Sunday, June 30, 2013


Stella: skateboarding with the boys. I think she impressed them with her speed, skill and dare-devilment..

Ruby: upside down over a muddy puddle. I can finally see her teeth coming through!

The girls are choosing their photos for my blog this week. I'm still facing major opposition over photo-taking. My solution at the moment is to let them pick which photos I use. They may not be the photos I like most, but there you go. Compromise is important in family life.

"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013."

Joining in with Jodi, at Che and Fidel

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Wednesday, June 26, 2013


Our mini veggie plots have been coming along nicely. Lettuces do well this time of year, so the rocket and spinach are looking green and happy. As per our garden diaries, the next step is to harvest and utilise our produce in our kitchen. 

I've one very keen chef in the making. Stella is always happy to be chopping, slicing and dicing, so after collecting some leaves we went to work. With my sister up over the weekend, we needed a big and colourful salad to go with my free-range roast chook and garlicky baked potatoes, so we opted for a tabbouleh, using lots of yummy and fresh ingredients and a simple dressing of seasoned olive oil and lemon juice.

It was delish. With the spicy rocket and ultra fresh spinach, it went down a treat.
And enough leftovers for me to take to work the next day. (Love leftovers!)

Today we picked a bit more to top home-made pizzas. We made our pizza dough from a simple online recipe, hand-kneaded and left to prove in the sun while we staked our tomatoes. 
After cooking the pizzas, we smothered them in fresh greens and a little bit of parmesan. 
And ate it all up. No leftovers this time!

It's so lovely to engage the kids in gardening and cooking; activities I adore. Giving them their own garden beds has been an inspired move. Hopefully these will be skills they'll take forward into their futures. 

I hope...

Sunday, June 23, 2013


Winter, t-shirts and ice creams...

 Stella: her favourite ice cream is a peppermint Magnum. A girl after my own heart...

Ruby: rainbow cones still top the list. A sweet picture of prettiness in her scratch and sniff T- shirt, she's a delicious strawberry squeeze...

It's winter here, yet today the girls went swimming in rock pools and finished up the walk with ice creams. We really do live in paradise...

"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013."

Joining in with Jodi, at Che and Fidel

Friday, June 21, 2013

report card

It's that time of year again. You know, the report card...
And this is mine...

(As completed by my youngest)
I did pretty well, I think. I was very happy with the A+ for love. As this is the most important category in this report card it was good to receive a top grade. I was a bit miffed by the C for smooching. I guess I do overly smooch them; their skin is so soft and I just can't help myself. But I must try and remember they're growing up, becoming more independent and probably not so keen to be smooched, particularly in front of friends and family. I will do my best to keep it in check.
And their report cards? Well, I'm not going to post them online. Suffice to say they both did extremely well, as always. But what makes me happiest is seeing the comments the teachers write about them. It appears as if both girls work hard, are responsible, have fun and are liked by their peers and teachers. This makes me very happy. This year both girls have excellent teachers; vibrant, inspired, motivated women who really "get" my girls. It's good. 
This is the last day of term. The promise of two weeks holiday lies ahead. I hope the cold weather continues so we can indulge sleeping in, open fires at night, walks on the beach and hot soups. I love winter.
Today I will tidy the house; and then ignore all housekeeping until the holidays have finished.
Happy holidays, everyone

Sunday, June 16, 2013



She requested one made from the remnants of my op shop find. I used this yarn to make a spiral scarf for my friend's birthday and had enough left over to make her beanie. The blue really suits her and highlights her beautiful eyes. 

Her beanie is still a work in progress. In the meantime she is happily swanning around in mine. I am hoping to finish hers this weekend so I can reclaim this one. Initially knitted for my nephew, I liked this  beanie so much I decided to keep it (it matches the one I made for PK a couple of weeks back). I quickly knitted another in black, brown and green hues to send south instead.. it looked great and was perfect for an almost-teenage boy.

"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013."

Joining in with Jodi, at che and fidel

Saturday, June 15, 2013

random pickings from the past week

The week has gone, as they do, and it seems as if we packed a lot in. Whew! It makes me reflect on life  pre-children. What did I do? Really?

PK was still tiling so the girls and I decided to get out of the house. We organised a lovely walk through the National Park with our buddies. No matter it was raining. The children embraced the spirit of the walk and splashed in puddles, shrieking ahead of us down the track. Raincoats were abandoned. We arrived at my friend's house 1/2 hour later, ready for hot showers and hot chips. 

coffee and cake with my darlin' at a (new for us) cafe, Little Cove Coffee. My Lindt chocolate friand was sooooo good. As was the double-shot coffee that arrived shortly after. 

a play in the park with friends. Aside from one little girl losing her lunch on this particular swing, it was a lovely way to finish the school week. One week until holidays!

a morning at Yandina Markets. My youngest picked out an amazing book on Dragonology. So much information in here! Secret codes, dragondust, scales and intricate drawings contribute to the awesomeness of this book. Love it...
oh, and wasabi peas for me and my eldest. We snacked on them while working on a school project.

On the other days, I worked. And cooked and cleaned and did stuff.. Oh, and ferociously knitted beanies like an addicted madwoman. I'm working on Ruby's now, then I'm done for a while. I have some sewing projects I would like to turn my attention to next. Watch this space... 

Monday, June 10, 2013


Stella: with her little friend Ivy. 
These guinea pigs have been free ranging in the back garden for some time. It seems a kinder way of life, mostly. Yesterday it rained continuously, so we set a food trap in order to catch them (they've become very canny and quick). After we rescued them, Stella dried and brushed them and made a lovely cosy bed in their indoor cage. This afternoon they got to come inside and watch a movie with the girls, while munching on carrot sticks.

Ruby: designing a board for her art shop on the deck.
We had Ruby's little friend over for the night. They spent hours in her room teaching; then more hours setting up an art shop. With cardboard money, one could have art made to order and delivered in person. It was a beautiful and creative activity. I did not have to intervene once in their play.

"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013."

Joining in with Jodi, at che and fidel

Friday, June 7, 2013

knitting by nana

This week, Ruby asked for some booties for her chocolate bunny. Being a bit tied up in my attempt number one disaster of a beanie and on a birthday deadline, I referred her to an expert. These booties were presented the very next day, complete with decorative ribbon...

The booties were such a hit that Stella then put in a request for her fave dog, Fergus. Mum was due to fly out two days later. "A-ha", I thought. "There's no way she can produce four little booties in time".
I was wrong...

Thank goodness for nanas, I say. (Even if they do show me up).
Now their special toys have nice snuggly warm feet for winter.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Happy birthday

PK had a birthday this week. He requested a beanie. They look easy and it should have been a piece of cake but I did struggle with it initially. I borrowed some circular needles which were too long, then I knitted it up on straight needles, estimating the size and combining a couple of online patterns to get what I was after. Well, my initial attempt was too loose and not long enough, a disaster that saw me unravelling the entire beanie two nights before his birthday.. Eeek...!!
However, I did learn from my mistakes. My second attempt was successful.. a nice warm snug fitting cap beanie in op shop wool that I loved..and finished the night before.
So they're not hard, and they don't take too long, provided you know what you're doing! My next project is to invest in some circular needles and teach myself to knit in the round. 

He was happy with the beanie, and with his other present, a retro-styled skateboard with bamboo deck and original surf art underneath. It is a treasure, if I do say so myself. Just looking at it gives me a little thrill of delight.

The birthday dinner was a combination of all his favourite dishes, finished off with a choc fudge cake with cream and fresh raspberries. Yum-o...

 I have loved this man for a very long time. We've had many, many adventures together over the last twenty five years. He makes me laugh and he loves me like no other. He's my family and my life.
Happy birthday, babe.

boat delivery

My dad took delivery of his new toy this week. A little sailboat from Walker Bay which can also be rowed or motored. It looks great and I can't wait to try it out with him.
Unfortunately (for me), my parents are off on a four week holiday from tomorrow, so I will have to bide my time. It won't be christened until they return.

So, expect more on this later..

the garden grows..

In spite of the fact we've had unseasonably excessive rain, in spite of the fact our capsicum seeds continue to be duds, and also in spite of the fact the garden beds have less than ideal sun, our garden is, thankfully growing (albeit slowly...)

Stella's tomatoes and rocket are both doing well. we picked a rocket leaf the other day to taste test. Ruby's comment.. "Mum, this tastes exactly like rocket!!.. Well, thank goodness for that!

Ruby's celery and spinach both appear to be thriving. The spinach is developing nice dark green leaves and looks sturdy and strong

Both lots of carrot seeds germinated this week under the hessian bags. I have removed the bags in the hope that the sunlight will encourage them on their merry way

A question or two; I'm hoping someone out there will have the answers..
Do I thin out the celery bunches?
And I'll have to thin the carrots as well, as they grow.. at what stage do I do this? 

It's been a lovely weekend in theses parts.

Saturday, June 1, 2013


Stella: she got her first "proper" haircut today. She was shampooed, cut and blow dried into a concave bob. She looks amazing. All grown up, somehow. I can't stop looking at her...

Ruby: she's become so proficient on her bike lately. And she can ride while still talking non stop, looking back constantly to make sure I'm listening!

"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013."

Joining in with Jodi, at Che and Fidel