Monday, 21 July 2014




"Portraits of my boys, once a week, every week, in 2014."

 Back to kindy and school for these two today - bit of a shock to the system with an early start after having two weeks of lazy mornings.  I'm already thinking ahead to the next school holidays......hello Term 3!

Joining in with Jodi's "52 project".


Saturday, 19 July 2014

Weekend baking


 I now do most of my baking in the weekend and tend to bake more in Winter.  I like to hide out in the kitchen Saturday and Sunday afternoons, while the kids are outside running around, tucked up inside playing or watching a movie.

Today was grey and a little bleak, and with heaving fruit trees over the fence it was time to get into the kitchen for a bit of baking time.

Tom was keen to help out so we made an Orange sponge cake with icing along with currant and citrus biscuits.  Both recipes we used were just a basic sponge and biscuit recipe that I changed a little and I needed to use currants as I seem to have two bags of them in the cupboard.

 Bell is at her cousins tonight and the boys are in bed early.  Mr H and I are working our way through the "Breaking Bad" series on DVD so we will watch that this evening while enjoying a takeaway Curry.

Sunday I'm hoping to do a bit of over due tidying in the garden, blitz the housework and make sure everyone is sorted for going back to kindy and school on Monday.

Hope you are having a good weekend where you are. xo


Friday, 18 July 2014

Out East



We are nearing the end of the school holidays here.  It has been a really good 2 weeks, and as usual it has flown by.
Today we took a drive around the coast, just an hour north of our town, where the landscape turns a little wild and rugged.  Green rolling hills, sheep and cattle galore.
The wind was freezing so we layered up and ventured out for a walk along Tolaga Bay Wharf.  The boys loved it, Tom treated us to his version of the Haka.  I clung onto little hands in the hope that no one would go "swimming".  It is a popular spot for wharf jumping and fishing over summer.  We will come back again when the sun is warm and shining.
The views are breathtaking, even when it's cold and a little grey.
Afterwards we headed into the small town nearby for pies (with the best ever buttery pastry), hot chips and steaming cups of coffee.
According to Tom it was "the best day ever"................and I couldn't agree more xo

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Easy little bread

I've tried a few different bread recipes my favourites being No Knead bread and a Nut butter loaf (delicious but expensive to make too often) - with the No Knead bread I found it's always best if it is eaten straight away as once it cools it can be quite hard.  I tried this Easy little bread recipe from my Grans Kitchen cookbook and it makes a delicious loaf, firm on the outside and super soft on the inside.  It went down a real treat.

If you haven't made bread before this is a really good starting point.  A perfect everyday bread, yummy with sweet or savoury toppings or just with a good swipe of butter.

Easy little bread

You will need:

1 1/4 cups warm water
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 tablespoon runny honey
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup wholemeal flour
1 cup rolled oats
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
Melted butter and oil for brushing


Mix the flours, oats, and salt in a large bowl.

In a bowl, sprinkle the yeast onto the warm water and stir until the yeast dissolves. Stir in the honey and set aside for a few minutes, until the yeast blooms and swells a bit - 5 - 10 minutes.

Add the wet mixture to the dry and stir very well.

Brush a loaf pan generously with some of the melted butter and oil. Turn the dough into the tin, cover with a clean, slightly damp cloth, and set in a warm place for 30 minutes, to rise.

Preheat the oven to 350F / 180C.  Brush with oil and butter and bake the bread for 35-40 minutes or until golden and pulling away from the sides of the pan.

Remove from oven, and turn the bread out of the pan quickly.

Makes 1 small loaf.


Sunday, 13 July 2014


"Portraits of my boys, once a week, every week, in 2014."
Tom - A Sunday drive to a look out point in town, a clear blue winters day, the views were stunning.  He loved it up there.
George - this little guy (with the possum eyes) can walk for miles!  His stamina astounds me.  We found a path at the top of the hill and followed it down into the bush, on and on we ventured through fallen leaves and boggy mud.  He loved it and promptly fell asleep on the car ride home.

Joining in with Jodi's "52 project".


Friday, 11 July 2014

Luscious lemon slice

I had a friend come over one afternoon this week with her three girls for an overdue catch up, some serious tea drinking and baked treats.

I had been out all morning and needed to make something quick before they arrived.  I tried this lemon slice recipe and it was delicious.  The next time I make it I'm going to add a little more lemon juice and some grated rind as I prefer a more a lemony taste.  Even a lemon icing drizzled on top would be good.  It only takes a few minutes to prepare and 30 minutes in the oven.

Making treats like this makes me realise how much I love good old fashioned baking using butter and sugar.  Yum!

Luscious lemon slice

You will need:

1 cup self-raising flour
½ cup caster sugar
60 g butter
1 egg, lightly beaten
¼ cup lemon juice
½ cup caster sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
60 g butter


For the base: sift flour into bowl, add sugar, stir well to combine. Rub in butter and add egg to form soft dough. Press two thirds into tin.

For the filling: place all filling ingredients into small pot and cook over low heat till thick.  Pour the hot filling over the dough in tin. Crumb remaining dough over top.

Bake at 350°F (180°C) for 30 minutes.


Wednesday, 9 July 2014

A little bit of colour

We are into the first week of the school holidays here and it has been a really relaxing and enjoyable first few days (touchwood / crosses self).  May it continue into week two.

The grey and cold has set in but there have been a few colourful treats around these parts.....

50% off Orla Kiely, couldn't say no.  Scored this beautiful tin - and it's huge!  I love her homeware's but once the prices are converted into NZ dollars her items are a tad on the expensive side so I like to keep an eye out for sales - my friend L always messages me when she spots one.

I joined in with Miriam from Create Hope Inspire for her Little Bit of Colour swap.  I was sent a parcel of treats from Kimberley of Creative Chaos - I'm hoping my recipient has received her goodies.  Kimberley and I had a good laugh about this as we always seem to get partnered up, I'm not complaining as she always sends such amazing things.  Thank you Kimberley! xo

The knitted dishcloth now sits under my Coffee Pot, it's too pretty to wash dishes with.

And I found more of the Forest Glade vintage Crown Lynn Dinner Set......13 pieces!  I saved a search on Trademe and  a couple of days later these turned up.  About 30 minutes after I pushed the BUY NOW button, Mr H was having "a moment" in the kitchen over all my crockery and thinks I need to start collecting something that doesn't take up so much room.  Bloody cheek!  He hasn't seen these yet as he is away.  I'm going to set the dinner table with the set tomorrow night.  Can't wait to see his face as he never misses anything, ha!

Flowers picked up with the groceries, for the mantelpiece and table.  Love a little bit of pretty colour about the house.

Have a great week!

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