Monday, February 28, 2011

I Heart Desserts

I'm keeping this simple.
Sunday = first anniversary.
Sunday = delicious three course lunch at Mikano.
Sunday  = two delicious desserts.  Twice baked chocolate souffle with coffee icecream and some yummy saucy thing.  And lemon mousse with lemon sorbet.


Saturday, February 19, 2011


When we first bought our house I thought 'hurrah I can now have the vege garden I've always dreamed of!'.

The first thing I did was pull out three magnolia trees, which apparently isn't allowed in my corner of the world, but as they were replanted in another corner of the world I'm sure Council wouldn't have minded too much.  These trees were replaced with a mandarin, feijoa and tamarillo tree, as well as a lemonade tree and a lime bush.

I dug up loads of grass to create a space for vegetables and over the years I've grown potatoes, corn, tomatoes, peas, beetroot, rhubarb, courgettes, apple cucumbers and beans.

This year it struck me.  The money I was spending on seeds/seedlings was not in fact being repaid in produce.

Yes the papers bang on about how much money you'll save if you grow a garden, and I grew a garden, but the garden did not really grow much in the way of vegetable.  Even after I forked out a goodly amount of money on fertiliser and spent more money on a compost bin in the hopes of adding more nutrients to the soil.

This year the tomato plants in one part of my garden yielded three tomatoes.  The beans gave me all of six beans.  The courgette - two courgettes.  The apple cucumber - four cucumbers (which I could have bought for $2 at the local grocer and the seedling cost me 3.49).  In fact the only plants that have thrived are the rhubarb and the tomato plant - which sprung out of nowhere in the middle of my flower garden.

As for the fruit trees?  After 3 years the tamarillo has five tiny fruit hanging off it.  The lime has one lime.  The lemonade failed to fruit at all.  The feijoa is finally fattening up.  And the mandarin is weighed down.  So two out of three plants may in fact end up paying for themselves and then some.

So what's a girl to do about it?  A girl who hopes to sell her home in the coming years so she can buy a larger home to house her (hopefully) expanding family?

I'm saying 'phooey' to the vegetable garden and planting flowers which if anything will make the house look more presentable and less hotchpotch.  My garden will be an ode to cosmos and impatiens.  Cosmos - 2.49 a pack (and self seeding) and impatiens FREE from my lovely neighbour.  The added value to my home, to be determined.  The added beauty?  Priceless.

Impatiens ... with a touch of weeds. 

Sunday, February 13, 2011

The joys of fish n chips

On Friday I ended the official holiday period with a meal of Fish N Chips and beer.

It was bloody good.

And I was bloody good 'cause I didn't guts them all down ... no, I left exactly six chips behind and threw them in the rubbish bin so I wouldn't eat them later.

Our local fush n chup shop do the best chips - they taste like they've been deep fried in butter.  Mmmmm.

Well tomorrow I return to the workforce once again.

Time to plan my next holiday I think ... and to buy another Lotto ticket.

Friday, February 11, 2011

The Lady Girl Debate

The other day I was about to text a friend to say happy birthday.
It was her 32nd birthday.
And what I was going to write was:  Happy Birthday lovely girl.

Then I thought, hold on, at 32 you're not really a girl.  I mean, you are because you've got the girly double X chromosome thing happening, but you're not this young thing who makes daisy chains and plays with dolls.  You're actually a woman.  But Happy Birthday lovely woman just sounds wrong.  Then I thought about writing "Happy Birthday lovely lady".  But that just sent shivers of revulsion down my spine.

For some reason whenever I hear someone calling a woman a lady I imagine a creepy old man who is out on the prowl.  His hair slicked back, wearing a leather jacket, cheap polyester trousers and fake snakeskin shoes.  "Evening ladies", he says slickly "can I buy you a drink?".  And he works his way round the bar hoping that if he buys enough "ladies" a drink then one of them will go home with him.  The flaw in that theory though, is that no real lady would go home with a man like that.

But does context come into it?  I mean, if my 82 year old nanna called me a good girl I'd be fine with that, but if a 48 year old male colleague called me a good girl I'd want to throw every single toy I'd ever played with at him.  And if someone were to say that I'd grown into a fine woman I'd feel proud.  But I'd hate for them to say that you'd grown into a fine lady.

So I've decided that the best way to battle through this minefield is to not say girl or lady or woman.  From now on everyone will be darl.  Which makes me sound sort of Australian and possibly uneducated, but I don't care.  I'd rather be called a dumb Australian than a well spoken, shudder, lady.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

The bitter sweet end of a holiday.

Alas today is the last day of my holiday.

When I said that to my husband he said 'well not really, there's still the weekend'.  To which I say 'huff'.
A weekend is not a holiday.  A weekend is a weekend.  And it can't be counted as part of a holiday because you have to share it with other people.

The joy of a holiday is getting up late and feeling smug because the majority of the world are already at work.  The joy of a holiday is cracking open a bottle of bubbles at 5pm while people are stuck in rush hour traffic.
The joy of a holiday is going for a walk to the shops at any time of the day and enjoying the fact that people might think you're a big old dole bludger (which I personally have nothing against so long as you're trying to find a job) while you're secure in the knowledge that you pay a shite load of tax every month.
The joy of a holiday is having fish n chips with a beer for lunch.  Which is EXACTLY what I'm going to do today to commemorate the last day of my divine holiday.

Oh and I took a picture of my dwarf dahlias this morning before the bees started buzzing furiously about them (trust me, the bees aren't disappearing they're just all living at my place) ... aren't they pretty?

Monday, February 7, 2011

'I ate all the pies!" said the crazy cat lady

I'm not sure how I feel about Fly Buys points.
On one hand they take so long to accumulate that I don't think they're worth the hassle.
On the other hand once in a blue moon I can cash them in for something fabulous, like my latest acquisition, a pie maker!

Which makes beautiful pies like the one below:

This pie was the Mexican pie, containing leftover beef and bean nacho mix, guacamole and sourcream.  It was divine ... or should I say THEY were divine - nomnom.

I've also made a thai green chicken curry pie (thanks for the tip Susie!) and a leak pie.  All excellent.

OH! and in between pie making I did some cat stalking.  Yes I stalked my cat 'cause I wanted to force a cuddle upon him.  Something he hates me doing which probably explains why he stands very still when he sees me before making his escape.  Anyway he had a new hidey hole to sleep in during the day:

(Look for the shining eye and the cat will be revealed)

There he is!
Anyway upon finding him I chose to do the kind thing and leave him alone ... this time.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

I like Cheese

In fact I like cheese is an understatement.
I love cheese.
All sorts of cheese (well mostly, the really pongy blue and I are still circling each other trying to decide if we're friends or not).
I can't got past Mercer without stopping in at the cheese shop and spending too much money on cheese - maasdam, pecorino, gouda ... you name it I'm buying it.

So what does one cheese lover do on their second day of holiday?

They make cheese!!

I used Annabelle Langbein's soft cheese recipe (an absolute doddle to make) and it came out beautifully! It's like a rough textured sour cream but tastes very fetta-ish. I could eat it all day ... oh that's right I have been.

Friday, February 4, 2011

I didn't quite nail it ...

Day One of a holiday has to be the best ever.

Your whole holiday is still to come, you've DAYS to relax, the possibilities are endless!

So what did I do?

Made cheese, went for a walk, then sat on the couch for about five hours watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer episodes while supping on the grape stuff. A good time.

In between all that I went to see the lovely Lucy and had a manicure (thanks to the husband for providing the voucher). Deciding to try something different I chose a purple shade to adorn my nails. Perhaps not the best idea I've ever had. I feel like I ought to be a member of the Misfits from Jem. Or an extra on Outrageous Fortune. Even the lovely Lucy suggested that next time I might try a darker shade or red ...

Thursday, February 3, 2011

I'm on HOLIDAY!!

One week of bliss.
I'll garden.
I'll cook.
I'll spend endless hours surfing the interweb.
I'll drink tea in the morning.
I'll drink wine in the evening.
I'll watch trashy television.
And I might even do a bit of exercise.

Oh and I'll sell clothing on Trade Me to make up for the clothing I bought at the market (a jacket, a jumper and a 'rugby' top ... and the clothing i bought on that my husband doesn't know about, ha!)

Happy days!!