The Ginger Festival

A few weeks ago we went to The Ginger factory for the Ginger Festival. 
We enjoyed variety of talks and demonstrations, perused the gardens and ginger plants 
and watched the other entertainment.
We sat in on a cooking demonstration (grain free, gluten free) 
a garden lecture on native plants and enjoyed some ginger treats.

 J was not sure about this character, but she/he was very funny. 
I had to explain Dame Edna, which is not that easy and then 
he didn't believe me when I said she was a man!

Fabric Marker Cushion DIY

So I found my black fabric marker and some calico and a cushion inner, then used a letter stencil and traced words (with a pencil first) directly onto the fabric. I then made a cushion and to get the frayed edge look, just zigzagged one side.

Lots of things you could print on a cushion actually!

Crochet Lampshade

I had some thick Tshirt style fabric thread in this lovely mustard colour and I also had a broken this is what happened after some single crochet and a bit of twisting.
It is a bit lopsided in places, but will do for the moment.

Crafty Little Foxes

I made these from the Mollie Makes magazine because they were so cute.

Recycled Map Waterproof Pencil Case

 I had a very old street directory which I new would come in handy one day, and that day was yesterday, when I wanted to make some pencil cases in the form of an envelope.
First I cut some plastic to size, the non adhesive type ( $1.50 from Office works) and used double sided clear tape to hold the paper in place.
The plastic is on the inside and outside and I cut a separate lid from paper but it was one piece of plastic on the backside, if that makes sense.
The sewing machine was then used to sew along the top front panel, then zig zag all around the sides, bottom and top.
The flap folds over if you crease it and leave something heavy on top for a few minutes.
Any recycled paper could be used, or colouring in sheets, books, photos, any size and it is fairly waterproof, although I haven't poured water in it!
I think a long skinny one would be kind of useful and you could put velcro on it to keep it closed and make sure your pencils didn't fall out.
Total cost, less than 50c, if that.
One craft down, two more on the go, so must go and get busy!

At Play Today

 A sailing adventure and a rock n roll dinosaur band (with cows as the fans?) amongst other things.

A Migrating Channel-Billed Cuckoo

This is a big and unusual bird, we think it is the Channel- billed Cuckoo all the way from 
New Guinea and  PNG.
It was in our backyard causing a riot amongst the regulars, such as the parrots, 
currawongs, butcher birds, minors, crows, magpies, honeyeaters, 
willy wagtails and cockatoos.
What is all that noise? Why are all the birds ganging up and dive bombing 
that giant thing up there?
We spent quite a while watching the show.
At first we thought it was an eagle of some sort, but then we got a close up of the
large beak and red eyes. 
We finally discovered it's name and why the other birds were not happy to share their tree. 
This bird is a nest invader, it uses the other nests to lay eggs and then abandons them, 
to be fed by the other birds (and these chicks eat heaps). 
The parent comes back though when it is time to fly North for the winter.
Cuckoo day care?
 The cockatoo seemed nervous also and tried a few times to scare this large Cuckoo away.
But the Cuckoo was not worried at all.

Well thanks for visiting Mrs Cuckoo.
More info about this interesting bird can be found here

Farewell Fish

These were our new fish...
Salt and vinegar
Santa and

They lived with us for about 10 hours.
Now they are under the Mango tree.

We wait and try again.

Happy New Year

What will we discover in 2014?

Christmas Day 2013

 A Happy Christmas it was!
After opening many presents from Nanny Poppy, we spent the day playing.
Playing new and old boardgames, building Lego and relaxing outside.
Eating ham, Christmas Pudding and all those other yummy Christmas treats.
Water play was involved.
 H was keen to try his new painting set and Art Easel, so he created a piece of work.
He also made this funny fellow for the gate...

Christmas Eve Dinner 2013

Christmas Eve dinner is always nice, I like the atmosphere and I also 
prefer cooking in the evening rather than during the heat of Christmas Day.
This year was easy going, yummy, and fun...just as it should be.
 Leaves from the garden.

Baked, creamy camembert is delicious with some nice crusty bread
 and so easy with garlic and thyme.
Pears were thinly sliced and baked in the oven, fruit mince was a mix of granny smith finely diced and some organic sultanas and spices and maple syrup simmered on low.
Lamb cutlets were browned then cooled and one side coated 
with a mint, pistachio (and some other bits and pieces) then refrigerated 
until time to cook on BBQ. The fresh cherries were mixed with cabernet paste 
and a little water to make a sauce.
The coconut meringue (purchased from a local patisserie) was scattered 
amongst fresh mango, lychee and passionfruit.
I made passionfruit curd and mixed half of whipped double cream with it.
The sorbet was a good accompaniment.

 Old music sheets used for placemats and I re-filled some crackers with personal trinkets.

A lovely evening, great company but unfortunately not too many photos!