Monday, 25 May 2015

New 101 in 1001 list

When I first started my blog back in October 2012, it's original purpose was to document my adventures with 101 things in 1001 days (see my first post here)

That list ended in March this year and I only completed 46.5 items on my list (see here) but if you go and check out my last post you'll see why.

So I've decided to start another list, there are some things from the last list moved over that I didn't complete and there is a lot of new items too.

I've changed a lot in the past 2.5 years and I know I'll change a lot in the next 2.5 years too which is why I haven't got a full 101 items on my list quite yet, as I'm still working out what exactly are some of the things I'd like to accomplish over the next 1001 days. So far I've got 68 items and it gives me room to grow and add more things over the coming months.

As a laugh I decided the starting date for this list would be April 1st 2015 (April Fools Day), which means the end date will be December 27th 2017 which will be a nice Christmas present - so it works out pretty good timing.

As I complete items and add new ones I'll keep you update to date with it all.

Anyway without further ado here's my list so far, I'm so looking forward to completing more items this time round.

1. Finish Crochet Rug (from last list)

2. Finish Dolphin Cross-stitch (from last list)

3. Read the whole Bible

4. Take a photography course (now that I've got my new camera that I wanted from my last list)

5. Build a Macaron Tower (from last list)

6. Learn to handstand (from last list)

7. Buy a bike (from last list)

8. Ride a camel

9. Read Anne of Green Gables Series (from last list)

10. Work on my cookbook idea

11. Work on my photobook idea

12. Start writing a fantasy novel (which my husband wants to help be involved with)

13. Photograph a sunrise each month (at least 13 of them)

14. Decorate a 3 tier cake

15. Buy a new car (my poor Stewie has seen better days)

16. Visit a famous landmark I've never seen before

17. Hide 20 encouraging notes throughout the city

18. Photograph a street scene or landscape in all 4 seasons

19. Paint the house

20. Recarpet the house

21. Read at least 15 books (I'm such a slow reader)

22. Stencil paint the hallway

23. Get a hot stone massage (from last list)

24. Make a Seven of Nine costume (from Star Trek)

25. Buy a chocolate from a posh chocolate shop

26. Go to Supernova expo

27. Cook a duck

28. Cook a rabbit

29. Try duck eggs

30. Climb a tree

31. Re-do the kitchen cupboards

32. Fix up the backyard (such as paving, turf etc)

33. Cook a Japanese banquet

34. Try a tequila shot

35. Make proper chai tea (not just from the teabag)

36. Tie-die a t-shirt

37. Make a Death Star Cake

38. Complete the Better Lettering Course

39. Write an Ebook

40. Make salted caramel

41. Take the Cronulla coast walk

42. Make my own cheese

43. Grow mushrooms

44. Have a dress custom-made for me

45. Plant a garden

46. Take my oldest nephew on a city trip

47. Learn to play a basic song on the guitar

48. Make grasshopper pie

49. Make a 3 coloured globe cake

50. Have a fairy tea party with my niece

51. Dress up for Disney on Ice

52. Read Lord of the Rings again (now that I'm older)

53. Crochet a Stormtrooper quilt

54. Have an Alice in Wonderland party

55. Play the board game Risk

56. Buy my husband the lego Death Star (to go with his Millennium Falcon I bought on the last list)

57. Start designing invitation packs

58. Participate in NaNoWriMo

59. Start a children's story

60. Paint or buy a mural for the garden

61. Learn some coding

62. Photograph lighting in a storm

63. Create an e-newsletter with my blog

64. Grow e-newsletter list to 150 subscribers

65. Sew a yellow blazer

66. Make a Snow White costume

67. Make pasta

68. Make ginger beer

To be continued.....

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Photo source here

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Baking Stains plus giveaway

This post is brought to you by Vanish


I'm an amateur baker and no matter what I do, I create mess. My husband loves to eat my baking creations but never likes the look of the kitchen afterwards. I'm slowing getting better and I'm now starting to clean as I go, which MJ is very delighted about (thank goodness for paper towel and wipes). The only thing I can’t seem to get any better at is not getting mess on myself.

Even with an apron on, I find buttercream on my foot, icing sugar in my hair, chocolate on my jeans, flour on my face and some kind of concoction that resembles melted cheese and crushed nuts on my shirt, which was by the way covered with an apron but somehow still got there. I swear dirt has a vendetta out on me as I always manage to have some kind of stain somewhere on my person.

Now there’s no way I’m going to give up baking and cooking just because I get stained (a lot), I’m sorry but it ain’t gonna happen. I love getting lost in the process of creating something spectacular out of what is considered humble ingredients (flour, sugar, milk, eggs, nuts etc). It’s so enriching being able to create something out of pretty much nothing.

So what’s an amateur to do with all those baking stains?

Call in the experts.

If anyone knows how to get rid of clothes stains its Vanish. They even have their own dedicated Stain Solver website where you click what stain you've got and they give you stain removal tips. How awesome is the internet?? You have a problem it will help you find the solution.

Vanish has kindly given me a Vanish NapiSan prize pack for one lucky person to win.

The pack includes:
  • Vanish Preen Oxi Action Trigger
  • Vanish NapiSan Oxi Action Powder
To win all you need to do is leave a comment below and tell me what is your most common stain in your household?

Competition ends Friday 22nd May at midnight and is open to Australian and New Zealand residents.

Look forward to hearing your stain stories.

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Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Quick & Easy Cupcake Topper

I want to show you how to make a quick and easy cupcake topper for your next party or afternoon tea.

The things you'll need: 
  • Fondant in the colour of your choice
  • Stencils 
  • Edible dust (I used silver as it would stand out on the blue) 
  • Copha (vegetable shortening) 
  • Paintbrush
  • Fluted cookie cutter 
  • Rolling pin
  • Small spatula 
  • Cupcake with covered in buttercream

First up roll out your fondant to about 3mm thick. Using the stencil of your choice, place on top of the fondant and using some Copha on your finger, smear a generous amount over the part of the design you want. Once you have put the Copha onto the stencil, dip your paintbrush into the silver dust and apply generously all over the design. Carefully peel back the stencil to reveal the pretty design. Then using the fluted cookie cutter cut out the design. Allow to set for about an hour and then place on top of your cupcake. 

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Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Stop the blaming!!!


We were put on this earth to love, respect and look after each other even if we don’t get along. We are all in this together; we are all the same in that we all need protection, acceptance and love.

Men are naturally physically stronger than women, it’s just the way nature is, there’s nothing wrong with that, what is wrong is when that physical strength is used to intimidate, control and hurt.

A friend of mine just recently got out of a very verbally abusive marriage to a man that she thought loved and respected her, a man that said on their wedding day he would look after her. She was one of the lucky one, she took all the strength she had left and walked out the door.

Her abuse had been going on since the day after she got married and she hid it from everyone including her family for months. She blamed herself, she made excuses for his behaviour, she hoped it would stop, she got professional help but it only got worse.

Domestic violence happens more than we care to admit because people don’t want to admit it’s happening to them. My friend waited over a year before admitting it was happening. Since admitting it, she’s been faced with accusations from some saying she didn't try hard enough, she’s too sensitive, she should put up with it because marriage is for life. This blaming needs to stop!!! NOW!!! We all have a choice over our actions and he choose to scream at her, to belittle her, to treat her like crap. She’s not to blame for his actions as he has made the decisions to do what he's done not her. 

Also it’s not just men that do this, women do it too. We've got to stop hurting each other and get ourselves help. There’s nothing wrong with asking for help, I've been seeing a psychiatrist for 5 years for my depression/anxiety and I’m so grateful for all the help Suzie has given me, I'm a much better person for her help.

34 women this year have died in Australia from domestic abuse (that's 2 a week) from people they loved and thought they could trust. That's 34 less beautiful people on this earth and what's wrong is that women are still being blamed for it. Stop blaming the victims and start helping the ones that are doing the abuse, start getting them help so they can become better people.

Please let’s stand together and put an end to domestic violence so that others like my friend can smile and know there’s a brighter future out there for themselves.