Saturday, 30 July 2011

At Hest Bank, 4 Years Ago Today

On this day, 4 years ago, Joe and I were staying with Uncle Tom (Kelsall) at his lovely bungalow in Hest Bank. These photos are of Morecambe Bay and the shore at Hest Bank.

Across Morecambe Bay to the north and the Lakeland Mountains

Looking west to Morecambe itself

Houses along the shore at Hest Bank

Red Bank, a favourite picnic spot

Have a look here for more about Hest Bank, it's a beautiful place with lots of interesting history. This link is to many more images of the town and it's people.

Our very favourite resident of Hest Bank xx

Son-in-Law Eggs Recipe

Hard boiled eggs sizzling

sauce developing it's wonderful flavours

rice a-waiting

simple salad ready
 This is a quick and very easy dish but it's quite delicious. It's hails from Thailand and this is what you'll need~~~~basic recipe but you'll need to double it for a family or to make sure you have leftovers! It's success depends on the lovely balance of salty, hot, sour and sweet.

6 free range eggs, hard-boiled and shelled
1 tablespoon of cornflour(thanks L)

1 onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon of brown sugar
2 teaspoons of Maggi Hot Chili Sauce OR a chopped fresh chili
3 tablespoons of hot water
2 tablespoons of fish sauce
1-2 tablespoons of tamarind juice or lemon juice
oil for frying

Use a toothpick to poke 3-4 holes in the eggs so that they don't burst while they're frying and roll them in 2 teaspoons of cornflour which makes them nice and crispy.

Heat up a tablespoon or so of oil and put the eggs in to brown all over.

In a small saucepan heat another glug of oil and cook the onions until they're quite tender.
Add all the sauces, the sugar and the water and stir well.Cook for 5 minutes and then mix in the remaining cornflour to slightly thicken the sauce.

Serve with Jasmine or Basmati Rice, eggs on top with the sauce poured over, and perhaps a side salad.

In Thailand this dish often appears as part of a buffet-type meal.

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Harlequin Bugs and Some New Soap

I'd noticed some pretty red insects sheltering on the back of my garden spade(that I hadn't put away) and thought how cute they were. Yesterday I was reading a gardening magazine from the library and spotted my new little friends! They are Harlequin bugs or beetles and they live by sucking the sap from citrus trees, potato and pumpkin plants. Hmmm. Not good. The solution was simple enough though, drop them into a few inches of soapy water and that's it. I knocked them off the back of the spade and even picked a few up off the garden. Sad but true...they were within a yard/metre of my lemon and lime trees, potatoes and pumpkin vine so they were definitely up to no good.....have you seen them in your vegie garden?

The other thing I did yesterday was try Rhonda's new soap recipe,

1000gms olive oil
250 gms copha
450 gms of rainwater
172gms caustic soda

You'll need to visit Rhonda's blog for her instructions. I found this recipe quicker and even simpler to use than her previous recipe, the soap this morning was easy to cut and stamp and I'm very pleased with the result. Thank you, once again, Rhonda.

The recipe makes twice the amount shown in this photograph for less than $10 Au if I leave it unscented, the essential oils are rather expensive.

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Wrist-warmers or Fingerless Gloves

Here's my pattern for lacy fingerless mittens. You'll need 4mm/UK 8 needles and 50grams of wool(hint..if you have half a big ball of yarn you can simply weigh it to see if you have enough) These mitts will fit a small to average hand.

You could also make plain gloves by just knitting stocking stitch, perhaps some stripes to use up oddments of yarn. I love to have a pair or two if my Gift Box and find that most people appreciate being given a pair. In fact I have people in Canada, Queensland, Victoria and Western Australia wearing my woolly warmth!

Cast on 39sts
Work knit 2, purl 2 to last st and purl 1
Work knit 1, purl 2, knit 2 to end

Repeat until you have 14 rows.

Lacy pattern is a 4 row repeat and is worked 7 times in all(giving you 28 rows of pattern)

1) knit 2, *yarn fwd, sl 1, k1, psso, k1, k2tog, yarn fwd, k1,* repeat to the end, knit 1
2) Purl
3) knit 3 *yarn fwd. sl 1, knit 2 together, psso, yarn fwd, k3* repeat to end
4) purl

Now work 8 more rows of the rib st pattern and cast off loosely.
Sew up seam to fit your hand leaving a space for your thumb.

To make larger mitts for a man I cast on 46sts and knit them plain or in a stripy pattern.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

South Fremantle

We've had two appointments at the Fremantle Hospital lately, one in June and again yesterday. The area around the hospital has many turn of the century workers' cottages as well as a thriving primary school. Here are some of the photos I took last month...

There are potatoes planted along the left-hand side of the fence.
I do wonder where this door leads?

and yesterday when the weather was far more wintry but still not cold.

I think this is a Chinese Tallow Tree

A huge eucalyptus tree in the school grounds

This tree must be a favourite with the children.

I love going to Fremantle

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Baby Dresses

With another baby girl grandchild on her way next month I was excited to find these two tutorials for teeny dresses made from 2 fat quarters or even a vintage pillowcase.

So off they go to Canada this week along with some sweet knitwear too!

Saturday, 23 July 2011

In Ottawa, 5 Years Ago

In the 10 years Joe and I have been married we've traveled overseas on 5 wonderful occasions. Three times to visit his large family in Montreal and Ottawa and twice to the UK with side trips to Paris.

These photos are from Ottawa, July 23rd, 2006. Ottawa is Canada's capital city and provides many beautiful photo's a small sample of  Parliament Hill and the Byward Market. Cakes for supper with William and Carolyn also came from the markets ;)

Fair Trade clothes from South America...

The Pub...

 and finally some sweet treats for supper with friends...

We also the colourful guards parading in front of the Parliament Buildings...

Hope you've enjoyed this glimpse of beautiful Ottawa,
Love from Sue

Thursday, 21 July 2011

Three In A Tree(house)

Just for fun, my three children in their homemade treehouse at our Cooloongup home in the mid 1980's.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Georgie, The Twenty Cent Rabbit

You know that I love to knit and sew and was delighted with Georgie who's cost came to a grand total of 20cents and that was for the second-hand pattern at the Red Cross Shop in Shoalwater Shopping Centre. This was in October 2010. Everything else was already here, the cotton for her body was white quilter's muslin, I knit her little cardigan from some Bendigo Mills cotton yarn that Tammy had sent me and I added a button from J-in-Wales.


Her skirt is a simple gathered rectangle cut from a vintage pillowcase and her felt boots are stitched from my scraps. The part I was dreading was her facial features...I tried kidding myself that having no face was Waldorf-like but it just looked vacant and slightly un-nerving so I took the plunge and used Shelagh's threads for her eyes and nose/mouth.

A thrifty toy all round and one that I doubt I can part with!
PS Tammy, J-in Wales and Shelagh are all friends from the DTE forum.

These are my knitted rabbits, Rebecca and Rachel......eta I bought the pattern for these lovelies from Elizabeth @ Her blog is a delight too as she lives in the Lake District There are some sweet free patterns there too.

It's very wet today but not really cold. I'm cooking a pork casserole in the slow-cooker and am making some lentil soup on the stove....the house smells lovely. This is my lentil soup'll need

1 cup of red lentils
1 chopped onion
1 chopped carrot
1 large stalk of celery thinly sliced
a crushed clove of garlic
1 tablespoon of tomato paste
a splash of olive oil, salt and pepper
boiling water

Gently fry the vegetables for a few minutes, stirring to stop them sticking
Add the tomato paste and fry for a minute or so then stir in lentils, salt and pepper
Cover with boiling water and cook for about will need to stir it regularly and add more water as the lentils absorb it.
The lentils dissolve completely leaving you with a thick soup nicely coloured by the tomato paste. Enjoy.

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Making Soap at Home

Today is the 1st anniversary of making my own soap. I've made 7 batches in this time, enough to keep Joe and myself clean as well as sharing it around with family and friends.

The cost for a plain soap is about 80cents a bar and is mild and gentle with the glycerine intact unlike commercial soap where it is removed and sold separately resulting in a drying soap. The cost of the essential oils is quite high but makes bathing a much more pleasurable experience. Joe loves his Man Soap which is a mix of 4 teaspoons each of patchouli and cinnamon oils with a teaspoon of ground cinnamon stirred in to give it a nice purple colour.

I use Rhonda's Cold Pressed Soap recipe and am using 2 x 2litre ice-cream tubs with baking paper as the soap keeps sticking in my lovely molds and needs digging out!

These last ones are scented with Sweet Orange Essential Oil and coloured with ground turmeric.

Confession...after posting about my huge wool stash I bought more. ( lol )  150gms of lambswool blend for $3 at the Red Cross Shop was too much temptation and a Milo is on the needles for Miss Megan :)

Monday, 18 July 2011

Date Squares...Joe's Favourites

These are one of grandad Joe's favourite baked goodies. I only buy raw sugar and plain wholemeal/brown flour nowadays and use Baking Powder as the raising agent.

you'll need

250gms of chopped dates or a mix of dates and sultanas
1 cup of hot water
1/2 cup raw sugar
2 tablespoons of cereal such as Weetbix crumbled, corn flakes etc OR use 1 tablespoon of flour

Mix together in a small saucepan and stir over low heat for about 5 minutes until thickened.

Leave to cool as you make the crust.

1 1/2 cups of plain wholemeal flour
180gms of soft butter.

Rub butter into flour until it resembles breadcrumbs and then stir in

1 1/4 cups rolled oats
1 cup of brown sugar
1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
2 teaspoons of baking powder

I used my Nana Gardner(Nellie)'s old silver spoon to press half of the mixture into a greased baking pan measuring about 23cms x 32cms

Bake at 180 degrees celcius for around 30minutes, it will be lightly browned, and allow to cool completely before cutting and removing from tin. Eat and enjoy, lovely with cream or custard too.

Here's a loaf of Cape Seed bread that was baked in the breadmaker today.

Our Little House, In Rockingham

Here we have the back patio featuring the lemon tree bought by Mum and Dad for my 50th birthday, a very small and messy kitchen during tomato paste production and the front of the little duplex with our Ford Laser ...must have been 2007/8?