Thursday, February 26, 2009

A cup of tea and a bit of a catch up

Ah, it's been well worth the wait! I feel I have been overdue for a sit down and relax with a cup of tea while I reflect... things have been a little hectic here and I keep feeling like I've got 50,000 things to do and no time to do them in... The fact that Jett is enjoying making me earn my stay-at-home-mothering job by taking anywhere up to an hour to go to sleep (2 day sleeps and a nighttime one means this can be up to 3 hours!!) isn't helping. But then I only need to look at him and the frustration melts (well, actually, truth be told, it melted after having a light beer and glass of wine at mum's!), but hey sometimes it melts without the use of alcohol :P

I've had a few things I've been meaning to blog about but then time has slipped and they are no longer as current. But here's my lovely post-Valentines Day breakfast that Kym made for me on the Sunday because he worked on the Saturday. Hmm.. it was pretty good. Scrambled eggs and avocado on Sol bread, all washed down with a superb bottle of Champagne. (Ignore the 'lick it' on the bottle that was written by Urbane's kitchen team, sometimes it's best not to question!) I think I've become a bit of a Champagne snob of late and now that I can only have a glass or two at a time I've decided it needs to be the good stuff. Life's too short to drink cheap wine, that's what I say :D

Then there was the great meal we had at our house Sunday week ago with my extended family when Kym brought home some yummy snapper fillets stuffed with crab mousse left over from work (**I assume the boys from Urbane don't read my blog! he he he -just kidding, it was needing to be chucked if not eaten) and he wok-tossed some wombok, yams and shallots with fish sauce and ginger, served with rice. Jett was just mad for it! We're proud the little man has taste :P Excuse the pic too - I was planning on taking the photo before I started eating it but couldn't help myself!

Mum and Bec both made desserts so were well stuffed afterward but it was totally worth it. Mum made a delicious bread and butter pudding and Bec a fancy take on a crumble, made with yummy nuts and seeds in the crumble, and peach and raspberry's as the filling. I feel hungry again just writing about it... As Bec's was still in the oven when this pic was taken I only have one of mum's.

Then there's been lots of pochette making which was lots of fun for the Beckybean shop and myself. But I'm about to get into the reversibles again so I'm about to go in and pick some fabrics once I get off the computer... all in good time though. I want to savour this cup of tea.

Oh and the biscuits I made last Thursday for a friend coming over for a visit... They are chocolatey, oatey, LSA (ey), and absolutely delicious. We are always modifying ingredients and they still always turn out crackers. I had every intention of making them a week earlier and sending the recipe in for the Handmade Help Cookbook but it didn't happen and by the time I had this photo they were full on biscuits! So I opted for my minestrone recipe soup so I guess I'll wait and see if I made the cut :P (pardon the pun, he he he).

Other than that, there's been a bit of 'park life' with my mum and the kids, trips to Gymboree, cafes with Bec and the kids, quick visits down to SA to see all the in-laws, lots of op shop browsing, swims at my aunty and uncles and parents places, swimming lessons with Jett and Kate, and of course a bit of swimming action at Southbank last Sunday (possible with the rest of South-East QLD!), where we still managed to run into a few sets of friends we hadn't seen for a while. I love how Brisbane really has the small-town feel sometimes :D

Oh and before I forget, the lovely Bel and Em from EmBelish have nominated me for Proximidade Award. Bel and Em are fellow BrisStylers who have a great blog and sell some gorgeous little items in their Etsy shop, like hairclips, softies, brooches and many other fabulous things - go check them out! Thank-you Bel and Em, I am really stoked you thought of me for this award.

Proximidade is described as follows:

This blog invests and believes in PROXIMITY - nearness in space, time and relationships. These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in prizes for self-aggrandizement! Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers!

Now it where I list eight other people to pass it onto. Like Bec, I can't choose (I am a Librian afterall so I'm going with that excuse!) and don't want to double up on anyone that may have already received it. Check out my 'lovely blogs' on the side here and see if there's any you aren't familiar with and have a read. You never know what you might find out :D

So it's been good to reflect on my busy couple of weeks, and to remember just how good I have it sometimes. I know I wouldn't want anything any other way!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

I think I just like saying the name, Pochette!

Bec and I have finally finished our first little collection of pochettes (the French term for envelope clutch) for the Beckybean store. We're in the process of uploading them now and a couple more should be added in the next day or so. These are a new item for the store so we'd love to hear your feedback on what you think :P

I'm pleased there were a couple of 'test' ones I have claimed for my own 'research' purposes :D

Here's a few to have a squizz at anyway from the store.

And these are two of the pochettes for me!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Eye Spy...Love

The thing I cherish most in my life is my family. My parents, siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents, nieces, nephews, in-laws. These are the 'loves' I have known my entire life (or a new additions that have enriched it) and wouldn't be the person I am today without them. Then there's the person I met and have grown to love, and yet still love more each day - Kym. Then there's the 'instant love' - the love we felt for Jett the minute we found out I was pregnant and is a love that will never waiver the entire time I breathe. It's such an indescribable and amazing feeling to be able to love someone unconditionally with whom you have just met.

Sure there's things in this life I say I love but I guess are really just 'great' - great food, great wine, great books, great movies. Not my true loves. Of course I love my friends too and they are super important to me, but whilst sometimes they can come and go, the people that always remain is family. And to these 'family' members (you know who you are) who are here in a heatbeat when I call and am having a bad day - a massive thank you!

Thanks to Cindy for hosting and picking this weeks theme - we all need a reminder sometimes of what truly makes us happy!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Vintage sewing patterns for sale!

My sister has been busy sorting through all her old patterns she has acquired over the years, and has been uploading them to the Beckybean Etsy shop to support THE HANDMADE HELP BUSHFIRE APPEAL . These funds are currently providing direct assistance to survivors and wildlife affected by the fire storms in Victoria Australia through the RED CROSS and WILDLIFE VICTORIA. All of the monies raised from the sales of the patterns is being donated, so now's the time if you're feeling it's time to make a new dress, or an outfit for your little one/s. They are up there pretty cheap (US$4 and free postage within Australia!) and go for way more on sites like ebay etc. So get sewing and support a well-worthy cause :D

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Eye Spy... my secret (food) shame

This week I was lucky enough to be asked by Cindy to choose this weeks theme. However when I actually thought about mine I realised I probably have too many... until recently, I did like to indulge in the occasional small cheeseburger meal, or chips and gravy from KFC... in fact Kym was quoted in the Courier-Mail a couple of months ago saying something similar with a chiko roll when asked what chefs liked to eat but hate to admit it. But I'm trying to be better. We're trying to be better. We're trying to be healthier. I'm not eating as much crap as I once did. Well I wasn't until last Friday when my sister and I did our weekly shopping at Coles (to help raise money for the 2009 Bushfire Appeal) I couldn't walk past the chocolate isle and not purchase a block of this... Now it's no secret to anybody just how much I love chocolate, but I've normally been buying Green & Blacks Maya in an attempt to not scoff. (There may have been a time only a few short months ago when I was eating 3 blocks a week). However I resisted and purchased this block of milk chocolate. Which was gone in its entirity by 10pm (I didn't even get home from the supermarket until 5pm...). What was worse though was I tried to put the wrapper in the bin (above pic) before Kym could see I ate a whole block in a day... which he saw the next morning and still enjoyed giving me shit for being such a little piggy :P So I guess I was a little embarrassed which is why this week it's my secret shame.

Head on over to Bugandpop to play along.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Donations for Handmade Help

It's still difficult to fathom the extent of the destruction currently happening in Victoria right now and how the lives of so many people will be affected forever. In response to these horrific bushfires, the proceeds from the sales of two of our bags 'Eco Market Tote - Jaffa' and 'Clip-Clap reversible handbag' will be donated to the Handmade Help Fund to help bushfire survivors. EDITED: This has now SOLDEDITED: This has now SOLD
As mentioned in a previous post, this market tote was made by me and was recently listed on the front page of Etsy, and the reversible was made by Bec and recently featured on the Cuteable website. The Handmade Help site has been set up by Cindy at Bugandpop and will keep tabs on all the auctions and sales for the fund.

There are so many wonderful people doing their bit to help. I strongly recommend a visit to some of these great sites to see how you can get involved.
Handmade Help
Meet me at Mikes for Handmade Help explained
OzBushFireAppeal's shop

Monday, February 9, 2009

Eye Spy... something delicious!

What to choose, what to choose! What a great theme selected by Handmaiden. I decided I had to run with a range of icecreams in our freezer by my favourite icecream makers and personal good friends of ours, Grant and Mel at Lick!. They really do make the most amazing and creamy icecream - none of that rubbish that's made with milk and whipped to air to taste like nothing - nosirre! It's made with REAL cream and boy can you taste the difference! (never mind the calories, that's what the gym's for right?) I'm quite lucky that Kym often brings me home new ones to try. These ones are (back left to right) White Sambuca icecream and Orange & Passionfruit sorbet, and the ones at the front are Raspberry & Irish Cream icecream, Egg Custard icecream and Red Bull sorbet. Admittedly going from being pregnant to now breastfeeding has meant I've never really sampled the Red Bull one which Grant made especially for Kym and the kitchen team.

The lovely Cindy at Bugandpop has asked me to select next week's theme and hopefully it's not too close to this weeks... because I'm also a lover of food. So I'm going to run with

Eye Spy... my secret (food) shame!

I would love to see what other people LOVE to eat but are not so proud of. It could be a sneaky cheeseburger, a piece of 11 secret herbs and spices, chips and gravy, or just your secret chocolate stash! I look forward to reading everybody's secret indulgences :D

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Eye Spy... a small object

This is one of Jett's many dummy's that now surround our house. It's about as small as things get around here (or try to be anyway!). Before Jett was born I was convinced he was not going to have a dummy - I wasn't going to give him one. When he was born I didn't even have one as a 'just in case'. I can't pinpoint my issue with it. I didn't think it was wrong for others to have them. I just didn't want Jett to 'need it'.

And then he hated the car... actually he's still not a big fan (how many 10 month old's do you know have their own DVD player since they were 4 months old???). But it and the dummy together seemed to ease the non-stop crying in the car. Phew, I thought I was bound to only go within a 10 minute radius from home. He really did just love being able to suck all the time (and it was not a feasible option to let him be permanently attached to my breast 24/7). Then it seemed to help put to him to sleep when rocking. Then I said he would only have it when he was going to sleep. Then it seemed to help him not need to feed every 2 hours at nighttime. Then he would hurt himself and it helped calm him down, or stopped him crying when he was getting tired.

Now I have just succumbed to the fact that he has a dummy and he really does LOVE it. He gets excited for it. He no longer has it at the times that 'I dictate it's OK'. And now that he's at the 'I must put everything I see in my mouth stage', it certainly helps reduce the amount of foreign objects that pass his lips. Oh and when we're out in public or eating at a restaurant, it often helps with the excessive yelling or crying.

So I guess I have learned my lesson - at the end of the day you can't control everything as a parent. They have their own personalities and there's only so much you can do. Oh, and I guess never say never right?

Thank you to the Crafty Librarian for selecting this weeks theme and head on over to Cindy's site to play along.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Update on the 'bet'

Back in December I wrote about a bet that was happening in Kym's kitchen about the apprentice needing to lose 12kg in 12 weeks. Well he now has only one month to go and he has lost 3kg... he lost 6kg but then went and put on 3kg over Christmas. Poor bugger!

What I now find found funny about this is that he is now on the Cabbage Soup Diet (as opposed to the Tony Ferguson he was on before). I looked up this diet here and was pleased to see they make mention of the fact that this diet "is sometimes referred to as the "Mayo Clinic Diet", and the "Sacred Heart Hospital Diet". Interestingly, this diet has nothing to do with either the Mayo Clinic, nor any Sacred Heart Hospital we know about". Wow, so they have confirmed this diet has nothing to do with name of the hospital on one of my favourite shows, Scrubs. Hilarious. Obviously they don't watch the show or get the joke of why someone would call this diet that in the first place... I found this article as well about how bad this diet is. It's certainly up there with the Lemon Detox Diet my parents tried last year... but that's another story for another time. Needless to say it was a time when my sister and I had to be the parents as they were acting like children... (sorry mum if you're reading this but it's true, you didn't use your better judgement there!).

So anyway, I still wish Blake luck. He may get there... However he did go and call his boss a 'pussy' about how slow he rides his mountain bike, so when Blake wasn't looking he dropped 500gm of butter into his carefully portioned cabbage soup and blitzed it so he wouldn't know. Maybe there's a lesson in this for all of us - don't give people a hard time who can easily mess with the food you consume :D