The trouble with simple living is that, though it can be joyful, rich, and creative, it isn't simple. ~Doris Janzen Longacre

The best way to bring a sustainable change in the world around me is by bringing the change in myself

Sunday, January 31, 2010

It's a one pot affair today, a little garlic bread to go and thats it!Love making paella cause it so easy to do and not a lot of dishes either.Add a little garlic bread and a toss salad and you got a meal fit for a spanish king. He might want a litle sangria to go with it.

So I am going to post the recipe in my blog if anyone is interested making some. There are variations and variations with seafood, chicken etc but I just use what I got, ah and a good squeese of lemon juice. Calamari rings and prawns would have been lovely but I did not have any, so I just chopped up chicken breast and added a small tin of smoked mussels for that seafood flavour. It turned out lovely. I just guess at amounts as I go.
2 chicken breasts diced (wings or drummettes are also great to use)
2 onions peeled and diced
A little olive oil to brown chicken and onions
a few bits of garlic sliced
I can't afford saffron so I use 1 tablespoon of tumeric
Add 2 1/2 mugs fulls of long grained rice
1 tin of 410 gr diced tomatoes
Chicken stock (I use an OXO block with a cup of hot water)
and 1 level tablespoon salt
Add another 1ltr of water (Stir)
Cook on a meduim heat until dryish
Add frozen peas and a few fresh tomatoes cut into 1/8
Add a huge squeese of lemon juice and a little bit more water, (stir) turn heat down to low and cover . I added the tin of smoked mussels at this point.
Simmer for another +-1/2 hr (stir)
Check seasoning add a little black pepper.
Until nexttime

Saturday, January 30, 2010

A few pics around the yard ... feeding time

The dogs get a little dried pellets, just to see them through till dinner. Today they lucky to get a fresh bone each. Tomorrow if the weather permits we will have 3 dogs to bath in the hydrobath. and maybe Miss Daisy who has been playing with the backhoe and got oil on her fat tummy. Now that should be fun!!

One group of chooks are allowed to free range at a time, this morning it the silkies. Ginger and her chick could not wait to have a dust bath. It's nearly as big as her, just hope it 's not a little rooster.

Come on mum we hungry! Feeding time for the sheep, yep we back to feeding sheep bought stuff, pellets, lucerne and wheaten chaff and pony mix. And fresh lucerne bails . The grass is not growning fast enough ... we had a little rain on thursday. After breakfast they let out to graze on the lawn for a while. They easy to handle without the ram, just rattle a bucket of pellets and they come running.

This happens every morning as soon as Daisy's gate is opened, she heads off to the row of black bins, where all the feed is stored. While you getting feed for the sheep, she's into the buckets. It really is fresher than her bowl.
Now I am off to do dishes and hang the washing up
see ya

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Condensed Milk Cookies

Somewhere I got a little booklet that nestle brought out that contains all those great recipes that they have on the labels. I have a lovely apple pie that uses 2 tablespoons of condensed milk, but then I stuck with the rest of the tin. It keeps well when decanted into a little glass container and sealed, then lives in the fridge until next time.

(Oh my I forgot to post this one before I left for the farm Dec. It was heck tick, please forgive me ... or I could just wait for next christmas ... I think you can make them anytime.)

We have been making these biscuits for years, great as pressies and look very festive with green and red glased cherries.

You will need

250 gr Margarine 3/4 cup sugar

1 tin condensed milk 3 1/2 cups flour

1/2 teaspoon vanilla 2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

Cream marg and sugar, add condensed milk, then dry ingredients. Mix well. Roll into small balls (slightly heaped tablespoon fulls) and place on baking tray. Press lightly with a fork to get the lines. Cut cherries into 1/4 's and press 1/4 on top of the cookie. Bake at 180 for 10 mins or light golden.



Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Daisy's story

For those that are new to my blog, Daisy is a feral goat that was picked up somewhere near Mudgee by a young couple that thought raising a goat in their backyard sounded like fun. They struggled to feed her and had to find a new home for her. When I got her,she could not have been older than4 or 5 days. I wonder how different Daisy's life would have been living free. I wrote this today for Daisy. Please read it to your little one's and if they like it I would love to know. Here goes ....

Where's my mummy?
What just happened to me ... why have those strange humans snatched me from my mummy? I tried to run away from them, but I could not cause they where so fast. I am frightened and hungry, my tummy is rumbling so loudly. Where are you mummy?

Mummy, I don't like the milk the humans want me to drink. It's not nice and warm like your milk and they so rough with me. I asked them to "Please take me back to my mummy. I miss you.
Where are we going now?

Why have we stopped and who is that new human person?
Hey where are you going without me? Oh no, they leaving me.
She picks me up and cuddles me softly. She warm up some milk for me to drink and talks to me softly. My eyes are so tired maybe I will close them a little.

Mummy, I not scared anymore cause she is kind to me ...
I like her. I going to drink my milk and grow big. Then I will go look for you.
I love you Mummy.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Australia Day

!!!Happy Australia Day!!!

It's with pride the Australian celebrate this day, the flag blowing in the wind. Cars with flags on, painted faces and stickers on little kids faces. Lamb on the barbie Celebrations on the harbour front and parks. The Tennis is on the Tellie. Proud to be Australian.

January 26th is the anniversary of the arrival of 11 convict ships from Great Britain, and the raising of the Union Jack at Sydney Cove by it's commander Captain Arthur Phillip,in 1788.The colony they set up was the first white settlement in Australia.

Talk of the flag changing ... distancing themselves from the English rule ... why bother with changing the flag ... it's part of our history. Even the Aboriginals fort under the flag and some of them are proud of it. They have their flag and they happy. Our Priminister said sorry for taking the kids away from their parents but the hurt lies deep. "Stolen Generation"It's not only those kids but others too. But todays not the day for that.

We celebrate the landing of the ships in the harbour!

Happy Australia Day!

Monday, January 25, 2010

The East Wing is under construction

Once it was home to Clyde, and 3 silky hens, Ginger and Fred lived with them. It was peaceful and everyone was happy. Then the hens started getting broody wanting to hear little pips from fluffy white chicks. So the hatch was finished just in time for the first chicks. The west wing soon had to be added as they got bigger. Lucky the two babies soon found new accommodation with Tipsiepixie from ALS, where they playing happy house with their own chicks now.

Sadly Old Fred died without a new suitable replacement for Little Ginger. Isabella (she's italian cause her mom's italian) come to live here cause she was very lonely by herself, she's a white leghorn and she lays big white eggs. Mom got 2 black austrolopes, Henny and Penny cause mom could not think of any better names for them. They lay nice brown eggs.

Harry and the Matildas, there's 2 of them, come to live too so we had to move out to the west wing, it,s a bit cramped there, but we coping so far. When Mom saw those big black orpingtons, she had to bring them home. Now Dads finally building the east wing, he should have it finished by next weekend. Causes there's 7 little black fluffy chicks that need their own space soon. Mom says no more chicks this year and that final.

P.S. Mom promised to show you a picture of our chook barn soon.

Friday, January 22, 2010

What's on my crochet hook atm & opshop finds

Our local opshop is right next door to our bank, so normally I just pop in, check out the books section and have a walk through. I never buy new books anymore, they cost to much. At $3 a book here and they still as new ... what a bargain. Atm I reading Gold Dust by Kimberley Freeman.

Another time I found boxes of very long thick candles, must be wedding candle cause they two in a box, marked at $1.50. Needless to say I bought the lot, all 15 boxes, another find for the secret stash stockpiling box. They going to come in very handy.

Another find was a crochet blanket marked for a doggie blanket. I loved the pattern but was not crazy over the choose of colour, way to loud for me. The pattern was easy to work out and then armed with new wool and a crochet hook, a new project was started. I choose Carnival 8 ply in white and varigated brown/beige/dustypink very pretty! Nothing over the top.
It's slow going but that my project for this year. Just don't have the time
with working fulltime anymore.

But now housework calls and the animals need to be feed. Enjoy your Day. And so ...

Until nexttime


Thursday, January 21, 2010

What to do with overripe bananas

Over the years this recipe has come in so handy, you go to the fruit basket or look in the kids lunchbox and there it is. Maybe a little bruised or overripe and they don't want to know about it. Mostly we fry it with breakfast ... yummy sweet caramelized banana. Or make a smoothy drink, some skinny milk, lowfat frozen yogart and a teaspoon honey. Oh so healthy!!

Now for that Banana loaf, I try to double up the recipe as it get eaten so quickly either bake it in two baking tins, or one long baking tin. Muffins trays are good for that lunchbox treat.

You will need: (preheat your oven at 180)
125 gr of marg or butter +-
2 eggs
1 teacup of sugar
1teaspoon of vanilla essence
Cream together in a large bowl.

Add 2 cups of self raising flour
small pinch of salt
Mix 1/3 cup of milk and 1/4 teaspoon of bicard of soda together before adding it to mixture
Peel and squash 1 large overripe banana
with a fork, add to mixture. Mix well.

Pour into baking tray or muffin pans. If your using a baking tray maybe you would like to line it with baking paper, just helps to lift it easier. Baking time +- 30/40 mins test to see if skewer comes out clean. If I unsure I sometimes just turn the oven off and leave it in a little longer.

I don't add a frosting (same as for a carrot cake)but you could.
Sliced with a little butter is good enough.

Enjoy making it.

Until nexttime


Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A womans work is never done

This morning I woke with good intentions of cleaning this house, but all it got was a lick and promise. After feeding the animals, the veggie patch looked way more inviting. Once again it never received enough water the last week cause my helpers don't water deeply enough or just forget. If it wasn't for the rain the first 2 weeks while I was gone, the plants would have all died.

So now there's 2 raised beds waiting for seedlings to go in ... a quick crop of greens maybe. I bought some broad beans, carrots ,beetroot, turnips and pasnips for later in the season. But first I think I should add more mushroom compost to the mix. There's a mushroom farm not to far away and they really cheap $2 a bag. and maybe some rooster boaster as well, off to the nursery as well ... still got a voucher somewhere.

See Ya

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Special Treat for My Boy

The Monster Trucks are in town, what great excitement for any little boy amm and big boys. Thought I would treat my boy Cobi to a show. Everytime Grandma buys new shirts for the boys their always got bike or monster trucks on them and it was one of thoses sleevelees one he had on that day. We invited Jenny and her grandson Chase to join us, and set off for Taree about 150km away, booked into a Big Western Motel for the night... yes even a pool which the boys could not wait to swim in. The view was not bad either.

We head down to the show grounds and join all the other revheads there.Food and drink stalls everywhere, a line of kids waiting for a ride on the big trucks, a clown walking around with a bucket of water and a pump action water gun skwirting spectalors. It's hot and sticky all the shady spots were soon taken.

Hot dogs dipped in batter fried crisp then dipped in a little tomato sauce/ketchup and cup of hot chips were the order of the day. A pizza stall looked more inviting to me. Asking for anything healthier was out of the question.

Some of the trucks and bikes, with the Boys posing in front. But the smallest car with a Jet engine inside stole the show "Dangerous Dave" was happy to take a pic of the boys infront of his car.

Can you believe a little car can creat this display!

The evening ended with a fireworks display, something not seen in this small coastal town of Taree. Super awusome Grandma!!! ... maybe I just the bestest grandma out atm.

Monday, January 18, 2010

And so the new year begins ...

Well I am back in Sydney again. Could have stayed the extra week but DH reigned in his stray wife, I think it my cooking he missed Now I just reread my last post on Aussies Living Simply, and I already told you all about my new secondhand gas fridge, what a lovely fridge, so pleased with it. Remember We don't have power or townwater on our block

The sheep had a great feed ... only they wrecked all my corn and potatoes and munched all the sweet potatoe vines, but that ok it will all grow out again... in pumpkin patch veggie enclosure. Then finally we had their new "Crownland" area properly enclosed with strands of wire on new posts ... it poured on and off for days while DS and DH were doing all the work. But when they moved in we never hear any more Bahs from them again....The area has lasted well with 11 sheep eating. Only one more problem Dogs and Dingos, someone warned me about them just as DH was heading back to Sydney, so I bought a roll of dog wire and asked a local farmhand to put it up for me. I learnt more from him about fencing the correct way ... he had a good giggle anyway. Glen did some more work clearing around the containers mostly lantana with a tractor and bucket.

DH built the framework to my new bush kitchen with my old buttercup yellow cast iron zink, which (framework) I promptly painted white, now he just needs to enclose it, make some doors and add a extra shelf and connect the plumbing. I bought the zink at auction a few years back and being so heavy and awkward to move, George kept threating to bump it. 2 weatherboard walls went up and roof extended to enclose the kitchen. Now all I need is a little gas water heating system to run for the zink and shower ... that also waiting to be installed someday soon I hope ... then I could go feral no more washing in the round tub and boiling water on the gas.

Orpingtons have just increased by 2 chicks ... Tally now 7 chicks this summer ... first time mum will be looking after them. I am ok with this as they are strong little ones. Lets hope there a few pullets amongst them.Nelson the Ram got lucky and 3 ewes joined him in his paddock, he's very excited curling his top lip up sniffing the air and piddling everywhere .......... just wondering what they got to say about it all. (sorry got a headache)
That's it for now

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Happy New Year

Just popped in to say Hi to everyone and wish them a geat New Year.

I am still at Bellbrook for the next few weeks and only plan to go back to Sydney the Australia Day weekend 26th for you lovely folks in USA. George has go back to Sydney on the 3rd so atm it's Cobi and Myself here. We had heaps of rain only 3 days so far has the sun really come out. The sheep are having a ball with all the grass, our only worry is Dingos and dogs but I got a local farmhand to re enforce the fence with dog wire and now I can sleep a little easier. We had a midnight visitor through the only hole left (were the extractor fan used to be) a ringtail possum. I took a few photos but forgot the cord to download the photo's.

What I woun't do for a computer right now, withdrawls!!!!

Until nexttime