Digging up the footpath in front of our house: hours of entertainment and up-close digger observation for the digger admirer in the household..
A beach escape… Moreton Island August 19, 2011
It was Ekka week this week in Brisvegas.
For those not in the know, Ekka is slang for the “Exhibition”, which is the Royal Queensland Show, where they judge entries in a whole heap of categories ranging from cake decorating to showjumping to wool….. And there are sideshow rides, and showbags and…. A bunch of stuff that a 2 year old doesn’t need yet. The petting zoo came to visit his daycare recently, so I’m thinking that avoiding the dreaded “ekka flu” by staying away is well in order for at least a few more years to come
And the sole public holiday in the latter half of the year is mid-week for Ekka. So we extended it and took a few days out with some friends to venture to Moreton Island: an island right off Brisbane in the bay, but a bit more effort to get to: a 4WD adventure to get there, a bit remote (no shops at all where we were). We stayed in the lovely house of some friends with a group of 12: 6 adults, 6 kids (7 weeks, 7 weeks, 9 weeks, 2.1 years, 2.1 years, 3 years) – so busy! But yet: beautiful and relaxing despite the demands of a tribe of small ones.
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Yay for holidays.
Yay for the beach.
Much more relaxed mum.
P.S. Yes, the water was a bit nippy. But only a bit. I swam and stayed in quite comfortably when we were on the surf-side beach and I could get in deep enough quickly enough. It was the wind on the beach that was the killer. So lovely to swim though! Blisssssssssss
Portrait of a 5 week old baby August 18, 2011
So we got some family shots done a few weeks ago, and while I will put a few more up, here is a cute snap for the day.
Welcome to the world again little Luna.
Cooking Experiment – Rocky Road…. August 11, 2011
Can I rate it before I describe the process?? YES?
FAIL, total fail, on an objective how good was your rocky road quality test.
PASS, exuberant PASS on a subjective how good does it taste test.
OFF THE SCALE SUCCESS on was it a good way to spend a Saturday afternoon with your rocking little sister test.
I started by making homemade marshmallows using David Lebovitz’s recipe, which worked wonderfully. Light, fluffy and lovely to bite into and eat.
It was the fruit jelly layer that was our first undoing. We had a number of attempts, using no recipe but ones we adapted using a mix of gelatin and agar. Then realized after attempt #5 that the Noosa chocolate factory actually use pectin. Which we decided we didn’t want to try at 4pm after attempt #5. We ended up with one set of jelly that we thought would hold together ok and tasted ok. Ok, not wonderful, but worth a shot. …
Then we tried to mix it all together: our roasted peanuts, coconut, marshmallow, fruit jelly and melted chocolate…..
My sister was all for just throwing it in together and mixing. I decided I’d prefer to experiment with a few techniques. Luckily we went with my advice, as guess what? Hot melted chocolate melts marshmallows made with egg white and gelatin! Who would have thought!
But we had a hoot: laughing, eating sticky piles of goo, and eventually ending up with a few samples that we might actually serve to friends.
Overall verdict: FUN. But still requires some tweaks. I think we might give it a rest for a month and then have another shot…..
P.S. and this was definitely a not-for-the-two-year-old dish. He would have bounced right into the sky with the amount of sugar in it!
P.P.S. If and when you read this when you are older, I was keeping you from it for your own good. And it wasn’t perfect, so have to perfect it before you are old enough to have it anyway!
Readers – have you ever tried homemade rocky-road? Any tips???
I won!! I won!! I won!!! (something for once, and something good!~!) and… the start of a rocky road adventure August 6, 2011
here I am, quietly spending my Saturday experimenting with gelatine, agar and a few different varieties of a strawberry jelly… Because my sister and I are trying to create our own version of the marvelous Noosa Chocolate Factory rocky-road that is sold at the Jan Power markets here in Brisbane.
It is totally addictive and amazing. I’m just lucky I don’t have the energy to walk the 30 minutes to the city on a Wednesday yet when it is sold so I can buy it regularly… (though note to self: that may change. Bulge around the middle from baby-stretch: advises against incorporating this outing into the weekly routine. Taste-buds and sugar-receptor centre of brain advise: the case for – walking would burn off enough energy to eat a lot, surely that would compensate… and there is a playground, pool, etc at Southbank on the way, so it combines as a good kids outing)…
So the homemade marshmallow is done. Thank-you to David Lebovitz for the recipe.
But the jelly layer isn’t going so well.
But I won!!
Frustrated, I returned to my computer to once again find some recipes for a fruit jelly and see what I could tweak after attempt #4 is not quite right… And got sidetracked reading a few blogs…..
… And the first thing I think I’ll enjoy is a glass of great champagne. As I was just saying on facebook yesterday: “breastfeeding, bouncing and thinking, ‘oh yeah, I could go a cocktail’ while listening to the dj on jjj at the moment.. Greatest hits of my previous life as a clubber :)”. So next DJ set I put on I can express some breastmilk in advance, pass off a feed or two, have a nice glass of champagne and bounce along myself.
P.S. Notes on the rocky-road adventure to follow tomorrow.
Yes, playing with the scooter (mountain buggy freerider) and mountain buggy (mountain buggy urban jungle) combo has been fun so far. A few people have written asking how I found it overall, so a quick review:
- I love that the older one can attach and see out as we walk along – works really well with the baby cot/cocoon attached, though my little one is a bit short so when the normal stroller seat is attached he can only see out the sides at the moment, though that will change as he gets taller.
- I found the scooter hard to attach/detach from the pram in the beginning. Now I’ve worked out a method that works, but it requires a little bit of getting down on the ground and pulling/pushing the clips.
- Yes, the scooter does get in the way of walking a little. But only a little: you can attach it anywhere along the base of the pram, so I’ve got it to one side. Which means I just push on one side of the pram and it works ok – not as comfortable to push as without it, but not bad.
- Steering/pushing the pram with the scooter and child attached is a bit harder / different than normal, you need two hands rather than the one I often use when there is no-one riding an attached scooter. It feels a bit like driving a car with a trailer and trying to turn corners. Just a bit heavier and more cumbersome.
- The scooter works well when it isn’t attached to the pram, however the handle doesn’t turn to steer: you have to lean into it the same as a skateboard. So it’s a bit harder for Oscar to steer than other scooters he has tried.
- Oscar loves being on the scooter and being able to see the baby in the pram.
It’s a fun toy / scooter, I think it will get better and more convenient the older O gets (he is only just two, so it is still a bit hard for him to use)…
It feels really securely attached to the pram i.e. safe. I like that!
It is super convenient to be able to detach it for ‘freeriding’, attach it when a toddler is standing on it, and flip it up out of the way when it’s not in-use. Which is why we bought it: ie. it works as it says it does!
We’ve decided to buy a double pram anyway as we do go on a lot of long walks etc and when little legs get tired and my back gets sore after baby-wearing for a few hours it will be nice to have a break and be able to use a pram for both of them together.
I mentioned a while ago that we bought the Mountain Buggy scooter that connects to the pram for use when the new baby arrived.
Mostly I sling Luna about attached to me, so I am free to push you in the pram when needed, but sometimes it is nice to have your hands free.
So here is a dodgy picture of the new scooter/pram combo in action:
The trip was great apart from having to bribe you to get on the damn scooter when it was attached to the pram. Lots of praise that you were a “big scooter boy” seemed to do the trick pretty well after a bit of effort. And it was fun to push.
p.s. you have been madly practising your ‘scootering’ ever since on the back deck. I went out there last night to encourage you to come inside (it was dark and the light was out), only to see you stumble off it yet again, muttering a very clear “bloody hell” to yourself as you got right back on. Mmmmm. I wonder where you learnt that one (looks the other way)!
p.p.s. but i have decided that we do need a double pram for longer walks and outings, so have one in the pipeline… updates to follow.