i'm pregnant and it's going to be a rollercoaster

camping – yay! October 31, 2011

We had a lovely weekend away at Lake Cootharaba – camping at Boreen Point.

Oscar ran wild through the bush around the campsite with the other two year old

Bush play – camping at Boreen Point

sparklers at dusk

and the two babes slept like the proverbial babes.

sleeping like babes in the bush

I enjoyed a swim and an unplug.  Mmmmm.


Recipe: Strawberry Balsamic Icecream! October 23, 2011

Filed under: cooking,eating,Parenting — rakster @ 9:19 pm

strawberry-balsamic-icecream… yum!

If you’ve never made icecream at home before, this is my all-time favourite no-cook simple recipe.  Nothing beats freshly made strawberry icecream with a hint of balsamic.   It can be done without an icecream maker if you want to experiment.  Yum!!! Make it now!

strawberry balsamic icecream

450g fresh strawberries

150g caster sugar

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

150ml whipping cream (36% fat) (i.e. plain cream)


  1. Wash and hull the strawberries. Dry thoroughly then start to process them with the sugar in a food processor/blender.
  2. Add the balsamic vinegar while blending.  Blend until ingredients are combined to a smooth puree.
  3. Pour into a bowl, cover and refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavour of the fruit to be brought out by the sugar/vinegar.
  4. Combine the cream with the strawberry mixture and still freeze / freeze in an ice-cream maker.
  5. Put into container and cover with greaseproof paper (to eliminate air touching the icecream).  Then pop in the freezer and freeze for an hour until firm enough to serve OR  freeze but allow to soften for 20 minutes in the fridge if frozen solid.


  • Yum!!! It never lasts more than one day in our house.  Amazing flavour!
  • I sometimes reduce the cream and add some milk for a lighter mix, or a bit of jam stirred through etc to change the texture.
  • make when small children are asleep.  then you don’t have to share. They will just be happy with fresh strawberries.  There has to be something exciting to look forward to when you’re old..


adapted from Liddell, C. & Weir, R. Frozen Desserts 1995


cooking again – icecream and chocolate eclairs… October 22, 2011

Filed under: Parenting — rakster @ 2:25 pm

So. I have been on a cooking spree again in the past few days. I love my chickens, and I love their eggs too. I look at the pile of eggs in the fridge (4 a day at the moment, did I mention we got some new chickens a few weeks back? mmm… no, just a post about when we got #1 & #2..) everyday, and think of the yummy things I can cook. And since I’m obsessed with dessert, I’m on a dessert-making spree.

This week’s inspiration came in the form of Maleny Dairy cream, which the local fruit shop had in stock (I’ve been on the hunt for it for months after getting excited about great cream looking at Inner Pickle’s butter-making with her 2l of local fresh cream, and finding the Maleny one as the closest, minimally processed version I could find). I bought 3 bottles of cream, then decided to make icecream. Since it’s a new variety of cream, and the fat content is rather high, I thought I’d experiment with tried and true recipes first to see how it worked out. So a french vanilla icecream custard in the fridge cooling, I thought, well, better make another one as I’m going to have the icecream maker going anyway (yes, I have an expensive compressor-version icecream maker that doesn’t require freezing – so you can just turn it on and keep churning! It was a purchase a few years ago that I absolutely cannot do without now). So I also made a vanilla American/Philadelphia-style (for those of you not in the ice-cream making know-how, it’s an uncooked version without eggs). ….

mmm. That night when freezing my icecream I decided that I may as well use the strawberries that were in the fridge… So balsamic and strawberry ice-cream came out too…. because it is one of my favourite and is soo simple… (recipe tomorrow).

strawberry-balsamic-icecream... yum!

Then I decided last night that after dinner as the kids had both gone to sleep before 7pm (what a miracle), I had more energy. And wanted to use up some more eggs on a recipe I’ve been meaning to get to for a while: chocolate eclairs with fresh choux pastry. So I made the choux and baked them last night.. This morning made the creme filling, and will put them together for dinner tomorrow… Pics to follow. I suspect they won’t look beautiful but will taste divine.

choux pastry mini-eclairs - baking

and just to prove I don’t just eat dessert, the meal plan for the week just gone:

num num num. I love food!


beach withdrawal…. October 20, 2011

Filed under: Parenting — rakster @ 2:04 pm

We had a great time at the beach late last week / over the weekend. We did a lot of playing, digging, walking, whale and dolphin watching, and of course, swimming. The water at Cylinder Beach, Stradbroke Island, was absolutely divine. Little O came ‘out the back’ with me, happily diving under on a count of “one, two, three” to get past the big waves when they were breaking over us, until we got past the break. The water was so clear it was like it was 2 inches deep when it was 8 feet. mmmmm.. And I got a few minutes all to myself to just float. Bliss.

feeding and playing on the beach....


I am suffering from post-beach-holiday withdrawal symptoms: thinking of next beach holiday and how it is too far away…

babes on the beach (hah!).

a few shots to share…


love a good self-take!


Thankfully we do have the next trip planned already. Camping in two weeks time for the weekend. Yay!


lost wallet October 18, 2011

Filed under: Parenting — rakster @ 8:09 pm

so I lost my wallet today.


well, yesterday actually, when we were coming back from a holiday at the beach.


but i discovered it was missing this morning.


so ransacked the house and car looking for it. for a few hours.  before finally admitting defeat, and calling up and cancelling all my cards. then stewed the rest of the day about the $600 cash I had in it (the most I’ve probably ever had, weird that I even had more than my usual $20).




thankfully my husband is better at looking for things than I am.

it took him 30 minutes of solid looking to find it after getting home from work tonight.


where??  Oh, IN the toy fire-engine in O’s room, on the toy shelf. 


Of course! Can’t think why I didn’t look there earlier…


Business at the front …. Party in the back!!! October 6, 2011

I’m in love with the little curls at the back of my little boy’s head.



curls at two years

And his dad has a limited amount of hair, which seems to be decreasing in volume just ever so slightly over time (..ahem..).  So we figured, let him grow it, it will be one of the only times in his life he can have nice long hair and not have a care / worry about it.


He has asked quite a few times when seeing me do my hair in the morning, if he could “please have a hair clip too?”.  Which of course, I’m happy to oblige with.  Issue is, he most definitely wants to be able to see it in the mirror when he inspects it, so it ends up front and centre.  Which he doesn’t mind at all.  But perhaps won’t go down too well when he is a little older.


wearing a hairclip

And it is getting towards summer, which here in Brisvegas, Australia, can be a pretty hot and sticky affair.


So we decided on a cut.  Which was yesterday.  We went as a family to the salon for the big affair.  He sat in the chair and watched while his dad had his hair cut, drank his apple juice (special treat from the lady at the salon), and waited patiently.  Then sat as still as a statue while she cut his, moving only his mouth to ask, “Mum, what she doing??” repeatedly.


the ‘before’ shot

I like the hairdresser. they have juice!

getting ready. this is serious business, you know.

“what she doing?”


I couldn’t bear to see too much cut off, so we opted for a trim to keep it out of the eyes at the front and just a little off at the back.


The result: a lovely Mullet.  As my sister said, “Business at the front…. Party in the back!!”.

the ‘after shot’