Saturday, 20 February 2010

Summer Surplus Salad

We have an abundance of pears, nectarines, basil, cucumbers and snappy finger radishes at the moment, so I came up with this salad.
It's crunchy and juicy and full of Summer flavour

1 lemon squeezed for juice
1 large just-ripe pear thinly sliced length ways. Toss slices in a little bit of lemon juice to stop it going brown
1 small cucumber thinly sliced
2 just-ripe nectarines - mine are cling-stone, so I cut them in wedges off the stone
1 small red onion thinly sliced in to rings and then cut rings in half
4 finger or regular radishes thinly sliced
handful of almonds chopped
few sprigs of regular and purple-leafed basil rolled up and thinly shredded
Splosh of orange balsamic if you can get it or the best plain balsamic you can lay your hands on
Splosh of extra virgin olive oil
black pepper and salt

Mix it all together and serve ASAP

I think it's a winner and will definitely be whipping it up again

What about you?

Sew, Help Me!

I am considering bringing the Singer out of retirement and having a go at a spot of sewing.
Now those that know me will have just snorted coffee or most likely wine out of their nostrils or choked!

For quite a few years now I have had two minor projects in mind, but will need advice from the less craftily challenged for them to ever be attempted.
Firstly, I have a simple red/white cotton check dress that I want to make V-necked but have NO idea on how to go about this task or if it is indeed possible.
I KNOW it looks like a sack, but it actually has darts in all the right places and fits well, so SHUT-UP
The dress has umm, a hidden yokey thing behind the round neck made of the fabric and some of that binding stuff. See I told you I was rusty!
Here's a photo of it as is:

I also have this skirt I found at an oppy years ago, now it's not my colour and I have no idea about what I would wear it with, but I DO have a plan. I have this great Guadalupe Virgin Mary fabric I came across at Spotlight yonks ago and some fabby spotted ribbon and I want to attach the panel to the skirt. It really is all about ME, this project, as those who have looked at my blog will know, I have a lot of Maryabilia and Rosenalia going on in my home!
Here are the components for the skirt:

The advice I need is this, should I die the skirt? Say black?
I wear a LOT of black. Then the spots on the ribbon, which I plan to sew as a border all around the Mary panel, would tie back to the black.
I would then have more black tops to wear with it.
Oh I just cant decide.
All the components have been sitting in a bag for about 4 years!

I need some advice, guidance and inspiration to get started on these projects.

What about you?

Thursday, 18 February 2010

All I Want...

Right now, at this very moment, is to be back in Venice at this tiny, perfect, red-leather-banquetted, little bar eating the most deliciously, beautiful, freshly baked lasagne I have ever tasted and drinking that amazing Pinot Grigio! The whole bottle TO, MY, SELF.
Afterwards, I would like to inhale one of these most DIVINELY decadent, superbly-spectacular, light-as-feather and rich-as-a-Sheik Parisian eclairs.

That's ALL I want right NOW!

Well, actually, a magic wand or a few millions bucks would be quite nice as well.

What about you?

Kitchey-Kitchey OZ

Playing along at Flea Market Finds again...

Popped in to a nearby 2nd-hand store looking for a butter dish (my favourite old glass-lidded one broke recently) and came across these two lovely bits of Aussie collectability.
I still can't believe what good knick Mumma Kanga and her Joey are in, but the glowing red eyes are truly creepy...and those salt n' pepper shakers are not exactly what I would call practical.

My Mr I loves ye-olde-mechanical, functional stuff so this fabulous old portable grill had his name ALL over it. It works and is in amazing original knick!

Feeling all collecty-proud and happy with that little hit.
I really do love it when I stumble across something like these two, whilst looking for something else.

What about you?

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Of Cattle, Beetroot & Blackberries

I am home alone on the farm for a few days whilst Mr I is in I'm on farmhand duty.
Oh alright...I have to make sure the cattle have water in their trough, throw some scraps to the goat and give him a pat, walk the dog, avoid the cat who "lerves" Mr I and not me (and the feeling is mutual) feed, let out and put back in the chooks and keep my eye on my vegie garden. Very strenuous.

Some little fuckers are eating all my zucchini flowers GRRRR...our vegie garden is securely fenced, but those bloody POSSUMS will get in anywhere.
At least my beetroot is looking gorgeous and will be ready to harvest soon.

I have created a scrumptious beetroot salad in anticipation.

Grab yourself the following:

4 medium to large fresh-as-you-can-get beetroots
1 tablespoon of your favourite or home-made mayonnaise
3 tablespoons of your favourite plain yoghurt
a good, heaped tablesoon of seeded mustard
Handleful of Italian parsley chopped.
Some garlic or regular chives chopped

Pop the beetroot in to a saucepan and cover with cold water.
Bring them to the boil, then turn down to a good simmer until they are cooked.
Once cooked, cool them down in cold water and rub off the skin and chop off the ends.
Chop up the beetroot chunky style and throw in to a lovely bowl.
Add the mayo, yoghurt, mustard, parsley and chives
If you want you can add a small tin of Royal Sirena tuna in oil (I love this stuff and I drain the oil out, but still get the yummy flavour)
Mix together.

And that's it!

Here are some gorgeous blackberries that Mr I kindly picked whilst I was at work yesterday.

I will attempt another session of jam making and THIS time I will stand right by that pot and make sure it does not catch!

Home alone time means being slothier than usual and that's pretty DAMN slothy/slothful.
I quite like it.

What about you?

Thursday, 11 February 2010

My Place - My Stuff

Righto, apart from showing you alot of the stuff that makes my home mine, I am also playing along at My Creative Space & Flea Market Finds.

Now, I am not really crash hot at crafting or arting, I dip in to projects now and then, a spot of basic knitting or crochet and I can sew straight lines, but making stuff has yet to grab me and get me to commit to it on any regular sort of basis.
I like to take a photo and I like to cook and I used to love to paint, but these days I just love spending my time wandering around blog land and seeing what the really talented and dedicated crafters and artists and photographers of this world are up to!
I guess my home, and the way I play with and display all the things I have found over the years, is my real creative space! I reckon 80% of my home is furnished and filled with op-shop, 2nd-hand store, ebay, nature-strip and handed-over stuff!
Now for some advice from you, lovely readers, our place is on the market.
It is a 42 acre certified-organic farm in Nth West Tasmania and my style as you can see is somewhat eclectic and a bit nuts. A good friend has suggested we de-US the house, that is, HIDE most of it and bland out the house to appeal to a wider market.
I don't agree and just can't be arsed.
Have a look and tell me what you think?

I think our place is very homey and in keeping with the organic-farm lifestyle and that anyone who is in to organics will not be put off by all my stuff!

What about you?

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Funny Little Obsessions

Playing along here today: Flea Market Finds

Cripety! I reckon about 80% of my home is furnished with op shop, flea market. 2nd-hand store, junk shop, tip shop, charity store stuff!
These are just a few of my favourite things (as Maria would sing)
I don't mind if things are shabby or chipped or well-loved as long as they fit with whatever my current obsession may be!
I am always on the look-out for the following things:
prints/tins/kitchenalia that is retro rosey, cutely 60's bambis or old pottery pieces & knick-knacks in the crimsony/red/pinky with-a-touch-of-green style

Apparently and almost unbelievably, there are those who think this collecting lark is just crap and dust collecting madness! : (

What about you?

I Have Piles

I have posted previously about a condition I suffer with quite badly - Procrastinitis Bigtimus
Today I am fessing up about a particular symptom of P.B. and it's all about PILES.
This is a collection I am NOT proud of and wish I did not have, yet somehow it keeps growing and growing.
There are piles of paperwork and stuff ALL around our office/study and often they escape the office confines and pile themselves all over our kitchen table.
Seriously, Mr I and I are rendered useless when it comes to tackling our piles. They are created with such ease and with true intention of dealing with them yet, somehow coming back to them , facing them and removing them is something we avoid at all costs. It can takes YEARS.
The piles start out with a defined pile purpose - one for paid bills, one for paperwork to be filed, (HA HA HA HA HA Oh dear, excuse me while I re-compose myself, I don't think I have filed anything in our filing cabinet for about 4 years!) one for receipts, one for interesting clippings and notes and another for ? and on and on and on.
We get distracted by life and before long, we have forgotten which pile is for what and the wrong stuff gets plopped on top of the wrong pile and it is then all too hard. So the pile is gently lifted and moved somewhere else to be dealt with later...
BUT IT NEVER IS! All that happens is there is now space for the creation of a NEW pile!

I have PILES!

What about you?