Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Lost in India

I have been very remiss with blogging our daily adventures lately.  Yet it does not bother me as I know many of you follow me on Instagram to see the pics of our day to day life (@ceelew). The fact I haven't  had the time to devote to reflecting on our activities in a more verbal way is evidence of the extent to which we have been simply delving into life and living.  My baby is three years now so the level of independence in our home is increasing and I wonder where that will lead.

For now I am compelled to share with you these fabulous videos we have been watching as part of our education in our home.  Come for a ride with us as I attempt to place all videos on here.  Learn about India and about how you may be able to support the growth of young people in that country.

Episode 1: Mumbai, Chris!

Episode 2: The Temple

Episode 3: Roopa

Monday, April 22, 2013

Coconut Rice Bubble Crisps

Coconut Rice Bubble Crisps made by my Ess last week.

Last week Ess made us these delicious biscuits almost entirely independently, as well as transforming the recipe.  I'm so proud of her.  A few people saw them on Instagram and have requested the recipe so I thought I'd share in this long quiet place.  I hope that you may enjoy these too if you happen to stumble by here. These are a childhood favourite of mine, baked often by my mother's friend, Bet Harborne.

Her recipe is as follows:

¼lb/125g butter
1 scant cup sugar (we used about ½ cup)
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup coconut (I think.  My copy of the recipe actually doesn't state the amount so feel free to vary).
1¼ cups self raising flour
1 cup sultanas
1 teaspoon vanilla
rice bubbles

Cream butter and sugar, add egg. 
Beat well then add vanilla, coconut, then sifted flour.
Add sultanas.
Roll teaspoonsful in rice bubbles.
Baked on a greased tray in a moderate oven (180°C) for 10 minutes or until golden.

Store in an air-tight container and they will remain lovely and crisp. Suitable to freeze.

Now we altered this recipe to suit our current pantry and lifestyle in the following ways:

* We used some brown sugar as I'm slowly replacing all our sugar with glucose or dextrose and there's only a little brown sugar left.

* We had run out of eggs so Ess simply left it out and moistened the dough with some milk as it needed it after adding the flour.

* We use spelt flour rather than pure wheat flour and I often raise it with ¼tsp bicarb soda and ½tsp cream of tartar per one cup of flour.  Ess missed this raising step, yet still created yummy bikkies.

* We didn't have any sultanas as we don't use dried fruit due to their excessively high levels of fructose, so they were omitted.

* Our rice bubbles were not the usual variety but rather they are called Gluten Free Rice Bubbles.  We love their crispiness and their round shape.  They are very very popular, especially with my two year old.  We buy them here at The Nut Shoppe.

We enjoyed our bikkies so much that when I restock the cupboards with glucose and eggs we will give them another try and perhaps the cakey part of them will be even crispier.

And do let us know how yours turn out. ;)

Monday, October 22, 2012

Floriade 2012 ~ Be Spring Inspired

 A feast for the eyes and nose in particular ;)

It's a poppy parade and...

...Tulip Heaven

Enormous tulips in tiny hands
Tiny eyes in behind enormous glasses

Diamonds and Pearls Garden
(a necklace being a string of pearls in yellow with hanging diamonds)

Stiletto Parade Garden
(You can just make out the pink stiletto in this pic).

Stiletto Parade Garden

I've inherited my Mum's love for poppies it would appear ;)

Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Archaeology Dig

I'm not an historian but I can get interested - obsessively interested - with any aspect of the past, whether it's palaeontology or archaeology or the very recent past. 

And so can we!

We have just enjoyed a fabulous day with our friends of HENCAST (Home Education Network Canberra and Southern Tablelands) 

It was a day of tremendous organisation by one of our members with assistance from only one other. All her organisation and planning, resource sourcing and creativity is to be applauded.

The children had a fabulous time learning about what archaeology is by viewing a mockup scenario (a cow skeleton in a box of dirt) displaying what an archaeologist would do by stringing off the area of 'the dig' to form a grid pattern which they would then work through square by square.  The spine of the cow contained therein was then plastered by the children in order to have it keep its shape when removed. They were given a demo on how to sift through portions of soil by scraping across the top of the soil and sifting it while observing and looking for their "finds".  This was then put into practice by sifting through sand and clay, exploring and discovering.  Ess is carrying out this technique below. 

I just loved these sieves and trowels which were made for the occasion and each child had one each.  No fussing or fighting or waiting.  Each could busily sort through their own box of dirt.

The sifting and sorting and "digging" provided no end of discoveries for each and every one of the children from the youngest to the eldest.

There seemed no end to their "archaeological finds".

Here Ess proudly displays her quartz find.

Her turtle fossil.

A bone.

Teeth and coins as well!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Spiced Orange Almond Biscuits

We are still primarily eating no sugar and enjoying the changes it has made to feelings of satiety after each healthy meal we consume as well as being free from the cravings of sugar so often felt in the past.  I enjoy the way I eat so much now that I rarely desire to eat cakes or biscuits, or sweets of any type.  The children of course continue to request lollies as we near birthdays and ice creams as the weather warms, but their consumption of sweets is greatly reduced.   I do slip, just now I ate a Cadbury Rose which my neighbour delivered to us as a thankyou gift for collecting their mail while they travelled. 

However we largely don't eat store-bought treats in our home.  When we do want something different the following biscuit recipe is one I've devised which still has the children coming back for more....and more....and more.  It's delicious and I hope you enjoy this.

With the sugar out of the equation I find that the flavours of the spices and orange zest, and almonds as well, are much more pronounced.  It's interesting how our palate changes along with the foods we consume.  

Spiced Orange Almond Biscuits

Cream 200g butter with ½ cup glucose being careful not to beat too long with the glucose as it goes hard.
Add 1 egg and the zest of one orange.
Beat in ½-¾ cup spelt flour.
Add 1-2 tsps ginger and cinnamon and 1 tsp cocoa.
Continue beating in almond meal to make a stiff dough - perhaps up to a cup, or more.

Roll into little balls, push a small crater with your finger, and place onto trays to bake in a moderate oven for 10-15 minutes. (edited by Ess ;))

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Eee is Five

My little Eee has turned five.

I can hardly believe it.  Usually this age signals an entry into school life. I am very glad to say that we are enjoying our home school life so much we will be continuing that for little Eee as well.  Of course she is already learning but I guess I will 'up that a notch' as her early literacy skills develop and need enhancement.  She is currently at that lovely stage of absorbing so much information and eagerly desiring to learn new things.  "Would you like to go and play? or would you like to do your Maths?", "Maths!" is her reply.  I'll lap it up while it lasts. :)

The cake required for the birthday was quite a simple trampoline. I was very grateful for this as I was unwell for most of August.  Getting my head around a more complex cake was not what I needed as I recovered from persistence congestion and coughing.

I have always included my girls in cake decorating for their birthdays rather than keeping the cake a surprise for them.  For this also I am grateful as it means that they set to work in decorating for themselves while I simply supervise.  They are also learning valuable skills as well as setting their creative minds and fingers to work.

And with the addition of a few sweet little dollies the trampoline comes alive.

Happy Birthday little Eee!

From your cute little nose
to your tippy-toes
God's wonderful work surely shows.

Happy Birthday Tutu you.

You made me and formed me with Your hands. Psalm 119:73
(printed on the card received from Granny)

Monday, August 20, 2012


This is the view my eyes beheld as I opened my lounge room curtains on Saturday morning.

Beautiful isn't it!  A dusting of snow on the Brindabellas.

On the day previously it had even snowed in parts of Canberra, 
however we didn't see it.  It was raining for us here.

So after the morning's duties were complete,
(i.e. food shopping at the markets)
we enjoyed a quick lunch and headed to the hills.

We didn't have to drive too far before we arrived at snow along the closed Corin Road.
We stopped at the gate and proceeded to walk and throw snowballs, build snowmen, make snow angels etc.

It was just so much fun!

I do so very much miss the beaches we enjoyed closeby in Adelaide.  However the snow seems to hold a similar amount of fun for everyone!  Just wish it happened more often.

Our New Treasure

Lilypie Maternity tickers


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