31 December 2009

We've been getting a lot of this...

...around here!

Not a lot of washing getting dry.

The stuff out there now is all just towels, tea towels, dog towels and dog bedding. All clothes are hanging inside.

No dryer, so what else to do?

Just gotta roll with the summer weather...

30 December 2009

Christmas gingerbread...

I mentioned on my to do list that I wanted to make gingerbread biscuits this year.

I didn't think I'd have the time, but I was in the kitchen making salads and other food for the day on Christmas Eve and decided to make the gingerbread in the middle of it all.

Actually, Andrew pretty much did most of it. I got all the stuff organised and read the recipe aloud and did some of the measuring and whatnot, but he did the rest. Good job too.

Yep, that's flour on the biscuits. It's okay, we flicked it off.

Put a couple in some little boxes to take to places on the day too. I bought the boxes from Regal Craft Cards - look under Other items and then Acetate boxes. They're cheap. And they come assembled.

The recipe was from the Women's Weekly and we really liked it. I was also sent another recipe to try (thanks, Rebecca!) and want to try it too. Didn't have all the ingredients on hand for that one as it was slightly different to the WW one.

The verdict?

I don't think we cooked the biscuits enough - they were like bread, rather than biscuits. I really liked them though and will definitely make them again.

One of my other offerings for the day was this icecream thing straight from the free Coles magazine. You know the one you can pick up free as you walk in the store, or through the checkout?

It's chocolate icecream with chopped raspberries through it and vanilla icecream with chopped mint/choc biscuits through it.

A bit of fanagling around getting the icecream to soften, and not completely melt, while trying to stir in the extra bits.

Tip 1: Make this dish in the air con.

Tip 2: Serve this dish in the air con.

Tip 3: Serve it on plates, not in bowls. Flips easier onto plates!

Tip 4: Buy your raspberries on a two for one special. I did not do this. I did buy them on a discount special, so I was lucky.

Tip 5: Buy name brand mint slice biscuits if you want a kick of mint. Buy the generic brand if your family is a bunch of mint wusses.

Tip 6: If you must take a photo of your creation, do it quickly, would you? That icecream turns to mush pretty quickly...mine was just starting to slide...

Tip 7: If you ask your husband whether you have any mint in the garden and he says yes, just go check that, would you? We had 7 leaves and I used all of them.

Tip 8: If you get the icecream out of the deep freeze and leave it to soften on the bench for a bit, don't leave the kitchen. Please just don't do that.

Tip 9: If you endeavour to get the softened (melted around the edges) icecream out of the container, just watch your own strength with the icecream scooper. And watch the suction of the melted with the still frozen icecream. Lots of potential for icecream flicking and icecream dropping all over the floor. If the flicking/dropping potential is realised, you'll be wiping the stuff up for at least 15 mins when you're already pushed for time.

Tip 10: If you are making anything with icecream in the middle of summer make sure there's room in your upstairs freezer to throw stuff in at a moment's notice in case the flicking/dropping potential is realised.

Tip 11, just for good measure: Enjoy the dessert, we did!

A Cody Christmas

Hi everyone!

How was your Christmas? I hope you managed to stay cool - we had air con at both places we went to, so lucky ducks we were.

Was a first for us this year - celebrating with the pup, that is. It was a bit of a Cody Christmas. Andrew thought it was all a bit silly, but hey, us girls like to commemorate things and whatnot, so good for us.

Firstly, the dog got an ornament.

I wanted to buy one to mark his first year with us. Found it at Big W - turns out he's the same type as the reindeer and Santa. Nice, I reckon. I wrote "Cody, 2009" on the bottom.

He doesn't look like Cody, we all know that, but he's a dog who's kinda cute (could do without the eye patch, but hey), so he got bought.

After scouting around a few shops, I was lucky to find a dog ornament really. Not a lot around.

And then the dog got a photo taken with tinsel. He got several photos taken with tinsel because the first few photos were trial runs.

Andrew kept him busy in the kitchen while I arranged the set - very quickly.

We placed the dog in and he did very well. Didn't try to eat the tinsel once. Or a bauble. Actually he did try to eat a bauble, but that was later.

Anyway, we didn't get the best photos, but we did okay.

After the photo taking session he was dog-tired (ha ha) and took a nap.

"Bring tinsel to dog," I thought.

I tip-toed around putting tinsel and baubles in place. Took interim shots in case dog woke up and flew out the room.

He didn't.

That's his Christmas bear. How long have I had that bear? Like, years. Every year I pull it out of the box and put it straight back in. It lives in the box for 365 days a year. This year I pulled it out and knew who'd like it for Christmas...

Lastly, the dog got his own stocking.

I saw this idea on Leah Fung's Candy Cane Friday video - Johanna had the idea. When I saw it I thought I'd never have the time, but I found myself up late doing stuff at my desk, so I decided to make the dog a stocking of his own. We all know it was for me, but that's beside the point.

That was our Cody Christmas. There were a lot of other things in there too, but he was certainly one of the funniest, and funnest, bits.


25 December 2009

Merry Christmas!

Just wanted to wish you a very Merry Christmas!

Hope your day is filled with love, laughter and lots of good food!

24 December 2009

Christmas Bears

Oh, Happy Christmas Eve!

Last of the Christmas posts for you today and it's all about Christmas bears.

Went through a huge bear phase years ago. Don't do them much anymore, but they still make me smile.

Which is your favourite?

Mine's number 4. And number 3.

Have a wonderful day!

23 December 2009

What would we do without...

...the holly leaf punch?

I mean, really, come on! It gets a work out at Christmas time like no other.

A lot of people don't like to buy seasonal punches because they think they'll only use them once a year. Not true!

Well, it's sort of true. They do only get used once a year, but during that time they get hammered and gain purchase worthy status before you can blink an eye!

The holly leaf punch is one of those that has had PW status for years now. Like, years.

Hello, holly leaf punch! Thank you for all your good work over the years. I'm happy to award you with the seasonal punch of the year...again!

(Punch takes trophy and bows in gratitude. Punches live to be used, you know)


Cue slideshow.

Pause slideshow.

This is how the holly leaf comes - with three leaves attached together. You can use it as is, or cut it apart to suit your project.

Good, hey?

Resume slideshow.

As you can see, folks, the holly leaf punch transcends all times and dates.

It's classic, yet modern.

It's stoic, yet versatile.

It's sleek and stylish.

Okay, it's not sleek, that's not the right word. It's stylish though, you've gotta give it that.

Summary: You can use the holly leaf punch on all your Christmas cards until you depart from this earth.


22 December 2009

Christmas characters

Hello all,

I realise you're all pretty busy doing stuff for Christmas, but I thought I'd keep it going with the cards right up until Christmas, because if you're like me, you still like to have a look around the old blogos to see what's going on in the world.

These cards today are based on Christmas characters - reindeer, Santa and my own Christmas chick and duck. Who says you can't use a chick and a duck for Christmas cards? Not me...they're cute, so they're in.
Hey, Santa.

He's from the MME Merry Days of Christmas line and the embossing folder is the new Cuttlebug 5x7 Christmas Countdown. And that's the Threading Water punch by Fiskars at the top.

I simply cannot believe how popular border punches are now. A few years ago we all poo pooed them because they were so old school. I've done a complete 180 now though, and love 'em. Hello, favourite punches!

No more poo pooing here.

Were you a poo pooer too?

I said that we all poo pooed them, but I don't know that for sure now, do I? Of course not. Don't want to put you in the poo pooer column if you weren't one.
Interestingly enough, my other favourite punches are scallop circles, which I also poo pooed. Once again, 180, and they went straight to the pool room.

Okay, I think I've mentioned poo enough for tonight.

(It's Monday night at 11:41pm as I write this. I'm tired and I'm feeling a little weird. Can't be telling you where this post is going to go...but I'm warning ya, okay? Could be good...could be bad...)

Hey, Santa.

Tell me, Santa, how do you keep the weight on your stomach and off your legs?

Must be all that running around on Christmas Eve...look at those skinny pins!

You're a nice fella. You look like my punch art Santas. No wonder I like you so much.

I love your big red nose, cute smile...and your big beard.

These next two photos with the tags on them are from the one set of bunting.

The photo below actually shows the first three tags and the photo above shows the second two. I put the one above to go with the Santa above it. Confusing!

Couldn't get a decent photo of the whole bunting, so I had to shoot it in parts. By the way, I call bunting anything that hangs off twill or ribbon like this. You know, tags, triangles from fabric - all bunting.

Ah, cute reindeers.

They've made me smile 23 487 times over the last couple of years.

Good value those guys.

Oh, make that 23 488 times.

See the shiny nose?

"...had a very shiny nose..."

Here's the five tags in order...Rudolph (hello, red nose), Dasher, Dancer, Santa and Comet.

They're sewn onto twill with buttons in between.

Hey, Rudolph, you look like my punch art reindeer. No wonder I like you too. Kinda makes sense when you think about it.

It's becoming quite obvious that my penchant for cute is not just limited to punch art...

And here we are at the non-traditional section of the blog post.

Christmas cards with ducks and chickens on them? How weird...


I say, "How cute!"

Come on, how can you resist that face? Or beak.

Have you sent all your Christmas cards yet?



Other things to do for Christmas:
1. Wrap more gifts.
2. Make a few tags.
3. Make gingerbread biscuits.
4. Make food.
5. See more lights.
6. Anything else I've forgotten right now.



PS. I think I kept a lid on the weirdness...yes? No? Doesn't matter!

21 December 2009

A Colourful Christmas

Hey everyone,

Well, Christmas week is here!

Been wrapping presents today - still got more to go. Really want to get them done early this year, so I'm not rushing around doing it at the last minute. Not fun!

Just wanted to share some fun cards using the MME Colourful Christmas line. I've showed you cards using their papers before, so thought you may enjoy these too.

I like cards that make me smile. And hey, they're snowy and it's so not snowy here, but who cares? Like the paper, will make cards...that's it!

A couple of the photos were quick snapshots on my desk, not great, but I wanted to keep a record of them. They went to my mum for her birthday. She loves the snow so much she got them as birthday cards. Hey, her grandparents (or great-grandparents) are from Latvia, so it's in her blood!

I gave this last one to Andrew and he really liked it. Didn't realise it was for him until he looked inside. Just the right amount of glitter he said too. Of course he did.

Watch it, girlies, if you ever send me a card, he'll be the one critiquing it, not me! Being the good listener (and bouncer-off-er-er) that he is, he's very well versed in punch art, embossing, Cuttlebugs and all of that, so he recognises things and how they've been used etc. It's pretty funny actually.

Enjoy the cards!