Thursday, 2 June 2016

Recipe: Silverbeet and Egg

Here is a recipe that I have always loved. It may not be the most photogenic meal, however, it is very healthy and totally delicious. It also is a great alternative to use large amounts of silverbeet or spinach leaves. Don't forget, those leaves can also be lightly blanched (or even raw if desired), cut into pieces and frozen in the freezer for later use. No more excuses not to include silverbeet and/or spinach in your diet anymore! 

Silverbeet or spinach recipe

Lots of onions, caramelised in olive oil,
Pepper paste
Cherry tomatoes
Silverbeet (or spinach)
Salt and black pepper to taste

Sautee onions in oil. Add paste. Add silverbeet leaves and sautee until nicely caramelised on low to medium heat. Add cherry tomatoes and keep stirring only for a  further few minutes. Add salt and pepper and mix well. Turn off heat, crack as many eggs as you wish (as a rule of thumb, I suggest one egg per person) and close the lid. The eggs will cook in its own heat in the pot. Once eggs are in the consistency that you like, you can serve.

Homegrown silverbeet

Monday, 23 May 2016

Lunchbox Ideas (8)

Here I am with more healthy lunch and snack options after a long break, I wish I could say after a long 'holiday', but it was rather a very busy period due to other commitments in life. Most of these lunchboxes were prepared with the seasonal fresh produce, mostly homegrown, at the time. I hope you find them inspirational.

1. Lunch and Snack:
* Potato salad (boiled potatoes, capsicum, fresh mint, seasoning of your choice)
* Apple
* Blueberries
* Home-grown mulberries
Healthy school lunch ideas

Healthy fruit snacks

 2. Lunch and Snack:
* Stuffed vine leaves
* Pineapple
* Blueberries
* Home-grown mulberries
Healthy lunchbox ideas for kids

3. Snack:
* Sorrel leaves (packed with Vitamins A, C and more. Click here to read more.)
* Homegrown tomatoes
* Cucumbers
Sorrel, tomatoes, cucumbers

4. Lunch and Snack:
* Flat bread wraps with cream cheese, chia and sunflower seeds,
* Red capsicum sticks
* Strawberry
* Persimon
* Black grapes with seeds
Lunchbox ideas

To see the previous lunchbox ideas posts, you can visit:


Thursday, 7 April 2016

DIY Notebook Covers

I am over the moon about the fact that I am finally able to access to some of my photographs on my camera (I have been using my mobile phone's camera in the meantime)! The last time I was able to do so was approximately a year ago, so, it is one big fat YAYYY for me tonight! 

DIY notebook covers

These photos are of some of my fabric covered notebooks that I made for two lovely teachers of one of my children. These were relatively fun and quick projects to work on.  It was a good needed break from the sewing too. All I needed was some fabrics of my own choice, some decoration items such as pompoms, a hot glue gun and some scissors. 

DIY notebooks

The red one with the lace also has a little pink ribbon loop that not only looks good but is also functional. I particularly designed it for pens. The other notebook cover, the one in black and white, has pom poms, just for fun, of course. 

handmade fabric covers

I often really enjoy it when I can just look at my stash and come up with combinations and designs according to my taste and mood at the time. These were just that and they made lovely little gifts for teachers!

easy handmade fabric covers

handmade gift ideas

Thanks for stopping by and have a fantastic week!

Saturday, 12 March 2016

1000 Piece Puzzle - The Stress Buster

As a mum of two, no, as an ordinary person and perhaps like everyone else, I go through some fun times or some stressful times in life for various reasons from time to time. I accept that it is a part of life and sometimes you can't do much about things (but, don't get me wrong, that doesn't necessarily mean that I gracefully and with open arms take them all in at all times). 

1000 piece puzzle

A few months ago, as I wasn't feeling the best emotionally, I needed something to take my mind off what has been bothering me. This 1000 piece puzzle came in handy at that time. I have actually totally forgotten about the puzzle which we had bought may be a year ago but it was just a perfect time for Mr Hubby to remember about it. I got working on it right away. 

African cheetah puzzle in progress

I have always been pretty fond of puzzles but I must admit, I had a few hiccups along the way. Firstly, I had set it on the floor when I first started it and that sure didn't agree with my neck and shoulder muscles (I surely looked forward to my weekly yoga classes more than ever before around then!). Then, I set it on the table but it took too much space and I chose to work on the floor again. Because I was unable to spend much time on it at a time as a busy person and a mother of two young children, it took almost a month before I could finish it. Therefore, it became a bit messy around the room. However, it was still totally therapeutic and I loved every stage of it. 

puzzle - getting there

Ever since I completed the puzzle, the kids started breaking parts of it here and there and working on it by themselves. At times 4-5 pieces, at times 40-50 pieces! (So, I have still not put it away yet). I think that is one of the most natural ways of teaching/learning and inspiring. 

African cheetah 1000 pieces puzzle

Enjoy something fun today!

Monday, 22 February 2016

A Fabric Pencilcase and a Journey Back to Good Ol' Days

Do you remember your primary school years at all? Do you remember your first school bag for example, or your school shoes? How about your hairstyle? (Ok, I see, the hair style could be a topic on its own, I totally agree. Great to look at the family albums for a giggle but for now, forget about this last question, lets move on. )

When I was a child, which I don't know when and how became a 'history', people -if lucky- had one school bag, possibly for the rest of most or all of their Primary school years. We had school books and notebooks that we had to cover and put a name sticker/label on before school started. Most people had a few older siblings to receive help from but otherwise, parents or in later years, some friends would sit down and would cover them one by one for hours. The labels had cute little pictures and depending on our favourite subjects or books, we would choose our most favourite label and stick on that particular book etc. It was a lot of work (especially for the ones that were doing the main job) but so much fun too.

I also remember how precious our school items and belongings were to us. We would have only a very limited amount of pencils and rubbers and would look after them as if they were made of gold. Even the tiny little pencils were used until it was simply impossible to hold anymore.

I remember, most of us at the time used small prints in our hand writing so that our writing would look neat while saving space in our notebooks for future use.

I suppose those were the good old days. Now, things have changed.

I now see that consumption is the hidden word behind most conscious or unconscious behaviour and it starts even before the babies are born, with the parents indulging their unborn children, -or rather themselves perhaps- with  the best of everything they can afford. I mean afford as in 'buy' because it often means buying; the best furniture with the right colour combination and the perfect amount of contrast, tens and hundreds of cutest clothing pieces with often some expensive tags attached, the who-knows-how-many pieces of shoes that most babies won't even get to wear more than once and so on. And the list of what we buy for our kids regardless of the motives behind only grows with time.

Arguably as a result, I see that today's children are so much less caring with their blessings. It is often a 'given' that parents buy so many school uniforms (and seriously, what is it with the uniform prices these days? They are astronomic!) because things get 'lost' often. How about all those pencils and other stationary bits and pieces that never make it until the end of the year even though it looks like a life-time supply at the beginning of the year? If you are a parent of a student these days, I have a strong feeling that you know what I mean.

Anyway, the point is that the pencilcase in the pictures above is one of my son's many pencilcases. Some is too big for school, some is too small, some works perfect for the car trips, some is great for home. (Talking about indulging much?). By the way, in case you are interested in trying your hand at a small sewing project, or simply you just want to make your own customised pencilcases for your loved ones or yourself, there are many great tutorials on the internet. Don't roll your eyes, I promise, working with a zipper is not as hard as you have always thought. Just give it a go and see it for yourself.

Note: The colours of the pencilcase were chosen by Mr. Junior and I just added a few extra touches to it. I must admit, this one small pencilcase made him quite happy and proud (he loves it when he gets an opportunity to tell his friends that his pencilcase was made by his mum).

Monday, 15 February 2016

Lunchbox Ideas (7)

Yes yes, I know. It has been ages -and felt even longer!- since I was able to post anything here the last time. Even though it might have looked like a big break here, it was actually a very busy period for me. Life was in its full swing on this side of the planet for sure.

The new school year has started a few weeks ago Down Under and even though I love spending time with my children during school holidays and that we all really enjoy not having to rush in general; reality has already kicked in and we like it or not we have already adapted to our school-day routines well.

Below is some more inspiration for your in case you are looking at healthy variety and are happy to try new recipes and combinations. You can find the links to the previous lunchbox idea posts at the bottom of this page. Enjoy!

1. Lunch and snack:
* Cucumber dip (finely chopped cucumbers, natural yoghurt, a small pinch of salt, some dried mint and some fresh mint leaves for decoration).
* Flat bread chips (Lebanese/flat bread cut into triangle shapes and toasted until crisp).
*Purslane (Never underestimate this edible weed. It is full of Omega 3 just to say the least. Read more about it and get some recipes here)
healthy lunchboxes for kids

lunch ideas

2. Lunch and Snack:
*Pasta salad (pasta made from the night before. In the morning, I added some raw red capsicum, lightly blanched peas, and some dried mint. Feel free to add your favourite seasoning).
*Fruit salad (fresh garden grapes, some plum and nectarine slices)
*A salad (toasted halloumi, home-grown cherry tomatoes and home-grown basil leaves)
homemade food ideas for kids

healthy snack ideas for lunchboxes

3. Lunch and Snack:
*Some organic rice crackers and spreadable cheese
*Home-grown celery sticks, homegrown-cherry tomatoes and mozzarella cheese cubes
Lunchbox ideas by home of homemade treasures

4. Lunch and Snack:
*Sandwich (meat balls, green salad eaves, cucumber slices and spreadable cheese) (in a foil wrap in the picture below)
*An apple (cut in half)
*Carrot sticks
*Two types of grapes
Homemade lunch for school lunchbox

Healthy lunch ideas for kids

Previous lunchbox ideas for you to check out: