A Very Buggy Birthday

Both our little munchkins have January birthdays so this year we decided to throw them a combined “Bugs in the Garden” birthday party.

I don’t usually do huge birthday parties for the kids, but after the year we’ve had, I really wanted to do something special to celebrate getting through it all.

Here are a few pics of the day:

Party Yumminess

Party Yumminess

 

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The birthday boy... already a hit with the ladies ;)

The birthday boy… already a hit with the ladies 😉

Sharing his cake with Mummy

Sharing his cake with Mummy

 

And of course, the cake ;)

And of course, the cake 😉

 

Of course I turned to Pinterest for inspiration, and got the ideas to make these:


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IMG_7503It was a hot and sunny day, plenty of cold drinks were had, the kids had a great water-fight (led by the biggest kid of them all, my darling Hubby)

I was absolutely thrilled to see ALL of the kids playing fantastically together, ages ranging from my itty-bitty 1 year old, to a couple of gorgeous boys who started high school this year. The big ones play so well with the little ones and they all get along wonderfully. It’s really lovely to see.

A fantastic day was had by all, and my little bugs had a very happy birthday.

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Road trip, part 2

Ok so we made it to Warnambool.

We checked in to our room for the night, got settled in and had a glass of bubbly to celebrate our trip, then decided to go exploring.

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We walked down the main st, checking out some cute shops and sussing out our dinner options for later. Then we took a drive around the foreshore and river district and had a little walk around, we even found a few twilight markets on, and enjoying some time to actually talk, to each other, without any little munchkins demanding attention!

With such a perfect sunny day, it seemed a waste to go sit inside somewhere for dinner, and then we remembered the cute little courtyard at the back of Fishtales Cafe, so off we went for dinner.
Salt & pepper squid to share, an then a burger each, Zorba for Kane and tandoori chicken for me, and of course a couple of pale ales. Yummo!

Super cute Fishie made from old bottle tops @ Fish Tales Cafe

Super cute Fishie made from old bottle tops @ Fish Tales Cafe

After dinner back to the room to enjoy a night of (kid-free) relaxation and check out the great corner spa.

Next morning we went to Koroit Pet Resort to pick up our long-awaited puppy.

(by the way Victorian people, if you’re ever looking for somewhere for your pets to go stay while you’re on holidays, the lovely Josee @ Koroit Pet Resort is wonderful with animals.)

Polly and siblings giving Josee lots of kisses

Polly and siblings giving Josee lots of kisses

Polly is a Pyrenean Mountain Dog (or Great Pyrenees as they’re known in the U.S.) She is absolutely gorgeous, we are all completely in love with this new addition to our family. Kane came up with the name “Polly-Bear” because when we first saw her, she looked just like a little white polar bear.

After we got our little Polly-bear, we started on the long journey home.

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We decided to stop off at Timboon for a bit of exploring and lunch.

Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous! We had lunch at the distillery, WOW, yummy.

Lots of lovely local beers to choose from and some fabulous wood-fired pizzas (Kane had something yummy with pumpkin and goat’s cheese and rocket.  I had a slow-roasted pork with apple and fennel and home made relish…omg, if we lived closer, I would be going there every week!)

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The distillery offers tasting of their whiskey and liquers and they also have a huge range of locally made produce, including the wonderful Timboon ice cream, just perfect for dessert. (Also really lovely was that they are pet- friendly, not only was Polly allowed to come sit with us in the deck, but all the staff were coming to give her cuddles because she was just so cute!)

So, that’s about it. Came home to collect the kids and introduce them to Polly, they became instant best friends. Now I am busily puppy-proofing the shed and constantly rescuing the kids toys from our fluffy little terror.

Road Trip

* Finally got around to finishing off the blog post I wrote 3 weeks ago, lets just blame it on Christmas, or the kids, or whatever else you wanna think up…*

Hubby and I decided to treat ourselves to a little pre-Christmas treat last weekend.

We had to make the road trip down to Warnambool to pick up our pup so I jumped online and booked us a night away.

Saturday, we left the kiddies and headed off down the great ocean road. I haven’t been down there for at least 15 yrs and had forgotten what a gorgeous drive it is.

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We stopped at Anglesea for breakfast at the General Store, Kane had the biggest home-made sausage roll I have ever seen (and yummy too) and a decadent gooey chocolate brownie and a caffeine top-up for me.
Back on the road, sun shining, music blaring. The perfect day for a road trip, the only thing that could have made it better would have been to be driving it in a convertible.
Next stop was a pretty stretch of beach just out of Apollo Bay, where we went for a little walk, checking out rock pools.

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We couldn’t drive past the 12 Apostles without stopping to take a peek. Absolutely stunning.

IMG_6447Next stop… Warnambool

(Stay tuned for part 2 in a day or two  whenever I remember to do it!)

Till then, hope everyone had a great Christmas, I am still completely stuffed from non-stop eating and drinking the last few days (and loving it!)

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Lamb on a stick (my first original recipe!)

Hi there,

Eeek, bit nervous, this is the very first of my own recipes to go on the blog.

I wanted to make something “kid-friendly” and fun to eat, but still healthy and lots of flavour for us grown-ups too.

Kids love food on sticks, and I had lots of fresh herbs so I decided to go for something with a middle-eastern feel.

Lamb Koftas with Roasted Veg Cous Cous.

Ingredients:

600g Lamb Mince, 1 clove of garlic (finely chopped), 1 tbsp ground cumin, Skewers

1 cup Cous Cous, 500ml stock (vegetable or chicken)

1 brown onion, 1 large red capsicum, around 200/250g pumpkin,

A bunch of fresh mint, (around about a big handfull of leaves)

A bunch of fresh parsley, ( can use all mint or all parsley if you don’t have/don’t like the other one)

1 lemon, 1 tbsp cumin seeds, Olive oil, salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Greek Yoghurt and extra fresh mint to serve.

Instructions:

Let’s keep it simple, shall we?

Get the mince, chuck it in a bowl. Add your garlic and cumin. Lightly season with salt and pepper. Mix. Grab a handfull (around the size of a small mandarin) and smoosh it onto a skewer and shape with your hands to make a ‘sausage’ shape. (It helps if you wet your hands first so it doesn’t stick to you instead of the skewers. Also it’s a good idea to soak your skewers in water before you start, but don’t stress if you don’t have time, it’ll be ok. I trimmed my skewers a little bit shorter too, so they’d fit in the pan better, but wouldn’t bother if I was going to do them on the bbq)

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Finely dice the onion. Chop the pumpkin and capsicum into smalls chunks (1-11/2cms)

 

IMG_5571        Get a small pan and just lightly toast the cumin seeds for a few minutes

(careful, they burn quick)

 

 

Get a nice big heavy-based pan with a tight-fitting lid and heat up some olive oil on a medium heat. (I love my really heavy cast iron enamel one for this, and it’s pretty enough to serve everything in at the table.) Cook the onion till translucent. Throw in the capsicum and pumpkin. Turn heat up a little bit, and cook stirring occasionally till they just start to brown. Add the couscous and stir, then add stock, give it a good stir, put the lid on and turn the heat down.

Leave it alone for about 10min,then check on it, if the pumpkin is tender, you can turn the heat off and just leave the lid on. (don’t stir it yet,ok?)

During this time, you can finely chop the mint and parsley and start cooking the skewers. (Pre heat a large pan on medium heat and lightly oil it. You can do this on a bbq if you prefer.) Turn every few minutes.

When the skewers are cooked (about 7 or 8mins) take the lid off the couscous, throw in the chopped herbs and give it a drizzle of olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Arrange the skewers on top, give it a good squeeze of lemon juice, sprinkle with toasted cumin seeds. Serve with greek yoghurt and garnish with fresh mint.

(For kiddies, they might like it served in a mini pita bread that they can just wrap it up and eat it. Easy huh! )

And here we go, the finished product!

And here we go, the finished product!

So, there we are, my very first recipe. (if anyone does give it a go, please let me know how you went and if you like it!)

Happy Cooking peeps!IMG_5715

 

A Day In The Life Of… Me.

Ok, trying to get back on board with this blogging thing and linking up with Home Life Simplified for listmania #20, A day in the life of me.

So here is my Wednesday the 5th of June 2013.

5.49am: Squishy wakes up, nappy change, feed, back to sleep

7.15: Snuggle wakes up, insists that Daddy come play blocks with her, now. Which he kindly does so I can stay snuggled up in bed feeding and cuddling Squishy.

Coffee, I may be up but I'm not really awake till I've finished my coffee.

8am: Coffee. I may be up but I’m not really awake till I’ve finished my coffee.

 

9.45-10.30am: Squishy has a little nap. Snuggle does some painting.

I love seeing baby clothes all folded in the drawer. So much nicer than putting away grown-up sized washing!

I love seeing baby clothes all folded in the drawer. So much nicer than putting away grown-up sized washing!

I put some washing away and try to tidy up a bit. Go to put something away in desk drawer and it won’t close. Have to clean out desk drawer. Find some more textas for Snuggle. Squishy wakes up.

11.15am: Squishy has a roll around and chews on his toys.

Playtime!

11.15am: Playtime!

11.30-1.20pm: Squishy is a cranky and unsettled, wants to eat but doesn’t want to, wants to be held but doesn’t want to. *sigh* get nothing done for a couple of hours.

1.20pm: Lunch. We have toasted cheese sandwiches and sweet chilli sauce. (Snuggle is obsessed with sweet chilli sauce, she wants to put it on everything, including her toast some mornings!)

Squishy had pureed apple and a bit of a chew on a rusk.

1.20pm:  Lunch.                                                                Squishy had pureed apple and a bit of a chew on a rusk.

1.50: Take the little ones for a walk up to visit the goats. The new goats are starting to get used to us, I can hand feed three of them but Vienna is still a bit shy.

My baby girl, Mocha

My baby girl, Mocha

2.30pm: Snuggle stays outsidewith Kane for a little while so I can feed Squishy and try to put him down for a nap. It works! Yay, now I can get some stuff done! Run around like a mad woman tiding up and doing dishes.

How awesome is that 30 seconds when ALL he dishes are done...

How awesome is that 30 seconds when ALL he dishes are done…

3.30: Giving myself half an hour to chill out, have a cup of tea and do some crochet on the blanket I’m making for Snuggle while the little one’s asleep.

Tea and Crochet

3.30pm: Tea and Crochet

4.05: Squishy wakes up.

4.30: Bath time, Squishy first, then Snuggle plays in the bath while I get Squishy dressed and settled.

5.15: Get Squishy comfy in the kitchen in his rocker with some toys and teething rings so I can start on dinner.

Snuggle likes to "do cuttings"

5.15pm:  Snuggle likes to help  “do cuttings”

6pm: Dinner tonight is stir-fried kangaroo, marinated in char-sui sauce, lots of vegies and hokkien noodles. I love stirfrys, quick and easy and Snuggle will eat anything with noodles or pasta.

Kangaroo Stir Fry

Kangaroo Stir Fry with Noodles

6.45: Snuggle sits up on the couch with her milk and I sit with her feeding Squishy and reading a story. Tonight (and every night for the last week) its “Hot, Cross Bunny”

7.30: Both the little ones are asleep! YAY! Tidy up after dinner.

8.30: Relax time, super happy that Offspring is back on.

Offspring time!

8.30pm: Offspring time!

Snuggle up on the couch with Kane and a glass of wine to watch it.

9.30: Soo tired, going to bed.

(Squishy will probably wake me up for a feed sometime after midnight.)

So that was my day, not incredibly exciting, but lots of cuteness and cuddles.

How was your wednesday?

Till next time,

Beck xoxo

 

Making Stuff…

 

It’s #listmania time again, List 16 is all about making stuff, or more specifically things I want to make.

The perfect excuse for me to spend a few hours playing  um, I mean researching on Pinterest.

Can I just say now, how much I love Pinterest? I mean really, really love it.

I’m the kind of person who always has at least half a dozen projects on-the-go.

This means I don’t always finish things, or it might take me a year or two to get back to something, and sometimes by the time I get back to something, I don’t always remember what I was doing!

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This is why I love Pinterest so much, there’s so many things to remember, especially when building a house, there’s no way I’m going to remember the exact shade of paint I fell in love with a year ago when it’s actually time to paint, or what website had the handy tutorial for upcyling an old cabinet into something cool for a kids room. But on Pinterest, I can organise everything so that I’ll be able to find exactly what I’m looking for.

Ok, so now, some things I want to make:

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Awesome Recycled Chest of Drawers

Pinned this one from vertaustin.blogspot.com

I have an old set of drawers that were in my room when I was a kid, and they’ve definitely seen better days. I love this idea for prettying them up to put in one of the kid’s rooms.

Cooking :

OMG, there are so many things I’d love to learn to cook, I have hundreds of recipes pinned. Like this one for Pumpkin Donuts.

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Not exactly healthy but how yummy do they look? Pinned from annies-eats.net

Sewing:

yeah, this one might be a bit of wishful thinking. I haven’t even learned how to thread my sewing machine yet and I have 196 pins of things I’d like to make! Maybe one day I’ll be able to make something like this:

Super Cool Wings for Kids!

Super Cool Wings for Kids!

 

There are seriously hundreds of pins I could share with you today, it took me ages to decide on these ones, so if you want to see more, come stalk me on Pinterest, you’ll find me as Beck@mamaupthemountain and feel free to leave me your username in the comments or on FB so I can come follow you too 🙂

Lastly I’m going to share with something that actually will get made soon, a crochet granny square blanket I’ve started making for Miss Snuggle’s new big-girl  bed. The bed should be delivered by mid-June, so hopefully I’ll get the blanket finished by then too.

IMG_3390Ok, well that’s it for today, good luck with whatever you’re making this week.

Till next time,

Beck xoxo

Currently I am… (update)

Time for #listmania 15, an update on the first list of currently I am… to see what’s changed in 3 months. So here goes:

Currently  I am:

Reading: haven’t had time to pick up a book for a while, mostly been trying to catch up on the huge backlog of blogs in my reader.

Listening to: my Dad just gave me the new Will.I.Am album and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis albums, I’m only  on my first listen of each one, but liking them so far. (yes, my dad is WAY more into current music than I am! Most of the new stuff I listen to I get because he’s discovered it first.)

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Laughing At: my little Squishy. He has the cutest giggle and you just can’t help but laugh with him.

Vintage Love

Vintage Love

Swooning Over: the adorable vintage 70’s dress I picked up on our weekend away in the city. Great vintage find, so cute.

Planning: so many things, most involve getting more organised and ways to survive another winter in the shed without going stir-crazy.

Beef Rogan Josh with home made flat bread

Beef Rogan Josh with home made flat bread

Eating Lots of: homemade flatbread. I never knew how easy it is to make, I found a Jamie Oliver recipe that takes two minutes to make and you cook it in a grill pan or bbq. I’m addicted and making lots of curries and things with nice sauces so I can dip the bread into.

Feeling: A bit overwhelmed at the moment. A baby, a toddler, building a house, living in the shed. I try to stay positive but it gets a bit much sometimes.

Discovering: Spotify. I only downloaded the app a couple of days ago, so I’m just learning to use it but so far it’s pretty cool.

Looking At: Miss Snugglebug, wearing her pyjamas, with a footy beanie, ballerina skirt and fairy wings. And making the hugest mess, there’s toys everywhere but she’s having so much fun that I don’t care. (I tried to get a photo but she won’t keep still long enough!)

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Wearing: My new boots that I got for my birthday. So comfy & so pretty, I know I’m going to be living in these over winter.

Cooking: Lots of curries and casseroles, the cooler weather has set in and I’m turing to my favourite comfort foods.

Wondering: how much longer till I can fit into my pre-baby jeans again. I miss my clothes!

Trying Out: Cutting down on caffeine and white sugar. I’m not ready to give either one up, but I want to see if reducing my intake affects my mood at all. (She says while drinking her 4th cup of coffee for the day….oops!)

So, what are y’all currently up to? Feel free to leave a comment or pop by the FB page.

Till next time,

Beck xoxo

p.s. I had a few issues with some of the links on last week’s #listmania: Music. I haven’t worked out how to fix them yet, but I will work it out eventually. (I’m very new to this techy stuff) Thanks to everyone that let me know 🙂