Showing posts from 2016

Summer days

The New Year has come in and Summer is making its presence known giving us hot days. I've been cleaning up my container plants and cut a lot of the herbs back. I dried them, then added the herbs to jars. I have Thyme, Lemon balm, Apple mint, and Oregano. The mint needs to be cut back too, I'll dry that and add that to jars as well.  Having a store of dried herbs in the cupboard is useful for cooking and for adding in sachets to place among linen to keep the insects out of the clothes. 
Oregano is one of those useful herbs to keep in your garden as it is easy to grow and it grows well in a pot. Oregano has a strong camphor scent which makes it useful in potpourri sachets to be placed among linen. 
In culinary uses Oregano can be used for all different pizza’s and pizza sauce. A little can go in tomato juice. It an be used for all egg dishes, salad dressings, meat marinades and mixed in all types of sales. Oregano is a useful herb for casseroles, meat dishes, meat balls and poul…


I just want to wish everyone a Happy Holiday, or Merry Christmas, or how ever you celebrate this time of year. Keep safe in the New Year and I hope to be posting again soon after the New Year. 
I also want to thank everyone who has left a comment through out this year, although I don't always reply, I do read, and I appreciate every comment. 
My surgery to help fix my voice also went very well. I have a good clear volume and can speak longer without breaking. Although the voice is a little raspy with the healing, I'm happy with the out come.

Have a good day or evening where ever you are.

Rambly things

We've had some really nice weather of late, a little warm, but still pleasant. My container pot garden is enjoying the weather and so are the caterpillars which I had to spray for. Hopefully the spray will keep the loopers away. I had to replant the mint but I'm sure that will grow as it likes to take over. 
In other news the house my parents are renting is being sold. They've been there for about ten years and now have a lot to pack up, they have found another place on the other side of town not too far away which eased the stress of moving but still they have a lot to pack up.
Also I have an appointment next week with the anaesthetist which means my throat surgery is going to be soon. For those who don't know for years I had doctors looking at my voice and was told: There's nothing wrong, I need to speak up, speak properly, and all that. On a good day my voice sounds like I have laryngitist, on a bad day it's a whisper.  I'm generally a shy person and ta…

fabric tea towel edge

How to sew a fabric edging to a tea towel
Materials needed:

Tea towel. I used the ones from our cheap stores here. They come in a pack of three or five for a couple of dollars. I pre-wash and iron everything before use.

Any scrap of fabric that will match the bottom width of your tea towel. You can patch together scraps of fabric to make up the length and width you need.
Quick unpick
Usual sewing equipment: Scissors, pins, thread, ect.

If you don't have a sewing machine this can also be done by hand.

Step 1: Unpick the bottom edge of the tea towel.

Step 2: Unpick the sides of the tea towel. Making it long enough to match  the height of your combined fabric edging.

Step 3: Choose scraps of fabric long enough to go across the width of the tea towel. I had fabric left over from the baby quilt and the kitty baby bib on my Etsy store. Add in extra length for when you have to fold over the edges towards the seams.

Step 4: Your first scrap of fabric fold together and match the raw edges toget…

Steamed crock pot chicken - Slow cooker.

Steamed crock pot (slow cooker) chicken with vegetables
Chicken pieces. (You may be able to do this with a whole chicken too but you might have to adjust the olive oil, lemon and herb amounts.) Olive oil, 1/4cup. Herbs: Thyme, Rosemary, Oregano, fresh or dried. I used fresh. Use what ever you think will go with chicken and vegetables. Vegetables: Potatoes - quartered. Peel them if you like, I never did with mine. Carrots - trimmed and peeled if you want, I never peeled mine. Add in any softer vegetables, such as green beens, towards the end. Freshly squeezed lemon juice, 1/3 cup. 2 teaspoons of crushed garlic. Salt and pepper to season.

Place chicken and vegetables into the crock pot. Mix the Olive oil with the lemon juice, add the herbs and garlic into the oil and lemon juice. Then pour the mixture over the Chicken and vegetables. Keep the lid on the crock pot as the steam will cook everything through.
Cook for 4 hrs on High or 8 hrs on Low.

I hope everyone is havi…

Home time

After some rain then hail this month we've been having really good days of nice fine weather. I've been harvesting a few items from my container plants, salad mix, tomatoes, and strawberries. Eventually I'll be adding a few more vegetables as I go along.

I've been pottering around at home. We've had a couple of days with baking and cooking so expect a few recipes up soon for those. 

I attended my first craft fair and enjoyed the experience. It was a learning curve and I expect to do  things a little differently next time. I had sales and made a profit after I counted out my float.  I've also opened my Etsy store: Hilda and Lillian. I do custom orders, so let me know if you would like for me to do anything for you.

I hope everyone is having a good day or evening where ever you are.

Hilda and Lillian

I've been busy preparing for the Home School markets which is going to be held on the 15th of October.  Nanna Chel of going grey and slightly green wrote up a post about the event, here, so I'll link to her post. It'll be my first craft stall so I hope to learn a lot from attending. 
Below is a video tour of what will be on my craft stall table. Of course, a lot of the items are made from vintage fabric, thrift store ribbons, beads, buttons and a lot more from my stash. Even my business cards are made from my craft stash.

I also plan on opening an Etsy shop too, which also will include the same kind of items including more of my art. I named my shop Hilda and Lillian, after my Grandmothers; who are deceased. I think it is a nice reminder of them and being at their homes which had the usual fancy work doiley's and crochet items.

I hope everyone is having a good day or evening where ever you are.

Apple Crumble Cake

220 butter, chopped, melted 4 eggs at room temperature 2 3/4 cups self-raising flour 1 1/2 cups caster sugar 1/3  cup custard powder 1 teaspoon vanilla essence Sour cream 800g can apple pie fruit

Crumble topping: 3/4 plain flour 1/3 cup white sugar 1 teaspoon baking powder 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 75g butter, chilled, chopped

Preheat oven to 180 C. Grease a deep roasting dish or slab pan.  Cut baking paper to line tin and leave 2cm over hang.
Using an electric mixer beat melted butter, eggs, flour, caster sugar, sour cream, custard powder and vanilla essence for 3 minutes or until pale and fluffy.
Pour half the mixture into prepared dish or pan. Spread apple over mixture. Top with remaining mixture.
Make crumble topping: Combine flour, white sugar, baking powder, and cinnamon in a bowl. Use fingertips to rub butter into flour mixture until mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Sprinkle topping over cake mixture. 
Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes or until a skew…

Flower colours

We had a lot of rain and it finally cleared up, though it did bring a bit of wind and chill through the air. September in our part of the world brings the Carnival of flowers, that is held each year. Every year a garden is selected as a winner and visitors then can tour all the gardens open for the Carnival.
My aunt and I, took a visit to the reserved champion garden, and it was a glorious show of colour and flowers. I took a video so will have that up soon for everyone to have a look at.

The reserve champion won last year and I don't know why it didn't win again this year.

I've also been at home puttering around, preparing for a craft stall in October. I'm not sure if I need some kind of intervention or if I should even admit that much of the material shown here came out of my stash. I've used up a lot of scraps. The little folk art paintings, I brought the canvases in a packet of six and never quite knew what to do with them; now they are being useful.
Over all …

this and that

Spring is well and truly here.  We've had a bit of mix bag when it comes to the weather but it has been mostly glorious. I've been planting away in my tiny container garden and it is coming along nicely. The tomatoes are turning red and it looks like there is more on the way. Not bad for a freebie plant I picked up off the swap table at the Simple Living group, the plant I picked up in the winter workshops and dad said it would die. I also brought these 'mums mostly because of the cute little water can pot but mostly because they were half price at Woolies.

At home we've been trying to use up what we have with the food as we don't seem to go through it quick enough. So we made up some fritters to use up excess ham and such. The burnt ones are also yummy. 

I've also been pottering away at the work desk. I agreed to do a table at a craft stall in October. It'll be my first craft stall and I hope to have enough. You'd think I'd have more but as I do t…

Windy August

August has started to blow up a gale after we had rain and it has brought another chill in the air. We did have some fine days, fine enough for me to take some cuttings from the flowering containers and dry them. I have mint, cat mint, pansy flowers and parsley drying. A random mix which has the scent of mint more than anything.

I've also been working on a few craft projects. I'm getting more adventurous with crochet and trying different things. Youtube is so handy for someone like me who is a visual learner rather than a text learner. Even though I like today's technology I still write down what I've learnt so I can understand written instructions. You never know when you'll be without the internet or computer and can't access  electronic things, always write down what you can. This pom pom edging looks complicated but it is super easy. I'll put up a lesson for that soon, get your notebook and pen out.
I've also been doing some new tea towels. I'v…

Garden Markers

Spring weather is trying to make a showing. There were a few cold day, although, not really cold. With the warm weather a lot of things are starting to bloom and grow in my container gardens.
I saw these garden markers or plant pokes on line to buy and I thought to myself: Oh, I can make those. So I did. As always you know if I'm making something it will be frugal. The spoons are from the thrift store and depending on where you buy they are pretty cheap. These ones were a bit pricey at 50 cents but I liked the decoration down the spoons. They are all different size spoons but that works for me. 

The Basil I have growing came from an 'Italian Herb' mix from bunnings on sale. I also have a larger one growing amongst a tomato plant. The plant I picked up off the swap table from the simple living group and it surprisingly survived the winter. The Basil plant growing with that came from Dad's garden. 

The Parsley I have also is from Dad's garden. I changed it over from…

Crochet Shawl

Crochet triangular shawl
My video for crochet triangular shawl: Original instructions for the shawl came from: Bobwilson123 youtube channel.

Chain 4 join to make ring Double crochet into ring three times chain 3. turn  Work 2 double crochet in stitch at base of chain 3. Chain 3 counts as 1 double crochet Work 3 double crochet into chain 3 at end Chain 3. turn work Work 2 double crochet in stitch at base of chain 3 Work 3 double crochet into next space. Work 3 double crochet into chain 3 at end Chain 3 turn work Work 2 double crochet into stitch at base of chain 3 Work 3 double crochet into next space
*Repeat until shawl in required length and width

I hope everyone is having a good day or evening where ever you are.

Use it up

I've been offline pottering around. We've been having some really nice weather mixed in with odd weather, rain and fog. It won't be long before spring is around the corner although we still have windy August to go through yet. 
While at home I've been trying new recipes. I made a goulash and I'll put a video of that up soon along with instructions for a crochet shawl. I've also been managing to get some finishes done.

I've been working on and off of the baby quilt and it is finally heading to it's new home. A baby girl will hopefully like this.  The only thing I brought for this quilt was a flannel set of double bed sheets on half price and I used the flannel for the batting. I wasn't sure if it would work as a batting but it does make the quilt very soft and warm, but not hot. 

The rest of the fabric came from my stash. I used, yes, another bed sheet to for the embroidery blocks and coloured in the blocks using crayon tinting technique: Technique …


Ingredients: Pastry sheets. Finely chopped brown onion Bacon rashers trimmed grated cheese  Eggs Pure Cream

Method: Great oven to 200/220 fan-forced. Place a baking tay in oven. Lightly grease a  deep dish. Line base and sides of container with pastry and trim excess. Prick with fork. Line with baking paper.  Fill with pie weights or uncooked rice. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove baking paper with weights. Bake for 5 more minutes until pastry is golden.
Melt remaining butter in large frying pan over medium heat. Add onion and bacon. Cook.  Transfer mixture to bowl set aside for 10 minutes to cool.

Reduce oven temperature to 80/160 fan-forced. Spoon bacon mixture in pastry case. Sprinkle with cheese. Whisk eggs and cream together in bowl. Pour over bacon mixture. Bake for 45 minutes or until set. Cool for 5 minutes. 
Note:I didn't add the amounts as we made a lot to freeze. We also added silverbeet from the garden as it needed to be used up. I don't think I'd use silverbeet again…