Saturday, April 5, 2014

Giving :: Rum Balls

My mother-in-law makes the most delicious Rum Balls!  They are not too squishy, not too rum-my, and freeze really well, which can make for an organised lead up to Christmas.  Perfect for gifting to friends, neighbours, colleagues, and teachers, the only downside would be all the rolling involved in making enough for all those eager recipients!

Rum Balls
1/2 pound dark chocolate, melted
1/2 tin sweetened condensed milk
4 Tablespoons chopped walnuts
4 Tablespoons chopped glace cherries
4 Tablespoons dessicated coconut
12 Nice biscuits, crushed
2 Tablespoons rum
optional - a little preserved ginger, finely chopped.
chocolate sprinkles

Melt chocolate in the microwave in 30sec bursts, stirring after each zap. Did you know that chocolate can hold it's shape even when melted, so you could end up with a burned mass of chocolate (that doesn't look melted but really is) if you don't stir it?
While that's happening I crush my biscuits in the food processor, then add to melted chocolate with the condensed milk.
Then I whizz the walnuts and cherries in the food processor and add to the other ingredients in the bowl along with the dessicated coconut, and rum. Stir well until combined and roll into walnut sized balls, then roll in chocolate sprinkles.
Place them in an airtight container in the freezer for storage and remove as needed for guests or gifts.

You can make these as big or as small as you want, my MIL makes small ones, just a little bite. While I get impatient with rolling and make slightly bigger ones! Just remember that they're quite rich so a little goes a long way - I've seen some huge rum balls in cafes but haven't ever tried them, these would be too rich if made that size.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Hello 2014!

We're almost a month into the new year and it's been too long since I popped in here!  Our family has been busy enjoying the summer, taking things slow, heading to the beach, parks, pools, cricket and catching up with friends.  

It's been delightful and I'm reminding myself to enjoy the chaos and mess from having all five of us home because before long the boys will be back at school and work, there will be uniforms to iron and lunchboxes to fill, notes to keeps track of and schedules to keep!

I have also used the last few weeks to finish up projects that I started during the previous year, and ended up relegating to the WIP pile.  I've finished crocheting a lap rug, and quilting and binding two single bed quilts for the boys, during hot summer days and nights.  I am so very thankful for air conditioning as most of it has been done while sitting right under the cold air, and now we're all ready for some cooler weather!

They are far from my best work, and quilting them was one of the most frustrating things I've ever done. I have so much respect for those makers who churn out quilts each week, I don't know how they do it! These have taken me months to make, in between sewing for Indigo Elephant, and working on other bits and pieces, but it's definitely rewarding to see them finished and know that the boys love them!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Giving :: Rocky Road

Rocky Road is a favourite treat at our place during Christmas.  Super easy to make, loved by all and so great to customize to the recipient's tastes!!  The kids have been gifting their teachers this for the last couple of years and it's always been well received. 

There's no real recipe for it, just melt two blocks of your favourite eating chocolate (white, milk or dark), then stir through enough additions to achieve a lumpy finish, pour into a lined baking tin/dish and refrigerate until set. Cut into logs or squares, wrap and gift! Too easy!!

Some combinations of treats to include in the rocky road are below, but really you're only limited by your imagination...

White chocolate, marshmallows, raspberry lollies
White chocolate, marshmallows, cranberries, pistachios

Milk chocolate, turkish delight, marshmallows, macadamias
Dark chocolate, marshmallows, hazlenuts, coconut
Dark chocolate, choc coated ginger, pistachios

Saturday, December 14, 2013

And The Winner Is...

I would definitely turn them into a beautiful messenger bag

I had grand plans to make a pretty announcement for the blog, but didn't get around to it. So congratulations Brittney, I'm sending an email your way to get your postal details! Thanks so much to everyone who entered, I've loved reading all your comments and my little blog has loved the attention!  I wish I could send you all some fabric but stay tuned for the next installment of SMS Giveaway Day in a few months time!!

Thursday, December 12, 2013


Are you a lover of Pinterest?  A dedicated pinner like me?  Such a wonderful site for procrastinating keeping track of kids party ideas, design and decorating trends, recipes to try, anything really!  But so hard to keep up with all the great ideas flowing around the blogosphere, which is why, when I finally try something I've pinned, I feel the need to shout it from the rooftops!

This is rosemary wreath, made with rosemary from our garden, but slightly wilted from the summer heat. At least I can add to it if it starts looking too withered. It was too hard to centre on the ugly screen door and the peephole, which drives me crazy.  But it smells so amazing, every time the door is opened you get a whiff of rosemary!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Giveaway Day! NOW CLOSED

Hello!! Welcome if you're here visiting from the Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day, hi to all the regulars! I'm so glad you came by and hope you'll stay awhile.  This is my first time participating in Giveaway Day despite many years of clicking around blogland being introduced to new, creative blogs.

Having a little girl in the family this last year and a bit has seen a huge influx of girly fabric to my stash, not necessarily pinks and the like but for this giveaway it certainly is!  I'm totally crushing on geometric prints at the moment and these fabrics tick so many boxes. From the Simpatico range by Michelle Engel Bencsko for Cloud 9 fabrics, these organic cottons are great for a range of uses. I'm offering up half a metre (20 inches) of each fabric pictured above.

Here's how to enter:
* leave a comment on this post letting me know how you'd use this fabric.
* get a second bonus entry - in a separate comment let me know that you follow this blog, or become a follower and let me know.

Please be sure to have a current email address either in your comment or attached to your profile!

Giveaway open internationally!


Saturday, December 7, 2013

Three Months Later...

And I'm baaaack... again! When life gets busy, blogging just gets pushed aside.  Things have definitely been busier than ever around here. Over the last few months we've celebrated two kids birthdays, my birthday, done a couple of local markets, made what feels like a tonne of stock for Shop Handmade and more recently been flat out with end of year shenanigans!

The cake from Miss J's first birthday!

Can you believe that Christmas is just a few short (and busy) weeks away?  As usual I have a huge list of sewing to accomplish in that time.  They're mostly gifts, though I'm really hoping to squeeze in a little selfish sewing too, perhaps a little ambitious!  Plus there's all the food gifts to make and the last few school functions to attend, oh and a short break to the beach for some rest and relaxation pre-Christmas!  I'm hoping to share some of my makes over the next few weeks, as they're gifted, though true to form one has already been given and I haven't taken any pictures of it!

Hope you're enjoying your lead-up to Christmas, do you have a huge list of things to do as well? Please share and make me feel a bit better about my list!