Monday, December 31, 2012

hello 2013

a new year is here...

an opportunity to start afresh

time for some inspiration,

for a colourful, adventurous year ahead

live in the moment

enjoy the little things in life

dare to dream, and to live those dreams

Sunday, December 30, 2012

healthy microwave popcorn recipe

there's nothing quite like the delightful aroma of freshly popped popcorn.

and nothing quite like the satisfaction of being able to make a quick and healthy batch in the comfort of your own home.

all you need is three very simple things - a paper bag, a functioning microwave, and some popcorn kernels of course - oh, and a don't forget to add a good measure of enthusiasm...and being easily excited by little things is a bonus condiment too...

four steps to yummy air popped homemade popcorn :

one /  put about a tablespoon and a half full of popcorn kernels (this will make about a cup of popped popcorn) into a paper bag

two /  fold the top of the paper bag into 1cm increment a couple of times

three /  set microwave for 90 seconds and stop it when the 'pops' slow down to less than one per second (this bit takes a bit of experimenting as it depends on the amount of kernels and the wattage of the microwave)

four / dig in! enjoy the popcorn while its still nice and warm :) 

mt gambier trip

just got back yesterday from our family roadtrip to mount gambier. we stopped by a few towns on the way there and back as well. the view at the blue lake at mount gambier was amazing, and the umpherston sinkhole garden was another highlight. we also went possum spotting on our first night there, and got to feed them apples. they looked so cute nibbling on the little apple pieces! we also ate some nice food, plus heaps of snacks in the car, and a fair bit of yes, desperately in need of a workout right now!

thank you beci orpin + tdf

last week a lovely parcel came my way, just in time for christmas. i was one of the lucky readers to win a copy of beci orpin's new book - 'find & keep' from the design files. and was super lucky to also win a beautiful at-swim-two-birds potholder from mr kitly. the potholder came lovingly wrapped in a kraft paper with neon deco, together with a signature beci orpin postcard and notebook.

find & keep is such a gem! it's bursting full of inspiration and awesome projects (which i can't wait to give a try!) there's so much beautiful photography, bright ideas and thoughtful words. beci orpin is one of my favourite designers, and to own a copy of her first book....very exciting! thank you beci orpin & the design files ♥

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

five quotes to keep that train of motivation chugging on

"people often say that motivation doesn't last. well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it DAILY" | zig ziglar

"an obstacle is often a STEPPING STONE" | prescott

"ENERGY and PERSISTENCE conquer all things" | benjamin franklin

"don't go through life, GROW through life" | eric butterworth

"i am always doing that which i cannot do, in order that i may LEARN how to do it" | pablo picasso

Monday, May 21, 2012

finders keepers in melbourne

i've been meaning to write this post for a while, but it's been sitting here unfinished for a little long. now is the time to get things done for good!  

much love monday  |  love : finders keepers 

so a few weeks back, a few friends and i had a lovely time venturing through the finders keepers market in melbourne. we went on the opening night on a friday, and the royal exhibition building was overflowing with aficionados of indie art and design. there were so many wonderful handmade treasures to see, all pretty designs and creative ideas.

porcelain minaitures and glass bubbles | meow girl

geometric laser cut necklaces | so little time co

bead necklaces and diamond brooches | emily green

quirky mr frenchy necklaces | made of awesome 

pretty florals and forest animals jewellery | that vintage

can't wait till finders keepers come around to melbourne again in october! 

Monday, May 7, 2012

love ♥ live below the line

this monday, i'm loving Live Below the Line. i'm in the middle of a ten day challenge of living on $2 of food each day. live below the line is an engaging campaign aimed at raising awareness and funds to help end extreme poverty. 

today is the first day of the official 5 day challenge. last year, the 5 day challenge was an insightful experience for me, and i thought i'd up the ante, and do for 10 days this year, and start the challenge 5 days in advance - to help spread more awareness about the meaningful impact that together we can make.

the funds raised from Live Below the Line will go towards life-changing education projects, such as building schools in the communities of Yangis and Kumbareta in Papua New Guinea. donations will be used to train teachers, build infrastructure and provide scholarships - creating incredible learning opportunities for many young people, and tackling poverty at its root cause. 

here's an awesome little clip on the story of how Live Below the Line is making a meaningful impact in developing countries...

and if you'd like to support me and this worthwhile cause, please visit my Live Below the Line page :   

every donation is greatly appreciated, and will go towards creating the change that we desperately need to see. thank you! :)

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

art i heart - emily green

the finders keepers market is just around the corner for melbourne. i'm pleased to hear that one of my favourite local creatives - emily green - will be there, along with her excitingly colourful artwork and accessories.

her love for colour has been thoughtfully, and vividly, expressed in every piece of her artwork and jewellery. there's just something about the art she creates lets colour and geometry sing out harmoniously.

emily's signature handmade bead necklaces combine the most beautiful hues together. definitely on my wish list ; though it'd be so very hard to choose one...because they're all so nice!

let the colours speak for themselves...

emily green's designs simply have the most incredible colour palettes, enough said.

Monday, April 2, 2012

love ♥ coffee

when i was a little girl, my first sip of coffee was not a pleasant experience. the bitterness was quite a shock to me, and i had never quite understood how so many people couldn't live a day without their coffee, the peculiar taste had always confounded me a bit ...

that was until sometime last year, when i admittedly did fall in love with coffee. if not a lot, at least enough for me to be able to enjoy it without a single speck of sugar. perhaps i'm somewhat still that little girl that i was, though now i've come to appreciate the uniquely rich aroma and pleasant bitterness of coffee. that being said, coffee and i, we have a pretty healthy relationship. coffee isn't one of those things ingrained in my daily routine, but rather an occasional treat here and there, especially over a chat with friends at a nice cafe.

 skinny latte at giraffe cafe

this monday i'm loving : coffee and coffee art

see what anna at much love is loving this monday

do you have a thing for coffee too?

Monday, March 19, 2012

love ♥ cute drawings

oh my goodness, guess what i found today ?

... some splendidly cute drawings by jackie at chi bird! they're so adorable, and bursting with cheeriness. and perfect for much love monday. i'm loving the quote too : 'only do what your heart tells you'. short and sweet, and ever so true.

and here's a bit more of chibird cuteness... and things i'm loving at the moment ...

love : indulging in nutella 
one of the bestest inventions ever!

love : sleeping in 
some good rest does wonders

what are you loving this monday?

have a sweet week ahead, keep smiling, and follow your heart!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

restaurant time : olivehouse

having driven past olivehouse quite a few times ever since our placement in shepparton, and hearing plenty of compliments about this place from friends, it was clearly our first stop during the long weekend.

olivehouse is a neatly presented restaurant with beautiful gardens, and surrounded by endless rows of well kept trees, olive ones of course. we opted for the outdoor seating and had a lovely lunch accompanied by a light autumn breeze and a refreshing view of the olive grove. the food was delightful, and even better when enjoyed with a bunch of good friends.

Monday, March 12, 2012

love ♥ cupcakes

it's a long weekend, so i've been relaxing so much that i've almost forgotten that it is monday today!

we baked some strawberry vanilla cupcakes for afternoon tea, and spent most of the arvo decorating and taking photos of them. this week for much love monday, i'm loving very muchly -  cupcakes, and tiny teddies too :)

inspired by anna's 'much love' blog, check out anna's much love monday here

what are you loving this monday?

( see ) a different way

it's the twelfth day of the march challenge to do something different everyday. it's been fun thinking up new ideas for ways to make each day a little different, and a little more exciting. seems like food was the only variation i made in the first four days...hehe just shows how much i love it..oops :P so for the past week i've been trying super hard to do a few more non-food things, but yes, they do pop in here and there again...

how the adventure is going :

day five - going out at night after a tiring monday and had a great dinner with friends

day six - doing yoga listening to a remix of songs i haven't heard in a long time

day seven - walking home via a different route and enjoying the different scenery

day eight - downloading a new game app on my phone - draw something (it's addictive!)

day nine - gyming for almost two hours and felt so energised afterwards

day ten - step outside comfort zone from the naturally shy disposition of mine

day eleven - bake cupcakes with friends

day twelve - start the day with a morning jog

p.s. captured this with my camera the other day,
autumn is here!

how has your march been?

Sunday, March 4, 2012

do something different everyday

summer seems to have gone by in a flash, can't believe it's autumn already! laura at see hear say has inspired me with her march challenge to do something different everyday. it's a lovely way to add a bit of creativity and spice to the daily grind, and also interesting to see photos and updates from other bloggers who have taken on the challenge too.

this march i'll be embarking little thirty-one day adventure - experimenting with new ideas, trying out alternatives to things i normally do and embracing spontaneity.

here's how i'm going so far...

day one : making wholemeal flatbread from scratch

day two : cooking without any recipes, just by feel

day three : trip to the chocolate apple factory...yum!

day four : trying handmade papardelle pasta for the first time

Sunday, February 26, 2012

cafe time

the friar's cafe - a century old church refurbished into a bustling cafe, this was where we visited last weekend for afternoon tea. i loved the beautiful stained glass windows and antique wooden decor. 

the most delicious chocolate almond torte i've ever 
eaten! it's a rich cake with a beautiful balance of 
dark chocolate, nutty textures and creaminess. 

flourless orange cake with a punchy citrus flavour, 
silky texture and a pleasant hint of sweetness.

hot chocolate with that lovely layer of creamy milk
foam, and served with a slice of yummy almond biscotti

Saturday, February 25, 2012

pumpkin tortilla

for the past two week i've been living away from home, which means i've been missing my family and friends in melbourne, and also missing the well stocked pantry at home! 

so here i've set up my own little pantry, with the bare minimum essentials and groceries that require minimal, or more often, no cooking at all. having been surviving mostly on salads which only require a bit of slicing and assembly, i do get a craving now and then to cook something. and perhaps try something new too. 

i had half a pumpkin left in the fridge, and also almost a dozen eggs which had been sitting there for nearly a fortnight, oh, and the onions were on sale at coles so i had a kilo of those... perfect for a pumpkin tortilla! 

tortillas are spanish omelettes, which are traditionally made using potatoes, and eggs of course. seeing i had some pumpkin handy, the idea just came together quite nicely. the little cooking experiment in the kitchen turned out rather neat. the recipe i've made up is pretty straightforward, and uses only 3 ingredients plus oil, salt and freshly ground pepper. the pumpkin and onions are full of flavour, and the eggs give it a good protein boost, so it's quite an appetising and substantial, yet healthy meal. 

pumpkin tortilla recipe


one quarter large kent pumpkin - diced to 2mm cubes
two brown onions - halved and finely sliced
7 large eggs - lightly beaten
oil - 3 tablespoons 
salt & pepper to season the eggs

five simple steps

1. heat 1 tbs oil on in a frying pan and half cook the pumpkin ( approx 7 - 10 minutes )
2. meanwhile, in another pan / saucepan, heat 2 tbs oil and cook onions till golden brown
3. preheat the oven to 200 degrees celsius, and line an 18 x 18cm baking pan ( or similar sized round baking tin) with baking paper whilst letting the pumpkin and onions cool
4. place the pumpkin and onions into the baking pan and pour the seasoned egg mixture into the pan
5. bake for 20 minutes or until lightly browned and cooked through

buen provecho! ( spanish for 'enjoy your meal !' )

Monday, February 20, 2012

life is like a bento

the past few days have been a bit whirlwind busy, but with so much going on, every little morsel can be enjoyed in its own. rather than rushing every minute and scoffing down things in a blur, why not try a bite of each dish that the smorgasbord of life offers?

life is so much better in bite sized pieces - much like bentos!  

here are a few for inspiration, all courtesy of anna the red. she has a gallery of wonderful character bentos that is really quite a gourmet buffet for the eyes! they're super creative, a very cute!

and isn't this just perfect for much love monday  
such lovely and adorable sheep

hope you're having a bento-ful start to the week - full of creativity, colour and inspiring bites of life!