Wednesday, July 29, 2009


Kirby has left to return to Adelaide for Uni again. We've had her home for a whole month which has been lovely. We've had some great meals and catchups and she caught up with her friends from Mt.G and here a few times so that was good. I think Bri certainly enjoyed her company. Kirby went back with nearly twice as much luggage as when she arrived (and all her clothes washed and folded) and a few more frozen meals to fall back on. Next up is Quantitative Methods for Business, Market Analysis, Managing Communication in Business and Buyer and Consumer Behaviour. Okay, did your head just explode, cos mine just did! Anyway, the washing machine has cooled down now so I'd better get to work.
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Cheers - Joolz

Monday, July 27, 2009

Chocolate Icecream Sandwich Oreo Smoosh Cake...

Okay, so I love these guys enough to make an awesome dessert for afters tonight. I've been on the go since I took Bri to the orthodontist at 8am to have her braces off - note that gleaming, straight toothed smile - picked her up at 9.55am, forgot my Bowen Therapy massage appointment at 10am, lunched with the girls (Heather - Happy Birthday! , Helen, Chloe & Carmel) at 12noon, back to work until 5pm, grocery shopping and home at 5.30pm.
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I can't remember which blog I saw this dessert on so apologies for that and I made up the name (it was C at Stick Horse Cowgirls - thanks C) . All you need is a packet of Oreo cookies (smashed to smithereens in a plastic bag with a meat mallet), vanilla icecream of your choice (thawed to spreading consistency), 2 boxes x 4 icecream sandwiches (8) and whipped cream (mine was ashamedly in a can).
These are the icecream sandwiches. Choose a container to fit a layer of the sandwiches in the bottom, spread with gooey icecream, sprinkle with Oreo's, spray/spread with whipped cream then repeat with the sandwiches, icecream, Oreo's then a final layer of icecream. Cover and refreeze.
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The finished product, popped into the freezer to harden up. We don't have any strawberries tonight but that would be good to serve with them, or raspberry topping or whatever takes your fancy. I think any teenager would like this as a birthday cake/dessert for sleepover etc.
Cut slices and serve. Enjoy...a lot!
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Cheers - Joolz

200 posts and Possum Magic....

'C' over at Stick Horse Cowgirls had a tangle with a possum (or is it an opossum) and unfortunately (or fortunately) the possum came off second best. What a scary creature - it looks like it would take your hand off at your shoulder!
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We have much cuter looking possums here in Australia. This little guy looks like he wouldn't hurt a flea.
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This guy, on the other hand, looks like he could hold his own in a fight. Maybe he's similar to the culprit that has been banging around in our roof the past few nights... at 3am... just to annoy me... just when I'm all cosy and snug... kicking up a ruckus in the roof space above our laundry... on and off then again at 5am... just when I know I have one hour of slumber left...
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If I catch him, he may just wish he never got out of bed...
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Possums - they remind me of this cute book I used to read to my girls, you can read about Mem Fox, the author, here.
It is worth clicking on some of Mem's stories that she reads aloud. Sadly, Possum Magic isn't featured but Koala Lou is worth a listen to (another firm favourite).
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Wow, I just looked at the counter and I've posted 200 blogs in nearly a year. I might have to have another little giveaway on August 23rd for my one year anniversary. Blogging has been so much fun and I've learned a lot from so many people in the last year. I've always been a sticky-beak and catching a glimpse of people's lives, people just like you and me, around the world - it fascinates me.
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Cheers - Joolz

Sunday, July 26, 2009

A wish...




This is the first time I have embedded a clip on my blog.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The difference between...

MARMITE VEGEMITE PROMITE
Some overseas bloggers have enquired about the taste of Vegemite. I don't know how to explain it. It is savoury and salty and after that, I can't explain it. It is a breakfast staple in most Australian households. In fact, if you have a front door on your house, chances are you have Vegemite in the cupboard! Lol! I would equate it to Maple Syrup being the staple of most Canadian households.
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Marmite is the British equivalent of Vegemite, I can't say I have ever tried it.
Promite is a vegetable & yeast extract which is sweeter and has a softer, more spreadable texture. I dislike it! Angus prefers it over Vegemite, therefore we have both.
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Now I need to come clean - I have consumed the entire jar of "Name me" Cheese Vegemite and....it wasn't too bad at all. It was nice on fresh bread and I finished it off this morning on hot toast. It is more fattening than Vegemite so for that reason I will not buy it regularly but as a treat/something different for a change.
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Other things we put on our toast in the morning are:
jams, marmalade, fish paste (Anchovette), Chicken & Ham paste (ha ha - made from pork hearts and tongues - if you care to read the label!), ham, cheese & mustard, tomato chutney, honey, golden syrup. We're a funny lot,us Aussies!
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Cheers - Joolz

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Vegemite...there's a change brewing......

Okay, I admit it! I am a Vegemite addict! I love my Vegemite, I adore my Vegemite, it puts a rose in both my cheeks! Hey, I'm a happy little Vegemite. Now Kraft have decided to make a new variation of Vegemite. When I first heard this I thought they were 'changing' the taste of the original Vegemite. I nearly had a conniption (an angry outburst, fit, huff, tantrum - get the picture?)!
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They have mixed Vegemite with Cheese Spread! And they don't even know what to call the stuff! I'd call it Vegemite Cream Cheese Spread but that's probably too logical for the pundits at Kraft! It's a gooey, off-vegemite coloured pot of....goo!

*When I travel overseas, I fly the Vegemite flag!

* I take a handy tube like this with me. I have had Aussies in France and Italy, India, Hong Kong and Tokyo and other far flung places come up to my breakfast table and ask if they could please, please, please have a little scrape of my Vegemite.

* I aways say yes because I couldn't imagine being in a foreign land without Vegemite and not being able to have some.

* Oh, it is so good on toast with butter melted in first or on cold toast with butter smoothed on the bread.

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And look at those little fingers, just waiting to snatch a bite of those crumpets!

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I need to get one of these T-shirts!

* Have you ever made Cheesy-mite scrolls? Or Vegemite & Cheddar Cheese homemade croissants with puff pastry - I'll have to post the recipe. OMG!

* All Aussie kids at some time in their lives, look like this. No kidding.

* This picture has me very puzzled. Have you ever seen this product before? It is Vegemite cereal. I have never seen it in our supermarkets.

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(all pictures from the web)

...... and this is the new kid on the block. Kraft want the Australian public to think of a name for this product. What would you call it. I have no idea and frankly don't care. I have bought one jar and don't think I'd bother again. That's just me, though....actually it's quite nice dipped with plain cracker biscuits.

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Cheers - Joolz

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Mary Wigham progress...

I think this is about 7 hours work so far. It is very time consuming but I do like how it is emerging. I have a very long way to go!
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As you know, Angus likes to cook on the weekends. This was his effort last night. Pesto crusted loin lamb rack with herbed baked potatoes, roasted tomato and crouton salad and green beans with anchovy butter (not pictured). How good is that? Donna Hay is his mentor.
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Off to see Harry Potter & the Half Blood Prince now.
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Ooh, and tonight is the Grand Final of MasterChef Australia. Fingers and toes crossed for Julie to win! She's an Aussie wife and mum of 3 who can cook up a storm - if she wins she gets to write and publish her own cook book. Can't wait.
Added later: Julie Goodwin is MasterChef Australia 2009! Well done, Jules!
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Cheers - Joolz

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Netball and Uni Exam Results...

Bri's team played at home today and they all played well and recorded a good win. Bri got a full game at Goal Keeper. That's her defending the Goal Shooter. She had a really good game and played well in defence, even though she got hip and shouldered a fair bit! We were home soon after lunch, out of the cold. We were lucky the rain stayed away but the wind was chilly.
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Kirby got her results for the first semester at Uni today. She PASSED all four subjects!! She got a Credit for Marketing Principles:Trading & Exchange; a Pass Level 1 for Introduction to Management; a Pass Level 1 for Microeconomics and a Pass Level 2 for Accounting, Decisions & Accountability. These are great results for the hard work she has put in, especially living away from home for the first time. High Five, Kirbz!
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Cheers - Joolz

Friday, July 17, 2009

Something different...

(Scottish Haggis - not likely to be cooked in my kitchen...ever!)

Linda at RemoteTreeChanger has a fun food fact activity to do. I will list 100 foods and type in bold type the ones I have tried. Here goes:

1. Natto (never heard of it) - fermented soy beans (Japan)

2. Green smoothies

3. Tofu

4. Haggis

5. Langoustine (lobster)

6. Creme Brulee

7. Fondue

8. Marmite/Vegemite

9. Borscht

10. Baba Ghanoush - Eggplant/spice dish - Arabic

11. Nachos

12. Authentic Soba Noodles - buckwheat flour noodles (Japan)

13. Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwich

14. Aloo gobi - vegetarian dish of potatoes/cauliflower - (India)

15. Taco from street cart

16. Boba Tea (aka bubble tea) - tapioca (Taiwan)

17. Black truffle - Fungus Tuber Melanosporum (France)

18. Fruit wine (Elderberry etc)

19. Gyoza - dumplings (China/Japan)

20. Vanilla Icecream

21. Heirloom tomatoes

22. Fresh wild strawberries - tell me where to get them!

23. Ceviche - citrus marinated seafood dish (Latin America)

24. Rice and beans

25. Knish - dumpling covered with dough shell (Jewish/Yiddish snack food)

26. Raw scotch bonnett pepper

27. Dulce de leche - Caramel milk/candy (pronounced dool-say deh lay-chay) - (Argentina)

28. Caviar

29. Baklava

30. Pate

31. Wasabi peas

32. Chowder in sourdough bowl

33. Mango lassi - mango, yoghurt, sugar, ice drink (India)

34. Saurkraut

35. Root beer float

36. Mulled cider

37. Scones with buttery spread and jam

38. Vodka jelly

39. Gumbo - stew or soup from Louisiana, US

40. Fast food french fries

41. Lasagna

42. Fresh Garbanzo beans

43. Dahl - in Delhi, India

44. Caviar (oops again)

45. Wine from bottle worth $120 or more

46. Stroop Waffle - pressed waffle sandwich with caramel filling (Holland)

47. Samosas

48. Sushi - Tokyo, Japan

49. Glazed donut

50. Seaweed/wakame

51. Prickly pear

52. Umeboshi - pickled plum (Japan)

53. Crepes

54. Squid or Octopus

55. Cotton candy (fairy floss)

56. Gnocchi

57. Pina colada

58. Birch Beer

59. Scrapple and Spam - pork mush (Pennsylvania Dutch)

60. Carob chips

61. S'mores - made our own OMG!

62. Lo Mein - noodle dish (China)

63. Bangers & Mash

64. Curry - India

65. Sea Urchin

66. Homemade sausages

67. Churros, elephants ears or funnell cakes - deep fried batter then dipped in chocolate/syrup (Spain)

68. Adzuki beans - (Japan)

69. Fried plantain - banana like, need cooking (Southern US/Central America/Colombia)

70. Mochi - glutenous rice cake (Japan)

71. Gazpacho - tomato based cold soup (Spain)

72. Warm chocolate chip cookies - excuse me, who hasn't???

73. Absinthe - highly alcoholic beverage (45-75% Alc)

74. Corn on the cob

75. Whipped cream, straight from the can - not me but Brianna did last night!

76. Pomegranate

77. Potato Knishes - see 25

78. Mashed potato with gravy

79. Jerky

80. Croissants

81. French onion soup

82. Something made with squid ink - linguini

83. Tings (another name for ting-a-lings) - choc coated fried noodles with peanut butter/butterscotch chips

84. Frogs Legs - France

85. Moussaka

86. Sprouted grains or seeds

87. Macaroni and Cheese

88. Flowers - nasturtiums, lavender

89. Matzoh ball soup

90. White chocolate

91. Seitan - gluten wheat meat

92. Kimchi - pickled vegetable dish (Korea)

93. Butterscotch chips

94. Yellow watermelon - where can you get it?

95. Chili with chocolate

96. Bagel and Tofutti - soy based icecream substitute

97. Wild Game such as Ostrich, Venison, Elk

98. Polenta - blech!

99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee

100. Raw cookie dough

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An interesting excercise - now I am going to google some of the names to see what they are.

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Cheers - Joolz





Savoury Chops...

Here's a real winter warmer for you. These tasty chops would be great to come home to after a day out in the cold. Real comfort food
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SAVOURY CHOPS
lamb chops (forequarter, chump, loin) - enough to feed your crew
(pork chops or diced steak would work too)
1 large onion, sliced
2 large carrots, sliced
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4 tblspn plain flour
4 tblspn tomato sauce (ketchup)
4 tblspn vinegar
1 tblspn brown sugar
2 tspn curry powder
2 tspn mustard powder
1 tspn ground ginger
4 cups beef or vegetable stock
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Brown the chops on both sides in frying pan. Place them in a large casserole dish, top with onions and carrots.
Mix all dry ingredients, sauce and vinegar with a little of the stock to make a runny paste then slowly add the remainder of the stock to the paste. Pour the stock mixture over the chops, cover the dish with a lid or foil and bake in a moderate oven for 2 hours.
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Serve with fluffy mashed potatoes and greens. I had some puff pastry so I made some triangles to be fancy!
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Next time I will try it in my crockpot - (4-6 hours)
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Cheers - Joolz

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Devils Food Cake by Kirby...


I had 5 candles on my cake (one for each 9 years of my life?) but one is obscured. I certainly didn't want any more, might have caused an inferno! The frosting was 300gms of dark chocolate and 1 carton of whipped cream - may as well just slap it right on my thighs!!!

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Cheers - Joolz

Meatballs with Tomato Risoni...

(this is my picture of last nights effort - very pleased with it)
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MEATBALLS WITH TOMATO RISONI
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1 x 1 litre carton Campbell's Real Stock - Beef
500gms mince beef (chicken/pork would work too)
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 cup dried breadcrumbs
1 tblspn oil for frying off
4 tbspn no added salt tomato paste
1/2 tspn dried rosemary
1.5 cups risoni pasta (mine was San Remo)
2 ripe tomatoes, diced
fresh parsley and basil to garnish (I stirred the basil through at the end)
parmesan cheese, grated
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Combine 1/2 cup of stock with mince, carlic, egg and breadcrumbs. I use a disposable glove to mix it well. Roll into balls before beginning to fry. Heat the oil in a large frypan. Add meatballs and cook until browned all over. Pour over remaining stock, tomato paste and rosemary. Bring to the boil then reduce heat and cook covered for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Stir in risoni and tomatoes. Cook for 8 - 12 minutes (until al dente - mine stuck on the bottom a bit so watch it). Garnish with parsley and basil. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese when serving if desired. (I did!)
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This is a good hearty one pot meal. It's very filling and would be great to take to a winter barbecue as a side dish or for a 'pot luck dinner'. You could do it earlier in the day and micro it hot later (good to come home from the footy to). Well worth a try.
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Cheers - Joolz

Monday, July 13, 2009

Menu Plan for week beginning 13th July...

(Picture from www.campbellskitchen.com.au)
Menu Plan
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Monday 13th - Meatballs with Tomato Risoni - yes, yummy!
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Tuesday 14th (my Birthday!) - Mexican Potato Casserole - Lamb parcels with fetta/spices, bakes spuds and salad. Thank you Angus! Birthday cake by Kirby.
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Wednesday 15th - Roased chicken breasts with Basil, Zucchini & Currants - Nope - Steak, Crunchy noodle salad and potato bake. Not doing so well am I?
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Thursday 16th - Pork chops with potato bake, peas, corn and honey carrots - Savoury Chops
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Friday 17th - Aussie Burgers in homemade rolls with salad - Mexican Potato Casserole
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I've never stuck to a plan like this before so lets see how I go. I'll post photos as is do the dishes, hopefully.
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Cheers - Joolz
I think I have proved that I do not like regimented menu lists. But I will persevere.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Some awards - Thank you ladies!...


Thank you Tania at Outback Tania for this award. I will now reveal 1o honest things about me. Marcy gave me an award (oh, weeks ago - sorry) from Blessings Each Day and it was very similar - 10 truthful things about me. Here we go....
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1. I love my family first and foremost. I love my husband and I am so proud of my two girls. I love my mum and my sisters and my in-laws are lovely too.

2. I like to think I am a perfectionist and competent in daily life. I will wrap a present twice if its not right, tie a bow, try to re-ice a cake, fiddle with a blog post until its just right, undo many cross stitch stitches etc. I am prepared for most things - I carry bandaids, wet wipes, tissues, hand cream, sunscreen, nail file, scissors, diary, pen, chap stick, note pad, lady essentials, pain relief, toothpick/floss, salt & pepper - with me at all times in my 'bat utility' handbag! It weighs a ton!

3. I hate, detest, dislike (did I mention HATE) spiders above all other creatures on this lovely planet. To me they serve no purpose. Get rid of them anyway you can!

4. I think HATE is a terrible word and I would not use it to describe someone (other than spiders - Lol!)

5. I like to please people. Can I help you with that? I slow down for old people crossing the road, open doors for anyone, smile at strangers and say g'day because I can. What's to lose?

6. I dislike large crowds. Thirty people in a room is fine. 400 people at a big function and my head swims. Too many faces, too much noise. I am deaf in that situation.

7. I don't like to tempt fate. I don't like side-show rides, roller coasters, bungee jumping, sky-diving, ultra-light aircraft, motor bikes - anything could go wrong. My kids never had a trampoline - they might have fallen off and broken bones.

8. I love silver/white gold jewellery set with diamonds or sparkly white stones. Most of my jewellery is like this. Not so much the diamonds *sigh*!

9. I hate going to the Doctors or Dentist. I detest it. I am booked for a check up at the dentist in August. I will be brave!

10. When I select a magazine from the rack in the supermarket, I always take the one behind the first one - no-one's touched it. I always check novels when I buy them to make sure they don't have bent or marked covers. They must be in mint condition. Call me crazy (and I have other foibles like this too)...
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Cheers - Joolz

Blogger not co-operating...

Gee, Blogger gave me some trouble doing that last post. It kept coming up with error messages when I tried to publish and the font is Arial in most places when I changed it all to Georgia (umpteen times!). Like a stubborn old billy goat! Not happy Jan! I thought I might lose the whole post after I have sat here all afternoon.
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Added on Monday morning - this is really strange. I published the Home audit post yesterday and was viewing it in its entirety right up to last night. This morning when I view it, it has half the post missing. I don't know what happened? Very angry, now I have to retrieve my notes and try and resurrect it. Scrapping it and starting again may be my best option. I am very angry.
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Joolz

My Simple Home Audit

I have been following Rhonda Jean's Biggest Kitchen Table - Home Audit at Down to Earth. You can read all of her posts here and there are lots of readers comments too.
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LIVING DELIBERATELY

We live in a new house that we built 5 years ago. It is large and spacious with the kitchen has the hub. We like to cook – me during the week and Angus on the weekends. We live a very comfortable life. Angus works long hours in our business and I work there too. I maintain our home so that it is a neat and tidy space for us to live in. We probably could do with some new furniture, eg. A new lounge to replace the 18 year old one which is looking shabby, a bookcase and entertainment centre cabinet and one TV is getting quite old. Our home is decorated with nick-nacks and ornaments that I like, things that have been given to me as gifts or things that I have bought in our travels. These things make it our home. I do not see the point in buying a vase from a decorator store because it might look nice. After 5 years, we have barely any pictures or photos up on the walls. Angus is a little precious about putting holes in walls. What we do have on the walls are favourites.

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Because of the long hours at work, we do not live as simply as we could but that is not the nature of our business either. We work in the corporate sector and although we live in a small country town, at times we mingle with people from the business world.

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I try to cook from scratch most times, takeaway food is a treat. I’d rather make homemade pizzas on Friday night than order out. I work at our business every day. I confess, I have a cleaner who does 2 hours a week, cleaning the 2 bathrooms, vacuuming carpets and mopping our large tiled floor area. You have now idea how nice it is on Thursdays to know that everything is clean. I spot clean a lot in between times. I have one of those little Vax rechargeable machines so I can zip over the tiles and carpets daily to pick up crumbs, dust bunnies etc. It takes 5 minutes. I wipe over the bathroom sinks after everyone is done in the mornings, make sure the toilets are clean and straighten /pick up towels etc. I would hope if someone dropped in for a visit, I would not be in a panic that the house was upside-down.

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MONEY

This is our downfall. We (no, I) spend too much. Although we do not have huge credit card debts, we tend to spend what we have. At the moment, I know we spend way too much on food and we do waste items that go out of date in our fridge (sauces, marinades, dips etc) . I have cut back on magazines and now only buy one $4.50 mag a week. I need to take a look at our food shopping and simplify that more.

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FOOD

We do not have a vegetable garden or chooks for eggs. I planted lettuces and a small tub of tomatoes last summer and they were successful. I will expand on that later this year. Time does not allow for a big veggie garden, it would get away from me.

I need to Menu Plan each week. At the moment, I go to the supermarket on the way home from work and pick up what we need for the evenings meal. I tend to put things in the Freezer then throw things out 5 months later. The freezer doesn’t work for us. I have loads of good Recipes and we do use them.

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I need to try to put HEALTHY SNACKS in Brianna’s lunchbox. Make her eat more healthily instead of so much packaged, processed foods. We were given some ‘off the tree, home grown’ Granny Smith apples from a friend and Bri said she doesn’t like store bought apples any more. I bought one of those apple peeler, corer, slicer gadgets and it makes apple eating very enjoyable.

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We have a dishwasher (brand new) and I believe it is energy efficient and water efficient (heats cold water). It is run once a day.

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RECYCLING

Our food scraps are kept separate from our household garbage. Our Council has provided us with a small lidded scrap basket which you line with a ‘compostable’ plastic bag. All food scraps go in it. I wish I had chooks (we may one day) then I would feed them the scraps. I have a freezer in the garage so I freeze the bags of scraps then they go in our Green Waste bin and they are collected fortnightly by the Council. This eradicates smell and vermin can't get to it. We have a yellow lidded Recyclables bin and all cardboard, newspapers, cans and glass etc goes in here and it is collected fortnightly, alternately to the green bin. . Our red lidded bin takes all other household waste (plastics etc.) and that is collected weekly. We are fortunate in South Australia to have a 10c refund on most bottles and cans. Even beer stubbies and flavoured milk cartons are 10c so we store them up then take them to depot and get money back. It adds up nicely. Think - a box of beer = $2.40

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STOCKPILING

I have started buying things in bulk and many of one item if they are on special. We ‘eat’ toilet paper and tissues in our house! I stocked up on tomato pasta sauces the other day, Dolmio was out for $1.19 per 500gm jar. I need to stockpile more and live out of our pantry more. This is our pantry and we definitely need to ‘eat’ our way through what is in it at the moment. We have way too much processed, packaged food in there. I need to do a stocktake. Shame, shame, shame!

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DISPOSABLES AND GREEN CLEANING

As I said, we use way to many tissues and paper napkins but I do not like to use hankies myself. We use paper towel sometimes. Angus uses hankies unless he has a real cold. We have tissues in each bathroom and the kitchen. I use kitchen dish sponges and a scourer for dishes and pans. I throw the sponges away fairly regularly so as not to contaminate with germs. I use very little kitchen spray on my benches, maybe once a week. I am sorry to say that I will use gladwrap. I use micro cloths for polishing and dusting (not as often as I should). I only use carb soda and vinegar for my oven door, otherwise I use Ajax spray cleaner on surfaces.

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ELECTRICITY AND WATER

We have a bore pump for our water supply (artesian) as we live on the outskirts of town and we have rain water tanks for our consumption and for showering. Our toilets flush with bore water and I do all my laundry in the bore water (it is quite good quality). This ensures we do not run out of rain water during the summer months. Our tanks are overflowing at the moment.

Our house is not efficient when it comes to electricity. We have a bio-cycle septic system which runs a pump 24/7. When we turn on a tap in the house, the pump comes on. When we water our garden with bore water, the pump comes on. When we shower, the pump comes on so power runs our house night and day. We (they more than me!) leave too many lights on although I do try to have them all off if we are watching television in one room. We close our drapes on nightfall to preserve heating. We have reverse cycle air conditioning which means we are cool in summer and warm in winter. I need to police our electricity consumption more as our bills are astronomical – always have been. You would die with your leg in the air!

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HOME PRODUCTION

Time is my biggest enemy. I find that by the time I get home from work and shopping, prepare dinner and deal with the laundry from the line or tumble dryer, I am ready to sit down and do nothing. This is my laundry today, not bad eh?

This past summer, I made my own mulberry jam and this coming summer I will try apricot jam too. I love stewed apricots and apples – these can be frozen for later use. I have a good lemon cordial recipe and a salad dressing recipe. I have a bread maker and should use it more for making bread rolls and pull-apart loaves. I need to experiment more with the bread recipe and my loaf is too stodgy. I love making my own scones, muffins & cupcakes and biscuits.

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Laundry drying under our pergola today. We have had torrential down pours all through out the day - I reckon nearly 2 inches of rain (and some hail, thunder & lightning).

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Reading through Rhonda’s Biggest Kitchen Table forum has given me much to think about. I will read all the comments from readers and am sure to gain some valuable tips and hints. I just need to put some things into practice.

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SOME AIMS:

Decrease our electricity account - turn off that light, close that door, turn off that appliance

Decrease my spending on food each week - shop smarter

Use less disposable items if possible - cloth serviettes

Stock take the pantry - eat all the canned foods lurking in the back

Go through the freezer and don't put anything in that won't be used within a week

Menu Plan each Sunday for the week ahead

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I hope you've enjoyed my Home Audit - you might like to try it yourself. Thank you Rhonda Jean.

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Cheers - Joolz


Chicken Chow Mein Pasties...

I have had this grater (it juliennes) for a few years now. I bought it in an Asian grocery store for about $3.00. It is deadly on fingers if you happen to grate your thumb like I did once. It took a slice of my thumb the same size as the carrot strips, above! That's why the fork is stuck into the carrot - thats how I grate with this beast.
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CHICKEN CHOW MEIN PASTIES
600gms Chicken mince (or beef)
1 onion, finely diced
2 potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 carrot, grated
1 zucchini, grated
1 chunk sweet potato, grated
(I then microwave these vegies for 2 minutes to soften them)
1 can sweet corn kernels
salt & pepper
1 sachet Continental Chow Mein flavour base
Sheets of short crust pastry (you could use puff pastry)
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Brown the chicken mince and onion in a pan with a little olive oil.
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Add potato, zucchini, carrot, sweet potato and corn to the mince and stir through.
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Add in the sachet of Chow Mein flavouring and 3/4 cup of water and simmer the mixture for about 5 minutes until vegies are well cooked down and water has evaporated. Cool this mixture for half an hour otherwise the pastry will go gooey when you are rolling them up.
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Cut the pastry in half and place cooled mixture on each piece, roll up and baste with egg wash. Prick each pasty with a fork a few times.
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This is what they look like ready to go into a 190C oven.
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...and the finished item, ready to serve with a salad and some tomato sauce.
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Cheers - Joolz

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