Saturday, July 30, 2011

Another busy week flies by...

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Friday, I opened the curtains at 6.50am to see this! A sky ablaze with colour! I had time before I had to get Bri's off to the bus so I grabbed the camera, took some shots then hopped in the car and went for a drive in search of more pictures.
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My pictures don't do it justice...
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Driving out the road like a mad woman (still in my pj's!)...
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Wow!
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A week or so ago, I got busy and made another knot-tied fleecy rug - these are so easy for idiots like me who can't sew!
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So lovely, fluffy and warm... this one is being gifted away.
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On the food front - Monday night - Honey Mustard Chicken...
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Tuesday night Bri and I went to see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 2 so we sort of skipped dinner for popcorn and some lollies - NAUGHTY!
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Wednesday - Chicken Pot Pies
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Thursday - I made Cauliflower & Broccoli Au Gratin...
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It is only the past few years that I have made this dish - as a child I never liked cauliflower or broccoli.
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Cubed potatoes, carrots and pumpkin drizzled with a tablespoon of olive oil and dusted with Masterfoods Tuscan Seasoning. Bake on a paper lined tray for about 40 minutes at 180C.
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Delicious!
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I did crumbed lamb 'shoulder' chops - a really good winter dinner.
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Friday night was tacos.
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Finally, a picture of our dear mate, Gary (left). Cape Jaffa Seafood and Wine Festival won't be the same without you, Dudda!
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Cheers - Joolz

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

What do you think?

It's never easy to lose someone but is it any easier to lose that loved one in the blink of an eye, when they pass away suddenly (eg. heart attack) but they do not suffer on going pain ... or is it better, even though they are ill (cancer), to be able to say your goodbyes, but know they will suffer in pain until they die?
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I lost my father 22 years ago when he had a second massive heart attack within 10 months. No time for goodbyes, he was just gone, in the night. We said our goodbyes in the morgue. I remember him lying there, in his pajamas, like he was just asleep. We all felt cheated that it was so sudden and we couldn't say our 'I love you's and goodbyes" but I have always been comforted to know he didn't suffer any pain and didn't have to endure medical intervention and hospitals (he hated hospitals).
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On the flip side, we have just lost a very good friend to bowel cancer. Gary battled with that bastard of a disease for about 2 years, having conventional and experimental chemotherapy along the way. Eventually, the chemo made his so weak that his body just couldn't rally, the cancer won and he passed away peacefully on Monday. We visited him on July 4th and we could see that he didn't have a lot of time left. His body had started to shut down and it was upsetting to see our big friend, so frail and looking scared and fed up. He told us he had had enough. A couple of blood transfusions rejuvenated him in later days but not for long. He eventually said no to further intervention. In his last days, he had his wife (supported by his ex wife, can you believe) to administer care and as much pain medication as he needed to keep him comfortable. His funeral will be held next Monday and Angus has been asked to speak about our mate 'Big Dudda'. It will be hard but also a privilege. Love ya, Big D!
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It was good to be able to see him and say goodbye but after seeing Dudda the way he was, I would always hope that I am taken suddenly and not allowed to suffer the way he and so many others do. Just saying.
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Joolz

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Pizza Pinwheels...

Lay out a sheet of puff pastry and spread with your favourite pizza/tomato sauce...
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Sprinkle with bacon, onion and cheese (you can add olives, basil leaves, spinach... the options are endless)...
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Roll tightly into a long roll and secure the edge with a dab of milk...
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Cut into inch thick slices, stand upright on a lined tray...
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Bake for 25-30 minutes at 200C until golden and puffed. Great accompaniment to soup or salad.
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Cheers - Joolz

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Fruit salad and Chow Mein Pasties...

This is my 5-minute fruit salad that I had for breakfast. Finely cut up 1 apple, orange, kiwi fruit, banana and 5 strawberries (f you have them) and add the pulp of one passionfruit. Delicious with cereal and skim milk.
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Chicken Chow Mein Pasties

I have made and posted these before but I thought as I was making a batch to take to our city girl, I'd show you again.
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Brown an onion in 1 tblspn olive oil until golden...
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Add in 500gms chicken mince and brown off.
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Finely cube one carrot and a medium potato - microwave these for 3 minutes just to start cooking process.
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Add in the flavour sachet and 1 diced zucchini...
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Add in potato, carrot and a small can of corn...
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Mix through then add 1/4 cup of water and let if cook away for about 15 minutes, stirring a bit. Season with salt and pepper to your liking.
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You can make whatever shaped pasties you like but I find the rolls are quite easy to do and I use short crust pastry. Puff would work too.
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Ready for the oven...
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These took around 25 minutes at 200C to cook.
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These freeze well and can be microwaved hot or reheated in the oven. Great lunch box snack.
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Tomorrow I will do Pizza Pinwheels for you.
Cheers - Joolz

Monday, July 18, 2011

A busy week and I'm a year older...

My computer went on the fritz last week so I'll go back to Sunday morning.... all peaceful and quiet - just me and my breakfast - 2 poached home grown googies and a cup of coffee in my Mum mug! Kirby came home from Uni later in the day and is here for the whole week. Yay!
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She travelled back via the Coorong so she picked up some Coorong Mullet from the road side stall (we call it the Roach Coach!). Angus cooked them 'en papillote' which means to encase in parchment to steam the contents. It worked beautifully and the fish was really tender and juicy...
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On Monday afternoon, we went to see Bridesmaids. Funny movie - see it if you like gross sillyness!
Butter chicken for dinner...
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On Tuesday morning, I got straight into making some cherry biscuits for my friend, Helen. It's her birthday! I received a text from another friend saying we were all going out to lunch so that's just what we did! Great to catch up with the girls!
Lamb steaks dusted in Moroccan seasoning, grated parmesan cheese and plain flour - fry in a little oil in a fry pan - Yummo!
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Wednesday was just work, work, work! Kirby picked up some lamb parcels in MtG so that's what we had for dinner.
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Thursday happened to be my birthday so I was totally spoiled with my favourite perfume from Angus and the girls bought me some Peter Alexander PJ's and lovely necklace. And Kirby made this awesome Donna Hay chocolate cake. Actually similar to last years but a different recipe. So rich!
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For dinner, we had pre-dinner champers then Gus put a spice rub on some nice steaks and the girls did a salad and potatoes...
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This is very standard fare at our house - a salad full of veggies and potato & sweet potato cubes, oven baked with a seasoning. So easy...
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Yum! This is just what I ordered for my birthday dinner!
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Friday morning we headed off to Melbourne by air. We had to pick up a vehicle that we had bought at auction then go get another vehicle we had transported over to Melbourne, have it washed and sparkling clean so we could deliver it to the gentleman who bought it. Once that was done, we went out to dinner at a Teppanyaki Japanese restaurant where they cook all the food in front of you, on big grills.
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(all pics in Melbourne via Nokia E71 phone - forgot my camera!)
We ordered Teriyaki scallops, Ginger Chicken and Wagyu steak, Kobe style with veg
etables. The chef puts on a bit of a show in front of you, clacking the pepper and salt shakers and finely slicing the meats and flicking things about - very clever and entertaining.
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This is a rock lobster that some other gentlemen were having for their dinner. This poor critter was moving as he cut it in half then covered it with a lid. Two minutes later the chef removed the lid and its legs were still moving!
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Delicious, fresh scallops. At this point, the chef thought I was being a bit rude, taking photos so I stopped. :(
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Saturday morning, Gus went to check out some auction houses for vehicles and this gave me time to do a bit of shopping - only a bit, mind you!

I bought this Pandora charm for my bracelet - my Mum gave me some birthday money.
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I visited the Lindt shop and bought some chocolate balls for the girls - Kirby had Ultra Dark, Dark, Dark Peppermint, Cookies and cream and Raspberry and Brianna had Peppermint, Cookies and cream, milk and white and orange. They are total opposites when it comes to chocolate tastes.
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Then we were off to the footy at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) to watch the Carlton Blues play the Collingwood magpies. We go for carlton but they played like tired school boys and lost! This the meat pie that I had for lunch. It was good.
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This is the MCG from the city end - it is a huge stadium and there were about 85,000 people there.
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Dinner on Saturday night was as Ecco Restaurant on Toorak Road. I had a Cappriciosa wood fired pizza...
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Angus had the Duck Risotto...
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I snuck a picture of the wood-fire oven just has the dude was putting another pizza in - it's a bit blurry! Lol!
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We drove back home on Sunday, through Victoria. We left Melbourne in sunshine but it was down to 9C when we got to Ballarat (Hi, Tatersmama!). When we got to Hamilton, it was 8C - we had a quick Subway lunch then onto home.
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We had 'Mexican Potato Casserole' for dinner - one of our all time favourites!
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Hope that has everyone caught up on what's been happening in my neck of the world - thanks for the comments about missing me! I was still reading your blogs even if I wasn't commenting much.
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Cheers - Joolz

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