Saturday, February 23, 2013

Shopping skills

Before I do grocery shopping I like to have a bit of a browse. Most times I have a list of things on my Text/Memo app on my phone which I need to buy from the shops. It helps as I tend to forget lots of things and I get so annoyed the moment I remember what it was at home. The other day I popped into Kmart and picked up these melamine bowls for the kids at $6 - set of 4. We had a set but some of them got thrown around and they broke so here are the replacements. I love these as they are the perfect size for their meals.

The other thing on my list was a little shoulder bag. However, Equip were having a 30% off sale on their Ruby and Kit backpacks. I couldn't decide amongst the range of colours and designs on the backpacks. The lovely sales lady helped me and in the end the deciding question was "Do you want two pockets or just the one at the front?"

So I opted for one of the older style backpacks and saved myself an extra $6 so this one was just $24. Very cool budgeting methinks. I love the colour and she tells me that even the uni students fit their A4 folders into this bag. I'll be chucking in an umbrella and various assortments for work. My work pass can go into one pocket and my mobile fits perfectly in the other.

So, I've been making some interesting lunches for my kids. Namely, Michael who likes these puzzle pieces. I got this Lunch Punch cutter from the GLAD sandwich course I did. I think it's great. I still leave the edges in his lunch box so he can eat the spare bits. I don't like to throw good food bits away. There are cute princess designs and loads more and would make a great birthday present.

And because I wanted to be a bit creative I cut out an M which he has asked for again! I hope you're making some fun lunches for the kids. I did try to introduce some new foods (like chicken loaf, which I liked as a kid) but that isn't going well unfortunately. My kids prefer Nutella and PB&J. Hmmmm, must keep trying though.

In other news I made myself $140 without working! How, you may ask? Well, I had some gold jewellery which I never wear and thought I should do something with it. I asked the local jeweller if he would buy it and he said yes. I had already got a baseline quote from one of those places you see at the shops who buy your gold at the cheapest price possible *wink, wink : Do Not Sell Your Gold to them!!!* Well, my local jeweller doubled the price of *that* gold buying kiosk and I was stoked. Who knew, right???? So now, you know.

Hope you have a great weekend.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Winner, winner, chicken dinner.

Thanks for entering my GLAD giveaway everyone. I know there were a lot of page hits but you have to be in it to win it so please don't be shy and leave a comment for the next one. What  have you got to lose? So the winner, by Random Number Generator, is #4: Bec Macguire. Send me your address and we'll get your goody bag out to you. Enjoy!

Anyway, onto the rest of the week. I started off this week with Ash Monday or Clean Monday as it is also called. I went to mass and got my ashes and felt the holy spirit during mass. I listened to the priest and prayed that I would be a better person. I am going to hold back when I want to scream at the kids (sooo very very hard) and I hope that I can make a difference in my life because I change the bad things about myself.

I'm back at work now so when I am at home it's pretty full-on. Chores, chores, chores and a teeny bit of time to myself. Everything will work out if you ask God to help you and if you leave it up to God's will. You'll be much happier as well.

I made almond milk when I got back from Playgroup. I'm still figuring out how much water to add as I like my nut milks creamy and not so watered down. I think a cup of almonds to 2 cups of water seems to be a good consistency. I don't add anything to sweeten it. Just water and almonds blended together. Simple. But make sure you soak your almonds in filtered water first (overnight). I have been naughty and ate lots of junk food prior to Lent so I'm going to work on shedding a few kilos. So, I best get going. Gotta hang up laundry, buy more groceries and plan dinner. I hope you have a great week too.

I might have to have a fabric giveaway soon as I have quite a bit in my stash and it looks some of them, I won't be using it anytime soon so check back for more details.

*edit: Sorry to the people who couldn't comment due to the code problem. Next time I'll find a way for you to leave a comment without using the code. I was getting spammed so I needed to put the code back in.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

New Look 6931 - Kids PJ Shorts

 I like Saturdays. I want to call them Sewing Saturdays because it's the only time I leave half the chores undone and I grab a pattern and sew away while the baby is asleep. Well, he's not so much of a baby as a destructive toddler tornado but while he is in the cot I can carry on with most things as the other kids don't make too much mess. The youngest girl ran out of sleep-time shorts. To be quite honest, she never really ran out as much as mummy ran out of time to pack away laundry in the wardrobe. I don't see why it's such a big deal (daddy) as the baskets of clothes are clean. You know what I mean, ladies?
So I took out my only kids pj pattern: New Look 6931. It's pretty ok. I've only ever used the pants pattern. No, I lie/forget. I made the baby a singlet top which I haven't posted about yet. Moving on, I traced the pattern and cut them out last night using knit fabric I have my my stash. I think I was going to make myself a few tops/singlets but realised I never bought enough fabric. I had some pretty pink flowers knit and then some red/blue coloured one which I liked even better (from Spotlight).

 The first pair of shorts (pic above) I made I kinda didn't pay attention to seam allowance/hem instructions. Therefore, they took a bit longer to make/figure out and were a bit long. The second pair came together much, much, MUCH faster. I even used the iron which help tremendously when it came to hems and sewing them up. I folded up the hems twice in the second pair so they were shorter, even at the waistline. I really like the way they turned out.
 It must have been a good day because I even remembered to use my size tags I bought from Bags and Tags years ago. It's great as you don't have to guess what size you made your home made items. A good tip when sewing with knits: use the right needle, a ballpoint needle was used. I first had a 'fine' needle and I was wondering why the thread was getting sheared (head slap). Don't pull the fabric when sewing the hems as you will create a 'wave' in the fabric. You can see the wave in the first picture of the pink shorts at the top of the post. Unless you want to create the 'lettuce edge' of course which in that case, yes, pull the fabric.

Here's my 3year old grinning for me. She must like the shorts then. Two points for mummy!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

GLAD Masterclass and Awesome Giveaway!

Hello everyone. I hope you've had great holidays and are now excited to have the kids back at school. I know I certainly am! During the holidays I treated the kids (and myself) to a GLAD Sandwich Masterclass at Food, Wine and Design in Leichardt. I thought it would be a great experience as I was finding making their lunches a challenge and if they could get involved then it would be less stressful for me.

Another woman who knows the challenges mothers face getting their kids to eat well is chef and mother of two, Rebecca Perry. Having run her own kids’ cooking classes at Food Wine and Design for years, Perry knows that the way to achieve this is to think outside the box to get them involved and excited about food. Perry has come up with some fun sandwiches for GLAD inspired by the things that capture kids’ imaginations. We were so excited once we got there and settled ourselves at our table with other nice ladies. Rebecca showed us how she made her sandwiches. Michael was totally hooked on her 'Angry Birds' sandwich and that was all he wanted to make while we were there. Mia made the pinwheels and Lego sandwiches.

 Here are our 'Angry Bird' sandwiches. We used crusts for the eyebrows, cheese for the eyes, green beans for the pupils, carrots for the beak and slices of wholemeal and white bread for the mouth. You could add cherry tomatoes for the feet. The filling is plain ham and he ate them on the way home. Mariah was just happy to make the pinwheels  and with some help from Danny she made some yummy hundreds and thousands wheels to eat as well.

 The kids had loads of fun and I loved the tables. The table cover is a laminated green gingham and they each had a cutting board with GLAD Baking Sheets placed on top. These sheets are so cool because they are already cut to size and fit most baking trays. I have already used them for our fish parcels and baking banana bread. Soooo handy when your fingers are sticky or you are pressed for time and just need to get on cooking!

 I got to take home a GLAD goody bag. It contained the new Easy-Cut Dispenser, sandwich bags, baking sheets. Below you can see the animal wraps and two food grade markers. I've already used the Easy-cut dispenser and I LOVE IT. One hand punch and your cling film is cut. No more tangles! Yay.
So by the end of the day they were ready to go home. This was their favourite train station! They ate all their sandwiches on the way home I am very happy to report.

So do yourself a favour and visit GLAD. The brand has enlisted MasterChef winner and GLAD®ambassador, Julie Goodwin, to come up with some fun lunchbox variations that kids will actually want to eat, as well as some tips for busy mums who want to save time in the kitchen.There are also hints and tips for busy mums such as:
  • Kid-sized packets of snack, when bought at the supermarket, are really expensive. It’s much cheaper to buy pretzels, sultanas, rice crackers etc. in big packages and divide it up yourself. Popcorn is also an inexpensive and healthy snack to make and divide into bags.
  • Divide snacks into GLAD® SNAP LOCK®Mini bags, label and keep in the pantry. Pretzels, popcorn, crackers, dried fruit and biscuits are all great for this. Cut up fruit, vegetables or cheese and divide into GLAD® SNAP LOCK® Mini to keep in the fridge.
  • Freeze sandwiches in GLAD® S LOCK®bags – this means only making sandwiches once a week. Sandwiches that are suitable to freeze include cheese, mortadella or silverside and normal spreads such as Vegemite. 
 I know you'd want to share in the GLAD joy so I am pleased to announce a fantastic give-away. GLAD would like to be able to send one of my readers:

1  x Easy Cut Dispenser
· 3 x GLAD Baking Sheets
· 3 x GLAD Snap Lock reseal sandwich bags (pack of 50)
· 3 x GLAD Snap Lock Mini sandwich bags (60 pack).
· 3 x pack of 12 animal wraps
· 3 x sandwich cutters
· 6 x edible markers

It will sure make preparing school lunches and cooking at home so much easier and relaxed! So just leave a comment and I'll draw out a winner on Monday 11th February 2013 in the morning!  Wednesday 13th February! Just realised as I work Mon-Tues I am swamped.