Friday, May 31, 2013

Romancing the 80s, Iron-Ons and Old School

Did you have iron on clothing in the 70s or 80s? Why did this crafting genius ever go out of fashion? I had so much fun, I may have gotten a little carried away. Just cut out the picture, turn iron on high (turn steam off), sit garment on wooden chopping board, place transfer on item of clothing, press down with iron all over transfer firmly for a few seconds, peel away backing. Hey Presto. Boring purple windcheater be gone.  Be careful with the placement, once ironed on there is no going back.

 There are many more, let no plain windcheater, t-shirt or singlet go unadorned.

Wow indeed! Thanks Sukie. Bought from here and chocker block full of great child friendly, non-Disney, non-super hero, non-stupidly-sexy designs. The garments with transfers have been in the wash a few times and so far come out perfectly. I'm also tempted by the look of these GamaGo instant iron ons - which can also be found at Book Depository. I have also just purchased some laser printer transfer paper after being inspired by this wonderful creation with felt, the iron-on possibilities....

Gamago Instant Iron-Ons
An awesome makeover for some thrifted plain tops. Cue this song which is very popular in our house, especially with the middle Bowerbird, he likes the naughty bits and chuckles his head off at the swear words, hmmm perhaps not the best family song choice (be warned). I do love the songs Op Shop pride, and the You Tube spoofs are hilarious.

We've also gone old school by baking some bread in the breadmaker. It took a little dusting off but has had a regular work out since we baked the first loaf. Whack in some ingredients and press the button. Three hours later, yummy fruit bread sending heavenly yeasty smells through our house, these two couldn't contain themselves. I love how I know what's in a simple loaf of bread - none of the supermarket breads have wonderful sounding ingredients lists. The Breadmaker loaves don't have the beauty of a free form sour dough, and the hole in the bottom looks weird, but for simplicity, they are hard to beat, and with the right recipe, they do taste good.

 They couldn't resist pulling a piece of from the base - that bread blade hole just screams poke me.

 The Big Bowerbird made this perfect ginger cake while I made dinner, moist and super gingery, just the way we like it.
Some old school crafting by the Little Bowerbird. An untouched sticker/craft book found at the op shop has been keeping this little one entertained. What sane child doesn't use their craft books? Sometimes I am bewildered by what I find at the op-shop, things never used, or too wonderful to have possibly let go. The little Bowerbird is enormously enamoured with scissors and sticky tape at the moment, and loves perusing books for ideas on how she can use them. I thought (perhaps hoped) she might be getting her crafting urges fulfilled at kindergarten, but instead, she comes home inspired to make more things. I'll be happier when she gets better at cleaning up after herself. Once the creations were made we sang mother duck went out one day, over the hills... over and over again, the little one loved playing with her hand made finger puppets.

A yummy Autumn dinner with all the produce of the season - I'm not sure what you would call this creation.
To re-create
Roast mushrooms, walnuts and cauliflower with thyme, garlic, olive oil, and a little balsamic vinegar until golden.
Roast cubes of pumpkin separately with garlic and olive oil,
Scatter with crumbled Danish fetta and a little parmesan.
Have on pasta, or rice or quinoa if you're feeling a little bit trendy.
The little Bowerbird chose macaroni, and just had hers with cheese, old school style.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Making Rainbows and Playing with Helicopters


The children burst with excitement when the maples produce seeds, "look mum look"cries the Middle Bowerbird.  It is such a delight to throw these winged seeds into the air and watch them giddily tumble, spinning and catching the wind, casting themselves to new homes. I haven't met a child yet who didn't like playing with these natural helicopters, to be truthful I'm still fond of launching them into space too.

We are very rainbow inspired of late. The little Bowerbird has been creating Autumn leaf Rainbows and the Middle Bowerbird chose rainbows as a topic for his weather assignment.

We have been back to visit our DIY rainbow at Macedon Station and the picture on the wall is just as it was in April. Amazing how long chalk can last, I love it that no one has been offended or wanted to remove it.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Southern Brown Tree Frog

This is one of the most common frogs we find in our area, the Southern Brown Tree Frog, Litoria ewingi. See it's gorgeous padded toes, that's how you know its a tree frog. It's colours are highly variable, they can even have green on them. That orange in the groin is one of its identifying features. This is a particularly fat Southern Brown Tree Frog.

We never get tired of finding frogs in the garden, there is something about their smooth wet skin and wide eyes that is utterly enchanting. These frogs feed on flies, moths and mosquitoes, and are very welcome in our mosquito ridden backyard, we have a little pond made from an old bath to encourage their visits.

Even though its getting quite cold, we can still hear Southern Brown Tree Frogs calling, this species can breed all year round.  Only the male frogs call, their cree, cree, creeing, is a soothing soundtrack to our evenings. You can listen to the call, and find out more about the Southern Brown Tree Frog and other frogs of Australia at this wonderful website. I can also highly recommend the Museum of Victoria's Field guide app for helping identify species when you're out and about.