What good is a fancy window frame without a set of fancy curtains?

On Saturday morning we met at Spotlight to find some material befitting to the girls’ apartment.

We chose this bright and dainty paisley print to contrast against the pink and white:

Last week there was a slight issue with the placement of the frame on the wall:

As I politely pointed out, we are not dealing with giraffes – though I’d not be apposed to a pet giraffe if you’re offering – but rather girls, and teeny tiny ones at that. And so out came the screws and down came the frame. = )

We lowered the window to its new position and I traced the inside of the frame with pencil onto the wall, in readiness to paint a some sky.

I used acrylic paints diluted with a little water.

Sunday morning...

I was up freakishly early for a Sunday (6.30am... ridiculous). After ducking out for croissants I returned home and slapped on a second coat of blue sky. My mum is a bit of a whiz on the ol' sewing machine and was already at work on the curtains, which still need to be hemmed. So here's where things are at right now:

Meanwhile, inside the house... the Sylvanian Families are gonna have to have a little clean up before the girls come over.

I bags being decorator.


My mum grew up in the country town of Grafton and moved to Sydney at 17. Her side of the family are still there, which has been great news for us. After 28 years of family trips, Grafton is my home away from home.

My first ever plane trip, as a one-year-old, was to Grafton. Sometimes when we were little we would catch the Country Link train up with Mum. It's a 10 hour journey and when you're a kid, that seems like an eternity. Planes, trains or automobiles, we've always managed to get up to Grafton a couple of times a year.

Our Grafton Nanna and Poppy lived in this fabulous house which stood across the road from the bank of "The Mighty Clarence". My Poppy was an Easter-show-prize-winning flower gardener, and they had the coolest big backyard; a maze of rows and rows of flower beds. After playing outside we'd have to stand in the laundry as Nanna washed our feet in a bucket of water and sunlight soap.

Our Nanna (with whom I share my birthday on the 9th of August) has always been a fabulous baker. She was always on the ready, with jam drops and Anzac biscuits being her specialties. For dessert, the grandkids would get a scoop of icecream with a single choc bit on top. Wooooah, easy there Nanna with the generosity! Haha, actually, we thought it was amazing.

Our Nanna moved out of that house a couple of years ago, to the chagrin of us grandkids, but I can still vividly remember the feel of the carpeted hallway on my feet, the smell of the kitchen, and the coolness and soapy scent of the bathroom, with its old fashioned wooden stand, rag-rugged floor, and deep, green bathtub.

A fuzzy old pic of my brother and I on our Uncle's bike out the front of our Nanna's house. Mum and Nanna on the steps up the top, Uncle Wazzza in the short-shorts to the left.

Our mum would always promise to take us to the Grafton Pools - its waterslide being the town's key attraction as far as we were concerned - but before we got there we'd have to sit at Nanna's house while she and Mum nattered for what seemed like hours upon hours, as adult conversations generally seem to go, when you're a kid. It was the pinnacle of excitement when we finally left the house to make our way to the pools. Many a Ryan bottom has triumphantly slid down that slide.

I know lots of people would say this, but I feel like I have the best relo's in the world. My happiest times, without a doubt, are when our families get together. My cousin Brenton joined the army a couple of years back and now lives in Albury. We're all converging in Grafton next summer for his wedding, and I really can't wait!

I started this post with only the intention of sharing a photo that my cousin Steff texted me the other day, but got a little carried away. Although we're nine years apart (me being the old one) Steff and I have always been thick as thieves. I'm a very lucky cousin!

From Steff: "I looked at my array of cupcakes, and for some reason instantly thought of you! Haha, I hope you enjoy this little piece of the Jacaranda City! Love X"

Would enjoy it more if you sent me one. Just saying, xoxoxoxo. <3


Today is le Fathers Day. And a lovely day it has been. Here's a recap on the situation, so far.

 Here's a sweet-as picture of the dad in my life. Alright, so this was taken circa 1987, but I do like to dig it out as often as possible, for comedic purposes.

And here is a picture of my brother, Dad, and I, back in the good ol' days, when all dads had big fat silly mustaches.

Dads can be tricky to buy for sometimes. When I'm not sure what to get I usually throw together a little package of bits and pieces. 1) It's fun to shop for and put together 2) I hope it's fun to get - like a personalised showbag type thing. For anyone who knows my Dad, as you can see, this package has definitely been tailored specifically for him. I'm not a super-crass daughter; but I have a bit of a crass (but otherwise valuable) parent, hahaha.

The mama-figure had to work today, so Dad and I shot off for a father-daughter breakfast, which was just lovely. Dad gets his morning coffee from this place every morning before work, so even though every table was occupied and the only remaining one was reserved, the owner referred to my Dad as VIP and proceeded to un-reserve the reserved table, which we found very amusing, but didn't argue! This is clearly a photo of a pot of tea. I was far too busy with my bacon and eggs to stop to take a photo of that.

Tonight we're heading to my brother's house for more celebrating (and more eating, arrrrrgh), and I was charged with bringing something easy and tasty. When it comes to DE-LICIOUS and easy, it's hard to beat chocolate-dipped strawberries. Yum, yum.

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler. Put only about an inch of water in the bottom saucepan, because if you get even a tiny splash of water in the chocolate it will seize and go all grainy and spazzo.

Once the chocolate is melted, keep your little pot rested in the bigger pot, so the chocolate stays smooth and melty.

I made some chocolate penguins with the leftover chocolate (so the 1kg block might have been a bit ambitious). The Yogo Gorilla Mix was purchased for my fussy 29 year old sibling who would probably not touch a chocolate-coated strawberry with a barge pole.

Mmmmm =) Happy, and time to go!


Things are getting rather fancy in Char and Izzy's apartment.

The weird pile of bricks in the corner has been closed off, and skirting boards (ooh la la) have been added.

The ceiling has been primed and skirted.

We wanted to put in a faux window, so we asked Dad's cousin the carpenter to knock up a frame. We were literally expecting four pieces of 4 by 2 knocked together, but instead, he knocked our socks off by turned up with this elegantly carved fancy-shmacny bevel-edged window frame, with a freaking window sill! Here my Dad (sporting a lovely matching tracksuit) is painting it a nice crisp white.

If my own childhood is anything to go by, all little girls love drawing on chalk boards. I thought it would be cool to include one in their cubby so we screwed a rectangle of Masonite to the back of the door, and transformed it with a lick of blackboard paint.

So this is where things are at the moment. Just between you an me, I need to have a quiet word with the chief tradesman because the window has been screwed on too high, in my opinion. My Dad is 6"6, so his perception might be a little skewed. Being that the tallest occupant is less than 3 feet tall, some adjustments are definitely in order. I mean, how is a girl supposed to decorate her window sill if she can't even reach it? I'll let you know how I get on.


Good things come in green packages. Particularly when it comes to beverages.

When we were kids my brother and I were a little bit obsessed with green cordial. Lemon and orange were the run of the mill el' boringo flavours - but on the rare occasion when we persuaded our mum into buying Coola - we seriously felt like the luckiest kids on the block. It still makes me a little bit excited.

Being just a little bit older now, I'm free to purchase whatever beverages I choose, even the naughty ones that make you a little bit silly. I was reading Women's Health this afternoon and came across a little snippet on wines of the eco-green variety. Not quite Coola - but I wouldn't knock 'em back.

Sanctuary Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc - the first wine on sale in Australia to feature Planet Ark's Carbon Reduction Label.

Plinky-plonk from the One Planet range is packaged in recyclable material and are rated Carbon Neutral and No CO2 by the Carbon Reduction Institute. Fill her up, I say.

Banrock Station wines are made from sustainable grape varieties and profits go towards conservation projects. So if you have nothing to drink to, you can always cheers the orangutans. =)