I made a whole stack of these on Christmas Eve and took a plate to 3 different functions within a 24 window. Sneaky but time-effective.

You can find the recipe for my Aunty Til's rum balls in this post (scroll to the bottom).

White Chocolate Truffles

The published name for this recipe in Christmas Gifts by is 'Golden Eggnog Truffels' but since we're in Australia and not really famiiar with the whole eggnog concept, I changed the name. They are dark chocolate ganache on the inside, coated with white chocolate.

I'd never made this recipe and I had trouble with it. In fact, I have cooked 3 recipes from that book and had problems with all of them! Hmm... I don't think triple tests their recipes like the good ol' Australian Women's Weekly. If you follow my tips though, you should be able to make the recipe successfully. For me, I had to incorporate half a packet of crushed biscuits into the centre mixture, which completely changed the texture of it, much to my annoyance, because the recipe should have said to freeze something, instead of refrigerate something, and I didn't have time to play with. Anyway, as I said, I've incorporated my tips into the new recipe.

The recipe also called to decorate with edible gold leaf - this was way too expensive so I bought a little pot of edible glitter instead (about $8.50 compared to $38) and it worked just fine. Use a spoon or mini seive to tap the glitter onto the truffles.

Last but not certainly not least, I double dipped my truffles in white chocolate because one coat left a few patchy spots.

Makes about 30

300g dark chocolate, finely chopped
300ml double cream
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
60ml (1/4 cup) brandy or Cointreau
350g white chocolate melts
Edible gold leaf sheets or edible gold glitter (cake store)

1. Place dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Place cream in a saucepan over medium heat and bring just to a simmer. Gradually stir into chocolate until melted and smooth. Add spices and brandy. Stir. Cool and place in the FREEZER (my edit) for 2 hours or until firm.

2. Line 2 trays with baking paper. Use cool, slightly damp hands to roll 1 teaspoonful of chocolate mixture into a ball. Place on 1 lined tray in the freezer for 2-3 hours or until firm.

3. Melt the white chocolate in a bowl set over a saucepan of gently simmering water (do not let bowl touch the water). Skewer 1 truffle with a toothpick and dip quickly into the melted chocolate. Place on second lined tray. Repeat with the remaining truffles and melted chocolate. Re-coat the truffles with chocolate to cover any blotchy bits. Decorate using edible glitter or gold leaf.

Set at room temp, then store in the fridge until needed.


Edit: I  wrote this post on Christmas Eve morning, then Christmas Eve preparations got in the way!

These pork sausage rolls are a festive take on your standard sausage roll. With green flecks of pistachio and served with red cranberry sauce, they're a pretty Christmassy look for the ol' sausage roll!

I'm taking these to my friend's place tonight for our annual Christmas Eve get together. Lindsay and I taste tested the ones in the picture... we had to taste 10 to make sure they were okay. They are okay.

Tip: These can be made ahead of time. Cook the sausage rolls just a little less time than required (til lightly brown), freeze, then reheat in the oven before serving. They must be pre-cooked.

Ingredients (makes approx. 35)

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 brown onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
600g pork mince
100g pistachios, chopped
100g dried cranberries, finely chopped
2 tablespoons wholegrain mustard
1 tablespoon dried mixed herbs
1/2 teaspoon sea salt flakes
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
3 sheets frozen puff pastry
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon poppy seeds
cranberry sauce, to serve

  1. Line two oven trays with baking paper. Heat oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add onion and garlic then cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until onion is soft. Transfer to a large bowl and set aside to cool for 15 minutes.
  2. Add mince, pistachio, cranberry, mustard, dried herbs, salt and pepper, then stir until well combined.
  3. Put 1 sheet of pastry on a clean, dry work surface. Cut in half to form 2 rectangles. Form 1/2 cup of mixture into a long along the edge of a rectangle.Brush opposite edge with egg. Roll up firmly to enclose filling. Repeat with remaining mixture. Freeze 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 200 C. Cut each roll into 6 pieces and arranged on prepared trays, seam side down. Brush top of rolls with reserved egg, then scatter over poppy seeds.
  5. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until pastry is golden and filling is cooked through, Set aside for 5 minutes to cool slightly. Arrange on a serving plate and serve with cranberry sauce on the side.


This gingerbread biscuit recipe comes from the book Christmas Gifts. This year my Mum and I broke tradition and haven't made our usual gingerbread house - time was of the essence and the... essence was distributed elsewhere? Anyway - made these on the weekend and was pretty pleased with the result - I love using spices at Christmas time.

I have updated the recipe slightly (after making them) so that you can get a cracklier cookie so they resemble the picture in the book (instead of my flatties). x

Note the Crackle

Ingredients (makes 25)

100g butter, chopped
1 1/2 cups (225g) plain flour
1/3 cup (80ml) golden syrup
3/4 cup (155g) brown sugar
1 egg, lightly whisked
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon mixed spice
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1/4 cup (45g) icing sugar

Combine the butter and golden syrup in a medium saucepan over low heat. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes or until butter melts and mixture is well combined. Remove from heat and transfer to a large bowl.

Add the flour, brown sugar, egg, ginger, mixed spice, cloves and bicarbonate of soda and stir to combine. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 45 minutes or until cool and firm.

Sift the icing sugar onto a small plate. Roll tablespoonsful of mixture into balls and roll in icing sugar. Place on the lined trays, 6cm apart, allowing room for spreading. Edit: Return the tray of biscuits to chill in the fridge for at least an hour (longer is fine).

Preheat oven to 180C. Line 2 oven trays with baking paper. Bake in preheated oven, swapping trays halfway through cooking, for 15 minutes or until lightly golden. Remove from oven and set aside on trays to cool completely.


Don't be afraid to go to town when you coat your biscuits in icing sugar (I tell you this because I didn't go to town...).

And as per the top in the magazine page above (which I ignored) I definitely would recommend putting the biscuits back in the fridge for another hour after you have rolled and coated them. My biscuits did spread a fair bit which meant they didn't have the crackle effect I was after - if the dough is firmer when it goes in the oven though, this will make for a more compact biscuit and a more impressive crackle.



He has a unique talent for rocky road, I tell you. He used chocolate, white and pink marshmallows, mint Aero and chopped up Mint Patties (magic ingredient) in the base. For the top layer (added after the bottom had set) he used white chocolate sprinkled with chopped up shards of Peppermint Crisps.

Lovely work, boyfriend!

Here are two other Rocky Road recipes you might like:

Rainbow Sprinkles Rocky Road

Love Hearts Rocky Road


I made this Christmas Tree Fairy Bread for a BBQ on Sunday afternoon where I knew there'd be plenty of kid-folk running around, but of course it was the big kids that demolished it!

I reckon Fairy Bread would have to be the most nostalgic childhood party foods for Australian kids. Little trivia for you - Fairy Bread is an Australian and New Zealand(ish..? 0_o) specialty (another proud achievement!) and it's thought the title may originate from the Robert Louis Stevenson poem 'Fairy Bread' from A Children's Garden of Verses.

COME up here, O dusty feet!
Here is fairy bread to eat.
Here in my retiring room,
Children, you may dine
On the golden smell of broom
And the shade of pine;
And when you have eaten well,
Fairy stories hear and tell.

The best part of my Fairy Bread tree was when I was standing chatting with my brother Brendon, Lindsay, and our friend Django and Brendon complemented me on the Fairy Bread. I told him that he should eat the 'trunk' because it's made out of the top of a buttercake I had sliced off. He said, "Oh, I just thought it was a piece of crappy crust". "No, no" I said, "it's cake." He said, "OH ok!" and dived in. It was a lot of fun watching him chew up the crappy crust and witness the realisation disappointment cross his face after a few chomps. Fun for all, thanks bro!

So, let's have some tips, hey?

Yes, I know, it's Fairy Bread, how can you get it wrong? Oh, you can.

1. Must be fresh white bread. I started off with this here loaf - I was the first person at Coles before 7am (Lindsay says I just go down there to listen to their Christmas soundtrack... well, Neil Diamond was on, it was pretty good). Anyway, the baker took the bread straight out of the oven for me, so it was too hot to slice. Any fresher?! Of course, it was a nightmare to cut so had to send Linds back down to the shops, where I am sure he enjoyed some lovely carols.

2. Butter. Butter. Butter. Bread must be shmeared with butter, not margarine. Margarine would crappify your FB; why would you do that to the children? Just leave your butter out at room temp so it's nice and spreadable.


Happy Monday before Christmas! Hope everyone had a nice weekend. It was a busy one for me... 5 events in 3 days, which means, lots of excuses to make things for Alexsanta's Christmas Bakehouse =)

No baking required for these Watermelon Christmas trees, but they're probably one of the favourite Christmas items I've produced to date - just simple and fresh. Also, it turns out that making watermelon into trees is actually a super ergonomic way to eat it! None of this juicy jowls business that you get with regular methods of watermelon slicing.

I made my trees from a 1/4 melon, and that produced all the trees you see in this pic (minus the obligatory taste testers). It also meant less slicing and dicing.

These went down a treat among our fellow picnickers yesterday, as is, but if you wanted to jazz them up a little you could try finely chopping some mint as a festive and refreshing garnish.


Build a tower




Hi guys - hope everyone's having a good weekend so far - ours has been super busy, I can't believe it's only Saturday night, feels like Sunday night to me. That's a good thing, anyway!

So today we had an early Christmas lunch with Lindsay's Bondi Grandma. I made her a box of homemade chocolate truffle thingies. They were really easy to make. They reminded me a little of Ferrero Rochers (not to be compared, really, but they have that hazelnut-ganache element - close enough). I boxed them up in a stripey noodle box from my favourite shop, Dollar King. Haha... that's a lie, but I do seem to go there a lot...


45G (1/4 cup) whole hazelnuts
60mL (1/4 cup) thickened cream
500g milk chocolate melts


Preheat oven to 180°C. Scatter the hazelnuts over an oven tray. Roast in oven for 10 minutes or until lightly toasted. Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly. Place hazelnuts in a clean tea towel and rub to remove the skins. Finely chop.

Place the cream and half the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan half-filled with simmering water. Stir with a metal spoon until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth. Remove from heat. Add the hazelnuts and stir to combine. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 2 hours or until firm enough to roll into balls.

Line an oven tray with baking paper. Roll 1 1/2 teaspoonfuls of chocolate mixture into balls and place on the lined tray. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes or until firm.

Place the remaining chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir with a metal spoon until chocolate melts. Remove from heat.

Use a fork to dip a chocolate ball into the melted chocolate to coat. Tap the fork on the edge of the bowl to remove excess chocolate. Roll in your hands to create a rough surface. Place on the lined tray. Repeat with remaining chocolate balls and chocolate. Set aside at room temperature to set.

My Tips

  • If you don't have 2 hours to spare to firm up the mixture (or you didn't leave yourself enough time, like me!) you can put the mixture in the freezer for about 40 minutes instead. Worked fine for me
  • Don't make them too large as they're quite rich - a teaspoon is enough
  • My mixture made about 14 balls but probably could have made 22 or so
  • Just set these at room temp, don't whack them back in the fridge
This recipe comes from the Christmas Gifts book. 

Vegetable Oils are Bad


The other day I posted a recipe for homemade mayonnaise and told you to come back (like obedient little readers!) to find out why I bother making homemade mayo when the supermarket mayo is so freaking delicious! Here's why.

Science shows that vegetable oils are bad for you, specifically, that they cause heart disease and cancer.

I don't have a holier-than-thou attitude about food and will be the first person to tell you that my diet is far from perfect, but my attitude is that every little good thing helps the big picture.

I have shunned fake mayo (that is, anything that isn't whole egg) for years. If you have a bottle of fake mayo  (e.g. "Praise Traditional" Mayonnaise) in your fridge, I'm sure you'll find that it contains a LOT of sugar. Unfortunately, the supermarket varieties of whole egg mayo use toxic oils (i.e. vegetable and seed oils) in their recipes. Hopefully one day soon, there will be a variety that uses healthy oils (and it'll cost a bomb).

By the way, 'vegetable oil' is the umbrella term - when we're talking about oils to avoid, the list includes Canola, Soybeen, Sunflower, Sesame Seed and more (see table below).

It's a funny concept to grasp - it's VEGETABLE oil, that sounds like a good thing?

If you're interested in the topic, you should read Toxic Oil by David Gillespie.

The science gets a little complex and I'm no expert, so I'll just give you a excerpt from this article written by Gillespie for the Sydney Morning Herald. It's a wad of text but if you can't commit to a whole book, at least give this a go. If you can't commit to these paragraphs, I've made the crux of it bold.

'Almost every fat we put into our mouths today is a vegetable oil manufactured by an industry that didn't exist 100 years ago. We are eating vegetable oil because it is much cheaper for manufacturers to make food with oils chemically extracted from plant seeds than it is to raise and slaughter an animal. We've also been told that the secret to reducing heart disease is to consume these unsaturated vegetable oils rather than saturated animal fats. Now all the fats in our processed foods are labelled vegetable oils, and the labels are rarely more specific than that. Vegetable oil can be found in everything from potato chips to muffins, frozen foods to canned soups, to enhance flavour and texture.
The irony is that there is no such thing as oil from a vegetable. The products being sold as "vegetable" oils are in fact fruit oils (coconut, palm, avocado), nut oils (macadamia, peanut, pecan) or seed oils (canola, sunflower, soybean, cottonseed, grapeseed, rice bran). While the fruit and nut oils are relatively harmless, the seed oils pose a real risk to our health - and unfortunately they make up most of the "vegetable" oil in our food. It is now almost impossible to buy a packaged or takeaway food that is cooked in anything but a seed oil, and while some seed oils are unhealthier than others, they all contain damaging levels of omega-6 fatty acids.The process that initially permitted the huge expansion in the consumption of seed oil in the 20th century was hydrogenation, a chemical process that introduces hydrogen to liquid oil extracted from plants under extreme heat, making a thin oil thicker or even solid. Unfortunately, hydrogenation produces its magical thickening effects by turning polyunsaturated fats into trans fats. 
A trans fat works in the same way as a normal fat in cooking, but during the early 1990s evidence started to emerge that once these fats are inside our bodies, they significantly increase our risk of heart disease. They do this by decreasing HDL cholesterol (high-density lipoprotein, the so-called "good" cholesterol associated with lower rates of atherosclerosis) and raising the "bad" LDL form (low-density lipoprotein, which contributes to blocked arteries). A series of studies in the UK produced consistent evidence that trans fats also significantly increase a person's chances of developing type-2 diabetes.'

The chart below categorises oils and fats so that you can easily see which ones are safe and which to avoid. I have this chart printed and stuck inside the door of our pantry.

So there it is. That's the long (but short) reason why I am making my own mayo. It's not everything, but like I said, every little thing contributes to the whole!


Feeling a bit sad tonight because it's the eve of my dog, Hannah's, 15th birthday. Tomorrow, 15th December, she would have been 15 years old. So sadly, she was getting old and developing some complications, and we had to put her down a few weeks ago. It was very hard, the hardest thing to say goodbye, patting her one minute and knowing she wouldn't be with us anymore in a short time. Mum gave her a wash and brush and blowdry the day before so she looked so fluffy and beautiful. Hannah was a wonderful dog. We got her when I was 16. It is so funny when you think how many milestones your dog has been around for. Just always there, constant, throughout everything. High school... 16th, 18th, 21st...30th. All the highs and lows. They are just always there. Always ready to give and receive unconditional love. I clearly remember the day we went to the breeder's house to get Hannah. I picked her out of the pen and nursed her all the way home in the back of the car. At our house, as a puppy, she used to love hiding underneath the open drawers in the kitchen. I remember making her baby formula in those first few weeks. We brought home a "sister" for Hannah after a few years. Lily from the pet shop. They have been practically attached at the hip. Lily lost her sight a few years ago and has been shadowing and stumbling over Hannah ever since. Sometimes she would just walk up to Hannah and pretty much sit on her, but Hannah never seemed to mind. It was really tough, taking to Hannah to the vet a few weeks ago. Right before, Lily had come into the garage and sat right up against Hannah, like she couldn't get any closer. After a while she wandered away and it was heartbreaking to know that she didn't even realise that's the last she would see of Hannah. It was a horrible morning. Mum and Dad and I went to the vet together and then we came home after and buried Hannah in the backyard. It is nice knowing she is kind of there. Lily seems to be coping okay and is being lavished with attention. Hannah and Lil have had lovely dog lives, I think. They didn't have to walk on leads much, because we lived (where Mum and Dad still live) on the edge of a firetrail, so I just took them walking and running - free to run and sniff and do dog things. Hannah loved to just walk up to mud puddles and plonk down in them. There was a river at the bottom of the bush track I used to take them, and when the tide was low I'd throw aball and they'd pelt up and down the sand like total maniacs. Other days when the river was full I'd just sit on the bank and let them paddle around. They loved it. They loved swimming. They went on quite a few holidays with Mum and Dad - 8 hour road trips up to Red Rock. They'd spend two weeks at the beach, swimming in the river and going nuts on the sand. I took Hannah for her last walk along the fire trail less than six months ago, and realised sadly at the time that it would have to be her last - she was struggling too much. But nearly-15 is a ripe old age for a beautiful border collie. I just wanted to pay tribute to a lovely pet and think about her a little bit today and tomorrow with some photos. Rest in peace little Hanny. x

I loved her freckles.

Pit stop on one of our bushwalks.

Riding in the cheap seats on one of their beach road trips.

Friends let friends finish their icy poles.

Last pic xx

My favourite photo, that never fails to make me laugh. Mum and Dad thought it would be funny and I think they were right.

<3 Hannah <3

Homemade Whole Egg Mayonnaise Recipe

This extremely easy whole egg mayonnaise recipe is from Toxic Oil by David Gillespie. Why am I even bothering to make my own when supermarket whole egg mayo is so delish!? I'll tell you tomorrow.

This is the first mayonnaise recipe I've ever made and we (that is, myself and the resident male) are more than happy with it. I made my second batch yesterday.

Yield: Approximately 2 cups or 700ml
Fridge Life: At least a month, maybe more - I'll update this if and when I find out!


2 whole eggs (I used extra large)
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 cups light olive oil*
salt and pepper to taste

*Note: This is extremely important! You cannot use extra virgin olive oil - it has too strong a taste. I tried it, and it is absolutely grose. So just look for olive oil that says 'mild' on the label.


1. In a food processor, pulse eggs, mustard and lemon juice
2. Slowly, (whilst processing) add olive oil until mixture thickens
3. Taste and season with salt and pepper if required
4. Transfer to a sealed container (an old salsa jar is my jar of choice!) and refrigerate.

Because the recipe contains fresh whole eggs or fake preservatives, just be mindful to use what you need and then put the jar back in the fridge - you don't want to leave the jar hanging around outside on the BBQ table.

Aioli: add a couple of minced garlic gloves, an extra dessertspoon of lemon juice and a pinch of salt.

Tartare Sauce: add one finely chopped small onion, 2 chopped dill pickles, a splash of lemon juice, 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, 1 teaspoon of chives, and salt and pepper to taste.

Yesterday's lazy balcony picnic: chicken schnitzel with homemade mayo coleslaw. Yum!


Almost exactly what I look like right now.

I was just in the bathroom making myself into a better person with the lovely substance that is fake tan while thinking about what I could write about this afternoon. So yeah, let's go with that.

I had a tanning disaster a few weeks ago. I hadn't used fake tan for a couple of years. My go-to solution for misleading people about my pasty pins had been Le Tan Wash Off Body Bronzer. It's the stuff you use when you haven't prepared and you put on a dress and it looks like you gots no legs coz they blending into your white walls. That stuff is pretty good if you want to disguise the pure-paste for one occasion and then wash away the sin, clean for bed and back to your pale self.

I'm not sure what prompted me to do an all-over tan session but it probably had something to do with the arrival of summer and... shorts, oh yes, shorts.

So I went to Le Shops and picked myself up some Le Tanning Gel. By the time it had developed, I looked like, how you say, a sunset watercolour painting - all streaky and such. Nice and natural. Nice natural orange arms with freaky white clown hands (yes, I tanned my hands but it washed away. Like most clean people, I have a daily hand-to-body washing ratio of about 200:1 sooooo...).

I would NOT recommend clear tanning gels. The substance being colourless and fast-drying, the whole tanning procedure was fraught with mystery. I went camping that arvo and my friend said, "The most important thing is that you made the effort". Not true, the most important thing is that I look like a big streaky bacon body.

Anyway. My dear Mum gifted me some J Bronze Mousse after hearing my story of woe. I used it last week and reapplied today - the colour was still visible and even, just in need of a top up.

Why do I think the world needs my review - the girl who hadn't tanned in two years? The reason I want to offer my thoughts on this product is because I read a few comments last week and found them to be totally stupid.

Disclaimer: I like the tan, it's a good colour and it didn't turn out streaky. Obviously I'd use it again because I just did. I used the Dark - it's not that dark, don't be afraid.

However, some people were writing things like, "Ooooh, it smells so good, my boyfriend thought I was wearing perfume! I wore it straight to a wedding without needing a shower and even slept in it without it staining the sheets!".

I think those girls have been tanning too long and no longer know what normal skin smells or feels like.

I stink. I'll tell ya right now - I stink! I wouldn't even want to go to Coles like this let alone frock up for an event where there might be people with nostrils in close range. Your boyfriend thinks you smell like perfume? What perfume have you been wearing to date? Did you get it at Dollar King? You can't feel the tan on your skin? I can feel it - it feels tacky and dirty like every other tanning product and I cannot WAIT to have a shower later! You went to bed in it? Your poor boyfriend. Can only assume he is dirty, too. Have a shower. It took me two showers to feel clean again after last week's tan. I went to bed hoping I wouldn't be kicked out of it.

So, yeah, it's a nice colour tan, get it and everything, but no need to go kissing J-Hawkins' bare bott bott because, I'm telling you, you smell a bit like a sausage roll, and not in a good way.

See, this is why I don't do beauty reviews.

J-Bronze. It's just lovely.

Sweet Chilli Dip Recipe

My Mum's Sweet Chilli Dip recipe is fresh and easy and has been a family favourite for years. Enjoy!

125g light cream cheese, softened
300g carton sour cream (full fat, not light*)
1 glove garlic, crushed
1/4 cup sweet chilli sauce
1/4 cup chopped fresh coriander
Fresh coriander to garnish

Beat the cream cheese and sour cream in a small bowl with an electric mixer until smooth. Stir in garlic, sweet chilli sauce and coriander and mix well. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes before serving. Serve dip garnished with fresh herbs.

*Why don't I use light sour cream? The consistency of light sour cream is "thinner" and will result in a floppy dip. No one wants a floppy dip. Besides, there's nothing wrong with full fat dairy! It won't make you fat. If you want to make this recipe more diet-friendly, there are a couple of sugar-reduced sweet chilli sauces on the supermarket shelves now, or make your own!

DIY Gold Tipped Christmas Tree

When you live in a unit, you learn to be economical about space. Being economical about space, however, does NOT mean eschewing Christmas decorations! You just have to get a little creative.

We don't have a suitible posi' for a tree at our place, but seeing as though Santa will be delivering to our parents' places anyway, it's not so much an issue. Even so, Christmas provides the ultimate excuse to throw glitter, shiny balls, ribbon and tiny bells about the place with reckless abandon. It's not in my character to pass up this opportunity.

This year I decided to make a stick tree. I call it, Christmas remnants-of-a-gum TreeI used the gold spraypaint from my Christmas Cards to glitz the tips of some unsuspecting sticks, plopped them in a jar (which also got a stripey zap of gold) and bedazzled the arrangement with some sparkly ornaments (6 stars for $2 from Dollar King). Don't get me wrong, the stick assortment is no match for your traditional tree, but it does add a little December bling, and provides a place for Santa (wink wink) to stow his presents should he wish to acknowledge my amazing behavior throughout 2014.

And below - our advent calendar! We may be 29 and 31 years old, but there is no getting over the joy of an advent calendar. We blame thank our Mums. Today is my day for the calendar but I ate the chocolate at one minute past midnight. Sooooo yeah, nothing has changed!

Do you have any crafty ideas for blinging up your Christmas space? x


Hello! Today ima talk about Christmas cards. Are they becoming passé? I tackle all the hard-hitting questions here.

I understand they're not everyone's thing, and Australia Post jacking up its stamp prices to 65c is not helping the matter. However, I still think the ol' Chrissy card is a nice way of touching base, especially with the people you may seldom see, just to let them know: "HI. I STILL REMEMBER YOU AND THINK YOU'RE ALRIGHT AND DEFINITELY WORTH SIXTY-FIVE CENTS."

I have a long association with penpal-ism and a love of snail mail, so for me it's a non-issue. I don't even mind if you don't send me one back. #SELFLESS

This year I searched high and low (i.e. two places) for a pack of boxed cards that cut the mustard and was totally uninspired, so decided to DIY.

These little babies aren't going to win any design awards but they allowed me let loose with a can of gold spraypaint, which is the most important thing. #TARADENNIS

If you are intending to make these, I will offer you the following tips:

1. Do your spraypainting in a well-ventilated space and make sure your animals can't wander into the work area as the temptation to give your dog gold highlights will be strong.

2. I heartily recommend a crazy coloured envelope. Just because hot pink and rebel Christmas etc.

And, look! My deer friends keep surprising me with Insta shots of their cards. #WORTHIT

My little friend. I had her at Hot Pink.

From SIL. Juicy juicy green grass, by the way.

From my pal at the old place of work. And here is her address if you want to surprise her with another card :)

From Lana in London!

Without further ado, if any persons from The Internet have come across this post and would like to recreate these cards, here's how:

You Will Need
  • Search for 'Christmas Silhouettes' on the Google machine, save and resize, print and cut out your template
  • Some cardboard. I used Kraft brown card
  • Spraypaint (about $6 from your friendly hardware merchant)
  • A pair of tweezers
  • A small weighted implement to secure your template so it doesn't blow away when you spray it like mine did
  • A drop sheet, or permission to decorate your garage floor
  • A face mask so your lungs don't turn gold (just fashion one out something you have lying around)
  • A sheet of diamentes for $2 from the cheapo store for Rudolph's nose
How You Will Do It

If you are intending to DIY your own cards, I am sure you're already crafty enough to figure out these details.

Have fun!


Good morning! I hope you had a nice weekend. It's DECEMBER! Today is going to be a busy day - I have 310 Little Bow Thief wedding jams to make. Nothing that a little procrastination won't fix...

THIS: rainbow sprinkles flake cake. Hello. I made this for Lindsay's birthday back in July...2013. Oops. Anyway.

I mean the combo of sprinkles + flakes is just a treat for the eyes. It's like a swimming pool constructed of Flake logs and filled with edible confetti. It just makes me happy. The inspiration for this cake came from Steph at Raspberri Cupcakes. Her version leaves mine to dust, but I made Lindsay's cake for a small family lunch on his 28th birthday, hardly the time to bust out the novelty numerals. Thirty is fast approaching, though...

I used the 'fun size' Flakes (their definition of 'fun', not mine) for the border. Highly recommend you try this tasty little crowd pleaser! 

The inspiration. From the very talented Steph at Raspberri Cupcakes.

Road Trips + Wild Flowers

This morning I went on a short solo adventure to Robertson, about an hour* south of Wollongong. *It was supposed to be an hour, but ended up being an hour twenty. See, I had a group job interview assessment thingy lined up for this morning at the Illawarra Fly, a place that offers guided rainforest walks. I was sitting on the fence about this job for a few reasons, but got up this morning and decided there was no harm in going to check in out. Anyways, I took a few wrong turns along the way, and arrived at the destination 20 minutes late. I would never hire someone who was 20 minutes late for an interview. I took this as a sign. 

I decided to have a sticky beak at the Fly anyway. The walks are $25 (guided or unguided) - I'll come back another time with the Lindsay. On my way out I decided to 1. Take a selfie of... myself, with my new dangly tree-of-lifey mirror thingy and 2. Stop off at this totally cool little flower stall and pop a couple of 2$'s for some protea stems! It was the cutest little ramshackle of a set up, with scissors, curling ribbon and a wrapping paper dispenser (which had no paper, but who cares).

Definitely followed the dangly thingy's instructions and created my own happiness today. :)