From scratch

i made butter! I can hear you all saying would you just buy the damn butter woman. But its so darn simple to make i had to try it. 

4 cups cream into a mixer (i have a kitchen aid)(2ltr of cream cost me $2.99) beat the living day lights out of it. It will turn into whipped cream then Start to curdle and go yellow. Then you will notice it start to seporate into chunks and milk. Then strain out the butter milk. Pressing the butter to get as much moisture out as you can. Then knead in 1tsp of salt on a wooden board (wood draws out more moisture). Done!

   
    
 
Dont throw out the buttermilk. Put 2 cups cream and 2 tbls buttermilk into a jug and stir. Leave out for 24hrs. Know what we are making? Sour cream! Should be thick like custard after 24hrs then put in the fridge for another day and vola! And i still have enough cream left for scones or another batch of sour cream. Not bad for $2.99 and 10mins work. 

Feeding the masses

anyone get dreadfully depressed when a favourite, recently found blog stops blogging. I love the InnerPickle blog to bits. She is living my ideal life. Sadly hasnt posted since early last year. Still instagrams thank god. But today i was reading the archive to get my fix and was encouraged by her homemade philosophy again. Her children, like most children, react badly to preservatives and additives. Made me look up the nasty ones and i was suprised by the side effects of them! Asthma, chromosomal damage, headaches, and if course hyperactivity. Pritty scary that these are in everyday foods. Rice crackers are a pritty bad culprit that we feed alot to kids. Ready meals and biscuits are another culprit. The nasties?

  • E102 also known as Tartrazine. Causes asthma, hyperactivity, rashes, chromosome damage and migraines. Banned in Norway and Austria.
  • E110 sunset yellow. Causes gastric upset and allergies and kidney damage.
  • E104 quinolone. Hyperactivity, asthma and rashes. Banned in USA and previously Australia.
  • E211 sodium benzoate. Hyperactivity and asthma.

Really makes you think hey. I try and make as much of rues food as i can but time gets in the way and snacks are often prepackaged. Might have to check the label in some of them when i get home…

First shoot

first shoot over and done with. Went well, my 6yr old cousin refused to behave but i got some sneaky ones of her and i think the ones of her chucking a tanty are quite good too lol my issue now is that when i got them printed the colors are super over saturated. I tried two print places and both turned out the same. Not sure if maybe my screen colors are off or what is happening. Back to the drawing board on that one. For now im trying to shake a cough so that i can do a newborn shoot for my sister!

   
 

Photography 365

i have been reading alot online about pro photographers. Mostly a page called clickmoms. The first thing i realised is that EVERYONE had a Nicon or a Canon. I have an Olympus. But im assuming the theory is the same. I have a 48mm lens which seems to be a fave of most of them. Then i found that alot of them started with something called 365. Basically you have to take atleast one picture a day. I could really see alot of improvement by the end of the year for all of them so im giving it a go. 

I actually picked a good time because my sisters baby is due any day and my aunt has agreed to do a trial kids session with me and her 4 and 6yr olds tomorrow night, yikes wish me luck! 

The things i have learnt so far are that i dont have to go into my cameras menu to change the settings, all i have to do is press ‘ok’ and they pop up on the bottom of the screen for easy scrolling.

  
 I need to investigate the white setting. I found it but not sure how to use it just yet. And i am playing with the multi shutter function where it takes multiple pics a second. 

I have heaps of baby props on their way for my nephew so i hope to get some good practice in taking his pics over the next month or so. Stay tuned for the pics!

13months

My little Rue is 13months old and i thought i would do an update on how he is going. I love seeing him learn and work things out everyday. 

He has just learnt to walk and rarely crawls now. 

  
He can hold two things in one hand and often spends time working out how to make them both fit. He likes putting things on top of shelves and things inside each other.

  
Tonight he came and got me then opened the recycling bin and pointed at a milk jug. Once i gave it to him he toddled off prowd as punch. He has worked out that i can get things for him that he cant reach!

He decided against using a sleeping bag for bedtime. He would kick and scream when i tried to put it on him so he went without and has been much happier with just a blanket. It amazes me how he just outgrows things before i have time to even try and wean him off them.

  
He has a tooth! One on the bottom has just poked through. Thank god i thought he would never eat crunchy foods…

He is ‘playing’ alot more. Making car noises as he drives cars around the floor. He interacts with the other kids at daycare, talking to each other and waving toys at each other and getting excited. 

  
He loves to dance and especially loves the Kmart commercial. He knows how to get on a bike and loves being pushed around.

If he drops something he knows that he needs to look for it, under, around, under his bum haha and he often looks for solutions for reaching things that are out of reach, moving around furniture or climbing on pillows. 

His babbling is sounding more like talking although i still cant understand more than mummy and dad dad. He said milk once but try as i may he wont say it again. 

He can wave and point and loves seeing himself in reflections. And he adores bathtime! 

  
So heres to you my little wonder, may you grow and learn for many years to come.

  

Winning the lotto

what would you do if you won the lotto. Not a small amount but enough to set you up for life. Tonights draw is $60mil. I made a spreadsheet (i get bored easily at work) and only managed to allocate half of it… Then i worked out that on a very reasonable budget of $300,000 a year i can live off the remainder for 97yrs. Thats not bad. What did i spend my winnings on? Well mostly i think the most satisfying part would be setting up family and friends for life. What better gift can you give than not having to worry about paying a mortgage or setting up a study fund for the kids. So a large chunk went to that. Then about $5mil went into long term savings accounts for Rue and our futures. A house of course, several investment properties, a few first class holidays (london and harry potter world in florida are on my bucket list). Then there is $50,000 for random acts of kindness, you know, large tips and random gifts to strangers. 

Would you work? I would quit my current job but i think i would love to do something for fun where you arent in it for the money, maybe a cafe or something. BD said he would have to work occasionally or he would go stir crazy lol but what would you do if you didnt have to worry about paying the bills?

You might be thinking, well sure but who wins to lotto? Well i actually know several people who have won the jackpot! Most were one of several winners so only walked away with a million or so but hey, i can live with that!

Full weekend

BDs cousins and their two children were down this weekend and they decided they wanted the full tourist experience. Day 1 was a trip 40mins out of Canberra to corin forrest where they had a snow machine (no real snow that week). We all collectivley hated it, and only lasted about 20mins. I did get some super cute pics before rue got hit in the ear with a stray snow ball.

   
   
  
Then it was off to the zoo. I was excited to see hyenas and rue loved the mearkats.

   
   
Then to Smoque for dinner. The next day we did questicon a science game place. It was interesting but i think the kids were too young so we left after only a few hours and went to a toy shop. Dinner was at hogs breath. Rues entire dinner ended out on the floor but he seemed to enjoy doing it. Then to no suprise he slept the whole night through.

  

Olympus And sick babies

home on the couch on a saturday night. Its actually a friends engagement party right now that i had to sent BD to alone as Rue has been sick and was just too tired to stay up. So this mummy is watching Fashion bloggers for the 100th time. Living varcariously through their trip to Dubai, sun, water, looks so good.

But i did have one fun trip yesterday, got my tax return and finally got my new camera! Introducing my Olympus OM-D. I had heard good things and it really looks like my dads camera he had for years when i was little. Of course his was film, mine also has a few gadgets im loving. I fiddled with it for 20mins trying to work out why the screen was blank. Turns out there is a button next to the view finder for switching between the screen and viewfinder. Once that was sorted i switched it to manual mode and i was off. No photos yet as i havent left the house in 3 days :( 

 
Oh and any prayers and well wishes you can spare to a friend who gave birth to her son, James, yesterday at just 24weeks gestation. Word is he is doing well but every bit of love helps. 

Homeward bound

there comes a point where a person says no more. For me this was a few years ago when i decided i just couldnt do share houses anymore. So my sister and i bought a place using the first home owners grant. 3 years later we decided being landlords was worse than share houses so we sold it. Fast forward to today and i have decided that i cant do another winter in this house. Even with the heater running full pelt it only heats one end of the house, rue has his own heater which cant cope when it gets below zero which is most nights. The floors have no insulation so are freezing and the windows are single glazed and offer no insulation at all. 
I have had a gander at the housing market and although i would love to live somewhere off the beaten track where houses are cheaper, you get heaps of land and the house has way more character, i just dont think i can swing it with daycare and my job. So thats a future endevor. Instead im looking at fixer uppers around our area. Something big but run down. I have no issue, and would actually enjoy, renovating. 

Based on the housing market i can see our new home would cost around $380,000 for a 3 bedroom. This would mean at a 5% deposit of $19,000 and stampduty at about $11,000 we would have to save about $30,000, which is more like $35,000 after legal fees. This figure is scary! I have no idea how we can get that but we have to! So its onto the saving wagon for me. 

In the mean time im stocking up on renovation blogs. Do you know a good one?

Www.isgreattobeme.com

Www.abeachcottage.com

Www.houseandfig.com

Sick baby

so this mummy is sick of my baby being sick. So far, in a space of about 6 weeks. Rue has had:

  • 3 colds
  • Chest infection
  • Bronchitis
  • Roseola
  • Unknown origin fever which resulted in a trip to emergency (was over 40)
  • Now has  Conjunctivitis (pink eye) and a cold

My biggest issue with all of this is the fevers. Monitoring a babies fever is nerve wracking and constant. Rues fevers dont respond well to panadol or neurofen so i end out giving him them altnativley every 3 hrs (so each ends out being given every 6 hrs as recomended) just to keep it at a reasonable level (about 38C). I have gone through so many thermometers. The ear one broke, the under arm one is too slow as is the dummy one, both can take several minutes to work. We currently use a vicks forehead one but i often have to do it several times as rue keeps moving. Tonight it told me his temp was around 36 despite him feeling quite warm to me. Will check again if he wakes for a feed. Might end out having to get a proper ear one like the doctor uses. I just want him to be healthy!!