Thursday, April 17, 2014

Salted caramel snickerdoodles... Mmmm...

I needed to bake some non allergy specific goodies for this weekend, I have friends and family helping on all fronts this Easter weekend so that I can participate in one of my best friends weddings on Saturday...

I didn't read the recipe properly before baking, or I probably wouldn't have ever got around to doing it! There is a half hour dough freezing, and then wrapping each cookie around a piece of caramel... If you have the time, it is absolutely worth it!

Check out the blog I got it from, they have amazing recipes!

http://www.twopeasandtheirpod.com/brown-butter-salted-caramel-snickerdoodles/



Brown Butter Salted Caramel Cookies

Yield: 2 dozen cookies

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 8-10 minutes

Brown butter snickerdoodles with a caramel surprise inside!

ingredients:

2 1/2 cups all-purpose Gold Medal flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup unsalted butter, sliced
1 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon plain Greek yogurt
1 cup caramel squares, cut into 1/4's

For Rolling the Cookies:
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Sea salt, for sprinkling on top of cookies

directions:

1. In a medium bowl, Whisk together the flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.

2. To brown the butter, heat a thick-bottomed skillet on medium heat. Add the sliced butter, whisking frequently. Continue to cook the butter until melted. The butter will start to foam and browned specks will begin to form at the bottom of the pan. The butter should have a nutty aroma. Watch the butter carefully because it can go from brown to burnt quickly. Remove butter from the heat and let cool to room temperature.

3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the brown butter and sugars. Mix until blended and smooth. Beat in the egg, yolk, vanilla, and yogurt and mix until combined. Slowly add in the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.

4. Form the dough in a ball and cover with plastic wrap. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. You can chill the dough overnight.

5. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Measure about 2 tablespoons of dough and roll into balls. Flatten the ball with the palm of your hand and place a piece of caramel in the center of the dough. Wrap the cookie dough around the caramel, making sure the caramel is completely covered with dough.

6. In a small bowl, combine the cinnamon and sugar. Roll the balls in the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place dough balls on a large baking sheet that has been lined with a Silpat baking mat or parchment paper. Make sure the cookies are about 2 inches apart. Sprinkle the cookie tops with sea salt.

7. Bake the cookies 8-10 minutes or until the edges of the cookies begin to turn golden brown. The centers will still be soft. Cool the cookies on the baking sheet for 2-3 minutes, or until set. Transfer cookies to a wire cooling rack and cool completely.

Recipe adapted from Ambitious Kitchen


Thursday, April 10, 2014

Gluten free, vegan peppermint chocolate cookies

Gluten free, vegan peppermint chocolate  cookies

I originally saw a gluten free recipe for mint chocolate cookies, but really wanted to make them for Mark, so I overhauled the recipe to suit my needs... The original recipe can be found on glutenfreeonashoestring.com

These are actually quite good, could do with no sugar I think... Next time...


Ingredients
  • COOKIES
  • 5 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 100g vegan chocolate, chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon pure peppermint extract
  • ¾ cup (105g) high-quality all-purpose gluten-free flour
  • ¼ teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if your blend already contains it)
  • ½ cup (40g) unsweetened natural cocoa powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (100g) sugar (take or leave)
  • GLAZE
  • 200g vegan chocolate, chopped
  • pure peppermint extract, to taste

Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 170 degrees. Line tins with baking paper, and set them aside.
  2. In a medium-size microwave-safe bowl, place the coconut oil  and all of the chocolate except for 3 to 4 1½-inch-size chunks. Microwave 30 seconds at a time, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Add the reserved chunks of chocolate, and stir until the chocolate has begun to thicken a bit and the chunks have melted. Add the vanilla extract and peppermint extract, and stir to combine. Set the chocolate aside.
  3. In a large bowl, place the flour, xanthan gum, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt and sugar, and whisk to combine well. Add the chocolate mixture, and mix until the dough comes together and is well-integrated. 
  4. Put teaspoon sized blobs on the baking powder, tablespoon if you want a bigger cookie
  5. Place the baking sheet in the center of the preheated oven and bake, rotating once, for 7 - 10 minutes. Remove from the oven, and allow the cookies to cool completely on the baking sheet.
  6. Once the cookies are cool, make the glaze. Place all of the dark chocolate except for 3 to 4 1½-inch-size chunks in a medium-size, microwave-safe bowl. Microwave 30 seconds at a time, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Add the reserved chunks of chocolate and the peppermint extract, and stir until the chocolate has begun to thicken a bit and the chunks have melted.
  7. Place the cookies, one at a time, in the glaze. Carefully place it on a clean sheet of baking paper. Allow the chocolate to set at room temperature (chocolate was setting fast so I basically iced the cookies)

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Raw vegan snickers bars...

My girl is on a raw vegan tip, she made these amazing bars and I absolutely needed them to help my clean eating!  

There was lots of leftover chocolate so I put then in dinosaur moulds for the kids...

Recipe from
http://www.thisrawsomeveganlife.com/2012/12/raw-snickers-candy-bars.html?m=1


raw snicker bars: makes about 10 bars

Nougat layer:
1/2 cup raw flour (such as oat, coconut, buckwheat, almond, etc.)
1/3 cup raw agave/maple syrup
1 cup sliced almonds
1/4 pine nuts (optional) 

Caramel layer:
1 cup dates and enough water to cover them
1/4 teaspoon salt (optional) 
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons melted coconut oil

Raw chocolate coating:
Just use your fave recipe or my own 

To make the nougat: pulse the flour, pine nuts (if using) and sweetener together in your food processor until smooth. Add the almonds by hand. Shape into small logs on parchment paper and put in the freezer. 

To make the caramel: blend all ingredients together in your blender until creamy and thick, adding the least amount of water you can. spread a little on to the tops of each nougat log and put back in the freezer. 

When they are frozen enough, cover each one in chocolate and let harden in the freezer or fridge.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

The Lego Movie

We had all sorts of plans for today, and on Friday, when they all fell through, I immediately remembered the Village Cinena email that offered $10 tickets to an advanced screening to see the Lego Movie... They pushed back the release of this film in Australia to coincide with school holidays, despite it being out for up to a month in other countries... We ordered tickets and away we went!

At Village cinema, there were a few Lego related activities for the kids, had this been better publicised we would have arrived earlier... In any case, we were given plenty of take away colouring in sheets etc... They also have a Lego family combo, which includes 4 small popcorn and 4 small drinks AND 4 sealed packets of Lego for $35... With a Robot police man and his little ship, and the Piece of Resistance pack with Emmet and a wreckage scene where he found the piece of resistance, they are already selling on eBay between $10-20!

The film itself was awesome! I don't like posting spoilers, what I will say is this: I didn't look at my watch, which is the best possible sign... It had something for everyone, we all found very different things funny and ALL laughed loudly throughout... We are 36, 34, 5 and 3... We will definitely be buying it once it is out, Marley asked if we could the minute the credits rolled!



Saturday, March 29, 2014

Salted Caramel Banana Pudding...

I saw this and had to make it... The problem with puddings and cakes, large items that don't keep, I feel like they will go off before we get to eat it... My BFF was having a dinner party and I offered to bring dessert...

It was delicious and rich, not exactly as thick and solid as I had have hoped... I would definitely consider making it again, but all on the day before, I didn't think 8 hours was enough for the last refrigeration... And after eating it for breakfast this morning, while it didn't look great, my pic is pretty bad, it tasted even better! I used Marie biscuits as they don't sell the nilla biscuits in Australia...

Recipe from Magnolia NYC taken from 
http://www.ringfingertanline.com/2014/01/12/magnolia-bakerys-banana-pudding-salted-caramel/

Magnolia Bakery's Banana Pudding With Salted Caramel
Ingredients
    For the pudding
    1. 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
    2. 1½ cups cold water
    3. 1 (3.4-ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
    4. 3 cups heavy cream
    5. 1 (12-ounce) box Nabisco Nilla Wafers
    6. 4 cups sliced ripe bananas
    For the caramel
    1. 1 1/2 cups sugar
    2. 1/3 cup water
    3. 1 1/4 cups heavy cream
    4. 3 tsp fleur de sel
    Directions
      For the pudding
      1. In the bowl of a mixer, beat sweetened condensed milk and water for about a minute. Add the pudding mix and beat for about two more minutes.
      2. Transfer to a smaller bowl, cover, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
      3. In a large bowl on medium speed, whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold in the pudding mixture until combined.
      4. In a large bowl, layer wafers, bananas, and pudding. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 8 hours before serving.
      For the caramel
      1. Combine the sugar and 1/3 cup water in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan. This is the only time you can stir the sugar. If you stir it while it's cooking, it turns to rock candy. Place the saucepan over medium to low heat until the sugars start to dissolve, 5 to 10 minutes. Then turn the heat up to medium-high and cook until the sugar starts to caramelize, 5 to 7 minutes. Do not stir while this is happening. You've got to watch the pot, because it goes from caramel to burnt really quickly. And be careful, the mixture is extremely hot!
      2. Turn off the heat and stand back to avoid splattering. Slowly add the cream. Don't panic - the cream will bubble violently, and the caramel will solidify. Just give it more time to liquefy again-trust me!
      3. Simmer over low heat, stirring constantly, until the caramel dissolves and the sauce is smooth, about 2 minutes. Allow the sauce to cool to room temperature, at least 4 hours. It will thicken as it sits. Stir in salt. Recipe will make more caramel than needed for the pudding, but I'm sure you can find something to do with the leftovers!
      Notes
      1. PLAN AHEAD when you're going to make this! Make the caramel and first part of the pudding recipe at the same time, wait 4 hrs, finish the pudding, and refrigerate overnight. The caramel does not need to be refrigerated - it thickens at room temperature.
      2. This caramel recipe will make much more than you need for the pudding... but you will not be upset about it. Trust me, you'll find use for it.

      Friday, March 28, 2014

      Sons of Anarchy: Night of mayhem at The Palace Melbourne

      I love panels and I love Sons of Anarchy, it was a no brainier that I attend this... 

      Dropped the $60 on a ticket to see Tig (Kim Coates), Juice (Theo Rossi) and Bobby Elvis (Mark Boone Jnr) talk about their experience working as actors on the show... I was concerned about it being at The Palace, having only ever seen panels in convention settings... I was right to be concerned... During the day, I rang The Palace to find out the running times, they said it should start around 8... We arrived at 7, to a massive queue as doors opened at 7.30, at 8 I called The Palace again, they said it would start at 8.30... Standing around waiting for an hour didn't impress me, especially with a random old biker film and bad music on, then a miserable dude performed... At 9.30 they came on... I stood still waiting for two hours waiting for a one hour panel... The host didn't know what he was doing... No charisma, no sense of how to lead the men into stories...

      Boone sang a song, we watched a reel, they did the Q and A portion of the evening which after 2 hours of drinking were just repetitive, boring and outright embarrassing... It was awesome when they told a story or two, giving us a sense of themselves, their work etc... But overall it was too long and uncomfortable, and ultimately I left feeling pissed off and angry...

      It was poorly organised and executed... Bad job on the organisers...

      Tuesday, March 25, 2014

      Unbearable Lightness - Portia DeRossi

      I wanted to read this book when it came out, but life got in the way... A couple of weeks ago, Amazon said it was on sale, so I downloaded it onto my kindle... And waited... I have to pick when I start a book, because if it is a good book, I won't get anything done until it is done...

      I started it Sunday night, and finished it this morning... It was good.. Not in a feel good way, in fact I found most of it, maybe the first 90% terribly upsetting, but I had to know what happened, what changed for her to make her a happy human... I have read a lot about eating disorders and coming out, but the two combined in such detail, it was raw... I had bad dreams about it last night... And I am so happy that her life has brought her love and happiness...

      This isn't your usual celebrity biography, this is a focused journey from the depths of anorexia and bulimia, to love and light... If you know anyone suffering an eating disorder, read it! I would honesty say to read it anyway... 

      Monday, March 24, 2014

      Townhouse Toorak Village...

      After 2 new babies, I finally got out for brunch with 3 of my favourite humans... We chose Townhouse because it was central to our needs, and got a good urbanspoon rating... 
      Unfortunately they don't take bookings, and there weren't tables inside, I didn't take a jacket, so I was freezing! An outside heater wouldn't go astray, coming into the winter months! It looked great, a welcoming set up and vibe... The menu was fresh and seasonal, there were way too many things that looked good, and no eggs Benedict so I was forced out of my brunch comfort zone... 

      I ordered the breakfast bun, and between the four of us we had 4 different meals, and ALL were good! It all looked good, and tasted good... The service was great,  table situation aside (we did ask to be moved inside if  a table became available, several did, we weren't moved), I would definitely go back!

      Everyone started to eat before I could get photos! But her are mine and Kelly's after she popped her egg!

    1. Townhouse
    2. 466 Toorak Rd, Toorak VIC 3142


    3. Saturday, March 22, 2014

      Coconut oil...

      I'm in...

      I finally made the pricey purchase of coconut oil recently... I have used it in my cooking, which was the main point, and then I received an email from Passion Foods which was a game changer... 

      Yesterday I was suffering with really dry lips after my cold, and I have been using it on my lips and they are almost cured! Including an almost cut from the dryness! Tonight I took my makeup off with it, am crossing my fingers that my sensitive skin  doesn't freak about that tomorrow, will edit it in if it does... I'm considering trying it as a moisturiser if it goes well, it would significantly reduce my beauty costs if it could be used as a cleanser AND a moisturiser!

      https://passionfoods.myfoodlink.com
      COCONUT OIL, and just what makes it so amazing!
      Of course using it as food is obvious. Besides having antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties,1 coconut oil is an excellent source of medium-chain fatty acids (MCFA). Unlike long-chain fatty acids (LCFA) found in meat and vegetable oils, MCFA are quickly broken down by the body and used as an energy source, meaning that the simple act of replacing LCFA with MCFA can produce weight loss with no changes in caloric intake.2
      Use coconut oil for desserts, cooking, or as a butter replacement. Add it to smoothies, cereals, and homemade granola.
      Our coconut oil is truly raw, unrefined, extra-virgin, organic, and non-GMO. Minimally processed with no added ingredients, it has the perfect balance of delicious flavour without any excessive aromas or taste overtones.And now for the unexpected – 30 ways to use Coconut Oil beyond food!  
      Beauty & Personal Care
      Moisturize: Apply coconut oil topically on your body and face to keep skin supple. Use a thin layer around the eyes to smooth out wrinkles and reduce sagging skin.
      Exfoliate: Mix half coconut oil and half coconut palm sugar in a bowl or jar and scrub dry skin before a shower.
       Remove Makeup: Ditch that store bought makeup remover for pure coconut oil. Moisten a cotton ball and add a dab of oil to remove your makeup. Then use a damp washcloth to remove any excess.
       Cleanse Your Face: Apply coconut oil onto your face and neck, remove with a damp washcloth and pat dry.
      Make Your Own Facial Scrub:Mix ½ cup coconut oil with 2 Tbsp coconut palm sugar. Stir until you get a gritty, spreadable consistency. Then squeeze 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice and mix. Store in a glass jar for 2-3 weeks.
       Shave: Use a thin layer of coconut oil and shave as usual. This is excellent for sensitive skin. The antibacterial potential of coconut oil1 will also help soothe small cuts from your razor. You can even use a small amount as an aftershave lotion.
       Take a Coconut Bath: Add coconut oil to a hot bath to soothe dry, itchy skin, plus it smells wonderful. Be sure to scrub the tub after to prevent slipping.
       Coconut Nail Care: Apply a small dab of coconut oil on your cuticles to moisturize dry areas.
       Pregnant or New Mom? Try massaging coconut oil onto breasts and belly to help prevent stretch marks. It is gentle enough to use on baby’s skin to soothe diaper rash, and for use as perianal massage before and after birth.
       Massage: Since we’re on the topic, give a loved one a massage with coconut oil.
       Deodorize: A small amount of coconut oil applied directly onto your armpits can help keep odours away, again thanks to its antibacterial properties. 1
       Lip Balm: Simply apply coconut oil to your lips, or try combining with  for extra shea butter creaminess.
       Oral Health: Try mixing coconut oil with baking soda and a tiny amount of hydrogen peroxide as a toothpaste. You can also try the Ayurvedic remedy of oil pulling (swishing) with coconut oil for up to 20 minutes—this has been proven effective at reducing bacterial count in the mouth.3
       Insect Repellent: Apply coconut oil to help keep insects from biting. One of our staff members says this worked even in the mosquito-laden jungles of Costa Rica!
       Hair Care: Massage coconut oil onto dry hair an hour before your shower, or even overnight with your head covered to protect your pillow. You can also use it to tame any frizz or fly-always before you leave the house
      Stress Relief: Massage coconut oil to your head in a circular motion and breathe in the sweet, nutty aroma to relieve stress.
       Clean Your Ears: A tiny dab of coconut oil at the end of a Q-tip can help gently remove wax.
       For Fido Too: Apply coconut oil to your pet’s coat if they are experiencing skin issues.
       
       
      Household Uses
      Clean Wooden Furniture: Use coconut oil to clean and condition wooden surfaces. Be sure to test a small area first. You can even use it on your wooden cutting boards when they start to look dry.
       Metal Polish: Use coconut oil to make metals shine. Again, be sure to test a small area first.
       Detail Your Car: Apply a small amount of coconut oil to a soft cloth and clean your car interior. Be sure to wipe off any excess with a clean cloth.
       Season Cast Iron: Use coconut oil to season cast iron pots and pans.
       The Squeaky Wheel Gets the…Coconut Oil: Ditch the WD40 and use coconut oil on squeaky hinges and bicycle chains.
       Zippers, Too: Coconut oil can help unstick stubborn zippers.
       Get Artistic: Coconut oil is great to lubricate your guitar strings. Also use to clean your paintbrushes, as well as your hands after using oil based paints.
       
      Soap Scum Be Gone: Apply a small amount of coconut oil to a wet cloth and scrub that tub. Then spray with hydrogen peroxide and wipe dry with a clean cloth.
       Shoe Polish: Use coconut oil to shine your shoes.
       Residue Magic: Coconut oil is excellent for removing chewing gum from any surface, including carpets and hair. You can also use it to remove residues from labels if you like to reuse your glass jars.
       Clean Your Mouthguard: – A little coconut oil can help sanitize your mouthguard or retainer. Rub it on in the morning, let it sit throughout the day, and then rinse in the evening.
       Even Plants Love It: Coconut oil will give a glossy finish to indoor plants when you use a small amount on a soft cloth and wipe the leaves.
       
      All of this in one jar of coconut oil! How many household and beauty products can you replace with this one superfood?

      Passion Foods is located at:

      219 Ferrars St, South Melbourne
      Tel: 03 9690 9339
      Fax: 03 9682 7747


      Monday, March 17, 2014

      March in March...

      I don't like to push my politics on here, but the protest about loss of faith in our current government (Australia), was such a massive experience and it felt so important... Yet it wasn't reported in mainstream news because if their ties with our current government, I just thought I should say something...

      Somewhere between 30,000 and 50,000 like minded individuals got together in Melbourne to march to the steps of parliament and on to the treasury gardens... In that massive crowd, not once did I feel unsafe, no one seemed angry... It was an incredible peaceful and positive protest, even when people would bump into you, they were apologetic, it was so amazing to be in that! I was weary of taking my kids, so I didn't, but there were so many families there, and it was absolutely fine for children... The chants weren't profane, some of the signs were, but small children can't read... 

      There were people from all walks of life... My friends and family, a kinder mum I know, a bunch of people I used to rave with, attend hip hop gigs with, see at the football, so many people I knew in that crowd...  A man in his 70's stopped my girl Kelly to ask what 'WTF?' meant, so we had a bit of a chat, and it was like that, sharing moments with strangers... Strangers that want a better future for our country...

      That's all...











      Friday, March 14, 2014

      Veronica Mars movie is out!

      I woke up this morning to my digital download sitting in my inbox... I have been waiting for this for months! 

      I loved the show, was completely disillusioned when it was cancelled so abruptly, and rejoiced when the Kickstarter happened to fund the film! The minute that they let foreign people back it, I backed it... It was actually a bargain considering the tshirt, stickers, download and blu ray that will all be mine! And the emails with updates as it all progressed... 

      Looking forward to my little viewing party tomorrow night!

      Tuesday, March 11, 2014

      High heeled converse..

      Oh what did you do Converse? The Spring Collection includes these... Whether you are rocking heeled sneakers or not, I am just not sure about this...

      Play School live in concert...

      Play School Live in Concert - Prince of Bears 2014

      We booked this for Mace's birthday weekend, and thank goodness we did, his actually birthday we were all sick, I barely got out of bed for his cake! Was overjoyed that we were all well enough to go... I have taken the kids to loads of these types of shows, some have been amazing, others less so...

      Play school Prince of Bears was really inexpensive $77 for the 4 of us, for 45 minutes, cheapest we have ever been to... The most expensive was Yo Gabba Gabba at $200 for 4... 

      It was hosted by Alex and Rachel, neither favourites, Alex particularly annoys me! But I have to say, live, he is really charming and entertaining... It was basically all of the best nursery rhymes and dances performed within the context of the story, and Mace (3) had a blast! Marley (5) was entertained, but it was about Mace and it really ticked his boxes!

      It felt fast, because it was so much fun... Would definitely recommend it if it's touring locally...


      Tuesday, March 4, 2014

      Apple Slinky!

      In our home, strawberries rule Marley's fruit snack experience... Unfortunately they are just about out of season and at the rate she eats them we are spending over $20 a week on them! Then I saw an apple slinky, I don't pack apples in her lunch because I know how fast they go brown, but with the slinky you can use the peel or non peel function... So apples stay good until fruit snack time, and they are also very cute... Definitely a success, and only $16 on eBay!

      Monday, February 24, 2014

      Puku S8 Portable Charger, for phones and tablets!!

      I have been through a couple different portable charge devices, and although they work, they weren't convenient...  These look amazing!  You get the equivalent of 900 hours of standby time, 36 hours of talk time and 153 hours of media play time, this is PERFECT for holidays, flights, day trips etc, especially as it charges tablets too!  Seriously considering getting this for our trip to Hawaii, ain't nobodies iPads will be dying with these around!

      It's $99 on http://www.gotpuku.com/




      Puku S8 Portable Charger

      Thursday, February 20, 2014

      8 Guaranteed Ways to F Up Your Kids Emotionally...

      There is some good stuff in this... I must admit that I have been struggling with the transition with Marley at school... It is so awesome watching her go out and do her own thing, organise her mornings before school with her friends and really, not need me... I am learning how to take a step back, and let her use all of the life skills I have taught her, and grow into a beautiful independent human... In an effort to not mess her up!

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sherrie-campbell-phd/8-guaranteed-ways-to-emotionally-fck-up-your-kids_b_4619389.html

      Friday, February 14, 2014

      Nirvana Lullaby cd...

      I was given this as a gift when Marley was born and I acquired quite a few of the other Rockabye Baby Lullaby Renditions of favourite artists... I used it as quiet time music... I know there are some really mixed opinions on these albums, but for me, it was a way of keeping my own identity through music and imparting the feeling of what I like on my babies... 

      We are now almost 3 years on in Mace's life and what I love about him having and using his own boombox is the musical choices he makes... When he is tired, he will put on the Nirvana cd and have a little rest on his bed, humming along, sometimes he even falls asleep... Last night he was wired after having a big sleep at crèche and he put the cd on and rested to it until he fell asleep... I wonder whether it brings him comfort as it has been background in his life for his whole life, or whether he is just doing the research before I blow his mind playing him Nevermind at an appropriate age...



      Thursday, February 13, 2014

      Baking vegan banana bread...

      Y'all should know by now that I really enjoy baking... What you probably don't know is that I feel really guilty about baking, because my husband has a dairy intolerance and I like baking with dairy... It is a constant struggle in my mind, and then I ordered the Allergy Mama's Baking Book, and thought I would give some vegan baking a go... It went surprisingly well! I have copied the recipe with the changes I made, though I'm sure that the original would be even more delicious!!!


      Banana Bread

      The food allergy mamas baking book

      1/2 cup glad dairy free margarine

      1 1/3 raw sugar

      2 large mashed ripe bananas 

      3tblsp water

      2 3/4 cups flour I blended white and whole wheat

      2 1/2 Tsp baking powder

      1tblsp cinnamon

      1/2 tsp salt

      3/4 cup of dairy free buttermilk (1c soy milk with 1tblso white vinegar let sit for 10 mins)


      Oven 175c

      Beat sugar banana margarine

      Mix dry ingredients

      Combine all ingredients and buttermilk

      Pour into 2 baking/bread pans and cook for 50-60 min until a skewer comes out clean


      I stupidly put it all in one pan and so it took an hour and a half to cook!!!


      It's a funny texture, but is indeed delicious... And the house smells so gooooood!


      Tuesday, February 11, 2014

      Child porn on social media...

      I have something I need to get off my chest... I recently had an experience with online (social media) child pornography... Stop reading now if this is a trigger for you...

      I brought it on myself really, someone said something about a child porn account on twitter, and I stupidly clicked on it... I have always tried to not think about what an account like that contained... I assumed it was all kidnapped children being forced to do things that I'm not even comfortable thinking about... So I go to this account...
      It's pictures of kids jacked from the internet! It's kids in baths (boys only on this site), young and teenage boys in their underwear, bathers/shorts, in their dress ups, in shorts with no tops on... And in this context it was seriously disturbing that people's photos that they have shared on social media with people they trust, Facebook/Instagram I assume, have been taken and put into this context... It was awful, I reported the account to twitter as having child porn, and clicked off, stressed and sick feeling, much like now, reliving the experience...

      The reason I am writing this, and want you to share with your friends is that I know people that put pictures of moments with their loved ones, bath pics, pool pics, at home in hot weather and minimal clothes pics, and unless you know for 100% that every single person that you let see those pics aren't secretly into kids, it's probably best to stop posting them, unless sites like these don't bother you?

      Ergh, sorry about that, but I never had a clue that these pictures could be taken so extremely out of context by repulsive individuals...

      Wednesday, February 5, 2014

      Crazy school days...

      The past couple of weeks have been crazy with Marley starting grade prep... It has been an overwhelming experience emotionally as well as adopting new routines after a time of virtual free fall (holidays)... So far it has been great, and she is loving the experience... I have warmed to some of the other mums and Marley's very sweet teacher... Doing the readers has been awesome! Her reading skills make me so proud... I remember being in a special reading class with the grade 6's when I was in grade one, so seeing that in her has been lovely...

      I haven't been here loads but am on my Facebook page www.facebook.com/coolinwithkids 
      Every day if you want to check it out!