Friday, October 21, 2011

Hitting the Road again -

We are hitting the road and heading outback again.  This time we are going far, far west to look at Lake Eyre while it has water in it.  Referred to as our great inland sea you can read more about Lake Eyre – HERE.
It is sure to be an amazing sight.  We are doing a small flight over the lake to view it from the air and see where all the rivers flow into it.  I am very excited !!!!  Of course half the fun of it will be the journey to and from.  There will be a bit of bush camping to be done too.  This time I am okay with it. 
This shows you how far we are travelling, but we are not going this way – we are going more direct west.  I just couldn’t get google maps to change for me.  We are travelling the Strzelecki track from Innamincka.  The track is through desert country and quite isolated, so one has to inform the police or locals at Innamincka before embarking, and contact them once you have arrived at your destination. It is going to be quite an adventure.               
At home, the blooms are slowly starting to appear.  Our star jasmine is resisting flowering – must be due to the coolish weather we have had this spring.  Usually it is in full glorious bloom by now.
However here is what is around the garden.
Bouganvillea – colour chosen by my hubby – good choice.
Our mandarine tree has been loaded with fruit this year – very sweet
yellow rose
Yellow rose in full bloom.
sml bottle brushLge bottlebrush
Grevilleas have loved the rain and the cooler weather.  Colours are deep and beautiful.
flowering cactus
This ugly cactus has the most beautiful flower.  Hope it is flowering when we get home.
There may be a little internet connection here and there on the trip, but for the most part we will be technology free.
Back soon…………………..

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Humble Cooked Chook

I don’t know about other bloggers, but I am sick of the cooked chooks we buy from the supermarket and the take away chicken stores.

They are overloaded with salt (no good for my hubby with his high BP) and sometimes the flesh is so dry, and other times it is just mushy.

So…..I have decided to cook my own whenever I can. 

I bought a lovely big plump chicken - fresh from the supermarket  - and did my own stuffing  - and, the result was a scrumptious moist chicken with a lovely flavour.

Here are the steps I used.


Some left over crusts I had in the freezer.  Processed until fine breadcrumbs. (Stale white bread without the crusts is better)


Some left over bits of onion  and some dried mixed herbs.  Fresh herbs would be better, but alas my herb garden is non-existent at present.  Process the onions with the breadcrumbs.


Add a little salt, a grinding of black pepper and about 1/4 teasp white pepper.


The processed crumbs and onion with herbs and seasonings added.


Add some hot water til the bread mix is firm and form into a log.


Stuff into poor old girl. (you know where**) Mine had a split at the top of the leg.  Perfect for putting a dab of butter into.


‘Sew’ opening up with a metal skewer. Pat the chicken dry with a paper towel.


I decided to truss this ol girls legs together as she was looking most uncomely. 033

I cooked mine in my Mum’s old electric frypan circa 1979.  It is much nicer in the oven, but I was in a hurry and with the lid on this one, it kind of steams it through.  You may like to use an oven bag if using the oven.  The potatoes and pumpkin done in this old frypan with the chicken were just really yummo.

Forgot to take a picture of the meal before we gobbled it up.  The meat was so tender and moist and the stuffing was to die for.  Will definitely be cooking my own as much as possible.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Embellishing - A Desert Landscape

Last weekend was our quilt retreat.  It was so much fun and their was a lot of laughter as friends got together and got the endorphins pumping.


Some of our ladies enjoying the retreat.

Of course, some sewing was done.  One of the highlights of the retreat is the homemade goodies table.  It was groaning this year and there were some lovely delights to be savoured.  Some I tried – (and everything was home made) .  Rocky road, French biscuits called madelines, (thank you Nelly), apple cinnamon cake, lemon coconut slice, shortbread creams, cherry and ginger slice (by me) and lots more.  My hips have spread as a result!!

When I went to the textile fair in Brisbane a few months ago, I entered a competition to win an embellisher.  Alas, I was not the winner, but instead a friend of mine, Linda, won it.  She already had an embellisher and knowing that I wanted one, she offered hers up for sale to me.  Of course I snapped it up.


(My new embellisher – note map underneath which hubby has spread out to plan our next trip)

Four ladies brought along their embellishers to retreat and Linda kindly showed us some ways to use it.  She did us all up a little pack of fibres to use.  Some of them she has dyed or painted herself.  A very talented lady.  Thank you Linda.


This is what I did as my landscape project.  It is inspired by the country we saw on the edge of the Simpson Desert when we went on our road trip in July. 


Linda said we could now go ahead and embellish our piece with beads, stitch etc. 

The embellisher is so much fun and I can see I will be doing a lot more in the future.

Thursday, October 6, 2011


Sometimes special friends come into our lives and I truly believe they are sent to us to learn lessons and humility.  So with this in mind, I have added this cute badge about friends to my sidebar which I picked up over on Paisley Cat.  They have some really beaut pages, badges etc. so do pay them a visit. 
My friend, Shirley, came into my life around 20 years ago and we have learnt much from each other, but she has truly taught me a lot about life  (and embroidery VBG).  It was her birthday on Monday, so yesterday I took her shopping and to lunch.  We had a lovely day out together with no stress, nothing to rush home for, so we could just enjoy the day.
We were excited to find Murray’s art supply and framing shop had moved into lovely new premises in the main street, so we simply had to check it out.
We made a few small purchases and of course Shirley being Shirley had to try her new goodies out straight away. 
She thought she needed brushes………ahem
This her current supply, but never mind, the new ones will not go astray!!
Have a great year ahead, Shirley.  Looking forward to seeing what she creates with her new art supplies.

Monday, October 3, 2011

A Little Break

After the quilt show and all the excitement of the Carnival of Flowers, we decided we needed a little break away and took my darling sister up on the offer of joining them on the Sunshine Coast for a few days.
Sunshine, there was not, but it didn’t bother us.  We still had some lovely walks along the beach and some good old chin wags (new saying just for you Judy)  over drinks and nibblies on the balcony of the apartment.
001(you can just get a glimpse of the beach through the pine trees LOL)
The apartment was right across the road (through the car park) from Dicky Beach.  Beautiful white sand and delightful views of our wonderful coastline.
Here is my sister and her husband relaxing by the pool.  Even though it was cloudy, it was still much warmer than Toowoomba.  Yesterday here was back to winter again. Grrrr.
On the sewing front I am working busily on some Christmas gifts.  Can’t show here as that would spoil the surprise!
I managed to make a few small things to sell at the quilt show.  These pincushions were sold quickly and I thank Shirley for assisting in their production and also for eating the right camembert cheese.  ??**  VBG  Thanks Shirley.
Oval Emb Pincushions
I will make some more for next year, so keep eating that camembert Shirley.
Currently in the evenings, I am working on squaring up all my crazy quilt blocks I did several years ago in preparation for finally putting them altogether into a quilt.  Can’t rush these things!