Sunday, November 30, 2008

Fast Food challenge week 1 complete

I did it!!!!!!!!
I went to macdonalds on day 1 or 3 (cant remember) but we only had iced coffee's, tia had a pink donut (i didn't even taste a single pink delicious sprinkle).
Tia and I went out around 11.30am, bad time to go out! We came home at 3pm and had lunch!
I did not go late night shopping til hubby is on his way home/meeting me out and then eating kfc on thursday, friday night!
Tia and i sat down at a milk bar/corner shop/hot food shop for 40mins while we waited for 3.15pm to walk back near kinder to the school & then buying school uniform. Could have easily asked for a burger with the lot (like everyone else) but relaxed in the air con, with flav water & magnum expresso ice cream x.x
Went out shopping on saturday, did not have lunch out!
(Alyssa was cranky on/off from 5am til 7am, when she decided she was fully awake) on sunday was/is uber tired... did not feel like going shopping for milk.. did not feel like cooking.. thought seriously bout pizza.. how easy it would be.. then wondered if hubby would cook *sigh* ended up going out shopping to woolies, grabbing stuff coming home and cooking dinner!
Mula saved= $60-90!!!!

Lilypie 1st Birthday Ticker

Friday, November 28, 2008

Excited about school..

Tia is growing fast. Her speech is getting better, her vocabulary is getting bigger.. All good to hear! Yesterday after dropping tia off at kinder, i stayed and did "kinder duty" which is staying to help for a hour and a bit while they do several craft things. My table was making cards. Basically sticking a recycled christmas card front picture onto a piece of red carboard decorating with sparkles, sequins and little christmas tree & star sprinkles with the glue in pots and then using a glue stick to stick a little piece of paper that said "To my family, Merry christmas Love" on the inside.

I had one little boy (not going to prep next year) with the best manners stubbornly decline any decoration! I had one little girl who wanted the card to be horizontal and open that way. I had another girl who would only use the glue stick. I had a little boy who decided that using 10% of all decorations on offer should be put on his card. It looked so blinged! The teacher told him that was a bit silly as they would not all stick.. And then someone up-ended one of the sequin containers onto the floor and i was down after that picking them all up! lol!

Alyssa was pretty good.. up till the end. I had her in the bassinette pram thing (basket with canopy(think like a convertible), held in pram by 3 clips) and then on the floor towards the end so she could roll around and see more than just the ceiling..

The other 'stations' were making angels (painting and using glitter) and making christmas trees (threading and glitter) This all comes home on the last day which is also the concert/party day... i think i might stay and do kinder duty again that day. as the note says drop off the kids with morning tea as usual @9.15am and come back at 11am with plate of party food. It takes me half hour to walk there or back home.. which means i'd spend less than a hour? at home b4 walking back.. I'll just take a bottle that day, i think. (Yes Alyssa is having on average 1 bottle. Basically for when i'm inconvenienced(trying to run out door), think im empty (only been 2hrs) or know she will bite me (so impatient!)..

Lilypie 1st Birthday Ticker

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Dieting sucks

(note ive eaten mud cake today and baking further yummy stuff.. so im not 'dieting', i am not eating fast food & i do plan on eating much better very very )
Lilypie 1st Birthday Ticker

Sunday, November 23, 2008

NO TAKEAWAY/FAST FOOD Challenge 3wks!!!

Starting Monday 24th Nov.
Ending Monday 15th Dec.

If you'd like to join in on the challenge, leave a comment and then drop in once in awhile as i'd love to hear how your doing!

I was pretty successful in the times ive done it.. i remember some 2 years back when i went months without any bad fast food! And while sticking to any "plan" has not been planned or implemented successfully over the past 4months (with the aid of being tired, breastfeeding, busy many excuses)

For me I will be passing up the usual fast food (kfc, pizza, macdonalds, chips.. pretty much all that we have thats on offer a 5minute walk or ph/net order away)..
I will instead be having salad sandwiches, veggie subs, ham n salad subs, (not the meat n cheese subs) steamed dim sims or home-made (no i dont own a deep fryer).

I'm wondering whether i should include cake, donuts, thick shakes also??!!.. baby steps i think for the first week? We shall see how it all goes!

So my first steps for a successful week will be:
1) Meal planning (including new recipes to avoid eating out due to 'boring' meals)
2) Buying ingredients for the planned meals.
3) Eat brekkie/lunch/dinner b4 going out.
4) If out walk towards the short line of subway not the huge line up of kfc/maccas.
5) Throw out pizza coupons & forget about the online sites of pizza vouchers.
6) Include perhaps a tray of oven fries (no extra added oil) or home made pizza planned for the weekend.
7) Have some fuss free meals (stag chili in a can & cc's, canned soup, dim sims) available in case i'm tired.
8) Blogging about the week challenge wise next sunday!

Lilypie 1st Birthday Ticker

Thursday, November 20, 2008

my visual dna..

Saw this on maria's blog! thought i'd have a go at it!
Youniverse Personality TestYouniverse Personality Test

Lilypie 1st Birthday Ticker

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Picnic Cob & dinner pic

As usual i changed it a bit..
the recipe called for zuchini, eggplant, sweet potato, basil leaves, bocconcini.. none of which i have and in the case of the zuchini & egglplant both i dislike! I was going to get some bocconcini to try out.. but i forgot!
I substituted the bocconcini for some pepato cheese (pretty waxy, hard but crumbly) & some normal cheddar. I substitued the chunky red chili dip for pizza paste sauce, the semi dried tomatoes for fresh tomato and the veggies for triple smoked ham, mild italian salami & pepperoni... and i forgot about adding any salad greens to it.. thinking about it now wouldn't have done well anyways (considering in the recipe, which i didnt read to the end) they cook it.. i put 1 quarter in the oven, was yummy and the other quarter for 1min in the microwave and it was just as yummy, if not more melted and hot..
the next morning while clearing the bench i realised i left out the leftover salami & pepperoni! whoops!!!! Worked it out to be roughly the same cost as the veggie version, i found that the deli was cheaper than buying 100g packs from the over-packaged fridge deli section.. but then thats probably normal.. however the over packaged deli meats probably last longer in the fridge unopened..

finish up with a dinner pic, veal chop or cutlet.. with some salad.. i did add some addictive whole egg mayo to this..

Lilypie 1st Birthday Ticker

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Pnotes & portable HDs cool applications

P-notes is a very handy application!!! Hubby and I both have portable or personal hardrives.. the kind that are external to the pc. Recently he came across all these programs for portable/pocket hardrives.. like msn (imagine having the same version of msn where ever u go at work, home, from pc to ur laptop or friends pc.. u get the idea?) while some portable hardrives have insane storage e.g 1TB or 700GB.. these portable apps are quite small.. im guessing for ease of use for ur little 1G USB drives! lol!!!! :) But thats still good news for big or small stroage devices!!
Portable applications cane be found here
theres thunderbird (email), Firefox (browser), bible study tools, Pnotes...

what is Pnotes? hehehehe

Post it notes for the PC! How cool is that!!! Relatively environmentally friendly (assuming u turn your pc off every once & awhile..) No desk clutter (like ur guests care or even see your terrible desktop clutter on ur pc/laptop lol!) its also pretty Hard to loose them...

Pnotes can be found here

Ive been playing around with the skin editor.. but havent been able to make a successful one.. (must be something i am not doing right..) theres a few cute already made skins by other people to choose from that u can download optionally like the 'bunny notes' by Deepthi (shown in screenie) or the 'apple' & 'clasic pink' by Andrey Gruber (shown in my screenie, click for better view?!!)... *note my pnotes are transparent due to a option, u can have them as transparent or as none transparent as u prefer..
*note you do not need a portable HD or usb stick to use this program, its just handy if u regularly access more than one pc or are paranoid about loosing data...
*note pnotes is freeware


Lilypie 1st Birthday Ticker

Friday, November 14, 2008

Love handles increase death risk: study

November 14, 2008, 3:18 am

WASHINGTON (AFP) - A thick waist almost doubles the risk of premature death, a major European study has found, showing there's nothing lovely about love handles.

Importantly, the risk is similar even when body mass index (BMI) fell within normal range, according to the authors of the study of 359,000 people aged 51.9 on average, including 65.4 percent women, appearing in Thursday's issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

The research found that excess fat stored around the middle of the body was a major health risk even when people are not considered obese or even overweight by statistical BMI standards.

In fact, each five centimetre increase in waist size increased the risk of death by 17 percent in men and 13 percent in women.

"The most important result of our study is the finding that not just being overweight, but also the distribution of body fat, affects the risk of premature death of each individual," said Tobias Pischon, the lead author of the paper from the German Institute of Human Nutrition in Potsdam-Rehbrücke.

The data should encourage physicians to routinely measure patients' waists as well as their BMI on routine office visits, according to the study carried out by the Imperial College London (GB), German Institute for Human Nutrition and other European participants.

"The good news is that you don't need to take an expensive test and wait ages for the result to assess this aspect of your health - it costs virtually nothing to measure your waist and hip size," said Elio Riboli, the European coordinator of the EPIC study from the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at Imperial College London.

"If you have a large waist, you probably need to increase the amount of exercise you do every day, avoid excessive alcohol consumption and improve your diet. This could make a huge difference in reducing your risk of an early death."

Lilypie 1st Birthday Ticker

Amaretto mud cake

I made a interesting mud cake for Jamie's 31st Birthday!!! :)
Here is the caramel mud cake recipe that i tweaked:
Caramel Mud cake
From AWW Cook

Prep time: 30 mins (plus cooling time) Cooking time: 2 hrs 10 mins Serves: 12

This cake is so moist and dense that it can be difficult to determine if it is cooked. The baking times given are your best guide, and when cooked, the cake should have a thick, sugary crust. If you like, cut the crust off the cake, although the frosting will soften it.

250g unsalted butter, chopped
200g white eating chocolate, chopped coarsely
2¼ C (495g) firmly packed brown sugar
1½ C (375ml) water
2 C (300g) plain flour
2/3 C (100g) self-raising flour
1 tspn vanilla extract
3 eggs, beaten lightly

1. Preheat oven to slow (150°C/130°C fan-forced). Grease deep 22cm round cake pan; line base and side with baking paper, extending paper 5cm above edge of pan.
2. Stir butter, chocolate, sugar, and the water in medium saucepan over low heat until mixture is smooth. Transfer mixture to large bowl; cool 15minutes. Whisk in sifted flours, then extract and eggs.
3. Pour mixture into pan. Bake, uncovered, about 2 hours. Stand cake 10 minutes then turn onto wire rack to cool.
4. Make caramel frosting. Place cake, top-side up, on serving plate, spread with frosting.

Caramel frosting
125g butter, chopped
1 C (220g) firmly packed brown sugar
1/3 C (80ml) milk
1½ C (240g) icing sugar

MY caramel glaze
(doesnt keep for longer than 3 days or in high heat)
2C icing mixture
1/2C brown sugar
dash of amaretto & water to right consistency

Melt butter in small saucepan. Stir in brown sugar and milk; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 3 minutes, cool 10 minutes. Gradually stir in sifted icing sugar until frosting is of a spreadable consistency.

I had just only came back from shoping before i made the cake, so i wasnt about to go out again. i had just about 100g of white chocolate... for some reason i thought some cream would make up for the difference.. the cake was moist, dense.. very dense.. very sweet..
I used 1/3cup of amaretto tasted the mixture.. and tasted some more.. lol needed more amaretto and tested some more.. yummm .. lol do u see a pattern?
the recipe makes alot of cake batter! I baked mine in a large loaf tin that i have.. i wasnt keen on putting it in a round cake tin or 2 slice trays.. i measured out my loaf tin and my round tin and found my loaf tin was larger in capacity and its a good thing it did too! Either because the recipe uses mainly plain flour or because its so rich with sugar.. it does not rise much at all.. nevermind that it cooks for 2hrs! The most expensive part was no doubt the amaretto! In the end i made a $15 mud cake.. lol.. just with the alcohol!

i also added some thickened cream & some extra flour to get the consistency right. (mine was too runny thanks to the cream & amaretto) I also brushed some extra amaretto on top of the cake, to soften the crust and add more flavour..

It was a great cake, terrible served cold from the fridge... but great at room temperature! Very easy to make in very little time. * i used choc thins in a lazy attempt to decorate the cake..

Lilypie 1st Birthday Ticker

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Anna & Asha

Tia named the kittens Anna & Asha... I do think Tia meant 'sasha' but i prefer 'asha' ;) I could not decide on names.. did i want to continue the spice theme (previous bunnies were pepper & vanilla) did i want to continue the japanese theme (in memory of Nori)... in the end Tia had names she liked, and well we go past the pet shop on our way to safeway/woolies & she likes to name all the animals... even tho i tell her she can't, we dont own them etc.. i think she misses playing nitendogs!
The above is Asha (pronounced ash-ah) she is the alpha kitten (she attacks lil anna into submission) she growls when eating if she can see u, if she has her pom pom orange ball she growls if u come near... but she is gorgeous! She does look after her sister and grooms her, hubby lol'd when i said "anna u are getting your asslicked so grin & bear it..." seems the downside of being a kitten & having long fur.. stinky bums OH YUCK!!!!! plus side.. ur sister might clean you.. down side.. ever felt the sand paper feel of a cat lick?? now can u imagine it on that sensitive spot? LOL! We think Asha is the one least toilet trained x.x NOT HAPPY!! (just as long as it never happens on the carpet!) She also purs the loudest..

This is Anna! She is pretty but only 2 colours black n white.. she is a guts! (if asha doesnt push her head out of the bowl) she can smell food that she will like from a mile away (seems smaller tho than her sister)! She is a sook, most likely to want a cuddle.. slightly lacking in the grooming department and has had 2 baths were asha hasn't yet had one..So yeah.. found out this afternoon that they or one of them had been peeing on my magazine on the slate floor just out from the fireplace & that someone had done a #2 on the floor in the back corner of the lounge room.. yesterday i caught anna scratching the inside door mat and peeing (on the floor not the mat) so that got moved.. x.x Im gagging with each stink of the #2's!!! *shudders* am looking forward to the kitty litter tray moving from near the front door to the laundry... i think its the reason i have not had a appetite for the past few days!!! no kidding!!!

We were told that they are calico long hair cats.. i made the mistake of calling them tortiseshell but no.. they have patches of colour which is calico apparently..

Lilypie 1st Birthday Ticker

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

come on OBAMA!!!!!

LOL!!!!!!! my prediction, it will be close.. no doubt there will be a few recounts, cries of rigging & failed electronic voting. the winner will be obama!

I think americans have seen enough of old war dogs, capitalism, poor getting poorer, education in usa sucking further (who was the beauty queen that said americans kids were dumb because they didnt have maps? lol), deregulation... (note mccain wants to privatize social security... can u imagine if cenrelink was owned by a bank? i mean americans already have to pay tax on welfare and pay back any welfare later..)

besides this 'free country' the country of 'milk n honey' weve all known how BS that is.. next election will we see a native american? or a multilingual hispanic? or even perhaps just one person who doesnt have white hair and a creepy smile (mccain)?? (when will we finally see a aborignal PM or a 4th generation chinese/australian PM? hmm...)

isnt about time intelligence won over war mongering? Hope and change won over fear?

sure the conservatives are all over palin saying she cant control her "teenage daughter" so how can she control the whitehouse? (but this teenager is 18yrs old.. i mean sure in usa u cant drink till ur 21.. but still..)

Lilypie 1st Birthday Ticker