Well, here we are – Christmas is nigh and another year is rapidly drawing to a close. When I first started writing this blog, a little over five (!) years ago I wasn’t really sure what to expect. It started as a way to document life in a new country. Since then a lot of life has happened – marriage, a baby, a global pandemic. It’s been quite the ride and it’s been both cathartic and challenging at times to share that with you…Continue reading “Summer salutations”
For me, December isn’t December without some Christmas baking. Growing up in those weeks leading up to December the 25th there was always a supply of rumballs, white Christmas, and shortbread stored in baking paper lined Tupperware containers in the fridge. As a child I had a particular dislike for dried fruit, so the shortbread was the treat I enjoyed the most and the one I have the fondest memories of.
My grandmother’s shortbread recipe has almost legendary status in my family. I can’t even imagine how many batches she would’ve made over the years. I can remember one December, watching her knead the shortbread mixture together, marvelling at how easy she made all the ingredients come together (then realising later in life she had incredible strength in her arms to be able to do that!)
This is the only shortbread recipe I’ve ever made, and to be honest probably the only one I’ll ever use…Continue reading “Shortbread”
Well, here we are in the last month of a year that I think no one will forget for a very long time. The last 12 months have been incredibly testing for many and while 2020 will be farewelled with much gusto, the challenges that come with dealing with a global pandemic won’t magically disappear when the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve. I sincerely hope however, that we take away a few lessons from this last year: the importance of family and friends, of of fresh air and being outside, and of good health. Simple pleasures, but ones that fill your heart and head with joy.
Here’s what’s been making me smile this month…Continue reading “What’s been making me happy: December”
The festive season is upon us and in Australia that means hot days, cold drinks and lots of alfresco eating. When the weather’s warm, I crave salads – not so much the stock standard lettuce, tomato, cucumber, and carrot variety with a basic supermarket vinaigrette, rather ones with cooked vegetables and pulses, nuts, herbs and creative dressings.
This sweet potato salad was first introduced to me at a family gathering many years ago. The recipe from another family, but so impressive at its first tasting that it’s been written down and recreated by my grandmother, mother and myself ever since.
I’ve taken it to barbecues, picnics and Christmas Day celebrations and it always receives rave reviews, so if you’re after a new salad to try this summer, perhaps this is one to consider…Continue reading “Sweet potato salad”
Somehow December is almost upon us and the end of the year (and what a year it’s been!) is nigh. This last week of November has been one of sickness, celebration, heatwaves and the start of the festive season.
This is the week that was…Continue reading “The week that was”
November has felt particularly long. It’s been a combination of factors, namely Adam working out of town for an extended period; and a bout of sickness that saw Paul, myself and then Adam collapse in a heap all within about 24 hours of each other (I won’t elaborate, except to say family gastro is not fun!) So while I never like to wish away time, I’m rather glad to see the end of November.
Despite the challenging days, like always, there have been moments of joy – this is what’s been making me smile this month…Continue reading “What’s making me happy: November”
July 2020 has been a bittersweet month – we were meant to fly to England to spend time with Adam’s family, it’s my final month of maternity leave and unfortunately it feels like COVID-19 is starting to strengthen its grip on Australia again. Despite the sadness and anxiousness that the above has evoked at times, I’ve had some really lovely moments too.
This is what’s made me smile in July…
It’s been a little while, but I just wanted to jump on here and wish you a very merry Christmas, and say thank-you for your ongoing support of this blog. I know I’ve been absent these last few months, while I’ve been devoting myself to motherhood and taking the time to enjoy these early newborn days – which are whizzing by ever so quickly…
Well there we go, that’s Christmas over and done with for another year. Adam and I had a wonderfully, relaxing day featuring an almost all-day lunch with my family and his distant relatives in Wagga Wagga…
I can’t quite believe Christmas Eve is here already – with the wedding and our lovely holiday back in the U.K., the last few months just seem to have whizzed by. I spent the weekend deep cleaning the house, finishing up the gift shopping and buying lots of delicious food. Adam and I welcome my parents and brother this afternoon and we’re looking forward to spending some one-on-one time with them all over the coming days.
I sometimes think the build up to Christmas is more lovely than the day itself – am I the only one?! You’ve got time to ease yourself into the festive spirit and special moments manifest themselves when you least expect them. This year I got to experience the pre-Christmas buzz in both Australia and England, so today I want to take you back to early December – when trees were just being decorated and lights switched on and Christmas markets were in full force…