Lazuli Green Island Mama

Lazuli Green Island Mama

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

summer camping

Where do I start when waxing lyrical about summer camping?? O God, how I love it.

The camping, the night sounds, the sun on our faces, the dirty children, the dirty bums of clothing. We swam in the peaceful Shoalhaven river, we rode bikes, we sat around the camp fire, we made many cups o' tea, Johnno enjoyed re-bonding with his beloved MSR, we sat like super-stars in the back of rather luxurious speed boats, we jumped off said boat to swim, we ate like kings, we jumped off rocks to make a splash, we went to bed late.

With the tents packed away, it has been a crazy few weeks of getting back in to the swing of the new school year, the beginning of pre-school, finding our weekly groove. But we can always go again.

the 2 handfuls: Chooch and Tom

Charlie's seal impersonation

a visitor to Noah's tent
boys do breakfast

Charlie, Tess, Wombat and Noah (with some campsite friends)
How to get Tess to give a real smile for photos: tell her to think of her Dad in his undies.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

images of Christmas

trying out presents from Gogo

enjoying a Christmas festival with our school community

Friday, January 15, 2010

Panettone bread and butter pudding

I do apologise if you assumed that the bread and butter pudding hadn't turned out as well as anticipated due to my tardy posting of the recipe. Rest assured... it was truly sensational. So, here it is... Panettone Bread and Butter Pudding.

You will need:
3 cups milk
300ml cream
1/2 cup caster sugar
2 strips lemon rind
1 vanilla bean, split lengthways
400g panettone, approx
90g butter, softened
4 eggs
2 egg yolks
2 tbls apricot jam

  • combine milk, cream, sugar, rind and vanilla bean in a saucepan; stir over heat, without boiling, until sugar is dissolved. Bring to the boil, remove from heat, stand for 10 mins.
  • cut panettone into 1.5cm-thick slices. Carefully toast under grill until browned on both sides. Spread one side with butter while hot; cut into pieces and arrange, overlapping, in a greased shallow (2L) overproof dish.
  • preheat oven to 160 degrees C (140 degrees C if fan-forced). Put the kettle on to boil.
  • whisk eggs and egg yolks in a bowl until combined; gradually whisk in strained milk mixture. Pour custard over panettone in dish. Place ovenproof dish in a larger baking dish, adding enough boiling water to come halfway up side of ovenproof dish. Bake, uncovered for 45 mins or until set. Remove from baking dish.
  • heat the apricot jam in a small saucepan for a few minutes, then brush top of pudding with jam.
And then, enjoy the best bread and butter pudding you have ever tasted.

(I think I saved this recipe from a Woman's Weekly magazine from Winter 2006. O... how special! That was a lovely season. The brewing of Chai.)

Next week, I hope to share with you some piccies and stories from a recent camping trip. Until then, eat and be merry!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Mick Tonello's Panettone

I've waited a whole year for Mick Tonello's Christmas Panettone and now that it's in my kitchen, I'm finally using it to test out what reads like the most delicious bread and butter pudding ever. At 10pm on a Monday night.

I should be wearing a pink floral maxi, domestic goddess that I am. But I'm not. A blue big leaf kaftan will have to do.

If it's as delicious as it sounds, I'll share the recipe with you tomorrow. xx

Little boys in the big city

A few weeks ago, as part of our summer holiday daze and savouring of the festive season, I headed off to the big city with the little boys.

One of the perks of where we live is that we can walk out the front door, down the hill, onto a ferry and there you have it... one of the world's prettiest harbours. I don't do it often enough to take it for granted. It always causes me to pause, and sigh, just for a moment. I hope my little ones remember these ferry rides fondly in the future.

So off we headed, across Sydney Harbour (all that land and all that water) to see if we could find Santa (or one of his helpers. We all know Santa is too busy at this time of year to be chit-chatting in shopping centres) ...

After a ferry and a bus ride we landed in the big bang big smoke amongst many hundred Sydney-siders. Our first destination was Elizabeth St and the Christmas window displays of David Jones department store. I don't remember making that trip as a child but I hope this will be the first of many visits for my boys. The window scenes really were beautiful, with puppets and props depicting carols and folk tales and songs. Maybe next year we'll try a visit by night, hopefully with a few less people on the streets so that we can look for longer.

Inside David Jones we did indeed find a Santa's helper who was warm and kind and chatted to Noah about where he could park his reindeer when he came to our home on Christmas eve. Charlie asked for an axe for Christmas. That was the first I'd heard of that request but he did continue to look for axe-shaped presents until all presents were unwrapped (no, he did not receive an axe. Shame).

After ice-cream sodas and cookies we toddled off to the Queen Victoria Building to see what we could see. We found a HUGE Christmas tree which we were able to stand right under and look up to the lovely domed ceiling, complete with twinkling lights and star on top. Lucky little boys. May they continue to live with blissful expectations of wonderful things, for a little while longer.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

3 boys and a camera.

This is what happens when you don't realise that the camera has made it to the backseat of the car, with the boys.

New Year's Resolutions

1. No parenting/psychology books to be read for one year (that is, after I've finished 'Heart to Heart Parenting' by Robin Grille. I promise. Well, I promise I'll try).

2. Acceptance.

3. Equanimity.

4. Try to keep blog interesting. Or give up blog. Hmmm. How to judge that one?