• Crafty

    Dolly Did It

    This is a complete rework of my Doll House blog. It deserved better pictures original was rushed and there are parts of the house I have re-built twice over since the original post. I still love this doll house and I need to find a home for it! The Crazy Doll House Lady In the process of finding wallpaper and flooring for the Maya Doll House, I became obsessed with some of the amazing miniature creations…and a couple really  captured my imagination – like these ones I scoured online sites and local stores to find the right cabinet and NOTHING was right (or the right price). Then I had an…

  • Crafty

    Josie #1

    When I was 4 years old and still living in England, Aunty Joyce, Mum’s twin sister, would take me into town every single Saturday. We’d go shopping, buy sweets, and she’d spoil me rotten. One day she took me into a big department store called TJ Hughes and their massive toy department and told me I could choose ANY doll I wanted. I looked at the shelves upon shelves of dolls – and quickly pointed to a little black doll and would not be swayed. SHE was the doll I wanted and her name would be JOSIE. My aunt was so sweet. She realized that the doll shook her head…

  • Life

    Brave No More

    It’s St Patrick’s Day and usually I would be thinking of Ireland and my pals there but the only thing on my mind today, again, is New Zealand and the terrible events of the past week. I was born in England and I live in Canada now…but I spent 45 years of my life in New Zealand and identify as a Kiwi. I am proud of that heritage. On Thursday night I saw the news via a post from Gracie, my niece, and had all the same shocked reaction as everyone. No need to describe the disbelief, fear and panic I felt – we ALL did.   Inadvertently one of…

  • Recipes

    Egg Free Banana & Coconut Pancakes

    One of the questions I ask guests before they arrive is “do you have any allergies or food preferences?” It is so much better to be prepared and nothing worse than being told right before breakfast that someone is lactose intolerant or allergic to eggs. I prepare my buttermilk pancake batter the night before so it can do its bubbly, ferment-y thing. So when the nice German couple arrived home from dinner and Stephi told me she was lactose intolerant I had to find a plan B. I had coconut milk. I love coconut. I found lots of coconut pancake recipes but after reading them I wasn’t really convinced any…

  • Recipes

    Oatmeal Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

    GLUTEN FREE – EGG FREE – DAIRY FREE and DELICIOUS!   I had 2 groups of people recently staying for several days and two (one from each group) was gluten free, AND dairy and egg free. I’ve got GF and DF pancakes down to a fine art. People always ask for seconds, but I wanted to do some baking for them too. I came upon an oatmeal recipe I liked the look of (probably because it had coconut in it) so I set about making the cookies. When I had the cookie dough all ready to measure out onto the baking tray I had a dizzy moment and threw a…

  • Crafty

    Reflecting on an Obsession Part 1

    I am very partial to mirrors – and it would seem I am in a minority because when I go to auction I can pick them up for peanuts. I’ve bought some very ornate ones and some very simple ones and I like to change them around to suit the season and my decor. I am very happy with my bedroom mirrors…they go with our hand painted Indian furniture perfectly. I fell in love with this unique shaped mirror and picked it up for $15. Very happy camper! It was quite a buy – the hall stand and mirror for $35! Oh yeah, and just to the right there’s an…

  • ricotta lemon
    Recipes

    Heavenly Lemon Ricotta Cookies

    Lemon is one of my favourite ingredients for both cooking and baking. My lemon cupcakes were for sure one of my personal favourites and by far the most fiddly and complex: a rich lemon cake, filled with home made lemon curd, glazed with lemon syrup, frosted with a rich buttery frosting and topped with a slice of candied lemon. Today I made Lemon Ricotta Cookies..a Giada De Laurentiis recipe I knew they were going to be gorgeous when I looked at the batter. I tasted it (quite a lot) and it was delicious! The Ricotta makes the mixture very moist and light. I was very generous with the lemon juice.…

  • Crafty

    Mirror Mirror

    A couple of years ago, I put an absentee auction bid on a lot of 8 plastic containers of beads and baubles. They were packed full: Silver Gold White Black Wooden Clasps and findings Glass beads Pearly green, pink and cream beads I was pretty surprised to get it. I bid “high” because I wanted those beads BADLY. So $32.50 later I had a treasure trove that was conservatively worth around $400. My next attempt was more pleasing I started playing round with some of the cool beads from those treasure boxes. In combination with brooches and bits of thrift store jewelry, they started to take shape. It takes a…