Tuesday, September 30, 2014

T Stands for Tuesday-Disaster!! Lemon drink for coughs and colds

 Opps I was setting up my new photographic area and the dowling stick fell down on top of my new saucer. I can still use the cup. Why did it happen to one of the loveliest of cups?

I made this cold and cough drink which consists of slices of lemon, fill jar with honey to cover lemons and about a 2inch size of ginger. Scoop out a spoonful and add hot water. Voila infused ginger, lemon and honey drink to sooth that sore throat. We are coming out of our flu season and going into spring but I drink a cup of this a day to keep bugs away from me and build my immune system up for the next winter season. Store in fridge and keeps up to 3 months if there is any left hahaha.

Come back tomorrow to see my new photographic set up on my WOYWW post

Joining Bluebeard and Elizabeth for her T for Tuesday Meme

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

T for Tuesday on a Wednesday

For some reason I can't seem to finish the last bite of a Turkish delight choc bar. I've done it a few times now.

Joining Elizabeth and Bluebeard for this Tuesday Meme.

WOYWW #277 & A missed opportunity - Michael's Library

I thought I'd show you hubby's pad, or the room I gave up for his library. We both love books so I guess I still have half of this room as half of it holds my books LOL. I discovered my cookbooks are shoved in-between his engineering books...and it's one book here and one book there. MEN!!!

So this room is upstairs and used to be a TV room for kids. It measures 10 feet x 12 feet or 3 meters x 3.6 meters. It would have been a real cosy craft room for me but I can't get too greedy because I have the downstairs which measure 26 x 36 feet or 7.8 meters x 10.8 meters

 So as you can see this area is still to be furnished with bookcases. The photo Michael commissioned in Hawaii on our honeymoon 16 years ago has finally been uncased and displayed. It has never been displayed all these years as we never had room nor a suitable stand to display it on.
 Going around the room, he is waiting for a coffee table to put his chess set on it.
 His lazyboy chair that reclines, we are looking for a second hand one for me. Drawing that I commissioned a fellow student in my graphic design class to draw for us of Michael's dog Shelby that he left in the US. His cat KD is in the photo above that was also drawn by my friend Abbie Boyle.
The third wall with more books. Bookshelves were a bargain and sturdy. We both love reading books so this room is a great little nook for us.

I can't show you my desk just now because I have a secret project going on that I can't share.

Joining Julia's Stamping Ground to see more crafty spaces.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

WOYWW #276

What a difference a week makes!!

                                  Before                                                                          After
I spent an entire day to achieve this, from 6am till 8pm WHEW, makes me tired just thinking about it. This area will be the storage area because the lighting is not good for crafting.
                              Before                                                                               After
I moved the white cupboard in the second photo, you can just see it on the other side of the silver post which is probably holding up the whole house upstairs lol.
This side will be my crafting area because there is direct light. I'd love to have the craft table further down where the roller door opens but the 'new' dining table will go there. We pick it up on Sunday yay. So next week you shall see the 'new' loved furniture and hopefully all unpacked and ready to go. Well all hidden at least hahahaha. I have 2 projects to do so time is of the essence.

And yes Julia I do craft, sometimes I just can't show what I am doing because they are no public friend or 'secret' projects LOL.

Had some very interesting comments on my desk/room last week, so I'll address some here. Julia Queen of Desks said she has never seen me craft, that made me laugh out loud. My craft posts are on another blog to this one, you can see it HERE. This blog is my photography blog, I decided to split my two loves of craft and photography into two blogs. She also suggested throwing out some of my furniture to make way for the new...ahem....I need all the surface space I can get and since most of them were given free I am not complaining about the hodgepodge of furniture I have now. One day I will win lotto and can make one of those to die for craft rooms I see in the US.

Others wondered how many dies I owned to fit in that white cupboard....have you seen Becca Feeken's die collection? She has so many she has to have a system to store and collate them. Mine is a baby collection LOL. I promise I will photography my dies collection when I have them all in once place.

Another question was the actual size of the craft room and yes its the size of the house which is upstairs and measures 26 x 36 feet or 7.8 meters x 10.8 meters. So I practically craft in the space of the house we live in, just downstairs which makes it a really small house compared to the one we just moved from which was double the size of this one.

LLJ commented that I could hold a WOYWW crop in here, so I am putting out an open invitation for anyone who wants a WOYWW crop here are welcome to plan a holiday with LLJ and Julia to come on Downunder.

Check out some awesome craftrooms:
Brenda's Studio
Cathy's stamping Oasis
Christie Hund

Joining Julia's Stamping Ground to see more desks/craft areas.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

T for Tuesday and Cauliflower Soup another version

Well as promised I made another version of my Cauliflower Soup Recipe, this version is way tastier..ahem I didn't get to taste the first one but I bet this one beats the first. Now in my first recipe I forgot to put the cheese in, this time I remembered but I forgot the anchovy hahahaha. What a dill I am when it comes to cooking. 

So this is what it looks like to start with, hubby and I are trying to lose weight so I found a recipe book that I had a long time ago that cause me to loose 5 kgs in 4 weeks by cooking sensibly. You cook with tomato juice instead of oil. So you can see a tinge of tomato juice in the pot. I added zucchini to the pot after roasting the cauliflower, onion and garlic in the oven (at this point I didn't know I was adding more ingredients so nothing else got roasted. Also added round cabbage, because I had both ingredients in the fridge I needed using up.

I added some chicken salt and pepper but found it still bland, then I found a jar of chilli and lime salsa in the cupboard from Anthony's Sauces in Canberra, definitely going to order some more of this ingredient.
And here you have the finished product, I asked hubby if he wanted it as is or pureed. He does not like his soup pureed lol. Had I known that I would have cut the vegetables up smaller into bite size pieces, so here I am struggling to fit a large cauliflower in my mouth LOL. Luckily it was boiled all day so its soft and I can break it up with a spoon.

Seriously this is one of the tastiest soups I've ever made with so little ingredients, the secret is in the roasting.

Joining Bluebeard and Elizabeth for T for Tuesdays. 

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

WOYWW #275 and Cauliflower Recipe

These two photos show the progress I have been making in unpacking, I am standing at the computer end of the room. The white cupboard took me 2 hours to move is now in the middle of the room. Here is the story of why it took me 2 hours to move. You can see the bathroom door in the middle half open where I discovered in THIS POST that I could take the perfect photo in there of all places.

 The photo above and below is taken from the other end of the room, looking towards the computer desks. Tables are out and boxes are down. All looks a little hodgepodge right now as nothing is in its place. The white cupboard will hold all the dies and embossing folders, I decided I would dedicate a whole cupboard to it as the collections are expanding. I get my exercise just walking from one end of the room to the other LOL
We will be picking up a 12 seater dining table (don't ask me where I am going to fit it), and a chest of drawers and a buffet and hutch. I will have to make them all fit, at a bargain price of $500 we couldn't pass up this offer as they are all very hard wood and in perfect condition. Stay tuned for more photos of these new additions.
For the foodies who visit, I made some cauliflower soup which was delicious, so hubby reckons, I didn't get to eat any because it went off before I could try it hahahaha so today I am making some more. 
Here is the RECIPE if you'd like to make it.
You can check out the refreshing drinks I've been making lately HERE

Joining Julia's Stamping Ground for more desks or craft rooms

Cauliflower Soup

According to hubby this cauliflower soup was very delicious, unfortunately the cook didn't get to taste it as it went off before I got to it. So today I am making another batch for me to eat. I did the second soup recipe below but forgot to put the cheese in LOL so today I will not forget it.
The secret is the roasting of the ingredients.

I found 2 recipes online that looked good:

Silky Cauliflower Soup
From David Lieberman
Serves 4 to 6
1 head cauliflower
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil              1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced                     1 quart low-sodium chicken stock      
1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan   Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Remove the leaves and thick core from the cauliflower, coarsely chop, and reserve.
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan or soup pot over medium heat and add the onion and garlic. Cook until softened, but not browned, about 5 minutes.
Add the cauliflower and stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook until the cauliflower is very soft and falling apart, about 15 minutes.
Remove from heat and, using a hand held immersion blender, puree the soup, or puree in small batches in a blender and return it to the pot.
Add the Parmesan and stir until smooth.
Season, to taste, with salt and black pepper. Keep warm until ready to serve.

Roast Cauliflower soup
Serves 2
The inspiration for this soup was a combination of a roast cauliflower winter tabouli by Karen Martini in the Sunday Life part of the Sun Herald (who has  a new cookbook out…am dying to get it) and Jane & Jeremy Strode’s cauliflower soup from Two’s Cooking.
I like to use a mix of chicken stock and water so you still get to taste the cauliflower. For a vego option use vegetable stock or all water and skip the anchovy.
500g cauliflower, broken into large florets and stems sliced
2T olive oil
1 brown onion, diced
1 clove garlic, smashed
1 red chilli, finely diced

2 anchovy fillets, chopped
500mL chicken stock
500mL water
freshly grated parmesan cheese to serve
your very best extra virgin olive oil, to serve
Preheat oven to 200oC. Place cauliflower on an oven tray. Drizzle with 1T olive oil and season with s&p and roast for approx 25mins until golden on the edges.
Meanwhile, heat oil in a large saucepan and cook onion covered over a low heat until onion is soft but not brown. Add garlic, chilli, and anchovy and cook for a couple of minutes.  Add stock and water and bring to a simmer. 
When cauliflower is ready add to the soup and simmer, covered for an additional 10 mins or until cauliflower is well cooked through. Puree with a stick blender or in batches in a food processor. Season with s&p and divide between two warmed soup bowl. Grate over a generous heap of cheese and drizzle sparingly with extra virgin oil.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

T for Tuesday

Spring is here and what better way to welcome it in than with a wholesome fruit smoothie, which is really just fruit I crushed in my pretend Nutri bullet. I added some orange juice to give it some liquidity. Took the lid off my mason jar so the juice could flow out the straw smoothly and discovered the fruit pieces were too big to come up the straw hahhahaa. I might have to go back to an ordinary glass to drink hey.

Not having much luck with my mason jar drinking glass am I!!!

Joining Bluebeard and Elizabeth for T for Tuesdays

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

WOYWW # 274

Taking photographs of my creations that look decent is a challenge. With all the houses we've moved to in the time I've been playing WOYWW it certainly is a challenging decision. Last week I found the perfect place. Great light, great colour, of all places-in the bathroom downstairs-my craft room bathroom that is.
So I hunted high and low to get some glossy surfaced tile and a nice background one. Found these at a tile shop around the corner. Got one slate coloured one for the lighter cards and one off-white one for the darker cards and some background ones as I don't think the mirror or the tiles behind a card would look good. These 60cm x 60cm tiles for $7 that have a reflective surface.

 This is the window that gives awesome light, you wouldn't believe it as it looks so dark, but that is the secret to great photos, to have the light behind you and the area must be decorated in light coloured tiles and walls so the light reflects off them, the window is behind the camera. I've been studying all the great photographs Crafters posted and my favourite ones are those with a reflective surface. Yes it looks precarious but it's actually quite stable as they are heavy. I glued some non stick sheets to the back of them to protect the front of the tiles from being scratched. Its amazing how rough the backs of these tiles are.
Another secret I've found is to zoom the camera in while standing as far back as you can, this removes all shadows of you holding the camera etc right in the viewing area of the subject. Check out the first photo I took with this set up HERE.

Joining Julia's Stamping Ground  to see what other craft areas other people have.

EDITED: I subscribe to Digital Photography School, its free and you get lots of great hints and tips.

Here is a link for posing people with confidence, 
it works the same for articles you are photographing.

Portrait printables

Hints and tips page

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

T for Tuesday

I went to my favourite Tea shop called T2 they had this tea for sampling, Of course whenever I go visit them I always taste the tea on offer and inevitably buy something that I have tasted. 
Clever marketing!!
 I also found the perfect lighting to take my photographs...in the bathroom, of all places. The window is really tiny and high up but is enough diffused lighting to make a pretty clear picture. You can see my photographic setup HERE
 I also found this mason jar/glass that is the in thing these days, I dont know if I like the straw permanently in it but for $2 one can't go wrong in experimenting. I added mint from my garden, raw honey (after I tasted it and found it needed something sweet). The sample at the store had ice in it and I thought I'd try it hot as it still abit cool here. Well I prefer the cold version so I popped some water into ice cube trays and will test out the cooler version tomorrow.

That mason jar is driving me crazy, I cant have the lid on to suck out of the straw, its needs air, so off the lid goes. not sure how long the straw will last although it is a good quality one.

This is the Rosehip tea.

Joining Bluebeard and Elizabeth for T for Tuesday Meme