Tuesday, December 1, 2015

30 Day Flip- Holiday Decorating

Today I am linking up with The DIY Forum and HomeTalk to show my Christmas decorating. Thankfully, this year I was able to get a Cricut, which has helped with a lot of my decorating! I do not do too much though, as my son celebrates his birthday close to Christmas and so I tend to leave the decorating until after his birthday. I have come up with a few ideas to get my house into the festive spirit.

First up, my seasonal nook in the home has been taken over by Christmas papercrafts! I have done an advent calendar, Christmas banner, Papercraft Sampler and a small gift box decoration all from one Christmas paper packet and some cardstock.

This advent calendar has 25 tags, all with a perforated number that has an activity written on the back. My boys will love being able to see what we are up to each day!

This simple banner was made using cardstock and paper, tied together with twine. This file was free on the Cricut website!

One of my favourite projects this Christmas has been this sampler, which I hang in a 12x12 frame as seen above. I love coming up with an idea for each square, and having it all come together is so much fun.

I made up some cute Christmas present stacks for table placecards, but one is sitting in my decorated nook as well.

As far as gift giving goes, I quickly whipped up these wine bottle holders as wine is the perfect gift for Christmas party hosts, neighbour gifts, or even teachers.

My last little project was these two 6x6 canvases, which I decorated using scrapbook paper, cardstock and some embellishments.

I have had so much fun decorating for the holidays. I am still supposed to be resting for the next month, so my grand design plans have been pulled back a bit. However, I have been able to craft up a few little touches within my home to make my house feel a bit more festive.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

WCW Festive Pasta Salad

It is the season for celebrations over food and wine, and what better way to celebrate than with a colourful pasta salad? Best of all, this is so quick and easy to put together. so you can spend more time socialising and less time in the kitchen!

Festive Pasta Salad

2 packets fresh green filled tortellini
1 jar green pesto with cashews
1 package dried cranberries
freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Cook the fresh pasya according to the package directions. Drain and return to pan. Add pesto and dried cranberries, toss to coat. Transfer to a bowl and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Chill for at least two hours then serve.

Quick and delicious, perfect for your next Christmas side dish.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Appreciating my Family for NFCM

As some of you may be aware, I recently took a short break from my blogging to focus on my health. I had laparoscopic surgery for endometriosis removal in January, where steps were also taken to treat some of my symptoms. However, these symptoms continued, and in some cases worsened, and the only other option was a major surgical procedure. The incidental discovery of a rare rectus sheath hernia was also found, and so it was agreed that I have the hernia repair and a hysterectomy at the same time, requiring a full cut along my abdomen.

This was major surgery, and I had my doubts. I was worried that I would be away from my boys for so long, how my recovery would be, and there were also the fears of going under general anesthetic. I am no stranger to surgeries, having had major hip surgeries as well as three other laparoscopies, but each time I still get nervous. However, my symptoms had forced me to stop exercising, and some days I couldn't even leave the house. For two weeks out of every month I was in constant pain, and when I couldn't even walk my son to school and back I knew that something had to be done. The surgery was booked in, and I started to prepare for my hospital stay.

You can imagine that this is not something I can recover from overnight, and in fact I spent an entire week in hospital recuperating. Throughout this time, my family pulled together to help with meals, looking after my two boys and making sure that I still had everything I needed to be comfortable.

November is National Family Caregiver Month, and I wanted to highlight how important family can be when you are dealing with illness. I am so grateful to my husband for being the parent at home for the next few weeks, and he did an amazing job while I was in hospital. He still is doing most of the work around the house as well as helping with the boys, and I cannot give him enough credit.

My parents and in-laws have also been amazing, helping with transport, meals and housework. Sometimes just having company is enough, and a cup of tea with my mum is guaranteed to get me to forget about my pain for a while. My mother-in-law especially has been so helpful, taking time away from her day to help out and make sure I have everything I need.

I am taking each day as it comes, and hope to be back on my feet by Christmas!

I am truly amazed at the amount of people who look after their spouses, parents or other family members long-term. Six weeks seems like a long time for me, but those who do it every day are often under-appreciated and may not have the help of anyone else nearby. I am lucky in that I will recover with time, whereas others may have to deal with a lifelong illness or a sudden diagnosis that brings about major change to normal life.

I also wanted to share the story of Heather Von St. James, who made me aware of Natioanl Family Caregiver Month. This woman is so strong, and her health journey had me in tears. If you have a moment, I encourage you to read her story and find out why she is now fighting to change the law. Her journey with mesothelioma is a tough one, and she now devotes her time to advocating for those affected by this devastating cancer and helping inform others of the dangers of asbestos. This is particularly poignant here in Christchurch, where a lot of houses are being renovated or demolished without thoughts for the dangers of asbestos.

My blogging will be back to normal this week, as I can at least sit down and type now without being in pain. Feel free to come say hi on Facebook or Instagram!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

A brief break

Things have been a bit quiet here recently- I am currently undergoing some major changes and will be undergoing surgery next week with a lengthy recovery.

I hope to be back at the end of November, bringing you more recipes, children's activities and SAHM stories, but in the meantime I hope you all have a wonderful lead up to the festive season.

I will have so much to share with you when I get back- Christmas is going to be big plus I have a 6th birthday party and some craft markets, so I have no shortage of ideas and tips.

In the meantime, you can follow me on Instagram.

Hope you have a wonderful month!


Friday, October 23, 2015

Friday Frock Feature 4

Another Friday, another frock!

I had an opportunity to wear my LBD as part of my birthday celebrations. This dress is a bargain from Ezibuy- so easy to wear and comfortable. the material is a bit thin so I wore a nude slip from boohoo underneath.

I paired this dress with some strappy blue, green and black high heels, and added my new Portmans crop jacket for some warmth and colour.

My sister and I had a great time celebrating our birthday at the newly re-opened Yamagen restaurant, complete with a chef who was skilled at upside down salt writing!

Don't forget to check out the reasons behind Frocktober and donate here.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Friday Frock Feature 3

Today I am sharing a fun party dress that I can dress down for daytime events.

This Heidi Heavy Embellished Chiffon Skater Dress from Boohoo has been great for both day and night occasions, and I love the extra sparkle that the top adds, and the gathered waist gives me shape but is still really comfortable to wear.

The back also has gorgeous detailing, with a button clasp and slight gape to show off your skin.

I wore this dress with flat sandals to a daytime children's birthday party, but it is also beautiful paired with wine red lips and black pumps for a night out.

Unfortunately this dress has sold out online, but I have found a similar one here.

Remember that I am wearing a dress each Friday for Frocktober, to find out more about this and to donate to a great cause please click here.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

WCW Caramello Peanut Truffles

      Sometimes you have those recipes that turn into a disaster, and yet sometimes they turn into something salvageable and amazing! This is what happened to me with this recipe- I originally tried to make a slice but it crumbled as I was cutting it so I made it into truffles, and they were delicious. I have streamlined this recipe for you to try at home without the slice disaster step!

      Caramello Peanut Truffles

      250g block Caramello Chocolate, melted
      115g butter, melted
      200g Marie biscuits or other plan vanilla biscuits
      3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
      1/4 cup coconut flakes
      1/4 cup chopped roasted peanuts
      200g milk chocolate melts
      1/2 tub Cheesecake Filling

      Melt the butter and Caramello chocolate together with the sweetened condensed milk in a microwave safe jug.

      Crush the biscuits and combine with butter mixture, coconut flakes and peanuts.

      Spread into a baking tray and allow to cool.

      Melt the milk chocolate and pour over the biscuits. Leave to set in the fridge for at least two hours until the chocolate is hard.

      Crush the base and chocolate layer in a food processor or by hand in a Ziploc bag, then mix with the cheesecake filling into balls. Leave to set in the fridge for at least two hours, then enjoy!

      You get bites of hard chocolate, peanuts and softer cheesecake filling in every bite. One is not enough with these truffles- deliciously decadent and great for entertaining!
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