Thursday, March 26, 2015

Thriving on Thursdays - Linky Party # 125

Domesblissity

Welcome to another Thursday and time to THRiVE. It's Thriving on Thursdays! I'm not sure if we're ever going to get autumn let alone winter. The heat is driving me nuts. I think our body clocks must know that it should be starting to cool down by March but we're still melting from the heat here in Queensland. Also, in case you missed it, Domesblissity has reached over 3,000,000 hits in the last 4 years since I started blogging. I couldn't have done it without you, popping in each week to link up and share my posts. I've grown to love you all like best friends. I just wish we could have an annual get together and actually meet up in person. Thank you so much to everyone for visiting me here in my little part of the world. Anyway, no time to waste. Let's see what my favourite top 3 food and non food posts were from last week's party.

FOOD

chocolate orange cornmeal biscotti






NON FOOD

recycled denim bracelet


How To Make Your Own Business Cards


Crochet Basket



Domesblissity

Thanks again everyone for linking up. I wish I could feature you all. You're all such talented people. Feel free to grab a featured button if you like. Oh, and don't forget, there'll be a round up of all the Easter food and craft posts linked up from the last couple of weeks. I'd like to get them all in the one spot to be shared. Other than buy a big bunny each for the kids, I haven't really got any else organised for them. Now, it's up to you. Let's see what you've got this week.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

3,000,000 hits!


Numbers, schmumbers. When I started this blog just over 4 years ago, as a way to record my everyday recipes and handy hints for my children when they left home, little did I know that anyone else would be interested in it. I don't really pay much attention to numbers and stats. It's a bit of a necessary 'evil' sometimes when it comes to sponsorship opportunities though, which I've been ever so grateful for.

Anyway, while I wasn't looking Domesblissity had hit 3,000,000 hits! I'm ever so grateful for each and every one of you who has visited me here in this little part of the world. An average Aussie Mum with 2 children who has a passion for cooking, crafting, sewing, making do, recording happy family moments and some not so happy moments. There's nothing special about my life but if there's something that I can offer that will help someone else to make ends meet or make your daily routine that little bit easier, I'm happy to share it. I must be the world's worst blogger photographer and have no idea how to style my food. I'm too busy trying to get it on the table to feed my hungry lot. If it tastes good, that's all I worry about.

My most successful blog posts have mostly been the 'compilation' type posts I share. I get these hair brained ideas that I'm going to make all these wonderful projects out of all the old t-shirts, for example, so start pinning, forever to be lost on one of my Pinterest boards. So, I decided to create a blog post, just for my benefit so that when the mood strikes, I'll be all set to start searching for ideas. Little did I know other people would be interested in them as well. These are the top 5 posts of all time.











Thanks again everyone for making this journey such a wonderful one. The best part about the whole process is the fantastic friends I've made along the way from all parts of the world. There's no way our paths would've crossed if it hadn't have been for blogging. Heaps of love to you all!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Baked churros


I'm not one much for food trends and tend to make do with what I have. If I don't have an ingredient for a particular recipe, I'll substitute or not make it at all. Churros seem to be the 'new kid on the block' with every cafe selling them and churro vendors appearing at theme parks and markets. I've tried them once or twice and to me, they're just a different shaped doughnut. There is quite a bit of history to them. Some say they originated in China of all places, where the Portugese tasted this originally salty pasty, and then going on to recreate it with sugar. Spanish shepherds then cooked the tasty snack while out herding sheep with nothing but flour, water, oil and an open fire. And so the churro began. 


I've got no intentions of heading out to buy any special equipment to make them or even try to make them as per the recipe. Instead, for our lazy Sunday morning brunch, I had planned to make French toast with a block loaf I had which wasn't fresh anymore. I wondered if I cut the loaf into thick slices and then 'sticks', could I create something like a churro and so my version of a Baked Churro was born.


You could use any leftover bread, bread rolls or bread sticks. I found the block loaf was perfect to cut the big chunks of bread suitable for dipping and then baking. I just cut off the crusts.


I was going to fry them in an oil/butter combination but then thought about just dipping them lightly into this mixture of melted butter, beaten eggs, brown sugar, vanilla and cinnamon, put them on a rack over a baking pan and bake them, which turned out the best way. (I did just over bake them slightly and some were a little burnt on the edges but still tasted okay.)


You only need to quickly turn them in the butter mixture as you don't want the bread soaking up too much of the liquid. I had 15 bread sticks and it was just enough mixture.


To accompany the 'churros', I had a bit of dark chocolate left in the pantry and I just broke it up and microwaved it in 30 second bursts until it was melted. I also served a small bowl of golden syrup. (I didn't have any maple syrup.)


After they came out of the oven, I rolled them in a white sugar/cinnamon mix. The whole house smelled gorgeous with a buttery cinnamon smell wafting through. 


They were demolished by the kids. Even Miss Fuss Pot gobbled them up. Now that's saying something. A definite keeper for a Sunday morning brunch or afternoon snack.

Baked Churros

  • day old bread, cut into sticks (or bread rolls, bread sticks)
  • 125gm butter, melted
  • 1 tbs brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • extra cinnamon and white sugar for rolling


  1. Preheat oven to 170 deg C.
  2. Mix melted butter, brown sugar, beaten eggs, cinnamon and vanilla extract.
  3. Dip bread sticks into butter mixture lightly and place on a wire rack over a baking pan.
  4. Bake for approximately 10 mins in oven or until golden brown.
  5. Roll in cinnamon/sugar mixture.
  6. Serve with melted chocolate and/or maple or golden syrup.

(PS You'll have to excuse my photos. They really don't do the recipe justice. I took these quickly with my mobile phone which doesn't have a very good camera and I'm a dodgy photographer anyway!)

Monday, March 23, 2015

Planning a wedding


The last thing I'd ever thought I'd be posting about here at Domesblissity is planning a wedding. I'm so excited though. I do love organising things and especially events such as a wedding. We finally got around to setting a date. It'll be on Saturday, 14 May 2016. We met in person on the 12 May 2014 so this was the closest Saturday around that time. It's a very special day for us so we wanted to commemorate it. We will have been together 2 years by then.


So, what to organise? The biggest factor in our choices will be cost. Even though we probably could spend quite a bit on the wedding which is easy enough to do, we both just don't see the value in it. We'd rather have a very informal ceremony and a coming together of family and friends in a very laid back, social atmosphere, celebrating our new life together as husband and wife. We'll try to do that as cheaply and as stress free as possible.


I've been trying not to get too focused on it right now but I just can't help it. I already had a wedding Pinterest board when we picked out the engagement ring but kept it hidden. It's out in the big wide world of Pinterest now and a lot of people are following it. I love to pay attention to detail so I won't be forgetting all the personal touches. One thing our guests can be assured of is that there will be a place to sit, some great food and lots and lots of love at our wedding. We would much rather spend our money on travelling and our future lives together. We are both pretty frugal and don't want for anything.

Besides using Pinterest for inspiration, I've created an Excel spreadsheet with tabs for things like the reception, photographer, marriage celebrant and accommodation (wedding night) etc. We're booked to go to a Bridal Expo here in Brisbane on 24 May this year and no doubt we'll be inundated with a lot of inspiration (and brochures). We've got a pretty good idea of what theme we want but it's not even really about a theme. It's just about having a nice day.

source
Damien has asked his brother to be best man and I'm going to ask my next younger sister to be matron of honour. Both of my children will be in the wedding party with my son walking me up to Damien. If Damien has his way, both of our dogs will be 'dressed' for the wedding and in the wedding party. (Did I tell you he's a dog lover? Thank goodness.) I can see chaos reigning supreme. At least it will be a day to remember, that's for sure.

Stay tuned for updates and progress along the way. We're still over 12 months away from the day but if the way the years fly by lately, the day will be here before we know it.


Thursday, March 19, 2015

Thriving on Thursdays - Linky Party # 124

Domesblissity

It's Thursday and time to THRiVE! Welcome to Thriving on Thursdays. Temperatures are still high in my part of the world and I'm so over it. I have, however, been getting on top of housework and mundane things like ironing etc and I must say, as much as I don't like doing them, I feel so much better when they're done. Busy with kid's things and appointments for myself here and there has kept me busy this week so not much exciting cooking being done. Just the basics. Would love to cook up a storm this weekend with the kids and try some new baking recipes I've been pinning. Anyway, on to my favourite top 3 food and 3 non food posts from last week's party. The posts being linked up lately have been amazing! (Oh, and by the way. Keep those Easter posts coming. I'll be featuring them all in a round up on Sunday week, the 29th of March.)

FOOD

sugar cone tea cups


Pork Roast with Root Vegetables: simplelivingeating.com


Spicy Turnip Chips in Dehydrator at Diane's Vintage Zest!  #recipe #easy #healthy #vegetarian #snack


NON FOOD



This DIY nest necklace craft can be created in about 15 minutes. Each egg represents a child so it makes a lovely Mothers Day gift or baby shower gift.




Domesblissity

You guys make my job so difficult to choose just 3 from each category. You are all so talented. I appreciate each and every single one of you, linking up each week. Feel free to grab a 'featured' button if you like. Now, onto this week's party. Let's see what you've got!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Being a part-time Mum


I'll never forget the moment I became a mother. I guess you could say I was one from the moment I fell pregnant but I had fallen pregnant a few times before and miscarried so the moment I saw my baby girl for the first time, that was it. That was when I knew I was a Mum. I was so happy, I couldn't speak. The nurse asked me what we had named her and I couldn't get the name out, I was so choked up.


Now, 10 years later, little did I think I would be a part-time Mum. Just over 3 years ago when my husband walked out of the marriage I became a single Mum. I had always felt I was the full time parent when he was living here anyway so doing it all on my own wasn't going to be a problem. It was just bloody hard work. We started with him having the children every second weekend and that was the first time since they had been born that I actually had a break from the daily routine. I used those 2 days every second weekend just to vegetate, maybe catch a movie, eat a small tub of ice cream or enjoy a hot cup of coffee from start to finish.

For the last 6 months, I have the children 8 days out of every 14. It's working very well and the children are getting to spend time with Damien and I and my ex and his new wife. Everyone's happy, or so I thought. My 8 year old little boy let us know he's extremely unhappy with his Dad for not being truthful about coming back to us. It's something he's held onto these last 3 years that there might be a chance that he'll come back to us. With my ex getting married last year and me now engaged, it was evident to my son that was never going to happen.


The poor little guy has had a stutter for a couple years but it was getting worse and he was also suffering from anxiety. Talking to a lot of people and reading a lot of things, it seems children do hang on to the fact that Mum and Dad might get back together but are shocked when it doesn't happen and take it quite hard. He's getting some counselling and speech therapy and lots of love, like they both always have. To think that my ex and I have come so far in these last 3 years is wonderful and all 4 adults in my children's lives love them dearly and visa versa.


When the children go to their Dad's, it's an opportunity for Damien and I to enjoy our relationship and each other. We go for moonlight walks, dinner, concerts or just hang out and enjoy watching a movie without interruption. The trouble is, that's not what I signed up for 10 years ago when my daughter was born. I was supposed to be with them every day and every night. It's just another part of the Mummy guilt I've been going through. I think of them every minute they're away but I know they are being well looked after and in good hands and they are spending quality time with their Dad. I know I am having a good time as well, enjoying my adult life and being 'human' again.


Some might say it's the best of both worlds and some days it really is. I can't help but feel guilty sometimes though. If I look at it positively, the children are getting the very best versions of their parents rather than the ones who didn't get on very well and there was no love in the house. My ex and I are on the same page in regards to their upbringing and welfare and we really couldn't ask for more. They are included in Damien and my relationship as much as possible. Sometimes you really have to take the good with the bad and make the most of every opportunity. I've learnt to live one day at a time and make the most of that time. The children and I didn't ask for this or expect it but we've learnt to live with it and it's better for everyone, all round. Life does have a funny way of working out sometimes. Whether my children are here in person or not or whether I'm a part-time parent or not, they'll always be in my heart every second of the day.

(I've been wanting to write this post for a while but just never around to putting how I was feeling in words. It probably sounds a little disjointed but I wanted to put it out there for other Mums who might be going through the same thing to not feel guilty, that it's nobody's fault. It's just the way it is and to try and keep things harmonious between yourself and your ex as much as you can, for the children's sake.)

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Baked Thai Chicken Wings


Nothing like picking up a couple of kilos of marked down chicken wings from the supermarket, especially when you've been craving some sweet, spicy, finger-lickin' wings. I was in the right place at the right time on this particular day. I think they were only about $2 for the 2 kilos (4.4 lbs). They were just what the doctor ordered on this summery, hot day and the leftovers kept well in the freezer for another quick meal.


I cut the chicken wing into thirds and kept the wing tips for the dogs. I laid them all out in a plastic dish suitable for marinating.


The marinade consisted of some basic pantry staples which was shaken (not stirred hehe) and poured over the chicken wings and left to marinate overnight ensuring I flipped the container and shook the wings around a bit.


I placed the marinated wings on a wire rack to allow excess fat to drip away from the wings.


They came out lovely and golden with a slight burn on the edge for crispiness from the brown sugar I added to the marinade.


Served with a sprinkling of fresh coriander (cilantro) leaves and a side of sweet chilli sauce, they were lip smackin' good and a change from the usual honey/soy combination I usually do.


Baked Thai Chicken Wings
  • 2 tbs soy sauce
  • 2 tbs sweet chilli sauce
  • 2 tbs lime juice
  • 1 tbs sesame oil
  • 1 tbs garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

  1. Add ingredients to a jar and shake well (or whisk well in a jug).
  2. Pour marinade over chicken wings and allow to marinate for at least 2 hours (overnight is better).
  3. Place chicken wings on a wire rack and back for approx 25 mins in a 180 deg C oven or until golden brown and cooked.
  4. Serve with sweet chilli sauce or soy sauce for dipping and a sprinkling of fresh coriander (cilantro) for garnish.
  5. Great for a snack, light lunch or serve with rice and vegetables for a main meal.
  6. Suitable to freeze. 


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