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Life on two acres of arid dirt, on the edge of the Australian outback.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Some Favourite Recipes

ANZAC Biscuits
(Margaret Fulton's recipe)
You need:
1 cup each of plain flour, sugar, rolled oats and coconut
120gms of butter, melted
1 tablespoon of golden syrup
2 tablespoons of boiling water
1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda dissolved in a little water
Mix together dry ingredients
Then the rest
Spoon onto a greased oven tray
Cook in a coolish oven 150-160 C for 10 to 15 minutes.
Okay, it would appear that some of you have had trouble baking Anzac biscuits. I too, have had flops from time to time (even though they are still edible, they just didn't flatten out properly). However this batch turned out just right, so go figure! I use the same recipe every time.
What I did different this time was to melt the butter and golden syrup together, but didn't add the water or bi carb to it. I added the butter mix to the dry ingredients and then added the bi carb dissolved in 2 tablespoons of boiling water. I also use butter not cooking margarine. Maybe the temperature of the oven has something to do with it. These are cooked in a coolish oven not moderate.

Banana Cake

4oz Butter

1/2 cup sugar

2 eggs

3 mashed bananas

1 1/2 cups SR flour

1 tspn carb soda

2 tblspns water

Walnuts, optional

Cream butter and sugar well, add mashed bananas, beaten eggs, SR flour and the carb soda that has been mixed with water. Add walnuts and mix well. Place in 8" square or round tin and bake for about 1/2 hour at 180C-190C. Ice with chocolate icing and sprinkle with coconut if desired.

This banana cake is extremely moist and extremely delicious. The recipe has been handed down to me from my mother. It is a little different to the standard banana cake recipe,(much nicer in my opinion) as mum has changed it a little. I don't add walnuts, only because I'm not fond of them. The cake is just as nice without them.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Life is busy

I had a busy weekend having a lot of cleaning and tidying to do in preparation for starting work again yesterday.
Saturday I got to do a bit of cooking, a banana cake and some Anzac biscuits. I had my grandson to look after and he slept over on Saturday night.
The spoilt pup in the picture is my daughter's and I babysat him over the weekend as well while his parents went to Adelaide to catch up with friends. I am not sure who is more trouble, dog or children? Children are less work I think. This dog, Bailey is spoilt rotten and full of importance, me, me,me. And I might add that he chews everything!! My banana cake (I will post the recipe when I have a bit more time)
and Anzac biscuits

Canna in flower

Little flowering Purple plant

Sunday afternoon our son played his second game of soccer. Their team won again 9 goals to 2. He plays for the Stirling Strikers Gold team. Dear son kicked three of them. He is seen here warming up with his team mates before the game, he is number 8.

On the field playing.

I started back at work yesterday caring for a two year old boy. Today I have a five month old baby girl and the two year old.
My middle daughter has returned to Melbourne , and is coming home for again for Christmas which isn't far away now.
Hot here today with 34C (93.2F).
Have a great day where ever you are.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

A bit of this and that

Yesterday I received an impromptu visit from my Mum and Dad. They came to visit and see their middle grand daughter that is here from Melbourne until Monday.

With them they brought a box of goodies. The local owner of the IGA store in Kimba is a friend of my parents and these goods were damaged while being opened. The cutter that was used had sliced through the packets so they were unsellable. I got a big bag of SR flour and plain flour, big bag of rice, small packet noodles, and two bags of raw sugar, plus some chips that were just out of date.

My mum is lucky because she receives things like this all the time. Keeps her grocery bill down.

This poor little orphaned lamb was recently rescued by my parents from a farm that they caretake. It's mother had been mistakenly put on a truck when he was very young. He seemed to be doing poorly so my parents have taken him home to try and make him healthier. He will return to the mob when he has recovered.

This is a pet rabbit that my parents have. My Dad used to breed these rabbits for meat but unfortunately they all got the Myxomatosis disease and they lost all of them except this beautiful boy. He too had the disease but he didn't die from it and was nursed back to some sort of health by Dad and Mum. He has crippled legs and can't move very well as a result of the disease, poor thing. He now lives in with the chooks and is fed by hand. He seems quite happy.

My Dad has a real soft heart for animals. He once brought home a baby fox of all things for me to rear when the girls were young. It was so young it was still black in colour, but it knew how to survive. It would steal my kittens food while he was trying to eat. I tried to feed it a bottle but it bit the top clean off the teat. Dad said he had found the fox while out checking sheep, he thinks the mother may have been moving her babies and was disturbed and dropped the cub. As children we had many pets, kangaroos, lizards, lambs, calves, chickens, baby feral rabbits (4 of them reared from when they were still pink with no fur), they had been dug up by a neighbour ripping up the burrows, to name a few. Dad even found a carpet snake once that he kept for a while and then donated it to a reptile park. You name it, we had it. He is still the same.

I have taken pictures of some of Mum's garden although I should have taken more of her veggies. Mum has always had a garden as long as I remember even though some times it has been a struggle to grow anything due to poor soil and drought. My parents live on a town block now and the front garden is a combination of flowers and vegies all mixed in together. Amongst it is a lemon tree that fruits really well and some natives.

I am not sure what this flower is, except it's grown from a bulb with a brilliant orange colour.

Mum's lavender in full bloom in and around the vegies.

A spider that my son spied on the silverbeet.

A lovely Iris in bloom, she also has the plain white variety.

Some more pictures taken at the Kimba Museum. The members decided to paint this old Fordson tractor in rainbow colours to catch the tourists eyes. The museum is situated on the main Eyre Highway near the Big Galah, a huge statue that I will get a photo of later. Kimba is the town marked as Halfway Across Australia, (as seen on the big sign in the backgound) almost in the middle of this great country. You will pass through this little town if travelling to Perth. To see the Big Galah and other information on Kimba go here.

Fordson Major tractor lovingly restored by one of the Museum members.

1919 Fiat Tractor, with lots of old tools displayed in the background.

My Dad quizzed me about what these homemade gadgets were. I wasn't sure except I thought they were to do with animals. Turns out they are cattle yokes used to stop cattle getting through the fences.

Shearer King seeder restored by the members of the museum. They have busy bees on a regular basis.

Horse drawn buggy, I would love one of these.

Wagon that I think was drawn by horses, but may have been pulled by cattle.

Some old trucks that have been kindly donated to the museum by the locals.

The great community spirit still lives on in the little towns, which is a blessing, but I wonder what will happen in the future if the younger generation doesn't take these things on that the older generation have spent tireless hours restoring for everyone to see. Will all this be lost? I certainly hope not.

My weekend will be spent inside today as it is 41C (105.8F) outside and blowing a terrible wind. Poor plants, just what they don't need. My daughter has her friend's wedding today of all days, a wedding to remember I'd say. Tomorrow is an early start with Little Athletics at 8.00am and Soccer in the afternoon at 4.00. It is meant to be better weather tomorrow.

Have a truly wonderful weekend,


Thursday, October 23, 2008

Memories - a bit of fun

I received this email today from my daughter. I have had similar ones like this before, still some of the things made me chuckle!

CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL THE KIDS WHO WERE BORN IN THE 1920's, 30's 40's, 50's, 60's and 70's !!

First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they carried us and lived in houses made of asbestos. They took aspirin, ate blue cheese, tuna from a can, and didn't get tested for diabetes or cervical cancer.

Then after that trauma, our baby cribs were covered with bright colored lead-based paints. We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets or shoes, not to mention, the risks some of us took hitchhiking.

As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or air bags. Riding in the back of a Ute on a warm day was always a special treat. We drank water from the garden hose and NOT from a bottle.

Take away food was limited to fish and chips, no pizza shops, McDonalds, KFC, Subway or Red Rooster. Even though all the shops closed at 6.00pm and didn't open on the weekends, somehow we didn't starve to death!

We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and NO ONE actually died from this. We could collect old drink bottles and cash them in at the corner store and buy Fruit Tingles and some fire crackers to blow up frogs and lizards with.

We ate cupcakes, white bread and real butter and drank soft drinks with sugar in it, but we weren't overweight because......


We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on. No one was able to reach us all day. And we were O.K. We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then ride down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes.

We built tree houses and cubby houses and played in creek beds with matchbox cars. We did not have Playstations, Nintendo's, X-boxes, no video games at all, no 99 channels on cable, no video tape or DVD movies, no surround sound, no mobile phones, no personal computers, no Internet or Internet chat rooms..........

WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them!

We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no Lawsuits from these accidents. Only girls had pierced ears! We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever.

You could only buy Easter Eggs and Hot Cross buns at Easter time.......no really!

We were given BB guns and sling shots for our 10th birthdays, We drank milk laced with Strontium 90 from cows that had eaten grass covered in nuclear fallout from the atomic testing at Maralinga in 1956.

We rode bikes or walked to a friend's house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just yelled for them!

Mum didn't have to go to work to help dad make ends meet!

Footy had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that!!

Our teachers used to belt us with big sticks and leather straps and bully's always ruled the playground at school. The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law!

Our parents got married before they had children and didn't invent stupid names for their kids like 'Kiora' and 'Blade'.....

This generation has produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers and inventors ever! The past 70 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas.

We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned


And YOU are one of them!


You might want to share this with others who have had the luck to grow up as kids, before the lawyers and the government regulated our lives for our own good. And while you are at it, forward it to your kids so they will know how brave their parents were.

Kind of makes you want to run through the house with scissors, doesn't it?! PS -

The big type is because your eyes are shot at your age

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

For the boys (and girls)

After a busy weekend, I have finally found a moment to do a post in blogland. It has been go, go, go since we got back from Adelaide. I should probably be doing something else more constuctive right now but it can wait.

We left for the City Saturday morning. The weather was hot with home being 37C (98.6F) and Adelaide 34C (93.2F).

We had to call into Port Pirie on the way to pick up our pre paid SuperX tickets. The car was playing up a bit, coughing and spluttering from time to time and we agreed it must have been a bad batch of fuel, as it wasn't doing it before filling up.

We arrived safely and went straight to see the motorbikes in action as they started at 3pm and went until 7pm.

Heading through the city to the Wayville Showgrounds
On the way down,
hubby pulled into Snowtown to show us this wind generator blade. Those things are huge. I think they are setting it up for display, because the new wind farm will be officially opened soon. The train line goes right past and hubby had seen it on an earlier trip on the train.

My son getting a workout at the LA squad on Sunday. Luckily the weather was cooler and it was held at Henley Beach where it was nice and breezey.

Dear son listening close to one of the coaches, and learning about how to get a good start to a race. They practiced the crouch start and standing starts. My son is second in the picture preparing to start and listening to the coach. I was unable to get too close for this photograph as we thought we weren't allowed to, but it turns out we were able to go out to watch and listen, but we didn't know this until we asked an official.

And to the Supercross

Very noisey, but fun.
You don't have to be crazy to do these stunts but it helps if you are!

I always think of the poor mothers of these boys, I'm sorry but I wouldn't be able to watch if it were my son on these bikes. Mind you he says he wants to have a go at it. Got some bad news for him!

This is who my son wanted to see. Anyone who follows motocross and supercross will know who this is. Chad Reed. He is the world champion at this sport and he is from NSW, but lives in America.

He won all the races he competed in, including the final which he won by a long way. This picture is of Chad Reed way out in front in one of his races.
Upon arriving home at 7pm I had to fly around doing washing, ironing, school lunches etc ready for school and work the next day. On Saturday my daughter arrived home from Melbourne as well, so this week I have been taking her shopping for an outfit for the wedding on Saturday. Not sure if she has completely decided what to wear yet. I have also had my grandson to look after and drop to Kindy while his mum works.
Monday night I had a training for Family Day Care to attend. I will be starting back part time next week as they are desperate for carers. Not sure what I think about that yet, I guess
I could use the money to put away for my son's private school fees next year, and contribute some more to the mortgage and hopefully get it paid off asap. This is our only debt, so to get it fully paid for would be a bonus.
I have decided to give the Liver Cleansing Diet a go. I went on it a few years back and felt so much better, but slowly I have gone back to my old habits. I will post more about the diet in another post. If anyone has had results with this diet I would be keen to hear about it.
I had better go and start organising our dinner now,
Have a great day,

Friday, October 17, 2008

Garden update

Some apple cucumber seeds have germinated, which is good news because the others have been eaten by a Shingleback Lizard. (pictures can be found on a previous post, Sleepy Sunday) I found one in the garden the other day so this solves the mystery of who ate the plants. I promptly removed the lizard and gave him a lecture about staying out of my garden and go eat some weeds elsewhere. He hasn't been back.......yet! I have laid water around for the lizards as there is an awful lot of them here at the moment and they seem to be looking for moisture, because of the drought.

I shall transfer these after the weekend.

Finally I have planted the butternut pumpkin (thanks Linda for reassuring me it is okay now to plant these).

The silverbeet is doing well, cant wait until this is fully grown as my chooks are hanging out for some green. I bought a bunch of spinach for them the other day, cost me $4.00. Vegie prices are sky rocketing. All the more reason for growing your own.

Capsicums are also coming along. These are the green variety as this is all my son will eat, personally I like the red ones.

The Basil is thriving in amongst the tomato plants. I needed some of this for a recipe last night but had to buy some as they aren't big enough yet.

Poor last Zucchini. I planted four of these and they were growing fantastically until they were chomped. Only stalks left on the others, but they seem to be re-shooting again now.

The stalk is all that remains of three of the Zucchini plants.

Tomato plants will need staking up shortly as the wind is knocking them around a bit. I am going to try the same as A Vision Splendid has used.

I have planted the Strawberries in hanging baskets this year. Another idea from
A Vision Splendid. Hopefully they do well. At least I can hang these away from the lizards as they just love strawberries as much as we do.

What is in flower at the moment? A lovely red bottlebrush, this provides much needed shade for the chooks.

I'll call this a small white bottlebrush, but I think it is actually a tee tree.

If you know what plant this flower belongs to, could you let me know. I get asked what this plant is, but I have no idea.
Very warm day here. 33 degrees Celcuis (91.4F) with lots of sunshine. I went outside earlier and the sun was very bitey, I think it may be hotter than they have forecast. It is meant to be 34C tomorrow and we will be going to Adelaide. We are taking our son to see the Super Motocross tomorrow night, then checking out what we can find at the markets on Sunday morning before taking our son to Athletics in the afternoon. The athletics are held at Henley Beach so hopefully it is cool by then.

Hope you all have a safe and happy weekend and I will be back next week.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Yesteryear club

I have mentioned in a previous post about my Dad's hobby. He loves old tractors the most, but anything old is good. He spends most of his retirement time collecting and restoring old machinery for the Yesteryear club he started a few years ago. I think they have 30 plus members now, so it is great that his idea has been succussful.

The harvester below was lovingly restored by my Father with the help of the local high school children as part of their lessons. This took about three years to complete, and it has turned out great.

This is a photo of the machinery (junk) shed at the Yesteryear club. Most of the buildings at the club have been donated and recycled by the members. The toilet area was constructed by my dad using stuff that people threw out to the local recycle depot (dump). This included the toilet, basin, a box or two of new tiles, a window and a door. The clubroom was also built from recycled stuff, including things like table and chairs, cupboards etc. I forgot to include pictures of these, I will get them next time.

These pics are of a couple of photos on display using the some of the equipment that has been restored. A pretty good year that year by the looks of the crop they are reaping.

A truck waiting for some TLC. Dad said this is a recent addition to the club.

This is my Dad's next project, doesn't look like much does it? But by the time Dad has finished with it though, it will look like new. That's my dear Dad in the background.

Couldn't help but capture this picture of my Dad's dog Paddy digging for mompey's (mice). Mompey is a nick name that West Coast people use for mice. Sorry not a very elegant picture.

This is a Sunshine header in waiting. My Dad's favourite brand of machinery. A few years ago when we were in Melbourne we took photos in the suburb of Sunshine where this machinery was made. There is not much there now, just a timber shed with a plaque on it.

This years crop of wheat planted by the club. Money from the crops goes toward funding and running the club and to buy any more machinery. In the background you can see that it is pretty dry and there is also a motocross track.

Have a wonderful day,