Wednesday, August 31, 2011

seoul food

in 2001, armed with 4 years of studying English, linguistics and TESOL, JR and i headed over to South Korea.
talk about learning curve! woah~
especially the food.
 oh boy, it took me awhile to get used to but now, 8 years (eight years?!!) later i still really, really miss it.
but ex-colleague sent me the link to this website: aeri's kitchen

she has recipes for almost EVERY Korean dish AND a video tutorial on how to prepare it!
including my favourite:
HODDOK - which is usually sold at stalls on the street, especially during winter.
so, i had a go and made some for myself~

see that little pocket in the middle??? that is filled with brown sugar and cinnamon.

duuude. so sweet and chewy.

here's the video tutorial, you really should try it.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Make my Week #33 - paint by number restyle

i bought this sweet painting at an op shop a few weeks ago with a project in mind.

like most prints at op shops, it was a sad faded blue but i could still appreciate the magnificent study of light in this painting - the woman is reading an old love note from her guy whose photo is in the lid of the open box on the table. awww~
{does anyone recognise this painting, i'd love to know who it's by...judging by the main "focus" of the light i've narrowed it down to a male artist *wink*}

after looking at it so closely, i almost lost my nerve to paint over it, but i was too curious, so charged ahead!

i'm not convinced (maybe it's the frame?), and it'll probably get painted over again but it was fun having a go.
inspired by this re-paint on pinterest

Saturday, August 27, 2011

sewing in the sun

yesterday, instead of doing the ga-zillion jobs i should have been doing, i sat in my couch on the porch in the sun and made this little embroidery.

last year i found a set of 5 linen placemats at an op shop that have a selection of native NZ birds printed on each of them.
i chose the 'morepork' and 'silver eye' for this embroidery.

(do you know, i have never once seen one of those ceramic deer while thrifting. ever! but i'm totally thrilled with this hand-carved deer for 50c i found)

we have lots of silver eyes and moreporks where we live - and while i was sewing it, the Tui were putting on a real show singing and dancing (must be 'courting' season!)

if you're interested in teaching your kids about or observing common garden birds in NZ, there is a fantastic print out here.
our kids are getting really good at naming all the birds we see. 

happy weekend! X

Thursday, August 25, 2011

swap spies

Rosa-May is a spy. either that or she employs some.
she was my swap partner for the vintage kitchen swap that Stella organised and now i'm checking for hidden cameras...

for example, how'd she know i'd just picked (yes, picked. not pruned) some rose hips yesterday that looked JUST like the ones on the plate she sent??

 and how'd she know i'd only just stumbled across a delicious bundle of duraware this week in the exact same colours as the plates she sent...?

but, ha! i foiled her spies on this one...she thought i was after a cute little butter roller thingie, turns out i was just wanted someone to do the dishes so i could have a clean knife...;)

(i'll still take the roller thingie though, it IS pretty cute. better learn how to make scones now so i can use it!!)

thanks Rosa-May!!

wished someone else would be a little more subtle with his 'spying' ways:

he suddenly decides his sole purpose in life is to be my personal foot warmer every night when i am preparing dinner!
worse than a cat!

(and check out that 36 week-esque KNOW i'd be sucking it in if i could, but i have a grand canyon where tummy muscles should be remember?)


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

baby #5: Q & A

{was this baby planned?}
yes, and no. as soon as Danny was born, i felt there was still one more in our family. i tried hard to convince myself that we were done, but knew in my heart of hearts that we weren't.
i knew that if i followed my head over my heart i'd always bbe sorry and regretful.
however, we didn't try for this baby, so in a way it was a surprise. the reality of 5 kids is a lot more shocking than the dream of 5 this was the first time i actually cried (in the BAD way!) when i saw the positive. (sorry are so wanted and loved but you just surprised your mama initially!)

{how many children do you want?}
i was worried that i would never feel "done" with having kids. that maybe i had some psychological addiction to the feeling of being "needed" that a newborn provides or something..!
but i definitely feel done this time. phew,phew,phew!!
{don't you have TV?}
we have a television, but no reception. ollllld joke. move on...

{how can you afford to have 5 kids?}
i've noticed this is a common reason given for not having more children. it's legitimate i guess, but part of me thinks it's just buying into a society that is obsessed with consumerism and over-indulgence. both our parents were single-income families with 4 children. we never had extra, and sometimes had barely enough, but security, acceptance and love have the potential to raise just as spectacular adults as gymnastics lessons and private maths tutoring, don't you think?
we are a single income family on a VERY modest wage. due to exchange rates and choices we made in early marriage we are fortunate to have a lovely home with space for chickens and vege gardens. we don't spend a lot of time running to and from activities for the kids. this may change as they get older, but for the moment their life experience mostly occurs in and/or around the home. (don't underestimate what skills and character can develop at home: exploring; co-existing with siblings; building; balancing; creating; communicating; sharing; climbing; planting; pruning; growing... but this is really a different post altogether isn't it)

{will you still homeschool?}
that is always decided on a year by year basis, but at this stage yes, of course.

{will you homebirth again?}
unless there is legimate reason not to, absolutely!! i love how our children have been welcomed into the world by their siblings in their home. it is my most favourite experience in the world.

{do you have strong enough stomach muscles to support a growing baby for the fifth time?}
ok, so this is a question i asked myself...and the answer? no. (YIKES!) which is probably why i look about 8 months pregnant already. uh huh. i also left my pelvic floor muscles somewhere in my twenties. thankfully there are a plethora of elastic-y garments that improvise for muscle failure these days ;)

{will you find out what you're having?}
no way. absolutely not. i am entirely addicted to the excitement of not knowing. it beats a million christmas eves.
and besides, i can't be disappointed with another boy when there is a soft boy neck to sniff and an actual boy baby nursing in my arms, but i could be disappointed with a black n white scan image on my fridge of a boy i haven't met.
which leads me to the next question...

{are you hoping for a girl?}
yes. and no. Jada is desperate for a sister, and I'd love for her to have that experience (i have 2 wonderful sisters) BUT i realise they'd be eight years apart AND to have a girl as youngest...woah, can you imagine how much potential for Spoilt Brat there'd be??!!!
and to be honest, God knows what our family needs better than i do. and at any rate, i'm grateful to be providing society with a few men who have grown up with a wonderful father present.

{are you crazy?}
possibly. but without regret (so far!)


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Make my Week #32 - vintage quilt

i have another guest maker this week
(i just couldn't NOT share this with you)...

in between making meals for 9 people 3x-a-day and wrestling me out of the kitchen, my super-mum made me this beautiful quilt.
it's so simple and JUST AS I IMAGINED. i'm beyond thrilled.

and because mum can make magic happen with pieces of fabric and a sewing machine, she quilted it directly onto a thrifted woollen blanket...just like i wanted!

i can't believe it's MINE!! i've wanted a vintage sheet quilt for so long...and it is totally worth the wait.
thanks Mum!


Monday, August 22, 2011

a waiharakeke week

we spent all last week at my parents' home on the west coast (that's the view from their living room, and yes, my dad is building another Jeep!). my mum prepared 3 hot meals a day for us and didn't let me set foot in the kitchen for the whole week. i was spoilt was bliss!

when i was a new-ish mum, i used to think that if my mum helped me with something, it meant she thought i wasn't doing a good enough job.
WELLLL, i got over that matured and realised she was loving me by doing things for me, not judging me (i would do the same for my kids) and now she is MORE than welcome to do my ironing, weed my garden and wash my windows!! (she does all of those...often!)

we finished the week off with a cute little wedding on Sunday afternoon...

they walked out to this brilliant song by Mumford and Sons...there is nothing to watch but turn it up REAL LOUD, grab the nearest kiddo and giddy-dance til you collapse giggling.
it's nice to be back,
enjoy~ X

Sunday, August 14, 2011

inside scoop

thank you for all your congratulations!

i'm racing around trying to pack us all up for a week away, but wanted to share this before we left - a short clip of when we told the kids the baby news a few weeks ago.

it's kinda chaotic and jumbled, so view at your own discretion :)

a few things you should know before viewing:

*i have food in my mouth at the start (i know, monkey see...)
*we told the kids we had a surprise for them and they had to close their eyes. they assume it's lollies so hold out their hands also.
* a scan/sono photo of #5 was the "someone" they were meeting.

ok, i'm outta here...see you NEXT WEEK!!!
(don't do anything too cool without me!)


Saturday, August 13, 2011

PW2 {finale} one more thing...

it's been a fun week, thanks for joining in the celebrations with me - it was an especially great honour to have Pip Lincoln  (woah!) and craftzine (who gets bonus points for calling me a 'girl', yah!) stop by.

you realise as of typing this we are only a handful of followers away from a third party week!! keen??
I AM TOTALLY KIDDING! must be so sick of me!
(in fact, i will be out of internet range for an entire week next week so this space will be the exact opposite to the madness it has been this week, phew!)

but before i sign off for the week, there is one more project i want to share with that isn't finished yet, but i've been working on for a few weeks now:

you'll remember my Lisa Leonard necklace (must-have for every mama - i LOVE it!) that JR bought for me after Danny was born?...'s been pimped too:

hmmm, maybe we'll have to get Lisa onto it

{next February}!!



PW2 {giveaway} WINNERS!!

{and the winners are...}

 for the customised Hommage Stationery Co. stamp:

for the CHD babushka doll and crochet pattern of your choice:

and for the Croutons pink flower brooch:


if you are one of the winners, you have about 24ish hours to email me your details before i go offline for a week :)

thank you to the generous ladies who provided the giveaways and thanks to everyone who entered.


PW2 {inspire} celebrate creativity

i am SO inspired by artists being creative (like their Creator) doing amazing things that i could never do...

isn't that just pure brilliance?

party week is nearly over, i'll be back later to announce the winners of the giveaways.


Friday, August 12, 2011

PW2 (dee.i.y} doily wrapping paper

i never have wrapping paper when i need it and it drives me nuts so i thought up a way to print my own DOILY (hallelujah!) wrapping paper:

* a doily (this awesome orange one is from Widge! x)
* rolling pin
* brown paper
* washable white paint (my doily is still orange)
* press n seal. (sure, you could use ordinary plastic wrap but where's the fun in that?? this stuff is Serious Fun)

cover your rolling pin in press n seal (or plastic wrap - yawn~). the purpose of this is to keep your rolling pin clean.
whip stitch your doily in place over top of the plastic covering.

liberally apply paint
and rock n roll!

pretty, no?

this package is headed to the talented Rosa-May for the Vintage Kitchen Swap...hope she likes it!!


(ps. if you read in google reader you will have got this twice...deepest (embarrassed) apologies, trying to be organised and got a little eagerish-beaverish!)

Thursday, August 11, 2011

PW2 {giveaway} Croutons brooch

you know how there are some artists/ crafters whose work you look at and go, "wow, i LOVE that!", then you look at their next thing and say, "woah, i love that TOO!!"...then it turns out you adore all of their stuff?

that's how i am with Rhiannon's delicous business, Croutons.

Rhiannon is a generous and lovely stay-at-home-mama to 2 spunky boys and is currently working her tail off to have enough stock ready for the New Rags market later this month. 
however she still generously agreed to give away one of my favourite Croutons products (i have 3 so far!!):

{one large pink flower brooch}


rules for a valid entry are:
1. follow this blog
2. if you had $40 Croutons voucher, what would you buy??

++for an extra entry 'like' Rhiannon's facebook page (please let me know in a separate comment so i don't miss it)

winner will be announced on
{Saturday 13th August at midday, NZT}

good luck!!


PW2 {giveaway} CHD:crochet crush

who's enjoying party week?? sick of me yet? ;)

here is another giveaway i'm really excited about, this time by my real-life, just-down-the-road friend, Cait from CHD.

what i am passionate about is supporting creative businesses of stay-at-home mums and Cait oozes creativity.
how creative?
how about creative enough to design and write her own pattern for crocheted russian nesting dolls that actually stack! how about creative enough to design and write her own pattern for a crocheted set of stuffed nesting dolls!

my mind is blown. yours?

Cait's finish and attention to detail is impeccable.

and here's what she is generously giving away:

{one amigurumi style stuffed nesting doll}
{one crochet pattern OF YOUR CHOICE}

details: the doll will be like the one pictured (although colours may vary slightly) and stands alone at approx 11cm tall.
the pattern must be selected from the CHD etsy shop.

for a valid entry:
1. you must be a follower of this blog
2. if you crochet: tell me which of Cait's patterns you'd love to crochet.
if you don't crochet: tell me which of Cait's patterns you'd love to crochet if you could...(OR which one you'd love to give to someone who CAN crochet!)

this giveaway is open internationally and will be drawn on 
{Saturday 13th August at midday NZT}


look out for ANOTHER awesome giveaway coming this afternoon - wooo~~
(and don't forget to enter the Hommage Stationery Co. giveaway too)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

PW2 {restyle} grandpa night shirt > dress

hello spring dress, welcome to your new life~~

i know you won't miss your life as a grandpa's night shirt~~

(at least, one would expect not...!)

here's how i thrift for restyles:

my first rule of restyling:
{see the potential}
this night shirt was great quality, well constructed, cute pattern and i really liked the neckline. the fact that it is a mens night wear is irrelevant.

my second rule of restyling:
{be inspired}
a LOT of items have potential, but can you visualise exactly what you will do to it? are you bursting to get home and try it?
if not, then chances are it will join the pile of 'Restyles To-Do' (and never get done!)

{this outfit kinda cracks me up - today was so beautiful that it seems like i couldn't decide if it was winter (bottom half) or summer (top half!!) ha}

details:: this was dead easy - i cut off the sleeves and zoomed up the side seams on an angle to where i wanted my arm holes to be (the lines from the checks made it really easy to keep things even!). i changed the buttons and used a sleeve for a feature pocket on the front (using the sleeve cuff across the top, saving even more time *wink*)

feel free to link up some restyles in the comments, i'd love to see.