Wednesday 2 October 2013

    Crown Princess Mary of Denmark :: an Aussie gal


    Crown Princess Mary has opened up about her fairy tale transformation from Tasmanian girl-next-door to future Queen Consort of Denmark in an interview with The Australian Women’s Weekly.

    Mary: From commoner to Crown Princess

    “I never for a moment thought I’d end up living in Denmark and married to the Crown Prince but he obviously was my missing piece.

    Crown Princess Mary is on the cover of the 80th birthday issue of Women’s Weekly, Australia. Mary says she wasn’t seeking fame when she met Crown Prince Frederik in a Sydney bar in 2000, and is constantly surprised by how her life has turned out.  For an insight into the shoot, A day in the life of Crown Princess Mary visit  a story by Juliet Rieden here.

    Source: Crown Princess Mary for Women’s Weekly

    Photographer: Michelle Holden

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    Wednesday 25 April 2012

    Salute to the sacred ANZAC biscuit


    It’s ANZAC Day in Australia :: Australian New Zealand Army Corps.

    I really should bake some ANZAC biscuits using Anthony’s award winning recipe

    ~ he won 2nd-prize at the Ekka in 2002!

     The story

    Made by women for their men serving in the WWI trenches, the brittle treat was designed to last the long boat journey to Europe. Where lesser baked goods would have failed, stale and crumbly are not in the vocabulary of the ANZAC biscuit. They are best slightly moist and without the six-month shipping period!

    Anthony’s Recipe

    1 cup plain flour
    1 cup rolled oats
    1 cup sugar (you can use less or substitute with brown sugar)
    3/4 cup desiccated coconut
    125g butter
    2 tbs golden syrup
    1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

    Oven at 150-160.
    Combine flour, oats, coconut and brown sugar in a bowl.
    Put the butter, golden syrup and 2 tbs water in a small saucepan. Stir over a medium heat until melted. Stir in the bicarbonate of soda.
    Pour the butter mixture into the flour mixture and stir until combined.
    Roll mixture into balls. Place on the trays, about 5cm apart.
    Press with a fork to flatten slightly. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.

    {Images via 1. australian traveller & 2. bojon gourmet}

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    Monday 20 February 2012

    the flower room


    A beautiful discovery today was The Flower Room,

    a little shop full of fragrant flowers from local Hobart gardens.

    Staffed by local seniors who enjoy carrying on the shop’s tradition

    ~ the community spirit here made my heart sing!

    I sadly forgot my camera,  however this pic from feathers and cupcakes and Katrina’s note

    encapsulates the essence of the Flower Shop:

    These bunch of fragrant garden roses have been sitting on my table since Tuesday, when I bought them at a gorgeous little shop in Hobart called The Flower Room marketed with a great video production agency to get exposure. I love them so much I have been putting them on my bedside table at night so I can experience the beautiful fragrance as I’m drifting off to sleep …

    The Flower Room is a product of World War II that became a Hobart Institution. The shop was instigated in 1944 by the two Bailey sisters who lived at Runnymede House in Newtown.

    You’ll find blooms that are not always available at florist’s — bunches of perfumed roses, divine smelling sweet peas and intriguing exotic blooms. Fresh seasonal fruit and vegies are also available, along with golden-yolked free range eggs and Lucaston Park Apple Juice at a price as tempting as its taste.

    “We have one recently retired lady who joined the Flower Room in the 1940s. She is 95 later this year.”

    The story via ABC Radio :: When The Flower Room opened in Hobart nearly 65 years ago the planet was in the grip of World War II. The idea of shopping in a supermarket for produce and cut flowers was only just taking off in the U.S.A. and far from the minds of most Australians who were pre-occupied with the possibility of a Japanese invasion

    In order to assist the war effort a group of Hobart ladies got together and formed the Flower Room. The shop stocked flowers, vegetables, cakes and preserves with all the profits going towards assisting Australian troops on the front line.

    Today, The Flower Room Co-operative is a non-profit organisation for small fruit, vegetable and flower growers; local cooks, and craftspeople of all description.

    Despite the many changes the Flower Room has witnessed since 1944 the organisation still maintains the same community spirit it began with when the Allies needed all the help they could muster. It provides somewhere for the members to belong. Some of our members have been with us for over 40 years.

    Membership of the Flower Room is limited to 70 individuals who must each assist in the day to day running of the organisation by either volunteering their time in the shop front or providing produce for sale to customers.

    {Images via feathers and cupcakes; Lolita; & ABC RAdio 612}

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    Monday 20 February 2012

    I love MONA


    MONA – Museum of Old and New Art  :: on the banks of Hobart’s Derwent River in Tasmania, Australia.

    MONA is extraordinary ~ a place that once experienced can be addictive! For the best treatment centers for drug addiction, check this link. 

    David Walsh built it for everyone to enjoy and share his passion for Art.

    Built by art-lover and self-made-gambling-savant David Walsh,

    this privately funded museum presents antiquities, modern and contemporary art.


    {Image via Australian Design Review}

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    Tuesday 17 January 2012

    banksia beauty


    Beach weekends at Straddie and Noosa have included lots of banksia lovin’

    and to remind me, I found this delightful pic by Anna at Absolutely Beautiful Things.

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    Monday 3 October 2011

    dreaming of being saved…


    My little Princess moment ~ I’m hoping there is a Surf Life Saver in my life soon!

    {Image via Surf Rescue}

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    Thursday 3 February 2011

    Go faster than the wind!


    Many friends in north Queensland battened down for Cyclone Yasi.

    Windows taped, anyhting that can be picked up and become a missile put away,

    torches, batteries, emergency food suppiles for 3 days…

    Some friends decided to leave like my friend Marcia and her beautiful dogs in the photo below wearing their thundershirts, see Thundershirt reviews for more details..

    Her house is in Tully ~ no news yet as to how it faired the eye of the storm.

    I lived in Townsville for seven years, and I made some of my closest friends during those years. My thoughts are with everyone up there.  No power and water rations ~ long days and long nights.

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    Thursday 27 January 2011

    lovely buildings


    I flew to Rockhampton for the day

    {another flood effected town, the beef capital of Australia}

    It has some stunning old architecture.

    And as synchronicity would have it, the 7PM Project featured ‘Rocky’  tonight. In the segment Anna Daniels chats to Mayor Brad Carter, visits a bull run at the Great Western Hotel and takes a walk down the East Street mall.

    Rockhampton is situated on Queensland’s largest river, the Fitzroy, 633 kilometres north of Brisbane and just above the Tropic of Capricorn. Founded in 1858, a mini gold rush at Canoona – 48kms to the north – accelerated the establishment of the city. The city has retained a large number of heritage buildings, particularly within the Quay Street heritage precinct. While Rockhampton is largely known for its beef cattle industry, other primary industries in the region include agriculture and mining.

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    Wednesday 26 January 2011

    once a swag of jolly bloggers…


    For Australia Day I thought I’d share my favourite Aussie blogs!

    Australians all let us rejoice,

    For we are young and free

    We’ve golden soil and wealth for toil

    Our home is girt by sea

    Our land abounds in nature’s gifts

    Of beauty rich and rare

    My favourite Australian bloggers ::

    • the bowerbird stories ~ Kristina from {oldyarns} has created this blog of  poetic words and images. It is a place for finding beauty, traveling lightly & living simply. scribbled notes of adventures in the {oldyarns} workroom, vintage finds, our wanders & longings. please stay for a bit.
    • Mre Press ~ Clare Press has created this blog under the same name as her clothing label. She writes, lots about fashion and occasionally about so-called serious things. In another life she would live in a villa in Florence, travel with her maid and order hats from Reboux. In this one, she owns a Blackberry that’s languished, neglected, in its box for over a year.
    • instinct & grace {Paper Boat Press} ~ Kylie Johnson is an australian artist…designer… potter… poet…something or other…. Her blog is a space is for images and rambling words about . . .share news of my work, the studio i work in, the people i share my days with, and of those who inspire me here and there . . .
    • Pia Jane Bijkerk ~ enhance the everyday with this inspirational author and photographer.
    • Concrete & Honey ~ a very pretty blog of all things beautiful: people, objects, interiors & food. A love of Paris, colour, design, words and most of all, white, all with shared inspirations & creations. And her food blog Urban Nectar is divine too!
    • Lace & tea ~ Amanda has created a blog that is dedicated to luxurious fashion, wonderful decor and unique architecture.
    • Desire to Inspire ~A Canadian and an Australian Trying to Inspire the World One Room at a Time… Kim and Jo have never met but there is a bond between them that is so strong that it can cross half the world and back again. You see Kim and Jo are interior design junkies. They met on Flickr, shared images they had bookmarked and well that was that. Desire to Inspire was born.
    • Nostalgia and now ~ A Brisbane blogger who loves everything old and dripping with history. She’s drawn to things that tell a story, create an emotion or arouse a fond memory. Seeking that feeling of nostalgia, of a yesteryear only past lives have experienced and translate it into life – now.
    • Shannon Frick ~ celebrity interior stylist, decorator, writer and mother of two lovely children. She lives on a farm close to Byron Bay. ‘I love hanging out at home – in fact my life ambition is to spend as much time at home as possible and so I have created a career that gives me an excuse to do just that! I spend a lot of my time at home writing – my column for Inside Out magazine plus my sense of style interior books.’
    • Absolutely beautiful thingsAnna Spiro is an Interior Designer in Brisbane and started her blog as a record of all the beautiful things that inspire her and also as a record of work and displays have created in her shop Black & Spiro.
    • Not Quite Nigella ~ Lorraine Elliott, a cake and food enthusiast who believes that cakes belong in an art gallery. Born and raised in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney, she lives with her food-apathetic husband who takes most of the restaurant photos for her blog whilst she takes all the still photos of the food that she cooks.
    • perpetual-one ~ Georgina’s blog. ‘i love designs that are simple, smart and a little bit quirky. i like being different. i like things with a story, a style and a quality that is difficult to copy. perpetual reflects the one source of a love that lasts for always.’
    • feffakookanA Brisbane based ceramicist, Mel Robson writes a blog about her inspirations and gorgeous ceramics.
    • The Design Files ~ a daily design blog written by Melbourne set dresser / stylist Lucy Feagins. The Design Files started up in early 2008 and has snowballed somewhat haphazardly into one of the world’s Top 50 design blogs.
    • Behind Ballet ~ the blog of The Australian Ballet. Looking at dance through the prism of fashion, music, art and literature, it unravels the stories behind AB productions and ballet’s juicy past to find the new in the old and the old in the new.

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    Wednesday 26 January 2011



    In the spirit of Australia Day, I thought I’d share two lamington recipes with you.

    The humble Lamington is an Australian icon

    ~ a sponge cake in the shape of a cuboid, coated in a layer of chocolate icing and desiccated coconut. Lamingtons are sometimes served as two halves with a layer of cream and/or strawberryjam in between.

    History :: In the summer of 1886, Lord Lamington, Governor of Queensland took his entourage to Harlaxton House in Toowoomba to escape the steamy heat of Brisbane.

    He loved, ‘Snowballs’ – round cakes served with whipped cream. The cook was requested to make a batch for afternoon tea and to the cook’s horror the kitchen was not equipped with round patty tins or cream!
    The Cook was creative and made a big cake which she cut into oblongs, iced with chocolate icing and sprinkled with coconut. The guests were enthralled with the new treat. Lady Lamington was asked what the cakes were called.  When told there they had no name, the Guests dubbed them ‘Lord Lamington Cakes’.

    Another account was the Lamingtons’ chef at Queensland’s Government House, Armand Gallad, was called upon at short notice to provide something to feed unexpected guests. According to the Melbourne Age newspaper, Gallad cut up some left over French vanilla sponge cake baked the day before, dipped the slices in chocolate and set them in coconut.

    Ironically, Lord Lamington was believed to have hated the dessert that had been named in his honour, referring to them as “those bloody poofy woolly biscuits”.


    Sponge Cake:
    6 eggs
    150 g (51/2 oz/2/3 cup) caster (superfine) sugar
    200 g (7 oz/12/3 cups) self-raising flour
    30 g (1 oz) unsalted butter, melted

    Chocolate Icing:
    500 g (1 lb 2 oz/4 cups) icing (confectioners’) sugar
    200 g (7 oz) dark chocolate, chopped
    15 g (1/2 oz) unsalted butter
    125 ml (4 fl oz/1/2 cup) milk
    375 g (13 oz/4 cups) desiccated coconut

    Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F/Gas 4). Lightly grease and line the base of an 18 x 28 cm
    (7 x 11 inch) tin with baking paper.

    To make the cake, beat the eggs for about 5 minutes with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Gradually add the sugar and continue beating until the mixture is thick and the sugar has dissolved. Sift in the flour and fold in lightly. Add the butter and 3 tablespoons of hot water and stir gently to combine. Pour into the tin and bake for 30 minutes, or until golden. Cool on a wire rack.

    To make the chocolate icing, put the sugar, dark chocolate, butter and milk in a heatproof bowl and place over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir constantly until melted and mixed together.

    Cut the sponge into 16 squares. Put the coconut in a bowl. Dip each sponge square into the chocolate icing and then in the coconut. Leave on a wire rack to dry completely before serving. Makes 16

    {Recipe ~ Totally addicted to taste}

    Photographer: Joshua Dasey, Stylist: Margot Braddon

    Lamington Angels

    Vanilla buttercake:
    90g butter, softened
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup (110g) caster sugar
    2 eggs
    1 cup (150g) self-raising flour
    2 tablespoons milk

    Chocolate icing:
    10g butter
    1/3 cup (80ml) milk
    2 cups (320g) icing sugar
    1/4 cup (25g) cocoa powder

    1 cup (80g) desiccated coconut
    1/4 cup (100g) raspberry jam
    1/2 cup (125ml) thickened cream, whipped


    1. Preheat oven to moderate (180°C/160°C fan-forced). Line 6-hole texas or 12-hole standard muffin pan with paper cases.
    2. Beat butter, extract, sugar, eggs, flour and milk in small bowl with electric mixer on low speed until ingredients are just combined. Increase speed to medium, beat until mixture is changed to a paler colour.
    3. Divide mixture among cases; smooth surface.
    4. Bake large cakes about 25 minutes, small cakes about 20 minutes. Turn cakes onto wire rack to cool.
    5. Make chocolate icing.
    6. Remove cases from cakes. Dip cakes in icing; drain off excess, toss cakes in coconut. Place cakes on wire rack to set.
    7. Cut cakes as desired; fill with jam and cream.

    Chocolate icing
    Melt butter in medium heatproof bowl over medium saucepan of simmering water. Stir in milk and sifted icing sugar and cocoa until icing is a coating consistency.

    {Recipe from the Australian Women’s Weekly}

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