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Im 30 yrs old very happy married to a wonderful man (Nathan) i have a 7yr old son (Lochlan) and one on the way! We live in a town called Davistown. Im an aussie that use to live in the states! But have recently returned back to Australia! And im VERY passionate about cooking and my family!

Blog Archive

Sunday, May 29, 2011

~*Creamy Ooey Gooey Melty Spinach Dip*~

Last week we had my Grandmother over for a nice dinner, it was most definately a wonderful evening!
My mum and i went and picked her up after i ran to the store for the makings of this yummy yummy dip! We planned for a late dinner as my mothers job has her working later afternoons into the evening so i wanted something melty and warm, nutritional and tasty to feed Nan, Hubby and Lochie! Best thing about this dip is its oh so easy and it can be used for all sorts of yummy fillings! Next time you have boneless skinless chicken thighs or boneless skinless chicken breast try stuffing this stuff into them! YUM so simple yet it really turns plain chicken around into something fancy! Stuffed pasta shells are also something dinner guests will oo and ahh at when you bring them out of the oven ;)
Sorry for the lack of photos i only got one snapped and then that was it! We dug in with little toasted poppy seed garlic toast and crusty sour dough toasts!

hlf a pound or 8ounces of chopped frozen spinach (defrosted and drained)
2 cloves of fresh garlic smashed and finely chopped
a handful of washed and thinly chopped green onions
1/2 a teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1 large cup of shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 a cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese
4 tablespoons of mayo 
1/2 a cup of sour cream

Preheat oven to about 375ish
Make sure you drain/squeeze the defrosted spinach you do not want the excess liquid in your yummy dip! Add all the ingredients mix well and spread into a casserole dish you really dont want to use a deep dish as it wont melt as quickly :) place the dish into the oven and let it bake until it gets nice and brown and melty! Usually it takes my dip about 25-30mins to get to that point! Serve right away with caution that its VERY hot ofcourse!  

This dip really is great because you can make a lower fat version if you like. Also you can keep some of the mozzarella cheese and sprinkle over the top as you see i did in the one pic i took!
 Instead of using full fat mayo use light mayo and that goes for the mozzarella cheese and sour cream! If you try this let me know how you like the delish flavours!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

~**Getting My Groove Back**~

Getting My Groove Back?
What groove am i talking about you ask?? COOKING! Since moving back to Australia and being preggers i really have lost my groove for cooking.. 

I have not had the desire persay but i would cook once in a while! Seeing its getting cooler here i thought it would be the perfect time to make a big ole pot of Chili! Now its not the same as i usually make it as i dont have all the same ingredients i had back in the states but i must say this turned out pretty dang good :) Now for those of you who have NOT experienced a REALLL good slow cooked chili you have no idea what your missing :) You can NOT even compare a can of chili to a homemade from scratch batch! It slow cooks and all the flavours meld together, if you cant get your kids to eat beans this IS the perfect way to get them to eat em :) MMM MMMMMM! 
I did not used dried beans this time as i had no energy to tell you the truth to soak and what not so i used caned beans which surprisingly enough here in Australia theres nothing in them other then water...and some salt... :) good to know! The beans i used this time around were Butter beans which turned out pretty dang good they are alot larger then im use to when it comes to beans but boy did they soak up the flava! I also used cannellini beans which im pretty sure are called something totally different in the states :) I found i had to tweak my recipe alot when it came to the spices as i was unable to find real chipotle powder and i also havent gotten around to making up my own taco seasoning but they are on the list of things to do! But i did find smoked paprika powder which smells similar but doesnt taste the same still gives the chili a nice smokey flavour though! This time around i also had green pepper which i added to the pot as well not alot though as it can be very over powering! (green pepper is green capsicum to u fellow aussies!) I also used ground beef and chunks of chuck steak! Oh and i also didnt use my own stock i have made stock a few times since arriving here but i always turn that straight into soup YUM!
This makes alot and when i say ALOT i mean alot of chili which is never a bad thing like i mention in this post here we ate off this pot full for 2 main meals and we also gave some away for family to try! Big hit all around ofcourse. When it was all done slow simmering and it was time to eat we served it with some delish artisan breads we got from the bakery a sun dried tomato and olive twist loaf and a spinach and feta loaf YUM OOOO!

I am not posting the recipe as you can find it HERE and if you have read the post you will know the changes i made :)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

~**Nursery and Name Revealing**~

Well :) Here is the post you've all been waiting for!

So where to start... oh yea... what we had to work with! 
The apartment we moved into at my parents place is a nice size open room so 
even though we "thought" about putting Aj in with her big brother...
We opted to keep her in our room with us :) 
So the main wall in which us to be a garage mind you, turned into an apartment,
had a window in it and was never fully covered in and plastered.. Dad just placed dry wall in and nailed it in and painted a star and moon on that said area! He called up a mate who came and finished the wall 
which we were very grateful for..cuz if he hadnt of...we would of had to do it...and i wasnt looking forward to that part at all!
Took a couple days of drying and sanding and then it the rest was up to us! :)
So let me tell you this....paint in Australia is NOT cheap..... i almost fell over when we purchased the wall paints...we baught 2 small i think it was hlf litre paint pots, 2 paint brushes, a roller, a roll of painters tape and a tray grand total? $90 HOLLY MOLLY! :) But whatever! It looks amazing in my opinion!
It probably would have cost way more had it not been for the fact that dad had some paint we used as a "primer" worked out just fine! 
This is a pic hubby took after we were all done dressing the crib!  Look at that belly LOL lets not even talk about the boobs.. Shall we just say....ive gone up 5 cup sizes.... yep you read right...5! Goodbye C cup.. HELLO G cup..
So lets move onto the photos shall we!

So here is the wall all preped for painting as you can see its sporting a pretty star and moon and pretty blue painters tape!

Here it is all "primed" only took one coat, looked pretty good! Took a day to dry... felt like a week! Yep i found it hard to be patient threw this whole process LOL! Just ask the tape! I couldnt help myself!! Haha..
This is the pink we had colour matched to the light pink in the crib set we decided on! They did a good job huh! The girl who served us said they dont usually colour match anything material wise...which i thought sucked seeing i was so use to being able to go into Lowes and they would colour match pretty much ANYTHING! She gave it her best and well look at the next pic!
Seeing the lighter pink was a bigger area we only really had "enough" paint for one coat...but guess what? We patched over spots where it hadnt coated so well and seeing we used a light blue tinted primer it turned out really well! Here is the proud daddy to be applying the gorgeous dark pink!
SO what do we think?? :) i love how it turned out! Took me forever to figure out exactly what i wanted and to be honest i still wasnt sold on my idea when i decided LOL but i LOVE LOVE how it turned out! I decided no to the chair rail and went with a nice crisp (super light blue tinted) line! 
We got 2 coats of the darker on the bottom and it looks awesome! Took the night to dry and the next day it was time to put the crib together! I love this 4 in 1 crib and so glad that Nathan and i decided on this one together!
All put together! Here is Big Brother Loche posing for a pic very excited about lil sissy's arrival soon!
So there you have it! What do you think so far? Couldnt dress the crib  till the next day when mum and i went and picked up the mattress we had ordered! We moved the crib to where we wanted then scooted it forward and i measured and used a leveler to make sure where Aj's decal would go would be straight!
Atti was impressed! Wish i would have got a pic of when he first jumped in and he was splayed out on one of the bed rails LOL was very funny lol Atti has been given his notice as of sleepin in our room at night now :) he is allowed to visit but he goes and sleeps in with Loche at bed time.

So here we are...Here is Aj's Name!

"The name Arabella is of Latin origin and means "beautiful alter". It also means "answered prayer" in Italian."
Aj is most definitely an answered prayer in our eyes... she is our "Rainbow Baby" i first heard of this term the other night on one of my support groups for infant loss and miscarriage, they call babies that make it threw healthy after a miscarriage or still birth "Rainbow Babies" and i totally agree with this.. i said that Aj is most definitely a Rainbow after the storm that tore threw mine and my husbands hearts last year loosing our 2 Angel Babies...
Well what do we think? :)
How good did the girl do matching up the colour?!?! 
I really love how it turned out its most dfeinately girlie thats for sure! You watch she will probably grow up and hate pink! LOL
I love the crib set we went with! We almost didnt get this set as it was discontinued and we put Nathans mum on a mission to find it! And she did! 
Here i am lol... I have offically told Aj that she is has some where to sleep now and when ever she's ready come on down! LOL Nathan on the other hand has told her not a day sooner then her "due date" lol
LOOK at that BELLY! UGH lol im huge! If you were here and felt that belly ud most definitely agree with me that Aj 's got back baby! Yep thats her booty sticking out right there...LOL
Yep shes still in there ;)
Think i will make it another 3 weeks?
I reckon i wont make it 3 weeks :) almost everyone who sees me say they dont see me making it to my due date and i can honestly say i think im ok with that! :) 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

~**An Afternoon at the Beach**~

I know i promised Nursery pictures :) and dont get me wrong we have been VERY busy working on it...But im not ready to do the post just yet as i am still working on the wall decal :) We spent the wkend taping off the wall (dont u hate HATE that part of painting?? it TOTALLY sucks!) We bunked in my son's apartment for a couple nights sleeping on a VERY uncomportable bed... But happy to be back in our room as of 2nite! Loving the colours of the room I think Aj will approve! THAT or she's going to grow up hating PINK lol.. :) The crib was put together this evening hubby and i did that :) I LOVE it its gorgeous! Anyway enough about the nursery i want to share an afternoon with you all at a local beach not more then 10mins away from us :) The place is called Avoca Beach and its just breath taking! 
Please feel free to take your shoes off or your sandals and feel the warm sand between your toes! ;) 
Days are getting shorter here in preperation for "winter" even though most evenings you will see my husband walking around in sandals shorts and short sleeve t-shirts his causing alot of "put a sweater on Nathan" comments LOL the weather really feels like early fall!
So anyway we visited Avoca a few weeks ago now when the weather was a lil warmer LOL :) It was nice to watch hubby and son explore the beach and the rocks! It brings a huge smile to my face to see how exciting exploring places so close to us make them. I grew up exploring these places so they arent "that" exciting for me these days lol...but im glad to be sharing my childhood memories with them. Hope you enjoy the pictures!