Tuesday, March 31, 2015

12 Meals I ate on the Whole30 + Prakash's Butter Chicken Recipe

I had no idea what the food looked like when I was looking into doing the Whole 30 - Paleo program. My biggest fear was that it wouldn't be tasty or filling. I can happily report that the food is both delicious and packed full of flavour as well as filling. I love creating in the kitchen so it was important to me that going paleo didn't take that love for food and creating away from me. If anything I feel like I have kicked things up a notch now that so much of what we eat is completely from scratch.
Pineapple Salsa with Grilled Basa, (which is a white fish with a subtle flavour), and baked sweet potato chips, with a side of coconut aminos ( - which I talk about in the post that has our Whole 30 Results in it). Click here for a similar recipe.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

My Father Broke His Restraining Order

-Trigger Warning-

I was confronted this morning by the story of Tara Corrigan, 28 year old mother of 3, who was murdered with an axe by her ex- partner, while breast feeding her daughter of a few days old. She had only taken out a restraining order the day before it happened.

When I was a kid the police came to my house and their hands seemed tied on how to help us. It was either spend a night in lock-up or go to family counselling. Guess what my dad chose. Because there's nothing better than being trapped in a room with your abuser while he justifies every mean thing he does.
I loved cutting my own bangs (fringe), and the spanking stick loved my ass for it!

Here's just a small snippet of my life as a child of domestic violence:

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

My Whole30 Results, & The Paleo Cafe Giveaway

BEFORE: My husband Dave and I beginning the Whole30 Program with Andrea from The Pineapple Cake Blog, and her boyfriend, Ben.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Lactation Cookies - Oatmeal Chocolate Chip

Back in January I touched on the difficulty I had with breast feeding in my post Breast Feeding Gone Wrong. It's been my most popular post to date. Many women wrote to me telling me how difficult they found it to breast feed, including some of the responses they received from other people when they decided to move on and formula feed. 

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Our Living Room Makeover - Before and After

We were desperate for a nice fresh change in our living room. After I spent so many hours in there breast feeding, the room got a bit depressing. The orange Ikea curtains made the room too dark, and closed in. The months of new parenthood have flown by and I am spending more time at home than ever before. The need to purge is overwhelmingly strong, as is the desire to make our small cottage living space more practical and functional; (and of course updating it to 2015 from 2008). We didn't have a lot to spend on this room as we are currently saving for a new deck. I think for being so low on the priority list we have really improved the living room from what it was. 
Here are some BEFORE photos

This is me putting the baby change table together at 10pm one night in early 2013. The picture on the right is of when we finally decided to say goodbye to the orange curtains a few months ago, I recorded their last moments. 

Here you can see the curtains are gone but the ugly venetian blinds still remain. Which means there was now nothing hiding our hideous and fugly, (but useful), air conditioner.

You can see we had a very hard time letting go of our giant coffee table once Charlie's toys took over, and the corners became too dangerous to have in the middle of the room. We were so desperate to hold onto it that we stuck it in the corner as a lamp table for almost a year.

Thankfully my friend Nicole offered up this very light weight and toddler safe table option for free.

I went out to Crab Apple Vintage in Islington, and picked out my first can of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.
I love this paint so much because I didn't have to prime the table, nor the stools that I painted. I just went for it. You'll see photos below of the end result.

We sold the old coffee table and purchased this side table from Had To Have It 
after seeing this photo on Beryl's Instagram. Turns out she lives a few streets away from me. She gives new life to small furniture pieces and sells them at our local Olive Tree Markets. She can also do custom pieces - contact her on her Facebook page
Beryl also had this awesome photo on her instagram of a (working) bath tub in her back yard, sitting beautifully next to a mantel attached on the fence. It inspired our next project.
  I found this old mantel on the buy & sell site Gumtree for $80. David is extremely time poor and is always studying whenever he can, so it was very generous of him to spend hours fixing it up. It has some termite damage in the left side.

HOW TO: Dave used rubbing alcohol to kill any fungus or bacteria, then coated it with fibreglass resin to harden inside and outside. Once that was dry he re-formed the foot with a plastic epoxy then sanded it to shape. He coated it with ESP so he'd have no issues with paint cracking.

Next I asked him if we could paint the wall in our lounge room where the old fireplace used to be ( before we bought the house). I showed him some photos on pinterest to get him onside. He was a little concerned that a dark color could make our already small lounge room smaller. Obviously he came around to the idea ...

The wall is painted in Taubman's Signature paint.

In very early December, before the mantel went up, we put an order in for some plantation shutters from The Shutter Guy. We waited just over 3 months to finally get them which had to do with the Christmas period. While we waited we splurged and bought a new light fixture and did away with the cheap Ikea one (above). I've always hated it so I was especially giddy to finally have my dream fixture for this room up and installed. We wanted to match the old heritage art deco details of our ceiling, so we had that in mind when we picked the new one.

The stool and coffee table are painted in Florence, Annie Sloan Chalk Paint
and coated in Annie Sloan Soft wax for a nice smooth finish.

Charlie woke up early from his nap when I was trying to get some photos taken. He re-arranged some things, put out toys, and scattered Dr Seuss books all over the coffee table. I think he just wanted to add some more colour to the room. I'll just trust my young designer on this one ...

Love the little antique carousel toy I bought Charlie from the USA. Finally a room I can feel somewhat relaxed in while he plays.

Next challenge - getting a deck built! Yikes!