Just a quick update before the grand unveiling of Sophie's Christmas present, that has been lovingly upcycled by her slightly stressed and frazzled parents over the past few evenings. Will hopefully be near finished on Thursday evening. She'd better like it...
In fact, I now realise that I have so little to say that I really shouldn't be posting anything. 'Tis a narcissistic world we live in, isn't it?
Have discovered a FANTASTIC source of child entertainment - a roll of wrapping paper, sellotape, scissors and small cardboard boxes (cereal / washing powder etc) - Soph and Caleb love wrapping them up (using far too much sellotape, but at 90c for 2 rolls, I shouldn't whinge) then 'gifting' them to lucky recipients, and crowing over their contents ("Ohhhh, LOOK! You got an empty Tiny Teddies box - it has TEDDIES on it! Yay!!") before repeating the process. Particularly love the facial expression in this picture...
Have been making more yummy Christmas treats too. The inspiration for these comes from a girl I taught last year (or was it the year before?? The years blur into one...) who bought them to school for the staff one morning tea. I was hooked. These remain the one chocolatey treat that I cannot eat more than 2 of in a sitting, so they deserve kudos for that alone.
1) Melt dark chocolate in a bowl over a simmering pot of water. I use Whittakers Dark Ghana. 72% cocoa, or something like that. Gooooooood, anyway.
2) Brush up the sides of small silicon mini muffin cups and bung in the freezer until set. Leave them longer than you think they need - about 15 minutes will do it.
3) Pipe or spoon in caramel. I cheated and used the stuff in a can, but if you were organsied and did the 'boil condensed milk for 3 years' thing that all good and diligent domestic goddesses would do, it would be more admirable. And taste even better.
4) Top with cream and a strawberry. Again I cheated and used cream from a can. Because it's easy and tastes better.
5) Eat quickly, before they melt in this crazy heat or worse - you have to share!
Must post a pic of the vege garden. It's going MAD! I'm sure I can literally SEE things growing out there. We're devouring spuds, courgettes and lettuces, as well as fresh herbs. The pumpkins, beans, capsicums and carrots are a wee way away, but we'll be eating broccoli and tomatoes soon. The citrus trees have fruit too - can't wait to eat them, if they actually survive - seems too good to be true to have home-gorwn mandarins in Canterbury.
And finally, here is a picture of Helga, the Christmas alien. I'm allowed to say that, because Sophie was the one who originally declared that she looked decidedly ET-like. I think I love her. Christmas centrepiece, methinks!