Crochet Shopping Bag

I started to do a little crochet with the arrival of the rains. 
This is a little shopping bag or wool bag, or any purpose bag. I used the very user friendly pattern from here and added a few rows to it.

Healthy Choices

 Step 1 to better and Healthy choices - More Veg Juice, less sugar, more coconut oil, less grains.

This is a banana bread made with coconut and almond flour, no processed sugar, just honey, no butter, just coconut oil, some almonds and eggs and a few raisons and vegetable PULP from our cold press juicer!
Our juicer passed on. So since we all like our vegetable juice I decided to get a proper cold press juicer that extracts lots more goodness and leaves dry pulp.
Then I starting thinking how to use the pulp? In a banana cake recipe of course, but let's try coconut oil, coconut flour and honey and see if it works. It did. Very nice, healthy, gluten free.
I did not write down every measurement, although I will get to that at some stage. 
The next day I used the dry vegetable pulp in a mince meatball mixture, which tasted great but they were a bit crumbly without any binder.
The juice tastes lovely. Our favourite at the moment is green apple, mint, ginger, carrot, spinach, celery and sometimes beetroot.
Great way to get an extra hit of greens too. 
(we used to do this frequently but stopped finding the time to make it a priority)
 Another fantastic use for the juicer is to make fruit sorbet. Some local fruit we froze goes in and this mango and raspberry summer yummy treat comes out.

It is a slow juicer, but it is well worth the wait and the benefits out way the costs.

IPADs used for Research

 This year I am doing more with the IPAD and asking the boys frequently throughout the year to research a topic of interest to them, read about it and write a report with diagram or hand drawn picture.
We normally research topics via our healthy supply of books, however the internet is a mass of information and so we are happy using it.
Yesterday H decided he wanted to study anteaters...

 J went with leaf cutter ants.
 What will it be next? I have a feeling it will be robotics...

Water, Water, Water

 In contrast to the last post, the Queensland rivers have turned wild and ferocious once again.
We have had very minor problems in comparison to others and our movements were restricted however we are also thankful, the tanks are now full, the earth is saturated once again, and every species of frog is singing (very loudy) with joy !

Noosa River

 After a hot day, we went down to the river to watch the sunset and have a bite to eat, a picnic by the river!
The Noosa area has so much to offer, beautiful beaches, scenery, places to go, places to eat, and many, many great fresh produce markets close at hand (more on those at a later date).
The river is lovely to swim in and cooler in the afternoons. 
Be prepared to share it with the beautiful (somewhat loud) birds in the late afternoon who are also having their own picnic by the river... in the trees.

Paper Boats

H wanted to make paper boats (he really wanted to use lots and lots of sticky tape).

Hunting for Houses

 You can see on their little faces that there are things they would rather be doing than searching for a property. Actually those faces are "will the croissants be much longer???"
We are in Cooroy and stopped at an authentic French Cafe (QLD standards) where they had some of the tastiest croissants we have tried. The chef is French and the items on offer behind the glass looked fabulous which makes up for the wait. It is not a "coffee place" sadly, there is no sweet smell of coffee as you walk in and no fancy machine, but definitely a nice surprise in a small country town.
Another place definitely worth visiting in Cooroy is "Twig and Grace". This is a lovely gift, vintage, flowers, handmade cafe with a lovely vibe and it is always on our pop in list when in the area (and they are a bit more serious about their coffee, most times).

Leaf Play

 There are lots of leaves around. They have been used as currency and put on kebabs so far.

Performing Plays with Props

(King Kettle, Prince Paintbrush and Princess Pot Head)
Today we read some funny Folk and Fairytale short Plays, did some acting and made up our own stories and plays using anything we could find. We just happened to have a teapot like the one used in the show we went to the other day!
One of our created stories was about a tiny paintbrush who thought he was of no use to anyone because he was small. He was not wide like house painting brush or long like tall Artist brush. But one day he helped someone who had a very delicate small job to do for a very important person and he realised that everyone has special talents, even a tiny paintbrush with just a few bristles.

We had lots of fun with these plays, anything can be a prop or a character, even the sprouts in our dinner!


Today was a bit cooler so we were out in the backyard again rolling down the hill on the tractor and wrestling (boys and their wrestling!).

QLD State Library Activities

 The last time we visited the "Brisbane Educational Quarter" as I call it, was on the day of the floods a few years back. 
Recently we revisited and spent a day at the State Library, Museum and GOMA, but only just touched the surface. 
There is always plenty to do here during school holidays and we took advantage of a free performance, free books to read, free giant games, free giant dinosaurs to stand under and free interactive art and crafts. 

 We had a game of giant scrabble, even more fun than the smaller version!

 These guys were funny, they acted out three different books...quite unusual versions of fairytales, not the normal tales. 
I enjoyed it, it is for all ages (unless you are not cool enough to enjoy well told fairytales anymore!)
(Top secret storytellers clubhouse 3-9 yr olds)

 APT 7 at The Gallery of Modern Art is on at the moment and we only just managed a rather quick walk through. We didn't make it to the Art Gallery.

 The Museum had plenty of dinosaur activities on, including paper origami dinos and digging and other exhibitions (some queues and small fees), however the boys wanted to go back to the Library and find some books to read. There were quite a few children's vintage books on the shelves and some comfy reading chairs, so that is what we did to escape the rather warm weather.

Well done Brisbane, we love participating in these free Educational Activities.

Bird Visitors

 This is our blue winged Kookaburra friend "Giggles" and a new visitor below, who is very shy and elusive (we can't identify this one, we tried to catch a glimpse of her head but she is not ready to reveal herself as yet). 

Books for Boys

Sometimes we find it difficult to find good books for the boys that they haven't read and at other times we do find quite a few that have a purpose, are enjoyable and definitely worth a read. 
Now that H is reading most of the same books as his brother I am thankful that these tend to be of the humourous, non violent type (suitable for a 5 year old that is).
These are some of the books both J and H have been reading over the Christmas break.

Growing in the Garden

 Our seeds we dried from the heirloom tomatoes we purchased at the markets were planted and are popping up everywhere. Our other tom plants are producing well however some have had some grubs or split from overwatering.
 Why not try and grow a few pineapples after all we are in the Pineapple Capital. The local pineapples grown here on the Sunshine Coast are amazingly sweet. Next we hope to try growing some passionfruit.

In our Backyard

Our Backyard...
Is full of creatures and it surprises us everyday!
There are amazing birds, giant black cockatoos, whip birds, lorikeets, rosellas kookaburras on the fence etc, etc, etc.They wake us with their songs and chatter again at dinner time. I have a bird identification book for the ones we can see but there are soooo many!
And then there are the insects, well I have never seen so many insects in my life. Giant rhinoceros beetles, other bugs with metallic opal suits on, cicadas, crickets, giant goat moths and many more knock at the sliding door each evening to introduce themselves. Then we have the butterflies, and not so nice flies, all 100 different species from miniscule to magnormous. But the most interesting insect was the scorpion in Js bedroom. Our first scorpion guest that we escorted out quickly (and now don't leave doors open!).

Mustard the dog is ok with sharing the backyard and he actually finds some of the insects quite appetising. However he was not so sure about sharing the door mat the other night with a brown tree snake! The snake was not happy at all to have a dog in his face. We hope the dog learns his lesson from this relatively harmless variety. 
He does have other obstacles to deal with at night...the cane toads! We have had quite a few, but they have not left without a going away present. 

 Each day there is something new arriving at our backyard zoo.
Today it was a goanna wandering around in the mid day heat.
What will it be tomorrow?
We think perhaps an echidna,emu, or maybe even a platypus (maybe that is pushing it)? 
Whatever it is we are excited when we see something new turn up and it is such a wonderful way to learn!!