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Posts by: Danielle

  1. Cute, Crafty, or Otherwise

    Retro Renovation: “your daily dose of mid century renovation resources… design inspiration… fun finds… and a growing community of people all interested in restoring, preserving and cherishing their 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s homes.”

    Tonic Living: Amazingly beautiful retro fabrics. Love, love, love.

    2009 Christmas Candy Box: A downloadable template for a cute little gift box. Check out the ’08 & ’07 editions as well.

    Posted in Inspired.

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  2. For the Locals

    Sublime, Photography & Coffeehouse: One Saturday we were traveling from the Rocklea markets to the Moggill Markets and passed this place in Graceville. They just opened a little coffee stand out behind their studio. It’s a really lovely place, good coffee, and relaxing spot to read the paper.

    Posted in Exploring.

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  3. Tales of Christmas

    It was hard for me to get into the Christmas spirit again this year. It’s just too hot to feel like going through all the trappings of the season.

    Instead of hauling out the tree, I ended up buying a couple bunches of arborvitae branches, and put them in a vase with some red pom-pon looking dries flowers. Decorations = complete! All the gift bags from America fit underneath.

    Christmas Loot Christmas Table
    A couple days before Christmas I raided the 50%-off holiday bins at Spotlight, Australia’s equivalent for Michael’s. I came home with some placemats and “peace” candles.

    Table Candles
    I didn’t feel like doing our traditional Christmas Eve dinner, because it was too hot to have the oven on all day. So we opted for a fresh broccoli salad and risotto with mushrooms and peas.

    Christmas Dinner
    It was lovely. Gift highlights include a sparkley ring and earrings, lots of goodies from Anthropologie from the US givers, and the parasol of my dreams. ♥

    Posted in Cooking.

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  4. Scampers

    We’ve found a stray kitten. Well, it found us. It was at the end of the driveway behind a bin last night mewing in the rain. He’s maybe three months old, not too scrawny, but has fleas a-plenty. He had a couple cuts on his rear that we wiped clean, and then we reluctantly put him back in case he has a home to get back to.

    But this morning, he was outside the kitchen door waiting for a hand-out. We left for the day, and he was still there when we got home tonight.

    We’ll get him a flea treatment and call the shelters and put up signs at the local shops tomorrow. However, I’m happy to take him into our home if no one responds. He really has a sweet disposition, and we’d been talking about going to the shelters after Christmas to adopt anyway.


    Get Kitten Toysat Amazon.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

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  5. Christmas Birthdays

    My love spoiled me completely though, so I can’t complain. Woke up Christmas morning to a birthday card with tickets for us to see James Taylor in April. I cried. Couldn’t be more thrilled!

    ** Get Carole King & James Taylor at Amazon.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

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  6. What’s Cooking?

    Seeing as I’m not exactly a cake fan, I didn’t really think about making a cake forlthe Husband”s birthday last week until I came across this recipe for Gary Rhodes’s Guinness chocolate cake. A cake with beer in it? Sounds manly, right? I had a piece and didn’t actually mind it. It’s really rich. (I chopped up a 100g bar of 70% dark chocolate and stirred it in just before pouring into the pan.)

    I topped it with a yummy Irish Cream Cheese frosting:
    4 oz softened cream cheese
    1/2 cup softened butter
    1 cup sifted powdered sugar
    2 Tbsp Irish cream
    Blend cream cheese & butter together with a mixer. Gradually add powdered sugar and finally Irish cream. Lick beaters.

    More Recipe Goodness
    Gourmet‘s Favorite Cookies: 1948-2008: via Kris. I don’t love making cookies given that I only have one cookiesheet that fits in my abnormally narrow oven, but a few of these have almost tempted me. Speculaas, Dutch Caramel Cashews, and Lemon Thins remind me of Grandma.

    Greek Almond Tea Cakes I think we’re going to make these for my birthday treat this week.

    Buy The Gourmet Cookie Book: The Single Best Recipe from Each Year 1941-2009 at Amazon.

    Posted in Cooking.

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  7. UrbanMAX

    We’re off to do UrbanMAX this year. (I heard about it from Kris last year.) It’s sort of like doing The Amazing Race except just in our city. We have recruited a couple of people after our glowing tales from the last time. Hopefully we don’t get too sunburned. This is a little photo of us kayaking in shark-infested waters (aka the Brisbane River) last year.

    Urban Max 2008

    Posted in Exploring.

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  8. Making Coffee

    Two weeks ago, I noticed that the coffee tree out back was filled with bright red cherries. After a little bit of online research, I thought it might be fun to give homemade coffee processing a try. (In hindsight, “fun” is not the word I would actually use anymore.)

    You can see each stage of the process in my Flickr set. My thumbs are raw from taking off the parchment this afternoon. I hope to roast next weekend.

    Coffee Cherries


    ** Find Home Coffee Roasting gear at Amazon.

    Posted in Cooking.

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  9. Links for Later? Yes, Please

    Mouse: Pretty photos, lovely handmade things. Will have to look through archives later!

    Kay Loves Vintage: Jealousy-inducing photos and inspirational ideas. And proof that Aussie IKEA is completely missing out on the good stuff.

    Handmade Typography Flickr Group

    Start to Draw Your Life & 75 Ways to Draw More

    Posted in Inspired.

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  10. Raw Feedback

    I shot two photos in RAW the other day. First time. I hate life now. It’s like Paris Hilton getting to release an album. Talent optional. That is all.

    Posted in Creative, Photographing.

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  11. The Goat Rescue Story

    For those who haven’t seen my story on Facebook…

    One cold and rainy winter morning, the horses in the paddock next door were racing around playfully.

    Mystery & Gossamer

    From the middle of the horse stampede came the cries of a little lost goat named Penelope. She could not find her mama and was very sad.


    Our hero jumped the fence and carried her through the paddock back to the herd.


    We like to think Penelope’s mama was very grateful that we sacrificed getting to work on time in order to save her kid. The End.

    Mama Goat

    Posted in Creative, Photographing.

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  12. Links for Later

    Time to restart Firefox clean, but I’ve been hanging on to a dozen tabs I keep thinking I’m going to look at later.

    Ruby Slipper Bride: South African Wedding Photographer
    Once Wed: Another pretty wedding photography place

    Scrumptious Banana Cake Recipe: I may have posted this before, but this one is SO yummy and SO easy.
    Recipe Girl: Recipes including how to make adorable marzipan carrots.
    Urbanspoon: Restaurant guide
    Sugar Snap Pea Soup with Parmesan Cream: from my hero Lynne Rossetto Kasper

    The Handmade Expo: Ipswich crafty show blog
    My Paper Crane: Super-fun, crafty person’s blog
    Tubby Paws: Cute papercraft

    Mimicking Birds: Good music. Free downloads.

    Posted in Inspired.

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  13. Move in the Right Direction

    I’ve sort of got it in my head that I want to move everything over to my own domain. But I can’t for the life of me think of anything that summarizes me enough to want it to be the domain. So I’m stuck.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

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  14. No. No, I Didn’t. thought I was looking for something else:

    Like we don’t have big enough complexes from childhood as it is…

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

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  15. Live and Learn

    So next time we go away for two months, I’m going to throw away all the food in the pantry BEFORE we leave. That will save me the trouble of doing so when I get home. Mmm, yeah. We had some uninvited housesitters. Nasty.

    ** Get Anchor Hocking glass storage containers at Amazon

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

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  16. We’re the Kids in America… Woah

    The roadtrip was great fun. Since then we’ve been taking it easy in NW Iowa. The sweet corn season is just starting, and let me tell you, you haven’t had sweet corn until you’ve had it fresh-picked that morning from an Iowa cornfield. It’s like candy.

    But now my friends from Des Moines have come up to see us, so we must go drink some more coffee.

    With the Woolly Mammoth in Indianapolis

    **Get the “Kids In America” by Kim Wilde MP3 at Amazon.

    Posted in Exploring.

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  17. Music City

    We made it to Nashville after a week-long roadtrip via Des Moines, Iowa City, and Indianapolis. It has been weird making it a leisurely drive. Normally, I would have been on a mission to get from one home to the other and would only stop for gas. Now we have the liberty to pull over and see anything that piques our interest. It’s good.

    I’ve got so many photos to upload, but I don’t think that will happen until we get back to AU. Eeep. I should have brought my own laptop along.

    Posted in Exploring.

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  18. So Much To Do, So Little Time

    We’re in Florida hanging with friends who are more like family… if our family was a bit dysfunctional. (I know she’ll object to that statement, but all I’m going to do is mention “frogs”… and I rest my case.)

    A year and a half of multiple longings have been quenched since we got here. We’ve had Chick’n Minis for breakfast two days in a row. We’ve had numerous Starbucks coffees. (Not the greatest coffee in the world, no. But it’s like a comfort beverage to me.)

    Another highlight was going to Anthropologie, a favourite of mine since forever. I got a frame, a little bird thingie, and an apron.

    Tomorrow we might even get to see NASA’s rocket launch depending what’s happening. Cool, eh?

    Posted in Exploring.

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  19. Things I Have Done in America

    ♥ Seen my family.
    ♥ Eaten at Baja Fresh, McDonald’s (the new Southern chicken sandwich is their answer to Chik-fil-A, yum!) and Pizza Ranch.
    ♥ Seen Up… twice. (It comes out in AU in September.)
    ♥ Shopped at Super Target, and super it was. Overwhelmed by all the selections. We may have jumpstarted the economy with all our purchases.
    ♥ Bought Advil by the hundreds. (They only come in packets up to 20 in AU, not in bottles of 150.)
    ♥ Plugged in appliances without having to check if the outlet was on.
    ♥ Drank Dr. Pepper and root beer!
    ♥ Walked home from the movies at 9:30pm while the sun was still setting.

    The Trip
    We left our house at 8:30 on Friday morning. We flew via Auckland to LA with a fair amount of turbulence. It was nice to know that when you’re sleeping, you just sort of rock with it. It’s much less alarming than when you’re awake and gripping the armrests with white knuckles.

    We were delayed in LA due to thunderstorms in Denver. And then we were delayed again there, because our plane had a mechanical problem they wanted to double-check. Yes, please go ahead and take your time quadruple-checking that, thanks. By the time we got to the hotel in Omaha, I believe we had been gone for 36 hours. Blergh!

    I’ve had jetlag worse than ever before. I’m not sleeping at night and feel like poo all day. Tonight I’m taking a sleeping pill if I’m not down in an hour.

    Posted in Exploring.

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  20. Oh Honey Mustard

    I’ve been a member of Vibe Village for almost a year now. In that time I’ve tried some fun products, but last weekend I got to host a party that featured some Masterfoods Family Favourites sauces with a bonus Glade Scented Oil Candle.

    We had Tuscan Meatballs, Honey Mustard Chicken, Beef Stroganoff & Cheesy Potato Bake, and they were all pretty darn good. I’ve never met a potato bake I didn’t like, so that was a given. But my favourite was definitely the Honey Mustard Chicken. The recipe on the packet was SO EASY and would be something I could throw together after work. It only requires chicken cutlets, sliced mushrooms, 100 ml pouring cream, and the sauce base. Yum.

    Anyway, I took some photos of the night and thought I’d upload them as I’m clearing off my memory sticks.

    Posted in Cooking.

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  21. Money, Money, Money… Must Be Funny

    Last night we pulled out The Money Drawer. We throw all of our loose change into a drawer at the end of the day. We’ve been accumulating for years, only taking out the gold coins when we’re desperate. I’ve been worried about losing the bottom of the drawer, because it was so heavy it could hardly be pulled out anymore.

    Coin Drawer
    At our bank, they want you to count out the coins and put them into bags before you bring them in. So we watched Wipeout and sorted coins until we ran out of bags. What you see below is $1000 in $1, $2 or 50¢ coins. One THOUSAND dollars. In CHANGE. That was sitting in a drawer in our house.

    $1000 in Coins
    And that’s not even all of it. We have a ton more $1 coins. And then there’s all of the 20¢, 10¢, & 5¢ coins to go. I’d bet there’s at least another $500 at least. I feel a bit like someone with a mattress full of cash, but it’s a nice little stash to deposit right before we go on holidays!

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

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  22. Queens Park on Queen’s Birthday

    After reading about all the get-togethers of the Sydney American Expats, I thought I should mention that we’ve got a few in Brisbane, and we know how to have fun too! So today we had three Americans and a Kiwi celebrating the Queen’s Birthday at Queens Park.

    We joined Brisbane-newcomers Nat & Chrissi at the Nature Centre to have a stroll through the animal enclosures. I must say that the more times I visit, the more I’m starting to love those ugly emus.

    We had afternoon tea at the cafe and saw the resident cockatoo Cocky. He can dance and say “scratch my head”, and he made a friend in Chrissi when she did just that. I believe I snapped this photo just before he attacked my camera and gave me a fright.

    It was a beautiful day and lots of fun hanging with some American peeps who share a lot in common with us. We leave Friday on a mission to partake in white cheese dip in remembrance of them.

    Posted in Exploring.

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  23. Through the Looking Glass

    This past weekend after launching a new CD on Thursday night, we took off for a little anniversary getaway. We headed up the coast on Friday and spent three nights at Glass on Glasshouse. I found that place when looking for accommodation over Easter break and thought it would make a good romantic destination. It really was perfect.

    The place is ultra-modern and two full walls are glass. (Do not worry, there are blinds.) Polished wood floors, leather lounge, huge spa bath, king-size bed, media system, and views to blow your mind.

    There was a covered porch with a dining table and electric grill. Below is the view coming down the path towards the “pod”.


    Just inside is the living room. We watched both “Bridget Jones” movies and then the Lord of the Rings trilogy — director’s cuts. Eeeep! The couch had a fold out bed, which we pulled out a couple of the nights when it was getting hard to sit and keep watching.

    Living Room

    There was a small desk where Hanslset up for a while. He was doing music, and I was on the couch backing up all my photos. Aren’t we the geeky couple? But I don’t know how he got any work done with a view like that. (And yes, Manda, those are my Spongebob slippers in the bag.)

    Next to the television was the ethanol fireplace which was double-sided and could also be seen through a glass panel from the spa.

    The giant spa bath filled from the ceiling. It seemed like a really cool and romantic idea, but to prevent it from splashing all over the whole room, it couldn’t be on much more than a dribble until it was half-full.

    Also modern and cool was the bathroom sink with water coming out of the mirror. It looked so zen, but as I’ve mentioned elsewhere, it was a bit gross while brushing teeth. I don’t particularly enjoy watching my spittle traveling across the porcelain square into the moat at the front and floating around to the drain in back.

    Comfortable bed and more great views. Several kangaroos would tend to hang out outside the windows on this side. The last night we slept with the blinds open and woke up to the glorious sunshine.

    I drew a quick, not-exactly-do-scale floorplan one afternoon while we were there. You can click through to flickr to see the notes explaining what each area is.

    I took along my anniversary flower that I got on Wednesday, because I wanted to enjoy it while it was still in its prime. I had it setting on the edge of the spa so that I could see it from the sofa. One morning we had the blinds down while we watched movies, but the sunlight came through one crack and made the flower glow. I didn’t even notice the reflection until after I looked back at the photos.

    Other highlights from the trip:
    ♥ Italian pasta lunch on Saturday at the fabulous discovery Cappriccio’s in Maleny. (We even tried to go back to try the pizza on Monday before we left the area, but unfortunately they were closed. We’ll be back!)

    ♥ Going for a Sunday bushwalk on the Glass House Mountain Lookout Track.

    ♥ Spending several hours strolling through Maleny on Monday before we came back home. My souvenir was a silk pillowcase from Maleny Additions. (Three days later my skin and hair are instant perfection… well, maybe not yet.)

    ** Check out cool ethanol fireplaces at Amazon.

    Posted in Exploring.

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  24. Three Years and Counting…

    It’s so hard to believe we were married three years ago. In some ways, it feels like it has been forever, and in other ways, it feels like just yesterday. I think we’re just lucky that we remembered our anniversary at all. I guess neither of us are super-sentimental in that regard.

    He slipped an orange gerbera onto my desk when I wasn’t looking this morning. And we’re going for a little tapas lunch at Simpatico today. Then on Friday we head to our little getaway for a long weekend. We’re staying at Glass on Glasshouse. It looks absolutely perfect and peaceful. I’ll let you know!

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

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  25. Survey Says…

    Last July, I wrote about this survey place I found called PureProfile. I signed up and have been slowly ticking up the cash in 10-cent intervals. (Actually for a survey, I usually get $2.)

    The reason I mention it again is just because the other day I took a survey about plastic shopping bags. And then on Friday I happened to see the results of the survey written up in an article in the Courier Mail.

    “The survey found that 83 per cent of Australians want a national ban on non-biodegradable plastic bags, while 79 per cent of respondents want electronic waste to be barred from landfills.”

    Look at me contributing! So yeah, it’s been interesting, and I’ve made an easy $60 so far. If you want to sign up, you can use my referral number to show some love. 🙂

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

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