New Life

Alrighty then. Time to pull the sleeves up and try again. It’s time for a new lease of life for this ol’ blog. When I first started blogging I was home with a toddler and a new born baby. It was very much an outlet, and a lifeline to the outside world. Art-making had taken a back seat, and the toddler was steering while the baby worked the pedals.

The girls are at school now (I know! Crazy!) and I’ve just come out into the sunlight after pulling together three exhibitions in a month. Life is very good, with a wonderful new balance, and hopefully the blog will reflect that.

Cheers to that!

Happiness is… (003)

… Jokes told by 6 year olds.

Mum, Mum! Can I tell you a joke?

Ok.

Knock knock!

Who’s there?

No, wait. Why did the chicken cross the road?

Why did the chicken cross the road?

No! I mean, the cow. No. Why did the turtle cross the road?

Why?

Because it wanted to go to sea! Get it? To seeeee! To Sea! Get it??

And then I fall about laughing, but probably for all the wrong reasons.

Happiness is… (001)

Well, so much for a new blog begetting a renewed vigor for actually… blogging. With the last crazy couple weeks of school, then a coldy, snotty nosedive into the holidays, the publish button kept drifting down my to-do list. Tonight though, I thought I’d start a new little series. Do any of you remember a Peanuts book called “Happiness Is… A Security Blanket”? It was a funny little collection of everyday moments and little objects of happiness. With that book in mind, and the wonderful initiative of Schmutzie‘s Grace in Small Things, here is the first of hopefully many (go on, humour me) little day to day security blankets.

Happiness is…

Monopoly on a rainy afternoon.

Monopoly

And then dinner bathed in the late afternoon sun.

Dinner

Dukkah Eggs with Fathers’ Day Salad

Australia celebrates Fathers’ Day on the first Sunday of Spring. It would be easy to see this as an allegory: a time for growth, a strengthening of connections, a flourishing of bright and generous familial love.

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Frankly we love it for the chance to sit in the sun (fleeting as it was today) breathe in the heady scents of Spring and enjoy a beer and some good nosh.

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These (almost, dammit) perfect eggs weren’t going to stay naked for long.

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Dipped in a seedy spice mix, they were a great accompaniment to a cold beer in the warm sun.

Dukkah Eggs

6 eggs
3 Tablespoons sesame seeds
2 Tablespoons coriander seeds
1 Tablespoon cumin seeds
1 Tablespoon fennel seeds
1 Tablespoon Black Pepper
1/2 Tablespoon Salt
2 Tablespoons Olive oil

Place eggs in a saucepan of cold water, and bring to a gentle boil. Simmer for 8 minutes. Plunge in a big bowl of iced water. This shocks the eggs into letting go of their shell, making them easier to peel. Toast all spices and the sesame seeds, either separately in a fry pan, or in the oven. Whizz together with the salt in a coffee grinder until broken up, but don’t let it become a paste. Rub the eggs with a little olive oil, then dip in the dukkah mix. Quarter and arrange on a serving platter. Serve immediately, or cover, to prevent the egg yolk from drying out.

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I served these eggs alongside this bold salad, dedicated to Dads everywhere.

Fathers’ Day Salad

1 eggplant (aubergine), cut into 1/2 cm slices
1/2 butternut pumpkin (seedy end, seeds scooped out), halved again and sliced into half cm moons
1 capsicum (red pepper) sliced into flat-ish sections
A big handful of rocket, and another of baby spinach
3 Tablespoons olive oil
3 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Grill the eggplant, pumpkin & capsicum, let cool slightly, then slice eggplant and capsicum into strips. Toss together with the rocket and baby spinach. Shake oil and balsamic together in a jar and drizzle over salad.

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For after, with coffee and ice cream, we had a sublime lemon & lime meringue pie.

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For now though, it’s the girls’ bedtime, so that recipe will have to wait for another day.  In the immortal words of Stephen fry, Pip Pip!

HAL goes domestic

The magnetic pull of the computer screen has become a minute by minute test of my willpower. Stuff that goes on in the ‘real’ world (it’s relative don’t you think?) takes me ten times as long nowadays. The computer is in our main living space. Actually all the distracting stuff is in our main living space: lounge, dining, kitchen, tv, fish tank. But it’s the computer that sirens the loudest: “Oh, hey, Hi! It’s you!! The pale squishy creature with no CPU or firewire port – well, none that I can see. Anyway, come over here! You might have a new email! Did you here that? Was it the new mail ding? It might be important. Ooh, while you’re here, what’s the Facebook crowd up to? They’ve been updating? Have you? Hm? And you haven’t checked your RSS reader for minutes! Do you know how long that is in computer time? Eons. Hey! Hey, where are you going? … Yoohoo,I know you can still hear me…. EEEEEK! SCREENSAVER! Quick! Come and do something! … Quickquickquick! Before… oh…. yawn…. feeling rather tired… Please come over… Before I go… to… slee….zzzzzzzzz”

Sadly the zzzzz stage doesn’t last long, before it calls out in its sleep and I rush over and it starts all over again.

Well, hello!

So. It’s been a while… I’ve been on an extended hiatus from the old blog. I figured if it was boring me, it was probably boring you too! For me it was a minor document of the wonderful, tedious, frustrating, glorious, loved filled baby years. We’re no less love filled now, maybe even more so, but we’re also adventuring further into the world. Off we go!

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