Monday, 3 October 2011

Monday munchies, Chocolate scrolls

Well, holidays are over & it is back to normality! Girls are back at school, Mr P is back at work & I have been cleaning like a mad woman all morning!
A little while a go, I mentioned on Facebook that I had made yummy Chocolate scrolls & most of the work was done for me in the bread maker. One of my lovely friends went looking for the recipe on here & was wondering why she couldn’t find it……well here you go Alyssa, this one is just for you!


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These chocolate scrolls are to die for! Now, I do warn you that these are not low fat, diet, low in sugar, etc. These are just simply yummy! This recipe does make a lot & I do freeze the leftovers. They are the best when the are warm so if you do freeze them, let them thaw then just pop them in the microwave for 30 seconds before you eat one so that they are warm, gooey & yummy!
I make the dough in the bread maker so all the hard work is done by the machine. It is so simple & easy to do recipes like this in the bread maker but you should always use recipes that are specifically for a bread maker. There is a whole lot of recipes on the internet that are just for bread makers. This one comes from the book that I got with my machine. I brought my machine of Ebay for $20 so if you don’t have one, you can pick them up cheap & you won’t regret it. I think I need to add at this point that I am not a chef, I am just a home cook. The food that I make is simple & easy. I like to cook that way so that cooking becomes fun & is not a chore. I do not “style” my food. The photo’s that I share with you are raw & original. This is food that everyone can cook.

So here goes…….
Put these ingredients into your bread maker in this order….
1 & 1/4 cups of tap water (cold tap)
2 tablespoons of olive oil
3 tablespoons of milk powder
2 teaspoons of salt
3 tablespoons & 2 teaspoons of caster sugar
1 & 1/2 teaspoons of cocoa
4 cups of plain flour
1 tablespoon dry active yeast

It is important that you follow this order so that the yeast is activated at the right stage.

Set your bread machine to the “dough cycle” & walk away.
When the dough cycle has finished, take the dough out of the bread maker & place on a piece of baking paper on your kitchen bench.

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Pre heat your oven to 200 degrees
Roll the dough out to a large, thin rectangle (about 30cm x 40cm)
Cover the dough with a cup of choc chips, leave about 10cm of the dough without choc chips along one long edge so that you can roll it up.

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Brush the edge of the dough that does not have chocolate with a little water so that it will for a seal when you roll it up.
Using the baking paper, roll up the dough as you would with a Swiss roll. Make sure it is nice & tight.

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Cut it into slices about 2cm thick.

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Place the scrolls on a baking paper lined tray.
I put some on a tray & some in a lined spring form cake tin to make a “pull apart” to put in the freezer after cooking.

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Brush the tops of the scrolls with a little water & cook for approximately 20 – 30 minutes or until golden on top. Make sure not to overcook or the scroll will be too hard.

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Ooooooooh, I am getting hungry just looking at these photo’s! I think I might need to make some more this week!

Sunday, 2 October 2011

School holidays wrap up

I know, it’s only Sunday morning here in OZ & I am already talking about a weekend wrap up.
With good reason though, today is the last day of school holidays here is QLD so this afternoon is going to be madness. We will no doubt have someone who can’t find their school shoes, pencil case, hat, etc, you know…….all the usual that goes with having 2 weeks of school. My husband also wants to go to a friends house this afternoon to watch the Rugby League grand final, hmmmm, not such a good idea to have the girls out the night before they go back to school after 2 weeks off!
And to add to that, my husband is going back to work after also having 2 weeks off. He is an interstate truck driver so he also has to pack his clothes, food, cooking utensils, DVD player, etc. The poor guy has driven over 2000km on his holidays.
I have a short attention span so driving on long trips is not the best thing for me! I need to keep moving & do something crafty so on our many hours in the car & nights sitting by the fire I finished a super cute Hoot Hoot embroidery for Georgia’s room.


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The reason for all the kilometres clocked up on our holidays is that we went to the country to visit Grammy & Pa for the first week.


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Then we drove all the way home & headed north to my favourite place in the world, Double Island.


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There is nothing better than getting in your 4wd, taking your 4wd on a short ferry trip across Noosa River to beautiful Double Island. Where the beach becomes the HWY. It is such a beautiful place to be. Driving along such a beautiful stretch of beach is the most relaxing thing in the world! While we were there, we were even lucky enough to see 3 whales swim only 100m off shore. It was one of those amazing moments where I couldn’t even take my eyes off them long enough to reach for the camera. I will always have that memory tucked away though.
We had planed to go up with friends of ours but due to sickness, they had to pull out a couple of days before. You could imagine our surprise when as we were sitting down to lunch, on our own little patch of private beach, that our friends pulled up in front of us! It was an even better day when we got to share most of it with such great company!


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A few weeks ago, I entered my Travel Chalk Mats into a sewing challenge competition on Sew Wat & I managed to win!


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This was the second competition that I had entered over at Sew Wat so I was super excited to win this time around! There were so many great entries so a big round of applause to all the ladies who sewed something that challenged them.


I have to say a big thank you to my wonderful husband who yesterday refurbished our built in wardrobe. We own a very modest little 3 bedroom house that has minimal storage. A big house has just never been something that we wanted to struggle to pay off, a small & cosy home that is affordable was more of a priority for us. So when I picked up some shelving that was 90% off, (yes 90% off the normal price!) I was over the moon! This was the result…

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Before…………………………………………….After

The total cost was $25 for all of the shelving! Woo hoo!! I love a good bargain!

So as you can see, we have crammed in as much as possible in the last 2 weeks. It has been wonderful spending such quality time together. With my husband being an interstate truck driver, time together is very rare. We make the most of the time that we get to spend together. We had originally planned to travel the east coast of Australia & catch up with a lot of friends & family that we have been promising that we would one day visit but we changed our plans to better suit our family needs. We needed this time together, we needed to not be sticking to a schedule, we just needed to be together & relax. I apologise now to anyone we offended by not visiting them but I hope you understand that this was this best holiday we could have ever had for US.

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Now, this week, life will return to normal.
The girls will be back to school, hubby will be back in the truck & I will get my creative mojo back!

Friday, 30 September 2011

Festive Friday, #3

Welcome to another Festive Friday!
During the week I received a parcel in the post from


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It was full of wonderful Christmas material that made me go weak at the knees!
My daughter had a pink fit when she saw this…….


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Now, for me to be able to use it on the blog, I had to promise Miss Georgia that I will buy some more to make something just for her. What can I say, the girl loves pink, loves candy & loves Christmas! After a lot of foot stamping, huffing, puffing & bottom lip dropping (from me!)…..she finally agreed to hand over the material.
Phew, that was the hardest part over…the easy part was sewing the Festive Friday project.
So what do you make with half a meter of this beautiful
Why, you make a “no pattern” Christmas apron of course!


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I used the half a meter of the Christmas candy material, half a meter of plain white material  & about 2 & 1/2 meters of white bias binding ( you could also use ribbon or make your own bias binding out of scrap material)
This gorgeous Christmas Candy Ribbon by Riley Blake would also be perfect


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So, what you need to do is cut 2, 50cm x 70cm rectangles out of the pattern & the plain fabric so that you have a front & a back for the apron.



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Take your patterned material & fold it in half lengthways with right side facing in.
Measure in 15cm from the top corner towards the middle & 25cm from the top corner down the side.
Join the 2 marks with a line as shown in the next picture.


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You then need to make a curved line using the straight line that you have just drawn as a guide.


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If you are not comfortable doing this, you can just use the straight line. But I say give it a go with a pencil or tailors chalk & you can just rub it out & try until you get it right!

Using the curved line as a guide, cut through both pieces of the folded fabric.


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When you open it up it should look like this….


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Using the piece that you have just cut, make the exact same out of the white material that will be the back of the apron.
Now, you can either use bias binding or ribbon to make the ties & neck strap.
I chose to use bias binding as I made about a million meters of white bias binding when I first brought myself a bias binding maker!
You just cut 2 lengths of 1 meter long strips, fold it in half & sew along the length. It is really that easy.
Cut the next length to sit comfortably around your neck & finish where you want the top of your apron to start.
Do the same as the waist ties, fold in half & sew along the length.
Place the back of the apron, right side up, place the ties just under the curved edge & place the neckties at either top corner.


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Sorry about my poor drawings! (giggle!)

Place the patterned apron piece on top (patterned side facing the backing).


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Pin both pieces together, making sure to leave a 15cm opening at the bottom of the apron so you can pull it right side out at the end.
Sew all the way around the outside, but make sure not to sew the opening at the bottom.



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Clip the curved edges, making sure that you don’t cut the stitching.


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Pull it right side out through the opening at the bottom.
Iron the apron flat, pin around all the edges & sew a line the whole way around, making sure to close the hole in the bottom where you pulled it right side in.


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And there you have it!
One Christmas apron! Perfect for all of your Christmas cooking or to give as a gift to someone who loves to cook!


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(Thank you to Miss Kiara for being my model!)

If you are going to give this as a gift, you could add some cookie cutters, print out some of my recipes like….

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Wrap it all up in some cellophane, some Christmas fabric or a tea towel & you have a very thoughtful present.
Here are some other great fabrics for Christmas
Just click on the photo’s to take you to the Wrapped in Fabric online shop.

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If you were wanting to make one of these for a man or boy here are some other great fabric ideas..


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Hope you enjoyed this weeks Festive Friday & if you give this apron a try, then feel free to post your finished photo’s on the Sew, cook, laugh & live Facebook page.

I would love to see your creations!
P.S. If you stop by the Wrapped in Fabric site, let them know that you found out about them here!

Thursday, 29 September 2011

Backseat organisers for the car

One thing about sewers that I love the most…….the most amazing people are sewers!
(giggle!)
A little while ago, I came across a Facebook page called


It is a page that is dedicated to free patterns & tutorials that can be found on the internet.
I came across a wonderful pattern for backseat organisers that were amazing for our road trip.
This is what I made….

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The inspiration for these wonderful organisers came from here…


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The tutorial that is over at The may fly was very easy to follow & so well written that I am just going to show pictures of what I made.

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I did a little bit of tweaking with the pattern & made some of the pockets pleated so that they could fit the bulkier items such as the girls DS consoles, Portable DVD players (in the big paocket down the bottom), Roll up travel chalkboard mats headphones, pencil cases, etc.

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For anyone who knows me well, my car is my 4th baby (kids & dog take the first 3 places!), so the thought of spending 4 days in the car with my family on a road trip had my hyperventilating at the thought of all of the mess that would consume the backseat.
Not with these organisers!
The girls actually enjoyed putting things away into the pockets.
Hmmmm, maybe I need to make these for their rooms & they might keep them a bit cleaner!

One last thing before I go & do all the cleaning jobs around the house for today.....I have been trying to reply to all of the lovely comments that people have been leaving under the blogs but for some reason, I can't!

I just want to let you all know that I read every single comment that you guys leave & I appreciate your lovely feedback on the tutorials, recipes & my going's on that I blog about.

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!

Remember to click "follow" on the side of the blog page so that you get the posts sent to your email.
You can then print the recipes & tutorials out for future reference.

Tomorrow is Festive Friday & I have created something that a beginner sewer can make & the most expert of sewers will want to do!