April 11, 2014

Home Notes on Etsy

We all know the way to turn a house into a home is in the details.
I found some lovely Home Decor items on Etsy tonight - what do you think?
This simple 'face pillow'  adds some quirky fun to a classic room.
My hubby thought it looks a little creepy and that its eyes would follow you around the room.
huh? ...whatever man...

*face throw pillow  by My Little BelleVille
*quartz crystal speciman by NostalgicWarehouse
*In Flight print by Skinny laMinx
*Dark Gray Turkish Bath Towel by BathStyle
*Wood Planter by Cattails Woodwork
* Mitten Print by My Little BelleVille

for any home decor style, you know you'll find something amazing over at Etsy!


April 8, 2014

the secret...



so what are you waiting for? go on....

Ive been a little busy in my little world and haven't had that much time to blog.

School holidays start soon and Easter is around the corner - its going to get a lot more hectic real fast.

I do hope to start posting more regularly.

So have you noticed the tweaks on my blog?

I've had a new blog layout done, thanks to the ever so talented Katrina whom many of you know via 'The Block' - she is also the girl behind The Media Maid and was such a great help...such a smooth process - thanks so much Katrina, I love it!

*image via

April 4, 2014

LA Stories: Stahl House

I cant believe its been a year since we visited the West Coast of America...the days, weeks and months seem to intertwine and before you know its almost time for another trip (yes please!).

As a family we like to plan and discuss where to next - its nice to dream right?!

I was going through my Holiday snapshots - all saved in computer files...downloaded and neglected - its a real issue for me as I don't think I've printed photos since 2004!! So bad!

I have to take time out and tackle my photo organisation problem and get some beautiful photo books printed...

so a year ago, we were in LA.

I had organised to do a house tour of Stahl house. Andrew took the boys to 'The Grove' as I knew they wouldn't really be keen on a House tour...

so I caught up with my friends Tammy and Michael, who are both LA locals but had never seen it, so off we went up into the Hollywood hills - there were strict instructions of where to park as the street is private and gated and who wants to annoy the neighbours?

When we arrived it looked like any normal carport but when the Tour Guide opened the back door into the property we all went 'WOW!'...like I mean mouth wide open 'WOW!'...just stunning!





The Stahl's bought the land for a mere $13,500 in 1954 and the house was designed by

Pierre Koenig in 1959. A simple glass and steel house that takes advantage of the stunning views over LA.

Perched high up in the hills with a vast drop down, here the Stahl's raised their family ...it is still privately owned by the family and these days its used for photo-shoots and commercials as well as the scheduled House Tours which pay for its maintenance.

The one thing Tammy and I agreed on when we left the tour was that we both had an urge to go home and de-clutter...being in such a minimal space creates a feeling of freedom...which is what every home should feel like!

So if you ever visit LA and want to do something fun and a little different, go visit Stahl House.

April 1, 2014

Americana: Mac 'n' Cheese

Do you have a go-to comfort dish?  I have a few but one of them is the simple combination of Macaroni and creamy cheese sauce. Oh yum!
I don't make it often (calories!!...) but when I do, we all enjoy it so much, the boys always ask for seconds so I make sure to bake it in my large baking dish.
It's also a perfect side dish when entertaining for a large crowd. A real crowd pleaser!
I spotted this Mac'n' Cheese recipe by LA chef & restaurant owner, Wolfgang Puck,
via 'Hollywood Housewife' blog.
Andrew and I enjoyed dinner at one of Wolfgang Puck's restaurants whilst on Honeymoon in LA many moons ago.
The recipe below seemed easy enough...and it turned out perfectly - the added crunch of bread crumbs on top make it so good, promise!


Ingrediants
85g  unsalted butter, plus more for greasing  
·    6 Tbs. all-purpose flour 
·    1 bay leaf 
·    4 cups milk 
·    1 1/4 cups crème fraîche 
·    1 1/2 tsp. fleur de sel 
·    3 3/4 cups shredded mozzarella 
·    1 3/4 cups shredded aged cheddar cheese 
·    Freshly ground white pepper, to taste 
·    450g  cavatappi, ( or small penne) cooked al dente
·      3/4 cup fresh brioche bread crumbs 
        Method Preheat an oven to 180°C. Butter your baking dish.    
        In a  saucepan over medium heat, melt the 6 Tbs. butter. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring, until blended, about 1 minute. Add the bay leaf and slowly whisk in the milk until smooth. Simmer, whisking occasionally, until the mixture is thickened, 14 to 16 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and discard. Whisk in the crème fraîche and the 1 1/2 tsp. fleur de sel and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat and stir in 1 1/4 cups each of the mozzarella and cheddar. Season with fleur de sel and white pepper. 

In a large bowl, combine the pasta and cheese sauce and stir in 2 cups of the mozzarella. Transfer to the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella and cheddar and then with the bread crumbs. Bake until the bread crumbs are golden and the cheese is bubbly, about 30 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Serves 8 to 10. 

Recipe via Williams-Sonoma recipes  




March 29, 2014

R-e-l-a-x...its the weekend!


We are spending a Saturday night in and I couldn't be happier...
its been a while since we've had time to chill as a family and hang-out.  We had Pizza for dinner and are watching 'Captain America' on TV...

I found these beautiful sun-filled images on Pinterest

After the Rain
comes the Sun...

Hope your having a chilled out weekend too!

*images via
Top * Middle * Bottom


March 26, 2014

Experiments in Collage

I’ve started a 6-week online workshop – ‘Experiments in Collage’, with Collage/Mixed media artist, Randel Plowman.
...I love Randel’s style and have been following his work and blog for years now.
I also have two limited edition prints of his ‘Bird’ collages hanging in my kitchen so you can say Im a huge fan!
Randel has offered the online course before but I had always been too busy to take it and the timing was never right so am pleased to be taking part now.
It’s been great so far although I'm already behind with my homework but I’ll get there as it’s so interesting!...

I love Collage, Mixed Media and Art journaling – it takes me back to childhood ...paper & glue and craft time. We had a great craft room at my primary school, it was a messy haven where you can experiment and enjoy the process!
 I'm sad that my boys don’t really do that much creative craft/art at school...so much discussion about creativity in schools been overtaken by Academic expectations...its a real shame!
Back to my post – this here, is part of my first homework assignment, these collages were meant to be done quite fast
and free flowing so this required trying not to think about it too much, which can be really tricky (for me anyway...)
they turned out so cute and it was a fun exercise, can’t wait to do more!
I turned mine into Greeting cards by securing my collage onto thick cardstock and I’m going to list them in my Etsy shop!


March 21, 2014

Illustrated Food


Love these!
How fun...
food + illustrating, two of my favorite things!

This week has just flown by for me...I'm like is it really Friday already, I just got over Monday! (my stressful day...)  we've been busy with High school application forms and Open days, pouring over home plans getting inspired (and confused) and hanging out for info about this missing Malaysian flight - are you as intrigued as I am?
Have a lovely weekend peeps!!

illustrations:
Lemonade by Ayu Iwashima * Biscuits by
Caitlin Shearer  * Food themed Book Cover by
Aurora Cacciapuoti