Sunday, May 31, 2009

China Tea Cups

My Gran (who is no longer with us) was a great tea drinker and had various types of beautiful china tea cups that were used daily, rather then stored away for a special occasion. I loved the ritual of the afternoon cup of tea with Gran, and was appreciative as a child that I was allowed to use the fine bone China Cups that are normally reserved only for adults. Yes I broke a couple, but Gran didn't bat an eyelid. She had the philosophy that you might as well use it now as you can't take it with you. A theory she passed onto me - although being a clothes horse I usually take it on when it comes to dressing. I wear what I want regardless if it is"for good" and when my daughter is not at Kindy she can herself wear what she likes - by the time she wears it somewhere nice she would have grown out of it.

Anyway... although my Gran was a big believer in using her delicate tea-cups daily she did require a certain type of tea-cup. They had to be very fine, none of these chunky edged cups. Fine and delicate or not at all. She had some beautiful ones, some of which she passed down to me, that I am sorry to say I haven't got on display (cats and small children don't mix well with China), but will have and will use just like Gran one day. I found a cute cup that reminded me of my Grandma at

Share with us your stories - we would love to hear them.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Girly Stuff

My daughter is the ultimate girl. It is shorts or jeans to kindy, but then that is the end of that and it is dresses or skirts for the rest of the week (even if we have to put tracky daks underneath). She is always adorned in plastic jewellery and her main loves are princesses and mermaids.

So when I saw these adorable crayons on Etsy, I immediately thought of my girl. A prolific "artist" needs the right tools and these will do just the job (and they are made from recycled crayons so good for the environment - waste not want not). I especially like the colours intertwined. We have some similar pencils (boring old straight ones) that have the colours mixed, and it is the most fun when colouring. It is a great way to teach them about mixing hues and discovering what colour is made from mixing. Find these crayons at

I find it quite a challenging job to always think of something new and exciting to do with my kids, but I do find the simplest things are always a hit, like drawing or playdoh or a personal favourite for my kids, pretend games. Currently we are on a round of Peter Pan. I am hoping that a new obsessions rears it's ugly head soon as I am all Captain Hooked out, but that is the joy of motherhood.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Mineral Makeup

Here's a million dollar question for you: Which brand of Mineral Makeup is the best? (including price range too).... I am just about due to buy a new cover up/foundation. I never buy heavy ones, usually anything that says minimal (or tinted moisturiser) is more my style. I like to have a bit of a glow, but am not worried about every spot and speck. I think its beautiful to look natural. I have been thinking about getting a mimeral makeup, but it is confusing choosing which to buy when there are soooo many on the market! Share your secrets girls.. Have you tried and tested any which you highly recommend??!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

New House

Ever since I have been with my Husband (going on a decade now, oh my) we have been renovating, moving, renovating, moving, and since my beautiful children have come along - renting. We choose to rent for a number of reasons, but one of them was because we wanted a house with character that we would feel at home in - and that is not something you find readily.

Well, we think we have finally found it and all going well we will be moving in very soon. I am very excited but due to years of moving constantly our furniture and home ware is a jumble of styles and nothing matches. I have lived like this for at least 5 years now (I know, the problems I face, how do I go on!!!) and the thing that has bugged me the most about living in these temporary houses is not being able to make my children's rooms in particular home. I want to make it a haven where they can go when they are feeling cross, tired, happy, etc. So this time (and this house is for at least the next 20 years) my house is going to be my haven. Room by room I am determined to get it just like my type of display house - comfy, practical, full of great art and a happy warm environment.

It will be years in the making but I will get there. I think I will be doing a lot of shopping on Etsy which is a shopping site devoted to handmade items. MissyMooDesign is a favourite and I just love this cat print (we are a cat family) .

Hmmm, the fun I will have.

Monday, May 25, 2009


Oh my goodness - who really cares anymore (or ever). I was doing my Monday morning grocery shop today, and of course flicked through a few mags at the check out line. Three cover stories were about Brad and Ange. The first was "They're faking it", the second "He'll never leave me" and the third "Still hollywoods hottest couple". I was tired of them before they even declared they were a couple.

I find it funny how three magazines can have such different stories, especially as though I am positive all their sources are reliable, lol. I guess we all do it though - people watch and make up a little scene in our head about what is really going on, not unlike looking at a photo of some celebrity couple and fabricating a story from it. It is a bit of fun I guess, for the public. Can't imagine it is that much fun for the celebrities involved. Imagine having a heated discussion with your partner over what to have for dinner and the local supermarket and it being spread all over the media that "Jane and Bob on the Rocks". Simply because you wanted green beans with dinner and he didn't......

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Receipe for Chocolate Balls

It's that time of year when we are looking for comfort food. Here is a quick and easy receipe that everyone will love! I have to hide these when I make them as my kids do not want to stop at one! They also freeze well, so I often make a batch, pop them in the freezer and pull them out as needed. Great for unexpected visitors, they thaw in 10 mins!

12 tablespoons drinking chocolate
12 tablespoons dessicated coconut
1 tin condensed milk (I use the low fat option)
1 pkt chocolate ripple biscuits (crushed)
3 oz melted margarine/butter

Mix all together
Leave 1/4 hour in the fridge for the mixture to set a little
Roll into balls, cover with extra coconut.
Store in fridge.

Tip: Use the food handling disposable gloves for rolling the balls.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Kids and Kindy

My daughter's lovely Kindy put on a Mother's Day morning last week, and it was a beautiful day. We had mother/child arts and craft to do, all the mums had to wear tiaras that the kids had made for us, we were presented by the children a lovely morning tea, and ended the morning with a coffee and a chat with the other mums while the kids played. All in all, very nice morning was had by all.

Another project that the kids had down in the weeks preceding the Mothers Day Morning was to paint a picture of their mums (I am green with a red nose and wild yellow hair, but their is a resemblance there), and write a little biography of their mums to hang in the class room. I think all the mums were slightly scared about what may come to light with these bios. I am sure we are all great mums, but we all raise our voices at our kids from time to time, or forgets to clean their teeth in the morning when we are running late. There were many funny ones like My mum is 3 and I can't remember the other number, or My mum is old and brushes her hair a lot. Or my bio, which started with "I love my mum because she feeds me lollies! " and ended with "I love my mum because she gives me chocolate after dinner". There was some other nice stuff thrown in about giving her lots of kisses and cuddles, but my willingness to throw sugar down my child's throat seem to dominate. I was highly embarrassed until I noticed most of the other mums had something like that on their bio, and a teacher patted me on the back and said, "you do it once and it is what they remember for ever".

I must admit I am not a sugar Nazi, but I do limit my kids to two chocolate bullets after dinner IF they eat their dinner, and they get the occasionally lolly here and their. Have I defended myself enough yet???

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Cooking Class - completed!

I mentioned about a month ago that my lovely sister had given me a a cooking class voucher as a Christmas gift. I attended the Authentic Italian class over the weekend. We learned dishes such as Osso Bucco, how to make Passata (very easy) and best of all, how to make Pasta, in this case, Agnolotti from scratch. It was actually very relaxing to take the time to kneed the flour, egg and water until it made a silky dough. I can't wait to give it a go by myself at home. All I need now is a Pasta maker! (Another item for my Wish List). hee hee.

Overall, it was a great experience to meet 6 women whom, like myself, all share a love of cooking. After about 3 hours of non stop cooking, we got to sit and enjoy a wine over a delicious 4 course meal! What a fabulous way to enjoy an Autumn saturday... It's such a great feeling to learn something new!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Mother's Day


I was lucky (?) enough to have breaky in bed this morning thanks to a great husband who made pancakes, and my 4 and 2 year old who presented me with my breakfast. I received three pancakes (one of which the kids promptly devoured) with butter and golden syrup. Yes, golden syrup, bedsheets and two small children - a recipe for disaster. But we made it through without an spillage. 10 years ago when my husband and I were without children, syrup in bed would have bought up very different images, but these days - it is just fear.

Anyway, it was lovely and my children were very excited about making me feel extra special on my big day, and that was the best present of all. Seeing their little faces with big smiles as they bought in the pancakes brought a tear to my eye. My present (a facial) is on hold until next weekend as most of the Beautician's in my area are closed on a Sunday, so I will have a double helping of Mother's Day.

Off to have Sushi (yum) for lunch!! Hope all the mums out there have a really wonderful day.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Kid's Stuff

At Shimi we have been lucky enough to have a couple of great designers with us. One is Rebecca Nash, who makes the cutest little t-shirts and sets for boys and girls. There are creative, out of the ordinary and bring a smile to your face. My personal favourite is the giant cupcake. Everytime I look at it and I feel like cake (not a huge stretch on any given day, but nevertheless....).

This week we also received some cute new apron's from "Mine Too" designer, Leanne Boyd. So retro and bold, but also very practical. I usually make my children stripe off to their underwear when we cook (we are Queenslanders and live in pleasant temperatures most of the year round - let it be known I am not making my children cook for me near naked in the middle of winter at freezing temperatures), and I am sick of trying and failing to wash chocolate out of their clothes. These aprons have a plastic side that wipes clean so you can last a few cooking sessions without having to wash these babies continually. Great idea.

Lastly we are pleased to say that Shimi has jumped on the designing band wagon and have a few select t-shirts to add to our collection. The designs are simple but cute and again, a little bit different what you see in the shops every season.

Sleepy Head

In my yoga class a few nights ago, my wonderful yoga teacher was talking about the ways in which the change in season can affect how we feel. Such as in Summer, the extra daylight hours and sunlight streaming into our rooms, encourages us to jump out of the bed that little bit earlier and make the most of the day. And so, it makes sense with Winter, that our bodies naturally go into some sort of hibernation. We all of a sudden feel like sleeping more, and moving less. I always vow to myself that I will stay just as energetic during Winter as I am in Summer. But, as my instructor explained, it isn't really what our bodies are looking for. They need more sleep in Winter! And, to help with making that happen, we could all start with going to bed just that little bit earlier.. It will do us the world of good... Speaking of getting to bed, its very very late. So, I best be going.. Sweet Dreams..

Monday, May 4, 2009

Lost and Found!

Following yesterday's post regarding my misplaced sunglasses, I am very very
happy tonight to let you know that my sunglasses safely spent the weekend at my son's kinder.. They were sitting on the kitchen bench, just where I had obviously left them! My diligence at looking after them carefully will now be stepped up a notch! ha.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Lost Property

One of the things I find most frustrating is misplacing or losing items. Especially ones that have sentimental value behind them. Well, this week has been one of those weeks. Amongst other things, I have misplaced - (can't bear to say 'lost' at this stage), my sunglasses. Now, I know it may not seem that dramatic in the scheme of things that can happen in life. However these sunglasses were a christmas present from my husband and they were the best fitting glasses I have ever owned. They were also more expensive than I would usually buy as I find with two young kids they can easily be dropped, scratched and broken in a fairly short space of time. Given this, I have treated these glasses with extra love and care and have always made a conscious effort to put them safely in their case, so how could this happen! I am devasted. I have two more places to check tomorrow - the local skating rink or the kinder.. Wish me luck. I will keep you posted... Agh! I was trying to think of what lesson I have learned from this.. And it made me think about how important it is for us to always hand in items we find which are not ours. It could make a huge difference to someone's day..

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Winter Fashion

I really love winter fashion. I like my jeans and a great top and cardi, this is what I live in. Cardigans are my weakness, and I must admit with some guilt that I have a cardi in most colours you could imagine. However in saying that, some date back to being 15 years old, but they are a simple addition to the wardrobe that is classic in style. We are getting in some great new stock in the coming weeks including cardigans and a beautiful cream trench, so I can't wait to get my hands on them. The jumper or cardigan is an easy buy too. If you own one that suits your style you know from then on what will be the best buy, therefore you can buy online without the anxiety that it may not fit or suit (although that is half the fun of buying online isn't it?). Although we own an online boutique and love people to buy online with us, one things I would not buy or sell online is jeans. They have to fit perfectly and unless you have the body of a supermodel, it is a trickly one. I love to shop, but shopping for jeans can be the most depressing outing. Oh well, we can't have everything our own way.

However, with all these positives the jeans, top, cardi look (when worn as a constant) can look a little boring. That is when it is time to grab some jewellery and express yourself. Of course diamonds never date, but beaded jewellery can be very effective. It gives a lot of colour and can draw attention if worn distinctively. Look out for the next big craze in jewellery - glass art. It is very individual, with most peices being unique in that every button or bead made is slightly different, and although it can be quite chunky, it is divine. Keep your eye open - Shimi will have some soon.