Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Mathilda's Market

I mentioned in an earlier post that we are trying some new trading opportunities this year.  Well, we are quite excited because one of them is on this weekend.  We are making our first appearance at the fabulous Mathilda's Markets.  It is a niche market that offers unique, stylish and affordable baby & kids goods that are lovingly handmade or of limited production. The retailers are handpicked to ensure an exciting product range. You will discover a vast variety of funky, unique and gorgeous clothing, toys, dress up’s, jewellery, hair accessories, linen, sleepwear and so much more! And all this for your little ones ... it's a kid's shopping haven. 

Most of the retailers do not have a shop front, so you know you'll find something special, not available anywhere else. Please come and see our stand at the upcoming Mathilda’s Market on THIS SUNDAY 22 March, from 9am to 1pm at Brisbane City Hall, B/w Adelaide & Ann St, King George Square, Brisbane City (parking available at King George Square Car Park. Entry to the market  is free. This will be a fantastic day out for young & old. For a sneak preview, have a look at the website ( and enjoy a browse through the photos of all participants. I look forward to seeing you there!  The Cute as Buttons photos are the ones that Taryn Newland took for us last week.  

Maybe you could organise a group of friends to come along and join in the market shopping and then play grown up again and go for coffee!  I can't remember the last time I went to the city on a Sunday.  It will be great.

As I sit and type this, I am sporting a sweat mo and feeling like the air conditioning should still be on...however, I have promised a lovely, comfort food, dinner recipe that will be perfect for the cooler weather which is sure to be here before we know it.  

I've been planning my Thursday and it is shaping up to be fairly busy so this recipe is just the thing to keep the tummies happy at dinnertime without causing me to be in a flap trying to prepare things and juggle babies at 4pm!

This recipe comes from Kylie's Nan.  Kylie is a creative friend and a colleague.  We now catch up with our little ones at playgroup and every now and then we swap recipes!

Grandma's One Pot Wonder Casserole

  1. Put diced meat (I usually use beef but lamb is nice too) into a plastic bag with 4 tblsp plain flour, some salt and pepper and shake to coat meat.
  2. Place meat and any leftover flour in ovenproof casserole dish with lid.
  3. Add any chopped veggies you like.  The more the merrier! I use a selection of potato,    pumpkin, sweet potato, celery, onion, carrot, zucchini, mushrooms, peas, broccoli...       whatever I have in the cupboard.  I think onion, potato, celery and carrot are enough for a basic casserole. 
  4. Add enough stock to just cover meat and veg.  I just use powdered beef stock and hot water.
  5. Add a good whack of tomato sauce and Worcestershire sauce (2 tbsp ish of each), a tsp of mixed herbs and a shake of pepper and salt.
  6. Cook at about 190 degrees for about 2 hours, stirring a couple of times during cooking. The longer you cook it, the more the gravy reduces and thickens and the yummier it is.

You can serve this by itself in a bowl as veggies are already in it.  Maybe some crusty bread or toast if you like.  My family loves it served with couscous.

I will pop everything into the slow cooker in the morning and it works a treat.  I sometimes use less works even when I don't remember to reduce the liquid for slow cooking.  Hope you enjoy Grandma's Casserole.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Well, we are both a little weary after another big day at the Handmade Expo in Ipswich.  We love Liesa, Micky and Miriam and really enjoy being a part of any markets or events that they have planned.  

They truly value handmade goods.  The creativity and personality that the creators reveal in their products are recognised by these girls and they work really hard to make sure there is an avenue for people to create handmade goods and buy handmade goods.  Their next event is on the 4th April when Handmade Expo does Gundy!  We're packing the cars and taking our lovely wares on the road to the Goondiwindi PCYC.  We hope you can join us and tell your friends.  

If you'd like to keep up with the Handmade Expo Ladies, click here.  We'll leave you with a thought from the girls to take with you as you go about the week:

Buying handmade is better for people:
The ascendancy of chain store culture and global manufacturing has left us dressing, furnishing and decorating alike.  We are encouraged to be consumers, not producers, of our own culture.  Our ties to the local and human sources of our goods have been lost.  Buying handmade helps us reconnect.

Perhaps this week, you can try to reconnect with your 'culture' and the things that make you and your home unique and unrepeatable.  Have fun!

Monday, March 9, 2009

My Mum can turn her hand to anything.  She has knitted, sewn, embroidered and been a busy and clever maker all her life.  Her Mum was the same and these busy and talented ladies have greatly shaped my nature and my interests.  I treasure things that they have made for me over the years and wanted to share Yo-Yo the clown with you.  My Mum made this for me almost forty years ago.  She recycled pieces of dresses and shirts to make the yo-yos and can still remember where most of the pieces of fabric came from.  I think of the time and energy she so lovingly poured into making this toy and I am in awe of her.  She is a wonderful, wise woman.

Making things has always been a part my family culture.  My Dad was a clever carpenter and he and my Mum restored many beautiful pieces of old furniture and gave me a great love of Vintage. When he was hospitalised with a back injury, he took up Macrame and whipped up some very 70s pot plant hangers.  He and Mum were great fans of Hobbytex at one time - does anyone else remember that period in craft???    

Our latest design is an homage to my Mum and Yo-Yo the clown!  I am really excited about these Heart Yo-Yos.  They come with co-ordinating bloomers and look positively scrumptious!  Let us know what you think of them. 

 The photo is gorgeous and was taken by our friend Taryn Newland from the Designers Emporium Markets.  Taryn has taken some great shots which we will be sharing with you over the next little bit.  To visit Taryn's visually soothing blog, click here.

I'm up late preparing for the Handmade Expo in Ipswich.  It has been a while since we've been at the showgrounds and we'd love to see you there on Saturday, 14 March.  Come along between 8am and 2pm to check out the goodies on offer at the March Madness Sale.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

We Appear to be Experiencing Technical Difficulties!

This is a quick post to let you know that our links and contact details aren't working at the moment.  I'm sure it is a really simple error but as I have really simple skills, I haven't located and solved it, yet!  We're on to it and hopefully will have it sorted soon.  Some of the blogs we like to visit also appear mysterious and title showing until your mouse hovers over the spot!  Hope it makes you want to click and visit them. 

In the meantime, I'm going to head out to the garden shop and look for something pretty like this, to brighten up some pots. Have a happy weekend.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Ladybird, Ladybird Fly Away Home.

Hello Lovely Ones.  What a busy week it has been.  I hope some of you have tried the fudge recipe.  It really is a great treat.  Today I am going to share one of our new designs with you.  This lovely ladybird is Sharon's creation and we will be debuting it at the next Handmade Expo at the Ipswich Showgrounds on the 14 March.  She comes in a traditional red and white and we also have a less traditional pink and white version.  She's very sweet and will be available in a towel, washer combo and also some tshirts.

The ladybird is one of the few insects that is always associated with good luck.  Perhaps it started when farmers saw what a wonderful crop protector these little creatures could be, as they chomped their way through the pests!  They can signify joys and sorrows, the direction of your husband to be and even carry away ailments.  The idea I like the best, is that the spots on the back of the ladybird show you the number of happy months that lie ahead of you.  Our lovely lady has too many spots to count and that is our wish for you!  Countless months of happiness for you and yours. 

If you'd like to brush up on your ladybird folklore and mythology, click here.  Come back soon to see more lovely new designs and a really yummy dinner recipe that will be perfect for the cooler weather which is on the way.