This blog is all about me......I come here for respite in between caring for JoJo (our Daughter who has Special Needs)......I am addicted to starting new projects......I am becoming a fabric-a-holic... I love to try out recipes... take a beach walk and breathe in that salty blue to have coffee...sip a glass of a book......I am Queen of the Armchair and am inspired by all the wonderful blogs out there!!!

Friday, October 31, 2008

From this ...... to this

It is on it's way ...... Christmas, especially for stitchers, crafters and anyone who lovingly creates .... Here is the latest Christmas Stocking getting ready to join the rest of the family. How this time comes so quickly ... one minute it's August and you think, oh - there's plenty of time ... and the next minute amongst our daily lives you realize ... yipes, it's November tomorrow and time speeds up. May you enjoy your handwork for the season!
We just had our first Trick or Treaters followed quickly by another lot. Had some treats for the first lot but had to resort to a trick for the next 6 in the group .... sticks of parsley and a spinach leaf for the lucky one !!!!! What they must've thought .... Never mind, they started munching on the parsley anyway!!!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Blogging For A Month Now

I have been blogging for a month now!!! Who would've ever thought that if I just press this little button that says 'Create Blog' just to see what would happen - and presto ... wow, enter a wonderful new world of the Blogging Community ... lots of stories to share, beautiful stitching happening, recipes to share and many other of life's moments, all well and truly inspirational and much cherished by you all. Thank you for all your comments ... it has made my re-cuperating so much easier and not so isolating when in that situation, and also when raising a daughter with a you can see in the little verse in my prior post, how true it all is for us...
I have thoroughly enjoyed your visits ... and thank you for calling in.

I think a celebration is in order now ...
Any Excuse Chocolate Pate : (from Choosing Happiness, Life & soul essentials - Stephanie Dowrick)
. 300g good quality bittersweet chocolate
. 1 cup cream . 2 cups fresh raspberries
. Chop chocolate and place in bowl over hot water
. Stir chocolate with cream until melted
. Place cling wrap directly on to surface of pate and refrigerate until firm
. To serve, scoop pate onto plate and garnish with fresh raspberries ... very decadent. Enjoy - perhaps with a glass of pink champagne ...

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Flowers - and a Meaningful Poem

Here are the beautiful flowers I received from my gorgeous sister - they were waiting for me when I came home from hospital, they are just soooo divine!!!

Today I'd like to share a poem I came across in a little publication entitled The Country Web - a poem I can fully relate to as we bring up our daughter with a disability ...

Welcome to Holland - written by a Mother, Source Unknown:

I am often asked to describe the experience of rasing a child with a disability - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this ...

When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guidebooks and make your wonderful plans. The Colosseum, Michelangelo's David - the gondolas of Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, 'Welcome to Holland'.

'Holland'? You say. 'What do you mean Holland? I signed up for Italy! I'm suppposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy'.

But there has been a change in the flight plan. They have landed in Holland, and there you must stay.

The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, filthy place, full of famine and disease. It's just a different place. So you must buy new guidebooks. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It's just a different place. It's slower paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while, you look around, and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills, Holland has tulips, Holland even has Rembrandts.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy, and they are all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say, 'Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That is what I had planned'.

The pain of that will never go away, because the loss of a dream is a very significant loss. But if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things about Holland.

And how true every word is - sometimes I think it would be lovely to meet this very special Mother ....

Late entry - Kate Morton whom I emailed a couple of weeks ago about how I thoroughly enjoyed her book The Forgotten Garden replied to my email ... how cool is that!!!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Writing Desk Has a New Home

When we went back the next day our little desk and chair

was waiting
for us. It fits nicely into the little timber nook but looks oh so different when it was amongst the all white timber. The timbers all just fit in nicely with each other. Enjoying everything that has Paris on it at the moment ... the lovely ink pot, timber burl and quill came from Tasmania in a little place called The Nut. Now I have to get myself a nib and then I can have my coffee and get cracking with those Christmas Cards looming on the horizon!!!
Little bouton bag sitting up also full of red and green Christmas buttons ...
Assignment still going on and on and ....
Lots of time spent poring over cookbooks, magazines this week, finishing Susan Duncan's book on The House at Salvation Creek and still cross-stitching Christmas stocking which I will try to post up soon. Meanwhile weather here is very uncharacteristic, lots of wind, choppy ocean and predicted snow in the Mountains ... back to the drawing board now ...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Calamari with Chilli Salt

By special request from Millie at The Laurel Hedge: Calamari with Chilli Salt - serves 10
. 1.2 kg calamari, tube
. 250 g flour
. 20g salt
. 5 g cracked pepper
. 10g chilli powder

. 10 sprigs coriander
. 2 each banana leaves
. each lemon wedges
. 1 stalk spring onion
. peanut oil for frying

1. Cut calamari into thin strips
2. Combine four, salt, pepper, chilli in a bowl and mix well
3. Put small amounts of calamari into the flour, coat well and shake off any excess
4. Deep-fry in small amounts for 2 minutes to keep it crisp and place on absorbent paper.


1. Deep-fry coriander sprigs. Take care as the water content of the herb can make the oil spit
2. Place a banana leaf (lettuce is okay too) in the centre of a pre-warmed plate and top with the calamari and coriander
3. Garnish the lemon wedges and julienne of spring onions.

If you want a brighter red colour add some paprika to your flour mixture. Different peppers work well also ... enjoy!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

New Writing Desk?

Very exciting - we saw a sweet little desk and chair yesterday, took measurements and came home to see if it would fit in a little timber nook in the dining area ... stay tuned to see if when we go back tomorrow if they still have it.
This re-cuperating time has been sooo good, doing extra things that I normally wouldn't do eg. set up this blog. My Hubby has been exceptional ... we have a daughter with a disability and he has been doing everything ... and I mean everything, looking after her, the house ... and me. I am truly blessed.
Now wondering about this TAFE course, whether I should push it and go back and do it or take it easy and let healing well and truly set in ...

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Dessert Is Served

Finally, after a couple of days working out the entree and dessert for the assignment I have basically worked it out. Following is dessert: 1. Creme Brulee with Sesame Seed Wafers
2. Pavlova 3. Baked Apples with Cloves in a Pastry Gown
4. Cherry Clafoutis 5. Dark Chocolate Cheesecake, Blood
Orange and Cointreau Compote (pictured from my class - the blob on the side is curled chocolate)
6. Black Forest Gateau 7. Sticky Date Pudding

The idea is to do 7 entrees, 7 main meals and 7 desserts for
this assignment, cost them and pretend we have a Restaurant ... I can now appreciate the time and effort going into making up a menu, making it sound appetizing and the layout of it all - down to the font!

I know this is all in the wrong order but I thought starting off with main meals followed by a dessert and then trying to fit entrees in.

So ... here are the offerings for entree:
1. Minestrone Soup 2. Tempura of Vegetables and Prawns 3. Mini Spring Rolls with Sweet Chilli Dipping Sauce 4. Citrus Salad with Baby Spinach 5. Peperonata and Goat's Cheese Tart 6. Calamari with Chilli Salt 7. Grandfather's Master Soy Stock Poached Chicken Salad. Now ... back to the drawing board.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Books, Bags and Menus

A couple of bags recently
finished ... the spotty one is a reverse of the floral one ... both in pretty colours, quite a change from the usual darker colours, quite suits our new life on the coast.

At the moment reading Susan Duncan "The House", all about living in the house that Dorothea Mckellar lived in. The others recently finished while laying around not being able to do too much.

Also at present trying to do assignment - choosing 7 entrees, mains & desserts.

1. Cajun Style Salmon with Salsaa Fresco and Fried Parsnips
2. Thai Chicken Curry
3. Turkey & Kangaroo Pie in Mulled Wine Sauce with Vegetable Panache

4. Crumbed Veal Escalopes with Marsala Sauce served with Turned Vegetables & Bean Bundles
5. Braised Lamb Shanks with Paysanne of Vegetables
6. Fillet Steak with Green Peppercorn Sauce ....

7. Risotto with Grilled Mushrooms. Thinking out loud here, have to work on the steak and accompaniments, probably Potato Roesti/chips/ and some sort of salad. Back to the books then ... and my six weeks isn't even up yet!!!

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Entered a giveaway recently at Barb's and won a prize!!! Two lovely books and Little French Birdies buttons, thank you Barb! Now I'll have lots to keep me busy ...

Starting up assignments also for my cookery course ... lots of work ahead of me now.
Yesterday is a dream, tomorrow but a vision
But today well lived makes every yesterday a dream of happiness, and every tomorrow a vision of hope, Look well therefore to this day. Sanskrit proverb

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Thank You Cathy!!!

Just before I went in for surgery I received this sweet little bouton bag from Cathy at as a get better present ... just gorgeous. Have worked out how to get from camera to computer!!! Cathy's blog is just a delight .... I'm going to fill this little bag all with red buttons and then I'll post it up.

Friends are quiet angels who lift us to our feet when our wings have trouble remembering how fly ...

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Red Shoes...And A Red PT Cruiser!!!

I had an enquiry from Vosgesparis as to what a PT Cruiser was ... so here 'tis ... A retro looking car, a very friendly car as when you drive it other Cruisers wave to you. They even have a Club where you meet others and go cruisin' ... and I couldn't resist the shoes!!!

Now I'm going to try and take some photos and learn how to get them on to the computer so I can put up a couple of special things that I have received from some very special talented ladies ... stand by!!!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Today I finished 'The Forgotten Garden' - what a fabulous story. Normally I don't go for books that jump from one time to another (eg 2005 to 1900) but this one was written like you were actually there following the one character and the continuation of it all ... I was so impressed that I actually emailed the author and told her so. I have never done this before .. ... An exquisite book, perfect for re-cuperating. At this rate I'm reading a book a week, plus various magazines and some stitching. Reminds me, I'll have to get into my assignments soon. Am doing a cookery course which I'm missing out on for a couple of months.
A photo of the beach at sunset ... just there at the right time. Can't wait for those summer nights ... not long now.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

How I Came To Be Queen Of The Armchair!!!

Tonight I became known as Queen of the Armchair (thanks Barb) - quite suits actually under the circumstances. Check out Barb's blog and Venturing out today - lots of sunshine and salty air, sipping a caramel latte, reading 'The Forgotten Garden' by Kate Morton, one of those books that you always just have to read one more chapter ... fabulous. Not much stitching done today but what the heck, the beach is looking grand.

Welcome To My World

Hello, my name is Dzintra Ingrid ... have been known as Ingrid and since our Sea Change I have started to use Dzintra ... pronounced without the D ... (but still known as Ingrid, I know, it's confusing ...)

Welcome to my world ... a journal of our Sea Change ... Mum to three wonderful children ... bringing up a daughter with a disability and seeing life through her eyes ... being a new Nanna ... photos ... inspiring quotes ... taking on a cookery course ... the odd recipe ... and trying to get some stitching done amongst all this ...