Thursday, December 2, 2010

Choc Mint Cupcakes

Ever on the search for dairy-free egg-free desserts for my special boys, I am about to embark on the gingerbread biscuit.  Big Man will be giving them to his friends at preschool and music lessons for Christmas this year.

But, before I do, I thought I'd share these gorgeous Choc Mint Cupcakes that are also dairy-free egg-free (except for the Mint Slice on top, of course).  I perfected them a few months ago and they have become a family favourite since.

Imagine Big Man's joy when I told him he could finally eat the icing!  Priceless!!!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Recharging the Batteries

I am still running on 'island time' so please forgive the late post.  

On Saturday we returned from 10 days in Heaven, otherwise known as Ratua Private Island in Vanuatu.  If you haven't heard of it then you MUST check out their website here.  

In the meantime, I will leave you with some pics of ours of this magical and unique resort that is really like no other we have come across before, neither in our research nor our travels.  

Arriving by night by boat: The Welcome House

Beachside dining area by night

Lounge area

Dining area: there's the MOTH feeding Little Man his dinner, and just behind them is Big Man playing with the Nespresso Capsules lol

View of the Lounge Area on left, Bar in the back, dining deck and dining area on right (not in photo)

Beachside dining area by day
Our Tiger Villa

Kid's bed

Little Man's cute cot

Looking down the hall towards the parents' room from the kids' room

Mum & Dad's verandah for night time wine and kicking the MOTH's butt at Scrabble

Our room

Kids' verandah

Looking into the bathroom

The waiting bench outside the bathroom, lol

View from the bathroom - bananas!

Looking down to the water from our villa

The MOTH relaxing

View of the Day Spa from our own private beach

Looking back at our villa from our own private beach

Our own private beach and deck

This was a once-in-a-lifetime holiday for us and we are so glad we did it.  We were a little nervous at first about the whole private-island thing and no kids club, etc but our boys were amazing!  Our days were filled with swimming, eating, sleeping, collecting hermit crabs, riding around the island with locals, chatting to people, fishing in the evenings, riding bikes... 

It was only on Day 9 that Middle Man suddenly stopped what he was doing and asked more out of curiosity than anything, "Why don't they have TVs in Ratua?"  

Now THAT, my blogging friends, is a sign of a great holiday!

Monday, November 15, 2010

A new love of mine

A new love of mine is A True Love of Mine, a very cute blog about baking.  

I stumbled upon it today totally by chance whilst googling the history of Neapolitan ice cream (my all-time favourite 80s dessert).

Anyhow, I'd promised Katie I'd show her the Masterchef Black Forest cake I'd baked earlier this year.  I realise now that I didn't even blog about it at the time.  Probably out of sheer exhaustion at baking the stupid thing.  


So here are the pics as promised.


Very pleased with how it turned out, but probably won't be attempting that again, lol.

Monday, November 1, 2010

In the Night Garden {1st Birthday Party}

As I'm sure everyone would understand, I'm positively exhausted after the weekend.  After an awesome birthday party for our Little Man on Saturday we spent all of Sunday in the emergency room with him.  He's on the mend now and wearing his "I'm 1" badge everywhere he goes. 

Here are the pics from his party.  Not bad for a first attempt at a dessert table.  I'm pretty pleased with myself.

The activities table

"In the Night Garden"

My first ever dessert table.

Iggle Piggle Gingerbread

Pinky Ponk Juice

Pontipine Fruit

Caramel Popcorn & Peaz

Hahoos' Choc Mint Cupcakes

Upsy Daisy's Vanilla Cupcakes

 Chocolate Cake


The Little Man requiring a bit of help from his older brother...

...but no help needed now!

Loads of fun In the Night Garden

Thank you to all those who have inspired me, but particularly:

Hayley Moss' awesome In The Night Garden cake
Caroline Shenouda for the gazillion daisies and flowers
Pauline for those awesome Hahoos cupcake toppers
Jennifer Graham for her amazing cupcake recipes that taste just as delicious when made dairy and egg free 

All other stationary/craft made by me using Cristina Re stationary
Gingerbread, birthday cake and dairy free & egg free cupcakes baked by me.

 Have a beautiful week everyone!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Happy Birthday Little Man!

The big day is finally here.

Little Man is officially 1.

The story continued...
(Warning: graphic caesar photos)

After an entire night of labouring every 3 minutes at 8am I was advised that I hadn't dilated a bit.  Baby was still up really really high, almost transverse with his head on my left hip and butt in my waist on the right.  

I took another shot of Pethidine but again labour stopped completely.  

Around 10am my obstetrician popped in and asked if I wanted the oxytocin drip to go in.  She also pointed out that if this was my choice then we would be committed to having this baby today, on my due date.

Those clever midwives and doctors knew: this baby was BIG, and way too high and in completely the wrong position.  There was no way I was getting him out, but they were willing to let me give it a shot.

In went the drip and by 2pm I was delirious with pain.  Still no dilating though, so my midwife (Margie again) and Dr Sophie (as my boys liked to call her) sat on my bed and said that there was very little hope of this baby coming out on his own.  They briefed me on the risks of breaking my waters (cord prolapse) and added that this baby was big.  Really big.  My Big Man was big at 3.7kg, and that was an agonising vacuum and forceps delivery.  The way these women were talking made it sound like my baby was going to be even bigger.

In the end it was a really easy decision.  A caesar it would be.  Amazingly, once we'd decided and arrangements were being made both the MOTH and I couldn't contain our excitement any longer.  After two and a half days we were going to meet our baby.

It was recommended that I have an epidural to ease my pain while I wait for surgery to become available and I reluctantly agreed.  You see, in both my other labours my epidural didn't work.  With Big Man it was patchy and with Middle Man it didn't work at all!  No pain relief whatsoever.  I was terrified of being cut open while that epidural was wearing off.

Well, it was definitely my lucky day because just as that epidural was about to go in (literally; local anaesthetic had been administered and the doc was holding the epidural ready for insertion) Margie rushed in and shouted, "Leave the epidural!  Surgery is waiting for her now.  She can have a spinal block when she gets down there."  Hallelujah!!!

The rest is a bit of a blur.  Through it all I was positively shitting myself with fear but the caesar went very smoothly.  I do remember at one point panicking because I thought I couldn't breathe but it was kindly pointed out that my oxygen levels were at 99%.  

The 29th of October 2009 was a great day to have my baby.  Surgery was filled with many many people, mainly students all there to watch me have my 3rd baby, first caesar, and learn something from it.  For us the added bonus was plenty of people on hand to take photos.

Just like with my other two boys I will never forget the moment I first heard my Little Man cry.  I had just been cut open, he wasn't even out yet but he still managed a gurgly cry.  It was a moving moment and I couldn't control my emotions any longer.  After 2 and half days baby was almost here.  

But what is it?  A boy or a girl?  

The MOTH was called over to cut the cord and, having seen the sex of the baby, came back over to me and whispered gently in my ear, "We have another little Spiderman."

Welcome to the world, baby Evan!  

And Happy 1st Birthday.