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On the weekend I felt like pie. So I found lemons in the fridge and decided to make up a healthier version of a lemon meringue pie! The usual lemon meringue calls for quite a bit of sugar and butter. That is a component I hoped to change in the recipe. I hope you enjoy it, and let me know how it goes!! 😀

 

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Ingredients

Base

1 cup plain flour, sifted*

3-4 tbsp honey or maple syrup

1/4 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup butter or oil, melted

1 egg

 

Filling

Zest (rind)  of 1-2 lemons

1/3 cup lemon juice

3 egg yolks (save the whites for meringue)  

1/4 cup butter or oil, melted

1/4 cup honey

 

Meringue

3 egg whites

3-4 tbsp sugar (coconut, rapadura or normal)

 

Equipment

Electric mixer/beater

 

1. Preheat oven to 180ºC. Grease a cake tin.

2. In a mixing bowl, combine flour, extract, and egg. Add melted butter/oil and honey/maple syrup.

3. Roll out pastry and place in tin. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden. Once baked, leave to cool down for 5-10 minutes.

4. In a saucepan, combine rind, eggs and honey. Mix until smooth. Add in butter/oil and lemon juice. Stir until mixture thickens.

5. Spread filling over the base. Then make the meringue.

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6.  Using an electric beater, in a bowl combine meringue ingredients, and mix until soft peaks form. HOWEVER, with the sugar, whilst it’s mixing, gradually add the sugar.

7. Spread meringue over filling. Bake in oven a further 10-15 minutes.

8. Allow pie to cool down and enjoy! You can also refrigerate if desired.

 

*Other notes

-To make a gluten free version, you can use almond meal, coconut flour, spelt flour etc. in place of the plain flour.

 

 

As another 12 months draws to a close, and 2016 approaches, I like to look back and reflect on the year.

Before I delve into my personal insight into this year, I wanted to leave behind some parting advice for the impending New Year 😀

I have learned that having hope is a little spark within the darkness which tells you not to give up, to see there can be light-no matter how dim or small the light, and that in order to have optimism is the pathway to positivity, courage and belief.

I also firmly believe that amongst the craziness, stress and pressure in and from our daily lives, taking the time to just stop or slow down every now and then, or even every day is important. Whether that be in listening to music, meditating, going for a run, stepping outside and catching some fresh air, or watching a funny video- do something for yourself. I have often found that I perhaps didn’t utilise the time as much as I should have, leading to some regrets. This leaves me with the point to enjoy the present moment before you, and look ahead, but also leave time to just live in the moment, and really make the most of it.

Life is about enjoying what you have, experiencing the ups and downs, taking life by the reigns and ultimately living YOUR life. It is about finding things you love, things you dislike, pursuing your dreams, making mistakes, lifelong learning, making the most of opportunities presented before you, and being yourself. Every one leads different lives, and is unique, their own individual self.

So all-in-all, I want to wish you all a spectacular 2016 ahead, and hope that it provides joy, safety, peace, comfort, security, good health and new adventures for you 😀

This is a bit of a run down of my year:

JANUARY

I was spending time on school holidays with my siblings, caught up with friends, watched movies, did a LOT of baking and just tried to make the most of the time.

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FEBRUARY

This is the month indicating back to school! I started Year 10 and basically tried to settle back into a routine!

MARCH

In this month, I went to the Enlighten Festival with my brother, mum and family friends, participated in the Relay For Life and had the school fair, which were some of my highlights.

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Relay For Life! It was my third time participating in it, and it is always such an emotional but hopeful, and incredible experience to be a part of.

APRIL

This month my dreams came true when I met my role model and inspiration Therese Kerr, and also my gorgeous friend from Instagram, Anastasia. This month, I also enjoyed celebrating Easter, and school holidays as well! 😀 I too felt incredibly blessed to attend the Dawn Service at the Australian War Memorial among so many members from and outside the ACT to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Gallipoli, and ANZAC Day in its entirety. God bless.

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Enjoying Easter!

 

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These two souls are so genuine, pure and absolutely incredible, and I feel so blessed and are grateful to have them in my life 😀

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My siblings and I had a great day at our friend’s farm for the school holidays!

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Miniature donkeys!!

MAY

This month what stood out for me was raising awareness and the charitable attitudes of my school who had just finished raising money for the World’s Greatest Shave, Cancer Council but also for what was happening in Nepal. Also travelling to the Sydney Holocaust Museum was an incredibly eye-opening and almost surreal experience for me. In the last few weeks I was also gearing up for my Semester 1 exams!!

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I also had an Expo introducing me to Years 11 and 12, and got this hat from ADFA

JUNE

This month my brother celebrated his 12th birthday and also celebrated the end of Semester 1 at school.

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JULY

A majority of this month was spent on holidays. I went to Sydney with my family and completed in my first 10km fun run, then spent a week in Taree. It was such a beautiful and very relaxing holiday! 😀

AUGUST

This month was back to school for Semester 2! We did the 40 Hour Famine which is an amazing cause, and in return also did some fundraising through the Winter Sleepout which was a lot of fun! My school too also did Book Week where I went as the Yellow Wiggle with some of my gorgeous friends!

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SEPTEMBER

This is one of my favourite months because of Floriade!

OCTOBER

This was the month of the Nara Candle Festival, Halloween, more Floriade visits and also my 16th birthday!

NOVEMBER

This month I had Semester 2 exams, went on City Express to Sydney at the end of the month, and found that things at school were starting to wind down a bit.

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It wouldn’t be right visiting Madame Tussaud’s and not getting a photo with Rihanna 😛

DECEMBER

This last 31 days of the year was crazy busy with end of year celebrations, graduating from Year 10, my Year 10 dinner dance (formal), moving into a new house and Christmas. But it was also a very reflective and exciting month I am very grateful to have finished this year off with! 🙂 😀

And to finish off is my annual Flipagram!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/114650321@N02/23468180624/in/dateposted/

 

In honour of Anzac Day on the 25th of this month, I have shared 2 recipes- one for Anzac biscuits, and another for an Anzac and Coconut Slice. This year marks the 100 year anniversary since the landing in Gallipoli, and on this upcoming Saturday, we acknowledge and remember those who fought for our country, but more importantly, the ANZAC spirit. On this occasion, we reflect back on the mateship, courage, loyalty, initiative  and sacrifice in which our soldiers upheld, and the impact of such qualities in our national identity.

Anzac Day

The first recipe is a classic and very popular sweet biscuit. Throughout the war, it was used as a substitute for bread, because they were so hard, they were intended to be a long lasting food source for the soldiers. I love making Anzac biscuits, and they are still a favourite among many! For those of you who prefer healthier alternatives, I have also in the Notes section included a few points as to how to make it gluten free, containing less sugars etc.

I found this second recipe for Anzac and Coconut Slice on http://www.nood.net.au/! If you get the chance to try it out, I hope you enjoy it, and would love to hear your thoughts. I really love the recipes on this site, and highly recommend it. Thank you to the fantastic people at NOOD for this great recipe! It is quite easy to make and is delicious.

ANZAC BISCUITS

Makes 20+

Prep time: 10-15 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

(Anzac Biscuits. 2015. Web. 19 Apr. 2015.)

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup coconut
  • 125 g butter
  • 2 tbs golden syrup
  • 1 tbs water
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 160°C. Line 2 baking trays with non-stick baking paper.
  2. Combine flour, oats, coconut and combined sugar in a large bowl.
  3. Stir the butter, golden syrup and water in a small saucepan over medium heat until the butter melts and the mixture is smooth. Stir in the bicarbonate of soda. Add to the oat mixture and stir until well combined.
  4. Roll level tablespoonfuls of the oat mixture into balls and place, about 5cm apart, on the prepared trays. Flatten until about 1 cm thick. Bake for 15 minutes or until light golden.
  5. Set aside for 10 minutes to cool slightly before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.
  6. Enjoy!!

Notes

  • For a gluten free version, substitute the plain flour with gluten-free flour such as spelt, coconut, almond etc. You can also find gluten-free rolled oats at the shops, and use this as opposed to the regular rolled oats.
  • For healthier alternatives; you can use coconut oil in place of butter, 1 cup coconut sugar or 1/4 cup honey in place of the brown sugar and/or 5 tbsp maple syrup as a substitution for golden syrup.

ANZAC AND COCONUT SLICE

ANZAC & COCONUT SLICE

(Anzac Coconut Slice. 2015. Web. 19 Apr. 2015.)

Serves 12

Cooking time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups organic oats
  • 1 cup wholemeal self-raising flour
  • ½ cup coconut sugar/sweetener of choice (i.e. honey)
  • ¼ cup coconut syrup
  • ¾ cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • ¼ cup desiccated coconut

Method:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.
  2. In a bowl combine all ingredients (except the desiccated coconut) and mix really well.
  3. Line a square baking tray with baking paper and tip the oat mixture in.
  4. Press the mixture flat firmly with your fingers before sprinkling with coconut.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes or until edges start to brown and coconut is golden in colour.
  6. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before cutting into 12 even slices.
  7. Store in an air tight container for up to 1 week.

I hope you enjoy the recipes, and if you have any comments/questions/concerns etc. feel free to message below in the ‘comments’ section.

I have been meaning to post to you wonderful people in a while, but as common as it may sound, time really does slip away. I created this site back in 2013, when I was in Year 8, and I really felt that year was in particular a time I was learning more about myself, my health and as cheesy as it may sound; life.

My parents have always raised me to be honest, to be be proud of myself no matter how big or small the feat, and how I may feel about it, to treat others how you want to be treated, to be there for others, and more importantly I have learned as I have grown up; myself.

I am now in Year 11, turning 17 later this year, and honestly, feel like I have lost touch with myself and my goals. Every morning, I wake up grateful for everything and everyone around me. For the comfortable bed and adequate clothing I wake up in, and actual living and breathing I take in. I say this a lot, but every moment of my life I am so incredibly grateful to my family, friends, teachers, clean food and water, good health, various forms of transport, a great education, safe and secure shelter and everything in my life.

I have learned that everything happens for a reason. The good, the bad, the happy and the sad. We experience times in our life where when disappointing, stressful, painful, sad, negative, sorrowful and/or uncomfortable situations arise, it is for a greater purpose. Depending on the situation, it is intended to teach you a lesson. Sometimes it really sucks honestly. You may not understand why you are going through this certain experience, but as even more frustrating as it sounds, it will benefit you later on. The decisions you make, the choices you are granted, are ultimately up to you, and your journey in life.

I am a teenager. I stress and worry about the future. I feel insecure about my appearance- my looks, body image and how others perceive me. I can be greedy, selfish and rude. I have days I feel like being left alone. I put myself down a lot, by punishing myself to be or do something like someone else. But just like all you truly beautiful people, I am only human. I personally do not believe in perfection, but I do believe every single soul in this planet is amazing. I believe we were all blessed with these amazing gifts, identities, talents, characteristics, experiences and opportunities for we are unique. There really is no one else exactly like you, no matter how untrue that statement may seem. YOU are worthy of living this life, and have been granted such choices, responsibilities and experiences for you to grow and blossom.

I am my own person, as all you incredible people are your own.  I am so grateful for the chance I have had to write my views and beliefs, and to re-introduce myself to you, as I think sharing is important.

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and enjoyed the day with all your loved ones!

Another fun, eventful, tough, memorable, hardworking and wonderful year is about to pass; 2014.

This year has been filled with as you can expect many new experiences, opportunities and changes.

happy new year

I am grateful for everything and everyone in my life, and look forward to another fantastic year. May this New Year surround you all in joy, peace, comfort, hope, light, guidance, safety, good health, love, wonderment, laughter and experience. Have a wonderful 2015 and remember to cherish every moment.

Bless you all 🙂

To continue the tradition, I wanted to share some photos with you from throughout the year from my personal album, and a Flipagram too!

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Floriade-Nightfest

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Floriade in the daytime

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A view from Mount Ainslie Lookout

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The Canberra Nara Candle Festival

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The Relay For Life back in March

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I was a proud sister at my sister’s Class Leader Induction at the start of the year!

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A trip to Taree around the middle of the year

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Some photos in Sydney from a trip there in June/July

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Witnessing the Blood Moon was just phenomenal!

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My birthday cake this year :-P. It was a layered sponge cake filled with assorted confectionery in the middle!

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My brother’s Year 5 Graduation/Farewell.

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Christmas!

Here is the link to the Flipagram! 😀

https://www.flickr.com/photos/114650321@N02/15966496120/

A few months ago, I remember posting the importance of mums, and why we celebrate Mother’s Day. It is now September, and this week we are celebrating Father’s Day!

fathers-day

A Dad is a person
Who is loving and kind,
And often he knows
What you have on your mind.

He’s someone who listens,
suggests, and defends
A dad can be one
of your very best friends;

He’s proud of your triumphs,
but when things go wrong,
A dad can be patient
and helpful and strong.

In all that you do,
a dad;love plays a part
There;s always a place for him
deep in your heart

And each year that passes,
you;re even more glad,
More grateful and proud
just to call him your dad;

Thank you Dad…
for listening and caring,
for giving and sharing,
but,especially, for just being you.

This poem is called ‘What is a Dad?’, and I remember when my siblings and I were younger, we gave my dad this poem.

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I also remember back in primary school that every year we would make or do fun things with our dads, from making paper ties and funny cards to three-legged races, piggybacks and those kinds of activities where all fathers would be celebrated on a fun afternoon at school. That is just one of the memories I have of my dad on Father’s Day

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Father’s Day means different things to everyone, because all fathers are different- just like every family is different, and all of us are unique individuals. I hope all fathers enjoy their day this Sunday, and are celebrated aswell as acknowledged for all the awesome things they do!

 

I just wanted to finish off this post sharing some photos of my dad.

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Lately I have been craving chocolate and caramel, thus then decided I to make something using both these ingredients- but in a healthier way!

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Ingredients

Base

  • 1 1/2- 2 cups of mixed nuts 
  • 1 cup dates (soaked for 30 minutes)

Filling

  • 1 cup medjool dates (pitted and soaked for 30 minutes)
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp tahini (optional)
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence 
  • 1 tsp salt (optional- to make a salted caramel tart) 

Topping

200g melted chocolate 

or you can make raw chocolate with these ingredients

  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 6 tbsp raw cacao powder
  • 1 tbsp raw honey/maple syrup/rice malt syrup- any sweetener of choice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

 

1. In a food processor, combine nuts and mix until fine. Add dates and process further. 

2. Press base mixture into a round tin and refrigerate. In the meantime, start making the caramel filling. 

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3. Combine all filling ingredients in a food processor, and process until mixture is smooth.

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4. Take the pan out of the freezer, and pour the filling over the base. Refrigerate a further 30 minutes. 

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5. Melt chocolate in microwave or with a saucepan, or if making raw chocolate, mix ingredients in a saucepan under a low heat. Next take the pan out of the fridge and pour chocolate over base. Refrigerate until chocolate is set.