Last night when I was having a hissy fit, chucked a wobbly, cracked the shits and generally behaved like a spoiled brat, (polite description) because in the space of a few hours, I’d burnt the chicken casserole, stuffed the raspberry meringue layer cake and then when I’d chosen to make a lemon tart to replace it, dropped the dutch oven into the middle of the tart just as the curd was setting. I was not happy and had thought for a moment my world was just crap because I couldn’t present magazine perfect food to our guests who were coming on Australia Day. For god sake, get a grip, it was only a BBQ. Having said that I like to make sure whatever I do is done well. This morning I had to (no, chose to), make focaccia, throw a couple of sourdough bread sticks into the BBQ because the ‘toy oven’ was full of focaccia and then throw in a loaf of bread for us for the week. I think the strain of returning to full time work, not having sold our property that will fund my new kitchen and reno and just  generally being out of sorts had built to pressure point and I lost it. My dear old dad used to say I was like a pressure cooker, build it all up then explode and then its all calm till the next time. Never really understood what he meant until times like this. Thankfully it  doesn’t happen often! Happy birthday for yesterday Stan, miss you more every year.

Well the explosion has been and gone and today we had a lovely day with friends just chillin’  and enjoying the day. No one gave a crap about how the food looked (and for that matter tasted) laughs, wine, relaxing and appreciating what he have is a far better priority to focus on. We used the holiday for Australia Day as an excuse to get together. We haven’t had many opportunities to host gatherings at this house yet but I hope we have many more opportunities in the future. It was a great chance to see how far we have come with establishing the back yard landscape. 2 1/2 years ago this was what we hadIMG_4480.

A bungalow filled most of the back yard, no fencing, no design form and in this shot 7 or 8 trees had already been culled. This next photo was taken today from pretty much the same spot in the yard but things are in leaf. I’d say we’ve made headway! That’s the mulberry tree back right. Vegies and chooks on right.

IMG_9484Our  Australia Day food included Chad Robertson’s potato and thyme focaccia with rosemary instead of thyme. I was thrilled with this.

IMG_9521 Crumb shot

IMG_9546My beautiful daughter is trying to resurrect the lemon tart in this shot. Golly, I’m so proud of her, she has grown into the most beautiful woman and I greatly appreciated  the help she gave today. She also made a pavlova, which she will tell you is the best you’ll get. I disagree, mine is! There is also the rest of the Annabel Langbein’s Pork Rillette that I froze before we went away along with some cottage style cheese with lemon and thyme I made last night (that wasn’t a train wreck!). My little small rye sourdough loaves are hiding in there behind the cheese. Knife placement says it all about mood!

IMG_9537Em’s pavlova.


And here we are just chillin’ in the newly established area where a couple of years ago there was a bungalow, rats, wasps and rancid soil.


Our lamb sausages were good but it didn’t matter. The best bit of today was just enjoying friends, laughing and sharing some fun times.



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