Sunday, June 30, 2013

26/52: a portrait project

Hunting and gathering with the meerkats

floor play in stripes

bathtime fun

Miss three always on the move. Exploring and venturing out into the wild. Watching the beginnings of the sun setting with the meerkats at the Melbourne Zoo. 

Little fox turned 6 months old. Rolling and kicking. Grabbing a toadstool rattle with his ten little fingers. He has such great personality and cheeky smile.

~ Joining Jodi over at Che and fidel for the 52/2013 project ~

Saturday, June 29, 2013

BITS + PIECES- stills: a weekly collection

Slow days with the fire on
Sewing late in the afternoons
Enjoying my tribe, their laughter and creative mayhem
Toys resting in the sandpitt after much play
The days are just too short though
The nights long with wee ones waking
The wait begins for the rebirth of the seasonal sown vegetable garden 
The week ended with an adventure to the zoo on the most perfect of winter's days. Sunshine, no wind and happy children.

Joining The beetle shack for Weekly Collection stills.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

25/52: a portrait project

Little fox greeting me after a sleep. His smiles are majestic.

Miss Three continuing her major art piece at Nanas

"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013."
We have been enjoying crafternoons and gentle days leading up to the Winter Soltice. We called in the light, lighting candles, planting seeds in the garden and being creative.
Little Fox is almost 6 months old and greets us like an old soul. Full of joy and chatter. Miss Three has been busy with Montessori lessons, practising her writing and quilting and running around at her Nan's while l quilt.
Our family nest is filled with colour, warmth, washing to be folded, busy play, noisy chatter, lines of animals on a march through the house, singing and movement. There are moments where all is quiet, a cup of tea enjoyed while little ones play. I wouldn't change our family for the world. 

~ Joining Jodi over at Che and fidel for the 52/2013 project ~

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Wordless Wednesday- Sunday pinnie fun

Destined for the Etsy shop tomorrow such a great pinnie for the Winter. Miss Three wanted this for her wardrobe. I wanted one in my size but alas there is a little girl somewhere who's destined to feel as free as a bird. 

Joining thelittledrummerboys
for Wordless Wednesday 

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

A Winter Soup Kitchen

Winter comes and the chill has started to set in. There is new life in the garden, snow peas, climbing peas and garlic shooting through the soil and reaching for the sky. I'm spending time by the fire trying to keep the little ones warm and healing from ongoing coughs. Today l am sharing three recipes for soup making to warm you against the winter chill. The leaves as a mess on the ground, the tree limbs bare and the days short. We are coming up to the Winter solitice and as the light goes and the dark sets in, soup just makes everything better. Especially when you make it and serve it with a thick slice of buttered bread.

How to make Vegetable Stock Concentrate

Stock is really important when making a great soup so l thought to include the thermie recipe for stock concentrate. I've made this three times since getting my thermie and it's one of the best things to have in the fridge for easy and quick meals. Now you're meant to make it in a thermomix but l don't see why you couldn't make it on the stove top.

200g celery, roughly cut
2 carrots, roughly cut
1 onion, peeled and halved
1 tomato, halved
1 zucchini, roughly cut
1 clove garlic
1 bay leaf
few leaves basil, sage and rosemary
1 bunch parsley
150g rock salt
1 tbsp oil

How to make in thermie
Chop all veges for 10 seconds on speed 6
Add salt and oil and cook at varoma temperature for 20 minutes on speed 1
Mix by slowly turning dial to speed 6 then pulverize for 1 minute on speed 9

Place in jars for up to two months in the fridge of freeze for 6 months in ice cube trays.

How to make in a blender/ stove top
If you don't have a thermomix you can blend and chop in a blender, cook on the stove top till tender and then put it back in a blender to blend till smooth in consistency. Place in jars for up to two months in the fridge of freeze for 6 months in ice cube trays.

Leek and Potato Soup

50g unsalted butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1kg potatoes, peeled, cut into 1cm cubes (I like Desiree potatoes)
1 leek, cut in half, washed well, finely sliced
1 medium brown onion, peeled, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 fresh bay leaves
1 litre fresh chicken stock or use 2 tbsp of vegetable stock concentrate and mix with warm water to dissolve.
1/4 cup cream
sea salt and fresh ground white pepper
2 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, finely shredded, to garnish

How to make
Heat butter and oil in a large heavy-based pan. Add the potatoes, leek, onion, garlic and bay leaves and cook on a low heat, stirring frequently until the leeks have softened.
Add the stock and simmer, covered, for about 25 minutes or until potatoes are very tender. Remove the bay leaves and purée the soup until smooth. Return the soup to the saucepan and stir through the cream. Season to taste. Add more chicken stock if necessary to give the desired consistency.
Ladle into soup bowls or large T2 cups, garnish with parsley and crusty bread. 

How to make in the Thermomix

Place cloves of garlic, leek and onion in thermomix chop on speed 6 for 6 seconds. Add olive oil and cook on 100 degrees for 1 min on speed 1.
Add diced potatoes, stock, butter, bay leaves and cook for 18 mins on Veroma. Check that potatoes are soft, remove bay leaves. Add seasoning and cream and blend for 1 minute. Blend on speed 8 starting at speed 1 and slowly increasing it to prevent liquid coming out. 
Taste and continue seasoning if needed. 
Serve and add parsley as a garnish.

Lentil Soup

1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 onion, peeled and chopped
1 stick of celery
250grams of red lentils (brown lentils are ok too)
500 grams of Roma tomatoes, cooked
1 litre of water
2 tbsp of stock concentrate or you can use 2 stock cubes
freshly ground pepper and salt
chopped parsley

How to make in thermie
Add celery, onion, carrot and chop using turbo button 2 or three times till ingredients are chopped. Cook for 1 minute on 100 degrees, speed 1. Add lentils, tomatoes, stock and water, pepper and salt to TM bowl and cook for 25 minutes on 100 degrees 

How to make in a blender/ stove top
Place all ingredients into a stock pot, cover and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer until lentils are tender. Allow soup to sit for about an hour. Reheat, serve and garnish with parsley.

Enjoy! I would love to know what you are making in the kitchen- leave a comment below-send me a picture or recipe to share at Become a member of the blog and be notified of blog posts as they happen. Tell your friends about Poppyfox, share the love. If you're interested in doing a guest post please get in touch at poppyfoxathome@gmail. We'd love to hear from you.

x Mummafox

Sunday, June 16, 2013

24/52: a portrait project

"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013."
Miss Three wrapped warmly against the winter chill. Our Montessori lessons have focused on encouraging independence. Learning to dress and making morning rituals. She's helping Little fox get dressed and has mastered buttoning and using zips.

Little fox is getting big. Teething and unsettled at the moment but I'm hoping he begins to sleep at night again. These are the last days in his Moses basket. I'm capturing these moments so I can look back. They grow up so quickly.

This weeks favourites-
This week I've enjoyed the surprise and joy at oyster-pearl
Those lush curls and the defining moment of a two year old everything-to-someone
A painted Matilda ready to take on the world or a photo shoot at thelittlebeds
Owl wings inspired by Llevo el invierno at miranarnie
Boys are such incredible little people aren't they. 
Great moments captured over at crumbbums

~ Joining Jodi over at Che and fidel for the 52/2013 project ~

Friday, June 14, 2013

Reflections on motherhood and Mytop 5

The more I take care of me with everyday rituals the more space and love I have to give to others. Common sense some might say but it's something l have just begun to see the value in. I guess l always thought it was rather selfish now l know it to be crucial to being a good mum.
It's a lesson I'm embracing with each day as I challenge myself, lately l have been feeling like there is so much unfinished around me, it's brought on immense feelings of mother-guilt. The voice that tells you, you should be capable of achieving everything in good time. I've felt as if l have been floundering. I have to remind myself Little fox is only five and a half months old and teething and have a toddler going through what l could only describe as adolescence. When l stop and talk to my mother guilt l know l am doing all l can. The need to be patient and kind to myself but it's an ongoing reminder that l am still learning. Being held accountable with MyTop5 keeps me mindful of taking care of me.

I've been busy, taking care of others, doing Montessori, setting up the Etsy shop and being a mother to my two wee ones. I've got handmade stock to put in the Etsy shop and it's this weeks goal from today to work on it. I've got blogposts written and not yet finished and I going to complete those too. For the past couple of weeks l have been less goal orientated with Mytop5 and more self aware. I've been enjoying practising awareness in nature and in everyday moments. Returning to daily practise of the breath and everyday rituals that ground me to the present.
Noticing the sunshine streaming in the windows of our car as we drove along the coast exploring and having adventures this past week. Watching how the change in season plays with the landscape. The turn in the colours and the bare trees. Tree limbs now naked and bare with only the memory of it's leaves - a woven mess on the ground.  Sand and loamy soil imprinted with rain and wind and ever-changing. Paddocks lush, green and windblown. Cattle feasting on the grass bracing themselves against the wintry elements. Lambs standing near their mothers no longer small but limber and adventurous together in groups. 

Then I've also been practising the art of shopping and lunching at cafe's with my tribe. I splurged at my favourite shop in Barwon heads Kiitoslivingbydesign and bought socks to wear with my salties. But the highlight was watching Miss Three playing with a wooden tram with its round peg people while i caught up with the owner and had a chat with Maria about the importance of looking after me. It's strange how those unplanned conversations are happening more and more. There have been lots of things l have done for myself but more than anything l now realise l am important too in my tribe and l deserve comfort and TLC too.
Returning home to washing needing to be done. A house clean but in need of a vacuum. Meals to be cooked and baby food to be made. I noticed this morning on my way out the door to drop Miss Three at childcare that the garden is changing.  Seeds we planted before we left on our holiday pushing tiny green shoots through the soil and garlic tops growing another cm or two. When the rain stops broad beans, brocolli, kale, more garlic and peas need to go in. The zucchinis to be pulled out and a potato bed planted in front of the lounge window. Little fox sleep on the couch pillow as l write this as previous attempts to put him to bed haven't worked. A perfect example how what we think should happen doesn't and how we need to remember to be fluid in our mothering and our daily life practise.
I hope this week you look after yourself and take care of you.

Enjoying coffee's, a good film, new hair and a crochet bear
spending time at McCanns nursery a haven for slow breakfasts', hot coffee and play
vino o'clock, being silly, watching nature
catching up with Maria at Kiitos and being reminded to take care of me
buying lush socks for winter and sharing a cuddle moment with Miss 3
lunching with my tribe at Gingermais and actually having time with Ads

What are your top 5 going to be? Try to take care of you by doing just one thing for yourself this week. Join the blog by being a member so i know your here. Follow me on Instagram during the week @thepoppyfox, join in and use hash tag #sbtbmytop5 and drop me a line so l can follow you as you venture into your Top5.

X Mummafox.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

A winter holiday

It's a tradition to take a winter holiday down the coast. Ads and I have been keeping to this tradition for almost eleven years. This was our first time as a family of four. It was a chance to observe and venture outside, to enjoy the sunny but windy weather interspersed with rainy moments.

I love the warm weather but winter is such an enchanted time. We head down to Anglesea to a family owned holiday shack once or twice a year. It's a simple place we love and call home. We packed our woolly socks, beanies, mohair blankets, quilts and gum boots. I packed my thermie for quick cooking, created a menu for the week, worked out a rough Montessori lesson plan and loaded our new tablet with games, books and movies for Miss Three. We had long drives visiting coastal beaches along the Bellarine peninsula, Barwon heads, Ocean grove, St. Leonard's, Indented heads and then Queenscliff.

Watching the joy on our little one's faces when we arrived at a new beach. Noticing how Little fox is growing up. The chubby cheeks, the words that surprise us, conversations shared in the backseat. Legs kicking out towards the sea, little fingers clutching toys and feeling the sand. When Miss three fell on her bum in the water at Barwon and having to drag her out drenched, soaked to the bone and still able to smile. And after a quick change she was back building sandcastles in her gumboots and hoodie with bucket and spade.
It felt important to take the time to be together as a family and enjoy one another. The simple pleasure of enjoying a sunny day and taking the time to turn our attention to our surroundings. The cloudy skies, soaring sea life, rolling green hills, kangaroos on the green and grazing cattle and sheep in the paddocks. The feeling of sand under toes. Rolling waves, sandy dunes and sea grasses moving with the wind. Making memories that will stay with me for a longtime. Having a glass of wine and hot chips with Ads at the boathouse as the sun set while Little fox played on the floor and Miss Three coloured. A perfect end to our first day.

Watching pelicans fly overhead at Indented heads the following day, collecting leaves at Queenscliff after spending time lunching and enjoying the vintage loveliness at Gingermais. Finding opportunities for craft where ever we were. Beach combing, and eating at Annie's, shopping at Kiitos, spotting toadstools and doing sand play at Barwon heads.

We explored the Great Ocean road and some of our favourite haunts. Spotting lighthouses at Aireys Inlet, watching the rolling surf on the way down to Apollo Bay. Discussing all the wildlife and sea animals that live there with Miss Three as we drove along. Having some mother/daughter time at Wye River collecting shells and feathers, running along the shore, holding hands. Having fish and chips and hot noodles at Lorne as the sun set and we watched the light change across the water and grow dark. 

As the days went on, seeing Little fox discover trees, sand and cloudy skies. I noticed the beauty of where we live. The farmland surrounding the coastal hills and valleys with yellow, loamy browns and greens and the beauty and freedom of the surf, the immensity of the ocean. Listening to the song of the sea. The wind on the water, the cry of sea gulls. The patter of little feet running in gumboots to kick at the sand and chase the receding waves. I felt renewed after weeks of the family being sick with colds and stuck indoors. It didn't seem to matter that it was cold we were outside, having an adventure and having fun. We're coming up to the winter solstice and as we began each new day we turned our attention to everyday rituals that ground us and make us happy. We talked about Winter, the need for things to rest. A time of slowing down, the weather changing. Miss Three learnt to button her clothes and put on socks and tights. To build a fire each night, collect wood with her dad, cook marshmallows and experience the joy of drinking hot chocolate to warm ourselves after being outside. 

I loved sharing time with my husband which feels like a rarity when nights are spent feeding and putting little ones to bed. It's always a case of stealing moments together when we can. Our biggest enjoyment during the holiday was watching Miss Three and Little fox together. Playing on the floor, Miss three celebrating when Little fox spoke or rolled. Sharing in blowing raspberries and giggles. Having morning cuddles in bed and talking about the plan for the day's adventure. 

We made memories that will stay with us. Motherhood and being a parent is hard work but it's times like these that help in those long days that seem to never end. What a week, what a great Winter getaway. 

Are you planning on a Winter holiday?
What did you get up to last week?

x Mummafox

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