Friday, 28 September 2012

DIY: Make a Vegie Patch!

It's Spring School Holidays over in Australia, and what better way to entertain your kids for a few hours than to plant some vegies! The kids can help look after them, watch them grow and by the end, everyone reaps the rewards by eating nutritious organic vegetables or fruits!

This is also perfect for those of you in a rental property. My husband is a carpenter by trade so he knocked up a vegie patch with scrap timber that didn't contact the grass so as not to kill it. Another idea we had (and only decided against this one as it was a given that our 2 cats would be heading straight down to the garden to dig and poop!) was to drill hole in the bottom of a children's plastic clam and use that as a vegie patch. SO much cheaper and easier than purchasing those proper vegie garden setups that start at around $150.00. The clams only cost $20 at BIG W, Kmart and Target. Here is an example of a clam/shell from BIG W:

I promise it is worth the few hours you'll spend setting it up and really, you can be so thrifty it shouldn't cost you much at all! We chose to buy 'easy-grow' vegies that were seedlings.

At first one makeshift box was enough for our babies to get started, but as we soon realised - they were growing up fast and within 2 weeks my husband was making a lot more boxes! So maybe start off with a few if you won't be able to transfer them into bigger pots or purchase more shells as they will need to planted well apart if you don't want to 'dig them out'.

So 3 weeks later here's a look at how our vegies are coming along. We are all loving watching them grow and are pretty proud we haven't lost any of them to death as yet! You'll be able to see just how much we had to spread them out because they are growing so fast.

Left to right: 4 x Tomatoes, 4 x Spring Onions, 3 x Corn


Here come our strawberries

The first tomato is on its way.


Bunches of capsicums are beginning to grow
So there we have it, fairly simple, organic, good for you and the kids and of course - a great learning experience! Why not try it out?!


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Saturday, 22 September 2012

How to: Rainbow Cupcakes

This was so much fun! What kid wouldn't eat a rainbow cupcake (or adult!). This was so simple and had fantastic results... so lets make RAINBOW CUPCAKES!

First we bought a white cake mix. It is important to get a cake or even cupcake mixture that is going to be as white as possible, so when you add food colouring the colours turn out bright, not 'yellowish'. :)

We then mixed the cake mixture as per instructions. Choose what colours you will be making your cupcakes. I found that yellow was a bit on the boring side as it looked like a normal muffin colour. Try to pick at least 3 colours for a great effect.

Separate your mixture into different bowls for each colour. Simply add a few drops of food colouring and mix well until you reach your desired colour.

You then want to spoon the mixture into your cupcake cases, one colour on top of the other.

Cook in the oven (25min max if using cake mix - keep checking them as ovens will vary!) and they will be ready when an inserted toothpick is clean when removed.

Here are the results we had!

For our icing we coloured the pre-mix a light blue. We then put white sugar in a bowl and added a few drops of blue food colouring. Once the cupcakes were iced we dipped them in the 'blue glitter'. Looked very cool!

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