Happy Easter!

Happy Easter!

If Jesus rose from the dead, then you have to accept all that he said; if he didn’t rise from the dead, then why worry about any of what he said? The issue on which everything hangs is not whether or not you like his teaching but whether or not he rose from the dead.

― Timothy Keller, The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism

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It’s a bit gross.

It's a bit gross.

But compost is cool!

Just put all your food scraps (except onions/citrus etc) in a bin in the kitchen. When it gets full, tip it out into an outside compost bin. Add some newspaper/egg cartons/dry grass etc to balance the compost. Add a bit of water occasionally and stir it occasionally. Eventually it will break down and will be great fertilizer to use on the garden.

(I usually let Sam look after the compost.)

I make myself

I make myself

Chose joy.

Sometimes its hard to feel happy. I don’t think it is appropriate to be happy all the time. But I think joy is something different to happiness. It doesn’t depend on circumstances like happiness does. My joy comes from knowing the truth. From knowing that I am so loved by my Heavenly Father that he would send his son to die on a cross for me. (That is why Good Friday is so good!) The penalty for my rebellion against God has been paid by Jesus. I have been forgiven, accepted. I no longer owe anything. I no longer have to try to prove myself to be good enough – no more striving in vain. My debt has been paid in full and I am free. Free to live a thankful life full of joy.

So even when things are bad, I make myself chose joy.

Thankyou Jesus.

 

Not-so-healthy rocky road.

Not-so-healthy rocky road.

This has been my go-to rocky road recipe for the last couple years. It’s great to give for presents at Christmas. It’s not so healthy, so I haven’t made it for a while. Oh well.

ingredients:

  • 2 packets of marshmallows, cut into quarters
  • 2 big handfuls of pistachio nuts, shelled
  • 2 packets of red raspberry lollies, cut in half
  • 4 big long packets of Aldi milk chocolate

Method:

  1. Line 2 baking trays with baking paper.
  2. Melt chocolate either in microwave or in bowl over simmering water on stove.
  3. Add chopped lollies and nuts to melted chocolate and stir.
  4. Pour into trays and put in fridge/freezer to set.
  5. When set, put onto large chopping board and cut with hot knife into small pieces.
  6. Eat and enjoy!

Homemade ginger beer.

I’ve been making homemade ginger beer for a couple months now. I’ve always wanted to try it. My Grandpa used to make it years ago. Mum told me stories of how occasionally, a glass bottle would explode, and would send broken-glass and sticky mess all over the garage.

When researching homemade ginger beer for myself, I found that it’s actually quite a healthy drink, as it is naturally fermented. This fermentation provides lots of beneficial bacteria (probiotics) which is good for your guts. Most of the sugar added is broken down by the fermentation process too, so it’s a healthy low-sugar drink. Much better for you than the bought stuff, which can have up to 8 teaspoons of sugar in one bottle!

I found instructions here, and tweaked them to work better for me.

Here’s my version of homemade ginger beer:

Equipment:

  • Glass jar 
  • Hanky or cloth to cover jar
  • Rubber band to secure cloth over jar
  • Large stockpot
  • Strainer and cheesecloth/chux cloth
  • Jug
  • Plastic bottles and lids, I bought a pack of home brew bottles and reuse them

Ingredients:

  • Fresh ginger 
  • Sugar
  • Water
  • Lemon juice

Instructions:

First, make the plant/starter/culture

  1. Pour 3-4 cups filtered water into your glass jar. 
  2. Add tablespoon of chopped fresh ginger and desert spoon of sugar to the water.
  3. Stir to dissolve sugar then cover with cloth and secure with band.
  4. Repeat steps 2-3 every day for about a week.
  5. Depending on the weather, you should notice that it’s getting nice and bubbly by about the 3rd or 4th day. This is a good sign, showing that fermentation is happening.
  6. On the 7th day, if there are lots of bubbles, it’s time to make ginger beer!

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Second, make the ginger beer

  1. Feed the plant as usual, then strain plant through strainer and chux cloth into the large stockpot. Squeeze the plant until all the liquid has been removed.
  2. Keep the ginger from the plant, you can use about 1/4 of it to start your next batch. Put it into the same glass jar without washing and add water, ginger and sugar as before.
  3. You can give a way the rest of your ginger beer plant to friends to start their own ginger beer.
  4. Add 20 cups of water, the juice of 2 lemons, and 3 cups of sugar and stir.
  5. When sugar is dissolved, use a jug to pour mixture into 9-10 clean plastic bottles, leaving about 3-5 cm of air space at the top of each bottle.
  6. Place bottles out of the way on a bench to ferment for about 1-2 weeks, depending on how warm it is (the warmer it is, the sooner the ginger beer will be ready).
  7. When the bottles feel firm when pressed, they are ready to go into the fridge.
  8. When cool, it’s ready to drink!

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Pour over ice and enjoy! 

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Here are my dregs. I’ve given some to my mum, my mother-in-law, my brother-in-law… Let me know if you want some!

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A weekend in Melbourne.

We went to Melbourne last weekend. It was good to get away from the business of renovating and just spend some quality time together. 3 hours in the car is such great talking time. There was also a beautiful sunset to watch.

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We arrived at about 9 on Friday night at my Uncle and Auntie’s house. It was great to catch up with them and their kids. They’re two fun 10-year-olds. They made us play about 43 rounds of Monopoly Deal with them.

On Saturday morning we drove to the Yarra Valley and went to this Herb and Chilli Festival. Sam found out about it at work and thought it would be fun. It was a bit different, but pretty fun. There were stalls selling all kinds of food – most with chilli. I had a hot chocolate with chilli and it was great! (But I’ve already been won over by the chocolate chilli combination. I love it in ice cream.) There was also a stage with dancing and entertainment, and a tent where there were talks given by interesting people. One was about growing truffles (they sell for about $3000/kg!). Now Sam wants to grow truffles!

On Sunday we took a train into the city and just walked around the Royal Botanic Gardens.

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They were beautiful and relaxing. We got hot chips from the cafe there, then we went home.

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Thanks for the lovely weekend, darling.