#1531 Day 33 of getting there: homemade sweet potato gnocchi

I haven’t been writing as much as I like, and that’s got a bit to do with this cv business and balancing working from home with schooling baby girl from home, but it’s more to do with the OTHER.

The other is me fuelling all my creative energy into cooking new recipes.

It isn’t hard to find them after all. So many more people are putting together live recordings and sharing extra recipes to help us deal with this isolation, and just as well because we need something to do with all the extra time we aren’t going out.

And just the other day, I fell in love with a recipe idea I have been toying with for years now.

It was gnocchi. Rather, it has always been gnocchi. But this version was a sweet potato gnocchi.

Nom nom nom.

You know, some time ago I bought a packet of gnocchi from the shops, at the height of the shopping-covid frenzy when pasta was getting low to nothing on shelves… and I thought, being from a nice grocer and all, that this gnocchi would also be, nice.

I have only ever had, smooth, delicious, pillowy puffs of homemade or restaurant high-grade quality gnocchi.

So imagine my disappointment when this gnocchi tasted like plastic.

It was NOT nice. It honestly had a fake, manufactured taste, and I was spurred by the idea of homemade gnocchi even more.

So earlier this week when I saw Leah Itsines, self-taught cook, post on facebook that she was doing a live and making sweet potato gnocchi, I knew that soon, I would be too.

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How great is technology? I knew I couldn’t follow her to make it at the exact time she did, but she was posting the video on YouTube later, so all I had to do was go to her channel today and voila!

The instructions were all there.

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My gnocchi was deliciously homemade. It was so refreshing, to have it not taste like plastic! What do you know??? In fact, it tasted anything but. I think I made a pretty great first time gnocchi, and I even have extra that I have frozen for another time so that is SUPER EXCITING.

But that’s not even it. No folks. Topping that homemade sweet potato gnocchi was Jamie Oliver’s 3 minute tomato pasta sauce… another food guru I have started following lately!

And just as well that I had a 3 minute sauce recipe, since it took me hours and 26 dishes to make the gnocchi.

(All hail the dishwasher).

It’s so satisfying to make your own food. It’s amazing to experiment with different dishes, flavours and ingredients, and even to go out on a whim and try something you’ve been scared to for so long.

I can’t believe I made gnocchi, I am still so excited about it!

Next on my experimentation list? Well Leah has also made dumplings, and I LOVE DUMPLINGS… Marion Grasby has an egg drop soup that looks incredible… and Jamie Oliver and Oprah Winfrey recently made his Singapore-style fried rice together, over video call of course… ahh.

Ain’t technology just the best. 🙂

 

#1525 Day 27 of getting there: I dyed my hair, yeah yeah

So, I have NEVER coloured my hair on my own, at home, alone.

That statement suggests that I may have coloured my hair at home, but in the company of someone else… and that is totally right. Years and years ago I had bestie do it for me, before baby girl entered the picture, and I am pretty sure it was during my “save money/I can do that” phase.

But only I wasn’t actually doing it… bestie was.

Fast forward to several years later, and now Coronavirus is making me dye my hair at home, properly alone.

Let’s just stop to think about that for a moment. The isolation caused by this virus is making people look within themselves to build things, create things, change things, and be inventive in ways they never imagined they would, or could.

Although it’s not a situation anyone of us want to be in… there’s something exciting and thrilling about that thought. The thought of all of us looking within ourselves to make something in our lives happen, to make something in our lives better.

Including, hair.

Look, I love my hairdresser, and I will happily go back to them after all this is over.

But I totally smashed the hair colouring tonight.

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I couldn’t wait until this isolation blew over, no I sure as hell couldn’t. As it was I was scheduled for my hair appointment the weekend when the virus crisis started to peak… and so I ended up cancelling.

Regrowth and split ends galore. I could deal with the split ends indefinitely, but the regrowth was NOT TO MY LIKING AT ALL.

You know what colour I picked? Bittersweet chocolate. I told Hubbie I picked it because I liked the name and said it suited me at this phase of my life, and he said that sounded just like me, ha ha.

Things are bitter at the moment, but I always try to remain sweet.

And who doesn’t want their hair the colour of dessert?

Hair colouring night… success. 🙂

#1518 Day 20 of getting there: Easter cookie decorating

I’m happy to report it’s another support local post! And you can not any more local than across the road, DOWN THE STREET, local.

I’m proud to say that Flock Café is our local coffee joint, and so conveniently close to home. However today was not one of those usual days that we could have walked there, what with the hellish weather and all.

So we jumped in the car and drove the very short distance over, to grab one of their cookie decorating boxes.

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I saw they were promoting them some days ago, and amidst shop closures and takeaway ONLY, thought it was a great way to support local business, all the while finding something fun for baby girl to do, because God knows I need ideas!

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She had so much fun, and I loved watching her get creative.

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Ahh, creativity. I just love it. Those piles of sweet candy tasted insanely great upon the deliciously soft cookie base too. 🙂 ♥

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#1515 Day 17 of getting there: Supporting small business – the fairy house

I am always on the lookout for ideas to keep baby girl busy at home, now that we are in the middle of this indefinite isolation period.

So I love when I find ideas that are not only fantastic, but support small business too.

Insert, Billie’s Place.

They’ve joined other businesses in creatively looking for ways to keep running by providing certain home deliveries to customers in the light of shop lockdowns happening all around.

I found out about these mail-out fairy houses on social media… and thought it was a fabulous idea. I jumped on board and ordered one for my own fairy princess.

Today, on this still and sunny Autumn’s day, we set about putting it together.

Painting.

Gluing.

Decorating!!!

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It was the perfect hump-day activity… though to be honest, every day kind of feels like hump day at the moment, right?

Here’s some more sparkle.

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And done. It was as much fun for us, watching baby girl’s excited expression as she got creative and added bling and greenery everywhere, and anything that makes us forget what is going on in the world right now… is priceless.

Fairy houses are pretty magical like that. 😉

#1511 Day 13 of getting there: a little bit of everything makes Saturday sweet

The day started off, drawing with baby girl.

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Next was the brownie baking.

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The triple choc brownie baking, I might add. 😉

There was taste-tasting, coffee making, and puzzle doing… it was relaxing, and with the wind howling and sheets of rain coming down outside, there was really no better place than to be at home.

Our cat Mister F slept for about five hours on the couch. It was that type of day.

Then at night, on random we started to dance in the kitchen.

If you’ve followed my blog for a while you’ll know that’s a common event in our household. Somehow though, we just haven’t had much of a chance or opportunity to dance all together on a Saturday night.

It seems for the moment though, we will have an indefinite amount of time to dance in the kitchen.

What made it better, was I started off reluctant. All I wanted to do was settle back on the couch. It was like I was so used to doing nothing, that I just wanted to go back and do NOTHING.

But as the saying goes… if you can’t beat them, join them.

Which is what I did. I participated in baby girl’s little dance-off contest, and before I knew it, was galloping and pirouetting across the kitchen floor and almost colliding with Hubbie and baby girl but doubling over with laughter.

And I was so glad I caved in. So glad we mucked about and went stupid and got warm amidst a really freezing day. And though we aren’t all tik tok savvy to have recorded it for the world to see, there is something else I captured…

Our little tennis match. I saw the best idea on facebook a while ago. Take two wooden spoons or other long-shaped utensils, tape it to the back of some paper plates, then using some stools/chairs, drape a blanket/tablecover over it to create…

A tennis stadium IN YOUR HOUSE.

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Oh, and the ball? A balloon. It even acts like a ball if it’s been hanging around the house for a few days, flying irrationally and without care through the air, making it more challenging to hit.

Let it howl. Let it rain. We’ve got the home isolation entertainment down pat.

#1508 Day 10 of getting there: Rainbow balloons

The most pressing thing Hubbie had to buy on his ‘essentials’ shopping trip was…

CHALK.

In light of all this ‘C’ business (don’t want to use the word anymore!) and all of us having to NOT GO ANYWHERE (with enormously good reason I might add) kids have been expending their energy the best way possible.

Creatively. With colour.

Insert, RAINBOWS. 🌈

Children all over have been hitting the pavement, not just for walks and bike rides because it’s the most fun they can have sans playdates, but they’ve been colouring up the front of their homes, so that there’s a beautiful pop of colour for all the people walking by, to brighten their day.

And to colour up their own day with it.

Well guess what?

There was NO CHALK at the supermarket… of course. It’s the one thing everyone is doing at the moment.

Never mind – I had a back-up plan.

BALLOONS! 🎈

So today, we took to the balcony and hung them up in our own kind of rainbow design…

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A couple of the traditional colours were missing from the pack, but we did what we could, with what we had.

And I guess, that is the main motto out of all of this, isn’t it?

Doing what we can.

So let’s try to do, A LOT of good.

With a lot of colour. 🌈

#1489 Friday movie night

When you work away from home, you really start to appreciate your days off… at home.

Friday night’s have become my little saviour.

They are mine, and mine alone. I sit on the couch after everyone has fallen asleep, and find something on TV to watch.

Tonight’s supercalifraglisticexpialidocious viewing?

Can you guess?

Well it’s not the original. Rather it’s Saving Mr. Banks, the story of how Walt Disney courted the writer of the original Mary Poppins book, P.L. Travers, into allowing him to make her original tale into a Disney classic.

The story behind the story… how could it beat the one we have grown up with and come to love?

Well it is a completely different story. One that is heart-wrenching, as it is uplifting. (Actually, that oddly has similar elements to the story it’s based on if you look hard enough).

And though Mary Poppins brings the word unique to a whole new level, the character of P.L. Travers played by Emma Thompson, is a whole other hilariously difficult character on her own.

Watching stories unfold in the comfort of my home, from my couch, at my will, has to be the greatest ‘me time’ and restorer of creativity wells there is. ♥

  • Did you know that P.L. Travers is not the real name of the Mary Poppins writer? She was indeed, Helen Goff,  and part Aussie, no less. 🙂