11 May 2009

A quiet weekend

Shane and Sarndra.

I hope all the mums had a wonderful day yesterday (or today) surrounded by family. I'm not sure of the origins of Mother's Day, it's probably commercial, but I like how a day is set aside for mother's and father's day. Those roles should be honoured and, quite frankly, I'm surprised they still are. I'd like to send out a special mother's day greeting to all those who became mothers for the first time this year, and are therefore having their first mother's day, and also to all the grandmothers (and grandfathers) who are raising their grandchildren. That must be a tough, but very rewarding, job. Hello Anna and Karyn!

All packed up and ready to hit the road.

I spent my mother's day here with Hanno. My boys both called me in the afternoon as both of them were working. They called within 10 minutes of each other on the break they get between lunch and dinner service. So what did Hanno and I do? We washed curtains, and then puzzled over how to get the clips back in so we could put them up again. Happy days! LOL

On Saturday I had some wonderful alone at home time. Hanno helped Shane and Sarndra move into their new home, I packed them a basket lunch to take and was then left to my own devices. I wandered around talking to the chooks after I fed them a big bowl of warm porridge and bread mixed together with milk. Margaret Olley (my favourite chook) died last week after being sick for about three or four weeks. We thought she was recovering a few times but eventually she started bleeding from the mouth, so Hanno had the horrible job of putting her down. Poor Margaret, we'll miss her.

And I was left with the chooks - Martha, Heather and Cocobelle.

I did some chores, a load of washing and then wandered through the front garden for a while. It's very peaceful out there, just the place for a wedding. We still have some plants to go in and I want to take some cuttings off a few of the flowering bushes, but most of it is done. We did a lot of talking about the wedding while Shane and Sarndra were here and now we know what they want, it's just a matter of putting that plan into action. Sarndra told me there will be five babies/toddlers attending so we're making our bedroom into a parents' lounge for the night. It is all those little bits and pieces that will make it a warm and family-friendly event so I hope we don't forget anything.

I packed a picnic lunch for the workers - sandwiches, homemade biscuits, water, tea and coffee.

It will be a family wedding in many ways, not only will the ceremony and reception be here but brothers, sisters, aunties, uncles, cousins, and a big group of close friends are all working to make the day one to remember. A homemade wedding, what could be better. I think it will be a lovely day for our family and the memory of it will stay with me forever.

Our car was packed to the roof too.

A few people asked for the crumpet recipe and I'm happy to share it.

1 ½ teaspoons dried yeast
1 cup plain (all purpose) flour
1 cup corn flour
1 ½ tablespoons baking powder
1 teaspoon bicarb (baking soda)
1 teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon salt

2 cups warm water


Place all the dry ingredients in a bowl and slowly add the water to a make a smooth batter. When it's completely mixed, put it aside for half hour to rise.

You will need some egg rings or a metal form to contain the crumpets in the frying pan. I used heart shaped cookie cutters. Grease the rings with oil.

When the batter has risen, heat your frying pan over a low heat and place the rings in the pan. Spoon out the batter so it's almost at the top of the form. Slowing cook the crumpets on one side. As it's cooking you will notice holes forming from bubbles in the batter. That is good. Make sure the bottom doesn't burn, have your heat low. When the batter has set and the bottom is cooked, turn the crumpet over, take off the form and let the crumpet cook on the top for a short amount of time to make sure it's cooked. Then place it on a cooling rack.

To serve, toast the crumpet in the same way you'd toast bread. When it's golden brown, serve hot with butter and honey, and a cup of tea. I freeze the crumpets when they're cold so I can have them for breakfast on and off over the following couple of weeks.

If you have favourite recipe for crumpets, I'd love to know about it. I have another recipe in my CWA cookbook (Barossa version) that uses self-raising flour to make a stiff dough. You cut the crumpet shapes out and bake in the oven. Whatever way you make them, crumpets make a truly delicious breakfast. I am going to make crumpets and tea for my breakfast this morning.

And then? Then I'm off to work. I hope you all enjoy the week ahead.



  1. Thanks for the recipe. I am anxious to try it. Thank you for all of the help that you give all of us. Thank you for sharing your heart.

  2. Oh Rhonda, I'm so soothed by reading your posts. The wedding sounds like it will be beautiful, and such a wonderful day to remember.

    I've struggled this week with an issue at work, which I've not been able to get out of my head, trying to work out how to deal with it. It's upset my studying, and housework, and general peace and tranquility.

    Each night I've read your blog before heading to bed (your posts appear about 9.30pm here in the UK). I've felt soothed and comforted, and reminded that I'm in charge of how I feel. I get all that from you, even if you're writing about crumpets, lol!

    I'm trying to reconnect with my home slowly but surely at the minute, and I find it's so much easier to be happy when I'm pottering, gardening, sewing, baking... Today I made a skirt and a bag, and even tidied up after myself! I sometimes struggle with organising food and end up eating nothing but bread and jam for an entire day... but at least the bread's home made now! I'm working on the jam.

    Anyway, just a rambling comment to say your blog is a haven of peace and quiet in my life, influencing how I feel about my home and encouraging me to have a go at things and look after myself.

    Thanks :)

  3. Thank you Rhonda for the crumpet recipe..I will be making those this week..I can tell that they will be yummy. I told you I had made your recipe for dog biscuits, well now I have to hand out the recipe..the dogs love 'em!
    Too bad about Margaret your chook. She was a beauty!
    I love the sound of that 'homemade weddings'..I too think they are the best.
    Our g'daughter arrived home yesterday from Australia and NZ where she spent the last 3 months. It sure is good to have her back!
    Have a wonderful day!

  4. Hi Rhonda..i've have only recently started reading your blog..and i love the 'feel good factor' it gives..cant wait to start some of your recipes..i think i'll make the Lemon Yoghurt cake tomorrow..thanks for sharing your life with folk..i have added it to my favourites now..by the way i love River cottage..it is still been shown over here in the U.K.

  5. Thank you for sharing the recipe.

    I hope you did have a lovely mother's day. Happy mother's day to all moms.

  6. Hi Rhonda sounds like you have exciting times ahead. I think people get to carried away with weddings now most of them costing what a deposit on a house would cost. I know this wedding will be very very special and about two people who love each other wanting to spend there life together.This shows how much our values follow through into our children and the younger generations.Rhonda you should be so proud of yourself for raising such a fine son.

  7. The origin of Mother's Day was actually the efforts of Miss Julia Ward Howe, a woman who regretted neglecting the care of her ailing mother and wished to honor her memory in a national way. If you like, you may read more about it here:


  8. Good morning Rhonda,

    Great to be back home after a few days away and nice to catch up on your news. I love crumpets and will certainly be trying your recipe. Wishing you a restful but fulfilling week as you work toward the wedding which sounds delightful.

    Blessings Gail.

  9. Hi RHONDA
    My daughter and son-in-law were working on Mothers' Day (they have a garden centre) so I traditionally go down to help them wrap pretty parcels et al.
    That happened yesterday morning (flowers and chocolate gifts for me) and yesterday afternoon I rode my bicycle for miles. Lovely.
    June also in Oz

  10. It used to be Mothers' Day and not Mother's Day.


  11. Morning Rhonda,

    I've seen a few different versions on Mothers Day. I don't think it really matters, does it?

    (In 1912, Anna Jarvis trademarked the phrases "second Sunday in May" and "Mother's Day", and created the Mother's Day International Association. [1][2]

    "She was specific about the location of the apostrophe; it was to be a singular possessive, for each family to honour their mother, not a plural possessive commemorating all mothers in the world."[1]

    This is also the spelling used by U.S. President Woodrow Wilson in the law making official the holiday in the U.S., by the U.S. Congress on bills,[3][4] and by other U.S. presidents on their declarations.[5]

    Common usage in English language also dictates that the ostensibly singular possessive "Mother's Day" is the preferred spelling, although "Mothers' Day" (plural possessive) is not unheard of)

    It looks like you had a lovely day anyway.
    I lost my son late last year so yesterday I spent the day with my dear sister. We had lunch together and spent the afternoon 'nattering'! A great day in all.


  12. I haven't made crumpets for years, Oh but I do like them. Think it might be a bit of a baking day tomorrow as I am going to make your lemon cake as well as the bread and also rolls. My lot can eat a dozen bread rolls with their supper, if I let them.
    Also need to make a batch of 'washing powder' and do some sewing I have left over the weekend. So all in all a homemade day.

    Have a good day yourself.


  13. Hi Rhonda,
    Thought I would share this link with you. This is about 15 minutes away from where my husband grew up. We pass by it every time we travel to see his Mother. We also pass the Mother's Days Statue located in Grafton, WV.
    Hope you enjoyed your Mother's Day!

  14. I heard last night that Mother's Day was started to provide an opportunity for mothers to protest losing their sons at war. Woodrow Wilson was petitioned to make it a national day - and the irony was it became a day for mothers to celebrate their sons at war (First World War)

    Second irony was the lady who petitioned the president then got so cross that it became commercialised, that she boycitted it, and protested about the commercialisation of mother's day.

    The things I learn on the middight quiz on ABC... Sunday evening

  15. I'm sorry to hear about Margaret Olley.

    I spent a lovely day with my Mum and made her some zucchini slice for lunch which she really apprecited with much lip smacking!

    Happy Mothers Day to all the mothers out there who made us the people we are today!

  16. Thanks for the crumpet recipe, I'll try your version which is very similar to the Bill Granger one I usually use. Bill recommends blackberry butter with crumpets, his recipe is delish.
    1 cup blackberries
    1.5 tbsp sugar
    1 tbsp lemon juice
    1/2 cup butter
    Bring berries, sugar and lemon juice to a high boil. Reduce heat, simmer about 5 mins until syrupy. Cool. Whip butter in a bowl , fold through berries for a ripple effect.
    Keep in the fridge.

  17. Thank you so much. YOU HAVE HELPED ME AND MY FAMILY IN SO MANY WONDERFUL WAYS. Not only have you helped us save countless dollars and cents, but you have helped me change my whole outlook on being a homemaker and living a smart frugal lifestyle. Your blog has inspired me to create my own blog on frugal living and home made products, but mine is more targeted at cooking, young mothers, new born babies, and baby products. Thank you for giving me the confidence to start my new hobby. You are officially one of my top five heroes! :)

  18. Glad you had a quiet, restful weekend.

    So did I, on Soule mama's blog which I first found out about in your archives! Thank you posting about her. A truly inspiring woman.

  19. Well, if we're going to debate the origins of Mother's (or Mothers') Day, where does the English term Mothering Sunday come into the argument? Since it's on a different day (March isn't it?) and a really different name, I imagine it has different origins, but still from something honouring mothers.

    So Shane & Sarndra have moved out? I must have missed you talking about that, I thought they were staying with you for now. Anyway, hope they enjoy their new home.

    The wedding plans sound lovely, and a complete contrast to one I am invited to soon where none of my children have been invited. Still, that fits with the bride's general philosophy, she didn't invite my children to her last wedding either!

    I'm sorry to read about Margaret Olley. It's always sad to lose an animal, and it must have been hard to see her suffering.

  20. Mothers Day was started in my home state West Virginia USA not too long ago matter of fact.

  21. Hi Rhonda,
    Before I read the comments for this posting I remembered driving through the town of Philippi, West Virginia in the USA and seeing a sign commemorating "Mother's Day" so I went searching on the web and found this site...

    this site is very informative, not only does it note the reason Miss Jarvis began the campaign to honor mothers everywhere, it states that she was never a mother herself.

    I hope everyone everywhere had a Happy Mother's Day.

  22. Hi Rhonda!

    I made your lemon yogurt recipe this weekend and it was wonderful! I love your blog.

  23. Lovely post as always, Rhonda! I'm anxious to try the crumpets recipe when we return from our vacation to the Midwest (Iowa). Hope you have a great week!



  24. Hello Rhonda,
    I'm really glad you've posted your crumpet recipe, I can't wait to try it out, I would prefer to do the baked ones, do you just change the flour to a self raising one?

    Joanne x

  25. Take care of yourself, Daffy. I'm thinking of you. {{hugs}}

    Sue, I was so sorry to read about your son. I'm pleased you spent the day with your sister. Go well. {{hugs}}

    Thanks for the origins of Mother's Day. It was fascinating reading the links.

    Toria, they couldn't find jobs here. They had to go back to the city.

    Joanne, the baked crumpet recipe is completely different. I'll post it tomorrow.

  26. I love that you are raising your own "chooks" I'm not sure if I can in my town but it will be something I look into this year.

    Also thanks for the recipe. I'll give it a try this weekend.

  27. Did you eat your chook you had to put down?

  28. Thanks for the crumpet recipe- I've been too busy to ask (or comment in general) but it is one I wanted to try.
    Glad the wedding plans are all coming together nicely.


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