Advent 2017: Day 14

I had a decent rest last night so I’m much better but feeling extremely tired. J’s friends came round for a playdate so I fortified myself with mini-apple crumble tarts for breakfast and just carried on.

The kids are playing “Ravensburger Labyrinth (I talked about this in a previous post) and another game called Marrakech.

This is a really fun carpet-laying strategy game set in a busy market square. It’s easy to learn, very tactile and requires some keen thinking, and is a real hit with the kids including Thumper, who just likes putting out the moroccan blue carpets in a zigzag pattern. (Buyer’s note: We bought our set from My First Games, but you can also find it on Amazon.)

P.S. We are following the Advent calendar from Truth In The Tinsel this year!

P.P.S. Check out our other Advent posts here with lots of crafty fun for the season and subscribe to our YouTube channel!

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Advent 2017: Day 12

We spent the day with the Aged P today – the kids have missed her so much!

 

By the way, the game that we are playing is called ‘Qwirkle‘. It’s a simple colour and shape matching game with a good measure of strategy thrown in, so it’s a good one to play across generations! (Buyer’s Note: We received this game as a Christmas gift from a relative who purchased it from My First Games, but you can also find this game on Amazon.)

P.S. We are following the Advent calendar from Truth In The Tinsel this year!

P.P.S. Check out our other Advent posts here with lots of crafty fun for the season and subscribe to our YouTube channel!

Advent 2017: Day 11

The Aged Ps have been away since the start of the Advent season, and they came back today! We helped them decorate their Christmas tree in advance of their arrival – which is always really fun for us as the Aged Ps have collected many beautiful ornaments from their travels around the world.

The poor Barn Owl is on call this evening. He’s been sick all day and has been resting quietly in the bedroom, but he’s heading to work later.

P.S. We are following the Advent calendar from Truth In The Tinsel this year!

P.P.S. Check out our other Advent posts here with lots of crafty fun for the season and subscribe to our YouTube channel!

The Good Life: Barter Economy

While my potato harvest has been extremely good, we are getting a little sick of potatoes here at The New Castle of Corke.  I have been seriously running out of things to do with potatoes!  I’ve made nikujaga, mashed potatoes, irish stew and have even fried the darn things in my airfryer[1]!

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Check it out.  More than half a kilo of potato right there.

Yesterday, I dug up the biggest potato I had ever seen in my life and realised that I had gotten to the end of my potato threshold.  Neither the Boobook nor I felt like eating potatoes anymore.

Thankfully, my friend, Mrs Peacock, was visiting family in Newcastle and she had had far too much citrus.  So, we did the only thing that made sense:

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Have a bag of taters

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Oranges, lemons and tangerines oh my!

We traded produce.

I have now participated in the barter economy!  Check me out being all productive and stuff!

Now all I gotta do is figure out what to do with all this fruit…


[1]With little success, unfortunately.  Some potatoes were not made to fry.  They disintegrated instead.

Sisterly Challenge 2016 results – Baking Challenge: PASS

Okay for those of you who have been following the Owls Well sisterly challenges may remember that I gave A Becky C a knitting challenge, whilst she gave me a baking challenge that I was very nervous about.

Well, I would like to say that I completed 4 out of 5 of the baking challenges that A Becky C gave me, which I think warrants a PASS.

I made a traditional baked dessert that was also a pie. I also made something savoury that wasn’t a pie.

And this year, I hosted Christmas ‘Everything Baked’ Dinner for the Owls Well family at my house – and everything that was served (except drinks) had been oven-baked!

Evidence:

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Happy Christmas Dinner!

I made Baked Potato Mash, Roasted Broccoli, Roast Lamb with root vegetables! Yay!

So. How did your knitting challenge go?

12 Ideas for Last Minute Crafty Christmas Joy 2016

The Christmas weekend is upon us and if you are anything like myself, you might be looking for some brilliant ideas for Christmas decor, Christmas party food or Christmas Crafty activities to keep little hands busy whilst the grownups catch up over a glass of eggnog!

Don’t Panic!

Owls Well is here with a round up of a dozen last minute Christmas crafts and general activity for Funtimes And Merriment from around the web!

Christmas Decorations

  1. I really like these super cute and simple paper angels from Growing With The Tans which I think would look very cute on the tree or as seating cards on the table!

  2. This super creative upcycled Nativity scene by Growing Hearts 123 also doubles up as musical instruments which would be fun for carolling (and there’s also a very clever Christmas Angel tutorial)!

  3. Here is a simple but very pretty stocking stuffer by A Pancake Princess using plain wood blocks – and it comes with a free printable!

  4. This is a very straightforward tutorial for shrink art decorations over at Mamawearpapashirt, which the kids can easily get involved in.

  5. These Marbled Christmas Cards from Fun-A-Day are very unique and a great deal of fun for the kids to make. I mean, who doesn’t love messing about with shaving cream?

    Christmas Gifts

  6. It’s beginning to smell a lot like Christmas – especially with this Homemade Peppermint Sugar Scrub by AdeSays which would make a lovely and useful gift!

  7. Our Owls Well yarn coasters keep little hands occupied and would make some pretty shiny christmas ornaments too! A perfect take-home craft for a Christmas party.

  8. What could be better than a tray of chocolate cookies fresh from the oven? This frozen cookie dough gift idea from iheartnaptime is brilliant and comes with a free printable – and you can use the Barn Owl’s FoolProof Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe too!

  9. I think these Rudolph candy bars from i heart arts n crafts would make very nice door gifts for a Christmas party! You can even set these up on a craft table at the party for any visiting kids

     

    Christmas Food 

  10. I think these Rudolph Baked Potatoes based on an Annabel Karmel recipe are super cute and would be a real crowd pleaser!

  11. Our Owls Well no-bake cake is a great idea if your oven is full of turkey and has no room for dessert – and the kids can help with it too!

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    Delicious and chocolatey

  12. I really like these Santa Fruit Pops from Clean and Scentsible’s Welcome Elf on a Shelf Breakfast! You might have to do the face yourself, but imagine how much fun the kids would have assembling these.

P.S. For more great ideas, check out our 12 ideas for Last Minute Crafty Christmas Joy from last year as well as 35 Simple and Foolproof Christmas Crafts and Free Printables

P.P.S. And don’t forget to use the Owls Well Christmas Party 2016 playlist for your own party!

Last Minute Christmas Dessert: The Outlaw’s Doggie Biscuits (aka Chocolate No Bake Fridge Cake)

So, the Outlaws are in town this year end, which gives me the opportunity to poach one of their favourite dessert recipes, lovingly named ‘Doggie Biscuits’ by the Barn Owl.

This chocolate-based dessert would probably make the worst dog biscuits ever (unless you’re secretly plotting a poisoning of that yapping midnight horror from downstairs), but they sure do make a deliciously satisfying snack! Additionally, this is a fun no-bake dessert to get the kidlets involved in some messy and rewarding fun.

This easy to make dessert is a big favourite in the Owls Well household, and the kids ALWAYS ask their grandma to make some for them (at the behest of the Barn Owl, of course). By the way, I have also included additional Thermomix instructions at the end of the recipe for those of you who own magic stirring pots.

The Outlaw’s Doggie Biscuits Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 12-15 Digestive Biscuits (about 250g)
  • 1 heaped tablespoon of cocoa powder
  • 3 tbsp Golden Syrup (you can also use honey or molasses. We used a date syrup.)
  • 100g unsalted butter
  • 1 bar of chocolate – roughly 200g (we used Cadbury’s Old Gold 70% Chocolate)

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Method:

  1. Place digestive biscuits in a ziplock bag, squeeze out as mush air as possible, then smash the biscuits into smithereens using a rolling pin. The best way to do this is to get a Batgirl to help you using an old wooden train whistle.
  2. Melt butter in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of hot water. Add golden syrup and cocoa powder, then mix until smooth.
  3. Add smashed up biscuits to the mixture, mix together, then pour out into a greased 13×9 inch cake tin to cool.
  4. Pack the biscuit mixture down tightly to form the base of the cake. Use your (clean) hands!
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  5. Eat biscuit mixture off hands, then wash hands.
  6. Break the chocolate up into pieces then melt in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water.
  7. Once the chocolate is melted, pour over the biscuit base and spread it out as evenly as possible
  8. Lick excess chocolate off spatula
  9. Let the cake cool, then place the cake in the fridge for the chocolate to set
  10. Cut into pieces to serve!
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Delicious No-Bake Chocolate Fridge Cake