Friday, July 29, 2011

{Crafty Supplies}

I thought I would take a moment to share a few of my favourite online crafty suppliers. There are many i visit, but one of my favourites at the moment is "Craftumi" which I found on This place is an Aussie craft shop that never closes (that could be very dangerous lol).

The other one I love is the infamous 'ETSY'. I love buying handmade, vintage items on there, but there is a whole section dedicated to supplies. Just select supplies in the drop down menu at the top of the page (third option) and search away. With the Aussie Dollar being so strong, I ordered some supplies today and it was actually cheaper than listed in the US dollars (woooo-hooo! Gotta love a bargain).

I hope you find some great things online and I would ove to hear from my other crafty friends if you have a place as a 'go-to' for supplies.

Lauren x

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

{Pretty Yoga Mat Bag}

I try to be as fit and healthy as I can and usually work out a few times a week. Now this project wasn't completely necessary. However, I pretty much convinced myself it was when I was trying to use some fabric that I had bought just cause it was SO gorgeous!!!

So now, when I go to workout, I have a very pretty way to carry my yoga mat. Love it!

I didn't have a pattern, just kind of 'winged it' but it was super easy and finished it in under an hour from first cut! If you can sew a straight line, you can do this for sure ;)

Lauren x

Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

{And the winner is....}

Well, what a coincidence that my 200th post is announcing a competition winner!!

By random generation, the winner is :

Grace .H.
and her answer : "I am loving the Baileys Fudge recipe and have made it for my friends and family as gifts who love it too!"

I felt generous and wanted to give away another kit too. So, the second winner is :

Vanessa .S.
with the answer "I love the post 'Bags with a Difference'. I love hearing stories like that, handmade products that really mean something. Thanks for sharing!!"

Thanks for all who entered....will do another one soon!

***winners will be contacted privately for postage details***
Enjoy girls;

Lauren x

Sunday, July 24, 2011

{Thanks Bobbi Brown}

Well, first post from my phone thanks to the BlogPress Ap so I hope it turns out!

I love shopping, I really do. Preferably without children in toe and money to spend! BUT the one type of shopping I have always hated but secretly wished was much easier was shopping for cosmetics!
I have an uncanny knack of choosing a color (particularly foundation) that i think looks good under the fluro lights in store. Then when I get into 'normal light' it looks horrid.

Knowing this, hubby treated me with an hour with a Bobbi Brown makeover where I got the chance to soak up Lisa's vast knowledge (from Castle Towers David Jones Bobbi Brown counter).

I am now a definite Bobbi Brown convert. The colours, textures and look of her cosmetics and brushes are definitely worth the price tag!
Hubby then treated me with some of the products I had tried. My favorite (very hard to choose) is the concealer, and the skin foundation which feels like silk but gives great coverage. I finally don't feel like I have to wear a 'mask' to get good coverage. I am loving the product and there is more I want for sure!

Thanks Bobbi Brown for turning this CHORE into a pleasant experience!!

Lauren x

Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

{Caramel Crusted Rhubarb Pudding}

Caramel Crusted Rhubarb Pudding

2 bunches of chopped rhurbarb (about 4 cups)

3/4 cup plain flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
95g melted butter
1 tsp baking paper
3/4 cup caster sugar
1/2 tsp dried ground ginger

3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tbls cornflour
1/3 cup boing water

1. Put rhubarb into an oven proof dish
2. To make crust: Sift flour and baking powder into a serperate bowl.
3. Add oats and sugar and ginger.
4. Add melted butter and stir through. Add on top of the rhubarb in the dish.
5. Combine the brown sugar and cornflour and sprinkle over the crust.
6. Carefully dribble the water over the crust - DONT stir!

Bake at 180' for about 1/2 hour or untill crust caramelised and rhubarb is tender (test with skewer if needed).

Lauren x

Monday, July 18, 2011

{Celebration Giveaway} Homemade eco-friendly cleaning pack

Well, for those that are on the "Homemade by Lauren Facebook Page" will know that I posted about the shock of finding out that it had reached 100 'likers'. I thought it was cause to celebrate - so here is the deal:


A 'Green' Eco-Friendly Cleaning pack. Includes: 1 handmade cleaning cloth, 1 spray bottle and 1 bottle of eucalyptus oil.

So, how do YOU enter???

Vote for your favourite Homemade By Lauren POST or SUBJECT.
(i.e. it could be the brownie recipe or posts about kids crafts)
Tell me what is something you have loved seeing on the blog.

Once you have decided your answer.....

1. Comment on this post
2. Email me to :
3. Comment on the Facebook page wall

{The boring bits}
*one entry per person
*winner drawn by random number chooser and announced Monday 25th July 2011 @8:30pm
*prize will be posted to winner the next day

Annnnnnd GO!
(your welcome)


Lauren X

Saturday, July 16, 2011

{Bags with a difference}

As a part of my blog - a weakness of mine is following and reading what other bloggers have to say. I have found many fascinating blogs latley - one of which is Naomi's blog "Seven Cherubs" (named after her 7, yes 7, kids! I think she deserves a medal for that alone. Apart from her wonderful happy inspiration, I found a post recently that moved me.
She posted on twitter about a giveaway which I just had to check out. And this one stopped me in my tracks.

It was for a bag from a non-profit company called
"Biddy Bags". This is an Australian buisness (love that) making bags like nothing I've ever seen before.
The concept is that in Redcliffe QLD, mature aged Australian women create handmade products for women. They sell them on the website and when you receive an order, you also recieve the story of its maker. How amazing is that!!!
You get to benefit from women who have spent many years perfecting handmade crafting skills, support them (they recieve over half the profit) and help keep these art forms alive!
It is a great initiative and as they say "Biddy Bags is a social and a fashion statement". Find out about their cause and meet some of the beautiful, wise and creative Australian women who create for them.

So, go over to their website and check them out, I know I have an order coming soon!
Lauren X

Friday, July 15, 2011

{A Nap Time Sewing Project} Handbag for a princess

My little Mr 5 has a party to go to on Sunday for a little girl whom he quite likes and they go to prep school together. Actually they first met when they were in Mum's group at 6 week old's and they re-met this year.

So, I had some fabric laying around and wanted to make her something special. I have been looking for a nice handbag pattern for ages and when I found this one, I just knew it would turn the fabric into a perfect gift for his little 'girl' friend.

I first stumbled on Made By Rae when she started a theme on her blog called "Celebrate the Boy" a sometimes crafty Mum of two boys, I was very interested! So I printed off her pattern for this Buttercup Bag and started cutting. It was a very easy pattern to follow and the steps and diagrams make this very easy! Here are some photos of the finished project. I also bought some more fabric today so I can re-make it for me ;)

Lauren x

Monday, July 11, 2011

{Where does the time go? 5th Birthday Celebrations}

I want to dedicate todays post to my first born child and my (as of today 5 year old) big boy.

The last few years of my life have been a roller coaster of emotions. This little boy has taught me so much about myself and has bought so much joy, love, laughter and adventure to this house. As many mothers can understand, that children teach you that you have so much more strength than you ever knew you had. There are times when you have had to summonse energy in order just to survive. You are constantly aware of how everything you do and say affects how these little minds will impact the world as they grow.

The first moment that motherhood really sunk in. After my first child was born, fed and he fell asleep in my arms. My heart was melted and I was forever changed!

However amoungst all the challenges and adventures, there are many moments every day that truley make this the best job in the world! Moments like when your little one grabs your cheeks and plants a big sloppy kiss on your lips, when they say "Your the best mummy in the whole world of my life" and when they finally achieve that goal after many very hard tries.

And it bought me SO much joy to fill the house with balloons and streamers in anticipation for the up and coming celebrations.

The house was filled with about 60-70 balloons and metres of streamers.....loved doing this!

God Morning birthday boy! This buzz lightyear toy has not left his side since then ;)


Picking the basil apart to go into the lasagna mix.

Making a traffic light swirly whirly cake (aka red, green and yellow marble cake).

After eating his birthday meal he built the racing track with his Pa and Uncles.

“There is no way to be a perfect mother, and a million ways to be a good one” - Jill Churchill

“A mother is she who can take the place of all others but whose place no one else can take.” - Cardinal Mermillod

“Every mother is like Moses. She does not enter the promised land. She prepares a world she will not see.”- Pope Paul VI

“Making the decision to have a child - It's momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.”
- Elizabeth Stone

Lauren x

Thursday, July 7, 2011

{Blue & White Dessert Table}

For those that know me, I love baking, I love entertaining and I love being crafty. So, last weekend we were hosting a bbq lunch for some amazing people in our world and I got to combine the three.

It was a big and emotional celebration day and I wanted to make it as special for everyone as I could.
So, I had a salad table (din't get a photo of this unfortunaley) inside which looked so lovely.

My draws I had bought the previous day were filled with condiments, cutlery and napkins and the white platters of salad were placed around a big basket overflowing with bread rolls. We all sat along a massively looooong 'banquet style' table outside and the kids played in the backyard and ate on picnic rugs. Just lovely!

My favourite touch of the whole day was my first dessert table. I have long been an admirer of photos of this phenomonen since I first layed eyes on the beautiful creations by Amy Atlas quite some time ago.

So, without her budget, trimmings and juggling two kids...I put together the following (not bad in my opinion).....

I made these tissue paper pom poms that I have fallen in love with. They were outside too to carry on the theme. Cute!

Marshmallow pops - covered in white chocolate and sprinkled with blue crystalised sugar.

(back) is a modern take on the classic red velvet cupcakes - a blue velvet cake. It was two layers of blue inside with cream cheese icing in between and on the outside. The decoration on the top is a mini bunting garland handmade from scrapbooking off cuts.
(front) a New York baked cheesecake with blueberry compote

(back) Caramel popcorn in patty pans
(front) Chocolate Cake Pops - mud cake balls with lollypop sticks, frozen, dipped in white chocolate, sprinkled with the blue crystalised sugar.

Milk bottles and blue clouds in lolly 'vases'.

The best handmade baklava we bought on the way home from our
treasure hunt the day before.

So, feeling like hitting the gym just revisiting these photos ;)

This was such a hit with the guests and I am just glad we have a double fridge in our new place. Because it was FUUUULLL!!!

Lauren x

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

{Old But New}

I have always loved visiting op-shops, garage sales and the like. I think it stemmed from scouting around "coucil kerb-sides for treasure" with my family as a kid. There is something SO spiritual about finding something that is about to be discarded and rescuing it and giving it a new life. I love mixing items taht are old with the new. I love things that look like they tell a story from a previous life (even though this isn't always known to you).

So, when I took my hubby, kids, dad and one of my brothers along for a 'treasure hunt' last weekend the excitement was palpable! We went to Reverse garbage in Sydney and the thing about these kinds of places is that you never know what's in thats half the fun! We came away with a few little nick knacks each. I snapped up some gorgeous fabric scraps.
On the way out we spotted a place called The Bower Reuse and Repair Centre.
We thought we would give it a go. It was amazing. Everything from old tools, wooden chests, old suitcases, sewing machines, books, jewellery - even a kitchen sink!

Here is a few pictures of the old drawers I got from The Bower and the fabric from reverse garbage. I turned some of the fabric into a decorated soft drink bottle vase and the drawers became cutlery and condiment holders for a BBQ the next day.

Reverse garbage and The bower are on facebook too, so check them out too!

Lauren x

Monday, July 4, 2011

{Mid Year Toy Sales}

If your a parent (especially of a young child) you are more than likely to have heard words in the media recently like TOY SALE, TOY EXTRAVAGANZA or TOY BONANZA!!!
In true style to my personality I got the toy catalogues in the mail and armed with my sharpie marker circling things I know would make my boys 'happy'. Before I knew it I had enough things circled to fill a toy room (regardless of the fact that that there are enough toys in this house to sink a ship already).

Then In amidst it all, I remembered a blog post I put up last year entitled "{12 Days of Christmas ::: Day 10} Fighting OVERindulgence with kids at Christmas".
Suddenly, a fog lifted and it all came back to me. How I want to stop the madness of 'STUFF' at christmas, because let's be honest, there are enough gifts from grandparents etc.... to create a frenzy on the day as it is!

So, inspired by the blog post above I am buying only 5 gifts for the boys this year. They fall into 5 categories :
I have decided to add a 5th one that wasn't in the origional post taht inspired the idea. That category is *Give. For this gift, it is something from them to another person and helping them bless someone else. You could give a gift to the kmart wish tree, a donation to a charity or buy a goat from the tear catalogue.
What we are planning on for the 'give' gift is a Compassion Child each who has the same birthday/ birthyear (or similar) to each boy. This way they have a personal and tangible way to live out their faith and understand the gravity of poverty and what they can do about it to help.

I hope this inspires you to put down the cataglogues for a moment and think about what Christmas is really about and how the choices you make help shape the values that shape your children and the grown men and women they will become.

Lauren x