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Leek and pumpkin barley risotto

I was intending to make this for both the little man and I tonight for dinner but took longer than the recipe said so the little man had a pre packaged pasta – bad mummy!

A different take on risotto and I must admit I LOVE pearl barley so found it quite tasty.

I would definitely make it again and maybe add some new ingredients to it as well. Hope if you make it you enjoy it too. I will be serving up the leftovers to the little man tomorrow night!!

500g butternut pumpkin peeled, seeded and diced
2 Tbsp oil
1 leek trimmed, rinsed and sliced
2 rashes of bacon trimmed and chopped
1 clove garlic crushed
200g button mushrooms sliced or halved (depends on your fancy)
1.5 cups pearl barley
5 cups veggie stock (I only had chicken)
1/3 cup chopped parsley

Preheat oven 200C

In baking dish toss pumpkin in half the oil, season and bake for 20-25 minutes until tender.

Heat remaining oil in large heavy based saucepan, sautée leek, bacon and garlic 2-3 minutes until leek is tender. Add mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes stirring until golden.

Stir in barley to coat in oil. Pour in stock and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 20-25 minutes.

Remove lid and simmer a further 10-15 minutes (I found closer to 20+ minutes), until barley is tender and liquid is completely absorbed. Season to taste.

Stir through pumpkin, sprinkle the parsley on top.

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Mani time

The little man was colouring his nails in with blue texta which I told him off about. I then said would you like your nails blue to which he responded yes.

I went and got the little bottle of blue nail polish I have and painted all of his nails for him. The funniest part was trying to get him to shake his hands/blow on them to dry as he couldn’t grasp either concept really well. I ended up blowing on them but as only one coat dried quiet fast.

He then wanted to paint my nails so I let him and the result is below!!

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I though his dad would have made some snide comment about the nails but he didn’t, which I am glad about as it is just a phase and he sees me doing it every now and then and wants to be like mum.

He is pestering me to paint them again which I haven’t yet, might have to get a different colour this time!!!! He says “all my blue gone I need some more on my fingers.”

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Why????

Why do I have to have the most arrogant and unreasonable father to my little man? What did I do in a previous life to deserve the treatment I am receiving? I never thought I was mean or nasty to anyone to have this happen to me. I never played up as a teenager, never touched drugs and sacrificed things to get where I am today; so why does the world think I deserve let alone handle this constant stress?

The little mans dad gets 8 extra Thursdays a year when he can spend time with him. He took one of those today, he’s meant to return the little man to me to 5:00pm. At 4:50pm I receive a text saying he just realised the time and that they are out and about and not returning him to me tonight. I said as per the court orders you need to return him to me. Which I received back “he’s with family, happy, safe and well and very excited to be staying another night.” If he knew his son at all he’d realise that The little man would be upset that he’s not seeing me as yesterday in the car he kept saying to me ‘you pick me up in the morning.’ This is not about a father trying to state his authority over me but his three year old child.

I know he’ll be ok but god I want him home with me.

Why break your court orders when in the long run you are not doing yourself any favours!!

Just have to suck it up and be strong for my little man who I love beyond words. I honestly don’t believe my life was meant to be this difficult but for some reason it is and I just have to get on with it.

Thanks for listening again.
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Homemade gifts

Here is the little man painting some gifts for nanna for “Mothers Day.” This just proves my point that I have been off the airwaves for a long time.

We made a coaster out of icy pole sticks and then he painted it. The best part of this little project was that he got to eat an icy pole every night as we had to get the ‘perfect’ stick before adding it to our little pile.

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I realised after we had given the gift to mum that I should have sealed the paint either with a sealer or maybe even clear nail polish as I am sure the first time she puts an ice cold glass on it the paint will run or end up on the bottom of the said glass.

He then did some general and finger painting and on the finger/hand painting I wrote a poem on it after it was dry called My Handprint. Unfortunately I don’t have an image of this as I did it the morning of and straight into the car and off we went.

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It is hanging at nanna’s house in the exact same spot where she used to hand my brothers and my artwork from kinder and school. Good to see some old habits never die.

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Good Read

I do enjoy a good biograph and have read some really interesting ones over the years.  I saw this at the library the other day and decided to give it a read as I love the TV show, even though I don’t have foxtel and haven’t seen an episode since a friend taped the wedding!!  Sad I know….

Anyway this was better than I thought it was going to be and mentions the OJ Simpson case a fair bit as she and her first husband were extremely close to OJ and his wife Nicole.  

I also have a lot of admiration for her and the way she and her ex-husband maintained a great and loving relationship even though they were no longer a couple and she had remarried.  All for the sake of their children and I guess the love they had for one another at another time in their lives. 

It made me think about my situation and that I know I will never be able to show that kind of relationship to my son as his dad is not the forgiving type and is out there to ‘get me’ or belittle me at every corner.  I know this will never change which is a great disappointment for my son, but it comes down to the way his dad wants to behave towards me.  I wish for the little man’s sake we could have a better relationship ,unfortunately this will not occur as he is still bitter about his first ex-wife and they have been divorced for years!!! 

It can’t be healthy to hold on to such resentment and to portray this onto the children involved as it doesn’t do them any good to have one parent bad mouthing the other on a constant basis.  It is not of my concern as I have enough things to concern myself about rather than worry about his attitude towards me; don’t get me wrong sometimes I am stressed and upset beyond belief with the things he says and does to me but I can’t change it and have to keep moving forward as hard as that road is at times. 

I do applaud Kris Kardashian for the way she has lived her life for her children, especially in the earlier years not necessarily later in life and the train wreck of a TV show that kept us all coming back for more. 

If at all possible have a pleasant relationship with your ex for the sake of your children’s wellbeing and health and to show them what a relationship should be like.  After all it is all about the child and not about the parents.                                                   

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Chalking!

On a beautiful Melbourne Sunday morning we went outside to play with the neighbours two girls scootering, riding, fixing items and then getting the chalk out.

We were instructed to draw sharks/fish/a mix of the two to represent members of the family.  I first drew my little man and then he wanted a Grandpa and Nanna shark to go next to him.  My neighbour asked him who else was missing from his family and he looked at her blankly, to which I replied “pooh bear.”  I received a scowl from my neighbour as I am guessing I should have said myself but hey if my child doesn’t want me to draw me then I am not going to suggest it; I’m just grateful he didn’t say his dad and his half siblings!!  Naughty thought I know …….

Below are a couple of images of my attempts at drawing his family, sans pooh bear.

Coop is the blue one, grandpa is the green one and nanna is the pink one!

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Easter project

Since having my little man my craft side seems to have blossomed, well not really but it has come out of hiding and I am willing to give things a go!  Browsing the internet the other day I came across a picture and I thought “I can do that!”  So off to Bunnings we went.

My little man loves this shop and every time we are there he has to touch all of the mowers.  As he goes along the aisle he tells me a little something about each one; the colour, how it starts and what things do.

After meeting his requirements I said it is now time to get what I came for.  I purchased two terracotta pots and a tine of blackboard paint.

Now it was time to go home and get painting.  Two coats later they looked like this.

Last night was decorating time and this is where I am not an artist at all.  I have a go and that is all that counts and hopefully Coop will like it, he gets to do the other one for a friend of his.

Hope you all enjoy your Easter and if you decide to give this idea a go show me your finished products as they will be better than mine!