Orange, Almond and Honey Cake

I love the fact that we grow some of our own food. We have had fruit trees for many years. Some don’t produce as yet, probably because we don’t do enough t them to help them grow, but some, like our citrus, are wonderful at giving us fruit during winter.

Our mandarin tree grows so many fruits that I am able to share them with many people, and our orange tree is going great at the moment too. The fruits aren’t huge, but they are tasty. I picked 5 the other day and decided to make an orange, almond and honey cake.

I am  one of those people that if they get an idea for a recipe in my head, I google and look at MANY different recipes, and then see what I have in the  cupboard and whip up said food using what I have. Some recipes I follow to a T but others I make up….some ones they work and sometimes they don’t. 

The most  important thing you need to realise is that you need to boil the oranges for two hours making sure it stays covered with water so a top up very now and then is needed. When done let them cool. I did mine a da before I use them and left them in the fridge. I then cut them in half to get the seeds out.


3 smallish boiled oranges (processed to mush in the food processor)

2.5 cups of almond meal

6 whole free range eggs

Between half to one cup of raw honey(I’m not huge on measuring)

1.5 teaspoons of baking powder(no aluminium added stuff)

Slivered almonds

Two tablespoons water

Dollop of honey (at least two tablespoons worth)


Pre heat oven to 180°C

I used a little hand held blender to mix up the honey and the eggs.

I then folded in the oranges and then folded in the almond meal and the baking powder.

I then lined one regular sized square tin with baking paper and popped the mix into the tin then into the oven. 

I cooked it for 35 minutes and took it out I left it in the tin for 10 minutes to cool.

I mixed the extra honey and water together popped it in the microwave for 30 seconds and then poured it over the top.

I sprinkle the slivered almonds over the top and took out of the pan and popped it onto a cooler, still with the baking paper underneath. 

We ate it with a little yoghurt on top. It made 16 really decent  sized pieces of cake.


I think the next time. Make this I will pop some black poppy seeds into it. 

Let me know if you give it a try.
Until next time

Lots of it




Stretching Your Dollar Further

I just thought I would update you on our Marleyspoons dinner.

It was the Beef enchiladas, and with a vegetarian and one that only eats chicken breast, it was going to prove tricky.

Here is the run down

I bought three dinners, using a discount voucher of $30, the three meals, for two adults and two kids, came to $84. So, $28 per meal. But, I am very good at stretching meals and changing them up for a family of 8.

Here’s what came with the pack

Here is a list of what I added

4 whole grain large wraps cut into quarters

One tin of kidney beans

One tin of tomatoes

Grated cheese

2 shallots

2 cloves of garlic

So, it feels 8 of us with actual leftovers. Though not much.

I ended up making a vegetarian lot of it too….and it was all so very tasty and got a big tick of approval from the kids.

Here’s what is left, except the vegetarian one has lots…it went!

So, yep, I think good value.

I hope I can stretch out the next two meals like this one.

How do you make your dollar go further when you are cooking dinner?

Until next time

Lots of it



Preserving and Boho

I have been busy lately…with nothing particular, but just busy with life.

The kids were back to homeschooling, and I found some wonderful novel units of work that they will be completing for English. Jacob has picked The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and for Madeleine I have picked A Wrinkle in Time, which I think she will love.

Their timetables have been set, and this term we are including some outside time and some reading time. In our busy lives it is far too easy to forget to do the simple things in life….fresh air, and beautiful words. 

I have also been busy with the produce swap group I have on Facebook. On Wednesday I did 4 swaps. I got some fantastic produce, and a beautiful snake plant. I swap my lovely organic lemons and my lovely meal, and sometimes herbs and some grape vines.

One of the swaps was a couple of kilos of olives….we love olives in our family and at the moment I am curing them, which basically involved a slit in each olive and now soaking them in water u til most of the bitterness goes, and then preserving in a brine for a bit.

A swap from last week was a fantastic lot of chokos. Chokos bring back memories of when I was little, and around the corner there was an old man who had a wonderful vegetable garden and he would often give my mum and dad vegies…. I actually wonder what sort of relationship my family had with him. We had no car, so we would walk past his house every time we went to the shops…maybe a quick chat on the way was the only relationship we had? But I remember chokos and rhubarb. With the wonderful batch of chokos I made some delicious chutney, and yep, I preserved them. I popped the jars in a water bath and sealed them…although I doubt they will last long enough in our household to test them to see if they preserved well.

That has created a monster, and now all I want to do is learn and make preserved foods….I bought a little set for preserving, but now I need more jars, and I really want a dehydrator too. On the wish list…lol…

I love going to the markets….whatever we don’t grow in the garden I generally buy at the markets. I go to many, to try and get organic or chemical free Vegies and fruit. Richmond Fine Food Markets is on every Saturday…it’s a great drive and a lovely little Markets….today I got a gorgeous side table to match one I got a few weeks back. They are lovely. I will post them nxt time.

While we were at the markets, hubby and I went for a little look to find Huck Finn. Couldn’t find it, but I found a trip down memory lane…two books that I use at school when I was 6, times learn how to read. At 25 cents each, I couldn’t pass them up.

I am forever changing my house around, the style and the furniture. Thanks to kmart and IKEA, I now have a home that looks a little boho…still a long way to go, but I am loving it so far.

Patchy Pants has been a little quiet…when I get a spare minute I will be creating some more jeans and tops. Will keep you posted…

Hope your time has been busy with lots of fun, positive busyness…❤️

Until next time

Lots of it



Happy Easter

I have been quite busy since my last post. Making our outside area a nicer place to be and better organise, receiving items to create some new jeans and even some t shirts.

And of course, all the everyday stuff that keeps you busy.

The little corner of our backyard was once a very ugly shed, and that was taken down and put into another more Hidden spot of the backyard.

A little corner garden was created with a variety of daisies, my crazy good lemon grass, and I made these trellises and there will be a passionfruit vine eventually covering these.

I got this little set from Kmart, and I have put some tea light lanterns in the trees…it looks very pretty at night, and it’s a lovely place to sit in the day.

And the kids are using it already.

We are moving our Vegie patches so we have room for our hammock there, and the patches will be in a sunnier position.
My Facebook group, Western Sydney Home Produce Swap Group is going well on Facebook. Currently at 77 and plenty of people are swapping their surplus produce. There’s lots of questions and interesting articles and good Vegie conversations happening.

Here is my latest swap I did.

I have been busy looking online for lovely things to put on jeans and tops and jackets. Can’t wait until I have more time to get going on my recycled jeans. look for   “Patchy_pants” on the etsy site. I will be getting more on there over the coming weeks.

This morning is Easter Sunday, said happy Easter to you, however you spend the day I hope it’s wonderful.

I usually buy my sisters some chocolate for Easter, but actually forgot, so this morn Ng I whipped up some bickies for them. It’s nearly Anzac biscuits however I used coconut syrup instead of golden syrup.

Made double batch and. Used margarine as we didn’t have butter…. must say, they are pretty delicious, of course Raymond’s me and I had the sample one each. The rest are in this little box, all prettied up for them.

Good Friday saw Maddie, Jess and I heading up to Katoomba to go for a bush walk at Minnie haha falls. Unfortunately, I had never seen traffic like it before, barely up the hill and there was so much traffic…we were almost walking up the hill. So once we eventually got to glenbrook we decided t turn around and give on a different adventure.

We got tickets for the Sydney Easter show. We hadn’t been for man years and I must admit I was pretty excited to go without the struggle of a double pram to navigate through the crowds…lol…

It was a great day….way too much junky food, and Jess and I even snuck in a margarita, and Maddie had a non alcoholic one….we saw animals, lots of people (140000 in fact) and Di lots of walking (12km).

We walked through the produce halls, and was in awe at all the wonderful skill that some people have. I actually got myself 4 showbags, and a kewpie doll. Never had one.

Here are some happy snaps from the day.

Well, that’s about it for now

Until next time

Lots of it



Busy Busy

My life is and probably always will be incredibly busy. That’s just the way it goes with 6 kids. Admittedly they are not little anymore , but that doesn’t mean that it all stops just because they are bigger.  I think it’s actually a different sort of busy.

I went to the markets over the weekend and purchased a few things that I would love t❤️ wear but don’t fit me…. figure someone would love them just like me somwill probably pop them on eBay, or on the etsy shop I have started. 

I purchased two gorgeous bunches of flowers and they look gorgeous in the vases, I also bought some cakes for the family and a few other bits and bobs….gotta love a good markets. 

I have also sewn a few of the Upcycled denim projects. And ver the past week I open d up the etsy shop..,here’s hoping other people like the Upcycled denim items and someone actually buys one…lol…

Not too much the update, so I will show you a few f the items I have  made.

Until next time

Lots of it



I have taken the plunge.

I have finally taken the plunge and trying out WordPress….I have been a blog spot user for quite some time but been very silent for quite a while. My interest in all things good for you has become quite a theme in my life of late, for myself and my family. So, here is the beginnings of a little blog to share ideas and hopefully inspire you to give things a go yourself. 


Today is just a little about me. Mum to 6, with 3 grown up now. Love my arts and crafts and providing my family with healthy food to eat. I homeschool my last three and spend my days teaching them, and try and fit in all my other loves throughout the day. I wish there were more hours in the day so I could squeeze in more of my loves.

I love all things Harry Potter.



I love David Bowie.


I love wool and pretty material.



I love picking food from my garden and using it in my cooking.



I love the smell of books and opening up new ones to read.



I love to get paint on my hands.


I love sipping tea and watching movies with my family.


I love seeing my kids achieve something they thought up they couldn’t.



I love to look at pictures that make me happy.



I love to shop at local markets.



Yep….I am a tad daggy…lol…well, maybe I’d like to think of myself as a bit of a hippie…

until next time

Mandy xxx