Birthday cakes

Two modest cakes for my real birthday. For the girls' playdates that happened to be there and for the parents who came in the afternoon. On the left a classic with a new twist. A lime-mascarpone pie with raspberry hearts from this recipe. Looks more difficult than it is. The other recipe was chosen for its main ingredient: coconut. Coconut is always good! Used unsweetened coconut though. Still sweet enough.


I have folded these beauties before. They are easy to make, when you can be very precise. Smooth magazine-paper is ideal for this project, because it folds easily and sharp. Just choose pages with the colours you like, matching or contrasting. I found another tutorial that has very clear instructions here. I meant to throw this branch out, but now it got an extra life.

Sint at school

The girls each have to make three surprise Sinterklaas presents. Quite some work. These items will be the contents of one of those. The classmate asked for drawing utensils. We found some nice ones, but they don't look very exciting. A short Pinterest search produced this cute kitty. Perfect pencil case to go along with the brush pens and pencils. But I used the pattern of this baby (the small image has an inch-indication on the side, for enlarging) and added a lining. The outer fabric is from a thrifted shawl. Now it's time for J to make a surprise wrapping and a rhyme.

Breakfast all-day

Lucky me, I won this cookbook. Since I really like breakfast and lunch thingy's, I put in some extra effort for the entry. I quickly aquarelled a Danish breakfast I once enjoyed (had to be your favourite breakfast ever) and sent a copy by mail. Bingo! Simple, basic recipes, with another twist. Today I prepared a delicious and healthy, green is spinach, smoothy for the kids from the book. The green wasn't inviting to them, but the ladies both drank it till the last drop. Loved it. The writer, Denise Kortlever, has a lovely site too. You could either order a signed copy of the book there or try to win one here.

As the twig is bent the tree is inclined

The girls were sitting, like groupies, in the first row to see Bas Haring in the Natuurhistorisch Museum in Rotterdam yesterday. A philosopher who likes to bring philosophy closer to the people. Our kids know him by listening to 'de junior beta canon'. The last one is a set of cd's about the main themes of science (nano-technology, electro-magnetism, hygiene, mobility, etc) made accessible to elementary school kids. Would make a nice Sinterklaas-gift. Our eldest listens to the cd's every night, before falling asleep. You could say she's a fan. And I must say, I also like to listen to the stories when played in the car. J. took her cd-cover to have it autographed, but unfortunately didn't dare to ask for it in the end. Despite the ladies liked the lecture and Bas a lot.

Squeezed-in me-time

On FB I saw a workshop in screen printing come across on Thursday. Making your own Warhol Marilyn Monroe-like portrait in one afternoon, on this saturday. I could fit it right in on the, like always, busy saturday thanks to husband (took kids to hockey, horse riding and art class). The workshop was in the Grafisch Atelier in Den Bosch (organized by Wave of Tomorrow, taught by Bianca Tangande). The real work, making the screen, was already done for me when I arrived, so I could start with the fun part right away. I made these portraits, of the daughters, with one screen and cut out templates of paper. Loved the process and will surely try this again. When you live in the neighbourhood, make sure to check out the courses given in the Grafisch Atelier!

My girl, my city

Sunday-afternoon, J. is at a birthday party, A. needs some rest and N. wants to have lunch in the city with me. Good idea. Some mother-daughter-time. We enjoyed a delicious lunch at NomNom. She took the hotdog and I choose a Nomentje (4 sandwiches). Hmmm... Afterwards we did some shopping. What a lovely city 's-Hertogenbosch has become these last years! So many unique shops. Here are some hotspot-lists for my hometown: Remade with love, Den Bosch City Blog, En Suus en Elle Eten. Maybe you'll find some tips for when you are coming to see the Bosch-exhibition anyway. At last N. and I went to the library, where a lightning artist made free sketches on the occasion of the centenary of the library. There was no waiting line so we sat on the chair and in 5 minutes she produced this funny caricature.

Sound search

Sometimes I find it difficult to vary in healthy snacks. We're so lucky that our kids love to drink water and tea, eat rice-wafers and enjoy fruits and vegetables as snacks. But I'm always trying to find healthy alternatives for cookies and cakes. Like this sugar-free (with honey) breakfast cake. We only added another combination of spices (2 tsp powdered cloves, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp nutmeg) instead of the 'speculaas'-kruiden, because we liked that in another recipe. It was half a succes though. J loved it, N didn't. I ate it for lunch with some salted butter. Less healthy, but very tasty.

Veiled cat

Last friday it was halloween disco night again, for the 10, 11 and 12-year-olds in the village. When J. saw this lacy cat on my laptop, she said that's what she wanted for the party. Pretty easy to put together and with simple black clothes a stylish costume. Also wearable with the veil in the back, when it annoys in the face. She and her friends still didn't stay until the end, but no drama's like the first time anymore. Our second daughter (9) is another cup of tea, she can't understand why the girls wouldn't want to stay until the end. We know we will never have to pick this girl up before closing. N. can't wait till next year.

And one for me

A hat for me, for when it's really cold, modelled by our eldest. I bought the yarn in sale last spring in France. Slightly odd texture and colours, but perfect with my army-green parka. Again this easy pattern.