It’s almost Easter. And because Easter means chocolate, we made chocolate donuts. As you do!
With this awesome, super easy cake recipe from Quirky Cooking. They are so good, you must try them!
It’s Easter time. My most favourite time of the year. Not for the religious reasons, though that does hold a special meaning too. And not because it’s a time of year when it is perfectly acceptable, and even expected, that we stuff ourselves silly with chocolate. Though that helps …a lot.
No, Easter is my favourite time of the year because it means the beginning of cooler weather for us North Queenslanders. A cooler breeze starts to blow in off the ocean. The long, insanely humid, blisteringly hot days start to ease up and give way to days that are a perfect blend of not-too-hot and not-too-cold, but ‘just right’. And THAT means we can escape our air-conditioned houses and start enjoying the great outdoors again. Tables get dragged outside for lunch under the trees. The sheet goes up and lawn chairs are lined up on the grass for outdoor movie nights.
And best of all, it’s time to start planting our vegetable gardens. Where in other parts of the country the main growing season has just finished, for us it is just starting. And so we PLANT!
And this year, to herald the start of this new season ~ and because the kids have not stopped asking for them since we moved ~ we got chickens. Seven of them to be exact. Arguably the best pet EVER. The kids adore them. And one day in the not too distant future, they will give us eggs. So about this time next year, we might also get to do natural egg dyeing with our very own chicken eggs.
Happy Easter from the Confetti team xx
I wasn’t going to share this, it’s just something that I had drafted with the kids at home for the school holidays. But the events in Sydney of the past couple of days have made me feel, even more, the importance of teaching the act of kindness to our children, particularly to strangers.
For the past few years we have created a ‘fun list’ for almost every school holiday, filled with things like ‘go swimming at the beach’, ‘go bowling’ and ‘visit the museum’. But this year I added a list of random acts of kindness that are age appropriate for my 4 and 7 year old. Things that I hope will help them to see the happiness and difference that they can make through their actions.
Here’s what is on our list:
* Write messages on the sidewalk for passers by (happy ones of course)
* Pick up rubbish in a public place
* Give someone a compliment
* Make cards and put them in friends’ letterboxes
* Choose toys to donate to charity
* Bake cookies for the neighbours
* Give outgrown clothing to a smaller friend
* Put flowers and a note on a strangers’ windscreen
* Donate pet food to the animal shelter
I’ll probably keep adding to this list over the next 7 weeks before they return to school, and will try to share a few photos on our Instagram account as we go. If you’re doing anything like this with your own kids (or without kids – it works for adults too!) or if you have any ideas for things we can add, please let us know! And we’d love to see any of your photos too – just hashtag #kindnesskids and tag @confettimag on Instagram.
This year we all packed up our cars full to the brim with furniture, props, food, kids and one husband, and drove up to the beautiful Atherton Tablelands to shoot our Christmas scenes. If you have been following us for a while you will know how much we love this glorious part of the world. For one thing, it’s MUCH cooler than it is in Townsville, so we get to escape the heat for a while. But it is also a chance to slow right down, energise and just breathe a little easier.
This was probably the most relaxed photoshoot we have ever done. And that is saying something considering that there were four children and two dogs in the mix! So what does this all look like behind-the-scenes? It looks a bit like this….
Haha! Sleeping babes and kids chasing cows – yup, just your everyday photoshoot. You can view the first in our Confetti Christmas series on the Confetti website here.
If you follow us on Facebook or Instagram you might have noticed we’re a bit bonkers about bees. We’re sure we don’t need to tell you why – bees are awesome for so many reasons, the least of which is the honey they produce.
Did you know that without bees our food supply would be reduced by two thirds? That’s a crazy amount. Do you like apples? Almonds? What about pumpkin? Avocados? Carrots? All of these and more would disappear without our little bee friends pollinating our plants. And our bees are in serious trouble, disappearing and dying off in huge numbers around the world.
It has always been our goal that Confetti be a vehicle for us to live a more sustainable and conscious life and we love sharing these little lessons and journeys with our readers – it is this sharing that keeps us inspired to continue growing.
It’s hard to remember the exact chain of events that led my partner (Stew) and I to take up bee keeping. I think it was a natural progression after having chickens and an ever expanding veggie garden. Our initial interest in bees came from what the bee could produce – delicious honey – and also the help they would offer our garden in pollinating our fruit and veggies so we could enjoy better yields.
We’ve had a hive for 10 months and the process has taken us on an unexpected journey filled with a huge environmental education. Since learning about bees we feel more connected to our local environment, the seasons and weather conditions and we have discovered a growing gratitude and appreciation for what the planet can provide. I often feel a little overwhelmed when I understand the strong connection between EVERYTHING! The more we’ve learned, the more responsible we feel for the trees we plant in our garden and the products we buy for both the garden and household.
I never could have guessed a few years ago I’d have a bee hive! Whenever we tell people we have a bee hive there is a mix of intrigue and ‘you guys are crazy’ looks! Plus of course the inevitable jokes about my name being ‘Honey’ and producing honey – yeah, yeah, I get it!! I think deciding to live a more sustainable life eventually leads to being a bit crazy, but a good crazy!
Is bee keeping for everyone? Probably not… but I think most people would be surprised how much they’d enjoy the process and of course what’s not to love about the end result – golden sweet amber! Bee keeping takes us about 6 hours per month to maintain and harvest the hive and has probably cost around $1,100 to set up. The cost includes the hive box, hive (queen and bees), honey spinner (how you harvest the honey out of the frames), suits and general equipment.
If you interested in keeping bees my advice is to contact a local bee club or someone you know who has bees and attend a few ‘honey harvests’ so you can see how the process works. If you’re still keen then ask someone from the club to help you setup the hive, they are usually all too happy to help!
I’ve really fallen in love with bees and I’m in awe of their systems and processes. Keeping bees has also given Stew and I a shared interest and weekend ritual to do together which has been a bonus.
I hope you feel as inspired as the Confetti team do about the ‘honey bee’ and share this information with as many people as you can – the more we all share and connect the better chance our bees and our planet have. Read the full article here (subscriber only) and learn what you can do right now to help save the bees here.