March update – Workout and a Recipe!

So sorry to vanish for a couple of weeks. I was struck down with a horrendous cold from the eldest man-child, and was out of action for a while. Things however have been very busy here at our little homestead. We have received our first order of seeds from Diggers Club and have finished setting up our first raised garden beds. The rest of the backyard of our new house might look like a muddy wasteland, but we will hopefully have lots of fresh vegies this winter. I have also ordered some pretty and useful flowers (Calendula) and also several herbs. We have branched out a little in the vegie department. I have to confess I have NEVER eaten a broad bean. I guess I’d better learn, and fast, as we will have a huge crop of them according to my plan! If you have any good recipes for them, please share.

We have also plans to plant a lot more greens because hopefully if things go according to plan, we will have chickens in the next few weeks. Yes, I am finally getting my chickens hooray hooray. The coop has been ordered, but is yet to arrive. This weekend we are supposed to be organising a compacted base for the concrete pavers the shed will sit on, and some fencing of some description. Of course, we don’t want the chickens to destroy our wasteland now, do we! I did think that I should plant out the bare areas where the lawn and future garden will be for a green manure crop. Something that will improve the soil and give the girls a bit of green stuff to play in for a while. We look like getting 4 Light Sussex – possibly crossed with a Silver Laced Wyandotte (True Wyandottes are very pretty birds, but have broodiness issued). We are going to meet them tomorrow because they are from a local breeder and see if we all will fit together. Of course I want to name them Jane, Lizzie, Kitty and Mary (name that book!) but the men in the family might have other plans. Knowing my luck they will be called Liverpool, Bolton, Leeds and Arsenal.

As far as the workout part of the title goes, we have finally purchased a treadmill. Yes I know, go outside and get some fresh air and exercise, however, those that say that haven’t lived through a winter where we are. Mud everywhere, lots of rain, very bad roads and no footpaths. There is a nice wetland to run around locally, but it’s at least 10 minutes by car away, and is not lit, so not safe for me at night. For 5 months of the year *skip* goes to work and gets home in the dark, so he is missing his chance to go running too.

We have been saving up for one for the new house, and shopping around the specials and got a very impressive model on sale. It was delivered yesterday, and took all evening to assemble. That was our first workout!! However I gave it a spin today while keeping an eye on our sick doggy, and managed to walk 2.5kms in 31m33secs. Burned 178 calories, as I mixed up the incline from 1% to 2% (major burn change) and the speed set at 5kms an hour once I had warmed up. It was fantastic, and so convenient. Can use it while dinner is in the oven, watching tv, talking to the kids. Best idea for us I think.

As for the recipe, this is my tried and true Banana Cake. I got it from a friend (Hi Katheryn!) and I have no idea where she got it from. I whipped it up in no time flat this afternoon, and the house smells wonderful. It’s also a great recipe when you don’t have a lot of stuff on hand – only needs 1/2 cup of milk and 1 egg – or am I the only one that gets an urge to make cake when there isn’t any milk in the house?

Banana Cake – I make 2 small loaf cakes from this recipe

  • Preheat oven to 180 (bit less if fan-forced)
  • 3 oz marg/butter melted
  • 6 oz sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 big ripe bananas, mashed
  • 8 oz Self-raising flour
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tsp Bicarb Soda

Melt butter, mix into sugar. Add egg and beat well. Mix in bananas, but don’t beat. Dissolve Bicarb soda in milk, add half milk and half flour to mixture, mix well, add remaining milk and flour. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes.

Perfect crusty outside, super moist inside! I sprinkled this one with cinnamon and brown sugar before baking, the other one will get iced. I think I have some cream cheese or ricotta in the fridge 😉

Anyway, homemade pizza for dinner, better get chopping!

 Happy Crafting - Cassie.

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