#MadeItMonday: A Book, A Book! I Made A Book!

Welcome to #MadeItMonday, where I post something I’ve made in the previous week, and where you can join in and post something you made too! The rules are easy: post a pic somewhere of something you’ve made in the last week (ish; let’s say in the last month as the hard-and-fast) and tag it. Sit back and enjoy scrolling through all the beautiful things we’ve collectively created, and celebrate the fact that humans can be awesome! πŸ™‚

Pretty much the only thing I’ve made this week apart from school resources and stuff is the internal pretties for Where Shadows Rise – which, okay, this feels a little like cheating in terms of ‘making’ something, but on the other hand, VERY PRETTY AND EXCITING!

If you want to read the first chapter, you can find it right here πŸ™‚ Yay! Pretty book!

What have you made this week? (It doesn’t have to be fancy!!) Don’t forget to tag your contribution, or even better, leave a link in the comments!! I love seeing what inspiring things other people have made πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

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#MadeItMonday: Snuggle Blanket

Welcome to #MadeItMonday, where I post something I’ve made in the previous week, and where you can join in and post something you made too! The rules are easy: post a pic somewhere of something you’ve made in the last week (ish; let’s say in the last month as the hard-and-fast) and tag it. Sit back and enjoy scrolling through all the beautiful things we’ve collectively created, and celebrate the fact that humans can be awesome! πŸ™‚

This is literally the only thing I have made this week apart from school resources and the occasional bit of uninspiring food with which to feed myself + fam, so you know. Snuggle blanket it is.

And no, I didn’t just randomly decide to make a blanket in the midst of one of the more chaotic weeks of the school year; this was a purchase through the family Etsy shop πŸ˜‰

Close up of sewing machine foot in the process of stitching white or cream satin binding to a baby pink cotton fabric with a darker pink 'classic winnie-the-pooh' print on it. The scene is dark, lit only by the light of the sewing machine.

 

What have you made this week? (It doesn’t have to be fancy!!) Don’t forget to tag your contribution, or even better, leave a link in the comments!! I love seeing what inspiring things other people have made πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

#MadeItMonday: Baby Pretties

Welcome to #MadeItMonday, where I post something I’ve made in the previous week, and where you can join in and post something you made too! The rules are easy: post a pic somewhere of something you’ve made in the last week (ish; let’s say in the last month as the hard-and-fast) and tag it. Sit back and enjoy scrolling through all the beautiful things we’ve collectively created, and celebrate the fact that humans can be awesome! πŸ™‚

Pretty baby things this week, because brain = dead and – confession – I haven’t actually really made anything this week. I mean okay I probably cooked food and made lesson plans and STUFF, but you’re getting baby things. Because I figured you’d prefer that to a powerpoint on how to use quotations, which, while an INCREDIBLY AMAZING RESOURCE, is probably not so interesting to the vast majority of the population.*

So. Pretty baby mat. Rawr.

baby mat drawn up into a sack with dark denim on the outside, a baby pink cotton fabric on the inside, and baby pink twisted rayon cord drawing it all together. baby play mat laid out on floor with edge flipped over to show underside and upper side at once. Upper is baby pink cotton fabric with a classic Winnie-the-Pooh print. Under is dark denim. Pink twisted rayon cord edges the denim. A toy sack (which lies flat as a baby mat) made from dark denim on the outside, a baby pink cotton fabric on the inside, and with a draw-cord of twisted rayon cord in blossom pink.

* If you’re part of the minority who would actually really be *interested* in a powerpoint on the subtleties of quotations and how to use them to prove your point, feel free to shoot me an email through the contact form in the menu, or leave a comment here, or contact me on social media etc etc etc and I’ll share it with you πŸ˜‰ <3Β 

What have you made this week? (It doesn’t have to be fancy!!) Don’t forget to tag your contribution, or even better, leave a link in the comments!! I love seeing what inspiring things other people have made πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

#MadeItMonday: A Rocket Cake

Welcome to #MadeItMonday, where I post something I’ve made in the previous week, and where you can join in and post something you made too! The rules are easy: post a pic somewhere of something you’ve made in the last week (ish; let’s say in the last month as the hard-and-fast) and tag it. Sit back and enjoy scrolling through all the beautiful things we’ve collectively created, and celebrate the fact that humans can be awesome! πŸ™‚

I know, I know, like practically every second #MadeItMonday post these days is cake. What can I say? I like cake!!! Anyway, this one was my son’s birthday cake recently. It was a Toy Story party, but I refuse to do commercial-themed cakes, hence, Buzz’s rocket! I was planning to get a photo with Kiddo’s Buzz toy standing by it, but it was so hot at the park that after literally 2 minutes of the cake being there, the fins (which are made of white chocolate) melted o.O So not cool. Also, it nearly fell over sideways at 10:30pm the night I was making it. That was a terrifying moment, but I chocked it up with some spare cake and it ended well in the end, and Kiddo was super impressed, so yay :3

Birthday cake shaped like a tall rocket - cream with purple drippy icing and lime green fins with sparkling sprinkles.Β  The rocket cake on a concrete bench at the park.

What have you made this week? (It doesn’t have to be fancy!!) Don’t forget to tag your contribution, or even better, leave a link in the comments!! I love seeing what inspiring things other people have made πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

#MadeItMonday: Yet More Cake (Wedding Cake This Time)

Welcome to #MadeItMonday, where I post something I’ve made in the previous week, and where you can join in and post something you made too! The rules are easy: post a pic somewhere of something you’ve made in the last week (ish; let’s say in the last month as the hard-and-fast) and tag it. Sit back and enjoy scrolling through all the beautiful things we’ve collectively created, and celebrate the fact that humans can be awesome! πŸ™‚

Yet another cake this week (I know, I know). One day soon, I’m going to tell you the utterly hilarious story behind this cake, but for now, pictures πŸ™‚



This is four filled layers of mud cake, two dark chocolate with orange curd buttercream filling, and two white chocolate with lemon curd buttercream filling, covered in Italian meringue buttercream and decorated with 24-carat gold leaf and hydrangeas from the garden of the mother of the bride πŸ™‚ Believe it or not, there is a whole bathtub’s worth of flowers here!! See:

What have you made this week? (It doesn’t have to be fancy!!) Don’t forget to tag your contribution, or even better, leave a link in the comments!! I love seeing what inspiring things other people have made πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

 

#MadeItMonday: Sketches for Darkness & Good Anthology

Welcome to #MadeItMonday, where I post something I’ve made in the previous week, and where you can join in and post something you made too! The rules are easy: post a pic somewhere of something you’ve made in the last week (ish; let’s say in the last month as the hard-and-fast) and tag it. Sit back and enjoy scrolling through all the beautiful things we’ve collectively created, and celebrate the fact that humans can be awesome! πŸ™‚

Today you get a sneak peak at an upcoming release. If you’ve been following the blog for the last couple of years you’ll have heard about Darkness & Good, the short story blog I run with Liana Brooks and Thea van Diepen (and if not, go check it out! Free short stories posted weekly at least 3 weeks every month!). If you’ve been paying *super* close attention, especially on twitter, you might have seen comments about ‘the antho’ or, ‘D&G antho’: Hurrah! Liana and I* have collected all the most popular stories from the first two years of Darkness & Good’s existence, and are releasing them in an anthology!

* Thea only joined us after these two years πŸ˜‰

I do all the formatting for our Inkprint Press releases, and will only a little hinting from Liana, decided that a) each new short story would start on a right-hand page, and that b) consequently, there were some blank left-hand pages, and that c) blank left-hand pages in the middle of a book look really ugly, so d) I should do some (quick) sketches to fill them! So the anthology will have illustrations, which is pretty exciting. It also has a cover, which we’ll be releasing *really soon*!! So much excite.

So anyway, my contribution to #MadeItMonday this week is one of my favourite of the sketches I’ve done for the anthology, for the story Red Planet Refugees, which you can read in raw, unedited form right here on the Darkness & Good blog πŸ™‚ The sketches are just super quick line art, but it got me drawing again and I had so much fun doing illustrations for nearly half the stories! Yay!

Line art of washing on a line by a corrugated shed on a sandy plain or desert

Don’t forget to tag your contribution, or even better, leave a link in the comments!! I love seeing what inspiring things other people have made πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

#MadeItMonday: A Birthday Picnic :)

Welcome to #MadeItMonday, where I post something I’ve made in the previous week, and where you can join in and post something you made too! The rules are easy: post a pic somewhere of something you’ve made in the last week (ish; let’s say in the last month as the hard-and-fast) and tag it. Sit back and enjoy scrolling through all the beautiful things we’ve collectively created, and celebrate the fact that humans can be awesome! πŸ™‚

#MadeItMonday contribution of the week: it was my birthday recently, and we had a picnic dinner (as picnicking is pretty much my favourite way to consume food apart from a) in bed or b) at a fancy, atmospherey restaurant), and because it was my birthday I decided I wanted to make it actually LOOK like a birthday picnic. I also made myself a birthday cake for, like, the first time ever, because there was a specific technique I needed to practise – yay cake! So my #MadeItMonday contribution this week is the lovely picnic set-up + cake, because I totally made it, and it was creative and a little work of art all of its own :3

Birthday picnic with food artistically arranged over multiple levels on a portable picnic table Single tier birthday cake covered in pale yellow buttercream, with a round posy of soft cream roses clustered over one edge and gold left speckling the top and part of the front

Don’t forget to link to your contribution in the comments!! πŸ™‚

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3 of the Most Highly Awesome Animals With Pointy Bits On Their Faces

Yup, today I wanted to share with you three random animals that I’ve seen repeatedly around the place lately, for various reasons, elaborated on below. Their common point is that they all have pointy bits on their faces! Oh, also that I think they’re incredibly shiny πŸ˜‰ I know, I know, this is totally random, but they’re pretty cool animals, so bear with me πŸ˜‰

First up we have the delightful nawab caterpillar, who’s been doing the rounds on Twitter:

green nawab caterpillar with frondy face that looks like an alien helmet

Innit so cute?! For a caterpillar that is…

Secondly, we have the ever-charming nudibranchs (also known less gloriously as sea slugs πŸ˜‰ )! This is just an indicative image; nudibranchs come in all colours of the rainbow and are just as fabulous :o) I have a bit of a fascination with these critters (probably they are one of my favourite animals) and I see them on my social media feeds pretty regularly as the twinny one Liana Brooks is also enamoured of all things oceanic πŸ™‚

white nudibrach with black and orange stripes and orange fronds

And finally, narwhals!! There are a whole buncha memes out there about how narwhals are the unicorns of the sea, and AS IF THEY AREN’T, HA. I’m kind of obsessed with narwhals at the moment because I’m plotting a narwhal birthday for the toddler later in the year O:) I may or may not already have the cake planned……. (Actually, that’s what inspired the theme of the party, because I’d seen all these amazing unicorn drip cakes around the place and wondered how I could put my own personal spin on them, and since she had a fabulous angler fish drip cake for her first birthday I figured why not continue the ocean theme?! :D)

two narwhals sword fighting in the ocean

So there you go. My random top three animals for the year so far. Leave a comment and let us know: what’s YOUR top animals of the year so far?

 

#MadeItMonday! Peony Cakes (Includes Vegan Chocolate Banana Cake Recipe)

Last year I attempted to start up #MadeItMonday, where I post something I’ve made in the previous week, and where you can join in and post something you made too! However. Blogging and my life being what they are, it, uh, fell by the wayside. But! I am now attempting to redux it, starting today. The rules are easy: post a pic somewhere of something you’ve made in the last week (ish; let’s say in the last month as the hard-and-fast) and tag it. Sit back and enjoy scrolling through all the beautiful things we’ve collectively created, and celebrate the fact that humans can be awesome! πŸ™‚

Here’s my contribution for this week, a pair of cakes I made for my husband’s work right before Christmas. The cream one is a white chocolate mud cake with raspberry buttercream as both filling and frosting, topped with melted white chocolate (I didn’t even bother making ganache, I literally just melted the white chocolate and poured it on :P). The brown one is a vegan chocolate banana cake* to cater for dietary requirements in husband’s office, with a simple cocoa-icing sugar-water frosting. Both are topped with a couple of peonies and some white chrysanthemums I picked up at the supermarket πŸ˜‰

* Super-delicious, dead-easy recipe below.

Two cakes topped with pink peony flowers

Vegan Chocolate Banana Cake

This is actually a super-delish, moist and satisfying recipe that’s a crowd-pleaser even with non-vegans. Works great for diary-intolerant diets too!

Makes one small cake (20cm?), as per photo, or 16 smallish cupcakes. My recipe πŸ™‚

1 1/4c self raising flour
1/2c cocoa powder, or cacao if you want a stronger, bite-ier cake
1t baking powder
1t vanilla essence
2 mashed bananas (frozen work great)
200mL coconut syrup (or maple syrup, honey, etc – I used honey this time and it was great)
1/3c sunflower or other flavourless oil
1.5t apple cider vinegar
Combine wet ingredients in one bowl and dry in another, then mix all together. Half fill well-greased cupcake tins or cake pan and bake at 170C for 20 mins (cupcakes) / 30 mins (cake) or until they spring back to the touch/skewer comes out clean. Devour! πŸ˜€