Monday, December 7, 2009

DIY Xmas embroidery frenzy da results!

Hello and Happy Holidays to you all! Yes its been quite a while. Elias and I had been ploughing (stitching) away for AGES and then **PLONK** Xmas day landed in the middle of our suburban livingroom sweatshop. Elias was stitching until the very last minute before we walked out the door to go for the big feast. These are a few of the things we did. Its all simple needlework...but there is such a sense of accomplishment when you complete something. We are ever so pleased with ourselves! All the cross stitch here are my designs but if you like the other stuff then I suggest you check out Its fantastic for iron-on beauties and you just stitch along the lines.
Teddy Bear by domesticatedbee for baby Andreas
And Skull and Crossbones for my Babs
Elias for his lovely mama
detail of a kitchen towel by domesticated bee for Paulina
And Elias for YY.
I'll be back soon with yummy but easy recipes and more...enjoy the remainder of the merriment! XXX

Friday, November 27, 2009

breakfast at the monastery recipe

Yeah yeah I know. I did kind of go on a bit in my last post. I was delirious from excitement and exaustion, and I have since edited out chunks. Anyway, for those of you who did manage to make it all the way through...for lunch today I made my own version of the fish dish we were served for breakfast at the monastery and it turned out YUM! I really recommend it because its super healthy, cheap and easy to make. You will need:

  • around 5 tomatoes, either dice them or wizz them in a blender. Enough to fill a deep plate. You could also use chopped tomatoes from a tin.
  • 3 medium sized onions, or 1 1/2 big ones. diced.
  • two cloves of garlic, chopped up
  • a spoonful tomato paste
  • around 600g worth of bakaliaro (cod) chopped into approx 4 finger length pieces
  • 2 large potatoes cut into smallish pieces
  • olive oil (extra virgin) (of course)
  • a bay leaf
  • pepper, salt optional

Sautee the chopped onion, garlic and pieces of fish in olive oil for a bit then chuck in all the rest with a little water and leave to boil softly for half an hour. Make sure you stay near the food and stir a bit every so often so it won't burn. Taste it after about 15 minutes to see how salty it is (bakaliaro/cod can be very salty sometimes) and add salt if necessary, a generous shake of pepper and a glug more olive oil.

As soon as the potatoes are ready, it should be ready to eat as you don't want to overcook the fish. Serve in a deep dish with really nice bread. I'll definitely make this again so if you don't make it maybe you'll eat it for dinner at my house! X

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Sweet as honey

Ooowhere do I start? I just got back from paradise! Ahhhh... Mmmmm. Really, there are no words to fully describe my experience in Amorgos so I'll just put a selection of orgasm sounds. How crap! No, I'll try harder. Here we go:

This weekend we took a trip to the island of Amorgos. The occasion? Its quite a ferry ride, so at this time of year there must be an occasion. The beautiful monastery Panagia Hozoviotissa (built into the face of a cliff overlooking the sea wot the island is famous for) celebrates with a fair on the 21st of November. Worth a look? I think so.

We did so many nice things. There are some I must recommend. The first is 'O Loudaros' of Lagada. Its a caffeneio that doubles as a tavern if anyone wants to eat. All the food is local produce and the salads are ecstasy for taste buds.

Also some of you may already know the oh so pretty zacharoplasteio(I think that translates as sweet shop) (cake shop?) 'Kallisto' in Hora. Best cheesecake I've ever had. Really!

And last but definitely not least are psimeni raki and rakomelo (and if you have no clue what these are and are interested go to These two traditional Amorgos drinks are the ultimate winter booze. Drunk hot or cold, either way it warms you up, gives you a delicious high and no hangover. We brought back as much of both as we could afford. If you live in Greece you can usually find either at the supermarket or a cava. Amorgion is a really good brand and made on the island. If you live out of Greece're in luck! Brettos in plaka now has a website and delivers OVERSEAS! They have a very good selection of Greek wines and traditional liqueurs and stuff. Get rakomelo at

As for the monastery and the fair, all I can say is that it was magical, and I really can't go into too much detail because I cannot do it justice. I will say one thing though. They fed those of us who did the morning shift a mean fish dish for breakfast and I am in the process of trying to figure out the recipe. And because a picture is worth...this is a view from the steps on the way up. Ahh...

Sunday, November 15, 2009

grog blog

The days are now tiny. The dark goes on for ages and its much more comfortable to be indoors after the sun goes down. You just want to curl up on the couch with a hot bev but need something a bit more butch than a cup of tea. So what will it be? Mulled wine? Too much fuss. Egg nog too milky. Irish coffee? No. Hot grog is my poison.

In England* grog usually means a drink mixed with rum. The British Navy used to give rations of grog to the sailors. They got a pint of rum(neat) a day mixed with a quart of water. They were allowed two pints before battle(!!) and also after-if they won. Lime juice was often added to this mix to prevent scurvey. Add honey and you've got a drink thats to DIE for. YUM. This is how my hot grog is done:

Put 3 teaspoons of honey into a cup that won't crack with heat. Add one shot of a strong dark rum. 1/4 shot of freshly squeezed lime juice and 2 1/2 shots of boiling water. Stir it all up and drink it.

If you do make it, and love it like I do you may want to invest in Diffords Guide #7, the cocktail bible. You can buy it from amazon. Happy winter!

*In Australia grog can mean any alcoholic beverage. This is because when Australia was first settled grog was pretty much the only thing available to drink.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Bling bling! Christmas lights are popping up all over the place, and the message is loud and clear: Its Christmas! 'Tis the season to be jolly, and spend lots of money in the shops. But what if you don't have much extra cash this year, and yet you still want to give nice things to your lovelies and make them smile? Could you, would you consider DIY presents?

If you live in Greece then maybe you haven't realised that Stateside and in the UK there is a little knitting/tapestry/sewing revolution going on. Everyone seems to be at it! I hear even Madonna has taken up knitting so there you go. With still over a month left till Xmas, maybe this year you can avoid the endless queues and get creative at home with music and a hot cocktail!

Should the idea of getting crafty like that sound appealing to you, there are a good few websites that can help you get started. These are all worth taking a browse through:

However, if sewing isn't your cup of tea of course you mustn't be discouraged. There are other very important things. Like food. Like a personal favourites recipe book! This is something I must urge you to consider very seriously. I would KILL for some of the people I know to make one of these.

If you really don't feel like making something but like the idea of original handmade stuff you can always go to My friend Anna has a beautiful shop there at The choices at etsy are endless. Two of my favourites are (great prezzies boxes and mirrors) and (fantastic wall stickers)

One of my best ever Christmas presents was a portrait of me and my sweetie. I like it so much I thought I would show it to you. Thanks Georgie!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Back to Basics

Ok then! Now that I feel I have had a nice little series of online rants about things that worry me or piss me off I can move over to the stuff I think other domesticateds like myself must care about. Like cooking, home decor and ware, clothes, accessories and a bit of DIY. So today I wish to celebrate the glory of the kitsch plastic table cloth, something I just cannot live without. It never fails to brighten up my day! After years of scouring London flea markets, the High Street shops and the East End (sometimes paying stupid amounts of money for low quality crap) I have found my dream brand in good ole Athens at my local supermarket. Its called Dizas Athens Luxury table cloths and its FAB. The quality is perfect and a tablecloth costs around 4Euros. There are loads of patterns that range from simple country checked to sunflowers to aquarium. So I can keep my brother's slightly hideous desk from University in the kitchen forever as it is safely hidden under one of these babies. I love! If anyone wants me to pop over to the supermarket and get you one I will do so gladly. This is me enjoying tea with my table cloth after a night out. The good times are endless! :)

Saturday, August 1, 2009

The Doors of Perception

I am sometimes horrified when I watch the news. I just can't believe my eyes. How is it that night after night, on a government owned channel, a woman who is made up like a cross between Siouxsie Sioux and Alexis Carrington Colby Dexter is allowed to appear on television and do the job looking like that? (I mean no offence to Siouxie Sioux who is a goddess). I often cannot concentrate on what this ET3 newsreader is saying. My mind starts to travel; I start to wonder, what is the make-up artist thinking when putting the finishing touches on her face? Or maybe there is no make-up person and she did it on her own? Well anyway somebody must think she looks just right!(!) Which gets me thinking about perception, and how different things look through the eyes of another.

I could go on for ages about the bad taste on TV. As far as I'm concerned the female newsreaders usually look like they've nipped over for a bit of a break from partying at the bouzoukia, and I really wish the men would wear the right colour foundation and a whole lot less at that; but enough. As I said before, other people don't see a problem. Other people can watch television and actually hear everything that is being said. We all see things so very very differently.

Our seperate perceptions of reality are what make us unique. But we do get caught up in our view of things a bit much. We are so easily convinced that we are 'right' and that our brand of 'right' defines us and we will defend it to the bitter end, no matter if it screws up our relationships or nervous system or even our entire life. There is a fine line between staying true to yourself and being an egomaniac. I think we all walk that line on a daily basis.

If the doors of perception were cleansed,
Everything would appear to man as it is, infinite.
For man has closed himself up, till he sees all things through narrow chinks of his cavern. Said Blake.

A very influential quote this has been indeed. We all have a sense of the infinite when we think about it a bit. It does our heads in. Some of us have even tried to to tackle the concept by looking into science, have given 'A Brief History of Time' a go and made it through X number of pages. But how often do we think of the finite? How often do we consider our own limits; the limits of our ego; the limits of our point of view...

I bet that newsreader lady would think I really need to sort out the dark circles under my eyes. And she would be right.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Drink and dial

The other day I got myself into debt for a pair of sandals. I had to! They were soooo nice and so very out of my budget. When I first heard the price I just kind of froze. Then I left the store abruptly in a state of panic and started to head nowhere in particular really really fast, feeling that the finger of God was pointing at me from the skies accompanied by a big booming voice saying: 'You can't spend that much money on SHOES!'. I was randomly racewalking down Ermou totally oblivious to the world around me when I got a call on my cell.

"Did you find shoes? Did you buy them? Why not? Come on, haven't you learnt your lesson yet?"

So I went back and bought them immediately. I really wish I had listened to this person when I found that beautiful pair of sunglasses on sale (but still very expensive) last August. When in doubt whip it out. Better to be safe than sorry... with the goods in my fat little hand.

Its much better to regret things you've done rather than to moan and mourn after you've missed the opportunity. 'Never drink and dial' the old saying goes. Whatever. I think if you're pissed and feeling it, do it. Whoever it is may deserve an earful from a drunk. Maybe they'll realise they hurt someones feelings and try to better themselves! They may even be flattered by the attention....

So whats the big deal with being spontaneous? Why am I supporting reckless drunken behaviour. What am I on about?

Its getting easier and easier to filter our feelings. There are text msgs you can leave for ages while you think of a smart reply, websites for dating etc etc. Its easy to get obsessed with presenting a perfect image of ourselves. We can take our time and weigh up every detail while we miss a excellent opportunity for an adrenaline rush. I say let's not.

Friday, July 24, 2009

judgment days

We are all guilty. We have all had one of those days when we were overtired, or things weren't going quite as planned, or for no clear reason we just felt pissed off. So the casting of judgement begins....

When we were teenagers judgmental attitude ran rampant in our lives. I felt it was somehow my duty to be tirelessly critical. It used to go something like 'eeeeew she listens to Mariah Carey. And her hair is so 80s.' Or 'that guy thinks he's so hard but he's into Warrant what an idiot'. Ring any bells?

Yes but we aren't like that anymore. We have grown out of it. We now accept each other for who we are and just get on with our own lives. Fat chance! It seems it is part of being human to sit on our throne in the sky of our mind judging and pitying our fellow man....

Ever since having a baby I have been overwhelmed by the amount of advice/criticism that has been liberally dished out from all angles. 'You are still breast feeding? Are you nuts? You have to stop! You're not a cow! Hasn't the doctor told you you can give the baby milk thats not yours? They sell it at the pharmacy!' This is but one highlight of direct quotes from an endless torrent covering all aspects from behaviour to eating habits . I have gone through many attempts at being buddha-like and letting it all just slide off me. But its not easy when you're exhausted. And that is when the Queen Bee in my brain thinks its high time I start to judge back! Aaaaaaahhhhhhh!

So, here I am, on the verge of judging others for judging others. Being judgemental is a bit like a drug. It helps you blow some steam, short term. But in the long term it just makes you grumpy and miserable and you need to keep doing it to feel ok. I remember being around 21 and saying something thoughtless to a friend about someone we both knew. He turned to me and said, 'never criticise a man until you've walked a mile in his moccasins'. I realised he had a point so I just shut up. It was good advice.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

thoughts on hot

The other day I got talking with a friend on what makes someone 'hot'. He (obviously a he-no offence guys) held that looks are the most important thing. But is it only looks that turns heads when someone walks into a bar? I say nonononononoooooo.

First of all the hot person needs to think they are hot. Not in a 'look at me I'm so sexy strike a pose vogue' kind of hot. They need to take their hotness for granted. And be focusing on things other than their looks. People who look like they are thinking about what they look like don't usually seem terribly approachable. Sometimes they look like total arseholes.

A person is hot if they are enjoying themselves. The misery guts in the corner will not turn heads. Maybe some gothic emo type might notice they are good looking, but whatever. A hot person oozes the feeling that life is good......or at least interesting.

A person is hot if they have their own unique style. Their own fabulous brand of me. So doesn't everyone have access to that? Surely everyone can be hot for a least one other person, no?

Anyway why do I care enough to sit and write a whole blog about this topic? Do I consider myself some kind of expert on 'hotness' as a result of my clubber/drama teacher combination from days of yore? Hmm. Do I feel the need to blabber my opinion about anything all over the net as a result of too many hours of talking with a baby per day? Definitely. This blog was born of a lack of going out for coffee or/and drinks...something I used to take for granted. Don't take going out for granted non-parents! Going out is so very sweet....

I think what I want to say is that I have started to realise that life is really short. Being with a baby all the time and watching him grow before my eyes has really brought that home recently. The times I have the most fun with him is when I am actually 100% there, not thinking about how I can steal a few minutes to read or get on facebook. And when I'm having fun, I like looking in the mirror. I don't see unplucked eyebrows and hideous hair. I just smile.