December 31, 2015

Vietnam Trip Day 2, Saigon

Filed under: Trips — pearsey @ 12:59 pm
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20/6/2014 – Saigon
From Bangkok to Saigon. Fairly easy trip, got to the airport and got a taxi ok. Went for a walk to the opera house to get our tickets for the AO show we were going to, past a couple of other famous buildings. Had a walking tour in the arvo and went to the imperial palace. Was bombed at the end of the war, but they rebuilt it, but don’t use it. For Vietnamese culture it is very oppulent. Had a huge bomb shelter underneath it, was used during the war. Saw the old post office, notre dame cathedral from the outside, and walked a bit elsewhere. Guide seemed a little disinterested, but did tell me where I could get nikes from like hers. Went there but far too expensive. Saigon first impressions are that it’s just like any other Asian city, perhaps I’ve been to too many…

The Running Board

Filed under: Idle Ramblings — pearsey @ 12:51 am
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I generally end up doing some kind of project around Christmas time and this year was no different.  My brother and I decided a board that Gary, our brother in law, could hang his running items on would be useful.  I volunteered to make one after we couldn’t find a decent one online.

It wasn’t really that hard, just a little time involved.

Painting the runner

Painting the runner

I took a piece of pine, painted it green (because I already had that paint), painted a silhouetted runner on it, sealed it with a clear lacquer, put a few hooks in for medals, race bibs and ribbons and bingo, done! A couple of pieces of dowel allow more medals to be displayed, with a chain either end so you can hook more on. Bulldog clips complete the package and allow you to clip a heap of ribbons or race bibs together, then they hang on the board.

Nearly finished

Nearly finished

Gary loved it, so hopefully it hangs inside his house, not in the shed!

The finished board

The finished board

December 30, 2015

Vietnam Trip Day 1

Filed under: Trips — pearsey @ 12:39 pm
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19/6/2014 – Melbourne
Melbourne to Bangkok. Longest line I’d ever seen at Melbourne customs to exit the country. Nice seats, nice flight, I slept reasonably for a plane, didn’t partake of the food at that time of night though!

Chocolate Scones & Other Goodies

The old lemonade scone recipe is my favouite go to scone recipe. For some reason, a while ago I decided to make chocolate scones after a conversation with a lady from church.
All I did was substitue a bit of cocoa for flour and added a little extra baking powder to make up for less SR flour and put some choc chips in there. They all went, so they must have been ok!

Chocolate Scones

Chocolate Scones

For Christmas this year, I also made some lemon meringue pie for our family, which I turned into lemon and passionfruit meringue pie. All I did there was switch half the lemon juice for passionfruit and we had a heavenly pie which seemed to go down quite well!

Lemon Passionfruit Meringue Pie

Lemon Passionfruit Meringue Pie

Steve scored for Christmas this year with some hokey pokey golden syrup biscuits and a jar of lemon butter from our families traditional lemon butter recipe (which of course I changed). Hopefully the lemon butter turned out ok because I’d never made it before. I actually added some extra egg yolks I’d frozen a while ago and some extra lemon juice. A jar also went to Uganda, so hopefully I’ll get some feedback on how it was.

I was also trying to get rid of some eggs and baked a simple egg cake. It used 4 eggs, which was the purpose of the cake. Tasted good, but if you weren’t trying to use eggs, other recipes will give you the same result.

Earlier in the year I made some banana icecream, with a simple recipe of 4 bananas, 1/4 cup of milk and a teaspoon of vanilla. I added a little extra milk and would use riper bananas next time.

And something I didn’t quite try this Christmas, but was going to, was a salad with passionfruit dressing. Here’s a couple of examples here and here for when I get a chance.

At least the chives from my vertical garden made it in to the Christmas salad!

Christmas salad

Christmas salad

December 29, 2015

Some updates

Filed under: Idle Ramblings,Trips — pearsey @ 1:22 pm
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I’ve done a few trips recently that I haven’t got around to posting about on my blog. While it’s mostly for my own reference, it’s also a handy place to back up some of my photos and keep some notes on my trips. The last few trips I’ve been on, which coincidentally I haven’t written up on my blog, I managed to keep a short diary on an app on my phone. But now I’m upgrading my phone and I don’t think the diary entries will be coming with it (unless I can find a way, I do enjoy reading them again).

So over the next few weeks/months, I’ll post the entries to my blog. They’re short (about 1000 characters), normally unedited and the photos aren’t always the best – just whatever I remembered to take using my phone at the time.

There’s 3 trips – Vietnam, Cambodia and Fiji that I’ll upload. Vietnam was last year, around June/July 2014 and was basically a trip to introduce Mum and Dad to an Asian country as neither of them had been before. Cambodia was back in November this year, a whirlwind two week trip that began in Ho Chi Minh City, finished in Bangkok and visited some of the highlights of Cambodia. I backed that up with Fiji – leaving a mere 60 hours after I’d returned from Cambodia. Fiji was a missions trip, where a team of us attended 7 pre school graduations; I did the graduation speeches and preached the one Sunday I was there and we all presented gifts and certificates to the students, helped out wherever we could and of course had some fun.

If I ever get around to posting some of my other photos and a few more details of the journey’s, that would be good, but til then, this will have to do.

Honey Honey

Filed under: Food — pearsey @ 12:38 am
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One of the guys at work started dabbling in bee keeping and earlier in the year he harvested his first batch of honey.

I ended up with a jar and set about making a few things to take into work to share the honey goodness.

We had honey cheesecake, sugarless honey joys and honey chocolate cake.

I didn’t get a photo of the cheesecake and honey joys, but I remember the cheesecake ran away (it was good, but a little runny), the honey joys were just, but the chocolate cake was a winner.

Honey Chocolate Cake

Honey Chocolate Cake

Anyway, here are the recipes for the honey joys and honey chocolate cake. The cheesecake was probably one I made up given that it was running away. I know for sure it was a nobake one, quite possibly based on my orange cheesecake here. At least you know it’s possible. You can google it now!

December 28, 2015

Christmas Haul 2015

Filed under: Idle Ramblings — pearsey @ 7:30 pm

Here’s my Christmas haul this year, just because I can I guess!

  • Wheelbarrow
  • Fire pit – I am looking forward to giving this a run, it will go well with the pergola I’m building out the back.
  • Two photo frames (12×16 inch) (must get last years hung)
  • Plants to replenish my vertical garden from last year
  • Two passionfruit plants
  • MP3 FM Modulator
  • PlanetShakers #Let’s Go CD
  • Plastic table cloth covering
  • Dove moisturising cream
  • Assortment of homemade biscuits
  • Assortment of bought chocolates and biscuits
  • Solar lights from work Kris Kringle
  • 2 Cinema tickets
  • 2 Christmas tea towels
  • Bali calendar
  • Selection of hot chocolate mixtures

We had a great day, headed down to Drouin Christmas day to enjoy plenty of food and presents, the most memorable moment coming on the journey home boxing day… I was not far from the Domain tunnel when I felt something wet, slimy and clammy on my leg. A quick glance down and I saw a lizard. It was all I could do to stay on the road and of course there is nowhere to pull over there. I brushed it off, and it disappeaered. Later on the Calder I’ve looked across and there’s a frog sitting on the front seat of the car. For those who don’t know me, I am not an animal person. They are fine, but they need to stay away from me. I pulled over here and managed to get the frog out of the car. The lizard… who knows. My only word of advice is if your brother gives you flowers in a cane basket that has been sitting outside for a few days, check it well for stray animals before it goes in your car! It really could have been dangerous…

December 27, 2015

The star and the search: How will you respond?

Filed under: Church life,Idle Ramblings — pearsey @ 4:00 pm
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Christmas time is a time to reflect on the Christmas story and the characters that we read and hear about so much at this time of the year.

In Matthew 2:1-12 we read about Herod and the wise men from the east.  The wise men, or magi, had been keeping an eye on the sky and noticed a new star appear. They decided to follow the star, heading to Jerusalem in search of the one who had been born King of the Jews (2:2).  Even at this early stage, the wise men recognised Jesus as King of the Jews and were seeking Him to worship Him.

Imagine the wise men, deciding to seek Jesus.  Whatever they were doing at that stage in their lives, they abandoned, they left behind families, possibly wives and children, jobs, livelihoods and property in their search for the King.  There was no earthly guarantee they would make it to their destination – it was a long and dangerous journey across country that was known for robbers and hardships.  How many of us could, or would, take time out of our regular lives and undertake a journey of this nature?

After the wise men made it to Jerusalem, they paid a visit to Herod, enquiring after the King Jesus.  Why would they go and see Herod when the star would have led them directly to Bethlehem?  Perhaps it would be natural to assume that a new king would come from the current line of kings, which at this stage was Herod.

Sadly though, Herod was only interested in this new king because Jesus was a threat to his rule.  He was well known as a brutal, ruthless and insecure king, a point he highlighted when he ordered the slaughter of all young boys under the age of 2, hoping that Jesus would be killed as part of this group.

The chief priests and scribes, the ones who knew the scriptures like the back of their hands, were able to point the wise men to where Jesus had been born, but yet they didn’t care to go and look for Him, to find the one who was to one day lead them.

Despite the discouragement from Herod and the chief priests, the wise men continued their search.  The star led them to Jesus, and when they found Him, they presented their gifts and offerings and bowed down to worship Him.

If we’re genuinely seeking Jesus, God will provide a sign as we seek Him, it will involve a journey with a cost and discouragement, but we are guaranteed to find Him: Jeremiah 29:13 says “you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart”.

When we look for Jesus, we will find Him, when we truly find Him, we will worship Him and give Him all we have.

How will you respond this Christmas?  Will you be like Herod who responded with hatred and fear?  Will you be like the chief priests and scribes who responded with indifference?  Or will you be like the wise men, who went seeking Jesus, overcame discouragement and responded with worship and adoration, bringing their gifts as an offering?

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