23 Apr 2014

Mediterranean Prawns

Feeding the family can be a headache. Keeping every ones taste buds happy is far from smooth sailing, but the one thing that I can always rely on to bring a smile to the faces of my teens is pasta.

Recently I was lucky enough to be sent some wonderful samples from Barilla and since I received the generous package right before Easter, I decided to take advantage and use their delicious products to whip up a yummy dish for Good Friday. 

Living where we do, there is always an abundance of fresh seafood available and our family favourite is Prawns. So it was the perfect chance to combine the families two favourite foods and please them all at once.... WINNING !


1 tablespoon olive oil
3 Cloves crushed garlic
1 medium onion finely chopped 
2 teaspoons of dried or fresh oregano
1 teaspoon of chili flakes
1 cup Val Verde diced Italian tomatoes 
1 jar Barilla Mediterranean Vegetable pasta sauce
Barilla whole grain spaghetti
Green prawns

In a large pot of boiling water cook the pasta to packet directions

Heat the oil in a heavy based pan, add the garlic and onion and cook until onion is soft
Add the oregano and chili and cool for a further 2 minutes

Combine the tomatoes and the Barilla pasta sauce and add to the pan, bringing sauce to a simmer
Add the prawns making sure that the sauce does not boil.

Once the prawns are cooked through, drain the pasta and add to the sauce

A healthy, delicious meal that thankfully satisfied each tummy in our family, giving the Easter Weekend a fabulous start.

Thank you ever so much Barilla 

beck xx

This was not a sponsored post

11 Apr 2014

Locusts Or Teens ?

Sometimes I think I am housing locusts instead of teens. It seems that I spend more and more of my time taking up residency in the isles of Woolworths and stuck in the kitchen trying to feed my hungry plague that buzz around the pantry like bugs drawn to bright light.
Now with the school holidays upon us keeping a full fridge has become a time consuming chore.

 A plague of locusts wreak havoc, they swarm, devastate crops and cause major agriculture damage - causing famine and starvation.

Just like the locust, teens swarm kitchens in droves stripping a fridge of its contents in seconds being just as devastating to the family pocket as the locusts are to the farmers and their crops.

How much are you really forking out to feed your locusts teens these holidays ? Let me guess, just like me you have actually no idea of the hole they are creating in your wallet !
I know that my teen boys and their friends can clean out my fridge and pantry just as fast as a swarm of ravenous locusts can clear out a farmers entire crop, leaving a devastating trail of crumbs and dirty plates behind them......

My locusts teens are growing boys, but I am sure that the amount of food they put away on an average day is growing faster then they are.
I admit that I had better control over my boys eating habits when they were younger, when there seemed to be more structure. It seems the more they grow, the harder it is for me to keep up with their growing appetites, they never seem to be full ! Maybe I need a built in buffet to satisfy my teens growling stomachs.

The thought that keeps circulating in my mind is, if the boys keep eating the way that they do, we just may need to refinance our home.....they are literally eating machines !

Thank goodness that when school goes back their eating habits will return to what I consider relatively "normal" however that still requires a huge effort on my part to keep the fridge and pantry well stocked.

Keeping an eye on my hungry hoard of locusts teens and happily linking up to FYBF with the gorgeous Grace who has all of this to look forward to....

Happy Friday
beck xx

7 Apr 2014

Honored To Help / Asbestos Awareness Week

Last week I was especially honored to be contacted by Heather Von St. James an inspiring woman who asked me if I would like to help raise awareness through my blog for Mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer that is caused by exposure to asbestos. After reading her email, and doing a little research I jumped at the chance to help her out.

In November 2005, just three and a half months after the birth of her first and only child. Heather was diagnosed with mesothelioma.
Heather was exposed to asbestos through her fathers work jacket and the second hand exposure as a young child was enough to make her sick many years later. She was given only 15 months to live, but with treatment and surgery to remove her left lung, Heather is a survivor.

Unfortunately, around 3,000 people are diagnosed each year with this ferocious disease.
On average, they are given 10 months to live.
That's 300 days.
7,200 hours.

Since 2003 here in Australia it is illegal to import, store, supply, sell. install, use or re-use asbestos. However in the US it is still not a banned substance, with around thirty million pounds being used each year.

This week, April 1st - 7th has been Asbestos Awareness Week  I was delighted to have been asked by Heather to be a voice and take a part in sharing the awareness.
In honor of Asbestos Awareness Week the Von St. James Family has created a webpage dedicated to raising awareness of this deadly disease. I am happy to share their webpage HERE on my blog to help educate and raise awareness of this preventable disease.

Thank you so much Heather for this honor, and I wish you and your family all the best for the future.

1 Apr 2014

So, Here We Are

No matter where you may roam
or how much distance is between us,
you will always have a part of my heart.
We have walked life's journey 
 hand in hand for the past twenty years
and now its time for you to go out and explore on your own.
Good luck on your new adventure my boy
Know that I love you 
and that I will always be here

When you were born almost 21 years ago, my life changed in so many ways, and there were a lot of lessons to be learned. The most important lesson, the true meaning of unconditional love.  I have wanted to hold you close and protect you from the moment you were born, and to this day that has not changed.

I have so many memories imprinted on my heart and on my mind. Happy memories that makes my heart ache with love.

I am bursting with pride with all that you have accomplished, and the future that lies before you. You have a world full of possibilities, grasp each one with both hands and explore. The world is your oyster.

So, here we are. 
Its been a week since you left the nest. A long week. You have spent the week in transition, leaving the comfort of your well known home and discovering a new and foreign atmosphere. A culture shock to the system you might say.

Me, I have at times wondered around the house aimlessly, standing in your empty bedroom wondering where the years have gone, why I had to let you go. 

Snip snip snip, I can feel the cord being cut every time your name is mentioned. I miss you.

A couple of times now when preparing to serve dinner, I have set six places. I act as though its funny when your Dad or brothers comment, but deep inside I feel silly and a little empty. This will pass, I know. But for now its hard. 
You have depended on me for everything up until now, and I am finding it difficult to imagine that from now on you will lean on me less and less. 

How do you prepare yourself for the time when your children start to move on ? 
I have no answers to this question. It is something that I had never even considered, and now that it has begun I am frightened that the years will pass all to quickly and all my chicks will be gone. That my purpose in life will end and I will have nothing left to throw myself into. My children have been my whole world, I am afraid I will be lost with out them.

So as you start to find your way around your new life, I will try to soldier on without you by my side, I will jump for joy when you phone me, and enjoy every visit that we have. My eyes will eventually stop filling up when someone mentions your name and I will eventually come to terms with the fact that although you have moved on and out of your childhood home, I will forever be your mum and you my son. Our hearts locked forever in time.

Linking up for another IBOT with the wonderful Jess


Well hello there.... It’s been a while between blog posts, I needed time to gather my thoughts and to heal, both inside and out. Most of...