Feijoa Coconut Cake (Gluten & Dairy Free and Paleo)

I need this!!!

Hungry Cub


Feijoa is an innocent little fruit which divides the passionate. You either love it or hate it. For me; I’m in the loving camp.

If I recall correctly I first encountered feijoa on a family trip to Auckland when I was about three. My brother called them three-joeys and the name kind of stuck. To me ‘three-joeys’ are some kind of hybrid of pears, tomatoes, and something I can’t quite put my finger on. But they’re addictively delicious! I love the fact feijoas abound in Autumn, just when you’re feeling a little sad about declining summer fruit numbers; along come feijoas to brighten any dish.

This cake is ridiculously easy. One of those, throw-everything-in-the-bowl-and-mix-it-all-in-one-go recipes. As I said; easy. Try it out to go with that cup of tea on these balmy Autumn afternoons.



Feijoa Coconut Cake (Gluten & Dairy Free, and Paleo)

1 cup feijoa flesh (just the innards), chopped…

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Green Tomato Bread

Oh yummy!! I think I need to make this once we have moved next week! I have a heap of tomatoes that aren’t turning red before the move! Apparently it’s pointless to try to transfer the plants, so I’ll pick what I can! I’ll do a follow up post and let you know how it goes!

Isabelle at home

Green Tomato Bread

I know, it’s like I am trying to see how far I can take my weird ideas.  BUT in my defense this is not truly my idea.  Matt decided that since we have an ever-growing amount of green tomatoes from our “garden” (which in fact is really big plastic/rubber tubs around the chicken coop…real classy I must say!) we should make yummy stuff with all these tomatoes that don’t seem to get their beautiful red colors.

oh my tomato heaven!

The fact that it is getting colder at night made us bring in all those tomatoes.  We don’t want them to freeze.  But now because they lack the bright sun, they don’t ripen…oh the tomato drama!


3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
2 large eggs, lightly beaten

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Delicious gluten free Basil, Spinach, and Feta scone/muffin concoction


These Gluten Free Basil, Spinach, and Feta scone/muffin thingys taste amazing!!! I’ll share this epic experience with you so you can make your own delectable delights!

First tip– Try to use some expired ingredients for the yeast (about one heaped tsp, maybe? The number by the tsp amount had rubbed off!) and 2 2/3 cups of gluten free bread mix (expiry date had rubbed off as well, so not sure how old it needs to be to get my epic results.😉 )

I can’t even read the best before on this one, so if you want my results, go for about ten years old.😉 hehe


Best before 11/11/14 (so only a few months off..  )
Best before 11/11/14 (so only a few months off.. )









Second tip– Use a few non-expired items, but definitely don’t measure! I used about five fresh spinach leaves from the garden (maybe about a cup and a half chopped up if measured), about 1/5th of the feta cheese block (cut up), and a sprinkling of dried basil (likely around a tablespoon’s worth).

We LOVE spinach, so having it in the garden is a MUST!
We LOVE spinach, so having it in the garden is a MUST!
Mmmm.. time to plant more basil! Dried is good, too!
Mmmm.. time to plant more basil! Dried is good, too!









Third tip– set in warm place to rise for an hour…and when it doesn’t rise, don’t be sad- just pop it into muffin trays (fill them 3/4 full) and turn the oven onto whatever you usually use- umm… I think I did it around 200C (?) and walk away and forget about them. (WHOOPS!) This recipe had more than 12 muffin’s worth, so I just spread some out on a flat tray and it made amazing flat bread that was eaten too quickly for photos!

Fourth tip– find yourself doing something else in the kitchen a little while later and hear the fan running in the oven. Start frantically whispering “oh no! Oh no!!!” because you have absolutely NO idea how long you left them and grab the oven mitts as you throw the oven open, only to discover the most perfectly browned scone/muffin concoction you have ever made. Go figure!

Fifth tip– eat while warm. ALL OF THEM. You know you want to. Just do it.😉 Save the next lot. hehe. We ate about half of them and I did freeze some for kindy lunches, but still- even then, pleeeease eat them warmed up to get the optimal yumminess!


In case you missed all that- here’s the condensed version:

1 2/3 c lukewarm water with 1 heaped teaspoon of active yeast- set aside for twenty five minutes.

Add 2 2/3 cups of bread mix into mixer and then add what should be frothy yeast mixture to it. (to be fair, my yeast is expired, so it wasn’t very frothy, lol)

Before mixing, add random amounts of feta cheese, basil, and spinach and then mix all together for about five minutes, then scrape the pan and make sure everything mixed well.

Now, cover and set in warm place for an hour to rise (or not rise in my case…again, likely due to the expired yeast.)

Now pour into muffin trays and the left over onto a flat tray on baking paper and stick in the oven at 200C (ish) until they look like mine. (sorry, I have no clue how long I forgot left them in there!)

Now take them out, eat, and enjoy! Mmmmm… and adding a bit of butter or coconut oil just makes them even more delicious!

Oh yeah, and be sure to wash the dishes straight away once you are done, as I did.😉 I’m totally showing off since you know I’m bad about doing dishes!! (see my post “The Great Dish Dilemma” here! haha!)


I would love to read about some of your favourite recipes! (especially GF ones!) Please leave your links in the comments so I can find them and use them! Thanks!


From the fingers on the hands that accidentally made amazing things today…



How to save on rent…


Yep, that’s what we’re doing, so everybody should do it, too, am I right?! Haha, nah, I doubt everyone wants to go through the hassle, and if we’re honest, neither do we! Alas, it’s not really up to us as hubby is going from a good paying job to minimum wage, thus the necessity of change.

As I’m sure that all of you are faithful followers of my blog because you hit “follow” last time you were reading my ramblings, you will have read the post about my husband losing his great job recently. Here’s a link to the beginning of the story, and this blog will be an update to calm your curiosity!😉

10563199_651968334911588_5123040647543176932_nSo I wrote that post about a month ago now, and we received four weeks notice from his work, so thankfully we’ve been paid until now. God is so good, and we are thankful for His provision! It worked out that hubby basically had two months off over summer- completely paid! Albeit it wasn’t the most awesome way to spend summer…the uncertainty, anyway! We got in a lot of family time, though, and that WAS awesome!

Hubby applied for and got a job at the local gourmet burger place- Burger Fuel…pretty much our favourite place to eat.🙂 WIN! He starts on Monday and we’re so stoked that he has work already! As I mentioned in the previous post, he had gone more than a year without a job last time because of his ridiculously amazing qualifications and superman skills, so it’s a huge answer to prayer that he got this job so quickly! THANK YOU for those who have been praying for us!

We realised once he lost his job that we would need to move as our income would very likely go to minimum wage, so we started looking for a new house over a month ago. Nothing was ever quite right, and the one place we were super keen on had an agent that just would NOT get back to me for anything. (I can see the blessing in that now!) Yesterday, after ever so slightly bugging a real estate lady, we were able to view a place that had potential and we confirmed that we wanted it. It is $115 a WEEK ( A WEEK!!) less than our current rental! I know those of you living in other countries may not pay much in rent, but over here in the most beautiful country in the world, our rent rates are dumb- I guess we’re paying for the views.😉

We will miss our hillside home that backs onto the gondolas (as seen here!) and has lake and city views, but for that savings, we praise God for His provision! And you know what?! When we went to see the house, we realised that the views were beautiful there, too! Oh, how God gives over and abundantly above all that we ask or think!  Check out the view from the new place!!!


Tell me you aren’t impressed with that view?!! I was so amazed! We have loved our last two houses as they’ve been on hills so we don’t feel smothered from a city atmosphere, and now I don’t even have to look at houses! Sure, there are houses on both sides and behind us, but WOW! What a view! And do you know what is even BETTER?! We are directly below the flight path- and only about one kilometre from the end of the runway as the crow flies! My boys (all three of them.😉 ) are going to LOVE that! I love it! There’s a reason aeroplanes is in the name of this blog!

Part of why the house is so cheap (only $195 a week!) is that it’s on quite a dodgy road…sometimes considered the worst road in the town. I talked to a close friend (who owns a house two doors down and has had it for twenty years) to get his opinion. He assured me that this part of the street is fine, so you can breathe easy now! (in and out, in and out…sloooower…that’s better!) Do you know what? We’re not afraid!

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” 2 Tim 1:7

Everywhere we’ve gone over the past few months, God has given my husband and I amazing peace in choosing the homes we’ve chosen. We’ve seen His hand of protection in the bad areas that we’ve lived in (pretty much the only areas we can afford!) The safest place we will ever be is in the centre of His will, and we have no doubt that we are there now- and will be in moving to this new home.

We look forward to getting to know our neighbours, and we’re sad to be leaving the amazing neighbours we have now. Check out this welcome home note from our neighbour, Lisa, that we found when we got home a week ago…


…there were even “footprints” up to the door! My three year old was tickled pink! He adores our sweet Lisa! Yes, we will definitely have to visit her regularly!

So that’s the latest anyway! We’re moving- AGAIN. We have been in this house for FOUR WHOLE MONTHS now, after all! That’s how long we were in the last house, six months in the one before, and seven and a half months in the one before that. We hope that this will be that last move for a while! Maybe a year?! Dare we hope?!

How many times have you moved? Do you like change or detest it? We are obviously not too phased by change and probably thrive just a little bit too much on it, but I am sure that some of you have stayed in one place much longer than we ever have! I would love to hear your stories in the comments below! Maybe some moving tips?! Pretty please?

The ramblings of the crazy woman who is packing up her house yet again…and the mama of this adorable boy whose face shall go instead of mine this time!

He was having fun on the swing at the playground just across the street from the new house!
He was having fun on the swing at the playground just across the street from the new house!

LydiaPs. Here’s a song that always encourages my heart…

When we arrived home from our honeymoon, our house had confetti all over…

…and we STILL don’t know who did it! It’s been over five years and we don’t really hold out hope of discovering the culprit! If it was you and you’re reading this, go ahead- let us know! You have done well to keep it under wraps for all of these years!

IMG_0775 IMG_0774  IMG_0772IMG_0773 IMG_0771 IMG_0769 IMG_0768 IMG_0767 IMG_0766 IMG_0765 IMG_0764

So who was it?! Time to fess up!

Have any of you done something like this? Been the victim of such a thing? I admit that I did plenty of tp-ing in my youth, but none recently! Are YOU a prankster? (btw, I totally do NOT recommend ever putting shaving cream on a window and allowing the sun to bake it on…)

A baffled woman,


Hubby and I while in Rarotonga on our honeymoon...completely unaware of the havoc being reeked at our new home!
Hubby and I while in Rarotonga on our honeymoon…completely unaware of the havoc being reeked at our new home!

These are a few of my favourite things…

Anyone who knows me knows that I get excited about, well, pretty much everything. I LOVE great customer service and great products, so when I find  them, so I do tend to rave a bit! Here are a few of the things I raved about this week…

This awesome BLOG that is super inspiring and written by a super cool mum. I’m not terribly crafty, so I need inspiration like this to get motivated! Her blog is http://happymumhappychild.co.nz/ and on facebook she is at https://www.facebook.com/happymumhappychild?pnref=lhc


This awesome SOAP that is all natural and super duper lovely on the skin! I picked it up from a local mum who has been selling it for years now and it’s a new fave in this house! Hubby really likes his man-musk one, and I love my pink grapefruit one, so it’s a big WIN. Oh, and she’s very affordable too, especially considering the ingredients are actually GOOD for your skin! Check her out at her facebook page- https://www.facebook.com/vintage.violet.naturals


We are big fans of natural immunity and home remedies in this household, so our main go-to is Nutribiotics Sodium Ascorbate from iHerb. It’s the most easily absorbed form of vitamin C, and we take it at the first sign of illness. It’s a natural pain reliever and anti-histamine. You can imagine that you don’t need many things in the medicine cabinet when you have this! iHerb has a ton of great stuff at cheap prices, and if you want a discount on your first order, you can use the code LBW350 and get $5-$10 off.
NutriBiotic, Sodium Ascorbate, Crystalline Powder, 16 oz (454 g) - iHerb.com 2015-01-25 08-35-21

I’m pretty much always excited about the great products that are available through my website, one of which is the face wash. I never imagined that I would ever RAVE about a face wash, but yeah- it’s awesome. It’s available here http://www.bestmascaraever.co.nz or comment below if you’re in NZ and want to save on shipping.🙂


I’m sure I’ll have more things to rave about soon…life is too short to ignore the little things.😉

From an excited mama,



The Great Dish Dilemma



This is the great dish dilemma. 


They just keep appearing!  Whyyyyy?!

From what I have heard, most people have a chore that they dislike and put lowest on the priority list. Dishes is mine.

I have good phases where the dishes are done promptly– for a day or two, phases when they get done fairly regularly– when hubby takes on the dishwasher role, and normal– when they get done because we have run out of either bench space or clean dishes.

Honestly, though, I don’t hate doing dishes! I actually enjoy the hour in which I get to do them in peace when Hubby watches the boys and I prop my tablet on the windowsill and watch a Hallmark movie on youtube. This happens because hubby just wants them done, and so do I!! It’s not a conspiracy!

And you know how there is always that one dish that proves more challenging than the rest- the one you soak three times? This is mine…


The porridge bowl. I love porridge but hate the bowl cleaning. But hey, to get more porridge, I have to clean the bowl, and so the great dish dilemma continues.

But hey! Before you’re totally grossed out, my house can be pretty much spotless in less than half an hour on pretty much any given day if I hear that someone is coming over! I’m a pretty tidy person generally. This is just my weak spot domestically. Well, this and my whole “lightning storage”, but that’s another post entirely!

What is your thing? What chore do you prefer to avoid or delay?  Please tell me I am not alone in this?! I’m sorry if this makes clean freaks freak. ;)  Feel free to swing by and remedy the problem!

The true confessions of a real-life mama,


Be real! You have to have a weak spot somewhere!
Be real! You have to have a weak spot somewhere!

There’s a reason the word “aeroplanes” is in this blog name!

So the other day, J and I were reading a book and I challenged him to find aeroplanes to match the ones in the book. It didn’t take too long! He knows the names of most of them and constantly impresses me with his knowledge- at 3 years old! There are SO MANY AEROPLANES in this house!


It was inevitable, really, considering his Papa is an aircraft engineer for NZ’s main carrier, and Daddy has been a pilot, flight instructor, and air traffic controller, and soon hopes to start building a full-size fibre-glass Canard sorta like THIS.

“What shall we build, J?” I often ask him when we get out the duplo. Hmmm.. I’m sure that even you won’t be surprised by the answer!

Yes! He has a nappy on, it’s super hot here so clothes are very often optional at the moment!

And mama does her best to keep up with his mean skills…


…and I was SO proud of this creation until he came up to me with two grey pieces and said “Mama, here you go. You forgot the engines.” LOL. FAIL. My kid is too clever!

So yeah, it’s not just by chance that aeroplanes are in the name of this blog. They are a very real part of every day life in this household!

What is popular in your house? Trucks? Dolls? Diggers? Rockets? I would love to hear what your kids love!

A mama who will eventually learn the names of all the aircraft…


Hubby and I flying when I was 18. We were highly attracted at the time, but didn't end up married for another 3 years!
Hubby and I flying when I was 18. We were highly attracted at the time, but didn’t end up married for another 3 years!

Simple gifts can be enough! Part One- Kid’s Presents

Have you ever done home-made gifts for friends or family?

Baking? Framed memories? Jars with ingredients? Love vouchers?

A sample of a love voucher Cameron made up for me. Last time he did it, he printed them as 4x6 pictures and put them into a small photo album. Once redeemed, they get put into the back and turned around so not visible, and on a birthday or Christmas, he'll randomly put them back in the front and give them again. I. LOVE. IT.
A sample of a love voucher Hubby made up for me. Last time he did it, he printed them as 4×6 pictures and put them into a small photo album. Once redeemed, they get put into the back and turned around so not visible, and on a birthday or Christmas, he’ll randomly put them back in the front and give them again. I. LOVE. IT.

We are big fans of thoughtful gifts, and not fans of materialism and spending big bucks on stuff that people don’t want.

For our son’s first birthday, we spent a whopping $5 on a second hand boy doll (that he loves to this day at 3 and a half years old), and a $2 thing of bubbles! They were both very appreciated! We spent more on his cake because we bought two model type aeroplanes (for about $15 all up) for the awesome cake my husband made for him! (Hubby’s dad made the cakes when they were kids, so I wanted to carry on that awesome tradition!🙂 ) We  had a fun family dinner to celebrate!

All we asked from my brother and sister-in-law was a big box so we could make a playhouse! It was perfect and FREE!
All we asked from my brother and sister-in-law was a big box so we could make a playhouse! It was perfect and FREE!
Hubby's first try at making a themed cake! EPIC! Hangar, tower, and runway in the shape of a number one- complete with a plane taking off!
Hubby’s first try at making a themed cake! EPIC! Hangar, tower, and runway in the shape of a number one- complete with a plane taking off!


Birthday number two- family dinner again, stuffed Mickey Mouse ($1 from op shop!), and pull back aeroplane ($6 from Save the Children shop!)


Birthday number three- first kiddy party! I wanted to wait until HE could appreciate it. Before three, do they really care if people are there other than family? The only present from us was an awesome rocket I had found as-new, second-hand months earlier for $200 $50!!. We used rockets as the theme and daddy made an amazing, gruesome cake! It had “crashed” because that’s what Josiah always did with his planes and rockets, and hubby made blood  jelly/jello ooze out the hatch door. It was pretty perfect for J, though, and he loved it!

We kept the party cheap by finding décor throughout the year on sale or at dollar stores, putting his many aerospace books on window ledges for inspiration, and having mostly naturally gluten free foods that he is normally allowed to eat. I’m not keen for my kids to go crazy on sugar, so why would I waste a special day and make my kid go nuts and feel sick on sugar? That doesn’t make sense to me! So we had bananas, home-popped lightly salted popcorn, apple slices, carrot sticks, celery with peanut butter and raisins, some sausages, and cake- with water as the drink. Not one kid complained! Anyway, back onto the topic at hand! Healthy eating is another post entirely!

Healthy doesn't have to mean BORING!
Healthy doesn’t have to mean BORING!


Lovely, eh?! This is what can happen when hubby gets free reign of the cake design!!
Lovely, eh?! This is what can happen when hubby gets free reign of the cake design!!


I have SO many more things I could say about affordable gift-giving, but I’ll leave you for now with our boys’ ONLY Christmas present from us this year.  (call us Scrooges, but they didn’t care!)

TA DA!! I promised in my earlier post about building free forts that I would show you our latest creation! Here is it! We finished it on Christmas afternoon while J slept at Grandma’s house. I found all of the materials for this as I was out and about doing errands in the weeks before. I would drive through the industrial area on my way home and pick up odds and ends every trip. We already had the stuff like drill, hammer, nails and screws, so it was free for us and pretty cool! They love it!

It's pretty tall and sturdy! Hubby is 6'3"!!
It’s pretty tall and sturdy! Hubby is 6’3″!!


What are some clever DIY or simple, affordable gifts you have given? I would love to hear your ideas below in the comments section!


Sincerely, a simple mama trying to raise children who are grateful for the simple things…




My Grandma- my kindred spirit.

Anyone who has ever read or seen Anne of Green Gables will understand the term kindred spirit, and perhaps wonder at the term being used in relation to my grandma. If you knew us, you’d understand.

Our husbands get it. They see our similarities and love for adventure, yodeling, Bing Crosby, and live shows. They see our fun-loving, zany sides and our sincere and crazy love for them.

My grandma is hilarious and fun to be around, and she turns 80 today. You would never guess that by looking at her, though! She is so beautiful and adventuresome and happy that she looks AT LEAST a decade younger!


My beautiful grandma and my Great uncle grandpa when we were exploring Milford Sounds on their last trip to NZ.
My beautiful grandma and my Great uncle grandpa when we were exploring Milford Sounds on their last trip to NZ.

She was married to my handsome grandpa for over 50 years, and they were amazing together. We loved spending time with them and they always made the effort to come visit us. They have always lived in a big farm house in Michigan, but they didn’t let that stop them from visiting us when we lived in Florida, and later they made 10 trips to New Zealand to spend the North American winters down under, basking in the sun and warmth (that we are currently enjoying- sorry!!)

Several years ago, I had the privilege of flying back to Michigan with my mom to help grandma take care of grandpa in his last weeks of life. It was a sobering, precious time that I treasure. Grandpa was so special to all of us grand kids. My fondest memories of him from my youngest days come from when the cousins would stay the night at Grandma and Grandpa’s house. Grandpa would always tell us a wildly hilarious story of his youth and then pray with us and kiss us goodnight. It was precious, and I felt so loved. You can see why I am thankful to have had those last weeks with him.

Grandma survived his passing with the peace of God that passes all understanding, and God provided her with another wonderful man a few years later. God has a real sense of humour, because she married my awesome, widowed Great Uncle (he was her brother in law by marriage) and they are so delightfully in love! I may or may not have greatly encouraged that marriage as I have always has a special love for that particular Great Uncle, and I have photos of him and I when I was just a little girl.

My grandma is the only, and I mean it when I say ONLY person who has ever asked for me to “yodel some more!” haha. She gets a real kick out of it while everyone else cringes…she’s awesome!😉

I love my grandma, and I am so thankful for her!

Do you have any awesome memories of your grandma? Is she on Facebook as well? My grandma is so onto it with these things! I love it!

I’d love to hear your stories about your grandma and your memories together!

One spoiled girl,


Beautiful South Island lake views!
Beautiful South Island lake views with my parents and Grandma and Grandpa D.

My life as a mum with aeroplane loving boys