Hello all

Dusk has fallen as I have come to write today. It has been so quiet here at home after last night’s activity with our two granddaughters and later with our daughter Maria. It has been a rather unpleasant grey day and every now and again I smile to myself as my memory goes back to last night when Alice (11) and Violet (6) were making cards for Auntie Belinda’s birthday on Sunday.

Oh what pains they put into making those cards! All will be revealed tomorrow, especially the lovely verse Alice found on the computer and wrote out in her best writing (which I’m longing to share, but Auntie Bel may just read this!). It made me aware just how much this auntie is loved by our two girls. I said to Geoff that you can tell how much regard someone is held in, when children spend a great deal of time and effort making cards for them.

Looks sunny up there at the Pearly Gates!

Looks sunny up there at the Pearly Gates!

The memories of last night reminded me of how blessed I am to have my grandchildren living near me after living away all of their little lives, that is until the last 18 months. Sometimes, I think it is just a lovely dream and I will wake up and find them back in Sydney again. But no, this one is real …

Which reminds me of the piece I wrote in my Journal late yesterday when I was anticipating their arrival. It is true that they are like little rays of sunshine in my life, so I just have to share this:

Friday 7th June 2013

“It is wonderful to see blue skies and sunshine this afternoon after two grey awful days. It’s like a light bulb has been turned on up in the heavens. I can just see God standing at the ‘Pearly Gates’ as people come through complaining about the weather. It’s as if he got fed up and cried out: “Enough already!” Then he pressed the switch and turned on the sun. “Thank you God” is all I can say about that!

And now the sunshine is making me feel good as it spreads its warming rays throughout my whole being. My granddaughters Alice and Violet are coming after school today and my brain is buzzing with ‘ideas.’ You know what I mean when I say ‘ideas?’ Thoughts running through my head about what I can do to bless their little hearts.

I simply cannot help myself and find I am always excited when I know they are coming. I have fresh bread baking in my bread machine (you know to appease after-school hunger). Lasagna is on the menu for tea (every child LOVES lasagna surely)? Perhaps apple crumble in a mug for dessert? A recipe that I picked up from the radio after lunch. I can just see the smiles on their faces when they see such a thing as a ‘dessert in a mug!’ An ‘oh Grandma!’ moment.

You know, there is something wonderful about doing things for others! It’s like the sunshine, it warms the cockles of your heart. Perhaps it is important for our mental health that we think of others more often, rather than become self-absorbed and insular? In this way, we become as powerful as God – up there in the heavens waiting at those Pearly Gates turning on the sunshine – so that those around us feel the sunny warmth of our love and care.

And yet, paradoxically, in giving to others, we somehow switch on the light of sunshine for ourselves as well. In this way, no one really loses!”

Mine was in a mug but you get the idea ...

Mine was in a mug but you get the idea …

And so it all happened as planned. Alice made the apple crumble in a mug which turned into the hit of the night. Maria was so pleased to have tea cooked for her … and apple crumble into the bargain. Yes dear friends, it is true that when you give to others, you receive back so much more … and the sun seems to shine over your life and bring you cheer.

And this blog would not be complete without the apple crumble recipe either so here it is:

Easy Peasy Apple Crumble in a Mug

Apple: mix in a bowl

1 large tin pie apples

1 heaped tablespoon caster sugar

sprinkle nutmeg/cinnamon

four good sizes mugs

Crumble: Mix in a bowl

1 large cup of oat clusters (any brand)

1 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoon plain flour


little oil to bind together


Spray four mugs with oil. Put in apple mixture, top with crumble but don’t pat down, keep it crumbly. Put mugs on a tray into a moderate oven and bake for 25 mins.

When cool, add pouring cream to mugs (I made room down the side with a spoon and poured the cream)  and serve. Voilá! Enjoy!