Coolangatta Australia
blogging

Friendly Friday – Anniversaries

September seems to be the month for it.

Wedding anniversaries, Relationship anniversaries, work anniversaries and special occasions.

I suppose I shouldn’t be all that surprised.

September is Spring in this part of the world and for those that dislike winter and cool mornings, it is cause for celebration when the earth turns towards the sun again.

Brides choose September for their weddings.

Do they do that in the North as well?

Weekly Friendly Friday Theme

Friendly Friday challenges you to look back on your own Anniversaries. Where were you last year, six years ago, ten years ago or more?

My photo archive indicates I am frequently found close to the water on my Anniversary.

The wild surf at Greenmount headland, at Coolangatta draws us in.

A surfer was taken by a shark right at this point, just two days ago.

A father in his 40’s who surfed here every day. He was rescued, taken ashore but paramedics could not save him. The shark, believed to be a Great White, left its tooth embedded in the bite mark on his surfboard.

On our anniversary visits, I rarely went in for a swim, preferring to walk in the shallows and then past the old Shark Tower monument, which was erected in the 1960s for lifesavers to use as an observation site.

From that point, I would follow the boardwalk through the pandanus trees around the headland.

  • beach

Even though we have nets to protect swimmers, the killer shark appears to have swum underneath the six-metre nets that line the shore.

The irony of the local name: ‘Snapper Rocks” Hotel and Surf Club, does not escape me.

Join in with the Friendly Friday Challenge

Add a Friendly Friday tag, to your anniversary post, including a pingback, or if that is confusing, read the full instructions on joining in with the Friendly Friday Challenge.

Please remember to leave a comment below as pingbacks don’t always work.

Next Friday, Sandy will have another challenge for us.

Happy Anniversary.

grass amongst mangroves at the beach
Australia, blogging, Photography

Friendly Friday Challenge- Splendour in the Grass

So often we walk around in nature failing to notice the details, the grass under our feet.

Subtle changes in colour and appearance indicate the passing of the seasons. Many varieties of grass remain invisible, yet are an integral part of the natural landscape.

Senga Grass at Mt Hakone

The theme for this week’s Friendly Friday challenge is:

‘Splendour in the Grass’

grass in close up Australia

Using Grass to Frame a Landscape in Photography

In photographic terms, grass can be used to frame the shot or make an interesting feature in the foreground.

This ‘Moon viewing,’ photo captured during the Tsukimi festival in mid-Autumn, in Japan.

Japanese Senga Grass Fields at Mount Fuji

The Japanese find Splendour in the Sengakuhara Pampas Grass, by strolling along a walking trail, at the western side of Mount Hakone. For it is here that the changing colour of the tall grass offers stunning vistas. In November, the grass turns a shimmering, silvery gold. Wedding proposal and selfies abound at this time of year.

Australian Splendour

In Australia, a country fringed by blue oceans, you will find grass the colour of sunburnt earth, which often makes me yearn for the vivid fluorescent green grass of wetter climates.

Birch
Birch Trees and Grass in Helsinki – so green

Australian deserts display different kinds of saltbush grass.

Australian Desert grasses and Saltbush

In the arid conditions of the Australian landscape, plants have adapted to grow under extreme conditions, such as the grass tree.

Grass Trees in Australia

Grass Trees in their natural habitat

A relic of the Age of Dinosaurs, Xanthorrhoeas, also known as the Grass Tree, grow very slowly and are resistant to bushfire. In fact, fire helps the grass tree produce its flowers. They also have a unique symbiotic relationship with the soil. The presence of a mycorrhizal microbe in the soil around their roots allows them to flourish, even if the soils are nutrient-poor.

Grass Trees in the Garden

Grass Trees are highly sought after in Australian horticulture and as such are often illegally removed from their natural locations. They fetch high prices as ornamental plants. Little do the owners realize that if the soil in their garden does not contain the mycorrhizal enzyme, the grass tree that they paid so dearly for, will wither and die.

Imitating Nature in Growing Grass Trees

Here’s a secret that an old-timer once told me. Take a cup of brown sugar, put it in a bucket of water and water your grass trees once a month for two years with that mixture. The sugar feeds the mycorrhiza and gets it going and your grass tree will survive.

www.abc.net.au/gardening

Create a Friendly Friday Challenge Blog Post

Everyone is welcome to join the Friendly Friday Challenge with your own interpretation of the theme.

Add a pingback to StPA and tag your post with ‘Friendly Friday – Splendour in the Grass.’ Then return to this post and leave a comment below listing your post’s published link.

There is a full set of instructions on how to join the Friendly Friday Photo Challenge on my blog header. This challenge runs until next Thursday.

Last week’s Friendly Friday Challenge initiated some excellent contributions, with the theme of ‘Markets,‘ over at co-host Sandy’s blog.

Would you like to join in this week?

Friendly Friday
blogging, Travel

Friendly Friday Challenge – Market

It is quite ironic that my Friendly Friday Challenge Co-host, Sandy, should give us the prompt, Market this week as I was just looking through my photos of the wonderful Market Hall, in Helsinki, Finland.

Finnish Markets

Where the Hungarians are spoilt for choice in varieties of Paprika in their markets, Helsinki is spoilt for choice in terms of Salmon.

Me, being Australian, have only really known three varieties of Smoked Salmon – Tasmanian, Norwegian and Danish Smoked Salmon.

My eyes opened as wide as saucers when I saw the contents of the cabinets in the Helsinki Markets, the day I arrived in the Finnish capital.

I remember it is not just ordinary salmon, because the thing that struck me about Finns, was that they had taken Salmon to a whole new level, like as in Heinz 52 different varieties.

Now I love Salmon, so I was pretty happy with this, until I realized how hard it would be be to choose which one to buy! I needed help to choose between Tsar’s salmon, Cold Smoked Salmon, Flamed Salmon, Lemon Salmon and Rose Pepper Salmon, etc. and in the end, feeling rather befuddled, I settled on Cured Salmon with Basilic. With a large helping of Salmon Soup? How could I resist?

salmon soup in helsinki
in helsinki

You need to know that the people of Helsinki eat a good deal of fish, freshwater fish, that is. Even sometimes three times in a day. So when I think of Helsinki, I think of Salmon, and lots of it.”

StPA – forestwoodfolkart.wordpress.com/2016/09/17/helsinki-travel/

Polish Markets

In Poland, you may not see as much Salmon, but you will see a delicous form of smoked Sheep’s Cheese and lots of traditional style products for sale in Zakopane in the Tathra Mountains.

Zakopane

Japanese Markets

In Japan, the markets were absolutely full of many varieties of seafood. For the Japanese, seafood is a staple. It is a shame my travelling partner dislikes fish!

Australian Markets

Meanwhile back home in Australia, the sun is shining, (as always) and the markets continue with a Covid safe plan for the moment. For how much longer, we are unsure.

Redcliffe Esplanade
Pre Covid photo of Redcliffe Markets
Friendly Friday
Photography

Friendly Friday Challenge – Close Examination

Explore the finer details of your photos through Close Examination.

Use Macro Mode, Zoom in, (a little), or crop afterwards to take macro and close-up photographs.

beard of a schnauzer dog
They are not called Schnauzers for nothing. ‘Schnauze’ means muzzle in German.

This photo was a little too close for comfort.

geiser Iceland
Waited for a while to capture this one

Photographic Tips – Improving your Macro Photography

  • Check the composition of your photo
  • Take multiple shots
  • Use Manual mode or focus if you can
  • Stabilize your camera as much as possible – (a tripod or solid base helps)
  • Move the subject, not the camera
  • Try adding the effect of different backgrounds
  • Check your depth of field for focusing

I got a bit fancy with the Canva templates, but the close-up, above, of the little mushrooms, were very worthwhile to highlight. So delicate sitting atop their thin stalks, they appeared to defy gravity.

And now for a slideshow of flowers:-

  • Snow pea insect
  • cape gooseberry in paper case
  • burst of colour

I added a frame around the pumpkin leaves. It may have been edited with Snapseed, but it is from my archives, so I can’t be sure. I do like the way you can see the furry hairs on the pumpkin leaves. Glaucous is the botanic name for hairy leaves, I think.

Pumpkin leaves in macro
It is all about the detail

“Taking pictures is savouring life intensely

every hundredth of a second.”

duggal.com

Friendly Friday Photo Challenge – Close Examination Prompt

Now it is your turn to write a Friendly Friday post with the theme, “Close Examination.”

Don’t forget to tag your post and link with a pingback here, so all readers can find your post.

Sandy, will have another great prompt for you next week.

Join the Friendly Friday Challenge.

Friendly Friday
shadows
blogging

Friendly Friday Challenge – Shadows

Sandy’s prompt for Friendly Friday reminded me of a visit to the Skansen Museum in Stockholm,where I felt the presence of old world shadows.

In the midst of a Swedish winter, the shadowy silhouette of the bell tower in Stockholm’s Skansen Museum was an imposing and slightly daunting sight set against the crepuscular morning light.

Swedish farm houses were dark and the winters bitterly cold. Many families lived in the same house for generations and the darkest corners of the room echoed with imagined shadows of the past.

Skansen’s Farm labourers cottage

Taking refuge inside, farmers and their labourers would enjoy consuming a hearty meal, particularly at Christmas.

For those who have Swedish heritage, visiting Skansen is a way to bring history alive and feel more of a connection with the past.

Linking to Friendly Friday- Shadows

shadows

Sandy is hosting the blogging challenge which runs until Thursday, this week.

A new prompt will be released here at StPA, next Friday.

eye
Photography

Friendly Friday Photo Challenge – Capturing a Feeling

How seriously do you take your Photography?

Is taking photos just a whim, a bit of fun? A hobby you would like to improve? Or a serious pursuit? Whichever category you fit into, (or don’t), we notice photos that are striking, ones that capture attention, (pun not intended).

This old portrait captures a strong emotion in the eyes

Scott Bourne has some thoughts on the magic behind photography and it was his post that made me re-consider how we take photographs.

Do we snap a shot just as a record of what you saw?

Do we compose for interest?

We might even find an angle that portrays a little more emotion, particularly for street or portrait photography.

If so, we convey a feeling through the photograph to the viewer.

Great ocean Road
Not the standard tourist stop portrait

Scott explains a little more of what he looks for in a photo:

Unfortunately, in today’s instant gratification-hungry world, it’s rare to find someone who will look past the superficial to find something special. Everyone just wants a magic camera, or lens, or camera setting or post-processing, preset. Unfortunately there is no magic anything. What there is well, that is all about SEEING. I want to encourage you to “feel” your way to a photograph.

Scott Bourne – picturemethods.com
daisy

Some people have an eye for photography. Others have to work to develop it. Regardless of your camera budget, if you do have an eye or can develop it, your photos will attract attention.

seeing
Such expression in this cropped photo of eyes.

Friendly Friday Theme – ‘Capturing a Feeling’

This week for Friendly Friday, when you take a photograph try to compose to capture a feeling or emotion.

If you are using your archival photographs, you might crop a photo or edit to exhibit a particular mood that you wish to create.

Today for example, we made a new friend.

A young magpie landed on our fence, literally right behind our heads, as we sipped our morning cup of tea. The bird was bold and curious and his reward for that, was a morsel of cake. We watched his confidence and trust, in us, slowly grow as I hand-fed him a small piece of ham.

I cropped the following photograph to create a feeling of intensity, of concentration and to convey the beginnings of trust in the bird’s eyes.

After tasting the morsel of carrot cake, he must have thought his luck had changed.

I like the contrast of nature and the stark white and ultra modern built environment behind, but feel that some editing would help the photo stand out. But today, I left it as is. What do you think?

This afternoon the bird returned with his mate, who was much more cautious about the ham and preferred a lawn grub or two which is far better for them, anyway.

Posting a Friendly Friday Challenge?

Don’t forget to comment here, tag and pingback to this post.

Instructions on how to join the Friendly Friday Photo Challenge

Friendly Friday

I will be back in two weeks time with another prompt. Next week, for Friendly Friday, you will be in the able hands of Sandy, my Friendly Friday co-host, who will post next week’s challenge.

folk art eggs
blogging, Photography

Friendly Friday Challenge – Nostalgia

norway
A day in Norway

“Photographers are writers- Writers are photographers: we catch a glimpse of something beautiful – a flower, a glance, a window – and catch it into our camera or writing lens: add a bit of glimmer, a ghost of a shadow, allowing the background to sink into fuzziness while focusing on the sharp beauty; thus, we highlight the romance of life.”

Pamela Wight from https://roughwighting.net/

What beautiful words from Pam – inspirational words that inspire us to become better photographers, whether we are amateur or professional. We strive to become photographers that capture the emotion in a scene, or evoke a feeling from the viewer.

It is my photographs that tell me that four years ago I was leaving Poland on a flight to Denmark. I was overjoyed to be in Denmark, but so sad to leave Poland behind.

Five years ago, I took photos of our newest family member.

While six years ago, I was driving overland across the mountains and fjords of Norway.

Ten years ago, the following photo reminds me of the serenity I felt the day I was punting on the Avon River in Christchurch, New Zealand. It was just two weeks before the first of two devastating earthquakes to hit that city.

christchurch
The Avon River, Christchurch

More than 40 years ago, I was about to fall in love. Not with a boy, but with the snow. I was leaving for my first skiing holiday with friends.

Girl in coat and beret

Without photographs, these memories and feelings might be lost in the passage of time.

Memories are made of moments.

Life is a collection of such moments fused into an ever-changing continuum.

The transient nature of life’s experiences are one reason why we take photographs. Like time travelling, photographs are a way to give life to the past, so we can imagine again that moment in time, in all its visual richness.

Looking at photos might evoke a feeling of NOSTALGIA.

Feeling Nostalgic

Join the Weekly Friendly Friday Challenge Theme

To join in with this week’s challenge theme, simply create a post, including a pingback, using the theme Nostalgia, and tag it:

Friendly Friday – Nostalgia

Be sure to leave a comment below,as well as the pingback, so others can read your post.

Write a Little More for Friendly Friday

As this is the first Friendly Friday post for the month, we would love you to write a little bit more about your chosen photo/s. It’s far more interesting to hear the narrative in addition to the photos that you post. [This does not have to be a lengthy]. Here are some ideas if you are stuck on what to write:

  • What is its significance or history of the photo/s?
  • Where and when were they taken?
  • Why was it taken?
  • Post a recipe/ re-tell an old story that relates to the topic

Monthly Guest Blogger – A Mindful Traveller

Each month, Sandy and I publish a Friendly Friday post from a guest blogger. This month the wonderful Lorelle from Melbourne, Australia, who blogs at A Mindful Traveller will be our guest blogger and will take about an old family recipe that evokes Nostalgia for her. The post will be published here at StPA tomorrow.

If you are interested in submitting a guest post for Friendly Friday, please contact me or Sandy, via the Contact pages or our WordPress Profiles.

Weekly Photo Challenge Next Week

Next week, Sandy will have a new topic for Friendly Friday. Follow our blogs to receive new themes each week.

Friendly Friday
blogging, Photography

Friendly Friday Challenge – Unusual

Many years ago, whilst travelling through country Australia, I snapped a photo of a patch of forest in an old park, where we’d stopped to have lunch. This was the days when you had to drop off your camera film and wait for several days, for it to be developed.

Remember that?

Weeks later, a friend saw the photo in my album and insisted the photo depicted a fairy pointing her finger towards something in the bushes. It was a mystery and a tad spine-tingling to remember there was a plaque, on a monument in that same park where I’d taken the photo, which said, “ in memory of the first white child who died in the valley.”

Photographers often claim to have captured photos with unexplained objects in them. Some turn out to be a simple case of double exposure, minute dust particles or even reflections, called Orbs, whilst others cannot be fully explained at all.

Do you believe in UFO’s or the Unusual?

Source: i.guim.co.uk/img/media/

More recently, as you can see in the photo below, I was in the picturesque town of Sandane, in Norway. I’d arrived in the early afternoon and was snapping photos of the fjord. Actually, it is pretty difficult for me not to take photos when I am presented with such natural beauty.

sandane norway
Sandane, Norway

Walking further along the fjord, a shower of rain interrupted my progress, so I snapped a few photos and quickly turned back for the Gloppen hotel, where I was staying that night. Something strange appeared in the photos, that I noticed only when back in the hotel.

There was a pacman in the sky.

Or was it some kind of chopped Photo Orb?

What is an Orb?

Orbs are a somewhat new phenomenon that appeared at the dawn of the digital camera in the 1990s. At first, the camera manufacturers believed these orbs to be malfunctions of the camera, but to this day they claim that these balls of light are microscopic particles floating in the air. On the other hand, those in the paranormal community hold firm that these orbs are the presence of spirits.

https://www.artmartstl.com/ghostly-orbs-fact-or-fiction/
haunted house
A Haunted house in Iceland with Orbs

How to Tell if an Orb is Dust or Something Unusual

From the abovementioned website, here is some information:

  • *If the orb or orbs in the photo seem to be behind a person or thing, as if peeking out or passing by, it could be supernatural. That’s because reflections don’t fall behind an object or person in a photo.
  • *If the orb has more density in the photo, it might not be a natural particle like dust.
  • *On film, if the orb or orbs seem to have a light of their own and move independently of wind or motion, it could be a spiritual encounter.
strange photo orb
Presumably a dust particle?

There are ‘Unusual’ things all around us.

Have you ever seen anything unusual?

Take a Seat!

Weekly Friendly Friday Prompt

For this week’s Friendly Friday Challenge, show us something you have photographed that was –

Unusual

or create your own:

Source – Stock Photo

Instructions for Joining Friendly Friday

Sandy will post the next weekly prompt next Friday!

Do include a pingback and leave a comment so all readers can find your post! I look forward to seeing what you come up with.

blogging, History & Traditions, Photography

Friendly Friday: The Colour Pink – Guest Post

Vero writes:

When Amanda asked me to write a post with the prompt, “Pink,” my mind went in many directions first.

Then I paused: what’s really my relationship with this girly colour?

Let’s be honest, no matter how modern you are on the gender stereotyping theme, it will still take yonks before pink is something else than a female shade!

I grew up in the 70s, though, which was supposed to be a decade of change and evolution in the matter. But my mother was rather traditional. My bedroom had a pink wall paper – until very very late.

I wore pink dresses.

But looking at this other photo from my dance class, (ironically, it’s black and white!!); it seems I was suddenly totally opposed to pink and decided to make it very clear!

Being a teenager is very tricky, isn’t it.

You want to fit in but also you want to show the world how different you are from the crowd!

That’s when I started wearing very different items of clothing.

I particularly loved a velvet jacket and suede tie which belonged to my grandfather – 4 sizes too big for me. The results of my combo choices were often extremely peculiar but I guess that’s how I decided to be creative at that time.

And took ballet classes wearing pale pink leotards and tights. In a way, pink was the colour of my childhood.Then the teenage years followed. And they were black. Didn’t we all wear black then? It was the way to merge.


Pink never really came back in my wardrobe in my adult years. Except for fuchsia. Vibrant colours are what define me now. In French, we have a way to qualify vivid shades: we call them “shouting” or “yelling tints.”

As if it was so bright, it could actually make an unpleasant sound.

In my never-ending craving for strong saturation, I even painted my house’s front wall, one Saturday afternoon, in bright pink. My courtyard had already been indoctrinated with a mixture of bleu majorelle (link to jardinmajorelle.com/ang/ ) and anis green !


Click on over to Vero’s blog to read the second instalment of this post.

About the Guest Blogger

Vero was born in a green and quiet Parisian suburb. She left this idyllic scenery in her early twenties to live in England, later settling in the South of France and started a family of three (+dogs!). Now in her forties, she lives in a rural coastal village in Brittany.

Thanks to Vero for this interesting glimpse into her relationship with the colour pink prepared for this week’s Friendly Friday theme.

If you would like to be featured as a guest blogger for a Friendly Friday Challenge post, please contact Amanda or Sandy – hosts of Friendly Friday, via our contact pages.

Friendly Friday
Norwegian hakking
Photography

Friendly Friday Weekly Challenge – The Colour Pink

Young girls are pretty much divided into two camps – generally speaking. You are either a PINK or a PURPLE girl.

As each person’s eye sees colour, and variations of hue, a little differently and individually to the next, what is one person’s dreamy hue might be something another person intensely dislikes.

Tassie Tulips

Pink or Purple?

When we are young and asked what about our favourite colour, most girls will answer pink or purple. Very rarely, yellow or any other colour. This usually translates to little girls wearing predominantly either pink-coloured or purple-coloured clothes and decorations.

And never the Twain shall meet.

Just as most young boys will preference red as their favourite colour. At least in Australia, this is the pattern that we regularly see and hear, with young children.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that a Pink girl won’t wear, or use, other colours at all. It only means that when you ask a young girl what her favourite colour is, she will generally answer “Pink,” or she will answer, “Purple.”

It’s a thing.

Definitely a pink theme here but with a touch of purple

The Princess top in the above photo was purchased in Legoland in Denmark and was highly sought after in the Pre-school crowd at my daughter’s Kindergarten, especially so as it was unobtainable, in Australia. Fights even broke out, between the girls, over who got to wear it and there was lots of pouting from the ones that missed out. I had to ban the top from being worn to Kindergarten. My guess is the pink girls were the ones fighting.

One day a play date with a four-year-old friend of my daughter ended in tears. The little girl refused to leave our house unless she was allowed to take the Princess top home with her! My daughter naturally refused such an offer.

As for me: I used to be a purple girl, never a pink girl, but life changes you.

I had a wishy-washy lilac painted room as a child, as pastels were really the fashion. Yet, I have way too much Scandi genetic material to be completely sold on pastels, so a more cleaner, intensive colour is my choice these days. Yet looking through my WordPress archives, I note that most of my photos are indeed shades of purple, usually in the form of flowers.

I did find this gaudy ‘Pet Expo’ photo hidden in my archives:

This one didn’t have much choice in the matter!

We also see lots of pink in nature.

Or is it purple?

Pink or purple?

Join the Weekly Friendly Friday Challenge Theme

To join in, simply create a post, including a pingback, using the theme The Colour Pink, and tag it:

“Friendly Friday – The Colour Pink.”

Be sure to leave a comment below, so everyone can find your published post.

As this is the first post of the month, we ask you to post a little bit more about your chosen photo. This is not compulsory, but it is much more interesting to hear the narrative behind the photo. This does not have to be a lengthy piece.

Here are some ideas if you are stuck on what to write:

  • What is its significance or history of the photo/s?
  • Where and when were they taken?
  • Why was it taken?
  • Post a recipe/ tell a story that relates to the topic

Monthly Guest Blogger – Vero

We will soon be publishing a Guest post celebrating this theme, from the wonderful blogger Vero, in two parts. The first part will be published here at StPA tomorrow and the second part at Vero’s blog, so do check that out.

If you are interested in submitting a guest post for Friendly Friday, please contact me or Sandy, via the Contact pages, or via our WordPress Profiles.

Weekly Photo Challenge

Next week’s Friendly Friday Photo Challenge will be found at Sandy’s blog. See you there.

Friendly Friday
road
Architecture, Australia

Friendly Friday Challenge – Surprise

I am not that fond of social media, but I do use it. Sounds a bit hypocritical, doesn’t it? I rather like the Facebook ‘Memories’ feature. It reminds me of what I was doing on that same date, in previous years. They are always happy memories. (I generally don’t post sad ones).

Last year at this time, for instance, I took a road trip with an old friend. We stayed overnight at an Eco-resort, a first for me. It was sublime. In the morning we took a walk through the forest and there was a surprise waiting for us, one that I wasn’t so fond of:

He didn’t bite but I was oh so close to standing on him

Instead of taking the highway home, we opted to follow some back roads. An unscheduled stop in a rural area, to check on a noise in the rear boot, (read: trunk if you are from the USA), led me to discover a surprising panorama. One that only the farmer and the cows might have shared:

However, a bigger surprise was to come a few miles north.

Can you guess what it is?

A Wheelchair Accessible Basket Case!

In Aussie lingo, it is known as the Kenilworth ‘Dunny.’

In a park prone to flooding (?!), a kilometre outside of the small country town of Kenilworth, Australia, a town known more for its prize-winning cheese, is a prize-winning Dunny, or public toilet facility.

180 people submitted their designs in a competition, run by the Town’s Council, for the creation of a new public – ah – monument. It was a local architectural illustrator, Michael Lennie, whose design titled Canistrum, Latin for a basket, that was selected.

At a cost of $600,000, the ‘Dunny’ was supposed to represent a basket – the basket being the history of the town and the unfinished basket supports the future history of the town, yet to be written.

But why yellow?

On pondering the glorious throne, of which I did not deem necessary to try out first hand, I pondered whether the artist was having a go at us, or maybe he was a ‘basket case?’ Lol.

The folks up that way do seem to have a wry sense of humour as the next surprise seemed to indicate.

This was spotted on the back road across the mountain.

Jurassic Park anyone?

If you haven’t already guessed, the theme this week for Friendly Friday is:

Surprise

Show us a Surprise photo or two, or three in a Friendly Friday Post?

Because everyone likes Surprises, don’t they?

Even if they are a prize winning public toilet facility.

Surprise Us!

How to Join the Friendly Friday Challenge

To participate in the Challenge this week, you need to:

  • Create a Friendly Friday Post titled: ‘Friendly Friday – Surprise’
  • Link back your post to this blog, forestwoodfolkart.wordpress.com and Sandy’s blog. The Sandy Chronicles
  • Tag your post, ‘Friendly Friday and ‘Surprise’
  • Leave a comment below, so that the hosts and others can find your post (pingbacks don’t always work)
  • Let the hosts know via the contact page if you would like to be featured as a guest blogger in future weeks. We publish a guest post once a month.
Friendly Friday

See you over at Sandy’s blog next week for the next Friendly Friday theme.

Cakes, cookies, biscuits and Home Bake, Community, Food

Friendly Friday Photo Challenge- Guest Post – Something Different

In addition to our regular posts, the Friendly Friday team at TheSandyChronicles and StPA, are featuring Guest Posts from Bloggers who contribute to the Friendly Friday Photo Challenge.

Ju-Lyn, a Singaporean blogger, from All Things Bright and Beautiful especially enjoys food and cooking, in addition to making ‘purposeful choices, ‘ and has kindly contributed a guest post to our weekly theme of “Something Different, in the form of a post about a Basque Burnt Cheesecake.

Ju-Lyn regularly posts mouth-watering foodie delights, on her blog, and this recipe is no exception.

Did someone say Cheesecake?

I hope you will be tempted to try it, for yourself.

Here’s Ju-Lyn:

Guest Post by All Things Bright and Beautiful

I love cheesecake, of all sorts: baked/unbaked, cream cheese/ricotta, New York/Japanese. I will scoff each with delight!

It was love at first bite! So enamoured was I that I didn’t realise there was no crust, which I only registered in retrospect. I have never made a cheesecake without a crust before so the idea intrigued me and I begged the recipe off the friend, who gifted me the slice.

It took us a while to get started because our baking shop was out of 500g tubes of cream cheese. After searching for more than a week with no small tubes in sight, I decided to take the plunge and bought a 2kg block. With this quantity, I was free to experiment. The recipe is simple enough, but it makes a tall cake baked in a 6-in circle tin, resulting in a silky gooey centre. Older Daughter wanted to see if dividing the batch into two, (ie. 2 x 6-in tins), would make any difference as she prefers a firmer crumb.

So we did. The verdict is split. Half of us love the taller version, with a slightly squidgy centre. The other half prefer the uniformly firmer texture of the shorter slice. We do all agree that we love the intense, smokey caramelised top of both versions.

Ju-Lyn, All Things Bright and Beautiful

Recipe – Burnt Cheesecake

adapted from ButtermilkPantry

Ingredients

· 430g cream cheese, room temperature

· 100g caster sugar

· 3 large eggs, room temp (approx 150g of eggs without shell)

· 270g heavy cream/thickened cream

· 20g all-purpose flour

· 1 tsp vanilla extract

· 1 tsp lemon juice

Method

1. Line a 6” circle cake tin with 2 layers of baking paper and trimmed to have an overhanging amount of 1.5″-2″.

2. Preheat oven to 240 degrees C.

3. Cream sugar and cream cheese together until smooth.

4. Add eggs one at a time and beat until smooth.

5. Add the vanilla and lemon juice. Beat until just mixed.

6. In a separate bowl, mix flour and heavy cream until smooth.

7. Slowly pour the cream/flour mixture into the cheese mixture until mixed through.

8. Bake for 30-35mins until top is dark amber and almost charred at parts but the middles still has a wobble to them when you give jiggle the pan.

9. Cool in the tin fully on a wire rack at room temperature to allow the cheesecake to set.

10. Remove from the baking tin and enjoy at room temperature.

11. For a less “gooey” center, place into the fridge after cooled to allow it to chill and set.

For the 2-tin version, we lined the tins with only 1 layer of baking paper.

We shortened the bake time by 5 min.


Thank you Ju-Lyn for creating something different for us.

The photos are enough temptation for me to try creating this on my own.

Friendly Friday

If you would like to feature in one of the Friendly Friday Team’s Guest Posts, please contact Sandy, from (TheSandyChronicles) and Amanda, from (StPA), either by way of comment below or directly via their Blog Contact Pages.

The Friendly Friday Photo Challenge with the theme Something Different, will conclude Friday this week, when Sandy will post a new theme on The Sandy Chronicles.

Cakes, cookies, biscuits and Home Bake, Community, Food

Discover a New Friendly Friday Photo Challenge

In these strange times of pandemic, we are called to act differently from the norm. We adjust our lifestyle to accommodate the lock downs and social distancing, according to our own countries. I like to think of it as the beginning of something new, rather than something lost.

Friendly Friday

A New Kind of Photography Challenge

With new beginnings, comes change.

Friendly Friday is changing. Slightly.

It is our intention to expand the Friendly Friday challenge.

In the first two weeks of each month, participants are encouraged to dig a little deeper into the theme with their response. adding a short narrative, a story or recipe along with their photo.

Guest Bloggers Wanted

Furthermore, we will be publishing a guest post from a Friendly Friday blogger, in addition to the theme, which will be published on our blogs, in the second week of each month.

If you would like to nominate for a guest post slot on either of the host’s blogs, please let us know in the comments below. More details below.

Friendly Friday Photo challenge
The original Friendly Friday Logo

How has Friendly Friday Changed?

This week and for the first week of each month following, we will set the F.F. theme and, in addition, post either a story, a recipe or a narrative of some kind, along with our photo, addressing the Friendly Friday theme for that week.

As always, it is up to you to interpret the weekly theme, as you see fit. You are only really limited by your imagination.

Bloggers who prefer to simply post a photo, will not be left out as the remaining two or three weeks of each month, will be devoted to the regular Photo challenge in the previous format. i.e. You will be presented with a different photo prompt suggestion for you to interpret as you wish, each week. In this way you will still have an opportunity to publish a photo or photos, on Friendly Friday, if you so choose.

Friendly Friday Theme for this Week

This week, I am challenging you to post a photo and story/recipe/narrative about:

Something New/Something Different

It might not be a food you have tried or a recipe that is the “something different” for you, it might be some other kind of activity, or something from your past that you have suddenly had the opportunity to revisit, something new in your garden, or a different way of doing things.

For me, it was baking with a different food! Read more of what I made, below. But first a reminder on how to participate in Friendly Friday.

How to Join Friendly Friday

To participate in the Challenge this week, you need to:

  • Create a Friendly Friday Post titled: ‘Something new/something different
  • If you can, include a recipe or write a short narrative or story, but most importantly, include a photo interpreting this week’s theme.
  • Link back your post to this blog, forestwoodfolkart.wordpress.com and Sandy’s blog
  • Tag your post,“Friendly Friday – Something New, Something Different”
  • Leave a comment below so that the hosts and others can find your post (ping backs don’t always work)
  • Let the hosts know if you would like to be featured as a guest blogger.

My New Beginnings with Something Different

Most people say they don’t have time to cook. Has Covid given us more time? Or only reduced distractions so we are willing to do things we have not done avoided before?

Cooking New and Different Foods

I’ve never in my life used Figs before. Neither have I made a Sourdough Mother. My kids might teasingly say I am a sour mother, so I guess I am halfway there! Lol!

So it is definitely a new beginning in the kitchen.

But let’s get back to the figs.

Fig and Walnut Loaf

I don’t really know anything about figs. Figs are something new and different for me. I might even confess to being a bit terrified of using figs. But I don’t want to admit ignorance. They are, after all, very much on trend at the moment.

Not only do I not know how to prepare figs, or how they can be eaten, I don’t know what they go well with, or their nutritional benefit. In fact the only contact I have had with Figs prior to this, is from my local cafe.

They served a mean Fig and Walnut Loaf, sliced and toasted, with lashings of warm butter, strawberries and icing sugar! Garnished with mint.

It was fantastic, it was filling and I was in love.

heart

Soon after discovering the delight that comes with eating figs, this local cafe closed down. I went into an a kind of fig/walnut withdrawal that might see me raid the walnut jar late in to the night! So it became my mission to find a recipe that would equal the cafe’s culinary delight of Fig and Walnut Loaf.

Today it was done and happily shared with neighbours. It was good, really good and now my addiction has been properly fed, the body will no doubt, demand a repeat performance. Figs may be on the menu for some time to come.

Writing a Guest Post for Friendly Friday

Are you interested in being featured here as a guest blogger?

Would you like to write a guest post to be published here on Friendly Friday?

You may choose your own theme or alternatively use our suggestions, but a guest post would follow the format:

  1. Address the weekly Friendly Friday theme by writing a post.
  2. Include suitable Photograph/s
  3. Add a Story / Narrative piece or/
  4. Post a Recipe relating to the theme
  5. Submit to Sandy or Amanda


Guest posts will be published the second week in each month.

For further info on how to become a guest blogger, please contact Amanda or Sandy who will happily provide you with more information.