Get another $10 Kikki K voucher (even though it’s not your birthday!)

I received a $10 voucher to spend on any full priced product at Kikki K for my ‘anniversary’ of being a member, I get one every year! You can get one too, plus a voucher on your birthday, just sign up.


Left Over Easter Eggs and Add To Me Muffin Mix

Image :Pexels

(Updated and reposted)
Even though it’s only been a week since Easter, you may be looking for ways to use all the leftover Easter eggs and chocolate, instead of having it tempt you every time you see it. Easter eggs are more expensive gram for gram than regular bars of chocolate, so it is wasteful to throw it out when it can be used in so many ways. Try some of the following ideas, and don’t forget if you intend to use the chocolate for cooking you can always freeze it to use later.
1/. Finely grate chocolate in a food processor. Use this for;

* Hot Chocolate Mix- Add the grated chocolate to hot milk. 

* Cake topping- Sprinkle the chocolate over iced cakes and cupcakes.

* Chocolate recipe addition-Add the grated chocolate to pancake, cake, cupcake and muffin batters. Stir or fold through cheesecake, ice-cream and any dessert mix that calls for chocolate.
2/. Melted chocolate. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler or slowly in the microwave. Add it to recipes or use it for fondue, ganache, chocolate dipped strawberries. With Mother’s Day and any other special occasions coming up try making gifts of homemade molded chocolates, chocolate dipped spoons, rocky road and other confectionery. Add it to warm cream to make an ice-cream and dessert sauce.
3/. Mini Easter Eggs- Chop roughly or keep whole and add to muffins, cupcakes and cookies.
This is a simple basic recipe for a plain muffin mix. I make up a few separate quantities of the dry ingredients and store it in takeaway containers in the pantry, and just add the wet ingredients and the flavourings when I am ready to bake them. Mini Easter eggs or chopped or grated chocolate is a tasty addition to this mix. Add between 1/4 to 1/2 a cup of the chocolate.
Just Add to Me Muffin Mix
2 cups plain flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup canola oil
2 egg whites
1 cup skim milk
Place the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl and blend all the ingredients together well. In a separate bowl use a whisk to blend the oil, egg whites and milk until blended completely together. Pour into the dry mixture. Mix with a wooden spoon just until everything is moistened, don’t over stir or beat. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius. Prepare a muffin tin with a non stick cooking spray or paper muffin cups. Fill each muffin cup 2/3 full of batter. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a couple of muffins comes out clean.
Consider making a double batch and freezing the muffins individually for a quick lunchbox addition or to have on hand for guests.
For more interesting muffins just add:
Banana – add 2 mashed bananas with the wet ingredients
Choc Chip – add 1/3 cup choc chips with the dry ingredients
Berry – add 1/2 cup frozen raspberries or blueberries with the wet ingredients
Strawberry and White Chocolate – add 1/2 cup mashed strawberries with the wet ingredients and 1/3 cup white choc chips with the dry ingredients
Cinnamon – add 1/4 tsp nutmeg to the dry ingredients, bake as per recipe. Mix 1/2 cup sugar and 1 tsp cinnamon together in a small bowl and dip tops of muffins in this mixture as soon as they come out of the oven
Apricot – half fill each muffin cup. Drop 1 tsp apricot jam into each muffin pan, add remainder of batter on top
Ham and Cheese – add 3/4 cup grated cheese and 1/4 cup diced ham with the dry ingredients.
Try any variation you can think of. I would love to hear your muffin variations or ideas for leftover chocolate in the comments section.

Simple Lunch Boxes

The new school year is about to start here and the supermarkets are hawking the lunch boxes and lunch and snack foods so I thought it would be a good time to think about simplifying the lunch box.

Smash Enterprises Rubbish Free Containers

Packing a lunch box is a great way for anyone to save money and eat healthier food. Being organised and simplifying how you pack the lunch box will make sure you actually DO use it because it is READY when you are about to run out the door. Put a post it on the door to remind you to run back to the fridge and grab it though!  If you are mindful about what you include, packing a lunch box and s cheaper and healthier than bought lunches and snacks too.

Look at the tips below for organising and simplifying the task of packing lunch boxes.

If you don’t do this already, plan on dedicating an area in the fridge and the pantry or place where you store non-perishables, for lunch and snack items so the person packing the lunch box has easy, grab and go access to items. If you freeze lunch items designate an area in the freezer too. Keep in mind that you don’t have to designate a whole shelf or drawer, a basket or plastic container will do. Apart from making it easy to grab and go by having a designated spot for lunch items, the grocery shopper/s in the family can also see at a glance which items need replenishing.

Try to pick a regular time of day to pack lunches. Pick the afternoon or before dinner if mornings are a mad rush. If afternoons are a problem think of another time when you might be in the kitchen anyway, like lunch time, while you’re cooking dinner, or after you have unloaded the dishwasher- you will probably only need 5 or 10 minutes max. Consider delegating the task and get the kids involved. If they don’t want to help, tell the, that’s ok you were planning on packing sardine and liverwurst sandwiches, they will be happy to fetch the Vegemite then. Wink!
If you succeed in getting the children involved make it easy for them to help you by storing the items you will commonly use where they can reach it. You can even have your child make their sandwich when they have their afternoon snack or while you are making dinner or cleaning up after breakfast. It is possible that the more involved they are the more likely they are to eat their lunch! Consider posting a chart somewhere in the kitchen (like the inside of a cupboard door) with pictures of what you want packed, eg a sandwich, one or two pieces of fruit, veggie sticks, a treat, and a drink- whatever you wish they would eat!
Speaking of getting the kids involved, I started and continue to try and enforce the habit of bringing the empty lunch box and drink bottles to the kitchen as soon as we get home. This is usually the time when when I will be fixing an afternoon snack anyway so it makes sense to me. It’s a good time to discuss what and why something hasn’t been eaten and enjoyed so you can plan alternatives and it’s a good time to wash everything. A caveat-don’t rely on your child (or teenager!) to completely empty all the food and containers out of their bag, it is highly unlikely that they will ! Unless you personally check their bags frequently, you WILL one day be lead to an odour that turns out to be a shocking, soggy, mouldy mess that will permanently stain and ‘odourise’ their bag and turn you off your own lunch for quite some time-trust me on this one, I have l much experience in this matter.
Cut veggie sticks the night before when preparing the veggies for that nights dinner-(This is also a good time to prep veggie for the next nights dinner!) Store in airtight containers or ziplock bags lined with a paper towel liner and the veggies will stay fresh. Save little sauce containers if you get some with a take away to use to sometimes add a dipping sauce for some variety.
When washing grapes, take the time to wash the whole bunch. Use kitchen scissors to cut smaller bunches and pop them into containers or ziplock bags. Place these into a storage basket in the fridge for a grab and go snack or a quick addition to lunch boxes. Try popping a few of the pre-packed bunches of grapes into the freezer for a refreshing snack the is a healthy alternative to ice-blocks etc.
Most fruit can be washed ahead of time, but strawberries should only be washed close to the time when they will be eaten for the best texture and flavour. Oranges can be pre-cut but keep apples whole or cut them at the last minute and then reassemble it into it’s “apple” shape and wrap it tightly in plastic wrap to keep out as much air as possible so it won’t go brown.
Most schools have a ‘munch and crunch’ programme for students to have a snack and reenergise during class time. You will probably be given a list of suitable foods, which are not only healthy choices, but are also ‘less messy’ foods. Use this list to remind you to pack the munch and crunch and as a jumping off point for what you can pack that is healthy and not as likely to stain that freshly ironed school uniform-you may say I’m a dreamer… You may note-cherries are NOT ON THAT LIST!
Half or quarter fill drink bottles with the chosen beverage and freeze them. Each morning top them up with the rest of the beverage to make a handy ice pack to keep lunches fresh as well as providing a cool drink.Remeber what beverage you froze though, some combinations that may occur as a result of forgetfulness may not be so palatable- chocolate milk and lime cordial comes to mind. Better to stick with water, I think.
Check containers are easy to open and close for your children to prevent them dropping or spilling their lunch and prevent leaks-refer to stained school bag dilemna above. Schools encourage labelled, reusable containers, and while try are better for the environment, they can be quite costly, so check that they are user friendly too. Don’t spend too much though, they will get lost! You may don industrial grade rubber gloves and check ‘lost property’ but don’t expect too much of this black hole of  scholarly belonging so-in fact, I limit my search to two minutes or less, lest I also be sucked into this portal where Tupperware lids, jumpers and yellow raincoats go to die.
Be on the look out for different sizes and shapes of containers. Reuse takeaway containers and  tiny sauce tubs too.Label the top and bottom with the families last name. Also have on hand ziplock bags, foil, wrap, paper towels and even some plastic cutlery. Try to find a common drawer or shelf to store all of this. Keep it as neat and organised as you can and try not to have too much, toppling Tupperware towers will NOT inspire you to pack a lunch and being hit on the head by an avalanche of alfoil and glad wrap boxes just plain HURTS, When you wash and dry a drink bottle or container put it’s lid on before storing it and discard the odd bods.
Consider having two lunch boxes per person. While one is being used or washed and dried, the other can be filled ahead of time and kept in the fridge, ready to go.
When you have time be creative with your child’s lunch just to make it more appetising and special, present it bento box style, cut food into shapes or make wraps or rolled up sandwiches, include stickers or a note, add a few treats to share such as home popped popcorn or some smiley faced biscuits.
That’s quite a few tips for now, I might leave it there and revisit this topic again later. I also think most of these tips apply to adults as well, working or not, consider taking more homemade lunches and/or snacks when you are not at home and I think you’ll feel better for it.
Add your own tips in the comments too, I’d love to hear them!
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Happy Birthday (Bargains) To Me *8*

My House

My House Advantage Club members receive a birthday voucher of $20 off anything instore or online with free shipping for Advantage club members, click here to sign up for free.

Happy Birthday (Bargains) to me *7*

Lots more birthday rewards turned up in my inbox this week. Some are great and some not so great-designed only to make you spend more or with conditions that make it difficult to bag a bargain. Here they are…


$20 off any item instore and online. The top I chose was $119.99 and I got it for $49. I’ll picture it below.

Become a VIP here.


$20 off anything online. I found a nice tee and got it for half price.

Become a VIP here



$25 off online, instore or at David Jones, the emails states ‘excludes clearance’ however I was able to buy a tee online using the voucher code- I did have to pay $10 postage because there was no stock in my nearest store in order to take advantage of Click and Collect. Still I got a 100% linen tee that was $79.00 for $4.00! I’ll picture it below. Become a Saba VIP here.

Fusion Brands

I remember receiving a voucher last year, but now Fusion Brands offer triple points for 7 days at your birthday time.Join Fusion by visiting Mathers, Williams ,Colorado or Diana Ferarri online and signing up.


Mimco has a reward club called Mimcollective. They sent me an email saying I will be rewarded NEXT year if I start spending now. Hmm.


Katies offer a $20 off voucher instore or online-minimum spend is $30. Sign up here.


Autograph offers $20 off full priced purchases over $30 instore or online. Become a VIP here.


Rockport offers a birthday discount of 20% off full priced items instore or online. Sign up here.

Novo Shoes

Novo Shoes offers a birthday reward of $20 off full priced items online at Novo Shoes

There are a few more vouchers in my inbox so stay tuned.

Happy Birthday Bargains To Me *6*

Here’s three more birthday offers for VIP members.


$20 off full priced items over $30 instore or online 

Join Jeanswest Rewards here.

BeMe 25% on a full priced purchase instore or online. Become a BeMe VIP here.

Veronika Maine gives privilege members $30 to spend instore or online for their birthday. Become a Veronika Maine privilege member here.

Happy Birthday (bargains) To Me *5*

Today’s VIP birthday perk comes from Forever New who offer 15% off on full price purchases (online only). 

Sign up at Forever New here.

Happy Birthday (bargains) to me *4*

Another birthday voucher! This time from Sheridan Outlet and it is $25 to spend on full priced or marked down items in store or online. Delivery is a flat rate $9.95 and purchases over $150 are entitled to free delivery. Sign up here.

Happy Birthday (bargains) to me *3*

Today’s bargain is a $10 off birthday voucher from Bonds to use I store or online with free delivery for being a Bonds and Me member sign up here. I chose some new socks 😀

Happy Birthday (bargains) to me *2*

Today’s voucher: Review $20 voucher to use in store or online, click and collect available.

Click here to sign up to Review Australia’s loyalty club.

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