Tuesday, 26 February 2013

The Best (and Easiest) Chocolate Cake Recipe

It is a big call I know, but this Chocolate Cake recipe I am calling as the very best recipe that I have discovered to date. Oh and it is also super simple as it involves my very favourite kind of cake making technique - the melt and mix!!

I have been making this recipe for years now as my 'everyday' choccie cake recipe, and it never fails me and is super, super yum and never lasts long in this house!

You'll Need:

  • 1 1/3 Cups Plain Flour
  • 1 Tsp Bicarb Soda
  • 1/3 Cup Cocoa Powder (Cadbury gets my vote!)
  • 1 Cup Caster Sugar
  • 1 Cup Buttermilk
  • 2 Eggs
  • 125g Melted Butter (Cooled)
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla Essence


  1. Preheat oven to 180 and line and grease cake tin - I normally use a 20cm round cake tin for this one
  2. Sift flour, bicarb of soda and cocoa powder in to a large bowl and stir in the sugar
  3. In a separate bowl or jug, combine buttermilk, melted butter (cooled), eggs and vanilla
  4. Make well in centre of sifted dry ingredients and add wet mixture
  5. Beat with hand beaters/kitchen aid on a low speed until combined and then increase speed to high and beat for approx 3 minutes (mixture should be thick and creamy)
  6. Pour mixture in to pan and bake for 40 - 45 mins

Handy Tips & Tricks
  • Ice if desired - I love a chocolate or white chocolate ganache! But a simple butter cream frosting with a little bit of coconut on top is also very divine!
  • This also works for Cupcakes if preferred
  • Based on a recipe featured on Taste
If Chocolate Cake is not your thing, feel free to check out my recipe for the most divine Caramel Banana cake going around, that recipe can be found right here.
Do you have a favourite chocolate cake recipe? Why not share the link to your favourite so that we can all check them out.

Friday, 22 February 2013

$100 Home Services Voucher Giveaway thanks to Oneflare!

If you have a few little jobs on your 'to do list' for around the home, then you are just going to LOVE this amazing giveaway!
Thanks to the lovely folk at Oneflare, I have one AUD$100.00 gift voucher to give to one very lucky reader to be used on Services booked through Oneflare.

Not sure what Oneflare is? Then you can read all about this amazing Company right here in my previous blog post.

Entry is below via Rafflecopter, please note terms and conditions of entry.

Good Luck!!!!!

PS: I would love for you to leave me a comment on just what odd jobs you'd get done at your place if you won!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

- The giveaway will be hosted by Rafflecopter and is open to Australian residents only
- The announcement of the lucky winner will be made right here on the Utterly Organised blog
- The lucky winner will have 5 days to contact Utterly Organised and claim their prize
- Failure to claim prize within designated period will result in another winner being drawn
- $100.00 gift voucher is only redeemable on Oneflare for the specified amount and for one single use only
- Entrants must like the Utterly Organised and Oneflare Facebook Pages
- Any questions on the competition can be directed to utterlyorganised@gmail.com

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Organise your Home Service Needs Easily with Oneflare!

Can you believe next week it will be March?! Me either!! After the Christmas craze and holiday madness, I’m still yet to really get stuck in to my goals for the year just yet. If you are anything like me - with more goals than time on your hands - you are just going to love an amazing little company I have discovered to truly help me get underway with this year’s goals!

Oneflare is an Internet service designed to give busy individuals (especially us Mums!) a helping hand when you need it most. It helps you find and hire home service providers of all kinds when you need a particular job done, ranging from cleaners, electricians and gardeners to caterers, handymen and photographers. Who knew?!

As you all know, I love staying organised by tackling and prioritising tasks, and a little extra help makes it that much easier, especially when it always feels like there are a million things to do and no time to get them done (especially now we are down to one very short sleep a day with Mr B!) .

Oneflare is super easy - all you have to do is submit a short form outlining the details of what you need done. Then, before you know it, multiple businesses are competing for your work, returning to you with quotes!

Oneflare eliminates the need for busy mums like us to spend hours making phone calls. They do all the work for us! You can receive quotes, review business profiles and customer feedback on a mobile website site so you can even get organised on the go (another useful app to getting organised this year!).

Personally, I find it a little uncomfortable to trust strangers coming into my home where I spend most of my time working and caring for Mr B, but with Oneflare I have peace of mind. Established businesses are backed by their Home Care Guarantee covering jobs up to $500 if something goes wrong. What’s more is that businesses are reviewed and rated honestly by fellow Oneflare users, so it’s just like having your girlfriends help you find the perfect shoes for an outfit (only in this case it’s the perfect business for your job!).

You can even find all tricks of the trade from their top service professionals on their blog! So next time you are worried about the endless list of tasks you have to do, get yourself into an organised state of bliss and head to Oneflare

If you have a tap to be fixed, a fence to be repaired or another Home Service job on your 'to do' list, you are going to love the giveaway we have in store this week. Stay tuned as in a few short days, the wonderful people at Oneflare have kindly donated an amazing prize which will go a long way for one very, very lucky reader who is in dire need of the Services of Oneflare.....

Friday, 15 February 2013

How to Organise and Store your Digital Photographs

A wee while ago, I asked all of the lovely readers on my Facebook Page what you might like to have covered off and fetaured on the blog in the New Year. One such request was how to organise and store all of the digital piccies that we now collect these days.
Because I am quite frankly no expert on this topic (and I really do need a swift kick up the backside to organise these myself), I have asked the very knowledgable Brian Jensen from Dell to pop back and give us his ideas and thoughts on the topic...

If you’re a digital photo buff, you know how easy it is to fill up your computer with mountains of pictures. You probably have everything from last year’s vacation in the Caribbean to your Great Aunt Betty’s birthday party stored on your hard drive. With all of these photos, it’s easy to see how they can get jumbled and hard to find. If your photos are in need of some organisation, read on for some easy tips for how to get started:

Decide on Your Method

There are a number of ways that you may wish to organise and classify your photos. A great way is by date—go ahead create folders on your computer that list the years the photos were taken, and then within the year folders create month folders. This way works well if you know approximately when the photos you are looking for were taken—you can go in and find them quickly and easily.

Another way that you may wish to organise your photos is by event, such as “Trip to California” or “Ski Vacation.” This works especially well if you tend to take photos of special occasions. You’ll always have those memories right at your fingertips.

While these are two of the most common ways to group your pictures, don’t feel that you have to use them. You may want to create different folders for different photography subjects (one folder for shots of your kids, for example, and another folder for pictures of your dog) or group things by colour (an awesome idea if you’re a nature photographer). The choice is really up to you, but one thing to remember is to be consistent. Find a way to organise your photos that works for you and then use the same method for any pictures you take in the future.

Create Labels

Now that you’ve got your digital memories grouped, you should give some consideration to how you’ll name them. Create a naming convention that has meaning to you and will allow you to find your photos if you search for them.

You may consider naming the photo with a brief description of what’s happening and listing who is in the shot. You can also put the place where it was taken, the date, and anything else that will help you find it later.

Back It Up

All your pictures should be saved in two places. Saving pictures on your laptop is great, but there is a chance that you could lose your hard drive either through a hard drive failure or a disaster of some kind.

In order to prevent that, you should save your pictures onto an external hard drive or some other external media device, such as an SD card. These are very inexpensive and can offer a great peace of mind if something bad were to happen to your computer.

Print a Photo Book

If digital access isn’t the most important thing to you, printing a photo book is a great way to store your pictures in an organised fashion. There are many websites where you can upload pictures to create a professional looking photo book. These sites will then print, bind and mail the book to you. Some of the sites that offer photo books are Shutterfly, Snapfish, MyPublisher and Blurb. In addition to these popular photo sites, many local stores that offer photo printing will offer photo books as well.

Store Pictures Online

In addition to organising your photos on your computer and backing them up on an external hard drive, there are places pictures can be stored online. The good part about this option is that no matter where you are or what happens to your laptop, you can get to your pictures from anywhere that you have Internet access.

What are your tips on organising and storing digital photos? Leave a comment and let us know.

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Organising the Pantry - On the Super Cheap!

I love MM's. Not to be confused with M&M's (which I also love), I am talking about Tupperware Modular Mates.

Soon I will be sharing on the blog my pantry with you all, which in all seriousness has approx 80 pieces of these Tupperware lovelies. When I decided to organise my pantry, I saved up my hard earned pennies and decided to treat myself to a pantry full of the stuff - all in one go!
I love the way the product looks, lasts and just how easy it is to organise the pantry with them. But I know for many (me included), it can be hard to cough up the money to organise a whole pantry using these products.
What if I told you that you could find a similar looking product at $2 a piece?!!!
Well much to my delight I discovered in my K-Mart store (in Australia) that they are selling a very similar looking product to the Modular Mates range for $12!! Yes that is $12 for a 6 piece set.
Now I am in no way saying that the quality of these is going to live up to the lifetime gurantee of the Tuperware real deal, but for those that maybe don't want to spend a lot to deck out their whole pantry with matching containers, then this could be for you!
I tested out the seals on the product and I must admit, it does look like it is going to be a fairly durable little set.

So what do you think? At $12 a set, will you be trying these to organise your pantry?

Friday, 8 February 2013

Win an Office/Study Organising Pack thanks to TheChicElement - Enter Here!

I just knew that so many readers would just love the range of goodies available through TheChicElement. In case you missed my absolute favourites featured on the blog (so hard to pick a few really!), you can read about it right here.
 I am so excited that for one lucky reader, you are going to win this very divine Office/Study Organiser set from TheChicElement range. The set includes:
  • 1 Clipboard
  • 1 Pencil Cup
  • 1 Ring Binder (3 rings)
  • 3 Binder Pocket Folders
The prize pack is valued at $71.35 and is sure to make your office/study the envy of many (including me!)
Entry is below via Rafflecopter, please note terms and conditions of entry and good luck!!!!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Terms & Conditions
- The giveaway will be hosted by Rafflecopter and is open to Australian residents only
- The announcement of the lucky winner will be made right here on the Utterly Organised blog
- The lucky winner will have 5 days to contact Utterly Organised and claim their prize
- Failure to claim prize within designated period will result in another winner being drawn
- Entrants must like the Utterly Organised and TheChicElement Facebook Pages
- Any questions on the competition can be directed to utterlyorganised@gmail.com

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Amazing Office Organisation with TheChicElement and Win!

As a work at home Mum, I spend a heck of a lot of time starting at the 4 walls of my office. As such, I have (and continue to) really try to set up a place that is functional but also pretty to look at and a little bit inspiring too.
Finding the right accessories for the home office or study can be hard. I want stylish, not too pricey and to my taste - not too much to ask is it?! Thankfully TheChicElement offers not only functional but fabulous office products at fabulous prices!
TheChicElement has been created by a fellow Australian Work at Home Mum Tiffany and was only launched in January this year. As she welcomed home her third child the previous year it became clear that home would be the best place to work from. But this also led her to discover that she really needed her own ‘space’ within the home to work and feel inspired.
Tiffany embarked on a journey of discovery, finding office products and items that would bring that special touch and style and I have to say she has definitely achieved that with her collection which is just divine! Upon browsing TheChicElement's collection, you will completely fall in love with so many pieces for the professional office, home office or study.
Here are a few pieces that I am lusting after:
I really need to replace my horrible white Ikea desk chair with something a little more stylish. I love the Ghost Chair above that retails for $99.00 and I also am in love with the Replica Eames Chair below for $69.00. Both are beautiful and within my limited budget, but I am not sure which way to go! Decisions, decisions.....
With my little business I have so many folders and files for my clients events, how amazing would my desk look if I stored it all in the Cotton Desk Top divider above?! At $28.95 and free shipping, how can I resist?
The Padfolio is a genius product - it has a front cover clipboard, notepad inside with a handy pocket. This lovely comes in a wide range of patterns, but I could not resist the Chevron design so I have made it mine! At $27.95 with free shipping, you'll probably start volunteering to take minutes at your next staff meeting just so you can whip it out and impress!
As a newbie sponsor of the blog, the fabulous news is that if you'd like to get your hands on some of the items in this amazing collection, I have a giveaway kicking off this Friday so you can do just that! Stay tuned to the blog and my Facebook page for more details on how to enter.
In the meantime, why not head over to TheChicElement website and pick out your favourites too.... Tell me what do you love?
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