Let’s Be Pen Pals


Hello Lovelies. It seems too long since I have sat here and shared anything from Mama Bear’s Kitchen. This year has hurtled itself full throttle into what is shaping up to be one of our biggest year’s yet.  Just when we thought our large family life couldn’t possibly get any bigger, I find that we are required to stretch our arms that wee bit further and enlarge our capacity to embrace all that the Lord brings our way. Our family dynamic is changing. One daughter leaves the nest and is happily fluttering  away over in her new domain. Another new daughter is welcomed into our clan, with plans to marry our son  later in the year. We couldn’t be happier, or prouder of the fine people our young adults are becoming, and the choices they are making.  



With ten people living in our home, there are many challenges. Every day is enormous. Feeding the hordes three times a day, tending to the little lambs and their constant messes, staying available for the wanna be independent teenagers and supervising the planning of a wedding all keeps Mama Bear on her toes. Not to mention the washing. Oh the washing…trying to squeeze what could be a full time job in between  the daily hum of homeschooling and general upkeep of a busy home…Like I said, it’s all quite a challenge. 




And then there is cake. Thank Heaven for cake. The question I am asked time and time again from people with looks of sheer disbelief on their faces, is

” How do you do it all??”

Whenever people find out that I have 9 children, homeschool and make cakes, they instantly elevate me to the position of  ‘crazy, insane, amaaaaazing superwoman.’ One well meaning mother once went so far as to tell me that I made all of the other mums in the room feel like failures!! As misguided and untrue as these assumptions about me are, I acknowledge that the facts about my life do sound rather absurd! When you do what I do and make cake, it is natural perhaps to question how I could possibly fit everything into my days. 



I don’t really have any magical answers to this. When curious people question me, I usually answer that I don’t know how I do it all either!! They assume that I am super organised ( I am not). They don’t usually believe me. But truly, organisation is most definitely not one of my strengths. Homeschooling your children does have  the benefit of more free time in the afternoons. No homework, no school lunches to plan…our whole family is very accustomed to finding their own things to do and are mostly busy little bees creating some marvellous mess endeavour to fill in their free time in the afternoons. This does allow me snippets of time to bake, create, plan, set up and style my next event. I also use my evenings. We don’t watch tv so much and so I use this time to work on my next project. I actually need to have something to do with my hands, so I use this time for more detailed work. My husband also graciously allows me to set up my next styled event on a trestle table in our family room. So I spend my snippets of free time gradually setting up and styling my table. 



 On baking days, when I have a cake order to fill, I usually spend the mornings schooling the children, then around lunch time I start to bake. This is often done with the two littles up near the bench helping me mix. I will also talk through the instructions with my middle girls and let them make up the batter for me. Those not directly involved in helping me will usually take turns reading to me at the kitchen bench. They love watching and helping me, especially when I am making sugar flowers or my new Tim Tam pops. I have a little dream to train up the girls  so that in future years when they are all older we can all work together in Mama Bear’s Kitchen doing parties and baby showers. It might be just a dream, but perhaps at least one of them will catch the vision!

You never know. 







Does it all get stressful at times?  Yes.  Am I trying to do too much?  Sometimes. Does my house get messy while I am busy creating?  Most definitely yes. Does the washing build up? Yes. It’s always there.  Is it worth it. 








I am a creative person and creating beauty revives and refreshes me. It brings balance to my incredibly hectic, others centred life. I am incredibly grateful to have these ‘snippets’ of time in amongst my many demands, to bake, create and share the love with those around me, most importantly, those in my home. I am also very thankful that I can share them with you too.

 Lots of love. xx



  • Victoria Roberts

    Lovely pictures Mrs. Hogbin!!! Where does Alice live now?

    • A
      Mama Bear

      Thank you Victoria. She is at Teen Missions bible college in QLD. xx

Leave your comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.