Tag Archives: blogging

Gone Fishing

24 Sep

holsbys gone fishingI don’t know why I’ve posted a picture of the ocean, in fact, I’m about to head on a vacay in the the opposite direction.

Remember how I was umming and ahhing about sucking off into the funset for a little jaunt with Grandpapa and his Winnebago?

Well, by midday today the babes and I will have touched down in sunny Alice Springs where we’ll meet our main man, Grandpapa, and Windbag the beloved bus and head off into the desert for 10 days of big open skies, red dirt and adventure.

I cannot tell you how much we’re looking forward to it. The children are pumped for emu and camel spotting, and I’m pumped for some down time and wide open spaces.

It’s been a crazy 6 months full of change, fear and excitement, tears and laughter, so I reckon 10 days of sweet F.A. will do me the world of good.

There’s something about big open skies and road trips that lend for the right kind of soul searching so I’m going to disconnect from the cyber stuff and simply be present in the real world for a bit.

I’ve scheduled some Holsby gold from the archives to happen on the Facebook page so you don’t forget me while I’m gone, but I’ll mostly be out of 3G range so I can’t keep you updated even if I want to for at least a week… God knows, I’ll still be the desperado standing atop Ayers Rock waving my phone above my head trying to get reception so I can share it with you.

But that’s not all, folks, I have some more news too… while I’m away the blog is getting a little nip here and tuck there so by the time I return my trusty steed will have had a proper facelift.

It’s exciting times for my wee blog.

We’re growing up, taking the leap onto the next level and I’m taking you guys with me. You game?

Thing is, you’ll probably see the new look before me. In fact, I won’t be able to do any of the little tweaks and love taps I’ll give it when I get the chance so you’ll probably see a few changes over the coming weeks.

If, by chance, something goes awry and you have any issue connecting with me, just stand by and know I’ll be home on the 4th October and all will be sorted asap.

Otherwise, hang tight, m’lovers.

I’ll post to Instagram and Facebook when I can, and I can’t wait to show you my portraits from the middle of Australia.

Catch you on the flip.

Love and light,




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Lessons in Life

3 Sep

You may or may not know that I went to ‘blogference’ on the weekend called ProBlogger.

550 bloggers converging on one hotel on the GoldCoast is a hell of a thing, you can only imagine how many selfies and images of food were zipping across the interwebs. You would be forgiven for presuming it was a room full of narcissists, but I assure you it was anything but. There was much love and support to be had…

As many of you aren’t bloggers I’m not going to talk to you about the conference which although it was ten kinds of amazing, it’s boring as batshit if you’re not a bloggy type.

What I am going to talk to you about are a couple of the invaluable life lessons I learned while I was there, because I believe that no matter who you are or what your dreams are this stuff is relevant across the board.

Fear is a killer.

We all feel it.

It’s natural to feel fear around something you’re passionate about but you mustn’t let it cripple you.

I was shitting my pants about going and hanging out with so many chicks (chicks are freaky, right?) but what I discovered was a coven of love and support.

Darren Rowse, PB founder, said “If you want to conquer fear, don’t sit home and think about it. Go out and conquer it.”

How true is that? You need to go and punch that fear in the throat because scared people don’t achieve their dreams. I could be all ‘feel the fear and do it anyway’ but it’s a bit wanky, so hear this….


You already know I’m a wanker. I told you about my vibrator.

Don’t be afraid to tell someone how you feel about them.

Just before PB I received a message from someone I didn’t know. A blogger. A really good blogger. And she reached out to me to tell me she really loved what I was doing and they way I was doing it.

She made my god damned month. I hugged the crap outta her when we met for the first time over the weekend and I told her she really touched me.

It made me realise that it takes little effort to tell someone you acknowledge what they’re doing and that you rate them. I took that on board and went and gushed all over a few people that I wanted to tell I admired and did I make their day?

Who knows, but at least I wasn’t scared to share my feelings.

You don’t get successful overnight.


This one sucks big balls, sure, but it’s a great reason to keep going. Success, life, all of it – it’s a marathon, not a sprint.

Rand Fishkin, a specialist in something that I find really confusing, said “The price of success is failure after failure after failure.”

I personally would rather not fail lots of times, my poor ego hates it. Or maybe I already have failed many times. Lord knows, I’ve tried lots of things before I found this writing thing, but either way, you just need to start, and then you need to keep showing up consistently.

Set goals.

He who is aiming at something is more likely to hit it, than he who is aiming at nothing. Capiche?

Matthew Michalewicz touched on something that smashed me in the nose and made my eyes water….

Matthew Michalewicz

He also talked about goals, but you also need to believe in yourself.

And that shit is hard. It’s so much easier to doubt yourself, and wonder how you will ever achieve your dreams but you know what?

You are talented, creative and worthy, so why not you?


Just start. Today. Better to start imperfectly than to wait until you’re perfect. I can’t remember which guru said this, and I’ve totes paraphrased but you get the gist.)

Achieving your dreams is not magic, it’s knowledge and process. Doing the steps that lead you to where you want to be.

When blogging royalty recognises you it’s ok to wet your pants a little bit.

I’m not cool. Not by a long shot. You knew that already but now the cat is well and truly out of the bag with the rest of the world.

So all of this inspiration and joy has left me feeling wrung out like an old sock. I feel a little sad.

I feel a little scared, because this is it.

I’m standing on the precipice of my new life and it’s now or never…..

These really are the days of our lives, and there is no half way.

You either do it, or you don’t.



There were many awesome women, but these women?  They are my tribe.

There were many awesome women, but these women?
They are my tribe.

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Apple Fritters and A Daunting Dance Card

3 Jun

apple fritters recipeYou know that old expression be careful what you wish for?

I don’t reckon many people would wish for herpes so I figure as long as you’re wishing for something positive that doesn’t leave a burning sensation in your knicks, knock yourself out.

It helps to be specific so the Universe, or the angels, or God, or whomever you wish to doesn’t mess it up. You know, don’t just make a blanket wish for ‘more excitement’ cos that shit can be tres confusing to the powers that be, know what I’m sayin’?

I wished to be a freelance writer who could work from home and be with my kids and balance everything beautifully.

Luckily, farking luckily, for me, it would appear it’s kinda happening.

I admit I’ve put in some yards, and as we know hard work accentuates luck, but still…..L.U.C.K.Y M.O.F.O.

But first things first, let’s talk the about Kidspot Voices 2014 because that is one of the flukiest damned things that I ever did see.

You know how made it into the Kidspot Top 30 Parenting and Personal blogs?


Well, I didn’t really mention it here, because I didn’t wish to be a douchey bragger, and although it’s lurvely to receive a kudos from the community, the competition is well fierce I didn’t really think I’d get far in the comp.

The gorgeous Amanda from the Cooker and a Looker and I at the Voices announcement party (may be a tad squiffy)

The gorgeous Amanda from the Cooker and a Looker and I at the Voices announcement party (may be a tad squiffy)

Which I didn’t……. the Top 5 was announced, I wasn’t in it.

Then, like a goldfish I promptly forgot about it until I received an email recently telling me that one of the original Top 5 had to pull out due to personal matters, and being as I only just missed out by the skin of my teeth, did I want to step up to Top 5 and get back in the game?

This is the part where I did a cartwheel and tore my middle-aged, slightly dimply, inner thigh.

Voices2014-nominee_P&P_TOP_5_Am I pissy that I wasn’t in the original picking?

Are you kidding? I eat cold vegemite toast off the floor, for god’s sake. I have little pride.

As if that wasn’t cool enough, same day I had a meeting with the fab editors over at Essential Kids and you are looking at (well, reading) the very latest Fairfax (douchey bragger) food writer.

You know I hate BOOM, but……

apple frittersI’m a lucky mofo, right?????

I bought myself a wall calendar and scrawled all over that puppy because I’m a shocker at remembering dates and deadlines and suddenly there seems to be many of them. HEAPS.

Little bit scary.

I do feel I’ve been neglecting you guys a tad though. I mean, you’re my first love.

It’s you guys and this space and all my hours of spilling my guts that have got me to this point… so let me make you a special little breakfast.

Just pretend we’ve had a sleep over you and I, drank too much celebratory champers, eaten ourselves silly and passed out without removing our make-up. Now I’m whipping this up in my dressing gown while you drink tea and stare at Giggle and Hoot, all the while wishing my kids would shut that infernal racket up.

There’s a banana in the picture below because this rocks with banana too. If you want to use gluten free flour it works, I’ve done that too, but this time I just went spelt.

You can also use plain flour. Your brekky, your choice.

I don’t have an apple corer and I’ve NEVER succeeded in removing the core until this day…. see what I mean?


If you’re not so lucky, just halve it, and a V wedge out where the core is and serve moons rather than rounds like I do every other day.

apple frittersYield : serves 4

What you will need :

  • 1/2 cup spelt flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla paste
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 large apples, cored and sliced into rounds
  • Coconut oil, or butter for frying
  • vanilla yoghurt, for serving
  • raspberry jam (or your preference), for serving

What you need to do :

Toss your flour and baking powder into a bowl and stir quickly to combine.

Make a well, dump in your egg, vanilla and milk and stir until smooth as a baby’s butt.

Get your frypan nice and hot with your coconut oil or butter, before dipping in your apple rounds, ensuring they’re nice and coated before you pop them ito the pan.

Flip when brown. Repeat until done. Smear with jam, blob with yoghurt and nosh it up with gusto.


apple fritters

Flukey perfect apple round – B.O.O.M.


Cook Once, Feed All COVER_lr

Cook Once, Feed All is about making your life easier whilst preparing nutritious and quick food for your family. Hailed by Mouths of Mums as the ‘must have recipe book for all families’, this book is a collection of family friendly recipes, all accompanied by stories from my life.

To order your hardcopy of Cook Once, Feed All head to the Holsby Shop right now.

If you like what you’re reading why not like my Facebook page now or subscribe via email, to be sure to always keep up with the Holsbys.











Portrait 365 : 98 – 105

13 Apr

I’ve had a bumper week. Like, madly, stupidly bumper.

I’ve picked up some tv producing work and been working on writing commissions and giving talks about food at schools and to groups of women and, and, and, and, my feet have barely touched the ground.

I feel like I’m in a whirlwind, but it’s a sweet, warm whirlwind to I’m just going with it.

Last night (amidst much drunken revelry and fabbo frocks) I was announced as being in the Kidspot Top 30 Personal and Parenting bloggers and I really want to say a big thanks to everyone who voted for me. To see my name next to some bloggers I really admire is such an honour and a thrill and to be in the same room as many of my “colleagues” was a joy. I made some new friends fo’shizz, tequila will do that.

Without further ado, let’s see who I’ve shot this week…..

Spiderman Sean

Spiderman Sean

“I’m on my way to a kid’s party.”
“I figured.”
“This is not my regular Sunday outfit.”



D Man claims Orsha is his new best best friend. They met once, for ten minutes, and have never seen each other again. The finer details don’t matter don’t matter to him, I guess it’s a feeling.



Technically shot on the same day as her sister but those eyes….. those eyes.



“Is it my birthday again tomorrow?”
Valid question, buddy. Sadly, no.



“My heart is with the community. I want to give people a sense of belonging to something.”
Felicity and I are beginning to work together on a project called Overhaul Wellness. Wellness days to help you balance your body, mind and spirit. Stay tuned.

Pastor Bronwyn

Pastor Bronwyn

“I come from a family of traveling performers. When they put me into boarding school the nuns got cross because my grandmother had sent me with silky pajamas.”
I went to church this week for the first time in about 20 years. I wasn’t there for a service though, I went to talk food to group of lovely women.

Kayte and Beth

Kayte and Beth

Kayte : “Say what you want. It’s your blog.”
Beth : “I finally cracked it when I wrote a post about a fitted sheet.”
These chicks are kind of The Shit. This image was taken as pretty much the first thing I said to these ladies who you may know better as Woogsworld and BabyMac. Fast forward a few hours and Beth touched my boobs and we were the last ones to be thrown out of the pub. Firm friends now I would say.


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Recipe Rewind – 5 beauties from before you were watching.

11 Mar

When I first started this shebanglang I went hell for leather and posted every day or so. I remember getting up at 5.30 am all pumped to ping some love in your in-box before you got up (all three of you).

I was alternating between food and thought pieces and I was cooking and thinking my ass off all day every day because I was so excited to have the outlet.

Admittedly, I couldn’t sleep for shit at that time because I was 500 weeks pregnant with a baby elephant who prided herself on sleeping directly on my bladder, but at least I was productive…. and let’s face it, shooting my mouth off is more my style that cleaning like a tornado as some up-duffers do.

I busted out some of my bestest, most go-to, week-day, bang-em-out meals in the first couple of months when only my best friend, my Nana and my Mum was reading.

I’ve thought a couple of times how much of a big fat waste it was so I’m going to treat y’all to the recipe rewind.

Admittedly, my photography was pretty bloody awful when I started, but I’m not ashamed.

Hell, I’ve shown you a photo of my arse, and my cans, so what’s a crappy picture of food between friends, am I right?

I can guarantee that although the images may be dogs, these meals are still on high rotation at the Holsby Bar and Grill, and you should totes get on the bandwagon, yo.

fish and misoFive Spice Fish with Miso Broth

Anyone that eats at my table with regularity has eaten this numerous times. It takes me 10 minutes to from board to bowl, so maybe it’ll take you 20 minutes the first time and you’ll just get speedier after that.

My kids eat this happily, I just give less soupy juice because they’re hopeless and will wear that stuff.

Curried Mince

nana and grandpaThis little ripper has been handed down throughout my family. My grandparents eats this, my uncles eat this, their kids and partners, and my brother and mother, and, and, and,….you get the picture. Speaking of pictures, this recipe comes with my crinklies, Nana and Grandpa’s, love story.

Sticky Mustard & Marmalade Pork with Pears

This rocks. Nowadays, if I’m not using a fillet, I’ll get chops with the skin on. I’ll chop that tasty pork fat and skin off and roast it with a liberal sprinkle of salt and crackle that baby right on up and serve with it.

Everything is better with crackling.

squid and chorizo pasta

Chorizo and Squid Spaghetti

Spicy chorizo simply loves to be married with seafood…. particularly squid. Add some hard core pasta carb action and this is such a delicious meal.

squid and chorizo pasta

5 Minute, 5 Ingredient Lime Pie

I simply had to give you a cracking dessert in the list. You think I would leave you high and dry after dinner???

Not my style.

If you have NO TIME to make dessert, make this baby your biatch, because it couldn’t be simpler or faster, and just quietly, it’s yummy enough to be impressive to boot.


Cook Once, Feed All COVER_lr

Cook Once, Feed All is about making your life easier whilst preparing nutritious and quick food for your family. Hailed by Mouths of Mums as the ‘must have recipe book for all families’, this book is a collection of family friendly recipes, all accompanied by stories from my life.

To order your hardcopy of Cook Once, Feed All head to the Holsby Shop right now and receive both the hard copy, and the ebook, plus my new mini ebook A Bit On The Side.

If you like what you’re reading why not like my Facebook page now or subscribe via email, to be sure to always keep up with the Holsbys.

A message for you.

7 Mar

A determined flowerMy darling readers,

I just had a lightening moment whilst on the loo (number 1 only) and I wanted to share it with you because sharing is –  well, often just plain old over sharing in my case but in this instance – caring.

Some of you are related to me by blood. You don’t have to read, but you do. You still count in this.

Some of you are friends; some old, some new. Whether I’ve loved you for a long time or a short time, I love that you’re on this journey with me. Thanks for playing.

My Dad said recently that he has found out so much more about me since I started writing this blog, and I’m sure many of the people who know me feel that way.

It’s not that I don’t talk like this in real life, its just about time and opportunity. There’s not enough time to have all of the chats and drink all of the wine and eat all of the meals with everyone I would like to.

Some of you are also bloggers, writers I admire and aspire to learn from whether it be creatively, or technically, or how I see your life through the little snapshot you give us through your window on the inter webs.

Many of you, my readers, are people I’ve never actually met, and sadly, I may never have the opportunity to.

I just realised that although many of you have never, and may never, meet me personally, you care about me and my life… and my family.

You are interested in what I think, and you care about how I feel.

You take time from your busy lives to comment on my posts, you offer me advice. Some of it great advice.

You make my food, and you take pictures and send them, and tell me how your family loved it.

You share your lives and experiences with me, intimate details, and pain and secrets.

You are funny. You, my readers, make me laugh because you are very, very funny.

You live in all corners of the world, I’m endlessly amazed at how far this travels, and yet you are my community.

This morning this thought has brought the prickle of tears to my eyes because it hit me how lucky I am. Lucky not just in the big way that I live somewhere that allows me to have a voice, not lucky in the way that I am fortunate to have time and space in my life to create this, but lucky on a much more base level.

I’m lucky to have such love poured on to me by such a big community of people.

I want to give you all a cyber hug and say thanks.

Without each of you, I would just be spouting off to myself, as usual.

Without your encouragement, and engagement, be it on the blog or Facebook, I wouldn’t have the courage to keep showing you my metaphorical arse, and sharing my deepest thoughts and fears, and loves.

Laying myself bare. Letting you in. Letting me out.

By me doing this, you are doing it to. You let me in to your lives, and I get you in mine.

Anyway, it’s Friday, let’s go wrap this week up and kick some little goals and keep on moving forward…. the only direction to go.

All my love,


Hooking up with other amazing bloggers for FYBF over at With Some Grace.

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You can also subscribe via email, or follow me on Instagram at The Holsbys to be sure to always keep up with the Holsbys.

The big mouth who kicked the hornets’ nest.

14 Feb

Holsbys rainbow, whangareiIt’s been a big week for me on social media. I had my first public crucifixion.

I’ve pissed people off before, or perhaps offended slightly, but never before have I been the butt of strangers’ anger.

I’m open to intelligent debate on what I write, but ultimately this is my blog and I will not approve comments that bad mouth me, belittle me, rant on about what an arsehole I am or doggedly argue with me.

You can call it warped censorship, but I call it MY blog.

At 37 years of age I am well aware that I will never please all of the people all of the time, and all I can follow in this venture of mine is my moral compass.

It has been suggested that I am self-serving and selfish and I’m exploiting a young girl.

I would like to reiterate, that I am telling a story of one woman’s experience with her child. It is an interview with one person. I do not need permission from two separated parents to interview one parent.


I’m not putting the child on hormone blockers and neither is her mother. It’s not a debate about the ins and outs of gender confusion, it’s just their experience, and how they’re living with it.

Using real names and images was never my call. It was arranged between the mother, child and publication.

If that makes you wish to crucify me, go right ahead. I have done no wrong.

I am not dogmatic in the slightest. I’m riddled with insecurities and want people to like me. Just like I was in high school only now I have better hair. My skin is still sketchy.

I am honest to a fault and I’m endeavouring to pursue an authentic role as a story teller.

I write about consensual sex slaves and prostitutes. That’s a bit taboo, too.

I write about swingers, and I write about families with disabled children.

Is that more socially acceptable?


In this era of the superficiality of social media it is not easy to remain uncynical, but perhaps I am actually coming from a place of honesty?

Is it not possible that I simply want to shine a light on all the dark corners on life so we can all  have a greater awareness of our fellow man, and know that we all have frailties and weaknesses and they don’t make us any less valuable as humans?

People use drugs, spouses have cyber affairs, marriages may not be what they seem, mums get depressed and struggle to bond with their babies, people have mental breakdowns, people starve themselves, gorge themselves and cut themselves.

Masturbating is fun, drinking too much isn’t a sin, and sometimes we are all scared.

It’s ok.

It’s just life.

I write about life. I write about people.

I write about stuff. What I do, or what I try my best to do, is honest storytelling.

No hidden agenda.

Fame and fortune would be bloody awesome, but realistically MasterChef or Big Brother is likely to get me there before this writing gig.

If the stuff I write makes you uncomfortable, I apologise, and with no hint of malice I suggest you stop reading my blog because there will be more stuff that makes you feel uncomfortable.

I don’t feel discomfort from the messy stuff in the world. I embrace all of the wacky and wonderful differences that there are between us that create the tapestry of our lives.

I’m intrigued by the different. Intrigued by the messy.

Life is not tidy.

It is beautiful chaos.

PS Happy Valentine’s Day, homies.

If you like what you’re seeing, why not like my Facebook page now as I have a little spiel there.

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Merry Fricken’ Christmas, yo!

24 Dec

holsbys christmas message


Guys, I just reread last year’s Christmas post and it feels like a gazillion Brazilians ago.

We’ve had a bumper year, you and I, and I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for your love, support and kind words.

This whole shebangalang would not be a thing without youse.

You guys are funny. Your comments crack me up.

You guys are thoughtful. Your support and encouragement gives my wings wind (meant to sound profound but sounds slightly eggy. Stay with me.)

You guys are clever, insightful and weird.

Like me.

Thanks for recognising yourselves in me. Or allowing me to make you feel normal.

We’re in this together.

Have a wonderful Christmas.

Whatever you’re doing, with whomever you’re doing it with, do it with joy for we are the lucky ones.




a community service announcement

13 Nov

My dearest of dear peeps,

I just wanted to let you know that I not been abducted by aliens and am the subject of extensive anal probing, run away to the circus to ride elephants in spangled leotards or got a real job – sharp intake of breath.

In case you’re wondering where the hell I am this week I am plugging away as diligently as ever but I have a few different things to focus on in order to throw a cracking party on the 28th for the launch of my new book, Cook Once, Feed All.

You see there’s a little bit involved with launching a book. Like, rather more than I anticipated.

Rumor has it many people do it with a team, however when you are the team something has got to give in order for shizzle to get shizzed.

So, as of Saturday the 16th November you will be getting on board the Holsby Train for the 12 Days of Awesome which is the lead up to the big soiree. 12 days of great posts, Holsby TV, recipes, guest posts and a special give-away to help your relationship sizzle…. in the meantime, I hope my leaving you hanging will only make you want me more.

Enjoy the rest of your week,


Danielle xxx

PS I miss you guys.


Exciting times

29 Sep

Danielle ColleyMy lovelies,

I just wanted to have a little word with you about some stuff going down at the Holsby Bar and Grill.

You see, I’d always given myself an internal deadline for this blog business before I had to quit it and go and get a ‘real job’. Blogging and social media, writing books and contributing to sites is a full a time job and whilst looking after the stinkers it keeps me very busy. Until now I’ve been doing it for free or the occasional sale of my old ebooks,

I decided recently that in order to continue working this hard, I needed to make some spondoolies. I really love money. And I’d really love to make money doing this.

Soooooooooo, I’ve recently been approached to do some sponsored posts.

I want to let you know that I’m not selling out, and I’m not going flog you shit. I’m going to continue to write interesting, thoughtful, funny and personal posts, and sometimes there will be a link included by a kind benefactor who is helping me stay afloat. I will always disclose when I have been paid to do a post.

I will not compromise my voice or my blog, but even with that in mind, as I’ve not done this before I will need to feel my way a bit.

My book is due to go to the printers this week (cue:heralding angels), there is more Holsby TV sitting in my edit suite waiting for me to cut it, I have deadlines up the wazoo for contributions and I’m so thrilled about everything my little blog has become.

It’s exciting for me, and you guys are such an amazing part of my journey that I want you to be in the loop about every step.

Stay tuned, and I won’t let you down,



PS Feel free to tell me how you feel about sponsored posts as your feedback is invaluable.


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