This week we have a special guest blog post from Breanna, who recently reflected on her experience as a wish recipient with Make-A-Wish Australia and the #WishForce.

Following a liver transplant, wish recipient Breanna had her wish to be an event manager granted in 2016. Together, with the tireless support of the #WishForce, Breanna hosted a magical fundraising ball raising money in support of other kids and teens fighting life-threatening illnesses. Hotondo Homes Ballarat were a part of this incredible wish, building and donating the wishing well for her event. Now in Year 10, Breanna came back to Make-A-Wish Australia for her work experience. As part of her experience, she reflected upon her wish and shared her expertise for planning a fundraising event.

How My Wish Came Together

Breanna's Wish
My wish was to style and manage my very own event to help raise funds to support Make-A-Wish Australia. Styling events was something that I loved to do in hospital as I always found myself on Pinterest looking at ideas for my future birthdays and wedding. The idea of being able to style something while also supporting Make-A-Wish and all of the other kids that wanted wishes as great as mine granted was just a dream come true.

Breanna's Wish
Make-A-Wish organised for me to work alongside The Style Co. who showed me how they run events and together we came up with the fairy tale theme. We then picked an element from different fairy tales to showcase at the event. For example, a red rose in a glass case as the table centrepiece inspired by Beauty and the Beast, a mini tree with red apples from Snow White, and there was even a Cinderella carriage photo booth!

Breanna's Dress
Seeing it all come together was amazing. I was so used to looking at the plans, but to see it come together in real life was better than I ever would have imagined, everyone did such an amazing job helping pull my wish together!

Breanna's Wish
I was so amazed by all the donations made by so many different companies! My dress was custom made, I had my makeup and hair professionally done, the foliage, balloons and lollies were donated and the wishing well was custom built and donated, thanks to Hotondo Homes Ballarat!

Breanna's Wish
The event raised an incredible $118,000 for Make-A-Wish Australia and was far more than I ever would have thought. This is all thanks to everybody that came to spend this special night with me. I would just love to say a massive thank you to the Wish Force for making my wish come true better than I ever could have imagined, it was one of the best nights that I have ever had.

Breanna's Wish

Breanna’s Top Five Tips for Planning an Event

1. Choose a theme: Begin by looking for ideas and themes that you would like for your event.
2. Get creative: Once you have finalised your theme start looking at different inspirational ideas that you could incorporate into your chosen theme.
3. The layout: Once you have your theme and inspiration, start to work out how the room or place is going to be orientated and where your decorations and anything else that you may need is going be situated.
4. Sourcing: Now you can start to create and bring all your ideas to life by outsourcing with event suppliers, or making them yourself.
5. Action! You can now decorate your space the way you’ve planned with all of your supplies and decorations.

Wish Effect

Wishes have an incredible and lasting effect on the lives of kids and teens fighting life-threatening illnesses, their families and wider communities. As you can see, the hope and joy of the wish lasts long after the moment itself!

If you’d like to know more about Hotondo Homes’ partnership with Make-A-Wish Australia, visit the Hotondo Homes website today. Alternatively, you can also donate to Make-A-Wish Australia via their website.

Whether you’ve lived in Queensland all your life or you’re thinking about making the move up to the sunshine state, Hotondo Homes has a large network of builders ready to help you find the perfect home! All our local builders have a number of home designs available to choose from, and can provide cost-effective solutions to meet your budget and lifestyle. This week we’re putting the spotlight on a few of our builders throughout Queensland so you can get to know some of the members of our Hotondo Homes family!

Hotondo Homes Toowoomba

Steve and Cassandra Allan have been part of the Hotondo family for 10 years, and have won numerous awards during their time as Hotondo Homes franchisees, including the prestigious 2017 National Professional Builder of the Year! Servicing Toowoomba and the surrounding areas of Dalby, Gatton, Warwick, Laidley, Lockyer, Hatton Vale and Plain Lands, they work with you and your requirements to build a home that fits your lifestyle and suits your budget. Passionate about building homes of the highest quality, Steve and Cassandra believe the secret to success is in delivering a rewarding and memorable building experience by being big enough to deliver, but still small enough to listen. With twenty years of experience building in Toowoomba, the team at Hotondo Homes Toowoomba have built over 200 homes. Known for professional and personal service, whether you’re after a house and land package, a multi-level home, or have an unusual block, Steve, Cassandra and their team are the perfect choice for your new home! Visit their brand new Jaxton 261 display home and see the quality craftmanship they include in every new home they build.

Hotondo Homes Gold Coast North

With over 18 years of building experience, Corey and Rachael Hobbins are your local builders on the Gold Coast who can turn your dream home into a reality. Priding themselves on attention to detail, Corey and Rachael prioritise customer serivce and dedication to understanding their clients’ needs. Servicing the Coomera, Pimpama, Gold Coast areas, as well as Ballina, Lismore, Lennox Heads and Evans Heads, they have over 90 flexible floor plans and a range of house and land packages to choose from, all of which can be tailored to suit your individual needs. Corey and Rachael’s years of experience, professionalism and local area knowledge will be the perfect tool to guide you through one of the most important purchases of your life. Pop in to their new Erskine 225 display home and chat to the team about starting your home building journey with Hotondo Homes.

Hotondo Homes Sunshine Coast

Alyssa Pepper is your award winning builder on the Sunshine Coast, and can build in surrounding areas inluding North Brisbane, Bribie Island, Woodford, and across the Sunshine Coast Hinterlands. With over 10 years of experience, when you build with Alyssa you deal directly with her from the drafting stages right through to the final handover. Whether you’re looking to build a family home or an investment property, Alyssa can assist you in finding the perfect home solution. Specialising in small lots through to acreage lots, as well as double storeys and townhouses, Alyssa prides herself on her quality service and construction, and is happy to let you be involved in your build as much as possible. Providing an unbeaten, unique, professional and honest experience, Alyssa and her team are ready to help you find your dream home. Visit Alyssa’s Jagera 250 display home and see her superb work in person!

Hotondo Gympie

Known for turning dream homes into a reality, Chris and Michelle Dodt are widely considered to be Gympie’s trusted new home specialists! With an impressive 30-year-long career in the building industry, Chris and Michelle have everything you need to build your new home in Gympie and surrounding areas including Glenwood, Tin Can Bay, Rainbow Beach and Goomeri. Joining the Hotondo Homes family over 20 years ago, Chris and Michelle’s dream was to build quality dream homes for locals, and today they pride themselves on their fantastic customer service and commitment to supporting the local area. Choosing to work only with local trades, your home will be built by people who know the local area inside out. Whether you’re looking for your first home, dream home, or an investment property, Hotondo Gympie have a solution that’s perfect for you. They also specialise in acreage and split level designs, meaning they can build your home no matter what kind of block you own. With a team of professionals who can walk you through the home building journey every step of the way, you’ll have peace of mind watching your new home come to life. With a new Cooloola 208 display home open, Chris and Michelle would love to chat to you about building your dream home!

Hotondo Homes has a number of builders located around Queensland to help you with your vision. With flexible designs for all types of land, and plenty of house and land packages available to suit your budget and lifestyle, you’re sure to find a local builder in your area to create a beautifully constructed home for you and your family! Visit the Hotondo Homes website and find a builder local to you today.

If you’ve been waiting all year to host Christmas in your beautiful new Hotondo home and show off that stunning new kitchen, elegant dining area, and enjoy relaxing in your living space with family and friends, we’re here to help. We’ve got some tried and true dessert recipes from some of our very own Hotondo team members that you can make ahead of time to help with your celebrations for Christmas Day!

Cinnamon and Brown Sugar Shortbread


Who doesn’t love shortbread? It’s perfect to enjoy with a cuppa as you put your feet up and relax after a long day of celebrating. Best of all, it’s quick and easy to make a couple of days in advance! This recipe serves ten people approximately.

250g unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup lightly packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 & 1/4 cups plain flour
3/4 cup rice flour
1 & 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Icing sugar mixture, to dust (optional)


Chocolate Ripple Cake Wreath


A twist on an old favourite, this is another dessert you can make the day before you need to serve it, and just save the decorating for the day of your celebration! This yummy dessert serves approximately twelve people.

2 x packets of chocolate ripple biscuits
500g thickened cream for whipping
2 tablespoons cocoa
1 tablespoon icing sugar
Chocolate cream biscuits
Peppermint balls
Mint leaf lollies


Clootie Dumpling (Cloth Dumpling)

This is a Scottish recipe that takes a little TLC to create, so allow some time a few days before you want to serve it to create this delicious pudding! Serves approximately twenty people.

500g self raising flour – for mixture
1 cup suet
1 cup sugar
500g mix of currants and sultanas (any ratio of your choosing)
25g mixed spice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Treacle for taste (however no more than ½ cup)
Milk (up to 1 cup if needed)
Preferred alcohol of choice (that goes well with fruit – sherry, whisky, Drambuie, etc)
Some extra flour
Boiling water (from the kettle)

Calico sheet – you’ll need approximately 50cm2
2 large mixing bowls
1 large stock pot
Strong rubber band
Mixing spoon


Tobler-Tastic Cheesecake

Cheesecake is always a winning dessert especially on a hot Christmas day, and this one combines some amazing flavours. It serves approximately ten people and best of all, it’s no-bake!

1 ½ cups chocolate ripple biscuits, crushed to crumbs
100g melted butter
500g cream cheese, softened
¾ cup caster sugar
1 teaspoon gelatine dissolved in 2 tablespoons of boiling water
200g milk chocolate Toblerone, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup thickened cream, softly whipped
1 punnet raspberries pureed and sieved into 2 tablepsoons, combined with 2 tablespoons icing sugar
Toblerone shavings, for decoration
Extra raspberries for decoration


Note that you can substitute strawberries and it still tastes delicious!

Ausukes (Little Ears)

Best eaten when made or day of making

Ingredients and equipment
500g plain flour
2 sachets dried yeast
2 eggs
125g butter
½ cup sugar
½ cup luke warm water
½ cup milk (if necessary)
Canola oil for frying

1 large baking bowl (china or ceramic)
1 large frying pan
Paper towel
Serving plate or bowl
Rolling pin

Note: in order for the mixture to rise, please keep ingredients warm.
This reciple makes about 48.

We hope these delicious dessert recipes help with your meal prep in the lead up to Christmas Day, and that the celebrations in your new Hotondo home are beautiful memories you and your family will treasure for years to come. From everyone at Hotondo Homes, we wish you a very merry Christmas, and a happy and safe new year!

For more home design and interior inspiration ideas, visit the Hotondo Homes website today.