Monday, October 21, 2013

A love letter

I'm in a relationship, in fact, we might even be going steady.

I have a serious crush on Melbourne. Not in a 'you're better than Adelaide' way or anything. I'm loyal 'til the end. But in a Mr Right Now kind of way. It's where I'm supposed to be.

It helps that some of my very best friends live over here and my housemates are sweet and my location is second to none. There's also the great restaurants, coffee and yes, I even love the public transport system (gasp!).  

My room has awesome views of the city and a gorgeous high peaked ceiling, I can walk to the Tan and I've just discovered Leo's (thanks Sue!).

The markets are a feast for the senses and Zumbo has just opened up around the corner. And then there's Burch & Purchese - I'm without words. I have pho at my fingertips and Mexican just down the street. I've only filled up my car four times in six months - and that included a drive to Dean's Marsh!

It's not all rosy though. Work has been tough (I'll leave that post for a rainy day) and they use plastic bags over here like they're going out of fashion (yay for SA's stance on plastic bags). They don't have a bottle recycling program and my heart hurts every time I put 10c worth of glass or plastic in the recycling bins. Those poor Boy Scouts!

And I can get lonely. I derive so much happiness from bouncing off other people but my 'other people' have their own 'other people' and I miss my Mum. And my Dad. And my brother and sister in law. And I desperately miss my niece and nephew who are growing up way too fast. And I miss my grandparents and being 15 mins away from everything and everyone.

But this city still has me wrapped around its little finger.

There's the small issue of the terrible weather and serious hayfever conditions, and most of my above mentioned friends are grown ups with life partners and kids which isn't ideal for a 30 year old single gal's social life. But otherwise things are pretty good.

The shops are open til really late and they have ham on their parmies - sorry parmas - as a standard. Flowers are cheap and brunch is served all day.

I wouldn't say it's love - yet - but I've got a serious case of lust for this city. Enough to get me smiling again.

I've had a bit of a blog block recently, but I'm slowly trying to find my mojo again. If anyone still tunes in, I'd love to hear from you. Especially if you're in Melbourne - I could do with a tour guide, shopping  director and a glass of vino or two. Oh, and a job (long story - but I'm serious!!)

What do you love about Melbourne? Help me compile a 'must do' list so I can  see it through your eyes.

I'll be back again soon. Slowly. I'm finding my way xx

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Fit for a sailor

There's something romantic about a day on the water. I think it's the fresh air, or the wind in your hair, or the salt on your lips. Or the boys in boat shoes.

Well now, there's an even better way to enjoy a day on the high seas thanks to Two Spoons Catering on the Gold Coast.

Sally and her team have developed a gourmet range of boat hampers to suit every celebration - maybe he's popping the question, or you're ringing in the new year or you're spoiling a hen on her special day. 

Whatever the occasion - make your life easier and leave the hard work up to the professionals. You just worry about chilling the bubbles and choosing an outfit.

Find out more at and make sure you follow them on Facebook to stay up to date with their exciting developments.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

A berry happy household

It's fair to say I'm the favourite housemate around these parts in the last few weeks.

I've been playing Suzie Homemaker and baking up a storm in the kitchen. My waistline isn't thanking me, but I'm in the good books with my friends.

Tonight I made the super easy and super tasty donna hay chicken and haloumi skewers and a yummy citrus, pomegranate and mint cous cous salad. I've also got some bircher muesli brewing in the fridge overnight. Almost want to go to bed early to wake up and have it for breakfast!

And in the last week, I've been going for the sweet angle and and baked ms hay's oat, ginger and orange crisps (gourmet ANZAC biscuits) and a delicious blueberry yoghurt loaf - both from her Oct/Nov issue.

The cake was for morning tea with a dear old friend and her almost six month old. It was soooo easy and really tasty. I took the leftover half a loaf down to the farm with me for Carri and her hubby so that I didn't have to polish it off myself at home - I have no self control!

The bit I like the most about this recipe is that the butter is melted, so there's no creaming, or blending, or hard work. It's just a case of mixing it all together with a big whisk!

Blueberry and yoghurt loaf
150g unsalted butter, melted
1 cup (220g) caster sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup (140g) greek style (thick) yoghurt
1 Tbspn finely grated lemon zest
1 tspn vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups (225g) self raising flour, sifted
125g fresh blueberries, plus extra to serve (I used frozen)
icing sugar, for dusting

  1. Preheat oven to 160 C
  2. Place the butter, sugar, eggs, yoghurt, lemon zest and vanilla in a bowl and whisk to combine.
  3. Add the flour and whisk until well combined.
  4. Fold through the blueberries and spoon into a lightly greased 22cm x 8cm x 7cm loaf tin lined with non-stick baking paper.
  5. Smooth the top with a palette knife and bake for 1hr - 1hr 10mins or until cooked when teested with a skewer.
  6. All the loaf to cool in the tin for 10 mins before turning it out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  7. Dust with icing sugar and top with extra blueberries to serve (I also added a dollop of yoghurt which was delish)
  8. Serves 6-8

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Chicken soup for the 30 year old soul

Nothing clears the mind like country air.

And I'm lucky enough to have one of my dearest friends living on the most gorgeous little farm only two hours out of Melbourne.

I took some time out last week to bake some biscuits (recipe to come - they were SO easy!) and head out to Dean's Marsh to stay with Carri and her beautiful family. Carri is Mum to the sweetest little six month old Alice who just warms my heart. A smiley, happy baby - she was just what the doctor ordered.

We drank cups and cups of tea, fed the ponies, feasted on baked goods, toured the farm, pondered the new farmhouse (it's going to be DIVINE!) and just chilled out. It was the most relaxing and rejuvenating 20 hours I've had in a long time.

It's times like these I think "what could've been" if I had said yes to Farmer Wants a Wife . . . !

Monday, October 7, 2013

On your toes

I'm not much of a Dancing with the Stars fan anymore.

Until I saw that Adam Garcia is on the judging  panel this year.

He is so charming, totally swoon worthy.

Remember this little number he did with Kylie a few years back?


Might be enough to have me tuning in again this year. Oh, and Edwina from Sunrise. She's just gorgeous!