31 Jan 2013

Flashback, um, Thursday?

I know that should probably be Flashback Friday. And believe me, I did consider writing this and saving the post for tomorrow. But I might have something else to say then! And also, I am really digging my flashback inspiration in this moment, right now...

So I wanted to talk about my flashback favourite musicians from my childhood. Not a bunch of kiddie bands, but the musical influences from my oldies. I mainly have dad to blame for these, but they're so damn good, I have nothing but gratitude!

Ok, so when 'I Want a New Drug' or 'Power of Love' comes on, I smell the ocean. This was THE DRIVING album for my dad and I when we would go from home to Palm Beach for the day. I hear the greatest hits tunes and I think Summer, road trips, sand, ocean and ice creams. BEST.

Oh Gordon. So much of my young romantic daydreams were accompanied by your beautiful melodies. Sigh. I have been to a lot of weddings with 'Fields of Gold' as their wedding dance. Gets into your soul. Also, great for car music. Fortunately his later stuff has been just as awesome. Although, 'If I Ever Lose My Faith' is still a personal favourite...

I have actually met Tori! Dad was publishing a book on her at the time (maybe 1994?) and so we had great seats at the show and we got to meet her backstage afterwards. In her dressing room! I remember big mirrors surrounded by globes, platters of fresh fruit and a tiny, bright-red-headed Tori; with her pixie ears and great big smile. She was just the best! I had absolutely no words. Anyone who knows me, knows that this is a rare event. Tori's music is raw, pure, effortlessly melodic and maybe a (tiny bit) grungy. And if anyone has seen her on stage, her whole body goes into the music. It's quite a sight.
I think the album 'Under The Pink' is my all time fav:

The soothing tunes of Mr Taylor. He is the calm in a storm but his lyrics are still clever and often political. Many a driving trip (seeing a theme here?) was spent listening to 'Fire and Rain' or 'Shower the People.' Here's a cool old clip for 'Carolina on my Mind' - he's so young! With so much hair!

Every time I hear a song from any of these artists, I get a warm and fuzzy feeling of nostalgia. One that you think is lost; much like how your childhood bed is the most comfortable in the world, until you travel/move and years later you come back and that sense of comfort and safety that your childhood bed used to represent is gone!

Was that too deep? Anyway, these artists are fabulous and make me happy. In fact, listening to a bit of Huey right now!

Es ♥

30 Jan 2013


No, that title is not incorrect, and not the result of a keyboard test, but really the only way I can describe my day and current mood.

I'll explain.

Two things are true about holidays. One, if you are single and book a massive, long-term, might-not-be-back-ever trip, you will meet the love of your life just before you leave. Has happened to a quite a few people out there. It's like it's some sort of test.. 'will you really leave and expand your horizons, or stay for a maybe-man?? hmmm?????' - my inner voice is always a little mocking. I should work on that.

The other true thing is this; I have noticed that you can book a holiday, plan as well as you think you can for that time away from work/home... only to find that no matter what you do, the week before the break is total chaos and stress. Why? I don't know. But it's true for me now... hhhhectic! Every man and their dog is after me right now. Actually, it would be good if it were dogs. I like dogs. But no, it's just people with issues that needed them solved yesterday. Oh well. Just 2 more days (and 2 hours) to go of work and then beach times for TWO WHOLE WEEKS IN HAWAII.

Yup, all the posts for the next 2 weeks (from Sunday) will likely involve;
  • photos of the white, sandy beaches
  • photos of mocktails
  • long descriptions of amazing mountain/kayaking/restaurant experiences
  • and the like...
But until then, here I sit in a world of 'blurghkkk'. But it's cool. I mean, ecstacy of contrast and all that, right?

Es ♥

29 Jan 2013

What I Miss

Weirdly, lately I am missing a good ol' horse ride. Being an activity that is kinda banned for pregnant ladies, I haven't been for a long time.
I think it all came about from some weekend discussions. We saw a few friends we hadn't seen in a while and P was extolling the virtues of our new car's off-road abilities. I was trying to explain how the car kinda takes over when you're going down a particularly rocky patch, much like a horse finds it's feet down a steep slope... and then I must have day-dreamed off for a bit because now I am missing horse-riding.
I mean, look at this cutie! We met her on a farm stay we recently we went on in the Kangaroo Valley. She's only a baby, so no horse-rides on her, but she has such a lovely nature. Horses are ace.
Es ♥

28 Jan 2013


Apart from the wet-bottom-of-jeans potential, I love the rain. The smell of rain on grass and hot concrete. Even just the sound of rain. Really, it only has 2 downsides; it ruins nice shoes (I have rectified this with some pretty excellent gumboots) and it makes people drive like idiots.

Thanks to a local cyclone up north, it's been raining now for 2 days solid. Yet again, we have another Summer in Australia where you can either be running from floods or running from bush fires. It's a mad, wild place.

Anyhoo, here are some rain-themed pics.

Es xx

25 Jan 2013

Australia ('Straya) Day

Hooray for 'Straya Day weekend!

Warm weather, happy Hottest 100 tunes, beach swim and fabulous friends.

Two varieties of lamingtons (that's how Aussie we are), beer, lamb, and Australian flag [temporary] tattoos.

Pub lunch - yes, that's ribs you see there - baby cuddles and sneaky cake treats.

Is there anything better?

People Do Amazing Things

Ok, so sometimes I get bored with a task I am supposed to be doing and trawl the internet for a bit. Sometimes I find good things. I liked this video of people going cool things. One of the 'feats' is an Aussie ballboy at the Australian Open catching a tennis ball. Being that the Australian Open is on right now, that actually interviewed this kid (he's been ball-kidding for about 4 years now) and he was a real cutie.
Anyway, enjoy.
And Happy Friday! Woots!!

24 Jan 2013


Anyone who knows me, knows that I am one for having some strange dreams. Maybe it's all the cheese I eat (ah, The Mighty Boosh), or maybe it's just the influences of the day. Regardless, I am one for the night-time vision weirdness and last night was no exception.

I am dreaming a lot about babies. Well, that's a given. However, in 6 months, I have only ever once dreamt about a baby that was mine/from me. That was in the first week when I hadn't yet confirmed that I was pregnant. But since then, there has been the occasional baby dream, but always much less, um, normal.
Regularly I find myself in dreamland, caring for babies who are not mine, mine but adopted or more often than not, turning into inanimate objects... usually food. Yes food. Like toast. Baby-shaped toast. Which often gets eaten, but reforms by the next morning into more baby toast.

Last night, I dreamt that we had adopted a gorgeous little Asian bubba, but the little thing kept poo-ing everywhere. I mean everywhere. I blame the (very amusing) article I read yesterday (here if you want it, thanks Ms E for sending to me).
Being that I was still up-the-duff in the dream, I knew our own baby was still due to arrive. So another set of babies arrives. Twins. They come along with someone else who has birthed them and she hands them over. I'm still thinking, 'these can't be mine. I don't remember labour (one probably doesn't forget that) and I am still very preggo over here..'. And before much else happens, they turn into lamb cutlets. P had been telling me about his delicious lamb meal he had had out at dinner that night, so maybe that's what that was about.
But seriously, babies turning into food? SO WEIRD. Am I really so obsessed with food? Or is the lamb reference a timely Australian patriotic symbol? Aussie Aussie Aussie, wahh wahh waaahhhh??

Anyway, I'll try and worry about this no more, strange as it is. Instead, I will console myself with my all-time-favourite Boosh scene.

Es ♥

23 Jan 2013


My dad loves the word 'Sensational'. He also likes the phrase 'Fair Dinkum' but that's a story for another time. I guess he uses it a bit like I use, 'awesome', often inappropriately, as 'awesome' is supposed to be reserved for some sort of divine happening, whereas I use it when I find a lost dollar on the street.
Dad uses 'sensational' to describe something just really, really great; like a great day playing golf. Which works I guess, but he certainly doesn't use it in the sense of 'it caused a sensation'; like his golfing made the national news...

I meant this title today as a bit of a play on the word sensation, as that's what's been on my mind lately. As in, things that feel great. Like sand between the toes, hand in a sack full of grain - you know, that kind of stuff. But seriously, how good are some of these sensations?

  • A head massage (just massage, full stop)
  • First morning stretch
  • Floating in the ocean
  • Holding a puppy/kitten 
  • A warm towel in Winter
  • Loudly slurping jelly (go try this. now)
  • A shower after being at the beach all day
  • Hugging someone with warm sheets from the drier


There are other things, but everyone has their own 'ah' moments. Might be nice to go try some soon. Beach anyone?

Es ♥

22 Jan 2013

Chorizo Salad

Thought I'd share this delicious salad. Was super fast to make and tasted fresh, limey, crunchy... all the good things!

So this dinner idea came about because, months ago, I had bought a can of black beans when I meant to buy the black beans in a packet. Confused? Yes, clearly I was too. Basically, the packet-y ones you get from Asian supermarkets are the salty, concentrated-flavour ones which you use mainly in stir-fries. We usually take a couple of tablespoons and steep them in water before draining them and putting them into a wok with veggies and chicken. 

Anyway, in a moment of weirdness, I bought this tin, in which the black beans are more like red kidney beans (soft and not very strong in flavour). So P scanned the net and we found this recipe. It was totally scrumptious - so much so, that I just now had it again for lunch!

Es ♥

Chorizo, Corn and Black Bean Salad

You will need:
  • 2 corn cobs
  • 400g can black turtle beans (see note) or red kidney beans, rinsed, drained
  • 1 avocado, peeled, chopped
  • 200g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 small red onion, sliced
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • Grated zest and juice of 2 limes
  • 1 tbs red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) olive oil
  • 2 tbs chopped coriander
  • 4 chorizo sausages, sliced on an angle
  • 4 flour tortillas
  • Sour cream, to serve
Here's what to do:
  1. Cook corn for 10 minutes in salted boiling water until just tender. Drain and cool slightly. When cool enough to handle, cut off kernels and place in a bowl with beans, avocado, tomato and onion. Set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, combine cumin, lime zest and juice, vinegar and oil. Season, then toss the salad with the dressing.
  3. Heat a lightly oiled char grill pan or non-stick fry pan over high heat. Grill the chorizo slices for 1-2 minutes each side until crisp and cooked through. Drain on paper towel.
  4. Meanwhile, warm the tortillas according to the packet instructions.
  5. Toss the chorizo and coriander with the salad, then serve with sour cream and warmed tortillas.
CHANGES WE MADE: We skipped the sour cream, and the tortillas. I did however make a rice side-dish. Basically fried some turmeric, cumin, smoked paprika in some oil, added about a cup of white rice. Once fried off a bit, I then added 2 cups boiling water and let the rice cook through absorption. Came out all yellow with a mild, spicy flavour. Good accompaniment.  

Recipe sourced from here.


21 Jan 2013


Got lots to do! Work-wise and home-wise there is heaps going on. There just aren't enough hours in the day really. On the plus side, it certainly makes the working day move a little quicker!

Sometimes I am bordering on the 'frazzled' point, so I am trying to stop every now and then, to take a few deep breaths (when I read something like that, I always take a deep breath! The power of the word).

Sometimes, you just have to get a little Zen about it all. Things happen when they're going to happen. We can influence some things, but usually once there are other people/factors involved (and when aren't they?) then there is usually some compromise required. So today, I am doing all I can and then trying to be ready when it's my turn to act.

In the meantime, all you can do is laugh, right?

20 Jan 2013

Off Road - the day in full!

So we started at about 8am yesterday morning and made our way up into the Blue Mountains, going via Richmond and Mt Tomah. It was great to get the Landy onto some real roads - away from the city. After a brief stop to get some 'side of the road strawberries' (the best we have ever, ever tasted), we continued up to Lithgow and onto Lidsdale.We have a 4WD Treks book, so we followed one called 'Gardens of Stone' so we could see some good views. It was rated as 'moderate' difficulty and in hindsight (more like, current-sight while we were gripping our seats in fear), it may have been a bit beyond what we needed for our first foray into off-road-ness.

Anyhoo, the first thing to happen, 30m into the trail was that we almost got bogged. Yup. The puddle looked small so in we go and out we almost didn't come! Poor Landy was a-slippin' and a-slidin' like crazy and with no one around to potentially tow us out, those few seconds felt like a few hours! But, the upshot is that the car found its grip like a champion and we now have a suitably dirty 4WD.

Up we go onto the ridge, but to get there, there was a hell of a rocky climb. Again, I'm gripping the seat, getting thrown about all over the place. I had this maniacal smile on my face like 'Sure honey, this is GREAT!' but quietly shitting myself. Put it this way, the baby was churning inside my belly for the next hour. Talk about adrenalin surge!

Once we were up the top we stopped at a beautiful lookout point over-looking the valley. So quiet, we could hear a car driving down below, maybe 3km away as the crow flies. It was super peaceful.

Not 20 minutes later, we see some bushwalkers near their car (the only people we saw all day) and they hail us down. No, not for a broken-down car, they just wanted a lift down the hill to save them a walk and they thought their car wouldn't make it that way down. Boy, were they right or what!? The next section into the rainforest was so steep, so rocky, and while we're all trying to keep up polite conversation, poor P is navigating some two tonne of car straight down. OK, it was actually really fun. But between wondering if we would make it without a crash and wondering if the backpackers were secretly plotting to murder us, it was a tense half an hour. Avoided a few more mud puddles once we got to the bottom and eventually dropped the walkers off for their trail - just as it started to rain. They were probably re-thinking their trek at that point, but they didn't tell us!

We decided then that we'd had enough 'challenges' for the day and we made our way back up and out, continuing north rather than go back the way we came. Lucky we went the way we did, because we saw some awesome wildlife! A few wallabies and some kangaroos (see pics).

Finally back on safe, secure bitumen, we made our way back to Sydney, but not before a quick cuppa tea and coffee (ok, AND some chocolate cheesecake. I'm pregnant, so I'm like, totally allowed). We think the old dog at the teahouse was keen on our food, more than our company...

The weather really did do weird things that day as you can see in the pictures. But all in all it was wonderful. A great start to our off-roading adventures!

Es xx

Lunch Spot
The point just before the fear.

Hi there!
Finally, some mud on the car.

This guy.
Weather change much?

19 Jan 2013


Wowsers, today was fun. Took the new car out for a spin - and not just any spin! The car has officially been christened. With mud, dust, rain and some serious rock-activity. Being late now I think I can do this trip more justice tomorrow. So here's a pic to get in the mood!

18 Jan 2013

Feelin' hot, hot, hot!

Wowsers! It's as hot as Hades today. 44 degrees in the city apparently! Maybe it wasn't the best day to have off from work - I am missing that air con! But it is nice to get some things done (thank you air-conditioned shopping centre) and to organise some things at home. We have a pool in this apartment complex too, so I might give that a go as well. But not for long. Too damn hot out there! Can't wait for that cool change/storm that's a-coming. Tomorrow is supposed to be cool-ish. Got a road trip planned for tomorrow. More on that later!

Going to have to brave the elements of today eventually though. We are going out to a Sydney Festival event tonight, not to mention a sneaky dinner at 360 beforehand. Super fun! Just all need to keep our fluids up I guess. What a pity social convention doesn't allow for 'no clothing in public'! It's way too hot for clothes - but then, imagine the burn-potential on a naked body. Yikes!!!

17 Jan 2013

Getting it DONE

If I'm being really honest, motivation at work has been a bit of a struggle lately. Christmas/New Year was slow in the office; no one was really around and momentum was difficult. Not to mention that the afternoon always looks really good for a nap these days for me. 

Eventually, time trundles on and I had no choice but to start ticking some more things off the list. I knew that this week (and next) are crunch-time for a few things, so here we are! Anyway, after much emailing, calling, filing, coordinating, I am feeling much more on top of things. It's amazing how a little bit of pressure can spur you on!

16 Jan 2013

Sometimes, there's tears.

Pregnancy is a funny thing and it impacts on people in different ways. For me, I have to say that so far I have been blessed. I love it. It's been fascinating to see how my body copes with changes in shape, energy levels, appetite etc. I certainly have nothing to complain about. I was ready and I guess by body was too. It's not from lack of effort though! I eat well, I exercise very regularly and I prepared months before with supplements to make sure I was in the best possible position to fall pregnant and have a healthy pregnancy. But that's the Naturopath in me I guess! It was finally nice to put some of the knowledge into practice!

However, with all of the 'lovely' there are certainly days where it's all a bit much. I do get tired. I do get 'over it' some afternoons at work. I don't have the stamina for late nights.

And sometimes I cry for no reason! A soppy television episode will get me going, even if I'm half-reading a book at the same time. I spilt tea on me last night and I cried. P was like, "Do you even know why you're crying?" and I said, "No *sniff*, but the tea hurt me *sniff*?" Everything was going wrong yesterday; stubbed toes, spilt tea, dropped potatoes - you name it, I dropped or hurt it.

Sometimes there's just tears anyway. You don't have to be pregnant with extra tiredness and weirdo hormone levels. There are times when you just feel down and need a cry. That's OK. In fact, I think it's good! It shows that you're releasing something that you had pent-up inside you, or that maybe you're admiting to yourself that a particular thing is not good for you right now. Tears bring awareness, clarity or a cleanse. Embrance it all I say.

No more tears today though. Feeling (reasonably) on top of things, looking forward to a relaxing weekend road-testing the new automobile on some rough tracks... Fun!

Es ♥
Pondering things. I was 2 weeks pregnant here, but didn't know.
Maybe I had a sneaky feeling...

15 Jan 2013

Baby Monkey

Maybe it's because it's all 'baby baby baby' at our place, but I am seeing little things everywhere. I was trawling through some photos from a Bali trip we went on about 18 months ago, trying to decide if we should make a photobook (they are great for holiday snaps), and here was this little monkey. I love how he/she is nuzzling in there.

P really LOVES all things monkey (was even born in the Year of the Monkey), so he had an absolute ball with them that day. That's his hand feeding them. I hid near the car because our guide told us they can get nasty. One lurched towards me at one stage and I jumped and squealed like a 5 year old. Funny bit about the feeding picture - P held out his hand (gingerly, as they said the monkeys can get vicious), and the monkey looks up at him, grabs P's hand with his hand and pulls it in! Like he was saying, "hey, don't make me move closer for this.. you work for me buddy" and then gently ate the nuts. What a Sir!

Was a great day though. And that baby monkey was super-cute!

Es ♥

14 Jan 2013

Busy, busy

Time is a funny thing. P and I worked out today that we have one free weekend before the baby is born. One. And it's the weekend before they're due. What the heck is that about?!

Weddings, catch-ups, time-away, birthdays... it's just endless! And while I love seeing everyone involved, I can't help thinking that something's gotta give. I mean, I tire out pretty quick these days, and I'm no where near done baking this baby. Not to mention that the baby room currently consists of a chair. Yes, one chair.

We are trying to carefully pick and choose things we know we will love, and then if, on the day, it's all too much then we can just can-it. Well, I can just can-it and stay home for a nanna nap. Or go to the thing we planned to do, and still have a nanna nap. Who knows? Someone there might be like, 'what a great idea! Can I nap too?' - it's all the rage these days, right?

Anyway, am especially busy at work today/this week, so need to get back to it. Tick-tock!

Es ♥

13 Jan 2013

Making Room for Baby

This weekend we make room for bub. I've been making room in my belly for bub for a while now (26 weeks in fact), but we haven't made a physical space for 'it' yet.

We currently live in a 2-bedroom apartment, but one of the bedrooms is currently servicing as a kind of storage unit. Boxes, the pieces of a spare bed, desks, wine... not really conducive to a nursery. So today we moved those bits into a storage unit (a proper one this time), just in the next block.

Though it's been difficult, we have resisted buying anything, furniture-wise, for bub until we have a space for it all. To be honest, I can't even picture what we need until the space is clear anyway. Something like the physical space reflecting my mental space. Or something like that.

Anyway, once we're done, then we can organise the essentials. We are lucky to have one of the grandfather's-to-be making a change table for us, and the other grandfather-to-be helping with a re-paint furniture DIY. I am really looking forward to this new space. Considering I will be spending a lot of time in here - feeding, reading, changing, playing - so I want to make it as clean, cosy, comfortable, bright, happy, practical as I can.
I have lots of ideas, and at least 3 more months to get it sorted, so we'll be fine.

Fun times ahead!

12 Jan 2013

New Music ♫

Look out world. Here's where I put on thick, black-rimmed glasses and pretend to be a music reviewer...

I bought six CD's the other day. Originally I made a list; thinking myself well-prepared for the obvious seasonal question, "What do you want for a Christmas?", but no one asked. Sigh. So I gifted myself. That sounds really sad doesn't it (and also, 'First World Problems' much)? To be honest, my mum did buy me one of them (thanks Ma), but JB were having a sale, so why not get the rest for myself?

Ok, guilt-reduction-reasoning aside, here are my thoughts on my new musical experiences:

Tame Impala: Lonerism
This is a big-un. Tame Impala are kinda massive these days. A sleepy-sounding band from Perth, they have such an authentic psychodelic, 60's sound that you keep wanting to check the production dates. It's quite surreal listening to them. Should probably be listened to on acid, but still very enjoyable when sober. Vocals are dreamy and distant, chords are harmonic and endless, and really when you're the favourite band of Noel Fielding, what more cred could you possibly need?
     ♪ Prediction: The song, 'Feels Like We Only Go Backwards' will be Triple J's Hottest 100 2012 number 1. Or at least very close to it.

Ladyhawke: Anxiety
I love this NZ lady. She is super spunky and her voice is low and deliberate when she sings. She mixes rock-chic with ladyness (yes, it's now a word) and her lyrics always seem to ring a chord, even if I don't understand what the heck she's talking about.
Her albums are quite pop-like, but with an indy edge. I follow her on Instagram (because I am clearly a stalker of some kind) and I love her down-to-earth attitude to touring and living.
     ♪ Fav song at the moment: 'Black White & Blue.' Closely followed by 'Sunday Drive'

Deep Sea Arcade: Outlands
Another local band (most of my fav's are home-grown, thanks Triple J), Deep Sea Arcade are another 'time-warp band' for me. Like Tame Impala, they have a 60's vibe and I love it. A bit more upbeat than Tame (sometimes I think TI tip a little into Radiohead waters which my friend calls 'music to kill yourself to' which is probably a bit unfair), I love DSA for their boppiness (now also a word) and happiness. Even looking at this band takes you back in time! Check out the vid for 'Lonely in Your Arms'. Timewarp!
     ♪ On repeat right now: 'Seen No Right'

Alpine: A is for Alpine
Staying with the Australian-theme still, here is a lovely little group from Melbourne. Soft, ethereal but still pop-electric (maybe pop-eclectic? Let's coin that term. It sounds good). Very catchy tunes, gentle, but still manage to worm their way into your sub-conscious like a sweet-singing, musical brain-parasite. A bit on the girly-hipster side of things, but I don't care. Nice to bob along to in the car when you're trying very hard not to lose your sh*t in the traffic. I mean, please people, use your indicators!! They have a purpose!!!!!
     ♪ Will you like Alpine? Try Youtube for 'Gasoline' or 'Hands'

Unknown Mortal Orchestra: (self-titled)
Ok, so technically I haven't received this one yet. JB have yet to send it out to me... not happy JB! But I have listened to their songs endlessly on the net, so I have a feel for them and I'm really just looking forward to being able to hear them away from a computer.
They are a US/NZ fusion and it works so well. First heard of them with their song, 'Swim and Sleep Like a Shark' and was hooked. Lovely harmonies and clever, catchy riffs. Mostly soft-rock in a way. Some other songs veere into more rock-y territory, but the best way to describe them is to say that there is a definite 90's grunge feel, with a 60's flower-power intention.
     ♪ Confused? Fair enough. Don't listed to this weirdo, just go listen to song I mentioned before, and another one, 'Ffunny friends' (spelling correct, I swear).

The Black Keys: El Camino
Ok, this one appeals to both sexes. It's bluesy, rootsy, black and it got soul. Something like Mumford and Sons, but less banjo twang. Consisting of only 2 guys (American), and a touring band. They have actually been around for over a decade and already have a good smattering of records out there, but I only really got into them after hearing 'Lonely Boy' (which has an intro riff eerily similar to the opening music from that ABC show The Hungry beast...). Definitely raw and edgy, this will appeal to almost every taste. Oh, they're not black. But they should be.
     ♪ Listen to 'Lonely Boy' or 'Gold on the Ceiling.'

First Aid Kit: The Lion's Roar
I was recently going through a bit of a phase. It consisted of aztec prints, big knits, an obsession with tribal prints and bright, bright colours. Pretty much a hipster-American-Indian. I know, I know. I didn't fully immerse myself into it, but some things did influence me.
See? Knits and tribal prints? Not my fault.
Including this band of two sisters from Sweden (although with suspiciously strong American accents. Hmm, maybe 'Swedish' sounded more exotic?). Sporting long dresses, long tresses (yes, their hair) and wandering through forests and fields, I was immediately in love. They are definitely Folksy, sometimes dangerously close to Country, but mostly that honest-tribal vibe that makes you wish you met them around a campfire, whilst trekking with native Americans, wearing your favourite moccasins. Damn I want me a pair of moccasins...
     ♪ Listen to 'Wolf' and 'The Lion's Roar'

Ok, now glasses off and into the car for some sweet, sweet tunes.

Es ♥

11 Jan 2013


This morning, the lovely people at Clover Cafe, Annandale, have me a chocolate with my decaf!
All because I was the first person today to pay with coins... everyone had been coming in with large notes and it was driving them crazy. Ha!
A good start to a Friday eh?
Happy Weekending ☺
Es ♥

10 Jan 2013

Picture Play

Photography is fun. I am definitely an amateur, but I like playing with different exposures, environments, subjects and a lot of the time, apps on my phone. Here are a few edited ones. Just for kicks.



Es ♥


9 Jan 2013


"I don't believe in the kind of magic in my books. But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book"
~ J.K. Rowling

One of the great joys I have in my life is reading. I can thank my wonderful parents for instilling this in me. In my younger days, never was there a night that they didn't read to me before bed, and then later on to listen to me as I read to them. There were such stories of adventure and magic that not only sent me into sweet dreams, but also awakened a creativity that has served me well since. Dad would do all the voices and even act out scenes, making me giggly and hyperactive and not at all 'settled down for sleep' as per mum's instructions. But it was all worth it, to inspire a love in it's purest form; a love for new worlds written by others, feeling like they were made just for me.

A book can transport you into another world, another time, another universe, with all sorts of capabilities that we may not have here in this world. Books are magical. Sometimes a book is so good, that there is a bit of a mourning period when you have finished reading it; like you need time to come back to reality.

Even if the book is not what I want it to be, even if I'm reading it thinking, 'this is just rubbish, why am I doing this to myself?' I will finish it. I can't leave a story untold in my mind once I have started.

I even like the smell of books! I particularly like the smell of ink on new books (ooh, those glossy textbooks too!), but old, musty book smells are also amazing. I like the feel of a book's weight in my hands, and the texture of the paper. I think this is why I can't bring myself to buy an e-reader. I love looking for books (new or old), researching about books, waiting for books to arrive in the mail, holding them in my hand as I walk to a coffee shop... Clearly, reading is a whole-body experience for me.

I have a bit of a 'book-to-screen' rule as well. I usually (as in try to, about 90% of the time!), read the book before I see it's screen adaptation. Many times this has exposed me to a book that I might not have normally read. Other times, I have read the book, then have forgone the movie or tele-series entirely!
Either way, it's a good place to start if I'm unsure what to read next. However, this hardly ever happens. I always seems to have about four books, piled up next to my bed, waiting for me to explore.

"I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of anything than of a book! When I have a house of my own, I shall be miserable if I have not an excellent library" - Jane Austen (1775 - 1817), Pride and Prejudice, 1811

Es ♥

8 Jan 2013

Today was...

...all about the heat.

Our little island nation is feeling hot, hot, hot today. Even in 'ocean-breezes' Sydney, we got to 42 degrees. That's wild. I can't remember another time it got that hot here. It might have been in primary school. There was a rumour that when the mercury hit 40, all the kids could go home. I seem to recall it getting to 40, and well, staying at school. LAME.

It's not such a great thing actually. Most of the country is on fire. Literally. Bushfires everywhere, particularly in Tassie. Our thoughts are really with them. There was a lovely story on ABC Breakfast this morning which told of a couple's 5 children, who were stranded with their grandparents as a fire consumed their house. Fortunately they were situated next to the water, but even that wasn't an ideal solution. There were incredible images of the grandmother holding on to the youngest children whilst trying to hold on to the poles of their jetty, in what was described as very cold water (the irony of that, wow), attempting to breathe the 40cm of fresh air just above the surface of the water before the air became thick with smoke and fire. Terrifying. As I listened to the mother tell how she nearly lost all her children and her parents in a matter of hours, I was balling my eyes out. So lucky. I haven't even seen my bubba yet, and already the thought of losing he/she is unbearable.
Fortunately, it was a happy ending, but not all of them are. We are not always the Lucky Country, especially in bushfire season.

There is no bush near me right now, so my solution to escape the heat is to swim in the pool then hide in my house; minimal clothes, curtains drawn, fan on, sucking on ice-cubes, watching Parks and Recreation.

And tomorrow is supposed to be 25 degrees. The weather has bipolar.

Es  ♥

7 Jan 2013

Summer Social-ness

Well, it's Monday again now, but a here is a little note on the lovely weekend that was:
  • Wonderful visit from one of our good friends, who stayed most of the week! 
  • Warm day in the sunshine, picnicking in Centennial Park - a few cute toddlers in tow.
  • Juice catch-up with an old school friend who is about to pop out a bubba!
  • Lots of pool swims.
  • Fabbo lamb dinner with great friends/old flatties. Chocolate-covered fruits finished night off perfectly.
  • Lunch with folks and the look on their faces when they saw our new wheels!
  • Relaxing dinner - Thai Beef Salad (put way too much chilli in though!) - and some bad TV.

Very busy weekend so now I am pretty weary, but I am hopeful that some pregnancy yoga will restore some of my 'chi' tonight. Mostly we do a few poses, then hold our bellies and think happy thoughts to our babies. Not exactly strenuous :)

Es ♥

My Instagram name: picture_potion

6 Jan 2013

Square Eyes, Part 2

Ok, cup of tea made? Check. Fresh for Part 2? Go!


Sons of Anarchy: Whilst we're on all-things-rough, I should mention Sons. It's about a small-town, American bikie gang called, you guessed it, Sons of Anarchy. I think the best summary was made by our friend Dan when he said, "They are all bad people, but you still care about them. This show makes you root for the bad people!". And it does. There are guns, retaliation murders, jail horrors, porn stars, drugs, the IRA... you name it. I got really emotionally involved in this one. As in, shouting at the television kind of involved. It's so outside my life experience that it became a kind of guilty pleasure. Stand out performance, definitely the matriarch of the club, Gemma Teller (played by Married with Children/Futurama, Katy Sagal - who's real-life husband Kurt Sutter wrote it and stars in it too).

One of the greatest mag covers, ever.

True Blood: Ah, to all the Trubies out there, let us unite! Such a great series, which I think might have peaked at Season 2-3, but still provides good entertainment. You're living under a rock if you don't know about this one, but the fast pace and ridiculous story lines made it just so fun. Mainly about vampires being societies underdogs ('God Hates Fangs' a reference to the 'God Hates Fags' issue in the US), it also features a whole bunch of other dangerous and magical beings. These are revealed gradually, so I won't list 'em here, but this is a really great show. Watch out for the brother of the main character Sookie, which is Jason Stackhouse (Ryan Kwanten from our very own Homers!). Season 6 due this year, but I fear it might have lost some of it's sparkle.

Parks and Recreation: I am almost up-to-date with this series, and I still love it! Season 1 was a bit of a pilot series (only 6 episodes), and it's a bit snore. But persevere! It;s comedy gold, thanks to Amy Pohler and together with some other amazing performances from Nick Offerman, Aziz Ansari, Rashida Jones and even Rob Lowe (!), this is highly addictive. It's based on a parks and recreation department in a local council in the small (made-up) town of Pawnee. Leslie Knope's (Amy Pohler) obsessive professionalism drives everyone mad, but she is so lovable that everyone is usually won over by her charm. Lovable and mad, there are some fantastic one-liners in here that you'll be quoting incessantly to friends and family.

There are SOOO many other things to watch out there. It was nice to relive some of these stories, because we enjoyed them so much. Looking forward this year to some more Parks, Sons, True Blood, Game of Thrones and Community. Gonna be a good year on the box!

Es ♥

Square Eyes!

Some of the best TV shows I have seen lately have been thanks to friend-recommendations. I love hearing about a show from a friend; because you know them so well, you can guess if the show will be a good one for you too! There are so many fantastic shows that have come out in the last few years, the hard part it fitting them all in. Once you add in work, travel, friends, food... one runs out of time for TV watching. However, when you do sit down in front of the telly, it's often so much better to watch a few episodes of a great series, than subject yourself the rubbish on commercial TV these days.

I thought that I would list a few goldies we have watched in the last few years, and some that I would still love to catch up on. I seem to have got a bit carried away here, so I will divide this up into 2 posts, to save on some boredom.


Easily one of the best episodes,
Season 1 ep.7.
Abed as Batman.
Community: I was really obsessed with this show, partly due to the crush I had (or have) on Jeff Winger. Dan Harmon's writing combined with the comedic pace of the actors (not to mention such a well-picked cast.. hello? Chevy Chase? Donald Glover? Wow.). It's about a study group who have come together at their local community college (which for us would be like somewhere between a TAFE and a Uni). The stories are wacky, and the core characters (the 'study group') are lovable in how horrible they are as people. Somewhat like the Seinfeld gang in that way. Get through the first few (a bit slow) episodes, and you'll be hooked. New season on it's way, but without Harmon's writing skills. We wait with nervous anticipation.
Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister.

Game of Thrones: Ok, so I am a bit of a fantasy nerd. I'm not a 'gamer' and I don't know any of the Star Wars lines by heart, but I am partial to a good bit of Tolkien. So anything with dragons, quests, family-honour, kings and a tipple of magic... well, you had me at dragons. This series is based on the book series and by all accounts is quite faithful. The cast are amazing; Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister (right) steals it for me. But all in all, I was smitten with this show from the opening title sequence (I think it won an award for the graphics maybe?), and the wait for Season 3 is killing me! Lucky it's not far away...

Pillars of the Earth: Again, another book adaptation, as many of the great shows/movies are. This one is based around the building of a cathedral in the 12th century. My partner has read the series many times and hence we looked out for this one. It didn't disappoint. An amazing cast due it being a British/Irish/American production, there are some really wonderful performances, but I have to say that this was the beginning of my Eddie Redmayne crush. Swoon.

Saloon owner, Al Swearengen.
Deadwood: Wow. Not for the feint-hearted, or anyone who can't tolerate swearing. Set in the late 1800's, Deadwood is a small gold-mining town, with most of it's prosperity going to it's saloons. Naturally a rivalry occurs amongst the key power players and the dynamics of the different classes and races make things really, really interesting. However, to help create the sense of 'roughness'  and 'rawness' from that time and place, the writers have written in a whole-lotta nasty words that will make even a hardened street gangster blush. Once you let that wash over you (in the name of contextual relevance), it's a tapestry of clever story lines and ridiculously good performances. Stand out actor; Ian McShane (also features as a corrupt bishop in Pillars of the Earth).
Maybe not one for your mum.

Ok, so I will do this in 2 parts. Both being posted today, because yesterday was CRAZY BUSY! Ah well, I'll get the hang of this 'one post per day' eventually right?