during the week we decided to block out this weekend for compulsory family fun time. we have had too much sickness over here & we were all in need of some R&R together.
luckily for us it was beautiful weather & peek-a-boo party cakes were having their $1 cupcake saturday. such a great combo ! i think joey must have eaten close to four cupcakes … his favourite was the peanut butter cupcake. my favourite … the carrot cake cupcake. booyah ! while the baby slept joey watered the garden. such a great helper
in the afternoon we hit the beach. the perfect place to be on a sunny winter afternoon. trucks, sand and hot chips. yes ! we just love the beach.
on sunday we went to church & afterward we did something we rarely do … instead of going home for the baby’s sleep we decided to go into the city. big mistake ! on a normal day this little adventure would probably have worked out fine … but the aroma festival was on this weekend which meant there were a million and one people walking around circular quay. bummer ! we weaved our way in and out, bumped lots of heels with our pram (sorry !!), tried to carry a toddler who wanted to walk (so we wouldn’t lose him!) and finally made it to the MCA. we had a quick peek at some amazing art & then decided we were all exhausted so it was time to head back home. we were all happy to get home & enjoy some sunshine on our front porch with a cup of tea. perfect end to a fun weekend !
we have recently moved from a teeny tiny shoebox apartment into a house. it has been one of the biggest decisions we have made as a family and so far it is the best. we are not used to all this roooooooooooom ! we hardly have any furniture to fill the space ! a nice problem to have a friend of ours came around last week & did a bit of shuffling of furniture so the space is working for us really well now. i have loads of DIYs to do & lots of bit + pieces i want to pick up from op shops, garage sales, side of the road etc … but i’m happy for this to be a slow process so that every item we pick up we absolutely love.
i have been taking some advice from this lady on how to make your house a home. she also gives a few tips in this post on how to photograph your home. so here are a few bit + pieces from around the place for you to enjoy ! i hope to do a house tour one day …. but that idea might just stay in the pipeline for the moment.
i love the queen. she is one amazing lady ! this figurine was given to us by a friend for the diamond jubilee year celebration. her hand waves and is powered by a solar panel on her handbag. too kitsch. too cute. i love.
roses are in this week ! best part of winter.
fridge art work. a must.
the owl looking wise.
my beautiful beautiful carafe that has just had a work out due to our kettle breaking.
so there you have it ! a few little bits. more pieces to come.
here are a few more pics of hong kong that i just can’t get enough of. wow ! it’s amazing what a short little holiday away from home can do for the soul & for a marriage. i would go back there with mark in a second …
this week the babe had unexpected surgery to remove & replace grommets that were put in a month ago. it’s not a big deal really, but i am looking forward to health ! she has been such a darling … never complaining, always happy. i can’t wait to see what she’s like when she’s 100%. the health of a family is huge & so incredibly treasured ! i am ready for health and sleep
i took these photo’s of the babe when we got home from surgery. they are waaaaaaay too overexposed but there is something about her eyes that i just can’t get enough of. she looks exhausted yet content. i love her. her strong character. her inner beauty. her positive nature. her determination. her.
this weekend mark & i hosted a christmas in july for my mother’s group. what a very special bunch of ladies. we ate ham, listened to sufjan stevens’ ‘songs for christmas’, drank mulled wine and let the kids run wild. it was perfect.
i was so busy having fun that i completely forgot to take photos. the ones you see were taken by others on the night or the next morning. oops ! i learnt my lesson.
one of my favourite adventures from our hong kong trip was going to macau. i actually didn’t really want to go, but on our first morning mark woke me up early & we were out the door & on the ferry for the hour-long trip to macau. when we got to macau we took a tour in a cycle rickshaw. it was a really sweet little ride. it allowed us to see a lot of macau without seeing too much ‘inside’ macau.
mark was drawn to macau due to its history of the colonial settlement of portugal … which of course meant portugese tarts ! it was a fascinating little place. known as the las vegas of asia it has over thirty casinos. it is extremely wealthy, well manicured, every car was a merc or a porsche or a rolls, and there were loads of people there (mainly in casinos). all this was mixed in with the catholic influence of portugal … incredibly beautiful churches, confession boxes and the virgin mary were dotted throughout sar macau. it was very sad to see so many people gambling their life savings away. it was also incredibly surreal as i tried to imagine the portugese living there with china just over the hills.
i took a very short film of our cycle rickshaw ride to share with y’all. here it is !
we’ve been on holidays now for almost three weeks. how time flies ! we have been away (hong kong!), doing bits & bobs around our new house, spending time with friends, and a spot of work/study here and there.
at the beginning of the holidays we had a quick trip to the south coast to visit family & friends. it never disappoints ! it was as if summer had peeped into winter for a moment to give us a quick kiss on the cheek which made us all happy the kids love seeing nana & pa and while they were scootering around mark & i ducked out to have a coffee date all on our own (like big people !) at our favourite place. the kids & I visited some close friends who threw a birthday party for the three girls (including the baby) who shared june birthdays. it was so sweet. our friend meg (pictured above) is one of the most inspirational women i know ! and i get to see her tomorrow … yippeeeee !
it was a whirlwind of a trip & we loved every minute.
we just loved hong kong. i’m so glad mark organised for us to go to a city to explore rather than an island to sit on the beach. it suits us better to be immersed in a new culture, figuring out how to get places, seeing how people live differently, and exploring. in hong kong we loved the hustle & bustle, the million trillion people walking everywhere all the time, the late nights, the contrast of a highly technologically advanced city still using trusted traditional methods (e.g. bamboo scaffolding !) & the dumplings !
we kept a travel journal of each day with bits & pieces as well as photos. I hope that one day the baby will ‘discover’ it & that i can relive the memories telling her story after story after story.
we experienced our first typhoon in HK ! it was quite surreal … when we woke up in the morning there was a T3 warning. we thought it was totally normal but apparently it was the first typhoon of the season. we cruised around that day & went to the Felix bar that night for a cocktail & to enjoy the famous light show from the Kowloon side. unbeknown to us, the typhoon warning had reached T8 (out of T10) which is quite serious ! so the light show was cancelled (we only realised this about an hour later!) ha ! while at the bar we met some folk from new zealand (who were very Green & let us know it because of the political climate in Australia at the moment) and we suggested they catch the ferry back to the island. being from oz, we are totally used to rough ferry rides … but let’s just say, in a T8 and a rickety old ferry in HK i just hope those NZ’ers survived !! walking home everyone in hong kong was bunkering down for the typhoon – all windows & doors were being taped, sand bags were put everywhere … it was a bit scary. but the typhoon hit full force while we were sound asleep & we woke up the next morning to a beautiful day.
we also loved the K11 shopping mall. It is a shopping mall that is also an art gallery. the art was inspiring & the motto of K11 is “in art we live” – perfect. we also had our first cup of english breakfast tea/affogato at the mall since we had left sydney – it tasted so good, but so wrong at the same time !
i just can’t get over how good the dumplings were in hong kong. it should be expected, but man-o-man i miss them. i think we’ll take a sneaky trip to china town in the next few days with the kids to satisfy our craving. i have also been drinking jasmine tea religiously since we got back … ha ! it’s so funny how a place can make you change habits (even if for a short while !).
hong kong. we love you. thank you for being so good to us.
the babe had her first hair cut this morning by the best hairdresser on the planet: ally joy. it is always such a fun time having ally come over and do our hair – joey thinks she’s great! this morning was a bit different for our youngest … these photo’s crack me up. she was particularly upset about getting her hair wet & then I think she just didn’t know how to cope. it’s worth saying, she had a bottle of warm milk & went straight to bed as soon as ally had finished. too sweet. these photos will definitely come out at her 21st birthday !!
i decided to mix things up and have gone ‘Raven Black’. All I need is a pair of doc martin boots & i will totally look the part !
we have just returned from a four day trip to hong kong to celebrate our five year wedding anniversary. our trip to hong kong was filled with only a teeny weeny spot of shopping, but with a whole lot of dim sum & dumpling ! far out … if i lived in hong kong i would turn into a steamed pork dumpling because i just luuuuuurve them. yum yum yum ! i’m so glad we decided to can shopping & focus on the food … what better way to immerse yourself in the true culture?! perfect !
tim ho wan was by far the best eatery in hong kong. a friend of ours gave us the tip & the air hostess on our flight suggested that if we go, to grab a ticket in line, then go off for a few hours to explore the streets. that’s exactly what we did ! arriving at 9:30 am (very very very early for HK standards) we waited in line for 30 minutes, were then given a ticket & told we wouldn’t be seated for two hours. luckily, tim ho wan is placed right in the centre of the world: adjacent to sneaker street, the ladies market & the goldfish market. sneaker street was a true highlight ! i was desperate to purchase a pair of gun metal patent leather converse high tops, but alas, they didn’t have my size (EUR40!). we watched the ladies market set up (didn’t really get going until after noon) & hung out in a park people watching for a short rest. perfect !
once we were (finally) seated we were super excited due to such a lengthy wait. we sat on a table with people we didn’t know (obviously!) & even though we couldn’t speak cantonese they suggested a few signature items not to be missed by pointing to the pictures. wow ! tim ho wan did not disappoint ! truly authentic, spectacular & delicious. the baked bbq pork bun was by far the best. so crispy. but i also luurrved the tonic medlar & petal cake – basically a jelly with petals – it cracked me up because it reminded me of the french film i recently saw – le chef – and the molecular gastronomy that they were trying to create. ha !
here is a quick vid to show you the essence of tim ho wan – it was so incredibly small & intimate. loved it !
tim ho wan
* music in vid: “but for you who fear my name” by The Welcome Wagon