Tuesday, November 30, 2010

sick of it

You know how I had an awful virus thing a few weeks ago? Well, apparently once was not enough and I have it again. Off to the Dr tonight to see if he's got something to cure my ills.

Monday, November 29, 2010

classic wedges

These shoes have tickled my fancy this week. Classic suede wedges with a teeny bit of sparkle. Oh yes, I could see these adorning my feet quite nicely...

Now, onto important things. Harry Potter. Saw it yesterday. LOVED. I screamed, I squealed, I held my breath, I sighed, I cried - I coveted Helena Bonham Carter's curls... {and the wardrobe of 90 per cent of the female cast when dressed formally. Oh. My. WORD!}

Today? Oh it's a grey, miserable monday of course. Luckily my gal has her theatre rehearsal today and I have an article to write that I've been researching all weekend. So I'll knuckle down, then get her all ready for the chance to dance on a beautiful stage. Only a week till the concert - I just can't wait!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

cake off

Here's the cake my niece decorated her Friday night for her son's birthday party yesterday - isn't it awesome? She had the icing topper made up in the US, and made a mudcake which was then covered in fondant icing dyed blue. Then check out all the amazing shells and seaweed she made out of coloured fondant using only chopsticks as a tool. Cool huh? The 'sand' is sugar coloured with food colouring, there are a few Guylian seashells around the base - and those cute little sugar fishy lollies. I can't believe that this was her first cake.

I only supplied the house, the KitchenAid, the oven, the colours and the cheer-squadding - she did all the amazing decorating herself and I think she did a fabulous job. He had quite the party yesterday!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

say aaaaahhhhhh

Oh, I do so love the weekend. Last night our gal had a friend over for a sleepover so while they swam in the pool hubby and I sat in the pavilion and ate chips and sipped on an icy cold beer. Hello, bliss. I also helped my niece make her cake - well, I supplied the fondant, colourings and KitchenAid - and lots of ooohs and aaahs. It looks fabulous - I'll try to snap off a shot tonight.

Today hubby's taking the gals to buy the birthday pressie - while I do a little more work - just a tad. Then it's party followed by a trip to the Red Lantern Markets - I'll tell you what, Newcastle's market scene is positively blossoming at the moment. Love it!

So, you, what are you up to? Tell me, tell me, tell me do.

Friday, November 26, 2010

fabulously friday

Hurrah, oh weekend, I do love you so. We've got another busy one planned. Tonight my niece is coming down and we're baking and decorating the cake for her son's birthday party tomorrow. The gorgeous little fella will be one so he's having a nemo-themed party. Bless. There will be fondant, there will be painted fondant, there will be fondant formed into seaweed... Wish us luck...

Saturday afternoon we have his party, which, as it starts at 4pm will take us into the evening. Then on Sunday afternoon I'm finally off to see Harry. I know!!! I'm also giving the new Gold Class cinemas a whirl which I'm really looking forward to.

In between there shall also be swimming. Ahhhhhhhhh.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

oui, oui, OUI!

Tom Ford is guest-editing the Christmas edition of French Vogue. Surely I can expect this in my Christmas stocking?

the whole tooth

I remember when I was pregnant I spent a lot of time wishing and hoping that my child would have my husband's teeth. See, mine have caused me a lot of grief over the years, but realistically that's mainly because of antibiotics that I was given when I was a baby caused some of my second teeth to grow through weird. Luckily the stains and pitting are all covered up thanks to cosmetic dentistry. But my husband has lovely white, straight teeth - and I knew he'd never had braces - but I didn't know he'd had plenty of teeth removed.

Sure enough our child has inherited her father's teeth - and our dentist has inherited a patient who helps fund his European holidays. Yesterday I got a call from the school to say Miss A had chipped a tooth - but vertically, taking off a whole slice. Of course I quickly called the dentist to book in for an emergency appointment and picked up the gal.

The poor little poppet had to have the tooth removed - the third tooth she's had extracted as the damned things don't really like to come out on their own accord. That's three times I've held her hand while she's bravely had huge needles inserted in her gums and a tooth reefed out. Ouch.

But on the bright side, at least the tooth fairy pays double for an extraction...

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

lip service

I do not do nude lips. I need some gloss, some balm, or, when the fancy takes me - lipstick. Ordinarily I'm a lipstick at night and a gloss or tint during the day kinda gal. Lipstick feels too heavy for daytime. But allow me to introduce you to my new paramour.

These Benefit Full-Finish Lipsticks are so creamy and delicious that you'll want to sleep in them. Now I just so happen to have found the perfect summer pink - Pillow Talk - oh, it's pretty. It looks bright and rosy, and on your lips it just so happens to morph into the ideal summer shade that brings a fresh glow to your entire face. I am in love.

Benefit always win me over with their foxy packaging - and these were no different. The matt black with white polkadots on the box had me squealing with delight. A lippy costs $34 so when you do a cost-per-week factor taking in all your festive functions it's worth every penny.

Go on, give your face a fresh new look and check these out - you won't be sorry {ps: Saucy? You're the next shade on my list...}

what's cooking this week?

And let the festivities commence. We're just home from dress rehearsal and photos for my daughter's ballet concert, and that always signifies the start of the festive season for me. Next week we've got the theatre rehearsal and then, before we know it - the concert. After seven years I'm finally getting the hang of it all: three dances mean three costume changes, but this year, there's only two hairstyle changes which is a bonus.

Here's what we're eating this week:
Wednesday: Chicken schnitzel, mash and broccoli.
Thursday: After a two-week absence I'm attending French lessons. Hubby can cook he and the gal steak and salad. Because it starts early and ends late I'll just have toast.
Friday: Prawn linguine
Saturday: We're off to our nephew's 4th birthday party at 4pm - so I imagine we'll just grab some takeaway on the way home.
Sunday: Pork belly and roasted vegies - have I been craving pork belly lately. Mmmmmm.
Monday: Theatre rehearsal from 4.30 to 7pm for the ballet concert. Something simple I think. Let's say bbq chicken salad.
Tuesday: Final ballet lesson for the year - chicken and chorizo bake with rice.


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

magnificently maggie

I was just one of the throngs of voices who screamed "Nooooooooooooooooooo" when hearing that Maggie Alderson's column would no longer be appearing in my Good Weekend {presumably they'll be changing the name to just Weekend...}. But, excitedly, Maggie's going to be posting each week on her new site Maggie Alderson Style Notes. Quick, go check it out and subscribe. Ahhh, Saturday mornings shall return to normal. Bless.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Sunday, November 21, 2010

oh stella

Oh, how I'd love to wander up Stella McCartney's garden path. Isn't it just positively delicious?

Saturday, November 20, 2010


I think it's important to regularly invite guests to your home - just so you can do a 'kick-your-butt-into-gear' serious clean every so often. My step-sister and her partner are arriving any moment now so husband and I have worked like maniacs to get the house ready. Not in a weird show home way, just in a 'good lord how on earth did the floorboards in the pavillion get into that state?' kind of way.

So now, front of house looking good. Guest bed made up. Kitchen looking okay - with a big chunk of beef marinating in red wine, thyme and garlic ready for bbqing tonight. The pavillion by the pool is pristine again, the bar fridge in the pavillion packed with beer, french bubbles and wine. Yep. We're ready.

Hopefully this nice weather will hold so we can eat on the newly cleaned back veranda. If not, no worries, I'll simply cook the beef and potatoes inside and we'll eat in here as well.

How about you? What are your plans for the weekend?

Friday, November 19, 2010

this is literally high-lair-ius

Thank you Reality Raver for finding this Uh-Maze-Ing clip. I die. I literally die.

guest posting

See this pretty pic of my gal? You can read more about it over at Corinne's Daze of my Life where I just so happen to be guest posting today. Go on, tell her I said "hi".

friday flowers

If you need a garden shed {as we do} why not make it a wee, pretty one encircled by flowers and shrubs so it's hidden away? Doesn't this look intriguing?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

if you'll excuse me...

I've had quite a busy week, gee, wouldn't mind a wee bit of a kip in this...

rachel zoe is pregnant

As soon as I saw this photo over at Crazy Days and Nights I knew. After watching the show last night and seeing Rachel's terrifyingly skinny chest I couldn't imagine how she'd actually be carrying enough weight to menstruate, but she's just confirmed on Twitter that she's pregnant. And look at this shot - no, not the tummy, the chest - not airbrushed and there are no visible bones.

Wow, Rodger must be over the moon and I hope it all goes well for them...

pink peonies: so pretty

My desk is currently overwhelmed with prettiness thanks to my beautiful bunch of peonies. Oh, they are just the most incredible flower. I love their tightly budded heads - so tight that you can't imagine how on earth they possibly hold so much promise inside - and then, when they bloom, oh it's magnificent.

Yesterday I was doing some work, and my gal sat beside me filling out her Christmas cards {all the gals in her class get a card so she wanted to get started early - and actually finished!} and I heard this funny little sound. I looked over and realised it was my peony unfurling!!!!! We actually sat and watched it, like some macro-time-elapsed photography on a wild-life documentary - but in real life. Absolutely magical.

I don't buy flowers often enough, even though they bring me such joy. I think I need to rectify that.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

what's cooking wednesday

Busy will be the theme of What's Cooking Wednesday during the silly season. Which is why I'm totally and utterly besotted with the whole concept of meal planning. Knowing I'm going to be busy, and knowing that I have meals planned to prepare for this makes me happy. Here's what we'll eat this week - hopefully!
Tonight: Prawn and broccoli skewers on a lemony, herby rissoni salad.
Thursday: Gal at school disco, husband coming home late from a meeting in the big smoke, me at French lessons. Eep. He can cook himself a t-bone steak and some steamed microwave vegies. I'll have some yoghurt and salad.
Friday: Lamb, spinach and pinenut pies in a filo pastry next {I'm going to line cupcake cases with squares of filo pastry and blind bake them. Then I'll fill them with lamb mince cooked up with onions, garlic, grated carrot and some tinned tomatoes. Some toasted pine-nuts will add a new texture dimension. I'll serve it with a salad - tomato and onion with some fresh mint perhaps.
Saturday: My step-sister and her partner are visiting from Melbourne. We've got a lot of chatting and catching up to do so I'll prepare a couple of salads and do something on the bbq - standing beef rib roast perhaps and carve up a couple of viking cutlets when I serve. Are blood oranges in season? If so I want to make a blood orange tart. Mmmmm.
Sunday: Roast dinner. Chicken perhaps - lots of veg.
Monday: Final Twilight Netball for the year. Home-made pizza when we get home - home-made by husband and child I think.
Tuesday: Pork cutlets with gremolata and panko crust. Apple and red cabbage slaw. Lemon roast potatoes.

Yep, that'll do.

daisy, daisy, daisy

So, you know how Baz Luhrman's working on a remake of The Great Gatsby? Well, excitedly, he's cast Carey Mulligan as Daisy. Perfection.

Now, if only he keeps ol' frozen face out of it I'll be happy {that'll be Nicole Kidman for newer readers, and for older readers - I know - I haven't mentioned her for yonks!}

well read

Hey, do you like a good mag? May I suggest this one? Sure, I may have written the odd article or two in it, but I'm not really biased - it's a fab mag.

Thanks x

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

excuse me while i rob a bank...

After a six-year hiatus Tom Ford has returned to designing women's wear.

Oh, yeah!

make a new plan, stan

Are you a planner or do you prefer spontaneity? I used to adore being spontaneous, until I realised it also meant disorganised, messy, stressed and unreliable {for me}. So over the years I've established a series of plans to help me try to streamline my life.

My favourite is my weekly meal-planning. Honestly, spending five minutes a week planning what I'm going to cook {probably took me 30 minutes when I started, but it gets easier over time} saves me so much time, stress and energy - and helps us eat healthier.

My Christmas Card list will be a saviour this busy festive season. It's simply a word document with all the names and addresses of everyone I send cards to. Each year I update any details as they come to hand {new babies, change of address} and if I don't receive a card in return, and I'm merely sending them out of obligation - I drop them off the list.

I also make up a master list of gifts: who we're buying for, and options to buy, and where. You know I hate shopping, so this means I can dash in, go to two or three shops and knock over all the shopping in one session. Sweet.

What plans to have set in place to make life easier?

Monday, November 15, 2010

monday, no need for moaning

I don't know what it is about Mondays, but I do believe that reading this poster I found over at Gala Darling will chase your Monday blues away...

sparkly season

Are you starting to feel all festive? I know I am. Not so much as the people around the corner who put their Christmas Tree up two weeks ago {I know!} - but still, festive.

That's why I've chosen this pair of shoes as the Shoe of the Week. A pair of spangly, sparkly Jimmy Choo pretties would be just the thing to trip trap through Christmas parties galore don't you think? As I work from home, I shan't be having a Christmas Party this year. Perhaps I need to plan one for next year though... And wear these shoes...

Sunday, November 14, 2010

stop it!

Fabulous with a capital F. A. B. U. L. O. U. S. {underlined, exclamation point, 64 point type}

well seasoned

My favourite flower is currently in season. It's brief, it's fleeting, it's beautiful.

Best find me a florist and a big bunch of peonies asap.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

paris v new york, nouveau

The creative genius over at paris v new york has come up with the goods once again.


splish splash

♥ Today I'm grateful that I can walk out my back door into this. Oh yes.

♥ I'm also grateful that I'm well enough to be able to enjoy it.

♥ Playing along with Maxabella x

Friday, November 12, 2010

my hero

I ♥ Helena so.

less than a week...

Squeeeeeee! Look at the cute kids at the London Premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows Part 1. Excuse me: Emma Watson: undoubtedly the most gorgeous thing to ever live? I was just over at Lainey Gossip reading all about Harry Potter and co. Lainey's possibly even a bigger Harry Potter fan than I am {she's been to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter!} and she says that the cast are just so deliciously unaffected by their fame, enthusiastic and just so sweet. Disney could take notes on how to raise child stars couldn't they? Obviously there's also a world of difference between LA and London...

Can. Not. WAIT till next week. Squeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

blue moods

Oh, this I need to see. I love Michelle Williams. LOVE. And Ryan Gosling? With what looks like scruffy hair and some kind of beardy growth, whew...

I may need to sit in a bucket of ice to avoid spontaneously combusting while I view it. Is that a service they offer at Gold Class cinema?

friday flowers from favourite places

I love this shot of my wee lassie in a garden down in the Southern Highlands. I'm pretty sure she was about six here - and very into striking a pose - bless her socks.

And look at those tulips... Sigh.

Busy day today. I'm catching up with a friend from real life who became a bloggy friend - Corinne from Daze of My Life {I know, it's normally the other way round isn't it!}. I'm finally over my illness so we're off to the beach for coffee, chatting and watching her gals play on the sand. Thankfully it's a beautiful day in Newcastle today - I hope the whales come out to play!

Then I'm taking my niece pressie shopping. She's 16 and I'm taking her to get something fabulous in the make-up department for her formal next week - one gorgeous lipstick, nail polish or eye shadow - and we'll probably play around with other stuff while we're there.


Thursday, November 11, 2010

tea and crumpets perhaps?

I'm well and truly sick of being sick, but according to those who've already fallen prey to this bug I can expect a few more days of it.


So far today I've eaten two slices of white toast with vegemite. Same as yesterday. So I've asked my hubby to buy some crumpets for dinner tonight. When I'm no longer feeling poorly I'm going to follow this recipe and make me some crumpets. These look so plump and delicious that my store-bought versions are going to look like measly little flat things in comparison. But still, a crumpet's a crumpet - can't complain about that!

things that make me go woo

The Rachel Zoe Project was back on air last night, and oh, I missed my couture porn. The fashion was seriously to die for - especially in this Demi Moore shoot for Harper's. {The Louboutins!} And the Taylor intrigue - oooooooooh. She was always such a brat that I'm pleased to see she's getting her comeuppance {I've managed to use that word twice today - gee it's a word I love...} - nastiness never prevails, not even on Survivor {hear that Naonka?}.

Okay, that's it for me. I'm still poorly so I'm off to drink more water. Sigh.

Oooh, one thing. After watching Rachel Zoe last night I can't work out for the life of me how she could actually be pregnant. She seems even thinner again, surely well under the weight at which you can maintain periods and ovulation - how would a pregnancy be possible? But, then again, I still don't think she's properly confirmed {although apparently Pink and Carey Hart are having a wee bubba - that will be one rockin' babe!}

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

what's cooking wednesday

After a day of only white toast and vegemite I'm finally ready to think about food. Here's what's going down in our kitchen this week:
Tonight: um, vegemite on toast...
Thursday: Chicken Curry and rice
Friday: Lamb steak, green beans and crispy potatoes as seen on Nigella's Kitchen {the crispy potatoes are gnocchi fried in olive oil!}
Saturday: I'm going to trial something from the free-range pork options at Coles
Sunday: Roast chicken and roasted vegies
Monday: Mexican - perhaps fajitas {inspired by Nigella much?}
Tuesday: Veal scallopine, wilted, garlic spinach, mash

That'll do...

feeling poorly

I'm unwell. I seem to have succumbed to some kind of a bug that's determined to refuse to allow me to eat or feel vaguely human.

So I shall be resting, and waiting on my Dr in a top hat to prescribe some kind of remedy...

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

happy birthday!

One of the things I love the most about where I live would be these beautiful ocean baths. There's the big baths {apparently the largest ocean baths in the Southern Hemisphere} and the baby baths {still pretty damned big} - and it's their birthday. Woo hoo.

75 years old and still looking gorgeous, must be that weekly cleaning that does it. I love how there's always someone swimming, from the tenacious oldies who do their laps throughout winter, to the families who flock to the site in summer. I'm rarely brave enough to swim in the large swell our local beach produces, so the ocean baths give me that delicious salty water kick - without the fear factor or the crowds between the flags.

Gotta love a city that offers up something so beautiful.

Monday, November 08, 2010

tee hee

hello photoshop fairies

Unless Jessica Alba is wearing one of Mr Pearl's fabulous corsets I find it very hard to believe that her waist is just marginally wider than her thigh.

Jeez louise.

shoe boop be do

Monday? Really? Already? Wow, that weekend went by mighty quickly. Let's ease into the week with a seriously fierce pair of Jimmy Choo's shall we?

Sunday, November 07, 2010

sunshine always makes me smile

Oh, we have blue, blue skies today and these make me so happy. Yesterday's gardening was a great success, despite the drizzles. My dear husband spent the whole day pruning the lilly pillies and guess what we found? A dove nesting on three cute little eggs in the midst of the trees {that one didn't get so much of a prune...}. Bless!

I also managed to fit in a visit to the Olive Tree Markets down the street. Amazing. So many gorgeously crafted creations - including 50s style and pin-up-esque clothing and swimsuits. Squeee! I bought a pressie for a friend's new baby and plan on buying as many Christmas gifts for my nieces there as possible - you've got to support local creative types!

Today we have more gardening and a trip to the Farmer's Markets on the cards. Can we do turkish gozleme two days in a row for lunch? Um, yep, probably, it's damned addictive stuff.

I'd also like to spend a wee spot of time relaxing somewhere like this. Mmmmm.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

a sunny saturday

Shhhh, don't tell anyone but we currently have sunshine. I know! So we're about to dash into the garden to do some work while the sun shines. Hubby needs to prune the outrageous growth on the lilly pillies around the pool and I'll take bags of the trimmings to the green waste site to get mulched up. Then I'd like to weed the front gardens, after all that rain surely the weeds will almost leap into my hands...

Friday, November 05, 2010

what's that don draper?

friday flowers from faraway

Oh, c'mon, where's Spring? It's 15 degrees at the moment, a cold 15 degrees. It poured rain all night and it's all grey and soggy-looking again today.

So I thought I'd take myself {and you} back to a perfect spring in the South of France. It's hard to find anything that's not picture-perfect in France. Even in the ugly villages {yes, it's true, there are some ugly villages in France, just one or two} there are still window boxes overflowing with red and pink geraniums, roadside roses and those gorgeous shutters. And if there's a wall, chances are that there'll be a vine growing up it.

I love it how the French take every opportunity to make things special. Can you imagine a French family bolting down dinner in front of the telly? {Sure, maybe they do - but boy, it'd be a secret}. No, instead meals are to be celebrated. Foods are prepared with love, and eaten with pleasure.

And homes are to be decorated with love, and lots of flowers.

Sounds like the right idea to me...

Thursday, November 04, 2010

serendipitous shopping

For my gal's ballet concert this year she has to supply one costume: a 30s-orphanage-esque outfit for a performance of Annie. So straight after school yesterday we hit the Salvos. And paydirt. We found the most divine gunmetal grey dress, that when accessorised with torn stockings and falling down socks will look perfect - but will also look fab afterwards accessorised with tights and cute beads. For $5! Then, in the same section we found a gorgeous Industrie sunfrock, white with stripes of pink and orange - again $5. Standing at the register waiting to pay my head swiveled around behind me until my little eye happened to spy - a set of Boules! In a box! Pristine!!

I snavelled them up and the girl behind the counter delightedly said, "Oooh, you're buying these". Apparently she'd only put them out mere minutes before. Destiny? I think so.

I know what we're doing this summer - picnics and petanque tournaments. Oh yeah!