Sunday, December 28, 2014

colour my world

Pretty colours make the world a better place don't you think? When I was in Portobello Road earlier this year I couldn't help but exclaim in delight at the pretty rows of colourful homes. Imagine these pretties when the wisteria's out in flower!

I know house colours are cyclical, and fashionable, so I can't wait till pastels are back in style again. I do love a pretty colour with a crisp white accompaniment. (disclaimer: yes, my house is pale grey - with a white trim - but it's been so for over 15 years now and it suits it so!)

In Newcastle I was growing increasingly despondent at the number of dark, prison-grey buildings that were popping up - usually without an accessorising white (sometimes JUST the dark grey, othertimes a slightly lighter grey) or beige. Blahful beige. Not soothing beige, just meh.

So imagine my delight yesterday when I saw this glorious building painted up in the prettiest blue!

Even against a grey sky it looks so glorious. (And yes, that's a free ad for you local real estate agent - I have no energy for cropping this iphone shot).

Isn't it lovely to see the heritage features picked out? Imagine if all our beautiful buildings were painted with such thought.

Now, when I shared this on Instagram one of my friends (who happens to have started the Lost Newcastle page) told me this used to be the Blue Peter Hotel. So it's a pretty colour WITH a nod to history. Even BETTER!

Thank you owner of this building - can others in Newcastle please follow your lead?

Monday, December 22, 2014

happy holidays

And it's Christmas holiday time.


I'm off work from now until January 5 and let me tell you that I'll be enjoying every single second.

I'm still not *quite* prepared for Chrissy - have to get the gal a couple more Chrissy pressies (and more for her birthday five days after). But I'm feeling pretty darned calm about it all.

After working full-time for the past year, I'm so looking forward to this break. I intend on cycling and swimming every day, spending quality time with my wee family and getting the odd thing done.

Including wrapping pressies - there are now a few under our tree, but not enough.

Oh, and I'm now into year three of shopping locally for Christmas and it's going really well. There have been the odd pressie I couldn't find and had to buy online, but the vast majority were available from indie retailers on Darby Street. So pleasant wandering down a tree-lined street to shop rather than listening to tinny carols in a crowded shopping centre.

Have a lovely, lovely Christmas everyone.

Monday, December 08, 2014

meal planning monday

Well, it's been a while between meal planning hasn't it? I've had my mum and step-dad up for 10 days so there was a lot of vego and on-the-hop cooking. But I'm trying to get myself as prepared as humanly possibly before Christmas (eep!) So here's what's on the menu this week.

monday: spaghetti and meatballs. I love this dish.

tuesday: spanish roasted chicken with chorizo and potato. With a green salad.

wednesday: beef stirfry with cashew nuts and hokkein noodles.

thursday: roasted chicken and veg and salad.

friday:  we're heading to A Very Darby Christmas on Darby Street so we'll grab dinner on Darby!

saturday: salmon on the bbq with roast potato salad and greens. Then I'm off to NewyTwistmas - our twitter party which coincides very nicely with an 80s night at the Great Northern. Hello dancing the night away!

sunday: roast beef on the bbq with a green salad (I hope I can buy watercress - I have a craving!)


Sunday, December 07, 2014

christmas in newcastle

 On our way to my gal's ballet performance the other night we couldn't help but notice many pops of colour in Civic Park. And look! Yarn-bombing Christmas decorations! Aren't they glorious?

And look at this - knitted and crocheted coral reefs! In the fountain at Civic Park (with the glorious Baptist Tabernacle in the background.

I do believe that the Civic Theatre is one of my favourite places in Newcastle. What a gorgeous place for my gal's ballet concert.

There was also a glorious event in Civic Park for the launch of Patricia Piccinini's Skywhale. The vendors from The Olive Tree Markets brought food and drink vans along and thousands flocked to see the spectacle. And what a spectacle!

We found the perfect spot to watch her inflation - over the Civic Fountain - it made for utterly glorious photographs against the twilight sky.

The skywhale requires perfect conditions for flight. No rain, and barely any wind. We had a still breeze. She rose, she hovered, she turned, and she collapsed. What a piece of performance art.

Just like the whales that live in our oceans, Skywhale responds to her environment.

It's a night I'll never forget.

My mum, stepdad and daughter all went on a Christmas wander in Newcastle East. Where we had the chance to take this gorgeous Chrissy Card. Isn't it brilliant? It's the work of a local artist.

The walk started here, at the magnificent old Post Office (please let it be restored soon!)

Loving these buntings Andrew Finnie is such a talented artist.

We looked in gaily decorated windows and just took in the atmosphere of the night. I love this city so much.

Look at how magnificently the plane trees frame the views of all our diverse architecture.

Oh, and these were the Christmas Cocktails I prepared to sip while we put up the Christmas Tree. Frozen rasberries, rose syrup and French sparkling. So delish!

Speaking of that fabulous architecture framed by plane trees... This was our view as we arrived at Subo for our 13th wedding anniversary dinner. Oh my, it was utterly divine. Subo totally deserves the accolade of Newcastle's best restaurant.

How's December treating you?