My Crazy Pinterest Addiction!

I love Pinterest. Really love it. I’ve used it for everything from finding inspiration for my wedding (obviously, you don’t plan a wedding without a bit of pinspiration, amiright?) to looking up recipes for my Mexican theme engagement party last year (a Churros cake? Yes, it was amazing) to looking for a new hairstyle again! It’s quite addictive.

So, feel free to have a squizz at my boards –  I have way too many but I can’t bring myself to get rid of them, what if I need that recipe for HOMEMADE EASTER EGG CUPS that I pinned two years ago? Seriously.

I’m always looking for more inspiration for my recipes and Pinterest is a great way to find new ways of making raw protein balls and doing the “effortless” top knot trick.

Bodalla, NSW

Wow, what a wonderful place.
Bodalla is located about four hours South of Sydney. We drove down to Wollongong, and decided to drop in to the Nan Tien Temple (amazing, peaceful, serene).

image (6) Also, don’t wear ripped shorts to the Nan Tien Temple. I was so embarrassed. They said I had to cover up using my jumper – noted for next time!

We drove through Bateman’s Bay, Ulladulla, Berry – all lovely (but busy) small towns. We stopped for a sausage roll and a coffee at the Heritage Bakery in Milton – it’s definitely worth a visit if you’re in the area!

We stopped by Mogo Zoo, which was just amazing. I love zoos, and I try to remember that the animals in cages are there to be helped, and the species saved. Some of the animals in captivity wouldn’t be alive if it weren’t for the conservation efforts of Zoos and their wonderful keepers!
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Lastly, we made it to our little home away from home!

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It was such an amazing place to stay – I would highly recommend it! The rooms and clean and a little bit fancy. They even provide you with a free litre of FRESH milk, and not just any milk, but from their own cows! I couldn’t get enough of it, it was so fresh, so wholesome, just delicious. It made coffee taste that much better the next morning!

They also make all their own cheeses as well (apparently you can do a class there too!) – we bought bush tucker, a delicious, rich smokey cheese. It was devoured SO fast. image (1)

Now, I could probably go on for days about how amazing this part of NSW is, about how the people are friendly, the air is fresher and the food is simply amazing, but why take my word for it? Go check it out for yourself!:)

 

We Stand United.

As you may know, the city I currently live in, where my home, friends and family are, was besieged by terror yesterday.
You probably know them already, but I feel it’s therapeutic to recite them here, on my blog. A lone gunman came into a favourite Lindt Café in our central business hub, with a gun, a machete and a sword. He held 17 people against their will, forced them to post videos with his demands and hold up a flag with Arabic writing in the Lindt store window.

At 3.37pm, three of the people being held hostage managed to escape. At the time, we didn’t know if they were released or not. It was later discovered that because he was alone, he was fast losing control of the situation and they managed to escape out the front and side doors.

At 5pm, two more people escaped. I imagine he was getting quite agitated at this point, and this was when I started to really fret about remaining people. Someone as insane as he was, would no doubt act without any thought for consequences and he placed no value on human life.

When we went to bed that night, nothing else had happened. It was just…quiet. And dark. We waited anxiously the whole night, for some kind of peaceful resolution. It felt wrong that I should be able to go to sleep in my own bed, with my loved ones safe and sound, while those poor souls stuck in the café didn’t know if they were going to survive the night. The poor family members who didn’t know if their loved ones would ever come home.
My heart breaks that two people didn’t survive. Both died saving other people. Katrina Dawson, a 38 year old mother of three and barrister, died protecting her pregnant friend. Tori Johnson, a 34 year old man, was the café manager. He tried to wrestle the gun out of the gunman’s hands when he fell asleep.
These people are the epitome of our Australian spirit. We’re mates. We’d do anything for our mates. We protect them. Care for them. Care about them, even if we don’t know them.

Since the siege ended in the early hours of this morning, the Australian people have shown such an amazing, united spirit. Have you seen the hundreds of flowers being left at Martin Place? It’s overwhelming and it makes me incredibly proud. It
re-inforces the fact that we’re one group. We don’t care if you’re Muslim, Catholic, Jewish, Buddhist or whatever, if you’re Australian, you’re Australian.
The lone gunman was a nutcase, and does not, and never will represent the views of the Muslim people, who are also Australian and will always be welcome in this country.
I’m proud to be Australian. We stand united.
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#Illridewithyou

Fridays are good days (once the clock hits 4pm)

It’s been a hell of a week. Actually, it’s been quite crappy, and I’m freakin’ stoked that it’s nearly the weekend.

I think I might have a drink tonight – I can think of nothing better than reading my book (I’ll tell you about it shortly) with a glass of Rose or Moscato, or Cider and some peace and quiet. I don’t drink much but occasionally I really feel like something!

Oh yeah, so, my book. John picked it out actually. I was sceptical at first but it’s actually pretty exciting. It’s Stephen King-ish. I have a hard time putting it down. It’s called The Passage by Justin Cronin. Check it out here if you want.
Don’t give anything away though, I’m less than a quarter of the way through!

So. Here are a couple of things that have been occupying my spare time this week:

This lady. She’s full of some awesome advice for health nuts like me. As you may know, I’m one of the many sufferers of food intolerances, and it’s always good to get some advice. If only I lived in Melbourne, I’d go to the lovely dinner she’s hosting! Check it out! I went a bought a tea she’s the ambassador for, called Your Tea. I feel a difference already!! My digestive system is already thanking me for looking after it (um, except that I had 3 pieces of baklava today. Oops!).

I’ve also just recently discovered The Collective – definitely plan on getting their magazine on the weekend!

Searching for the perfect engagement present for my soon-to-be brother-in-law and his fiancé for their party this weekend. It’s harder than I thought! But we settled on a gorgeous Vera Wang cake cutter set. I think they’ll (read: she) love them!

And lastly, searching for courses I’d like to do next year. I’m torn between nutrition and zoology. But I’d also like to do something creative. Thoughts?

And here’s a picture to leave you with. Happy Friday!

 

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Lazy or stupid?

I’ve had the flu since the early hours of Friday morning. It hit me like a tonne of bricks. I was all like “Ha, I haven’t had the flu all winter, suckers!” when everyone else was getting sick, and then suddenly… Oh. I’m a vitamin-popper, green-smoothie-drinker, healthy-eater, and yet. Just goes to show, if someone in your house has the flu there’s an increased chance you’ll get it.

So anyway, Sunday is usually our long run day and I really didn’t to miss out, but I knew I didn’t have the energy to actually do a run. So I did a bushwalk. And it was awesome.

 

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However… I did this bushwalk partly because I was sick of being, well, sick and I felt like I needed to do something. But also because I felt like I was being lazy if I didn’t. Where does that come from? Would I have been lazy if I hadn’t gone, or just recovering? Why is there such a need to always be doing something and when did rest become laziness? It’s a question I’ve asked myself many times. How do I know when rest is required, and how do I know when I’m just being lazy? If you’re really sick, it can make you worse if you run or do strenuous exercise, so how can you tell? I’m sure it’s not just me!

On a mini side note, John bought me a new Garmin today and I’m so excited to use it!

And I NEED these, these and these. Yesterday.

 

 

The Fault In Our Stars – book review (sort of)

I know, I know. I’m totally on this bandwagon way late. I thought I had a good reason not to read it or see the movie. I knew it would be sad. I knew I would read it and the someone would die and I would be so sad.
What I didn’t realise is how much I would laugh. And think. And laugh some more. And then cry. It was a whole range of emotions in one small book. I cherished every second of it. Emotions are a powerful thing, and sometimes I’ll read books that I love, that are exciting and action packed and keep me enthralled. Other times they’ll keep me interested and I’m desperate to know what’ll happen (when Tory meets Maelgwn, when Edward leaves Bella, when Clary becomes a shadowhunter, when Henry imprisons Eleanor – I really could keep going) . Other times a book will come along that keeps you thinking and guessing and empathizing.
I got teary. A lot. At one point I was laughing while I was crying. Yep. Emotional rollercoaster, friends.

I can’t recommend it enough. It opened my eyes to kids who have cancer. Who are just like normal kids, but with a disability. Who are probably stronger that your average kid; hell, they deal with more than some adults! It concreted what I already knew: kids with cancer aren’t weak, they’re fighting a goddamn awful battle, day after day. Whether they’re terminal or not, they are STRONG.

In conclusion, it made me realize that right now, I literally have nothing to complain about compared to kids who have cancer. Hopefully I never will. I’m an adult type person. I have an amazing fiancé and mostly wonderful family and friends. All those little dramas I have are specks of dust. They don’t even matter.

Carpe diem dudes.

 

Only the Animals – book review

I’m a big reader. I love getting lost in books and stories. I often find myself reading for hours, only to realize I’ve been sitting in the same position that entire time and my leg has fallen asleep, I’m starving and in dire need of the bathroom. But that’s the sign of a good book, right?

++SPOILERS BELOW+++

Anyway, so my latest adventure was curated by Ceridwen Dovey.
Only the Animals tells the individual stories of ten animal souls. Caught in between human conflict, they each tell their incredible stories of life and death.

It’s written superbly. Ceridwen manages to make you feel as if you’re that animal. You’re a dog in Nazi Germany, wanting only to generate good karma and protect your master; some might know him as Himmler. You’re a dolphin who worked in the military protecting humans as dolphins always have, who writes to Sylvia Plath about her death. You’re a turtle who goes into space during the Cold War, with the words of Tolstoy etched upon your back. And one of my favourites, you’re a cat on the Western front, telling tales of your beloved owner’s adventures in Paris.

It’s such a fascinating and complex view. Seeing human’s actions – our most evil and most pure, through the eyes of an animal is something else. It warped my perception. It made me cry and laugh out loud. It made me sad and it made me thoughtful. It made me really think about what the human race has put creatures through – what some are still putting them through… but that’s a post for another day.

I particularly loved that each animal had a connection to a well known writer. I couldn’t guess them all, but there were Kafka, Tolstoy, Plath and Lawson, to name a few.

It’s the kind of book you keep thinking about, keep deciphering in your head, what it means and what it means to you.

I highly recommend it!:)

(but keep a box of tissues handy)

 

GPS watches – handy or a hindrance?

I ran without my garmin last week (shock! horror!). For those who know me, know that I’m a bit anal retentive with keeping track of my progress. I upload the data to my computer after every training session and if my watch is out of battery (it’s been know to happen) I sometimes use my phone and track it via RunKeeper. But John’s garmin ran out of juice and he was aiming for 14k, so he needed it more than I. And as we were running in the bush, my stupid phone didn’t have reception.

So anyway. It was really good. I have no idea how fast I was actually going, but I ran to a landmark that is approximately 2.5k’s from the start, and I ran there and back in 35 minutes. So I would assume I was running about 7 min per kilometre; as I was aiming for an easy one, I think it’s a good sign that a 7 min pace is now my easy pace. Considering 7:30 used to be my fast pace!

I really enjoyed running without having to look at my watch (because really, how can you not?) but on the flip side, my usual sprint to the finish line was kind of anti-climactic because I didn’t have a little stop button to push! Do you run without a GPS watch sometimes? Every time?

Below is my view from my post-run stretching! natio

I experienced what I thought was shin splints this week, but I’ve actually discovered (through my own trial and error) it’s most likely just a bit of deep muscle pain! I’ve been trying to change my running style and when I did my 8k’s two weeks ago, I think it really set it off. It felt like it was in the bone, and I bought some 2XU compression calf guards and I’ve been icing them every day (which has helped), but I dialled it back a bit and ran like I normally would, and it virtually went away! So I’m still going to take it easy, but I did some intervals on Tuesday (30 on/30 off x 15 reps) and yoga last night, but my legs feel way better – there’s a lot less pressure. So yay!!

What’s on your healthy routine for the rest of the week? I’m supposed to do a time trial either tonight or tomorrow, and then a longer run on Sunday… and hopefully some more yoga in between!

Weekend’s are sometimes hard to fit workouts in; I can be a really lazy person and I have to actively book a workout with John to make sure I stick to it. Having said that though, I think there needs to be a good balance between training and actually relaxing – I love to read in the sunshine with a cup of tea, or play with my dog. Those things are important too!:)