Life happens. So do rainbows.

The BF and I arrived home nearly three weeks ago. We’re getting to that point where it’s like we were never gone. It happens, right?

Since we stepped back onto Australian soil I have attempted to write two new posts only to leave them unfinished. I have looked at my blog only those two times and I guess part of me has wondered if I would come back to this little corner of the Internet. There is a lot going on. Work. Study. Life. It all gets in the way of me waxing lyrical over here.

Thing is though, despite all that’s going on, I often find myself thinking that I want to write about this or that. Show a photo or two…

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Speaking of which, here is the rainbow I saw on the way to work today. I may have nearly crashed attempting to get the best photo of it. Thankfully no police officers happened to see that!

So, I guess I have decided that I won’t be retiring from my Internet rumblings just yet.

Then I suppose I should fill you in on what’s been happening. I was a European Gypsy for 6 weeks. It was brilliant. I relaxed all of my eating and indulged in every pizza, gelato, Nutella, pastry… you name it, I ate it. And it was spectacular.

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This was possibly the best lemon tart I have ever eaten.

There are so many photos it’s kind of bonkers. So rather than go on a photo overdose I will simply point you to my Instagram feed that was over flowing with sights and food and selfies.

A few times I’ve found myself browsing through the photos I took, it already feels like so long ago. Sad. But that just means it’s time to plan the next one!

What’s been happening since we got back? Well, I started a Whole30 on July 2. Two weeks in and I am feeling pretty darn good. Honestly, I can’t really see much of a difference, but I see myself everyday, so I guess it’s difficult to judge.

This week I’ve had to make some additional tweaks because I was pretty much od-ing on eggs and my belly was less than pleased about it. Whoops. I should have known really having had to cutout eggs for 8 weeks a couple of years ago. It’s all good though, I’m just working around it.

A habit that I have gotten into is cataloging (for want of a better word) my day. I started while we were away so I could remember what we did- it’s easy for everything to blur together.

20130718-195258.jpg (there’s that rainbow again…) This is how my Thursday looked. I ate my first Medjool date. Oh dear. I don’t think I’ll be able to keep them in the house too often, they’re delicious!

That’s it for now. Tomorrow is Friday. Good news.

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I’m leaving on a jet plane… TODAY!

IMG_2722In T-minus 10 hours I will be sitting on a Qatar airlines flight to Barcelona.

Wait… what?

The European-Gypsy-Adventure was booked waaaay back in November, the fact that it is now well and truly upon us just seems so bizarre.

Bags are packed. Boarding passes are printed. And I am over flowing with nervous excitement. Getting any work done today has been an uphill battle…

As a result of this trip things will probably be a little sparse in this corner of the internet. But I will be blowing up instagram with all of our exploits, and lots of food no doubt!

Leaving on a jet plane… in 36 days + a green smoothie

IMG_2099I cannot believe we are so close to jetting off on the European-Gypsy-Adventure. It’s crazy.

Our Eurail passes arrived on Monday, I may have squealed a little bit when I realised what the delivery was…

I’ve been working on a mental list for a while now, it’s about time that it was liberated from my over crowded brain.
1. my passport renewal
2. Eurail passes
3. Accommodation in Barcelona
4. Hire car for France
5. Travel insurance
6. Accommodation in France
7. A hostel for Paris
8. Accommodation in Italy
9. Accommodation in Germany
10. Speak to cousin about house sitting

I’m sure there are loads more things I need to do, they’ll come to me, I hope. Accommodation is the main issue at this stage. The problem with booking places is that we don’t actually know when we will be where. We have a rough idea of when we’d like to be in each country but nothing beyond that. We’re flying by the seat of our pants really, not that I mind, it makes it feel all the more adventurous.

Once we’re in the final week packing will take over as my main concern. I am an over-packer. I think this is due to my general indecisiveness when it comes to dressing myself. What if I don’t take the one t-shirt I really feel like wearing when we’re climbing the Eiffel tower? Invariably I do end up wearing the same clothes over and over, even when I have an entire wardrobe to choose from, however when it comes to packing I seem to internally freak out and convince myself that I will want to wear certain items that I may not have touched in months. It’s ridiculous.

On a complete side note; I just finished the most incredible green smoothie. IMG_2101This incredible concoction was…

Green juice base; 3-4 kale leaves, half a large cucumber, 2 lemons (peeled), a nub of ginger, 5-6 cos lettuce leaves, 3-4 full celery stalks (this makes enough for me to have a green juice- of about 350 or 400ml- and then a green smoothie also)

Then I added the smoothie bits; 2 tbsp flaxmeal, 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar, 1 big shake of cinnamon, half and avocado, 1 tbsp of chia seeds (soak them for a couple of minutes in water so they get all slimy first), 1 tbsp coconut oil, 1 tsp maca powder, 1-2 handfuls of baby spinach

Blend baby, Blend! It’s the first time I’ve included coconut oil in the mix and oh baby was it amazing. Not over powering just adding this delightful coconut-y smoothness. Yum.

Hobart: Day Three

First out of bed and showered, again (dried with a full size towel though thanks very much). While the others got ready I trimmed and washed the fresh Tasmanian strawberries from the market. IMG_1741A pre-breakfast snack if you will. Delicious, obviously.

We didn’t have much of a plan for Sunday. Breakfast was naturally on the agenda, some wandering in search of earrings (for mum), terrarium kits (for sister) and a NAB ATM (for the sis-in-law), collecting food for a picnic. IMG_1740My mocha. The first coffee I’ve had since July. Thoroughly enjoyed.

IMG_1739Mushroom, yet again. This breakfast was my favourite of the three days. Poached eggs, sourdough, bbq mushroom and fried haloumi. I think haloumi should make more appearances on breakfast menus, who doesn’t want fried cheese for breakfast?

IMG_0002Our wanderings took us past this darling shop, which had the terrarium kits. You can see one of them to the left there. Sadly it was closed. I would like to have a shop called The Cat’s Pyjamas.

IMG_1767Perhaps I have a thing for cats… because I was also enamoured by this teapot. I’ve not seen it in Tea2 stores in Melbourne!

IMG_1738Oh bakeries. How I love you. Considering a gluten free future does have its drawbacks… We took a baguette and green olive and basil loaf for the picnic collection. I was also very tempted by the ciabatta. IMG_1756So, with picnic supplies purchased we jumped into the car and took off for Richmond. According to the website it is one of the most important historical towns in Australia. I’ll be honest, Richmond oversold itself just a little… this bridge was the highlight, nuff said? So where to now? Back in the car we thought we’d head toward water. After much driving we ended up pretty much where we started in Richmond.

IMG_1754Picnic time. BOOM.

IMG_1753The view wasn’t bad either…

The winery closed up and we still had some time to kill before our flight. Off to the beach we went.

IMG_1766I was too much of a wuss to even dip a toe in. I was told it wasn’t that cold though.

IMG_1763Feet in the sand.

IMG_1760I sent this one to the BF. Yes, sometimes I am unapologetically cheesy.   

IMG_1762Mini (dead) crab.

IMG_1761I find it near impossible to walk down a beach and not pick up shells. These three were my favourites.

When the unrelenting sea breeze became to much back into the car we got and headed to the airport.

Thank you Hobart for a delightful three days. Hopefully next time I can explore a little more of the apple isle.

Hobart: Day Two

I was the first up. I ended up drying myself post shower with a hand towel because I couldn’t find the actual towels and was sneaking around trying not to wake people up (I did end up finding the towels when I was 99% dry… they were in a cupboard under the sink, good stuff). IMG_1778Naturally breakfast was top priority. We all ordered the same thing, 2 with salmon and 2 with mushrooms.

IMG_1732After breakfast it was a hop, skip and a jump out to the Salamanca market. I love markets. And it was the perfect day for it.

IMG_1779 IMG_1780Start at one end, walk the way up, turn, and head on back.

IMG_1781Oh these buttons nearly killed me. Squirrels!

IMG_1782We don’t have Ladies in the Snow in Melbourne. They were delicious. Although, as we crunched while walking a fairly gruff man at the next stand told us to throw our apples away and taste his. Yes, we appreciated his passion for apples, however the delivery could have used some work.

IMG_1733Blueberries may be my favourite fruit. I was sad when these were gone.

IMG_1783Cutest tshirt ever? Yep. 

With market time done, what to do? Drive up Mount Wellington and nearly run out of petrol, there was talk of knocking it into neutral and cruising back down the mountain, not kidding…

IMG_1784The view was worth it though, we weren’t even at the top here.

IMG_1785Sunny selfie.

Back on the road we found ourselves at Puddleduck winery, a family owned and run winery on the way to Richmond. We were so very glad we stopped.

IMG_1788 IMG_1789Ducks, yes, there were ducks in the pond. We found ourselves a table and settled in for the afternoon.

What to do after an afternoon of wine tasting and chit chat? Dinner, of course. But that’s a post all it’s own. That good.

Hobart: Day One

This past weekend I took a mini break with the ladies in my family. Mum, sister and my bro’s lovely GF. My sister’s Christmas present was a weekend in Hobart so she could tick another state off her list before 30, she’s only got one to go before October.

So at 8.05 on Friday morning we departed the mainland for the apple isle.

IMG_1769With handfuls of tourist brochures, and the hire car at our hotel we were in search of food. Salamanca Place it was (I realise now that I ate mushrooms with every breakfast).

IMG_1759We ate and drank and discussed the days plans. There was almost too much in front of us.

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IMG_1771Waiting for the ferry on the way to our first stop…

IMG_1772MONA. I am not really sure how to properly explain this place. It is disturbing, and interesting, and totally bizarre and more than once made me question what on earth was going on in other people’s heads.

You could take photos but couldn’t take your phone. My phone = my camera. So once inside no photos for me. Although while wandering around I saw a number of people who weren’t quite as honest as I. Highlights included this water wall of sorts, which is so difficult to explain I almost feel I shouldn’t… but I will try. It was a rotating list of words (not sure where from) that dropped from a large rig. The words were made of water. I knew I shouldn’t have tried to explain.

Another highlight was the pulse room. As you strolled up a wide hall to the entrance there were a line of light-bulbs all flashing at different rates. At the end of this line there were two handles that you could hold on to in front of which was another large light-bulb. The handles channeled your pulse and lit up the light-bulb  when you let go your pulse jumped up into the line and as each person did it your pulse moved further along. Mine was easy to spot because it hardly even lit the globe. As you followed the line you came into a room the ceiling of which was covered in bulbs all pulsing. I was mesmorised.

IMG_1773You could take photos outside.

IMG_1775Cement truck.

IMG_177699 steps

MONA was emotionally draining, as ridiculous as that sounds. So we had a relaxing dinner, and some of the best calamari I’ve ever eaten. De-licious. There are no photos however because I was feeling brain dead… I absolutely made up for it at dinner the following night.