The Great Mouse Invasion of 2017

11 August 2017

Mouse Invasion of 2017

So this is the reason why things have been a bit quiet on the blog these last few weeks.

We have mice in our house.

(Not cute plush ones. Real ones.)

We came home from our 4 week trip away… and my son discovered that he had left a zip lock bag of almonds in his school bag. The bag was shredded up and instead of almonds, there was a whole lot of mouse poo.

There was mouse poo everywhere in the house!

Inside ALL THREE of my children’s cupboards, the mice had made several nests in their clothes, in the boxes, in the blankets, in the lego boxes, in the teddybear and toy boxes.

Every single shelf, box and cupboard had mouse poo, so every shelf, box and cupboard had to be cleaned.

Bedroom 1. Bedroom 2. Bedroom 3. Games room.

So much cleaning! So much disinfecting! So much laundry!

It’s been 3 weeks since returning home and we have only caught 8 mice so far. There are more, but they are the smart ones who know how to steal food from the traps without setting them off.

I wish I could have a break from all the cleaning, but this morning I opened my pantry and caught a tiny whiff of a peculiar smell, which didn’t smell like anything I was familiar with.

Which means I’ll have to clean my pantry from top to bottom, ugh.

What are your plans for the weekend?


 

Elevating Everyday Outfits with Metallic Flats

10 August 2017

Black + Gold

That’s right. The old jumper and jeans combo – ha!

While I won’t win any fashion awards for this one, it’s simple enough for me to race out the door in the morning and get me from A to B to C.

In this case, I was going from a school drop off, to a casual meeting with a client (picking up some products), to the dry cleaners, a catch up with my mum, back home to do some work, then back to the school to pick up my boy!

Black + Gold

So yep, whenever I dress in simple outfits, I always try to throw on a pair of statement flats to elevate my outfit.

This particular day I wore my Grana Boyfriend Cashmere SweaterAcne Studio Jeans, A.P.C Bag, ASOS Hat and Black & Gold Oxfords (old season) from Habbot Studios.

Gold, silver and metallic shoes are having a bit of a fashion moment lately, but honestly, I’ve had these oxfords for 6 years and I still wear them regularly (ie. I have lots of boring outfits to elevate) and hey, I just love wearing them!

I’m now on the look out for some more feminine looking metallic flats… so I’ve compiled a few on my wishlish below!

 

Shopbop Metallic Flats

 

Shopbop Metallic Flats

 

Shopbop Metallic Flats

 

Gold Flats

Repetto Cendrillon Ballet Flats – Can’t go wrong with a classic Parisian ballet flat by Repetto no less (I wish!).

Sigerson Morrison Simona Flats – Such beautiful details. I’d be staring at these babies all day. These will be in style for years.

Sam Edelman Rodney d’Orsay Flats – Slightly cheaper option and just as pretty.

Rose Gold Flats

Yosi Samra Serena Glitter Flats – Love this colour + sparkle! I can see myself wearing jean, tee and blazer with these.

Joie Adiel Glitter Mules – Such a cute style.

Yosi Samra Marry Me Marabou – Again the rose gold is adorable.

Silver Flats

The Fix Esmeralda Mules – OMG these are just WOW.

Alexander Wang Amelia Mules – Love the soft, folded details. Might look a bit dated in a few years though.

Frances Valentine Pauline Slides – Perfect with jeans!

Have a fantastic day!
xxx


 

28 Day Central Australia Road Trip, Part 1 – Perth, Kalgoorlie, Menzies, Lake Ballard, Leonora, Laverton, Warburton, Warakurna

8 August 2017

Uluru Road Trip 2017

Hi everyone!

My husband and I took thousands of photos during our trip around Central Australia and it was quite a feat to go through them all. So I’m just sharing the highlights with you all!

We went with two friends and their two kids (twins aged 6), while our kids were ages 14, 12 and 8.

Our friends are planning a yearlong trip around Australia, so this was a “trial” trip for them – we were just tagging along! Sort of! They were the ones who spent an incredible amount of time doing all the reading, research and planning for places to go, places to camp, routes to take, things to see, maps to print out, equipment to take, etc etc.

We travelled in two 4WD Toyota Prados, one towing a camper trailer (theirs) and one with a regular trailer (ours).

Uluru Road Trip 2017

Day 1 – We left Perth drove and about 6 hours to Coolgardie (just East of Kalgoorlie).

Since we had kids, we had lots of toilet stops and a long lunch stop to stretch our legs, so we were on the road for about 8 hours.

Uluru Road Trip 2017

We used an app called, WikiCamps to find ourselves a roadside, campsite in the bush.

It wasn’t an official campsite and it had no water, electricity, toilets, showers or anything. It was just a nice patch of dirt amongst some bushes. We made sure we left the place as it was and took all our rubbish away.

It was kind of fun, we felt like we had the whole outback to ourselves.

Uluru Road Trip 2017

Day 2 – We drove into Kalgoorlie and stopped to see the Super Pit, Australia’s second largest open cut gold mine. It’s about 3.5km long, 1.5km wide and about 600m deep.

It was humongous and rather horrifying to think about it’s ecological impact.

Uluru Road Trip 2017

We hung out at Hammond Park in Kalgoorlie.

It was a fantastic playground for kids – lots of green grass, picnic areas, shade, climbing things, sculptures, a pond, a kiosk and an aviary.

Uluru Road Trip 2017

There was a large emu enclosure with some beautiful emus and peacocks.

And there were some cages with talking cockatoos – my kids had never heard a bird say “Hello” and it kind of BLEW. THEIR. MINDS.

Uluru Road Trip 2017

We drove north for 1.5 hours to a town called, Menzies.

Then headed west to Lake Ballard, a salt lake made famous by a permanent art exhibition called “Inside Australia” created by artist Antony Gormley.

It features 51 metal sculptures based on laser body-scans of local residents from Menzies and a few “out of towners”.

Uluru Road Trip 2017

The sculptures were ghostly and creepy but beautiful and serene at the same time.

Set in the vast landscape, surrounded by salt, visitor’s footsteps, mud, rocks… it was quite an extraordinary sight.

Uluru Road Trip 2017

The sculptures were spread out over 10kms, so it was quite a walk. I only saw about 5 of them.

We anticipated that the ground was going to be muddy and sticky, so we taped plastic bags over our boots. Or course, the kids climbed the rocky hill, which ripped up their plastic bags, and they ended up with muddy boots anyway.

Uluru Road Trip 2017

This was our set up! Since we were covering so much distance and stopping at so many places just for one night, we decided to buy two pop up tents. They were awesome, because they literally took 10 seconds to set up and 2 minutes to pack away.

They aren’t so good with rain, wind or storms though, hence we brought a gazebo for extra shelter (you can see the gazebo frame set up in the photo, because the weather was a bit iffy).

We camped at the edge of the salt lake, at a designated campsite.

We had a spectacular view of the sunset!

Uluru Road Trip 2017

This is my 8yo, who, after cleaning his boots and changing into his clean clothes, decided to take a photo of the sunset without stepping away from his tent, to keep his socks clean.

Uluru Road Trip 2017

The sunset was amazing!

The hills, the lake, the sand all around us changed colours, in a magical, delicate, subtle way; with hints of gold, pinks, oranges and pale greyish purples – oh the colours – it was hard to believe it without seeing it with your own eyes!

Uluru Road Trip 2017

Day 3 – We drove north to Leonara, then over to Laverton where we began “The Outback Way” route, which is the main road through Central Australia.

It was also the moment the sealed bitumen stopped and the famous red dirt road began.

I had always thought that central Australia was barren like a desert. Turns out that it’s quite green and full of trees and shrubs. I guess it would look very different in Summer (it is Winter in Australia now) and I can only imagine how beautiful it would look in Spring.

We had such good luck with the weather and lack of rain, therefore the roads were in excellent condition.

We spent 7 hours on the road (including a few stops) and covered about 500km. We camped at another bush campsite off the main road.

Uluru Road Trip 2017

Day 4 – We woke up at 6am for another long day on the road. We stopped at the Tjukayirla Roadhouse and thanks to the internet, we were keen to try their “famous” Tjukayirla Burgers. They were $18 each! I was very skeptical, but to our delight, the burgers were delicious.

We fuelled up at Warburton. And arrived late into the Warakurna Roadhouse, where we camped for the night in a Unpowered Caravan/Campsite.

We drove for about 500kms and again it took about 7 hours, including lots of stops.

Oh and it was my first shower in 4 days.

* I could have had a shower at any roadhouse along the way, but it didn’t quite fit into our driving schedule, so I survived on baby wipes.

And on that note, I’ll end this blog post – ha!

My next blog post is about arriving in Uluru / Kata Tjuta National Park.


 

What I Wore: Back Into Winter School Runs

5 August 2017

Winter School Run

Oh my gosh people! Camping for 4 weeks in the bush was epic!

I’m trying not to sound like a princess here: So while the adventure part was pretty cool, the reality of camping in winter meant I had to layer up and wear the same clothes every day until they smelled bad.

My camping wardrobe revolved around: 2 pairs of jeans, 2 fleece jumpers, 1 jacket… and lots of thermals.

Coming home, slipping back into my favourite cardigan, my favourite jeans, my favourite sneakers… made me feel so relaxed, at ease and sooooo happy to be back in my comfort zone.

They almost felt like new again!

Winter School Run

So I’m home and I’m straight back into mummy mode, with school runs and grocery shopping.

I’m wearing my Grana Cashmere Long Cardigan, which is all sold out – but Grana are currently having an Up to 70% Off Sale. You can pick up a Cashmere Jumper (I have 3 V-neck boyfriend cut jumpers!) for AU$102, Silk Cashmere Tops for $49, Classic Silk Shirts for $27 (odd colours though), or Silk Camisoles for $32-$35.

If you’re keen, feel free to use my link here to get 10% off your first order. I do get a little referral credit though!

Also wearing: GRLFRND JeansA.P.C Bag, Ben Sherman Shirt, Converse shoes and Sportsgirl Sunglasses.

 


 

After 28 Days of Camping

1 August 2017

2017 Uluru Trip - Home

Well hello there!

I’m back from my epic 28-day road trip around central Australia.

4 weeks without blogging, facebook and social media was certainly… refreshing, liberating and quite frankly, brain changing.

(I did do some updating, but I was only on social media for about 5 minutes every 2-3 days.)

So how was my trip?

We saw some truly amaaaazing sights, visited some unforgettable places and had some incredible experiences!

We had so much quality, family time – it definitely brought our family closer together.

It was great for our boys (aged 14, 12, 8) to experience this kind of bush camping; travelling to places where it was 4WD only, uncertain road conditions, bring your own water, fuel, food, recovery gear, cb radio and have no shower for 5-6 days.

We drove from Perth, to Kalgoorlie, Uluru, Alice Springs, East and West of Alice Springs, Coober Pedy, Streaky Bay (South Australia), Nullarbor, Cocklebiddy, Norseman, back to Kalgoorlie and Perth. We covered about 6500km.

I have a new appreciation for how BIG Australia is!

I do feel grateful for having experienced these places. I’ve heard so much about them, and I can now say with a bit of pride that I’ve been there.

I was struck by the beauty of the landscape and I loved watching the colours change around me throughout the day.

We discovered the joys of audiobooks.

And we discovered we all can sit in the car and be silent, for hours! We made a deal with our kids, if they sat quietly for 1 hour, staring out the window – without any devices. – they could have 1 hour on their phone/ipad (which meant 2 hours of peace and quiet for us). Some days we were in the car for 6-8 hours… and it was so quiet and relaxing. A long road trip with 3 kids?! Who would have thought?!

For me personally… 28 days was too long to be away from home, to be camping in a tent, rushing from place to place, in middle of Winter, with kids!

There was lots of setting up tents + bedding + camp kitchen for one night, then packing it all up again the next morning to be on the road by 8am.

I was cold. I was unsettled. I didn’t enjoy that bit. I craved to be in one place and settle down to make a temporary home. I craved to be in a warm space.

However, the nature of our trip was to cover a lot of distance and see a lot of things, with kids. So I just had to suck it up and try to enjoy as much as I could haha.

A few times during the trip, we stayed at a caravan park for 2 or 3 nights, which was good.

And a few times, we stayed with generous friends in Alice Springs, in their warm, comfortable home. We were so grateful they shared their house with us!

Despite everything… it hasn’t turned me off camping and seeing more of Australia.

We’re already planning our next camping holiday, which will be a much shorter 7-8 day trip.

Since coming home… I’ve been enjoying my soft, warm bed. My ever-lasting hot water shower. Indoor heating. Running water. Electricity. Simple, modern day conveniences.

I’ve been washing clothes, cleaning sleeping bags, airing the tents, storing our camping gear and sweeping up the dust balls in our house.

I’ve been catching up with family and friends. Doing all the things I love, like reading, cooking, writing, photographing, running, yoga… and slowly finding my groove again.

I’m so glad to be back!

I have lots and lots of updates!


 

A mid-week brunch at Pixel Coffee

27 July 2017

Pixel Coffee

My husband and I snuck off for a cheeky coffee and mid-week brunch to celebrate being home after our 4 week road trip.

A mid-week brunch! What a treat. We almost never have brunch!

But we were happy to splurge, especially at one of my favourite coffee spots in Leederville: Pixel Coffee.

I had the Butterbean Mushrooms ($21.90), field mushrooms on Mary Street Bakery sourdough with poached eggs, butterbean spread, chimichurri, dehydrated enoki, truffle oil and walnut herb salad.
Pixel Coffee, Leederville

My husband had the Avocado Smash ($17.90) with Mary Street Bakery sourdough, poached eggs, avocado, Persian feta, seed salad and lemon oil.

It was so good to sit down, debrief, lay out some plans and reset our goals so we can head into the last half of the year!

And after being home just a few days, we are already starting to plan our next holiday adventure!


 

What I Wore: The Fluffy Cardigan

20 July 2017

Everyday Blush

Many years ago, I used to obsess over “sleek” coats and “slimming” cardigans, thinking that I had to do everything I could to make myself look thinner, slimmer, longer and leaner, especially when it came to outerwear.

Not any more. Perhaps it’s the change in styles over time, or maybe I’m just older, wiser and I don’t really obsess about fashion rules anymore. It’s been a breath of fresh air for me to dress in voluminous, chunky, baggy clothes these days.

My recent love is definitely the big, fluffy cardigan.

I have two. A black one from Hello Parry and this blush one from Acne Studios via Shopbop. They are wonderful.

They are both on high rotation in my wardrobe at the moment, and you’ll see me wearing them all through Autumn, Winter and Spring.

I pretty much wear mine like big bath robes, constantly wrapping them around me and snuggling into them all day. I love that they are baggy and roomy, so I have the option of putting on more layers underneath.

When I took these photos, it wasn’t quite Winter yet. The morning was a little cold, but the sun was up in the afternoon and I was more than happy to show off a bit of skin.

That day, I met up with a colleague, who was wearing an equally beautiful cardigan by Equipment (similar to this one).

We looked like two nanas, wrapped up in our big fluffy coats, holding our teacups with both hands, warming up our cold fingers, with a little rug over our knees – haha.

Here’s to more nana moments!

Everyday Blush

Wearing Acne Studios Cardigan, Tibi Racerback Top, GRLFRND Jeans, Tibi Mules, APC Hangbag.


 

Braces

17 July 2017

Since it’s my birthday month, I thought I’d share something mildly entertaining about myself :)

Braces

When I was 14 years old, I had a severe overbite, my teeth were big and my jaw was crowded.

I had braces. Double train tracks. The whole deal.

I also had the full orthodontic headgear, which fit over my head, with straps, springs, elastics, facebow (pictured above) that fit into the braces on my teeth.

I looked like the Finding Nemo girl!

Braces

Except that MY straps went over my head, like a strap-on helmet. It was intense!

I think I had them for 18 months. It felt like much longer though.

Thankfully I didn’t have to wear my headgear during the day. Just at night.

I think back on the experience now… and I’m surprised that I wasn’t more traumatised by the whole thing haha. I recall that I accepted the idea of braces quickly (I had no choice), I was generally very apathetic about it and in the end I think somewhat enjoyed being a bit different/weird. Although I’m sure my mum and dad might have a different story.

I remember being in lots of pain, and I remember having to do a few things differently, like cutting up my food before I eat and never biting into anything with my front teeth.

I also remember I never had sleepovers outside my family/cousin’s house.

But hey! I am SO thankful that my parents had the foresight (and money) to fix my teeth.

Funny thing is, my husband also had top and bottom braces.

And it looks like ALL three of my kids will need them too.

Yikes!

The other funny things is… I still never bite into things with my front teeth and I always cut up my apples and carrots before I eat them!


 

What I Wore: Floral Dress + Faux Fur

13 July 2017

Majorelle Dress

Last winter I shared a few tips on how I wear Summer dresses in Winter (my hair was so short back then!).

And those tips still ring true for me: Add a big furry coat and some long boots.

You can’t go wrong with that formula!

A few weeks ago, back in June in fact, I went out with some girlfriends to catch up over Mediterranean tapas, drinks, and to celebrate an early birthday.

I put on my fancy, floral dress – a little worried that we might get a table outside the restaurant and that I would certainly freeze to death. But thankfully they had the heaters cranked up and the collective body heat of the guests (and food?) made the place super nice and cozy.

I’d like to say that we went out dancing after, but in reality, we became a bunch of grandmas and each headed home (at 11pm!) to crash into bed haha.

Majorelle Dress

Wearing: Summery dress by Majorelle, Faux Fur Coat by Korean brand Sarah (similar from The Iconic), Over the Knee boots from ASOS and a Rebecca Minkoff Quilted Bag.


 

Homemade Laksa (Kind of)

10 July 2017

Homemade Laksa (Kind of)

When the weather is cold and stormy outside, all I want to eat is hot noodle soup!

But since I don’t want to leave my house and drive to get it, I have been making my own soups and noodle meals at home. (Saves money too.)

This laksa has been my favourite lately.

The laksa sauce is from a bottle, so I just heat it up with light coconut milk.

Add some fresh noodles, roast chicken (which I freeze in packs), add a whole lot of sliced vegetables, boiled egg, lime from my tree and mint from my garden.

Sometimes I have a vegetarian version, with tofu, egg and mushroom.

Not very authentic. But it’s so good and it hits the spot!


 

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