Archive for March 2014


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Sushia Izakaya and Bar

28 March 2014

My sister (who lives in London) was in town last week, and I took it upon myself to organise a dinner for 12 of her/our girlfriends. It wasn’t a hen’s party, it was just a simple dinner and gathering where we all could catch up.

She loves Japanese food, so I wanted to find a place that had great food, suitable for large groups, and was a bit special.

I asked local food blogger, Michelle, and she recommended I try out Sushia Izakaya and Bar in Brookfield Place, Perth City. It was perfect!

It was new, modern, stylish, lots of tables and room to move, a great capacity for large groups, and it had a big open kitchen.

Sushia, Brookfield Place, Perth WA

I’m actually not sure what this cold dish was called. See? This is why I’m not a pro food blogger heh.

It was a platter of mini salmon and chicken tacos, and salmon and avocado entrees. And it was yummeh.

Sushia, Brookfield Place, Perth WA

Although there were 12 of us, we kind of split ourselves into 3 groups of 4, and we ordered a few dishes to share between the 4 people. It just made things easier for us to share food.

The Tuna Tataki (Seared tuna, miso aoli and Japanese dry spice – $23) came out and I almost squealed with delight. I love cold Japanese dishes and this looked amazing.

The tuna was so soft and fresh. Its flavours were delicate and delicious. The miso aoli was heavenly!

Sushia, Brookfield Place, Perth WA

This was the Gyu Tataki (Seared beef with garlic chips, chives, momiji oroshi scallion, ponzu sauce) $21

The beef was aaaaamazing! It was also soft and fresh, and it almost melted in my mouth. There was a bit of crunch from the scallion and a burst of salty and tangy flavours. It was such a joy to eat.

I wish I had to confidence to serve up raw beef at home.

Sushia, Brookfield Place, Perth WA

Then we shared a Gindara Saikyo Yaki (Cod in saikyo miso marinate – $38) which was quite nice. I was told this was one of popular dishes.

However, the fish was not as soft and “fall-aparty” as the previous dishes. I think it could have been due to the fact that the girls and I were talking and talking, that we forgot to eat it straight away, and instead left it on the table (for a good 10 minutes) and it got a bit cold. Nonetheless, I could taste the infused miso flavour and it was really nice.

When all the food arrived, I was afraid that we didn’t order enough, but it was fine in the end. I even had lots of room for dessert.

We shared a Sushia Dessert Platter (which was a nice way to sample a lot of the desserts at once. I didn’t get the names of all the desserts, there was tofu cheesecake, ice cream, red bean pancake, mochi ice cream, chocolate mousse – $35).

I also had a non-alcoholic cocktail, Green Tea Punch (Lemon grass, fresh green tea syrup, fresh lime and apple juice -$14).

Overall it was excellent and I would definitely come back!

Sushia Izakaya and Bar, Perth
Brookfield Place, Basement Laneway

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Beauty Review: My SK-II Skin Challenge

26 March 2014

At the start of this year, I was invited by SK-II to embark on a SK-II Skin Challenge… which is really a fancy way of saying “I used their products exclusively for 3 months” :)

So this is how I did just that…

Beauty Review: My SK-II Skin Challenge

1) Everyday after I clean my face, I wipe a little bit of Facial Treatment Clear Lotion all over my face, which cleanses and smoothes my skin.

I actually had no idea how the lotion works… until I looked it up 20 seconds ago (thank god I have the internet to help me sound brainy!).

The clear lotion contains AHA (alpha hydroxy acid) which exfoliates the skin and in doing so, “erases” fine lines. Making your skin smoother.

2) Then I use the Facial Treatment Essence. This is a cocktail of nutrients for the skin, ensuring that it gets all of the goodness with one application. I find that the essence balances out the skin’s pH, sebum secretions, and moisturises the skin evenly.

I’m a real fan of this essence and I have been using it for years!

While I adore the product and I adore the effect it has on my skin… I honestly think it has the softest whiff of seaweed!

But hey, I’m a woman, I don’t care, it makes my skin glow, so I’m going to keep buying it :)

Beauty Review: My SK-II Skin Challenge

3) Lastly I use the Stempower Cream (a day and night moisturiser), which feels smooth and light on my skin. It has a lovely, light fragrance – not strong nor overbearing.

The results?

Really good! My skin now feels nicely hydrated all the time and my skin tone seems to look clear and even. My cheeks feel a little bit plumper and firmer than before too. I’m pretty happy with the results.

The not so good?

The price. It’s expensive. Not everyone can afford it on a long-term basis!


If I could only buy ONE product, I would choose the SK-II Facial Treatment Essence, mainly because I have used it for years and I like the effect it has on my skin.

BUT I would still highly recommend the Stempower Cream to try. And since you can buy the Stempower KIT here (which contains the cream, essence and a facial mask)… for the same price as the cream itself, it’s kind of a no brainer – go for the kit and get all three for the price of one. Such a win!

You can also buy SK-II from Sephora online here.

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I am the apple queeeeeen!

24 March 2014

Everyone in my family loves apples. We eat a lot of them. If given the opportunity, each person in my family would eat one apple a day, which means 5 apples x 7 days = 35 apples. How crazy is that?

I don’t actually buy 35 apples a week, I only buy around 10. And yes, by day 2 we’ve run out of apples and everyone gets a bit twitchy.

Anyway the other day, my kids sent me away to the fruit and vegetable market to BUY MORE APPLES DAMNIT!

So there I was, strolling through the aisles, filling my basket with cucumbers, broccoli, red onions… when I approached the apple crates. They were full of new season Royal Gala Apples. I looked at them in sheer amazement.


They were so red.

So plump. So firm. And so perfect.

They were orbs of nutritious perfection. Little round balls that spoke of health, strength, and the essence of life itself!

Transport yourself back in time. Imagine walking the earth during the days of our ancestors… stumbling across the damp ground, through a tangled forest, cold and hungry, lifting your eyes up and seeing a tree full of these apples!!

How happy would you be?! How ecstatic would your whole tribe be? Talk about treasures from the heavens!

I’d sing and dance around a bonfire and create an apple festival for the apple gods!

Haha which is pretty much what happened when I returned home from the shops.

I walked through the door with my shopping bags slung over my shoulders. I dropped them to the ground and watched the apples roll across the floor. My children shrieked with delight and scrambled around to gather them up in their arms. We danced across the living room, munching into the sweet, crunchy goodness of those Royal Galas. Everyone was overjoyed and much less twitchy!

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This is how we row

21 March 2014

Kayaking at Moore River

I took this photo a few weeks ago. We were camping with friends in Guilderton, next to the Moore River.

We were kayaking, swimming, sand boarding, and building sand castles with friends… all day!

I took Liam out for a paddle and we sang “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” at the top of our lungs, to the other side of the river and back.

I just love this photo. I’m so thankful that I made the effort to reach into my bag to grab my camera and made us pose in the glaring sun.

Liam and I look so happy, so content, so utterly delighted to be alive.

Would you believe that today – 21 March – Liam turns 5 year old?

Happy birthday little buddy! We’ll be celebrating your birthday with a party next week!

(For those who have been following my blog for the last 5 years, join me for a trip down memory lane!)

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Netball Diaries

18 March 2014


Last November (four months ago) I started playing NETBALL for the first time in FOREVER.

I used to play in primary school, and I was pretty good. That is, until everyone else hit puberty first and started to GROW TALLER – then I had no chance. In a matter of months I was dropped from the Division A Team (The cream of the crop! All the cool girls!) and plonked in the Division C Team (with all the book nerds…). Sigh, there went my dreams for a top class netball career. Haha just kidding.

So a couple of months ago a bunch of girlfriends asked me if I’d like to play netball with them. They were all beginner level players and just wanted to get together for fitness and fun. I had just spent nine months of cycling training towards a “Cycling 100km for Charity” event, which, I have to be honest, is a very male dominated sport… so I thought WHY THE HELL NOT, I need some SPORTY GIRL TIME.

So that’s how I found myself standing on a netball court, totally clueless and totally petrified on my first netball game in a gazillion years.

I haven’t mentioned anything about my netball adventures on my blog prior to this, because the only thing I had to say back then was:

“I’m short. I’m crap. I have no ball skills. I don’t know how to play in a team. I can’t remember the rules. My arms are weak. I can’t throw. I have no sense of balance or personal space. I have to play against someone? I’m not very good at being aggressive. I don’t like aggressive players. Why are they standing so close to me? I have to jump and throw at the same time? Oh god the coordination requirements are beyond me! OMG I have to cut my fingernails before I play?!?!”

But you know what? I really enjoyed it. My brain loved it.

Even though I was sooo crap at playing netball…. each week, my brain felt like it was growing bigger. It was making new connections and new pathways. The game was so fast paced that literally every 10 seconds, there was a brand new situation in front of me that I had to solve and make my body respond accordingly. It was SO different to cycling, running, weight training and pump classes. It was awesome.


It’s four months later and I LOOOOVE my weekly netball games.

It’s such a great workout, such a fun thing to do with my group of girlfriends, and it makes me feel awesome. Yay for team sports.

OH and one week I was actually chosen (by the umpires) as the Best Player on the Court!! I was so so so proud of myself!! I zoomed home and squealed at my husband and kids! They thought I was a bit crazy, but they were happy for me because I was beaming!

I have improved a lot over the months. I’m a bit obsessed about it now. I’ve been watching Olympic netball videos, training videos and reading coaching tips online. I’m very motivated to run more during the week, to work on my core and upper body strength… just so I can play better netball hehe.

I even train in the house at night, standing in front of the TV, by jumping up to see if I can touch the ceiling… and I can now! A bit distracting for hubby though.

So here’s to learning something new, working at it bit by bit and totally smashing it!!

Hope you all have a fantastic week!

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No-Sugar Apple and Almond Tart

17 March 2014

Yuma, Yuma, Yuma! No added sugar, but there was PLENTY from the apples.

No Sugar Apple Tart
The rough chopped almonds gave it crunch. The base was a little flaky, since I skimped on the butter, but…

No Sugar Apple Tart
…it was still all eaten in just five minutes.

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Wedding Bliss!

16 March 2014

CC&BT Wedding

My little sister got married on the weekend! It was a beeeautiful wedding for two beeeautiful people.

Everything from the sunshine, to the flowers, the guests, the speeches, the dancing, family and friends — everything was all so wonderfully special, that I’m glowing with happiness and bliss!!

I can’t wait to share some of the photos with you all soon!

I hope you all have a fantastic week ahead!


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Crazy Hat Lady

14 March 2014

Crazy Hat Lady

There’s nothing I love more than heading out in the cool morning (after dropping my kids off at school), getting a whole lot of jobs done, then sitting back in a café, cup of tea in hand, pen and paper in the other hand… for some creative thinking time.

If you ever bump into me, you’d usually see me in this sort of get up. Sweater, shorts, oxfords, and of course, a hat.

I’m always wearing a hat these day! And I’m fast becoming the crazy hat lady around my neck of the woods.

Polka dot sweater from Sportsgirl
White cuff shorts from Zara
Citrus cross body bag by Marc Jacobs from Shopbop
Cream oxfords from Habbot Studios
Hat from Sportsgirl

( See all my Daily Outfits here )

Check out more of my favourite online shops in my Women’s Online Fashion Shopping Guide.

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Happy 25th Birthday World Wide Web!

13 March 2014

In the late 1960s, the “Internet” – the original and most correct meaning of the term – was already in operation.

It was only in 1989 (yes 25 years ago!) that a computer programmer called Tim Berners-Lee created a way to easily link documents together online… thus creating a web of connecting pages that became the World Wide Web. He was just 36 years old… about my age now.

For a few years, the WWW looked like this…

WWW Turns 25
Obviously,  this was a perfectly acceptable webpage for computer nerds. It was simple and clear, with no distracting colours or pictures!

WWW Turns 25

But then along came Mosaic in 1993. It was not the first web browser, but it was the browser that popularised the world wide web and included features like icons, bookmarks, pictures and a more attractive interface which was easy to use. Non geek/nerdy people started to use it to communicate and access the data on the internet.

I was in high school at that time. I did a subject called Applied Computing and my teacher showed us how to use the “e-mail”.

I was utterly gobsmacked that I could send a letter over the computer!

WWW Turns 25

Then by 1995, the internet went commercial and saw a rise of websites like ebay, Amazon, Geocities… followed by Hotmail and many more companies. Like they say, the rest is history!

I find it amazing that everything emerged and advanced so quickly. And I’m equally astonished by how the WWW had so quickly affected the way we do EVERYTHING.

By 1999, I had developed a friendship with a guy (now my husband) via the internet. This used to seem “weird”, but now, online dating, shopping, social media, news, smart phones, apps, online games… it all seems so completely normal. I literally can’t remember the last time I wrote an actual letter by hand, fold it up, slide it into an envelope and lick the stamp. I am sure my own kids never will.

Arthur C Clarke Interview on ABC

But what is perhaps most amazing to me right now, is that while most of the the world’s population throughout the 1980s and 1990s was completely surprised by the “sudden” arrival of the internet, the famous science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke completely and accurately predicated all of this way back in 1974… check out the video link.

The video is an interview by the Australian Broadcast Corporation (in 1974), where Arthur C. Clarke talks about how computers will change the future for the everyday person. He shows the interviewer, and the interviewer’s son, a humungous computer which fills the whole room.

Basically, he says that in 2001, people will have their own computer in their house, a small compact console, that can talk to other computers. They will be able to get information for their everyday needs like bank statements, theater reservations, and other things people need for living in a complex society. And they will take it for granted as much as we take the telephone.

Can you imagine what was going through the mind of the interviewer – This old guy is batshitcrazy!! What kind of freaky shit is he talking about?!

Mind. Blown.

Here are some other interesting articles for your perusal:

Six Revisions – The History of the Internet in a Nutshell
Wikipedia – History of the Internet
W3 – A Little History of the World Wide Web
Telegraph – How the web was born: WWW Turns 25
Internet Society – A Brief History

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My Travel Essentials

11 March 2014

I have some exciting news!

1) My little sister (my ONLY sister) is getting married this weekend and I’ll be one of the bridesmaids!

The wedding will be in Perth, then next week we are going to fly over to Singapore and Malaysia to celebrate with her partner’s family.

2) I’ll be travelling without my husband and kids and I’M A BIT EXCITED! I’ll be able to focus on lots of girly-girly-pretty-pretty wedding things without feeling guilty about ignoring all the man-boys in my life.

But this is all a bit scary for me.

The last time I went away by myself was 3 years ago. I went to a very wintery Denmark for 7 days for a fashion media trip and to attend Copenhagen Fashion Week. I found that packing for such cold weather was quite difficult, especially when trying to fit in all the bulky coats and knits. I had to pack as if I was going on a mission to Mars!

This time around, I’ll be going to a tropical place that I am very familiar with, so packing should be a cinch.

However, the DANGER is that I will be just TOO relaxed about my packing…. And that I won’t have the proper essentials I need for playing the major supporting role in the biggest event of my sister’s life.

So, all my outfits need to be planned (from my bridesmaid’s dress all they way down to what swimsuit I’ll wear at the girl party by the pool), my beauty essentials will need to be packed, shoes, jewellery, cameras, passport… I guess I’ll have to make a packing list.

Travel Essentials

Here are some of my travel essentials… (clockwise from top)

•   Passport, camera, smartphone, watch – of course!
•  Chanel Coco Mademoiselle Perfume – for me to smell nice.
•   L’occitane rose hand cream – for soft hands 24/7.
•   Napoleon Perdis Camera Finish Powder – for keeping my skin matte.
•   Chanel Vitalumiere Makeup with SPF15 – for flawless looking skin.
•   SK-II Stempower Cream – to keep me hydrated and radiant all day.
•   SK-II Skin Signature 3D Redefining Mask – to prep my skin for the big day!
•  Sukin rosehip oil – for sensitive, dry patches on my skin.
•  Chanel Nail lacquer – for manicure touch ups.
•   Bobbi Brown lipstick – for gorgeous colour.
•  Chanel Eyeliner in Noir – for smoky eyes.
•  Clinique Mascara – for thick lashes.
•  Tiffany and Co cosmetics case – to stop things from getting lost in my handbag!

I’m sure I’ll add more to this list… as the days get closer to my departure.

I’m so excited!

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Korean Hair Dresser in Perth: Balayage!

10 March 2014

I’ve been going to a cool Korean Hair Salon in Subiaco, called Curi Hair.

Last year I had a perm, then some hot oil hair treatment… now I finally took the plunge to colour my hair in balayage style.

I was a little nervous about it because… my hair was quite dry from the perm and I knew that it would become even dryer and frizzier after the colour. But I was dying for a change and a fresh new look for my sister’s upcoming wedding.

Korean Hair Dresser in Perth - Balayage

So this is me in the morning, just about to head out the door to my hair appointment.

My hair looks soft and a bit frizzy because I washed my hair the night before and I didn’t blow dry or use any products.

Korean Hair Dresser in Perth - Balayage

I was surprised that the treatment only took 2 and a bit hours.

I should have brought a book, because I spent the 2 hours reading horribly trashy celebrity magazines that made my head hurt. I had a nice cup of tea though.

Korean Hair Dresser in Perth - Balayage

Ta da! I was a bit shocked. It was so light. I’ve never had my hair this light in my whole life.

But I really liked it!!

What do you think? Do I look younger? Do I have to tint my eyebrows now?

Yay for a fresh new hair do!

Their prices are really reasonable too.

Do check out their Curi Hair Facebook Page for more photo examples and contacts!

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Fred and Ginger in Top Hat

7 March 2014

I recently watched Top Hat, a 1935 musical comedy staring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers… who I didn’t know much about until now.

I didn’t CHOOSE to see this movie. It was forced on me by my husband, who is a fan of “classic” movies. This happens now and again. If I want to snuggle up to him on the couch, the price I often pay is to suffer through a film which is “important to cinema history”… as opposed to “entertaining”. For example, you might like to read my review of Clint Eastwood in Dirty Harry.

Thus, I was expecting Top Hat to involve aliens, guns, car chases, zombies, weird humor, or whatever.

But I LOVED IT! It was so cute, funny (in a silly way), and the dancing was lovely. And after I got used to the style, I realized I was watching a romantic comedy-musical that was almost older than my grandmother. But it still worked!

The movie was one of the most popular and successful movies of its time and it broke box office record, grossing $3 million dollars – which was a lot of money back then! It is continually referenced as one of the most stylish films of the 1930s… Hollywood’s “golden” era, when modern glamour was invented.

Fred and Ginger were Hollywood’s top stars in the 30s and 40s and they had such an electric on-screen chemistry that they went on to make a total of 10 movies together. So they were as big as can be, in the world of movies stars, pop music stars, and celebrity icons… but they were not a couple in real life. Top Hat was a movie written specially for them, especially to show off Fred’s amazing dancing.

Even though the movie was in black and white, I was so struck by the interior set designs and of course… the fashion!

Fred and Ginger in Top Hat

Basically I was checking out all the clothes worn by both Fred and Ginger throughout the movie.

But being a girl, I was very taken by this feather dress!

Fred and Ginger in Top Hat

I had to do a bit of interweb digging to find this stunning photo of Ginger Rogers and her dress.

I don’t know who took the original photograph, but by the looks of it, it was a film still portrait taken on set at the RKO Movie studios.

Ginger collaborated with RKO costume designer Bernard Newman to create this blue feather gown. It features a figure-hugging, low back, bias-cut silhouette, which was covered with ostrich feathers. Stunning!

Fred and Ginger in Top Hat

The dress famously dropped feathers everywhere and apparently the feathers floated all over the stage, got caught in Fred’s suit, hair, face and made a huge mess during the dance scene. Yet Ginger insisted on wearing this gown, despite Fred’s and the film crew’s protests. Fred subsequently went on to called her by the nickname, “Feathers”. So cute.

I also discovered that Fred always chose his own wardrobe in movies. He had a signature “casual elegant style” and as a result he was a significant influence in 20th century men’s fashion and often named one of the best-dressed men in the world, and helped established sophisticated “masculine cool”.

At the end, I realised that my husband and I had watched a whole romantic comedy together… without him whining about it!

Well, there you go.

I wonder what other time traveling treasures are out there!

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The Little Black Dress: Always Chic and Always Stylish

5 March 2014

The other night my husband and I went out on a last minute date night. And I mean LAST. MINUTE.

He ran into the room, “Quick we have babysitters, lets GO OUT NOW!”

“What? Where? What are we going to do? Watch a movie? Eat out? I haven’t booked anything.”

“Doesn’t matter, just get dressed NOW!”

“Yeah but I need to dress appropriately, like, what if we decide to go… rock climbing? What do I weeeeeaaaaar???”

“We’re not going rock climbing. Just wear something NICE!?!”

Little Black Dress

So what’s the answer to WHAT DO I WEAR? A little black dress, of course.

It’s the perfect outfit for any nice occasion! It’s always chic and always stylish. I never feel daggy or “badly put together”.

This little black dress is by FashionJunkee, and it’s one of those easy to wear, miracle dresses that hugs and fits in all the right places. It’s made from a thick fabric, which has a good, comfortable stretch to it. It feels like I’m wearing shapewear that pulls me in and helps with my posture.

It has some sheer lace at the top, a sweetheart neckline and cap sleeves. It’s cute as a button. And plus it is really affordable.

My styling notes are pretty straight forward.

I chose big, bold and colourful earrings, to add interest and sparkle. These are from Wanderlust and Co.

Black suede heels from Betts. I could walk all day in these.

Handbag is by Rebecca Minkoff from Shopbop.

And the chair? Well, I took this photo as I was heading out the door and there was all this kid stuff in my photo studio… so I just included it in my pic. I consider it to be a reflection of the reality of my life – surrounded by kids, mess and bright colours!

( See all my Daily Outfits here )

Check out more of my favourite online shops in my Women’s Online Fashion Shopping Guide.

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Casino Royale

4 March 2014

I have quite a few circles of friends, but I’d say that my biggest group of friends is my “scuba diving group”. Once upon a time we used to go scuba diving together. But now, you’d be hard pressed to find any one of us who has touched a wetsuit in years. We’re too busy with kids, mortgages, life. You know how it goes.

We still see each other often. We go camping together. We have barbecues together. We do outdoorsy things like bush walking, kayaking, boating, watching movies. We’ve created a happy little village for ourselves and our kids. It’s a rare and beautiful thing.

So it makes me beam with delight to see my friends (particularly this group of friends) all dressed up and without kids!

Tuxedos, bow ties, top hats, fedoras, shiny croc-skin pointy shoes!

Strappy silk dresses, flowing gold sequins, long satin gloves, pearls, fur, and diamonds!

My lovely girlfriend, Bec, celebrated her birthday with a Casino Royale theme party. There were card tables and roulette tables, finger food, dancing, entertainment, a DJ and a dance floor.

Casino Royale Theme Party

Now if you ask me honestly, I have to say that I don’t like gambling at all. Especially the whole “losing money” thing.

Plus I don’t like roulette. That spinning wheel? I can’t handle it. It makes me want to barf on the table.

But… I really like card games!

I played all kinds of card games when I was a kid and teenager and I am pretty good at it. Especially bridge, blackjack and poker.

I used to love playing poker. I can’t do a straight poker face to save my life. But, I can pretend to be a “ditzy princess” like a star. I’ll be chatting casually about frivolous topics like high heeled shoes, and then BAM I’ll throw a straight flush right atchya.

Casino Royale Theme Party

Look at me! I match the card table!

Because I can’t stand losing, it means I can’t play at casinos. My card playing skills get thwarted by my psychological inability to throw perfectly good money away. So I don’t take any risks, I am paralysed with anxiety and I play terribly.

But since we were playing with fake money at this party and I was amongst good friends… I enthusiastically DOVE HEAD FIRST into the card playing spirit. I could feel my competitiveness rise and rise.

As my chips multiplied like a single-celled organism, spilling all over the place, enveloping the table, I wanted more, more, MORE!

Deal faster damn it, faster! Quit talking! Stop entertaining us with card games, give me my hand noooow!

Unfortunately I lost all my fake money and I had to drown my sorrows on the dance floor haha.

Casino Royale Theme Party

This is what I wore! The dress code for the event was black tie glamour, not James Bond characters. So I wore my stunning Pia Gladys Perry dress that I reviewed here.

Perhaps because everyone else wore black, red, white, gold and silver gowns… I kind of stood out and I received so many compliments! Which is lovely and all, but I really think it’s a strange Kermit the Frog colour! Thank goodness it looks ok with my skin colour.

Casino Royale Theme Party

My girlfriend also gave me a gift. A souvenir for the night. I was told that my dress had a split that was worthy of a racey, lacey thigh gun holster.

So I walked around all night, with this knobbly thing between my legs and used it to pew pew all the law breakers.

It was such a great night!! :)