Thursday, November 25, 2010

ALL CAPS shopping

I didn't exactly plan it, but today revolved around shopping at stores with names in ALL CAPS.

The first stop was ALDI. As usual they have an eclectic mix of 1-week only specials.  On my "to buy" list was the ultrasonic cleaner ($24.95).


I put my rings in for a clean tonight and there were fluff coming out of the claws!  And the diamonds are shiny now.

I also bought 6 crystal wine glasses for $9.99, you can't go wrong with prices like that!

After lunch, we drove to DFO at Homebush and met up with my MIL.  She wanted a new purse for Christmas.  I thought she might find something from Oroton, but she chose this one from Strandbags.  The compartments are exactly how she wanted, and the leather is nice and soft.  It is a good bargain too!



I also managed to pick up a little something for myself.  A bubble hem skirt from Jigsaw for the princely sum of $35 (the RRP is $229 - I feel sorry for anyone who paid that).


Here's the print up close.


It's perfect for summer, no?

The trip to IKEA was an impromptu one.  I thought TLG would enjoy the kids' play area, but upon arrival I discovered that it has a minimum age requirement of 3.  So I did the next best thing and bought a few things from IKEA's kids' collection.


KUNISER boxes ($14.99) - to store all his small cars and trucks.


VESSLA storage crate ($9.99, plus lid $3)


TLG saw it at the store and said something like "put all the toys in there". He's such a smart little boy :-)

And this is the crate in action.


I think it looks good!  I may buy a few more next time and stack them up.

TLG woke up in the middle of the night and asked for "my blanket".  He only had a small blanket he received as a present at birth, so it was time to get him a proper one.  I bought the LEN STJÄRNA cot quilt ($39.99) as well as 2 sets of quilt and pillow covers.


VITAMINER TRUMMA ($16.99)


And BARNSLIG NATTEN ($19.99)


And this is what it looks like IRL with TLG modelling.


Moving on to food.  Have a look at our dinner tonight.

Lamb rissoles with diced tomatoes with onion and capsicum.


With a side of mixed salad leaves with cherry tomatoes, chèvre cheese, and balsamic and cameralised fig dressing.


Last but not least, check out the sunflowers!


P.S. All of today's photos were taken with our new camera (in "idiot-proof" auto mode).  Mr Curious and I are pretty impressed with it so far.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Tick tock tick tock

Some of you may know that I wroteanother blog two years ago when Mr Curious and I moved into our current home.  One of the posts was about choosing a new clock.  Well, fast forward two years and we still don't have one!  We usually use the little digital clock on the microwave, but if the microwave is in use, or if we didn't press "clear" after the timer is up, we have no idea what the time is.

I was flicking through Inside Out at the library today and this clock captured my attention.


The Popov Cuckoo Clock ($125, Santina's) - I mean, who doesn't like a cuckoo clock?

That would be Mr Curious.  I show him the clock and he said "I don't want any clock that makes noise".  Where is his sense of fun?  But I guess  I don't want the clock chiming loudly at 3am in the morning either.

I have not ruled out this clock completely but I did a bit more searching.

Karlsson 3D Dots Aluminium Disc Wall Clock in Mirror ($59.95, Gifted)


Karlsson Spirograph Wall Clock in White ($99.95, Gifted)


Karlsson Dome Wall Clock in Black ($79.95, oo.com.au)


Karlsson Disc Swinging 6 Wall Clock with Black Pendulum ($89, Santina's)


Out of these four, my favourite is the last one at the moment, but it's a bit hard to make a final call without seeing them in person.  Santina's has two stores in Sydney so I may check it out.

Which one do you like?  Or do you have other suggestions?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

My new toy

My dad came back to Australia yesterday and we met up tonight for dinner. He bought a new toy for us.


It's a Canon Powershot G12 camera! I can't wait to play around with it. And you'll see the results on this blog :-)

Saturday, November 20, 2010

A morning at the Markets

It was a beautiful morning - the perfect day to spend outdoors.

Mr Curious, TLG, my FIL and I headed to the Northside Produce Markets at Civic Park in North Sydney to stock up on some fresh food.


My FIL babysat TLG at the playground whilst Mr Curious and I checked out the stores.  It was much more relaxing than trying to push the stroller through the crowd!  It was almost like a date for us.

We started off with a bacon and egg damper roll each and it was glorious!  No photo as they were consumed very quickly ;-)

Here are some goodies from our haul.

Over the Moon Non-homogenised whole Jersey milk ($6 for 2L)


If I am to recommend one thing from the markets, this will be it. It is easily the best tasting milk I've ever had. Yes it's full cream, but it's perfect fine as a treat once in a while.

Drover's Choice saltbrush lamb easy calve leg ($30)


All I can say is "yum"!  We also bought some lamb rissoles for a mid-week dinner.

Ox-heart tomatoes - so fresh and juicy


Some mushroom for a simple pasta dish.


Various Gumnut biscuits ($21 for 3 bags)


I've only tried the freckles so far and they're delicious!

And last but not least, I bought some beautiful sunflowers.


I chose buds that have not opened up yet.  The florist told us to soak the stems in hot water for about 20 seconds beforehand and they will open up easily.

All in all it was a great morning.  What are you up to this weekend?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Christmas shopping for my sister

My sister lives overseas and it's usually easier to buy her presents online so they can be delivered to her directly. Last year I bought her a gift voucher for a day spa. This year I'm thinking about a handbag. I asked her what she wants but she is too busy at work to respond (she often works overnight, it's madness!) so I think it's up to me to choose.

Here are a few bags from Nordstrom that look promising.

kate spade new york 'gold coast - maryanne' quilted leather shopper ($US445)


It's sophisticated and suitable for both work and a day out.

kate spade new york 'tompkins square - billie' satchel ($US375)


It's elegant, and a good size so she can fit lots of documents in (as she is a lawyer she is surrounded by paper).

Furla 'Tate M Tracolla Lucchetto' Flap Bag (on sale, $394)


Furla is a great mid-priced designer brand and I was sad when they left Australia a few years ago. I love the look of the soft leather. I'm a bit tempted to get one in this colour for myself.


And last but not least, MARC BY MARC JACOBS 'Totally Turnlock - Helena' Satchel (on sale, $US304.90)


Regular readers of this blog will know that I'm a fan of MBMJ bags, and I've seen cclarebear's Turnlock Shifty Tote in person and it's really lovely.

So it's decision time.  Which one should I get for my sister (and should I get one for myself?)

UPDATE: By the time I made up my mind to get the MBMJ bag and confirmed delivery details with my BIL, the bag was sold out.  So I bought the Shifty Tote instead.


I made the purchase and it went through smoothly, then Nordstrom sent me an e-mail saying that the bag is in backorder, and there is no expected date of delivery.  All they said was "We are working to complete your order as soon as possible". I'm not impressed - they better find a bag for me pronto!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Wall of Hands


I used to participate in a fair bit of volunteer work. I have directed bike traffic at the Big Ride, wrapped Christmas presents for the MS Society, and ushered at a Desperate and Dateless ball.  I love to do my part for the community, and I always enjoyed my experiences.

Now with a job and a toddler, I can't spare the time to volunteer, which is a shame.  Hopefully I'll find the chance to do so in the future.

In the meantime, I am contributing finanically to worthy causes where I can.  I saw an ad for the Wall of Hands on smh.com.au today.  According to the Australian Literary and Numeracy Foundation, 4 in 5 indigenous kids in remote communities can't read. It is the aim of the Foundation to work with indigenous communities and schools to improve literacy rates.

I think about how much I enjoy both writing and reading, and promptly made a donation to the Foundation.  I hope that my small contribution will help a child on his or her path to literacy.

You can read more about Wall of Hands here.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Summer wardrobe part 2

I received a lot of compliments on the dresses I bought in my last ASOS order so I'm back on the website to add to my summer wardrobe, as well as get a new swimsuit.

Unfortunately the Seafolly swimsuit is no longer available in my size.  I show the swimsuits on my shortlist to Mr Curious and not surprisingly he picked the Pussy Galore, so I'm going to order it.

I decided against the colourful kaftan that I mentioned in the last post; I am going for something a bit more understated instead.

ASOS Pom Pom Cotton Beach Kaftan (on sale, £14)


I like the maxi dress I ordered last time, so I'm getting another one with the same cut.

Liquorish Tile Print Maxi Dress (on sale, £15)


And here are two more summer dresses.

Freesoul Contrast Panel Strappy Dress
(on sale, £17)


ASOS Premium Embroidered Empire Dress (on sale, £26)


I am also ordering a few basics for TLG including this.

Little ASOS Mini Skulls T-Shirt (£6)


Last but not least here are some accessories to complete the order.

Too Faced Glamour To Go Fairy Edition (£16) - A good selection of colours and handy on holidays.


ASOS Keyhole Retro Sunglasses (£10) - A pair of sunnies to wear around at the pool or the beach at Fiji. I hope they fit!


With a 20% discount (GRAZIANOV code until 17 November) the total is less than $A200.  Very good value in my books.

My shopping ban is truly over!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A dip in the pool

TLG started his swimming class today.  At his age there was no actual swimming, just lots of moving around in the pool.  He did much better than I thought, given he was quite distressed when we took him to the pool a month or so ago.  I was really surprised to see that he could support himself by hanging on to the side of the pool with his arms!

I hope he enjoys the water as we will be spending lots of time on the beach or in the pool in Fiji.

Speaking of Fiji, I am thinking about getting a new swimsuit.  I have a few bikinis that are holiday appropriate but my one piece swimsuits are all too "serious" and I want to have something fun.

Since ASOS has a 20% discount on now I'm having a browse there.

Pineapple Pussy Galore Swimsuit (on sale, £22)


Mr Curious will be happy with the cleavage, and I think it's a pretty flattering cut. But is it a bit boring?

Spot Skirted Cut Out Back Swimsuit (£26)


I think this one is a lot of fun, but am I too old for this?

Ruffle Swim Dress (£35)


This looks great on the model, but I'm NOT a model and I have big hips, and this may make them look even bigger.

Seafolly Spot Frill Suit (on sale, £44)


I like the frills and the polka dots, and Seafolly is a familiar brand.

And from the bargain bin:

Pleat Detail Swimsuit with Secret Support (on sale, £8)


It looks super bright in the photo, but in the video it is a softer green.  It is probably the most flattering cut out of the five.

And finally, what do you think about this kaftan (on sale, £12)?  It looks nice on the model but will it look bulky in real life?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Chill out Wednesday

My brother B paid us a visit today.

TLG fell asleep in the car after playgroup, however the transfer from the car to his cot failed, so we headed to Balmain for lunch instead.

We didn't have a place in mind.  After a bit of window shopping we went to a cafe called Fundamental.  They have mix-and-match salads for $11 each (5 to choose from) and we ordered one each (TLG ate off my plate).  When the dishes came we were amazed by the serving size.  What a bargain!

I ordered half brown rice salad with dried blackcurrants and cashews, and half pesto pasta salad with sun-dried tomatoes.


The brown rice salad was yummy - really fresh and perfect for a warm day like today. I ordered the pasta salad mainly for TLG but I enjoyed it too.

B ordered half tuna nicoise salad and half roasted pumpkin and green bean salad.  He enjoyed it too.


After lunch we were strolling along Darling Street and I came across The Little Marionette.  A Balmain local recommended it before so B and I bought a coffee each.  I was not disappointed.  It was one of the smoothest coffees I've ever had.  I only had a weak one because I already had a coffee in the morning, next time I'll try a full strength one.

One of the reasons we went to Balmain was to pick up a few more macarons from Adriano Zumbo.  There are so many blog posts about Maracon Day last Satuday (see here and here for starters) so I'll keep it short.  I bought 7 flavours - chocolate salt and vinegar, burnt toast, mandarin, redskins, sichuan pepper, choc mayonnaise and pear vanilla macadamia).  I've only had the burnt toast and redskins so far and they tasted exactly like their namesakes.  Amazing.

TLG was over-tired by then so we hopped back on the car and he fell asleep fairly soon.  After dropping by a friend's place briefly we drove to Birkenhead Point.  Thankfully I was able to transfer TLG into the stroller without any trouble, so B and I could take our time with the shopping.

I may have lost my Oroton retractable umbrella (it's not official yet, the current status is "misplaced"), so I went to the Oroton outlet for another umbrella.  This time I bought a full length umbrella in pale blue and white.  Good value at $25.


Here's a closer look.


I also picked up the Jackie Hobo in silver for Miss Kitty-Cat.  I hope she likes it.

After that it was time for the Alannah Hill outlet, and I added Mind Your Manners Pet! to my AH cardi collection.


It's like a winter version of the Save Me! Cardi.  It is down from an RRP of $229 to $99, and it's wool and cashmere, so it's a good bargain in my book.

I also picked up the Party Secrets headband and The Heart-Felt Suicide clip as gifts.  They're lovely but I'm a bit old for those now ;-)


With a lighter wallet it was time for home.

It's always fun to see B and TLG loves his uncle B, so it was a great day for all.

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