Tuesday, May 29, 2007

It's about time I started thinking about what we eat a little more carefully. Since starting at the gym my fitness level has been improving (it's not hard to get better when you're starting from zilch), but I have not been satisfied with my weight loss. So here I am again, trying to plan our meals in order to improve my eating habits. I am also trying to make our Friday night dinners a special celebration, for the end of the working week.

Monday: Chicken strips, broccoli, cauliflower and pasta in a tomato sauce.

Tuesday: Marinated lamb fillets (heart smart), chicken sausages for the children, Greek salad, baked potato.

Wednesday: Lentil and pumpkin stew, steamed rice.

Thursday: Lamb burgers, salad, chips for those of us who could use fattening up.

Friday: Coq au Vin, creamy mashed potato, steamed fresh greens. Apple charlotte and custard for dessert.

Saturday: Toast, bacon, eggs, homemade hash browns, baked beans and spaghetti for non egg eaters.

Sunday: Pumpkin soup, fresh bread rolls

Menu Plan Monday is an initiative of Organising Junkie

Monday, May 28, 2007

A few more photos from our trip to Dreamworld:
Joshua and Samara on the teacup ride at Wiggle World. It was clearly the most popular part of Dreamworld the day the we were there, crowded with wide eyed toddlers and pram pushing parents.

They had a lot of koalas, always fun to see. They're so cute and sleepy!

Christopher was thrilled to see a Tasmanian Devil, as he spent a lot of time doing a project about them last term at school. They're so darn ugly!!

Another sleepy koala.

And the tigers. They were spectacular! We managed to catch one of the tiger shows. Those kitties sure can leap! It amused me no end to see how similar their behaviour is to their smaller domestic cousins. It makes you just want to scritch them behind the ears :)

Sunday, May 27, 2007

What a great weekend! We explored the delights of Dreamworld and spent the night with Grandma and Pop. Samara had 'the best birthday ever!'.

Here are my beautiful babes. Samara is wearing the new clothes I bought her for her birthday. Too cute!

Samara, Christopher and I rode the Rugrats themed roller coaster. It was their first ever coaster ride. I am working hard to bring them up as dare devils, in spite of their father's aversion to fast rides! Samara wasn't so sure, but she was pretty happy by the end. Christopher was right as rain :)

There was an area devoted to Australian native animals. The kangaroos were very popular.

Samara tends to be cautious about the unknown, and of the three children she was the last to summon up the courage to feed the farmyard animals. You can see she did love the goats. Joshua said they were his favourite too. I have to agree with them. Goats are the prettiest creatures, with all their colours and patterns. And the outgoing personality is hard to resist!

But the real drawcard at Dreamworld at the moment are the two tiger cubs. Only a few weeks old, they are gorgeous, fluffy kittens, though a scary kind of big! We saw older tigers as well, and Joshua turned to me and sighed 'I wish I was a zoo keeper!'. I wish I was a zoo keeper too, they get to pat tigers!!

Saturday, May 26, 2007

It's Samara's birthday today. She's a great, big seven year old now, or will be in about 47 minutes. She doesn't know what an exciting day we have in store for her today.

We're going down to the Gold Coast for the weekend, and will be spending the day at Dreamworld. The kids don't kknow that bit yet, and I am so looking forward to seeing their reaction when we get there! Many photos will be forthcoming in the next few days.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

A Night at the Opera

Concert time again, and I am in fine proud mama fettle. The Queensland chapter of the Australian Youth Choir had their first concert performance of the year last night. It's our second year with the choir, so Christopher and I are old hands now! These children only get to rehearse all together once, three hours before the big show. The standard of performance is amazing. Every single time they manage to make me cry. Christopher is the tiny fellow, third down from the top on the righthand side of the choir. The photo is a bit dodgy because you're not supposed to have cameras in the concert hall, and I was trying not to draw attention to myself. Here's a closer up picture of our little angel...

The performance ended at about 7pm, and after collecting our over excited chorister, we walked through South Bank to have a yummy meal at Kapsali's. The kids thoroughly enjoyed the live entertainment, especially the belly dancer. We walked back along the river before taking Grandma and Pop up to the train station and driving home. It was a wonderful night. Made better by the fact that I stocked up on my favourite Lavender tea from tlicious. It's a lovely night cap!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

With all the beautiful tulip pictures that have been appearing in northern hemisphere blogs lately, I had to succumb to the tulip love. I was very surprised to see tulips for sale at my local supermarket, and I had to lash out and buy myself some. I do love having fresh flowers in the house, and with the drought preventing any significant gardening I have to get my flower fix somehow!

I have been tagged three times now for the seven things meme. I am not a big meme person ... I read others quite happily, but I am not such a big poster of them. I am not even sure if I'll be able to think of seven interesting things. To grossly misquote a passage from Jane Austen's Emma, maybe you should settle for 27 very dull things indeed!


1. My family didn't have a television until I was 11 years old. I sort of wish we didn't have one now.

2. I am an accidental love bird breeder. I started with two at the beginning of last year, and now we have 7. Anyone want a baby lovebird? All the young are hand tamed, and very sweet.

3. I can't stand spelling mistakes and grammatical errors in menus and public signage. I inherited this snobbery from my Dad.

4. I was possibly more traumatised than Joshua when he lost his toy puppies about a month ago. He found them last weekend, stuffed into a tiny bag and shoved behind some furniture. The relief was palpable.

5. I have a teapot fetish.

6. Same goes for china teacup trios.

7. I have far more craft plans than life expectancy. Sometimes I worry I'll die before I get the stuff I want to do done. This is probably inevitable, even if I lived to 150.

I am not going to nominate anyone to do this meme, since I have seen pretty much everyone I know do it in the last week or so!

Friday, May 04, 2007

Yes, I am still here. Doing a whole lot more reading than writing at the moment, that's all.

I started at a gym about a month ago, and the thought of exercise is consuming large parts of my brain. We're trying to eat more healthy food. I have lapsed lately into a morass of instant and easy prep food. Joining the gym gave me a shake up. My blood pressure was highish for the first time ever, and I can only blame my own laziness, both regarding exercise and diet. I have cleaned up my act, and am already feeling better for it.

The first day was hilarious. If you call almost passing out on a cross trainer after an appalling two minutes on the lowest setting hilarious. I am sure it would have looked funny. The second time I summoned up the courage to climb on the cross trainer was not much better. I had waited a couple of weeks before this attempt, trying to build up my level of fitness just a little before I faced that monster a second time. I lasted two and a half minutes. Then I fell off. I didn't think about how you have to slow these things down before you stop, and when I stopped, the machine kept going, and practically ate one of my legs. The bruise was quite impressive. At least the world didn't turn black and start spinning like the first time.

Now I have managed to build up to five minutes on the cross trainer, as well as increasing my intensity on the other machines, and I clamber off with all the grace a short pudding like myself can muster. I am enjoying feeling a little healthier, though I could sleep the clock around at the moment. When I first started at the gym Brett and the kids were on holidays, so I could indulge in the luxury of a nana nap. Now that they're all back at work and school I don't dare, for fear I'd sleep through school pick up time.