New Places!

Monday, October 25, 2010
It is so easy to get stuck in a rut! To keep doing the same things and going to the same places, and never really seeing, exploring or discovering new wonderful places and things that are right underneath your nose. I have recently come to the realisation that I had somehow transitioned from someone who loved exploring and finding new things, to someone who just likes to be comfortable and do the same old same old. Wow, this is not me at all...but it has become very much my lifestyle. I have decided the the only was to break out of the status quo is to challenge myself! So this is my simple, 'New Places' challenge. Nothing extravagant like packing up everything and moving countries (I've done that twice before) but just checking out new places in my City! New restaurants, new pubs, new cafes, new stores, new anything really, something that is not necessarily new to the city.. but a new experience to me! Who knows I might find new things I love or despise! But either way, I'll let you know about them, so maybe, you can try some of these new discoveries too! Already had my first new place experience this weekend, so I will update soon! Until then, remember life is short! Enjoy it...

My Mum finds the best things!

Thursday, October 21, 2010
I was pretty excited yesterday when my Mum gave me a couple of things that she picked up at antique fairs and opshops for me!

Firstly, these two awesome Embroidery Magic binders, they are filled with templates, stitch guides, ideas and everything else that someone like me could pour over for hours.
I love them! I also know that they will be very,very helpful in my development of embroidery.
Secondly, she picked up these cute little Betsey Clark Crewel Pillow Kits. They are pretty cute, I wouldn't of thought they were necessarily my style, but I think they can work in the right place! You can still see the price tag, my Mum always finds great deals.
Angus (of course) couldn't let photos get taken without being the poser that he is!
Just goes and sits right in the midst of it!
This one is a great shot of the huge bump on the top of his nose! It is so soft and velvety!
Now I better get back to my assignment, and stop procrastinating!

Germs Of Perfection: A Tribute To Bad Religion

Back in my high school days I was a big fan of Punk Rock! Recently I loaded some of my old CDs onto my ipod, I was feeling like I needed some more punk in my life, and I love how when you listen to particular music so many memories flash into your mind and it takes you back to a particular time in your life! Occasionally I still love to listen to a bit of Rancid, Pennywise, Bad Religion, NOFX, Goldfinger and many many more punk bands that hogged most of my cd collection.

Today I was particularly excited, because I found out that a group of different artists all did covers of Bad Religion songs. There are 12 songs in total! The best thing about it, is that they are all free. I downloaded them and am listening to them right now! I especially like Tegan and Sara's cover of Suffer. I also really enjoy Ted Leo's cover of Against The Grain, it is so weird hearing it so slow. Other cover artists include Guttermouth, The Weakerthans and Switchfoot.

If you want to get your hands on this wonderful free MIXTAPE of these artists paying tribute to Bad Religion.. Click HERE

Ask and you shall receive!

Monday, October 18, 2010
So exciting I found out last night that Woolworths is stocking American style pumpkins this year, after my previous blog about missing them, now they are here. My, my how Australia is becoming much more Americanized, although I think these are strictly Halloween pumpkins according to the advert, unlike in the USA how Pumpkins are associated more with Fall.
They are however $26 each. I don't really remember how much we payed for them in the USA, but I am pretty sure this seems pretty expensive. Most likely because they have been imported from somewhere. Either way, I might just get one...

Wecipe Wednesday...

Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Wecipe Wednesday!?!
This is one of my favourite things to make! It isn't really like a bar, it is more like a cake...and it is delectable (introducing it to my vocab thanks to Bill Compton) . This recipe is from my Pennsylvania First Church of God cookbook that was given to me as a wedding present, it has come in very handy when trying to prepare traditional Pennsylvania dishes to help Joels homesickness!

Ingredients: 1 cup sugar
1 cup mashed bananas
1/3 cup oil
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
cinnamon to taste
sprinkle of salt
nuts ( I use walnunts) or grape nuts cereal.

Grease a 9 x 13 inch pan. Beat sugar, bananas, oil and eggs together. Add flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Stir until moist. Add vanilla, cinnamon and salt. Mix in nuts, as many as you need. Bake 25-30 mins at 350F (180C). Cool completely and frost with cream cheese frosting.

1 (8oz) pack cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup butter
2 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla.

Cream together the cream cheese and butter. Add the sugar 1 cup at a time. Add vanilla and mix. Apply to cake when it is cool.

(By Christopher Weaver, Newville First Church of God)

Well this is definitely worth a try, I assure you. Of course, there is a whole lot of sugar in these, so I only make them every so often! But they sure are amazingly yum! Enjoy!

Adventures of a Weekend!

Monday, October 11, 2010
What a weekend, I am still exhausted! I need two more days off. I am still obsessed with my hipstamatic app on my phone, and like to take pictures all the time, unfortunately they are nowhere near as good as those on my digital SLR, but way more convenient to carry.

Stop One: Burgers at Grill'd in Mt Lawley Friday night: Best things about this place is the burgers, of course. I have only tried one, but it must be the best in my opinion the Mustard and Pickled! Also, they are BYO, brilliant. The boys brought their "beer sack" and then there was wine! Swings and Roundabouts is one of my favourite wineries, it is from Yallingup WA, and this Kiss Chasey Premium Red is not very expensive, but so so lovely!
Stop Two: Saturday, Cottesloe Beach. Our dear friend, and house guest Tony has a serious obsession with Fish and Chips, and what better place to eat them, but hanging out at Cottesloe on a lovely, warmish day!

Stop 3: Sunday Morning Farmers Market, with friends Kellie and Adam!I love this places, the community comes together with their kids and dogs and get produce and all sorts of interesting things from their local area! Plus it is sooo yummy, we walked away with a big bag full! Joel also got his fill of a Tamale, and me a Gozeme! Yummo!

I don't know who this musician is, but I would sure like to find out, she was really good.
There is one more event, but that will have to come later! It was a lovely weekend, with friends, good food and entertainment!

Great Day and New Project!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Best part of today so far was heading down and buying this Grab denim sleeveless jacket, best part of that was it was bought with a gift card from points earned with the credit card, so technically free. Really, I know better, just the credit card ploy to make you use it more, and the benefits are never quite worth it. For today though, I am happy, I feel a bit country. I need some sweet cowboy boots to go along with it, and I would fit right in. Side note: I must be going through a denim phase, because I bought a denim dress on sale, that would also go perfectly with some cowboy boots! Now I know what is next on the wish list! Second best part of today, I think I won One Movement Tickets for a big concert all weekend.. sweet, because I never win anything...

New Embroidery Project:

This is one of my favourite prints. It is from a tattoo flash, I believe from sailor tattoo artist extraordinaire Bert Grimm. Seeing I have no tattoos thus far, and I am still a bit tentative to get them, if I were to get anything, this may be it. For now though, I will embroider it and hang it on my wall, because simply, it is amazing and I love it! If after a while I still enjoy looking at it, I may decide to get inked. I first spotted this design last year when we were strolling down South Street in Philadelphia( you can see a black and white version in the top of the left flash sheet) ... and since then, I haven't been able to get it out of my head. I did get a suggestion to put a cupcake where the skull and cross bone is, that would be amazing, or maybe a needle and thread!
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For the Love of Chocolate

Friday, October 1, 2010
I am a self-confessed chocoholic. I could eat chocolate any time of the day or night. In the last couple of years I have learned a whole lot more about this delicious treat, and it is not about its calorie count. It is something that to be honest I would rather not know, and I could keep on eating whatever chocolate I want guilt free, apart, of course from the added excess to my hips and bum.

More than 70% of the worlds cocoa supply comes from West Africa, the countries Ghana and the Ivory Coast, and much of the work on the fields, harvesting is done by children. Not children who are working to provide for their families, but children who have been stolen or forced into slave labour. Children who have to work with "child sized" machetes with serious and very real risk of death or disfiguring injuries. Would you trust an 8 year old with a machete? I wouldn't, no matter what the size.

We have been jumping for joy lately that an Aussie favourite, Cadbury, has decided to make
their dairy milk bar 'fair trade'. Meaning that no child labour will be used in the harvesting of the cocoa beans, and the farmers will get a fair market price for their produce, and this of course is fantastic. I often think to myself , why are they getting all these congratulations, and pats on the back for not exploiting people. Shouldn't that just be the norm, that we don't take advantage of people less fortunate than us just so that we can get a better deal. The reality is, it is far from the norm. So many companies in so many industries for generations have been exploiting others so that they can get what they want and of course, make more money, and we, the consumer, un-knowlingly, or dare I say, un-caringly (in some cases), go along with it, no questions asked. If we make some noise, this doesn't have to be the norm any more. We don't remember the days when it was the norm to have slaves in England and America, but that used to be the norm too, until a small group of people rallied together for change, and now, we wonder how those generations could have thought it was ok. Do we want the future generations to think the same about us?

This is a great link with more information and actions that we can all take to tackle modern day slavery.
And if you want to learn more about Fair Trade: