5 Favourites Friday! (err Saturday)

Saturday, April 23, 2011
Ok well officially it is Saturday, and my 5 Favourites Friday post is late. Yesterday, because it was a public holiday I thought it was Saturday instead..whoops! This is what long weekends do to me. Plus this one is extra long because it is 5 days!
My 5 Favourites for this week are

5 Favourite BOOKS!
Disclaimer: I am not really a book snob, I haven't read a whole lot of the classics, but I like a good book that sucks me in and I can really enjoy. I had to read Virginia Wolf for University, and I will leave her to the professionals.. I wanted to poke my eyes out reading "To the Lighthouse"
These are not really in order of my favourites, it is just too hard to pick.

Jayne Eyre: Charlotte Bronte.
I read this book as well for university, and then I watched the old movie. I really just liked the story, the old woman in the attic intrigued me. I enjoyed the old fashioned love story, with a terrible twist. I really liked Jane's character as well. It was not a chore at all to read, I could hardly put it down. If you have read this, and want to read more about the "old woman", I have been told the "The Wide Sargasso Sea" is her story, it is a parallel novel by Jean Rhys.

Ender's Game: Orson Scott Card
Joel is probably the reason why I read way more Sci-Fi now than I ever thought to before. He introduced me to this book, which was the first of an entire series, that we have both read. Which then led us to read many of Orson Scott Card's other series, which I like just as much. If I say that this book is about a young boy who goes to military training camp in outer space to learn to fight off alien invaders it would probably put you off. Don't let my description frighten you, even if you don't like Sci-Fi, I think you would enjoy it, this is a great book.

The Time Traveller's Wife : Audrey Niffenegger
If you have seen the movie, but not read the book, you should know that the movie SUCKS in comparison. The book is amazing. It jumps from time zone to time zone and from different peoples perspectives so cleverly, that even I wasn't confused. I cried so hard in this book, that's when I know that I am really sucked in. Although it can take a little bit to get your head around what is happening, Niffenegger writes it so well, I still knew what was going on, it easily could have just been do confusing and mind boggling.

Marley & Me : John Grogan
If you hate dogs, then you probably wont like this book. For me it reminded me of my childhood. We had a crazy Golden Retriever called Champ for a couple of years before he had to be put down because of cancer, and then a more passive Goldy, Ben, for about 12 years after that, who also did lots of silly things. So reading this book brought back so many memories, even now with the drama we have been through with Angus our Shar Pei, I just felt I could relate so well. Dogs really are amazing, and no matter how ridiculously naughty they are, how much money they cost you, they are so loyal and loving. I felt this book captured all of that, and the attachment that we feel to these funny furry creatures! I guess, as a dog lover, it was so easy for me to love this book. Once again, the movie is pretty lame compared to the book.

The Celtic Crusades Series : Stephen Lawhead
I probably read this series about 8 years ago. I can't just pick one book because they all go together in my mind. The first book starts in the year 1095 and follows stories of the crusades to the East, the last of the infidels, called by the Pope. Although it is not necessarily historically accurate, it is historical fiction. It brings to light a lot of questions about what actually went on during that time, and showed how easily people became convinced they were in fact doing the right thing, and how they were manipulated. It is definitely a great read, and it might just be the history lover in me, I really couldn't stop reading all three of these books: The Iron Lance, The Black Rood & The Mystic Rose. I have also read a lot of other series by Lawhead, he is one of my favourite Authors of all time!

On the hunt for Nursery Rocking Chair/ Glider

Thursday, April 21, 2011

One of the big items that I want for our new nursery (which by the way has not made much progress since my last post about it) is a Rocking/ Gliding chair. I know some people love the ones that they find in the regular baby shop. For me, it is just not really the style that I am going for. To be completely honest I don't really want a nursery chair that looks like it belongs in my Nanna's house in front of the TV. I am trying to locate, discover, uncover a great rocking chair, that is an affordable price, durable and is most of all Comfortable, seeing we will be spending a number of hours in it over the next few years. I have been scouring ebay and gumtree for old vintage recliner/rockers that I can reupholster, but for right now there hasn't been anything that has met my fancy. My preference would be something with fabric padded arms, but I guess a couple of giant cushions could also help sort that problem out.

These are some of my top picks from scouring the world wide web. It seems though that Australia's options for nursery rockers are far less than that of America and even Europe and that makes me sad. Why are we so far behind in this Aus?

This Storytime rocker from Nursery Works featured in one of the nurseries in a previous post. Except I didn't know what it was then. Well now I do. It looks so great, I wish I knew if it was comfy or not. I have only been able to find them online. They retail for about $1099 at bebeonline.com.au

This chair is gorgeous. It is the Mo-Ma Glider by Olli Ella. They are new to Australia, and as a bonus they also make them here in Australia now too. Now, these are a little pricier, you can buy them on Olli Ella's website olliella.com.au for $1699, but that does include delivery. They also come in a choice of 5 different colours. They do state on their website that this chair will "last for generations" so if it a stylish, good quality, long lasting glider you want. I know I am tempted. They have a few more gliders that are yet to make it to Aus, they look fab too!

This is a Replica Eames style rocking chair from clickonfurniture.com.au , I love the look of it. I think that it is cute and stylish, and comes as a pretty good price $295 for their fibreglass one, or $129 for the plastic. I am just a bit worried it wont be that comfortable, although I have seen many nurseries decorated that include on of these style rockers. I guess it would be a try it and see. This one at clickon also struck my fancy, even though it is not traditionally a rocker.
But I think that it is pretty great. This one is on Sale at the moment for $999 including ottoman.
Of course Ikea has to feature! They have this Poang rocker, that also comes with a footstool. Although the footstool doesn't rock like some. They have lots of fabric choices, you know they are pretty easy to come by, and they range from $199-$359 depending on the fabric you choose to go with. Because of the price and versatility this one definitely ranks high in my books. We used to have a Poang chair by Ikea, and it lasted us a while and I remember them being pretty comfortable.

Even though I haven't found out if you can get this rocker in Australia yet, I needed to feature it because I LOVE it. It is the Jens Risom Rocker, picture found at www.dwr.com.
It is also around $2000 USD, so I can only imagine how much more it would be here in Australia.

Obviously I have got some decisions to make, and some more searching to do. Searching for money in the bank account maybe!! I hope that if you are looking for a rocker too, that this is helpful. Happy nursery hunting!

New Places: Lancaster Winery

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Lancaster Winery is located in the Swan Valley, in Western Australia. Not, as many people may think Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Because we had visitors from the Lancaster, PA region here last week we thought that it was fitting that we go and visit the winery. since we were already hanging out in the Swan Valley.

I liked this winery because it isn't all fancy and posh. It is simply just a tasting shed out among the vineyards. It is not filled with tid bits and souvenirs, just people hanging out tasting wine and cheese. You feel like you are really where the wine is being made, it is not dressed up, just quaint and lovely, the scenery is gorgeous. Lancaster does not sell their wines in bottleshops, they are exclusive to the tasting shed and on their website: http://www.lancasterwines.com.au/ if anyone is interested.

I unfortunately only had a teeny tiny sip of Joel's wine, but wanted a lot more! From the verdict of the wine tasters there with us, Joel and his Uncle and Auntie, they are pretty great wines. The prices are also pretty good, ranging from $14-$79. I will be making sure that we head back there when I have had this baby, and Joel will be the designated driver this time!! Although I wasn't tasting, I did get to enjoy the location! It was really lovely.

5 Favourites Friday!

Friday, April 15, 2011
This week has flown by again...

The 5 Favourites topic for this week is...
Things from the 90's!

The 90's hold great memories for me, it was my school years, my great childhood and just getting sucked in to whatever fad came out. So these are more what were my favourite things in the 90's than what I would now say are my favourites! Does this make sense. As a kid in the 90's this was the stuff that I was obsessed with, as embarrassing as it is now.

1. Troll Dolls
I remember in Perth there was a store completely dedicated to Trolls, and whenever we went out with my Nanna and Pop we always ended up at the Troll shop. It was a magical place for me. Here is a sneak peak of my troll collection. Yes, I still have them tucked away in a cupboard, waiting for another generation to play with them! Here is most of my collection...

2. Making Mix Tapes
In high school I used to spend hours listening to CD's and then pressing "play and record' simultaniously on the stereo to record my favourite songs and listen to them on my Walkman.. oh yes, I said Walkman. Making mix cd's is so much easier than making mix tapes was. Timing and precision was essential, starting immediately and laying in wait to stop the recording before the next track started. I hope that somewhere I still have some of those mix tapes.

3. The Video Board Game "Nightmare"
I have never really met anyone else who had ever heard of this, so maybe it wasn't actually that popular in the 90's. Released in 1991 it was a Horror board game with an accompanying video. I remember playing it at a birthday party with a bunch of my friends who were having a sleepover. First we had Fondue for dinner and then played this game in the dark. So scary, I probably would still be scared today if I played it.

4. Dinosaurs

Oh I used to love this show. All I remember now though is the baby dinosaur always saying "Not the Mama". I am pretty sure it was not that great, and I don't think I would want to watch a full episode now, because it would just ruin all those fond memories I have.

5. R.L Stine's Goosebumps Books
Even those this pretty much makes me cringe now, and it is pretty embarrassing, I had to include them. I seriously think I had about 50 plus Goosebumps books, I had a whole bookshelf full of them. I would make sure that they were perfectly in order, and every time a new one came out I would be down the shops buying it so fast. I really was a lover of these books. They were scary, without being too scary, they were about pre-teens just like me. Just to make matters worse I was also a huge fan of The Babysitters Club books, pretty much anything by Enid Blyton especially the Magic Faraway Tree & Wishing Chair series. Yeah, I know.. lame.. but what can I say, I loved them!

Kangaroos and Baby Bumps!

Monday, April 11, 2011

This is a place out in the hills of Perth, where the Kangaroos just chill out because the pub leaves food and water out for them. It is pretty cool because you can get nice and close and see them in their natural habitat, not inside a fenced in area! Always a treat to see some Kangaroos!!

And today I hit 24 weeks pregnant! Woah, 6 months. I seriously cannot believe that I am this far along already. Starting to feel bigger and heavier these days! I know that this is nothing compared to the next few months.. but it is so exciting.

Hope you like the background of the WA bush! Cos I sure do!! If you look closer you might spot some friendly Kangaroos chilling out!

5 Favourites Friday!

Friday, April 8, 2011
Well it is that time of the week again, Friday!! Oh the best day because you know that you have two full days of relax awaiting you. This weekend is especially exciting because we have Joel's Aunt and Uncle coming to stay with us!
It is also a great time of the week because now I know that I am always doing..

This weeks favourites are my 5 Favourite Blogs!

First up is A Beautiful Mess

This blog is what initially inspired me to start blogging, and showed me the amazing connected world of handmade! I found it because I was looking for scrapbooking brands and material that wasn't grandma'ish. Now this is not a scrapbook blog, but Elsie Flannigan who owns abeautifulmess used to have her own scrapbooking line. To make a long story shorter, now this blog is about fashion, design, lifestyle and her vintage/handmade/cupcake store called Red Velvet. It is really a great blog and constantly a source of inspiration to me.

Next up is Smile and Wave.This is owned by Rachel Denbow, best friend of Elsie (above). Although, quite different to a beautiful mess you can definitely tell these girls are connected. Rachel's blog is about kids, craft, vintage and she always has some great ideas and insights that especially in this phase of my life I feel like I can relate to.

Third is Sublime Stitching This is a blog by a lady named Jenny Hart. It is how I initially saw how great modern day embroidery could be and made me really want to give it a shot. Jenny has a couple of books about embroidery published, and offers great embroidery tips on her blog. She has some great designs that you can purchase through the store and she really loves embroidery.

Fourth, this is a new one for me, Powered by Pastries.
I only found it about a week ago. Already, I have utilised it to start to re-design my blog (if you didn't notice) I downloaded one of Powered By Pastries free blog templates and I really love it. I like the style of the blog design, and I really love all the great tips about how to improve your blog. I am such a html amateur, I am really looking forward to new posts and learning more about blog design!

Fifth, Design Sponge.
As I am always trying to think of new ways to decorate my house that are not the usual go down to the store and buy the stock standard, this blog always inspires me. Like I am loving this re-upholstered couch! I love all the features, especially the before and after posts of furniture and articles that have been reconditioned. Makes me so excited to try them myself.

Wow, I could probably do 10 or 15 favourites on this topic so easily. One thing I realise that they all have in common, is they all have been a source of Inspiration for me. This keeps me going back and checking often. It is a good thing for me to remember about my own blogging journey, and how I can improve.

Cloth Nappies: Good idea or crazy Mum...

Tuesday, April 5, 2011
So I am pretty sure, that I have decided that I am going to go down the cloth nappy route. Yes, I know.. this probably means that I am naive, and I don't really know what I am getting myself into. Maybe so, but at least I want to give it a try. I talk about this a lot with my Mum. She raised four children, all in cloth nappies, because back then disposables were pretty average quality and really expensive. They weren't the fan dangled cloth nappies that we see today, they were just cloth squares that needed to be folded and pinned, with those ginormous pins that are only used for punk rockers to hold their jeans together these days. In my head, I am thinking, with much encouragement from my Mum.. "if she can do it, surely I can do it too". Not only that but the options today make it soooo much easier than it ever was 20+ years ago. You can even buy these great hoses that connect to your toilet to rinse unwanted stuff down the loo easily. You can buy smell holding bags that store nappies when you are out and about. You don't have to soak them forever anymore either.
(here is a very old picture of one of my brothers wearing this daggy cloth nappy! I am sure he will hate that I put this up. Yes, that is me in the background in my awesome nightie)

So if most of our Mothers did it, and they managed just fine, why is it that so many people around my age with children give me the look like, "you wont last a week". Maybe I will fail miserably in this quest, maybe it will all be too much. Seeing I don't have a baby that I need to change multiple times a day, I am not really sure just yet. All I am saying is that personally I want to give this a shot, I want to try and save money and yes the environment from being loaded up with landfills of nappies that don't breakdown for hundreds of years. Maybe I am just naive and idealistic...but I will report back after August and let you know how I am going!

But of course I would love to hear from any Mum's out there who use them and love them!! I have had a lot of negativity about this choice, but know that they are so popular these days.

And.. look how cute these nappies from itti bitti are these days... oh boy!

New Places: Ootong & Lincoln

Sunday, April 3, 2011
Don't let the unusual name put you off this cafe in South Fremantle. I am so happy because South Freo is really starting to thrive, with all these great new little cafe's and restaurants. I am so glad I live so close. I am not sure why this is the first time I have been to Ootong and Lincoln, it definitely will not be the last. I have been to the building before, when it used to be a quaint little antique store/devonshire tea cafe, but now it is a whole lot different, and dare I say better!

Yes the food was good, the smoothie was also good. Joel says the coffee is good too, although I wouldn't know because I don't drink it. What I really loved about Ootong and Lincoln is the design and decor. Although simple and spacious, it is really retro, quirky and fun. Some of the things that stood out to me were that most of the lights on the ceiling were encased in old glass jars, the lighting cables were strung across the ceiling like tinsel. Then to top that off, I noticed a couple of lights in the back area, laundry baskets as lamp shades!What a fabulous idea, they looked great. Each table was different, and they were accompanied by matching seats, all vintage and many were retro. Above the windows, which covered the whole front wall was a large shelf that held many old small bicycles and tricycles, so cute.
All in all, I was impressed by this place, there was nothing "normal" used for the decor, they had old telephones hanging on the wall, and a number of bike hooks so people can hang their bikes up whilst they dine. They also included hooks on one wall that were large wooden spoons.

5 Favourites Friday!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Well it is Friday again, I knew once I started this series that Fridays would sneak up on me. It is fun though to have something to plan for

This week is a bit obscure: 5 Favourite Girl Group Songs from the 60's !!
I couldn't just pick 5 songs ever, or even 5 songs from a decade, my love so much music from the past has made me sad if I end up leaving out songs that I know are wonderful, so I had to narrow it down even more!

The 60's was full of girl groups singing the cheesiest love songs but for some reason, I love them.. so if you want the cheese of yesteryear..then you should take a trip back to some of these all time greats! I remember being in primary school and listening to these songs in my room. Singing as loud as I could, and feeling pretty good about myself! I was thrust unknowingly into a love of all things 60's when I got my first CD player for my birthday, accompanied by the CD "Jukebox hits of the 60's" ever since then, the hits of this decade seem to resonate with me. I just can't help but love them. Especially all these...

The Angels: My boyfriend's back

Betty Everett: The Shoop Shoop Song (It's in his kiss)

Shangri Las : Leader of the Back

One Fine Day : The Chiffons

It's My Party: Lesley Gore

Have Fun Listening!!
For me these oldies are a great start to the Weekend!!