Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas 2013 and around here

Christmas was a low key affair around these parts. We went up to see S's grandmother Christmas morning, S's brother for an hour in the afternoon and then out to dinner Christmas night.

The highlight was definitely dinner and drinks. We ventured up to the O bar which is on the 47th floor of the Australia Square building. It is a slowly rotating bar, so during the hour and 45 minutes we were there we saw a full view of the city. It was really pretty and really quite romantic up there. We had a few cocktails each then headed (in the rain) to our dinner reservation at The Four Seasons restaurant - The Woods.
The menu was a la carte and there were about four options for each course. I didn't take any pictures of the food because I was too busy enjoying it, but let's just say it was delicious. I'll definitely be back to try more of their food.

Since then, we have mostly been lazing around the house. We were invited to a street party the other night and got home at 1:30am. A great bunch of people. The next morning Ted was really sick from a bone we'd (stupidly) given him. We ended up taking him to the vet as for the first time ever he refused food and water and he was really sluggish. He is home and fine now (no bones lodged in there anywhere) and our pockets are much lighter from the hefty vet bill.

I hope your Christmas season was lovely!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

What did Rhi do on the weekend?

This past weekend was the first weekend S has had off study in three months. We used to that to our biggest advantage and saw a lot of people who probably felt neglected during our studies.
These boys!
Friday night M, T and baby H came over for dinner. Baby H is almost 6 months old and just divine. He is such a happy baby and a pleasure to be around. Also not great for my ovaries. I made a really delicious lasagne and even surprised myself at how good it was. If I had taken pics, I would do a recipe post - it was that good.

Saturday and Sunday were spent seeing family and hanging out at S's family farm. This could well be the last Summer we get to spend at the farm so we are soaking up the time the best we can. The pool is pretty glorious on a hot day like Sunday and most of the day was spent pool side. We also went to get the car cleaned and I felt so bad because it was so hot and those young guys looked wrecked.
I have had an alcoholic drink every day since the weekend and I am not even sorry. It is the season, after all. 

In other totally exciting news, my best friend in the whole world got engaged on Sunday night and I could not be more excited for her and C. Congrats guys, you are a perfect couple!

I hope you all have a lovely Christmas and thanks for reading this little blog here!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

20 things you didn't know about me

  1. I google the end of movies while I am watching them
  2.   I am hilarious and cuddly and really friendly when I have had a few drinks.
  3.  I have only two pairs of heels. I am not a shoe person
  4. I often speak out loud what I think Teddy is thinking. In his ‘Teddy voice’.
  5.   I am a scrooge. I prefer to save money than spend it and I have successfully ‘trained’ a few people I know.
  6.   As soon as I walk through the door I put on gym gear even when I have no intentions of working out (95% of the time).
  7.   I look for new ways to better myself all the time. I don’t accept things as they are and often do my own research.
  8. My socks never match.
  9.   After S gets up in the morning (usually before me), I roll over to his side of the bed because it has ‘his’ warmth (I don’t even know how to explain that).
  10. My hands and feet swell after I eat carbs and when it is hot.
  11.  When I am nervous or upset, I can’t keep my hands still. S usually notices that before I do.
  12.  Sometimes I see what people spend their money on and wonder why? Until I remember that we all spend our money on the things WE like. Der.
  13.  I LOVE coffee. I am a coffee snob and I don’t care what people think of that.
  14.  I want babies and I don’t care if they come BEFORE marriage. I don’t care what people think of that, either (and no, I am not trying for a baby. I want babies but not just yet).
  15. I work in statistics. That is as exciting as it sounds...
  16.  Following on from the point above, if you knew me 10 years ago you would never have thought I would be now in this career. In fact, even I sometimes wonder how I did an economics degree and made it here.
  17. I long for a nicely decorated home and a thriving garden. But I am too lazy to action it. I always use the excuse that I’ll wait until I buy a house.
  18.  I don’t have a poker face. My expressions tell you exactly what I am thinking. I’ve had a few people call me out on the dirty looks I give when I disapprove. I don't mean to do it and hardly realise I am doing it.
  19.  I am the only person in my whole family (extended included) to attend and finish Uni.
  20.  In person I swear a lot.
Tell me; what don't I know about you?

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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

What did Rhi do on the weekend?

Hello all!
Another weekend gone by and only one more until Christmas. I know most of you are excited, but I am not.
I spent another weekend around the house with little side trips out to do the grocery shopping, have drinks at a neighbour’s house and then more drinks with friends on Sunday afternoon.
Friday I had a work Christmas thing (just divisional). The only reason I am mentioning this is because I think the gift I gave my Kris Kringle was the best.
Saturday night our neighbour had a pre-Christmas get together. Her parties are always the most fun and most wild parties you have ever been too depending how much alcohol you consume. I decided to give my body a break from all the Christmas drinks I’d consumed and only had 2 drinks, so the night was early for me. I was tired and in bed by 11:30pm. Lucky the walk home was short.
Us before the party. My mouth is huge
Salted Caramel chocolate tart
Sunday was drinks with friends in Chippendale at a darling little pub called the Duck Inn.
Our friends M and T have a 5 month old baby who is just the cutest little boy ever. I suppose everyone thinks that of their own kids and/or friends kids, but really he is. I got to play with him while his parents ate their lunch and we had a lot of fun in front of a giant fan. Who knew fans could be so fun! I hear the food there is amazing – it sure did look it (I wasn’t hungry, so didn’t eat).
In other news, my house still shows no signs of the impending Christmas season and to be honest, it probably won’t. I have been really slack to even buy the decorations let alone put them up, so I might just have another ‘no decoration’ year and perhaps try harder to get it done a little earlier next year.
I am currently reading a book called ‘The dog lived (and so will I). I have been reading it for about 2 weeks thinking it was a fiction book. That was until I googled it (I was getting bored and wanted to know the ending) and it is actually a memoir. It’s a good book, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to read it again…or recommend it for that matter. Have you read any good books lately? I need some new books.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Salted Caramel Chocolate tart

I found this recipe on a blog many moons ago (I can't remember who's - if it is yours, please do tell me!). I remember making it when I first saw it and the ganache being too bitter as I used two blocks of Lindt 70% dark chocolate, so this time I changed up the recipe and used some Lindt milk chocolate and Lindt 70% dark chocolate. 

The recipe is really easy and perfect if you are whipping it up at the last minute like me. Since I rarely forward-think, I am often looking for last minute ideas for sweets/savouries to take to parties. My neighbour hosted a little Christmas get together with the only request being for everyone to bring a sweet or savoury snack.
You will need: 
A sweet pie base (frozen section of coles)
180grams of chocolate
1/4 cup thickened cream
A tin of caramel top and fill (or you can use condensed milk, but I don't know how to make that in to caramel and like I said - I had  little time)
Salt (preferably sea salt)

To make: 
- Put your pie base in the oven and cook it for 10 minutes on 180 degrees celcius. I am sure you seasoned bakers would put pie weights, but I however did not. 
- Pull it out of the oven and fill it with the whole can of the caramel mix and bake it for a further 30 minutes on 180.
- While that is cooking (and not too soon), prepare your ganache. I use the old two saucepan with hot water trick on the stove top as I don't have a microwave. Mix your chocolate and cream together and mix it until the chocolate has melted. The consistency should be smooth.
- When the caramel has cooked, crack some salt over it (you can choose how much or how little.
- Pour the chocolate over the top and put it in the fridge to set. Mine took about 3 hours, but you can leave it longer. 
- When it is set, sprinkle some cocoa over the top and it is done!

I forgot to get a finished product photo, so you will just have to use your imagination. I hear the tart was a hit with everyone!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

1, 2, 3 # 5

1.       Not sure about you, but in order to get back on the exercise band wagon I usually need to buy myself some new running gear. Last week was skins! And guess what, I went for one run last week. Not exactly getting back on the bandwagon, but in my defence the 4km run I thought I was doing ended up being 7.2km. I hadn’t run for about 3 months and that 7.2km run has left me sore for a week. Nevertheless, I WILL get back in to it and this time, I won’t run quite so far and try and ease myself back in to it.
Mine are pink
2.      I also bought the Napoleon Ultimate Contour Palette last week in a bid to look a little more put together and less I-just-got-out-of-bed. The first couple of times I used it I saw no difference. After looking at youtube and pinterest, I have found how best to contour my face and I think I am getting better because I got compliments on my makeup yesterday. That’s a success in my books. Still not makeup-artist looking, so I’ll keep my day job.
3.      I am no music person and in fact I prefer to NOT listen to music. I can’t listen at work because I need to concerntrate, I can’t listen on the bus because I like to hear what’s going on around me, I can’t listen when I walk because I like to be on-guard, It has to be below 10 in the car etc etc. In saying that, I do like feel-good music. London Grammar definitely does not fit in to this category and makes me feel flat every time, but I keep going back to it and it has been on repeat this week. I recently discovered Haim who are feel good and pretty funky too. What music do you like to listen to? I get over artists pretty quickly, so I like to have a good stream of new artists coming through… and please don’t tell me Jay-Z or Rihanna because I just can’t get in to that music.

Monday, December 9, 2013

What did Rhi do on the weekend?

My first proper weekend without uni work to do was bliss. S is still studying, so I kept myself busy sewing and watching Orange is the new Black. Has anyone watched that series? It’s good and the episodes are long, so it provides hours of time wasting fun.

S had set up his study resources on the dining room table on Saturday (where I usually sew) and undeterred by my lack of sewing space, I set up a sweat shop in the lounge room. The desk I used is Steve’s sisters (who’s living with us for a couple of months) and sits unused on the front terrace so I re-purposed it as a sewing desk. It was a great idea if I do say so myself because sewing can be pretty boring if you don’t have a tv to watch at the same time. It also allowed my side-kick Teddy to watch and make sure I wasn’t making any errors.
Saturday’s sewing was a pair of shorts that ended up being too small. I didn’t even make it to the hems or waistband and already they were too tight on my legs and bum. I should really have made a practice version first as the material I used was a beautiful DKNY one. Lucky for me I got two metres so I can try again or try and make the first pair a little bigger.
That's a pin in the front..
Teddy got a hair cut on the weekend too...see here - isn't his little bandana cute.
Sundays sewing adventures led me to making a blouse. I had some black and white printed Lisa Ho material that I couldn’t decide whether I’d make a dress or blouse with so I opted for blouse since I hadn’t made one in over a year. It is still a work in progress, but so far so good. Hopefully I get to finish it this week and then I’ll do a proper post on the pattern and blouse itself.

I'm making view C
Sunday afternoon, Steve decided he wanted to play tennis with L (Imogen’s boyfriend), so Imogen and I decided we’d be tennis WAGS and watch with cider, dips and crackers. Ted came with us and tried his best to catch tennis balls through the fence and barked when he couldn’t.
A very relaxing weekend overall – weekends at home every once in a while are good for the soul.
What did you do on the weekend?

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Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Christmas is almost here

Hello friends.
Christmas is well and truly upon us. I was wandering through Harris Farm the other day (that place smells so good) and came across mini potted Christmas trees. I've decided that for our first ever Christmas tree this is what we'll buy since space is a premium in my house and there is honestly not one corner free for a full sized tree. I think I'll buy some mini baubles and lights from Ikea because their lights have little battery boxes that I can hide in the bottom of the pot plant. It will look something like this:
In an effort to get the rest of the house in to the festive season, I might also look for some DIY Christmas decorations to hang around the place. Maybe some tissue paper pom poms, baubles etc. Some ideas I have found:
Not sure of the source
Source - these in red, green, white for the mantle perhaps
Basically, I am keeping it simple, but a little festive since we will be home this year. Speaking of being home - both our families asked us to not go away this year (no problem, we're saving anyway). Now both families are going away. Pay back, I think ha! No biggie though, we can just have a lazy day before we go to dinner together.
Are you decorating your house this year?

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Exams are done!

Hello everyone!

Hooray for the end of exams. A sigh of relief and a cheeky Friday night drink and I am well and truly in relax mode on the lead up to Christmas.

I have a list of things to get through in the coming weeks and a couple of weekends to fill as S will be busy studying for his postgrad exams in late December. I plan to get back in to sewing, read more books, go to the beach, decorate my home, blog etc etc.

What have you all been up to?