Tag Archives: Australia

Vegan Eats, Sunsets, Cradle Mountain and one Alpaca

In all honesty, I could probably write 2 or 3 more posts on this Tasmania adventure. However, I feel that people might liken it to a vacation slideshow, ya know? Like I tell you every detail of our vacation and you sit there reading my endless rambles, but really only wanting to look at a couple pictures here and there. Cause that’s all anyone really wants, right? The pictures? And not EVERY picture, (organized chronologically and explained in length by your truly…) No, you want a highly edited photo journal of just the highlights and best moments. Maybe with a point form note here or there. I understand. No offense taken.

I will spare you any further sneezing escapades and just get down to the good stuff. The good stuff being: Wombats.

But first… Melbourne!

Sean and I at half price cocktail hour!

Hostel bar...

Then on to dinner. Melbourne has the best selection of vegetarian food I’ve ever seen.

the vegie bar...

and the best Vegan food I have ever tasted. Eva.

all vegan, all awesome

So much deliciousness.

Next up: Jazz bar in an alley!

jazz... only it was contemporary... not really our scene.

The next day, the Spirit of Tasmania awaited us.

cabin and sunsets!

We had a great time getting used to our sea legs… and then I went mental on out of focus sunset shots. Cause the colours were pretty.

...

Once in Tasmania, first stop was Cradle Mountain. but before we got there… we found a random man with a lovely lama. Or was it an Alpaca?

Once at Cradle Mountain, we opted out of camping and into a delightful little cabin smack dab in the middle of the national park.

Waldheim Cabins

Wildlife everywhere!

how is this NOT adorable! Love.

Shweeet…

On the second day, Sean and I conquered Cradle Mountain. Ha-mazing.

CONQUERED!

After Cradle… well there is more to come, but I’m sorry. After spending the better half of two days editing down images and still having about 60 odd that I wanted to post… well I’ll have to split it into two. But I promise that’s it!

🙂

See ya soon!

xxx

 

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riding sand dunes and hugging kangaroos

Why is it that the more time you have… the less you get done. Is that a law? Like Murphy’s law? Or Newton’s law? Are those things?

I’m calling this Caitlin’s Law. You see, it seems that I need to be extremely busy in order to get things done. Normal things. Like grocery shopping, and altering clothes, and doing laundry. All of which I can get done IF I have no time at all to do them. NONE of which will get done if I’m on ‘vacation.’ It’s Caitlin’s Law. I’m just being real with you.

Anyway, blogging has fallen into that category of things that don’t get done when I have an inordinate amount of time. But now, well NOW things are picking up, and so naturally, this fits quite nicely into my tight schedule this week.

I suppose I’m a creature of routine. I need structure and boundaries and time tables and lists in order to function. Take it all away and I’m completely lost. I get up at 8am, which seems early enough, but I struggle to leave the house before 11. Who takes 3 hours to eat a smoothie and shower?

I guess that’s just real life. I don’t know what else to tell you.

In any case, I’m here to update you with pictures from the last couple weeks. Get ready, cause things are about to shift from 0 to AWESOME.

My parents rented a wee car and we went on a good old fashioned roadtrip for a couple days. I researched some very exciting things that I then forced them to do with me.

For example: Walking to Stockton Beach to see the Largest moving sand mass in the Southern Hemisphere. Apparently the sand dunes move about 4m north every year! WHAT?!

The walk there was actually more of a hike, and mostly flat. Kinda. It was also very hot that day… it was truly like the Sahara. I swear.

Stockton Beach

After a night in Port Macquarie, we ventured to Byron Beach. Hippie Capital of Australia. Absolutely no one wears shoes… or a shirt… but it issss beautiful…

Byron...

I ran up to the lighthouse in the pouring rain, and came upon this young Wallaby. Uh-mazing.

the lighthouse run

Next we wrote some postcards in which I detailed my life in red and blue ink. Mostly about how I was going to find some kangaroos to hug.

postcardsss

And true to my word… I DID find them.

At a wildlife sanctuary that I demanded we visit.

kangaaarooooo!

WHO DOESN’T LOVE A JOEY?!

joey joey joey

bzzz

kanga AND roo!

Seriously. Kangaroos are the coolest EVER. Emus… not so much.

x

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the best way to spread Christmas cheer… is singing loud for all to hear.

so pretty...

It would seem that Christmas sort of exploded into my life over the last week. Yes, Sam the Snowman himself just waltzed in and puked Christmas cheer all over my apartment… too much? OK well then… Buddy the elf came by and in a matter of hours there were paper snowflakes hanging from my ceiling, white paper garlands on my walls, and a beautiful Christmas tree adorning my living room. (I exaggerate only moderately.)

CHRISTMAS TREE!

The only thing missing, frosty windows and a mulled cider on the stove.

Not only did I complete the apartment re-design for Christmas, but I also donned my new baking gear (the amazing Christmas themed apron courtesy of my mother) and churned out two batches of gingerbread. One of which I constructed into a house, complete with gingerbread men, trees, reindeer, and snowflakes. And after that? A batch of chocolate-orange biscotti.

biscotti and coffee

Note that one of my batches of gingerbread failed to come together in order to make a house or men… however it made the PERFECT dough for smushed up mishapen cookies. As for the biscotti… well, while they were delicious, I think I’ll leave that to my dad. But more on that later.

In the last week and a half I have watched no less than 8 Christmas movies:

1. Robbie the Reindeer

2. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

3. A Christmas Story

4. Elf

5. Home Alone

6. Home Alone 2: Taking back New York

7. How the Grinch Stole Christmas

8. Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer

… and more to come!

Just a few brief pictures today, as I am pooped…

🙂
x

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Christmas weather (kind of) and Miso!

miso soup

Not sure what happened to Summer over here in the land down under, but it seems to have made it self very scarce as of late. Yes, it’s actually looking a lot more like Christmas around here than I initially expected. The warm summer breezes have been swapped for cool windy temperatures with lots of rain. And while it isn’t quite the right form of precipitation falling from the sky for a White Christmas, it is consistent and unforgiving. Mostly when you’re walking to and from work and especialllllly when you’re carrying one too many bags, as I normally am for some reason unbeknownst to me.

Anyway, I have a feeling I jinxed things with my complaints about the hot wind. And maybe also when I was writing Christmas cards and declaring how much I missed the winter. Ooops.

No matter, I can deal with a bit of wet weather and a cooler climate for a while. It makes drinking tea SO desirable and it gives me more excuses to bake and also make soup. SOUP!

Miso Soup that is. I only recently acquired a taste for Japanese food. Seaweed used to completely turn me off. The smell still does a bit, but I’m really getting into vegetable sushi and miso soup seemed like a great idea last week. And let me tell you, it was.

miso!

I’ve made it twice now. The second time adding every vegetable in my fridge that was about to go off. It’s a win win. Though I’m not sure if I can call in Miso soup after that. Maybe more like ‘Vegetable soup with some miso in it.’

everything that was in my fridge soup

Either way, I enjoyed it thoroughly.

Miso Soup the Caitlin Way

3 c. of vegetable broth

3 c. of water

6 tbsp. Miso

4 strips of dried wakame

1/2 c. chopped mushrooms

3 stalks of spring onion, chopped

1 carrot, chopped

half block of firm tofu, chopped in cubes

1 head of baby bok choy

Whatever else you have on hand that seems appropriate or not appropriate. Or any vegetable ever.

Bring the broth and water to a boil in a large saucepan and add the wakame. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes or until it is soft. Remove the wakame and chop into much smaller pieces. Add the onion and carrots to the broth and boil until tender. Add the mushrooms, tofu and wakame to the broth and simmer for another 10 minutes. Right before serving, add the bok choy for a couple minutes until just wilted.

Take a spoonful of broth and add 1 tbsp of miso. Whisk it up until combined and then fill the rest of the bowl with soup.

I add the miso to each bowl, as it should not be boiled. You can add it to the pot if you intend to eat all the soup at once, otherwise just add it per bowl. Adjust to your taste.

Delightful.

I used a very light miso in this recipe, so it wasn’t a strong flavour, but I enjoyed it. You can use  whatever type of miso you prefer.

x

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City2Surf…

This past Sunday was the long awaited City 2 Surf 14 km run in Sydney.

city2surf

I have been waiting for this run for ages. Literally, over a year. I was so excited to register this year and I was determined to train and run a really good time. I was aiming for a time that seemed almost out of reach; 75 Minutes.

bibs... lucky number (665)11!

The last race I ran was in… 2006? I think. It was the Toronto Half-marathon. I finished a couple minutes over 2 hours and I was shattered. I reallllly wanted to break 2 hours, but such is life. I was super stressed that year, starting university, working 30 hours a week and training for a half marathon. I took on way too much…

Well anyway, when the City 2 Surf came along, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to train up and set a rather ambitious goal. This race has got to be one of the biggest in the world. (But don’t quote me on that.) (No wait… you can quote me on that. I looked it up.) They had to cut off the entries a couple of weeks ago because 85,000 people had registered. And I was one of them. The race starts in the Sydney CBD and winds its way down to Bondi Beach. It’s kind of a big deal.

I didn’t actually end up training as much as I wanted to. True, I’ve been running about 6 days a week, however I haven’t ran more than 10km at a time. Usually, I would just do 5kms and call it a day. Needless to say, I’ve been a  little bit anxious the last couple days because I knew my goal time was slightly out of reach. I quietly changed it to ‘I’m aiming to break 80 minutes.’

Suddenly, the day was upon us. On Sunday morning I woke at 6am, had a cup of tea, a date stuffed with peanut butter, braided my hair, laced up my shoes and we caught a bus into the City.

pre-race jitters

My stomach was a little bit in knots. I needed a bathroom about 3 times before the race even started. Just to be safe. And even then, I had to pee from kilometer 1. Oh jeeez.

Sean and I crossed the starting line together, started our watches and then we went our own ways. As in – he sprinted ahead and I sneakily followed him for about 1/2 km.

The biggest challenge of this race is what the Sydneysiders affectionately call ‘Heart Break Hill.’ Basically, it’s a 1km long hill that promises to break you before you’re even half-way through the race. Well Heartbreak my ass. I came and I conquered that mofo. I give credit to all those stairs I climb at work. And to Sydney for being a very hilly city in general. Every single run I go on has a heartbreak hill. Pft, child’s play.

Besides, the biggest challenge for me was the 85,000 people. I mean… that crowd didn’t thin out ONCE. I was constantly weaving through sweaty men and women. It was kind of annoying at first but it sort of turned into a game. I only shoulder checked a handful of people – BY ACCIDENT. And in true Canadian fashion I turned around and apologized profusely.

I didn’t look at my stopwatch at all during the race, but I felt strong and before I knew it I was at 10 km… then 11… and then I saw Bondi.

Bondi...

So the final result?! An unofficial time of 70 minutes and 4 seconds. DAMN YOU FOUR SECONDS! damn you.

the final time (ignore the fact that my ipod is still on toronto time)

Needless to say, I was pretty happy with these results. We’ll see what the Sydney Morning Herald says on Tuesday with my official race times according to the chip in my race bib.

weee...

After the race, Sean and I met up at a pre-determined spot, slightly out of the way, and drank some complimentary Gatorade and water.

why does my left eye squint more than my right eye?... MOM?! I guess it's not just my eye... this picture is unflattering in a lot of ways...

After a brief walk around Campbell Parade and a couple more bathroom breaks, we somehow managed to grab a table at one of the best cafe’s in Bondi. Trio. It was deliciousssss. Seriously good eating. Or maybe that was the 14 kilometers of hunger talking, I can’t know for sure.

trio coffee

However, I burned it off before we even made it home and I was hungry again.

carrot-sourdough toast, avocado, roast toe-ma-toe and jam...

All in all, it was an excellent day. I’ve had that running high for over 24 hours now, and I’m itching to do another race.

City2Sea anyone?

November 13th in Melbourne? Sign me up… This time I’m aiming for a sub 60 minutes.

bahahaha I kid I kid…

xxx

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The week that it rained forever…

Sydney... pre-rain

On Monday evening I was on my usual stroll home from work… it was darker than usual, but I thought nothing of it. Perhaps I’d left a little late, maybe there was some minor cloud cover, no big deal. As I came out of the park I took a deep breath of the fresh air and admired the night.

…And then the heaven’s opened up and the rain began to pour.

I was almost home, but it didn’t matter… I ran the rest of the way and still ended up looking like a drowned rat.

The next morning I woke up and looked out to find more rain… but I thought little of it, and just slapped a scarf round my head and took my umbrella for my walk to work. I remember thinking, as I jumped over a puddle, that this was kind of nice. My feet were still dry and that was all that mattered.

…And then it started coming down in sheets.

Cats and dogs even. I waited at the crosswalk, but the green light never came. I could see people in their cars looking at me, feeling sorry for me, laughing at me, as the rain fell sideways and soaked me through.

…And then I misjudged the depth of a puddle and water rushed into my boots.

By this point, there was nothing I could do. I kept my umbrella up… but it was pretty useless. My skirt was dripping wet, and my feet were cold. I sloshed through the puddles. However, I made it to the homestretch with my good mood intact.

…And then a car drove up onto the sidewalk and plowed me in the side, clipping me with the side mirror.

I was startled, confused and then just like that my good mood was gone. Who drives up onto a sidewalk and hits a pedestrian? And then just holds up his right hand in a half-wave. The very same wave you use when the car beside you lets you into their lane. Was it an apology? Was it a ‘thanks for moving when my car hit you?’ I dunno. I barely even got eye contact.

Honestly, it’s no big deal… I’ll just move along. Thanks for the raised hand apology. I appreciate that.

So I hit his van with my inside-out umbrella and screamed some profanities that I can only hope he heard. I’m pretty sure that makes us even. No?

Well, in any case, I made it to work in one piece. One soggy piece. I spent the rest of the day airing out my boots and sitting on tea-towels. It was joyful. The brightside? My hair looked amazing, thanks to the scarf I wrapped around my head before leaving the house. Yes… I’m a babushka now. jealous?

This rain continued straight-through until Friday night. It was incredibly persistent. And I love the rain, but I gotta say it put a damper on my mood. I did, however, learn my lesson about walking to work. I finished out the week by taking the bus and wearing a different set of clothes for the commute.

In other news, I did some baking this week… but it wasn’t much to write home about. And I didn’t get any pictures. That’s sort of the problem when I only bake at night. I need a good reflector and flash system. Working on it.

Hopefully next week will bring some better light and better opportunities for more picture taking. I’m getting restless.

In lieu of any pictures that even remotely relate to this post… I’ll leave you with this. Pancakes a la Caitlin.

Hopefully I can recreate and take better images soon for more recipe love.

Apple pancakes with coconut, granola and dried fruit. Oh and maple syrup.

xxx

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The Saturday I ruined the carpet.

It was a beautiful Saturday morning… there was a definite chill in the air, but it was crisp and bright. Sean was going riding, so I had the whole day on my own and I was determined to make it as good as any other Saturday. Only better. I had high hopes. Markets? Runs? Swimming? Coffee? There were so many options, too many really. I wanted to do everything.

However, all week I had been itching to bake. I have very little time for baking since I started working. I’ve gotten up early, I’ve stayed up late… all in the name of scones and granola. And while that has been somewhat fufilling, Sartuday morning really isss the best time for a sweet breakfast. So I woke up nice and early churn out some delightful Strawberry pancakes before my boy left for the day.

I must say, they were perfect. Whole wheat, complete with strawberries, almonds, coconut and some chocolate covered fruit from dessert the night before. I was really happy with these babies. Especially since vegan pancakes can be tricky. Paired with a strong black coffee… it was delicious.

I was enjoying a small portion when I greedily got up for seconds (and lets be honest… more chocolate.) Anyhoo, I somehow knocked over my coffee mug bowl, which was still half full. I watched as it spilled in slow motion, crashing onto the beige carpet and brown sofa. I paused for a split second to let out a silent scream of terror and then tried to hurdle over the coffee table to grab a towel. In the process of doing that, i tripped over a bag, or the table, or my foot and thus spilling Sean’s cup of coffee as well.

After a couple minutes of sopping up coffee, I quickly googled coffee stains and came up with a quick vinegar/water mixture that actually seemed to get most of the stains out. But not before I dissolved into tears and began cursing the tiny apartment.

I’m sorry apartment. I really do love you. Despite you’re stainey carpets and non-existant counter top space. I DO love you.

I continued to throw shit around for a while. Ordering Sean to go riding, wiping the counter in anger, washing dishes with fury. He tried to help, but there was no point. I made him leave and then threw some more stuff around when the door shut behind him. It felt damn good. That hamper never saw it coming.

So, crying aside, I ended up cleaning the whole apartment and I felt much better for it. It also only took about an hour since my beautiful little North Sydney home is so small. 🙂

ready for the jog.

Finally ready to start the day, I decided to take a jog to the Rock’s Markets just over the bridge, maybe take a wander and then jog back.

I debated taking my camera and ditching my water. Ultimately, I decided to suck it up and take the camera… until I realized there was no way it would fit in the tiny camel back. Hence, there are no more pictures from this day.Which is a shame really. At least I stayed hydrated.

I shoulda photographed those pancakes, they were ridiculous amazing looking. Just ask my non-biased boyfriend.

On my merry way to the markets, I stumbled upon the Kirribilli Markets… another HUGE market spread compelte with second hand clothing and home-made treats. I bought both. I had bypassed it on the way to the Rocks, but stopped on the way back before they closed for the last-minute deals. Score.

Back home, I devoured a smoothie and tried on my pretty new threads.

Sean walked in not long after… “You’re smiling!”

He was expecting something else?

pft.

xxx

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Coastal jog, ocean swim, all day breakfast.

For the past couple weeks I’ve been working in an office from Monday-Friday. A regular nine to fiver, I am. And Sundays are mostly lounging and dreading Mondays, so in my mind, this leaves only one day a week for doing whatever I please.

Today was one of those Saturdays. I had a hankering for a run, swim and brekkie. A day-off tradition.

pre-run coffee and lounging...

Sean suggested a run that we’ve done parts of before, but it was beautiful and challenging none-the-less. Bondi to Coogee. A coastal walk that takes you past 5 beaches, each with their own strip of cafes, crashing waves and die-hard surfers. We’ve never made it the full way from Bondi to Coogee. Sean informed me that it was a quick 45 minute run. I questioned it, only because his 45 minutes and my 45 minutes are at quite different paces. However, I’m trying to up my game for the City to Surf 14km run in August. So Bondi to Coogee it was.

It took us just under an hour… but I was puffffffffed for most of it. There are a lot of stairs and a lot of up and downs. However, it’s easy to get distracted by the beautiful views. That combined with the fact that there are a billion other runners that you can focus on beating kept things interesting. haha. When we were finished I was left wandering how long it actually was. Well, I’ve just googled it and found that Bondi to Coogee is a 6km walk. We did it, and then we returned. I’m going to go ahead and say we ran 10-11km since we didn’t run the full length of either beach. But still. That’s damn good considering I haven’t run longer then 5kms in about 6 months. booooo-yah City to Surf.

We started in Bronte, ran to Coogee back all the way to Bondi and then back to Bronte. I was on my final sprint to the Beach and ready to kick off my shoes in a fit of joy to jump into the ocean when Sean hailed me down, informing me that we should use the ocean pools. Apparently, it was dangerous surf.

Off to the side, near the cliffs, there was a gorgeous little ocean-water pool. We dove in, as the waves crashed up over the side. It was all the fun of the ocean without the scary undertow and mysterious sea-creatures.

sooo cool...

After a quick dip, I sprinted back to the car and attempted to change strategically under a towel into dryer clothes.

Sean had researched some delightful little cafes and we decided on a hidden gem in Paddington called …at Perry lane. It was, coincidentally, on Perry Lane. Tucked away, almost impossible to find. I thought it would be packed on a Saturday morning, but since it was so strategically placed, we had no trouble securing a table immediately. They also serve All Day Breakfast. The three sweetest words in the english language.

...can you spot the cafe? I'll give you a hint, it's next to the hipster smoking the cigarette and texting

We started with some hot tea, since it was partially outside and the weather here is getting quite cool. Again, not being able to decide on only one dish each, we ordered three.

...a delightful menu...

Toast, avocado, and roast tomato for the lady, a breakfast burrito for the gentleman and maple granola (they ran out) fruit toast with honey and almonds to share. Obviously.

I'm pretty sure people think we're food critics...

delishhh

The food came pretty quick and I gobbled it down twice as fast. At the time, I couldn’t quite figure out why I was so damn hungry… but after finding out the legth of that run, its started to make more sense.

he's sooooooooooo hun-gree

That fruit toast was pretty good, but it was the atmosphere and delicious coffee that did it for me. I would definitely go back here for a long lesiurely lunch. It didn’t break the bank either, which was a nice change.

Back home, Sean took a doze on the couch while I whipped up a batch of granola that had been missing from breakfast. We watched ridiculous TV and snacked on warm granola until the sun went down.

xxx

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Stop and smell the Rosè… bahaha

The long weekend! in June!? Unheard of!

Apparently there is a bit of uncertainty about when the Queen’s birthday is. In Canada, it was a couple of weeks ago, Victoria Day, the May 24th weekend. But here, in Australia… it was this past weekend. June 11th, 12th, 13th… weird. When is her birthday, really? Should we ask her? It really seems more disrespectful than anything. However, I’m not going to argue, a long weekend means a day off work… or at least a day away from the office. Saturday called for some celebration…

A wine Festival of epic proportions.

One fixed fee for a day aboard the bus of dreams. Jump on and jump off at whichever winery you please and for an additional $6.00 you receive a bottomless wine glass. Okay, maybe not bottomless… but we were free to try all the wines on the tasting lists of any winery that we made it to within the day. We chose to go top to bottom with each list of the five lovely wineries that we eventually made it to. I’m not sure how many glasses that would add up to… but it’s more than enough for me. And I only drank whites…

The day kicked off with a two and a half  hour drive South of Sydney to Laura and Whitey’s house in Gerroa. We had to leave bright and early to make it there by 10.30… but we were able to stop for a nice breakfast bite at a cafe called Clifhanger just outside of Wollongong. Had it not been raining and foggy, I’m sure the view would have been just peachy keen…

raisin toast, a mystery fruit muffin, coffees and a bacon and egg roll

It wasn’t the best breakfast I’ve ever had, but we definitely wanted to load up on carbs before the onslaught of wine.

Once in Gerroa, we drove into the town of Berry, where all the wineries are and there we waited in the train station parking lot for the beloved bus.

It was a chilly morning…

notice the face on the boy second from the left...

Once on the bus, it was a short ride to our first winery. We bought our six dollar glasses and it all began!

last on the right... I loveee that face. such content...

They served the widest variety that we experience that day, including liquer slushies, mulled wine and beer. Delectable. I tried a lovely array of white wine and port followed by a piping hot cup of the mulled wine and got back on the bus a little less co-ordiated then when I arrived.

Whitey... our host

To be honest, it was hard to keep track of things after this. There was more wine… this much I know for sure. There was a man named Ben who poured us a glass of white that tasted like lantana.

cheers, so many cheers

There were chickens, sheep and there was poop on my scarf.

poop

One of the final wineries we stopped at was equipped with sheep

(for grass control in the vineyard) and a lovely flock of chickens and roosters.

This was by far my favourite stop. Not only did they offer all organic wines and foods, but the owner invited us to come pet, feed and pick up(!) the chickens.

Samuel... he was the pooper... because we were bonded

Amazinggg. We also got to visit the sheep… who were rather rowdy, but very photogenic…

they knew who had the camera...

The day came to an end back at Whitey and Laura’s house where another friend cooked us an amazing italian inspired dinner. It was the perfect thing to help soak up some of that alcohol lingering in my stomach. So delicious…

sunsets in wine country...

Unfortunately, Sean and I were not able to stay for the breakfast the next morning. We had to wake up at the crack of 6am in order to make it back to Sydney. Boy o boy I was tired. It wasn’t as bad as it could have been. We had ended up in bed by eleven… everyone was full of wine and food, staying up later wasn’t even discussed.

All in all, it was a lovely weekend, with lovely people, and general loveliness.

xxx

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Breakfast in Summer Bay…

Today was the day I have been looking forward to since forever. Forever meaning, about a month.

Last summer, while I was living in Australia, my boyfriend and I made a habit of going for brunch once a week, or whenever he had a couple days off of work. We’d pick a part of the city or a suburb that I hadn’t seen yet and make a point of going for a jog, or coastal walk before settling on a delightful cafe for a delicious brunch. It became a tradition very fast and it is definitely one of my favourite things to do on a relaxing day off.

After a couple of weeks of planning and then bailing, we actually got up this morning after only 3 hits of the snooze button and set off on the mini road trip up the coast to Palm Beach. Sean informed me that Palm Beach is actually the shooting location for the very popular soap opera ‘Home & Away.’ Except that in Home & Away Palm Beach is so sweetly named ‘Summer Bay’.

It was about 45 minutes outside of the city, but well-worth the drive on such a beeeeautiful day. We parked along the Beach and decided to jog up to the lighthouse… little did I know that ‘up to the lighthouse’ meant running though soft-sandy foot paths and up about 5 million stairs constructed of tree roots and sandstone. Needless to say, I was damn-hungry by the end of it.

The views from the lighthouse were pretty lovely and along the way I got to see some of the famous Home & Away sights (!) Lifeguard stations with very authentic ‘Summer Bay’ signs and souvenier t-shirts. Ooooooh…

The run back to the car was along the beach… Jogging near the water kept thing interesting as I played tag with the tide. I always win. As soon as we reached the car, I striped off my shoes and running top and ran straight into the ocean… shorts and a sports bra. I hadn’t thought ahead to bring swimmers, but it didn’t matter. No one was really swimming as it was a bone-chilling 18 degrees oot. Oh Winter… better get out my wooly socks.

The water was actually very nice. Not too cold at all. I was able to frolic in and out freely, practicing the perfect gallop into the waves, and a very lady-like and graceful exit. Always tricky with the ocean undertow.

After I had been totalled by a couple waves, swallowed a decent amount of salt and very nearly lost my shorts, we thought it was time to head in. My stomach was definitely craving something delish.

post-run post-swim

We had already decided on going to the Boathouse, a lovely cafe on the other side of the bay.

the boathouse

The coffee was strong and the atmosphere was perfect.


Coloured strings of lights were draped from poles and adorned the jetty. I took a ridiculous amount of pictures as Sean ordered. And then later I took even more.

lights and lines...

why am I so attracted to these?

We sat down on the dock patio and had 3 amazing dishes, since we aren’t exactly the best for making decisions.

brekky

I devoured my Avocado on toast (bacon on the side to give to the boy… cept they didn’t actually put my bacon on the side at all) and Sean had poached eggs and bacon. There sure was a lot of bacon for one man. We also enjoyed the granola with Rhubarb compote. This time they ACTUALLY put the yogurt on the side. This deliciousness definitely made me want to march out to the grocery store and buy some rhubarb. I see a pie or crumble in my near future.

that bacon is just ALL up in my breakfast, not so cool...

One ginormous line-up and two take away coffees later we were back in the car, but not wanting to head home.

... just one more...

We stopped at another Beach on the way, for some wandering and ridiculous photoshoots.

he's a looker...

Sean commandeered the camera…

There are about 40 of these taken in under a minute… It was all very high fashion… and then my mom texted… but I worked the camera…

Finally, back in North Sydney, I spent the afternoon listening to my heart palpitate from that one too many coffees and searching for recipes that might included rhubarb, apples, chocolate, or anything with sugar really. Cause that is exactly what I needed for my palpitating heart.

It was a perfect day off.

xxx

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