Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Warning...contains nudity!

The invitation said "Dancing Girls" so I'm not sure why I was expecting something else. But  later this night I found myself just inches away from the most naked girl I had ever seen.

We were at a client's client function (even though were were a supplier, we wangled an invite) and the dancing girls originally came out in fairly demure crystal bikinis and helped serve drinks. Their costumes were amazing and their make up was immaculate. They said they were coming out later to do a performance and when they did, EVERYONE stopped.

They were actually burlesque dancers (I'm not exactly sure what that means, but I think it means less clothes than before) and they had changed into a crystal g-string, little stickers over their nipples, an elaborate pearl necklace and not much else. Oh, there was also a beautiful feather fascinator, but I'm pretty sure no one was looking at that.

I don't know how they managed to do a whole routine wearing pretty much nothing, I know I would have lost my nerve. They were awesome though and I loved the performance.

Makes my job seem a bit...lame.

Monday, August 27, 2012

10 things you probably didn't know about me

1. I love gardening.

This surprises many people. Probably because most of them see me out either in work attire or weekend casual, not covered in dirt and compost. But I absolutely love growing plants and flowers, veggies and herbs and can easily spend hours outside tending to my garden. I also buy gardening magazines and watch gardening shows and one of the highlights this year was going to the Chelsea Flower Show in London. I don't  profess to being a green thumb though, a good percentage or my plants die. Doesn't mean I don't love it.

2. I hate flying.

Not just the slight annoyance or claustrophobia. The full on panic, hyperventilating, heart racing, lock yourself in the bathroom situation. It starts long before I get on the plane and usually lasts until I am "well inside the terminal". I've always had it. I hate that feeling of being that high in the air. I hate turbulence and I know I will never get over it. The only thing I can do, if I ever want to travel, is just deal with it. I did it this year for my first long haul flight in a long time, when I went to Dublin. That was a 30 hour flight and I coped OK.

3. I don't read.

Well, I don't read much. Especially if there are no pictures. I don't any issues with reading,  I'm just very hyper and find it very hard to sit still long enough to read more than one chapter. I'm aware of the irony - that I write for a living. That's just how it is. Strange, but true!

4. I like cartoons.

I just never grew out of the Saturday morning cartoons phase. I can watch them with or without my son. I love Pixar and will easily go to the movies or watch the DVDs with or without my son. I love the innocence of the younger cartoons and the slight sarcasm of the older, teenage cartoons. My all time favourite cartoon is "The Emperor's New Groove".

5. I don't speak Chinese.

This one is bad. I wish I could speak Chinese. Both sets of grandparents came over from China in the 1940s and both my parents were born here. Mum and Dad can understand and speak some of the language, but sadly for us second generation we never needed to. Sometimes I think about taking lessons but a) I think it would be difficult now that I'm older and b) how weird would it look me walking into a Chinese lesson?

6. I am severely short sighted.

I wear contact lenses during the day and glasses at night. I can't read a book clearly unless it's 30cms in front of me. I've considered laser surgery, but surgery scares me so unless it's absolutely necessary, I won't do it. Even if would make my life sooo much easier.

7. I have a degree in Human Resource Management.

Weird huh? It was a pretty trendy degree at the time and although I realised half way through that I was completely uninterested in the course, I finished it anyway because I hate starting things and not following through to the end. It's a Business degree with a HRM major so I've definitely used the core business subjects in my career, but definitely not the HRM subjects. I also have a secondary major in Film & Television Production, which I've not really used either except for a short stint in a corporate video production house. I loved the FTV subjects though, they were awesome.

8. I've lived in 4 cities.

Born in Townsville, studied in Brisbane, moved to Melbourne for 4 years where Josh was born, then Sydney for 1.5 years and back to Brisbane since then. Favourite has probably been Sydney, although it's sooo expensive to live there. Melbourne next, the food is great. Brisbane is a great family city though to live in and Townsville will always be home.

9. I hate ibises.

I'm OK with most animals, but I hate ibises. They smell terrible and they look funny.

10. I can't think of a tenth one.

OCD for Coathangers

All the coat hangers in my wardrobe match. I'm a bit OCD about it. They were the dark brown ones from IKEA. They're a great size and (did) match my wardrobe floors in the flooded house.

I went to IKEA to get some more this week and found out they had discontinued the dark brown ones. Arrrrgh! I could feel my heart rate rising and the panic set in. I paced around the accessories section in pointless hope that I would find a secret stash of them somewhere in a back corner.

Alas I knew this was not to be.

So I had to make a decision. I had to replace all of them as well as extras for the new clothes I bought recently. My new wardrobe now has...."natural" coloured coat hangers.

I spent hours this weekend swapping them all over and rearranging the wardrobe so they looked uniform.

My life is soooo glamorous.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Like watching grass grow...

Dear little strawberry plants in my garden,

Please hurry up and grow some beautiful, big, juicy strawberries. I've been waiting so long, watering, weeding, moving you around so you get the most sun. You have these little flowers that tease me, but they never seem to turn into the strawberries I am longing for.

I love watching you grow and seeing the beautiful deep green colour of your leaves against the dark, moist soil. But what I really want to do it pick your fruit, dip you in double cream and eat you.

Please make this so.

Love, Karina xx

Cross River Lunch

OK, so I made a bit of a pact with myself to get out of my eating comfort zone and go to other parts of town that weren't in my immediate work or home area (or The Valley or Sunnybank). 

Make a pact...and it will happen :-).

We met Miranda over at her new workplace in Teneriffe, which is across the river, but surprisingly close to Bulimba if you just jump on the ferry. It was an absolutely glorious "Winter's" day in Brisbane and enjoying the warm sunshine on your back as the cross river ferry gently lulled across the waters was just divine.

You really MUST eat alfresco on such a day so we went to The London Club. I had the bacon, mushroom, parmesan and sun dried tomato linguine...without the bacon. It was delicious, but, and I hardly EVER say this, was just way too big. It was a lunch special too. I left half of it on the plate, which was just plain wastage and I hate that. It's no secret that I'm a big eater, so if I couldn't finish it, I'm certain most other people couldn't. Such a shame.

I loved being on this side of town.  All the woolsheds and narrow, treelined streets, a totally different feel to Bulimba. I'm totally coming back, but at least I can tick this one off my list. 

Friday, August 24, 2012

The Strawberry Sundae Stand

They look delicious don't they? They're the iconic strawberry sundaes at the Ekka. All the proceeds go to the Prince Charles Hospital Foundation. It's their biggest fundraiser of the year.

They start with the cone, put in a base of white ice cream, a layer of chopped fresh strawberries, a scoop of strawberry ice cream then top with fresh cream and a whole strawberry.I've ALWAYS loved them! In fact, at the Ekka last year I think I had three of them, they were that delicious.

Not this year.

This year, I not only didn't want one and didn't have one, I don't think I ever want to see one again!! Ever!!

I did a volunteer shift at the stand, first in the production line and then out the front serving. There were sooo many people, sometimes the lines were three people deep in a snaking line all around the stand and even with eight people on production we couldn't keep up. It was busy and I went 5 hours straight without a break, in my high heeled boots (not expecting any sympathy there, just saying).

I was actually a little grumpy at the end. I'm a bit of a control freak so I guess there were a few things I thought they could have improved to make things a bit smoother. And from the conversations I heard, there was a bit of politics, which I abhor, especially in charities.

I think over the course of five hours I saw at least 1,000 pass through the production line. I was so sick of the sight of them, I didn't even want to eat one at the end. So weird for me.

Then, as it happened, later during the week I had to go out the Prince Charles Hospital. And I saw how they took care of the patients who looked so, so sick. And I felt bad for being grumpy.

I also regretted my decision not to have a strawberry sundae there. Now I have to wait a whole year before I can get another one.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Shoe Love ♥♥♥

There's no place like home! 
There's no place like home!

It really was love at first sight. I saw them in the window and I just HAD to have them! They were the perfect shade of red -  "Chilli Patent". A 10cm heel which is way higher than I'm used to, but so gorgeous I'll just learn to walk in them.

So hard to take a photo of it to show its true beauty, but look, it matches my iPhone case!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

My Recent Gastronomic Montage

Anyone would think I like food ;-P

Arancini Balls at The Jetty Oxford, Bulimba
A flat white at Hawthorne Garage, Hawthorne
Macaroons from Twist & Roll Bakery, Rocklea
Sushi at Tenkai Sushi, Woolloongabba
Bean Curd Rolls from Teamaster, Fortitude Valley

Green Tea Panacotta from Sweet Dessert Shop, Sunnybank
Berry Muffin from Paddington Station Cafe, Rosalie

Cupcakes from Oxford Street Bakery, Bulimba

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Let's Partaay!

Part-aaay time!! Just an excuse really to break out my new dress :-)). Dowse Bar is pretty cool for a inner suburban bar. Love, love love the artwork and decor...make a great backdrop for photos. Super sweet barmen too who can make a mean mocktail! (Guess who wasn't really drinking).

Note to food and beverage though, a couple pieces of tomato and shreds of rocket between some dry bits of focaccia a vegetarian option doth not make. You know my appetite. I had to eat two to fill up. The chips though, were awesome. I ate both serves and some off someone else's plate :-).

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Sooty the random neighbourhood cat

This is Sooty, the neighbourhood cat. I'm not sure which house she belongs to, but she obviously loved and well cared for. She followed me from down the street, up the stairs and straight into our apartment. I was carrying a bottle of milk at the time...that might have had something to do with it. But she curled herself up on the floor near our feet and happily stayed for a couple of hours.

Was kinda cute.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

The Milton Road Nun

I've been "trying" to do some exercise to counteract the effects of being a greedy guts. I can't jog, I just don't have the fitness level, but I love walking, it's a fantastic way to get to know the neighbourhood and all the little things you wouldn't notice when you drive.

I was walking down Milton Road and could take a closer look at "The Nun". I don't know much about it, but someone dresses up a nun in their front window in different outfits. It's been there for years and a bit of a mystery to me. The website doesn't really reveal much either.

But, you know, it's interesting.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Lazy Saturday Lunch at Home

I honestly can't remember the last time we had a Saturday lunch at home. Things have just been so busy lately with the house I did make a concerted effort though to have lunch at home this weekend. Slow roasted some cherry tomatoes in the oven and spent a small fortune again on an olive loaf from the Rosalie Gourmet Market. Topped it with some avocado and drizzled with balsamic.


I really need to eat at home more often.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Demolition Complete :-(

Demolition on the house has been completed. Heart wrenching and very, very sad. I wrote more about it on my other blog.

The simple things in life...

Like when you cut open an avocado and it looks like THIS!! Just perfect!!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Lentil, Leek and Spinach Soup

Someone asked me on FB the other day if I ever cooked. Hmmm...fair point I guess since I've been posting loads of photos of my eating out expeditions.

It is time to get that under control, because I actually like cooking. Tonight I made this lentil, spinach and leek soup, which was surprisingly delicious. Even the 13 year old went back for seconds :-).

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The Brisbane Flower Market

I had to go to the Brisbane Flower Markets twice this week. This is one of my faaaavourite places, not just because the flowers are soooooo much cheaper, it's just so beautiful to see buckets and buckets of beautiful, fresh flowers in one spot. The smell is divine too. I had this bouquet of three bunches of jonquils put together as a going away present at work. The perfume was beautiful, almost overpowering considering their tiny delicate flowers.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Himalayan Cafe

You know what my problem is? I'm a bit parochial when it comes to cafes and restaurants. I tend to just go to my local area or the area around work and when I do find a great place outside those areas I just tend to stick to it.

I need to be more adventurous.

I had to do a drop off in New Farm the other night and went down Brunswick Street on the way. There's so many amazing cafes and restaurants down there, new ones that have opened since I've last visited and some iconic ones I've "been meaning" to try for so long.

Anyway, had a spare night this week and just did it! Grabbed the G and went to the Himalayan Cafe which I've wanted to go to for ages!

I think we were pretty lucky to get a table as there were reserved signs everywhere and it was already half full by 6.00pm. Great atmosphere, kitschy authentic decor and the food was AMAZING!! We got the vegetarian platter which had some dahl, black eye bean curry and a kidney bean curry which was out of this world! Also had the customary tofu dish and some sort of bread thingy entree. There were LOADS of vegetarian options and all very reasonably priced. We were SO FULL by the end.

...but we still made room for apple crumble from Lady Lamington ;-)

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Demolition Sadness

Demolition is due to start tomorrow. I can't tell you how much sadness I feel. We started stripping out the fixtures and fittings either to give away or sell. I thought that by salvaging as much of the home as I could that I was somehow not destroying it...totally?

Such a ridiculous philosophy and truth be told I actually felt worse when it was done, like I had raped and pillaged the house in an act even worse than demolishing it.

I had to get over it though. We did managed to save all the windows and hopefully they will live on in someone else's house.

I'm not sure how I'm going to go during the actual demolition. I haven't made up my mind whether to be there or not, but I haven't got long to make a decision.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Mid Week Kuan Yin

Kuan Yin has always been a Friday night or weekend visit for us, so mid week was kinda weird.

But change is as good as a holiday right? And there was a new item on the menu - satay "chicken" sticks! Seriously, seriously delicious.

I also had the sticky rice timbale. Always a favourite. And there really wasn't any difference between weekend atmosphere and mid week atmosphere, it's all good.