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Monday Morning Ritual: Getting Organised for Another Week

I plan my day in a way that flows.

This affirmation is perfect to start the week with! Here is a snippet of what my Monday morning ritual looks like.

Firstly I meditate. I do this immediately when I wake up and have had half a glass of water to drink. I keep a bottle of water next to my bed to refill my glass from so I don’t even need to move! I prefer to not leave my bedroom (my sanctuary!) until I have meditated so I can set my vibes for the day.

I write a little in my journal about anything interesting that popped up in my dreams and in my meditation. I always keep a few crystals nearby. They’re beautiful and uplifting to look at.

purple and rainbow crystal and diary planner

I keep my favourite affirmation cards in my diary so I can pull them out to look over in the morning after meditating. These small square cards are the Empower Yourself Affirmation Cards by Miranda Kerr. I have other affirmations that I note down in my journal too. I keep this particular card in my diary because it seems so appropriate!

affirmations for a well organised day over morning tea

It’s so hot at the moment here in Sydney that I have to have a cool shower to refresh. This might sound a bit odd but it’s also a great way for me to fit in a little exercise every single day without fail. Right after my shower, I do 30 push ups against the wall. Just like that, I’ve done some exercise! A word of warning: do not do your wall push ups in the shower where the floor might be wet – you wouldn’t want to slip and hurt yourself.

monday morning day diary entry

A new habit I have now is to moisturise my whole body after showering. I use either coconut oil or an oil blend that I make myself. At the moment I’m also using this lotion from Garnier, it smells quite fresh but isn’t too overpowering. I’m trying to get through it so I don’t have a whole row of bottles on my bedside counter like some kind of crazy lotion obsessed person but it’s taking me a while! Usually this would have been finished in a week if B was around because he prefers moisturisers to oils and he always loves using what I get for skin care since he knows how fussy I am about products I didn’t make. But I’m here and he’s still overseas so here I am with oodles of lotion to myself.

This jade bangle is from my mum. I need the moisturiser to help with getting it on. It’s a bit of a struggle but nothing like the kind I went through in Delhi when a very sweet bracelet maker rammed a handful of tiny bangles up my palm. I swear I felt my bones crack that time haha. They were SO beautiful but I nearly cried when I took them off.

Moisturiser and Crystal Jade Bracelet Bangle

After that, one of my favourite parts of the morning: TEA AND BREAKFAST! I like all the morning but that first cup of tea is lovely. I put ice in my tea because it is so hot, is that weird for you? I don’t know how normal that is in a lot of countries but in South East Asia this is extremely common. If Sydney insists on having tropical weather than I have no choice but to crack out the ice cubes.

Although you can get bubble milk tea all over town so I guess you’re probably used to the idea of ice in tea by now.

Mum and I bought these delicious date and walnut scones at the markets yesterday so as an extra special treat I’m having one for breakfast with organic butter. When scones are so fresh I don’t feel like I need jam or cream. That and a big tumbler of water makes the perfect meal to nibble on as I get on with business.

delish scone with morning tea

If it isn’t too crazy hot yet then I’ll duck out for a quick walk otherwise I’ll stay in the shade and head out later on in the day when things cool down. I used to be fine in the heat but now that I’m pregnant I just feel the effects so quickly and worse I know that however hot I feel the baby feels even warmer so it’s important that I don’t get dehydrated and stay cool. Another reason to avoid getting too much sun when you’re pregnant is you can get dark patches of skin because of pregnancy hormones. It’s called ‘the mask of pregnancy’ and usually fades after you give birth but personally it’s best to just avoid getting to that point. It’s important to get some sun every day but not too much. Moderation is the key, as usual!

2017 diary planner from Kmart
Watermelon tumbler (comes with lid and straw) from Kmart

I hope you have a lovely week ahead filled with little things that make you happy!

Let me know what your getting Monday morning ritual looks like! x

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On the Prowl for: Handbags > Diaper Bags!

I met up with a girlfriend for lunch a few weeks ago and was struck by all the prams being pushed around us. Each pram was loaded down with a ginormous diaper bag and pushed by a mum hauling her own handbag.

I had already made up my mind that instead of a diaper bag I’d just use one of my existing bags. Seeing those women just made me more convinced of this plan. And then I thought, I know! I’ll do that and GET A NEW HANDBAG instead. Bahahahaha. Stay with me: if we’re pushing baby around in a pram, there’s that little basket thing underneath where the baby goes that you could always store equipment in and if I’m breastfeeding (hopefully that works, if it doesn’t I want to know why did I go up three bust sizes for) then I don’t need to pack any bottles of formula. So what do I really need to bring?

  1. A few diapers.
  2. Ziplock bags for dirty diapers.
  3. A change of clothes. Maybe a top for me too just in case I get spit up on.
  4. Baby wipes.
  5. Nursing pads for me.
  6. A cloth I can lay the baby on for changing.
  7. Another cloth to use for breastfeeding time.
  8. A bib.

Anything else?

I feel like in my normal day to day I carry around way more than that LOL. So it wouldn’t be as though I can’t fit things into my bag. And I really don’t love the look of diaper bags. NO THANKS!

And that’s the story of how I decided I’d rather get a bag. I don’t take buying bags lightly, mind you. It takes me MONTHS to decide. Unlike my shoe purchases. But this time, I’ve decided that I’ll get something classic that I can pass on to my daughter. With that weird justification (in my mind I make very good sense) let’s get on with THE PROWL, eeeeeee, excited!

In no particular order:

Saint Laurent Classic Monogramme Bag in Large

saint-laurent-classic-large-monogramme-chain-bag

This is pretty classic. I like the mixed quilting on this YSL bag and the silver hardware. Most of my bags have gold hardware.

saint-laurent-classic-large-monogramme-chain-bagback

Saint Laurent Classic Large Collège Monogram Shoulder bag

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A slightly different look with the handle but maybe this is too “schoolbag” looking? Hmm.

Saint Laurent Classic Medium Collège Monogram with Embellished Leather

saint-laurent-classic-medium-college-monogram-embellished-leather-shoulder-bag-in-nero-argento

Whack a few stars on it though and I’m digging it. Typical me! But then I feel like this wouldn’t be so much a classic as a one-off trend thing. Maybe if I were on the lookout for a baby sized handbag then I would get something like this in a small size.

Saint Laurent Large Monogram Matelassé Suede Shoulder Bag in Coffee

saint-laurent-large-monogram-matelasse-suede-shoulder-bag-in-coffy

I love a fuzzy bag and I have this thing for suede. What do you think of the brown? Very autumn?

Saint Laurent Medium Tri-Quilt Slouchy Leather Shoulder Bag

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Oooooh, grey looks good.

Saint Laurent Monogram Blogger Leather Shoulder Bag

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“Blogger” bags. TEMPTING! And with the hearts on it, so cute! Maybe next purchase (in a few years haha)!

Saint Laurent Sac De Jour Baby Shoulder Bagsaint-laurent-sac-de-jour-baby-leather-shoulder-bag-coal-nero

And then I saw these Sac De Jour totes by YSL. So many colours!!! And shades of grey and black! And textures!

sac-de-jour-small-leather-tote-marine-nero

How do people decide on just one colour? I managed to almost eliminate navy bags because I have a navy Balenciaga that I’m very happy with. I said almost – pretty sure this one here is some shade of blue.

sac-de-jour-small-leather-tote-no-zip

They don’t close up the top though, do they? I was pretty set on getting this style in the ‘baby’ size but thought I’d juuuuuuuuuust look a little longer.

Saint Laurent Classic Small Monogramme Downtown Cabas Bag in Rose Antic

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How cute are these? And I love the colours!

Saint Laurent Classic Small Monogramme Downtown Cabas Bag in Oyster Grey

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So chic.

Mulberry Small New Bayswater in Candy

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This Mulberry bag was the first bag I came across and considered getting. Such a happy colour!

Saint Laurent Medium Monogramme Sunset Bag in Indian Pink

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This sugary pink bag caught my eye too. Less bright but very sweet all the same.

Mulberry Small New Bayswater in Canary

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And then I went back to the Mulberrys and saw this canary yellow one. Also a happy colour!

Céline Small Trapeze

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I do like Céline bags though and this has some colour to it but isn’t over the top.

Chloé Drew Crossbody 23cm in Royal Navy

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Hmm, this is nice too. Aaaaaaannnnndddddd we’re back to blue.

Miu Miu Soft Calf Shoulder Bag

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VERY ladylike with Miu Miu.

Saint Laurent Classic Small Sac De Jour in Blush

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Since I’m looking at colourful bags, may as well go look at some more Sac De Jour totes. Like this one in blush.

Saint Laurent Small Downtown Cabas Tote

pale-pink-leather-small-monogram-downtown-cabas-tote

I feel like I already posted this one but let’s look at it again, shall we?

Saint Laurent Mini ‘Love’ Heart Chain Bag

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Oh my goodness, a heart shaped bag WITH stars on it? If I were getting 2 handbags, or more like 1.2 handbags (for the same price as 2 bags though, hmmph) this might be one of them! But I’m not. So.

Another Small Sac De Jour from Saint Laurent

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Meanwhile, in Sac De Jour land… EVERYONE could use a red handbag, couldn’t they?

And Another Saint Laurent Sac De Jour Tote

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But this shade of pink though. This one really tugs at my heart strings.

Saint Laurent Sac De Jour Baby Tote

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Although black is always good. ARGH. Except this is blue isn’t it? *Squints* I can’t tell anymore!

What do you think of my choices? Some of these are too small to be practical but I had such an enjoyable time oohing and aahing over everything that I thought you might like to take a look at them too!

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Do you have any of these bags? I’d love to hear your experiences with them if you do!

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Sunday Feels – The Healing Power of Taking Rest

Is there anything better than waking up to rain against the window pane at the end of a busy week? Not only a rainy day but a rest day for me. I still woke up hella early as usual but gosh, it felt like luxury to have all those hours. Today is a Moon Day and I am looking forward to taking rest from my usual morning yoga practice.

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The constantly changing weather seems to be wreaking havoc on my body and after croaking my way through teaching this week, I could feel my voice leaving me for a well-earned vacation. Somewhere warm, I imagine. There was an ad years ago that showed a couple discussing where they would go for a holiday. The woman decided she would go to Phuket or somewhere like that and then the man promptly said he would go to Bali. Kind of reminded of that right now. Plenty of warm water and an early night seem to have done me the world of good today. Rest is always the crucial thing for me. If I don’t get enough of it, my body reminds me soon enough and then it will MAKE me have to take rest. I made some goals for myself this year and my body seems to have come up with a goal of its own for me – to take more time to rest.

breakfast in bedWhat do you do when you get the day off?

I like to shower and get into my comfy home clothes, make a simple brekkie, perhaps apply a face mask, laze around reading books, think about a late lunch, more lazing, perhaps even take a nap?! Already I feel so much better than I have in days! It is so important to find time to rest. Later on I will do a little light stretching, some Pilates exercises. It’s still important to get the body moving! If it is to be a rest day like today, then I won’t do much in the way of chores, but I will wash any dishes and the towels. It feels better to know that the kitchen is clean and tidy. And later on I will be glad when we have fresh towels. Food will be the really simple kind. That seems to suit me best. Here’s what I ate so far:

Breakfast: Avocado on multi grain bread. I like to smear what is left in the shell on my face which as it dries seems to tighten my skin. Such an easy face mask, and afterwards when I finally remember to rinse it off my skin feels incredibly silky. I walked around with a green face for an hour before I remembered to go splash the avocado off. But not before I took the rubbish out and said hi to my neighbours. Nice.

Lunch: I’m avoiding anything oily or too salty so as not to upset my throat. And I am just crazy about turmeric in all my food so I steamed some rice with turmeric and garlic. After the rice was perfectly cooked, I lifted up the lid, threw in some green vegetables, cracked an egg, and tossed in some white mushrooms. I’m so chill right now I can’t recall what they are called exactly, possibly oyster mushrooms? Anyway, I close the lid so the steam doesn’t billow out and instead stays inside and perfectly cooks all those toppings. This is one of my favourite ways to make a meal and I’m glad my body seems to love this type of food too.

steam powered

A few years ago I was working as a lawyer for a construction company, and all of us, and I truly mean the entire legal department, went through a phase of being obsessed with the hot chips from the cafe downstairs. They were so delicious we couldn’t get enough! Of course we completely overdid it one afternoon and I went home with the most terrible headache. I was so thirsty and all I wanted was steamed broccoli. When I went back the next day I found out I wasn’t the only one with a hot chip hangover. Yikes!

Back to my lunch. So, after a few minutes of gentle steaming the white of the egg is glossy and opaque, that’s when I know it is perfect. You may like your egg a little more firm but I like the yolk to be slightly oozy. My grandma used to make me gooey eggs like this and she would tell me it was my mum’s favourite way to eat eggs, and she called it “suo suo dan“; “dan” being the word for egg and “suo suo” being the action you make when you try to slurp up the goo. I still describe my eggs like that to this day. As to flavour, I just dash a very small amount of light soy sauce and sesame oil over the top. You can add white pepper, chopped chillies, coriander, but I’m happy with this and so is my tummy. Can there be anything better than having a warm feeling in the belly when it’s raining outside?

What nice things will you make for yourself to eat this weekend? xx

 

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A Well Spent Sunday

brings a week of content.

Quite so!

Actually I had a lovely time on Saturday as well so I’m in for a fortnight of wonderfulness. How grand would it be if each day we spent well gave us a credit for the week ahead? Like a sort of happiness coupon.

The more pragmatic of us would point out that we could alternatively just live each day well and forget the coupons already. Yes. Of course. That would be an easier way wouldn’t it? So how many of us do that?

Hmm.

If I had to say what exactly it was I did over the weekend that filled me with such bliss and contentment, I’d struggle to mention anything super exciting. It’s always been those tiny little moments that sort of creep up on me. Which is such a relief because that means during the weekdays I can just keep myself open to more of such treasures.

The heroine of a favourite book of mine had a ritual with her best friend called “White pebble or black pebble”. Each day they would fill an imaginary jar with white pebbles for anything wonderful that happened and black pebbles for anything not so. At the end of the day the women would ring each other and announce whether it was a white pebble type of day or a black pebble one. Ever since reading that book I keep a jar in my mind, a tad dusty as I don’t tend to it all the time, but I take it out more and more these days and check how many white pebbles I found during the day. The occasional black pebble shows up but I try to be less diligent with those.

Here are some of my white pebbles this weekend.

Usually I teach during the weekends, which I adore, but it was nice for a change to have my entire morning to myself to awaken very lazily with a coffee. After a huge yawn whilst shuffling these cards I drew (I kid you not) the Awakening card. Do you believe in coincidences? Or destiny? Can we have both?

Awakening
It’s important to be yourself!

I’ve gotten really fascinated with geometry, I’m always seeing these fancy circles and squares showing up on weheartit and so on. So I gave it a go this weekend. Let me tell you, there’s more than one way to join the dots. Like a zillion ways. Figuratively and literally. Aside from getting a little cross eyed at certain points it was really absorbing. An interesting way to meditate if you can’t stand not doing anything at all. I think there are still more dots to join.

More than one way to connect the dots

The power went out in our building, so we were trapped for a while. Luckily I had already made a coffee so fine by me. No harm at all. Until I felt ready for a second coffee. But then we figured out that the power inside the bedroom worked. We’re problem solving people. Hehe.

No I did not care to check if the washing machine had any power. Priorities.

Would you believe I have not had rice crackers until now since I was at uni?  The first time around? If you want the math for it, that would be almost 15 years ago. Far out. And after I merrily ignored the serving suggestion and made my way through just about the entire packet I realised why I didn’t buy rice crackers anymore when I wouldn’t stop bouncing off the walls afterwards. And then I was insanely thirsty for hours. No original flavour for me thank you very much. Gimme the BBQ. It weirded B out to see snacks in the house AND to see me eating them. I don’t buy snacks because that was how I was brought up. We only got them if we were having a party. I think I will revert to that rule. But it was a nice treat x 4 serving sizes.

Serving suggestions are not serving rules.

Oh, and I also had a visitor drop by during the afternoon to see how my drawing was going. Birds drop by from time to time and I always feel like it’s a good sign. My mood always lifts when I see the flutter of wings even for the briefest instant.

Eventually the power came back on and we watched a bit of The Other Woman. More than anything I think we like Leslie Mann’s voice. And I like the expressions Kate Upton makes, she seems so goofy. Oh and I felt really happy about the dinner I threw together. To counter ALL the rice crackers I ate. When everything is really fresh, not a lot needs to be done to make a delicious meal. And a cool salad is so good for balmy nights. And minimal clean up!

It’s pretty straightforward you just need to mix together a dressing, tear up some leaves, and add anything else you want to make it a filling meal.

Teevee Dinner
“What is up with your hot brother?” Yeah, Leslie, tell us.

So how was your weekend? I hope you had a wonderful weekend and a week ahead filled with magical white pebbles. xx

 

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“Dear Friend” or “To Soup, With Love”

JOE (V.O.)
I am in Vancouver.

He stops… Hits the delete button and erases the message.
He starts typing again:

JOE (V.O.)
I was stuck in a meeting, which I
couldn’t get out of it, and there was
no phone.

He backspaces to erase “there was no phone.”

Screen now reads: I was stuck in a meeting, which I couldn’t
get out of it. Joe sits there thinking for a moment. Then he
starts typing.

JOE (V.O., cont’d)
The electricity went out in the building
and we were trapped on the 18th floor and
the telephone system blew too.

He stops and looks at it. Then he types:

JOE (V.O., cont’d)
Amazingly enough.

He sits looking at it.

Then he deletes the whole thing.

Sits looking at the blank screen.

Excerpt from 

You’ve Got Mail

by Nora Ephron & Delia Ephron

Based on:
The Shop Around The corner

by Nikolaus Laszlo
2nd Final White revised
February 2, 1998

I have lost count the number of times I have watched You’ve Got Mail. And the number of times I think of that scene with Tom Hanks trying to explain himself. Deleting the keys (two finger typing style) and then making a mawkish expression at his dog who is very much #judgingyourightnow. I have been Joe for the last, oh, however long it has been. I had drafted a whole bunch of things but stopped short of posting until now. I won’t go on much further in case I delete everything and am back to staring at a blank screen. But this is where I am today. Here I am, enjoying the familiar.

Catching up on laundry. Staring at these printable daily organisation template thingys on Pinterest. Wondering who prints all this out? And then uses them everyday? Wondering how people have it so together they can organise their Pinterest boards so neatly. Getting up every hour or so to stretch my back out on my yoga mat. In my bathrobe. Trying to remember if I took my vitamins this morning or if that was yesterday morning. Scratching my head over a Sudoku puzzle that just has me stumped. Scooping minestrone-ish rice soup into a bowl. Ah, the soup. Now, that’s good stuff. When my youngest brother was in preschool, I would pick him up after school and walk him home. He told me on one of these walks that his favourite morning tea snack was tomato sauce and rice, all for 40 cents from the tuck shop. I remember being his age and loving tomato sauce with rice as well. Tomato flavoured anything. I still remember the look of bemusement that flitted across my father’s face as he watched me merrily dousing my fried rice in tomato sauce. There was an Italian restaurant that my family frequented when I was little. An entire wall was covered with hooks and resting on each hook was a two handled stoneware soup bowl. My memory leads me to remember that each bowl had a name emblazoned across it, or perhaps just under the hook, only for the most regular of customers although my mind stops short of deluding me into thinking that I had one with my own name on it. Although considering I drank enough minestrone in that place…

I still love minestrone but perhaps times have changed. It never tastes quite the same as when I used to scoop it out from that scratchy stoneware bowl, always trying not to scrape the bottom, but unable not to, whilst my parents exchange greetings with the owner as he brings out the chianti.

Minestrone-ish Rice Soup to eat in your bathrobe

You need (the quantities are guessed, I will tell you now that I am absolutely terrible at estimating):

Passata, say 500ml or a tin or two of tomatoes, whatever you have

Knob of butter (or not)

Splash of cooking oil (I use coconut oil but olive oil is good too)

Spring onion, a stem, chopped, or an onion, chopped

Carrot, one or two, chopped

Potato, one or two, chopped, if you have any (or none at all)

One cup of rice, rinsed

Your choice of greens, rinsed to hurl in at the end

Basil, oregano, parsley – fresh or dried

black pepper

teaspoon of sugar (only as needed to counter the acidity of the tomatoes, I used coconut sugar)

Vegetable stock cube + 500ml or vegetable stock, 500ml

Method: 

Hurl butter into a hot saucepan with the oil so the butter does not burn.

Add the chopped carrots and onion in. If you wish you can sprinkle a little salt on the onion so that it does not burn but if you stir diligently you will be safe.

Sauté for 5 minutes or so then add the potato if you have any. 

A few more minutes and then in with the passata/tomato situation that is available to you. Be prepared for splattering. Add the water or stock (lucky you!). I had a half bottle of passata so I just filled it with water to get the last dregs of red pulp out into the pan. Bring to a boil. Throw in stock cube, pepper, sprinkle in dried herbs if using them. In with the rice.

In the end the sugar was needed so that went in as well. You may or may not need salt, I didn’t. Then simmer until the rice is soft. I like my greens just, just done so I turned off the heat and then stirred in English spinach. 

Chuck on the fresh herbs if you have any and black pepper. Dash of butter or olive oil on top if you’re feeling fancy/indulgent. 

Eat in bathrobe. Scrape the bottom of the bowl to hearts content. Avoid staining fuzzy socks.

Hours later, discover bathrobe needs to be soaked.

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Monday Mornings in the Kitchen

How was your weekend?

Sometimes I’ll catch up with friends and they’ll want to know what B and I do for our weekends. In truth we do a whole lot of nothing. And we LOVE it.

On Saturdays I might teach a class or two in the morning time whilst B sleeps in. And then we’ll head out for coffee and a bit of lunch. Sometimes yum cha. Don’t be surprised, of course I get into yum cha. It’s been a while so on Saturday afternoon I whipped up some focaccia to have with some cold things for dinner.

Sunday mornings we lounge around in our baggy t-shirts, having brekkie, coffee (me), homemade chocolate milk (him) until one or the other of us decides it really is time to get off the couch. We usually spend Sunday afternoon at the market stocking up and then stop by the car wash before spending the evening at home watching whatever the Powers-That-Be decide to air on tv.

We watched Divergent last night and felt so lost (what’s going on? what mean Divergent? Abne-who? erudite, what it do? why does everyone only wear black? what happened to Jennifer Lawrence? oh, she’s not in this?), I kept expecting to see some zombies for some reason. At certain points in the movie, I’d turn to B and say, “This would be a perfect time for some zombies.” Meanwhile, both of us were googling the plot synopsis to figure out what on earth was happening. Thank you IMDB.

I don’t know if B and I are the kind of couple other people would want to hang out on the couch and watch tv with because of our running commentary.

B: Is his name Four?

Me: Yeah, like the number.

B: I need to look up this Divergent movie.

Me: Make sure you search for ‘synopsis’, plot summary tells you nothing.

B: On it.

Me: (looking up from IMDB) you know he’s from Sydney?

B: No, you don’t say.

Me: Yeah. Says so right here.

B: What website are you reading the story line from?

On the screen, Shailene Woodley asks the man named after a number if she can see his tattoo.

B rolls his eyes at me.

I roll them back and send mine after them.

Me: You know she drinks clay water too?

B: Really? Wow.

Now Shailene is saying to Four she has no idea who she is anymore.

Me: You’re Mrs Four.

B: You’re Divergent.

Both of us: You’re welcome.

B: Do you think I’m a Divergent? (perks eyebrows meaningfully, whilst retrieving his imaginary gun from his imaginary holster)

Me: Definitely. It’s written all over your face. (nods solemnly)

B looks pleased.

Later that night in bed:

B: What does ‘divergent’ mean, by the way?

Me: Um. Away from normal.

B: I thought so.

Et cetera. And that is how we watch tv in this household. Which might not be for everyone.

Also not for everyone is cooking fish. People can be so nervous about cooking fish. I know I was to begin with. It’s really quite simple – so don’t be scurred!, as someone once said to me in a nightclub. I must have looked petrified. And I was. Especially after they said that.

Anyway.

To begin, I’ll help you get started with what I made for B to bring for lunch today. It’s so so so easy, which is always helpful on a Monday morning when I’m stumbling into the kitchen still trying to identify my elbow from my knee.

What you’ll need:

Piece of fish fillet with skin on. We picked up some gorgeous salmon yesterday but white fish is fine too.

Oil of your choice (I went with extra virgin coconut oil)

Bit of butter

Parsley, good quality sea salt and cracked black pepper

Ready? Here we go:

Grab fish out of the fridge.

Heat up the pan.

Whilst the pan heats up, pat dry the fish fillet with a paper towel, sprinkle bit of salt/pepper each side of the fish.

Add a good glug of oil to the pan and let that heat up. If you’re using a nonstick sort of pan, you may use less oil.

Place the fillet, skin side down in the pan. You will hear some very satisfying bubbling sounds as the skin starts to schleeerrrpppp! and crisp up in the pan.

Give that about 5 minutes to do it’s thing, just have the fire around medium to high. This would be a good time to chop the parsley, rinse some tomatoes, tear up some basil. Drizzle the tomatoes with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, sprinkle with cracked pepper/salt and throw the basil on top.

Back to the salmon: very gently, turn the fillet skin side up now. Depending on the thickness of the fillet this could do with just 1 minute or another 2 minutes. Don’t forget though that when you take the fillet off the heat to rest, it will still continue to cook through.

Now, this is a good time to throw in that knob of butter to melt into the pan. Sprinkle of parsley, maybe more pepper and you have a buttery sauce for your salmon. Although, I will just mention here that a good quality mustard (whole grain or Dijon) or just a squeeze of lemon goes very nicely. But I forgot about the lemon this morning because VERY EARLY IN THE MORNING.

Take the salmon out of the pan and let it rest to one side. To know if it is cooked you can do the loving squeeze test – squeeze the fillet gently with thumb and index finger. It should be firm but not rock solid (very cooked) or still squishy (bit raw).

If you find the fish is really overcooked, panic not. You can get two forks and just flake the fish and turn it into a salmon salad. Have no fear!

Anyway, you should be fine! When you’re ready to serve it up or pack it into a lunch box, chuck more parsley up top, drizzle some of that butter sauce over the top. I will admit to spending far longer than I liked trying to navigate how to pack everything in. Finally settled on having the avocado stand in as a makeshift bowl for the tomato and basil. And then I squeezed in a slice of focaccia for B to mop up any juices and smear the avocado onto. Clamped the lid down and took a victorious sip of coffee from a mug the size of my face.

Fait accompli! Just took me a while is all.

Waste not, want not. Remember that basil? After you rip the leaves off the basil stalk, plonk it into a glass of water. You will have the most gorgeous, refreshing infusion of water to drink.

Trophy please?

Never mind! B just texted me to say lunch was good. Awwwwwwww. Fuzzy feelings.

But please do try it, if it’s something you’ve always wanted to get on to, and let me know how you go! You’ll do great, I know it! Have you watched Divergent? What did you think?

Happy Monday! xx

 

Gallery

First Things First. Hello! But Firstest, Coffee.

Firstest? What.

Hello. Hi. Welcome to my world! So nice to meet you! It’s about to get even nicer for me as I’m about to get started on my pot of cold brew coffee. Have you ever had any? Give it a go! And then we can have a chat over our mutual love of cold brew. You just need filtered water and good coffee, soak the coffee for 12-18 hours and then strain, pop the liquid in the fridge to keep. It’s less acidic than the traditional method of brewing but it takes longer. I feel like this method can make even the worst quality of ground coffee I may come across taste pleasant. It’s not a miracle method but it certainly improves a situation of disappointing coffee. There’s a sweeter, rounder tone to cold brew and it keeps in the fridge for ages. Unless you finish it all. Then, no, it does not keep for long at all. I make a batch at night and by morning all I need to do is strain, pour and drink. That plus ice cubes and a dash of milk equals a really smooth ice coffee. Too easy ✌️let me know if you give it a go! xx

Precise recipe below.

It’s pretty straight forward, click on the photos to enter gallery mode if you’d like to really get in close!

It was only a matter of time before I discovered cold brew coffee. After I lugged my espresso machine all the way over here from Sydney first. That’s how I do. I’m all about taking the scenic route in life.

1 Hurl ground coffee into glass jar (I use my plunger but you can use a jar), I use about 3 heaped scoops plus 1 extra whattheheck scoop for good measure. Scoop away! Precision, precision, precision.

2 Fill her up with filtered water and stir the coffee enthusiastically so every coffee ground gets coated. Best to use wooden utensils not metal. There’s a fancy science reason for that. I guess, if you made me, I could go into that. (Your call! Let me know in the comments below!)

3 Option to wipe up mess, sip existing coffee.

4 Cover (I used a ziplock baggie, although glad wrap works too) and let stand for 12-18 hours. I leave my jar out on the counter overnight.

You could pop it in the fridge but I did some research and it doesn’t make much difference and not everyone has that kind of real estate in the fridge just hanging out. Certainly no such room in my fridge anyway. Would you like a tour of my fridge one day? I love peeking inside fridges. Oh, and wardrobes too. 

Confession: I haven’t always waited the full 12 hours. Hee. I was THIRSTAY. I’d say try to hang in there for at least 8 hours. You should be sleeping a minimum of 8 hours anyway so.. just stir, leave it alone and go to bed! By the time you roll out of bed, everything is ready!

5 Strain the liquid from the grounds, using a paper coffee filter or paper hand towel to line the strainer, although at this time of the morning I don’t always line the strainer. (I can’t lie, by that I mean I never line the strainer, it’s metal. In my mind the stirring with chopsticks is plenty of effort) So I just push down on the plunger and pour into a jar for storing in the fridge or straight onto a glass of ice for drinking. Usually the second thing.

6 Those with willpower can put the strained liquid into the fridge to chill whilst the rest of us can serve immediately over ice cubes, with rice/almond/soy/cow/goat milk or no milk at all.

Tadaaaah!

SOOO good, right? Let me know what you make of the cold brew method if you give this a go and tell me a little about yourself!

So nice meeting you! x