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March 16, 2016


I celebrated, and now I am.

And it was GREAT!


I talked last post about a birthday trip to Brisbane, of enjoying time sitting on their deck listening to music.

I also spoke of things happening that I knew nothing of. Surprises! And they were well worth the agony of not knowing.
After landing and then heading to get our bags – our friend and her family were there waiting for us and inside the terminal…Huh? We were supposed to be meeting just one, Kaz, outside in the pull-up-jump-in-really-fast passenger pickup. But as I looked over at J collecting our bags I noticed another person I recognised….. Wait? What? It turns out that as soon as I had sent my friend my text to say that we were coming up to Brissy to celebrate my birthday – last June – she sent the text onto our other good friends and they booked the same flights! To spend the same 5 days with us….. So damn good…. and so very good at keeping it quiet! We have spent so much time with them recently and they have said nothing! That was a great surprise – as the 6 of us get along so well. My heart swells with happiness to just think about how they did this for me, and kept it quiet.

So the first night we did sit on that deck, enjoying the warm humid air of Queensland. And plans for the second day were to spend time at the local farmers markets, swim at South Bank

and then go back to the deck.But… all that day these friends talked quietly among themselves, spent time whispering in small huddles and would stop when I came near. I knew that there was a further surprise, could see it being discussed but I didn’t anticipate the exclusion I would feel when the discussions where happening around me. Actually it was pretty awful, and I can’t hide my feelings very well. They almost told me, as they could see I was feeling left out, but I pulled up my big-girl-pants, told myself off and tried to enjoy the anticipation.

The next day I was told to pack everything, as we would be heading to the airport from the ‘next place’. Okay. And then we left, heading east towards the Gold Coast – where we pulled up outside an everyday, average looking house in Mermaid Waters.
And then as the roller door lifted and I could see the inside of the home through the huge glass front door – I realised that we were not staying in any average old house…. this place was amazing! And it was to be ‘ours’ for the next 3 nights!



The view off the Gold Coast high rises







Master Bathroom – complete with a deep bath, twin shower heads and a steam room – my kind of bathroom!!!!

We had such an amazing time in this house. The kids pretty much swam the entire time, and as we could see them at all times it was so easy to supervise them.
The adults sat around on the comfy couches all.the.time too. Relaxing, listening to music which was piped through to every room {bathroom included}, drinking wine, laughing, cooking and eating amazing food {cooked mostly by J – he is a star} and again  – relaxing!

My actual birthday was a very low key day, I had a massage {booked by a friend xx} and then we sat by the pool and in the pool for the rest of the day. Just an awesome way to celebrate.

And then sadly it was time to leave this beautiful home, and head back to our own. It was very tough to leave, and we all tried to work out how we could stay in this place for longer……sigh…….

I had an amazing time – turning 40 – with fabulous friends, in an incredible place – and I will remember it always. Thanks guys xx

Inching closer…

February 20, 2016

I am inching closer and closer to my 40th Birthday. Which is now in 9 days time.

J has celebrated his, with a evening at the Tour Down Under and a brunch with family. And next it will be my turn to celebrate.
We are heading off to Brisbane my little family and I – to spend some quality time with our great friends the Cz’s. It is only for 5 days, but I am so looking forward to sitting on their back deck sipping on cool drinks, listening to the music that is always playing in their house and chatting the time away. There is some other things planned too – but of that I know nothing… it’s a surprise!:)


The last month I have been really focusing on getting back to being active and healthy. I made an effort in January, but the school holidays and the hot weather we have here, really snagged my efforts – so I looked at it as an easing in and then when Feb hit and school went back for the year  – I launched into it and it came pretty easily too.

I have begun back at Bootcamp – each Wednesday and Friday morning in the next town on from us, about 7km away. We do it on the towns footy oval, and have had all sorts of unusual weather already… from misting rain, to warm, to light frosts. And it is  only February. Living in the Adelaide Hills is completely different to living on the Adelaide Plains!
I am really loving the Bootcamp – the instructor Claire – is very young, energetic, happy and relaxed… she is not one to worry about letting a few choice words slip in… and for that I love her. We often begin with a running warm up lap around the oval (dread!) and some knee’s up/back, side steps, sprints and grapevines.
Sometimes the workouts are circuits – working on particular parts – arms/legs/shoulders etc – and the other week it was Tabata week… which is “In a nutshell and in its most basic form the Tabata Method is 20 seconds of hard training followed by 10 seconds of rest repeated 8 times”.

It was a really tough few days of this style of training…especially the burpees… but I was so please to have done it.
Last week we did a 3km time trial, 6.5 laps of the oval. But things got a little mixed up and the few of us at the back of the back {who had been lapped 2x} only did 2.6km…one lap short {I was sure I still had one lap to go went she cheered to say well done you’ve done it…ah well…. I can’t say I wasn’t sad to stop😉 }.
Anyway, I am loving the body changes that this style of training brings…. my shoulders are feeling more toned, my legs feel stronger and my waist is shrinking.:)

I weighed just before I began, and was not shocked. I knew what I had been eating, and could feel the results – I wrote them in a private diary and some were *sleeping badly, *no longer able to kneel down and touch my butt to my feet, *my ‘bigger’ tops feeling a little snug, *wedding ring no longer fits.
Some of these ‘results’ made me feel rotten. Enough to be motivated to become more conscious when eating, and when choosing what to eat. I won’t go into too much detail, as we all know what is needed to be cut back on…white carbs, sugary foods, junk foods… and what needs to be eaten more. So I have. And I am feeling so much better – I even hopped on a scale this morning and in a month have lost 1.1 kg.
Now I now this is not a HUGE loss for a month, but for me, it is great, I feel better and I know I can keep up what I have been doing and continue to feel great. Whether I lose weight or not, I know I am moving in the right direction, more than I have been for a few years really.



ON the home front, we have been doing a lot of small home improvements… new tap-ware, shelves, hanging pictures, renovating an old run down shed and building a chook house and pen.
We are beginning to really enjoy our time spent up here, and look forward to driving up the driveway and breathing out all the stress of the ‘city’.
This morning I took my coffee and breakfast out to our back patio area and sat and watched the chooks roam, our two sheep scratching themselves on the back fence and the dogs roll in the sun. I also sat with my latest crochet blanket and finished off a row {it’s a queen sized blanket…one row is loooong}. It was very peaceful and lovely, and amazing to think that this is my life right now. So very good.

I have also had a laugh, and smiled that acknowledgement smile, when reading others blogs on turning 40…. of which they say it all so much more eloquently than I ever could.

But it is nice to know I am not the only feeling these things.







December 30, 2015

I just can’t write the same title again…..or should I? 7 weeks ago, I wrote about getting back on the rails… and 7 weeks later I again feel the same.

The move, the Uni Intensive, the final very large assignment, the 3 Christmas gatherings hosted here, the 3 days of Christmas celebrations and all in 38+deg heat {our weather has been unseasonably hot this summer so far} has really knocked me about – so much so that yesterday I had a quick nap on the couch at 10:30am and again a catnap at 2:30pm while ‘watching’ the kids at the pool – not the safest thing to do!

Rewinding to discuss early on: After doing a few weeks of Bootcamp  – I was experiencing such incredible fatigue,  during the exercise session I just couldn’t catch my breath & just could.not keep going….I was also having catnaps on the couch at 4pm ish {unlike me}, sleeping in as I was just too tired to get up {again unlike me}, ‘holes’ in my memory and a pesky ongoing husky voice…. so I went to the Dr’s for blood tests. Which again, showed me to be a completely and perfectly healthy {overweight} person…. but with anemia.
So I began to take Iron tablets and while I did not notice feeling ‘so.much.better’, one day I noticed that the tiredness was not there anymore.

Then yesterday when talking to J about my tiredness – he questioned why the Iron tabs are no longer working…. and I realised that I have not taken one for over a week now. Aha!
That could be my problem… as I am having trouble getting up in the morning to exercise & have been feeling general lethargy – which I put down to finally having time to do nothing {which is great too!}.

So I begin again, I took one yesterday, and am about to take another. I am scheduled to take them for 3 months and then go back for blood tests again. I have swirling thoughts now, of what if’s, so I will put them aside and worry if there is something to worry about.

I have also begun again to eat normal food – good breakies, salads at lunch, good healthy dinners – fruit as snacks…. for the busy times for me can be tricky to eat regularly and there has been so many leftovers in our fridge that grabbing those to eat has been easier than thinking/making something healthier.
But now, just about everything crappy has been either eaten, or now just tossed out due to us really not needing it in our house anymore – and we can begin to reclaim some healthy habits.

One thing that is happening in 2016 is that J and I both turn 40.

Yikes that seems so unreal. I do not feel forty – but I look it.

So this year I really need, and want, and have to….. yeah the ‘drill’… it is well known & often said. But I do have to  – and I really need to – and I really want to.


I know it is just a number. But still.

So, onward to a year of good health and good times with my lovely family. xx










Back on the rails again

November 11, 2015

I do feel so much better now. The walk I did last night was 55 minutes long, which took me to the post office, round the back of the footy oval and back home.

The only yuck bit was that my stomach was huge and bloated by the end of the walk, making me waddle a bit a lot- but I know the cause of that and it is all my own fault. I bought a packet of chips yesterday, on a whim, and they were BBQ flavour…guaranteed to have garlic and/or onion powder in them. Garlic and onion {in any form fresh, powdered etc} – having done a FODMAP elimination diet – are my killers for bloating causing major stomach distension. Like I am 7 months pregnant distended! It’s yucky feeling and makes me look awful.
And I should know better than to eat chips with flavour. I should know better than to eat chips at all!

Having worked as Chef’s for most of our lives – cooking with garlic and onion is second nature – but about 6 months ago I cut them out of home cooking, using instead the green ends of spring onions {“allowed” on FODMAP} and celery to get the beginnings of wet dishes such as pasta sauce or a roux. We have not noticed much of a difference.

Although it does amaze me how we have so easily CUT out onion and garlic – just-like-that! Without even giving it much thought. It was just done.

But have yet to cut out chocolate, chips, lollies and the like:) They cause me as much grief…yet I cling on to them!


I should be setting myself small goals for the rest of this year to begin to CUT them out of my life too…. As I know it will make me feel so much better again.

Right so I should and so I will!….. this month {11/11/15 – 11/1215} I will cut out eating lollies. No more –  as they make me feel rotten – the same as sausages, onions, garlic and bread.


Today I am off to visit a friend for a coffee, write up a menu plan and shopping list, tidy my study in anticipation of a Uni subject beginning in two weeks and a Zumba class.


Doing it for the good of it..even if I don’t want to!

November 10, 2015

I am feeling frustrated and frumpy.

The reason? A lack of exercise!

The reason? Life, family, kids.

All three have gotten in the way of me moving. And it leaves me cranky and no fun to be around.

I need to get out and move, and as always I need to make that “first” walk an easy one. Something that I can achieve without too much effort, thought or commitment – one that leaves me feeling so much better so I WaNt to head out again!!

So tonight is that walk. I am going to walk to the post box, through a few extra streets of the town and home again.

I know it will have me feeling so much better shortly.

Even though I know I do not want to go out and walk.

I will.

So its been a while….

November 2, 2015

2 months, maybe more…. and I am feeling the need to write again.

1/ Our NEW house…. we have moved. Finally! After a long 12 week settlement the day finally arrived. In fact we have been here for 2 weeks now. The move went well, and at no time did we feel like we were never moving again… I think the 12 weeks helped a lot for this, as we had plenty of time to be well organised and ready to go. Also, owning two homes at one {a country manor and a city residence😉 } really helped in making everything run smoothly. We had plenty of time to not only empty and clean one house, but had enough time to clean and fill another. I was over the cleaning bit at the the end though, I will admit!

2/ Our OLD house…. is still unsettled – $$$ wise. Lots of very stressful issues with the conveyancer in getting all the right paperwork to the right offices has made this part of house buying/moving very yukky. So to paraphrase a long winded and winding story – we are in breach of contract due to the fact we cannot supply the ‘goods’ that have been promised, are stuck in the middle and have no blame what-so-ever butt can’t do jack shit about it, and so we made the decision late last week to grant a ‘Licence to Occupy’… meaning the purchasers can move in before they have paid for the house.
It is not what we wanted to do, but didn’t really want to risk losing the buyers of our house if they pulled out of the sale due to the breach of contract…..seeing how we DO have two homes under bridging finance… and a hefty double mortgage!

So now all we can do, and it is all we have ever been able to do, is wait for the professionals to do their job…. and if they had done their job in the first place we would not be in this mess. Ahem. We hope all this business is concluded sometime late this week, and we will be back to one mortgage, one home and a life a little less stress filled!

I do often think that I will look back at this time and shake my head and smile at the craziness of it all….. I KNOW that will happen later on…but for now  – it sucks!

3/ Our NEW town…. from only living here for two weeks we are settling in quite well. There are some things that will take  a bit to get used to… night time noises are weird, it’s very dark with minimal street lighting, our mail is in the post box at the post office (1.3km away) and it is a lot quieter.
But there are some lovely things too – being able to walk the kids to school which is only 800mt away and takes 10 mins to walk, the quiet mornings, sitting out the back of our place with a cup of coffee while pondering life is pretty nice, the neighbours kids come and go and play and stay and the view’s when I am out walking. It’s all pretty nice really. It is going to take a bit more time to really feel part of the community, but we are working on that by being as active and out and about as much as possible, saying hello and joining groups – it’s hard meeting new people but it’ll happen.

Here are a few pics from around the place….


Fields and a sunrise


The long straight country roads – just have to remember to pay attention to cars…


Roo’s in a field – I think they live there.


So – there is too much time gone by to re-cap all that has been going on – so I will begin again. Kinda like a new start… fresh house/fresh start. Always is a good time to shake up a routine I think!

Having left my gym, and WW, before we moved I knew that being up here would be good to begin again some of my old ways of being active and healthy. I am going to list them here and will check in in 6months time to see if I have succeeded in my shake up..

1/ I want to walk more. This is something I never fail at – I love to walk, I love to listen to podcasts while walking, I love to look at the world around me while walking. I love longer walks and am aiming to try out some of the local walking tracks like the Mawson trail and some walks in Mt Crawford forest, but when I cannot be bothered doing anything strenuous I know I can do a quick walk to check the mail box {2.6km there and back} and always will feel much better about myself in general.

2/ Join a workout group – and I have…Bootcamp! started this morning at Woodside at 6am.. it goes for 7 weeks, 2x per week. Will discuss this more tomorrow….

3/ I want to ride my bike more –  and there is a fantastic bike track – the Amy Gillett Bikeway, only 7km away {in the next town}, that is purpose built using the old railway line and very very scenic!

4/ I want to do more home workouts…we have all the equipment needed, its minimal, but I am sure that it is all I would need. The girls would love it if I did this, and would join in… and for my 11yr old… it would be a big help for her confidence, her fitness skills and for keeping her active and moving.

5/ I want to menu plan each week again. Now that all my cookbooks and recipe books are unpacked I plan on getting the old system back up and running. Also, we want to go on a rather large, once-in-a-lifetime holiday at the end of next year… so budgeting in almost back in action {once the damn house settles that is..}.

6/ I want to be more organised in cooking good healthy food and in eating that good food. I want to take my own food with me more often too – as this is where I often ‘fall of the wagon’ and eat food that makes me feel rotten. More planning and being organised each week can only lead to this occurring.

I think that is all there is to assisting my future healthy me… I will check in again in 6 months to see how I am going!

But for now, I need to hop up out of this computer chair and begin my day….

Climbing out of the sickness hole.

August 27, 2015

Another month of the year slips by and we are looking the end of August. Time does indeed fly by when you get older, and I have to remember the good things that happened in the month, rather than lamenting the time is gone forever.

First things – our house. Well, nothing new has come on the market in Birdwood – so we jumped, both feet together – into our new adventure. We had another look at the house we like, this time though, we bought along a tribe of friends and family to help us/ show us that we would be making a good, and the right decision to go ahead and purchase that house. There were a lot of head nods, smiles and ‘go for its…’ – so we did. We put in an offer, and a few counter-offers – until both parties reached a number that felt okay.

We had a building inspection – and again, bought up a tribe of family members, this time all the parents who all gave ‘the nod’ of approval. Building inspection was passed, with only a few minor things needed to do – fix taps, replace taps, paint fading woodwork – all easy done and planned already.
And now we wait for the final, all okay, home loan approval. We have no worries about it, just need the final, big red stamp…. and that should happen today:)
And then the house will be ours.

We are both really happy, for it just feels right. Even walking around the house, it always has felt right. Walking through other homes has not had us feeling like this, and each time we got back into the car we would look at each other and say ‘it’s nice, but not like the one in Birdwood.So it does make sense to have bought this one.

Settlement day is now only 6 weeks away, and we have begun packing. The house looks odd, but I am so okay with the boxes and our stuff not around. I am ready to leave this house and begin our new adventure.



Well, I was doing really well, even lost a kg at WW….unheard of in my recent history… and then the flu got me. Achy back, prickly sensitive skin – which came on all of a sudden, so much that Miss 11 put me to bed and made me a cup of tea. Ahh so awful! That was early last week, and since then all I have done is lay on the couch, rest, lay on the bed for a sleep, got to bed at 9pm {totally weird for me as I am a night owl}, sit down after every activity and then rest a bit more. I have not felt so flat and lethargic for some time. Next year, flu vaccine for me.

Today I feel better. Much better, functioning adult better. I even went out and did a 40 min walk. A slow walk, but out in the world and in the slightly-warmer-than-last-week sunshine {spring is around the corner!}. I can only get better each day now, and for that I am thankful.

Today, I also go back to eating on plan. No snacking on chocolate, chips or crackers with cheese. Just normal eating. I need it, for the body sluggish-ness is getting me down. Also, my heartburn is back with full force. I had porridge with banana this morning…. and I suffered with the burning my whole walk. Gah. It is time to get that back under control too.


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