This weekend just past we took a little trip to Melbourne. In part it was out of desire to again explore Melbourne, and also a test to see how our little guy could handle being on a plane and away from his familiar surrounding. We learnt a few things – Soren needs routine, his three naps a day, that sleeping in a pram is no longer his thing, and to next time get a larger hotel room so we aren’t confined to a small bedroom for most of the day while he naps. Our trips away aren’t quite as adventurous as they once were. Which is totally fine. It’s just a change of pace we must slowly get used to.
The first day was heaven (and quite misleading). Soren was perfect on the plane, sat still in the cab on the way to the hotel looking intently out the window, actually slept in the pram while we enjoyed a great Asian fusion dinner at Chin Chin on Flinders Lane, and went straight to bed with barely any fuss. A perfect little traveller we thought. My dream of exploring Scandinavia seemed possible. But… the rest of the trip wasn’t quite as smooth and we had our fair share of tears and protesting.
One of the highlights from the trip was hiring a car and driving down the Great Ocean Road. It meant that Soren could happily sleep when he wanted to and we could enjoy the scenery. The coastline stretches for miles and it really is a beautiful part of the world. For lunch we stopped in Lorne and stumbled across a little cafe called The bottle of milk that make awesome burgers. A little more driving and the decision was made to return back to Melbourne, taking what we thought we was a shortcut. Both our phones had no reception by this point. Turns out heading inland wasn’t the best decision. The road twisted and turned and by the time we were out of it we were all a little green and needing to stop for a breather. But despite that it was a really nice day.
I didn’t quite get to all the places suggested on Facebook by a few of you, but thank you! I now have a little list of places to check out when I head back there again. Some places that we did make it to and loved are Cumulus Inc, which we had been to in the past and loved. We were again impressed and I’m determined to make my own light and crispy crumpets with ricotta and honey. Another was Oli & Levi, a hidden laneway find that make awesome little egg tarts in many different combinations. 95 Espresso Bar in St Kilda was great for their coffee. And of course Chin Chin. The caramelised pork with Asian salad over rice was amazing.
All in all it was a fun trip. Melbourne has so much to offer and I’m still so eager to return and explore more. Perhaps in 6 months when Soren is a little more settled and can then be my cafe hopping companion sharing babycinos over slices of delicious cake and pastries. Here’s hoping ;)
Our little guy is a nearly 6 months old. To think that he came out a tiny 2.4kg is almost surreal. All the questions I’ve had about whether he is getting enough milk or sleep, if I’m looking after him the best that I can, and any doubts I’ve had before now seem insignificant when I look at the healthy little boy he is becoming.
The longest I’ve spent away from him is 3 hours at a time (my hair desperately needed it). He is with me when I do the groceries, visit family and friends, when I’m photographing… just about every minute of every day. These things to me are the norm, but to see his little eyes looking around when I’m out and to watch him observing and taking in new sights leaves me feeling proud and excited to introduce him to his world.
I’ve learnt a lot about him. Like that his back is extremely ticklish. That he loves being flown around in the air when naked. And that after a really deep sleep he needs hugs and to be told that everything is ok.
I’m not a perfect mum by any means, and really who is? But I hope this little guy grows up feeling the love I share for him. That a warm hug is always there when he needs it. And that along with his father he is the most loved and adored person in my life. x
When it comes to pizza toppings, I like to keep it simple. Well, when it comes to most things I prefer something simple. I’m not a ‘cheeseburger’ or ‘nacho’ pizza kind of person or whatever the latest offering is, unlike Reid who is all for these peculiar combinations. So looking at the pizza menu there is usually a clear separation of interest. Personally my favourite is the classic margarita. Cheese, tomato and basil. What’s not to love? Or prosciutto, mozzarella and oregano.
Today’s lunch was a pizza of simplicity. A thin and crispy pizza base topped with caramelised onions, Kalamata olives, rosemary and parmesan. Then after being cooked, a crumble of creamy Persian feta.
Sometimes I’ll venture out and try something a little more adventurous. But in the end I’ll always go back to my simple ways.
For recipe, click on the text page image to enlarge
Recently I photographed a story for UK magazine The Simple Things. The theme was Moroccan with ingredients like oranges, olives, preserved lemon, orange blossom water, couscous, almonds, spices and herbs. The theme was simple – a few cushions scattered on the living room floor around the coffee table, candles lit, wine poured and mellow tunes played as a feast was enjoyed.
The magazine is now on sale in the UK. A sneak peek should be up on their website shortly so be sure to take a look over the coming days. Thanks to Katie, Darren, Reid and Kylie for being my models for the evening. And Soren for being such a good boy while Mum was busy cooking and photographing :)
Mushroom ragu is my go-to recipe for a simple evening meal. I’ll usually toss it with pasta and a little goat cheese, but if time permits I’ll vary it and serve it over buttery polenta with shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano. White wine, chicken stock and a touch of cream forms the sauce. With thyme and garlic infusing it with flavour. You can keep it simple and go for Swiss Brown mushrooms only, or like I did here, use a mixture like Shiitake, Enoki and Buna-Shimeji. The most time consuming part is preparing the polenta. But when you taste the buttery flavour of the polenta combined with the creamy mushroom ragu, you won’t mind making the effort. Enjoy!
For recipe, click on the text page image to enlarge