Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Two Very Different Holidays

Months ago we pre-booked a nice, calm holiday in a cabin, by the river for a week at the end of January. Then we also decided, a bit spontaneously, on doing an 11 hour drive to Melbourne when we found out our friend Mark needed a dog sitter in December. We left on Christmas day which added extra stress as we also had to squeeze in gifts and a Christmas lunch with my in-laws before taking off. Clearly we make excellent choices when it comes to travelling with babies, I mean a 24 hour trip across the world with an 8 week old, and an 11 hour trip in a car with a toddler? What could be better?

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Finding Myself - Colleen's Story of Weight-loss

I'm headed into the Aussie bush this week. I'll have no phone reception and not internet. The cabin we are staying at boasts about this fact with their website slogan, "... we can't provide WIFI but we promise you a better connection." Let me introduce you to 30 year old Colleen Mckee, who recently inspired me with her story of becoming the most fit mum around town. She hails from Louisiana, and I know her through her sister Melanie, who was my favourite room mate  in our early twenties. Clearly that means I can trust her sister Colleen with my blog this week. Hope you are as inspired as I am. I may just go walk-about  now to burn some calories. - Jess at PKM
Seriously? America should really have some new gun laws!
In May of 2013, we were blessed with the arrival of our third child. This should have been a time in my life where I felt the happiest I have ever been yet I felt a constant cloud hanging over me. I had gained close to 70lbs over the 3 pregnancies and I was just plain uncomfortable in my own skin and found myself hiding from every camera possible. Having been a former collegiate athlete, I felt defeated by myself. I was no longer the happy, healthy girl I once was.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Breast Feeding Gone Wrong

Recently I received private messages from two friends, both asked my opinion on whether they should keep trying to breast feed or not. When breast feeding goes wrong, it can go really wrong, and what then?

[Just a disclaimer before any other women decide to jump me and cut my boobs off - I fully support breast feeding women. I think it is one of the most incredible things a mother can share with her baby, and that if you are capable of doing it well then you should be doing it].

Women like me will continue to struggle to feed our babies when it just isn't working for us or them. Women like me struggle each day to reach the breast feeding milestones we had in our heads "If I can just make it to 6 months" or "12 months." Meanwhile we feel like we are on the verge of nervous break down from exhaustion and sleep deprivation.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Voted Best Pizza in the World - 400 Gradi, Melbourne

My husband and I (+son) just got back last night from our family holiday to Melbourne. We were graciously offered babysitting by our sister inlaw so that we could go out on a date on our last night there. It's rare and wonderful to be given that opportunity, because going out with our 1.5 yr old tank of a son, to a restaurant, is usually like setting off a few party poppers right next to someone's ear. It's loud, busy, frantic, and messy; and we just want to get in and out of there alive and with as few dirty looks as possible. It wasn't hard to decide where we wanted to go. We had heard about and seen Chef Johnny Di Francesco (who trained as a chef in Italy) on Australia's morning show, Sunrise. In 2014 he beat out 600 other competitors in Italy at the World Pizza Championship, and took home the award of Best Pizza Margherita.
We got a little lost on our way but finally made it to Johnny De Francesco's restaurant 400 Gradi in Brunswick. Thankfully this extremely busy restaurant (with a line out the door) didn't give our table away even though we were 5 minutes late. It seemed to us that every one of the waiters there were Italian. We were humoured while waiting for our dinner by watching two staff having a heated conversation, which no one could hear because of the hundred other conversations taking place. For us it just added to the raw Italian feel of the place, you know? Two impassioned Italians in this setting - could we get more stereo-tyipcal if we tried?

David was so embarrassed that I asked the waiter for a photo, but like I said date night's are rare, and I'm also a blogger who wanted to capture the moment so I could tell you all about this delicious experience. 

We started out with Piatto di Antipasto - cured meats, Italian cheeses, olives and marinated vegetables. I have never had prosciutto that tasted so good and just melted in my mouth. It redeemed past experiences where I have eaten slightly dry and chewier prosciutto; like at my wedding reception where I actually gagged hard on a piece of the stuff. 
This plate was so full of flavour, and even the breadsticks were *more-ish

I'm so glad Dave decided to order us some greens. This yummy salad of rocket, apple, walnuts and  freshly grated parmesan was a hit with us also.

And then the pizza arrived ...
We ordered the GuanciaMatera, san marzano tomato, Fior di latte, pancetta, mushrooms, olives and loved every bite. The dough was light and thin where it should be - but not crispy and the crust was puffy and heavier than the base. It was the way pizza should be, in my humble quadruple citizen, but still not Italian, opinion. David had to remind me this was knife and fork pizza.  If we could go back we would love to try their pastas and dessert. 

Oh, and I must mention that we had great service, which to me just tops off the whole experience. You can have restaurants who think they are so good (arrogant),  and/or too busy to give great, friendly service. This was not one of them. Our waiter was attentive even though he was busy, and the food came out on time and when it should come out (i.e.the appetiser before the main). It helped that the waiter looked like the italian version of my brother Josiah, and seemed similar in personality. Both guys are wonderful waiters too. It just happens to be Joe's birthday today so I may as well show you a picture of him in gold shorts and wish him a ...

Back on topic, I give 400 Gradi a 5/5 and a MUST TRY and MUST DO AGAIN!

*Australian way of saying you want more of the yummy stuff
**This is not a sponsored post. We wish, but it was worth every penny.