We had a really busy January. I thought life would slow down after Christmas but it did not. I feel like I’ve barely been home at all over the last month and I’ve been perpetually 15 minutes late for everything.

Last year I would go months without getting called into work, but I’ve now been called in 7 times in the last 6 weeks. Insane. But insanely good for our bank account!!

Anyway we’re on holiday now though so it’s ALLLLLL GOOOOOD.

Cassia and baby Cedric came to visit the other weekend. I was a bit unsure how the visit would go since it was the first time we’ve had a baby guest, but it ended up good! Cedric is 6 months old and requires a lot of bouncing. Between the bouncing we went out for brunch, played Ticket To Ride, went to the Camberwell Sunday Market, went to the city to shop at H&M and Uniqlo (they don’t have those in Adelaide), made pizza, drank milkshakes, and of course lots of catching up chats.

We played the present Rosemarie gave me for my birthday.. (mostly) Canadian themed Wits and Wagers cards! They were fun although we had some questions… for example, does the surface area of the worlds largest pizza account for the top and the bottom?

Weightlifting is going ok. I got told a new cue a couple weeks ago which has made some things click finally, although I’m still terrible and weak AF. Don’t know if I’ll be able to lift in Korea at all though so maybe I’ll forget everything. :/ If things go ok when I get back though I will do another competition in March, the Victorian Weightlifting Open. We’ll see.

Sailing has been fun. They’re slowly giving me more things to do as I get more comfortable on the boat again. Although last week I tried to help by loading the winch, but I did it wrong and caused an override and we came in (extreme) last place in the race. We almost had to cut the rope. It was real bad. They’re probably glad to have a couple weeks without me haha.

Scott and I have started a new thing where he is supposed to plan something for us to do once a month. Last month he organized a night out at the Big Bash League. I am slowly figuring out cricket. I actually don’t mind big bash because it plays at a pretty good pace and they try more exciting shots. However the game we went to turned out to be more of a Medium Bash and was kinda dull. Melbourne only hit one 6 (and no 9’s hahahahahah).

Da boys cashed in their Christmas present voucher from us, which was to take them to the Aquapark at Melbourne Cable Park. It was really fun! Although Scott and I struggled to keep up with them, haha. I also feel like I pulled Seth out of the water about 900 times. The next day my arms were so sore!! We got slurpees after and no one hurt themselves, so I would consider it a success all around.

Kate sent over a whole bunch of Canada Olympic gear for Scott and I, and all the kids. They are very ready to cheer for Canada starting next week!!

Scott and I leave tonight!! We’re stopping in Sydney to see Jess and Rae and Ben Folds, and then we fly to Seoul on Wednesday. Rosemarie will arrive on Thursday. :D :D Back in two weeks (unless we get nuked).

I’ve been asked to write out a list of what we are going to so you can look for us on TV. I apologize if there are any mistakes… time zones are hard. Look for the Aussie-Canadian duo! I’ll try to post on Facebook or something about what we are wearing on the day. I’d guess that it will be easiest to see us at skeleton, but who knows.

All for now. I’ll probably be posting the most on Instagram while we’re away. #instagramthatshit

GO CANADA GO! AUSSIE AUSSIE AUSSIE!

I really enjoyed last years cider advent calendar, but I didn’t want to order it again if the ciders were going to be the same. So instead Scott made me one himself! What a good egg. He put together a great mix, many of which I had never tried before.

Here are my thoughts, again mostly for my own reference.

  • Mercury Draught Cider – 8/10 – better than I expected, pretty normal tasting, not too sweet
  • Pipsqueak Apple Cider – 9/10 – dry, tart, natural taste, great
  • Rekorderlig Apple Cider – 1/10 – smells like nail polish remover and doesn’t taste any better, couldn’t finish
  • Saxton Apple Cider – 8/10 – a bit funky like French cider
  • Montague Cider House – can’t remember
  • Monteith’s Crushed Apple Cider – 7/10 – a bit sweet

  • 5 Seeds Crisp Apple Cider – 8/10 – fine
  • The Cider Lab Pink Lady Apple – 6.5/10 – ok. a little sweet, a little artificial tasting
  • Orchard Thieves Apple Cider – can’t remember
  • Spring Cider Co Apple & Pomegranate – 5/10 – this is cider watered down 50% with soda water, tastes fine but gets a half score for only being half cider
  • Strongbow Dry – 8/10 – fine
  • Pressman’s Original All Australian Apple Cider – 8/10 – very apple juice-y, nice

  • Little Green Apple Cider – 3/10 – nooooo, fake apple flavour, sweet, like Sommersby (my least favourite cider ever)
  • Bonamy’s Apple Cider – 6/10 – don’t like it that much, don’t know why exactly
  • Willie Smith Bone Dry Apple Cider – 7/10 – dry but not sure about fermented flavour

  • Twisted Sister Apple Cider – can’t remember
  • Batlow Cloudy Cider – 8/10 – good
  • James Squire Orchard Crush Apple – 8/10 – tart, has chunks, I still like it

  • Cheeky Rascal Passionfruit Cider – 6/10 – fine I guess, a little passionfruit flavour, sweet
  • Sunshack Feijoa Elderflower Cider – 6/10 – i just don’t think i really like feijoa or elderflower
  • Dr. Pilkington’s Miracle Cider – 9/10 – light taste, refreshing AF
  • Renberg Apple – 7/10 – Aldi version of Rekordelig, tastes ok
  • Cheeky Rascal Apple Lime Mint Chilli – 6/10 – not as spicy as i hoped

Last weekend Scott and I went camping in the Grampians. The campground had a big field next to it where you could see emus during the day, and kangaroos in the evening. It was my first time seeing emus in the wild. :D

Saturday morning we hiked up the Pinnacles. It was very hot and I am very lazy so we took the easy way up, from Sundial car park. It still took a few hours and involved a bit of climbing. The views up top were great!

Scott is so #basic.

After our hike we got ice cream in Halls Gap, and walked to Venus Baths, but it was a bit lame and had too many flies so we didn’t stay long.

We still needed to cool down so we headed to the Lake Bellfield swimming area. It was not very busy and I don’t know why because the lake was very pleasant. I really like lake swimming.

We couldn’t have a fire that night because there was still a total fire ban (we have such bad luck with that!!!!), so we just swam in the campground pool, read books, and played games instead.

Sunday morning camping pancakes to fuel us for another hike.

This time we hiked to Mackenzie Falls from Zumsteins via Fish Falls. This hike is longer, but much flatter than the quicker way to the waterfalls. Again, it was HOT AF!! It took us about 2.5 hours including lots of time taking pictures and refreshing our feet in the water.

Again, so #basic.

OK so the hike and waterfalls were lovely, but it all feels a bit weird now because we found out afterwards that someone actually drowned in the waterfalls the evening before, and they had only pulled the body out about 1.5 hours before we got there. The waterfalls were actually closed when we set out, but because we walked the long way in there were no signs!! D: I’m just glad we hadn’t gotten an earlier start because we could have seen it all which would have been even more disturbing. :( It’s all very sad.

You’re not supposed to swim at Mackenzie Falls but a lot of people do because it is SO nice. We totally would have swum too if we had brought our bathing suits. If you do decide to swim there, please be smart about it!!! Maybe wear a life jacket? Stay well away from the falls, they are much more powerful than it seems. Only swim if you are a strong swimmer. Be careful about slippery rocks!!

Happy doo doo everyone.

2017 wasn’t quite as exciting as 2016 for us, but it was still a pretty good year. We’ve really settled in to our new lives in Australia and still managed to do a few fun things.

  • We moved into a very nice, but compact, apartment in Camberwell. With a guestroom!
  • I finally got a nuclear medicine job, only part-time, but better than nothing.
  • Scott got a new job, in the smoothie head office. He can make smoothies whenever he wants.
  • Natasha came to Australia, which was truly excellent. Many adventures ensued.
  • Lots of friends and family had babies.
  • I took advantage of working part-time and squeezed in spontaneous visits to Adelaide and Fraser Island.
  • We drove to Sydney for Easter to visit the Lonard’s.
  • We went home to Ottawa for famjam and #canada150, and restocked my Kraft Dinner supply.
  • I joined an Olympic weightlifting club. Even did my first competition. It’s been 6 months and I still suck though.

2018 is looking great so far. We’ve got tons of visitors coming, two camping weekends booked, a trip to Brisbane and Noosa, and of course our big trip to Korea for the Olympics (where we will meet up with Rosemarie for a week). And that’s just the first few months! I also start full-time work in March and maybe that means we can buy a house apartment soon?

PS if you toggle the +/- sign you can display the temperature here in Melbourne and in Ottawa. +25 -25 +25 -25 :D

 

The Noodle Market in Birrarung Marr is long over but I still wanted to show you stuff. I’m sure it will be back next year anyway.

We went early (around 6pm) on a drizzly day and there were almost no crowds. This was very good because I wanted to check out all the options before I decided what to buy. And there were A LOT of options!

KFC Cheese Puffle: Korean Fried Chicken stuffed inside a cheese puffle topped with Japanese mayo and shallots

I ended up choosing a very Instagramable puffle from Puffle. It was yum. Cost $17 though!! It was very hefty at least. Plenty of chicken.

Scott had a Chicken Satay Roti from Shallot Thai, which had chicken satay, salad and peanut sauce in a roti wrap. And Natasha had veggie noodles.

Scott and I also shared a It’s Sher-Berth-Day cone from Gelato Messina. It was a white chocolate lined cone filled with mango sherbet, vanilla cream and mango jellies, and dipped in more white chocolate. It was very very nice. I really liked the mango ice cream and all the white chocolate.

Scott hasn’t actually had a drink in nearly 18 months. He’s so thirsty.