Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Aquarium Style

 We spent an afternoon at the Melbourne Aquarium. Dressing is tricky here since in can rain like mad and then be hot and sunny. I wish I had something really flowy so that I could fit in with all the lovely fish...

top: Target
cardigan: Ricki's
jeans: New York & Co

See more pictures of the Aquarium adventure at Mind the Ramp

Today I am thankful for fish tanks. I think fish are lovely to look at but horribly gross when dead on a beach and frightening when one brushes past my feet. I like to keep some distance between me and my fear of things with little bones...


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Night Market

Last week we remembered that the summer season Night Market at Queen Victoria Market was starting. I didn't really know what to expect. I guess I thought that it would be similar to the regular market... just darker?
Fantastic Sangria

It was fantastic!! There were heaps of people, amazing variety of food, and lots of little shops full of delightful handmade goods.
Nepalese dumplings

Kangaroo Burger. Really dense meat, but not too bad!

Today I am thankful for discovering something unexpectedly fantastic. There could be an adventure right around the corner, you just have to have enough energy to go out and look for it.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Chapel Street

We live close to Chapel Street which is a shopping street full of hipsters. Often, when I walk down the street I'm quite sure that I'm not quite cool enough. At the very least I don't wear enough leggings as pants and totally see-through tops to fit in to the scene.
The Gentleman Caller had a hankering to drool over expensive cars at the Lamborghini store:

After all that manliness I had to have a rest. Which, obviously means sitting at a pub. Drinking a delicious and sour beer called Perverse Sexual Amalgam. What a fabulous name!

Today I am thankful for trying new things. And understanding salesman who know that we were only there to gawk at the fancy vehicles. 


Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sunday Shoes: Forever 21 Sandals

As I was cleaning out my apartment I discovered I have a rather lot of shoes. Miss Sal from Already Pretty has a series called Sunday Shoes. I've decided to share them to remind myself why I love them, the stories behind them and as an archive of the ones I've had to say goodbye to.

Forever 21 sandals

I bought these sandals during the Grand Opening of the Times Square Forever 21 in NYC last year. There were so many people and staff were offering manicures at the bottom of the escalators. I felt I had to buy something!

All you need is love

Just saw this video. Still a bit teary. I love Love...


Saturday, November 26, 2011


We tried the classic Australia dessert Pavolva.
Basically it's a giant meringue cookie with whipped cream and fruit. Pretty delightful, especially when covered with passionfruit puree, or as I like to call it Crazy Happy Fun Sauce!


Thursday, November 24, 2011

Like a fox

We are lucky enough to be included in most of our hosts social events. Last week we went to a backyard party at a beautiful house. It was beautiful and pretty fun. But after 2 hours of being with people who we didn't know, and 95% of them didn't make an effort to know us (but the ones who did were so lovely!) we decided to be true to our introverted selves. We walked home through a gorgeous area of the city with huge houses and views of the river.
We got some Mexican food, came home, and watched a movie. It was a great night!

top: Target
dress: Suncana
leggings: Ricki's
shoes: Quick Brown Fox

A word about this dress: At a market there was this lovely designer lady from Croatia. She had worked for many years in costume design for theatre. She made this dress and it's really cool. The front is black, the back is red-black and there are purple ties at the side. On the hanger it just looks like a shapeless bag. But the trick is to use the ties to do different things! Tie in front, back to the side, wrapped around, tucked inside. It's like 7 dresses in 1! And it feels very Melbournian to me. Black but with an interesting cut. It may not always be the most flattering but it's always different and comfy! 

Today I am thankful for the times that allow me to be social and allow me to have time to myself


Tuesday, November 22, 2011


The other day we were in the city and decided that we wanted to go for sushi. And what better kind of sushi to have than the ones that come to you on a little train! We found a place, sat down and then realize that it was $3 per plate. And those plates had maybe 2 tiny bits on them. So we promptly packed up our stuff and wandered down the street to Cookie. It's a restaurant/bar that has really delicious Thai-ish type food. And it has a cider on tap called Dirty Granny!
We tried to order what we had last time we were there with a friend. We ended up only getting one thing right. The other was a super hot dish that you wrapped in leaves that look like they could have been pulled off a tree outside. We are not very familiar with this kind of food so it was exciting!

Also there was a giant machine on the roof of the building across the way just jackhammering away. Very strange and potentially dangerous!

Normal looking building right? Look closer:

Whaaaaaat? Isn't he just going to jackhammer himself through the floor?

Today I am thankful for finding places in the city... and then being able to find them again to enjoy their delicious food all over again!


Monday, November 21, 2011

All those city lights

Since the Gentleman Caller and I don't have jobs we spend a lot of time in the apartment looking for jobs. That means that at night I want to get out of the house and do something, even if its just going for a walk.
One Thursday night we took a tram into the city to see all the pretty lights.

And, naturally, eat truffles...

We also saved all our dollar coins and took them to a casino to play the 2 cent machines. We didn't win anything but it was a couple hours worth of entertainment!

top: Target
dress: Ricki's
belt: off H&M dress
tights & scarf: ?
shoes: Quick Brown Fox

Today I am thankful for an outing with my Gentleman. I'm happy that even though we see each other all the time now, I still get butterflies... 


Sunday, November 20, 2011

Sunday Shoes: Melissa Wedges

As I was cleaning out my apartment I discovered I have a rather lot of shoes. Miss Sal from Already Pretty has a series called Sunday Shoes. I've decided to share them to remind myself why I love them, the stories behind them and as an archive of the ones I've had to say goodbye to.

Melissa wedges from Gravity Pope, Calgary

These remind me of classic Barbie shoes. They are made of plastic so they are super easy to clean and are comfortable as well. Plus they have that new Barbie smell... the whole car smelled like them on our 8 hour drive home... 


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Horse of a different colour

One beautiful day we decided to stop applying for jobs and do something fun. We made our way to the Melbourne Museum. There was a special travelling exhibit about Tutankhamun that we really wanted to see.
That exhibit was really good but the big surprise was that the entire museum was fantastic! The only baffling part was the dedication to an entire area of the museum to Phar Lap. Apparently he was a really good horse and people everywhere loved him and so they have tons of memorabilia devoted to him. And when he died they stuffed his body and it's there in a glass case. That's all well and good. It's nice to have a national hero. Even if he has 4 legs. My problem with this obsession? Phar Lap died in 1932!!!!  I know that I'm not a horse person but seriously? Some other creature or person must have done something sporting in the last 79 years to take the focus off a horse!

dress: gift
blazer: Ricki's
scarf: ?
leggings: Target
shoes: Quick Brown Fox

Today I am thankful for surprisingly lovely days. You know the ones that go in a different direction than you think that they will but it's actually delightful. 


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

A small rant and a cute story

The Rant
Australia is proving to be more difficult than planned. While we both had good jobs and were highly respected at home, here it's just been rejection after rejection. I was really hoping that I could work somewhere that would add to my resume when I get home. I knew that it wouldn't be an amazing job but I was hoping not to have to be a waitress because the hours are so terrible. Generally in my life it's been "Danielle! You are fabulous! Here's a job!" And I understand that no one knows me here and that fabulousness is hard to translate onto paper. But still. I have lots of skills. The Gentleman Caller has lots of skills.
The other thing is that many many many businesses refuse to hire people who are on our type of work visa. Sometimes you have to go through a 10 minute application and then at the end it will say that working holiday visas need not apply. Just put that at the beginning!
Every Australian who we've talked to said that we ought to go to CentreLink, which is like a government agency to help people find jobs. We had one very similar back home and anyone who is eligible to work in Canada is able to go there. So we got dressed up in interview gear and walked over there. We just got in door and the worker said "Yeah. We can't help you here. Not on that visa." So the government makes these visas really easy to get but actually doesn't want us here. I know that we can't be enrolled in programming or anything like that. We were just hoping for someone to maybe point us in the right direction and give some hints. Very very frustrating. And it's getting harder and harder to remember that I am actually hireable and have something to give to this country.

And all this was pretty dejecting until we walked around the corner and saw this:

The Cute Story
We went to a party a few weeks ago. It was, in classic Aussie fashion, a BBQ. The host wanted to make sure that we were welcomed and felt comfortable so he ran out to the store especially to buy us mayonnaise because he had heard that Canadians love mayonnaise. We didn't know this until the next day. And consequently we didn't eat any because we were eating bbq lamb and bbq chicken. I might have some mayonnaise on a burger. Maybe? Anyway I think that is the cutest and nicest thing...

Today I am thankful that I have my health. At least there's that.  

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Cup Attire

There were some pretty incredible dresses and hats at the Melbourne Cup. There were also some real unfortunate ones. There seemed to be some confusion on what was day wear and what was club wear. Some of the dudes went all out too with fedoras. One had a completely purple suit, shoes and all. Amazing.

The shoes that I planned on wearing had a flaw when I put them on: They had lost the heel tip! All was lost! I had to borrow some heels from a friend but they were a little too big and impossible to keep on for longer than 1/2 hour. Luckily I have a massive handbag and could fit the flats in as well...

dress: some dress that does 12 things that I bought from a Vancouver designer in 2008
top: Thermal long john for warmth
tights: Ricki's
Shoes: Camper
Hat & necklace: borrowed from friend

Today I am thankful for hats. They make you feel fancy or (if wide-brimmed) protect you from the sun!


Monday, November 14, 2011

Melbourne Cup!

In Melbourne, the spring Racing Carnival is the big thing in October/November. The biggest day of all is the Melbourne Cup Day. 
Outside our carpark

The hat is good!

We were lucky enough to be able to attend this year. I had no idea what to expect. All I knew was that I had to wear something nice and wear something on my head. Ollie and I had gone shopping a couple of week prior and I discovered that hata are outrageously expensive. Even the bin full of broken hats and left over feathery bits was still over $50. 

This is where you bet!

Food? Champagne? Yes please!

Watching the races

I also knew that we'd be outside all day and because Melbourne has 4 seasons in one day I would probably be cold. I wore a thermal top underneath my dress 'cause I'm classy like that. 


Maybe someone won? 

Basically the Melbourne Cup was a fancy tailgate party. We were in the nursery (a giant parking lot) and had a gazebo with buckets of champagne and lovely bits to eat like mini quiche, antipasto platters, and mini cakes. It was beautiful! We watched the horse races on a giant screen. And then we thought we'd bet. 

This is what happens when your horse places!

Epic Winning

We even got to swap tickets and go into the wealthy area. It was a fancier carpark with more expensive champagne. But the best bit was that we were able to actually see the track and watch the horses go by.

Watching the horses go by

Amazing! Especially since horse racing is not something that is part of anything that we know about. The whole day was very strange and fantastic!

Today I am thankful for wonderful friends and friends of friends who include us in their fun times!


Sunday, November 13, 2011

Sunday Shoes: Goblin boots

 As I was cleaning out my apartment I discovered I have a rather lot of shoes. Miss Sal from Already Pretty has a series called Sunday Shoes. I've decided to share them to remind myself why I love them, the stories behind them and as an archive of the ones I've had to say goodbye to.

Goblin boots from Daddylonglegs, Southwold, England

Oh these boots! In the very first week I started working in a pub in a tiny village in England I saw these boots in the village across the river. I went to visit them every week. They were far too expensive but I loved the colours and the turned up little toe. The week before I left that village they went on sale! Oh happy day! Sadly, they are very beat up after years of wear and went directly into the garbage after this photo...


Tuesday, November 8, 2011


The Melbourne Botanical Gardens are a beautiful place to go for a wander. We bought lunch at the milk bar across the street and hopped on the tram.

It was a super hot, perfect day to be out and about. We wandered, picnicked, and read our books in the grass.
top: Joe Fresh
dress: Miss Shop
shoes: Teva
necklace: art fair

There were so many different kinds of trees and plants that I had never kind of seen before. Perfectly relaxing, blissful day.

Bamboo Forest


Monday, November 7, 2011


One day I went out the front door, looked up and saw this.

That is a BIG spider. Luckily out of the 2503 that can kill you, this isn't one of them. He just scares the pants off you.

Today I'm thankful for slow moving animals and my ninja-like reactions.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Sunday Shoes: Teva Sandals

 As I was cleaning out my apartment I discovered I have a rather lot of shoes. Miss Sal from Already Pretty has a series called Sunday Shoes. I've decided to share them to remind myself why I love them, the stories behind them and as an archive of the ones I've had to say goodbye to.

Teva Sandals

In going travelling one needs some comfortable shoes. I walked into the store and had to immediately ask for help. I explained to the girl that I needed something that was comfortable but that I didn't hate. These worked perfectly!


Thursday, November 3, 2011

Tranny Bingo

On Wednesdays we generally go to Tranny Bingo. It's just regular Bingo but the callers are two fabulous 'ladies'. Also there's a participation part as well. When they say the numbers everyone has to shout various rude but awesome things!

This week we had extra time and decided to walk rather than take the tram. We also came across a Lamborghini store where all the cars cost half a million dollars. And yet the office TV was playing Days of Our Lives. True Story.
blazer, top, jeans: Ricki's
bracelet: gift
scarf: gift
necklace: shop in Madrid, Spain

Today I am thankful for tiny traditions that make me feel that I almost have a home here. As soon as I get a job I'll feel even better. 


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

HM The Queen

The Queen came to Melbourne. Or as I like to think of it, my bestie Liz came for a quick visit.
I thought I'd just go down to see what all the fuss was about. I thought there'd be a lot of people but I also thought that they would have some sort of organization in place. I just barely got out of the train station and then the crowd stopped moving. I was stuck beside a screaming baby and this was about all I could see.

Today I'm thankful for being able to keep it together in very crowded places. And instead of immediately getting some vodka after this I had some sushi...