Blogging from Down Under

Archive for the tag “Australia”

Red Carpets, Champers and a bit of theatre darling!

So last night was not your typical Sunday ‘go to bed early, get ready for the week ahead’ night for me. It was a bit of a crazy one where, literally, ‘Anything Goes’.

Yep, last night I was invited to attend the opening night of ‘Anything Goes’ at the Princess Theatre in Melbourne.

Did you see what I did there?! You see ‘Anything Goes the show and a night where anything goes – oh come on – that was good. Work with me here!

Read more…


Great Ocean Road Marathon Festival 2015

This weekend we headed down to Apollo bay on the Great Ocean Road so that husb could take part in the Great Ocean Road marathon festival.
He was doing the half marathon which was 23k, well actually the half is 21k but they make you carry on for a further 2k afterwards to get to the finish line in Apollo Bay. I’m not sure why they don’t just move the finish line so that you actually do the right distance but whatevs.
Now some of my more avid readers (are there any left?!?) may remember husb doing this race before, and you may remember that our accommodation was slightly less than impressive. In fact I thought I was going to be murdered in my bed if you recall? You can read about that here. And also Here. Well you’ll be pleased to know that this time our accommodation was all together more pleasant. We stayed at Apollo Bay cottages which were lovely and did the job nicely thank you. Complete with roaring fire (and comfy socks).


 I was slightly concerned on the journey up that we may have a chunder incident due to the combination of lots of lollies from the birthday party the Bear had attended that morning, coupled with husbs crazy driving the windiness of the Great Ocean Road, and it was these I thought, that would not make a good combo.

Turns out I needn’t have worried about the Bear at all – he was right as rain. . . . .

Nope, it was the other one I should have worried about.
I’ll say one thing for the baby Bear – she is a quiet vomiter, horribly, horribly smelly, but quiet as a mouse. In fact I would hardly have known she’d been sick at all if it hadn’t been for the fact that she pebble dashed the iPad that the Bear was watching who then proceeded to scream that she had vomited everywhere.

Of course there was also the cloying sweet smell of stomach bile and partially digested fruit bar that then proceeded to permeate into the fibres of the car that gave me the next clue. Let me tell you, attempting to clean car sick off a velour car seat with the last 2 remaining baby wipes is no mean feat!
I’m also pretty sure that the receptionist at our accommodation was going to report us for child neglect when we rocked up with a boy child with no shoes on, a girl child with no top on and a car stinking of sick!
Awesome! – We have totally got this parenting gig nailed!

However, moving on, husb smashed the half marathon. He finished in a time of 1.36 compared to 1.51 when he did it last time. The timing last time was probably something to do with him not wanting to return to our house from hell but hey ho! He was awesome!



Melbourne Half Marathon 2014

You can do this
Just put one foot in front of the other
You’ve got this
Mind over matter

My mantra as I took on my first ever half marathon nearly 10 months after the birth of my second beautiful baby Flo-Bear.

I signed up to give myself a goal to work towards, I train better and stay more focused when I have a set goal to hit.

I’m not gonna lie, back in June when I first signed up it seemed like a long way off, plenty of time to train, plenty of time to get the mileage up. It’s all good, I will take it slow and steady, I won’t be stupid about it I will build up my miles slowly.

Then the niggle started,
then the niggle got worse.
I went to see the physio, I foam rolled (owww) I stretched, I did my rehab exercises, I stopped increasing the mileage.

Still the niggle niggled away until I was in so much pain I thought I would not be able to run at all.

I saw the chiropractor in a last ditch attempt to run pain free and although he worked a minor miracle in 10 minutes, still it was not quite right and I set off on my first ever half marathon wondering if it would hurt, when would it hurt and would it beat me on the day.

Before the race. ahh look at me, so happy in my blissful ignorance!

Before the race. ahh look at me, so happy in my blissful ignorance!

My question was answered within 300m from the start, as I rounded the corner towards iconic Flinders Street station, feeling myself being pushed along by the wave of runners surging past me.

I need to take it slow
I need to pace myself
Slowly but surely wins the race

You can do this
Just put one foot in front of the other
You’ve got this
Mind over matter

Onwards I trotted trying to take in the atmosphere, enjoy it and not think about my knee.

3KM – spurred on by my lovely little family cheering for me, I continued to take it steady, the pain pulsing quietly in the background.

I'm In there somewhere, can you spot me?

I’m In there somewhere, can you spot me?

6KM – the pain spreads round to the side of the knee, and by 9k my whole leg is seizing up. I pop my pills, and down an energy gel and this gives me a boost to carry on. I employ some of the tactics that my chiropractor gave me for race day to loosen the muscles up. It doesn’t really work.

You can do this
Just put one foot in front of the other
You’ve got this
Mind over matter

13KM – my glute is getting tighter and tighter, the tightness spreading down the back of my leg behind my knee making it extremely difficult to stretch my leg properly with each stride.

17KM – please be over soon, please be over soon, please be over soo . . . wait! hang on, why are all the marathoners going this way? Where are all the half marathoners? Crap, where have all the half marathoners gone? Am I going the wrong way? – please no, no, no, no. . .

Oh wait there’s another half marathoner, thank goodness I don’t have to carry on the marathon route.

Just keeping running, just keep running – man I’m getting delirious now.

19KM – when are we going to get to 18Ks! Seriously, this is the looongest km EVER

You can do this
Just put one foot in front of the other
You’ve got this
Mind over matter

Oh yey, 19KM, how did I miss 18, doesnt matter, 2 ks to go, 2 ks to go, ee I addio 2 ks to go!

19.2KM – Holy Crap, why is my knee hurting so much, have I broken it? why won’t it bend properly? I want to cry, don’t cry, don’t cry you’re nearly there.

You can do this
Just put one foot in front of the other
You’ve got this
Mind over matter

20.6KM – 500m to go, must run the last bit, I will run the last bit if it’s the last thing I do, you can’t run the last bit, your leg is going to fall off. Hell no, it’s not, oh there’s the finish line. I’m sprinting, what am I doing, I’m actually sprinting, how am I doing this? My knee is killing, keep going, keep going.


imageimageimageimageThank goodness that’s over.

Bloody Hell, my knee is hurting. I can’t really stand up now, that was a rubbish time.

The rest of the day was spent like this. Ouchee

The rest of the day was spent like this. Ouchee

But you know what?! I actually finished.

It wasn’t pretty and it was by no means fast, but I got it done.


Now what is my next challenge going to be?

An Awesome Aussie Adventure. Australia ‘the Top End’ – Darwin

I’ve been pretty lax on the ol bloggin front of late, which I will attempt to blame on the fact that we have been away on holiday with lack of wifi, but in actual fact it is because it is due to the fact that I haven’t been able to get my shiz together to blog on a regular basis since the birth of FloBear. Time management is not my strong point and at the end of the day when it comes to a choice between writing a witty, side-splittingly funny blog post or going to sleep, sleep has won out every time for the last 6 months. I have definitely been in need of a break. . . . . Which brings me seamlessly onto this . . .

We have just returned back to Melbourne from an awesome 10 day adventure exploring parts Australia that, if we were honest we were not sure that we would get the opportunity to visit even though we live here.
Having two small children tends to put a different complexion on things and whereas when we were bc (before children) we would be able to, and often did, jump off at the drop of a hat to head off somewhere random for a few days, these days, that is not ‘quite’ so doable. Still doable but it certainly takes a little longer and involves a lot more planning and luggage!

imageThis particular adventure started at Darwin in the Northern Territory, took in Kakadu National Park and finished up in Port Douglas ‘Great Barrier Reef Territory’ in Tropical Queensland.

Fast running friend and family moved to Darwin temporarily at the start of this year so Darwin was the first stop on our tour to visit them. We got to see a fair bit of Darwin and the surrounds as a result of having them as tour guides.

The flight to Australia’s ‘Top End’ as it is commonly referred, was 4 hours and 15 mins. That’s right we flew just shy of 5 hours to end up at a destination in the same country – still blows my mind. That is like flying from the UK to Israel – totally mental, (not that it is mental that you would want to go to Israel but that its so far).

Darwin was a little bit of a culture shock coming from cosmopolitan Melbourne. Don’t get me wrong I am in love with Melbourne with its vibrancy and cool cosmopolitan nature but you could quite easily be anywhere in the world there are that many nationalities there, very similar to London but on a smaller scale.
Darwin on the other hand is a whole different ball game. It is very small and quite provincial and I don’t mean that in any derogatory way at all just that it was so markedly different to what I am used to in Melbs, I know It sounds odd but I really felt like we were given a glimpse of the real Australia. Like the Australia I always imagined, the one you see on the TV.

imageThere is a huge Aboriginal community in Darwin and it is perhaps this that made me feel as though this was proper Australia. That and the distinctive orange sand, that I am still finding absolutely everywhere.

Darwin is seen as a bit like the gateway to Asia with flights to Singapore taking more or less the same time as to Melbourne. Darwin as a city was very quiet, perhaps because people use it as a base to fly in and then take off to explore the amazing National Parks and while we got to do that I am glad we got to experience a little bit of Darwin too for the short time we were there.

We headed to Berry Springs about an hours drive from Darwin. These are natural springs which are a local beauty spot and very popular. We arrived there mid afternoon and there were lots of people milling about sausage sizzling at the picnic ground and taking swims in the 3 natural pools.
We didn’t swim as I was a little bit reticent to go into the water after seeing all the signs telling you to beware of crocs in the area.

Australia is so vast and there are so many places to tick off our to do list that I am really pleased we were able to get to this end of Oz.

We had such a fabulous time and did so much that it is too much for one blog post, so . . . . Yes you guessed it.

Stay tuned for the next instalment folks 🙂

I thought they were chives!

Ok, so it has taken me a while to pluck up the courage to write this particular post for a number of reasons, not the least of those reasons being the fact that I feel like I am about to vomit every time I think about it. However, I am going to put aside my squemishness and soldier on, and for the good of you my dear dear reader I will tell you my story, in the hope that it may stop you from making the same mistake I did.

Read more…

Post Navigation