Wednesday, July 29, 2009

christmas in july

we spent last weekend at barwon heads with zac's dad's side of the family for a "chistmas in july" weekend. i didn't pull out my camera friday nite for christmas dinner but it was good. while most of the group dined on apparently "the best roast ever" zac, his cousin and i dined on amazingly good vegan tacos that his cousin made (she's vegetarian). she does pretty much the same as me with tvp, beans, tomatoes and taco seasoning but she also added in a can of refried beans-- it's really good that way. there was trivia where zac won "morning tea and a spa package" (an english breakfast teabag and some a travel packet of bath gel from the holiday house we were staying at).

when i got home and looked over my photos i had over 200 photos and only few (probably less than a dozen) with any of the 11 adults in them. the rest were scenery, children (there were 3) or dogs (4 fur balls).
jack taking a swim next to the barwon river:

axel and ziggy going crazy and having fun at the beach:

jasmine just being cute cuz that's what she does:
madison feeding her cousin:

lachlan playing footy at the house (which was RIGHT across the road from where we had our wedding reception):

bug-eyed madison:kade lookin a bit stunned (and very cool in his new beanie):

kade on the move:under the pier:

the view from where we got married:

the grass in the middle of the picture is where we got married:

beach shot walking around the bluff:

checkin out the stick:
following his big cousin:view of melbourne from port arlington:

jack passed out on the way home after a good weekend of swimming, playing, running and lots of attention:

Friday, July 24, 2009

more chipotle

i just had the best lunch (and now i'm procrastinating on the computer). i had one last chipotle in adobo sauce in the fridge (which somehow hadn't gone bad cuz i'm sure it's been at least 3 weeks). i decided to make smokey refried beans from vegan planet. i didn't have pinto beans but i figured kidney beans would also work well (they did). the recipe calls for 1 or 2 dried chipotle chilies but i used the 1 canned one i had left and the rest of the adobo sauce it was in. i made some rice, tore up some baby spinach and mixed it all with the beans in a bowl then topped it with a bit of nutritional yeast. sooooo good (but unfortunately no photos-- it wasn't a very photogenic meal when it was all mixed together, just brownish red chunky mush with bits of green).

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

food of the future

i came across this article in the age today. apparently, genetically modifying the tomato may be the key to "boost[ing] crop yields in a move [scientists] say could help feed and clothe millions of people in a time of climate crisis"
really? the tomato is the answer?
i'm really not sure how the tomato is going to clothe people 8)
i would have thought the answer to sustaining a growing world population would be more along the lines of growing/eating foods that work well in local climates and eating less resource intensive foods like meat.

winter is over?

18C yesterday!! the wind was a bit crazy but it was soooo nice and almost warm-- and it's been warm overnite! i was excited that maybe we'd have another day like that today cuz it started off amazing. very little wind, sunny (the sun was even up high enough at 7:45 that i got to wear my sunnies for the first time in a couple months on my ride to work) and mild. now the wind has gone crazy again and it's overcast. at least it's still mild. now we just need some rain cuz everything is drying out again.
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Saturday, July 18, 2009


this sign was on a large, empty cardboard tube donated to my work (for the kids to play with). you gotta wonder why nobody at the sign company picked up on the fact their sign looks a bit funny (especially cuz i was tired). maybe they noticed and decided that people might find it amusing (or maybe it's just me and 10 year olds that notice).
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Friday, July 17, 2009

a new friend

wombat made a new friend today. unfortunately not a dog friend (but she did act kind of ok at the one dog we did have come very close to us) but a nice older lady. a few times on our afternoon walks we've passed this woman who is walking home from the bus or tram stop with her "old lady cart". she always stops to say hi and tell wombat she's a good boy (obviously she hasn't noticed wombat's saggy nipples and large girly bits). she also talks about her little terrier (that died sometime in the past few years). today, after talking for a few minutes about her dog (wombat sat herself down and waited patiently which was really good) she asked if i ever give wombat doggy chocs. wombat LOVES those (and we don't get them very often cuz they are really doggy junk food). she dug thru her cart and found a packet with a few left. she didn't realize i could feed wombat thru the muzzle (or i could have taken it off cuz there were no dogs around) so she said i could have what was left for wombat (she carries different dog treats with her often to give to dogs she's gotten to know). it was really kind of her. the best part was that after we started walking away wombat was COMPLETELY focused on me and heeling amazingly while she tried to eye the treats she could smell. i stopped every 20-30 metres to give her one and kept talking about "treats" the rest of the time. wombat was sooooo good. i may have to start carrying treats again on walks. the first dog trainer we went to showed us how to teach her to heel using treats to have her focus on us and also to redirect wombat's attention when other dogs were around and teach her that seeing other dogs was a positive thing). it did help a bit with other dogs but then she picked up on the idea that if she makes another dog bark then she gets a treat so we stopped with that. we may have to retry learning to heel using treats though (it can get tricky trying to get them through the muzzle).

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Thursday, July 16, 2009


the beast has been so lazy lately (i don't blame her, it's nice to be curled up and warm when it's cold). the other day when i came home for lunch i didn't hear her collar jingling on the other side of the fence (usually she hears me locking up my bike and gets up, shakes and runs to the back door). i figured she was inside. i walked in and no dog greeted me. i assumed she was on the couch and just being lazy but no dog there. i walked out the back door figuring she was asleep on her bed out there and didn't hear me. no dog there either. the only place left was our bedroom so i ran in there only to find her curled up in a "nest"she made on our bed with her jacket on. the next day i found her there again (but without jacket). she doesn't even bother to greet me (which is a good thing cuz we ignore her when we get home so it's nice when she reciprocates). we've been teaching her to sleep with her jacket on at nite because she'll be doing that at the kennel (she doesn't really have much control over body temperature so even though she's big and muscle-y she still gets cold at nite). we also don't re-tuck her in under her blanket if she gets up during the nite. it took a couple nites but now she doesn't even come to our bed if she gets up at nite (and the couple times she has jumped up during the nite we've just yelled out "go to bed" and she hops down and goes to bed).
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Thursday, July 09, 2009


this morning i locked my bike up on the corner of sydney rd and glenlyon for an hour while i got my hair cut. i came back to find my front brakes (including the cable) and my lights gone. why would someone do that??? i can understand the lights (i'm actually surprised this is the first time i've had my lights stolen, especially the rear one which was just taped to my panier rack with electrical tape) but the front brake? they would have needed an alan key to get that off. they left my cycle computer and helmet and seat which all would have been almost as easy to take (especially the seat). there was a pretty dodgy looking guy sitting near my bike but it could have been anyone (there's always dodgy looking people sitting around that area). i ended up just taking my bike to the closest bike shop (which isn't really my favourite) and it's costing me $65 to replace the brakes (and i'm bikeless the rest of the afternoon). when they told me to pick it up at 5 i should have just left and taken my bike to a new shop that just opened along the park st. bike path on nicholson. at least there it would be a much closer walk to go back and get it later on (and i've been intending on trying that place out for service). so annoying. plus, i NEED lights for my bike tomorrow cuz i work the late shift and it'll be dark when i come home and would never ride up rae st in peak hour traffic without lights (even with bright lights i've still had people come close to hitting me). i went to the $2 shop and bought some lights to do for now (i kinda think the front light came from there, and maybe the rear too, although they didn't have anything similar to my rear lite style this time). sometime you can get good lights from the $2 shop but it's kinda hit and miss.

so i picked up my bike, rode most of the way home (3 blocks away) and the gear cable snapped!!! arrrrghhhh! i don't know if it was the bike shops fault or if the guy (or girl) tried to take my gear cable too (or got mixed up and started undoing that instead of the brake cable). i didn't want to ride back to the bike shop again. i tried to fix it myself but i definitely need a new cable so i called velo. i really don't want to leave my bike there (i think they do offer courtesy bikes or metcards) so the guy said if that's all i need then he'll do it on the spot for me in the morning (yea).
i also had issues with the cheap lights i bought. i went to exchange the front one (which only lit up 3 of the 5 leds). the guy at the shop tested it with his batteries and it worked fine (note to self: don't use the old batteries out of the remotes to test bike lights)
zac came home with a longie of coopers stout. that makes me happy.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

straight up

it was SOOOOOO cold this morning (i think about zero with the windchill) but look how much the weather warmed up! 2 layer weather (i wore 5 when i went out earlier)! i'm so glad i haven't had to do 8am starts at work this week (and i only have to work 2 days). hopefully the nights won't be as cold next week when i go back to regular work hours (but then that means its probably not sunny and warm-ish during the day too).

Saturday, July 04, 2009


at the end of last winter wombat discovered the space heater and how great it is to lay in front of it (we use the space heater most of the time in the evenings when we only need to heat the lounge room, the central heating only goes on if we need to heat the rest of the house because it uses a lot more energy and the house doesn't stay warm when it goes off anyway). so now when she hears the space heater go on, if she's cold she'll usually go over to it and settle as close as she can to the heater without burning (and i'm usually right there next to her).
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never-ending cabbage and chipotle chilies

in our fruit and veg box last week we got 1/2 a head of cabbage. it was a VERY LARGE 1/2 head of cabbage. fortunately we like cabbage but it was HUGE (i wish i had a photo). i called zac at work yesterday to convince him that even though he was going for drinks after work, he still wanted to come home a cook dinner and not just pick up something on the way home. i told him we needed some kind of stew-y thing to use up the cabbage. i had already made a cabbage soup and cabbage rolls (both recipes from la dolce vegan) and there was still a huge amount left. i said i'd make some chipotle chili corn bread (from vegan planet) to go with the stew, zac just needed to use that cabbage up. he came home and put together a stew and we sat down and started eating. just before i finished my bowl i started talking about the left over cabbage rolls i'd had for lunch. it was then that i realized that the whole reason for making the stew hadn't happened-- the cabbage was still in the fridge! there was a bit of it that was already steamed and chopped so i threw that in to what was left of the stew but there is still a ton of cabbage in the fridge!
chipotle chilies have been my favourite food of the week. i don't know why i never got on to these before. i bought a small can of black beans in adobo sauce from the spanish deli a few weeks ago so i could try black beans in chipotle adobo sauce from veganomicon. they were sooooooo good!! now i've got the rest of the can to finish so i made the corn bread last nite (which is amazing too) and i think the rest will go into a potato recipe i saw in vegan planet. i think we'll have to swing by the spanish store again to get some more chipotle chilies in adobo sauce.