Wednesday, October 31, 2012

rocket through procrastination

I am veering off topic today. Seeking a new recipe. This post has little to do with the green leafy kind of rocket pictured and more to do with the spaceship blast off kind of rocket force required to bust through procrastination. Do you suffer from putting off til tomorrow what you could and should definitely do today? Including improve the quality and or quantity of food you eat?

I have always left things til the last minute worked well under pressure. I have though been giving a lot of thought recently to changing my last minute ways and I am interested to hear how you manage or mismanage that precious resource: time.

For example, this week River has been home from school sick with conjunctivitus, cough and temperature which has rendered us housebound. As much as I don't like to see River feeling unwell, the silver lining in this cloud is I have worked through my list of housey things I have been putting off. I have also felt grateful that I am able to be at home with him and Sol making chicken soup and giving him some extra TLC.

Every task I finished was so much quicker and easier to do than my thinking self had conjured up for me. As with nearly every task I put off once I have done it or at the very least started the job I always think "That was easier than I thought it would be. Why didn't I do that sooner?!"

Therein lays the secret. Turn off the thinking. Or as my Darling husband often tells me when it comes to getting things done "Take the emotion out of it". He is right. It works.

So what's my strategy for changing my ways? Every time the angel of procrastination whispers "you can do that later" I am going to Begin It Now.

Have you ever put off something and then when you finally did it think "Why didn't I do this days, weeks or years ago?" What are your tips for busting through procrastinating? Or, do you think there is any truth that procrastination serves a purpose? I'd love to know.

Monday, October 29, 2012

back to the stone age

From now until Christmas, week on week off, I am following Dr Zenon Gruba's version of the Stone Age Elimination Diet. I have written here before about Dr Gruba and the 12 week guided detox program that Pete and I undertook with him last year. We did it because we really subscribe to the theory of - 'why wait to get sick to be well?!' 

Many people wait until they are diagnosed with a chronic illness to improve their diet and lifestyle. I believe that even for people who are in good health and eating a nutritious diet there is always room for refinement. 

It had been 12 months since I last saw Dr Gruba so I went for a follow up visit and basically he gave me the thumbs up for improving my health. To keep me on my path though he recommended I follow his version of the Stone Age Diet. With the emphasis being on eating fresh fruit, vegetables, fish and meat (no pig products) no grains and no dairy there are similarities to the Paleo diet, however in contrast to Paleo ways Gruba's diet includes legumes and potato. (The baked rice in the third picture was not for me but the vegetables were). This article is a good read to cover the for and against Paleo.

Having completed my first week I can say the beauty of the one week on one week off is two fold. For me it makes it very achievable. Having gone 3 months with no sugar, salt, dairy, wheat, fruit, alcohol or caffeine, 7 days is a walk in the veggie garden. The other aspect I am enjoying is it has heightened my awareness to which foods agree with me and which don't. As much as I enjoy a bowl of porridge on a cold morning I have really noticed that if I eat too bigger a bowl I feel like Goldilocks in need of a nap.

I won't bore you too much with the intricacies of my personal observations (because given there are people in the world who only have rice or less to eat I do find bantering on about detoxing etc; to be self indulgent and the need to detox indicative of our culture of excess) but another aspect I like about this diet is the reliance on real food. I was in the veggie garden harvesting greens 3 meals a day compared to one or two meals a day where I would take a leaf or two for a salad sandwich I was picking bunches of greens to cook up and eat with an egg or some kangaroo or to mix in with chickpeas and other veggies. By the fourth day Pete asked me to please go easy on the kale plant. It made me realise that most people eat too few vegetables. 

I commenced last Saturday to coincide the ending of my 7 days with going to a birthday party where I red wine, bread and cheese were back on my menu.

Where are you all at with your real food journeys? I ask because, well because I want to know, but also because eating real food in a processed world requires a certain way of thinking, a commitment to good health and it takes planning. Share your tips and thoughts.

Friday, October 26, 2012

friday links

(photo: my organic bounty purchased at local farm gates. Lucky us!)

Hopping around in blog land this week these lemon brownies caught my attention

If you are in a sugar free zone this sugar free banana bread looks worth a go

Hungry for a gorgeous food blog with supremo photography? Visit Mila's Deli

Mimi from Manger does it again with spell binding pomegranate merengues.

For a savoury recipe, these walnut and lentil burgers look great to me.

On a sad note, I was really sorry to hear this week that Gabrielle Roth the author and creator of 5 rhythms dance is nearing the end of her life through having cancer. I was introduced to Gabrielle's wonderful work through her book 'Sweat Your Prayers'. I recommend her books to anyone interested in re-connecting with their true selves.

And while we're on the topic of being true to our heart, if you struggle with self-acceptance or are having a case of the 'I'm not good enoughs' read this post by American wellness blogger Kris Carr.

I hope your week has been nourishing in lots of ways and if it hasn't - next week change it! Food wise my week has been very nourishing but I am so ready for a night off from 'what's for dinner?' 'time for a bath' 'brush your teeth' etc; So, I have arranged with Pete to hand over the dinner shift to him tonight and when the clock strikes 5pm and hungry tired children start to prowl the kitchen I will wave the children and Pete farewell and head out to walk on the beach or go to a movie or perhaps even a soak at the hot springs. I'll return a few hours later when all is said and done. I feel better already.

Happy weekending x

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

recipes by Robin Koster-Carlyon

Following on from yesterday's post about wholefood mama Robin Koster-Carlyon here are two totally delicious and nourishing recipes that Robin creates for her family. Plus at the end of the post you will find a link to an article written by Robin about the splendours of growing and cooking with nettle.
I hope you enjoy these recipes x

Quinoa, Roasted Veggies, Marinated Chickpeas and Feta Salad

Night Before:
Soak 1 cup of chick peas over night. 

1 1/2 hours before serving:
Drain the chick peas and refill with water.  Add a 3 cm piece of Kombu.  Boil and then reduce to a simmer for about 1 hour or until tender.

While the chick peas are boiling, peel 1 medium whole Butternut squash or 1/4 to 1/3 of a Queensland Blue squash and cut into 1 1/2cm cubes.  (I prefer these squashes because they remain whole even when roasted.)

Peel 3 carrots and cut into match sticks.

Peel 2 beetroots and cut into 1cm cubes.

Place all on a roasting tray. Lightly sprinkle with olive oil, salt and fresh thyme.

Roast in a 180 oven for about an hour, turning occasionally so that all sides brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool for ten minutes.

Rinse and drain 1 cup red quinoa.  Place in a saucepan with 1 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock.  Cover.  Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.  Simmer for about 20 minutes or until the quinoa seed has split, a little white "tail" comes away from the kernel. This is the sign that the quinoa is soft.  Place in a bowl to cool.

1/4 cup Balsamic Vinegar
1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Dessert Spoon fresh lemon thyme
1/2tsp salt and generous grind of cracked pepper

Use seasonal greens.  Mixed lettuce, spinach, rocket, beetroot greens, mizuna.  Rinse and spin dry.  This salad is delicious with as few or as many as you have.

Once chickpeas are tender, drain and mix immediately with the marinade.  As they cool, they soak up the marinade.  If there is no marinade left in the bowl with them, make a bit more.  

Once cool, add about 100grams of feta cheese cut into 1 cm cubes. Stir to coat with marinade and let sit for ten minutes.

Place greens in bowl.  Top with quinoa, then roasted vegetables then chickpeas and feta.

Leek and Nettle Tartlets
I adapted this recipe from Linda Woodrow's Leek Tartlets with Olive Oil Pastry  (I used to use a short crust pastry but tried her yogurt, olive oil pastry and much preferred it.)

Makes 6 large muffin sized tarts. Recipe doubles fine.

The Pastry:
Into a food processor or a bowl, put 1 cup of wholemeal plain flour and a good pinch of salt.
Put a couple of good dessertspoons of low fat Greek yoghurt in a cup, then top it up to half full with olive oil. You want it about half and half – ¼ cup of each. You don’t need to mix them.
Tip the cup all at once into the processor or bowl and blitz them together.  In a food processor it’s just a couple of seconds, but you can do it just by stirring.  Knead just enough to combine into a dough.  It needs to be quite moist so don’t add any more flour than necessary, and don’t overwork the dough or it will get tough.  Put the dough in a plastic container in the freezer to cool while you make the filling.

The Filling:
Sauté 2 cups of chopped leeks (white and pale green part) in a little butter or olive oil.  Do this over low heat for about twenty minutes which caramelises the leek.  When they are almost done, add 1 cup chopped nettles.  
Beat together:
  • eggs
  • ¼ cup white wine or 1/4 cup milk or 1/4 cup cream or 1/4 water with a squeeze of lemon 
  • a dessertspoon of lemon thyme
  • a good grating of black pepper
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
Assembling and Baking:The pastry is quite fragile.  The easiest way to roll it out is to put a sheet of greaseproof paper on your bench top, put the ball of dough on it, and cover with another sheet.  Roll the pastry out between the two sheets, turning once or twice to un-wrinkle the paper. You can then peel the top sheet of paper off, cut the dough to fit your muffin tins, flip the lot and peel the other sheet off. Roll the scraps out between the greaseproof paper again.
If you have a round bowl the right size to fit the muffin tins, use it to cut your rounds.  I do not so I cut the dough into squares which then stick up out of the tins. 
Grease the baking tins lightly, line with pastry.  You can pre-bake empty for five minutes or just put a few dessert spoons of the leek and nettle mixture into each cup, pour the egg mixture, dividing between the cups and top with parmesan cheese.
Bake in a medium oven for around 20 minutes till the pastry is golden.  

Read more about nettle written by Robin here.

Monday, October 22, 2012

wholefood mama: Robin Koster-Carlyon

I am so excited to bring you this post, the first in what I hope will be an on-going series of profiles of wholefood mamas from all around this great big world. It gives me great joy to begin with a fabulous wholefood mama who I have the pleasure of knowing in real life. Make yourself some tea and settle in to meet Robin Koster-Carlyon.

Robin is one of the most inspiring mamas I know. Together with her husband Peter and their two children Maya and Rye, this family have created Transition Farm - Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) on the Mornington Peninsula.

As explained on their website CSA is "a concept that originated in Switzerland and Japan in the 1960s, and its basis is to “put the farmers’ face on food”. In this way, CSA seeks to connect consumers with the story of their food, including both the farmers who grow it and the environment in which it is produced. CSA  is a relationship of mutual support and commitment between farmers and members. In return for an annual membership fee to help cover the production costs of the farm, CSA members receive a weekly share of the highest quality organically-grown harvest during the local growing season. When members obtain food from local farmers, they are directly supporting small, family farms in their community as well as receiving the freshest available produce."
(this is an example of the exquisite food members of Transition Farm received in a half share box (2 people) in January 2012)
What inspired Robin and Peter to set up their own CSA farm?
Robin explains, "Peter studied Permaculture with Bill Mollison.  Bill's advice on what the best thing to do to help the planet and its people was to either start teaching permaculture or run a CSA and produce food for your local community.  Peter then started to research the CSA movement.  We had already been growing vegetables for our own family.  We had been successful potato, carrot and raspberry farmers.  I had experience on a large scale vegetable farm.

We also started thinking about global issues like Peak Oil,  the global financial situation, the Mayan prophesy about 2012.  We knew that whatever was happening in the world, the best thing we could do for our family was be as self-reliant as possible.  We also felt the best thing we could do for our community was to grow food within the Community Support Agriculture model where we were growing for our local community and only using the resources that we had available to us.  I guess with age that old motto, "Think Globally Act Locally" has finally made sense to me."
How did you become interested in wholefoods?
I grew up in a food family.  My father is a butcher and my parents ran a very european style store with a huge meat case, deli meats, cheeses, breads, prepared foods, speciality groceries.  My mother is a wonderful cook.  We grew up eating "real" food.  I was a vegetarian for ten years and learned about protein alternatives and continued to diversify my pantry.  When I was 27, I moved to Peru. There, I continued to learn about locally produced foods.  I worked in communities that grew all of their own food and what they could not grow, they traded for from communities at different altitudes that could grow other staples like corn, quinoa and potatoes.  I love learning about food and I love growing food and I really love eating food that I have grown.  That makes me want to learn to grow more of the "staples" like quinoa and chick peas which I tried growing this year. Having children has been another adventure into food for me.  I actually never imagined how much time I would spend thinking about and preparing food as a mother.  As I really believe that you are what you eat, feeding our family whole food is really important to me.

What are your tips for encouraging children to eat well?
Grow your own food!  I think one of the best tips is to offer children fresh, organic produce.  It actually tastes better which encourages them to eat more!  And all year round, they can walk around the garden and graze.  There seems to always be a child friendly fruit or vegetable just waiting for a nibble.
I feel lucky because our children enjoy eating well.  I know children with parents who cook wonderfully and they just will not eat some of the food.  I think the best choice we have made is that anything in our pantry or in our fridge is fair game.  There are no foods just for the adults.  The children are watching us model good eating habits.

Can you describe family life on the farm?
Life on the farm with young children---It has been many things throughout their life time.  When Maya was just born, I would tie her on to me and head out to round up the sheep.  I helped Peter plant lavender plants with her on my back.  Planted the veggie garden with her on a blanket or in a wading pool.  She ate her first solid foods grazing in the vegetable garden.  I remember being so worried that a bee or a march fly would sting her.  And there were the stories about the parasites that animals carried.  And there was Maya crawling around in the dirt.  I have to admit, I wish I could have relaxed a bit more with her.  Part of me did wonder if she was going to end up filled with worms or eaten by bugs or get tetnus, etc.  But she survived and maybe seeing that made it easier to relax with the second child.  

I found it hard when Maya was born to not be able to do as much as I did before.  I could not take her on the tractor and I did worry that the sheep might jump in the yards.  Would she be safe in a sling.  Rye was a bit different because we do not have so many animals on this farm.  We have carried both of them either in a sling or as they got bigger on our backs.  So they have always been a part of everything.  It did limit what I could do, and when I could do it.  But this is a family farm.  When there are things that need to be done, they need to be done.  

I have found the balancing act between mothering and anything else, really to be just that.  Both Peter and I feel very blessed at the amount of time we have spent with our children.  Working from home and running your own business does allow you to be with your family.  I also feel lucky that the daily demands of farming have really been taken on by Peter.  I have never felt as if I had to choose between taking care of little children and running the farm.  As they get older though, and we are trying to grow Transition Farm and solely support ourselves on farming, there are times when I need to do something on the farm instead of doing something with them.

Maya and Rye are at a great age now where they can choose to come along and work with us or stay in the house.  Most of the time though, they choose to just come with us.  There is always something they can do to help.   I feel like a pioneer family when I say it,  they are another pair of hands.  And it is fun working together.  We talk about things or listen to music.  They come and go with some jobs, wander in and out of it, exploring on their own, making up games, building "shade" and then finding something to play with in the shade.  Last summer I paid them to collect cabbage moths and green shield beetles.  I needed quite a lot to be able to roast them so that I could use the ash in biodynamic preparations.  They were great at the job!  They help seed, help weed, help harvest, draw pictures on the farm black board.  Farming is not rocket science.  Maya and Rye can do most things that we do around here.

What is a memorable meal for you? What made it special?
I loved the food at our wedding.  We were married in my home town, on the beach.  The reception was held in a community "beach shack", wooden shutters that pushed up, ceiling fans, beach sand, ocean.  There were gardenias and bougainvillea blossoms.  It smelled sweet and salty.  The fish was caught that morning.  The meat came from our store as did the rest of the side dishes.  It was all seasonal food, prepared on site and presented beautifully on palm fronds and banana leaves. The cake was a traditional Trinadad fruit cake brought from the island by my Trinadadian friend and soaked with rum and love for weeks before the day.  It was then covered with marzipan which reminded me of the Christmas boxes my great grandmother would send every year from Holland with all sorts of lovely Dutch treats.  My sister was working in Austria at the time and brought back beautiful dark chocolate which we melted and dipped strawberries in.  And another friend made four different sorts of truffles.  The food not only tasted great, it was very fresh, wholesome, beautiful and filled with memories and love.  I find full sensory experiences including great food last in my memory.

What do you say to people who say they don't have time to cook?

Food is not an essential.  We can go days even months without eating.  But to live feeling nourished, food is essential.  I look at food as living energy.  I like to eat food that is still vibrant.  And the only way to do that is to cook or prepare whole foods.  You may not think you have time to cook, but will you have time (and money) to be sick?  I think that eating well balanced vibrant food keeps our body at its optimum.  

What do you like to do when you are not working?
 I like spinning wool, knitting and crocheting, making clothes, making dolls and toys for the children, painting.  I like walking and keeping fit.  I am trying to teach myself how to surf.  I like going on adventures with my family-finding a new hike or visiting a new beach or just going to our favourite beach with a picnic meal.  I am trying to help the school start an outdoor edible classroom so the children have a place where they can be part of a thriving ecosystem and learn to grow food.  I also work with pregnant and birthing women and their families.   I really enjoy supporting women and their partners and families.

What do you love about your life right now?

I love my family right now.  I love that Peter, my husband, is following his dream.  I love him for dreaming it.  I love mothering my children and being a part of their lives.

If you are hungry for more here is Robin's extensive and fabulous list of links to blogs or websites that in her words "excite me or make me think". Look out for the next post that includes recipes from Robin.

Thank you Robin so much for the information and above all the inspiration to grow, cook and enjoy real food and family life. 

Kirsten Bradley passionate about permaculture, local food and community, tiny houses, family and more  (
Joel Salatin author of many books including You Can Farm (
Linda Woodrow author of The Permaculture Home Garden  (
Jenny Blyth is a fantastic midwife, film maker and the great author of  The Down to Earth Birth Book - One of my all time favourite books for pregnant and birthing couples ( )
Maya Donenfeld artist and author of  reinvention - sewing with rescued materials ( )
Amanda Blake Soule mother of five, living in Maine and author of several books including The Rhythm of Family and Creative Family (
Lianna Krissoff who wrote a wonderful preserving book Canning for a  New Generation and has just released a book on whole grains (
Janisse Ray author of The Seed Underground- A Growing Revolution to Save Food ( )
The Greenhorns- Young farmers movement in the US ( )

Friday, October 19, 2012

fast friday

I went missing in action here this week. I needed a break from technology and was a little swamped by the day-to-day happenings of family life. You know how that goes?

I missed being here though and missed all you. And now the sun is finally showing us its heat I am about to head to the beach with River and Sol for an after school swim but first some links...

The plate of vibrant real food above was part of a taco feast we enjoyed during the week.

I am just back from a trip to Melbourne where Sol and I enjoyed lunch with my aunty at The Kitchen - asparagus and fetta tart with delicious fresh salads of rocket and lentils with mint and chickpeas with black sesame seeds so much flavour on the plate.

I also had good coffee at The Pantry, a restaurant I used to work at and now contribute to their online newsletter

How wonderful do rose and fig muesli biscuits sound?

It was also wonderful this week to discover the art of Anne Middleton

This weekend we are looking forward to heading to the Boneo Market and fingers crossed for a bit more beach weather. Have a beautiful weekend and I look forward to being back here a bit more next week x

Friday, October 12, 2012

friday links

Too tired to cook? Read this story for real food inspiration  - Mum knows best: how food justice starts at home

I am looking forward to getting together with my extended family this weekend to catch up after our trip north and I'll be baking Karen Martini's dark chocolate olive oil cake to take along...I'll be skipping the refined sugar and replacing it with stevia and coconut palm sugar and reducing the overall amount. Fingers crossed that works out!

If you like to keep your snack attack wholesome I think these cacoa and protein balls look worth a try (as do many other recipes on Ashleigh's health lovin' blog)

When my house was quiet (oh some time around midnight. yawn) I made myself a cup of licorice tea (my favorite brew at the moment) and watched with great interest as my culinary wizard, health loving friend Samantha Gowing and three of her wise, health loving gal pals launched their new online TV series - healthtalks

I've signed up to virtually attend the problogger conference in Melbourne. Oh how I wish I could go for real but finding a babysitter for Sol from 7.30am and getting myself to Melbourne rapidly flew into the too hard basket. Now all I have to do is find a spare 21 hours to listen to the content.

If you're feeling consumed by your to-do list take a moment to gain perspective and watch this clip it includes segments from US documentary Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide

On that note, count your blessings twice and have a wonderful whole food filled weekend. Look forward to sharing more here next week x

Thursday, October 11, 2012

an old school favorite - zucchini slice

Working from home affords me the luxury (some days) of planning ahead and having dinner ready before school pick up. Yesterday was one of those - good - days.

Before heading off to school River asked if we could go directly to the skate park after school. With the promise of sunshine showing itself that afternoon it seemed like a good idea and coming home to dinner prepared made it an even better plan.

So by 2.30pm Sol and I had cracked eggs, grated zucchini, carrot, cheese and onion mixed it all together with some olive oil and gluten free flour, baked it in the oven for half an hour and voila, with salad on the side dinner was ready.
Typically zucchini slice includes bacon but I'm not so much a bacon fan so I skip that. I used a vintage cheddar to make this one but I use whatever cheese I have in the fridge, I've made it with fetta, parmesan or goats cheese. I add grated carrot to up the vegie intake and carrot always makes things a little sweeter don't you agree? Chopped fresh herbs are also a great addition. Grating the onion rather than chopping it keeps it well disguised from little people who don't enjoy biting into onion. Instead of baking it in a baking tray you can also bake it in a muffin tray for individual servings. And if your children have a taste for tomato sauce try serving with homemade sugar and salt free tomato sauce. Leftovers are perfect for lunch the next day.

I hope your return to school week is going smoothly. And a big hello and welcome to the smiling faces I see who have joined up as followers this week. Thrilled to see you there! x

Zucchini Slice

5 eggs
1 large zucchini grated
1 small onion grated
1 small carrot grated
1 cup cheddar cheese grated
1 cup self raising flour
1/4 cup olive oil
(optional ingredients - bacon, herbs, other style of cheese)

Turn oven on to 170C
Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Whisk eggs in a bowl and mix in flour. Add vegetables, cheese and oil mix until combined.
Pour mixture into baking tray and bake for half an hour or until set and golden.

So easy!

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

milk and honey

It's been a long time since I sat in a restaurant incognito recording every detail to write a review. But when we went to Mullumbimby's favorite pizzeria I said to Pete (who has accompanied me on many reviews) let's pretend to do a review. Just for fun. Believe it or not, reviewing restaurants is work and not always fun. 

When I worked as a reviewer for The Age Good Food Guide I was often asked about reviewing: does the restaurant know you are reviewing them? No. The aim is not to receive any special treatment in the hope of a favorable review. And yes the meals were paid for, out of my pocket and then I was reimbursed by The Age. The reviews for that guide are carried out annually over about a 3 month timeframe by a team of reviewers who are assigned various restaurants. One year I agreed to do 25 reviews which involves taking along a co-reviewer to assigned restaurants and ordering three courses each and then writing a review of 200 or so words that sets the scene - place and people- and carefully considers details of food and service...

So. Back to Milk and Honey in Mullumbimby.

If you want a seat in this pizzeria favored by locals make a booking or you will be leaving with take away. Folks with and without children start filling the wooden seats and cushioned benches from 5pm and as the tables turn, friendly and capable staff smile and ferry the wood-fired pizzas and farmer's market fresh salads to chatty customers seated at bare wood tables inside and out on the front pavement. We were there early but rumour has it as the night progresses so does the noise level, the space between tables and chairs is slim so hearing your neighbour (both on your own table and eavesdropping!) should still be easy. Located by a busy roundabout the glow of headlights flickers through the windows as cars round the bend. 

The ruggedly handsome owner/head pizza chef gives George Clooney a run for his pizza in the looks department and as for his pizzas? If crisp, thin crusted pizza covered simply but generously with combos such as roasted tomato sauce, dotted with olives, torn basil, pancetta and mozzarella cheese, or roasted pumpkin and goats cheese is your preferred style then make that booking. And arrive hungry. The large circumference of Milk and Honey pizzas ensures you leave with a satisfying "I've just eaten pizza feeling". The house made chocolate mousse is worth saving room for. For those who like vino with their pizza Milk and Honey is BYO and I can recommend the 2009 organic shiraz made by Organic One that I picked up at The Middle Pub bottleshop around the corner in Burringbar Street.

Milk and Honey
5/59 Station Street  Mullumbimby NSW 2482
(02)6684 1422

Friday, October 05, 2012

sweet friday

Raw food chocolate tart and coffee anyone? This was the morning tea I indulged in at Brunswick Heads Health Food store (owned by our sweet friend David Shaw) last friday.

We slipped back into Melbourne yesterday and were greeted by sunshine and traffic aplenty. Looking forward to the weekend celebrating my dear friend Luci's birthday and then on Sunday resting up before school starts again Monday. One more term and River's prep year is over!

To keep the Byron Bay feeling alive here is my list of Byron inspired links:

- tired of thinking about what to feed everyone (yes even me who loves cooking has patches of this) then visit the Goddess of Babylon and swoon over fashion instead

- listening to Bay Fm 99.9 radio station in my car is reason alone to move to Byron permanently

- capsicum salsa made by Baraka foods was a delicious farmer's market buy

- breakfast at Harvest Cafe & Deli in Newrybar with our Byron buddies was an out of our ordinary fun way to spend a saturday morning

- wishing I had of made it to Naked Treaties new raw bar for a green smoothie

- I am obsessed with the Mamabake ladies, clever community minded Byron mamas who started a big batch cooking craze so they can eat well with their families and have more time to themselves. I'll be writing a whole post about this next week but I couldn't resist sharing it now.

Thanks too and welcome to the new followers who have signed up this week. So lovely to meet you here. If you are of the facebook world I have finally broken my resistance and started a Wholefood Mama page so you can pop on over there if you like :) Happy weekend everyone xx

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

when bloggers meet

We are still enjoying our Byron Bay bliss. On Sunday I asked our dear friend David, who we stay with each year, if I could invite some friends over for a chai, "They're coming up from Bellingen and staying in Mullum". In his usual generous and gracious way he said,"Sure that's fine". I added, "There's one detail that I have to tell you and that is, I've never met them before". We both cracked up laughing and when the laughter settled, "They're your friends and you've never met them before?" he quizzed me. "We met online. Jay is a blogging friend," I explained.

And so. It happened! The super lovely Jay whose blog and the trees was one of the first to capture my undivided daily attention came to visit with her beautiful family. Before they arrived I confessed to my friend Ruth that I was feeling a bit nervous. But I needn't have been nervous Jay, Scott, Poe and Ilo were every bit as delightful in real life as they are online. They arrived with warm smiles and hugs, nuts and berries and rhubarb grown in Bellingen. We settled on to blankets on the lawn, drank chai and chatted while the children played tug-of-war and ran around playing ball.

I was first drawn into Jay's blog by her photos, her sense of humour and the warmth that she conveys in  her posts. Jay and Scott made the move with their children Poe and Ilo from Sydney to Bellingen 16 months ago and I admired that because in time moving north is on Pete and my wishlist too. Coupled with the fact that I have great memories of Bellingen from a time Pete and I spent there about seven years ago, Jay's blog has all the ingredients to keep me happily reading along.

On Monday morning when I was sifting through the photos my friend Michael had snapped of Jay and I (just look past my current hairstyle that is an unintended cross between Farrah Fawcett and Suzi Quatro), my friend Ruth wandered in and we sat looking at photos and chatting about blogs. Ruth is mama to one year old twins and was there with her family to meet Jay, Scott, Ilo and Poe. Ruth is not a blogger I showed her and the trees and she said "ooooh isn't it beautiful. I can see how you can fall in love with a family you've never met!"
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