That’s a Wrap – January 28, 2019

The week in photos

It’s a long weekend Sunday here in Australia – for Australia Day. While the public holiday tomorrow is much appreciated, I am, to be honest, more than a tad conflicted about the date. I’m writing this early on a Sunday before heading down to Caloundra for a get together of the astro group I’m involved in and then we have friends around for dinner tonight – so I deeply glad for the day off tomorrow.

Anyways, let’s wrap this week up…

What made me laugh

The Australia Day lamb ad – which is always a little controversial – proposing a merger with New Zealand. It makes sense – we both get to keep the things that we both have claim over, they get to share our prime lamb and we get to share their prime minister. If you haven’t seen it, duck over for a look. New Australia Land.

Quick as a flash the Air New Zealand marketing team was onto it with a webpage for exploring the best of New Australia Land – where the world’s best lamb rests. It’s worth a read and a giggle. You’ll find it here.

What made me go eeeeeuw…

Cane toads are a problem here in Queensland – and we get our fair share each night. They’re an ugly migratory toad and move through, burying themselves against the heat of the day and then moving to the next place that night.  We’ve stymied them a tad by putting down weed matting in our garden beds, but now they’re making their way into the soil in my pots. I found this one in my curly-leaf parsley during the week. It was gone the next morning.

The problem with them is – aside from their sheer numbers – they’re toxic and can kill a dog. (As an aside, they can also kill crocodiles and even the carpet pythons don’t eat them.) They can be (partially) controlled with salt but I can’t take the risk of one dying in the backyard and Kali finding it, so I continue to be disgusted by them, continue to let them move through, and lift the pots up to higher ground.

A Ballinger Hill Update…

looking out to sea from the top of the hill

I made it to the top – up into Buderim Village – and took the photo to prove it. Yes, I stopped a lot to catch my breath, but I made it. From here the challenge is to reduce the number of stops along the way.

Where I also walked…

Serenity Falls

This holiday long weekend is one of the busiest on the coast, so we decided to avoid the increased traffic on our usual Mooloolaba beach walk by doing an early morning – before it got too hot – bushwalk to Buderim Falls instead.

There are 2 ways into the falls – one is a steep-ish bush track that’s and the other is longer, but the first 50% is the boardwalk. We opted for that.

Once the boardwalk finishes, the path isn’t accessible for prams or wheelchairs as it becomes quite rocky. Towards the end, there are some rocky stream crossings which completely freak me out. I think it’s the fear of falling or injuring myself, and I overthink every single foot placement – making myself anxious in the meantime. Of course, hubby and Ms T bound ahead.

The waterfall when we get to it is a tad diminished – on account of it not having rained for a while. It’s still beautifully peaceful being down here before the holiday walkers descend. Just the birds and us.

Coming back I let the others tackle the few rocks and opt instead for the rock-free steep track out. I said it for the view but no one believed me.

What I wrote…

I got started on my new novel – Christmas at Curlew Cottage. I was only scheduled for 3 days in the day job so planned to get to 10,000 words this week. When I ended up having to work on Wednesday I scaled my expectations down somewhat, but I still had Fridays – and everyone knows not to interrupt me on Fridays.

So I took myself off to a coffee shop, settled down with a pot of tea and let my characters start to speak to me.

Just after this photo was taken I got a call – and reluctantly closed scrivener for the rest of the day. I should, however, finish the weekend with the first 2 chapters written – all going well.

What I blogged…

The first instalment in my Nigella Diaries series: About Roast Chicken. The post was, literally, about roast chicken.

What I watched…

Aside from Great British Bake-off which is back (yay) and the new series of Death in Paradise (yay), I’m slowly working my way through the British Christmas cooking shows that I’d recorded before Christmas – for research purposes.

What I’m reading…

More Jay Rayner – again for research. I did, however, for light relief read Amy Andrews latest. It’s her first foray into writing in first person and I’m not really sure how I felt about that. It is, however, very steamy indeed. And no, that read wasn’t for research purposes.

Just because…

I snapped these frangipanis at the farmer’s market yesterday. Sadly my tree isn’t anywhere near as prolific as this one!

What I cooked…

Hollandaise sauce from scratch – for my Nigella Challenge. I’ll tell you all about that during the week. As a result of having leftover egg-whites, I also cooked meringues – and as a result of having meringues, I made lemon meringue ice cream…which I’ll tell you about on Thursday. The best bit about this ice cream is that it doesn’t require churning. The 2nd best thing is that you don’t need to make your own meringues or your own lemon curd – shop bought is absolutely fine.

We have friends over for dinner tonight so I prepared a beef rendang yesterday which will be better for resting overnight. I’m also doing a Kapitan Chicken and sticky date slice with toffee sauce for dessert, both of which I’ll make up when I get back from my astro thingie.

As for my healthy recipe for the week? It wasn’t so much a recipe as a salad dressing that we used in a wombok (Chinese cabbage) salad. The salad was just shredded cabbage, grated carrot, sliced snow peas and some sliced red capsicum (pepper). For the dressing, Into a jar went 2 tablespoons of tahini (sesame seed paste), 2 tablespoons soy sauce (we use a gluten-free brand), 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon caster sugar and 1 tablespoon of sesame oil. Shake it all up and the dressing is done. Rather than toss through the salad, I drizzled across the top – mainly so I didn’t drench the salad and therefore turn a healthy choice into something else entirely.

Ok, that was my week…how was yours?




Author: Jo

Author, baker, sunrise chaser

19 thoughts

  1. I love your update Jo and you made it up the hill yay!! I also love that I’m actually nearby at the moment enjoying the delightful rainforest area and little towns and spending time with my mother in our fabulous Airbnb. Your photos are great and I also love the adverts, it’s great to share them with everyone.

    1. Your air BNB looks delightful!…as have your pictures been. Enjoy what’s left of your Sunshine Coast stay.

    1. I can’t deal with them either. Way too ugh for me – and hands down the worst part of living in Queensland.

  2. I always enjoy your weekly wrap Jo and frangipanis are gorgeous aren’t they? Well done on the Hill you are doing so well and each time you reach the top it will get easier. Not a cane toad fan although I haven’t seen one for years maybe they don’t like the CBD area LOL:) Looking forward to your next book and it sounds perfect as a Christmas present to myself. Have a great week and look forward to next week’s wrap. PS we just finished watching The Good Fight Season 2 (again – can’t wait for Season 3). I love Christine Baranski. 🙂

  3. Congratulations on another busy and varied week. I am never sure how you fit it all in. I loved the ‘New Australialand’ video. I greatly look forward to reading more about your lemon meringue ice cream!

  4. Congratulations, Jo, on making to the top of the hill and getting so many things done in a week! Your photos are lovely as usual. #lifethisweek

  5. Well done on the hill climb and the walk to the Falls. I’m hoping for some lemon meringue icecream now – just need someone to make it for me (why do you live so far away??) Can’t wait to meet in 1.5wks – it’s going to be fun 😀

  6. Your hill training is going great guns! Soon you’ll be running up that hill! I too am a bit conflicted about Australia Day but I’m not conflicted about a long weekend – if only every weekend had 3 days! I would totally freak out about the cane toads – all those weird and wonderful critters you have – it’s one of the main reasons I can’t move to Queensland. I just read a great book called The Lilac Girls – fiction based on a true story – and it was an amazing read. Very excited about the Christmas book!

  7. So pleased for you and the hill challenge! I too know it can feel uncertain with different levels of rocks and so on during some walks like you mention and as someone who HAS broken her ankle I do take precautions. I am really keen to walk on the rock platforms on the beach but unless B was with me I wouldn’t as my fibula-less right leg may not give me the stabilty I need…and then there is that thing about being in my 70th year ….

    Those frangipanis are prolific around the Central Coast too where there are many mature trees. I took a shot when I stopped driving & parked when I was out. It is now my FB blog header !

    Thank you for linking up for #lifethisweek. Next week the optional prompt is the first of the regular photography ones: Share Your Snaps. 4/2/2019. Denyse

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