5 things…

It’s been a massive week and right now I feel like I have that permanently tired behind the eyes feel that I’m beginning to think probably won’t go away until the end of summer. I’m blaming the fact that the birds are up and about at 4.30am and the sun is streaming through the windows by not much later than that. Of course, it doesn’t help that I’m attempting to jam more hours into my days (and nights)… #selfinflicted

I spent a few days down in Sydney for the day job (which happened to coincide with the office Christmas party) and flew home at stupid o’clock on Saturday morning as we had friends scheduled for dinner that night. There is, as they say, no rest for the wicked.

Okay, let’s get into what made me smile…


Sarah came home after a few days in Sydney. The house is so quiet when she’s not around.

It’s beginning to sound a lot like…

Yes! I love Christmas and when I walked into the airport the other morning and they were playing Michael Buble’s Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) that familiar tingle was in the air.

It’s beginning to feel a lot like…

I’ll be honest – it seemed weird having our office Christmas party last Friday night when it was still November. It did, however, feel right once we were all there.

And at 5am Saturday morning when I struggled out of bed to make my way down to the station and to the airport for my flight home, my head certainly felt like I’d been to an office party!

It’s beginning to look a lot like…

Our Christmas tree went up yesterday – a week earlier than usual. We marked the occasion (as always) with champagne and savoury pinwheels.

This year’s ornament is below. I love the galahs.

Christmas memes

I love the memes that are popping up right now. This is an oldie but never fails to make me laugh.


I loved this post by Laurie at Meditations in Motion. It was, essentially about time, but also explained some things about thermodynamics in a way I actually understood. Naturally, I went straight to the concept of disorder and how that applies to my messy desk, but…

At the Christmas party on Friday night I was talking to a colleague about Wagner, Shakespeare and classic literature (as you do) and he brought up the second law of thermodynamics (as you do).

‘Are you familiar with the second law of thermodynamics?’

‘As a matter of fact, I am,’ I replied, crossing my fingers (the ones not holding the wine glass) behind my back.

‘There’s a word I can’t grasp that explains disorder,’ he said.

‘That would be entropy,’ I replied smugly.

Thanks, Laurie!

The Crown

I’m loving series 3, but the episode about Aberfan in Wales had me in tears.

If you haven’t heard of this disaster, google it.

Sydney air quality

Okay, this didn’t make me smile. There was so much smoke in the air that Sydney had the 9th worst air quality in the world for a couple of days.

Just waiting at Central Station for my train up to Chatswood my eyes started to smart and my lungs tighten. I could smell it in my hair at night. Ugh.

On the upside, when a storm swept through on Friday afternoon the strange light was really armageddonish. The photo below doesn’t do it justice. It was much darker and much weirder.


Our Sydney office has recently moved to Chatswood and the food out there is amazing. You name an Asian region and you’ll be able to find something yummy.

This laksa at the IPOH Club for lunch on Friday was one of the best I’ve had in a long time.

For the sake of Project Excess Baggage, I’m seriously glad I only visit the office occasionally.

Frangipani spam

Just because.

Saturday Kitchen

We had friends over for dinner so this week’s cuisine destination was Bali.

We did Balinese-style pork belly (with crispy crackling) with raw sambal on the side. To accompany that was steamed green beans with spicy tomato sambal stirred through it.

Dessert was unashamedly NOT Balinese. I’d normally do a black rice pudding but because I flew in that morning I took the quick and easy option with this lemony, fruity, cheesecakey tart. With just six ingredients (including both kinds of berries) and no baking involved, it’s a great I’ve run out of time dessert.

Okay, that was my week…how was yours?

Author: Jo

Author, baker, sunrise chaser

19 thoughts

  1. Your Christmas ornament is so cute and cheerful. I miss seeing frangipani unless I go somewhere warm so spam away with your photos. I read about the poor air quality in Sydney on the news. Hope it’s improved by now. #lifethisweek

  2. Hi Jo – I can’t believe you’ve found time to get your Christmas tree up during all that busy-ness! I think you must have more energy and hours in your day than I do! Normally mine would go up this weekend (first w/end of December) but we’re heading off to Rottnest again and I don’t want to leave it to the cats while we’re gone, so it’s not going up until the 7th this year. I hope you get some down time over Christmas and January to recharge your batteries before you fall in a heap of exhaustion!

  3. What a great week Jo, hectic and full on! I love frangipani flowers too and your photo is gorgeous. I am here to assure you you won’t be getting morning light and glaring sunshine at the early hours of the morning over here! In fact it’s a very different world over here. #lifethisweek

  4. Wow what an action packed week! Sorry your visit coincided with the terrible air quality – it was so unpleasant! Tree looks fab and I love the galah decoration. We have a few new personalised decorations for Teddy Roosevelt and my Christmas life is complete now the tree is up. As usual you outdid yourself in the Saturday kitchen, that pork belly looks next level!

  5. It’s so crazy that we’re already in the Christmas season! That pork crackling looks amazing!! That’s a skill I haven’t mastered yet!

    1. Thanks. The trick to this crackling is to whack the oven up at the end of the cook and ut a wooden spoon in the door for a few minutes. Works a treat.

  6. You are doing an amazing amount in the (already!) silly season. Tree up…and will you take it down before you leave? The air quality has been pretty dire. Even up here. The nasty storm yesterday has left thousands of homes still without power today.

    Thank you for linking up for Life This Week. Next week’s optional prompt is 48/51 Self-Care Stories #7. 2/12/19. I hope to see you there too. Denyse.

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