Saturday, July 31, 2010

2 months old

With two months...

... Victoria is very ticklish.
... she loves to watch Papa dancing.
... she always sleeps in the car.
... she has discovered that she can use her hands to push things away or pull them closer.
.. . she started to lose her beautiful fine and soft baby hair.
... she can play by herself for 10 minutes.
... she weights more than 5kg.
... she suddenly hates her dummy.
... she is always hungry – like her mama ;-)
... she has slept through the night – twice!!
... she is our greatest joy!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Fashion Friday

I ♥ colourful tights

All images found here

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Great Ocean Road

We had a wonderful trip to the Great Ocean Road. It was cold and rainy, but our apartment had a fireplace and we had lots of hot chocolates and hearty soups. So it was actually a very cosy family get away.

Everything was much easier than expected with the little one and this mini trip gave us great confidence for our big trip to Germany in two weeks. She slept even better than at home (her first all-night-sleep ever – 7 hours, woa!), she didn’t seem to mind the new environment, she kept her appetite and loved the wind and the salty air on her face. A real beach babe!

Surfer at Bells Beach

Cold Climate Rainforest near Lorne

Amazing Johanna Beach

Monday, July 26, 2010

Travel Baby – mini trip

Every Monday I will post something related to babies: inspiration, craft projects, baby news, and discoveries I have made in this new and exciting world for me. I hope you come along on that rollercoaster ride with me.
* * *

My lovely husband and I decided to do one more trip here in Australia. Although we have been to the Great Ocean Road a couple of times before, we still want to see it one more time. And show to our little one: the winding road, the wide beaches, the spectacular views, the wild Southern Ocean, the fresh wind, the yummy seafood and the best scones in the world.

So we will hit the road tomorrow. The Great Ocean Road is just a 2-hour-drive away, but still it feels like a big trip with a 2-months-old baby. Although I promised myself that I would be still spontaneous and travel a lot when I am a mum, I already discovered some differences.

Travelling without children:
Starting around noon – planned coffee stops – spontaneous hotel choice – double room – late checkout – carry-on luggage – walk at the beach – exploring the bush – change clothes – fine dining...

Travelling with children:
Starting early in the morning – spontaneous feeding stops – booking in advance – apartment – early checkout – car full of luggage – walk with the pram - exploring the baby facilities – change nappies – one-handed dining...

Although everything will be different, I cannot wait to start our first family trip tomorrow. How exciting! I will be back on Thursday with a report and some photos. Have a great week!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Australia’s Next Masterchef

The decision is made.

Australia’s Next Masterchef is:

Picture found here

Callum, however, is my “Masterchef of the hearts”. I was amazed, how well he handled the pressure and how genuinely happy he was for Adam. And he is ‘just’ 20 years old. I reckon he will have a great career as a chef, even if he just became second.
Picture from here

I cannot believe it. It is over. What am I going to do every night? For almost 4 months I spent every night from 7.30 to 8.30pm with the Masterchefs. I don’t know whether that’s loyal or sad. But hey, first I was heavily pregnant and now I have a little one so my entertainment options are somewhat limited. And it wasn’t just stupid TV, it really was educational.

Things I have learned in this season of Masterchef:

1. That you should put the oil onto the meat before frying it not into the pan.

2. How to make an easy but yummy chocolate brownie. Find the recipe here

3. What to make with fresh fennel – a yummy orange-apple-fennel-salad

4. How to judge whether prawns are fresh or not.

5. That showing passion makes you so much more likeable (it is true, Claire!)

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Girls' night

Tonight little Vic and I are going to our first girls’ night together. And the ingredients for this night sound unbeatable:

9 lovely girls (aged from 8 weeks to 43 years)

+ Yummy food

+ A glass of bubbly

+ Chick Flick

What else would you want on a Saturday night?

Friday, July 23, 2010

I desperately need...

... a cupcake today.


Oh well, first of all I do not really need a reason for cupcakes. They always brighten up my day, put a smile on my face and are just so yummy.

Today, however, I deserve one even more. I hardly had any sleep in the last two days and nights, because the little one is going through a growth sprint + it is cold and rainy again + I have millions of things-to-do left on my list before we go back to Germany in 3 weeks – arrrrggghhhhh!

Enough reasons to stop at Little Cupcakes,my favourite cupcake shop :-)

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Mutti’s Restaurant

You can tell that I am homesick, when I go to German restaurants abroad. Otherwise I would always prefer local cuisines.

Mutti’s, however, is well worth a visit, even if you are not home-sick. You really feel at home at Mutti’s (which means ”mum’s” in German): the atmosphere is warm, the service is very friendly, the beer is cold, the food is great and it is surprisingly affordable.

Last time we ate there with friends, the four of us shared the Brettljausen (a mixed platter for 2 with cured meats, pickled vegetables, terrine, goats cheese and bread) and some Brezn with butter as starter. Gosh it took me right back to all the wonderful skiing holidays, which I spent with my family in Austria as a child.

As main I had the Triple duck (glühwein poached duck breast, crispy leg of duck, and potato dumpling filled with duck crackling, served with speck and grüner veltliner braised savoy cabbage and lingon berry scented duck jus) and I can tell you I still dream about it. It is the perfect modern interpretation of a traditional German Christmas duck. As yummy, but less fatty and less rustic. Beautiful!!!

My lovely husband had “Kasnudeln” – a wonderful Austrian style pasta – which was a bit unusual for him, because it is 100% vegetarian. How un-German ;-) Our friends, however, made up for it and shared the Crisp roast pork hock for the ultimate German meat experience, which was yummy but enough for at least 3 very hungry people. So don’t worry about my hubby, he got his fare share of meat that evening.

Unfortunately, we were all way too full to have dessert, although they sounded so appetising and reminded me of my granny: Bienenstich, Black Forrest Cake, Apple Strudle...

Oh my god, even writing about these dishes makes me salivate. I think I’ll have to make myself a salami sandwich right now ;-)

Guten Appetit!

118 Elgin St, Carlton VIC 3053
Phone (03) 9349 5008
Open Wed 4:30pm-11pm; Thu-Fri 12pm-11pm; Weekends 5pm-11pm

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

A Scottish Wedding

On Wednesdays I share everything wedding with you: tips, projects, organisation, photos, faux-pas, fun things and golden rules I ‘learned’ from my own wedding. I feel I need to give something back to the fabulous blog community who helped me stay sane and enjoy every second of my ‘big day’.

* * *

On the weekend we caught up with very good friend of ours, who just came back from their wedding in Scotland. Due to the arrival of our little one, we were unfortunately not able to celebrate their big day with them. I loved to see all the wonderful pictures, though, hear all the amazing stories and see their eyes still glittering with the joy of the big day.

The highlights for me were:
The groom wearing a kilt.

The kids performing a traditional Scottish dance.

The stunning dress of the bride.

Their honeymoon in Marrakesh, Morocco.

Congratulations again, guys! What a wonderful wedding you had! What a wonderful couple you are!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Ruby Tuesday

I ♥ red shoes

All images from here

Monday, July 19, 2010

Achtung Baby

Every Monday I will post something related to babies: inspiration, craft projects, baby news, and discoveries I have made in this new and exciting world for me. I hope you come along on that rollercoaster ride with me.
* * *
Unfortunately my post today is exclusively for my German-speaking readers. Sorry, lovely people from the rest of the world. This is nothing against you. The problem is only that the book I want to show you today only exists in German. It is written by a very funny German comedian, Michael Mittermeier and as you know humour is one of the few things which almost never can be translated into another language. I promise I am going to post something exclusively English very soon to make up for this all-German post.

Only in German

Erst war ich ja ein bisserl misstrauisch, als ich dieses Buch beschenkt bekam. Der Umschlag ist grauenhaft pink, der Titel haut mich auch nicht vom Hocker… Michael Mittermeier mag ich live sehr, aber lässt sich das auch ins Geschriebene umsetzen?

Naja, wie auch immer. Da wir ja sozusagen die Hauptzielgruppe sind und das Buch so einen langen Weg über die 7 Weltmeere hinter sind hatte, haben Andi und ich uns trotzdem sofort drangemacht… und ich muss es sagen, es war der Kracher. Wir haben Tränen gelacht, wir konnten kaum aufhören, wir fühlten uns ertappt und erkannt.

Das Buch ist lustig aber auch feinfühlig und manchmal sogar gefühlsduselig. Es handelt von vielen aufregenden Stationen der Schwangerschaft (Babyausstattungs-Kauf, Stimmungsschwankungen, Essensgelüste, Hebammensuche,…), der Geburt (PDA, Kreissaal,…) und der ersten Zeit mit Zwergerl (Wickeln, Pupsen, Durchschlafen, Zahnen,…). Für alles findet der Michl treffende Film-Vergleiche, komische Wortneuschöpfungen, informative Elemente und emotionale Worte.

Also, ich kann es nur empfehlen. Eine sehr amüsante Lektüre in kurze Kapitel unterteilt. Für alle Neu-Eltern und erfahreneren Eltern-Profis, für alle Nicht-Eltern oder solche die noch Eltern werden wollen, für alle Michael-Mittermeier-Fans und diejenigen, denen sein Humor sonst etwas zu laut ist.

Viel Spaß damit!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Lazy Sunday

It rains.

It is cold.

We just came back from a friend’s after-wedding-brunch – full of yummy food and wonderful stories.

The little one takes a nap.

My dear husband plays a computer game.

I have a cuppa and some leisure time just for me.

Life is good.

Hope you enjoy your Sunday as well!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

The best pizza in Melbourne...

... or at least a very good one.

Today we went to have lunch with very dear friends of us at The Boathouse. It is situated on the bank of the Maribyrnong River.

I loved the atmosphere – which is very casual, very child-friendly and very modern. The service was extremely friendly and quick, the Aboriginal art works on the wall were amazing, the views of the river extremely calming, the company charming as always...

... but most of all I enjoyed the food. We had wonderful pizzas – maybe not the best I have ever eaten but very close. For dessert we shared the dessert tasting plate for 2 – which easily satisfied the four of us: White chocolate filled profiteroles with dark chocolate sauce, chocolate brownies, mini muffins, coconut ice cream, watermelon-mint-sorbet, almond crunch, meringue with strawberry and crème brulee. Wow! What a treat!

After lunch we took a long walk along the Maribyrnong River, which was beautiful despite the cloudy weather. It also helped a lot in digesting all beautiful food.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Friday’s Finds

Today when looking for a present for my goddaughter-to-be I stumbled across DelicacyJ’s amazing jewellery shop on etsy. Aren’t these the most beautiful, simple but special gifts for little and big girls?

My only problem is that I cannot make up my mind, which one to get for the christening? Which one to get for my little girl? And which one to get for myself?

Oh dear, life is hard ;-)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Top 5 Penguin Books – Part I

It is the 15th again – so it is time for reading. And time for sharing my favourite books with you. This month it is all about penguin books. This range of amazing paperback books – from classics to contemporary bestsellers – which just costs $9.99. And because they have so many wonderful books, this is just part one. Part two will follow in August.

Book of Longing – Leonard Cohen
Wonderful poems by famous singer Leonard Cohen – melancholic, sad, heart-breaking and beautiful!

Breakfast at Tiffany’s – Truman Capote
Well worth reading – even if you have seen the movie with Audrey Hepburn a thousand times. Because there is more to discover and the story is slightly different. But still amazing!

Cannery Row – John Steinbeck
A must read – especially if you are travelling to or living in California. A piece of history. A story of lucky and unlucky men. A tribute to California.

Delta of Venus – Anais Nin
Beautiful, shocking, romantic, professional love stories written by the most famous female erotica writer. Definitely mature audience only!

Fever Pitch – Nick Hornby
For all who are sad that the Soccer World Cup is over. But also for those who are not interested in soccer at all. Hilariously narrated by the world’s biggest Arsenal fan.

More information on all books here

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Can I marry this car?

On Wednesdays I share everything wedding with you: tips, projects, organisation, photos, faux-pas, fun things and golden rules I ‘learned’ from my own wedding. I feel I need to give something back to the fabulous blog community who helped me stay sane and enjoy every second of my ‘big day’.
* * *

This wonderful car was the wedding gift of one of our best friends.

A Ford Mustang 1974 (2 years older than the bride and groom :-)). We instantly fell in love with him. The style. The colour. The sound. Amazing! We drove a long detour on our way from the church to the reception – which was a 3-minute-walk – just to spend more time with him. We obviously were quite a sight to behold, because even a public transport bus stopped just for us (and usually they never stop for anyone).

Unfortunately we had to give him back at the end of the day . But we still dream about him and I am sure that one day we will see him again.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Neither here nor there

Sorry, I know it has been a bit quiet around here recently. The reason for this is not my cute little bundle of joy. She is still incredible good - feeding well, sleeping good, being a happy baby unless there is wind in her little tummy.

No, the reason for me spending time away from my blog is that my lovely husband and I realised that we will be really moving to Germany in just 5 weeks. Aaaaahhhh! Therefore we spent the last few days putting together immense To-Do-Lists and throwing ourselves in getting them done: booking flights, applying for Vicky's passport at the embassy, organising the shipping of our container, starting to sell everything we don't want to take with us, meeting people we might not see for a long time,... I don't want to bother you with all the details, but it is a lot.

picture found here

But since we have also got a lot done in the last couple of days and feel very organised now, we decided to take the weekend off. So here I am sitting in front of my laptop with a beautiful cuppa (cup of tea), my lovely husband is still asleep and the little one is 'playing' on her baby quilt next to me. It is cold and stormy outside and life is good.

Wish you all a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The dream is over

Germany won't be soccer world champion 2010!

Maybe because their cutest fan decided to sleep rather than cheer on them?

Maybe because Octopus Paul predicted it?
picture found here

Maybe because Spain was the better team?

Or luckier?

Anyway, I won't watch any sports on TV until the next World Cup in 2014. Or at least till the European Championship in 2012. I won't set the alarm to 4.30am anymore. Life goes on!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Japanese Wedding Traditions


This week I want to take you with me to Japan. A fascinating country. So foreign but still close to my heart. I have visited it just once, but it is at the very top on my travel list. I love its food, its culture (or at least the bit I understand), its people, its script, its shopping craze, its bathing traditions, its fabrics,... So come with me to the “Land of the Rising Sun”.

To Japanese wedding traditions to be exact, because today is also Wednesday and that means all things wedding today.
* * *

Japan weddings – like most weddings around the world nowadays – are heavily influenced by the Hollywood way of getting married. Hence there a many, many Western-style weddings with the chapels, dresses and traditions we know. I prefer, however, Japanese-style weddings.

Not for me, of course, because I am not Japanese and therefore I would look ridiculous – more like being at a dress-up party than at a solemn ceremony.

Unfortunately I have never had the luck to be invited to a Japanese wedding. Or maybe this is a good thing, because I am surely would have made a foul of myself and embarrass my hosts anyway. There are just too many traditions and rules of etiquette I don’t know about.

What I just adore is:

• the wonderful Japanese wedding kimonos (just renting one costs around $5,000)

• the amazing ‘wata boushi’ wedding hat (it must be incredible heavy but it looks stunning)

• the huge red parasol that is carried behind bride and groom

• that the families are much more involved in the ceremony (they face each other during the exchange of vows and then drink sake to symbolize the bonding of the couple as well as of the two families)

• that receptions usually include karaoke (is there a better way to break the ice and start the party?)

If you want to read more on Japanese weddings, have a look here:

• Sawn-off marriages at An Englishman in Osaka

• Modern Wedding at Blue Lotus

• Tokyo Bay Wedding Village at Japan.ABlog.Bya Penguin

• Wedding gifts by My So-Called Japanese Life

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Japanese Simplicity

This week I want to take you with me to Japan. A fascinating country. So foreign but still close to my heart. I have visited it just once, but it is at the very top on my travel list. I love its food, its culture (or at least the bit I understand), its people, its script, its shopping craze, its bathing traditions, its fabrics,... So come with me to the “Land of the Rising Sun”.

Simply beautiful. Simply calming.