Weight loss update

Let’s start by saying – I’m envious of Dar’s fitness post today. Driving home, I thought ‘if she can do it (and she’s in a place with all that snow, and she is older than me) then what’s my excuse?’.  So I set up my laptop, and still channeling Dar – I put on her fave instructor Jillian Michaels.  I heard Jillian speak on the radio the other day, as she’s in Australia – what a champion.  Of course, I had no idea about her personal life and her new reality show…  So one 30 day shred session down!

Otherwise, I’ve done two Barre Body classes, and I weighed in today at 76.6kg, though I have been down to 76.0kg within the past week.  Honestly, my eating hasn’t been well regulated with a birthday at the end of January.  And with a big storm mid January, I threw my ‘no ice creams’ plan out the window.  Stress is definitely a ‘reason’ I give myself to eat rubbish! Shame on me!

I’m incredibly torn – I have something coming up before the end of the month that’ll blow my healthy plans out of the window – just wait, I will tell you, once the surprised are aware 😉  Oh and it’s not a baby, as much as I’d love it to be 🙂

So for this week’s menu, we went easy.  The butcher in our shopping centre has some ‘ready made’ meats and I feel more comfortable about these than the ones we often buy marked down in grocery duopoly.  Here’s what I got:

  • Chicken involtini
  • Pork noisette
  • Satay chicken skewers
  • Lamb kofta skewers

The BF’s pretty impressed by the meat haul. All up, it was around $50 and then I spent $40 at the grocery store, which brings us on par with most weekly grocery shops.  For vegies, I bought one ready made coleslaw mix and vegies to make a vegie lasagne.  I figure the lasagne is enough as a meal for me for lunches, and a ‘side’ for our evening meals.  All in all, it’s a pretty easy menu, so that’s a start!

Jillian - a side lunge is weird, but Lulu's got your back (via)
Jillian – a side lunge is weird, but Lulu’s got your back (via)

So with exercise – it’s one thing I struggle to pay for as I struggle to commit!  I’m good with playing water polo – but not training.  I could get a weekly or more membership to trampoline exercise ($15 per class or $19 for a weekly sign up for 8 weeks or $135 for 10 classes).  Barre Body is $25 for a casual class or $220 for 10 classes over six months, or $35 per week for two classes or $50 for unlimited number of classes.  Does anyone see how I could find this + my commitment issues = confusing!  And neither of these are particularly attractive when it’s super rainy outside either!

So, I’m not going backwards, but I’m not steaming forwards very quickly.  I do look good in my new work out top though!

Fancy Dinner – est

Recently, I was granted a surprising bonus from work.  I was keen to save it all, but the BF encouraged me to celebrate.  So I decided to go out for dinner at est, a two hatted restaurant.  Of course, on a 42C day!

Due to the heat, this was lunch:

Salad for lunch... Who am I? Where's Sarah?
Salad for lunch… Who am I? Where’s Sarah?
A joke made by someone else... but I appreciate it!
A joke made by someone else… but I appreciate it!
Hot hot hot
Gown selfie
Gown selfie
2015 Est 012
Simple beauty
Cut glass - retro cool
Cut glass – retro cool
Elderflower and lime cocktail - perfect for summer
Elderflower and lime cocktail – perfect for summer
Quirky cutlery
Quirky cutlery
Snapper salad with garlicy leaves
Snapper salad with garlicy leaves (sorry for the blur!)
Mr Mushroom consomme
Mr Mushroom consomme
Morteon Bay Bug with vegemite stripe - jokes.  Pretty ho hum on tast
Morteon Bay Bug with vegemite stripe – jokes. Pretty ho hum on tast
Pork that he rated the highest
Pork that he rated the highest
We picked the same mains - Wagyu.  YUM!
We picked the same mains – Wagyu. YUM!
Statement passionfruit souffle
Statement passionfruit souffle
Chocolately stuff.!?
Chocolately stuff.!?

There was some other sweeties to finish – a jelly square (tart), a macaron each with caramel between the layers and a log of chocolate.

The service was a little patchy.  Inconsistent wait staff, and busy.  We saw a few snafus too, bringing out dishes when people were AWOL, or our desserts came out, almost went to the wrong table, and then doubled back to the kitchen before coming to us.  est is part of the Meirvale chain of everything (bars, restaurants etc) and I think that’s probably their undoing.  Nothing was horrible, but it wasn’t top shelf either.  I sound so hoity toity, but I suppose I’ve come to expect the high prices as much for great food, as world class attentive service too.

Black white and gold

So a while ago, I think I mentioned I was planning a spectacular 60th for my mother.  I saw this inspiration picture on BetterAfter:

Pretty right? via
Pretty right?

With that in mind, my mum and I worked on a spectacular celebration with her friends and children. And we went literal, unlike Lindsay who went with an interpretation:

Lindsey's table
Lindsey’s table

So let me start with the hallway:

The were LED tea lights (about the ONLY time I'd tolerate single use plastic tea lights!)
The were LED tea lights (about the ONLY time I’d tolerate single use plastic tea lights!)
Some recent TV show inspired the vase of tulips (50!) and you see the gold on the door - it had a big gold bow on it!
Some recent TV show inspired the vase of tulips (50!) and you see the gold on the door – it had a big gold bow on it!

Now for THE table

Hand written menus for individual choices
Hand written menus for individual choices

Unlike the inspiration, we went for some flowers on the table:

Hand made by me
Hand made by me

How would people know where to sit? Solved that with a US purchase in Jan of a special little pen for writing on glass and porcelain:

Simon says sit here!
Simon says sit here!

Now all the rest of the shots I just wanna share for sharing’s sake:

Seems similar right?
Seems similar right?
Ready for a feast
Ready for a feast

Lastly, the cake (apologies for the fugitive-ly taken photo in the car, lest we have an accident and mum never see it!):

Yummy inside and out!
Yummy inside and out!

Overall, I LOVED planning for this – I hand sewed the white ribbon onto all the napkin rings, which was definitely the most intense part.  But I love hand sewing.  Everything was perfect, I’m told, and I was pretty happy with how things turned out. I realise the part of ‘entertaining’ I stress about is the food – everyone being happy and full and eating.  If that’s outsourced, I love the rest of it (Which isn’t to say I don’t like baking, but it’s like baking or event coordination, not both).

So I’m available for hire 😉 You pay bills (I covered the flowers in the end, mainly cause I wanted free reign – there was another HUGE bouquet in the kitchen you didn’t get a photo of cause I forget which was Birthday Girl’s request on our market trip).

Party planner instead of engineer? Maybe… just maybe!

More thoughts on food

Today I had a sick day – I left work half way through the say yesterday with nausea and a headache I’d had for days that wasn’t improving.  Today, I used the day off to see a physio to resolve the pain.  It’s been three months since I’ve needed to get my neck and shoulder aggressively massaged to recover from the pain.  All in all, I feel better now.

With the rest of my time, I wandered to a local Asian market to buy sunglasses, as my second cheap pair have broken, the arm snapped off.  I feel torn, buying cheaply made, Chinese sunglasses for $5 or $10, but then to buy second hand, it’s time sifting through the styles in a basket, and finding something I like.  And patience – I have to have the patience.  I don’t.  $10 later, I’ve been sold something that’s little labels tell me is polarized (though that’s a furfy to charge $10 not $5!), but hey, they’ll do.

As with most time I spend alone when not working, I think.  Gosh do I think.  About food.


It started with a mocha on my way to the physio.  I saw a caramel slice, handmade in that cafe.  I skipped it. On my market visit, I craved a hot cinnamon donut.  I didn’t find one – but I trawled the Woolworths that’d newly been built. I longingly looked in their ice cream cabinet.  My favourite Maxibon wasn’t available in a single serve.  I continued wandering.

I went to my local Woolworths. Still no traditional circular donuts – I refused to settle for a twist.  I wandered the shelves.  My favourite Maxibon was in a four pack at a reasonable price.  I couldn’t fathom explaining, or withholding from consuming them.  I left without anything from Woolworths.

I went to the pharmacy, and picked up a wheat heat pack (selecting the one that was Made in Australia) and a bottle of sodium peroxide.  A glass bottle and a plastic bottle twice the volume – the same price.  I then realised the strength was comparable, 200ml at 3% or 100ml at 6% in the glass.  I felt better for the glass purchase.  Shorter ‘best before’ date though.  So many thoughts!

Almost home, you’d think I’d beaten my sweets obsession.  But the corner store for one last look-see.  Three of four flavours of the Maxibon there, but not my preferred.  So instead I bought a 120mL Ben & Jerry’s tub. $4.95. Made in the USA.  On the counter were (probably short dated) blocks of Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate.  Same $4.95. I’m better off with the smaller tub of ice cream right? Less quantity. Same money – so not the most affordable ‘sugar hit’.

Seriously though – this obsession is not healthy! I need a better thing to spend those brain cells on. A greater mission!

What are your thoughts?

Weekend feed

So to finish the week of reporting…

I made a smoothie with a banana, the (yucky) unsweetened smooth peanut butter, and… chocolate ice cream. Oh and milk.  Usually the banana is frozen and we don’t have ice cream :s

And then I went to a friend’s housewarming. I ate

  • many cups of boozy berries with sweetened cream (so I didn’t recognise cranberries fresh)
  • handfuls of peanut m’n’m’s which I don’t actually LIKE!
  • a slice of homemade olive and rosemary bread
  • a handful of corn chips, and maybe one of potato chips
  • a thin slither of my fudgey choccie cake 🙂
  • three half sausages (halved prior to me, alas I’m not that neurotic!) in exotic flavours from a German butchery with some pasta salad
  • a serve of a Phillipines dish which is just like creme caramel only more devilish, thicker
  • many many cherries (I was too cheap to buy them grocery shopping, but you know 😉 Cheeky, right?

I skipped dinner, you can see why!

Sunday, we went for brunch, and they have HOMEMADE raspberry pear bread with cinnamon ricotta.  Yummy!  And a mocha – not so yummy.  But you know, i drank it all :p

Then we went to the RSPCA – well that was risky! Almost came home with a rabbit.  Or a lab puppy.  But neither.

Lunch was half a turkish roll with cheddar and thinly sliced ham (or halm as the younger version of me thought it was).

Turkish ice cream for ‘walking’ treat – mmm one was a backlava flavour and the other, I can’t recall exactly.  Really thick, and sort of stringy, but in a good way!

Then we had pulled pork wraps, with home made salsa and guac.  The remainders of which made a fast day lunch.

Friday Feast

Well if one fasts, one must feast!

Friday was a lovely work day – I felt like I (once again) tamed my desk and further thinned the large cabinet of inherited paperwork.  I felt very virtuous when i got home, and then headed out with teh BF to meet my parents for comedy (which was not *quite* comedy) and a meal.  The whole show was more the woman processing her mother’s recent death :s

Anyhow, onto the food.

Porridge with blueberries and milk

Mocha – mmm

Sweet potato and smoked salmon
Sweet potato and smoked salmon

Orange lunch: sweet potato and the remaining slice of smoked salmon leftover from making risotto.

Pear for snack when I got home. And a cracker with some 60% reduced in cost brie we found in the store! (Impulse purchase!)

Entrees (there were more arancini balls!)
Entrees (there were more arancini balls!)

Dinner was shared entrees of salt and non existent pepper calamari and arancini balls.  Neither were ‘wow’.  Mains however were two pizzas, well one pizza and a foccacia with pork & fennel sausage, caramelised onion and special yummy cheese.

Needless to say, there’s were fights about the last slice of foccacia, and I’m lucky I didn’t have to get myself home *cough cough*

And for dessert, post foccaccia-gate, I seemed the only person keen.  Always awkward.  Then BF offered a 60:40 split of a tiramisu, Dad countered with 50:50 and I snapped up a good deal.

See, lucky I didn’t have to walk home (interestingly, where we went, I have walked home more than once, so it’s not that much of a trial, but I was in heels, stockings and a dress… so… not the plan!)

Writing this on Saturday evening, I feel like it’s been a virtuous working week, and I could end the ‘series’ there… Mainly cause today, wowa, what a wash! More soon!

Thursday fast

Dessert yesterday
Dessert yesterday

Last night’s meals ended with above, in expectation of fast day Thursday.

I held off til noon to eat.

Today’s light lunch was a small 100g can of tuna and 250g punnet of strawberries. Nice, but the strawberries weren’t as ripe and yummy as the last batch.

I then had a hot choc (47 cals) with a touch of instant coffee, which didn’t add to it at all :p

The minute I got home, I boiled a kettle to make Potato and Leek soup, which puts me at ~350cal of the allowed 500! (PS Fiona, that’s my recent elect bill in the background!)

Potato and leek cuppa soup
Potato and leek cuppa soup

Now to accompany the Mr of the house to McD to ‘build his own burger’. Quick whilst I’m still sloching in soupy fullness! Actually maccas isn’t a temptation.

I also noticed today I don’t ‘fill out’ this button up shirt in the bust area like I first did – so even though the scales are slow to show, I’m losing cms.

Are you keeping clothing hoping you’ll fit back into them?  Or do you wear them even when you’re a little ‘busty’ or similar?

Sarah eats…

So today, much like yesterday.  Started with oats and blueberries (thought about adding some banana for your sakes, but meh).

Stopped by near my old office for a take away mocha.  The taste wasn’t as I remembered, but the barista was different.  It was still lovely to ‘catch up’ with people who remember me but are essentially strangers 🙂  Then a long car trip to my morning meeting.

Lunch was the leftovers of the BF’s go to meal (which does not look pretty).  It’s bacon/spinach/feta pasta.  He loves to make up a bulk pot.  I don’t usually eat much of it, as it’s a bit heavy for me, but today I felt like it.

The BF's go to bulk meal
The BF’s go to bulk meal

After the long car trip back to my usual office, and another meeting that rambled (seriously, no one seems to want to get ‘out’ of meetings where I work now!) I ate the banana I brought as a snack.  I’m pretty proud I skipped an ice cream, given I coulda.  I had the money, the calories (as in, it’s not a fast day), but I told myself ‘banana first’.  AND… they lock the fridge at 3:30pm, so even though I was in the office for another 3 hours, I couldn’t change my mind.

On my drive home, I was dreading the fast tomorrow.  I always dread the fasts.  The sense of deprivation is so uncommon in this society.  With this on my mind, I wasn’t content with the spinach and ricotta lasagna leftovers (again).  I suggested burgers out with the BF, but he was halfway through his lasagne and his poker game.

Nothing better - and quick too (don't boil first)
Nothing better – and quick too (don’t boil first)

Stroke of genius! Crispy-fried gnocchi.  I learnt this from watching French students.  It’s like potato gems, in a way.  The BF doesn’t like gnocchi, so given he had eaten, it was a ‘happy’ meal instead of a burger.  OF course, as I start cooking, the BF reads out the burger special locally, and it has a hash brown in it – I mean really! You’re killing me!

The chocolate ice cream is looking like a promising chaser — perhaps with some Patron or chocolate liqueur (or both)!

What’s a ‘happy’ meal for you?

Tuesday Tucker

tucker: Aussie slang for food!

I started my day with oats with blueberries – frozen blueberries go in with the oats and water, and defrost in their 2min cycle.  I also almost always have a glass or two of water.

On non fast days, it’s almost the next thing that gets me out of bed:

Mocha to go
Mocha to go

Nothing til noon time lunch at work.  I went healthy for the actual lunch course:

Doesnt look all that appetising, but good for me!
Doesn’t look all that appetising, but good for me!
Quick snap before they were DEVOURED
Quick snap before they were DEVOURED

Lest you think I’m doing this for your measure, the afternoon warranted me checking the ‘junk fridge’.  The patron saint of junk had delivered my favourite (he knows they are my fave).  $2.50 later:

I stopped at one
I stopped at one

The impending blog post quashed my flirting with a second after a hella boring meeting :s Team briefs, never that brief. (Google tells me 326 calories!)

For dinner was leftover spinach and ricotta ‘deconstructed’ cannelloni.

Then I went to a one off body painting course, and there were treats – jellies, mini chocs.  I don’t ever *like* jellies, but once I ‘popped’ I couldn’t stop – those sour worms were MINE.  Why did they tempt me?

And to think the BF and I picked up ice cream at the grocery store after my GP visit.  I’ve had some very bizarre dizziness spells, but doc diagnosed, and it’s harmless and will pass :0

Do you have a favourite ice cream?  Would you rather ice cream or chocolate as a treat after dinner?

Monday Munching

So today’s I fast.  Which means I try to limit my calorie intake to 500 calories.

Oh my, it was the toughest fast to date I think!

Here’s what I took to work with me.

My work haul - strawberries, cuppa soup, choc milk powder and roasted sweet potatos.
My work haul – strawberries, cuppa soup, choc milk powder and roasted sweet potatoes.

I still have a sore throat, so I skipped the sweet potatoes in favour of another soup for dinner (lunch I had potato and leek, dinner was roast chicken soup). I also had two hot chocolates made with water and powder, instead of the planned one. So I’m still OK calorie wise, just mixed it up.

Past week’s I’ve been able to fast til lunch time or dinner time. The lunch ‘break’ fast has been the below cutie (two actually!)

A previous fast day's selfie - boiled egg for lunch at work!
A previous fast day’s selfie – boiled egg for lunch at work!

And back to the strawberries – 250g is a lot and only 100 calories. YUM! Maybe I should defrost some blueberries for after this second round of dinner soup?