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Stewed rhubarb, pear and orange – sugar-free and so many uses

Rhubarb is one of my favourite vegetables. Traditionally, this tart vegetable (which contains good amounts of Vitamins A, B and K) is cooked with a lot of sugar to make it sweet, but I have a better solution. Fruits are naturally sweet and what’s in season with rhubarb? Pears and oranges – both sweet fruits which can be used as natural sweeteners and replace the added sugar normally used to cook with rhubarb. Read more

Travelling through time: Grandmother’s trip to Ireland in 1952

Nan was born in Northern Ireland and moved to Perth in Western Australia at age 3. Her father, my great-grandfather, came down with a condition after World War I and was advised by his doctor to move to a warmer climate. Nan’s observations of the Irish and their culture during a visit to Ireland in 1952 fascinates me. Our experiences were very different. For one, Nan was reunited with  lot of family. I figure I must have family in Ireland too, but I wasn’t aware of them when I travelled to Ireland 50 years later. Secondly, the bathroom situation has drastically improved… Read more

Chocolate beetroot porridge – heaven in a healthy breakfast bowl

I like to eat vegetables at every meal. It’s an easy way to help ensure I get plenty of clean nutrition in my daily diet and it’s a a brilliant method of ‘crowding out’ less healthy foods. But in winter – when the mornings are cold, wet, windy and overcast – I really can’t go past the comfort of a warming bowl of porridge for breakfast. Porridge and vegetables. How could this work? I recently had the sweetest idea… Read more

Contiki Great Britain: Edinburgh, Liverpool and quaint towns of Wales

Two words come to mind as I re-read the travel journal I kept as a 21-year-old country girl travelling from one of the world’s youngest nations (Australia) to one of its most well-preserved continents (Europe): old and nonchalant. I was clearly blown away by the history of the United Kingdom and at the same time a little dismissive of some parts too. Read more

Best hot chocolate recipe for a healthy, sugar-free indulgence

Hot chocolate cures a multitude of ailments – cold hands, sweet tooths, grumbly tummies and, of course, plain old chocolate cravings! It’s THE winter drink of choice and its indulgence and decadence doesn’t have to come at the price of poor health choices. Swap the pre-packaged, heavy-handed-on-the-sugar supermarket varieties and for this homemade hot chocolate as a healthy alternative.  It’s deliciously chocolatey and will curb those sweet cravings while warming your hands and heart on cold winter nights. Read more

Travelling though time: London, York, and hotel bars with men

You cannot truly appreciate how much can change in half a century until you go back in time. Obviously, much changes, but it’s the little things that get forgotten and the big things that either evolve radically or stand the test of time. As I continue to trace my grandmother’s footsteps throughout Europe in the 1950s, I can’t help but compare our similarities and differences, the societies we live in, and the world around us. Read more

First impressions of London and ghost stories of York

My first days in London as a 22-year-old in 2008 were very different to those of my grandmother who arrived by ship as a 32-year-old in 1952. In this time travel series, I recount the tales, thoughts and experiences of me and my grandmother – two female travellers of different ages, from different eras, with different approaches to travel and life. The differences are so evident when reading my grandmother’s first days in London, and this, the first entry in my travel diary… Read more

Hot chilli sauce recipe to boost metabolism, heat, flavour

The chilli plant in my vegetable garden was exploding with little red fingers that were practically begging to be picked. I picked the plant about 3 months ago with the intention of making sweet chilli sauce. I started de-seeding them and that took FOREVER, so the chillies laid half-handled for weeks until they eventually dried. Life was busy. I didn’t get around to finishing the de-seeding process until much later. That picking ended up dried chilli flakes and chilli salt (recipes to come). Lovely. But this time I was definitely making chilli sauce – no two ways about it. Man up and just make it – screw the de-seeding, make it hot or make it not! Read more

Travelling through time: a grandmother’s and granddaughter’s approach to life and travel

My Grandmother travelled solo for 9 months as a 32-year-old single female in 1952. I travelled as a 22-year-old coupled up working-holiday-maker in 2008 for 18 months. Considering my family always say I am so much like her, Nan and I were two very different people when we travelled Europe and it shows in the pages of our handwritten travel journals, which I’m recollecting in a new blog series. Read more

Beef Bourguignon meets Osso Bucco – winter comfort food at its best

I’m one of those people who likes to have the best of both worlds. One evening recently, as the rain was pouring and the wind was howling and my toes were freezing, I found myself staring into the fridge – getting colder by the second – and torn between making one of the two most comforting winter casseroles: Beef Bourguignon and Osso Bucco. Read more

Grandmother’s travel journal: To London to visit the Queen

This is a snippet of my grandmother’s travel journal from 1952. It’s the first in my time travel series. As I mentioned in this post, we both travelled Europe quite extensively, but 56 years apart. The pages of each our travel diaries reveal such uniqueness – the times in which we lived, our perspectives on the places we visited, the connections we made, and ourselves. But there is a familiarity in there too. Read more

Health and wellbeing benefits of owning a dog

I’ve always been a dog person (in more ways than one). I’ve had cats, fish and even a rabbit (for a week – long story), but dogs have always been my favourite animals. Dogs are fantastic fitness companions, confidants and comforters. I currently have two, Prada and Boss. They are Japanese Spitz cross Pomeranians, a great breed – they always looks like they’re smiling. I am so grateful for the love, humour and action they inject into my days. Here are three health and wellbeing benefits of owning a dog and a few tips on how you can get the most out of this mutually-beneficial relationship. Read more

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