Monday, 26 November 2007

R2D2



How cool is this!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Add to my if I had so much money I can't think of what else to do with it... I'd buy a list!

http://www.thinkgeek.com/geektoys/rc/9447/

Sunday, 11 November 2007

Garden Makeover

We'll we have done some work on our place... and fixed up the backyard. See the progress of our yard here:
Garden

Sunday, 4 November 2007

Winsor Pilates?

I've fallen off the Six Week Body Makeover (6WBMO) already! I lasted a whole one week and a bit. Yes I lost weight. Yes I feel a bit better... but I'll never be able to sustain the "way of life" as people call it for longer than 2-3 weeks at most! It was very restrictive in terms of salt (no salt), fat (no fat), sugar (no sugar)... you get the idea. Was able to eat things like potatoes and rice though! But the mix of having protein and fruit in the morning for me was just not doable. The support forums at Provida are great and have lots of recipes but it just wasn't achieveable... especially the 5 meals a day.

So now, I have learnt that smaller portions are enough to satisfy me, I'm continuing my water intake but have started adding back some of the things which were no nos: salt(but definitely in moderation), milk (only in tea / coffee), yoghurt. Tried to avoid wheat/flour based products.

But a friend has put me onto Winsor Pilates, so I'll give that a go and see what happens. I'm good with exercise videos as I just do them in the morning before work and that works well. Still waiting for it as I ordered it last Sunday and it has yet to arrive. Really think these type of motivational things should be shipped out ASAP as momentum gets lost... maybe one day the Internet and TV Shopping companies will learn.

Oh one thing I did buy as part of the 6WBMO preparation was a Magic Bullet Blender. They are really really really fabulous. We use them for smoothies and grinding things. Quick and very easy to clean!

Friday, 17 August 2007

ChoreWars

I LOVE this... http://www.chorewars.com/help.php -- too bad I don't have enough people in my party to organise the wars!

If you are finding it hard to get people in your house or your workplace to do their bit to keep the place clean and tidy maybe introduce this where people can earn points... maybe you can convert the points then to something else?

Thursday, 24 May 2007

On the way into the city on the Bullet Bus

I'm on the coach service which is the Bullet Bus (www.bulletbus.com.au) which I decided I would trial for 1 month to see how I go. This morning, I bulked up my shoes with extra insoles to cope with the two hikes to and from work between the bus stop which is on the Northern end of town. I was prepared to walk! I left the house at 6.50am and walked down to the Ettamogah Hotel where the bus/coach was waiting.

I hopped on but the bus driver wasn't able to help me purchase any tickets as it was his first day too! So I've left my name and mobile number with the driver. I just hope I manage to work out where to catch the afternoon bus! (And leave work on time -- about 5.30pm -- to make it to the 6pm bus).

The BulletBus coach is very comfy, and doesn't have that awful rubber/plastic smell that seems to permeate the Hillbus. I constantly feel like I'm going to puke with the stench of rubber when I get on the 6.12 pm 616 bus from the city! And then the bus driver is one of those on/off brake people... but that could be a problem with the buses themselves.

The main driving forces for me to start the BulletBus is the timesaving but more importantly is the poor service of Hillsbus and the awful smell of rubber/plastic! The BulletBus would be convenient if I worked near Wynyard, but I'm near World Square / Chinatown so it makes life a bit more difficult. But I figure I'd get some exercise by walking to and from the bus stop. It just needs me to leave work on time. I suppose the times I do miss my cut off point to leave work I can always default to the stinky bus!

The other benefits about BulletBus (v Hillsbus) include:
  • the fact I don't need to carry cash around all the time! I'm constantly running out of cash due to having to catch the bus;
  • Space! I can use my laptop without having to take one of the seats that is taller than others so I can slightly overhang the seat in front to fit!
  • Cushy/Comfy seats
  • Non stinky bus (ooh I think I've mentioned this before :) )
  • Non stop service -- this is the main selling point of the bus trip. I can do a "direct" trip from home to the city. Hmm... maybe I should be looking for a new job closer to Wynyard? ;)

So far, so good. Traffic on the M2 still sucks, but at least we're rolling along. This happens on the early (6.30am) 616X bus anyway and even that bus gets me into work before 8am. Thank goodness for the Lane Cove Tunnel.

I urge anyone who is in the area to give the BulletBus a go. I think it's a fantastic service even though it's more expensive than a Hillsbus trip, I think the extra is worth it.

Tuesday, 8 May 2007

I haven't posted for a while so there is a fair amount to catch up on. One of the things I'd like to make note of are the things that are available to us in the local area of Kellyville Ridge.

Internet
I can reassure people that we are able to get ADSL 2 although we were unable to get Optus Cable in this area. We use TPG

3G Phone - Three
I use a 3G Three Data card all the way into the city and also have a 3 Mobile phone and reception at our place seems to be fine.

Transport
I'm now catching a 616x bus into the city which is run by Hillsbus. Whilst I miss Busways, the Lane Cove Tunnel Express (as marked by the x in the bus route) gets me into the city in a reasonable amount of time. I have readjusted my bus to the 6.50am bus and get into work by 8.30am. (The 6.30am bus was getting me into the office 7.45am which was too early!). My return trip I try and get on the 5.52pm bus (from World Square bus stop) and it's getting me home by 7.30pm at the latest.

The bus costs me $5.60 each way. There is no discount for a return ticket although a weekly ticket is only $48. Unfortunately I miss too many buses to make this worthwhile.

At least now I have other options if I'm late as I can catch the Train to Parramatta and then the T65 from Parramatta Station which goes on the T-way all the way to Merriville Road.

Another option is the BulletBus which is a fantastic non stop service (and just down the road from home!!) but only stops at Wynyard Park in the city... working down near World Square and having limited services coming home just makes this too hard! The other thing I love about the BulletBus idea is no requirement for cash! I really hate it when I find I only have a $50 note in the morning and need to get on the bus...

Shopping
Our closest shops are Stanhope Gardens. Recently a K-mart has opened there which makes it very handy.
Of course we appreciate the local Bunnings (Norwest) and Supercheap Auto (Norwest) too! We've recently visited our local

Sunday, 11 March 2007

Becoming Local

It's strange at the moment as we are new to the area and trying to work out where to shop, where to eat and where to go for different things. Certainly is a lot handier than Mt Kuring-gai! We're now just down the road from a couple of eating options and a petrol station for convenience goods (bread, milk etc).

Food/Restaurants

I was surfing around to get some ideas of where to go for food on http://www.eatability.com.au which in our case wasn't very helpful. It's all very good to find out there are restaurants near by but the ratings others have given places don't seem to be consistent with our findings.

So far we've gone to the Chinese restaurant in Norwest/Bella Vista (Golden Lake) -- very delicious! We've gone to a couple of Thai restaurants (one in Stanhope Gardens -- Thai Spice and one in Rouse Hill) both great but I would say our choices at Thai Spice definitely tasted better. We've tried the Ettamogah Pub which was good but nothing to really write home about. Certainly handy for us though.

We're still on the hunt for a "noodle joint" where we can eat noodles or rice dishes for cheap. There doesn't seem to be anything of that ilk although Blacktown may have something near the two big chinese grocery shops. We have to try it out.

Shopping

Grocery shopping seems to be best for me at Aldi at Rouse Hill with the Fruit Barn and Parklea markets a good choice for fresh veges and fruit. I supplement the shopping at Kellyville's Woolworths or the Coles at Stanhope Gardens. Things should pick up when the Kmart opens at Stanhope as well. At the moment we've discovered Winston Hill's shopping centre for Big W... and we have yet to explore Blacktown's Westpoint fully.

We've discovered the Blacktown Chinese grocery stores which is tucked around the station near Humphries Lane and 1st Avenue. Maybe a place to revisit.

Recreational

Today we had kiddies / relos visiting us and we rode our bikes around Rouse Hill Regional Park. They have a flying fox (wire style) and all these fun sort of things as well as a fantastic undercover (large undercover!) BBQ area. Great for large gatherings.

That's so far for the discovering... I do wish there was some webpage or forum that discussed where to go and what to do for newbies to a particular neighbourhood!

Tuesday, 27 February 2007

Twilight at Taronga -- Beatnix in lightning and rain


We went to Twilight at Taronga on 24 Feb 2007. It was starring the Beatnix.
They were FABulous :) Very Beatlely! We hadn't seen them in action before but they had us up and dancing to Twist and Shout and Hey Jude!
Some more obscure hits (to my uneducated ears) were played too.

The rain made for interesting hiding spots whilst still trying to be able to see and keep within our "space" and not obstructing other people's view (with our umbrellas). We also had a couple of friends in lovely ponchos.
The concert was very wet, but it just added to the atmosphere. Good company and good music isn't diluted by a little bit of rain and an amazing light show (lightning over the city -- the view from Taronga is amazing!)

We've moved!


We've moved house (in January) and we're settling in. A pic of the house is on the left.
It's a really cool layout with a drive thru double garage and just a few doors away from McDonalds (both of benefit to Will not necessarily me!)
Our neighbours seem lovely as well.