I'm currently at home, waiting for a pot of pasta to boil so I can eat dinner. Andy is coaching soccer and Ella has just gone to bed. I'm exhausted but determined to get this post out tonight as it is the last day of August! I'd love a glass of wine to sip while I type but I know that it will probably mean I won't sleep as well... but a glass of wine would be so gooooood right now. No... I must resist.
Reading: Thrive by Arianna Huffington, who is the founder of The Huffington Post. She puts forward the argument that we need to rethink what it means to be successful. These days money and power seem to equate to success, but these things on their own don't really lead people to having a happy and fulfilled life. I am enjoying the book, and am already on board with a lot of her ideas and suggestions, such as incorporating meditation and yoga practise into your life. She also advocates for prioritising sleep which I totally agree with. 9:30pm bedtimes are a regular occurrence in this house! I also read All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr last month. I absolutely loved it. By far the best fiction book I've read in a long time. It's set in during the lead up to, and in, World War II, but doesn't focus on the Holocaust, which is a nice change from a lot of books I've read set during that time. It follows a young French girl the occupied town of Saint Malo, and a German boy who ends up in the SS. Beautifully written, heartbreaking and uplifting in equal parts. I cannot recommend it enough.
Watching: A few different things, although nothing I'm totally hooked on yet. I finally finished all four seasons of House of Cards, which has left a hole in my TV viewing life. I've started a few new Netflix series but nothing is really captivating both me and Andy. I'm enjoying Last Chance U, which is a documentary series about College football in Mississippi. I watched about half an episode of Flaked, developed by and starring Will Arnett from Arrested Development. I loved Arrested Development so was looking forward to this, but it is pretty terrible. Disappointing, and unusual for a Netflix produced show. I started Stranger Things with Andy but 5 minutes in he declared he wasn't watching it, so I might save that one for when I'm home on my own. Ditto for Master of None, I thought it was funny but Andy is not into it. My next try will be Marcella, which is a crime drama so will hopefully appeal to both of us. Oh and my guilty pleasure at the moment is Australian Survivor. It's just like the American version except the winner only gets half a million dollars here in Aus, and of course, no Jeff Probst. I love Jeff Probst, and watching this reminds me of being at Uni. Survivor was on on Thursday nights, which was the same night I worked at a local bar until 2am. After the obligatory drink with my work mates after we had cleaned everything up, I would come home and watch the latest episode of Survivor which I had taped. (On VHS! I'm so old!) Then I would go to class at 8am. I was so much more hard core when I was at uni then I am now. When my mom was here Andy and I went to the movies together for the first time since Ella was born, and to my surprise he suggested going to see Bad Moms. He normally wouldn't choose a comedy, and certainly not one that you would peg as a chick flick. I hadn't heard a lot about it, I am very out of the loop when it comes to new movie releases, and wasn't expecting much. However I was pleasantly surprised. Lots of laugh out loud moments, and of course being new parents it was very relatable to both of us. Andy also thought it was funny, so not just a film to go see with your girlfriends (although Andy may have been the only male in the movie theatre).
Feeling: Much better now that I've started taking iron supplements. I had some blood tests a few weeks ago that I'd been meaning to get done for months. Some post-natal check ups. Anyway turns out I'm iron deficient. I have to eat more red meat along with the supplement which I think I will struggle to do, as we really only have red meat once a week at the moment. But so far the supplement seems to be working as I feel a lot less tired this week. Could be mind over matter, but whatever works I guess!
Cooking: All of our own meals now that my mom has left and I've cancelled Hello Fresh for the time being. I'm trying to make better use of my slow cooker, especially on my days off. It's so nice to do a bit of prep in the afternoon and then just let dinner cook away, and not have to do anything once we've put Ella to bed. This Rogan Josh Curry was pretty yummy as was this Beef Ragu. I've also turned back to my Jamie Oliver cookbooks which have been sadly neglected over the past year. I tried his "30-minute" cauliflower macaroni the other night and it was delicious. Andy helped himself to not just seconds, but thirds, and Ella enjoyed leftovers the next day for lunch. Of course, it took me way longer than 30 minutes to do (it was more like 45-50 minutes) but I let go of expecting to actually cook any of those meals in half an hour a long time ago!
Enjoying: Getting back on my bike. Now that winter is nearly over and the mornings are much lighter I've started riding my bike to work again. It's such a good way to start and finish my day and get in some exercise. Not to mention I save $8 in train fare each day that I ride. We are looking into getting a bike seat for Ella, this one is my personal favourite, mainly because of the design, but it also has very good reviews. Then we can go on family bike rides on the weekends, I can't wait!
Hating: The start of the Premier League season, along with this new TV box Andy got from Optus that gives us some special sports channels. So. Much. Soccer. On. My. TV. Argh!!
Looking forward to: Summer! I know, I know, it's still technically winter. But it does feel like summer is just around the corner. After our trip to Noosa and Ella loving the beach I can't wait to be able to take her there more often this year.
Learning: To not over-schedule myself, slow down, and enjoy the little things in life.
Grateful for: Rice! I nearly ruined my brand new iPhone by leaving it in the pocket of my sweater, which I then threw in the washing machine. Such an idiot. I realised a few minutes later, stopped the machine and fished it out, promptly drying it off and putting it in a bag of rice. I left it there for three days (after reading various posts on the Internet about saving a wet iPhone) and miraculously it seems to work fine... for now. This wouldn't be so embarrassing, except this phone was replacing my last phone which I ruined when my full water bottle leaked in my bag. I didn't do the rice thing that time, so I guess at least this time I can say I've learned something new?! I'm blaming baby brain. That's still a valid excuse when your child is 14 months old, right?
Pic of the Month: I love this picture of Ella and I in Noosa, taken by my mom. Ella had just woken from a nap while my mom and I enjoyed a glass of wine in the sunshine. Happy times!