Birthday brunch for my little sis – a Melbourne day out

Operator 25 exteriorOperator 25 green teaOperator 25 benedict Operator 25 soft shell crab burger Operator 25 smoothie bowl Operator 25 salmon Operator 25 bulgogi burgerOperator 25 table setting


Birthday brunching with my cousins for my little sister’s birthday last month. We started our day with a sleep in then headed to the city for some delectable treats from Operator 25. City sightseeing and a tram ride led us to the NGV and the Andy Warhol Ai Weiwei exhibition that is currently on until April 24th. There was something for everyone with the Studio Cats installation appealing to the kids with a photobooth and interactive activities.

A walk along the Yarra led us back to our car and the colourful and intricate structures of the Chinese Zodiac signs. A quick pit-stop at home to refresh, then out to Rustique restaurant to end the day with my little sister’s birthday dinner. Family, food, art and sunshine – what a birthday!

IMG_9383Mr D taking in the hynotising arrangement of over 1500 bikes in Ai Weiwei’s Forever Bikes (2015) installation which for Ai, symbolise the freedom to move
IMG_9384Entering the summer mist garden, the perfect place to walk through on a hot summer’s day
IMG_9393So agile and adventurous in his new shoes!
IMG_9408The shade of the Summer Architecture Commission developed by John Wardle Architects, is a structure that combines an outer layer of precision engineered steel with a mass array of 1,350 hand folded elements that provide colourful shade by day and a unique nocturnal glow.
IMG_9385 IMG_9422Ai Weiwei’s Letgo Room (2015) Plastic. Composed of more than three million plastic building blocks featuring Australian activists and champions of human rights and freedom of speech. This installation was originally intended to be constructed with LEGO pieces. Visit the exhibition to find out more.
IMG_9423Ai Weiwei’s S.A.C.R.E.D. Maquettes (2011) Fibreglass. A series of architectually scaled dioramas depicting scenes from the detention cell where he was held without charge by the Chinese government for eighty-one days in 2011. This cast him in the dual roles of rebel and victim of oppression.
NGV water window Melbourne Andy WArhol Ai Weiwei NGV Melbourne Studio Cats NGV Melbourne The Urban MAAndy Warhol and Ai Weiwei – For Kids. Interactive, fun activities to get the little ones involved in the artists’ mutual love of cats.Studio Cats Andy Warhol Ai Weiwei for kids

(1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005)

It may prove to be a stressful year for the Roosters in 2016, so do take care of your health. Improve your stamina by eating right, taking up some calming activities and spending more time with your loved ones.
You may experience some stagnation in your career progression and frustration may build up. However, it may be time for you to upgrade you skills through taking up courses or look to further your studies. It may also be time to apply for that sabbatical leave and take a break from work to unwind.
Some misunderstandings may arise this year between married couples. So learn so communicate better with your partner and be more understanding of their emotions. Singles can expect to have better romance luck towards the end of the year so do not fret!
Your wealth luck is not too favourable this year. Be realistic and be wary of unattainable financial yields. Things that look to good to be true, are probably just as the seem, so do not be swayed by greed and use common sense when such situations arise.
– Prepared by Grandmaster Vincent Koh – Singapore Feng Shui Centre 2016

(1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1999, 2003, 2015)

The goats were in charge in 2015, but it is time for them to transition to the year 2016. It may be a slow year for the Goats, but plans will still progress well and remember to strive towards success, and be motivated throughout the year.
If your career seems to be in a limbo this year, do not dwell nor be pessimistic. Stay positive and keep your morale up. This is an opportunity for you to take up self improvement courses or that advanced certification that you had been mulling about.
For singles, don’t be cooped up at home. You will have to widen your social circle in order to meet your prospective partner. For those married couples, be adventurous and seek out new activities and dates to spice up your relationship with your spouse. Maintain a harmonious relationship by making your feelings known to your spouse and express yourself with sincerity.
Try to be more economical with your spending this year. Consider to invest modestly and seek passive returns to supplement your monthly earnings. The period of late winter will bring some favourable wealth luck. Goats are known to help others out, but this year, try to be careful with who you lend money to.
– Prepared by Grandmaster Vincent Koh – Singapore Feng Shui Centre 2016

These Chinese zodiac sign summaries were found underneath each sculpture of our signs in the Crown atrium.

Life Lately – the start of 2015


Day 1 and 2 – The first meal of 2015 was some ham and a bowl of arroz-caldo (a Filipino rice soup with chicken and ginger-flavored broth) at mum’s house after watching bursts of colorful fireworks just outside – Mr D squealed with so much excitement at the unexpected explosions! Day 2 was production-line time as we helped my brother prepare for his wedding with over 250 name tags, goody bags, cupcakes being carefully assembled one by one. When all was done we took a train into the city to go through a last rehearsal at Passion Dance Studio – the bride and groom had a couple of special dance numbers in store for their guests 🙂 We then had an eventful night staying over at Crown Promenade.

Day 3 – Eat, drink and be married! I love how the two photos above show the two sides to our day – looking all pro in the top photo whilst behind the scenes it was super hot and windy! The fierce weather didn’t stop us from celebrating a beautiful ceremony at the Fitzroy gardens before partying it up with good music, food and drink at Taylors Lakes reception. For more pics of the day check out my Instagram feed!2015/01/img_9350.jpg

Day 4 – Time to relax. We took Mr D swimming at the hotel pool before spending some time with family friends who had come from Las Vegas to attend the wedding. I love how these milestones in life always bring loved ones together and what better way to reconnect than over a delicious home-cooked meal by my dad!2015/01/img_9351.jpg

Day 5 – Playing Melbourne tour guide. Domaine Chandon and a stop over at Yarra Valley Dairy cafe was bliss on a gorgeous day. Enough said.

2015/01/img_93521.jpgDay 6 – Grateful for thoughtful friends and their brunchtime invite. Duchess of Spotswood. Devoured a Prince of Wales. 2015/01/img_9430.jpgDay 7 – A happy day. Brunch in Williamstown. A walk in the park. A visit to the NGV. Shopping at Emporium Melbourne and dinner with the family.2015/01/img_9354.jpgDay 8 – Back to work. Maths and science books at the post office. A new cafe. Vintage posters at the Salvo’s. A dinner date and finger lickin’ good dishes at Mr Miyagi. Loved the music too! Reminded me of the Next Blue days 😉2015/01/img_9355.jpg

Day 9 – Dumplings galore at China Red for a farewell dinner as a friend moves overseas for work. Always love catching up with my dance family, Rewind.

2015/01/img_9356.jpgWeekend – Fried chicken and a visit to grandma’s to spend time with my aunty and uncle who were visiting from London!

2015/01/img_9357.jpgDay 12 – 14 – Work fridge looking full with lunches from home – looks like everyone is going well with their new year resolutions of either eating healthy or saving money! Took Father Noel out for a belated birthday dinner. Love Longrain’s braised pork and dessert platter.


Day 15-17 – A stroll after work down to South Wharf – such a nice, little walk along the river! Hadn’t walked down this side of Melbourne before! Attended the media call for Strictly Ballroom and was blown away by the sequins, music, dancing and Baz. The performances were so energetic and uplifting, I just wanted to dance in the aisles – and that was only after seeing a snippet of the show! You can get your tickets here! Attended the Blogger BBQ at The Park, Albert Park and got to catch up with some fellow bloggers. It was nice to be able to chat face-to-face 🙂 Beautiful stained glass windows of St Francis’ church on Londsdale st.2015/01/img_9400.jpg

Sunday selfies with this little guy. Along the Yarra outside Crown, we lazed around in the Sportshub enjoying live acoustic music and a cup of Movenpick icecream! Cozy outdoor lounge settings and beanbags. A perfect start to the year.

What have you been up to lately? Hope it’s been a happy and healthy start to 2015 – xx –

A day with Monet – kid friendly!

IMG_02237 monthsMonet collage IMG_3056[1]Woodfired Pizza

Rhodri exploring Monet’s garden, Baby D not sure about the autumn leaves, the NGV, an introductory talk to Monet and his work, life and story, lunch at the Soul Kitchen Woodfired Pizza foodtruck. 

Monet’s Garden  at the NGV, 180 St Kilda Road, Southbank 

Thanks to a fellow mummy friend, Baby and I went along to an introductory talk about Monet and his work. The kid-friendly activity held in one of the NGV auditoriums was organised by Culture Mamas and it was a lovely way to spend the last day of autumn. There we gathered with our prams and kiddies in tow and listened to the eloquent speaker as she took us through the life of Monet and the waterlily paintings he was so well known for. Hearing the speaker pronounce the French names and places took me back to the times when hubby and I explored Paris’ many galleries together and would hear the seductive French accent around us.

There were boxes of little toys placed along the aisles to keep the kids occupied if they wanted to get up out of their seats and after the talk we went on to see the exhibition. Monet’s Garden is open until September 8th 2013 so you have plenty of time to get down there to visit if you haven’t done so already for a lovely day/evening out.

Can you recommend some must-see events in Melbourne during this winter season? 🙂

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