Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Food Diaries : Switch Lifestyle

Switch Lifestyle in Knox City is one of my regular haunts. I've been there more times than I can remember, and I love it - however it is not a place I can full-heartedly recommend.

If you decide to dine at Switch, you are taking a risk and there will inevitably be something that goes wrong with your dining experience. Be it a long wait time, mix-ups with your order, unavailable items menu items (which they will only inform you of AFTER you have ordered it) or something not quite right about your food. It happens every time! Yet there is something about Switch that keeps me coming back time after time.

It could be the funky vibe, or the laid-back atmosphere, or the (sometimes!) good food, or the amazing cocktail menu.

There is a nice variety in the food menu, varying from Asian style influences, Mediterranean options or just your good ol' Aussie staples. But what I keep coming back for is the fantastic range of cocktails! I have a sweet tooth when it comes to my drinks, and I absolutely adore the fruity range of drinks which they have on offer. I've made it my mission to try every cocktail on the menu, however still have yet to make a proper dint in it - often because I've enjoyed a cocktail so much that I have to have it again on my next visit!

Switch has a large verandah type area for outdoor dining, as well as your normal tables inside, or cushy booths and couches to kick back on. There's also the Grill Bar area which is a larger open-plan area which is open for drinks on certain evenings or can be hired out for private functions. The dim lighting gives a very relaxed feel, with up-beat music setting the mood whilst not being too loud that you can't be heard over the tunes.

Overall, Switch serves tasty food and generous serving sizes. If you're in a forgiving mood, it's well worth a try! It can be a little hit and miss, but from my experience they all seem to balance out in the end! It's a great place to gather with friends in a very social atmosphere and you won't regret it once you've got one of their fabulous cocktails in your hands!

Switch Lifestyle Knox City on Urbanspoon

Monday, November 28, 2011

Nails of the Day

When I'm having a bad hair day, or a fat day, or just feeling a bit ick in general, a nice new coat on my nails always helps boost my mood a little!

I love doing my nails, and will usually switch around and play with colours when I'm bored.

I get very impatient in waiting for them to dry though, as you can see below I was a little impatient in between layers, so they're not quite right!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Christmas in November

Guess what everyone... there's only one month til Christmas!!! YAY!!!

So as you probably know, the holiday season is one of the busiest times of the year.  We thought we'd get in early before everyone was too busy with family and work events, and have out Christmas shindig last weekend. 

I love Christmas!  In preparation for the party, we decked out the backyard bar in tinsel and lots of little fairy lights, set up a little Christmas tree next to the couches, and scattered Christmas crackers around the place.

Of course, Melbourne being Melbourne, the weather was as unpredictable as ever. We had some gorgeous days during the week, but the night and morning before the party decided it wanted to storm and rain its little heart out! The boys set to work putting a tarp up next to the bar, so we managed to waterproof the place fairly well. Take THAT, Mother Nature! You can't spoil our fun! :)

By the time people started arriving, the rain had cleared but as the clouds started rolling back in and the rain started falling again, it turned a little chilly.  The boys decided to light a fire, and how else would be achieve this but with PETROL of course?!

Notice how they managed to get the fire not just IN the brazier, but all around it as well?! Men!! It did keep us all nice and toasty though! :)

After this stage, I got so busy entertaining (read eating and drinking!) that I forgot to take photos! :( It was such a fun afternoon/night having all our friends there, cooking up a BBQ feast, drinking far too many alcoholic beverages, and just catching up by the fire.  It did continue to pour down for much of the afternoon, but thanks to the wonderful tarp we managed to stay cosy and dry! Rocket enjoyed the socialising as much as we did, and towards the end of the party he just gave up and passed out by the warmth of the fire!

Excuse the shocking photo quality! As you can probably see, we'd consumed a few drinks by this stage and co-ordination was not quite as good as it should be! Poor little boy was so pooped that when it was finally time for bed, he went straight to sleep and did not stir, which is a big deal as he's usually an endless ball of energy!

He was right back to his usual self when we arose the next day though! It was gloriously sunny outside (thanks, Melbourne weather!) and we still had a bunch of meat and beer leftover so a few friends decided to join us for round 2.

Is it just me, or does anyone else feel like this after a great weekend?!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Beautiful Moments

Isn't this photo breathtaking?

Look at the sunstars coming off the little droplets!  
They look like little precious jewels... would love a ring like that!

Mother Nature is a clever little lady sometimes! Gorgeous.


Monday, November 21, 2011

The Backyard Bar

I hope you had a wonderful weekend!

Here in Melbourne, we experienced two seasons with a miserable stormy Saturday, but the most perfect sunny Sunday that you could imagine!  I had a fairly hectic weekend with our early Christmas BBQ on Saturday, that managed to stretch out into a lazy Sunday BBQ with friends! (post soon to come!) 

Good company, lots of food and a few drinks, is there really anything better? 

Below is a snapshot of our pride & joy - the backyard bar! :) 

We also have a TV set up in front of the couch, and it has since been adorned with tinsel and fairy lights for the weekend's festivities. It is one of my favourite places to be, kicking back on the couch with a movie and a glass of wine in hand... 

Ahh - the simple pleasures! :) 

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Turning Japanese

Ooh, I have comments and followers! Not many, but I am excited! Thank you so much to those who took the time to read and leave a little comment! And thank you for the lovely welcome messages! Makes me excited to have started this little blog! 

So today I thought I'd share some food pictures with you! 
(Be warned: I eat a LOT of food, and feel compelled to happy snap away so there's sure to be a lot of posts featuring eats!)

My lovely man, Liam, and I are having a Christmas party this weekend!  Sadly my poor little Christmas tree was blown over in the storm of November 2011, and there were some casualties! What started out as a short late-night Kmart visit to pick up some extra baubles turned into a mini shop-fest after I spotted the Wishing Tree set up at the front of the store.  

Shopping for gifts is so much fun! You should totally give this a go! :)

I had to do my bit, so we grabbed two tags from the tree and ended up trawling the toy department for ages trying to find the perfect Christmas gifts for a little boy and girl!  Following this with a trip to Aldi meant it was pretty late by the time we emerged. I get lost in the aisles of a supermarket - I will often go in to buy a carton of milk and come out with 15 other items and have forgotten the milk! 

So we decided to grab a quick and easy bite before heading home.  Cue Sakana Japanese Cafe, an inexpensive little place located on the High Street of Preston.  

With all that energy expended shopping, and given the late time I was absolutely STARVING when we sat down to order.  This results in mass over-ordering. As my mother always says, my eyes are bigger than my stomach (wouldn't it look ODD if that were really true?!)  

Edamame beans [$2.60]                                                             Entree gyoza [$3.90]
(there were more but I forgot to take a photo before we started eating!)

Chilli Octopus [$8.50]                                                             Katsudon [$8.50]

Tempura Combination [$12.20]

Couple of issues - the tempura was a bit bland, and some pieces were not cooked enough resulting in raw floury bits of batter in the odd mouthful. With the katsu don - every other time I have ordered it, raw egg has been stirred through the hot rice and seasoning resulting in a tasty eggy sauce through every mouthful of rice.  Sakana's has the egg already cooked on top, so the dish is a little dry.

For the price though, you can't really complain too much! We were SO full afterwards, and I am ashamed to admit I had to leave behind food. Sakana is not a bad place for a quick & cheap meal.  

Food is not fancy high quality Japanese, but is simple and tasty.  

Sakana Japanese Cafe on Urbanspoon

Monday, November 14, 2011


Lucky colours for my uncle's wedding! Red & gold - like a Chinese red packet! :)

Clearly not lucky for me though - on the morning of the wedding I sliced my finger, requiring four stitches! If you're looking for new knives though, may I suggest Scanpan? They cut through anything, I've learnt.

They interviewed the happy couple for a segment on The Project too! 5 seconds of fame... 

Hopefully my lucky nails bring them better luck than it has me!

Oh, and to add so I don't seem completely self-absorbed! We did have a minute's silence at 11am. 

Lest we forget. 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

A Blog To Call My Own!

Well... this is awkward. Being inexperienced in this here Blogosphere (am I even using that word correctly?!) I'm not sure the protocol for a very first blog post!

My intentions for this blog can only be described as a lifestyle blog, in that it will contain whatever might be happening in my day-to-day life. I wish I could be as clever and inspired as some of the blogs I've read, but alas I do not have any super powers or areas of expertise that I can speak to you about!

I don't even really expect many people will even read this humble bloggy, but I can spin a yarn and chatter til the cows come home, and there's only so much blabber I can subject my friends and family to! So if nothing else, this blog is for myself to write and write to my heart's content!

If I'm completely honest, I'm not even certain how long I will last in this world of blogging. I have an attention span which is far too short, and a list of things-to-do which is far too long!! I have browsed a lot of blogs though, and love the connections people have made and all the friendships formed in the blog world. So here's hoping I have the brain space to stick around for a while, and muscle my way into this delightful little space! :)

I wanted to introduce you to my fur children at this point here, but it's dawned on me that I haven't yet introduced myself, really! So... if anyone is reading or happens to be particularly interested - my name is Cat! I am 26-year-old Melbournite who is slightly boring, a tad crazy insane, and perhaps a little bit of an acquired taste. Hopefully you'll take the time to get to know me, and decide to stay for a while!

Well, now that's over with!

Miss Mitzi says hi!

The Rocket-man is pleased to make your acquaintance!

This is Piglet. There are eleven more of her at home :)

Well, there you have it! My very first post. That wasn't quite as daunting as I thought, although my post was far more pointless than I thought!  Oh well, bound to happen! 

Have a lovely Thursday :) xx