5 Tips on How to Bring the Hotel Home @ Thursday, February 22, 2018
By Carol from Road To Organized
To be honest my room looks like something out of Howl's Moving Castle, as I have so much craft supplies on every surface, flowers and things of inspiration and all. No I can't pop it into storage, because here out of sight and out of mind you'll never see it again. But I am working on popping everything into clear boxes and storing them where they stand.
We came across this article by Carol from Road To Organized, and it made me reflect on our last holiday, to Sage Hotel. There was no clutter, plenty of space to write, be it in the temperature controlled room full of light (we are vampires and live in front of a forest and never open the curtains at home, fear of dust and the truth, also burning) or downstairs in the communal space. Home is nothing like that, it's either screen time or bed. Nothing in between, not much room for anything but tripping and getting threads ripped out of you clothes, getting snagged on things (this is why we always wear aprons).
When we get our own place I'd love to have a separate study, craftroom and bedroom; and we'd actually use all these wonderful tips to create a hotel-like space with minimal clutter, though that's going to be quite a challenge, being the Queen of Clutter!
1. Clear-ish flat surfaces
Holiday accommodation only keeps the necessary on each surface. Those clutter free feels really impact on our relaxed state.
2. Keep only what you really love
The thing with the space we were staying in is, it had a whole collection of really cool ornaments, fresh flowers, original artworks and so on. And I loved pottering about looking at each piece. It made me think of the things that we have in our own décor. Do we really love each piece? Does it speak to us? What is it that gives it permission to stay in our home? What this does is, as we move through our space, we’re only surrounded by the things that we are really drawn to, and it makes us more comfortable in our space.
3. Softness and texture + light
Each soft surface had blankets and cushions so you could really cozy up in that space. The colours were somewhat neutral with splashes of colour and they were really inviting. White flowing curtains softened the space. It doesn’t mean you have to go out and buy stuff – use what you have. Think about how you use your own spaces. Do you like reading in your bedroom? Create a reading nook with blankets and cushions. Like sitting out looking at the view? What can you do to make the space more inviting for you?
4. Use the Good Stuff
From the unopened bath salts you have stashed in the back of the cupboard, to the crockery collection that you really love, start using the stuff that you keep for special occasions, on a more regular basis. Fill a basket with all those bath bombs and handmade soaps, and use them! Light those candles that are just for decoration.
Bring the Outside In
We spent most of our time in the sunroom overlooking the view, and I thought about our own patio that sits unused way too much. What can you do to make that a space you use more?
5. Add Flowers
So, I have a bit of a list now of what I want to do in our space, which mainly involves moving things around, and looking a little harder at each space and how it works for us. What can you do to your space that gives you those holiday feels?
Summer Nights with Curry Camp (Camberwell) @ Thursday, February 08, 2018
Charlie & Co. dined as guests.
Thursday 1st Feb
There are many things we love about Camberwell, including having everything on main street (or close by), the gardens and local restaurants. It took us years to get here, though the pond had long been drained sadly - but we wouldn't have gotten there in time anyway. Tonight we were delighted to finally tick 'picnic at the park' off the list, with Curry Camp.
In our town Curry Camp is the place to go for Indian, and we're been here many times, you could almost say we're regulars, and that's something as we're always trying new places. But I find this is my favourite Indian restaurant, and even though we moved to Hawthorn, we still come back to Curry Camp, and bio guy would pick up takeaway on his way over for our sleepovers.
L-R: Butter Chicken, Pumpkin Masala, Malai Kofter
Naan, chicken tikka, samosa, rice, raita/chutney
This is 'Deal One' ($32) from the takeaway menu with samosa x2, chicken tikka x2, one veg curry, one non-veg, rice, naan raita. We also ordered lassis ($12 for 3) and another main, and naan for one more. The deal serves two by the way.
Chicken Tikka & Samoas - Boneless chicken marinated in yoghurt and spices,
cooked in a clay oven. Tender and full or flavour, a favorite starter.
Samoas - For a vegetarian option (just one of a few) there's somosa's, spiced potatoes and peas stuffed in puff pastry. This one's a lot bigger than you think, and fun to eat.
11. Butter Chicken (far left, warm orange, not in this picture)
Boneless chicken pieces cooked with spices and tomato based butter sauce
The butter chicken as perfect as always (this place is not only our local Indian place, they're a house favourite and I had 15+ neighbours). While I try to order new things, this is our default.
47. Malai Kofter - Cottage cheese, potato and spiced dumplings cooked in a creamy sauce
The malai kofter was similar to the samosa filling but with cottage cheese, in a lovely creamy sauce, though a hint sweeter than the butter chicken.
49. Pumpkin Masala - Pumpkin cooked with aromatic spices
The pumpkin masla was a bit spicy for me though Andy thought it was just right. To cool down lassis (a yoghurty drink) were perfect, our favourite is the mango lassi.
Curry Camp is under new management as within the last week or so (at time if dinning experience), though nothing has changed, the menu has remained the same, the food just as good, service as welcoming, and shall continue to be our favourite Indian place. Don't be deceived by the lack of diners, most people are ordering takeaway (they're on everything: menulog, eatnow, deliveroo, foodora).
Located a block away (uphill, same side as the station) from Camberwell Station and on the 72 tram route the location is great, and you can park at the station or on a side street.
Open for Dinner Monday - Sunday, from 5pm.
796 Burke Road, Camberwell
Hello New Orleans! @ The Moldy Fig @ Monday, January 29, 2018
Charlie & Co. dined as guests.
Thursday 18th January
The Moldy Fig is quite close to the trams and can be easily spotted with a huge mural across the wall outside. Inside there's a beautiful blue jazzy mural duplicating the French Quarter of New Orleans. Live music is featured Thursday-Saturday nights, and on the day we went Michael Yule was playing.They also do swing dance classes/social here, more details at the end.
Pomegranate and Passionfruit Hurricane
The Moldy Fig's signature version of Pat O’Brien’s classic: white
and dark rum with orange juice, passionfruit and pomegranate
We started off with the signature c/mocktail, with rum for him and me without. A fruity blend that tastes like summer, not too sweet or tart but just right.
Introductions were made, we met chef & owner Dorelle and her daughter Vivian (also our very friendly waitress over the evening), who told us about the origins of 'The Moldy Fig'. The cuisine is a combination of cajun and creole in the New Orleans style. French origins with Jamaican and West Indies mixed in to create creole.
Dorelle's passion was discovered when gifted a New Orleans cookbook, followed by many trips to Southern Louisiana, and New Orleans, a collection of authentic family recipes passed on from locals 'The Moldy Fig' was created and almost a year old.
The kitchen pass is a replica of a French Quarter house with their shutters and decorative mantels and the colours are chosen from list created by city heritage, to maintain the authenticity of the old city. The mural on the wall is of Bourbon St and features many lovely French-style apartment balconies and old fashioned bars.
Take a walk down the hall, the walls are of a scene from Jackson Park.
I love that, painting the hallways to make them interesting.
Po'Boys = New Orleans Style Burgers
Southern Fried Shrimp Po'Boy
Deep fried shrimp in crispy buttermilk and spiced batter
with Louisana red cabbage slaw, tomatoes and remoulade
While I love all things deep fried and shrimp (yes that's the same thing as a prawn) this was lacking something. A white sauce? 1000 Thousand Islands? The slaw was different.
Beef Brisket Po'Boy
Slow cooked beef brisket with homemade spicy bbq sauce,
lettuce, tomatoes and homemade chili onion jam
Juicy and tender beef brisket with that beautiful onion jam (that I always have a jar of in the fridge) this is the jam!! It was absolutely amazing. And Fernando said the hot sauce works well with the beef. Sitting in a super crusty bread roll, that reminds me of the Vietnamese ones, which also has a French influence.
Fernando - Loved the brisket, the shrimp was honestly disappointing, I agree it needed some sort of sauce or something
Hot Sauces! Fernanado loves everything hot. The first one is the housemade one.
Cornbread (Original, Chili & Garlic)
I've never had cornbread before and these were scone shaped and sized, but tasted like a warm hug - as a cake though. Served very warm the butter melts into it magically. The garlic was my favourite.
He says - They were like scones, the garlic one was actually really good, it was an interesting combination with the fluffy bready texture to have garlic on it. Chili was not as successful, I didn't get the same fusion feel when chili is used well.
Gator Bites Aussie Style
Crocodile meatballs served with a refreshing mango salsa
Full of flavour with all the spices, it tastes a like chicken. There was definitely chili in there! Which the mango salsa was perfect for, till I realized there was more chili in there! XD
He says - I love chilli and chilli all the things please! There is something else going on in the background I can't put my finger on, but it was enjoyable and the chilli was used well here to compliment the meat.
Wrapped in pancetta with cranberry infused red cabbage
Fernando absolutely loved these! So incredibly more-ish! The pancetta wrap was beautiful giving it this salty exterior. The cabbage is also really nice with the cranberry infusion, I devoured that without even realizing.
Gumbo (The Official Dish of Louisiana) with chicken and andouille sausage
Mild heat. Reminds me of a Vietnamese dish that I can't quite name. The first one is to show you what's in it, a close up, though the second is the serving size. I love the presentation, as that's how I did it when I studied home economics!
He says - This is where I discovered the "Crystal" hot sauce. It's just like mum's cooking, a delicious combination of vegetables in a brothy sauce that gets absorbed by the rice and comes alive with the cayenne pepper hot sauce. Probably my favourite thing on the menu narrowly edging out the Po Boy, though I'm super biased as I love this dish. Went back for a second helping. I love the chunky vegetables in the sauce, they were the first time vegetables didn't seem so bad as a kid
Strawberry Salad with Bloody Mary Dressing
To contrast all our mains, meats and dishes we had a refreshing salad. I love fruit in salad! The strawberries were very sweet, and the bloody mary dressing bought out the flavours even more. I could taste a bit of lime. Strawberries, cucumber, purple onion & lettuce.
Jambalaya - A Spanish paella influenced dish with chicken and prawn
This does remind me of paella with a tomatoy rice base, it was hearty and filling. Seasoned & spiced it had plenty of flavour though no chilli - unlike Fernando I don't do chilli.
Deep fried in crispy Louisiana style batter. Mixed vegetable or chicken, served with remoulade and a chili. Well I can't say I've ever deep fried cauliflower before :P A crispy batter, we just had a bit as we really have tried a bit of everything!
Ribs of the Day - Slow cooked dry rub ribs with a bourbon glaze
served with our famous Louisiana Red Cabbage Slaw
Fernando says - The Bourbon glaze gave the ribs a delicious flavour boost, mixing well with the dried spices with the juicy meat.
Mississippi Mud Chocolate Cake. Served in a Cup with Cream. I love the presentation of this dessert! With cream and sprinkles on top too, though I simply can't resist pie, our national dessert.
Pumpkin Pie with Ice/Cream
With a crispy pie shell, and pumpkin filling full of spices. It was perfect!! As good as grandma makes them. After a banquet you might want to share one of these.
Sticky Date Pudding with Rum
Fernando - The surprise twist, the pudding has banana in it! I couldn't help but be reminded of banana muffins with the delicious and sweet sauce that makes all sticky date puddings come alive. The rum and the banana make this a very different experience to what you normally expect, it packed more punch and had more fire with the rum, and seemed more fluffy and light making it not as dangerous as a thick heavy pudding on the back of a large meal.
Overall everything had plenty of flavour and was delicious, he loved the gumbo and po'boy most, while the po'boy, Jambalaya and pie were my favourites. The turkey pancetta meatballs are perfect for sharing.
I love that this place caters for everyone, though if you're vegetarian you're really missing out :P There's lots of GF/DF/veg and vegan options.
It was very very hot that night, and the fans weren't cutting it. They really need air con. Though fortunately the really hot days aren't all year round.
Definitely give 'The Moldy Fig' a go, best to go in groups so you can order and try more!
Notes - There's live music Thu-Sat Night. And on every second Sunday starting at 1.30pm there's swing dancing is hosted by Swing Patrol with beginners classes and followed by social dancing till 5pm.
Back to School - 55 Pencil Cases Under $3 from eBay @ Monday, January 08, 2018
We love shopping on ebay, the catch is things take about a month to ship, though shipping is often free, and there's so much stuff and range! Today we'll be sharing with you 55 pencil cases under $3 (posted) from china, found on eBay. There's so much to choose from!
Animals & Totoro & Co.
Hi. I'm Charlie. Capricorn. ISFJ. An Events Planner. An American, San Franciscan in Melbourne.
This is a blog about food, events, desserts, hot chocolate & cupcakes, shopping, and the occasional beauty product review in between. A lifestyle blog by an American in Melbourne.
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