Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Our Amsterdam adventure

Dear readers, loyal followers; I've been on a blogging hiatus, celebrating Christmas in Amsterdam.
I hope you have been having a great Christmas break! Lachlan, Henry and I had a wonderful Amsterdam adventure. I love this city!
On Christmas day, despite neither Lachlan or I being religious, we decided to take Henry to a Christmas Church service. I must say, I had a great time belting out Christmas carols and sharing in the spirit of the day with so many others. Though Henry slept through most of the service, he enjoyed the bits that he was awake for!
We followed this by a non-convetional Christmas lunch of toasted Turkey sandwiches and apple cake, which were absolutely delicious. We then had an amazing 5 course Christmas dinner. Henry was happy as he got to eat his favourite spaghetti bolognese and then promptly slept through the rest of the meal. It meant Lachlan and I could enjoy a proper night out - well as much as you can with a sleeping toddler in tow.
All in all, an excellent Christmas and an excellent week spent in one of my favourite cities of the world.
13 hours into the 15 hour plane trip; we flew through the day, had about 3 hours sleep between all three of us, and Henry was an angel! I'm not sure who had kidnapped my son!
I LOVE shopping in Amsterdam!
Jet-lagged and cross!

Amsterdam Christmas Markets! 
Henry's new thing; in freezing cold weather  he insists on "no jacket!"
We stumbled upon an organic food market with live music. It was so cool!
At Amsterdam's famous Christmas circus!

Henry is enjoying sleeping through the circus 
Henry insisted that the left picture was of Lachlan, the right of me. Can you see the similarities? 
At Moeders restaurant. We first went here when Henry was 8 weeks old. That first meal was a lot more peaceful! 

Stedljik Museum - Amsterdam's modern art museum. Henry thought this was a picture of him. The typical reaction of a self-obsessed 2 year old!
Henry getting amongst the art 

Here is a kid who does not like the cold.
After our third attempt, Henry and I FINALLY made it to the Van Gogh museum. It only took us 2.5 years!

The best part about museums? The cafe of course!
Free to run after the boring museum. Right after this photo, Henry fell face-first into the mud. 

Tram rides; much more fun than boring museums! 
Henry insisted on a photo in front of the Christmas tree.
And he insisted on multiple photos in Santa's sleigh. 

Lachlan insisted on a Christmas photo too!
Unconventional Christmas lunch
Unconventional Christmas dinner
That's some family Christmas photo! 
On our last night, Lachlan and I got a babysitter and headed to the Michelin starred restaurant, Envy, it was incredible. Henry has actually been here - as an 8 week old, but we figured since he'd been before he wouldn't mind missing out. (And we wouldn't mind either!)
Leaving Amsterdam. Belated Merry Christmas from Henry and Elmo! 

Monday, 23 December 2013

What's the weirdest compliment that you ever received?

What's the strangest compliment you've ever been given?

At the hairdressers the other day, as he was was blow-drying my hair, the hair dresser remarked, "wow, that's so cool! You've got elfish ears!"
He took a look at both of my ears, and went on, "I was watching the hobbit the other day and I was thinking to myself, those hobbits, their ears come up into a point. I love them!
Your ears are a bit like that!"

The hairdresser then went on to show me his ears, also somewhat pointed at the top - according to him, just like a hobbit or an elf. He told me that he really liked his ears too.
Apparently I have ears like a hobbit - this is supposed to be a good thing. 
 The other strange compliment I will never forget was given to me by a customer when, as a student, I was working at the ABC shop - the retail store affiliated with the Australian Broadcasting Network.

An older guy was buying the monthly cricket digest, and as he was so doing he said to me, "excuse me, but would you mind me asking, are you  related to Brett Lee? (The famous Australian cricketer.) You look exactly like him, I mean you are the female version of him. I would not say this lightly either, because he is an amazing cricketer. It's amazing; you are just EXACTLY like him. Wow, you are so lucky".
I'm not a cricket fan, and so I found this rather odd. Though I guess it's good that the old guy meant well!
Brett Lee doing his thing; apparently I am the female version of him. Not sure what I think about this. 
So I'm interested to hear. What's the strangest compliment that you have ever received? And how did you take it?

Friday, 20 December 2013

Back in the 'Dam

What was I thinking with that outfit? You can tell I'd been living in China for too long.
Readers, Lachlan. Henry and I have arrived for a very cold Christmas in one of our favourite cities in the world - Amsterdam.
I mean, why would you sit on a beach in Thailand for Christmas if instead you can spend 17 hours flying, lose (yet another) baby stroller, and hang out in FREEZING cold Northern European style winters?
Three words: Dutch Apple Cake.
Love this place!
In the past, we've only ever been on Lachlan's work trips, so this time it should be a little more fun. Lachlan will never live it down that on our first trip out of China when we were living in Shanghai, I travelled with an 8 week old baby on my own in economy, while he travelled business class. Let's just say, that was the first and last time that ever happened!

It's such great timing as I'm on a little running hiatus. That means no treadmills and no running around in the dark and cold. Yippee! Instead it's all about the apple cake and Christmas Markets.

Here are some photos from our first trip here. Henry was so little! I can't believe I came with an 8 week old baby! No wonder he is such a good traveller.
Just a quick brag; despite doing a daytime flight yesterday, Henry was a little star. He didn't whinge, he watched a bit of TV, sat relatively still and played with his toy planes. He barely slept the entire time but was still so well behaved. Hurrah! We were helped a bit because of how much he loves planes. When we took off, he was so excited that he laughed us all the way "up, up in the sky!"

Henry was so small. I looked so tired.
I remember being so worried about not knowing how to keep him warm.
The second time we came, I was so "organised" that I bought a can-opener to make Henry meals, yet I forgot to bring him a single pair of shoes. It was 3 degrees when we landed!
Baby Henry enjoying the sunshine - a stark contrast to Shanghai!
I just love the slogan on this shop. This would never happen to me.
Apple cake.... as soon as the cafes open this morning, I'm going to be ALL OVER IT.
PS The Inspirational Women Who Run series will be back after Christmas. I've got more amazing ladies for you to be inspired by, so don't forget to check back then!
Plus, for our Hong Kong folk, I've got some exclusive interviews with a team from MoonTrekker, and other great trail running features. It almost inspires me to hit the trails and get involved. Crazy people!

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Christmas hotties

At this time of year is there anything better than a cutie in a Christmas jumper? I don't think so!
You can toast me anytime Colin.
There's something undeniably sexy about Cee Lo. 

Oh! Colin! 
It's hot, and timeless!
You can never have too much of Colin
It even works on Matt 
And the cutest of the cute (in my biased opinion anyway)....
The boy who refuses to pose
Too cheeky 
Running away from his mummy.

Merry Christmas!