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Archive for the ‘Australia’ Category

Must try: aja coffeehouse, Elizabeth Arcade, Brisbane

October 19, 2011 4 comments

Looking for a new place to eat in Brisbane City?

aja coffeehouse, Charlotte St, Brisbane

Opened 8 weeks ago, aja coffeehouse offers a fresh and well-priced menu of Asian-fusion dishes, Aussie burgers and continental breakfasts or simply a place for coffee and a dessert.

Service is quick and professional and the premises are spotless. You could go there for a work-lunch (as I have done, several times), girls’ catch-up, brekky or casual date and feel welcome.

Stylish, spotless and relaxed. What's not to love?

I’ve taken some of my fussiest friends there, and aja hasn’t missed a beat. The salt ‘n pepper calamari is unbelievably good and the presentation, lovely. Take my advice: Say YES to the fries (crispy, salty, sweet and spicy!). Your low-carb day can wait.

Salt 'n pepper calamari to die for

aja is located at the Charlotte St entrance to Elizabeth Arcade and is open Monday to Thursday 7am-6pm, Friday 7am-9pm and Saturday 9am-9pm (closed Sunday). Catering is available with 48 hours notice ph. (07) 3161 2691.

Opening a business in this economy is gutsy. Aja is a young, family outfit and they’re really very good. Give them some love, Brisbane.

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Categories: Brisbane, Review, where to eat

Cookie Monster cupcake YumYumYum

September 5, 2011 2 comments

Here’s a little something to brighten up your morning. Who doesn’t love Cookie Monster after all?

It looks easy to make, using Oreo biscuit for the mouth. But what do I care about that. I’ll take it, thanks. The hyperactive blue food colouring will nicely assist the effects of caffeine. It’ll make me work faster. Or something like that.

Happy Monday!

Categories: Australia, Business, Cake, Craft

Beautiful book bag

August 3, 2011 2 comments

I love my latest book-ish thing…

Book bag

It protects my precious books in transit.

A pouch for a writing pad, a slot for pencils and a snug spot for my beloved book...

Order yours from http://www.olvarwood.com.au/gifts.html

And, because caring is sharing, here’s a quote from the book I’m reading (The Story of a Novel). These words of Thomas Wolfe were originally published in 1936, but the feeling still holds true for those afflicted with the need to write. At pp.36-7:

It seemed that I had inside me, swelling and gathering all the time, a huge black cloud, and that this cloud was loaded with electricity, pregnant, crested, with a kind of hurricane violence that could not be held in check much longer; that the moment was approaching fast when it must break.

Categories: Australia, Books, Craft, Review, Writing

Office politics: What to do about the milk?

July 6, 2011 8 comments

This may be a short, but very significant post.

What do YOU do to stop co-workers using up ALL of your milk within a day of purchase?

I’m convinced that someone on my floor is bathing in my milk like Cleopatra, because it disappears Just Like That. I wrote my name in permanent ink pen on it, following office protocol. I also tried writing the name of crankier, slightly scarier individuals on it. Today, I tried something new….

Will this deter the milk thief?

I don’t mind the occasional sharing. However, from my last bottle of milk, I only had 3 cups of coffee (which is enough for one day of average output. No coffee, no workee).

If this doesn’t work, I’m thinking of writing EXPRESSED BREAST MILK on the bottle. Although, that might be going too far. After all, I¬† don’t need to include the word “expressed”, because it’s self-evident. If it weren’t expressed, well, it’d be a breast in the fridge (and no-one wants that).

Does your workplace have this problem? What are your handy hints?

GCC: the terrible truth

May 29, 2011 5 comments

Today, I had good news and bad.

The good news was, that I found my watch which had gone missing months ago.

The bad news was that the watch was on the treadmill (the walking thing which one is supposed to exercise on).

The Global Corporate Challenge made me rediscover my treadmill today, if for no reason other than team-guilt – the other team at work is winning, so it’s time to get walking.

What was surprising (other than finding my watch in the very same place that I’d lost my spare car key only six months earlier), was how much effort it takes to walk off Tim Tams. Especially, the six dark chocolate Rum & Raisin ones I ate yesterday.

Global Corporate Challenge day 11 - a half an hour walk

As the picture shows, half an hour of walking (at an easy pace) only burns off one Tim Tam (90 calories or 400 kilojoules) and a bit. I’d never counted calories before, nor dieted, so this was quite a shock. Furthermore, the walk only clocked up three and a half thousand (ish) steps, when the other teams’ averages are around 11,000 per day. Hmmm.

All things considered, I’m thrilled that I’ve found my watch and a new way to watch what I put into my mouth. (Those who know me well probably wouldn’t call me a convert, just yet).

Happy walking, everyone.

Categories: Australia, Business, Health, Life

Goodbye Borders (Brisbane City)

May 27, 2011 4 comments

Today, Borders Brisbane City closes its doors for the last time.

While some might say “hooray, another giant bites the dust”, it didn’t feel like a party shopping there yesterday. It was like picking over the garage sale of the newly dead.

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During the day, the shop was packed with people, shoulder to shoulder, looking for something more to buy at 90% off.

By last night, three floors of books was reduced to one floor of random leftovers and fixtures and fittings with SOLD stickers. People were in until 9:30pm unscrewing speakers from the ceilings and carting out whatever they could. I acquired some bookshelves. Lovely, lovely bookshelves.

Today, everything must go. If you’re in the city, pay your last respects and pick up a bargain.

My thoughts go out to the staff.

Categories: Australia, Books, Business

Global Corporate Challenge (and another day at the office)

May 22, 2011 4 comments

Teamwork is something that most offices aspire to. This week, teamwork has taken on a new spirit, with gazillions of suckers, like me, putting on a pedometer and logging into a teamsite to record daily steps taken as part of a 16 week challenge.

It’s a virtual walk-around-the-world gig, which raises money for Children’s Challenge, Footprint Initiative and the Foundation for ¬†Chronic Disease Prevention. And, I suppose, it’s good for us. Let’s not mention the fun.

Some people take it very seriously. Others, have already been caught out shaking the pedometer under their desks, which can look like something much worse (there has been an increase in loud laughing at the office, of late).

I’m up against another team, whose members ride to work, have personal trainers and are otherwise intimidated (in the nicest possible way) by the super-fit former PE teacher on staff.

Being against gratuitous exercise, I was lucky enough to get my daily count up this weekend by jiggling away at a fabulous 40th birthday party which had an 80s band until midnight. For anyone out there, with my allergy to exercise, that’s my hot tip #1: dancing to 80s music counts. Who can resist bouncing up and down to the outlandishly positive sounds of the 80s?

So, for 16 weeks, watch this space, as I explore what it means to be a good office-mate and fit global citizen. I might even start to enjoy exercise that doesn’t involve being first at the mid-year David Jones shoe sale.

Parents and teachers, take a look at the Children’s Challenge site and see if it’s something your schools could benefit from (it’s free to a limited number of applicants).

Have a great week, and try not to lock yourself in the fire escape if you’re going with the stairs instead of the lifts. That would be my tip #2.