Monday, 15 September 2014

New Kid on the Block

Today I was the new kid on the block and started a new role in a different team.  I've come to realise and accept that I am just not the type of person that can do the same job day in day out for years on end.  For a long time I struggled with the expectation that job hopping is frowned upon and that stability and longevity are desirable traits when it comes to work experience.

As awful as it might sound, whilst I love learning about new things I also get bored quite quickly.  Once I feel like I have mastered something I lose interest very quickly and want to move onto the next thing.

An opportunity popped up in HR for a similar role to what I was doing so I jumped at the opportunity.  I had worked with the Hiring Manager before so I didn't even have to interview for the role!  So today began my new adventure into HR systems, and it started in a red Asos skirt from a few years ago.


It was sad to say goodbye to my old role but I felt I had gotten everything I could out of it.  One of my stakeholders on my last day sent me this lovely email:


It really made my day.  It made me feel like the midnight conference calls and all the weekends and public holidays spent in the office were worth it.

Here's to a good 9 months work-wise!

Adding more Mimco to my collection

I would never pay retail for Mimco.  RRP is not worth the quality of products, especially their bags and wallets.

However in the past 2 weeks I've acquired 2 new Mimco bags.  Both were on sale (of course) and the sling bag I bought for almost 70% off!


I've needed a laptop bag ever since I started fulltime work (some 8 years ago).  I had been known to carry my laptop around in a Sheike shopping bag (yep those thin cardboard bags) or in my hands (not good when you are juggling your normal handbag + laptop + power supply + mouse + coffee).  I hate those bulky laptop bags work gives you and I find they add unnecessary weight.  This Mimco bag doesn't scream "I have a laptop in here please rob me" but has an inner padded section for your laptop.

I've also needed a sling bag since forever.  I had been eyeing this hip bag off but was certainly NOT going to pay $250 for it.



I punched some extra holes in it to shorten the strap and now it sits perfectly on my hip!

Have you made any new purchases recently?

Thursday, 11 September 2014

MNG now shipping to Australia

Have a look.  Prices are a bit on the exxy side ($500 for most of their leather jackets) - I hope the quality is decent but I find Mango quality a bit hit and miss, which makes things difficult when you are buying online and cannot inspect the item beforehand.  Having said that, they have a 30-day return policy and for $5 they will come and pick up the item from you.  Pretty good!

There is a lot of paisley on the site and I know many people object to paisley.  I don't mind it myself, but everything in moderation, people!


This also applies to leopard:


Delivery is free for orders > $100 and they have a LOT of stock.  Might spend some time tonight going through it to see if there's anything worth buying.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Spring has sprung!

What a glorious start to Spring Sydneysiders have today!  I walked to work with a certain skip in my step, excited about the impending warm weather and hopefully sunny days.


My weekend started with drinks and tunes - a work colleague's farewell drinks which saw me order a cocktail that came with a side of whizz fizz (seriously just whizz fizz).


Then dinner and more drinks with family and friends before Tom's gig.  Tom's band performed at The Metro, selling the venue out (1,100 tickets!) on their first ever headline show, which is kinda cool.  They're already planning their next show!


Saturday was cold, wet and dreary all day.  I demanded Vietnamese beef pho for dinner which always makes me feel better despite the bleak outlook outside.


My friend S took me to Lady Gaga at Allphones Arena.  Admittedly I loved Lady Gaga when she first came out 6 years ago (I even went to see her perform at Oxford Art Factory for a measly $22) but in recent years I've felt like she's been controversial for the sake of being controversial, and I've not liked her music as much as I used to.

I have to say though, she is an amazing talent.  She hit all her notes, she's a good dancer, and spent a bit of time at the piano singing ballads.  Her fans monsters are a bit outrageous and made me feel so old and prudish.  One guy was wearing 15 inch platforms.  He literally could not take any steps.  Another guy wore HALF a pair of black leather underpants - his right exposed butt cheek was dangerously close to my face.  There were people dressed in fairy lights, women in fishnet stockings, pointed bras (a la Madonna) and panties - thankfully no one in a meat dress though!

Yesterday I spent much of the day on the couch in front of the telly watching reruns of Friends and Food Safari.  Great weekend, all in all.

How did you spend your last few days of winter?

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

DIY wedding bouquets

Our biggest wedding splurge is the reception venue - and with 140 guests it's quite an expense.  So I'm DIY-ing as much as I can.  Not only because it's more cost-effective but also because I love DIY-ing and would get such a kick out of creating things that contributed to my wedding day.

I had heard quotes from florists in the thousands of dollars for wedding flowers.  I don't value flowers enough to pay that kind of money, and thought it might be fairly straight-forward to do it myself.

I youtube-d a few videos to got a decent idea of what's involved.  After purchasing some floral tape and wire from ebay, I paid a visit to the flower markets in Flemington.  I was completely overwhelmed with the flowers - which ones are suitable to put in a bouquet?  Which flowers/colours complement each other?  What am I doing??


So I just bought some white roses, pink roses and these random pink and white spatter roses, along with another random off-white flower (no idea what type of flower this is).  I think I paid $25 for the bunches above so estimate spending less than $100 for 5 bouquets on the day.  I cleaned them up (removed a majority of the leaves, thorns, picked off dead/dirty flower petals) and started building the bouquet.

I started with 3 large white roses in the middle, then filled the gaps with the smaller pink roses.  I continued to build around the outside with the spatter roses and random off-white flowers.  It probably took 5 minutes to build the bouquet.  I dismantled that bouquet and attempted another one with less pink than before.  Then I dismantled that one and did another version.  It was actually pretty fun!


I won't be using the off-white flowers in my bridal bouquets as they drooped really quickly but it's all about trial and error.  My sister attempted a bouquet and it turned out nicely - less pink and more white than mine.


Getting used to holding a bouquet!


I forgot to take pics of the actual bouquets once I bound it with tape, hacked off the ends and wrapped satin around it.  If I do another trial run I'll remember to take said pictures.

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Pork and vermicelli noodle salad

This has quickly become a staple dinner in my household.  It is so simple and quick and absolutely delicious.  Before I start I want to make it very clear that you can throw any asian condiment in the frying pan so no need to follow my condiments and quantities exactly.  I've literally made up the composition of the sauce and it changes every time I make this so just make it up according to your taste!


Ingredients:

  • 500g pork mince (I used chicken mince once and it tasted like rubbish)
  • 20g vermicelli
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 cucumbers
  • 1/2 iceberg lettuce
  • sprinkling crushed peanuts
  • mint
  • red chili (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons kecap manis
  • 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce
  • crushed ginger
  • sesame oil and/or white pepper to taste

Method:
  1. Place vermicelli in large salad boil and cover with boiling water as per packet instructions then drain water
  2. Fry ginger with some oil and add mince until brown
  3. Add all condiments to mince - keep tasting until you have perfected it.  Remember it needs to be pretty salty as it's seasoning the entire salad > add to bowl
  4. Chop all veggies > add to bowl
  5. Toss errthing
  6. Sprinkle crushed peanuts, mint and chili
  7. EAT

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Getting serious about Bikram

I've started getting more serious about bikram yoga.  In true Kay style, I bought myself a new mat (my old $7 Kmart yoga mat just didn't cut it anymore) and a strap (pink, duh!) to make it easier to carry.

I tried the 3mm Lululemon mat but it was too thin for me so I got the normal one instead (5mm) which provides a lot more cushioning for my tush!

These are the main things I have learnt through doing bikram:
  • It's important to get the foundations right - previously I had been pushing myself to complete each pose perfectly even though I was 'cheating' and not straightening my standing leg, or straightening the leg but not touching the knee with my forehead.  I also learnt how some poses are meant to be executed and once I started doing it properly I stopped getting knee pain.
  • Water water water - the first few classes I took a normal water bottle and 20 mins into the class I was drinking warm water (gross) so I bought myself a Thermos double-walled water bottle:

  • Don't wear cotton - after completing the class you are completely drenched in sweat.  Cotton clothes just stick to you and make you feel so uncomfortable.  I've started wearing compression wear which dries almost instantly.  Much more comfortable.
  • Further to my previous point, tight clothes are the best option.  You can't really see the shapes you are making in the mirror if you wear baggy clothes.  
  • Relax during the savasana - there is a reason why you give you breaks lying down; use them.
  • If it's your first few classes try and stay in the room - it might be hot and humid but lying down on your mat in the room is much better than running out.  Not only for you but also for your fellow yogis.

What are your bikram yoga tips?