Happy New Year!

Fresh from a week’s trekking on the Overland Track and a gorgeous beach day in the Freycinet National Park in Tasmania, I’m refreshed and ready to take on the new year.

We’ve got big plans for the blog this year, including more foodie posts and more content from our travels including Archer’s recent adventures stylishly treading the streets of Italy.

Stay tuned for a full recap of my Overland Track journey coming shortly.

In the meantime may January bring you lots of sun, surf & sea, excellent tennis watching and summer reading.

My summer reading pick – Mary Higgins Clark’s new one written in collaboration with Alafair Burke ‘Every Breath you Take’.  It features a murder at the Met Gala and a crime solving TV producer who wears excellent pant suits. I promise you’ll love it.

Beth xx

OXFAM TRAILWALKER BRISBANE

I’m writing this deliriously happy but with quite sore feet. That’s because last weekend we walked 55km in Oxfam’s Trailwalker challenge, raising funds to help fight global poverty.

We walked from Lake Manchester all the way to Mt Cootha. We tackled creek crossings, some very muddy tracks and lots and lots of hills, finishing just after 1-30am!

It was an incredible experience – so many highs and good times shared with some of my oldest friends.

And I’m so proud of our team. Of all the 55km participants only 65% finished with all 4 walkers.

Here’s my picture re-cap of our day –

After our 5am taxi ride to the start line, here we are bright and early at Lake Manchester, ready to go.

I even got a short black at the start line, thanks to the amazing coffee vendors who came all the way to Lake Manchester.

This was our no one gets left behind pact moment.

The one-minute to walking countdown!

And we’re off…

The teams were quite bunched up for the first 10kms. There was a lot of positive energy around!

We’d had quite a rainy week in Brisbane the previous week, so there was lots of very sticky clay-like mud. It was fun sliding around this part of the track.

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BONDI TO COOGEE WALK

You know my feelings about a good coastal walk: enthusiastic. Very.

Sydney is, of course, an amazing city. Lots of people. Lots of energy. And lots of traffic.

Maybe that’s why spending some time stretching your legs and breathing in the salty air on this walk feels really good and refreshing.

We hit the track nice and early one recent Sunday morning and made it to Coogee, about 6km down the track, before needing to be back in town.

Here are some snaps from this beauty of a walk –

Early morning in Bondi, nice and peaceful, before the crowds

You’ll pass the iconic Bondi Icebergs Club as you weave around the headland. It’s pretty impressive in the morning light.

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BETH LOVES – DAVID HOCKNEY AT THE NGV

Much of the east coast of Oz is battling through grey, rainy conditions right now as an ex-tropical cyclone makes its way off the coast.

So – a good dose of colour is in order today. And that means one thing – it’s time for a meeting of the David Hockney fan club. Who’s excited??

David Hockney is quite simply a living legend of the art world. This summer the NGV in Melbourne featured over a thousand of his works from the last decade.

Incredibly many of his latest pieces, including some stunning large Yosemite landscapes, were actually drawn on an ipad!

For me, this is type of art I really love. Nothing too political about it, just works full of colour that celebrate nature and feel vibrant and alive.

Here are 10 of my favourite images –

The exhibition starts with a room of iPhone and ipad drawings, many on backlit screens making them appear super vibrant.

There’s an abundance of still lifes, sunsets and flowers. All beautiful and whimsical.

I loved the Arrival of Spring pieces drawn in 2011 in East Yorkshire. The pieces have a really peaceful and hopeful feeling about them.

The Yosemite collection is flat-out amazing. Again, drawn on an ipad which is phenomenal.

You can’t really tell here but these are enormous pieces, taking up almost the entire gallery walls.

This one might be the most impressive piece in the exhibition. The drawing is presented on a group of 55 inch screens, which are animated to show the actual drawing process.

The final room of the exhibition features The Four Seasons – a display of 4 high def video pieces captured from equipment mounted to the artist’s car while driving in the countryside.

Here’s Spring –

And Autumn –

If you missed the exhibition in person, but would like to see more you can buy the book here. I promise you it makes one gorgeous coffee table book.

x

THE BEACH

It’s no secret that the beach is my preferred location.

Sun, surf and and cool clear water. Salty hair, sand everywhere. I’ll take it all.

So before we get into our Italy recap, I thought I’d share some snaps from what was a particularly good beach weekend.

North Burleigh proved a great spot for a relaxing Australia Day.

Not a bad backdrop to listen to the hottest 100.

Did the Burleigh rainforest walk on Saturday, starting at the main Burleigh beach and winding around the headland.

At 2.3km return, it’s an easy walk with some stunning scenery.

You’ll see plenty of pandanus and eucalypts trees and pretty rainforest.

You know my feelings on a good beach-though-the-trees shot.

Make sure you head all the way up to Tumgun Lookout for this spectacular view –

Look at that water. Perfection isn’t it?

Tallebudgera creek continued to turn on the magic Sunday morning.

Honestly, you’re just showing off now

Sunday afternoon with the girls meant it was time to try out this frose recipe from Vogue Living.

Watermelon + sparkling rose + ice + lemon = delicious

Archer made us this amazing Oh She Glows vegan chilli to cover our pool-snacking-needs. No photos though because we were starving from the surf. It happens. 

Some people are a bit anti-Surfers Paradise. I’m not one of them.

I simply can’t dislike a stretch of sand that allows for such good beach walks.

This was my sunrise walk before back to work on Monday –

Just quietly, I’m thinking battling the M1 traffic might be an OK trade-off if I can wake up to this every morning?

And as all good long weekends should, we ended things with an early morning breakfast at Elk before our drive back.

I hope your year is off to a great start!

X

 

ROMAN HOLIDAY LOOKBOOK

So Archer and I may have just booked a last-minute, post-Christmas, whistle-stop trip to Rome.

I adore Rome, especially in the winter. Everything about this trip just felt right, so in a very seize the day frame of mind, we booked it!

Now it’s time to workshop some gorgeous winter outfits. And yes, I do realise I just said that on the middle of a 32 degree day in good old sunny Queensland.

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1 – Regular readers will know of my love for all things khaki, British tan and navy. I feel like this Scotch & Soda jacket has a little bit of a Mochino vibe going on and is therefore very Rome appropriate.

2- My friends will probably laugh at the idea of me in flats, but I’m quite liking the athletic look right now. I flirted with the idea of Nikes, but I think I’ll stay loyal to Adidas and these particular kicks for the foreseeable future.

3 –   I love this Equipment shirt. I know it’s pretty expensive, but the description does say its a ‘versatile staple’.  Can’t argue with that. And it feels great on.

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4 – When it comes to Jeans, we’re all about Melbourne label Nobody Denim right now. These beauties are super comfy and a great fit.

5 – It’s not every day that a Brisbane girl gets to wear over-the-knee boots, so these Wittner Ebbony Boots will definitely make the suitcase cut. Wearing these to get some espresso on the Via Veneto = the perfect day.

6 – And finally I feel like if there’s a time and a place for this Cue silver bomber jacket, it’s Rome in winter. And it’s on sale, which can only be a good sign.

Happy Holidays everyone xx

BETH LOVES

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1- Had a good look at Jardan furniture over the weekend. They have some beautiful pieces, all made to order in Melbourne by hand. Spotted this fantastic Aquabumps print called Mediterranean Melt. It’d look fantastic in my office, or just about anywhere really.

2- I think I’ll have to get my hands on the Zimmermann Winsome Flutter Playsuit in black before the summer is out. It also comes in pastel pink and blue, but I love the simplicity of the black. It’s perfect party dressing for the holidays. Sure it’s pricey, but cost per wear, right? 

3- Would someone please get me this gorgeous Fossil backpack for Christmas. Yes it’s designed for men, but it’s everything I want in a hiking bag.

4 – Had a lovely long walk by the river under the supermoon last night. NASA says the full moon won’t come this close to Earth again until 2034. The true full moon actually happened early this morning, so it should be pretty spectacular tonight also.

GORGEOUS MOSSMAN GORGE

Can you believe it’s November already?

Melboune Cup has come and gone (nice work Archer for backing Almandin, keeping her extraordinary Spring Carnival record on track) and for us down under, summer is now just around the corner.

You can certainly feel the heat in Queensland.  Each day the midday sun seems to burn a fraction hotter.  And the humidity.  So much humidity.

Which means a nice refreshing dip is in order. Only sensible thing to do really. And I can’t think of many places better for a swim than beautiful Mossman Gorge.

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BETH LOVES

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1 – The fiddle leaf fig obsession continues unabated. Brisbane seems to be enjoying a particularly lush crop right now and I just can’t think of a room that wouldn’t be better with a fiddle leaf in it. If you’re in Brisbane and you need more fiddle leafs in your life, head to the Cottage Garden Nursery  – just don’t buy them all, because at this rate I’m probably going to need another 1 (or 2!). Image via Lonny.

2 – I’m thinking this beautiful Flannel slip dress will be perfect for the Aussie summer. Party season is coming after all.

3 – When friends suggest pancakes for dinner you should go with that because breakfast for dinner is always a good idea. I like to start with this buttermilk pancake base and layer up with blueberry compote and Donna Hay’s ricotta cream which is a mix of ricotta, a little real maple syrup and lemon zest. And berries and flowers. Of course. 

4 – These J-Crew earrings would make the perfect Christmas gift for a certain sagittarius I know. The colour description is ‘warm sun’ which I love.

QUEENSTOWN – SPRING SKIING GUIDE

It’s September. The Remarkables just had 65cm of fresh, glorious snow.

There’s only one thing to do. Get yourself to Queenstown  – it’s spring skiing time.

Queenstown is a place of stunning natural beauty all year round. In snow season, it feels like a little European ski village.

But instead of a long-haul flight to Europe, it’s only a hop, skip & jump across the ditch from Australia’s east coast.

Spring skiing means long sunny days, less crowds and more value for your $$$.

It’s our second year skiing in QT  – here are our tips for the best spring-skiing getaway.

Flights 

Get a direct flight if you can, it makes the trip a breeze at around 3 hours from Brisbane, Sydney & Melbourne.  

Try to get a window seat for snow-capped mountain views that will blow your mind.

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This is your view for about 15 minutes before the plane lands

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