Last Week of June and Comic-con @ Saturday, June 30, 2012

My first convention where I'm not going to eat all the food or take a milion pictures, is on tomorrow. Well it's actually on for the weekend, but my shift is tomorrow.  Haven't blogged much this week as I spent it mostly asleep and at various appointements, watching Korra, and working on a few pre-posts, as I've got finishing school coming up next week and still need to shop/pack. Made macarons, spent a couple of hours sifting it. They turned out to be flat chewy almond cookies... 

On Friday we spent a small part of the afternoon tearing up tickets, as they're printed on strips of paper which are all connected and for miles, for the main part we did showbags. Organization fail, we had to relocate twice (first we were in the booths area, and other people were there setting that up), so the plan was to go through a bunch of boxes, stop at each one and pick up an ad, repeat x10, and end up with back issues. Fortunately the majority of us didn't go with that, and had a person in front of each box, so that when we passed by each person we picked up an ad, like checkpoints. Once you were bored you could swap with the peeps on the floor folding A3 ninja turtle posters. There were about 25k showbags to fill. And most will be thrown out, as it's just a bag of ads. The only thing worth looking at is the program/maps.

The Production Line

The event is the comic convention, "the ultimate pop-culture and fan expo, featuring multi-genre content from across the spectrum; from film and television stars to comic book and anime artists, gaming demonstrations and cosplay competitions, to portfolio reviews and creative workshops and master classes."  I know nothing about comics, apparently it's the geek/nerd event of the year O.o I remember there was a boy who loves Star Trek and all this comic stuff, didn't have any friends, and talked to himself, who ended up being homeschooled because they all picked him. That's the only slightly related thing I know about comics, other than it's related to the CN show, Justice League.

Spiderman is missing?

Saturday was the first day of the event, and people started lining up at 4am O.O, it's cold... and the sun doesn't even rise till about 7.30am. The lines were long and went up to 1/4 of a mile outside too. People who got there at 7am were still there at 11am. Where the scanners down? In the end only the pre-paid people could get in, so the people who bought their ticket on the day didn't get in, because there was more people then expected, an it appears an unlimited number of tickets were sold. Capacity issue. Pictures.

For those working at the event, we got a weekend pass plastic bracelet thing, that you can't take off till after the event. Not sure why we really need it, but to get into the event you do need it, why don't other events have it? Here's a map and list of the vendors. When setting up I saw a lot of plushies ^^, those health/energy? mushrooms from Mario, pokemon plushies and star cushions. Very excited about checking those out tomorrow afternoon.

There will be dress-ups! I'm not really dressing up though, it's too cold, plus I really do have no relevant outfits to wear, not being into comics and all. Might wear my little red riding outfit, though the chance of me taking my coat off is relatively low, unless it's summer in there. Looking fowards to checking out all the other outfits. :)

Spellcheck is still down. :(

One Random Monday @ Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Yesterday morning I watched the first episode of Legend of Korra, which is it 'Werid Sister College' set after 'The Worst Witch'. Korra is set 70yrs after the end of the first series(?), and Anng is dead... Katara is the only old charater left. Anng and Katara got together and had 3 kids, the youngest of those kids, Tenzin, 51, is the airbending master (in only one), as in the first series Anng was the only airbender left, and so all airbenders would be his decendents. Korra is the main character now that Anng is gone, she's the next avatar.

Everyone's dead... the charaters from the first series, except Katara 85 and a grandma (she has 3 kids with Anng, and the youngest is Tenzin, who has 4 kids). Sokka didn't have any kids and died. Anng/Katara has 3, a waterbender, a non-bender, and Tenzin, airbender. Even though everyone's dead, their progress since the last series will be discussed, and I think they will be flashbacks.  There's a mini-Anng! Meelo is grandson looks like a mini-me version of him - almost :P.

Here's the link for the first episode.

After breakfast we did some errands, and stopped by Priceline to pick up some crayons I reserved (always call and resvere, because they mightn't have any in stock) and scored the last one. :) I love Clinque's Chubby Sticks and have ordered one from Sephora ($16), but here as people earn more, they must pay more. It's $35 here. But Face of Australia has made a dupe, their Sheer Gloss Crayons, pack of 3 for $15. Everyone in the beauty blogger world has been talking about them. Here's a review/comparison of the two, I'm not going to do one, as everyone else has, and it's adequate. As someone suggested, I *think* they're limited edition.

Face of Australia Sheer Gloss Crayons
3 for $15

On my way to the station I discovereed the location of Cake World! I was wondering where it was... the CW from the ourdeal thing I bought. We discovered why they said "subject to avaliablity", it's because they have a set of 15 cakes, and once a cake is sold, another one gets delivered from the warehouse. So there's only one of each cake on display/for sale. They open at 9am, so do call to reserve. But it got me thinking, as the location sucks (it's in a walkway, and not like the Royal Acarde) that cake you bought could have been from last week... They don't have a website, but I found pictures

They all look so good. Green looks interesting, something jas would potentially like. I hate redbean though. So the 3 I like most are: Mocha, Durian and Black Forest. Getting two, Durian is definately a pick. Now it's between mocha and bk forest, though I'm learning more towards mocha, knowing that bk forest cherries are of the canned variety. Fruit is in the picture because it looks amazing - though it's just vanilla and half the fruit used is canned. Mocha or bk forest, which to choose?

Emma doesn't like tomato & onion.

She also likes to feed the white bits of the lettuce to the seagulls... We had a lunch at Hungry Jack's, met up with Emma on her lunch break, we both tried out Hungry Jack's new Tendergrill Chicken Burger/Wrap for $1 (print this). I had the wrap, she had the burger, but somehow I forgot to get pictures of the wrap... but got a picture of her burger. :P Great for $1, but the chicken was bland and not worth $6. I prefer the $2.50 crispy chicken wraps at McDonalds. Btw do you have your pictures before or after the referencing text? I tend to go under, except when I need a picture to break up a slab of text. ;)

Stripe Peplum Shirt $30 - Portmans

After lunch I stopped by Portmans on my way to a meeting on the other side of town, and bought an amazing shirt. I had planned to check out this shirt, it doesn't look like the picture, the bow is loppy and just sad. Just a shirt nothing special. But I stumbled upon this shirt, in my size it was nothing special, but two sizes smaller, and it was amazing. Like in the picture I looked like I had a waist. Normally I don't as I'm always wearing long winter coats, and many layers.

Had a meeting, picked up something for a friend, then went to the library. Crashed. Fortunately I had set an alarm, and made it on time to see the crash. Timetabling opened at 5pm and it started lagging and then all the computers froze. IT quicked fixed the issue, and by 5.07pm I had picked all my subject times and been in the first one for each subject. :) Now I just have to go to all the classes to confirm lectuers/tutors. On the way home I bought some stuff for the macrons I'll be making another day.

Viktor & Rolf's Flowerbomb

At the post office early that day, I recieved a package, wrapped in brown paper, tied with string and then wrapped again in an excessive amount of clear tape XD the tape covered the entire package, guess the person wanted to make sure it couldn't get wet. :P It turned out to be a letter and gift from le beau, who says he coming to visit and staying for an entire two week :) (he works in the country, but spends 3/4 weekends in the city with me). The gift was Viktor & Rolf's Flowerbomb, which is an amazing but very $$$ perfume. How I know that's what I like, considering I don't have a bottle already, I don't know, and doubt I'll ever will.

Spellcheck is down. :(

Daily Deals etc. @ Saturday, June 23, 2012

A great way to save money on eating out is those daily deal, yes they do spam you daily, or in case of one site (forgot which one) multiple times a day. But they do sometimes, every couple months have great deals. I wouldn't recommend signing up for spam, instead bookmark and follow ozbargain, the best deals are posted there. Or use one of those collective sites that have all the deals. 

Some tips I'd give when buying these deals are...
- check out reviews, no.1 tip
- look at the location e.g. a nail place in a lower SES area isn't as preferable as one in the CBD
- only use well-known sites, just in case. e.g.
- beware those 6 course asian offers, they sometimes count rice as a dish, and some courses are tapas sizes
- pizza/pasta restaurant deals are often not worth it
- check out the menu before buying lunch/diner offers
- note the wording of T&C, e.g. "redeem early to avoid disappointment" that could mean early on the actual day, or during the time period the voucher is valid for. Some places only have x amount a day for voucher users - even though you paid for it.

Here are two recent deals, that I'd recommend. I've edited them taking out the persuade words they use e.g. "mouth watering" I'm not too fond of those descriptions as it's all persuading techniques. It's up to you, the buyer, to decided if it's mouth watering or not.  

$1 for a decent (medium) sized cup of yoghurt, sauce included, but not toppings, they cost 70c each. We went here twice, with their last offer (same as this one), good service, they offered tastings before you picked your flavour. The original flavour is lemony and reminds me of homemade yoghurt. Do check out the location before you buy, for me this location isn't a place I pass randomly, on my way to work etc. so I do have to plan a date/time to actually go. Offer link.

The Small Print
- valid 27th June to 27th Aug
- one voucher can be redeemable per person per day
- topping not included

The second deal...
$17 for 17cm/1 pound cake, serves 5. From the description (in small print link) they have a large range.

Cake World is another Bread Top franchise (asian bakery, only hires asians). There was/is one near Safeway in Carnegie, that I used to pass, bought a slice of their sponge cake once, it was lovely. Reviews, the few that can be found suggest it's good. Though the franchise has yet to create their website, I think they're still starting up?, and this offer is a part their marketing promotion to make people aware of them. Offer link.

There are 7 locations (you pick one where you'll pick up your cake from) when you buy the voucher. It looks like BH (on the Belgrave/Lilydale line) has the most stock/flavours, being more of the flagship store. Flemington appears to have least stock, as it's not their specialty, it looks sort of like 7 Eleven selling Krispy Kreme. Here's the small print.

P.S. There's no where that says you can't order the cake, so to me that says you can check out the cakes one day, and order it, say for a dinner party, on another day to get a fresher cake, as we don't know how long ago the cakes on display were made. Edit: Each day they get a set of cakes, say like a rainbow assortment, there's one of each. The next day if the red was sold another red will be delivered from the warehouse, but if not, that's yesterday's cake.


1. Cards - There are plenty of nice $1-2 cards around, your friend (esp. if it's a boy) probably won't notice that you got him a $7 Hallmark card anyway. Or if you’re in a crafty mood, make a card. Though if you’re like me and go all out, it would cost about the same as a fancy card.

2. DIY - Look up DIY idea they'd love. There are very  easy ideas out there e.g. picture frame + keep calm... photo in matte costs <$10 or you can make a candle or beauty creams and other natural beauty stuff.

3. Food! - Make cookies or other small good like rum balls, use cellophane and ribbons to make it pretty, or stick it in a nice $2 shop jar, and decorate the jar yourself. They do say the best way to a man’s heart is through his stomach ;). We’re loving candy bouquets like this one and this

4. Sales - For girls cosmetic sales are great for buying small gifts, you can also put them in a small basket, add tissue paper and wrap it from cellophane to create an gift basket, much cheaper than pre-made ones.  Also don't forget to stock up Christmas presents and other gifts during the June Sales.

Exam No. 2 @ Thursday, June 21, 2012

Heat wave! That's where I want to be, back home it's summer (as a country we have a white Christmas, though as a city it's rare - last time it snowed was in 2006) 90f or 32c, I'm still slowly getting around these conversions, measurements, oz, inches, pounds... The formula for changing Fahrenheit to Celsius and vice versa isn't fun. And so I still carry around conversion cards in my wallet :P. Back to the weather, it's cold enough to snow here in Melbourne! Fortunately it's only wet and not windy, and with a coat and umbrella you'll be fine.

Not much is happening lately, other than hibernation and exams. Had my second one today, events, time allowed: 3hrs, time used: 1hr. Not sure if that's a good thing... I did check all the answers several times. Life is unfair, we were given 10 topics, and only bits and pieces were on the actual exam. The last exam is during mid/late July, till November that is.

One thing that I have been up to lately, other than cramming studying is the return of art & craft projects! I haven't really started the Q of Hearts Project yet (they sent me a faulty dress x2, work in progress), but I did get a new dream journal and decorate that. It's a blue chunky spiral notebook, in the front cover I have pictures of water-painted fish and the back cover has been covered with pearly cream wedding invitation paper. Does anyone have a dream diary too? Btw there's an app for it. :P

Another development: my "study" area, I live at the library, has been revamped. Not quite sure if it's picture worthy, as all I've done is replaced the photos. Plus the bg has been in many pictures I've posted e.g. 1 & 2. The back wall has a purple, chandeliers, midnight elegance theme (my dark side :P) while the left wall is pretty, pink, flowers and my other half. At the moment the right wall is going to feature so art pieces from my folio.

A friend is going to the US and has "volunteered" to buy me some stuff. And I've asked for a kit from Clinque, still trying to figure out which one though. I saw three ladies at three different locations, two recommended the redness set and one recommended the anti-blemish set. I tried both, and found the red kit, the moisturizer too thick and I didn't like the smell. And with the anti-blemish we had no issues. I'm told the redness needs continuing treatment and it'll reduce over time but never completely go away, while the blemishes would. I have a day off tomorrow, so I may seek out a 4th & 5th opinion (two stores are quite close.) Which would you go with? 

Coming up...
- Lush's Igloo Sugar Scrub - Review
- Part 4 of the Adventures of Saving & Spending - Gifts
- Meet the Cast (of the Blog)
- Q of Babble, Meg Cabot - Book Review
- Two Weeks @ Finishing School
- Dream Diary
- New sticky tab on the right sidebar for notable posts.


1. Books - Use to compare prices. Check out those $5 book stores or borrow from the library.

2. Movies - There are survey sites that reward with movie tickets for doing their surveys e.g. survey village

3. Tickets - For plays and movies, enter competitions. I've won a few times for double passes to the theatre, and twice for movie tickets. There's also the contagious network.

4. Magazines - Enemy propaganda that wants you to buy stuff you don't need (with exceptions like the Times & Good Health). Unsubscibe. If you must, read can read the latest issue at the library.

5. Glasshouse Candles - DIY room spray, costs less than $20 (per 100ml/g), lasts longer, and there's no fire risk. All you need is a spray bottle ($3 for 3 @ the Reject shop, $10 oil from TBS, $10 rubbing alcohol). Just realized that that's not really entertainment...

Spendings - This and Last Week @ Friday, June 15, 2012

Warning - Picture Heavy. 16 of them...

June is the month of end of season and style/lines sales and so it's quite difficult to resist a bargain. Who can say no to a cool quirky $2 headband that used to be $20? Or good quality red 120 denier tights, with $10 off the price? All pieces you can wear many times, or if you change your mind you could always sell them in July on ebay and make a profit. ;) 

Last week, we bought...

Red tights 120d from Sussan, $7, was $17.
Ulta 3's Precious - for the Q of Hearts Project

On Tuesday we spent  a day with Emily...

We had lunch at Grill'd. Happy Meal & Blood Orange for me, Sweet Chilli Chicken Burger & Water for her.
She moved in the bg of that one ^.

On our way to lunch I got distracted and ended up buying 4 headpieces at Diva for $8.
(Top hat was bought last week.)

Individual Pictures, because I'm a photoholic :P.

Emily doesn't like this one, she reckons it's too big. :P

I reckon this one is a bit on the small side. :P

This is more like it, though I don't like veil in my face.
$4 when I bought it, a week later it was $2 - if they still have it in stock.

With so many hairpieces we shall have a day just for them.
Joining Thursday Tie will be... Headpiece Tuesdays! :)
Though we might skip the witch hats. :P

After lunch we went to South Wharf shopping center, the one next to the Hilton & Expo center. At Typo I bought two small scrabble letter canvas (A & F, part of a friend's engagement present), a pen and card for $5.50. The SA wore huge wooden-looking pebble earrings(?) in his ear lobes O.o and was very friendly.

The Card... a frame
This is going up on my future picture frame wall
- as soon as I figure out where to get those 3M hooks.
(Landlord's no holes in the wall rule.)

We stopped by BnT twice, to put through an order, and then to spend gift card credit.
The SA made a mistake and so we left with $10 credit, no chance of cash refund, :(
and so we ventured off to the DFO store where I bought a wash bag and six drawer sachets.

To conclude the day we were going to the Classic Curry Company, but with 2 girls and an iphone we got lost :P and ended up having dinner at La Porchetta. BBQ Chicken pizza, Hawaiian with chicken pretty much. It was great ^^, a large thin crust for $16. My 2nd choice for pizza, after Panned Pizza. And the best part is that they make different sizes (pizza for one) and being a franchise they're everywhere.

And our last and 16th picture...

The Cheesecake Shop's Tangy Lemon Continental Cheesecake.

It's very nice, providing that you don't eat too much. We had the blueberry last time, mainly blueberry jam with a couple
frozen blueberries in the middle, it was alright. Lemon's better. Why so many cheesecakes? There was a daily deal a month ago and we bought 3... Normally $24, we got them for $12.

Fashion & Beauty

1. No impulse purchases - once again use the same criteria as jewelry. But this time asks if that style actually looks good on you, rather that it’s pretty. And if it’s a big ticket item e.g. $500, put it on hold and ‘sleep on it.’

2. Jewelry - What would you wear it with? How often would you wear it? - Be Realistic. Also it helps to know what suits you (gold/silver), if you have Miss Fisher’s hairstyle, there’s really no point wearing earrings – we can’t see them.

3. Perfume - Buy what you'll wear often, and they’re cheaper at Perfume Stores, Duty Free and Chemists. Ebay is 95% fakes, don’t risk it. And do not ever buy it because the bottle is pretty.

4. Beauty Products - Use what you got before you buy more. Some also recommend beauty boxes ($15 per month) and they cone with some full sized products, worth it most of the time if you’re into trying new products. This is a hard one, but perhaps only shop at Lush during their 50% off Boxing Day Sale.

5. Online purchases – Do try before you buy, if you can't make it before closing time  put it on hold. Analyze. Also have a maximum of 2-3 packages coming at any one time.

6. DFO & Ebay are your friends, also warehouse sales. But know your size in that brand before you get there. Diff brands = diff sizing.

7. Timing - Buy most of your winter clothes during the June sales and summer during December sales.

8. Hair & Nail – DIY or get a friend to do it, unless for special occasions. Also look up offers by beauty schools, they sometimes offer free colouring or a cut as part of their portfolio.


1. Bring lunch instead of buying it, or only have TA lunch/dinner once a week.

2. Have a week's supply of dry/tinned foods in your draw at work E.g. Fantastic Noodles, crackers, tuna, etc.

3. Buy 'Big' - Buy big bottles of fruit juice and transfer them to small bottles, do the same with chips, crackers and other foods.

4. Coffee – only buy it once a week. Bring coffee mix to work or if it's for classes, BYO coffee in a thermos.

5. Eating Out - BYO water, you don't need that $3.50 Coke, and neither does your health. 

6. Daily Deals - sign up for daily spam (use your spam account). There are some good deals once a month or so e.g.

7. Specials/Offers - look out for them. e.g. 2-for-1 & Student Offers, Grill'd: free drink with burgers purchase on Tuesdays.

8. Meal Planning - check out the supermarket specials and plan around that, also maybe buy in bulk with a friend at Costco.

"Budget. It's the second most dreaded word in my vocabulary, right after diet. But it is a necessity."- Victoria of Think, Eat, Shop. Marketing is all about getting customers to spend, and the general theory is as the time of exposure to products increase so does spending. Perhaps that means that girls should not leave the house :P, that isn't really possible though, you have to travel to classes and work, and along the way they'll be temptation. The question today is: are we spending too much? 

The first step is to keep record of how much you're spending, do this for two months, if June is included, as June is the month of sales, and so it doesn't count, with all those investment/savings purchases. There are lot of apps that do this, and they have categories too, which are very helpful. For me I the basics covered so it's just personal spending and transport costs.
So my categories would be:
- Food
- Transport
- Entertainment/Hobbies
- Clothing/Accessories
- Home Deco
- Beauty
But I don't always spend on all categories, so sometimes I don't include them. For other it would include rent, bills, health, pets, car related expenses, house maintenance (cleaner/gardener/chef), gifts and nights out.  

Since 1st June, I've spent $370.05, made up of...
$76.05 in food ($23.55 on take away),
$40 on hobbies, ($22 at an art store, $18 on picture frames)
$140 on clothing/accessories, (all 4 items where on sale 50%+, one was an AH coat)
$25 in home deco, (typo, more picture frames + printing photos)
$25 on necessary things (e.g. postage) and
$64 in beauty (dry/shampoo etc. (in bulk), nail polish base, np remover).
And in this I haven't included transport costs, which is about $30 a week.

In terms of online purchases, included above, I'm waiting on the AH coat and the Queen of Heats outfit to arrive, BnT owes me $10 for postage refund, and someone owes me $15. I could have saved at about $12 on food (we allow take-away once a week), last week I bought two happy meals and a pizza. I could have bought lunch twice and only bought the pizza though.

Step 2 is to identify your spending habits.
  • What is it, an un-necessity that you're spending too much on?
  • What are your weaknesses? Manolo Blahniks?
  • When do you tend to spend the most? Is it during lunch break or on the way home? 
  • Card or cash? Research shows it's easy to spend more than you can afford with a card, as in a way it doesn't seem like money, compared to that ward of cash you just handed over. 
  • How do you spend your money? Do you buy a new bottle of OPI or have mani/pedicures weekly?
  • And your attitude towards money, it's a hot day, would you a. buy a $4 ice cream at the convince store or b. wait till after work and stop by the supermarket and get the same ice cream, on special, $6 for 4?
Not sure where I'd rank myself in spending habits as I have friend on both ends of the continuum, mr swipe (pays everything by card, does not know how to save) and mr extreme budget (who is better at money management, but considered stingy). And then we have mr spend NOTHING, because he never leaves the house, his lifestyle is: classes, home, tv, video games, study. 

Myself, I live at the library, in the cbd, surrounded by food. There are no lockers, so I can't stock up a week's worth of food on campus. I rarely go for mani/pedicures, only ever few months, and rarely buy nail polish, as I have a huge inherited collection. My Friday nights are spent at the library, or occasionally we have a dinner break. Saturday is spent online. I love the theatre, and we got every couple of months. Movies, I rarely pay for them, as I earn them through surveys. But my weakness is fashion purchases, though it's not that bad. As I get most things on sale, and won't buy a AH top for $200, no matter how nice it looks. With big ticket purchases, they're investment pieces e.g. a $500 AH will hopefully last at least two winters (taking into account winter is April - Sept/Oct). My problem is I spend too much on take away. So the goal is to only have take away only once a week. That's step three, after identifying where your money is going, set goals

So the 3 steps are...
1. Keep record of your spending
2. Identify spending habits & where your money's going.
3. Set goals, and do try to achieve them

And for the budgeting part, set money aside, $20-$50, depending on your income, just for those little things. Like coffee, eating out once a week.

I've googled some tips and customized them and added my own to help save, and spend less or at least spend wiser.
Coming up...
Part 1 - Food
Part 2 - Fashion & Beauty
Part 3 - Entertainment
Part 4 - Gifts

It looks better on a bk bg, where you can see the white boarders...

Project Keep Calm - Frames @ Saturday, June 09, 2012

Project Keep Calm

Part 2. On Thursday afternoon I went to check out photo frames. A good place to go is to the Reject store or $2+ store first, though don't go to those random asian stores, there are no bargains for picture frames there. At the moment with June sales there are couples places to get frames. Big W has two types of frames, both for $5 and they come in about four sizes, one design is birch, that wooden look and feel, comes in oak(cream)/black/white. Here's a picture. The other design is just a layer mahogany look, boring, but suits certificates. Big W also has those lovely ornate ones in bk/w for around $15, for a special occasion I'd get that, but as I planned on buying quite a few it was too $$.

The best place to get frames would be Target, they have a very large range, though their ornate design is well... ugly. But all their frames except the electronic ones, are 50% off. I decided I like their Club Collection, and it was perfect for the project, a simple design with a focus on the picture. As always it came in a range of sizes, we went to two stores (the 3rd on Monday :P) and bought nine frames for $27. They're normally $6. From one store we got three white frames, but as they've been on storage for years? they're dusty on the inside - so do check if that dust is on the box or frame before purchase. We had to exchange two and there was attitude from Ester, she was pretty much 'take it or leave it, they all look like that'. No they don't.

Friday, we went to another Target, they didn't have white, but that's fine. Because they had black! :) A very helpful SA, David, helped open and check all their frames, about eleven of them. We ended up with six perfect black frames. I personally prefer the black frames, as it seems to highlight the colours in the image - but that could be just me. The frames fit the standard 8x6".

Note that with the link from the last post the pictures are only of print quality for the smallest size, the standard 8x6", if you want to print it bigger you need to increase the picture quality with photoshop. When printing pictures don't forget to pick matte, it's less shiny, and doesn't end up having your fingerprints all over it. 

One last test shot. Not sure where I got this frame from, as I've had it for a while. Love the lighting.

The card that's used in the frames for the test is from Typo, they have a small range for $5 each, but do update it once in a while. Also try their DFO store, cards there go for 50c, called today and they have three different ones at the moment, but nothing interesting. It might just be easier to print your own ones. 

One last picture of the frame. :P

On Saturday last week, we went to the Good Food & Wine Show, Australia's largest consumer food and wine exhibition. And for once I arrived later than jas. We both bought our DSLRs, but I didn't end up using mine. Can't eat and take pictures at the same time, plus it's harder to take pictures in crowded places. Jas unlike me doesn't take a million pictures and so we didn't get pictures of everything.  Because he is still yet to send the pictures we;ll improvise for now.

Tickets $25 each for General Admission
- Won in a competition -

My favorite stall/vendor in terms of presentation was a wine company, which has a french chic theme with their bk/creme damask wallpaper, warm lighting and those black iron deco bird cages. When you hire a stall you can do pretty much anything with it (except dig a hole to China :P) to customize it, wallpaper, lighting, flooring, etc. Once again it's based a lot on location, the better the location of the stall the more it costs.

In terms of food the caramel sauces (salted butter & vanilla) from Caramelicious were amazing, La Belle Miette uses them in their their salted caramel macarons I've heard. I checked out the site and it seems to be on of those exclusive markets & festival foods. It's 200g for $9, but definitely worth it.

Salted Butter


A product we love but didn't buy was Luv-a-duck, the thought of carrying around meat in my bag wasn't too appealing, plus they do sell them at the supermarket. At Luv-a-duck they did cooking demos, we tried 3 samples and I liked the lemon duck the most. And ever since I've been craving duck, and looking forwards to going to Old Kingdom after exams for pecking duck. Next time I might get the $50 starter duck pack, other reviewers say it's worth in and great value compared to buying it at the supermarket. Though cooking isn't something I've ever done outside the classroom, and hence I'm hesitant to try, as I'm picturing rubbery textured duck...

An unexpected vendor was Brown's Confectionery, which sold candy that you can only buy at Sov. Hill in Ballarat (3hrs away from Melb). But nowadays you can buy their candy online, shipping cost around $10 I think. No paypal.

We also loved sodasteam, collective great dairy's yoghurt drinks, and those smoothie cube drinks.  Nespresso was also doing samples of latte's and short black, to promote their coffee machines. Not quite sure I want to be an addict like Hector though. :P

In the afternoon we went to a show where Maggie Beer did cooking demos, pavlova and a dish with chicken and artichokes. Though she didn't do most of the demo as she burnt her hand. Jas went into borderline fangirl mode when he saw her about 25ms away XD. Unfortunately Huey was not there.

I saw a penguin promoting Mini Melts and was super excited while jas was like O.o not understanding what the big deal was, it's just ice cream. But it's in very cool little balls! It was towards the end of the day and they had a 2-for-1 offer $5 for two is a great price. Freud and I always buy them at the festivals and they're normally $6 each. Mini Melts ice cream is cryogenically frozen by immersion in a liquid nitrogen bath at -190 degrees, so cold the ice cream freezes into individual little balls. Back home they're the equivalent of Dippin’ Dots. Not sure what jas had... but I had the Strawberries and Cream (top layer), Cookie Dough and Salted Caramel. I once read this line on a food blog and it's exactly how I'd describe the ice cream - "...from god's own dessert platter".

There was only issue we encountered (other than the expected crowding): wheels. I'd add children, except that I only saw one child. Wheels, trolley wheels, as they're short-ish and pretty much on the ground we kept tripping over them. They should have just one day for all the pram/trolley people.

Raspberry Drops - Glade Candle - Apple Stress Ball

Jas bought showbags, one from Good Food magazine for $15-ish which had a range of mainly samples but also an adequate number of full size products, including drinks, coconut water (2), sauces, a candle ^ and some other stuff I can't recall. I wasn't particularly interested as I don't cook and there was no candy :P. The only item of particular interest was the candle, which jas gave to me. The second showbag was by Maggie Beer, with three full-sized products, one was good quality fresh-looking tomato sauce, and a bottle of Verjuice (juice of unripe grapes).

The holder is glass with a plastic 'wrapped' design on it, made from the same plastic as the type on juice bottles, but a bit sturdier. The candle is attached to the holder but a magnet in the bottom, when you've used it you can buy another one to replace it. I found the scent wasn't that strong and didn't fill a bathroom, so it was a bit disappointing and I won't be purchasing refills. Plus I had a wick problem, and the flame flickered without the wind being present.

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