Summer Bucket List 2017/2018

It’s not secret that the warmer months are my favourite time of year – I feel like I exist all year, but it’s only during these few months that I really¬†live. Cold weather makes you want to just sit, wrap yourself in blankets, stay in bed and hibernate. It’s such a struggle to get going when it’s cold, wet and miserable. Sometimes if I’m outdoors and I get overly chilled, it will throw me into this awful state of extreme fatigue (mental and physical) until I’m able to spend hours warming myself back up again with hot showers, electric blankets and hot tea. I think my core just has a lot of trouble keeping its temperature, so of course I love spring and summer better.

When it’s warm, the days feel so limitless and full of potential. Nine o’clock on a Thursday night and you’re itching to do something? No problem, let’s go get ice cream and walk by the beach. That kind of thing is so nice. I have the biggest bucket list of things to do over the next few months – I’m sure I won’t get to all of them, but it’s a nice daydream. ūüôā

This is my 2017/2018 spring/summer bucket list:

I want to grow some amazing heirloom tomatoes – some for sauce-making, others for slicing and layering with homegrown basil and mozzarella for the best kind of caprese salad.
I want to learn how to fly the kite that’s been kicking around in my office for the last eight years.
I want to go boogie boarding with Nathan at Jan Juc.
I want to listen to French music in sunshine at the park while eating expensive cheese.
I want to finally go to Werribee Zoo, because I’ve never been.
I want to take Posie and Rupert to have Santa photos taken.
I want to go to a pick-your-own cherry farm and make jars and jars of cherry pie filling (seeing as Nathan loved the cherry pie I made on the weekend so much).
I want to go out on my father-in-law’s boat for the day.
I want to demolish the old (probably haunted) wardrobe in my office and make a new one to store my dress addiction.
I want to get frames for a bunch of things so we don’t have so many blank walls in this house.
I want to take lots of photos with my big camera again.
I want to set up the dogs’ clam shell pool in the backyard and do what I did last year – laying under the oak tree on hot days with my legs in the pool, laying on a blanket, reading.
On that note, I want to read all summer long – widely and deeply.
I want to celebrate the mussel festival at Mum’s house.
I want a really huge thunderstorm, the kind that rattles the windows and floods the backyard.
I want to set up a kitchen herb garden in the front yard so I can have fresh herbs in all my cooking.
I want to try different champagnes and see if there is anything I like better than my current favourite (which would be handy because it’s $100 a bottle).
In the new year, I want to start a physical, pen-and-paper diary – nothing too full on, but somewhere I can write all sorts of half-formed thoughts and fragments of poetry without having the urge to hit backspace.
I want to make a recipe from the Supernormal cookbook.
I want to find the perfect new cushions for the sofa – obsessed with feather pillows particularly these days.
I want to finally go out with Sarah to eat fancy steaks for our 30th birthdays.
I want to take a few domestic trips to visit family in Sydney and the Gold Coast.
I want to finally finish Posie’s quilt and the two batik ones that I started after our first Bali trip.
I want to relax enough to nap during the daytime on hot days.
I want to take a big day trip down the Great Ocean Road and take a walk in the rainforest.
I want to turn my entire garlic harvest into garlic butter to be frozen and used throughout the year – I did that to half of my haul last year and it was so delicious and so handy to have for whenever I felt like garlic prawns.
I want to really kick some writing goals under my pen names, and start on my big women’s fiction novel that will be under my own name in January.
I want to grow my own baby cucumbers and turn them into dill pickles.
I want to do some agility training with Posie – she’s getting a collapsible tunnel for Christmas, and I’m thinking about making some beams and hurdles for her.
I want to try to make time every single week to do something fun with Nathan, because it would be a crime to waste this blissful newlywed period with being serious or boring all the time.
I want to let saltwater dry in my hair and go to sleep with sand still between my toes.
I want to do healthy things, like eat five serves of fruit or vegetables a day, or make sure that I eat oily fish a couple of times a week.
But I also want to do unhealthy things, like make a gingerbread house or perfect my recipe for the Heineken green tea lemonade cocktail I had in Taiwan.
I want to hopefully be able to swim in my mermaid tail at Eastern Beach.
I want to enjoy every moment of the only time of year that I can feel my feet!

The Mussel Festival

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I took one photo, total, for the whole day – and it’s still rubbish. Mum always keeps her house way too¬†dark that it’s too difficult to take a nice photo there, plus Rupert was trying to murder my aunt and uncle’s new puppy and had to be held the whole time, which was a total joy and prevented me from taking photos or even eating with two hands as well.¬†Anyway, we ate: cold steamed mussels with green mango salsa and hot chips with aioli; coconut and lemongrass mussel soup; mussels in white wine with butter and parsley; and everybody else had (but I missed out) mussels cooked au naturale over a fire pit. Then of course pavlova, fruit, jelly and my brother’s homemade cookie dough ice cream which was too amazing.

I wasn’t having a great time on the weekend (coming off a two day migraine, sore ribs and some sporadic TN), but those mussels were so good. Next time, I’m going to buy an extra box for us to keep and eat on the Sunday as well. Nathan wants to experiment with bacon and chorizo and beer and tomato and chili… I’m happy to eat whatever, so long as it tastes good. Never too many mussels!

Mixtape: Songs of Summer

Rules: it has to be dreamy, it has to be light. It can’t be too energetic or too frantic, and can’t be too cheerful but not too gloomy either. It’s just over an hour of music, but I might add some more to it later. I¬†will post my last Japan post, soon – I’m just psyching myself up for the sheer amount of photos we have.

Anyway, these are songs for: luxuriating¬†on freshly cut grass under shady trees; wearing flip flops every day; eating icy-poles/popsicles that melt before you can finish them; laying in bed listening to the distant thunder of summer storms; smelling somebody’s outdoor cooking and suddenly getting a hankering to have a barbecue of your own; losing count of how many new freckles you have acquired; smelling the soil as it comes back to life when you water the garden at dusk after a scorching day; drinking mojitos or G&Ts all afternoon because you have nothing to do and nowhere to be; letting sand dry on your skin and finding a thin layer of it on every surface of your house; dahlias, hydrangeas, and roses; beaches being closed due to sharks, but you go anyway; walking around in your underwear and not bothering with pants unless there is company.


** Just found out that the Spotify player doesn’t work in Bloglovin’, so you’ll have to click through to read it on the actual site.