Friday, 27 March 2015

Cookie Dough, East Fremantle.

With a name like Cookie Dough you'd think they'd do awesome cookies, right? Right. Well they do, but they also do amazing breakfasts. I've eaten breakfast out almost every day since I got here, it's just what you do when you're in Australia. Forget going out for lunch, forget going out for dinner, it's all about breakfast. It's just a thing.

I first went to cookie dough a coupla years ago but we just had cookies....lots of cookies. So this time we went for breakfast, and ya know what, it was pretty darn good. I had the french toast with greek yoghurt, caramelized pineapple (yes.), and blueberries, topped with a drizzle of maple syrup. Mmhmm. I have to apologize for the phone photos, it was a bit of an impromptu visit so I didn't have my camera on me, but it was so good I just had to tell you all about it!

Like most Aussie cafes it's very cool and trendy, and they do a great selection of teas, coffees, and juices. I went for a very boring peppermint tea, but Cait had a flat white...and just look how cute the 'latte art' was!

Also I just had to show you the number holder - a little toy Bugatti. This is definitely my kinda place!

Cookie Dough really is a great place for breakfast, or just cookies if you're not too peckish! The salads also looked amazing, so I might have to try it out for lunch soon.

Another new place I went to the other day but haven't blogged about is Gustav's in Mosman Park, it was amazing. I didn't get any photos other than the ones on Instagram, but honestly, you have to go there!

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Thursday, 26 March 2015

Caversham Wildlife Park.

After our morning at Leighton Beach Cait and I headed over to Caversham Wildlife Park. I've been to Caversham countless times since I was a kid, but I haven't been for about six years, so we decided it was time to go back to see the Koalas and Wombats. It took us just under an hour to get there, and we were horrified to see the prices had gone up to $25! To be completely honest I think that's really overpriced for what it is, and seeing the animals in such small enclosures made us really sad. I don't know why I always do this to myself, I really need to stop going to zoos and wildlife parks then getting all upset.

Anyway, we got to see the most gorgeous golden possum, Cait held a snake, and then we both sat with Neil the wombat for a photo. He really needed to put some trousers on though. Also I was really disappointed that they no longer allow you to hold the wombat yourself, but years ago when you still could Caversham was a really small place where tourists didn't really go, but now it's full of them.

Here's a coupla photos of a 16-year-old me holding Matilda the wombat back in 2007! They're really heavy!

Then it was time to go to the Koala enclosure for the afternoon session of getting up close to them. You can't hold a koala at Caversham (I held one a few years ago at a different wildlife park in Perth), but you can get really close to them and you can stroke certain ones. You must be really careful you don't touch any of the eucalyptus leaves though, because if the koalas can smell the human scent on them, then they won't eat them and then it's a waste of leaves that are freshly cut each day.

I stroked Karen the koala, but she didn't seem too impressed, and wasn't nearly as excited about meeting me as I was about meeting her!

After our wildlife encounter we headed back to Cait's and watched Blackfish (amazing movie, you must watch it if you haven't already!). Then in the evening I went down to Crown Casino to meet Andrew for dinner, it was so good to see him again and catch up! Tuesday was such a great day, and after a very busy few days I was not looking forward to my early start the next morning. But I'll tell you more about that very soon :)

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Breakfast and Swimming at Leighton Beach.

Tuesday was a mix of eating, sunbathing and swimming in the beautifully clear ocean, and then shopping, and meeting some Aussie wildlife with one of my besties. Basically all of my favourite things.

Cait and I got up early and went to The Shipping Lane to grab breakfast, it was a cool place, but they got my drinks order and Cait's food order mixed up, and I much prefer Bib & Tucker just across the road.

Anyway, after our breakfast (which was actually really delicious when we eventually got what we ordered), we walked across the road to Leighton Beach, which is one of our favourites. The sun was completely blue, that bright Australian blue that blends in with the water like some magical watercolour, and the ocean so clear we could have been in a swimming pool.

Please excuse my eyebrows, they're pretty gross right now and I need to get them sorted ASAP. Anyway, we chilled out for an hour or so, had a swim, then dried off in the sunshine before jumping in the car and going down the road to Freo.

After two days of deliberating over grey or black, I bought the black hat for just $20 from Cotton On (if you'd seen my Packing For Australia video, you'd know how much I  l o v e  Cotton On), and Cait got some new Birkenstocks! We then headed over to Caversham Wildlife Park to say hi to the koalas and wombats, but more about this tomorrow, I don't want to give you too much excitement in one day ;)

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Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Kings Park, Perth.

As always my first few days back in Australia have been pretty awesome to say the least. I landed early Saturday morning (2am!) after a 24+ hour flight and zero sleep, and headed to the beautiful and glamorous Fraser Suites in the city (review here). The huge bed, clean sheets, and shower, as well as having my own space was very much appreciated after such a long flight. I slept soundly and then woke up to a welcome message from my best friend.

I called her at her work and pretended to be a customer, but she quickly saw through my accent/voice and screamed down the phone at me! After getting sorted and showered I checked out of the hotel and walked down the road to pick up my hire car. It was only when I was driving through the city that I finally relaxed fully, and the biggest smile crept across my face as I realized I have two whole weeks in this beautiful city of mine to enjoy and relax.

I was driving towards the coast and was about to drive straight past the entrance to King's Park when I thought, 'why am I driving past the park!?'. It offers the best views over the City of Perth, and I wanted to see that view ^^

After wandering around the park and seeing some Navy officers laying flowers at the memorial, I drove over to Rach's house. We chilled out and caught up, doing the usual happy giggly 'Omg I've missed you so much!' and then we went to Scarborough Beach to go for food at Grill'd. It's my favourite burger joint in Perth, which I told y'all about a coupla years ago when I was over.

The burger was amazing as always, and I tried the sweet potato chips, which were a little unusual, but pretty good! Rach is completely on-board with this whole vlogging thing, so we had awesome fun making videos and just having a laugh with it. Then after dinner we went down to the beach to see the sun start to dip.

I dropped Rach home and drove over to Cait's to get changed and ready to go out. Yes. I was back less than 24 hours and they were already dragging me out clubbing. Rach couldn't come as she had study to do for uni, but Cait and the others were intent on helping me get completely drunk to welcome me back to Perth in true Aussie style. 

I was only gonna have one drink, then we got to the Norfolk in Freo and I had a couple more. Then we went to my favourite, The Newport, the first very club I ever went to when I was underage and had a fake ID. Before I knew it we were queuing up for Metros, and despite it's usual reputation of being really shit, we had an awesome time! I love the photos below purely for our drunken faces. My drunken pout is on point.

I woke up the next morning with bruises and a bleeding cut on my leg, and makeup all over my face. So classy. Welcome back to Australia I guess! And ya know what? It feels damn good to be back.

Naturally Sunday was a complete write-off, so we headed to Gustav's in Mosman Park for a delicious hangover breakfast. Can we please just take a moment to appreciate the poached eggs and avo on toast, and the iced chocolate?

Sunday was a chill out day, then in the evening Cait, Rach, Jack, and I thought we'd check out the Noodle Night Market in the City as part of Eat Drink Perth, but found it quite disappointing. The food was pretty good, but very overpriced for the portion sizes and super busy! The queues were huge, so after testing some of the savoury dishes out we bailed and went to our old haunt - Baskin Robbins. It was good.

Yesterday was spent brunching at the amazing Cookie Dough (review soon, sorry!), and then shopping. It was a good day. The past few days have been a mix of crazy busy and super relaxed, but it's so so great to be back, and I can't wipe the smile off my face. I'm even more excited that my brother flies out on Thursday to join me! 

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Monday, 23 March 2015

Fraser Suites, Perth.

When I landed in Perth at 2am, going straight to the luxurious and glamorous Fraser Suites in the city was a god-send. Don't get me wrong, I love staying with friends, but after such a long flight and so little sleep, the huge bed and beautiful bathroom were very welcome. The hotel is really close to the airport as it's on the East side of the city, near the WACA cricket stadium.

I checked in and made my way up to the 12th floor where my one-bedroom premier suite was located. You could only use the lifts with your keycard, which made it feel really safe and secure! I was completely blown away with the suite, it was fresh and modern, and included small touches that just made it feel really glamorous and contemporary. They very kindly left me some treats on the dining room table - including a bottle of their own Shiraz! 

The suite had everything you could need, an open plan dining and living area with a small but gorgeous kitchen. Then you walk through to the beautiful bedroom and bathroom. When I was at the end of the room tour I was filming for my Youtube channel, I realized there was even a balcony with an amazing view over the CBD and main part of the city (which was only a 10 minute walk away as Perth is so small)!

I was so tired I got into my PJs, set my alarm as I had to pick up my car at 12noon, and then climbed into bed and fell asleep as soon as my head touched the pillow. 

The next morning I awoke and wasn't really hungry enough for breakfast after eating too much plane food and a shake shack burger at Dubai airport, so I stepped into the walk-in shower to freshen up after the long flight. There's no feeling quite like that of a hot shower after spending over 24 hours on a plane. The plane dried out my skin so much that my eczema flared up on my eye again, so I coated it in cream and then sorted out all of my luggage and bags. With my suitcase, camera bag, and handbag, I went downstairs to check out and walk 5 minutes down the road to the car hire company. 

I was really sad I wasn't staying longer, the swimming pool looks amazing and I hear the food at breakfast is pretty good too (although to be fair almost all Australian breakfasts' are absolutely amazing).

I'd definitely recommend Fraser Suites if you're staying in Perth! The staff were lovely and really welcoming even though I was checking in at 3am, and the suite was just beautiful. Also with prices starting at just £100 a night, it's really good value for one of the top five star hotels in Western Australia! Check out the full suite tour below and make sure you subscribe for my Australia travel vlogs! :)

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Life Lately & Youtube.

So I'm off to Australia on Thursday and thought I'd give you all a quick update on life in general with some of the latest photos off my phone/instagram. I don't do these very often as you all know how I'm usually very particular about the quality of photos on my blog, but I've been so busy the past couple of months and haven't had the time to blog absolutely everything, so I'm gonna give you a quick run-through of the things that have happened that I haven't blogged about. 

Also, if you haven't already done so, I'd really really appreciate it if you could pretty please subscribe to my Youtube channel? I started it back in September, but haven't really used it until the past few weeks. I'm really getting into this whole video and vlogging thing, which I never thought I'd do! I'm gonna try and vlog as much as possible in Australia, and can't wait to show you all around on video rather than just in blog posts!

Anyway, so what've I been up to lately? Well. Work has been crazy busy, and life outside work has been pretty busy too. It always happens like that doesn't it, things always seem to be busy at the same time? 

It was my colleague's 30th birthday, so she went to Lola's on her way to work and bought all of us cupcakes! Best. Colleague. Ever. Obviously we did give her a huuuuge birthday cake as well, so it's safe to say we were all high on sugar that day.

My membership cards for Barts and Beaver Lodge arrived - woohooo! Can't wait to make the most of these!

I went out to Dirty Martini for a friends' birthday. I got chatted up by a guy who did not impress me at all, so I gave him this look and he fled (he may have gotten the hint when I told him the bar across the road is better and he should go there instead). This is my resting bitch face. #fierce

I've just discovered that Bonne Maman do Caramel Spread, which is basically a really thick caramel sauce, and it's pretty much the best thing EVER. I've been eating it by itself with a spoon, and I'm not even sorry.

I feel like I've constantly been sick in 2015 so far, which sucks big time. It's just one thing after another. It has however, meant that lots of cakes have been baked, including the most amazing lemon drizzle loaf cake (below), and Dylan hilariously staring at me wondering what the hell I'm doing at home during the week (above).

I got the loveliest package ever the other week! Wrap Me very kindly sent Dylan and I a beautiful gift - a recipe book for dogs! Definitely gonna try and make something for Dylan from this, and how cute is the wrapping paper?! It's covered in Dylan photos!

I've had quite a cultural few weeks; I went to see an Irving Berlin concert at the Royal Festival Hall with my parents which was absolutely brilliant, and then I also went to see Swan Lake at the Royal Opera House with my brother. I'm SO lucky I have a brother who loves opera and ballet as much as I do (in fact, he loves it even more than me)! He was home from Uni so I treated him and we got the cheap £25 seats at the top. We went to Ed's beforehand for burgers and milkshakes, and then wandered over to Covent Garden.

I've found a tea brand that do the most beautifully packaged teas I have ever seen! I don't drink coffee or 'proper' tea, I only drink herbal and fruit teas, and Newby do some really fab flavours (the green tea was heavenly)!

As I'm off to Australia for a couple of weeks and Alex was off to Florida, we thought a big dinner was in order! So naturally we went to the Big Easy in Chelsea. Alex had the all you can eat Fajitas and shocked the waiter by have three huge rounds of them, and I shocked Alex and the waiter when I ate...*ahem*....half a rack of ribs, a cornbread muffin, fries, mac & cheese, red velvet cake, an oreo milkshake, and a cocktail. Yeh. I was hungry OK. 

Photo from Jasiminne!

After reviewing Bar Galante last month they invited me back to finally try the dessert (last time it didn't arrive in time), so I decided to take Jasiminne with me as she doesn't visit West London nearly as much as she should. I thought she'd enjoy it, and I obviously know her far too well as she absolutely loved it! The food is epic and the cocktails are even better!

My friend Edmund is running for parliament, so he had a big fundraising party at Kensington Roof Gardens. You all probably know by now that it's one of my favourite clubs in London, similar to Raffles, we often end up there in the early hours of the morning after going elsewhere earlier in the evening and being disappointed. It was a pretty wild night, and and we had so much fun! This is the only photo from the night, I didn't take my camera because I didn't want to risk it getting broken in a drunken haze.

How has your 2015 been so far? And how are you?
Is there anything you'd really like me to blog about or vlog while I'm in Australia?

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