Relocation.

So.

Big things have happened around the Circus of late. Those of you, lovely readers, who follow our travels through Instagram have seen us pack up our lives, rent out our little house in the ‘burbs of northern Brisbane, say teary ‘see you later’s’ to our friends and family and make our first international flight as a family to Thailand, to make it our new home.

Exciting?

Scary?

Crazy?

Yes. Yes. And yes!

For the moment, we are living full hotel life mode out of our suitcases, before we can move into our apartment and properly settle in to the amazing city of Bangkok. Rosie flies over from Australia soon too. She’s not missing out on our adventures!

Hotel living sounds like the dream, right? Well…. It is. And it isn’t. With three loud, very much outdoorsy clowns to keep occupied, there isn’t much r&r going on! On the other hand, there is the daily serviced room that I look forward to every afternoon… Fresh towels and linen and beds made by someone else? I’ll take that everyday… To me, that is a luxury that will be missed once we leave our hotel.

Marc’s two minute commute to work will be something that will be sad to leave as well.

And the decent wifi that the Clowns (and I) are making the most of, FaceTiming friends and family and playing online games with their buddies has helped them transition a little. The small three hour time difference helps a whole lot too.

Eating out and the daily, sometimes more than daily, trip to the local Tops Market has become a habit. I will be happy to have the coffee machine, thermie and slow cooker back once we move. While eating out for most meals seems like it would be great (no prep and no cleaning up!!) – the decisions for five people have become too hard after a week of meal negotiations and menu preferences. Some nights we have ordered room service just so we don’t have to go out again for another meal. Tough life, right?! But the food (even the room service) is fantastic. I can’t wait to try more places and share them with you!

School starts for them in a few weeks time, and they will hopefully enjoy the diversity that comes with attending an international school. I can’t wait for them to start, and they are (now) keen to make a start.

In the meantime, we are keeping ourselves busy by exploring on foot and making the most of the BTS line to navigate our way around the area. The clowns have seen some pretty cool things and have been exposed to a very different culture and way of life already.

I’m sure there is a lot that Thailand has to show and teach us!

Mx

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Nothin’ but blue skies

I look up. Sometimes.  I need to look up more.  I find I get stuck in a looking down rut at times. And that’s sometimes interesting, but mostly means I’m in rush mode or get all the things done mode. And that’s not always happy or helpful to my frame of mind or mood.

But when I look up?

The sky is refreshing and recharging and perspective shifting.


Blue with a few fluffy lovely clouds is preferred!


Blue skies at the park are great too. Especially when spent with friends.


Remembering to savour the sunshine on windy wintery type days.


Nothin’ but blue skies….

Adventures In Thermomixing : Sunday Baking

I try and bake at least one or two things for the Clowns lunch boxes on a Sunday. It makes everyone’s lives heaps easier and a little more organised in that crazy weekday morning rush!

So today I decided to make a few of Leilah’s (AKA Thermomumma) super easy and delicious recipes.  If you are looking for anything bread related, her recipes have always worked beautifully for me and they taste great!

Starting with Leilah’s Cheese and Bacon Rolls, which I made into baby sized portions. That way I can use them for snacks as well as lunches. I have made this recipe loads of times, and it is always a winner with the Clowns.

Finger Buns were next on the baking list. Again, super easy to make.  I made them a bit smaller too as I don’t think my kids lunch boxes need a normal sized finger bun for their morning tea!

Lastly, today I tried out the Blueberry and Choc Chip Muffins. Except I replaced the blueberries with raspberries.  They smell aaaahhhhhmazing!


That should keep the Clowns happy for the week!

Happy baking!

Guiltlessly NO! 

Do you? Do you say no to things, completely (or almost) guilt free? I used to be in the Say Yes to Everything! camp. And it was stressful. For me. And usually ONLY for me. Over extending and putting unnecessary pressure and stress on myself, just so I wouldn’t have to say that dreaded word…. And if I did have to say no, I had to have a mega super important reason why. So I could justify the No….

Ridiculous….  Right?! 

Ridiculous because the recipient of the No doesn’t really need to know the why or the why not, nor need understand your choice. 

So I had a little pep talk to myself (please tell me I’m not the only one who does this?!) and took my own advice. And I started saying Guiltlessly No! when I saw red flags for me and/or for the rest of my family. 

So I have said Guiltlessly No! to a few kids parties that were going to stretch out a fun day to a really long and tiring day/night, or we had overlapping commitments. I have said Guiltlessly No! to volunteering for a few school projects, one big one being the biannual carnival. I have said Guiltlessly No! to family events, especially ones that really don’t suit our routines come Sunday afternoon/evening.  I have said Guiltlessly No! to some recent girls nights out, which are usually great and fun and good therapy for the soul, however they also impact everyone else in my family. Probably the biggest Guiltlessly No! I have said is to the Clowns going to our school carnival, endless cues and crowds and Clowns who weren’t really keen to take part in their class performances (all not compulsory) meant we chose to miss it this year. 

And everyone is still OK!  

Do you know what? Life around the Big Top is calmer and a little less hectic for all my/our Guiltlessly No! calls. And I am really happy about that and I can see the Clowns and Marc are too.  Slower weekends mean more productive Clowns during the week. We are getting more little projects started (and finished!) around the house.  Monday mornings are not so hit and miss now. 

I have stopped feeling the need to explain my invitation declines. But this was hard in the beginning!! I have hardly any problem saying no to something that I know immediately is going to mean me running around like a crazy person trying to fit everything and everyone in.  And if I’m not sure, or want to check with Marc first, I can happily and comfortably state this to the person and get back to them with a response. Before, I would have committed to the thing without hesitation and without thinking it through first. And then just made it work. Somehow.  Crazy, I know! 

Saying Yes! to commitments and people has also become easier. We now have clearer priorities, workable boundaries and windows of time to play with (hello Google synced calendars!!). Happily Saying Yes! has been an unexpected byproduct of my Guiltlessly No! project. 

Guiltlessly No! has made a big, positive difference for us. Do you think it would help your family too? 

Adventures In Thermomixing : apple crumble

We here at the Circus love love love apple crumble! 

I finally thermomised (totally a word!!) my recipe and thought I’d share it here with you too!


Apple Crumble

Ingredients 

150g whole almonds

110g brown sugar

90g butter 

1tsp vanilla extract 

150g self raising flour 

1 large tin of pie apples

Method

Set your oven to moderate or around 180 degrees, depending on how hot your oven runs. You don’t want your crumble to cook too fast and burn! 

Add the almonds to your Thermomix, then 8 seconds on speed 8 (or whatever you usually grind almonds to almond meal). 

Throw in all other ingredients and blitz on the Turbo 2 second option for two or three times, depending on how crumbled you like your crumble.  

  

Then you’re pretty much done! 

Just spread the apples in your favourite crumble baking dish and pour the crumble over the top. 

Bake for around 20 minutes or until you can smell the crumbly goodness! 

We like to serve the crumble with custard and/or icecream, and eat it while it’s still warm…. And then sometimes I may have some of the leftovers with yoghurt for a way too delicious breakfast! 

Enjoy! 

Choc Protein Balls

This is a super easy and tasty protein ball recipe that one of my PT friends shared with me a couple of years ago.
I have tweaked it a little to suit my tastes since then.
It’s one of those combinations that will hit the sweet spot, if you are looking for that hidden chocolate stash 😉

 

Choc Protein Balls

Ingredients

1-2 tablespoons cocoa powder

2 tablespoons peanut butter

60 grams almonds

2 scoops protein powder

1 cup rolled oats/quick oats

1 tablespoon honey/rice malt syrup

1 tablespoon milk to bind

Coconut for rolling (optional)

Method

Process the almonds into meal consistency in your Thermomix or food processor.

Throw all your other ingredients in and blend well.

Roll about a tablespoon of the mix into a ball and then roll in coconut if you choose (I don’t do this, only because I’m not a huge coconut fan) and then either freeze the balls or just pop in the fridge.

Notes 

  • If you haven’t got a food processor, you can still make these by hand.  I would suggest using quick oats and perhaps melting your honey and peanut butter to help bind everything together more easily and with a lot less elbow grease!
  • If you don’t like/can’t use almonds, you can replace the 60 grams with anything like coconut, or another nut or a mix of chia seeds as well.  The combinations are endless!

Primary version of Mother’s Day 

Today was the Mother’s Day morning at the Clowns’ school. There is an art show (awesome, my fave part!), a concert (normally skip this bit and cross the road for a coffee, yeah mum of the year won’t ever go to me!) then morning tea (in years past, this was something you didn’t want to miss). 

I love seeing the art from each primary class – they are all usually really interesting and I actually want to have a browse.  I love being able to pull each child out of class individually to do this. As a general rule, the Clowns don’t get a whole lot of one-on-one time with either parent so this is special regardless of what we are actually doing.  And I love having the chance to catch up with some mums that I may not usually see around school, now the eldest two are out of prep.  This year is also the first time I have been younger sibling free. It was kinda weird. But great.  No appeasing a bored child/ren was awesome!   To be able to talk, uninterrupted is still a thing I take great delight in! 

Here are each of the clowns with their art for the show….  

Reuben and his crazy cats

  

Ella and her painted flower pot

  

Owen and his emu