Jan 4, 2018

Lovin' Life 4/1/2018: Festivus Inbetweenus.

Isn't it a beautiful thing to be free of your usual schedule for a week or two over the Sydney summer?  My most favourite part of the summer break is that week between Christmas Day and New Years Day that some incredibly witty person christened Festivus Inbetweenus.  The pressure is off from hosting Christmas lunch, there's often more days off than on at work, the traffic is commensurate with that and hey, it's summer.

Today's post is (yet another) celebration of summer in Sydney.  Its point of difference, if it has to have one, being that it's all about my Festivsus Inbetweenus.

My morning runs have taken me through all sorts of weather but only one kind of view - pretty special.

With nowhere, in particular, to be for a change in the morning, I've done my usual paradoxical thing and bounced out of bed each morning waiting for the first glimmers of the rising sun before setting out for some serious (for me) k's at a pretty relaxed speed (for everyone else).  I am yet to pull up stiff or sore from any of the hills I've done and the final stretches have all been as easy as the firsts.

The Christmas decorations have been carefully packed away for another year and the tree miraculously fit back into its box.

My New Years Eve was pretty low key so to compensate I dusted my eyelids with some glitter before I set out for the day.  

We've spent this New Years weekend being tourists in our own city.  Can you believe it's taken us this long to go on our first light rail ride through the city?

It was also our first visit to The Powerhouse Museum on Saturday.

We built cars to race after we explored some of the exhibits.

Before heading to the special Future Park exhibit on the ground floor.  An unofficial description of Future Park is that it's a kind of indoor light festival for children.  There were lantern balls just begging to be bounced by preschoolers.  Their colours changed as they moved and there was even a separate section with smaller lantern balls for toddlers.

We played with light and images that danced across screens and changed their shape and colour as we touched them.

Before stopping off for a cold drink and an icy pole at the cafe.  This photo of the wine list is purely for future reference only...

Sunday saw us back on the train to celebrate my train loving preschooler's real fifth birthday (as opposed to his birthday party day a few weeks back).  Unlimited public transport for $2.50 on your birthday?  That's living right there in the eyes of Mr Five.

We had a look at the recently opened light rail track to the QVB stop before heading up to HobbyCo for a restorative session of watching their amazing model trains shunt along their routes through forests, tunnels and European villages.

The birthday boy couldn't decide between MacDonalds and yumcha for lunch so he had both.  It wasn't as crazy as it sounded because there was a bit of a wait for a table and the nuggets helped prevent us all from getting hangry.

I won't lie, that's my plate of yumcha with the sachet of MacDonald's ketchup on the side...

You really can't take me anywhere...

Dessert was mango pancakes (sorry no photo, they disappeared the moment they hit the table) and that old favourite, the yum cha jelly bowl.  I never used to like lime jelly but it's now my favourite.

We finished our outing with an extended train ride to the Epping and Domestic stations before heading home for cake and dinner. In that order.

The cake was vanilla.  Linking to a ridiculously good and easy recipe for vanilla birthday cake.  And the concept was a pink castly but the heat and humidity conspired against me and this is the best photo of a rather bad bunch of the cake.  Fortunately, the cake tasted much better than it looked.  

Which was filled with a cheat's strawberry jam 

and frosted with a pink buttercream

flavoured thus.  I had no idea you could even get bottles of flavouring for icing so there you go.

How did you observe Festivus Inbetweenus?  All set for 2018 yet?


  1. I used to love working during the break - not only was it quieter in the office, but I'd get a seat on the bus. Coming home though it was always mobbed with people who'd been out for the day. Sigh. As an aside, living on the Sunshine Coast I SO miss decent yumcha!

  2. What a wonderful way to spend the day SSG! Yes, we so often don't both to explore our own backyards. I was in Sydney helping my sister move there this time last year, and loved our visits to Parramatta Lake and Elizabeth House. Love yum cha, but I douse everything in chili sauce rather than McDonalds tomato sauce! The 10 days off work during the holiday season is a really good break, especially if coupled with just a sensible number of social outings rather than a frantic dash from event to event.

  3. I love your term 'Festivus Inbetweenus'! lol Looks like you spent it well too! I spent a lot of it swimming in the pool and lying beside the pool reading. It's really the only time of year (except when I'm away on holidays) that I give myself permission to do that without feeling guilty! Happy 5th birthday to your preschooler ... nearly school boy! :-) xo #TeamLovinLife

  4. Happy birthday to your little one SSG! THat sounds like a wonderful way to spend a birthday, particularly the cake bit! Cakes don't have to look impressive to taste delicious! :)

    I've never heard of that time period described as festivus inbetweenus but I like it! As I'm still on leave from work that lazy, relaxed period between Christmas and New Years is just continuing into January, helped by lots of pool time in the mornings and summer storms in the evenings.

    Hope your 2018 is off to a great start, and if I haven't said it already, happy new year!

  5. Well there you go...flavoured icing! I have lemon and peppermint but this is new to me! What a great time you had around the city. There sure is plenty to do and see when you play tourist in your own town. I loved my solo excursions into the city. I used to get the car valet parked at the Wentworth for a cheap rate on weekends and set off from there. Walking, to the ferry and doing the round trip to Mosman and so much more! I miss that but not enough to come back ! Denyse x

  6. I had no idea you got jelly at yum cha?! Is that a thing, really? I can't do yum cha cos I'm coeliac and it's just too hard - but I love (and miss!) Asian food.

    Well done on the running. I would like to do more walking but just can't get myself organised in the mornings anymore! #teamlovinlife

  7. Looks like you've had the perfect Christmas break. I love this time of year too. It's great to be out of your normal routine even if it's only a few days or a week. #TeamLovinLife

  8. Looks like a fun-filled Festivus Inbetweenus to me. Happy New Year, SSG!

  9. Oh my goodness SSG! I have not heard of Festivus Inbetweenus. I LOVE IT!!!! I wish I'd thought of it. Such an apt description.
    Hoping to catch up with you again IRL this year. In fact, I think we should go on a bloggy shopping trip together at the change of season - I'd love to do a blog post with Sydney Shop Girl. xoxo #teamlovinlife

  10. My daughter would have loved to try the dumplings. She has tried fried dumplings, but she said she wants to try the version above. She has decided this year she wants to try new foods. Glad Preschool SSG enjoyed his day out.

  11. I love that you managed to catch a glimpse of the sunrise during your festivus inbetweenus SSG! Our kids loved the Powerhouse Museum when they were younger - definitely one of our fave Sydney haunts :) x #TeamLovinLife


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