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Benji is spending day 2 at daycare and I hope everything’s going well! Having no real work to do yet (we had to enrol Benji earlier in daycare than needed to ‘secure’ a spot; crazy, I know, thankfully the Australian government subsidises some of this!), Bry and I seized the opportunity to go on a lunch date at this new Mexican joint, Fonda Mexican, located in a fun and energetic neighborhood called Richmond.

Fonda Mexican serves gluten and dairy free tacos – YAY! – and delicious fries with an amazingly tasty aioli sauce. Price was about $6 per 6″ size taco – not too bad considering we’re in Australia. Bry ordered a burrito which tasted healthy and good. There were some crispy corn chips sprinkled in there which made it quite unique in a good way. We’ll definitely go back there again.

Now, I’m enjoying some QT by myself at home, catching up on housework and reading, when, really, I should be catching some zees.

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Celebrated Bry’s success @ work with a delectable lunch at Nobu at the Crown Casino. I first learned of Nobu when in Los Angeles. The chef, Nobu Matsuhisa, is a celebrity chef in the US and who now owns a chain of restaurants by the same name all over the world. Australia included. We had beautiful beef steak, spicy cooked prawns, and some really charming and delicious appetizers, one of which was cubes of rice deep fried and served with raw spicy tuna. Don’t worry, I didn’t eat the fresh fish but the deep fried rice was amazing. So was the steak, which was served with a special wasabi pickled sauce. Of course, being pregnant limited my choice of food especially at a Japanese restaurant where half of the menu comprises of some kind of raw meat (which I LOVE!).

Nevertheless, I still thoroughly enjoyed my meal. The dessert was also delightful, so don’t leave without trying something from the sweets menu.

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All right, so I caved in and ingested *some* caffeine this weekend. I have been on a good anti-coffee streak for about 2 trimesters until recently. Coffee in this town is simply too good to resist; in fact, I’m surprised I managed to hold out for so long. Since about 2 months ago, I’ve been drinking coffee maybe….once a fortnight as a “treat” to myself and also because I’ve just been feeling more and more lackadaisical from sleepless nights and baby weight. (Btw, it’s quite safe for pregnant women to drink limited amounts of coffee containing between 150mg-300mg caffeine. I just chose to avoid it completely for awhile, just in case. For more information, click here.)

This new cafe, Market Lane Coffee, at the Victoria Market in Melbourne serves exceptional coffee and I’m glad I got a cappuccino from them! They also sell some pretty cool coffee brewing devices and some really wonderful coffee beans. They’re on Therry Street next to the market. Apparenty there’s also another outlet at the Prahran Market. These cute little cafes serving quality food and drink are really what make Melbourne such a great food town…and me, a very contented foodie.

so here’s a snapshot of what being an SLP employed by the department of education in melbourne victoria is like:

– technically, you don’t automatically get school holidays off (you have to apply to take those days off and yes you only get 20 vacation days a year);

– you sometimes work out of store rooms, principals’ offices, staff rooms…basically any spare room the schools can find you;

– you have to pay tax on your travel claims;

– you don’t really have a clear idea of a career progression path;

– you don’t get recognized monetarily for studying more;

– you get $300 to attend Professional Development courses;

– you have to pay for your own end of year celebration meals because apparently we don’t need a break or team bonding activities;

– you don’t get your membership with the professional board (Speech Pathology Australia) (about $450 a year) automatically paid for;

– you see kids for therapy at best once a fortnight which really allows you to see lots of progress (NOT).

and here’s what you get for being a teacher:

– almost all of the above catered for.

i’m still trying to understand WHY anyone would want to be a Department employed SLP for more than 2 years. the working conditions are absolutely shocking. not to mention graduate SLPs are paid WAY less than teachers for having similar qualifications (don’t even get me started on the fact that my Masters is not worth anything in this system).

take me back to california.

Finally went to Brighton Beach, home to the famous colorful beach huts. What a pretty sight to see on a lovely day in spring.

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The school holidays are here. That means I get to work from home. Also, I took a few days “off” work. We’re going to Sydney this coming weekend to meet Bry’s sister and husband, then follow them to Noosa, and finally end the trip with a couple days in Adelaide where Bry has to be to present a paper. The whole trip in about 6 days.

I’m not setting my alarm for tomorrow morning. That means I get to sleep in till probably just past 7am (vs 6am on a normal school day): how luxurious!

Yes, haven’t had time to update this blog (or my other one). Working 5.5 days, plus tutoring and attending bible study one night a week, can really be quite tiring sometimes, surprisingly! Anyhow, will try to update more regularly. Last weekend Bry and I went to Torquay, a beach town about 60kms south west of Melbourne, to celebrate our one year anniversary. The place was beautiful, the time spent was wonderful.

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There’s a pot of gold. ???? This is what we saw a few days ago, after a short (but sweet) shower over Melbourne city…In fact, there were TWO perfectly shaped rainbows. We got lucky! 🙂

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I haven’t had too much inspiration to make new pieces the last few days. Maybe I’ve been distracted with other stuff, like, making a pound cake for 75 people: something I did yesterday for the Cross Culture’s ministry I helped out with at St. Jude’s (the church I’m attending in Melbourne). Whew!!! Can you imagine beating up eight sticks of butter together with thirty-two eggs…but it was all good. I left before they served the dessert but heard that people enjoyed it, which is all I could’ve asked to have happen!

This evening, will be, I think, the evening I START my exercise regiment again. I haven’t been good about keeping an exercise schedule and I think it’s about time!!!