Travel Thursdays – 7 Things We Love about the Tesselaar Tulip Festival

The Urban Ma blog Tesselaar Tulip Festival 2015Kids Day out Tulip Festival

Tesselaar Tulip Festival
357-359 Monbulk Road, Silvan (40km east of Melbourne)

Now in its 62nd year, the Tesselaar Tulip Festival opened today with over 100,000 tulips planted across 25 acres brightening up the Dandenong Ranges. We went for a drive with the family last year taking our aunties, cousins and grandparents and great grandparents with us – there was something to do for the whole family!

With a different theme each week, you can make a weekend of it and even organize a relaxing stay in the Dandenongs.

Sept 11th-13th – Turkish Weekend
Sept 14th-17th – Yarra Ranges Week
Sept 18th-20th – Dutch Weekend
Sept 21st-24th & Sept 28th-Oct 1st – Childrens Weeks
Sept 25th-27th – Food, Wine & Jazz Weekend
Oct 2nd-4th – Irish Weekend

Things we love about the Tulip Festival:

1 – Food and Entertainment We ate some gozleme, Dutch pancakes, ice cream and German sausages while listening to live music by some talented musicians. There is also entertainment with dancers and

dutch pancakes Tulip Festival Melbourne The Urban Ma reviewgozleme Tulip Festival The Urban Ma blog MelbourneThe Urban Ma eats Tulip Festival Melbourne

2 – Open spaces and opportunity to be out in the open among beautiful flora spending quality time with family

The Urban Ma picnic Tulip Festival Melbourne

3 – Big clogs and novelty things that you can find around the 25 acres that interest the little ones and the young at heartbig clog Melbourne Tulip Festival Melbourne

4 – Loads of photo opps – smile!

Tulip Festival 2014 selfie

5 – The Sculptor exhibit and plenty of market stalls to purchase goodies from

Windmill Tulip Festival Tulip Festival Melbourne 2015

6 – The new Tulip Train which you can ride on to view the colorful fields

school holidays activities Tulip Festival

7 – The beautiful and bright tulips. You can even grab a bunch to take home.

What’s your favorite thing about the Tesselaar Tulip Festival?

tulips at the Tulip Festival Melbourne

Travel Thursdays – 7 things to do at the Tesselaar Tulip Festival 2015

The Urban Ma blog Tesselaar Tulip Festival 2015Kids Day out Tulip Festival

Tesselaar Tulip Festival
357-359 Monbulk Road, Silvan (40km east of Melbourne)

Now in its 62nd year, the Tesselaar Tulip Festival opened today with over 100,000 tulips planted across 25 acres brightening up the Dandenong Ranges. We went for a drive with the family last year taking our aunties, cousins and grandparents and great grandparents with us – there was something to do for the whole family!

With a different theme each week, you can make a weekend of it and even organize a relaxing stay in the Dandenongs.

Sept 11th-13th – Turkish Weekend
Sept 14th-17th – Yarra Ranges Week
Sept 18th-20th – Dutch Weekend
Sept 21st-24th & Sept 28th-Oct 1st – Childrens Weeks
Sept 25th-27th – Food, Wine & Jazz Weekend
Oct 2nd-4th – Irish Weekend

Things we love about the Tulip Festival:

1 – Food and Entertainment We ate some gozleme, Dutch pancakes, ice cream and German sausages while listening to live music by some talented musicians. There is also entertainment with dancers and

dutch pancakes Tulip Festival Melbourne The Urban Ma review gozleme Tulip Festival The Urban Ma blog Melbourne The Urban Ma eats Tulip Festival Melbourne

2 – Open spaces and opportunity to be out in the open among beautiful flora spending quality time with family

The Urban Ma picnic Tulip Festival Melbourne

3 – Big clogs and novelty things that you can find around the 25 acres that interest the little ones and the young at heartbig clog Melbourne Tulip Festival Melbourne

4 – Loads of photo opps – smile!

Tulip Festival 2014 selfie

5 – The Sculptor exhibit and plenty of market stalls to purchase goodies from

Windmill Tulip Festival Tulip Festival Melbourne 2015

6 – The new Tulip Train which you can ride on to view the colorful fields

school holidays activities Tulip Festival

7 – The beautiful and bright tulips. You can even grab a bunch to take home.

What’s your favorite thing about the Tesselaar Tulip Festival?

tulips at the Tulip Festival Melbourne  

These tastebuds are tripping to Somalia – Safari

Safari Ascot Vale interior The Urban Ma blogSafari Somalian cuisine drinks

Safari Restaurant
159 Union rd, Ascot Vale

Knowing that Baby #2 is due in the coming weeks, I’m not one to say no to a dinner invite, especially when it is somewhere I have never been before with people I haven’t met. Those of you that know me would know by now that I love trying new things and chatting with people🙂

The night’s destination was Safari, one of many eateries on Ascot’s Vale’s Union road but this one, serving Somali fare. I don’t think I’ve tried any African restaurants let alone one that serves cuisine from one of the countries occupying the horn of Africa so I was looking forward to it.

We were in good hands with Kenny from Consider the Sauce picking the venue and the meals for the 11 of us having a dinner catch up that night (Kenny is no stranger to this cuisine – check out his posts here and here). Out came the drinks, soup and an abundance of food.

We ordered:
Vimto (a sweet cordial like drink tasting of a mix of berries – yum! I think this is served free with meals ordered!)

A Somali milk tea drink that was sweet and creamy – useful for washing down any dishes that were too spicy.

A bowl of meat broth soup – it was a hundred times more appealing on the taste buds than to the eyes. I could’ve easily slurped down another bowl of this.

Fadaration plate – a plate with on-the-bone marinated lamb, spiced rice and spaghetti-like noodles filling up the rest of the plate along with a salad. It was a huge serving for $18 and I thought I’d be going home with takeaway but I actually polished off nearly the entire plate! The aromatic rice was absolutely beautiful and so too the lamb which was tender easily came off the bone.

Ambience:
Bright and casual. There were three other tables booked out on the weeknight we were there. I’m guessing the communal sink at the back is used by those who wish to eat with their hands🙂

Service:
The waiter was very accommodating when taking Kenny’s order and we were served with a smile.

Vimto drink at Safari Somalian restaurant The Urban Ma Safara Somalian restaurant The Urban Ma Traditional Somalian soup Safari The Urban MaSafari Federation plate Somalian cuisineSafari Ascot Vale dinner with friends Click to add a blog post for Safari on Zomato

Work lunch #15 – Ramen with friends in Melbourne’s CBD

  Little Ramen Bar
346 Little Bourke st, Melbourne

I ran into a long time friend on the train the other day and her eyes sparkled when she told me all about her recent trip to Japan. I have still yet to visit Japan but it is definitely on the hubby’s list of places to go to in the near future. With sporadic airfare sales my friend was super excited to be going back again in April and it brought us to the topic of food, among other things.

I love Japanese food especially a warm katsu curry for lunch with workmates but I’m not as familiar with ramen as I’d like to be so my friend suggests we try out some of her favorite ramen places in the city. After a couple of changes to our lunch date we finally settle on a day and I enjoy more stories about the beautiful culture, sights and food of Japan and was also introduced to the metal pop phenomenon, Baby Metal as we enjoyed Little Ramen Bar’s authentic ramen bowls.

We ordered:
Vegetarian Gyoza dumplings full of tofu, vegetables, ginger and secret seasonings

Classic Ramen – original Tonkotsu soup rich in porky goodness extracted from over 10 hours of cooking. Topped with seaweed, bamboo shoots (which I omitted from my order), spring onions, & a slice of pork (OMG the pork was so tasty and tender. I ordered my classic ramen with the shoyu (special soy) base).

Chasu Tamago – a classic ramen topped with extra slices of BBQ pork and seasoned egg

Ambience:
We dined at Little Ramen Bar during the weekday lunch rush and got a table after lining up for only a few minutes. There are tables inside and out filled with hungry office workers slurping down their fix of warm broth and slippery noodles. Casual and clean.

Service:
We were served our steaming bowls of ramen quickly, and I was surprised that the waitress actually remembered to omit the bamboo shoots from my order. Nice one🙂

I always love catching up with friends and sharing stories over delicious meals…especially if they’re about travel, food and shopping!

What are some of your favorite ramen places in Melbourne’s CBD?


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Wellbeing Wednesday – Mind over body

    Today I will thank my body rather than criticize it. I saw this quote the other day and with a few more stretch marks popping up on my tummy lately, I’m really needing to remember to thank my body for all the amazing things it is going through right now rather than feel turned off by it’s changing size and appearance.

What are some things you do to overcome negative body thoughts and turn them into body love?

Bump Diary #14 – 32 week update

 How far along are you? 32 weeks and 5 days (this post was scheduled to go out this past Monday!!)

How big is baby? This week Baby weighs as much as a coconut. On average around 41.1cms long and weighing just over 1.5kg and heading into a growth spurt, beginning to plump up with essential fat that is accumulating underneath its skin.
Body and changes:
Weight gain I’m sure I’ve gained heaps of weight again this week feeling a little more uncomfortable with my walk definitely turning into a waddle these days.
Stretch marks Those little faint lines I first started seeing last week are definitely stretch marks. I saw them a lot more prominent in the mirror yesterday morning and when I realised that they were stretch marks I immediately felt surprised as I thought that since I didn’t really get many in my first pregnancy, it would be the same with this second one. Wrong! After a few minutes, I got used to the fact that they’re normal and are only a sign that a human life is growing within me and I have accepted that it’s all part of the journey of motherhood.
Sleep I’ve been finding it really uncomfortable to sleep these days and need pillows around me to help me get into a comfortable position. Mr D has also been having a few nightmares this week for some reason…and he’s been waking up a few times in the middle of the night crying :(
Maternity clothes I bought a black top and some leopard print pants from Target the other day and they’re so comfy even though they’re not specifically maternity wear! I’ve been pairing them with a black blazer to dress them up a little for work :)

The Other Stuff:

Reflux is still hanging around this week. I’ve been getting Mr D to learn how to put his shoes on by himself this week so as to help me out since I can’t bend over that low these days. My tummy has also been feeling a lot heavier this week and it feels like it’s really weighing down into my pelvis and I can feel pressure down there. Baby is moving so much this week especially when we went for a dip in the pool yesterday!

32 weeks pregnant The Urban Ma

Eating lots of cucumber, tomato and cheddar cheese at work lately
Feeling really out of breath again this week and less mobile – I took the elevator to go down two floors today when normally I take the stairs! Tsk, tsk, tsk!
Needing to get as much as rest as possible as I’ve found I feel super tired if I’m at it all day
Wanting to declutter the desktop on my laptop and sort through all the videos and photos on there
Watching music videos while hanging out at our hotel this week up in the Gold Coast
Bookmarking podcasts and videos to listen to and watch
Noticing how friendly people are on the planes to Mr D :)
Enjoying seeing just how much Mr D has loved flying and travelling with us over the past few weeks. It’s so exciting to see how enchanted he is by everything he sees and everyone he meets. This past week he got to spend some quality time with Daddy, his uncle and his cousin. Even though the two toddlers loved annoying each other, they had a great time!

Simple green smoothie The Urban Ma
My first time making a smoothie and I twisted the wrong thing out of the blender! I managed to save enough for one serving!

week 32 collage

Enjoying the simple things like a delivery of non-alcoholic drinks from Maggie Beer, a strawberry and Golden Gaytime flavored cupcakes and picnics in the park across the road with Mr D.

gratefuldaniel #11

Daddy: What are you grateful for today Daniel?

Daniel: Thanks to God for Mummy’s arms and for Mummy and Daddy working so we can go on the plane again. LOL!

Have you been continuing to practice gratitude in the past week? What have you been grateful for?

You have got to try the kaya bread at this new Malaysian joint – Makan Place

Makan Place Pacific Werribee Urban DinerMakan Place interior design

Makan Place Shop RE10, Pacific Werribee
Cnr Derrimut Rd & Heaths Rd, Werribee

An impromptu visit to see Nanna on the weekend led us from Bunnings to the new part of Werribee Plaza or should I say Pacific Werribee’s Urban Diner area. The $370 million redevelopment sees 15 new restaurants open in June this year and a great new space to hang out and enjoy a meal and some entertainment with friends.

Nanna and Aunty told us to meet them at Makan Place, a Malaysian restaurant with authentic Malaysian cuisine with a long menu filled with Malaysian favourites like nasi lemak and aromatic curries.

We ordered:

– Prawn wonton soup (it also came with prawn crackers)
– French toast with Kaya and Peanut butter (this was a perfect combination of super soft bread with a nice blend of kaya spread and peanut butter – totally ordering this again next time!)
– Fried Kway Teow
– Nasi Lemak – Malaysian, Indian -spiced fragrant rice served with homemade sambal, acar (pickled vegetables), crispy anchovies, peanuts and a half a hard boiled egg
– Fried rice, Nasi Goreng Kampung, Spicy fried rice served with sambal prawns, chicken wing, chicken satay and topped with a fried egg (the sambal had a real spicy kick to it, the chicken satay skewer was cold and dry but I really enjoyed the fried rice and the fried chicken. They’ve got to do something about that chicken satay skewer though…)
– Teh Tarik (hot)
– Milo (cold)
– Mango special

Ambience:
– beautiful and clean decor, lots of different options for table seating and also family friendly with high chairs. Mr D liked the bicycles displayed and the patterns of tiling were quite pretty.

Service:
– there was a long line when we got there but we were seated within 10 minutes and the scrumptious looking photos on the menu were very enticing. The dishes served up to us weren’t exactly like the ones in the photos but were still very filling that we didn’t have enough room to order cendol for dessert! We ordered our meals by using the self serve sheets of paper and even though I had written that I wanted my egg well done, it was still runny in the middle.

The Details:
Make sure you order a creamy drink from the extensive drinks menu if you are going to have anything with sambal in it as it is very spicy but also very tasty. Overall we liked the food and will be back next time to try the desserts and also have some more of that smooth, delicate kaya bread.

Makan Place entree menu MalaysianMakan Place menu nasi lemakMilo drink Makan Place Malaysian restaurant MelbourneTeh Tarik Makan Place WerribeeMakan Place fried rice Nasi Lemak prawn wonton soup  Makan Place Noodles kaya bread Makan Place Pacific Werribee  Makan Place Urban Diner Werribee Makan place interior kitchen    Urban Diner Werribee  

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