The most expensive zoo trip EVER!!!

This weekend past was all kinds of exhausting and all kinds of fun. Because I’ve been going away a bit for my writing lately and feeling guilty about leaving the family, I suggested (when I wanted to go to the Australia Romance Readers Association Awards dinner) that they come too. A long weekend in Sydney, in which we could catch up with my cousin and take the kids to Taronga Zoo sounded like a nice idea in theory, but honestly, I think I must have been on drugs when I decided to do it!


We took the midnight horror/red-eye flight out of Perth Thursday night and arrived in Sydney at 6am Friday morning. Thankfully the lovely lady at our hotel felt sorry for us and checked us in early so we were all able to have a lovely nap before heading out for lunch and a look around. As High Maintenance is studying the convicts in history, we went to The Rocks Discovery Museum and then had a lunch/breakfast/dinner (we weren’t really sure by then) at Pancakes On The Rocks. If you haven’t already worked it out already, I’m a HUGE pancake fan!


But the big highlight of the boys’ weekend (aka the title of this post) was a trip to Taronga Zoo where we met with my lovely cousin Mike and his gorgeous girlfriend Leila for a few hours. I hadn’t been to Taronga zoo in almost thirty years and it is just gorgeous. We didn’t have long enough unfortunately.

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And we saw LOTS of eight-legged reasons why Sydney is okay to visit but not to live. There were MASSIVE spiders ALL over the zoo!! See pic below!


Then on Saturday night, I dolled up and left hubby with the three heroes in training to attend the Australian Romance Readers Association Awards Dinner. It was a splendid night and huge thanks must go to Debbie, Heather and the whole ARRA committee for their hard work in organising this awesome event. My only complaint is that the night wasn’t long enough!! A few pics below 🙂


Highlight of the night (aside from seeing fabulous friends) was Monty (Daniel Montgomery) from OUTBACK DREAMS winning Sexiest Hero!! Alas I didn’t win the other categories I was nominated in but huge congrats to Amy Andrews who won Favourite Contemporary for HOLDING OUT FOR A HERO and Anna Cowan who won Favourite Australian Romance Author. 1507004_10202276244960563_2004382424_n

A Harlequin Aus photo with Kendal Talbot, Victoria Purman, Christina Lee and Tina M Clark in the back row and Sue Brockhoff (my publisher) and myself in the front row!

Some of my favourite people – Janette Radevski, Lisa Ireland, Cathryn Hein and Amanda Knight.BjUXlmYCcAA3O13.jpg-large

Me with the tall, dark and handsome John Purcell from Booktopia (a fab place to buy books online)!BjUYEsnCQAAshFO.jpg-large

Me and Sue again 🙂

For the official blog about the Awards click here. And if you love romance and aren’t yet a member of ARRA, I suggest you fix that quick smart!


What do you wear? An interesting idea with Georgina Penney

Have you heard of Destiny Romance’s delicious new chick-lit line!? A lover of chick-lit from WAY back in Bridget Jones days, I was excited to hear the news that Destiny will be publishing a chick-lit line and I’m delighted to have one of Destiny’s own with me on the blog today – the lovely Georgina Penney.

Georgina’s new book IRREPRESSIBLE YOU sounds absolutely hilarious (and I can’t WAIT to read it):

Irrepressible You Cover

You don’t become a notorious British celebrity without rubbing a few people the wrong way, which is why writer and comedian Ben Martindale has decamped to Australia until the latest media frenzy dies down.

When he meets Amy Blaine, a perky blonde who dresses like a 1950s pin-up girl, he knows he’s hit the satirical jackpot. He begins to fill his weekly London column with snarky observations about her life, clothes, and even their most intimate moments. It doesn’t occur to him that Amy, who is letting her guard down for the first time in her adult life, might be upset – after all, it’s hilarious, and his readers love her!

It isn’t until Amy discovers the extent of his betrayal that Ben begins to realise just how badly he’s cocked up the best thing that ever happened to him. But is it too late?

And now over to Georgina to ponder something which really resonates with me (someone who spends most of my days in Bonds short or trackie pants depending on the weather). Welcome Georgina…

Last week I found myself up to my calves in water feeling the antithesis of glamorous. In fact, I was so saturated that the drowned rats swimming past were giving me their hairdressers’ business cards.

While wading my way to my car, trying to remember exactly why I’d needed desperately needed to buy a jar of nutella, two other thoughts occurred to me. One was that I was bloody insane for thinking skinny jeans were a smart idea in this kind of weather and the second was that I hadn’t worn any shoes other than a daggy pair of thongs for a month.

A bit of thought on the subject had me wondering if the shoe situation wasn’t maybe the reason for why I’d been wearing pretty much the same pair of jeans paired with random T-shirts for months as well. My reasoning had been that anything else would just make me feel like I was trying to impersonate a peacock with pigeon legs.

But looking down at my flooded tooties, I came to a decision. Weather be damned! If I wanted to totter about in impractical footwear, I’d bloody well do it. There are just some moments where a lady has to take the plunge and force herself to have a goddamn sexy day, even if it does only involve a trip to buy milk and fill up the car with petrol.

So, decision made, I made a detour on the way home and brought a pair of nice cheap-I-don’t-care-if-they-die-from-drowning heels and put them on. That felt good. Really good. (If not a bit squelchy.) The minute I got home, I surveyed my wardrobe realizing just how many skirts, dresses and pants I hadn’t worn for months because I’d told myself I didn’t need to dress up because of the weather, the fact that I’m not going anywhere special, the heat, pms… you name it!

So the past two days I’ve started an experiment. I’ve put on makeup before starting my writing day, I’ve frocked up to go to the shops, I’ve swanned around the local open air fruit and vege market in a skirt and pretty shirt and wow, I’ve felt a million bucks. It feels like the romance is back, which is a bit handy if that’s a lady’s genre of choice.

It’s still raining. In fact, the flood water around our house is so high I’ve got fish swimming through my garage but there’s a benefit I’ve worked out about wearing nice shoes in the rain. I can always justify buying another pair if these ones die;)

Thanks Georgina! That was fun and I’m curious blog readers, what’s the most extravagant fashion item you’ve bought lately and have you worn it yet?! 

You can find Georgina on Facebook, Twitter and at her website!