Results tagged “Pizza” from Kazza the Blank One

Not as Good as the Last

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Went over to Chrissie's for dinner on Friday.  It's been too long since I've seen them.  Didn't help that they were sick for like a month.  Aunty Di is coming down in the school holidays - mum you should get a slideshow together and come down.

Nathan seven months

Saturday was pretty much just house stuff all day.  I did make a lemon cheesecake that generally turned out well but needs a tweak or two on the recipe.  Just need to practise til I get it right ;)

Saturday evening we went over to Scott's so he could get a bit of practise with the pizza oven.  It turned out to be a slow process and by the time we got through three pizzas (two of them gluten free) we were quite full.  And there wasn't even enough cheese ;)

Pizza at Scott's (gluten free base)

Smoked duck pizza

Sunday just more house type stuff.  Did some food shopping and cooked pork belly for dinner.  Still not convinced by the recipe I've used twice now.  Tastes good but the crackling goes bubbly (and takes effort not to burn) and just isn't as good (and doesn't keep as well) as my normal method.  Watched Snatch because the guys at work said it was good, but I wasn't convinced.  I even struggled to stay awake through some of it..

Tonight I finished labelling day 16 of our East Asia trip, only three days to go.  And then I did a 500 piece jigsaw.  In an hour.  Whoops.

Where'd I get up to?

Thursday night we had a whiskey tasting night.  Nothing really stood out for me.  Mostly because Neil didn't get any peaty whiskeys heh.  The four Scottish ones were much the same (one was slightly rougher than the others).  The Nikka was probably my favourite, just because of the hint of smoke.  Early night and slept reasonably well.

Whisky July

Whisky July

Friday I got a bunch of cleanup work done, then left early and headed with the sweetie down to the coast.  Stopped in Batemans Bay for dinner at KFC (bad move - they're even more inefficient than Belconnen and we took fifteen minutes to get our food!).  Chilled out at the house, and I started a jigsaw.

Saturday I finished the first jigsaw and moved onto a second.  Went to Myrtle Beach and even had a swim (well a wade really, I hadn't taken my glasses off and didn't want to lose them).  It was cold, but not freezing.  Couple of weirdos though - one meerkat and his wandering mate.  Yeup.  Saturday night we got pizzas from Steveo's.  We got three, but really only needed one.  Two tops - having some for breakfast we *still* brought home a full pizza!  Then watched Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull to see if it was as bad as we remembered.  It was.  And then some.

Coast breakfast

Myrtle Beach walk

Myrtle Beach

Steveo's Pizza

Today I finished the second jigsaw and decided to squeeze in a third while the sweetie did reading for uni.  Then cleaned up and came home.

Blue coast view

Almost hit two kangaroos - one on the way down on Friday night, and one on the way out to Myrtle Beach.  The second one was panicking and actually slipped over on the road in front of us.  We'd slowed right down though so it was all fine.  The first one just bounced gently across the road in front of us but didn't do anything stoopid.

Tried to doze on the way home but didn't succeed.  

I'm still sick with this damned cold.  Stuffed up nose so haven't been able to breathe in days.  I didn't feel like doing *anything* when I got home.  So *blip* there goes another weekend with nothing achieved at home :(  (I did manage to look at and geotag day 22 of the holiday though, so I guess that's *something*).

Had a bit of a blah day today.  Too much *crap*.  So when the sweetie decided to come home early because he's been feeling crappy from the cold he has, I came too.  We watched some Veronica Mars and got pizza.  Yeah real healthy dinner there.  Hrmm.  Really must get some more veggies to go with all the leftover meat we still have in the house..

Other than that I watched more of dad's documentaries, did some paint by numbers, and watched Source Code.  Interesting movie but the ending just leaves you questions.. 


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Just some home made pizzas.  They were yummy.

Pizza before

Pizza before

Pizza before

Christmas 2013

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Christmas Eve was a nice morning tea at work, followed by an early mark.  Went to Potty's to do a water change and bring home some lego.  Had lunch at KFC then came home and had a small siesta.

In the evening we got the Dominos wagyu three ways pizza and watched carols (or half watched really, I was playing on my phone).

Wagyu pizza

Christmas morning I finished off some last-minute cleaning of the house, then prepped lunch.  Annie and family came over and we sat around and nibbled and chatted while the Stus played Diablo.  Then had a roast pork and potato (and other things) feast.  Sadly the crackling wasn't as good as last time I did a roast pork.  Oh well.  Several food comas were had by people during Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, and we also watched the beginning of Monty Python and the Holy Grail (keeping with the theme).  The others went home and we finished watching it.  It was a lovely afternoon, pretty much stress free which was good.  Hurrah! :)

Christmas table

Family photo

Didn't get any photos of all the food except for these cheese and bacon balls - cheese, bacon, more cheese, more cheese, sweet chili sauce and chives.  They could have done with more bacon.. next time.. :)
Cheese and bacon balls

In the evening we watched the 7pm Project, and then Shrek the Third.

Today, Boxing Day, I got stuck into some holiday projects I'd been hanging out to do.  Tidied the shelves in the spare room cupboard, got half way through dismantling the Millennium Falcon, downloaded some bank statements and organised things there a bit, downloaded all the photos off all my cameras, started preparing my year in review post, built my nanoblock Schloss Neuschwanstein, and watched Storm Boy in the evening (I haven't seen that movie in probably thirty years).

Last Friday Night

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Last Friday Night (last night) a couple of Daves and a Neil and I crashed @CLBradley's place for wine and pizza.  Lots of fun, but sorry Lisa for keeping Miss M up way too late!  (and she knows the words to TGIF much better than I do, which is slightly disturbing, given that she's eight!)

Wine lineup

Doc saw this Back In Black shiraz and couldn't resist buying it
Back in Black Shiraz

Mosquito coil

Doc and Back in Black wine

So one of my cousins has lived in Canberra for something like three years, yet we've still only managed to catch up with them once. Definitely something that needed to be rectified!

So today we went over for lunch - some thoroughly delicious pizzas (that were also so filling I didn't need dinner!)

Pizza Pizza

Pizza Pizza

Pizza Pizza

Pizza Pizza

Yum yum yum!

And there were Magnums!


After lunch we played a game of Alhambra


So yeah, a nice relaxing lunch/afternoon. 

Hunter Valley

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Day 1

The day after boxing day we made our exit from Sydney.  Since we had to be back on the 30th for my cousin's wedding, the options were to stay in Sydney, go home, or have a couple of nights somewhere else.  We decided to go to the Hunter Valley.

We let the GPS guide us out of Sydney, and we managed to avoid the most horrible piece of road in Sydney, which is the five kilometres between Gordon and Hornsby, where it's just stop start the whole way.  The GPS took us round the north of all that, and it was much less stressful.

It's amazing the number of L-platers that were out.  I reckon they should either be banned from highways altogether or allowed to do the full speed limit.  Because forcing them to slow down on the freeways just makes everything slow for everyone else.

Learner drivers

We decided not to go up the Sydney-Newcastle freeway, opting to get off at Peat's Ridge and take the back way.  We mostly had the road to ourself, and it was a much prettier and less stressful drive.



Coming down the valley along the Great North Road was very pretty

Spaceman in a sculpture park north of Wollombi

Cessnock is very pretty at the moment with all the trees in bloom

As it turned out, we probably should have gone up the freeway, because we decided to go out to Minmi, which is right next to the freeway.  So it was a bit of a detour, but we weren't in any hurry so that was ok.

Crazy big house on Richmond Vale Road

Minmi Courthouse
Minmi Courthouse

Caboose in Minmi
Caboose in Minmi

I want a liqour shelf like this!  Pretty!  Popped in here to get a (non-alcoholic) refreshing beverage
Liquor shelf

Then out to the cemetery to find graves of Stu's rellies

Minmi Cemetery
Minmi Cemetery

Stu hunting
Minmi Cemetery

Found one!
Minmi Cemetery

These guys found their own rellies
Minmi Cemetery

Then onto the Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley.  A little pricey, but very nice.

Crowne Plaza reception
Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley

We got a hotel style room in the main building.  There's a tonne of self-contained units around the place that hold quite a few people.  They looked lovely, and people were out with deck chairs sipping wine, which totally looked like the life :)  They're a bit further away from the main building, and something like $800/night - ouch!
Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley

View from our room - not that exciting
Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley

What I did love about the place was the abundance of power points.  Something like 14 of them around the room, in nice useful places, like right next to the bed. 10 points right there!
Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley

Settled in and got ourselves freshened up, then went for a walk around the place

The huge pool.  A bit emptier at this point, but it was full of people a little earlier.
Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley

Giant chess set (there was a checkers set in the main building too)
Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley

Beach volleyball court
Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley

Waiting in the Vista Lounge before dinner
Vista Lounge, Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley

The Red Salt restaurant (also the breakfast buffet)
Red Salt, Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley

Our view for dinner
Dinner view

We started with this lovely Adina (a local) Pinot Grigio
Pinot grigio

The sweetie enjoys the wine and the view
The sweetie

Stu's entree.  I think this was "Caramelized Tart, of golden shallot and baked locally sourced goat's cheese, witlof salad"
Red Salt Dinner

I had "Warm salad of lobster, kipfler potatoes & frisse endive, poached quail eggs & black truffle dressing"
Red Salt Dinner

For mains Stu had "Coq au vin free range chicken, braised in Hunter Valley pinot, golden eschalots & smoked bacon, roast garlic puree, fried bread crumbs".  This thing was delicious - and look at that huge chunk of bacon!  Yum!
Red Salt Dinner

I had "Confit duck leg with cassoulet of white beans, lovedale smokehouse sausage & bacon, poached quail eggs".  The duck was nice, but too many beans for my taste.
Red Salt Dinner

We also had a side of "Sauteed mixed mushrooms with garlic and sherry vinegar (Swiss Browns, Buttons, King Oysters, Enoki)".  Omigosh this was so delicious!  One of my favourite parts of the meal!
Red Salt Dinner

We also had an amazing Rosehill shiraz - so smooth!  Yumm!
Red Salt shiraz

For dessert we had some Brokenback vintage cheddar (we were too full to eat any more!)
Red Salt Dinner

After dinner I was so full I went for a little walk around the place.

Took this nice HDR shot from the entrance area on my phone
Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley


Day 2

We had breakfast the next morning at the resort.  A pretty decent buffet of food.  Was quite crowded though, even though we were there near the end of service.


At 1pm we piled into a little minbus with a family of Swedish people and headed out on a winery tour (stopping to pick up some other people on the way).

Stu in the minibus

Our first stop was Peacock Hill Winery.  This was quite a small winery, and was much like the tours we did at Yass last year with a very small cellar door and crowds of people.  I found it a bit stressful, but the lady was reasonably well organised, so it wasn't too bad.

They have dinosaurs, which kept the two little Swedish boys amused
Peacock Hill dinosaurs

Peacock Hill dinosaurs

Peacock Hill selection of wines
Peacock Hill wines

Yeah being driven around the Hunter Valley tasting wines is a lovely way to spend an afternoon
Winery tour

The next stop was McGuigan's.  Having heard of this winery it wasn't surprising that they had a much bigger cellar door.  And they have this whole room setup for tour groups that looked pretty amazing.


Tour group wine tasting room
McGuigan's wine tasting

Us at McGuigan's
Us at McGuigan's

This cork stool looked pretty cool (but $249 and not particularly practical)
Cork stool

McGuigan's also make and sell cheeses.  We might have bought some, but didn't have a cooler bag or a fridge at the hotel.
Stu inspecting cheese

Sunflowers at McGuigan's

Next stop was the Pokolbin village for chocolate and cheese tasting.  The chocolate tasting was ok (half a dozen nibbles of chocolate), but the cheese tasting wasn't really anything special.  First you had to find the store that was doing it, then you had to ask for the cheeses to taste.  Yeah, not ideal.  

I did buy this cute little chocolate penguin from the chocolate place.
Chocolate penguin

Our last stop was Brokenwood.  This had a medium-sized cellar door and we sat around barrels to do the wine tasting.  We even got to taste a wine which was normally only opened for people paying to taste the wines.  So that was very nice.



On the way back we got up close to some kangaroos, which I think all the tourists liked :)




So a very nice (although somewhat expensive) afternoon, with half a box of wines and fortified wines acquired :)

For dinner we went to the Grapevine bar for beer and pizza


The sweetie

This was the "Truffled Mushroom" pizza, which sounded nice on the menu (swiss brown, button and enoki mushrooms, white sauce, confit garlic parmesan, thyme and truffle oil) but was a little bland
Grapevine pizza

This was the "Italian" pizza - pepperoni, capsicum, mushrooms, olives, mozzarella, parmesan & chilli, sour cream, thyme and rocket.  This was much nicer (I think the sour cream was a winner!)
Grapevine pizza

After dinner the pool was looking nice so I wanted to go for a swim.  But a change had come through which made it quite cold.  So we didn't stay in long.

Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley

Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley


Day 3

So our final day.

First stop (after breakfast at the Scottish Restaurant in Cessnock) was a trip to Morpeth to look for more of Stu's relatives in the cemetery.  We didn't find any.  Just some harness horses trotting by.

Trotting horse

Then to St John's College, only to find the whole place has been turned into a retirement village.  So far the historic buildings remain, but who knows for how much longer.

St John's college

Walking around to the chapel

The organ is still there, but the chapel is now a little community hall
St John's chapel

And the garden out the back has a gazebo, and the cross has been removed.  A bit different to last time we were here.
St John's chapel

And instead of a nice view out to the floodplain, all you can see is houses
St John's college - retirement village

So that was all a little sad.

Kept wandering.

This is the bridge at Hinton
Hinton bridge

And we found another probable relative of Stu's in the Hinton Cemetery
Hinton cemetery

Next up the sweetie thought it might be nice to head to Port Stevens, and Nelson Bay and Shoal Bay.

Nelson Bay sign

As apparently did the rest of New South Wales
Nelson Bay

It was so crowded it was painful.  We didn't stop anywhere along the beachside.  Couldn't have anyway - no parking!  Just snapped a pic out the window.
Nelson Bay

We did stop at the lighthouse though (only because a super huge 4WD couldn't fit into a half sized parking spot, so we got it)

Nelson Bay Lighthouse

Nelson Bay Lighthouse

Nelson Head

Carried on.  Shoal Bay was just as crowded.
Shoal Bay

Shoal Bay

Eventually ended up at Fingal Bay where we stopped for lunch a few streets back from the beach, where there was actually parking.  Fish and chips and potato scallops.  Because that's what you do when you go to the beach.  Even though we were nowhere near the beach.
Fish and chips

So left the craziness behind and headed back to Maitland to meet up with Margie at the Fox Bar.  This a nice little wine bar.  We had the whole front area to ourselves, but it was only when I went to the loo that I saw the lovely little garden they have out the back.
Fox Bar, Maitland

And finally headed back to Sydney.  Would have been uneventful except a horse float overturned on the freeway near Kariong killing two horses and completely closing the road.  The GPS saw it coming and we took a detour around it.  No idea if it worked out faster (it probably did) but it was certainly less stressful and no stop-start traffic for us.

Finally made it back to my parent's place and crashed into bed

Friday night the little brother arrived in town.  There was beer and pizza and Advocaat (I'd never even *heard* of Advocaat!!).  Saturday morning he fixed our en-suite's leaky loo, and then went home again.

Domino's Chef's Inspirations

Survived the week...

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Just barely .. more blog posts to come, backfilling.

Stopped in at Tony's on the way home for a refreshing beverage, then we got Pizza Capers and watch Deathly Hallows Part 2.

Video Night!

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Last night a couple of Daves, a Neil, a Steve and a Simon came over for a video night.  We'd planned the night for a date which Neil and I were not on call.  But alas, the person who was meant to do on call had a great fall (we're calling him Humpty now) and I ended up with it :(  

But anyway.  

We watched Johnny Mnemonic first up.  Not a bad movie (based on a story by William Gibson) but the acting was *terrible*!!  It was quite painful to watch heh.

Then we watched This is Spinal Tap, which I'd never seen before.  It was pretty funny.  

We ordered six Encore pizzas which were demolished in short order, and an *awful lot* of beer was drunk.  Considering two people were driving, there must have been a couple of people that drunk *a lot* of beer.. heh

October Video Night
October Video Night

Good times :)


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Because we were both feeling blah, we decided on beer and pizza for dinner.  Dominos outdid themselves, more than making up for the last time we got pizza from them where there was barely any toppings at all..

Dominos Pizza
And I just finished the jigsaw - of the Pinnacles in Western Australia

Pinnacles Jigsaw


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Depressing day today.

So much so that even with a fridge full of healthy food we ordered pizza.  And waited over an hour and a half for Crust to deliver it.  Shoulda gotten Dominos.

At least three brownouts tonight.  Stoopid storms.  We need to replace the batteries in our UPS.

And saw this bunny hopping around the front yard.  Stu didn't believe me, he said it was a rat.  I thought so too until I saw it hopping.

Wherein proving my camera has better eyesight than me - it was practically invisible where it was.


Spent at least two hours this morning attacking the foliage in the front yard.  Lots of chopping of cherry tree suckers, pulling up of weeds, and hacking away at plants in general, trying to get it all under control.  Piled up a *huge* pile of foliage to be chopped up more and put out in the garbage one bag at a time.

After lunch, I did a jigsaw I'd borrowed from the coast.  Just a map of the world, but with Qantas' flight routes on it - as of April 1965!!  With a 707 :)

Qantas Jigsaw
Qantas Jigsaw
Other than that, just a bit of house tidying and news feed reading.

The little brother turned up just before dinner, so instead of Stu cooking a fritatta for us, he decided he didn't want to cook at all, so I had to make pizzas for the boys.


Nothing night

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Was going to do some more scanning tonight but thought I'd wait til pizza got here.  Except we called Crust Pizza at 6:55 and it's 8:40 now (we called them again 25 minutes ago) and it's still not here.  Not happy!!

In other gripes.  ReCAPTCHA has been cracked, so I've been getting more and more comment spam coming through :(:(  So now going to have to figure out some other way of stopping the spam that doesn't take me a whole weekend to figure out and implement :/

Just for fun, here's a couple of fishie pics I took last week.

Julidochromis transcriptus
Julidochromis transcriptus
Neolamprologus multifasciatus
Neolamprologus multifasciatus
Neolamprologus leleupi
Neolamprologus leleupi
8:46pm.  Still no pizza.

Stu called them again.  They're just going to do it now.  And give us credit for the next time.  *sigh*

Cold October weekend

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So yesterday morning I woke up to snow.  


Actually I suppose you'd call it sleet, as there was plenty of rain too, but mixed in were little flurries of snow, which was epic cool!!

October snow
Did our food shopping, then spent the afternoon trying to tidy up the house.

I like how these coins arranged themselves when I dropped them on my desk the other day.

Coin drop

Then headed over to Nat and Andrew's and ordered Crust pizzas for dinner.  The winner for me was the "Peking Duck" pizza - with a hoisin sauce base and duck and a couple of whole leaves of bok choy.  Yum yum yum.

Crust Peking Duck Pizza

Had a go at iPad scrabble since we had four i-devices to use.  Worked ok, except that the phones kept dropping out :(  

iPad scrabble

Also played all 32 races of Mario Kart in a row.

Mario Kart scores

Today was final cleaning of the house, and then the Canberra Killifish Study Group which we had at our place.  Six fishy geeks plus Stu :)  After they had a tour of all our fish tanks they had their meeting.  I heated up lunch.

Afterwards headed out to Corin Dam, but will put all of that in a separate post.

Last night I made six-cheese pizzas.  There's colby, tasty, parmesan, mozarella, feta and some mystery softish cheese leftover from work on Friday.  They were epic nom.

Six cheese pizza
Six cheese pizza
(I put olives and capers on Stu's, I just had the cheese :) )

Tonight we finally remembered to go look for the International Space Station.  We managed to see it very briefly as a tiny little moving dot, before it went behind a cloud and then presumably a tree (as we didn't see it again).  

Oh and there was the whole thing about me breaking things in a big way today, which was really not what I needed at the moment.  *sigh*

We (I) used to cook pizzas every Friday night.  Until I got sick of them.  We haven't had any in probably a year or so. But last time we went shopping we picked up some pizza bases (just lebanese bread) and so I made some tonight.  They were pretty good.  Best not to overdo things though methinks.. :)


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We got home late tonight, so we couldn't resist the call of the pepperoni puff pastry pizza ... mmmmmmmm..!!  And only $7.40 because of Tight-ass Tuesday.. woot!
Kazza's "Boring Life Of a Geek" aka BLOG

IT geek, originally from Sydney, moved to Canberra in 2007. Married to "the sweetie", aka Stu. Prolific photographer, Lego junkie and tropical fish keeper.

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