Monday, 30 April 2012

City Break

Gonz and I xxx

What a great weekend!

My boyfriend Gonz, his brother Anth and Anth's gf/my friend Holly went to the city for a weekend. It's getting close to us going away so we wanted to make the most of the apartment being vacant.
We decided we would try teppanyaki for dinner as Anth and Holly had never been before. At 8pm we had a booking at Sakura, in South Melbourne.
Holly and I had some sparkling wine before and the boys had some beers before walking up Clarendon street. It was very warm inside the restaurant and the majority of customers there seemed to be finishing rather than starting up like we were. I still can't get over how quiet South Melbourne is on a weekend night. We ordered the first set which was $50 a head and included the starter salad and miso soup, followed by the prawns, teriyaki chicken, steak, bean shoots and fried rice. Our chef had lots of fun throwing food at us, and the waitress had lots of fun refilling our wines... we were wasted! She just kept filling them up! Anth and Gonz had a bottle of red and Holly and I polished off a white. I think it was a mix of the warm restaurant and the fast rate of refills that was responsible for our drunkenness. After dinner we walked to crown and had a cocktail at the 'Waiting Room', a beautiful cocktail bar in the lobby. Best espresso martini ever! I have little/no recollection of the rest of the night.
At Sakura Teppanyaki... yum!
Click here to see our menu (Yukiyama set)
Flinders street station and some glasswork in the cathedral.

I <3 Melbourne and all the alleyways.
(Pictured: Degraves Alley)

Window display at Hopetoun tearooms.
I'm dying to try this place!

Saturday was a long day... Being hungover is horrible. We aimlessly walked around the city with no clue what to do. Shopping isn't exactly appetising when you get the hot flushes and nausea that come hand in hand with being a fool the night before. Holly and I were ~good~ company. After lots of walking and deliberation we finally made a plan to check out St. Paul's cathedral. It was beautiful inside, and nice and cool which helps when you feel sick. The boys walked around and probably talked about materials and how you would build that place while Holly and I sat on a bench... We then went across to the Ian Potter Gallery in the NGV in Fed Square to see the Top Arts exhibition. Top Arts is a collection of the top art students in Victoria doing VCE. I actually really enjoyed the exhibition, free entry and definitely worth doing if you're in the area. We then met up with Gonz and Anth's sister Fleur (check out her blog) for lunch which was nice. The boys and Fleur got a lunch deal inc. gourmet sausage and VB for $10, while Holly and I shared hot chips... kind of felt better afterwards.

Anth and Holly (looking gorg) at dinner.

For dinner that night we went to Chinatown to a little restaurant down an alleyway. It was small but quite busy inside. We ordered a standard Chinese banquet for $30 each, inc. fried ice cream at the end... (naughty). Food was ok, my won ton was raw inside and when i sent it back the waiter just shrugged. Clearly the service wasn't with a smile, and they cleared our plate away while there was still food on it... but it didn't ruin our night. We were still pretty hungover and it was raining so we retired to the apartment and called it a night.

Dying to try the food at this place!

On Sunday, we decided to go to South Melbourne market. We walked around and found a Spanish place to have coffee. They were making the yummiest big pan of paella... it smelt amazing! It was $12 per serve, we didn't get any though. There is so much amazing fresh produce at the market, it's almost overwhelming. We decided to buy some antipasto things to share for lunch. I bought a big ciabatta loaf and some spinach dip, Holly bought some feta stuffed green olives and some sun dried tomatoes. Anth bough two types of cured meats, one was a Spanish ham and I have no idea what the other was and Gonz bought two cheeses. Holly and I bought some hedgehog and caramel slice to have also... it was probably my favourite meal of the whole weekend! Best idea.

It was such a lovely weekend, with GREAT company! We will definitely miss our friends and family when we leave (in five weeks).


Friday, 27 April 2012

My boyfriend and I last Australia Day.
Thanks to Hayley for the pic!
37 days to go... and who's counting? The boyfriend told me he watched a show last night on climate change, and because we are travelling by train we are reducing our carbon footprint to 4... or by 4 or something. Then he told me I should put that on my blog, bless.

There is so much to pay for! We still need to purchase our Eurail passes and travel insurance. What's more my phone bill, car registration, nursing registration and a car service are all due! It's going to take a huge lump out of my savings! $2,325 to be exact... I originally had an appointment at the hairdresser (for a treatment and a tone) which I had to cancel! Now my blonde will have to have a tinge of gold... cringe.

My fitness challenge is still underway... I haven't given up. My mum and I go to the gym together a bit and she is amazing! She has lost 10kg in eight weeks by personal training and a metabolic diet, she's also lost 6cm around her waist! I am so happy that all of her hard work is paying off. Anyway... I like to think I'm pretty fit... but she absolutely killed me on the bike. We peddled hard on a mid level for 3kms, followed by a k of rest, we then bumped up the level and did another 2km, then a 1km rest, then bumped up the level and did our last km as fast as we could. Death by bike. It was hell. I was literally panting.
It's off to the city to the weekend with my boyfriend, his brother and his gf, my friend Holly. Will keep you posted.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Some basics.

Today I thought I'd share a few basics that I've already bought for the trip. I still need a few more things, but I'm pretty pleased with my purchases.

Most importantly I got a pack! It's a cheaters pack! I'll feel like a real backpacker, but I get the choice to carry my pack or wheel it along! What's better, I got it half price from kathmandu. Bargain... I'm so smart! I even got a little backpack that attatches to the front.
I recently got back from a two week trip to Thailand and I took it for practice. It's very light and I was able to fit the basics in easily... However, I found it difficult to fit everything in and I only took enough for two weeks. It's going to take some serious culling to fit four months in...

I love reading every night and I also do alot of planning from my guide books. However, there is no way I am losing shoe space in my bag for books! So genious over here bought a kindle. Essential! It weighs less than my iphone and it currently holds my USA guide, two Europe guides, an Italian language book and a book on Prague. It also has five novel books on it. So easy to use! If youre a nerd reader like me eat your heart out. (It's cheaper to buy online btw.)

I've also bought a few little knick-knacks to help me along the way. No idea if they were a waste of money, or will be useful but I'll let you know. I got a laundry kit... There is no way I'm going to be one of those smelly hairy backppackers with this. It's pretty cute, comes in a waterproof bag with a universal plug, some laundry paper soap sachets and a clothes line. I bought a microfibre towel on sale at kathmandu as well, $10... bargain!
I needed some sandals to take of course. I have a few great pairs of Funki's except they're way too heavy! These jellybeans shoes cost me $30 with free shipping! They're very cute and very very light! Im also buying a clear pair!

Money saving tip! Buy a coin tin from The Reject Shop and put all your coins in it! I never have coins in my purse because I'm saving them all! Can't wait to see how much I get from it!

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

USA Plans

We leave soon! As you know, sixish weeks... I think five and a half to be exact. We have planned out pretty much all of our USA trip as it's only for three and a half weeks.
Plan is...
1. First stop, SAN FRANCISCO for seven days! Can not wait!
2. Second stop L.A. Hostel to Hostel bus transfer, $40 door to door... bargain. We'll be there for three nights. We are catching a greyhound bus to our next stop... costing about $35 each. Pretty cheap. I'm not going to lie, I'm kind of nervous about catching the bus.
3. Thirdly, SAN DIEGO! We're staying in a hostel in the gaslamp district. Looking forward to hitting up some beaches and sunshine. We're catching another bus... oh gawd.. This one is for eleven hours. I plan to hit up my kindle and ipod for eleven hours straight... maybe a temazepam haha.
4. Next stop is LAS VEGAS baby. We're there for three nights. We booked a suite here, looking forward to a little bit of luxury.
5. Last but not least. We are NOT catching a bus (thankgod), we are catching a plane to NYC. We are there for five full days. Hoping to hit up all the regular tourist places like Times Square, Central Park and walk over the Brooklyn Bridge into Brooklyn for Grimalde's Pizza.. it's the best!

I can barely contain my excitement! It's ridiculous.

Six week challenge

I realised a few weeks ago that I will be back in a bikini soon... back in summer. ~Small~ pressure. I started this challenge about two weeks ago... I was doing really well... then came easter, what was I supposed to do with all those eggs? Chuck them out? No. I ate them. I ate all of them... I think I even ate some of the chocolate eggs I gave to my boyfriend. So much for the six week challenge.
Don't worry! I haven't given up!
I work full-time and find it really hard to fit in the gym, but I've managed to fit in 3-4 times a week. This usually consists of a BodyPump class at the gym, some interval training on the treadmil, some bike work and a run outside. I also try and fit in some core work too. My weight hasn't changed too much (I gained a kilo thanks to my revolting easter binge fest), but I feel like my body is toning up for sure!
Yesterday I ran 4.5km around Oliver's Hill (not that far I know) but I tried to really up the pace and including Oliver's Hill I made it in 25minutes.
My bikini's will thank me.

Its me... Frankie Franks.

I'm Frankie Franks.
I'm a Melbournian female and I'm starting this blog because I constantly plan things... all the time. I might as well share my thoughts and plans with others.
I'm 23.. I've been in a relationship for the past year and a half and we leave in six weeks to travel across USA and Europe for four months! I can't wait to share it all with you! It's going to be the biggest adventure.