Friday, 21 December 2012

How to find calm in Sydney

Ah Sydney, my second home. An utter diamond of a city thrusting up out of the East coast of Australia. My heart flutters with endless possibilities every time I visit. It has a wonderful night life, fabulous shopping, a great art scene that just keeps growing and a steady bustle of people. There is no such thing as a quiet Tuesday night at the Pub in this town, it is always in party mode. At this time of year there are fireworks going off around the Harbor every night of the week.

Some days however when I'm in town I crave a slower pace. Here are some of my most loved relaxing adventures in this crazy hustle bustle town.

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Boat Harbour Opera House Bridge

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Harbor Boats View

If you havent visited Sydney before I highly recommend doing what the locals do & catch a Ferry from Circular Quay to Watsons Bay. Not only will you see the gorgeous Harbor from the water but also some of the most enviable real estate in the Southern Hemisphere. Hop off at Watsons Bay and grab some Fish & Chips from Doyles. Doyles is an institution in its own right and incredibly popular so you have the option of dining in the pricey Restaurant or from the Cafe on the Jetty. Pick a shady spot in the Park overlooking the Harbor to sit and you have officially found the best relaxing spot to while away a few hours.

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Harbor Jetty Legs

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Blue Mountains

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Blue Mountains Waterfall

If you have a whole day or weekend to spare I recommend escaping the the city entirely via hire car & head to the Blue Mountains. It is a bit of a long trip but its well worth the effort. It will provide you with spectacular views, quaint small towns that serve you a high tea style afternoon tea and the lush national parks filled with hiking trails.

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Beach Water

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Manly Beach Lifesavers

But to be honest, if you truly want to do what the locals love you need to hit the beach. Sydney has the best beach culture in Australia. Being quite fair in complexion I've always had to avoid the dangers of the Aussie Sun which meant a whole lot of slip, slop and slap. I had never been much of a beach babe preferring to keep out of the sun until I lived in Sydney.

There is a beach or cove close by to most suburbs and the locals are fiercely proud of their sandy spot. Bondi and Manly are the main beach attractions (& well worth checking out) but I prefer the secluded spots. My personal favourite sandy bum spot is Camp Cove. Nestled in between limestone cliffs just inside the Harbor entrance you can swim in the water without being pounded into the sand by strong waves. Lots of history (Captain Cook camped here when he first discovered the Harbor) and the walk there is as much fun as being at the beach.

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Harbour Bridge Opera House View

I love Sydney's hustle and bustle. But if you are caught up in it all and feeling quite stressed it really doesnt take much to step away from the rat race pace. All you need is your bathers, a ferry ticket and a sense of adventure and you can be suddenly a million miles away.

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

The Grinch who stole Christmas

Christmas is the time of year where the rest of the world falls in love with snow, egg nog, lavishly large hot family dinners, daggy sweaters, romantic comedies and twinkly lights. It is utterly foreign to me and there is zero appeal.

My earliest memory of this forced institution involved me being trapped sitting on a sticky & sweaty lap of Santa who was wrapped in a red velvet suit. 40C with no air-conditioning makes for one stinky and scary Santa.

Pineapple Dazzle Art Alan Sailor Exploding Christmas Ornaments

Pineapple Dazzle Art Alan Sailor Exploding Christmas Ornaments
Yes, I am a Grinch. I dont put up decorations. I dont subscribe to buying a Christmas CD so I can listen to carols whilst driving my car. I hate wrapping 100's of presents. It does not give me Christmas Cheer. It is a waste of money, a stressful day and no matter how big a smile I plaster over my face I cannot wait for the 25th December to be over fast enough.

So it was with huge amounts of joy  when my eyes saw these lovely images by Alan Sailor, (thank you Expundit) . He has quite literally done what I've only ever dreamed of doing - vaporising Christmas into a billion little pieces.

Pineapple Dazzle Art Alan Sailor Exploding Christmas Ornaments

Pineapple Dazzle Art Alan Sailor Exploding Christmas Ornaments

Pineapple Dazzle Art Alan Sailor Exploding Christmas Ornaments

Check out the full list of images on Flickr.

Monday, 17 December 2012

Let there be light

Recently I got a ticket to attend the Adelaide Festival 2013 Season Launch. Under the applause and hushed vibe the poster was lavishly presented to the crowd. It is eerily dark and temptingly inviting at at once. I wanted to crawl inside the light square box and see what was inside. All the launch was missing was a Wolf howling to the moon & I would have had goosebumps.

Pineapple Dazzle Art Yellow Rhino

It was love at first sight, again. I knew at once that I'd seen the work of this artist before - Benoit Paille.

Benoit Paille is a Canadian Artist who takes incredible thought provoking photos. I particularly love her illuminated landscape images. So enchanting you feel like you have stepped into another world. I cannot believe that they have not been edited digitally later in Photoshop.I was able to find some of her work on This is Colossal. I recommend you check out their cool blog.

Pineapple Dazzle Art This is Colossal Benoit Paille

Pineapple Dazzle Art This is Colossal Benoit Paille

I am really looking forward to the Adelaide Festival in March 2013. Known for being the risk taking Art Festival in Australia it dares to be different. I have traveled to festivals interstate and you can definitely tell where Adelaide dares and succeeds, the other festivals follow.

Friday, 7 December 2012

Summer tunes

Summer time for me means riding my bike home at night, playing frisbee in the park, BBQ's at friends houses and turning the music up loud.

What does summer time mean for you? Happy Friday peeps! 


Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Outbound with the In Crowd

Pineapple Dazzle Shag Retro Art

I am completely head over heels in love with the work of Artist, Shag. His brightly coloured retro inspired world is pure hedonistic fantasy. 

My taste in art has developed overtime but there is something cheeky in Shag's work that keeps me coming back.  One day I can only dream that he gets inspiration in the form of a bedazzled pineapple. Until then I will send him Jedi mind control thoughts.

Pineapple Dazzle Shag Retro Art

Pineapple Dazzle Shag Retro Art

Pineapple Dazzle Shag Retro Art

Pineapple Dazzle Shag Retro Art

If you are in Sydney (or Melbourne) check out Shag's latest exhibition, Outbound with the In Crowd at OutrĂ© Gallery

Monday, 3 December 2012

Choose Your Own Adventure in Turkey

Pineapple Dazzle Istanbul Blue Mosque

Earlier this year I jumped on a plane and flew to Turkey for my Honeymoon.
It completely blew me away. The people were generous & kind. The food was addictively good. The weather was warm and I barely saw a single cloud in the sky the 3 weeks we were there.

Pineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Hot Air Balloons Cappadocia
Pineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Hot Air Balloons Cappadocia
Pineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Stop Sign CappadociaPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Rock Formations Landscape CappadociaPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Adventure Cave Explore

One of the highlights of our trip was taking a hot air balloon ride over Cappadocia. At one point when we were floating over the land we were up in the sky with another 50 balloons. I took as many photos of the balloons (250 photos in 2 hours) as I did the alien landscape.

Pineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Flowers in Oil CansPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Beach Pebbles Butterfly ValleyPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Boat Cruise LoungingPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Beach Hut Kabana AntalyaPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Ancient Ruins Hot Water Springs

My personal highlight was our boat cruise down the Turkish coastline from Fetiye to Olympos. Our days were spent swimming in the warm buoyant Mediterranian water or climbing over small remote islands scattered with ancient ruins. By the end of our cruise I had turned a gorgeous honey brown colour from all of sun. Absolute heaven.

Pineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Ancient Ruins St Nicholas IslandPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Antalya City Garden

I will always remember how Turkey made me feel. The sweet smell of the orange tree's lining the streets. The comforting & mood lifting apple tea. The quiet solace of a tap dripping in a Public bath. A refreshing chill creeping up through my feet from cool floor tiles.

It truly is an old ancient place where old superstitions die hard and the land offers up so many unique almost mystical natural wonders.

I tried to bottle up a small amount of Turkey and take it home with me but it was hard to recreate in the cold dark days of winter. Now that summer is finally here I can stand outside in the sun, shut my eyes and dream that I'm back climbing up the side of a mountain, walking through a field of wild growing thyme in search of another lost city.

Friday, 30 November 2012

4 years ago to the day

Pineapple Dazzle Art Yellow Rhino

4 years ago to the day my husband and I went on our first date.

We were quite enamoured with each other & wanted to do something special. I remember we chose to meet at the Art Gallery for a short but sweet adventure lunch date. We walked around the Gallery showing our favourite artworks to each other like my favourite, Rhinoceros by Angus James. 

I remember having to excuse myself for a moment and raced up the stairs to the bathroom. I was having such a fun date that I raced back to the lower level gallery. A cheeky security guard chuckled 'Dont worry love, he hasnt gone anywhere.' I blushed beetroot for the rest of that day.

Since our first date all those years ago the yellow rhino has been tucked away hiding in the archives. This week, its finally returned! If you havent been to the Art Gallery for a while now might be the time to go check out the elusive and exclusive neon yellow rhino in its natural habitat.

Thank you, Art Gallery of SA

Thursday, 29 November 2012

by day but by night...

I might as well get it out of the way, yes I play Roller Derby and I love it. It is a huge part of my life so expect to hear a little about it from time to time. Lets be honest it was always going to appear on Pineapple Dazzle. 

For those who might have some preconceptions of the sport:

No I don't wear fishnets.
No I do not have any tattoos.
No I am not a lesbian. (Why does this matter anyway?)
Yes I am passionate about how physical & skillful the sport is.
Yes Roller Derby is widely stereotyped & overly sexualised in the media.
Yes the injuries & bruises are real.
Yes it's lots of fun to be involved & play!

I am one of the truly lucky ones to be apart of a fun-loving, supportive & nurturing league. I am inspired daily by the wonderful people that I have met since the beginning. It's these people who have grown to not only be my league mates but my closest friends. In saying that I have met even more truly incredible (men and) ladies around the world who have come to mean a lot to me too.

Shout-out to my lovely Derby wives around the world! *waves*

Roller Derby is a huge commitment of time (trainings, committee meetings, camps, public bouts, socials events, personal fitness) & does slowly take over your life. But the more you pour yourself into the sport, the more you engage & work hard for your league and team it has always in my opinion been worth it. 110%.

  Pineapple Dazzle Roller Derby Wild Hearses Win

My league Adelaide Roller Derby, is currently going through its Fresh meat Program (aka recruits) and there are 60+ girls trying out who are honestly all really brave, tenacious, strong & really nice. Like beauty pageant nice. I wish we could bring them all into our league but that's just not possible.

So looking forward to the season beginning soon when I'm back on my skates full time. Until then I'll just have to make do with summer time outdoor adventure skates will my pals. 

Thank you Matt Walker for use of your photo. 

Friday, 23 November 2012

Dare to wear

Pineapple Dazzle Party Balloons Indian Headdress Festival

My mother always says it is better to be over dressed than under dressed. I usually imagine her in a 1920's flapper outfit whilst saying it. I may have completely missed her point but I do believe that a bit of frippery makes a ho-hum day way more interesting.

Somehow donning a simple cape makes you feel courageous & bold and can turn a boring night at home into something out of this world.

Personally I cant get enough of dressing up as a Pirate at work. There's something about all the foul mouthed cheeky bravado that I gravitate towards. I'm amazed no-one at work has twigged yet what with all the swearing whenever I'm dressed in stripes & neck scarves. (I keep the swash-buckling strictly during my scally wag lunch adventures)

Next time you are feeling so-so maybe you should spice it up? Go on that bike ride dressed as a Ninja. Shopping in your finest La-Di-Da Chanel Dress suit, with pearls of course.

You never know you might just end up having a wonderful time.

LVS

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Dream a little dream

Pineapple Dazzle National Geographic New York High Line

My beautiful friend Sarah is currently living a charmed almost fairy tale dream existence in New York City. Whilst we are sleeping in Australia she is sipping coffee in bodegas, dating ridiculously hunky men, taking ballet lessons & walking the High Line (pictured above). And yet it wasn't always like this. Rewind the clock to earlier this year.

Sarah and I caught up over a rare sunny lunch in the dying days of winter. So far she had quite a deflating & dejected year. Trying to make the best of a bad situation Sarah was updating me on her latest job prospects, a job interview set for 2 weeks time. It wasn't an inspirational dream job she was applying for but one of those keeping the toe in the water numbers. Sarah then told me about her wild & terrifyingly non-conservative dream of packing up a suitcase & moving to New York for 3 months to dance & absorb the wonderful city.

Sarah is a very rational person so she was caught up in a huge tug of war between head & heart. She had the means & the desire, all she needed was confirmation that her dream wasn't just the mad raving delusional ideas of a crazy woman. Sarah was in a lucky position the universe had given her the ultimate motivation to follow her dream.

In the end Sarah cancelled the job interview because she was already enjoying the leaves changing colour in New York. I'm so proud of her following her dreams of being a Ballerina. Even if it is only for a short period of time her life will forever be enriched. I keep my fingers and toes crossed that she finds a way to stay over there indefinitely.

She was made to be a New Yorker and follow her dreams.

Check out Sarah's blog 

LVS

Everything In Its Right Place

Pineapple Dazzle Radiohead Concert 2012

Over the weekend I witnessed my all time favourite band play in Melbourne, Radiohead.

The night was truly brilliant. The stage production was phenomenal, the band were magic & most of all Thom was in a fabulous mood.

I'm not a religious person but I had a spiritual moment at the show of pure unadulterated joy. Maybe it was my 15 year old self who obsessively wrote OK Computer inspired poetry or all of the broken hearted moments that they have helped me through. But I felt peace and that everything will be alright now that I had seen them at their best.

Thank you Melbourne for being so lovely, respectful yet rambunctious a crowd.

My love affair with this band has been rekindled burning bright.

LVS

image sourced from

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Dont Hold Back

Pineapple Dazzle Donet Benet

Donny Benet: The man is a genius. An art god. A man who transcends genre character generalisations.

The man has been touring like a storm trooper and I cant wait to see him on Friday night @ Format.

I saw him perform at the Adelaide Festival earlier this year and it was love at first synch chord progression. And then again during the sax solo. Grrr like a tiger.

Unfortunately if you are elsewhere in the country you've just missed the dates for his Australian Tour but no doubt he'll be back making a meal of your heart again soon. Grab a slice of Donny Benet here.

Friday, 16 November 2012

You Got To Be Starting Something

Pineapple Dazzle Balloons Party

Welcome to Pineapple Dazzle!

With spring well & truly sprung I thought it would be a fabulous time to begin my first blog, centered around things that I love, sharing them with... well you!

This has always been my favorite time of the year. The buzz of the festival season is beginning, the days are longer and the nights are ours for the taking. I'm ready for an adventure.

LVS xx