Merry Christmas, everyone! We hope you’ve had a wonderful Christmas week! We certainly have and it’s been so relaxing, we wonder how we’ll ever get back into the swing of things in 2014.
I also wonder what I’ve done to deserve my own personal rain cloud. It’s two days before Christmas Day and it’s gloomy, cloudy and surprisingly cool for this time of year in Sydney. Even the tree in Martin Place on my way into work looks a bit lacklustre.
I’m always keen to get into the Christmas spirit and these little fellas always help. I don’t know why, but if I don’t get at least one mince pie over Christmas, that’s it. That Christmas doesn’t count.
Mrs Romance discovered this character flaw of mine only a couple of Christmases ago. I wasn’t a pretty sight. No one likes to see a grown man sulking – especially over mince pies. Since then, she’s always made sure I get my pie.
Last year she wrapped my own private stash. It definitely worked because she did the same this year and I’m well happy. Look at this one – it’s even got a little star on it!
Other than mince pies, Mrs R is very generous this Christmas. I get an excellent Paul Smith T-shirt (not pictured – but it will be!) and some wonderful socks! She also ordered me some other stuff online, but the postal service being what it is at this time of year, none of it arrived. Instead, she did courtroom artist’s impressions of what she got me!
The Ts are from a company called LastExitToNowhere.com, who take well-known slogans from films and put them on clothing. Do you recognise which films these two are from? Answers on a blank postcard or in the comments, please!
I’m also really looking forward to my new Kindle arriving – my old one broke and I don’t want to have to lug the bricks that are the Game of Thrones series around any more.
What’s an Aussie Christmas without a pavlova? I’ll tell you: it’s not a Christmas at all! Mrs Romance’s mum always does a spectacular job of these – and I’m not just saying that because she terrifies me!
Mrs Romance’s lovely sister, Mary, also gets me a wine aerator, which I’ve wanted for ages. This isn’t it, it’s a mug she’s given me. This mug has caused quite a stir on my Facebook page with a couple of mates trying to work out what the last symbol could be.
When I first see it, I think it’s a ‘W’. “I heart W,” I ponder. “What does that mean?”
My nephews think it’s hilarious, but then my niece betters it with: “I heart Batman?”
Excellent. On Facebook things such as ‘I heart synchronised banana dancing’ and ‘I heart a pair of handle-less pliars’ were suggested. I now have a feeling it might in fact be a pair of ‘devil’s dumplings’!
Mrs Romance’s mum is well pleased with this box of chocs I get her. And so’s everyone else, I think! Even Mrs R’s mum can’t tuck away over a kilo of choccy selection. The box gets shared around all night.
Today, Mrs Romance and I are shouldered with the job of making a croquembouche for Boxing Day dinner. We decide the cone thing is too much effort, so we go for a kind of horse jump pyramid type shape. It’s not until we start making the toffee for the glaze that we discover what a horrible job this is.
We both burn ourselves – me quite badly and the blisters on three fingers are going to take a while to heal – and make just enough to finish the job. We’re so tired by the end of it, we don’t even think it looks all that great.
In retrospect, I suppose it does look pretty good. We don’t have the heart to make more molten sugar to spin the thin web over the whole thing – even though I think it would look pretty awesome.
I decide to treat Mrs Romance to breakfast in bed. She loves corn fritters, so I make two enormous ones, poach a couple of eggs and knock up an avocado creme that works well with everything else. She’s pretty pleased and stays in bed a lot longer than either of us are expecting. I don’t mind though and double-screen the day away in the front room.
Tonight’s sunset over the city is amazing. I know this is probably the most over-photographed thing on Instagram, but I love posting pics of sunsets.
Mrs Romance and I love talking about the differences between our two cultures – even though they’re mostly very similar. One thing that we’ve never been able to agree on though is what’s better: a hot Christmas or a cold one. Here are our arguments on our latest He Said, She Said.
It’s a near perfect beach day today. And as we’re looking after a friend’s car at the moment, we’re also mobile. We nip down to Coogee Beach for a dip. We’re expecting to be in the water for about five minutes then be home again before we know it. The water is so nice though, we end up staying in for about 45 minutes.
Luckily we’ve found rockstar parking on the street – 4-hour free parking, and we can almost see our car from the ocean… now that’s rockstar!
It really is a picture perfect day here at Coogee today. It’s almost a shame to leave… but then we’re heading out to meet with a very special couple:
We go out for a drink with Danae and Gustavo. It’s the first time we’ve seen these guys in SEVEN YEARS!
I first met Danae when she came into my class when I was teaching in Sydney. She was here all the way from Switzerland and she met Gustavo, who’s from Brazil, while he was studying here too. They fell in love and moved back to Switzerland together. They got married earlier this year.
They’re an incredible couple and it’s a real pleasure seeing them again. We don’t end up getting home till 3am.
We’re up earlier than we thought we would be this morning – but it’s worth it. We meet up with more awesome friends, Barbs and Glen. My coffee’s looking pretty good once we’re sat down in 222 Riley Street Cafe in Surry Hills.
We’re all pretty excited about our breakfasts – Glen and I both order the egg and bacon breakfast burger. And of course we go for the extra provolone cheese!
My brother and sister-in-law have driven all the way down from Brisbane and are staying with us on their way down to a Melbourne wedding. It’s great to see them.
We head to Grill’d for burgers – we wanted to go to the Royal Albert for a Royale with Cheese… but they’ve been having problems with their deliveries this week! Still, Grill’d has done a pretty good job here.
It’s almost the end of 2013. Here are our most popular moments this year on Instagram:
We hope you’ve enjoyed joining us on our Instagram Diaries. We’re looking forward to sharing our Instagram moments on Mr & Mrs Romance with you in 2014!