I've started a Gratitude picture project that I want to share with you. I simply take a picture of some thing, person or event for which I am thankful that day.  Here's the first one I did:

And here's one from today:

"If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, "thank you," that would suffice."
-Meister Eckhart


Footy Fever

Growing up, I was a big sports fan. I  loved playing sports and watching sports with my Dad on tv. Over the last few years, though, my interest in sports has declined. It probably has much to do with the fact that, with the exception of a tennis match against Jason every once in a while, I no longer participate in sports. Also, we haven't had tv in a while, and I'm not around my Dad, who is a huge sports fan. And Jason, well, he's never really been a sports fan. BUT, let me tell you...we love us some Footy!! Australian Rules Football, aka Footy, is maybe the coolest sport ever. These guys are fierce athletes playing a tough sport. It's fast paced and way more exciting than the NFL in my opinion. I just can't help but have a tremendous amount of respect for how tough these guys are; they knock the crap out of each other with no pads on! We saw a guy get his front tooth knocked out and he just kept right on playing. And they're in killer good shape cause they run up and down this Enormous field for 80 minutes. We got the chance to go to a game, and it did not disappoint. The feeling in the air was electric! A little boy in front of us cried when his team lost. Australians really love their Footy. It seems you have to have a team and be very loyal to it.  We decided our team was going to be St. Kilda since that was one of the teams playing in the game we went to. Not only did they win that game, but come Saturday night, they will be competing in the Grand Final for the Championship!! It's a big deal around here, they have activities all week at Federation Square and even have a parade on Saturday. I'm kinda wondering what everyone's going to do when it's over. 


If you can overlook the cheesy song (or turn down your speakers) watch this video with some classic footy moments and see what I mean about the awesomeness of this sport:


Fitzroy & Treasury Gardens

G'Day All! Here is a slideshow of some pictures I took in late August at a couple of nearby Gardens. The music is Anne Akiko Meyers & Li Jian playing Satoh: Birds in Warped Time 2

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A Word About Vegemite

I love the kid who made this:

Guess Jason and I are not "normal guys."  Vegemite not only looks disgusting, the taste is also fairly disgusting. We were very eager to try it since it was one of the few things we actually knew about Australia before coming here. We learned this, by the way, from the song Down Under. You know,  "He just smiled and gave me a Vegemite sandwich." Yeah, we did a lot of research. Anyway, so we tried it our first week here. As I spread the black pastiness over the bread, the words tar on toast came to mind. It tastes very salty and the flavor is hmmm, well it's concentrated yeast extract, so I guess it pretty much tastes like how you think concentrated yeast extract would taste. Apparently, Kraft (who makes Vegemite) has recently come out with a new vegemite. The slogan is, "It's Vegemite, But Different." Nice one, Kraft. How long did it take you to come up with that? They had a contest for consumers to give it a new name, so as to distinguish it from the original, which will be revealed next week. Apparently, their marketing department sucks so bad that they have to come up with schemes to get Joe Blo to do their work for them. Those Krafty bastards.  I'm skeptical, but maybe, in the spirit of the Australian's notion of giving everything "a fair go," we'll give it a try. Anyway, just wanted to let all you Americans know that, at least in mine and Jason's opinion, you're not missing out on anything.


Healesville Sanctuary

Yesterday, Jason and I journeyed by train and two buses to the gorgeous Yarra Valley to see some iconic Australian animals at the Healesville Sanctuary. We saw dingoes, kangaroos, koalas, kookaburras, tasmanian devils, wallabies, and more! It was awesome and felt so good to be in the midst of such beautiful creatures. Here are some pics from the day set to Neutral Milk Hotel's In the Aeroplane Over the Sea. (The last one is for you, Abe.)

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Not Cho' Pizza

I love pizza. If it were not unhealthy and expensive to do so, I would eat it everyday. (Which is why I eat it every other day.) Thankfully, and probably due at least in part to the fact that Italian Australians are one of the largest ethnic groups in Australia, there is no shortage of good pizza in Melbourne, though you have to know where to go. Not all pizzas are created equally. Apparently, a traditional Australian pizza has egg and bacon on it, but we haven't tried it. However, Jason and I have recently discovered the most genius pizza ever. It's brilliant for us because it brings together beautifully two of our favorite things: pizza and mexican food. It's not cho ordinary pizza, but then again, they don't offer many ordinary pizzas at Mojo's Weird Pizza, hence the name. I've had other mexican pizzas before, but none this good. So, they call it the Gringo, and with a salsa base, corn chips, cheese, spanish onion, fresh tomato, jalapenos, cream cheese, topped with sour cream and guacamole, it's basically nachos on pizza. And no, it clearly isn't the healthiest of meals, but who cares, just look at this deliciousness:

Anyway, kind of a random post, I know, but what can I say, I get excited about good food.


streets are my favorite galleries

Warning: If you're not all that interested in street art, then the following slideshow is not for you because that's what most of the pics are of. One of my favorite things about Melbourne so far is the abundance of amazing street art in the laneways. All of the graffiti pics in this show were taken in this great little alleyway called Hosier Lane, about 20 seconds from our apartment.

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Us in Oz

-the new digs-

-the view from our deck-

-the new art-

Jason and I wanted something on our walls but we didn't want to spend much money
so we used the cardboard boxes that we shipped our stuff in
and made some good old fashioned homemade art.
Jason's painting is of course AWESOME! 
(And mine btw is incomplete and not so awesome.)

We love our new apartment in downtown Melbourne, 
which I have been spending way too much time in
looking for jobs on the internet. 


Sweeeeet Video!


Our honeymoon to Samoa started off a little rocky when the airline lost our luggage, but we made the most of it and got our bags back just a couple days later. Samoa is a very interesting and beautiful place. I didn't get to take many pictures as the weather conditions were not optimal. It was not as sunny as we had hoped it would be, but I did manage to take a few pictures, which I now present in another musical slideshow! I chose the song "Jesus is the Only Answer" from Bela Fleck's Throw Down Your Heart album because Samoa is overwhelmingly (98 percent) Christian. Their national motto is "Samoa is founded on God." All Samoans adhere to a core of social values and practices, known as fa'a Samoa (the Samoan way) which are quite conservative and traditional. The Samoan culture is centered around vafealoa'i, the relationships between people. Fa'a Samoa has three basic elements to it, which are the Matai (familial chiefs), the Aiga (family) and the Church. This system essentially spells out each person's relationship to one another and to those in positions of power. Samoans have a communal way of life in which most activities are done collectively. They do not have the same ideas about privacy; the traditional homes (fales) are open and have no walls. We found Samoans to be a very kind and generally positive people who are very proud of their beautiful country! They all wanted to know what we thought of Samoa and when we would be coming back. Hopefully we will make it back there someday!

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Summer Camp 2009

Jason and I had an awesome summer, including two trips to New Mexico, camping with Chrissy, The Fandangle & ranch tour with Jack & Vera, hangin' with the Marvelous Musickal Manders in Abilene, visiting my G-Pa in San Antone, seeing Octopus Project & Explosions in the Sky in Austin with Chrissy, a couple showers, a party and much more! We'd like to send a shout out of gratitude to everyone who helped make this summer such a special one for us! I took about a million pictures, but I've spared you from most of them and present a snippet of our summer in this musical slideshow! I'm trying out this new slideshow program because it allows me to set the slides to music from my library, so let me know what you think. 

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