The sun seems to be rarely making appearances lately, so when it decided to poke its head out the other day, we drove to Picton to make the most of it. We went to the gorgeous Common Ground café and bakery at the Razorback Inn. This beautiful place that is run by an alternative religious group has been on our agenda for ages, so we were thrilled to finally visit.

The Southern Highlands Food and Wine Festival was held this weekend at the beautiful Corbett Gardens in Bowral. The festival is held to celebrate and showcase the fine food and wine available in this culinary inspiring region of NSW . The easy drive to Bowral from our home in south west Sydney took just over an hour. We arrived in time to enjoy a coffee and have a look at the fashionable shops before progressing on to Corbett Gardens which were ablaze with colour from the many  blooming tulips on display.

This fantastic fruit and veg shop at the Marketfair shopping plaza in Campbelltown stocks a huge array of both fresh produce and specialty pantry items. After following these guys on instagram for a while, we finally got to check them out while in the area last weekend.

The sweet swap is a fundraising and networking activity for australian food or parenting bloggers across Australia. Each blogger pays a small registration fee to participate. This year this money was collected to support a clean water initiative for Vietnamese children by Child Fund Australia.  Each participating blogger is sent the name and mailing address of three other sweet swap participants. All participants prepare and mail portions of a sweet treat to their sweet swap recipients. In return you receive three sweet surprises back. It was wonderful have the postman deliver something other than bills during the last week of August.

Sydney freezer cooking enthusiast Susan Austin has just released her third inspiring cook book of make ahead recipes for the freezer. Her latest book, available as an ebook, is aptly named “Frostbite, Make-Ahead Recipes to Eliminate Mayhem at Mealtime.” With my busy adgenda I am always looking for ways to streamline lifes activities to get more relaxation time. For several years I have used Susan’s Frostbite cookbooks as my go to guide when filling my freezer with ready made meals. From the very moment I purchased the first cookbook in the Frostbite series, I’ve been hooked on freezing.

Located just off bustling Church Street in Parramatta, but still in the thick of it, Kouzina Greco draws in diners with its charming, checker green table cloths and its cosy size. If you can’t tell by the name, it is a Greek restaurant and it is serving up all you would hope for on traditional terracotta crockery.

It was a cold and rainy Saturday morning, but that didn’t stop us from leaving the house at 6.30am and heading off to the beautiful Camden Produce Markets. The markets are held every second and fourth Saturday of the month and allow only farmers or producers to sell their goods. It is also a fairly small market and is the only one in Australia to be held on a working farm. All this gives the Camden Produce Markets a great vibe, full of people that are passionate about fresh, Aussie produce. The breathtaking view isn’t bad, either.  

The Peppertree Cafe is a humanity project managed by Bankstown’s Multicultural Youth Service. This organisation were well deserving winners at the recent Fair Go For the West Awards for their achievements in employment. When we heard about their mission and success we decided to book a table for dinner at the cafe for their monthly performance night. We wanted to experience and contribute to this important social enterprise within the Bankstown community.

So it turns out that the Sydney metropolitan area has a forest. Who knew? I didn’t until recently when I read about it on Family Fun in Sydney. It is the Cumberland State Forest and it’s located in West Pennant Hills. On Monday, I decided to make the most of a sunny, winter’s morning and my long weekend (God bless RDOs) and finally check it out. I took my 81 year old, visually impaired grandmother with me.

The sun was out on Sunday morning, so I pestered Ethan until he was forced to get out of bed and take me out for brunch. We went to Lachlan’s at Parramatta. Lachlan’s is set in the picturesque Parramatta Park, on the site of Old Government House. I absolutely adored this place from the moment I walked in as history and good food are two of my most favourite things.