Throwback Thursday, 26 November – Hot Air Balloon

For my 30th birthday my partner took me on a hot air balloon ride. It was a magical, surreal experience. To be floating through the air in a wicker basket dangling from a balloon…It was really very calm and peaceful. The ride itself was followed up by a champagne breakfast, and the champagne part at least is tradition; after every balloon ride you’re supposed to toast the journey apparently. So for the post this week, I thought I’d take a little look at that history.


When we were ballooning we were told that ever since the first manned flight in 1783 pilots and passengers would toast the balloon ride afterwards as a thanks for a safe journey. Or rather a celebration that they survived the ride! There are also other rumours that champagne was actually carried on board to help calm down any spectators who happened to be around at the landing site and were lets say, not very happy about having a hot air balloon possibly landing on them…


Some other interesting facts about hot air balloons:

  • Hot air balloons as we know them, weren’t actually developed until 1960 when Ed Yost developed a propane burning system and a nylon balloon.
  • In 2005 the record for the highest balloon flight was set, the height was 21,290 metres.
  • The fastest speed of a hot air balloon has been recorded as 394 km/h.
  • The longest journey in a balloon, both in time and distance is 19 days,  21 hours and 55 minutes over a distance of 46,759 km.

That’s pretty darn impressive if you ask me!


Take care,


Throwback Thursday, 19 November – Bobby pins

KirbigripsWe all know what bobby pins are, right? The little metal or plastic bits you stick in your hair (sometimes head, ouch!) to hold hair in place? I was curious as to where these originated from and so decided to look it up and came across some other fun facts while I was at it.

Originally called the bobbing pin (but also known as the bobby pin, hair grip or kirby grip), it was created in 1899 by a guy in Paris named Luis Marcus. This invention supposedly coincided with a hairstyle known as the bobbed hair or bob cut style, a style which rapidly gained popularity because of the bobby pins.

Typically bobby pins are tinted to look close to hair colours but of course you can get bejewelled ones, ones with flowers on them, or ribbons, or any number of other things to jazz them up a little bit.

But did you know, bobby pins aren’t just used for holding your hair up or making it pretty with decorations? Check out this list of er, suggested uses:

  • Clean the wax out of your ears (I have to be careful about leaving bobby pins laying around my house as they have been known to disappear into someones ear…)
  • Book marks (I like my books so I probably wouldn’t do this)
  • Lock picks (has anyone tried this? I’m sure I did as a kid for shits and giggles and didn’t get anywhere)
  • As clips to hold food packets together (A good alternative if you don’t have a snap lock bag handy I guess)

Do you use your bobby pins for something other than hairstyling? Let me know in the comments below if you do!

Take care,


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Throwback Thursday, 12 November – The Mad Scientist

1017500_10151546113398170_150558799_nIt’s me! Years ago I was doing some external study with Open Universities Australia and one of the topics I was doing happened to be chemistry. At the end of the lab we were playing around, by that I mean we added too much of one chemical to make the fluid turn pink, so that we could take pictures with brightly coloured substances like the one in the picture.

Why? Because this was a novelty. It was the only interaction I ever had with the students…It was two days of an entire semester.

It did make me realise that studying externally wasn’t really making me feel like I was getting value out of doing a science degree. I wasn’t getting that level of interaction with students or teaching staff and wasn’t getting experience working in a laboratory. I ended up taking a year off after that to reassess what I wanted to do with my study. If I should continue doing it, and whether I should just suck it up and do it online or if I should see if I could physically attend university.

Fortunately, Flinders University offers a sort of compromise. Their lectures are available online, which means I don’t need to go into university say three times a week. There are of course lab practicals and tutorials, but for the most part the university provides ones that are outside of work hours, or are close enough to that I only need to leave work half an hour early.

For me this is a perfect fit. I haven’t had to reduce my working hours at all, and I’m able to physically attend those important practicals and tutorials because of the times uni makes them available. Win, win!

Have you had to manage this sort of a juggling act? What compromises have you made for it?

Take care,


Throwback Thursday, 5 November – Cheers!


Well tonight at least… Why? I was promoted this morning! I’ve been at the uni field trip this week and within twenty minute of getting into the office this morning my boss was on the phone offering me a promotion.

My job title will now be Manager, Service Delivery. So I’ll still be doing all my Team Leader responsibilities as that position isn’t being replaced, but I will also be looking after everything from leave requests, performance reviews, everything.

So cheers to that!

Take care,


Picture reference:

Throwback Thursday, 29 October – Coffee and espresso machines

Our coffee machine at work is broken. Technically it might actually be called an espresso machine because it does everything from grinding the beans to frothing the milk, whereas coffee machines I think are just like percolators and what not. But hey, coffee comes out of it at the end of the day.

The coffee machine at work is old, like really old. But not old enough to be antique, but it is so old it did make me wonder what the first coffee machines were like…and so over to good old Google I went.

coffee-percolatorThe first coffee machine was supposedly invented in 1818 and was like a percolator where you apply heat and the heated water infused with the coffee and then it dripped out a tap.

The first coffee filter paper wasn’t invented until 1908 though by a chick just looking to get better tasting coffee. She tried a few different types of paper until landing on blotting paper and finding it the best option, an voila we have filter paper!

traditional_espresso_machine-227x300The first espresso machine was invented in 1822, surprisingly not long after the coffee machine. Though I suppose good coffee can be addicting so one can’t really blame them. The espresso machine used steam to force water through ground coffee, yes a steam powered coffee machine! It definitely looks like a steampunk espresso machine too!

The modern espresso machine that you might see at cafe’s, or in our office (we’re getting a new one, yay!) was invented in 1946 and is all automatic and of course electrically powered. It looks pretty cool though, it’d be awesome if they started bringing out retro coffee/espresso machines cos I tell ya if they looked as cool as this I’d be tempted to get one at home just for show!



Throwback Thursday, 15 October – Motel I’m staying in

What’s your preference, a hotel or a motel? For me it kinda depends on budget. Hotels in Australia can be on the pricey side and I find that generally the motels are just as good and for nearly half the price, so when I’m travelling on a budget I go for a motel. Only to a point though…and that point is staying in Australia. Generally you know what kind of quality your own country is going to provide you for the price, and I’m quite ok staying in motels in my own country, but if I was travelling overseas, it would always be a hotel or resort that I would stay in. Mostly because I find the security is better and they tend to have better ratings.

Which is what I’ve done with this trip I’m on at the moment. I’ve come up to Queensland to attend the Pole Festival, and because attending that in itself cost so much money, not to mention flights, I thought I’d save myself a buck and stay at a motel.

IMAG1301How does this qualify as a “throwback” you ask? Well, the motel itself is from around the 1960s I think, and if it wasn’t for the weird salmon pink colour it’s all painted it would be quite quaint. It doesn’t have an elevator, which I think may kill me with all the workshops I’m doing, it was hard enough lugging a 17kg bag up the stairs let alone how I’m gonna feel when my muscles are sore!

On the inside though it’s not too bad, relatively up to date, the bathroom looks like it was done maybe sometime in the last few years at least, and it’s definitely spacious enough, and most importantly it’s clean.

So although the building itself is a blast from the past, at least they have tried to bring it up to the present and have kept it in a relatively good state of repair, and clean.

Throwback Thursday, 8 October – Makeup: 1985 vs 2015

On a whim, just out of curiosity I thought I’d see how different makeup looked in the year I was born (hint: 1985) to how it looks now. Some of doesn’t look so different, it still looks scary in some instances let me tell you!

The couple of images below are the least scary makeup looks.





It’s the eyes that have changed a lot I think. A lot of the every day looks I see don’t have too much going on around the eyes, it’s more natural, and then combined with a bright beautiful lip colour. Those times when the eyes do have a full on look happening it is usually paired these days with a light or nude coloured lip.

What do you think looks better, the 1985 look or one of the 2015 looks?

Take care,


Picture reference 1985:

Picture reference 2015:

Throwback Thursday, 1 October – iPods

You might not believe this, but the first iPod was only released in 2001. It seems like they have been around forever, and certainly 14 years seems like a long time, especially for a tech product. I mean, how is it that we don’t have chips inserted into our brains yet so that we can access music and the internet just by thinking about it? I’m sure that I read a book about that once, and I’m sure that’s being worked on my someone already!

Anyway, for this week’s Throwback Thursday I thought I’d take a look at the first iPod, the latest iPod and when the different versions came out.

So the first iPod was the iPod Classic and it was released on 23rd October 2001. Oh yeah, I remember these bad boys. And the design of the Classic really doesn’t look all that different even now.

Ipod_1GBut compare this to the latest iPod to be released which was the 6th generation iPod Touch on 15th July 2015.


Think about this, 14 years ago, the Classic was released with 5GB of storage (later came with 10GB), and had a life of about 10 hours when listening to music. The latest Touch comes with anywhere between 16-128GB of storage and can last up to 40 hours listening to music or 8 hours watching video. Huge difference, but what do you think, in 14 years have they come quite far enough or would you have expected more for the iPod by now?

For interests sake, let’s have a look at when the models for the iPod range were released, the first and last model for each category:

  • iPod Classic: 23rd October 2001 – 5th September 2007
  • iPod Mini: 6th January 2004 – 22nd February 2005
  • iPod Nano: 7th September 2005 – 12th September 2012
  • iPod Shuffle: 11th January 2005 – 1st September 2010
  • iPod Touch: 5th September 2007 – 15th July 2015

Interesting development over time huh, moved quite quickly from the scroll pad to being a complete touch screen with the Nano as of the 6th generation, to having the Touch which is well, a bigger version of the touch screen Nano! But then I guess, the Nano screen is a bit too small to see videos on clearly really.

So where do you see this technology going in the future? Maybe we’ll have a Virtual Reality iPod next where you can download songs with official music videos or concerts or intimate shows maybe so you can feel like you’re really getting that immersive experience with music. Or maybe it’ll be holographic, so the iPod projects a little image of the singer or band playing the songs. What do you think?

Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

Take care,


Throwback Thursday, 24 September – Mix that chemical drink…

Today I wanted to share a picture from my Bali holiday earlier this year. So not much of a throwback but it already seems like a distant memory to me!

This picture was taken at a place in Bali called Frankenstein’s Laboratory, and if you’re ever in Bali I’d definitely recommend going there. It’s like Halloween every night, and all of their food and drinks all have suitably creepy names. And if that wasn’t enough their drinks are served in beakers or test tubes  or syringes or even IV bags, it’s pretty cool!

The cocktail I had was the Spine Tingler, which was one that I got to mix myself! It was big enough for two drinks, my partner had the Dead Finger Iced Tea which was properly made with only a splash of coke, it was so potent and then with our dessert we shared a Chocolate Mudskull.

We did also have food, burger and fries with creepy names like Zombie Burger or Dr Frankenstein. They were tasty but it’s hard to make food look “creepy” – and if it was would you eat it? Well, I suppose we did drink the “creepy” looking drinks so that’s a yes lol!

They also put on shows every night, dancing and what not to Michael Jackson songs like Thriller, that was so good. Cool food and drinks, plus a couple of shows while we were there, it was lots of fun!

Below is a picture of me with my Spine Tingler chemistry set, and of my partner with his Dead Finger Iced Tea – the syringe is the shot of coke that went into it. Oh man it was so good!


Have you found any cool places like this, not just in Bali but elsewhere? Let me know in the comments below!

Take care,


Throwback Thursday, 17 September – Aka Froback…

Today I thought I’d post something a little more humorous and put up some funny meme’s about fro’s for a Froback Thursday post instead.






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