A Perfume Masterclass at Sweet Fern

31 May 2017

Liana of @findingfemme visits Sweet Fern perfumery in Ballarat

It’s the middle of Heritage Weekend, arguably one the busiest times of the year for me. I organise the annual Ballarat Tweed Ride and advocate for the many brilliant events on over the weekend in my hometown. I also do an annual photoshoot at the steam train and have previously modelled in the catwalk events. This year I am also juggling a play that I’m in which has rehearsals every Sunday, so half my weekend is taken up by that. I’ve also been vlogging the Fernwood Ballarat 12 Week Challenge and tonight is their end of challenge dinner, but I have to photograph my sister first before I go. Yeah, I do a lot. Like, a lot of a lot. So when Sweet Fern asked me to take part in one of their perfume masterclasses this weekend, you can see how much I wanted to go by how much effort I put in to make sure I had the time in my hectic weekend to do so. I am grateful to my past self for making that decision.

A Delightful Duck Dinner

26 May 2017

Today I had the pleasure of attending a lunch hosted by Victoria's own Luv-a-Duck and 3AW. The lunch was a presentation of beautiful dishes with duck as a feature with the 3AW team broadcasting live from the room.

I was excited to get an invitation because I have often used Luv-a-Duck duck fat on my famous roast potatoes since I realised it was readily available in supermarkets. Previously, I had been ordering french duck or goose fat from the Richmond Hill Larder who would ship it to me. It was a frustrating extra step to organise every time I wanted to cook a roast.

The food isn't the only reason why Luv-a-Duck is a familiar name in our lives. Jobs offered by the company at their location in Nhill drew up to 160 Karen refugees to settle in the city. Nhill is a small regional Victoria city which had a population of under 2,300 in the last Australian census. The influx of residents to the city had a flow on effect which has a number figure attached: $40m contribution to the local economy as well as 70 new jobs. Before the influx of Nhill residents, the kindergarten had nearly closed down and the school was not full. Both are now full and new houses are being built. The way the city and company worked with the refugee program is now an example being used to advocate for more programs across Australia.

The lunch was held at Craig's Royal Hotel. The 'Royal' in the title comes from time when Prince Albert came to stay in Ballarat. Tonnes of famous people have graced the building's rooms including Dame Nellie Melba, who would sing across the road at Her Majesty's and stay in the hotel, sometimes coming out on to the balcony to sing to fans below.

To start we had carpaccio of duck ham with labne, pomegranate, cucumber and torn mint. The main was assiette of Wimmera duck, pickled cherries, roasted beetroots and walnuts with duck fat roast potatoes in garlic and rosemary. Dessert fancies were provided by Craig's, which was also exciting because they do a pretty delicious High Tea. We were chuffed to see Lucy from Ballarat Lifestyle Magazine there as well. As usual, I hung out with my sister and bestie Goldfields Girl. She took all the photos with me in them.



5 Top Picks for Ballarat Heritage Weekend

21 May 2017

I'm lucky enough to live in the city that's responsible for Heritage Weekend. It's my favourite event of the year and my family get super involved every year. Here are my top picks for what to do over Heritage Weekend. The theme of this year's weekend is 'Mystery', with a lot of inspiration coming from the Doctor Blake Mysteries TV show.

Statues and Autumn Chills

19 May 2017

Liana of @findingfemme wears navy midi skirt from Review Australia, trench and necktie in Ballarat

One of my favourite things about cold weather blog photos is that the tip of my nose goes bright red. From that alone, I can tell that the weather in the picture is cold. We’ve recently had the first true cold snap of the year. The late hot weather we had been enjoying through the early days of autumn have gone. As I’m writing this, my heater is broken and it is 4 degrees (39.2 F). My fingers are way too cold to be typing, so my usual fast tappity-tap of typing is a sad slow pace.

Hello Runway

14 May 2017

Last night I was lucky enough to go with my siblings to the Hello Runway event organised by Rene of Absolute Weddings. It was a locally organised fashion show with an aim to raise money for cancer research. So many local businesses donated time, services and products in order to make the show happen, such as Blanc Boutique, The Lip Lab, Polly Shoes, Pretty Flamingo Photography, The Makeup Hub and Fringe by Paris to name a few. It was also cool to get a copy of the new Love Drum wedding mag.

Restaurant Ballarat

7 May 2017

Liana of @findingfemme at Restaurant Ballarat presented by Broadsheet

It’s cold in the city. For weeks the trees have been dropping their leaves and they crunch underfoot as I walk through the streets. I stride with my hands in my pockets to keep them warm out of the brisk air. The autumn weather is beautiful and cold, but it’s weather like this that makes you want to warm the heart by warming yourself inside. Picture a cold day, a beautifully laid dinner table, the smell of a roast that someone else has cooked and good wine. This was my afternoon, but instead of snuggling into warm by myself at home, today I’m settling down to a dinner table at the Ballarat Fine Art Gallery.
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