Lunch Out Loud to support those with Perinatal Anxiety and Depression #bePNDaware (The Bach Eatery, Newtown)

#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown

I went to a fabulous long lunch at The Bach Eatery in Newtown. The event was for the start of PNDA (Perinatal Depression and Anxiety) Awareness Week (November 15-21). Ten ladies lunching over the “Trust the Chef” menu ($45/head or $55 with dessert), listening to some amazing women who have been through anxiety and depression brought on by, or exacerbated by, the birth of their children.


#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown
Freshly Shucked Sydney Rock Oysters & NZ Cloudy Bay Clams w/Chardonnay Vinegar

#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown
Pino’s Charcuterie tasting plate

#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown
Cuttlefish, peperonata, squid ink dressing

#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown
Salt Cod Croquettes w/ Kaitaia Fire Mayo

You may have noticed that this year there has been a name change to Perinatal Anxiety and Depression (PNDA) Awareness Week. This change is in response to the importance of including two words:

Perinatal – Supporting parents’ mental health throughout the perinatal period (during pregnancy and after birth). We need to consider a parent’s wellbeing across this continuum, rather than viewing these periods as separate.
Anxiety – Now believed to be just as, if not more, common than depression. Symptoms of anxiety vary, however they can be just as debilitating as depression

The stories I heard yesterday and from my networks of family and friends have certainly highlighted to be the absolute terror some new parents feel upon the arrival of bub. And the isolation they feel, all the while putting on a “brave” face.


#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown
The SHINING star of our dishes – Papparedelle w/wild mushroom ragout & slow cooked egg. I kept going back for more!

#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown
Flank Steak w/ homemade “chups” & Red Wine Sauce

#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown
16 Hour Slow Cooked Lamb Shoulder w/ eggplant, roasted heirloom carrots & mint almonds – So melt in the mouth!

Chatting to the others about what some signs might be that a new mum (or dad) is struggling, Amy pointed out that the words “When did you stop breastfeeding?” from one new mum were often a red flag to say she’s struggling with something. It could just be with the feeding, or the question of when to try a bottle or solids, but it can also flag deeper issues around how Mum and bub are travelling.


#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown
Kiplers & Kumara w/ fried chili, garlic and Rosemary

#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown
(Super Crunchy!!) Iceberg Wedge w/ Bach Dressing

PANDA is channeling Winnie-the-Pooh this year…


And encouraging family and friends to check in with the new mums and dads in their lives, getting them out of the house, having a meal or a coffee, and a chat.

But also to host a “Lunch Out Loud” to raise funds and awareness to support people with Perinatal Anxiety and/or Depression. Information and ideas to host your won Lunch Out Loud are available here :)

Five easy steps to enjoying your Lunch Out Loud
1. Set the date- PNDA Awareness week is officially from Nov 15-21, however you can hold your event anytime during November and December.
2. Invite guests- Invite as many people as your venue can handle- at home, in a restaurant/café or at work.
3. Use social media- Facebook is a great way to promote and plan your Lunch Out Loud. Set up and event page, invite your guests and keep them updated in preparation for your event.
4. Collect funds- you can accept donations, hold a raffle, charge an entry donation, hold a bake sale- the possibilities are endless!
5. Most importantly, have FUN – At PANDA we hear every day that parenthood is tough; friendship and support are a great first step in this unique journey.


#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown
Hokey pokey brulee (OMG. GET THIS!)

#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown
Pavlova in a glass

#bePNDaware Lunch out Loud at Bach Eatery Newtown
“Jelly Tip” w/ white chocolate mousse

Funds raised from Lunch Out Loud support PANDA, which offers counseling through a free National Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Helpline, information, and referral services with ongoing telephone support for families throughout Australia.

PANDA’s Helpline: 1300 726 306 (operates Monday to Friday from 10am to 5pm EST).
Lifeline: 13 11 14

Better Homes & Gardens Live (coming to Sydney and Perth)

yeah joh griggs
Mama isn’t a Joh Griggs fan, but since she sponsor for me for LIPTEMBER mum is cool with JGriggsy

better homes

Fiona was invited to the launch lunch


Yeah, I know there’s no such thing as a free lunch, but…..

chocolte, hey?


I’ve been getting seriously good use out of my pensioner Opal card lately. $2.50 to travel all day on Newcastle and Sydney trains, buses, ferries and light rail, that’s awesome! And yes, you may be jealous, but I have it because they reckon I can only work 15 hours a week when I DO get a job, and so they give me some perks like cheaper meds to keep me less crazy, and cheap travel so I can apply for jobs and be able to jump on a train to meet awesome people and eat delicious food and consume great wine in the blink of an eye.

a vroom ford

So, this vroom of a classic blue Ford Falcon belongs to Jason Hodges, who bought it 21 years ago for $3k, but claims it is worth $30k now.


I’m also perfecting my “snoozing on the train” technique. It’s helped when I wear a beanie, so I can rest my head on the window, and my cardi of choice is more of a poncho / knitted wrap. So I curl up, and tend to miss half the trip. It’s wonderful.

travel gear
Totally travel ready.



So, one of the things I’ve got to with my awesomeness ticket, is off to The Greens, which is right next to North Sydney Oval. I went there to be fed, and to be informed about all the awesome stuff at the Better Homes and Gardens “Live” weekend expos that are happening in Perth in October and Sydney in November.


An amazing lunch, though I think “dill” was the herb of choice



A delightful Shiraz

And some chocolate making to ice to ice the cake




better homes
A Ms Johanna Griggs also Sponsored me for Liptember!

If you wanna go to the show, the details are:

23-25 October, 2015
Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre
Tickets from $18 for adults for a day pass!

13-15 November, 2015
Sydney Showground (catch the train!)
Tix from $18 GA, $38.50 for the high tea, more for masterclasses.

BONUS! use my code: M109830 and get 30% off your tickets!

I'm a mouse! Sponsor me for #liptember : mwah!
I’m a mouse! Sponsor me for #liptember : mwah!


Hello Jo! #liptember #bhglive @bhgaus @betterhomesandgardenslive #shesalsodrinkingshiraz sponsor me for @liptember :

Lunch Under $10 – Bahn Mi / Vietnamese Pork Roll, Charlestown

Bahn Mi, Vietnamese Pork Roll, Charlestown French Hot Bread Shop

There is a delicious Vietnamese Pork Roll available from the French Hot Bread shop on the Pacific Highway at Charlestown.

$5.50 gets you this beauty, with a great balance of soy and coriander, and a crunchy fresh roll.

I may have had two last week ;)

French Hot Bread
182 Pacific Hwy,
Charlestown NSW 2290
(02) 4942 2690

Cafe Macquarie, Belmont

Cafe Macquarie Belmont Iced Coffee
Iced Coffee

Just back from a very filling lunch at the (surprisingly hipster) Cafe Macquarie in Belmont. Why surprisingly? Well, I just didn’t picture mason jar iced coffees in the highway suburb of Belmont. Nor the haloumi salad with quinoa that I nommed down!

Cafe Macquarie Belmont Haloumi Salad
Haloumi Salad with quinoa and greens, $17.50

The greens were a lovely mix – snow peas, broccoli, asparagus, fresh mint leaves, baby spinach and sprouts, with the crunch of pistachio nuts and the zesty lemon juice.

Cafe Macquarie Belmont
Club sandwich with chips, $15.50

These chips were awesomely crunchy! Would be lovely on their own or with their house made aioli.

Cafe Macquarie Belmont Cappuccino
Skinny Cap

The cafe was also involved in the “Block by Block” street art project that’s brightened up the ageing building in the area

Cafe Macquarie
26a Macquarie Street
Belmont, NSW 2280
02 4947 0658

Aroma’s Cafe, Glendale

Aroma’s is the cafe we tend to go to when, it’s lunchish and we haven’t yet eaten, but would also like to head to K-Mart or Bunnings (but that’s moving soon!) or perhaps to browse at EB games ;)

purple coffee aroma's glendale

(yes, we have a Kinnect. Yes, I own a fitness game. I got the older version that DOESN’T have Michelle Bridges, because she makes me gag)

Aromans big breakfast

So we brunch… the “big breakfast” is above, and the yummy Spinach and feta quiche with chips and salad below.

spinach feta quiche chips salad

Coffees and meals always satisfy!