Twenty fourteen: An APD to Zombie reflection.

Um, I know it’s like five sleeps till the new year but where on earth did 2014 go? This time last year I was hopping on a plane to Europe! Time sure does fly when you’re having fun, and boy what a year I’ve had. For my last post for 2014, I’m going to reflect. Really, who ever thought I’d be such a good little reflector?

Accredited Practising Dietitian 

BAM. 2014 made. Dream come true. That was an incredible, challenging journey.

 Blogging and Broccoli & Blueberries

I started blogging. It started a little corny with my love affair with food. It’s true, I love food. But then it became broccoli & blueberries. Actually it’s still corny. I like it.

I like blogging too. I’ve been blown away from the lovely messages and support I have received this past six months. I really do appreciate it and I hope I continue to make my lovely readers happy in 2015.

Chobani immersion event & all things coconut

I attended a Chobani immersion event and had the opportunity to learn how to cook with Chobani and discuss the brand’s future directions. I came away with a chopping board, two really nice chobani glass bowls and two new friends. I officially met, in real life, the lovely Sarah and Mardi.

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And can I say, it really nice to meet people that share my enthusiasm for breakfast, peanut butter & broccoli.

And then well. Coconut oil. Coconut sugar. Coconut flour. Coconut water.

But toasted coconut flakes, I do thank you for coming into my life.

Deakinites in Dietetics: Class of 2014

These people are the best. Maybe I’m a little bias, but a group of people that think like me, and vent like me? (Non-dietitian friends consider yourselves lucky – you think I’m bad when I’m ranting.) It’s pretty good. There was so much laughter, love and support. A few babies too. And it really is nice to see where we are all going in our lives. Whether it’s gaining dietitian roles (go team deakin!), travelling or going on to commence a medical degree (Because it seems that studying for 5 years isn’t enough for some).

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Eating way around Melbourne & travelling Europe.

Oh boy, what a year I have. According to my Urbanspoon dineline, my life has been one big food festival since finishing uni. Except November, too many weekends spent at home. As I tick off another brunch spot, I feel I find another two to try. Oh, the pains of living in Melbourne.

And then there was Europe. Can I go back now?

Fabulous friends & fabulous food

Friends come, friends stay and some friends go. And that’s okay. It’s been a really good year and I’m truly chuffed with the friendships I have.

A special mention to those that have kept me sane, read my endless job applications & listened to my regular rants. Whether it’s about paleo, men and everything in between. You are the best.

And the food. Oh man. Just follow my instagram.

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Graduation

Aside from the fact that the graduation ceremony was exactly the same as my undergraduate degree, it was pretty fabulous to tap the left of my cap for the last time & finally accept the testamur I’ve put my heart and soul into achieving.

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Health star rating

In the later half of this year, we have started to see the new Health Star Rating hit our supermarket shelves. I have been lucky to work closely and gain an insight into the new system. The health star rating on some food products really blew my mind. While I don’t think it’s perfect (you can read why here), it’s a pretty damn good start and the best we have.

If not dieting, then what? 

I finally got my hands and read Dr Rick Kausman’s book, If not dieting, then what?

If you are looking for a new book to read this summer, I highly recommend this one.

Jobs

There has been excitement, and there have been tears. I was super lucky to gain a unique position on a 3 month contract. It was challenging, yes. But it has proved invaluable for the knowledge and skills I have gained, and has helped me really establish where I want to go in the dietetic world. So whilst I’m back on the job hunting front and it sucks, I truly believe that the right role is out there for me. 

Kew

My lovely lady Brooke gave me the keys to her and her new husband’s (!!!) place in Kew and access to freshly ground coffee everyday for two months.

House sitting is actually the best. Living alone was pretty damn good too. But I do apologise for the red hair that will forever be popping up around the place.

Layla

My cousin Lisa had a baby! Her name is Layla and she’s perfect.

Moving house & a MacBook Air 

After living in my house in Chadstone for 18 months, I moved. Three times. It was an absolute pain in the but on the day, but each time it has been fabulous. Brunswick, then Kew, and then to Reservoir. I actually feel like I can confidently drive around Melbourne’s southern, eastern and northern suburbs without a GPS now.

I also gave Microsoft the flick and purchased a MacBook Air. It’s beautiful. My fingers dance over the keyboard. It’s true what they say. Once you go Mac, you never go back.

Nice 

I had a really nice day in Nice. A joke that I will pretend never got old on Contiki. 

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Orthorexia

We’ve seen an awareness of a new eating disorder. Orthorexia. An unhealthy obsession with eating foods of the highest quality and purity. I wrote a blog post about it in October and I was overwhelmed by some of the feedback I received on this post.

Pete Evans & the Paleo way

The diet wars went to a whole new level this year. Celebrity chef, and pasta-tasting My Kitchen Rules judge Pete Evans publicly attacked the Dietitians Association of Australia and the National Heart Foundation.

I myself have tried not to get too involved on the blogging level – other Dietitians and health professionals have made some really well written pieces on why the Paleo diet may not fit all. You can read them here, here, here and here.

But I’m still struggling with this fact: 7% of Australians are eating the recommended daily serves of fruit and vegetables, and 35% of our energy intake is coming from discretionary choices. Yet, the dietary guidelines are to blame for our obese nation?

As for Paleo? The promotion of increased fruit and vegetable intake and avoiding processed food is great. That’s the foundation for any healthy diet. It’s the unnecessary cutting out of grains and dairy that concerns me, and the promotion of the one size fits all notion. If you can eat a nutritionally balanced paleo diet and you feel fabulous, by all means go for it. But if you need whole grains or you need yoghurt for breakfast, that is okay.

Quidditch, Quills & the Quibbler 

I’m not going to lie, I googled words beginning with Q. I didn’t even know some of these words existed. Anyway, these words were perfect. Another dream came true this year. I went to the Warner Brother’s Harry Potter Studio tour in London.

HP Studio tour

I saw Dumbledore, I drank butterbeer, I walked through Diagon Alley & I stood on the Knight Bus.

 Best. Day. Ever.

Real food and eating for real change.

 Dr Joanna McMillan presented this Ted Talk and oh my goodness, it was amazing. She sums up pretty much my thoughts. It does go for 17 minutes and forty seconds, but it’s so worth the time.

 I adore this statement she said,

“We’ve got to go back to eating real food. You can choose your ultimate diet as long as you have those core wholefood foundations with lots of plant foods, whether or not you choose to add meat or other animal products. Then you can make it individualised to you. Above all, we absolutely must eat with joy and take pleasure in what we’re doing, or otherwise we won’t do it for the long term.”

She also makes reference to the confusion and just how ridiculous our way of eating is now. We have baskets full of low carb, chocolate covered proteins bars, yet people are scared a banana. She explained a scenario in a Bondi wholefoods store where she asked for her smoothie without the protein powder, because protein powder is processed. She has a point, and to be honest, I haven’t touched a protein bar or bought protein powder since. I wish I could say the same about chocolate. 

South Melbourne Market blogging competition, Scoop Nutrition & Snails.

I entered a blogging competition and actually came second with this post! I won the opportunity to attend a food photography course with Billy Law. Everyone was taking photos of food. It was a little strange.

I became a scoop sub intern with the lovely Emma Stirling from The Scoop on Nutrition which was fabulous! I also wrote this guest post on Healthy Bones Action Week.

And I ate snails.

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Twice.

Tahini

Yes, sesame seed paste deserves some appreciation. This stuff is the absolute bomb.

Uncertainty

 Since June there has been a whole lot of uncertainty in my life. It’s been scary, but it’s also been exciting.

Very beautiful views. 

Can I just say, the views I have seen this year are breathtaking.

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In London, Paris, Lucerne, Nice, Florence, Rome, Venice, Prague, Vienna, Amsterdam. Then back in Australia. Melbourne. The Yarra Valley. The Western District. The Great Ocean Road. Where else have I been? The view of the city from Brooke’s wedding reception at Flemington was also pretty good too. Especially with the bridal party standing on the racecourse. Oh man.

Weddings & putting a ring on it.

One of my best friends became engaged to a lovely man, and I also went to the wedding of two dear friends. And caught the bouquet at both.

I just love weddings.

eXcellent 

I’m getting a little over this. Are you?

Yes & Yolo.

 You said yes didn’t you? Oh well, YOLO.

This year I actually started using the word yolo. Out loud.

 Zombies & Zig Zags.

I also started watching the walking dead the other week. Now, that’s a strange show. Do you have your survival plan for the zombie apocalypse?

And finally, zig zags.

Life is not easy. It doesn’t go as planned. We zig and we zag.

This year I have laughed and I’ve cried. It’s been bloody hard. But I’ve had a whole lot of fun, that’s for sure. Some things really should be taken as water off a ducks back, because life is too short. As Nicole would say, YOLO.

Thanks for popping by. I really do appreciate the time you’ve taken over the past six months to read my posts, comment and share. I do also apologise for this post.

Have a wonderful new years eve folks & I’ll be talking to you in 2015.

Emma xo

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