44. Almost $18,000 raised this year

Each year organisers of The Fur Ball rally together for Hunter Animal Rescue (HAR) raising much needed funds to save the lives of local animals. Over 230 people dressed up and dug deep into their pockets at the Merewether Surfhouse to raise almost $18,000.  

President of HAR, Jaimie Abbott, invited her good friend Tim Robards (pictured above with me) to be Master of Ceremonies for the evening. Tim is Australia’s first bachelor to appear on the TV show “The Bachelor”.  

See how you can help HAR here

Watch out for the 2015 Fur Ball around this time next year!

24. Euro Patisserie and Cafe

Today I met one of my BNI friends for a short business meeting and simply could not resist ordering from the amazing selection of quality pastries on offer.  This cafe never disappoints.  These divine taste sensations are made from scratch using the freshest ingredients and traditional baking methods. 

Such a convenient location at 68 Orchardtown Road, New Lambton and with plenty of parking out front or across the street why not treat yourself to breakfast or lunch.

Breakfast Menu
Lunch Menu
Beverage Menu

Do yourself a favour if you haven’t already, stop in and check out the cake cabinet or enquire about their catering services.  You will be delighted !

23. Twilight Dinner Cruise

Well my videoing techniques need improving but what a fabulous way to finish off a working week!  A dinner cruise on Port Stephens accompanied by my daughter and dolphins!

We booked Moonshadow Cruises for their Twilight Dinner Cruise.  It was the perfect way to take in the beautiful scenery, tell each other our latest news, listen to some live entertainment on board and dig into a modern Australian buffet.   There was plenty of fresh seafood, tasty meats, a variety of salads, some vegetarian options and a large selection of desserts including my favourite, Pavlova.

But before all this, we were blessed with a pod of dolphins who surfed the bow of the boat as we polished off our appetisers and watched a typically sensational Australian sunset over the water.

We opted for the cruise leaving from Nelson Bay marina which is just an hour north of home but Moonshadow Cruises also sail around Newcastle Harbour and have a vast variety of cruises to choose from.  

Check them out and book your own cruise!  

15: Special Place for Special Occasions

Well this place never ever disappoints!  

Weather you’re celebrating a special occasion like my friends and me for my birthday or an excuse for a quiet dinner for two to get out of cooking Rustica will definitely delight and tantalise the tastebuds.  

Almost everyone at our table decided on a dish that two can share.  The Slow Braised ‘Kleftico’ Lamb Shoulder with Oregano Potatoes, Greens & Walnuts  – excellent value at just $58.  For me, a Slow-Cooked Pork Belly with Spice Roasted Cauliflower,  Walnut Tarator & Pomegranate – simply sensational.

You will be delighted with the rest of the menu including desserts and wine list but most of all the staff are attentive, friendly and add to the experience.

 Located opposite Newcastle Beach it’s the ideal destination for any function with a wonderful view through a wall of windows.

For general event information or for any special requirements call Will Creedon (the owner) to discuss your event – eat@rustica.com.au or (02) 4929 3333.  Vouchers are also available.

You could also like Rustica on Facebook



If you haven’t been already then this weekend is your last chance you can experience Snow Time at the Hunter Valley Gardens.  Take the whole family and enjoy activities like ice skating, tobogganing, show off your skills on the mechanical snow board and alpine racers, attend an origami workshop, join the snow ball challenge or watch the kids get creative making a snowman or snow angel.  There will also be Husky racing demonstrations and live ice sculpting.  Remember this Sunday 14th July is your last chance!

All of these listed activities are FREE after paying the Garden entry so visit www.huntervalleygardens.com.au for further details.