Monday, December 14, 2015

Weekend Activities- Friends, Food, and TSwift

I'm taking a quick break from recapping our New Zealand trip to bring you a little summary of our weekend, because it was epic. 

Christmas Decorations

Friday was unseasonably cool, which was perfect for walking around the city. Peter and I decided to go look at a few Christmas decorations since we have done virtually nothing this year in terms of trying to get into the spirit. I've concluded that a summer Christmas is just never going to feel "real". Christmas and snow/freezing to death are basically synonymous for me and while I enjoy the warmer weather, it feels a bit odd. Plus, Australia isn't quite as Christmas-obsessed as America, so you can actually walk into a store and not hear Christmas music/be bombarded with decorations from October until the New Year. Actually, I don't think I've heard a single Christmas song this year, which is kind of nice. Usually around this time I'm at the point where the thought of listening to Mariah Carey's 'All I Want for Christmas is You' one more time makes me physically ill. 

Anyway, we headed over to Federation Square to look at the Lego tree:
 We then walked a few blocks to the City Square, where there's a really cute Christmas display.
It was fun to get out and enjoy what will likely be our last Christmas on this side of the world!

Taylor Swift Concert

I purchased tickets to the 1989 tour more than a year ago and have been counting down the days ever since. I am a HUGE Taylor Swift fan, and she did not disappoint! Since Peter doesn't appreciate TSwift quite as much as I do, I went with Lauren, who sported this epic t-shirt:
Lauren used to be Team Katy (Perry) but I think she has finally seen the light after the concert ;).

We had somewhat of a crisis right before the above picture was taken. I had downloaded our tickets to my phone through the ticketing app, but when we arrived, the app was completely down and the tickets wouldn't load. I had taken a screen shot of one ticket, but for some reason not the other. Just as I was prepared to leave Lauren in the dust (just kidding!), we got it all sorted out at the ticket window. It turns out, everyone else in line was having the same problem, and we were eventually given paper tickets and all was well. For a moment, I thought we were going to have to try to break into the stadium, which I would most definitely do to see Taylor.

We sat in the last section on the floor, which was all good until Taylor came on and two girls a couple rows in front of us stood on their chairs, completely blocking our view. We fumed in silence for a few minutes until Lauren heroically climbed over three rows of chairs to tell them to sit down. Sort of awkward, but totally worth it.
The crowd was predictably diverse, because let's face it, everyone loves Taylor. There were tons of teenage girls, which is to be expected, but we also spotted middle aged women without children, a mom and her two sons, three college-age guys, and even a couple of grandparents. Taylor transcends age...she is basically superhuman.

I apologize for the low quality photos...I brought my digital camera but was just too excited and totally forgot to use it. 

See her! That blob in the middle!!!
She sang a couple of her old songs, which I loved, and my favorite song of all time, 'Clean'.
We were given light-up bracelets on the way into the stadium that were activated when Taylor started and switched between various colors throughout the concert.
 Fireworks at the end!
 And because it would be a crime to blog about the concert and not include a video, here is a clip of "Shake it Off". You're welcome.

Basically, it was the best three hours of my life.

One note about the concert: it was shockingly quiet. There were definitely screaming fans and lots of cheering, singing, and dancing, but it was noticeably quieter than any concert I've ever seen. This is the first show I've been to in Australia, and it could have just been a fluke, but it was definitely toned down and left me wondering if there is some truth to the 'Americans-are-super-loud-and-hyperactive' stereotype (Lauren says yes). The venue was also pretty small, so that could have accounted for the relatively calm atmosphere, I suppose.

Hanukkah Party

On Saturday, we headed over to Sylvie's boyfriend Ari's house for what was intended to be a Star Wars marathon. Turns out we never made it past the kitchen table, didn't end up watching a second of Star Wars (which was fine with me!) and instead ate for a solid 10 hours. I'm not even kidding. We ate SO MUCH. Ari and his housemate are really good cooks, and they just kept bringing out amazing food: pizza, chicken wings, donuts, salad, dips, pineapple beer (amazing), and probably a bunch of stuff I'm forgetting. Exciting news- I  broke my previous record for number of donuts consumed in one day! The new record may or may not be 10. I figure the world record can't be that far off, so I might go for it...stay tuned.

On Sunday, Sylvie hosted a party to celebrate the last day of Hanukkah. We all brought food and I ate way too much again (theme of the weekend) and then we each lit a candle and those who celebrate sang a prayer.
I'm usually the 'wine friend' (aka the one who can't cook so I bring the wine instead) but I decided to contribute something edible this year. I considered a traditional Jewish dish, but I didn't want to completely butcher it, so I went with peppermint bark. It's basically dark and white chocolate with crushed peppermint on top and is my current obsession.
Overall, an awesome weekend full of friends, food, and Taylor. Really, what more could a person ask for?

Back to New Zealand posts tomorrow with a recap of our jet boat adventure!


  1. Thanks for the post. People who are really concerned about their next travelling experience may take help from the travel videos and road maps as they can help you in making your trip a memorable one. If you are planning to visit Spain then you must have the Spain Road Map along with you to make it affordable and memorable.

  2. Good'ay! Nice to find another American living in Melbourne. I just stumbled upon your blog via the GoodMigrations button on Alkeks Abroad blog, so I have two new bloggers to follow! We're also American expats living in Melbourne and previously were in Poland and Turkey. Enjoy the warm holidays here! :) Joy @MyTravelingJoys

    1. Thanks for stopping by my blog! It's always nice to connect with fellow American expats. Where in Melbourne are you living? The heat this weekend was UNBEARABLE...hope you managed to stay cool :).



Welcome! I started Laura and Peter Down Under in July 2014 when my husband and I moved from the States to Melbourne, Australia for his job. I blog about expat life, our travels, food, and whatever else comes to mind. Follow along on our adventures Down Under!



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