Queens birthday weekend is nearly here! While many of us celebrate Queens Birthday because it’s a long weekend, it originates from the celebration of the birthday of Queen Elizabeth II. This occurs every year on the first Monday of June. Apart from the Queen’s Birthday Honours list, there are few actual celebrations of the Queen’s birthday. With Monday being a public holiday there are many events happening around New Zealand to celebrate. Make the most of your long weekend and get out and enjoy the great events New Zealand has to offer.
Queens Birthday Ellerslie Races (Monday 6th June): An exciting day of racing at Ellerslie. The prestigious McGregor Grant Steeplechase is the favourite race of the day. It is a great day to get out and have fun with friends and family. Entry is free so go and enjoy racing at its best.
Miss Saigon (20 May – 11 June 2011) The Civic, The Edge, CBD: Feel like going to see a stunning musical? Miss Saigon is about a story of the losses we suffer and the sacrifices we make. It is one of the most stunning theatrical spectacles of all time.
The Legendary Nation (2-4 June 2011) Bruce Mason Centre, Takapuna: This is an entertaining show that will be enjoyed by all ages. Combining amazing choreography and music with detailed costumes and skill you will not want to miss out.
Waiheke Winter Arts Festival 2011 (4 & 5 June 2011): For those of you that love art then head over to Waiheke for the Winter Arts Festival. A collection of open artist studios and galleries, as well as island specialities, will be worth the ferry ride over.
Queen’s Birthday Weekend Fishing Comp (4th June) Kerikeri: If you fancy a spot of fishing head to Kerikeri. There is up to $1200 cash prizes to be won. Try catching the heaviest fish and weigh it in at 4pm on Sunday afternoon at the Homestead to be in to win.
Blues Cruise on the Lakeland Queen (5th June) Rotorua: The Rotorua Blues Festival offers a two hour cruise aboard the Lakeland Queen. You can indulge in some in delicious food and wine, as you listen to some blues music. Sounds like a good way to spend a Sunday
With many great events happening around New Zealand there is sure to be something that will suit you. It’s the last long weekend until Labour Day in October and, although winters here, lets hope for some good weather so can get out and celebrate!
How many of your truly get your five fruit and vegetables every day? It’s so hard to fit that much into your day with all the yummy fatty foods around. Juicers are a perfect way to get more vitamins into your day and be healthy. Natural fruits and vegetables are a rich source of vital nutrients and it is Norman Walker who popularised juicing and its benefits. Today it is very popular in homes, with people wanting to make a healthy and nutritious start to their day.
Centrifugal: Centrifugal juicers are the most common and available in most retail outlets. These machines finely grate fruit and vegetable into small pieces and a blade spins very quickly against a metal strainer to extract the juice. It is loud because of the high speed motor but great for producing large amounts of juice very quickly. This is perfect for the average household who want to make fresh juice but don’t want to go out and buy an expensive juicer.
Masticating: These machines operate by chewing the fruit and vegetable. They squeeze the juice out rather than cutting it against a blade. There is less oxygen in the juice due to the extraction method which means that it won’t decompose as fast. The better extraction means that it is more expensive but if you want the highest quality juice, especially for vegetables, then this is the way to go.
Twin Gear: These machines are by far the most superior as they deliver higher volumes of juice. They crush the fruits and vegetables to create the juice and as a result are more expensive than the other machines. This method create less foam on top, meaning a more smooth and nutritious juice to drink. These are excellent if you own your own cafe or restaurant as you want to be serving your customers the best fresh juice possible to make them come back for more.
Ease of use and cleaning: If you don’t want to spend ages washing up the juicers then look for one that is dishwasher safe and not too complex. Juicers may require a bit of cleaning work, but once you get used to it you will realise that the benefits outweigh the negatives. Think of that fresh glass of juice that you will get every morning!
Fresh juice tastes better, is better for your health and is worth every cent. It is not pasteurised and you can control the amount of sugar you add to the finished product. The type of juicier you want will depend on what fruits and vegetables you are using it for, your budget and the nutrients you want to get. A fresh glass of healthy fruit and vegetable juice is a great way to start your day!
Feel like Sushi for lunch? Sick of spending $10 for your sushi everyday but can’t find the time to make your own sushi? Well Sushezi is the answer. It makes perfect round sushi in your own kitchen without the need to head to your local Japanese sushi restaurant. It is quick and convenient. This means that you can create your sushi the way that you like it instead of trying to pick out the bits that you don’t like.
I love sushi but the idea of fiddling around with the little bamboo mat and then having it collapse puts me off trying to make it myself. It ends up taking far too long to make and then I end up with a bamboo mat full of ingredients and no sushi. The Sushezi makes a perfect large sushi roll and it is quick and efficient.
I gathered all my ingredients and started to assemble it in the sushi maker. It was easy and made lots of perfect sushi that I was proud to serve everyone. All my other attempts at making sushi before the Sushezi had been a disaster. I can now have healthy lunches to take to work without having to go to the mall and buy it everyday. This saves time and money!
It measures 12 inches by 2-1/2 inches. This makes it the perfect size to make not only sushi, but also other yummy things. This is a very versatile product and is fantastic when you want to create the perfect cheese logs and desserts. All the hassle of trying to create the perfect curricular log is now gone!
This is the perfect little tool that everyone should have in their kitchen. You will save time and money to create your own yummy healthy sushi. It is easy to clean up and you can personalise your sushi rolls. Perfect home made sushi can now be a reality.
Feel like going to carnival but there is none in your area or you don’t want to pay for every game? Cat Daddy games have created the fun and exciting Carnival Games for Wii. Everybody loves carnival games and this is the most realistic depiction. It has over 25 games and attractions including Pitch a Plate and Fish Bowl Bounce. It does a great job of re-creating the experience of a trip to the carnival, especially if you have some popcorn and candy floss to snack on. It has sold over 1.5 million copies and is simple interactive fun.
When you first enter the carnival you are asked if you want to play single player or multiplayer. This game is great in multi player for parties allowing for head-to-head competition. You start by creating a crazy cartoon avatar by choosing a hair style, shirt, shoes and so on. As you advance through the game you’ll unlock different outfits and other pieces to customise your character with.
The collection offers 25 interpretations of real life carnival competitions that quickly take you back to your fond childhood memories. Try mirroring the poses of dancing monkeys or use a plate to catch the falling pancakes and you are bound to be left laughing while you watch your competitors. The good variety of games will leave you wanting to go back for more and master them all. There are five carnival areas including Fortune Way, Claw Alley, Love Lane, Lucky Pass and Rodent Row. The games range from tossing a tennis ball into a fish ball to shooting a ball at a clown. Everything looks and feels like you’re in a 1950s carnival.
Just like the real carnival, every time you play the game you can earn tickets. These tickets can be used to buy various outfits and some of the games also need tickets for you to play them. This ignites a competitive drive as you become determined to get the tickets unlock more variations of the games. They can also be used for vending style games such as the Love Tester or The Claw. Goofy stuffed animals can be won as prizes.
There is a diverse selection of carnival games but the controls can make many of them unfun and unplayable. For example to ring the bell at the strong man booth you have to shake the Wii remote rigorously and this can become very repetitive and boring. While it may be fun the first few times the trouble with some of these games is that none of them very enjoyable beyond a couple of plays. However for parties they are great as everyone can enjoy them, they aren’t too hard and no-one has to be left out.
Carnivals are a highlight of many children’s memories. This game has done a great job of bringing carnivals to life through Wii. It takes the hassle out of searching for coins in your pocket for every try and wasting it. If you feel like a carnival fix, then you will love this game. All what you need is some popcorn and candy floss to drift off into carnival dreamland. Master all the classic carnival games and become the carnival champion!
Sidart is simply stunning and that is the word that comes to my head when I think about my experience there. Finally graduating from university meant time to celebrate. Wanting to feel like a princess on my special day, my partner took me out for lunch at Sidart.
The owner, Sid Sahrawat, is originally from India and arrived in New Zealand in 2000. He has opened up his own restaurant Sidart which is located in the heart of Ponsonby. Sidart was judged the “Best New Restaurant” in the 2010 Metro Audi Top 50 Restaurants. As we walked up the stairs to the secluded fine-dining restaurant I knew I was in for a treat. We were greeted at the door and seated near the window to look out at the amazing view. It was so peaceful, sophisticated and romantic.
We decided on the five course lunch special. As I sipped on a glass of their finest champagne, I knew this was the perfect destination for my graduation lunch celebration. Each course was delicious and had so many different flavours that you would think would never go together. The dishes were gorgeously designed and tasted even better.
My personal favourites were the yellow fin tuna with aloe vera, radish and wasabi and the Hawkes Bay lamb with celeriac, beetroot with liquorice cake. Now I know you might be thinking ‘wow I would never put all those foods together’ but wait until you try it and you will realise that it is the perfect combination. The different flavours delivered the taste buds a whole new tasting experience. While I am someone that is never really full, after these 5 courses I was satisfied and was ready to walk on the stage and get capped.
This is the perfect place for a romantic intimate date with your partner. Sidart is an impeccable little restaurant that is sure to earn you brownie points. It is a whole new unique dining experience that I guarantee you will love and always remember.
The iPod Touch generation 4 is an evolutionary leap for iPods and is often called the ‘contract-free’ iPhone. It is the dream choice of MP3 players with a simply an exquisite design. It is significantly thinner, lighter and more amazing than its predecessors. With the addition of cameras, it is simply everything that you need in your pocket for a small personal media player. The iPod touch has come a long way since its debut in 2007.
Design: The design itself is very modern and looks very similar to the iPhone 4. If you thought that the iPhone was thin then the new touch will amaze you as it is considerably thinner and lighter. If you have an older iPod touch you’ll see a huge difference due to the new Retina display which is a great improvement. With a display of 960x 640 LCD it is the iPods highest resolution ever. The text is strong, the graphics are sharp and it is simply stunning. The back is chrome but the problem with this is that you have to take extra care otherwise it gets easily scratched. But overall the design is modern, thin and best MP3 player on the market.
Cameras: The most immediate change to the iPod Touch generation 4 is the addition of cameras. There is one located on the back and the Facetime camera on the front. While it is great to be able to take photos, they are rather low quality and aren’t quite the same resolution that you get with the Iphone4. The cameras zoom is also not very impressive but the video abilities are the complete opposite. The back camera is capable of 720p HD video at 30 frames/ second which is excellent . So while the addition of cameras is great, it won’t replace your digital camera and hopefully with the next generation there will be a higher quality camera.
Internals: The addition of the new Apple A4 processor allows the device to play games and use apps that was not possible with other touch generations. It is significantly faster and will simply amaze you how fast it is compared to the previous generations. This is most visible when you play a game that you previously played on one of the slower predecessors as you will see how much faster the performance is.
Conclusion: Overall this is a fantastic device and a significant upgrade from the first generation touch model. Apple have widened their lead over competition as no other MP3 players have the same features. The amazing Retina display complements the new Apple A4 processor. While there is the addition of cameras, the resolution needs to be improved. This iPod touch is a great upgrade combining modern and fast technology with elegant design. It is the one of the best small personal media player devices out there. If you don’t want an iPhone, due to the monthly fees, then the iPod Touch Generation 4 is seriously worth considering.
Stumbling out of bed on a cold winters morning, rushing to get to work and then finally sitting down only to nearly fall asleep at work. Sound familiar? Wouldn’t it be great to wake up to the smell of hot fresh coffee from your own espresso machine in the morning? Not only would it be right at your fingertips but it would also save you money by not having to go to the cafe every morning to purchase an expensive $5 coffee that adds up to an excessive amount of money in a lifetime.
The coffee making process has been around for centuries. Coffee is unarguably the world’s most favourite drink, with over a million cups of coffee consumed every day. The days of having to use a professional barrister to make our perfect coffee are slowly disappearing. With the rising costs of daily expenses, an espresso machine is great to keep your daily ritual without putting yourself in debt. If you are new to the world of home espresso machines, then seeing the large range of different machines and brands can be a bit overwhelming at first, but think about what would suit you, your budget and your household.
Manual: This is the most basic form of coffee machines and was introduced over 50 years ago. If you are on a tight budget then this is the way to go. It has a water tank in the back and an arm to hold enough coffee grinds to make one coffee. There is a lot of manual labour involved but it also means that you can make your coffee to your liking as you can control the extraction pressure. If you are not very good at making coffee then I would suggest an automatic one as you don’t have to worry about your terrible barrister skills. Due to advances in technology, electronic pumps have replaced most of the labour which is bliss for people that simply want a coffee in the morning and don’t have to put in the effort to get it perfect.
Semi Automatics: Semi automatics are great for the normal family household and represent the next generation of manual espresso machines. They are reasonably priced and easier to operate with less labour than manual machines. However while they are easier to operate, they also have more moving parts. Due to that they are more prone to break down than the manual coffee machines. They still require some knowledge and participation from the user to do the initial process but the machine does the rest of the job. It requires minimum practice to achieve your perfect morning coffee.
Super Automatics: Creating a revolution of their own, super automatics are the next generation of espresso machines. They are fully automatic and have a built in quality grinder. Producing authentic espressos, lattes and cappuccinos in as fast as 60 seconds they are perfect if you are a coffee addict and love your morning ritual. The machine grinds the fresh coffee beans and then brews a fresh cup of coffee with frothed milk all at the push of a button. For those of who you want to feel like it is a brought coffee from the cafe you can pick up ‘cafe-lookalike’ cups from many household department stores. These machines require no experience to operate, have less mess and are very convenient. The coffee beans are automatically disposed into a built in container which means less cleaning up for you. They may be more expensive due to the high end technology but think of all the money you will save in the long run not having to go to Starbucks everyday. If you want a delicious espresso drink quickly and easily in the morning then this is the perfect match.
Conclusion: Coffee is one thing that many people cannot live without, even an addiction some may say. But with the rising cost of coffee at the cafe, espresso machines are becoming the better option and more popular in homes across the world. It is great for when you have people over and want to serve them the perfect coffee with fresh frothy milk. For most households semi automatics will do the job, but if you are looking for ultimate luxury in the coffee world then super automatics are the way to go.
Feel like going to a huge party? Ever dreamed of going to Vegas to experience the insane crazy parties that happen there? Want to have the time of your life? Grabaseat have just released an unheard of deal.
Grabaseat are having their 5th birthday and to celebrate they found an extra 747 in their back yard and have released a massive deal to the public. If you are ready for a package of a lifetime then this is it. The Kiwis are going to show Vegas how they can party and you are not going to want to miss it. Girls pack your tiny bikinis and men starting pumping those muscles as this will be the biggest party you have ever seen. You will be living in luxury at the Tropicana Las Vegas for four nights and there also might be a few surprises along the way so come prepared.
The first 100 seats have been sold and it is now $2299 per person return. So now you are asking, what is the catch? Nothing! The only thing that has to happen for this 747 to take off is to fill the 300 seats. And by how fast the first 100 seats went I imagine the plane will be filled no time, so get your tickets before it is too late. Grab your friends, get ready to party and remember ‘what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas’.
Dep AKL 5:15pm Sun 07 Aug 2011
Arr: LAS 10.35am Sun 07 Aug 2011
Dep LAS 10.00pm Thur 11 Aug 2011
Arr AKL 6.15am Sat 13 Aug 2011
Can you remember playing Guess Who as a child or annoying your parents to play it with you all the time? One of my favourite games on family road trips growing up was Guess Who. I am sure all parents and children alike have their own fond memories of this. Hasbro has now released an upgraded version on the original mystery face guessing game, Guess Who? Mix ‘N Mash Game. You can now create crazy combinations such as a human head with a zombie mouth and dog eyes. Kids will have plentiful amount of enjoyment and fun using their imagination to create faces that may never have been imagined, but surely exists in many children’s realities.
The original game may have been easy but this one is more challenging because you make your own character and the combination possibilities are endless. The rules are simple and easy to learn and can now be played with up to four players. The objective of the game is to ask players yes or no questions to try to guess what crazy characters you created. You pick the mouth, eyes and head which sit on the sturdy pedestal base but you can’t look at your character until you have the correct guess. With over 3000 face choices there are an endless amount of faces that you can create. Once you think you know what character you are, take a guess and if you are right then the other players can reveal the mystery character you created.
This is a great family bonding game and perfect for family game nights. Parents will love seeing their children laughing as they see the funny faces that they come up with. It is recommended for children 8+ but I think that younger children will also enjoy it with some assistance. It has a wide age range appeal so get the whole family together and create some crazy faces. At a reasonable price it is also great for children to give to their friends for birthday presents.
Computer games seem to be taking over many children’s lives so get the family together and play Guess Who? Mix ‘N Mash Game to create some fun and magic together. While children may want to stay attached to the computer, once they start playing the game they will see how addictive it is. The opportunities are endless so it can be played over and over again. With a little bit of creativity and imagination, crazy faces and fun can be made!
Laxing out on the hill of a vineyard, drinking a glass of wine and listening to some local tunes is what springs to my mind when I think of New Zealand music. As a country we should be proud of all the talented New Zealand musicians that are in our own back yard. What better way to celebrate this than having a whole month dedicated to New Zealand music. Despite being a small country we have a vast amount of talented musicians including Holly Smith, Concord Dawn, Bic Runga and OpShop to name a few. The New Zealand music month is a month long promotion run by the NZ Music Commission and it’s in its 11th year of celebrations.
The NZ Music commission spreads the word to media about key releases and live shows so that we all know about the incredible talent that New Zealand has to offer. Along with the New Zealand Music Commissions there are other organisations involved including NZ On Air, RIANZ, APRA, Independent Music NZ and the Radio Broadcasters Association. However just important as these organisations are the media, musicians and public that make it all possible. We should all support our homegrown talent.
This month was first set up to get local radios to play more homegrown music. Now it is a 31 day celebration throughout the whole of New Zealand to celebrate the vast amount of talented musicians. Before New Zealand music month was created the commercial radio didn’t play much local content. Nowadays there is a lot of awareness around homegrown music. According to Broadcasting Minister, Jonathan Coleman, in 2001 11% of music played on commercial radio was Kiwi-made. Today this percentage has risen to around 18%. This success is no doubt contributed by the New Zealand music month.
While it is a great opportunity for us to get out and enjoy and support New Zealand artists it is also excellent exposure for the musicians themselves. Each year we see new talent emerging on the radio. Fortunately getting to this stage isn’t the same long hard road that musicians used to have to face. While there has always been a great amount of music being made not enough people got to hear it or see it so it was very hard for the musicians. New Zealand music month has increased this awareness and now we all know about our favourite homegrown musicians.
New Zealand music month is an excellent opportunity to get out of the house and see our world class musicians all in our own back yard.
We have 5 double passes to give away to the Feelers at the Civic Wintergarden this Sat the 14th May to celebrate NZ Music Month. Joining them will be also be special guests The Aristocrats and Jonny Love. Tell us who your favourite kiwi band is and be in to win.