This post is my final entry into the Kidspot Voices of 2015 #FordThinking Competition
Life can move pretty quickly sometimes. It’s so easy to get caught up in work, chores, work, dinners, work, more dinners… Whole weeks can seem like groundhog day, and it’s easy to burn out.
I was given the chance to experience the all-new Ford Mondeo for 6 weeks, which turned out to be a blessing in disguise. Admittedly, I was super excited to zip around in a flashy new car, and really enjoyed discovering all the features (hello voice controlled navigation system!).
I had planned some day trips to make the most of the car and one of them was a road trip to the Dandenong Ranges with some friends, to enjoy some spicy baked beans and do some exploring.
What I didn’t expect was the sheer impact of just…stopping.
Taking time out to do the things you really love is so important. For me, that’s cooking for my friends and family. For someone else, it could be base jumping; for others it might be writing. It doesn’t matter what it is – it only matters that you do it.
It matters that the phones are put down. It matters that you forget about refreshing your inbox.
As I sit here and reflect on my 6 weeks with the Ford Mondeo, I’m remembering all the experiences the car allowed. I remembered the fun road trips, the assisted reverse parking (seriously futuristic…), the quick errands, the outdoor cook ups, the fuel efficiency of the car (for real though) and the early morning market adventures navigating Melbourne’s lane-ways (the inbuilt GPS was super handy here).
I loved having a fantastic, safe car to get me from A to B, but ultimately the experiences it enabled me create are what I’ll remember.
The ability to jump into a car with impeccable safety features and an intuitive command centre, which ensured I arrived at my destination safely meant I could focus my energy on driving and the experience at hand.
The voice activated navigation system used GPS technology to seamlessly guide us to our destination which allowed for chit chat, banter and some singing along to J-Beib’s* new song Where are U Now (Is anyone else out there obsessed? Please say yes).
The value of escaping our habitual Saturdays and taking a day to re-connect (with others and ourselves) helped restore my balance, inspiration and I felt re-aligned. For once, the thoughts of emails and work were nowhere to be found.
We explored the local town of Sassafrass to find some fresh ingredients then made our way up to the national park. After a little exploring, we found the perfect spot to set up our picnic.
I made rich tomato baked beans and hot black coffee from a French press and we ate, drank and laughed until it started to rain. We also visited some piggies! We returned to Melbourne with our bellies satisfied and hearts full.
I’d urge you to take some time to re-connect with what you love doing. Here’s a small list to get your imagination running:
- Block out 3 hours and take a book you have been meaning to read to the park. Leave your phone at home.
- Organise a pot luck dinner with your friends. Employ a strict no phones rule at the table. You’d be surprised how nice it is.
- Pack the family into the car and go for a drive. To the nearest rainforest walk. Lake. Beach. Botanical Gardens. Don’t forget water and snacks!
- Make yourself a lovely dinner for one. Slow roast lamb shoulder? Make your own gnocchi? A glass of wine to match?
- Pack the car for an outdoor cook up! All you need is to pack your ingredients, camping plates and cutlery and a small camper gas stove (if making a hot dish)
- Spend some time helping a friend move house, pack or spring clean
- Join the local sports team of that sport you were so good at when you were younger
I am really sad to see the car go as it has officially taken first place in my heart as my #1 car to drive. I’ll now have to rely on my friends for these getaway adventures, but I will forever be grateful for the fantastic experiences and opportunities it’s afforded me – especially giving me some precious time to re-connect.
What would your ideal day off look like? How do you re-connect to what’s important?
Have a wonderful day, Bec x
*This is the first time Justin Bieber has been mentioned on Dancing Through Sunday and will hopefully be the last.
You can see my other adventures featuring the Ford Mondeo here:
- 1 x 400g tin beans (such as haricot, butter, borlotti or cannellini)
- 1 x 400g tin dices tomatoes
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 chili finely crushed
- 1 garlic clove, crushed finely
- 2 teaspoons Dijon or wholegrain mustard
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce (Worcestershire if you aren't vegetarian)
- 1 teaspoon freshly chopped oregano
- salt and pepper
- crusty toast to serve
- parmesan (if desired)
- Drain and rinse beans and set aside.
- Finely chop the onion and garlic and chilli.
- In a saucepan, heat oil and cook onion, chilli and garlic for 3 minutes until soft and fragrant. Add tomatoes, soy sauce sauce and mustard.
- Once tomato sauce is simmering, add the beans and stir to combine.
- Add the chopped oregano, salt, pepper and a sprinkle of sugar if you wish and let simmer for 10-12 minutes until the beans thicken.
- Serve with crusty bread, toast, chives and top with sour cream.