Hi all, Mr Lucas Lifestyle here! A few years ago I would have scoffed at people riding down the highway as we whizzed past in air conditioned comfort. The idea of riding long distance was absolutely ridiculous in my opinion. All that changed after riding in my first Gibb River mountain bike challenge. I started to wonder if it was possible for me to complete an epic journey that I could bore my grandkids with one day! I still have the dream of riding from Darwin to Adelaide sometime in the future but I thought I’d better test my abilities with something a bit smaller. A nice three day journey along the iconic Great Ocean Road seemed perfect! After a bit of planning and booking of caravan parks we lobbed into Warrnambool. I had fit my Giant Anthem 29’er with slick tyres and a mirror for this ride so all I had to do was give it a quick service and I was all set.


With Lyrics Born singing “I changed my mind” (prophetic maybe?) in my single earpiece I set out from Surfside Caravan Park. It was a steep climb up to the main road but my fresh legs were up to the task. The first fifty kilometres of the journey winds through farmland, mainly Dairy farms with a few sheep here and there. A few blogs I’ve read about this ride call it boring but the country boy in me quite enjoyed it! The only thing bothering me was a vicious headwind that I figured I’d have as a constant companion over the next few days. This was more or less correct; sometimes it switched to a vicious side wind that would blow me further out into the traffic!                                                                                                               I caught up with my pit crew about 5km from the coast, topped up my camelback and had a bite to eat. Once I hit the coast things were a bit more interesting, it’s hard to keep attention on the road when the sea and the cliffs are so spectacular. I felt like a bit of a tool riding past all the attractions but I figured once I got off my bike we could drive back and have a proper look which is exactly what we did.                                                                          The descent into Pt Campbell was great! Big sweeping downhill runs nearly all the way. I tried to catch a couple in their giant fifth wheeler but just as I was about to sneak past we reached the flats and they pulled away, bummer! Once I had a shower and some lunch we drove back and had a look at the Grotto, London Bridge and then drove further on and visited the Twelve Apostles. Very inspiring coastline and i got a sneak peek at the first twelve kilometres of tomorrows ride.


I woke up early this morning expecting a bit of soreness in the legs but nothing!! I was stoked, must have been all of the walking we did in the afternoon and the stretching I did when I got in. I was starving so I had a huge omelette washed down with a black coffee and a heap of water. The blogs I’ve read say this is the hardest day by far so I was a bit nervous to say the least. The climb out of town is very steep but that is just a warning of things to come. For the first eighteen kilometres the ride is very pleasant, I got some good footage from my Contour HD camera  as I breezed along the coast thinking “this isn’t so bad, the other guys must be weak”. I was soon bought back to earth with a shattering thud when all of a sudden the road left the coast and started heading into the hills. For the next few hours I just climbed and climbed. I thought about writing to the Victorian tourist bureau and suggesting the change the roads name to “The great stinking pile of crap, where’s the friggin ocean road” Many a time I had to unclip and get my breath back and have a break from the constant grind uphill.                                                                                                                            By the time I reached Lavers Hill for lunch I was a shattered man. My pit crew met me there for lunch with the exciting news that it was only forty five kilometres to Apollo Bay! They might as well have said four hundred, my legs were jelly and I was seriously questioning my sanity.

After a good feed and half a bottle of Coke I was feeling halfway human again so before I chickened out I hopped back on the bike and pushed on. As I left Lavers Hill the road shot down the other side so I was soon rocketing along, pushing a top speed of 59.1 kph. Was I happy? NO!! Why? All I could think while descending was “please stop going downhill because I knew that at some stage I am going to have to climb out of here”.                       Once I reached the bottom the scenery was beautiful, not that it hadn’t been all day but I got a chance to take it all in. I rolled through the countryside thoroughly enjoying myself but before long I was ascending again. It wasn’t as bad this time for some reason. I was really getting into it, just pacing myself and getting into a good rhythm with a low gear.

The last five kilometres into Apollo Bay was a steep one, I could smell the cold beer in my Engel and nothing was going to stop me, well except for the crazy woman in the 4WD that nearly wiped me out in the main street! Another day down, the hardest riding I have ever done. I’ve ridden the 147km Bay in a Day ride from Darwin to Mandorah twice before but this was far harder for me. I’m too heavy for hill climbs like that. Good incentive to strip another 10kg from my frame.



Woke up early again feeling pretty good!  Amazed at my recovering ability, I rolled out my aching muscles yesterday arvo and spent a good amount of time  in the pool walking up and down and stretching.

Today was exactly how I imagined the Great Ocean Road to be, winding roads along the great coastline. Watching waves rolling in and crashing onto the rocks, flying downhill into small townships, climbing up to the next headland then doing it all again into the next township. I met the pit crew in Lorne and decided I deserved a pie! We were meeting up at Anglesea for lunch so I didn’t stay long. I don’t know if it was the pie or what but by the time I pulled into the park by the water in Anglesea I was feeling very ordinary. I had a bit of a mix up with my crew so they weren’t there so I had a small camp on a park bench and finished off all of my water. I had read in various blogs that there is one last big climb before descending into Torquay and for some reason it was freaking me out! Kylie and the kids had already dropped the caravan off and they told me it wasn’t too bad but I had convinced myself they were sparing me the gory details.

When I finally could put it off no longer I remounted and got on with it. I was surprised that in no time I was at the top of the range and soon my GPS told me I was only ten kilometres from my destination. All of a sudden I had a huge burst of energy. I was ploughing down the descents then absolutely smashing the hills. I felt great! As I hit the outskirts of Torquay I came upon a roadworks area with a 40km speed limit. I couldn’t help myself and clocked 47kph through there, what a rebel! I was going so fast I beat my pit crew to the Caravan park and had to ride around in circles trying to find our caravan before they rocked up and saved me. FINISHED!!!!!

Well that was it, two hundred and fifty odd kilometres with no real damage done. A bit of a sore butt and shoulders but what an experience! Very proud of myself and keen for the next big adventure.


Wow what an amazing 3 days we have had. It all started at Warnambool Vic where we started our journey along the Great Ocean Road.  There is one little twist to this 3 day journey along this well known stretch of road and that is Mr Lucas Lifestyle rode it on a push bike. That’s right you are reading this correctly, he hopped on his push bike in Warnambool and under his own steam peddled for 67Km and ended up in Port Campbell. Day 2 was a much harder and longer day for Mr Lucas Lifestyle with a 98Km uphill ride ending in Apollo Bay. Day 3 was a little shorter and not quite as hard as day 2 with only 90Km and not as much uphill with the day ending in Torquey. Matt will post a full count on this ride in the next few days (after he recovers).

Berries!!! Berries remind me so much of the Christmas holidays, the hot sun and refreshing cold berries for an afternoon snack or desert. So when opportunity came knocking at the door to go and pick some fresh strawberries and blackberries we all jumped at it. Berry picking took place at the end of day 1 of Matt’s ride. We took a quick little 15min drive inland to a town called Timboon, and headed out to the berry farm. We were greeted by the owners of the farm, an elderly couple in their 70’s. They had owned the farm for around 20 years and were very knowledgeable. At $8.50 a Kg we just couldn’t help ourselves and picked over a Kg of fresh berries, we where even permitted to have a little sample while we were picking. The biggest berry of the day went to Tiana who picked a 96g strawberry, and it was sweet and tasty. So with fresh berries and a look around the area we headed on home to our van where we had this divine fresh fruit salad and custard for desert.

Fresh strawberries

Fresh blackberries

Fresh Mango

Halve the strawberries and place them in a bowl, then spread the blackberries over the top. Cut the checks of the mango and scoop it from the skin, dice and add it to the berry mix. Mix gently and serve with custard. It’s so refreshing and yummy!


What can I say we have just driven through some of the prettiest countryside the past few days. We have travelled from Shoalhaven Heads in NSW to Phillip Island in VIC, along the Princes Highway. I loved travelling along the road and seeing all the different wild flowers out in bloom, they were so lovely.








So back on task we are now in Phillip Island and enjoying some of the sights, but the one place that really took my fancy was the Chocolate factory. Who doesn’t love chocolate, but if you are like me and can’t tolerate the dairy that they put into a lot of chocolate you will like this place, for there dark chocolate does not contain dairy. (guess who was now in chocolate heaven)

Processes to get chocolate

The process starts right back at the cocoa tree, where the cocoa pods are harvested. Harvest takes place every 6 months and the pods need to sound hollow and have a pale yellow through to deep red colour about them. Now that the pods are harvested they are cut open ever so carefully as not to damage the beans inside. The beans are then removed from the pod and left to ferment for around five to seven days. After this time the beans are spread out and left to dry in the sun for about six more days. Now we are starting to get down to the tasty part of this process, the roasting. The dried beans are then roasted; this brings out their flavour and also removes the remaining water content that they have. Roasting temperatures and times affect the taste of the cocoa. This is the point at which some people will recognise cocoa. After being roasted they are then put through a crusher to remove the shell and reveal the nibs that are inside. The nibs are what chocolate is made from. Nibs are also very nice to eat just the way they are. Grinding the nibs together produces a paste like consistency called cocoa liquor. The reason the roasted nuts turn to a paste is due to their high oil content which is then pressed out of the liquor, forming 2 parts to the original nib. Cocoa butter (oil) and cocoa cake (ground into cocoa powder). Not long now till we have sweet sweet Chocolate. Cocoa butter is then mixed with some cocoa liquor, sugar, lecithin and other ingredients to form chocolate.

So there you have it in short that is how chocolate is made. 🙂


4th December 2012


OK it’s been just over a month since my last hair challenge post and all is going well. I am using a bi-carb wash once a week to 10 days to get rid of the extra oil, and I am loving the results. I have tried using an apple cider vinegar to condition my hair as well but that just resulted in having oily hair within a couple of days. So in conclusion to my hair challenge, I will be sticking to washing my hair with bi-carb soda. My husband as mentioned in the last hair challenge post has also taken on the challenge and is finding it is working well. I will mention that he isn’t using bi-carb soda as a shampoo like myself he is just using water. Both of our hair is looking shinny, clean and healthy. I don’t think either of us will be reverting back to using commercially made hair products. I would love to hear your thoughts about the whole no poo challenge.


I’m always looking for different ways to present my eggs and I saw this one, one day when I was looking at recipes and just fell in love with it. All that is required for this is a capsicum and eggs. Such a simple idea and fantastic presentation that is all edible and less washing up 🙂 got to be pleased with that.

If you have any suggestions of what else you could use as egg rings please let me know I would love to hear about it.


It’s a very special day today for us here at Lucas Lifestyle, It’s our babies 10th birthday. That’s right people we now have all our children in double digits. Not only is it our babies 10th it’s also her grandfathers 70th in 2 more days. So celebrations  galore was to be had for the whole day.













1  cup Sugar

1 cup Gluten free SR Flour

½ tsp xantham / gare Gum

½ tsp salt

1 ¾ cup egg white

1 ½ tsp cream of tartar


  • Preheat your oven to 175 degrees.
  • Place the Sugar into the TM bowl and grind for 30 sec / speed 7.
  • Place the Butterfly into the TM bowl and then add the flour, salt and gum and aerate speed 3 / 30 sec.
  • Carefully place your flour sugar mix into a separate bowl and set aside.
  • You now have to clean out your TM bowl but please do this with a dry cloth to get all the flour out so that it doesn’t contaminate the egg whites.
  • Insert the Butterfly into the TM bowl, followed by the egg whites, water and cream of tartar. Beat with the MC off 50 degrees / 3 -5 min / speed 4.
  • You now need to place half your flour mixture to the TM bowl and combine 20 sec / speed 2.
  • Add the rest of the flour and repeat the process until all combined
  • Carefully transfer the cake mixture into your ungreased spring form tube pan. Run a butter knife carefully through the batter to release any trapped pockets of air. Smooth the top with a silicone spatula. The pan will be nearly full.
  • Bake your cake at 175 degrees for around 30 to 40 min or until lightly brown on top and you skewer comes out clean. Your cake should springs back when pushed gently.
  • Once cooked take it out of the oven and place it upside down and raised up from your bench and allow it to cool for around 1 hour. Remove from pan and allow to finish cooling on a wire rack.
  • It is now time to eat all your hard work. ENJOY 🙂



Stewed apples are so versatile. You can have them for breakfast, as a snack during the day (in lunchboxes), and even for desert.  I love to have mine with custard, and at any time of the day or night.  Stewing apples are a good way to use the apples that are left at the end of the week before you put fresh ones in the fruit bowl from you shopping.


4 Apples

½ cup sultanas

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp mixed spice

1 – 2 MC of water


  1. Cut the apple into approximately 1cm cubes and place them into the TM bowl.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients and cook 90 degrees / 20 min / speed 1.
  3. The amount of water that is added is dependent on how much juice you would like to have at the end and how juicy your apples are.  It really is to your own preferences.



I know this recipe is in the everyday cooking for every family but I have a friend that loves my mayo but she doesn’t own a Thermomix. So I thought I would put it up here so that she can make it in her food processor. The recipe in the Thermomix book sais to separate the egg and then add the white in after the oil and once the mayo is thick. I found this step not necessary, as using the whole egg in the beginning works just fine 🙂


1 – 2 Cloves Garlic

1tsp Mustard

1 Egg room temp

1 tsp Apple cider vinegar

Salt and pepper

250 g Grapeseed oil


  • Place the garlic into the TM bowl and chop for 5 sec / speed 9. Then scrape down the sides.
  • Insert the Butterfly, then place the egg, mustard, salt and pepper and vinegar into the TM bowl and mix 1 min / speed 4.
  • Now you need to set the TM to 4-6 min / speed 4. Turn the TM on and slowly add the oil to the lid of the TM bowl with MC on.


I just adore school fetes, lawn sales and op shops. There is always so much to see and plenty of bargains to be found. So while we are here in Goolgowi NSW we attended my nephews’ school fete. As I was pushing my other little nephew I came across a White Elephant stall (like a lawn sale) that had lots of little bargains the thing that caught my eye was a glass juicer which I ended up getting.  50 cents and it was still in the packet what a bargain.

So what I would like to know is what would be your best kitchenware bargain that you have ever picked up second-hand?


31st October 2012


Not much to report back about this week, everything is coming along nicely. I am noticing that my hair isn’t getting as oily as it had been. So I think my body is adapting to not using any harsh chemicals. I do want to announce though that I have a convert for the ‘no poo’ in my house. I haven’t pressured anyone to come on board with what I’m doing, but my husband thought he would give it a go and from what I can gather he likes it. Its only early days for him (2 weeks in) but all is going well. The next step is to see if our 3 girls would like to give it a try, not going to be holding my breath for this to happen, but maybe once they see how good my hair looks they might give it a crack. 🙂