Caffeine and sleep

Caffeine and sleep are related. When we don’t sleep well we tend to have more caffeine. I know I used to have more before the 30 days less caffeine challenge. Caffeine brings out the stay awake feeling as it is a stimulant. But it tends to create more problems for those that can’t sleep so well with caffeine.

After 15 mins of drinking it, you’ll feel the effects. Mayo Clinic says that many of us rely on caffeine to keep us going throughout the day. How much you can tolerate depends on the person itself. Saatva says that we should know our intolerances and tolerances to caffeine. Some people are jittery and wired up, whilst others relax.

Caffeine brings about disturbed sleep for more people. And when people are sedentary and have caffeine they don’t sleep as well. Caffeine is a whole buzz of activity and hype. We, the Melburnians love our caffeine and we would have lots if we could not sleep well. Coffee and energy drinks are the worst offenders with about 100-500 mg of caffeine.

Have a few of these and you’ll be buzzing. The Sleep Foundation says that caffeine cannot replace a good night’s sleep.

When I found that I drank less caffeine I slept much better at night and had not many PMS symptoms.

So if you want to have caffeine, don’t have it late in the afternoon and if you are sensitive don’t have too much of it. A little bit of coffee is ok as it is an antioxidant.

Do cut back if you are having too much.

Week 16 of frugal living

This week has been a bit bleak for all of us. It seems that Victoria is getting further and further behind in the economy with all the lockdowns. And it seems that Britain is about to have their lockdowns as they have gone over 500,000 coronavirus cases. They, too, will have their pubs shut and overnight stays banned. People complain about how bad it is here; well, wait until you see what’s over there. Portugal is the same thing too, and the London situation is getting worse, not better.

This week we had steak and chips for dinner. The steak was $14 at Woolies for two small pieces, and then we had to buy another packet just to feed the three of us. Then another day, we had homemade hamburgers with the $1 bag of buns from Coles.

We grow broad beans and the like, so we have had some salads. For one of the dinners, we had a pancake with red cabbage on top. We were still hungry after that, so we had mini party pies from the freezer.

It was Cafe SMART’s homelessness week and some of the cafes supported their campaign. I did buy a coffee to show them some support.

On the cool days, I have had some oats. I also enjoyed some black tea to remember a family member who had passed away. We can’t see them due to Coronavirus.

It looks like online shopping for a little while longer as the shops won’t open for a while yet. This week I bought a pair of Skechers shoes for $50 online.

Coffee cake for International Coffee Day

International Coffee Day was on the 1st of October. Whilst we couldn’t be together in a cafe (well in Victoria anyway- it’s still takeaway coffees) we thought of a coffee-flavored cake that you can enjoy with your coffee at home.

International Coffee Day is a celebration of the world’s most loved thing and that’s coffee. Its a day where we recognize the efforts of those that produced and made our coffees from the coffee growers to the baristas. It first started in Milan in 2015 and from there it has grown steadily. Many coffee chains give out free coffee. But we chose not to support them this year because of the Coronavirus and the fact that the small hole in the wall cafes are losing out. The hole in the wall cafes has already lost money due to the virus.

As Melburnians, we love our coffee and our cafes. We also love to sit and drink our coffee with our friends. Like the British, we enjoy it with cake and biscuits.

For those that have Nespresso, you can try out their recipe. I love their coffees and they are in Emporium. Whilst they are not open now you can buy their machines online. Their coffees are just like the ones made in a cafe.

We first heard about it last year when things were pre COVID 19. Its all about celebrating all things coffee. This cake is any cake flavoured with coffee. Earlier on this year we did do a chocolate cake. It is similar to that except you add coffee instead of chocolate.

Gumtree Goodfood

Gumtree Goodfood is a boutique place in South Yarra, Middle Park, and Albert Park. Here they sell the best items and before the Covid19 they used to let everyone taste stuff. We loved tasting the wines and now when restrictions are lifted I would love to go back there and buy a bottle just for myself at home.

Here they sell the freshest food and the nicest cheeses. Pre Covid19 they let everyone try the cheeses and the wines. The wines were really lovely and are all local

They not only sell fresh food but they sell pantry goods and ready made meals. I loved buying snacks and other sundries from there.

Do support them as they need your support. They only stock the best food around and they support local producers,.

Rustica Sourdough

We write this as part of our Febfast where we gave up on added sugars!

Rustica Sourdough is a bakery in Melbourne and here they are really popular with the locals in Fitzroy. So much so that there is another store in Melbourne central. This store would suit International students and locals just fine as it is a healthy eating cafe.

The staff are lovely and down to earth and at 3:30pm when we went last time they were happy to serve us even though they have worked a long and tiring day. It’s always busy with people

I really liked their vegan breakfast bar as it is a good way to start the morning and they were Instagram worthy. Here they were not too sweet and aimed at 160-200 calories this bar is a must for those that want to lose the weight.

Also I love their teas and relaxed environment! It is in a shopping centre and it has some seating outside its store as well as inside. They also have a great range of coffees and I enjoy their cold brew.

If you are in Melbourne central do come by and check out their awesome coffees on Level 2 where all the clothing stores are.

Choosing the best coffee machine

Melburnians and other people love their coffee and are very particular about it. If you were to buy your coffee each day it would be about $28 per week or $1456 per year. That’s a lot of money and paper cups used if it is a takeaway one.

So most people prefer to buy a coffee machine and their capsules which can save them a lot of money over time.

Photo by Chevanon Photography on


How much am I willing to spend? Am I willing to spend a lot or a little bit. Most Nespresso machines cost between $500-$1000. Where as a machine in Aldi costs about $90-$150. And don’t forget the capsules which cost extra


A coffee machine can last for years if you use it properly. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning. Do clean it after every use.

Most machines have a warranty period of one to three years. If there is a part that is not working properly and you did everything that you were supposed to, then you can take it to the manufacturer or retail store and get it fixed at no extra cost.

Try out the coffees before you buy.

This is a good idea to see how your prospective machine works and how to use it. Does it make good coffees or do they make crappy ones? A good cup of coffee is what matters to most people. Do you have to press many buttons to make the coffees. Does it make a lot of noise?

Most places will have test coffee machines and sales reps and you can see how they work. You can also ask them questions about their machines.

Do shop around for the best one. What works for one person might not work for others.

Society Melbourne’s homelessness report

This post was brought to you by the Salvation Army and other homelessness organizations for Homeless week.

Photo by Jessica Lewis on

Society Melbourne is a not for profit homeless organisation which helps the homeless people find jobs. They started last year. They started off with one place and then they now have five places all of which are at Melbourne Uni and RMIT.

They just launched in December 2018 and they have a long way to go. In the last year they earned $530,000 in revenue. Their programs rely on volunteers and they have about 5000 of them. In that year alone they sold 44500 coffees and 17400 crepes within their five places.

People get referred to them by the housing service providers such as the Salvation Army and other places and from there they get work experience in one of the not for profit cafes. And then they train to be a barista at the Coffee cart. From there they train at and Home.two and then after that they find work.

“Meaningful employment can empower individuals (experiencing disadvantage), by increasing their independence, social relationships and mobility, and supporting their health and wellbeing.” – Centre for Social Impact report, Aug 2019, pg. 6

In 2016, 27680 young people were homeless and that number is growing by the minute. Society Melbourne has a training program for its young people to get back on their feet.

Society Melbourne’s aims are to educate people and to motivate them. They want to help people become more confident in the workforce. Confidence will help them to build their self esteem which is important for the workplace

Their programs thrive on Community and without it they wouldn’t be where they are today.

In the future ahead they hope to be more sustainable and have a vegan menu at Home.two. They are giving discounts for those that bring their keep cups. They are doing composting of the coffee beans and food scraps which is good for the environment.

With the inspiration from the volunteers and customers they “Dream big”, just like Melbourne Uni do.

Please donate to this charity and you can help the homeless get back on their feet. You can simply pick up a coffee or a crepe at their Carte Crepes or Crepes for change. You can pick up a coffee at the and Home.two which are their community hubs in Melbourne Uni. Or if you’re at RMIT, The Coffee Cart is based at RMIT training. Now I know all these places do wonderful coffee.

The benefits of drinking organic coffee

We explain the benefits of drinking organic coffee vs the normal stuff

We bought Organic coffee from Aussie health products and now we want to try and see if it’s worth the price paid. The jar cost us $14.95 online. Normal coffee is twice as big and it costs about $10-$15 per jar depending on the brand and where you buy it.

The Clipper Coffee that I had is awesome. This is a ground coffee which means that it is grown sustainably. It’s clean and it leaves no mess and I love the earthy and fruity taste of the coffee. The coffee also smells really nice. It’s strong as well. It also has a lot of energy as well which we need.

I ran much better times this week with 30kms in four hours. I normally complete it within 5 hours.


The normal coffee is just your plain average one that does not do much. Coffeeandteacorner says that Instant coffee is not real coffee beans.  They don’t support the farmers growing the beans. These beans are grown in unsuitable conditions says And the normal coffee uses fertilizers to get rid of the pesticides which for some people can lead to a lot of health problems. According to Instant coffee has a thing called acrylamide which is potentially harmful. Acrylamide is a food contaminant known to cause dysfunction of the nervous system.

The normal coffee that I have sometimes tasted like petrol which is bitter and burnt. The ones I have at home are of poorer quality.

Organic coffee grows in much more sustainable conditions such as under trees. They are grown in much smaller farms. The organic coffee is free from pesticides and is free from health risks. It is sustainable for the farmers according to thenibble. Great coffee beans grow from great soil and these beans are easily compostable.

They have a higher caffeine content which might explain why I could not sleep some of the time. I found it difficult to fall asleep.

Yes, the organic version is pricier than the nonorganic one but this is so much better. Do buy the organic version if you value your health more than anything. And yes you can’t drink too much of this

Friends of the Earth cafe

I have been here a few times and enjoy their organic foods. This cafe is located along Smith st.

Here they are run by volunteers.

The food is seasonal meaning that you’ll get the best quality for food and your health. Here they have cheap food and drinks. My tea was only $4. I ran to this store from the city.

They cater for a vegetarian, vegan, dairy free, gluten free diet.

Here they use everything that is biodegradable. This is great for the environment. And they don’t waste anything. Here the meals change each day and so does the bread,

You can use your own jar for filling up the goods. The goods on offer are teas barley, nuts, oats etc.

The other day the volunteer gave me free cake. It was at the end of the day that I went and I had my usual tea and muesli slice. The cake was homemade by a company called Crumbs bakery and it was yummy. It was not too sweet and it was gluten-free

The muesli slice as a takeaway was quite nice too. It was nutty and had the right amount of good fats in there. Which is what women need.

Do come by to Friends of the Earth Cafe

Find it at: 312 Smith Street, Collingwood, Melbourne

Olivia Springs cafe

This is a down to earth cafe in Moonee Ponds. And it is pretty rare to find a health food cafe here. They had been open for three months now.

Here they serve breakfast and lunch as well as Vietnamese classics. All without meat of course, but instead mock meat. They have BLT with mock meat. And because it is a vegetarian place there are no egg dishes.

The music is calming and relaxing- it is just like what I hear during a meditation class.

The service was friendly and down to earth. But a bit slow. And there are no toilets here- you have to go across the road to the bus terminal where they are.

Since everything is cheap, they are a cash only place. All the food is under $15 and they make their own sweets.

Seeing as I’m trying a high fiber diet and am on the Sugar-free September, I went for a homemade orange juice and scrambled tofu on toast with avocado. Fans of Here’s the veg will like this place. The Annoyed thyroid will also like this joint as it is right up their alleyway.

The juice was freshly squeezed and was not too sweet.

The scrambled tofu with turmeric was a little bit spicy but I enjoyed the spicy kick. I made a mess of it- I’m sorry.  Fans of Consider the Sauce will love this dish. The bread was from Bakers delight across the road.

At least this place fares better than the place next door which I have to say looks a little bit old and outdated. Oh, and they sell junk food which I’m not a fan of.

Where they are at: 637 Mt Alexander Road, Moonee Ponds