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I had morning tea with the Prime Minister. And I liked it.

Fat Mum Slim /

Earlier this week, Wednesday to be exact, I sat working beside my husband who was nursing a fractured knee. “Oh. My. God!” I shrieked.I received an email that I need to read to him, word for word. I’ve had moments like this before, when emails come in and I can’t breathe and my heart jumps up and out of my body {like when I got picked for the Queensland trip}.

After reading the email he did a manly shriek and then asked to see it, sure that it was spam. It was an email from the Prime Minister’s office saying that the Prime Minister wanted to have me over for morning tea.

I replied with a very professional and cordial, “Yes, I’d love to attend” and then promptly called everyone I knew. My mother-in-law told my Hubby’s aunt and then news around their little town has spread. I’m sure I’ve reached celebrity status there.

So this morning I made my way across the bridge to Kirribilli House, where the PM lives when she’s in town. Hubby told me, “You have to call her Madam Prime Minister.” I wanted to call her Jules.

We drank tea while we waited for her to arrive. I wanted to take a spoon home for my collection, but didn’t. Who wants to be the blogger who gets frisk-searched at the front gate for stealing a spoon? Not me.

She’s beautiful in person. I’m not a political person. Perhaps that’ll come with age. She was warm and friendly, immaculate nails and make-up. I had so much I wanted to say, from my friends, but instead I told her my name, said hello and shook her hand. She told me she liked my necklace. And that was it. Oh, and we had a photo.

There was all sorts of tea, coffee, juice and quite possibly the best view in Sydney. We stood on the verandah and mingled.

We were offered little cakes, sandwiches and macaroons. I ate a sparkly pink one.

She made her way around the group and chatted. I’m not sure if anyone asked her any hard-hitting questions. Pathetically, I was more interested in her blue coat and the inside of her house. I really need to start paying attention to politics, don’t I?

I spotted Chrissie Swan earlier in the group and knew I had to speak to her. As the tea ended I made my over, and flustered, “I love you. I have to say hello.”

Julia, the Prime Minister, found us again and Chrissie stopped her to ask a controversial question, “Do you know tuna mornay?” Julia nodded. “Do you put peas in your mornay?” Chrissie asked.

“Yes I do,” the PM replied.

Chrissie does not like peas in her mornay and was not very happy with the response. The rest of the group lit up with laughter.

What a surreal morning. Brilliant, but surreal.

Who is the most famous person you’ve met? And do peas belong in mornay?

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  • Wow! I had weetbix standing up in my kitchen. What a delightful treat. It was really love to share it with you. I'm with Chrissie Swan, peas have no place in Tuna Mornay – I prefer tinned corn.

  • I feel pretty strongly about including peas in my tuna mornay, so Julia's answer has probably secured my precious vote.

    I'm glad that somebody was there to report the facts that other journalists won't touch!

    (I was charged with wrapping two presents for the PM a few weeks ago. The pressure was paralysing, and I wasn't even the one meeting her!)

    • A couple of my colleagues attended a function with the PM and Governor-General last month. Somebody realised (at the very last minute!) that it was correct protocol for us to be giving a gift.

      So somebody scraped together presents (a book of our history, and a vase etched with our logo – eww!) and I was handed a stack of cheap tissue paper and ribbon in our corporate colours.

      The overachiever in me died a little that day. But, under the circumstances, they looked freaking amazing.

      I hope they were briefly excited about what was inside! πŸ˜‰

  • Wow what an amazing experience! I can't say that I have met the PM but when I worked in childcare we had many famous people's children attend (it was a wealthy area of Melbourne) so I met the likes of Steve Vizard, Marg Downney, Craig Kelly (ex footballer), Mark Klemens (Molly's manager)to name a few. It was quite surreal as I used to babysit some of these families'children in their homes too. Such a completely different world to mine! Never commented on blogs before, but absolutely love reading yours! Thanks for sharing :o)

  • ugh, peas in mornay … otherwise sounds like a spectacular morning. so happy for you all the weather played ball! xt

  • I've been lucky enough to meet a lot of famous people… national and international. Musicians and politicians… thanks to my parents. I think they are just the same as everyone else – they get just as obnoxious or giggly as we do when they have one or two too many from my observations. Guess I'm just not star struck anymore… unless it's Re-AnimateHer, my favourite US Roller derby skater. I was lost for words when I met her. πŸ˜‰

  • I love that Julia was meeting with blogging mums. Very cool.

    Most famous person I've met was probably Kylie Kwong and she was lovely.

  • How fabulous! Looks like you had a lovely morning. I think I need to find out what tuna mornay is ….

    • It's a rue {white sauce made with butter, flour and milk} and then tuna and cheese added, and sometimes pasta. Sounds gross, but is yummy. πŸ™‚

  • Thats so great that you got to meet the PM. Thanks for sharing with us. xT

  • Glad you enjoyed the morning but a pity you didn't get to talk longer. How exciting to meet Chrissie too. Can I ask what the PM wanted the meeting for?

    • I kinda still don't know. I think she wanted to speak with women online. I thought it was meant to be about childcare, but it wasn't mentioned.

      It was lovely to meet her though and see everyone that I socialise with online. x

  • Very exciting for the photos. Also love the necklace and a proper photo of you :))
    Chrissy would be great to meet also..some people have all the fun ! :0)

  • Oh sorry and no peas !!

  • Amy

    hehehe Carmen, yeah Julia Gillard does nothing for me but I would still attend just so you could say you have been there done that lol.

    I'd have immaculate hair/makeup/nails too if I had someone to do it all for me lol.

    Cool that you met Chrissie Swan…….I agree with her, peas do NOT belong in tuna mornay, omg, that would just ruin it! but then I make my tuna mornay different to most (everyone seems to do a baked version? what's with that?)
    I like mine;

    corn kernels
    onion, water
    soy milk (the one dish that soy milk rocks in)

  • Sadly I don't even know what mornay is but I do like peas in my tuna!! ;D
    I am over the top excited for you Chantelle!! What a wonderful opportunity and now memorable experience. You look wonderful darling!!
    With my husband working for a major airline I've been lucky to fly first class more than I'd like to admit. Because of this I've had the opportunity to meet famous people while flying the skies. Many tend to hang out in the galley which surprised me. LOL

  • I'm so with Chrissie and the no pea tuna mornay thing. And how fabulous that our PM is happy to chat about such Big Issues AND pose for happy snaps! Brilliant x

  • Ummmmmm kayyyy, I'm NOT sure peas do belong in mornay, do they!?! Hmmm…. The most famous person I've met, sat a table with and had an actual conversation with was JPY! Anyone remember John Paul Young? I guess he's not so young any more!? Anyway, him, and… Chris Cranswick-Smith from Ready Steady Cook and Emmilou's in Surry Hills…I got him a gig at the inaugural Flavourfest in the Hunter Valley Gardens in June 2010, and I once ran into Simone Buchanan in a bar (from that show forever ago HEY DAD…yes I'm old!) but she wasn't too chatty! Maybe I mentioned she was shorter/smaller than she appeared on tv…and I did see Wendel Sailor in a coffee shop once but we didn't chat. I guess that's my brush with fame!

  • Such fun and a honour to be on 'the list'. I prefer my tuna mornay without the tuna, actually. I can't do hot tuna!?! x

  • awwww what a special experience! It's not everyday you get to meet our prime minister and she looks lovely in those photos (my husband will kill me for saying that as he is not a fan!). you look gorgeous and I love chrissie too

    well done and thank you for sharing such lovely photos with us as it makes us feel like we were all there


  • Tam

    I love peas in everything!

    Glad you had fun. What an experience – defs one to tell the kids!

  • When I was little I was involved with doing an allergy survey through our local hospital. When my Mum told me that Princess Diana wanted to come to the hospital to thank us all for taking part, I practised my curtsey at least 100 times a day until the big day arrived. She came, I curtsied, she told me she liked my dress and we got our photo taken. It's the only film that ever got lost in the post on its way to getting developed. It can still remember the disappointment of not being able to show all my friends.

    P.S. What is Tuna Mornay?

    • Oh that's devastating!! I am wondering what you guys might call tuna mornay?

      It's a white sauce {made with flour, milk and butter} and then you through tuna and cheese in.

  • Before Julia was PM she bought a book from me when I worked at a Dymocks bookstore and for that reason I think she is awesome!

  • douggyi

    Thanks for blogging this one, Chantelle. Whoever the leader is, it's good to see them following in BarrackO's footsteps and embracing the newer social media.

    As for peas, in my universe the only place that they belong is in the bin. I don't choose not to like them, it's just that the auto-vomit response kicks in when I try to eat them.

    • I agree with douggyi. I even hate the way peas smell.

      I also agree with douggyi's point re social media. It's a shame about the hard hitting questions though, so that y'all could have posted Ms Julia's natural responses unedited somewhere. Never mind. Does she speak in that robotic sort of 'party line' media voice over macaroons?

  • I met Kylie Minogue once and no peas do not belong.

  • My husband was the cyclist that had his hand broken by Rex Hunt a couple of years ago (had to sit next to his wife in court) That's about as exciting it gets around here for famous encounters.
    Well Done You Chantelle – what an awesome bloggy year your having!! Very much deserved xx

  • Anonymous

    I'm more excited about you meeting Chrissy Swan – she rox.

  • Wow, tea & scones with the PM how exciting for you.

    When I was 15 my Mum & I had morning tea with Lady Rowland at Government House as I was receiving a group award for Young Save the Children Fund from her. Mum & I felt very special drinking out of gold rimmed tea cups πŸ™‚

    In our household we like corn kernels in our tuna mornay, no peas though.

  • Wha? Did you know about this meeting during Queensland? Surprised you didn't say anything; I'd be telling everybody! Either way, congrats! That's awesome.

  • I used to stick my peas under the dining room table as a kid and hope my parents didnt notice. I vote yes for corn and yetch for peas!
    How flipping exciting! I would be sorely tempted to say that I voted for the other guy thought πŸ˜‰
    Great pics. ssss

  • oooops – supposed to end with xxxx

  • What an awesome experience!! I'm not really into politics, but have a bit of a soft spot for Julia. Think its more because of the sexist comments and latent bullying she's subjected to purely for being a woman.

    Chrissie's another favourite, but I have to disagree with her. Peas are vital to a mornay. They also have a place in pasta bake and curried prawns!!

    • Krystle, I think we should be friends. I have friendships that are based on far less than a healthy appreciation for peas.

      Corn is cool too. All we are saying is give peas a chance.

      (Good luck getting that song out of your head now!)

  • Tab

    No, no, I'm disappointed with our PM – there should be no vegetables in Tuna mornay. Gosh.

  • I don't eat tuna, but peas have a place in everything because my toddler loves them. The most famous person I (almost) met was Princess Anne, she came to tour my dad's orchard when I was a kid, ate lunch with my parents and various dignitaries in a marquee on our lawn, and though we kids were confined to the house, she waved at us as she walked by. Thars enough of a claim to fame for me!

  • I met James and Oliver Phelps (The Weasley twins from Harry Potter) recently and they were so lovely. I posed for a photo with them (36 weeks pregnant at the time!) and we had a good old laugh about me potentially going into labour, and Oliver commented on how big I was. They're lucky they're cute!

  • Anonymous

    You got a magnificent experience!!!!!! It's not just a “once in a lifetime” experience, it's “once in 100 lifetimes.”
    I've had a chance to meet the CEO of Disneyland and 2 of the “sister” actresses from The Brady Bunch. On those occasions, I'm so nervous, I tend to say a couple of words, and then fade to the background.

  • Peas don't belong ANYWHERE on my plate… thankfully hubby agrees so we are a pea-free household!!

  • Oh. So. Cool. I love this. Nothing more to say.

  • no to peas, but a big yes to corn.

    exhausted. Great Morning x

  • You have made me write a blog post to answer this question – about the most famous person – not the mornay!

  • Pretty floral napkins on the tea cup & saucers – a definite sign there's a lady in the house! KRudd would have had pale blue – lol!


  • No tuna dishes ever, please. Glad you enjoyed it! I've met Richard Morecroft, David Astle and Lily Serna. Fun day! And my hubby knows Hamish and Andy. I also see Alan Brough at the supermarket from time to time. I ask him obscure (to me) musical questions and he answers them before I've finished asking them. It's fun (for me). x

  • I knew i LOVED chrissie but her belief that peas do not belong in mornay confirms it!!

    You looked awesome Telle – loved the outfit

  • I have met many famous people in my former job as a journalist/feature writer, including many PMs and royalty (not JG though), and Chrissie Swan (covered many Big Brothers …). She IS lovely, and peas do not belong in tuna morney. Corn does though, and I have been known to grate up zuchinni and carrot as well. They don't belong either but I like veggify everything. Is that a word?

  • Jess

    Hate peas and tuna so no thanks. Met a lot of oz celebs thru wrk. Non oz prob Verne t something the dude who plays mini me in Austin powers lol

  • I had an opportunity to have afternoon tea with our Governor General Quentin Bryce when she was the Governor of QLD. A beautiful lady. However I may have left a lasting impression as I managed to drop a Strawberry Daiquiri on her plush white carpet in her place of residence. I have never been more mortified.
    And yes to peas in tuna mornay.

    • I die! Did you die? That's stressful!

    • I certainly wished for the ability to disappear. Funnily enough the group of people I was talking to at the time managed to skulk off and disappear and left me there all on my lonesome with my stain.

  • Loved following the morning on instagram and loving reading all of the blog posts tonight xxx You gals are all pretty fab but your necklace had me at 'bling'. Winner right there! Thanks, as always, for sharing xxx

  • What a brilliant experience to add to your book of life . You looked beautiful Chantelle.

  • Chantelle it was lovely to meet you at the morning tea. Your photos captured it beautifully. It was such a lovely morning! The PM was fantastic!

  • what a great experience, refreshing to see government embracing women in social media. x

  • Laura

    Definitely No to peas in my mornay! Love Chrissie Swan and very jealous you got to meet her!

    I have met Tony Barber (of sale of the century fame) and have been on flights with Michael Buble, Aerosmith (So excited when I saw Steven Tyler), Laurie Daly, Michael Klim and The singer from Frenzal Rhom. I do tend to get a bit star struck even with minor z list celebs.

  • Ali

    Cool. What a great experience! I love peas in my tuna mornay…and sweet corn, too! I even chuck a bit of pasta in every now and again! Actually, I just love tuna mornay! πŸ™‚

  • I met the PM a few weeks ago at a high tea. She was lovely and had a chuckle at the fact the woman in the room were having more photos with her hot security team than with her!!

  • I met the PM a few weeks ago at a high tea. She was lovely and had a chuckle at the fact the woman in the room were having more photos with her hot security team than with her!!

  • Sirena

    How fun, there's something so lovely about china tea cups. Have met a lot of famous ppl but have only ever been star struck once and funnily enough it was simply seeing peter garret walk past me in pitt st mall. As a child of the 80's he is the first front man i can remember and quite a front man he was. He's iconic and nostalgic for me, though i wouldnt have known it before that encounter. As for the question of peas…… Each to their own, i like peas dont often put them in mornay, but i also usually prefer tomato to cream sauces in which peas definately do not belong!

  • What a lovely experience! Political agenda or not, I think it is a beautiful opportunity. I wonder if our local govt would ever take such a time to embrace social media and have tea with bloggers too πŸ™‚

    Ai @ Sakura Haruka

  • Thanks for sharing your experience. Lovely photos of you and you do have a beautiful necklace.
    Sure I do meet some famous people occassionally but now I am befriending Malaysia's famous author/writer, Syed Hussein Al-Attas. Very friendly bloke and the other common thing we have is that our children attend the same school.


  • What a fantastic experience! Beautiful pics! How glorious that the ladies got to come out to play, and you were part of it. I think peas are great-mornay or not, and love them in Shrimp Curry as well. how cool that kindred spirits can gather, and be together, and the world's fame/follderol can fall away.

  • Wow, how absolutely cool was that?!! Met Robert Downey Jr at a restaurant. So good looking.
    I have no idea what a 'mornay' is but since I love peas, I'll say yes.
    Congrats on all the cool stuff!!

  • I can only imagine talking about her blue coat and the inside of her house would be a bit of relief after talking about hard hitting issues most of the time!
    Looks like a great time!

  • What fun! πŸ™‚ I don't know what mornay is either, so I'll stay neutral in this battle. The most famous person I've met was President Bush, and I also met President Obama before he was president. (and by met, I mean “shook hands with they have no idea who I am” clearly)

  • Kazzie

    What a cool, surprise invitation you got and to meet our PM, that's awesome.

    I've met Rolf Harris at a local hardware by chance years ago, where he was among 'the British paints' and got his autograph! Saw Hayley Lewis a couple of times, too. πŸ™‚

  • I used to work as a waitress for a catering company that has the contract for Prime Minsters Eleven Cricket each year. So I have served food to both Julia and Kevin Rudd along with other politicians and sports stars. Don't think it counts as “meeting” them though.

  • I met Camilla Parker-Bowles πŸ˜› She's a lot prettier in person too.
    As for peas in mornay – no. I do like sweet corn though πŸ™‚

  • Can't do corn or peas in my tuna mornay. It was a delightful morning tea. Wish I had thought to get my photo taken with you!

  • I had a photo taken with Wil Andeson, ive spoken to Dermott Brereton, Joel Turner (when he came with his band the Modern Day Poets), Lano and Woodley and also Jacqueline Mckenzie Hugo Weaving and Emma Lung, (they filmed the movie Peaches near my home town) they came to where i worked. Not long ago we had the Adelaide Crows come into my new workplace. also spoke to Mike Goldman at Big Brother in 2002.
    LOVE tuna mornay, corn no peas! I love peas but not in mornay:)

  • tiani

    Isn't anyone going to explain what tun mornay is? if its anything like tuna salad in America I like to put mayo, mustard and relish in mine.

    • It starts off with a white sauce {butter, flour, milk} and then you add tuna, cheese and vegetables. I'm not sure what you call it in the States. Does it sound familiar?

    • Is this Australian delicacy? If it is, then I must say I have not eaten it before or better still, never seen it before. I'll wait for it to go international. It might catch-up.


  • Ohhh yay!I very much love this blog post! it includes inspiration and High Tea Party with the Pm. Im not political either but HIGH TEA yay. x

  • Alice

    lol too cute! I am a bit “political” but I think if I was in your shoes I wouldn't be able to talk to her about anything political because like you I would just want to wander around her house and surrounding grounds… From the little peek hubby and I took from the gate the other weekend… It looked lovely… Hubby and I just wanted to go in and check it out so bad…Maybe one day we will get the chance lol

  • I don't mind if there are peas or not in my mornay.
    I met Princess Mary last year and she was just stunning, gracious and I was completely star struck. Airlie drew her a picture and gave her flowers from our garden while she was in Melbourne.

    If Julia does this is Melbourne I hope her people email my people! I would be thrilled to attend such an event! I also live close to her Melbourne suburban home that she live in until she moved into the lodge, so surely thst should count for something? Lol

    I think it is really interesting that she wants to meet bloggers and women.

  • Deb

    Tuna mornay sounds close to what we call tuna casserole in the US, and yes I would put peas in it! As for famous people, I have met the members of Def Leppard for autographs, and I was a complete nerd about it. And the actor Woody Harrelson once held my almost-2-year-old son up and said he had beautiful eyes. That's a sweet memory…

  • mmmmm, I think my famous person would have to be mandela. he was lovely. (I grew up in south africa in an optimistic time, so he's our hero πŸ™‚

    As for tea, we didn't have it but it's so exciting that you got to go inside kirribilli house!!!! I lived in kirribilli for years and always wondered what it'd be like inside πŸ™‚ Ooooh tell us more!!! Did it meet up with expectations? Did you get to walk around the pretty grounds! I've tried to peek in and there looks like there's a pretty garden… heheheh – oh dear I'm not remotely interested in politics either – can you tell?

    I guess blogging moms are important because your voice is read by many, loved and trusted. Those naughty politicians know that – go jules for using the social network.

    Cracked up when you said you wanted to call her Jules by the way, wish you had. That's what's always great about australia, the casual open manner πŸ™‚ LOVE IT!!!!



  • Jenni

    I met Kevin Rudd when he was PM. And NO PEAS IN MORNAY!!!!!