Category Archives: Life

How do you… (fashionably) prepare to turn 30?

It’s only a couple of years until I hit 30 and while the number certainly doesn’t bother me, there are one or two things I’d like to have ticked off before I blow out those candles.

After reading 11 things to buy before you turn 30 though, Harpers Bazaar would have you believe I need a longer list if I wish to ring in my 30s as a ‘fashionable woman’. Not wanting to relinquish my fashionability, here’s my scorecard on where I stand.

1. Classic shoe
It took until I was about 25 but I can now confidently say that cheap pleather treads have no power over me, whatever the disposable trend I could achieve by handing over a $20. I flash my Wittner card with pride and revel in my classic leather insoles.

Score: 9/10 (Mainly because 9’s my shoe size – in case you were wondering)

Wittner shoes

2. A great suit
I’ve got a nice pair of Cue work slacks… Will that do? Honestly though, I don’t think I’ve spent even a minute pining for a great suit. I’m yet to see how I’d justify the investment.

Score: 5/10 (I’m halfway there with the pants right?)

3. A signature flower
So firstly, really? I mean, really?? Do people truly need a signature flower? I’m stoked with a bloom of any variety!

Score: 6/10 (…provided my signature flowers can be a randomised posey)

4. A beautiful timepiece
I have quite a nice watch. It’s a chocolate brown Kenneth Cole with rose gold flashes & a partially transparent face. While I regularly get compliments about it, I certainly wouldn’t call it a ‘beautiful timepiece’. It’s a nice watch.

Score: 7/10 (Hey, it may not be a Hermes but at least it’s got a leather band)

5. A go-to lip colour
Does paw-paw cream count?

Score: 1/10 (Head straight to the MAC counter, do not pass GO, but do collect $200 – you’re gonna need it)

6. A personal scent
So I think I’ve got this one down: while I certainly dabble, my one true scent has been the original DKNY. I chose it based solely on the pretty bottle at age 14.

Score: 10/10 (C’mon, I gotta get a 10 for something!)

7. Jewellery you never take off
The example in the Bazaar list comes in just short of $17000. While I can’t compete on dollars, my grandma’s hand-me-down sapphire & diamond ring is a regular on my right-hand.

Score: 7/10 (Room for advancement but I’m ticking the box!)

8. Original art you love
We’ve got this IKEA print of some fish on a plate. It’s in the kitchen.

Score: 2/10 (Shut it, I know)

ikea fish print

9. A forever bag
Santa left me a beautifully soft black Mimco bag this Christmas. It’ll be as ‘forever’ as I can get it to be.

Score: 9/10 (Just in case I ever score some wild designer IT bag)

10. A killer winter coat
I bought a black leather bomber in 2007 and it’s still going strong. I’d love an amazing coat but as a coastal-dwelling Aussie kid, there’s really not much calling for swathes of wool, even in the depths of winter.

Score: 6/10 (& unless I move to New York, that one ain’t improving)

11. The perfect little black dress
A sculpted black dress with cream peplum detail was an investment early last year. I wouldn’t say it’s the ‘perfect’ LBD but it certainly saw me stylishly through a bunch of functions.

Score: 8/10 (Points off for the peplum)

So what’ve we learnt from this exercise?
There are people who have a signature flower! If your name isn’t Poppy, Daisy or Rose and you aren’t a botanist, why?? How have you given flowers this much thought?

We also learnt I need to put away the paw paw & befriend an artist.

Eh, I’ve still got 2-and-a-bit years.

Things I Love Thursday: Nov 14

The things rockin’ my socks lately:

  • Coming home to a massive case of wine… Woohoo!! Michael has signed us up as ‘Angels’ for NakedWines & this was our first delivery. Can’t wait to sample some new Aussie delights! Naked Wines
  • Sex addicts. Hear me out. For someone that doesn’t watch a whole lot of TV, let alone ‘reality’ rubbish, I’ve surprisingly been a bit obsessed with Sex Rehab with Dr Drew. There’s something about the incredibly tragic lives of these people that’s just so interesting to watch (and not just in a car-crash/it-hurts-but-I-can’t-look-away kind of way). 
  • Workplace wins – it’s always good when work (that you’ve been chewing your nails over) finally gets somewhere.
  • All the love, love, love that has been floating about lately – Spring this year appears to bringing out engagements, weddings & baby announcements all over the place! And speaking of…
  • I almost have a nephew! & judging by my sister-in-law’s belly, he doesn’t need too much more time in the oven! This is what I made for the recent baby shower – an Eeyore Nappy Motorbike! (I already have a Christmas present sorted for him too. Oh dear.) Can’t wait to meet the little guy! Nappy Motorbike
  • Gritshed! While getting up to a 5.20am alarm isn’t my idea of a good time, throwing heavy weights around, sweating my butt off & doing 50-odd burpees before breakfast is a pretty rewarding activity. Hunger-inducing, but rewarding! The awesome Rita Ann Kerr has been doing her thing photographing us Gritters. It’s fantastic to have professional shots of everyone’s progress – it’s really motivating & helps you see how far you’ve really come. This is my favourite of the shots she’s captured of me:   Gritshed
  • Kind words in unlikely places… Like finding this message on our table in a Thai restaurant.thaispiration
  • Wisdom from Leo Babauta. This article on clearing resentment and this one on developing selfless compassion have both rocked my week. Nothing like a good kick in the emotional teeth to get your butt into gear & your head out of mopesville.

Things I Love Thursday: 12 Sep

Here’s what’s been floating my boat this week 🙂

  • Researching all things Paleo! This meal planning template was a particularly useful find.
  • Pinterest funnies, especially this:

  •  Celebrating the birthday of my best friend since forever on the weekend. Friendship established 1992 & still going strong!
    Nina's birthday

    Here we are as chubby-faced primary schoolers 🙂

  • LOVE GRIT! Is it a tough workout? Here’s my post-GRIT face… Pooped!post grit
  • This Paleo Pizookie recipe with this banana ice cream recipe… Decadent but still a tick in the technical paleo book!

Paleo pizookie

  • And on banana ice cream: OMG!? I’d seen this article from The Kitchn before but just thought it was a bit of a beat up, or that I’d need some fancy-schmancy Thermomix-style blender. Ahhh no! It is pure magic! I shared the recipe with a workmate & he’s now using it as a bribery tool with his toddler. Bribery with just a frozen, blended banana – so simple! Just make it. You’ll see.

Things I Love Thursday: 25 July

Unashamedly flogged from blogger babe Gala Darling (who I’ve followed since forever), I present to you Things I Love Thursday. This is a love letter to all the things I’ve been digging in the last week (and a request to the heavens for more of the same!)

  • Getting so much stronger & more powerful through the magic of GRIT! To the uninitiated, it’s a super high intensity interval training workout that only goes for 30 minutes… but occasionally induces spews from participants. Major! This week I bumped my weights up a little, got through more push-ups on my toes & got through way more reps holding form. Loving it! This video is fairly produced but gives a pretty good overview.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wxFFCUXBu40&w=560&h=315]

  • Getting an unexpected late birthday parcel from my brother & his wife (who were both runners up in major cheffy awards this week – clever!) It got incorrectly delivered to a friendly neighbour who thankfully did not keep the new set of Peter Alexander pjs with cute accompanying hairband for herself and came door-knocking instead. Phew!

Lost birthday present

  • My pressure cooker… I shouldn’t love an appliance so much but it’s seriously fantastic. Pressure cooker, slow cooker & saute machine all in one shiny counter-top, easy-clean machine.
  • My ever-supportive other half who doesn’t get mad when I dive into bed with frozen feet and demand he warm them up with his own bed-toasty toes
  • Learning & being involved in new things at work. “User experience” is a big deal at work (and for good reason – we want users to have good experiences, right?!) and today I was involved in pulling together a load of research to map out some Personas for a new project.
    From UX mag:

A persona represents a cluster of users who exhibit similar behavioral patterns in their purchasing decisions, use of technology or products, customer service preferences, lifestyle choices, and the like. Behaviors, attitudes, and motivations are common to a “type” regardless of age, gender, education, and other typical demographics. In fact, personas vastly span demographics.

  • The birth of the #royalbaby Prince George – don’t whine, it’s lovely! Sweet couple got their sweet kid.
  • Making plans for some DIY projects (and not just the dinosaur craft!) I’ve got my eye on the dining stools for a serious revamp – stay tuned!

Melbourne: 19-23 June

For my birthday this year, we escaped to Melbourne for food, footy & adventures. We stayed at The Grand Hotel (lives up to its name!), bought Hawks scarves to fit in with the locals at the AFL & ate beautiful food at Rosetta, MovidaCumulus Inc, (& boozed at it’s upstairs brother, Cumulus Up) and plenty of other quality locals. That’s one thing about Melbourne – you really can’t go wrong!

Friday Fun

What’s floatin’ my boat this Friday:

  • Ellen Degeneres challenging Michelle Obama to a push-up contest. Watch this.
  • This woman, Gala Darling. It blows my mind that she’s only a couple of years older than me but yet has done so much for young women all around the net-savvy globe. I’ve been an avid reader of her website (and eBooks) since near its inception and she just keeps getting better & better.
  • I made these cookies a couple of times over Christmas & saw them evaporate from the serving plate in a matter of seconds. While they are pretty festive looking, I’m thinking that given The Lad has to work all weekend (a 12-day week is nothing to be sneezed at! Poor kid) I may just make a batch for him to take along.
  • This Thai Beef Salad is scheduled for dinner. Ooohh yeahhh. Stay tuned for the evidence!
  • A big gym sesh last night – I did a 20 minute effort of a 3-2-1 routine (as inspired by IowaGirlEats – can you tell I’m a little bit of a fan of her blog?) followed straight up by a strength-training super-set routine designed by The Lad. Let me tell you, I was sweating like nothing else! It was good to have a run again, even though it was on a treadmill. We’ve got a 10km fun run coming up in April and if this rain doesn’t let up soon we’re going to have to bite the soggy bullet and head out for a drenching rain run. I will most probably slip & fall on my butt in front of strangers if we do this. As humourous as this might sound, it concerns me.
  • Trying hard not to buy random pretty things I want (Damn you Vintage Marketplace for looking so good!) but I think Sportsgirl might be the recipient of some hard-earned dollars soon.

Awesome bits & things

Awesome bits & things from around the web…

Ban the FML. For good.

I am concerned about the increase in the use of the quip “FML” or, “Fuck My Life”. Often uttered by well-educated Gen-Ys about the current state of their life, FML is a disgraceful example of how self-loathing can become somewhat popular.

Over at the lovely blog of Gala Darling, Radical Self Love month is just about to begin. I see no better time than to banish the use of FML.

It’s such an aggressive criticism of not only oneself, but also of the forces that helped deliver you to where you are today. A relationship might fail, a job may fall through but it’s all experience; it’s all happening to build you up for future challenges & to help you really appreciate the amazingness of big success. The job that comes together, the boy that stays when times are tough – would you appreciate them if you knew nothing other than success at all things?

You need the clouds to appreciate the sunshine. You don’t need to berate life for throwing you an appreciation test. Take what you can from every experience, keep your head held high & take pleasure in the little wins of everyday. Morning coffee, scoring the last blueberry & white choc muffin at your favourite cafe, getting your liquid eyeliner perfect, scoring an amazing bargain… It’s all there. Keep your eyes open to the beauty & there’ll be no need for letting an FML into your vocabulary.