I’m Loving….EVERY-DAM-THING!

Happy days it’s Friday again, rather unfortunate that I really hit my stride at work at about 10.30 this morning.  I was on fire!  Until 2pm. And then I went home.  Love those mummy hours.

Anywho, I am totally loving Friday deliveries of make-up!!!  I’m going to be glamour-licious on Monday once I learn how to put lippie on with a brush!  Also very excited about the primer, any help to hide my aging skin is welcome!

BH Cosmetics

Sushi lunches on the Boss with the awesome team at work.  LOVE.  I really enjoy my job.  I love the nerdy-tech aspect of it and learning more and more all the time.  Being a working Mum is hard sometimes, but little snatches of adult time {SUSHI ALL FOR ME!!} are so nice.  I really and honestly never fail to be grateful for having such a great job in these spendy/scary times.

Sushi

I am loving nail polish.  Maybe because it’s winter and I’m done painting the house at the moment, so I’m enjoying having a little pop of color on my nails.  Not so much loving this color though.  The Revlon Top Speed polishes are awesome as I am generally doing my nails late-ish at night.  Yellow looked so great and funky on my beautiful soon to be Sister-in-Law, but on me not so much.

Revlon Speed Finish Nail Polish

My Boys.  They have a very volatile relationship.  Dave struggles to deal with his son, I find it easier {not easy mind you} as basically Ethan is just like me.  Ethan is strong-willed, a perfectionist, exacting, literal and demanding.  And I love every inch of his pain-in-the-ass-self.  Times like this when all is calm give me the most satisfied feeling in the world.

Story Time

So bad I know ::::slaps hand:::: but our local Fish & Chip does THE BEST chicken nibbles.  I crave them.  Better than any KFC batter your hangover could ever want!  None this weekend though……..{I’ll report back on that at a later time…..}

Chicken Nibbles

And to finish off…..I am in LOVE with this;

IMc

Dave went to Mitre 10 on Sunday and made a very quick detour by Noel Leeming {10% off Apple!}.  Oh wow.  This guy was on the agenda for this year so we had budgeted for it – I am proud to say it was a planned purchase!  last weekend was D-day as Big PC had crashed 3 times in one day and has been BSODing on and off for over a year.  Whatever, I don’t need to justify such a thing of beauty!  So, this Things I’m Loving is brought to you by Mr Mac.  Which btw, I completely don’t know how to use.  I have to google everything.  I found the desktop last night after using it for 5 days.  I must admit the transition is a wee bit frustrating.  Ethan and Dave have used Macs before, Dave owned one in a past life and E uses one every day in his classroom, but I’m just a big Windows dummy : (

Have a lovely weekend xx

Things I’m Loving is hosted by Meghan at MNM’s

I wholeheartedly believe that no matter what is happening in your life, there is always something you can be thankful for..no matter how simple it is.

Cook Eat | Yoghurt Lemon Cake Recipe

Our new baby lemon tree is pretty much awesome so I had to get over my flour phobia and whip up a cake. Voila!  Recipe is from The Women’s Weekly and is so easy, I will definitely be putting this gem into the regular baking rotation as it was gone in 24 hours!

Lemon Yoghurt Cake Recipe

INGREDIENTS

125g butter, softened 
1 cup caster sugar 
Finely grated zest of 2 lemons 
3 eggs 
1 cup flour, sifted 
1 tsp baking powder 
¾ cup yoghurt

1. Heat oven to 160°C fan bake. Grease a 20cm spring-form cake tin. Combine butter, sugar and lemon zest in a bowl and beat with an electric mixer until pale and creamy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Sift dry ingredients together and add alternately with yoghurt, stirring to just combine and form a smooth batter.

2. Spoon mixture into prepared tin and bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. once cold, remove the cake from the tin and spoon over lemon drizzle icing so it covers the top and runs down the sides of the cake.

Lemon drizzle icing: 
1 cup icing sugar, sifted 
Juice of 2 lemons 
Extra grated lemon zest to decorate

1. Combine icing sugar and lemon juice in a bowl and stir with the back of a spoon to form a smooth and pourable icing. Add a little boiling water if necessary, to achieve the correct consistency.

The Amazing World of Interwebs

My god there are some brilliant, creative peeps out there?  Are you one of them?  I am envious of you marvelously talented creative types that can spew art and craft from your little toes ::::::sigh::::::blog:::::::

Here is some gorgeousness I found whilst getting lost online;

Digital Origami Animals by Jeremy Kool

Amazeballs.  Yes I know.  See the other animals that will feature in Kool’s digital book here

Digital Origami Paper Fox by Jeremy Kool

Portraits of Ladies in Cardboard Outfits by Christan Tagliavini

How odd, very Alison in Wonderland-esque don’t you think?

Cardboard Ladies

Michael Wolf: Architecture of Density
These photographs will make you pause and really appreciate you 1/4 acre in New Zealand after your mind has been blown.
Waimea, Feb 2012
Waimea
Soap Bubbles.  Seriously.  Macro is amazing.
Bokeh Macro Photography – By Lee Peiling.
Who knew insects had this much personality?
Bokeh Macro Insect Photography
See you later little nerdlings x

Oh Sir Bob, now you’ve gone & OFFENDED people!

What a surprise.  People are angry because Sir Bob Jones got on his soapbox.  Again.

Though his latest rant is nothing if it’s not inflammatory – intentionally so.  Basically his position is that back in the day fat people were as rare as hens teeth, so rare in fact that people would pay money to see the Fat Lady at the carnival.  Now we all know that to see the Fat Lady, Fat Man or Fat Child, all we have to do is leave the house.  So much has changed in 60 years, our lifestyles have  become more sedentary, manufacturing and modern retail have changed the food we eat and how we get it, cultures have merged and melded bringing different foods and tastes into collision with western norms.

The fact of the matter is, fat is unavoidable.  It HAS become normalized if not accepted and valued.  There are multi-million dollar industries invested in the foregone conclusion that fat is here to stay and it’s bigger than ever.  Let’s really think about this people; there are TV shows about turning around the lives of obese people and making them skinny healthy again {if I hadn’t crossed out skinny there would have been the comments about how big people can be healthy too…..right?}.  The contestants on the shows aren’t having surgery or taking magic pills, they are doing what we all know WORKS.  Burn more calories than you consume.  Don’t eat a bunch of crap.  Exercise.

Yes, they have the best trainers in the world yelling at them and they have a kitchen stocked with healthy alternatives, but consider this; does it cost you anything to stop eating takeaways or fast food?  Does it cost you anything to get up earlier and go for a walk?

Undeniably, as one commenter noted, the delivery was harsh, downright rude.  But there is a message in there, and most overweight people know it.  I’ve been overweight (for me) and it got to the point where it consumed me and I was sick of it.  Hating my body took up way too much energy.  Change is hard and commitment is harder, but being fat is not always a life sentence if you choose to put in some hard work and not just of the sweaty kind.

Abs are made in the kitchen not the gym

Get Real Blogging, what do I think?

There are so many things on my mind right now, so many blog projects and ideas {as well as completing our house reno, my job, my family, yadda yadda} and no time for any of it. So I make notes, jot them in my notebook and try and find some time to remember what caused that ‘aha’ moment so many weeks ago.  This is one of those posts!

A post I read recently really struck a chord with me, it is something I have touched on before here; but a comment on that post from a twitter friend made me think twice about laying it all out there in blog-land and what the sugar-coated blog really means to both the writer and her audience.

Tara from The Treehouse added her own ‘Things I’m Afraid to Tell You’ blog post to a growing movement of posts worldwide that focus on how things really are. How we as bloggers really feel; our worries, fears and insecurities, the dust bunnies under the beds rather then the single polished piece of furniture visible in the ‘staged’ blog pic {I’m definitely guilty of this!}.  I loved her post, not only did it lay out some home truths about Tara herself, it also made me think about what I’m afraid of.  What my fears and insecurities are and why I write and post about the things I do.

A blog is a tiny window into someone’s life and at the end of the day may not be a window at all, perhaps more of an elaborate facade. What bloggers choose to share more often than not is the Bright & Shiny, the Perfect, the once a month home cooked meal passed off as a common occurrence.  My initial reaction to this chain of thought was lets all get real, let’s write about the truth in our days, the bad news, the fights with our husbands, the headaches when we drink to much {how many times do you ever see a mummy blogger mention that?!}.  Quit sucking it in and let the muffin tops hang out right?

Hmmm.  I’m not sure.  I thought I was sure until @kerrypayne commented on that earlier post;

 It helps your own sanity to sometimes say everything is fine when it isn’t, a kind of affirmation maybe

She’s right.  Life has been hard since we came back to NZ.  So many nights of crying into my pillow waiting for the medication to work so I could forget my troubles until the morning.  But I didn’t blog about that.  Perhaps I should have.  Diverting the focus from the audit, the miscarriage, the melanoma, the job loss, the death of my Dad for Christ sakes…..detracting from these things by sharing a beautiful picture, or one of my boys little triumphs, or an awesome family outing on Dave’s one day off that week; those blog posts helped affirm that the sun still shined on us – some days you just have to look harder for it than others I guess.

So write what you want, whatever you need to write at the time.  Less narcissism in blog writing and more self-preservation perhaps?  I don’t know, but bleeding heart writing can get tiresome to read {and can be painful to write}, sometimes the best remedy for a bad day can be to simply slap on some lippy, whip up some scones and post a plethora of Pin-Worthy pics!  Who knows?

However you choose to engage your audience, I’ll still read your blog, I may even comment!

 

I’m Loving ……

Pssst; Don’t forget to enter my giveaway here

Ethan takes out the number one spot this week.  I am loving his exceptional school report which has made us so proud we could actually burst.  Ethan you are the most driven, most exceptional little boy and you hold yourself to the highest standards imaginable.  You and your 10.5yo spelling are the greatest achievements of my life, just keep smashing your way around that rugby field and we’ll never have to worry about maths again, ok?  I love you.

Rugby, Kumeu v Takapuna

I am loving our wee Meyer lemon tree that Mum planted.  It’s small but a champion fruiter already!  Being able to put down roots – literally – in our new house is the best feeling ever.  Lemon cake on the baking agenda tomorrow!

Meyer Lemon Tree

Friday afternoons are not quite as cruisy as one would like as E has rugby training.  However, making the best of the situation with my babein-rugby-mama-friends  is an excellent way to unwind and drink some wine at home while the little guys sweat it out in the mud.  LOVE that we live one block from the club!

The boys came back for a wee play after training and I am loving the strong friendships that are being formed in this team.  Sport is {I believe} essential for little boys {I can’t speak for little girls as I don’t have one!}.  Learning to be part of a team and fighting HARD for the common good is a lesson that is hard to instill without the very defined roles and rules that are inherent in organised sport.

Friends

While we are on the subject of Rugby, I am LOVING being able to purchase presale tickets to the All Blacks v Wallabies!!!!!  I die.  Bledisloe Cup matches have to be some of the best rugby ever.  Having things to look forward to makes life awesome.

All Blacks v Wallabies

Loving Mum’s little dog Marley, he is the cuddliest of all of our dogs and LOVES to be close.  Very close.  It’s hard to see but he was resting his wee chin on the keyboard during a teleconference yesterday.

Little dog

I LOVE finding things that have been misplaced in the move.  Dave has been without his favourite leather belt for 5 weeks now.  I knew it had something {everything} to do with me as I couldn’t find my own belt and used his whilst my clothes were boxed up.  The belt was never to be seen again!  Until today when I though to check my shorts!  No wonder I couldn’t find it – brrrrr.

Fallen belt

Oh Saturday, you were perfect!  I loved today.  I stayed home from rugby this morning and spent the day methodically working through the to-do list in my head.  Among other things I was finally able to type up Ethan’s chore list.  He is keen as to earn some pocket money before our trip next month.  Go for it little man!

Chore list

Things I’m Loving is hosted by Meghan at MNM’s

I wholeheartedly believe that no matter what is happening in your life, there is always something you can be thankful for..no matter how simple it is.

Play | Q & A with Dr Paula Barrett Part 1

SkippingBeing involved in the Milo Play initiative has been awesome for many reasons, {not least encouraging more PLAY time!} but one of my favourite ‘perks’ would have to be getting the opportunity to interview the two Play Experts that have been on board with Milo since the campaign launched in March.

You can watch my video interview with Dr Grant Schofield here, and Part 1 of my interview with Australian academic Dr Paula Barrett is below.  It’s quite weird interviewing someone via email!  At least I didn’t have to worry if I had something in my teeth {or get out of my pajamas ssshhh!}

  • Are there different types of active play that are imperative to the health/wellbeing/development of kids?

All types of active play are fantastic for kids and children. Being active is very beneficial for children instead of just sitting in front of computer because it involves moving, creating, rather than just sitting in front of computer and playing virtual games. However, swimming, playing ball in the park, bike riding with friends and family, catch and seek, running, are optimal as they involve high levels of activity and increase children and family’s fitness level.

  •     How do these differ in importance by gender or age?

No particular differences, anything your child may be interested in that involves physical activity and nature and outside, please encourage them and join in as a family. Children will tend to do more outside often if their friends, parents, and other relatives join in and turn it into a fun activity for the whole family. It doesn’t matter if it is playing ball games in the ocean, beach volleyball, running through the bush with your family dog, bike riding to work and school as a family, being active outside is always great for your physical and mental health.

  • What role do parents/caregivers have in ‘play’?  Are we there as active participants/facilitators or do we need to step back and let them ‘have at it’?

It would be optimal if parents and caregivers play alongside with children, as active participants in games. It is up to the children if they don’t want you to be involved, and they will let you know and in that case, your role may be more of an encouraging one. You can also invite friends, your children’s friends, to join you and facilitate the process.

Visit next Thursday for Part 2!


  • I am participating in the Milo Play Movement as a Blogger Ambassador and any compensation received is for advice provided directly to the MILO Play Movement team on the social media engagement plan.
  • All communications I share regarding the MILO Play Movement are my honest opinion.

 

Style | BH Cosmetics

I’m probably way behind the play on this one – as per usual, but after confessing my fear of lipstick to a fellow blogger/tweep she recommended I try a lip palette from BH Cosmetics.  The reviews are seriously amazing for ALL of their products, I even found a fellow kiwi reviewer raving about their foundation primer.  After a traumatic passport photo experience on Monday {the photo just about makes me cry every time I think of it} I have vowed to step up my game and not look so damn wretched, washed out and horsey!

I have ordered the lip palette below, a bronzer and primer for $60NZD including shipping so will let you know what I think!

Acquisitions | Freedom Confit Vessel

I don’t know what a confit vessel is, but I do know that a mustard {er…. CAMEL} vase was exactly what my bedroom needed to balance out the blue accents.  I’m pretty sure I could furnish my whole house at Freedom, my lounge is desperately needing one of these and $800 to pay for it.

Back to the vase; at $24.95 a bona fide bargain, handmade 31cm tall, substantial and heavy.  Love.

Freedom Mustard Yellow Vase

 

Things I’m Loving

A wee bit late but better late than never right?

I am LOVING Dave’s tattoo.  The shading was finished last Tuesday so he is healing well and itching like mad!  These skulls are called Sugar Skulls and are common imagery used to honor the dead during the Mexican celebration Dia de la Muertos.  Dave and I were married in San Diego {Ethan was also born there} so we LOVE all things south of the border.

Sugar Skull Tattoo

I am so loving porridge for breakfast {occasionally}.  I forgot my standard apple and cheese last week and remembered I had a box of  Pam’s Berry Porridge sachets stashed in the work kitchen.  What a treat, CARBS!

Porridge for breakfast

These winterey mornings can be quite brutal {for Auckland}, but the afternoon drive to pick up Ethan from school can be quietly stunning.  I drive 15km to work and 15km back along an open road, through farms, orchards and much roadkill but… the vista some days is so damn pretty I have to resist the urge to stop and snap pics every kilometre or so.

Riverhead Coatesville Highway

I am NOT loving adult onesies in public, but I am loving how ghetto fab my local Countdown is that someone would actually wear this shopping.  Westies rule.

Grown Up Onesie

Finally, Sunday breakfast in bed was SO perfect as I was feeling a little under the weather, ahem.  Saturday night at the rugby club watching the All Blacks narrowly beat the Irish was a bit too nerve-wracking for my liking!

Breakfast In Bed

 

Things I’m Loving is hosted by Meghan at MNM’s

I wholeheartedly believe that no matter what is happening in your life, there is always something you can be thankful for..no matter how simple it is.