Thursday, 24 July 2014

'A Whole Lot of Questions' Tag.

I honestly can't remember where I found this tag.  It's been sitting in my Blogger drafts for a good few months now and silly me forgot to make a note of who the tagger was.  Oh well, I'm doing this tag anyway.  Hopefully you guys will learn a little something new about me. :)

Apple juice or orange juice?
Hmm.. probably apple juice.  I prefer pineapple juice though. :P

Are you a morning or night person?
Neither haha!  I suppose I'd have to say that I'm a night person though as I'm definitely not a morning person.

Which do you prefer, sweet or salty foods?
I love them both, but if I had to pick just one I'd probably choose salty foods.

What was your favorite childhood television program?
I had so many!  Degrassi, Lizzie McGuire, Round the Twist, Raggy Dolls.. the list goes on!

Are you a collector of anything?
Dachshund ornaments, clothes, house decor, etc.  Anything with a dachshund motif basically. :P

If you could be any animal, what would you be?
A miniature dachshund haha!  They lead the most pampered lives. :)

If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
Invisibility! I'd be the biggest snoop ever!

What is usually your first thought when you wake up?
"Seriously?! Is it morning already?!".  I absolutely hate mornings.

What do you usually think about right before falling asleep?
What I'm going to get up to the next day, the future, etc.

What's your favorite color?

What's your favorite animal?

Do you believe in extraterrestrials or life on other planets?
There's a lot of planets, so it wouldn't surprise me if there was other life out there.

Do you believe in ghosts?
I've never seen or experienced a ghost encounter, but I don't know for sure whether they exist or not.

Ever been addicted to a video/computer game? Which one(s)?
Sonic, Tomb Raider, Crash Bandicoot, The Sims.

You're given 1 million dollars, what do you spend it on?
A house, car, another miniature dachshund, an overseas holiday, our wedding.

Have any bad habits?
Plenty.  Funnily enough I can't think of any off the top of my head, but believe me, I'm horrid haha! 

Which bad habits, if any, drive you crazy?
Smoking, but only when it causes people to be anti-social.  It's my biggest pet peeve.  I'm not a smoker by the way - just so we're clear. :P

List 3 of your best personality traits:
1. I'm usually pretty good at making decisions.
2. I'm an honest, down to earth kind of girl.
3. I'm loyal to those who deserve my loyalty.

List 3 of your worst personality traits:
1. I'm not always the best listener.
2. I'm very bossy.
3. I'm quite the perfectionist (but a lazy perfectionist).

Have any celebrity crushes?
Oh for sure!  Too many list here though.

What's one thing you wish you could change about yourself?
I wish I was a bit more free-spirited, less anxious and more of a risk taker.

Any tattoos or piercings?
I have my ears and belly button pierced but no tattoos as of yet.

What personality traits do you look for in a partner?
The same personality traits that I would look for in a friend.

What personality traits do you dislike in other people?
When people are overly insecure to a point where they put down those around them to make themselves feel better.

Are you mostly a clean or messy person?
A bit of both I guess. I'm very tidy in the sense that everything has its place, but I can also skip the vacuuming for 6 months and not give a toss.

Do you see yourself getting married in the next 5 years?
Yes and no.  I'm about 99% percent sure it's going to happen, but I can't really visualise it.. probably because we can't afford it right now.

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live?
I don't know.  I really know South East Queensland after all.

If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would you go?
Oh, that's easy.. America.

List 5 goals on your life to-do list:
1. Get another miniature dachshund.
2. Buy a new car.
3. Get married.
4. Have three kids.
5. Buy a house.

Name 1 regret you have:
Studying to be a teacher for four and a half years.  I should have just gotten a full time job in retail.

Name 1 thing you miss about being a kid:
Sitting in my bedroom talking to myself whilst playing with my barbies.

Name 1 thing you love about being an adult:
Being able to make my own decisions.

What's your favourite song of the moment?
Chandelier by Sia.

What's your favourite song of all time?
I'm not sure.

What's your favourite thing to do on a Saturday night?
Staying in and watching movies.

What's your favorite thing to do on a Sunday afternoon?
Taking Ellie for a walk with B.

You're about to walk the green mile, what do you have as your last meal?
My cheesy potato and zucchini bake.

What would be your dream job?
A care-free 9-5 job, with weekends off so I can spend them with my family. :)

Ever wish you were born the opposite sex? If so, why?
Yes.  I just think things are easier in general for guys.  Actually, no.  Because guys can't give birth and that is definitely something I want to experience for myself.

Name 1 thing not many people know about you:
I have restless bitchface.  I think most people just assume I'm grumpy/uninterested all the time.

If you HAD to change your name, what would you change it to?
Matilda, Phoebe or Arden.

I tag everyone to do this!  I had a lot of fun answering these questions. :)

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Monday, 21 July 2014

Why I Write.

Have you ever actually stopped to think about why you choose to write a blog?  I can't say that I've given it too much thought myself before.. it's just always been something that I've done, mostly for fun. That was of course until the lovely Maria from Mummy Goes Mad nominated me to share my thoughts on why I write with my readers.  I thought this was a great idea as I honestly enjoy a bit of personal reflection, and I figured you guys might enjoy reflecting along with me. :)

What am I working on?
I'm working on being a bit more free and playful with my writing style; writing whatever is on my mind whenever I feel like it and without having to plan things out perfectly all the time.  I'm specifically trying to write more personal types of posts about where I am in life, my relationships, my thoughts on relocation, etc.  Not just so that I can get my thoughts out in the open, but also so I can connect with other bloggers who might be in the same boat as I am.  I'd also love to start sharing some more recipes and DIY blog design posts, it's just difficult to find the time for this at the moment.

How does my writing differ from others in my genre?
Well considering that I tend to label myself as a lifestyle blogger, I'd say my current (well, up until now) writing style is actually pretty rigid and uninviting.  I wish I could say that this is the result of being scared to get too personal on the blog, but the sad and pathetic excuse is that I'm basically just really lazy.  I started this blog back in 2011 to leave something behind for my children.  Back then though the thought of having children one day was such a foreign concept, so foreign in fact that I allowed my posting style to become incredibly sporadic, unfocused and let's face it.. boring!

Now that I'm getting older and time is flying by so much quicker, I find myself thinking more and more about my future and the idea of starting a family.  I don't want my kids to look back on my blog someday and think "eh, boring!" and then not even bother to read it.  I'm actually thinking of going back through my past posts and just deleting (or at least unpublishing) anything that my future children wouldn't be interested in.  I think I'd need a whole weekend free for that to be a possibility though. :P

Why do I write what I do?
I write about my life because that's pretty much all I have to write about.  I'm not big into one specific topic, such as beauty or DIY projects, yet I still feel like I have something to share with the world.

Like I said above, I mostly write for my future children and my partner (just in case *knock on wood* I die before he does) so if I didn't write about my life then that would actually be kind of weird now wouldn't it?

How does my writing process work?
I'm pretty terrible at writing up a blog post that I've made a note about in my ideas journal, so if I do want to plan to write a post I have to start writing a few sentences before saving it as a blogger draft, and then add that post to my to-do list somewhere in my daily planner.

Most of my posts are pretty spare of the moment though (or at least they are now), and I often find that once I start it can be really hard for me to stop.. take this blog post for instance. :P

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Now, the idea with this blog post is that after sharing with you all the reasons why I write I must now nominate three of my favourite bloggers to share with us the reasons why they write as well.  It was really hard for me to pick just three bloggers, so if I haven't nominated you below please feel free to share your reasons with us anyway!

1. Carly from Carly's Beauty World
2. Lauren from Tastes Like Love
3. Jamie from J4mieJohnston

Why do you guys write?  If you don't write, what's holding you back?

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Friday, 18 July 2014

We're moving to Townsville!

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that B and I (yes, now that my partner is almost a doctor he has decided I must call him 'B' on the blog from now on) were waiting to find out where he would be placed for his medical internship next year.  We were aiming for Brisbane, but I was secretly hoping for either Ipswich or Toowoomba as that would mean moving closer to family and living the suburban lifestyle that I was already very happy and comfortable with.  Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine we'd get placed somewhere further out though.  I mean, I knew it was a possibility, but the thought had barely even entered my mind.  I wouldn't allow it to enter my mind.

Fast forward to Monday afternoon this week.  It was around lunchtime when it popped into my head that B would be finding out where he'd get placed this week.  He mentioned the week before that he might find out as early as Monday, but as I hadn't heard from him all day I just assumed he hadn't been told yet.  A few hours later, at around 4pm, B walked through the door and greeted me before greeting Ellie.  I realise that this probably sounds normal to most of you, but given Ellie's extreme level of cuteness it is actually more normal for us to greet Ellie before each other.

Anyway, something about the fact that B greeted me first set off alarm bells in my mind and I immediately asked if he had received any news that day.  "Yes, but you're not going to like it" was his answer.  "No, don't tell me.. I don't want to know" I started spitting out, but B cut me off.  "It starts with a T.." and for a brief moment my heart fluttered in my chest as I thought he meant Toowoomba. Images of living in a cute little house and being close to mine and B's fathers came to mind.. getting the chance to watch my baby brother Lucas grow up.. having the rest of my friends and family come up to stay on the weekends.  I could deal with Toowoomba.  I would have been pleased with Toowoomba. But all these images were completely torn apart when B finished his sentence.. "and it ends with ownsville".  Townsville?  We were moving to Townsville?!

I'm not going to lie - I spent the next few minutes in denial.  "Are you sure?", "You're joking right?", "Stop! it's not funny!", "Are you actually being serious?".. eventually I came to the realisation that B wasn't joking from the pale colour of his cheeks and the breathy way that he spoke.  He was in denial about this situation just as much as I was.  Why else wouldn't he have told me the second he found out?

For the rest of that evening B and I were pretty up and down.  Neither of us had ever been to Townsville, knew anyone who lives in/near Townsville (our closest friends live almost a 5 hour drive away and everyone else lives back in Brisbane/Ipswich/Toowoomba/Gold Coast) or had really even heard anything about Townsville (although I take not hearing anything to be a good sign as it must mean it doesn't have a bad reputation).  All we knew is that is was a 6 hour plane flight from where we live currently (or 2 hours from Brisbane) or a 17 hour drive.  Doesn't exactly make it easy to visit our friends and families does it?

At the same time though, we'd have these brief bursts of optimism where we'd get a bit excited about something that would suddenly occur to us.  Things such as the costs of living up there not being as bad as we imagined (much better in fact), or B getting 25% of his University debt paid off for each year that he works up there and having this count towards his mandatory rural service time.  The city itself is also supposed to be a bit of a tropical paradise with the great barrier reef nearby.  Plus, it will still allow me to live the suburban lifestyle that I oddly enjoy so much. :P

The reality of it all still hasn't quite hit us yet.  I feel a bit lost, and I know B does too.  We're excited though!  Change is always scary, but I'm a firm believer that everything happens for a reason.  Basically I'm caught between two worlds right now.. the known and the unfamiliar.  I feel a fear that I have never felt before.. but in a good way!

Have you ever lived in or visited Townsville?  Ever moved somewhere rural to support a loved one?

Please leave your thoughts and advice in the comment section below.  All comments welcome. x

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Thursday, 17 July 2014

My New Blog Design Reveal + Blog Changes.

Sorry I haven't written a blog post in while.  I have been busy as all hell with blog designs at the moment following on from my EOFY sale.  I have also been in the midst of a bit of re-brand for my blog, which is what this post is all about. :)  I'm actually in the process of re-branding my blog design business website as well but that is taking a bit longer than expected due to all of the designs that I am currently working on (and my clients always come first!).

Anyway, back to the blog.. as you can see I haven't completely changed my blog design, I've simply altered it to a point where I feel more excited to write on it.  Most of the fonts I am using are still the same except that I am now using 'georgia' for my blog posts and I have slightly switched up my header title to incorporate two of my favourite premium hand drawn fonts.  The colour scheme is much the same as well as I just couldn't bare to part with my beloved shades of lilac and peachy pinks.  The biggest difference you will notice is that my background is now all white, making it easier for you guys to focus on the content of my blog posts.

The sidebar area has also been altered a little, starting with my welcome portrait.  A few weeks ago B and I had an impromptu family photo shoot with Ellie outside my Mums house and we managed to snap what would have to be my favourite photo of us of all time.  So I sent this photo to my lovely friend Maria who worked her magic on it and made it blog design worthy for me.  I know some people hate when Bloggers use photos of their spouses/families on their personal blogs (I don't understand why though) but for me my blog has always been about my family (present and future) despite what my blog name might imply.  You can see an example of Maria's photoshop magic below to give you guys an idea of just how talented she is.

Maria blogs over at Mummy Goes Mad and has been thinking about setting up an Etsy store to offer her skills to fellow bloggers.  If you like her work, feel free to get in touch with her as I know she'd love to work with you guys to bring your photographs to life. :)

Other changes I made to my sidebar included adding a large instagram slideshow to break up the important links at the top and the slightly less, though still important, widgets at the bottom.  I've also added a few Google AdSense adverts throughout the sidebar and at the bottom of my blog, so we'll just see how they go.  I'll obviously need to start posting more if I have any chance of earning any income through this blog though. :P

As for blog content, I have decided I need to start making a few changes.  From this point on there will be no more 'Thankful Tuesdays' posts.  To be honest, it just got too challenging for me to come up with 3-4 different things that I was thankful for each week without being too repetitive.  Let's face it.. I am constantly thankful for B, Ellie, family and friends, food and TV shows.  I don't think anyone needs to hear about this week in, week out.  I've also decided to get a bit more personal and just sit down and pour my heart out from time to time.  Not only is this therapeutic for me, but the blog posts I produce when I sit down and do this are some of the very best that I have ever written.  I want this blog to be more about quality vs quanity and I think making these few simple changes will help to do just that. :)

So what do you think of the new blog design?  Are you ready for some more heart felt posts?

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Thursday, 3 July 2014

I met the love of my life ten years ago today.

Myself and B, the first day we met in person.  Please excuse the horrendous photo quality!

Ten years ago today, on July 3rd 2004, I first met my partner B.  It was a (windy) Saturday afternoon in B's hometown of Toowoomba, and 15 year old me and 16 year old B had arranged to meet at B's local cinema to watch the movie 'Mean Girls'.  Not being a Toowoomba girl myself (I lived in Brisbane at the time) I didn't think about the fact that it might be cold that day and so I wore the shudder inducing pink collared top and tartan pink mini skirt combo pictured above.  To say that I was cold was an understatement.  Unfortunately I still haven't learned my lesson about Toowoomba weather and am often still caught out wearing shorts in the middle of winter. :P

Prior to this meeting B and I had only ever talked online.  We'd met in an MSN chat room (oh, the good old days!) roughly a year beforehand and had only just worked up the courage to meet each other face to face.  We were supposed to be meeting up as "friends" but from the moment that I first spotted him from across the cinema foyer, I instantly felt attracted to him.  Being tall, smart, funny and handsome meant that I of course formed a crush on B within minutes of us saying hello, but it was more than just the feeling of having a teenage, hormonal driven crush on someone.. it was almost like a sense of "knowing" that we were meant to meet each other that day.

I don't remember much of the movie side of our meet up as I was far too busy remembering to breathe as B pulled the old 'arm over the shoulder' move in a (successful) attempt to kiss me.  That's right kids, Daddy was always pretty smooth in the romance department. ;)  Thankfully our first kiss went really well as we'd both already had some practice, although I do remember B commenting on the fact that my legs felt a bit prickly.. Sorry buddy, but we were supposed to be meeting up as friends.. I didn't even think about shaving my legs for the occasion. :P

After the movie my Dad, who had kindly driven me up to Toowoomba to meet B, drove B and I over to picnic point to say a proper goodbye to each other.  Dad obviously felt that saying goodbye at the movies wasn't good enough for us.. maybe he knew that we would one day end up being with each other too?  Whatever his reason was, I'm really glad we went to picnic point.  B was really sweet when it came to saying goodbye, sweet enough for me to still remember the goosebumps his words gave me ten years later.  :)

Sadly we weren't in a position to start a relationship up at that time in our lives, and it wasn't until four and a half years later that B finally asked me to be his girlfriend.  I'm so glad we waited though. Realistically we probably wouldn't have lasted very long as a teenage couple in a long distance relationship.. plus I truly believe that the relationships we both had in those next four and a half years were necessary for the success of our relationship today.  I love B so much more right at this moment than I ever could have imagined loving anyone as a teenager.  He is my rock, my centre, my everything really.. and I am so glad we met each other ten years ago today.

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