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Everyday life inspirational Personal

Home tour: Our new home

January 12, 2017

Early this year, the One and I bought a new home. An 80 sqm pre-loved unit built in the 1970s meant that it was dated, but I instantly fell in love with the timber floors and airiness of the space.

Upon purchasing the house we knew parts of it would require renovation and TLC. Little did we know that it would take 5 months to get it to a state to move in, and even then it wasn’t complete! It was sure a balancing act juggling full-time work, volunteering activities, morning sickness from pregnancy and this DIY project. Through this experience I saw firsthand the commitment and hard work hubby dedicates to everything he does.

We also had help from friends – we could not have done it without them. Micah the Builder came over most nights to work on the house. Stav the Electrician helped us change all the lights and switches in his spare time. Hubby the One painted the whole house on his own, with some assistance from Ashford, Will and me.

Photos of our home

The biggest transformation took place in the bathroom, where we demolished a wall and redesigned the entire layout. It is now my favourite part of the house, because we handpicked every single thing in that room, from the tiles to the grout and bathroom fittings. It also boasts underfloor heating which is a luxury in the cold Melbourne winter months.

I love our dining table

Lovedreamdo - Living room ideas

All our prints are either hand-drawn or from Etsy, this particular one is the Auckland city skyline which reminds us of home


Shoe cupboard designed by hubby, a great way to keep shoes neat and tidy in a small area!

Charcoal floor and carrara marble wall tiles with silver grout

Everyday life inspirational

How to stop… and find beauty in your world

August 1, 2016

Being up in the sky amidst the cotton candy clouds and has become routine to me. I have been doing the same thing for the past ten weeks, on repeat. But it wasn’t until last week that I stopped.. and was amazed at what I saw.

A snapshot of the travel life

On Monday morning my alarm goes off at 4:30am. It take a couple of snoozes to get me up but when I do, I pack the rest of my essentials. My toothbrush, my prescription glasses and contact lenses, phone charger and all kinds of moisturisers. I hop into my mode of transport and in a daze half in and out of sleep I arrive at the airport. Nowadays I have some sort of special status with airlines that I get to skip the queues so zipping in and checking in doesn’t take long. I have my breakfast in the lounge, it is always OJ mixed with water paired with a toasted sammie, scrambled eggs on toast or cereal depending on what I feel like. By the time I have boarded the plane my tummy is satisfied, it doesn’t take much for me to fall asleep again.

The week passes fast when you are busy trying to achieve goals and make things happen at the client’s site.

Then Friday arrives and at 3:30pm. I rush from my last meeting to the airport, have a bowl of soup with a bread roll and butter (yum) and we’re once again off in the air. At this time of the day I am either: trying to relax on the plane by listening to music, thinking about all the things I have to do when I get off the plane, or playing a game on my iPhone to unwind.  For the last ten weeks I had been so caught up in myself that I did not get the chance to stop, change my perspective and appreciate. Appreciate the view. Appreciate that the act of flying is magical and a miracle. How could I have missed this consecutively for the last ten weeks?






Will you do this? Will you stop, pause and look around you? You will find beauty in the most unexpected places. Beauty that had always been there if only you had taken the time to stop… and look for it.

Everyday life inspirational

When you feel like decision making is weighing you down

June 15, 2016

Not every decision is a primary one. There are tough decisions, if you are like me I start writing a list of pros and cons. Then there are the easy and simple ones, the ones that do not cost you a thing.

Each decision has an outcome attached to it. Some are inconsequential, some are material.

On decision making

Most of the time decision making is like walking into a haze where you can’t see past your five fingers. Where will your next step take you? Will you walk into an open space or hit a brick wall?

The past me would be so paralysed with fear that I would just stop walking and stay stuck in my spot. Because I feel safer staying in the familiar than stepping out into the unknown.

The new me has learned that sometimes you just need to first trust, then keep walking. Because there are only two things that could happen.

You could be turning into a dead end street with no where else to go. So pick yourself up and turn back, with the knowledge that you have tried and learned and are closer to making the right turn next.

Or you could be making your way onto a flourishing path where flowers bloomed larger than you have ever seen and the air is fresher than mountain breeze.

Two rules to decision making

There are only two rules: You don’t stop making decisions and you don’t take short cuts.

A little short cut here and a compromise there accumulates and one day you find yourself in a place that you never wanted to be in the first place. I had my eyes on the end goal, and I didn’t care how I got there, you say. Honesty and integrity is the guarantee to staying the distance.

Don’t freeze when making decisions. Putting off on making a decision or not making one is worse off than making a mistake. At least you can learn from your failures rather than be stuck in the same spot.

After making a decision

Its passed the point of no return, like the song from the closing scene of the Phantom of the Opera. From here on is no longer about making the right decision but to run with the best decision to make next, in that situation.

Keep making the most out of it.

Everyday life inspirational

4 keys to confidence

June 8, 2016

The opposite of confidence comes in the form of nervousness building inside bubbling over like a stew simmering on the stove.

Heartbeat palpitating against your chest leaving you hiccuping for air.

That mind blank that is like a blanket that snuffs out the light leaving only darkness.

Something out there will try to rob you of your confidence

It could manifest in a joke that throws daggers at your insecurities like a bow hitting its target. Or when she walks pass you and says nothing to acknowledge your existence. Will you let the accidental unintentional rob your confidence?

You only lose confidence when you choose to throw it all away

The maybes, the perhaps, the I thinks, the I don’t knows. What you utter from your mouth reflects the very depths of your soul. Throw away those words that say you are unsure of yourself. But don’t throw away your confidence.

She stands in the crowd with quiet confidence, rising above the others. Some grow tired of doing good and toss at her a stone. It hits her arm and she shoos it away with her other hand, as if it was just a wheezing fly. Another group stand in the distance, snickering and gossiping at her, but she takes no notice, standing firm and secure in her source of confidence. She shines above the rest. It is the consistency of doing good and well and the flicking off of an negativity and cynicism that elevates her. She is beautiful beyond comparison because in her she does not let the darkness dwell.

Endurance cultivates confidence

He walks out on the podium with an immediate stage presence that demands your respect. He opens his mouth and speaks with authority, each word uttered with clarity. Not once does he have to refer to his notes, you sometimes wonder if he even had to prepare the night before. This is an authority that is cultivated through experience and endurance, through repetitive delivery of the same topic, each time refined, each time etched more deeply into his memory.

Giving up too early just makes you an amateur, a junior that is flaky and unreliable. But by honing your skill and your craft, you become a professional, a trusted somebody that people refer to and respect.

Remember what it was really all about

Remember the pure joy that burst and surged when you were first asked to do it? Remember the feeling of miraculous awe the first day you started? Remember why you chose the path that you are now on, the one that you now complain about? In moments of desperation, find time to revisit those moments. It was my dream, but now I complain? I asked to do this, but now I want to quit? Where is the reasonableness in this? But when we focus on the why and not the what, we often end up succeeding and triumphant.

Hebrews 10:35-36