These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things: AUGUST 2020

Well see ya later August and hello Springtime! What an interesting month August turned out to be. Adjusting to an immense physical and emotional emptiness has been a huge adjustment. But it’s also given me a lot of time and space to think, reflect and dig deep about what’s important to me and why. I think I’ve seen more sunrises this month than I have any other. I’ve probably also drank more than I have any other (hello sober September!) It’s been a bit of a blur but I’m so damn proud I made it through.

Canberra

So I realised it had been an awkward amount of time since I’d seen my (not-so) little brother down in Canberra. So why not make a weekend of it and tag along with your fam and bestie. Why the fuck did I go to Canberra in the middle of winter?! Damn it was freezing. Lucky we had some good food and good beer to keep us occupied. Note to self – Isaac, next time you’re coming to Wollongong!

Hiking and nature vibes

Sometimes you just gotta get out into nature and soak up some damn sunshine! Luckily around Wollongong we are #blessed with some gorgeous hikes. Even better, when you’ve got your Dad and besties with ya, it makes it even more enjoyable. The one i did with my Dad is called Drawing Room Rocks (not far from Berry) and the other is the Wodi Wodi track (just down from Stanwell Park). They both have amazing vistas of the ocean and surrounding valleys. Top it off with a coffee and feed at a cool lil cafe and you’ve got my heart!

Playing touch

It’s touch season! I somehow got roped into/volunteered myself to get involved in playing on a mixed touch team this season. Gosh I forgot how much I love team sports. I’ve played a few games to date and I haven’t had a panic attack (#winning). I’m getting better and more confident with each game, and it’s so great to get out and about with a bunch of awesome people. Ticks the social box and get physical box which is a win win for me! Go Illawarriors!

Palmerston (NT) - Touch Football Australia

Flicks

Why Women Kill
Lucy Liu, need I say more?! This show is epic! It’s a slow burn that tells the stories of three different women across three different decades, connected by the house they all lived in at their respective time. Following the 50s, 80s and teens (guys what are we calling 2010-2019?!), this show unpicks some incredible storylines and develops the characters beautifully. It’s a dark comedy (don’t worry – not slashy at all) and the storylines just hook you in where you have to keep watching to find out how it all plays out. You can watch Season 1 on SBS On Demand.

Salisbury Poisonings
Did the world just somehow forget that the most toxic substance on earth was loose in an English town in 2018?! Damn, this show is epic! With only 4 episodes, you’ll easily smash it out over a weekend. I remember when this happened and was it felt like a real life spy show was unfolding in front of our eyes. Watching this show and they way they recount what happened is so intelligent and gripping. It’s also funny how ‘normal’ it all looks after our response to COVID-19. In 2018, full body hazmat suits, masks and public health, really wasn’t widely talked about. Wow – watch it on SBS On Demand.

Books

The Dictionary of Lost Words, by Pip Williams
I absolutely adored this book. Set in the late 1800’s early 1900’s, it tells the story of a young girl who grows up on in the shed they compile the first Oxford English dictionary. It’s so fascinating to be transported back in time and think about how people communicated, what words meant, and how exclusionary they were/are. If you love a book about an underdog, love, curiosity and words, then you will love this book.

The Dictionary of Lost Words | BIG W

Gifts of Imperfection, by Brene Brown
Ah good old Brene Brown? Where would I be without her wisdom and ability to easily communicate complex concepts? I think I could have highlighted every other page. Honestly it’s jam packed filled with so much great content, wisdom and advice that it’s almost too much to soak in at once. It’s certainly a book I’ll be referring back to often. Thank you Tish for the recommendation. If you’re looking for how to dig in deep and confront your feelings (rather than hiding from them like I tend to do), then this book is for you.

The Gifts of Imperfection – Bethel Store

Tunes

The Killers
Do you ever have those moments where you literally forget a band exists? And then, out of the blue, one of their bangers comes on and a whirlwind of goodness just flashes right back to you? That’s what happened the other day when Glamorous Indie Rock and Roll came on and wow I was TRANSPORTED! So my recommendation is to go back 10 years ago and listen to those albums that you used to lose your mind to. Another reminder why music is good for the soul.

Podcasts

The Cut
The Cut is back baby! Hallelujah! This was one of my FAVOURITE podcasts last year and then they, well, cut it. I’m so glad they came to their senses and decided to revamp it. Two episodes in and I’m loving the new host, the topics they’re covering are awesome and – ah I’m just really excited that this podcast is back in my life!

The Cut Returns With a New Weekly Podcast

Product

Hawaiian tropic
This product smells AMAZING!!! Honestly their sunscreen makes you want to put it everywhere at all times, because after all, sun safety is sexy. Plus, if like me you’re basically incapable of tanning, be sure to pick up their gradual tan lotion too. It feels so good on your skin and again, smells amazing! Anything that promotes protecting your skin, hydrating it and getting your tan from a can (or a bottle), then I’m about it!

Buy Silk Hydration Lotion SPF50+ 180 mL by Hawaiian Tropic Online |  Priceline

Well August, what a ride. I’m very much looking forward to September and taking it easy. I’m looking forward to taking a step back from drinking and challenging myself to set new goals and kick them too!

These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things: AUGUST 2019

August! Thank you for coming! This month I was professional Adelaide and out in full force! I went on my first ever international business trip (which was freakin awesome), I’ve been killing it at work, I’ve been getting active and sweaty, and having a great time with friends! What more could you even ask for?! August was such a wholesome month and I honestly felt on my absolute A game! So let’s have a look at the month where I killed it! #humblebrag

🏍️ India

Hello country number 30! And what an adventure it was! India is somewhere I have always wanted to go but thought it was a ‘one day’ country. Never would I have thought I would get the chance to go on a business trip to three cities in 12 days. I visited Mumbai (or Bombay as the locals still call it), Kolkata and Delhi. I was totally in the zone and have honestly never felt more confident in my work. And being, the adventurer I am, I needed to get out and about and explore the cities I was in. This meant, 6am starts, late nights, lots of food, lots of staring out windows and lots of ‘wow’ moments. Seriously India, I cannot wait to come back

🎉Parties!

It was my best friend cyclone Erica’s birthday! The one thing I love more than my birthday, is celebrating my friends birthdays! We went on a double date to Kneading Ruby and hello fancy pants, it was a lot of fun! No party is complete without a night out at the Harp, a bottomless brunch at Dagwood (margaritas YUM!) and finishing it off with a Sunday Sesh at North Gong!

🐤 Haidee’s Hens

The first time I ever went on a hens night out, I was 18, living in London, and somewhat crashed a hens. The hen herself took a firm liking to me and proceeded to buy me tequila shots all night until I was throwing up in the street (yep – I’m glad I’ve left that girl behind). So for my first proper hens party, for my gorgeous friend (and Soph’s big sister) Haidee, I was tremendously excited to celebrate her soon to be marriage!

🍷 Fam time

Those who know me, would know that I don’t see my family very often. It’s a combination between being way too busy, distance and travel. So when my family come to spend the weekend with me, it makes me pretty damn happy. It also coincided with a Fathers Day weekend. So we took Dad to a winery, out for burgers, pizza and cocktails. Us Haynes’, we’re silly and loud and don’t make much sense, but we know how to have a good time!

🎥 Flicks

Animal Kingdom
You better believe we smashed over all 4 seasons. Whilst this is filled with way too much testosterone, there’s something just chill and encapsulating to watch a young group of guys steal stuff and bash stuff up. Is this really entertainment? I don’t know, but I came to view Smurf as the ultimate badass.

🎵Tunes

Smith Street Band
I know there’s been a lot of controversy around this band lately, and in music more broadly (can you separate the man from the artist, and still appreciate their music?) And whilst I don’t have the answer, the inner rock goddess within me loves this song! I want to listen to it loud, I want to thrash around and kick something in my connies.

Thelma Plum
Woah!! Her new album is AMAZING! I have had it on repeat and wow it is an absolute banger! I was lucky enough to see her in concert this month and WOW! Her voice is so powerful and her voice is honestly better in real life (how that is possible I have no idea!). Oh and she is STUNNING! Mega girl crush!

📷 Vloggers, Blogger and Podders

Larissa DSa
Whilst I was India, I stumbled across this India YouTuber. And I was lucky enough to see her video on Kolkata, before I arrived in Kolkata. Whilst some might argue it can ‘spoil’ a city before getting there, I can honestly say it enhanced my experience and made me so much more excited to go, and happy to be there. Plus it was nice to discover another YouTuber (who I think is very talented and super likeable!)

❤️ Product

Phisohex
OK not the most glamorous recommendation but a worthy one at that! When I cam back from India, my chest was covered in tiny red sweat pimples (thanks 95% humidity). But after a week or two they still hadn’t disappeared. Naturally, I consulted my expert ex-pharmacy assistant who recommended good old Phisohex. Wow! I honestly reckon within a day it started to clear up, and now my chest is completely clear! I’ve since incorporated into my skincare routine, and if you suffer from persistent acne, I would totally recommend it. It’s not a miracle wash (nothing is) but this really helped my skin and I saw excellent results!

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📝 Quote

The magic happens in the process! I cannot stress this enough, and cannot seem to remember it enough. I’m always worried about producing excellent, perfect, ‘ready to publish’ work. And I’m so hard on myself that I often don’t get very far, or I’m so completely unmotivated by the fear of failing, that I don’t even try.

Well this is not the person I signed up to be! This has been a beautiful reminder that I can create work that isn’t perfect, the most important thing is that I’m creating, getting my hands dirty and giving it my all.

Thank you August! I am so grateful I got to experience such an incredible breadth of activities, pushed myself and made a lifelong dream of travelling for work, a reality. Dreams can come true! September, I’ve set the bar high so watch out!

These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things: AUGUST 2018

See ya later August! Winter is over and Spring has Sprung (if you could say that we even had a winter!) I have to admit, I was terrified going into August. Every weekend was booked up with an event of some sort and I had no idea how I was going to get through it. I guess this is a reminder that no matter what lies ahead, you’ll always get through it. You may be tired but at least you bloody did it! So let’s have a look at the craziest month EVER!

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👠 Melbourne

Did you even have a girls trip if you didn’t go to Melbourne?! This was such a random and fun weekend! A few friends of mine from high school decided to rendez-vous in Melbourne for a getaway! I honestly had SO MUCH FUN! We stayed in a gorgeous apartment in the CBD. We ate, drank and danced all over Melbourne! I drank waaaay too many espresso martinis, bought funky pants, went to Brunswick for feminst-vegan food, trammed out to Fitzroy for coffee and vintage stores, and managed not to loose anything (sorry Mollie!). I also got to catch up with some friends that I haven’t seen in forever. There’s nothing quite like connecting with old friends and having a beautiful, genuine catch up on one another’s lives. I felt truly lucky to call these people my friends.

🏄‍♀️ City2Surf

It’s that time of year again! The painful 14km from Sydney’s CBD to the beautiful Bondi Beach. This is my 3rd year doing it and was easily one of the best ones! I surprisingly ran (without stopping) for the first half! This is unheard of to anyone who doesn’t know me! A mix between a run and a jog later I was at the finish line! Honestly – it is such a great day! I would highly recommend it to anyone and everyone! You feel so energised and excited, the adrenaline is real and the beers waiting for you at the end have never tasted so good I assure you of that!

💄Shenanigans

There’s nothing quite like some shenanigans with friends. Here’s just a few snaps. What’s not pictured are is my sore tummy from laughing so much!

👰 Lauren’s wedding

*Hold back tears* This was easily the most beautiful day of my whole month, if not year! I was lucky enough to go to my friend, Lauren’s wedding. I was pretty nervous about going because I only knew a few other people there, and this was only going to be the second wedding I’ve been to. Well I tell you – IT WAS BEAUTIFUL! I felt like I was in a movie! Honestly it was gorgeous and flipped so much of what I thought I knew on my head. I always thought I would elope and have a small, quiet wedding. But what’s the point?! You can have all of your friends, family and loved ones with you to celebrate your special day and eat amazing food! Ah it was honestly gorgeous and it made such an impact on my life. And to Lauren and Adam, thank you for including me on your special day! Your love for each other is evident as it filled the entire room! I wish you all the happiness in your new life together. *cries*

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✍🏽 Publishing an article in the Tertangala

Ever since I started uni, I’ve wanted to write an article for the Tertangala (the student magazine). Actually, even before I started uni! I thought that writing for the student magazine was the coolest thing you could do! And this month I finally did it! My lovely friend Laura approached me and asked me to write an article about immigration (basically my honours thesis) and the article basically wrote itself! I feel like this is such a cool addition to my student experience here at UOW and I’m so glad I could share my voice and somewhat, expertise on an issue I’m passionate about!

🎶Tunes

Nicki Minaj-  Queen.
My girl is baaaaccckkk! (rolls tongue like Nicki). This album is INSANE! Starting off with some sweet honey tunes, she takes you through a smooth journey of rnb and rap. Her hard hitting stuff is rough, her sexy stuff hits the spot and her ballads are contagious. All I’m thinking is… when is she touring Australia?!

Running Touch – My Hands.
This song is epic! I’ve had it on repeat this month. Everytime I hear it, it digs its way into my earholes and stays there. It’s very unique and excellently produced. I just love it and am definitely all about it.

The Preatures.
I was lucky enough to score tickets to the Preatures at the beginning of the month. I have to admit, I didn’t really know a whole lot of their music. Nonetheless, I went along. Holy shit, seeing them live changed my whole perspective towards them! The singer is an INCREDIBLE performer and I was purely captivated the whole way through. I’ve been listening to them non-stop since and think I can officially call myself a fan!

🎥 Flicks

Orange is the new black – Season 6. It’s back! Finally! I really should cancel my Netflix subscription while I’m trying to finish my thesis (I may or may not have finished this season in a week) but it’s totally worth it to feast my senses on this masterpiece! There are some truly magical moments in this series. Moments that catch your breath, coax tears from your eyes and inspire laughter.

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Book Club.
So Chloe and I went to the movies to watch Crazy Rich Asians. And I read the movie timetable wrong and we were a day early (classic!). So instead we went to watch Book Club. OMG it was hilarious! It was so cute to see these little cute ‘old’ ladies galavanting around LA! Would recommend if you’re after a feel-good flick and want an insight into your future as a ‘mature aged’ kick ass woman!

📷 Bloggers and Vloggers

kold
So I’m not usually a fan of Sam Kold but this video is RAD that he deserves a mention! Holy shit the YouTube game is changing because of creators like him. Storytelling is evolving, vlogging is growing and travel is becoming more daring. This video is pure awesome. If you didn’t want to go to Brazil before this, you will now!

📗 Book

Illicit FlirtationsL Labor, migration, and sex trafficking in Tokyo by Rhacel Salazar Parreñas
*nerdy talk* This book is awesome! Written in an engaging, human-centred way that looks into the everyday lives of Filipino migrant workers working as hostesses in Japan. When most people hear the word sex-trafficking, they think victims coerced into a transnational network of crime, gangs and slavery. This book completely turns that on its head. At least in my research, I think it’s really important to research migrants as individuals with agency. They are not useless, mindless people that make stupid decisions. The world of hostessing is complex and there are a range of different environmental, social, political, health and economic reasons why someone may end up as a hostess in Tokyo. A lot of the time, it’s actually their choice. We cannot ever make these choices for these people and I think this book does a great job of delving into the difficult decisions faced by thousands in Japan and across the world.

Image result for illicit flirtations
📝 Quote

I think that deep down, to my very core, I am a happy person. I think my default setting is ‘optimist,’ and while I receive a lot of jokes about it, I think I’m coming to realise just how much I value my optimistic attitude towards things. I know that sometimes I can be unreasonably optimistic, but in my eyes, it’s better than being unreasonably pessimistic. It just comes second nature to me because I really believe in people, in life and in the universe. I feel that everything will work out the way it’s meant to, and with a little hard work, good luck and you can live a pretty damn awesome life. It’s radical because I think a lot of people find comfort in pessimism or pain. I think that a lot of people are scared to be optimistic because it means being open, hopeful and vulnerable and many people just can’t deal with the fear of being disappointed. So yea – I freakin love this quote! (Plus there’s a little combi van and a rainbow hehe)

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*breathe in, breathe out* what a hectic month. To all of you out there who are feeling like life is travelling that little bit fast… it’s OK. I promise you. Overwhelming feelings of stress, anxiety and worry are just temporary. They will come and go and with each new day, you are one step closer to your goal, and one step ahead of where you were the day before. September will be wild so watch out. Remember to look after yourself, listen to your mind, your body, and know that there’s always someone there for you. It’s going to be awesome! So let’s do this!