Monday, 4 April 2016

The Long Road


On the 10th April my husband will find out if the 'Marathon of the Sands' is truly is the toughest footrace on earth...

He leaves Sydney tomorrow with his final destination being Marrakesh in the northern Sahara region in Africa.

Here are a few stats on his journey so far
  • Run and cycled 2646 km since November 2015, on three different continents
  • Lost 6.4 kg (apparently might loose another 5 kg during the race itself). Just calling it out that hot cross buns do not help his waist line :-(
  • Run through 4 pairs of trainers
  • 7 Osteopath sessions
  • 26 acupuncture sessions
  • Rabies, Typhoid, HepA, Polio and Tetnus injections - ouch
  • Raised $4,753 for BeyondBlue.... heartfelt thank you
  • Raised awareness for BeyondBlue....... again a heartfelt thank you
These are the stats on what he will have to look forward to
  • Run (crawl) 257 km over 6 days, with one 90 km multi stage run
  • Self sufficient for the trip, to carry all his food, clothes, sleeping bag, mat etc etc (debating whether I should pack him the Nespresso machine..!!?)
  • Water ration to 10 litres per day
WHY, WHY, WHY ....... 

It is personal and it is for a cause he is hugely passionate about and vested in beyondblue.

Thank you to everyone who has donated and a huge thank you to everyone who has taken the time to reach out to family, friends and colleagues and ask them if they are okay. It is such a small thing to say but has huge ramifications.. 

I am so proud of what he has acheived even before he makes his first steps in the race. You can continue to follow the adventure and support BeyondBlue via his Charity Page. The 5 boys are on Instagram too under @6days5whites.

Want to see the lunacy? Here is a preview..

If you did want to track him live during the race, you can join my kids and I by jumping on the following link MDS Live subscribe and then enter his race number 517. You'll then be able to watch via satellite as he navigates his way through the sand dunes, and hopefully not in the wrong direction..

Has your partner ever done anything you thought was a little bit OTT? Trained for an event and left you holding the reigns? Have you ever done MDS?

Monday, 7 March 2016

Suck it up Sista!!

Last week I shared an image on my Instagram where I captioned how I am not in the best place I have ever been..

 I quote ..

'Today I attacked it. I currently weigh 1kg more than I have ever (outside of pregnancy) and 4kg more than in the last 4 years.. Life is not all that easy at the mo and I am feeling really crap about myself, enough to have a cry about it.. so today started with a killer bush run with Dex. Exercise does wonders for your mental attitude, don't forget that.. Just over a month and I will claim back some serious training time from my mad @6days5whites husband!! Your day is what you make it.. So make it good'

I am fine.. I do these posts as I feel the need to be honest.. it is as much for others as me. I just know so many people who don't talk about it and suffer thier stupid thoughts and feelings thinking no one else has them..

My mental health is so good these days in that even when I am down I know its for a reason and I can rationalise my emotions. I know that crying can be cleansing and I go for it. I feel like a prat after as crying seemed way over the top given the situation but who gives a crap I feel better and no one else even knew!

Yes my work is hard at the moment, my husband is travelling and training a lot and life is 'FULL'.. futures are up in the air and it all takes a toll

BUT in the grand schemes of things my life is bloody awesome. I have so little to worry about compared to 90% of the world and I just have to remind myself that sometimes :)

My brother arrives to Aus in 7 days!!..WTF.. how can life be bad !! I won't have to discuss my irrational thoughts out loud to myself I will be able to call him!

The reality is all of us find it tough not to feel 'woe is me' when we are having a shitty week or seem to be getting the raw deal of a scenario, yet in the bigger picture I am like suck it up sista!!

your reality is still your reality..... and its still hard....

I am just sharing this here again to say share it out loud, share it, own it and don't be ashamed. You will be amazed at how many others are right by your side and right there ready to help.

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Eight Things I WON'T Be Doing Before I Die

So Sonia did it  and when I read her blog I thought.. how hard can that be to say 8 things you will not be doing before you die but to say things you felt were 100% true was actually a little harder than I thought!!

1. New York, NO WAY!!.

I have visited and yes I am possibly too easily influenced by films and TV series but the US scares me, well certain parts. Gun rules are just too loose for me to ever settle and I would be a paranoid wreck coming from Australia

2. You won't find me playing Computer Games for 24 hours solid ever again..

We finally got the kids a Playstation this year (they are only allowed to play on weekends and school holidays) and I haven't played once. 
Years ago my boyfriend and I sat and played Resident Evil for 24 hours straight. I think that was my fill for life as I just can't seem to go back.

3. I will never be a smoker.

I was for 3 or 4 years from about 17 years old.. 1-2 packs a day and then I met my boyfriend, who is now my husband and he didn't smoke. I was so madly in love and in total honeymoon period that I decided to use it as a time to catalyst my giving up and it worked. 
Even if we had not lasted I would have been ever grateful to him for that. 

4. I won't allow my moral compass to be compromised.

I like to think that I have become a good person. I was a much more materialistic, self absorbed individual in my younger London days. These days I see myself as a very loyal and devoted friend, wife and mother.
I believe strongly in Karma and I go out of my way to be the best business person I can be with a strong moral ethic that I won't even compromise for cash.. I plan to keep that going forever..

5. I will not have any more bubs of my own.

My hubby is one of 5 and would love more kids, I sort of would also but we won't as our family is perfect for us and it is time for us all to grow older together with no distractions apart from each other.
I say my own as if someone I was close too ever needed a surrogate and I could do that for them, I would. 

6. My material belongings will never be valued over and above my family..

I have got to a point were I truly value family time above all else. I would be happy living in a tent with my brood. OK a tent is pushing it but point is I would sell everything and anything  to keep us fed and together. I would move anywhere (just not New York) and I just don't crave materialistic things the way I used too as I would prefer to buy an experience over a handbag.

7. I will never free climb a cliff wall 

Rock Climbing on a sheer cliff face with no ropes? WTF? Why? The idea of dropping and splitting my head on rock just paralyses me in fear..

8. I will never run the Marathon De Sables

Marcus is doing it this April with his 4 brothers. I would have loved to have done it with him but we would have had to wait until the kids were older so we could have trained together and as I know I wouldn't go it alone and he will not want to do it twice I am crossing it off my Bucket List and will find something new!

Friday, 19 February 2016

New Starts..


This year I have made a promise to myself that I will be here maybe just once a week but that I will be more present when I am, that I will share more openly.

I want to be more proud of what I achieve and allow my mistakes to be something I share for others to learn by..

I feel like I started blogging to build a profile for business, I went more personal once I launched the business and loved it so much more but then I got busy and instead of pulling back and be true to myself I just content created. The thing is as I make no money from this blog, nor do I plan too, I was an idiot as it just lead me to get confused and frustrated.

SO thats it, here I am and I am back to doing this for me. It is how/why most blogs start and its why we like them so regardless of whether I am talking to crickets I am going to go back to a form of honest journaling approach.

I think it might be the turning 40 thing but I am happy with where I am and what I am and already 2016 has been massive for me in how I approach my work life balance.

So far this year I am proud that Sonia and I have really got DTLLWorkshops into a flow.. we have amazing creatives we truly adore and are now looking to hire an intern so we can take time out from being present at every workshop and see our family more often. Its a big step for a young business as it will really hit us on the hip pocket as it were BUT it is us knowing what we need to do to take it to the next level and ensure we maintain our love for what we are doing instead of burning out..

On my other work fronts I have dedicated Monday and Tuesday to DTLL so that I can get the guaranteed weekly requirements all done by Tuesday evening it means the rest of my week is for yummy stuff like press calls and just dealing with customers and our stores. The yummy stuff takes up so little time in comparison to those first two days that I get to be around for my kids and I truly feel like I can afford the time to spend on The Cult List, DTLLWorkshops and Crossroading.

The Cult List we are taking back to the bits we love and enjoy, those are designing our own products and pieces and simply releasing maybe 6-8 items a year and keeping them truly limited editions and everything we are about.

Crossroading is going gang busters and we are getting the most immense amount of pleasure helping other businesses brainstorm their way through hurdles and navigating the sticky stuff. We are very honest and it can feel a bit brutal but each and every business we have worked with leaves smiling and comes back for more so we must be doing something right.

And lastly on my personal front I am back training for me.. making time to do some longer sessions not just sneaking in a 30 minutes here and there.
I don't work the afternoons the kids are home so I can have playdates over and bake banana cakes for tea.
My hubby is travelling more but I am seeing it as time for me to get crappy house chores done and re connect with the kids by taking them to the beach to eat after school.
I am having other kids over for sleepovers so their parents can get date nights and just feel good about dedicating my solo parenting time to a good cause.
I am saving up to do a Vedic Meditation Course with my gorgeous friend Jackie and the biggest change is I have decided to go grey.. hair wise.. I will do another post on that another day x

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Bringing some colour back in to the Outside!!

Today I am having a chat with Terri from Moteef.. she brings some colour to your outdoor and in actual fact of late she is bringing divine smells and some monochromes for those who like it that way :)

I’m a trained graphic designer so I’m no stranger to creative business. After taking and abstracting photos for fun for at least a year, a chance conversation with my sister in 2012, inspired me to look into how I could develop my digital patterns into a collection of outdoor scatter cushions. Finding the right fabric base, having it printed in specific colours and then lab testing them for durability and colour stability was a journey over 1 year as I slowly learned about the processes involved - as well as marketing, social media promotion and ecommerce. I was finally ready to officially launch my first collection in September 2014. 
A year later I launched my Luxe outdoor candle range which I’m very proud of too. I teamed up with Self Organics, in Perth, to create 3 unique, hand poured soy wax candles, using our collaborative blend of essential and fragrance oils known for their insect repelling properties. The cherry on the top was the gorgeous vessel we had custom made for the project – a reusable double walled coffee glass with a snug bamboo lid. The packaging incorporates 3 signature patterns I designed for the project.

I love all my designs but ‘Circles’ is very close to my heart. In 2013 we discovered, the hard way, that my young daughter Lauren, who was then 3, suffered anaphylaxis to some tree nuts. This diagnosis very quickly brought to the family's attention that research into new treatments and cures for allergy and other immune diseases, as well as community education and improved access to care, was urgently needed.

So, as a family commitment to raising funds and awareness, I digitalised a design that my son Ben painted and that our family loves and we now donate $5 from the sale of every Circles outdoor cushion as part of our CUSHION FOR A CURE initiative to help fund medical research into allergy and immune diseases through the efforts of The Allergy and Immunology Foundation of Australasia (AIFA). Of course, Ben also gets a royalty for the use of his artwork with every sale – something that the now 9 year old is very proud of.

I absolutely adore a donut! Nothing fancy, just a fresh, unfilled traditional glazed! Shhhh!!

I’m drawn to bold abstract art, 70’s Op art and modern, mid century influenced furniture. I’m particularly inspired by the decorative arts of Africa, the Middle East and South America - I love their textured, painted urban decay and their tendency towards striking colour and pattern. I try to draw on these things when I create my designs.


Conversation starters - It sounds like a joke answer but it’s not.

There’s so much information that we can graze on daily that it’s hard to find the time to digest it all, discuss our findings and grow ourselves and our own ideas. I imagine a world where people are supportive, in-touch, considerate and curious. They share their food, experiences and knowledge, enriching each others lives with challenging ideas, fun experiences, humour and culture. 

I design so people are inspired to relax, share food and really connect in comfort all year round.

Paulo Cohelo’s The Alchemist. I’m not a spiritual person but this book has a very simple message – the importance of having a dream, going after it and never giving up. It’s a simple book that you finish and instinctively “know” what the story means to you.

In early December my family holidayed in Queensland. While in Noosa, I bought myself a delicate, silver ring with an ‘XO’ stamped into the top of it - I’m my own worst critic and I wear it daily to be reminded to be kind to myself. It’s working too!

I have extremely eclectic taste so I tend to pick music for the situation.

Designing – I prefer music with few words, ‘cos I’m easily distracted, so I listen to any kind of trip hop/chillout music that I generally stream online.

Chores – Something high energy. I’m fond of Sia and David Guetta at the moment.

In the car – Nova, on the radio (gotta stay up to date with my kids!) Faves we’re enjoying at the moment include Birds of Tokyo, Rudimental and Maroon 5.  

Sunday morning breakky on the Patio - usually a mixture of oldies including Cat Stevens, Bread, Joan Armatrading and Bob Seger. (A nod to my upbringing!)