29 July 2011

Choosing happiness

It is interesting that jealousy arises in those who should have the most empathy.

I was recently featured in New Idea – a double page spread. Of course I was hesitant. My story in the mainstream media's hands. My story about living with a rare, highly visible and often confronting chronic illness called ichthyosis. A story that could be manipulated and sensationalised like a great chunk of pity-putty. But it wasn't. I didn't write the article, but my personality, humour and honesty shone through.

The New Idea article was a small window into my experiences. To make those who don't know me think differently about physical appearance. To make people see my achievements, despite. The writing on my blog is the reality of my life. The fun I have shopping and seeing bands, the food I cook, the clothes I wear. Sometimes the reality I write about is tough. Hospital. Harassment. Love. Self doubt. Overachievement. My appearance. But it's the reality that I am prepared to share. And I am glad I do.

In the 19 months I've been blogging I have found a new support network. Online to offline. The friendships I've formed have been amazing. I have found support, acceptance and encouragement in strangers across the world. I have also been told I've helped people with ichthyosis and other disabilities and chronic illnesses. I've been told by parents of children with ichthyosis that they hope their children grow up to have the same positive outlook as I do. This is a privilege. And I've never sought pity in any of my writing pursuits.

Interestingly, the only negative comments I have received about my New Idea article, and also my writing for the ABC and DiVine have been from another person with ichthyosis. This criticism has been in the form of public online beratings. Despite our obvious similarity we are poles apart. Our generation, upbringing, support networks, outlook and choice are poles apart. The responses I have received from her are because of their own insecurities and bitterness. The jealousy and nastiness within are far more painful than her ichthyosis. Empathy versus jealousy. I know what I'd choose.

I have chosen a good life for myself. I could have sat at home hidden away, covering up, being ashamed. It's been suggested that I do. But I've worked hard at my own integration. I've had the support and encouragement from my parents. I've shown everyone I've encountered that I CAN. The road hasn't been smooth. I've experienced judgement, loneliness, fear, heartbreak, the desire not to have ichthyosis, bullying and physical pain. But I've just gotten on with life, despite the bullshit. Nothing has been handed to me, nothing has just fallen into place. I've worked damn hard to prove that I am not just a red face.

We all have the same opportunities in life. We can choose not to take them. We can choose to be angry at the blows life has dealt us. We can choose to feel hard done by.

I've chosen to see humour in awful situations. I've chosen to grab opportunities firmly with both hands and run with them excitedly, in awe of the possibilities. I have chosen an education, a corporate career and a media journey (writing and television) - an income for my independence. Friendships haven't always been easy, but I've worked hard at them too. I have chosen happiness. And these choices make my ichthyosis-riddled life a whole heap easier. 

(Originally written for Edenland)

28 July 2011

Expectation of wealth - guest post by Kylie Ofiu

 "So when you gonna get a real job son
And buy a little real estate?
If that means living someone elses life
I guess we’re gonna have to wait
Another day"
~ Bob Evans, Hand Me Downs
Lots of people expect me to be more financially advanced than I am. Owning a house. A better car. And a yearly holiday. In my dreams. 

Money expert Kylie Ofiu from Aspiring Millionaire wrote this guest post for my blog. Enjoy!

These days the pressure to be incredibly successful and wealthy is enormous. Pretty much anyone can become a celebrity it seems with reality TV being churned out like never before. It seems everywhere we look other people are living rich fantasy lives which puts a lot of pressure on those who are living on a more average wage. 

It seems the pressure to keep up with the Jones’ is worse now than ever before because what everyone else has is thrust in our faces all day every day. At any given time online, on TV, through social media websites, radio and magazines we can see what everyone else has and is doing and it can make us feel like we are missing out, that working more and earning more money will solve all our problems. 

What is interesting though is if you look past the lifestyles to the real lives of the really rich such as Warren Buffet he lives in the same house he bought years ago and has always lived a modest lifestyle, yet he is one of the richest men in the world. The book The Millionaire Next Door discusses this in detail, how most real millionaire do not live the lifestyle we expect millionaires to have. 
The pressure of trying to keep up with the Jones’ is unrealistic. Most people cannot afford the fancy cars, new clothes all the time, the mansion and unfortunately throw themselves into a lot of debt in order to live this way. Yes, some people can afford it, but it is often at a great sacrifice to family life. 
There is nothing wrong with aiming higher and striving to succeed or dreaming about being financially successful. The problem comes when it is done with a negative attitude and a general dissatisfaction with your life. 

If you look around the world, there is so much poverty and homelessness that if you have a job and somewhere to live, realistically you are financially successful. It is estimated that ¼ of the world’s population is homeless; over half the world’s population live on less than $2.50 a day. If you have more than that you are successful. 

If you are looking to be financially successful you more than likely are. If you are looking to be financially successful as the Western world sees it you can be, but it is not easy. It takes either a lot of hard work to create something worthwhile or that will sell to the masses; a qualification in a highly specialised field or you need to find a way onto a reality TV show. 

It all comes down to your personal view on financial success. Would $60,000 a year be successful for you? If so, that is doable with many careers. You might need to study and work a while to achieve it, but it is achievable. Would you prefer $150,000 or more a year? If so, again it is achievable but what you gain in money you may lose in big taxes and often a loss of family and social life. Most doctors and lawyers who are on the six figure incomes have to work 70+ hours a week so they often well and truly earn their income. Also when you are on that sort of income you are taxed quite handsomely. 
In order to determine if you are successful or not you need to define what success is to you. Once you know what it is to you, it is easy to see if you are headed in the right direction or if you need to make some changes. Sometimes in order to earn the big money you will need to study for years, move town or even country and often work long and hard. But if that is what you want, go for it. Nothing is stopping you. 

The reality of it all is that you can change your situation, you just need the drive and motivation to do so, which is what most people lack. Decide what it is you want, make a plan and go for it. I am a big believer in the power of positive thinking and aiming high, but also understand not everyone shares my view.  

Kylie Ofiu is author of 365 Ways to Make Money. Her blog www.kylieofiu.com is where she shares what she is doing as well as ways to make and save money. 

25 July 2011

Eye candy vs brain and heart candy

Is eye candy really worth it? Maybe brain or heart candy is better?
~ tweet by @Ambiguousviews
The question above was posed to me on Twitter after I commented on not seeing enough hot men at the football last week - my first football match.

Despite my desires for people to look past the exterior, I can be quite superficial - ogling good looking men on TV, in bands, bars, uni... anywhere really. I fall for blue eyes, great smiles, toned arms and scruff.

My good friend (also insightful and quite the romantic) Steve Tucker said "You cannot get to the brain or heart candy without the eye candy. Eye candy underpins attraction". 

Good point, but for me, things don't often start with looks. Or do they? Men often dismiss potential with me because of my looks. I have a killer online dating profile (with a killer picture of me, red face and all) - "Stylish, kind hearted and outgoing writer and TV presenter seeking friendship, romance and love" - what a catch!! No? "No thanks" say the replies.

I spoke about the difficulty of online dating on Triple J last week. One of the things I spoke about, but was edited out, was the way I feel attracted to other qualities in men, beyond their physical appearance. And I think this is because of my own experiences of finding it hard for people to firstly look past my appearance to get to know me, and then appreciate my appearance.

I have felt attracted to people, even loved them, based on intellect, conversation, humour and their ability to feel compassion and love. It's like the more I get to know and love someone, the more physically attractive they become. I've met a few people online, who I've bonded with via text/email and phone, and met them and felt almost instant attraction to their looks. I can remember two of these moments with two people - neither particularly romantic (in the car and playing with his dog), but it was then that their eye and brain candy collided with their eye candy. To make a giant heart lollipop?

I find articulate use of words attractive. Email and text exchanges can make me fall in love - and if they're a good speller, I'm planning my wedding. I find intellect attractive. If we can have an intelligent, meaningful conversation, my heart flutters. And if they are compassionate towards humankind and better still, me, they've won my heart. Looks rarely matter.

I believe heart and brain candy surpasses eye candy. There have been a few times where I've never been fussed about what someone looked like because I've loved their 'personality candy'. And then their physical appearance catches my eye and I'm a puddle on the floor. Their personality heightens their looks so much. It's like they're Simon Denny, Hamish Blake and Callan Mulvey morphed into one. With a personality I am in love with. 

Maybe this is dangerous? Falling in love with words. Over thinking. Being easily pleased by kind things being said (and maybe not always done?). I get hurt. I wonder if I will ever put eye candy before brain and heart candy, and I wonder if this will protect me more?

24 July 2011

Three Bags Full review by Jentopia

Yesterday my good friend, colleague and blogger Jentopia and I had brunch at Three Bags Full cafe. It was lovely catching up in the winter sunshine. Jen wrote a brilliant review and said I could post it here on my blog. My thoughts about Three Bags Full: What she said! Thanks for letting me do some lazy blogging today!

Review: Three Bags Full (Abbotsford)

This morning I met up with my friend Carly, blogger and passionate bruncher for..well, brunch. Carly had a hankering Three Bags Full after our last visit there in January so over the ‘other side of town’ we went.
After a relatively short wait, which was expected anyway we got what I think are the best seats in the place.
Sitting on a bench, in full sunshine – right next to where all the baristas are working.

It was glorious. We could hear each other talk, were warm and could see everything going on!
In our prime position we could also inspect the machine that apparently does ‘clover’. The kind barista noticed our interest and gave us a taste. Carly is not a coffee drinker, but I was hoping I would be able to appreciate it. Nope. It looked like weak tea, but tasted like strong coffee. I did not detect any ‘roasted green peppers’, and quite bravely (I thought), Carly ‘shotted’ the rest of the glass.

As I’ve long suspected I’m a coffee hack. Whatever, just gimme my skinny latte.
We ordered a skinny latte for me, and a hot chocolate for Carly. Deciding on what to have to eat, I decided in the spirit of my porridge posts, I had to get the porridge but was pretty hungry so got some fruit toast too. Carly ordered the sticky black gingerbread , with sides of salmon and a corn, pea and feta fritter.
The porridge was good, not mind blowingly good though, and while I’m probably being a bit of a goldilocks, could have been hotter. It had rhubarb and pistachio on it, which added a nice little something.
The fruit bread was delicious, although as usual I was a pelican and could only eat one piece although had a nibble on the second slice.

By all reports Carly’s breakfast was nice too, apparently she is a fritter fiend and she reported the fritter to be nice, but not as good as the one at Auction Rooms. I ordered a second coffee, but it never arrived – I didn’t mind too much as I didn’t need it anyway I was pretty full. They were genuinely apologetic so all was forgiven!
For some reason they kept thinking we were waiting on a third person, which sitting in our little spot would have been a bit squishy. The waitress came over and asked if our friend was still coming because there was a guy looking for a place to sit. He was apparently good looking so I switched spots with Carly. As I am married its a rule I have to give up my seat for single people. A bit like the train.

Anyway, the guy never came over – maybe he didn’t want to get cosy with us? I think I saw him later reading a broadsheet and there’s no way he would have had room for it in our spot.

All in all, as usual Three Bags Full delivered and it was well worth the trip, and the hellish traffic going home.
Location: 60 Nicholson St Abbotsford
Website: Three Bags Full
Twitter: @3bagsfullcafe
Coke Rating: No coke for you!

- Jen

23 July 2011

Guest post at Edenland - I choose happiness

I am guest blogging at Edenland. I have an enormous amount of respect for Eden as a writer and of course, as a person. She is tough and articulate and not afraid to take the piss. It's a privilege to be writing for her.

I wrote about my choice to be happy while living with ichthyosis, and the negativity received from another person with the illness. Here's a paragraph:

I have chosen a good life for myself. I could have sat at home hidden away, covering up, being ashamed. It's been suggested that I do. But I've worked hard at my own integration. I've had the support and encouragement from my parents. I've shown everyone I've encountered that I CAN. The road hasn't been smooth. I've experienced judgement, loneliness, fear, heartbreak the desire not to have ichthyosis, bullying and physical pain. But I've just gotten on with life, despite the bullshit. Nothing has been handed to me, nothing has just fallen into place. I've worked damn hard to prove that I am not just a red face. 

Go over to Eden's blog and read all of my guest post and check out her amazing writing. I wrote about her on my blog a few months ago. Praising her of course. I will be seeing her next weekend at Blogopolis - and I can't wait!

Thanks for having me Eden :)

19 July 2011

My interview on Triple J's Hack (and a related video)

This morning I headed to the ABC radio studios to pre-record an interview on Triple J's Hack.
I was incredibly excited and honoured about being asked to do the interview, and being in the studio that I took photos then forgot the directions to the interview booth (The Tardis). So I had to go back to the concierge to ask again!

The interview was about barriers to dating, specifically my physical appearance. You can here it here. 

Stella Young also spoke :)

I said a lot more in the unedited version, which I will write about soon.
Thanks for having me Triple J!! And a big shout out to interviewer Alex Mann :)

Meanwhile, listen to the interview (I am at the start) then watch this brilliant video by Edenland. It's as though she is channeling me. It's exactly how I feel about making an impression. Thank you Eden.

16 July 2011

Thank you

Wow! What a big week I've had! Magazine appearances, a TV interview, No Limits filming and my real job. I am exhausted! And honoured.

I have been featured in New Idea magazine in Australia, and Pick Me Up magazine in the UK.  I also did a radio interview on 3CR about disability in the media.

I want to thank everyone who has taken the time to read the New Idea article I featured in, especially those who have contacted me with their wishes. The response has been amazing! Nothing like I anticipated. I was portrayed so positively. I didn't write the article but my personality did shine through. 

I received calls, texts, emails, tweets, Facebook comments and praise from people face to face. My parents are so proud.

Strangers have written to me to thank me for raising awareness about ichthyosis. Some of these strangers have ichthyosis too - I have helped them. People I haven't heard from in years have written to me, congratulating me. Others I know have told me they just didn't realise the severity of ichthyosis. Famous people have written to me. Like super blogger Kerri Sackville: "YES! Keep meaning to tell you, I was pointing in the hairdresser's yesterday - I know her! (virtually). I know her!!!! FAB article. You GO girl! xxx" And singer Genevieve Maynard wrote some kind words via email and Twitter.

Comments touched me: 

"You are so amazing. That is all."

"Great photos Carly superstar! you look fantastic!"

 "Your an inspiration to everyone out there Carly , thanks for being u:) ps loved the article and so did our little boy who decided to eat it! Hehe.... Well done"

"I'm proud to be able to call Carly my friend. She might be brave, inspiring and confident but she's also caring, funny & honorable. I'm proud of you Carly! I'm REALLY proud of you Carly. Not only have you excelled in your career but you've exelled at life (AND not just because in the article it said that the doctors warned your parents you may not survive). And I hope you are told that every day, that what you have... Is special and you DO have the power to change peoples minds and perceptions. " 

"I saw you. I read about you. I showed everyone at work your article."
And comments made me laugh:

"Great article, Carly. My 2 year old son was kissing your photo last night."

"I blame you for the fact that I now have an interest in the Royal Wedding in Monaco & Daniel Radcliffes booze consumption, but seriously congrats on landing a great piece of stereotype busting & awareness raising (paint pallette lol). A win +++++ I wanted to avoid any misunderstandings so went in Sarah Leonardi's wedding outfit while awkwardly clutching a giant white carnation. Meant I could say ""just checking how the cover shoot turned out boys"."

There have been hundreds more comments. Wow.

I also received this comment:

"Your new idea article is lovely Carly :)

... but I read your untouched blog post and it made me all teary. I have to be honest, I much prefer to read your writing! I think you should consider writing an autobiography. and then when you start a changing faces in Australia you can write part 2 :) you are much more than a new idea story of the week!"

I have also been so moved by the response I've received from my Untouched blog entry. This is one of the realities of my life. And I am so proud that the words I've written about my own experiences have resonated with so many, from people with ichthyosis and other disabilities to the man whose arms I fell asleep in. 
I think I am reaching the right people. I think I am changing perceptions. I know I am doing this by just being myself. And for that I am proud.

13 July 2011


For most people, being touched is something they take for granted. It just happens. A hug from a friend, a hand being held, a pat on the shoulder for reassurance. These small moments of physical affection aren't milestones for most people. They are events that are just done - like drinking a glass of water, doing up buttons, putting one foot in front of the other. For me, these small moments of affection are shelved away in my memory like wines in a cellar. And for the big moments of physical affection, I want to hold a press conference, telling the world that I've been touched.

I received lots of physical affection from my parents as a child. I would sit in between them on the couch since before I could remember. Dad would curl my hair around his fingers, 'curly lurly, curly lurly, curly lurly', he would say, letting each ringlet spring like a piglet's tail. He'd give me animal rides on his knee, usually dipolodocus rides. And each night, and sometimes Saturday mornings, Mum would sit with me on the floor, me lying on her lap, while she combed the scale out of my scalp. I could not imagine letting anyone else doing this - it's such a private experience. Lots of skin being removed, my scalp and emotions often equally raw. The feel of the comb on my scalp was both pleasurable and painful. My scalp would feel so tender, especially when I went out in the cold. Void of its protection. I used to cherish this time I spent with my Mum - we'd make up our versions of fairytales, and I'd tell her what happened in my day - often of how kids at school were afraid to touch me.

When I heard this lyric, it felt like I'd written it.

"Is my skin untouchable?
Do I remind you of a part of you that you don't like?" ~ Darren Hayes, Unlovable
In 2004 and 2007, at his small concerts, Darren hugged me from the stage. In 2007 he kissed my face and I can still feel his bristles against my cheek when I think hard. A celebrity's touch is pretty special. Especially when for so long no one ordinary wanted to touch me.

Getting bullied at school was fortunately not often physical. Kids were too afraid of catching my skin condition. Being stabbed with a protractor, pushed off my bike and being spat on provided enough distance between me and the bully so they didn't catch anything. Despite the isolation, teasing and name calling, I still wanted to join in on their playtime - much of which involved some sort of physical contact. They didn't want me to get my cream or skin on them. I wanted to have my hair plaited by the other girls, to have my thumb touched in heads down thumbs up, to have my held hand by a friend. This sometimes happened, and I was so excited if it did. It meant that I was normal like everyone else.

My Dad is not a big hugger - nor are my grandparents. I think it's an English trait. Our hugs are clumsy and brief, like two humans in bear suits, just patting each others' backs gently. I was never allowed to sit on my grandfather's lap because I'd make it dirty. This is my main memory of time spent with him as a child.

Hugs and kisses as greetings are so common place now, even between strangers. Sometimes in a group situation, other people are hugged and kissed hello/goodbye and I am left standing there awkward, and waiting. I am not an initiator of this greeting, I never know if someone wants their cheek to be smeared in my vaseline, or have their black clothes peppered with my skin. People close to me don't mind if this happens. I remember feeling my most valued in the workplace when a previous male manager reached over and pulled some skin from my hair. Awkward but valuing.

I wonder if whether the reluctance by people to touch me is not of fear for themselves - and it probably isn't - we are no longer in the playground - but out of genuine worry that their touch will hurt my skin. It generally won't. A hug is warm and can often make me feel better. Even a sales' assistant's hand brushing against mine when they give me change can give me shivers. I also wonder whether my skin is so sensitive is why the feeling of being touched is physically and emotionally heightened. I don't think my nerve endings are more sensitive than the norm, but it's like my skin is more receptive to touch because isn't an every day occurrence.

Casual touches can feel miraculous to me, despite their innocent intent. A pat on the arm that means it's good to see me can make me smile all day. And so intimate touching is literally etched into my memory forever. After so many years of peoples' repulsion at touching me, the times when I've been intimately touched are amazing. Not necessarily sexual, but the hand holding, the brush of the arm to indicate interest, a kiss on the face. They're all electrifying. The best feeling in the world. I can remember every single caress during the first time I was in bed with a boy - even though it was in January 2000. I remember everything about how it felt.

When I had long term (?) boyfriends I'd often want to go to bed extremely early, just to revel in more than eight hours of physical contact. I never felt like I woke up with my skin dry like I do when I sleep alone. It's as though touch nurtures me.

Last year a strange thing occurred. As I slept in a man's arms, it felt so amazing being held that the feeling of touch was squared. I dreamed of him holding me as he was doing so. And then I wondered whether this was my body's way of responding to a form of deprivation, drinking up the sensory overload of being touched.

12 July 2011

My New Idea article scanned

Thank you to everyone who has left kind words about my New Idea article. Special thanks to Rebecca for making the lovely dress, Cheryl for the styling and for being pictured, and Steph for being my wonderful assistant at the photo shoot. And to Sydney Shop Girl for blogging about the article. 

New Idea were great to work with too.

Here's my article scanned for you. Thanks for your support. My rationale is here.

11 July 2011

My feature in New Idea magazine

Today I feature in Australian tabloid magazine New Idea. I have done an interview and a photoshoot . Of course I was reluctant. I want to be in control of my story, as I've written. I've studied journalism and am a freelance writer. I am aware of some of the tricks and traps.

I was extremely hesitant of speaking to the media. I don't want sensationalism or pity. I have seen the draft of the New Idea story and I am very pleased. While I didn't write it, my words have been used as quotes and I've been portrayed well. It's a lovely story.  I don't believe I've compromised my integrity or lost my dignity.

Working my own story on DiVine, Ramp Up, No Limits and this blog allows me to reach a discerning and somewhat converted audience. However, I believe by me being courageous enough to present myself to mainstream media may help me change perceptions about disabilities and chronic illnesses in an audience who I haven't yet reached. An audience who may need an insight into what it's like living with looking so different.

My ichthyosis creates such polarising reactions - from pity, criticism and discomfort, to mouth-gaping horror - that sometimes using my looks when telling my story is the only way to create awareness and acceptance. I am strong, intelligent, articulate and confident, and I need to show this alongside a picture.

I have had some other media outlets approach me and I am considering their invites after receiving valuable advice from respected bloggers, PR companies and disability advocates.

While I was worried about my story being in the hands of the mainstream media, I am more worried about the reaction I may receive from those who know me, particularly in the disability community. I hope you respect my decision to share my story with New Idea and possibly other media outlets. This may be the launching pad for my Changing Faces dream, and even a bigger publishing opportunity. And it may make the ignorant think twice and give hope to others with ichthyosis.

Go out and get yourself a copy of New Idea magazine. I can autograph your copy ;)

10 July 2011

Sunday mixtape - chooks, gifts from across Bass Strait and music

As I write this, I am listening to the number one Australian album of all time as voted on Triple J. Odyssey Number Five by Powderfinger. I love this album. It is such a complete album. Listening to it is like being with an old friend.

I took these at their farewell concert last year.

Number two was Frogstomp by Silverchair - I'd have preferred Neon Ballroom.

Seeker Lover Keeper got me through the domesticities of my day.
Seeker Lover Keeper is a band comprising three talented Australian musicians - Sarah Blasko, Holly Throsby and Sally Seltmann. How beautiful is Even though  am a woman?

Woah I
I got a secret
I think I’m in love with missing you
More than I’m in love with you
That’s why I go away all the time
That’s why I travel the world and roam free
There’s a time you leaving me
This is how I feel
I feel like a traveling salesman

Even though I’m a woman
Picking up my bags from the station
Standing there face to face
I’ll be lying if I did not say
I love you more when I’m missing you
That’s why I’m always away
Believe me it’s true

Woah I
I got a secret
I think I was born to be in a state of longing
Born to be wanting wanting
I put in a letter for you
I love the danger in distance
This time I’m leaving you
This is how I feel
I feel like a traveling salesman

Even though I’m a woman
Picking up my bags from the station
Standing there face to face
I’ll be lying if I did not say
I love you more when I’m missing you
It’s why I’m always away
Believe me it’s true
Believe me it’s true
Believe me it’s true

I love the danger in distance
I’d rather be missing you
I love the danger in distance
I’d rather be missing you
I feel like a traveling salesman
Even though I’m a woman
Picking up my bags from the station
Standing there face to face
I’ll be lying if I did not say
I love you more when I’m missing you
It’s why I’m always away

Believe me it’s true
Believe me it’s true
Believe me it’s true
Believe me it’s true
Believe me it’s true
I met my parents for breakfast this morning. We went to the farmers markets. The ABC news was filming a segment for the carbon tax announcement, getting farmers' opinions.

I had my usual - poached egg, polenta and salad with relish. So good!

We walked around the poultry show. Lots of ducks,

And roosters.
Some birds were so fat. It was the junior finals, and so the pavillion was full of children nursing chickens and putting vaseline on their beaks. Who knew chicken breeding was so big in the city?

My parents got off the boat from Tasmania this morning. They came bearing gifts.

The salmon and cheese diet is the best for my skin.
Elderflower cordial and apple and quince paste.
And a felted brooch from The Spindle Tree. Beautiful.
I have a new iPhone. The camera is great!
I tried it out last night at the Boom Crash Opera concert.
It was ok - but I was a bit bored, and Dale Ryder wasn't on stage for half of the show - a singer from The Models sang for a lot of it.

I also made a bread and butter pudding using some organic produce. Sourdough fruit rolls from the market, duck eggs, lemon and quince paste. It's cooking in the oven now.
Blogger is playing up. My scheduled posts are prematurely posting. Hmmmm.

09 July 2011

I'm still here

I've just been quite sick, trying to focus on my recovery. It's taken its toll on me, this karaoke flu.

Meanwhile, while you wait for something exciting to be announced on this blog on Monday, why don't you read a couple of blog entries that I am really proud of?

Online deception
Someone will come along one day
I promised myself I wouldn't think of you today
Megan Washington review
Being treated like a princess at St Frock


03 July 2011

Body love ♥

Edit: I am entering this in the We Heart Life I Heart My Body 2011 project.

After several days feeling awfully unwell, I was so glad to be inspired by Marie Claire to give my body some love.

On their Under The Cover TV show, editor Jackie Frank posed the question:
Are we quicker to say what we love or hate about our bodies?

So many times we can say what we dislike about ourselves. Fat this. Pimply that.We should think about what you love about ourselves and rejoice.

Personally, I am happy with my body. I may be red and scaly and oily and a bit confronting looking, but I think I am beautiful and have a good, petite size 10 figure. I am that ok with my body that I considered posting a picture of me in my underwear.
I love my smile, stomach, cleavage and fingernails :) My legs are also quite sexy in heels. And I actually love that my skin renews so quickly I never look old ;)

I asked my friends what they love about their bodies.

I love their responses.

M: "Always quicker to say we hate I think. Every morning I try to say three things I like about my body. I like my eyes, my neck and my hands. I appreciate my hands every day as I am a myotherapist."

J: "I have always been quicker to hate my body, rather than to compliment it. But after recovering from Anorexia, I am learning to love it! I love my longgggg legs, they go on forever! And my lips. And I love that my eyes change colour in the sun. We need more body love."

N: "I love my boobs, my smile, my hands, my nails, my legs. :)"

F: "my awesomely outta control hair. and green eyes - both are things that not everyone has =)"

N: "I love my boobs, my shoulders and my moles."

T: "I love my lips and I'm gonna overshare and say I love my girly bits for giving me my boy, and my boobs for feeding him without (much) drama. The fact that they are now pendulous I like rather less..."

K: "I love my little hands, they make me feel refined and delicate. And the freckle next to my belly button :)"

L: "I love my face:)"

These answers make me so happy!

What do you love about your body?  

01 July 2011

Karaoke is the germiest fun time ever. Nobody warned me of the consequences.

This is me doing karaoke last week with a group of bloggers.
 And here are my awesome boots and sparkly leggings. Love!

Contrary to what it looked like, I only had about five drinks.
I am really very excited without alcohol. And an attention seeker. I LOVE KARAOKE. It's my calling.

The best bit was singing to songs I actually hate. Untouched by The Veronicas. Telephone by Lady Gaga.
I got into them. Yes I did. I also loved how some of the videos were so 80s and never relating to the song. This here was the clip to The Darkness's I believe in a thing called love. Okaaaaaaaay.

I loved the yumcha. Blogspot failed loading the yumcha pics.

And I loved meeting other bloggers - some for the first time, others I'd met before. FionaDorothyNicole, Amelia, Shae, Naomi, Norlin, Toushka, Amanda, Kirrily, Alli, Jody and Shelley.

And this has been my view for a lot of this week.

Sick in bed. I've been to work two days, feeling horrid. I've been to the doctor. I have been given stronger antibiotics for my thumb (three weeks today and it's almost better!) and the chest infection. I was warned by the doctor to 'watch out for pneumonia' as though it's lurking around doorways ready to kidnap me. I wish someone warned me to 'watch out for karaoke'. Lots of the other bloggers who went to karaoke are also sick.

I feel the kind of sick where I am coughing, sneezing, feverish. I am shaky. Hungry yet don't want to eat. Each cough inside the privacy of my own home is followed by a groan or an 'oh fuuuuucccckkkk'. This death by karaoke flu has been teamed with a period week and the biggest rollercoaster of emotions because of a situation that I cannot begin to write about. I am not usually the miserable sick. I am chirpy all the time. Except now.

I am cursing the germs I picked up using the communal microphones. Though without them I'd never have been able to live out my dream - singing Truly Madly Deeply to the international video clip and kissing the screen.

Post script: after not having an appetite for 24 hours - not even wanting my delicious and nutritious chicken soup I cooked last night, I prepared myself macaroni cheese deluxe. I have to eat something. It looks like custard. Tastes like salty rubber. And I cut my finger on the can. Convenience foods are dangerous. FML.


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