😍 It may only be for a week, but in 5 days, I’m flying home to SYDNEY! 😁 I can’t wait. CANNOT. WAIT! I’m thinking that it’s going to be excellent for clearing my head and plotting the future, too… 😀💕👛✈️
Perhaps I’ve just listened to Kanye one too many times (sing it with me now! ”N-n-now that that don’t kill me… can only make me stronger”), but in my recent years, I’ve become ever-so-slightly besotted with scaring the absolute bejesus out of myself. SERIOUSLY! Is there anything more thrilling than identifying an activity that terrifies you (public speaking, accepting an invitation to a social event, reaching the last square of chocolate in a block… ha! I kid) and… deciding to conquer it anyway? It’s impossible not to feel incredible afterwards; after all, you’ve pushed your boundaries (woohoo!), you’ve completed a new life experience (WINNING!) and you’ve remembered that actually, you’re one darn adventurous, fun lass (or gentleman) who’s infinitely more courageous than they ever could have imagined. (And you are!)
With that in mind, to free myself from a funk, I’ve devised a series of to-do tasks to re-ignite my spark, to assist me in recalling that once upon a time, I was a dorky, free-spirited filly who jumped on planes to Nepal without a second thought, and definitely didn’t mope over less-than-lovely males. When was the last time that YOU frightened yourself? What act could you accomplish to dramatically (and deliciously) alter your life? Perhaps you could whip up your own list… let’s alarm ourselves (in a positive fashion!) and emerge braver, more confident and excited together!
Fear-Inducing Assignment #1: Getting My Licence
Ah! Okay, so I’m aware that to 99% of the population, this ISN’T A BIG DEAL, but to me? I can practically feel goosebumps forming! Look, I’m going to be brutally honest: I have the attention span of a goldfish. I’m highly distracted (not at all conducive to safe driving!), and don’t even get me STARTED on how I’d react if I was cruising along and suddenly noticed that I was sharing my vehicle with a spider. (The horror!) But truthfully? There’s nothing sexy about relying on a man (as I always have) to get from point A to point B. Earning my own licence, and gaining independence and freedom behind the wheel? Now that’s superb!
Fear-Inducing Assignment #2: Joining A Gym
Oh, Homer. We are TWINS! Everything about joining a gym encourages my skin to crawl: what if I… sweat?! What if I attempt to leap up on a treadmill and fall? What if everybody in the room points, laughs hysterically at my visible lack of exercise knowledge and… stares?! WORRY, WORRY, WORRY! Of course, on the other hand… what if i I thoroughly enjoy working out, meet new people and finally develop a comfortable relationship with my body?
Fear-Inducing Assignment #3: Fixing My Teeth
So I’ve got a wee bit of a… fang. It’s not HUGELY noticeable and I still beam open-mouthed like a git in almost every photograph anyway (as evident above!), but it… bothers me. Sometimes I feel as though people notice it before they notice me, you know? It’s something that I’ve been meaning to tend to for years, but every single time I’ve summoned up the pennies necessary I’ve had a sudden rush of guilt and thought ”jeez, they’re just teeth! How could I be so vain?! There’s people out there who might not even have teeth, and I’m complaining because one of mine protrudes? What a selfish fool. GET OVER IT, Corrine!” … except I never do. I’ve booked a dental appointment for Monday morning and even though I’m still agonising over the cost of what I’ll need to have done, at what cost will it come to my self-esteem if I don’t? A colleague recently hugged me and whispered ”you need to learn to put yourself first, Corrine. Focus on you. Because until you do and love who you are, you won’t have the self-respect to be able to spot a partner who’s healthy - and who’s not - for you.” OOH… barracuda. Deep, huh?
Fear-Inducing Assignment #4: Becoming Comfortable With My Own Company
Yikes! Even typing that is cringe-inducing! What can I say? I love people. Adore them. Friends, family, strangers… I’m smitten with them all! Nothing makes me grin wider than an excellent conversation and, simultaneously, nothing zaps my smile faster than being alone… which is probably a brilliant indicator that that’s exactly what I have to become comfortable with.
My teeth are chattering in anticipation already!
Oh, life. It’s hilarious, isn’t it?! Only a couple of Sundays ago, as we scribbled our names on the bottom of a contract for an interest-free loan, I turned to Richard and said ”so… you do know what you’re signing, right sweetheart? The minute we hand this back, THAT’S IT! Every week, for 18 months, we’re legally obligated to repay a certain amount of money to this company.” He nodded. Serious Corrine continued. ”Are you sure? Because, you know, even if we part ways, we’ll still have to - ,” Richard immediately cut me off, laughing. ”But why would we break up?! That’s never going to happen!”
Within two days, we had broken up. Yes! But not before our application had been rejected and some muppet (*cough* ME *cough*) had sighed and insisted ”oh, don’t worry, I’ll just transfer $1400 from my savings and buy it outright, you can pay me back gradually…” On the day it was delivered, Richard was already living elsewhere. I couldn’t stand the sight of it; it was enormous, I’d never been convinced that we’d needed it and it was a constant reminder of a union that no longer existed. But somewhere between chanting ”calm blue ocean” and ”SERENITY NOW!”, I reasoned ”it’ll be okay; I can return it.”
Apparently, the ”jokes” weren’t over yet!
One morning, while zipping around the bedroom, I knocked over my morning glass of cranberry juice and BAM! All over the top left half of the mattress it went! I couldn’t believe it. I quickly began Google-ing solutions for red stains. ”Use salt!” One website exclaimed. ”Baking powder will be your best friend”, another promised. Nothing worked. I dabbed, I scrubbed. I used multiple stain removers and whitening toothpastes. The stains turned from a delightful (!) crimson to a swamp green and now, the bed simply looks as thought it’s covered in rust. Magnificent!
To declare this week a disaster would be an understatement. I’ve cried. BAWLED. I’ve been brandedfelt immense heartbreak, tremendous confusion (”so, if this is all over now… WHY ON EARTH WAS I EVER ”MEANT” TO BE IN BLENHEIM?!’ Who am I? What have I become in this relationship? I don’t even recognise myself anymore!”), blinding rage and, amazingly, amusement. Once your eyes have dried and your breathing’s returned to normal, there truly is something comical about experiencing so much hurt and disappointment and yet… persevering. Perhaps it was the effect of the wine, but as I reflected upon recent events, I couldn’t help but slowly smile. Sure, everything (everything!) seemed terrible, but it couldn’t stay terrible. Things, I thought, could only get better… and so could I. (And so can you!)
Awww. I saw the empty box of jelly frogs on the bench and thought “NOOO, Richard’s taken the last one!”… annnd then I realised it was because he’d actually packed up a lunch kit for me 💕 ‘Twas a good way to start the morning 😊
Well hello! CRIPES it’s been a wee while, hasn’t it?! Between shifting homes (uh huh. After all that deliberating, Richard and I finally decided to move into a little house together, and thankfully, we haven’t killed eachother it’s been amazing living with him!), leaping on a plane to complete a week-long training course in Wellington and spending some much-needed family time in Auckland (I turned 26 a few weeks ago. WHAT IS THIS MADNESS?!), I can’t b-e-l-i-e-v-e that it’s October already, but it is!
Although it feels like the past month has whirled by in a brilliant blur, I can very distinctly remember this outing. After flying in from Blenheim, this was our first full day in Auckland, and following an enormous (and delicious!) meal at The Empire Tavern, Richard, my Mother, sister, cousins and I elected to venture up the famous Sky Tower. (Because really. what better way is there to take in the city’s spectacular views?!)
What I’m Wearing:
x Coral-coloured Pagani frock
x Billion year-old cardigan (okay, so it’s not quite THAT old, but we’ve all got a piece like this that we’ve been wearing for so long that we can’t even remember how we stumbled across it, haven’t we?!)
x Asos boots
You can’t spy them in the above Sky Tower pictures, but you see those gorgeous, glitter-filled turquoise stud earrings in the top right corner? I was also donning them. The lovely folk at Body Jewellery Shop kindly sent me a package full of their beautiful baubles, and can I just spend a minute telling you how much I ADORE them? Don’t be fooled by the insanely low prices (look, at £1.99, I wasn’t expecting terribly much either!); these babies are high-quality. I’m usually allergic to the materials found in cheaper jewellery (Richard swears this is just a ploy to get him to buy me expensive solid silver pieces, but it isn’t!), but I’ve been alternating between every set in this photograph and there hasn’t been an itch, rash or any discomfort to be seen! (Did I mention that they also haven’t done that turn-a-hideous-shade-of-brown/bronze-after-they’ve-come-into-contact-with-water thing yet, even when I’ve worn them in the shower? Two thumbs up.)
How are YOU? How have you been? Update me! I don’t know what’s currently happening in your world, and it feels so strange!
P.S. Whoa! Here’s ‘s a mind-bend. This is what I was in last time I was at the Sky Tower (which was over three years ago; I even still have the post from my last visit!):
Perhaps it’s because it’s overcast outside. (Do enormous, ominous dark clouds do anything to boost ANYONE’S moods?! Unless you’re hunkered down inside with a good movie or book, rarely!) Perhaps it’s due to the fact that I’m turning 26 in four days. (Greetings, possible quarter-life crisis!) Maybe it’s only started happening after a contract/agreement to lease a three bedroom home was waved under my nose (gosh, actual, legal commitment? To a property in Blenheim?! Yikes!), or after a spate of events on the weekend caused me to contemplate the longevity/strength of my relationship. (Unnecessarily? Necessarily? Hmmm…) I’m not sure, but what I do know is…
I am freaking out!
I’m feeling uncertain. Confused. A little lost. In a wonderful world where we’re spoiled for choice (we can flit between different university degrees! Chop and change our hair whenever we please! Elect to stop/start a new career at the drop of a hat!), how are we to to be certain of which direction to steer our lives in?
I was reflecting upon my own life this morning, weighing up my options. I could stay here in small-town New Zealand. Plodding along. Working comfortably. Enjoying the relatively inexpensive rent, general kindness of the community and patting myself on the back whenever SOME minor triumph has occurred. (”I made a new friend today, YES! I’ve managed to stop myself from running to the airport and boarding the first plane back to Sydney, suc-cess!”) In a year or two I’d probably have a child, be married (yikes!) and hopefully not regretting every single second of my past decisions. Or… I could choose to flee to London tomorrow. Saunter around Spain. Backpack around Brazil, volunteer in Africa and opt to be single until I reach my late 50’s and meet a Polish sausage-makerthat I fall HOPELESSLY in love with. (Hey, stranger things have happened, right?!)
My high school music teacher once uttered ”my best friend was a drop-out. She was pregnant and had 5 kids before the age of 26. Meanwhile, I’d completed two double-degrees by then.” ”W-o-w”, our class gasped. ”Your friend made some s-t-u-p-i-d decisions!” Miss. Bromley smiled. She hadn’t actually been seeking our praise AT ALL. ”There’s no such thing as a ”stupid decision”,” she said. ”They’re just that… decisions. Whatever you resolve to do makes you no less or better person, and every path has its positives and negatives.”
I’m still not sure which route to take. It’s feasible that you’re at a crossroads too. We may not be able to pick a destination for eachother (JEEZ I wish you could make my mind up for me!), but let’s hope that whatever/wherever we select leads us somewhere brilliant, okay?
If you’re clicking here for the first time, WELCOME! Every Friday we celebrate the fact that - ding, ding! - it’s Friday, and our favourite things (late-night movie dates? Wet towels?! Okay, it’s probably not the latter…) from the week that was. Here’s what I’m currently loving!
x Upcoming Travel - Or as the magnificent Madonna would purr, ”holi-day… cele-brate!” and ”if we took a holiday, it would be… it would be so nice!” WOULDN’T IT, Madonna?! This is precisely why I’m skipping off to Auckland next weekend, and then Wellington the following week, hooray!
Amazing Auckland, New Zealand.
Few things make my heart happier than fossicking through different locations, so the days ahead will be a TREAT! I’m going to eagerly trundle my way through the city, boogie the night away at my Auntie’s disco-themed (the best kind of theme!) birthday party, lure my Mother away to lunch (she’s flying over from Australia for the occasion!) and more than likely cry with pride/anticipation at the sight of my little sister’s pregnant belly. The first flight on Thursday couldn’t come any sooner!
x Surprising My Beloved - It was Richard’s birthday a wee while ago, and I chose to live by the logic ”if you can’t surprise/embarrass the bejesus out of your loved one on the anniversary of their birth, then when CAN you?!” After arranging to have a red rose, custom-made pool table cake and balloon delivered to his workplace on their morning tea break (in a panel-beating shop full of men, you can just imagine how this went down. Muahahaha!), I organised for a bunch of pizzas to be sent during their lunch hour, and I swear, making a big fuss/waiting for the barrage of ”CORRINE! What have you done?!” messages was more enjoyable than sampling the creation (banana-flavoured, mmm) later itself. We’re only on this earth once; go hard or go home, I say!
x Other Little Things - Gin, lime and soda (a winning combination!); lying in bed and giggling; texts which alert you ”don’t worry; I’m cooking dinner tonight, and it’s a SURPRISE!’' (especially when you’re in the middle of faux-whining to one of your friends ”ah, jeez. Meal inspiration is totally evading me tonight!”); warmer weather (winter, it’s been a joy, but… wait a minute. NO IT HASN’T. You’ve brought the freeze full-force this year, and I’m eagerly ushering spring in!); Limp Bizkit (a perennial favourite, no matter how uncool it is to love them!); gourmet sandwiches (pesto makes everything better); earthquake-free weeks (New Zealanders will understand!); invites to jump aboard new, fantastic-sounding projects (whee!); scooping up a rice cooker on sale for $19; Jelly Tip ice-creams; and finally, spending my final week as a 25 year-old. Eek! I’m 26 next Sunday! Is there anything radical/remarkable/ridiculous that I need to do before I creep closer towards the ‘30’ club?!
Happy Friday to you! What are you presently rejoicing about? Do you have any super weekend plans to share? Mine is looking q-u-i-e-t, but I’m scooting off to meet a former UK journalist who’s launching a brand-spanking new magazine here in Blenheim shortly, so hopefully that will be fun! (Or at least, interesting!)
Along with how to successfully ride a bicycle (cringe!) or the art of mastering the perfect risotto (d’oh!), I do not understand the cancellation of TV’s Ringer. IT HAD IT ALL! Juicy, suspense-laden story-lines? In abundance! Gripping, compelling characters? Like you wouldn’t believe! And then, of course, there were the outfits. Oh boy. Sarah Michelle Gellar rocked some GLORIOUS garments in every episode, and just you wait until you see some of her hair tricks!
*sniff* I’m truly in mourning for this show.
In case you haven’t caught a glimpse of it before, Ringer is the tale of a young woman - played by Sarah Michelle Gellar - on the run from the mob, who decides to pose as her wealthy twin sister to try and escape her troubles, only to discover that her sister has a price on her head as well. (Things rarely go to plan on the big screen, do they?!) It’s addictive and it’s brilliant.
Siobhan’s #1 style accessory? Her PHONE! Nooo, not quite, but it’s true that her obsessive mobile use almost makes my relationship with my iPhone look completely healthy! What this girl gravitates towards is polished femininity: think dainty blouses, silk scarves, ruffles, embellished belts and hip-hugging dresses aplenty. (Siobhan is all about the tailoring!)
I mentioned that mane: Siobhan’s soft, flowing waves are rarely worn the same way twice. Whether she’s sporting beautiful braids, a loose bun or making the most of a bobby pin, she’s bound to instil major ‘do envy!
Have YOU seen Ringer? (If so, what did you think?! If not, the full episodes can totally be watched for free - happy days! - here!) Is there a fictional character who’s captivated your wardrobe? I’d love to hear all about it!
If you’re clicking here for the first time, WELCOME! Every Friday we celebrate the fact that - ding, ding! - it’s Friday, and our favourite things (freshly baked jam-and-cream filled doughnuts? Recycling bins?! Okay, it’s probably not the latter…) from the week that was. Here’s what I’m currently loving!
x Blenheim, New Zealand - WHAT?! Look, I never thought that I’d be announcing my adoration for this town either (no offense, Blenheim), but four months into residing here, and I’m - gasp - finally beginning to enjoy it!
Upon first arriving, a gentleman glanced at me wistfully and declared ”Blenheim; she’s a small place, but she’s a good one.” I didn’t believe him. I’d moved here for my boyfriend, and as far as I was concerned, my only mission was to support Richard through finishing his apprenticeship, and then concentrate on getting the heck out of New Zealand! When we broke up, I didn’t have a clue WHAT I was doing anymore, but decided to persevere anyway… and I’m so glad that I did. I came to appreciate the breathtaking scenery. I met some (and continue to do so daily) EXCEPTIONAL people. Blenheim, I was determined to carve out a different path in you, and create my own happiness, and everything’s just begun to fall into place…
Fettuccine with honey-roasted vegetables and crumbled feta at Havelock’s The Slip Inn. I fool you not, this is one of the most delectable dishes to have ever passed my lips…
x Beyond-Compare Fare At Havelock’s The Slip Inn - Isn’t it fabulous when you stumble across a total knock-your-socks-off-INCREDIBLE eatery?! If you find yourself in the area of Havelock, Marlborough, a visit to this bar/cafe/restaurant-hybrid comes highly recommended! (The meals were out-of-this-world, the view is STUNNING and the customer service? Impeccable.)
x Richard - ”But didn’t you just say that you’d BROKEN UP?” You may be thinking. (Or not… I’m sure you’ve got at least 1,27272772626 better subjects to ponder!) Uh huh, but in a weird twist of events (oh, life. Always the joker, aren’t you?), we bumped into eachother again recently, and decided to rekindle our relationship. Don’t get me wrong, I’m 110% aware that he can be a bit (understatement!) of a muppet, but no-one else (get your buckets ready) makes my heart pitter-patter quite the same…
x Other Little Things - Placing my first ASOS order (oh, the nerves! Will my items fit? Will I LIKE them? We’ll soon find out!); so-uncomfortable-they’re-LAUGHABLE interactions (do you know what’s not a heap of fun? Entering a pub with your boyfriend and discovering every male that you’ve met in your two months as a single girl has chosen to drink at the same establishment. Richard: ”Who’s THAT? And how do you know HIM?!” Awkward times…); Coldplay’s God Put A Smile On Your Face (which happened to be blasting during the aforementioned hideous occasion!); my friend Karen’s attitude (”the neighbours were having a r-a-g-i-n-g party, so I decided to knock on the door. They opened it and immediately began with ”we’re really sorry, we’ll turn the music down now”, but I just waved my hand dismissively, showed them my (full) glass of wine and said ”I’m not here to complain, I’m here to JOIN you!”); hearing Stone Sour’s Through The Glass come through the car speakers and having Richard smile, grab my hand and murmur ”this is our song”); sincere small-talk; wonderful conversations with strangers; and treating everyone as though they’re my best buddy. (I swear, I can almost hear my Mother bellowing ”AND THIS IS WHY YOU FIND YOURSELF IN ALL SORTS OF UNUSUAL SITUATIONS, Corrine!” right now!)
Happy, happy Friday to you! How’s your day been? What are your plans for the WEEKEND? I’m whisking Richard off to meet a bunch of new friends at my favourite bar tonight, and honestly, I’m a little nervous…!
When my sister shared this gem on Facebook this morning, I instantly thought of you. Because isn’t it (like yourself!) fantastic?!
Sure, Mr. Marley may have been discussing partnerships in this quote, but isn’t it top-notch wisdom to apply to anyone? Your Mother? Your Father? Your best friend? Your beautiful new cat who accidentally mistook your bedroom for its bathroom? (Grrr!) Yourself? The WORLD?
Love hard when there’s love to be had… and have a beautiful Wednesday!