I love you then, I love you still. Always have, always will <3

I was looking through my photos today, as I have been trying to collate my travel photographs into my Instagram page (@novaturient_redhead); and I realised that our honeymoon was ONE YEAR AGO!!!

This time last year we were in Milford Sound, the torrential rain had us locked in our room for three days – which, to be honest – forces you to relax and just enjoy being away on holiday!

We did get out on our last day as the rain turned into a light shower for a couple of ours.

I cannot wait to repeat our last year and every year forward. Bring it on – rain, hail or shine ❤

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Akaroa, N.Z – spending a long weekend with friends <3

Hobbits, fish and ‘chups’ (they don’t say this, at all just fyi), kiwi fruit, Russell Crowe, Angela from Real Housewives of Auckland, being mistaken for an Australian, explaining where the country is on a globe and not getting credit for the pavlova.

This is a short summary of some things every kiwi I have ever met, dislikes. Kiwi’s, or New Zealander’s (a bit too formal I think), are the FRIENDLIEST, funniest, most giving and warm-hearted people on the planet.  You will never find a better companion than a friendly kiwi. One of my favourite people on this Earth is from Christchurch and I can honestly say, I have never met a kiwi I have disliked. It would be near impossible.

I think it has something to do with how astronomically beautiful their country is, not to mention how progressive the country is in general. New Zealand will always be one of my favourite places to visit. I have seen more of the North Island than I have the South Island, so i was excited to be able to visit more of the South Island.

Two years ago, in October 2015, we had decided a girls trip was on the cards. We are all spread out across the eastern cost of Australia and of course NZ, so Nats and I decided we would head over to New Zealand for a long weekend. Jem was going to show us around Christchurch and we were going to spend the weekend out at Akaroa. Akaroa was settled by the English and the French, the cultural influences of both are littered throughout the region.

Akaroa is on the Banks Peninsular in Canterbury area of the South Island of New Zealand. The name Akaroa is Kāi Tahu Māori for “Long Harbour”. It’s around an hour and a half from Christchurch, depending on the number of cars, sheep, the weather and of course the car you are in. If it takes twice as long, enjoy it! The drive is beautiful. We took the trip with  the best of Fleetwood Mac on repeat and catching up with one another.

We also stopped and did a massive haul at the shops. We had ten different types of cheese, since we are all cheese fiends, we also stopped by Barry’s Bay Traditional Cheese, which is in Akaroa. Barry’s Bay Cheese is made from local farms and is made in the traditional way since 1895. Their Havarti, Cracked Pepper and Chilli Cheddar cheeses are amazing!

fullsizeoutput_1a60No good girls trip is complete without several bottles of wine, some champagne, some cider and some delicious food before the drinking begins! Jem had found the cutest cabin in in absolutely gorgeous location in Akaroa, overlooking the water. It was a little walk out of town and was up on top of a hill.

We spent the weekend exploring the area, eating cheese, watching trash T.V, sleeping in, eating more cheese, drinking copious amounts of wine and just hanging out. It was amazing. We don’t get to spend too much time with each other, so it was really nice just being able to hang out and chat and bond. I firmly believe that your friendships with your girlfriends in your 20’s and 30’s are some of the most important and rewarding relationships we can have.

On our last day we visited a crazy little tourist must-see, the Giant’s Garden. The Giant’s House is a sculpture, mosaic garden and gallery and has the tag of “the happiest garden on earth”. It was certainly something different. It’s not cheap, at around $22 per adult entry. However, it’s worth it for the photos and it helps the owner’s keep the place open to the public. It is located within an historic house and gardens and is only a few minutes walk from the centre of Akaroa. It is seriously different and like I said, worth the photos! We also stopped in and checked out the local boutique stores as well. There is certainly a lot more about crystal’s and their healing powers I need to learn!

The Australian NRL final was on our last night in Akaroa and having found a little pub to spend the afternoon/evening and with no other patrons there, we asked the bar tender to change the channel. It was a Sunday night and hardly tourist season so it was super quiet. It turned into one of our rowdier nights and watching the game with a few locals who potted in later on was good fun as well. Our other girlfriend who was unable to make the NZ trip because of the grand final, was the reason we found a pub to watch the game in. Thankfully her team, the North Queensland Cowboys won, so it was celebrations all around!

Soon enough our amazing Akaroa break had come to an end and we made our way back to Christchurch. Hunted down fish and chips (with whitebait fritters – which I LOVE!) and watched a stack of reality tv whilst sitting near Jem’s fire and just soaking up each other’s company. Our little break had come to an end and Nats was back to Sydney and I back to Brisbane the next morning. Until our next catch up.

Having your friends so far away is really tough, but having the quality of friendships I have I wouldn’t change it for anything in the world.

fullsizeoutput_1a61Thanks for reading ❤

x C x

It’s the little things in life…10 things that always make my heart happy <3

  1. Cuddles with my Mum. Possibly my favourite thing as a little girl, something I resisted as a teenager (I was a shit of a teenager, honestly) and cherish and crave as a grown woman.
  2. When I am completely relaxed, anxiety-free and depression is under control. Oh my goodness, best feeling in the world. Normalcy, control and happiness.
  3. Taking. Off. My. Bra. Hello freedom! Oh and scratching along where the bra line was on my back – is this not the best feeling in the world?
  4. That first sniff/sip of coffee in the morning. Not a dodgy Moccona from the tin + hot water, coffee. A decent coffee.
  5. Ham + Cheese croissants. Worth the 400 plus calories and 51% fat content. Every damned time.
  6. Cake. Oh my god, cake. Chocolate, mud, red velvet, orange + poppyseed. I don’t even care, just make it moist and make it delicious.
  7. The smell of jasmine. Will follow the smell and inhale for dear life. Oh my goodness, that smell. Heaven.
  8. Crawling into bed on a Sunday evening when I have laid fresh sheets which have been in the sunshine all day after having been washed. It is important to note that this step can only be as deliciously satisfying if I have shaved my legs and washed my hair.
  9. That beautiful change of season which is palpable. The air is thicker, you need a cardigan – I cannot tell you how much I love that feeling when summer in Queensland has broken, and autumn is on its way.
  10. Laughing with my Husband. I mean REALLY laughing. Losing our sh*t, struggling to breathe, snorting – the lot of it. Laughing with your best mate – you cannot get better than that.

Lucy

x

I love you, Mum.

I am feeling sentimental today. Today is a cup(s) of tea, Netflix, top-knot wearing, waiting for wine-o’clock, pj’s on the couch kind of day and I feel zero guilt from it! It looks like winter is finally starting a subtle flirtation with Australia, thankfully! It’s cool enough to just have the door open, no fan or air-con necessary..it’s gorgeous :).

It is Mother’s Day tomorrow, here in Australia – I am too excited! My mum is my best-friend, without a doubt. I am her first-born, her eldest daughter and I am guessing I was her most problematic teenager. I read your post today K E Garland and it inspired me to share how I feel about my Mother, I hope you don’t mind 🙂 x.

This is the person who gave up her entire life to have me, to welcome me into the fold to share the world with her and Dad. She prayed for me, grew me, protected me, loved me. She taught me to talk, walk, love and care for others. Her cuddles, kisses and smell are my favourite things. Her acts of love, selflessness and constantly going without, were to provide for her family, to love her children. To put us first.

My Mum is a powerhouse, like most of our Mother’s are. Mum is the strongest, kindest, most selfless warrior of a woman I have ever met. We were just above the poverty line for most of my child-hood. However, Mum always made things fun, she went out of her way to spoil us and treat us on our Birthday’s. Her creativity in the 80’s and 90’s (pre-PINTEREST) is astounding to look back on now.

I, like my siblings (and any lucky Aussie kid), picked a cake out of the Woman’s Weekly Cook Book every year (check this link out, to trip down memory lane :)). She punished bad behaviour in the most constructive way, told me it was better to be kind than ‘beautiful’, that strong was better than skinny and that everything in moderation was ok.

Mum taught me how to plait, she took three pieces of material and nailed them to a piece of wood, that’s how I learnt. I always got to lick the bowl after she had baked a cake, she held my head over a bowl of hot water with vix with a tea-towel over my head when I was sick.My mum took white-out and blanked out the lines in books she thought were too harsh for a little girl and would change the sentence in her own writing, with blue biro, over the top of the crunchy white-out.

I got my baking, singing and drawing skills from my Mother (so…NIL), but I also got her thick problematic hair, her front teeth, sense of humour and her resilience.

I grew up with the phrases ‘give it all you’ve got‘, ‘you’re capable of anything you set your mind to‘, ‘if it doesn’t work out, who cares at least you tried‘, ‘build the memories‘, ‘be a good person, don’t be hateful or cruel to anybody‘, ‘stand your ground‘ and ‘you are worth more than your dark moments‘.  There have been numerous times in my life where these sayings have motivated me, guided me, scolded me and saved me.

Thank you for enforcing the no-shaving-your-legs until I was in high-school, never letting me watch The Simpsons and for enforcing t.v-off at 6.30pm and reading only until 7.30pm when it was lights-off, until I was 13. You gave me my love for books.

Even when I lived out of home when I was studying, she would drive passed my place and drop left-overs from dinner off at my dorm. Looking back on it now, I am starting to think it was not just to be kind, but maybe me leaving her in that house with two younger kids on her own would have been heart-breaking, that she may not have been prepared to only make three dinners, rather than four.

Mum stood by and comforted me through every break-up, every friendship break-down, difficulties in work, struggles in university and in life. Health problems, drama’s when I went overseas. The lot of it, supporting me, encouraging me and telling me to keep going. I could be in the darkest of corners imaginable and I would get an SMS ‘Lucy, I love you – never forget that. This too shall pass‘, and sometimes that was enough to get me to move, to get out of bed, to remember the sun will shine the next day.

Her out-of-this-world excited reaction when I got my first period, got my first job, got into uni, got promotions, got married. All of them – first class responses of elation and pure-unadulterated JOY!

Thank you for making sure I made it to 31, thanks for letting me make my own mistakes but stepping in when I could have gotten really hurt. Thanks for pushing me to do things I hated, just so I would learn to appreciate what it means to honouring your commitments.

Thank you for covering my super-white skin in suncream and lycra and hats and even making me sit in that stupid beach-tent, as you tried to protect me from the Australian sun. Thank you for smiling and nodding and feigning interest in whimsical side-projects/aims/plans which I am sure you knew I would completely tank at (but never, ever saying ‘I told you so‘).

Thanks for giving me your love of diet coke, cheesecake, coffee and dark humour. Maybe not so many thanks for passing along your fear of spiders, clowns, wallpaper and Humphrey B.Bear (yes, it is ridiculous he wears a vest but no pants).

So, Mum. My best friend, my protector, cheerleader, Nurse, taxi-service, accountant, manager of personal affairs, P.R Specialist, psychic, psychologist, relationship counsellor, partner in crime, grief counsellor, expert hugger and love of my life…I love you. I thank you and I love you. I wouldn’t be a tenth of the woman I am today, without you.

– Version 2

Happy Mother’s Day, Mum!

Lucy

x