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I wish I could have bottled the feelings I felt on Saturday morning for mass production. You know when you’re so happy you can feel it radiating from your pores like warm, glittery sunbeams? That’s how I felt walking down Glenferrie Road – my new local high street – toward the train station on Saturday.

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I did it, babes – I made the move! I relocated! I fluttered away from Adelaide like a little bird caught in an updraft, and I love it. I can say, without shadow of doubt, that I felt never felt so liberated or so totally content in my own power as I did on Saturday morning.

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It was a glorious day here in Melbourne – the sun was streaming down, lighting up the streets like a carnival, and I was on my way to meet my babe Pearl for a much needed debrief after my first week here.

Pearl and I met in our favourite spot – out the front of Zara in Bourke Street Mall! – and slowly made our way through the streets of Melbourne in search of a place to fix up Pearl’s new phone. Meandering down Elizabeth Street and pulling apart every aspect of my week at my new job and Pearl’s plans for her next shindig, we turned out gaze upwards to spot some ferns drifting lazily around in a breeze, poking out a third storey window.

“Is that a bar?!” I squealed excitedly. I could see misters hanging from the ceiling breathing super fine, cool water down into the space.
“I think it might be, I’ve never been up there,” Pearl said. “Shall we go and have a look?”

Well. We climbed a graffitied staircase and arrived on the landing.

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Pearl had it right when she said that in Melbourne, you should always look up. Warehouse – the bar we discovered – can’t be the only treasure nestled high above the city streets. I can’t wait to go exploring and see what else I can find!

After a glass of wine, we collected Pearl’s phone and made our way back to her place in North Melbourne. She and her lovely hubby Mark are lucky enough to have a beautiful three storey townhouse with – you guessed it – rooftop access. I’ve enjoyed several lazy afternoons hanging out in their pad, and this time, I have some rocking photo evidence! Consider this update as doubling for an outfit post!

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  • Tshirt & skirt – Cotton On
  • Bag – hand-me-up from my sister!
  • Heart necklace & flower crowns – Lovisa
  • Earrings – I’m Your Present
  • Shoes – Clutch Those Heels
  • Sunglasses – Bali knockoffs
  • Wig – just you wait…!

I really liked this outfit – I felt so happy, with just the right amount of girlie and just the standard amount of Melbourne black! An old lady even stopped me on the street to tell me I looked beautiful. It was all I could do not to just give her a huge hug.

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And of course, the view was pretty fucking amazing, too.

I’ll be sharing a lot more about Glenferrie Road and living in Hawthorn over the next few weeks. I can’t wait to really throw myself into Melbourne properly – I have barely had time to breathe since I got here, but rest assured – there is so much more to come.

I hope you’ve all had an absolutely cracking start to 2015. I know I have – and I can’t wait to see what the rest of the year has in store!

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After sixteen years, a tonne of travelling, making wonderful friends and loving wonderful people, I’m both extremely excited and a little sad to announce that my time in Adelaide has officially drawn to a close. That’s right: this is not a drill – I am making the Big Move to Melbourne!!!

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I knew that 2015 was going to be a year of epic change and exponential growth. What I didn’t know was how quickly I would start to reap the benefits of seeds planted back in 2014. To say that everything happened quickly would be the understatement of the millennium; I applied for a job back prior to Christmas, travelled to Melbourne on Wednesday this week for the interview, was offered the job on the spot, and within an hour had an apartment lined up and flights booked ready to start work on Monday!

As you can imagine, my head is spinning like a carousel on acid and my heart is threatening to burst with happiness. Despite all the whirlwind romance of it all, I am in some respects desperately sad to be leaving – but I know that this move is the exact right thing for me at the exact right time. I’ve been working towards a cataclysmic change like this for months and months, and you know what they say – it’s now or never.

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As much as many of my fellow bloggers will roll their eyes at this, possibly throwing their hands in the air in exasperation with a good ol’ “ENOUGH, already!”, the truth is that I owe tremendous gratitude to Blogcademy Headmistresses Gala Darling, Shauna Haider and Kat Williams. Without my scholarship to Blogcademy in 2013, subsequent frequent travel to Melbourne and building the incredible network of people there I have come to know and love, this, quite simply, would not be happening.

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To my loving, patient friends and family in Adelaide – your care and support over the last sixteen years has meant more to me than you can possibly know. You will always have a place to stay and a tour guide full of life and enthusiasm should you ever wish to visit Melbourne!

It’s going to be a ballistic year. I am so ready to take this next step of my journey, and I am so excited to have you along for the ride. Prepare for an onslaught of style, lattes, parties and craziness!

Blessings and all of the love,

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09 Jan 2015

Hello my gorgeous babes!

I hope you all managed to kick off 2015 with a BANG – I know I sure did! I drank (too much) champagne, watched the fireworks over the ocean at midnight and danced the night away. I even shed a little tear of the stroke of midnight – a tear of relief, perhaps, that 2014 is now officially done and dusted!

I’ve been thinking a lot over the past few weeks about my personal style and the way that I present myself. While this has already  culminated in the dyeing of my hair (ha! Surprise! More on that soon), a major ‘spring clean out’ of my wardrobe and a couple of new purchases, I think there are a few solid promises I can make to myself to ensure I look and feel my best in 2015. I like to think of these promises as style resolutions – a few staple guidelines to overhaul my personal aesthetic and remain, as always, cute as fuq.

  • Experiment with wigs

As sad as I am that I’ve have to adios my pink hair (ha! surprise! more on that coming soon), I am really glad that it’s now looking and feeling a lot healthier, shinier and stronger. The constant bleaching was not only damaging my hair, but was also excpetionally time consuming and expensive! So, when I felt the sudden impulse to salvage the precious few hairs I still have attached to my head, I decided to invest in some wigs.

This way, I can still enjoy having awesome hair – and even more so, because now I can switch between different colours, lengths and styles whenever I want to! Maybe even twice a day! Heck, maybe even thrice a day! Wigs are the perfect option for someone like me – a flighty, freaky Gemini who likes to change up my appearance as often as I change my knickers. Whee! I’ll be doing a full write up all about them when I get them in my hot little hands, so keep an eye out next week. It’s going to be so much fun!

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Image by Panda Face Photography via Geisha Wigs

  • Rock out with false lashes

In 2104, I started to wear false lashes a lot more than I ever have before – and I’m now officially obsessed. It’s not about ‘only for nights out’, or ‘only for special occasions’ – big, poofy, Edie Sedgewick-esque lashes are fast becoming part of my signature (despite my long-suffering mother’s lament that I might start ‘looking like one of the girls from that Snog, Marry Avoid show’.)  With a tiny bit of practise, lashes are so easy to put on and are easy to wear, and best of all they take a gorgeous makeup to inter-galactic level cool in seconds. I’ve got my eye on a few extra poofy lashes I want to add to my collection soon!

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Image by Max Abadian via The Sapphire Report

  • Accessorise like crazy

I’ve always been absolutely gaga over big, statement accessories – big earrings, chunky necklaces and enormous cocktail rings, to name a few. This year, I’m planning to take adornment to a whole new level. My earrings will double in size. Each finger will be sporting giant, sparkly rings. Necklaces will get more and more exuberant. My hair will never not have something attached to it. Oh, yes. 2015 is the Year Of Bling.

As a totally un-related side note, I just found out my favourite high street accessories store is having a massive closing down sale with 70% off storewide. Guess what I’ll be doing on payday?

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Image by Alexandra Leigh Photography via Geisha Wigs

  • Ditch the carry-all

I have precisely two handbags: one giant black pleather monstrosity that is well past it’s due date, and a gorgeous little green leather shoulder bag from Clutch Those Heels. While I adore my little green number, I have to admit, it just doesn’t go with every outfit. I need to invest in some new purses.

I’m not talking giant black or tan handbags that ‘go with everything’ and ‘hold so much stuff’. No. I’m talking really cute, small, colourful purses that make more of a statement as an accessory than they do as a bag. Obviously, I need something in which to keep my keys, phone, money, etc – however, I’m keeping it cute and simple in 2015. Think Carrie Bradshaw: “It’s a bag-ette!”

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Do you have any style resolutions for 2015? I’d love to hear all about them!

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30 Dec 2014

*Trigger warning: this post contains material of a sensitive nature*

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As a blogger, I feel it almost obligatory to write some sort of a ‘recap’ post at the closing of another year. It feels very strange to me that this time, one year ago, Nate and I were enjoying nasi goreng (well, I was – he was munging down pizza) and Bintang beer in Bali, waiting to chime in 2014 at Potato Head Beach Club. On this day two years ago, I was renting a room in my best friend’s family home after having been unceremoniously kicked out of my other share house a couple of months earlier, and I felt more free and happy than I had done in years. On this day three years ago, I was setting up a house for a Japanese themed New Year party – in a different relationship, a different home, and a different life altogether. And four years ago … well, I barely remember. To use an age-old adage, ‘my … how time flies’.

The truth is, I am not sad to see the end of 2014. While I’ve enjoyed some amazing high points – Bali, Melbourne, kicking ass on my blog, scoring my dream job, sporting my long lusted-after pink locks – I can’t help but reflect on what has made this year one of the most difficult of my life, too. The passing of my beloved grandmother. Crippling anxiety. Debt. Losing my job. Health struggles. Difficult relationship issues with various people, including family and friends. Intensely personal, private pain.

As well as I know that the only way to feel true happiness is to manifest it for myself, the stone cold fact is that sometimes, for all of us, it’s really, really hard. It’s hard to be happy and positive when you can’t get out of bed without crying. It’s hard to be grateful for the good things in your life when so much seems to be going wrong. It’s hard to feel positive about yourself when there are so many other seemingly better people to compare yourself to. And the hardest thing of all is putting on a brave smile and facing the world, when in reality, all you want is for it all to be over. I have felt this way, not just once, in the past year.

I am not telling you this because I am ungrateful for my many blessings. It’s just important for us all to recognise the simple truth that maybe, things aren’t okay all the time. That things are rarely completely as they seem. This is why I actively (and sometimes to my own detriment) always give people the benefit of the doubt. You just never know what might be going on behind the scenes and we should always give others a chance to demonstrate their own love and magic.

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Ninety percent of the content I write on this blog is focussed on manifesting positive energy, encouraging beneficial change and championing the differences that make us unique, including social commentary, equality, consumerism, sexuality, beauty, love and magic. Five percent relates to pro-feminism, and the other five relates to mental health. These three things are the epicentre of my entire value system, which is why I feel so compelled to write material that swings from one ledge to another. This is a perfect example of how I’ve felt this year: like a pendulum, swinging back and forth between two places, not quite able to reach far enough to land in either pure happiness or crippling pain.

I want you to know that next year, in 2015, I will actively be working towards the most rewarding year of my life. I have a deep belief that there are major, major things happening in the Universe to set me up for amazing successes next year, but remember my promise to you.

This time around, for 2015, I’m going to be totally real about it all. No sugar coating. No pussy footing. As the Blogcademy Headmistresses say, ‘no blathering, no bullshit’. Don’t worry – living love and making magic will remain the primary focus of my writing, because it’s what gives me the most joy. But I want to talk about anxiety, depression and all other facets of mental health, too. I want to tear down the pendulum and build a bridge in its place.

I know all you babes are going to have a magical, fantastical New Year! As I sip my champagne at the stroke of midnight, I’ll be thinking about each and every one of you. Let’s start 2015 in the best way possible – together.

I love you all. Thankyou for your continuous love and support. See you next year!

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Do you ever feel as though your passion is a hot air balloon?

I totally do.

It’s beautiful and buoyant. It rises above all other things and spurs you on to great heights. It’s ignited by a flame that burns deep within and floats dreamily along of it’s own accord, taking you along for the ride. This is the poetic facet of passion. This is the fun part. What people don’t tell you about passion is that it fucking sucks sometimes, too.

Hot air balloons catch on fire. They spontaneously combust. They get buffeted around in the wind and rides get cancelled when the weather is rough. This for me is parallel to my passion, which of course is writing. When the north winds blow a little too hard, the rain starts to fall and the hydrogen ignites, all my hopes and dreams tend to go up in smoke along with the balloon until Valentine Balloon Tours commissions a new design and we’re released into the wild once more.

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I hate this up-and-down pattern. When I’m in a stinking, fuddled, fermenting lull, my desire to write catches fire and burns like old film. When I feel as though I’m floating on clouds, lit from within by a fervent desire to create and filled with passion, the words just pour out. So how to strike a balance?

Usually, falling into a lull starts with something so, so small. Like missing a credit card payment, or having an argument with a sibling. I feel crappy for a while, but the problem usually resolves itself and I move forward with minimal angst. Then, something else happens. I might realise I’ve gained a couple of kilos, or forgotten about an event I was supposed to attend, or had an argument with Nate. Then I feel tired. Nothing major; nothing a coffee and a good night’s sleep won’t fix. I write it off as a bad day; I don’t bother writing and I collapse late into an uneasy sleep.

Next, something really crappy happens. Like losing a job, having a falling out with a friend, or failing a subject at school. I catch myself thinking, ‘If I had have just spent more time focussing on other things and not my writing, this wouldn’t have happened’. I feel guilty for not working, simultaneously feeling guilty for not working on the other areas of my life. This usually results in night after night of broken sleep, perpetual tiredness and an ominously oppressive feeling of overwhelm. But if I’m serious, I don’t really even think much about writing at this point. By now, I’m just trying to get from day to day.

And then, the Universe pulls out the big guns. I’m getting tea-bagged by the biggest cahounas there are – those belonging to the entire world. Knock back after knock back. Debt. Loneliness. Oppressive fear. Guilt. The guilt is the worst part. I believe that I am a champion of love, compassion and positive thinking. So when I can’t bring myself to love or think positively, I feel as though everything that I live for, everything I have worked towards, is a total lie. And then I rememeber that Christmas is just around the corner, sharply preceding New Years, and it’s all I can do not to book a one way ticket to Bali, crawl into a warong and live there forever, surviving on self pity and nasi goreng.

And then, today, I picked up a pen, found a piece of note paper with the corner ripped off, and started writing. And just like that, my hot air balloon service is back in business. I’m not even sure how it happened. I think maybe it was a higher power – the Universe, God, or something. All I know is, I was lying in bed crying my eyes out just because. And then suddenly, I wasn’t anymore. I wrote a letter to whatever it was that got me out of bed, got dressed, scrubbed out and reordered my office and made myself a proper meal. Which is far more than I’ve managed to accomplish for myself in the past couple of months.

If your passion is ebbing, your life imploding, your world evaporating – pick up your pen, put it to paper, and just write. I have no doubt that today, it may have saved me. And I know that things are going to be okay. Maybe not immediately, but for the first time in months, I have an actual plan. And it feels so, so good.

How’s your hot air balloon doing at the moment?

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