Thursday, March 31, 2011

Happy tunes for a sunny Thursday

A little music to get you through your morning.

The first Clip is Tim and Jean 'I can show you'. These guys were unearthed by Triple J and their debut album comes out tomorrow! Very similar to Passion Pit and guaranteed to put you in a happy mood :-)

The second one is Architecture in HelsinkiThey've been around a while but this is the first single from their upcoming album and I can't stop listening to it! Incidentally they also played this on Adam Hills In Gordon Street last night.

ENJOY!


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A-dressing a dilemma

With April almost here it means that May isn’t far behind it. Frick.

Normally, I’d be excited for the drop in temperature to a ‘chilly’ 15°C and the opportunity to start sporting scarves and tights on a regular basis (without being regarded as a loony), but unfortunately not this year.

This year, things are different because May brings a most nerve-racking, dreaded event with it…my ten year high school reunion.

I know. I can’t believe how bloody old I am either.

But aren’t you amazed at how good I look for my age? How youthful and fresh I am? No? Anyone? Helloooooooooo.

Oh well, time to move on. 

I can honestly say that I am looking forward to spending an evening drinking champagne, eating canap├ęs and gossiping with some of my best girlfriends (maybe we’ll even dance to Time after Time Romy and Michelle style). However, this hasn’t stopped the monster of insecurity  from rearing its head and posing a very serious question to me:

“What the hell are you going to wear?”

Damn monster knows I have no idea! Even thinking about it feels stressful because I’ve decided that dressing for a high school reunion will kind of be like dressing for a first date. You want to look slammin’ hot but completely effortless.

I also need to convey a sense of ‘I’ve got it together, am a very successful person with a highly overpaid job, lots of friends and a Fortune 500 CEO boyfriend who models in his spare time’.

On a side note when I wrote that sentence I had to stop a minute because I realised that I actually do have at least a little bit of that ‘got it togetherness’ going on. I have wonderful friends, an amazing boyfriend and a job that I enjoy but still HOW DO I CONVEY ALL OF THIS IN AN OUTFIT???!?!?!!!?

A quick look on Asos (who I see are now doing FREE standard shipping to Oz 100% of the time - YAY!) and I found these. My favourite of the two is the green one in the middle - the ASOS Premium Pleat Shoulder Dress With Full Skirt for 50 pounds.
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Which do you prefer?
Thoughts? I think it's quite simple but still really cute and with the right accessories it could be a home run style wise. I can almost see myself sauntering into the room, heads turning, people acknowledging...then walking into a bar stool and falling down some stairs. Unfortunately,clumsy is my game not graceful. 

On H&M I found this perfect piece of sunshine (the yellow dress) which I've worked into Polyvore to try and show you how I'd style it - black tights, glam jewelery. Simple and relaxed but still a little different.

Adorable no? I am DYING to own it and everything in that picture. Although I already have the ring thanks to The Boy and some new black brogues exactly like that pair...let’s just forget about that shopping ban ok?

So tell me am I on the right track for my reunion outfit? Do you think I could work a yellow ruffle with black tights and brogues or would I be committing fashion suicide?


I want your thoughts so lay em out people!


xx

Monday, March 28, 2011

The Island Life

I honestly feel that Greece was the home of the gods for a reason so as promised here is my experience of The Greek Islands in all their glory (watch out it's a biggie!).
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Oia, Santorini. You know you want to go but how?
Let’s start with getting there: Ferries are your friend. Buy your tickets a day or two in advance and you can’t go wrong.  As a guide, the trip from Athens to Santorini takes around 7 hours on a regular ferry (you can choose to go on a high speed ferry but faster = pricier). We paid €33.50 to get from Athens to Santorini and €15 between Santorini and Ios. Be cool and remember to take your iPod/Sudoku puzzle book/lollies out of your luggage when you get on. Otherwise it will be a long, long journey.

Where I stayed: On Santorini my friend and I stayed at Stavros Villas. The owners were kind and hospitable, the room was perfect but the pool was disappointingly small!  

Whilst in Ios we made Ios Resort our home. My friend and I shared a clean, modern room with a private bathroom, air conditioning, mini fridge and a balcony overlooking the pool, for just €22 a night each. The owners were wonderful and they sold the island’s best daiquiris, sandwiches and Greek salads at the poolside bar.

If you’re backpacking on Mykonos look no further than Paradise Beach Backpackers. I stayed in a beach hut 2 minutes from the beach and bars but it was more expensive than our accommodation on the other islands and not nearly as nice.

Santorini
My first afternoon on Santorini was spent in Fira drinking wine, eating salted pistachios and watching the sunset over Nea Kameni -the islet volcano. This is one of my favourite memories. Ever. I felt really peaceful and so lucky to be there taking in something so beautiful.
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My first afternoon in Fira

I’d highly recommend doing a day tour of the Island. Ours started with a boat ride to Santorini’s Nea Kameni Volcano to climb to the top. As you can imagine, the Greek sun is unforgiving and the rock radiates the heat making this a pretty tough climb, but rest assured the view from the top will blow your mind (pardon the pun)! After descending the volcano we swam at some so-called ‘hot’ springs before sailing to beautiful Thirassia. Quiet and laidback, this Island was the perfect spot for a long lunch of swordfish souvlaki and moussaka in the sun. mmmmmmm.
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Thirassia
I am a big believer that when you’re on holidays you get an exercise-free pass. Embrace it. I’m serious, who wants to climb 250+ stairs after eating a giant piece of moussaka when they’re on holidays? Not me! Splash out a few Euros and take a joyride on one of the very excitable donkeys from the port up to Oia, Santorini’s most picturesque and popular town.
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Oia is the home of blue-domed, white washed buildings, tiny overpriced shops and cafes and according to many: the world’s best sunsets. The best view is from the ancient castle, so go early to get a spot. We waited and watched and as the sun dipped lower in the sky, purple, pink. orange and gold spread over the Aegean like a blanket. Everyone applauded the spectacular show.
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Not bad eh?
What else is there to do on Santorini? Hit the beach of course and spend the day at Kamari Beach. We feasted on fresh fruit and yoghurt and listened to chilled out tunes. It was bliss. My only gripe is the exorbitant cost of English magazines. Cosmo is not worth the equivalent of AU$15 in any country.
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Lounging at Kamari beach
Ios
The epic poet Homer is buried on Ios, along with the dignity of many a drunken tourist…Ios is about fun in the sun, late nights, dirty dance floors and hot hook ups. Spend your days lazing by the pool or tanning at Mylopotas beach. Evenings should be spent watching the sunset and drinking cocktails at Harmony, before heading into Chora (the town centre) to dance until daylight and scope out the talent.
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Exploring Ios during the day
Ios has many beautiful churches and the narrow streets are great fun to explore so make sure you see more of the island than sand and dancefloors. We got lost in the maze of white buildings on our mission to find the Panagia Gremiotissa church overlooking the town centre but it was well worth it for the view.

What was the best island discovery? White chocolate covered Oreos. Oh. My. Goodness. Why in god’s name don’t we have these in Australia? Tell me WHY!?!!?
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Church on Ios

Mykonos
I didn’t love Mykonos – it’s much pricier than both Ios and Santorini. Whilst it is pretty with its postcard perfect buildings and winding streets (designed to confuse pirates) I felt that it was overly touristy and a little seedy. To make the most of Mykonos you should do the following:

  1. Watch the sunset from/over the Chora Windmills
  2. Eat in Little Venice
  3. Search for Petros the Pelican and his friends
  4. Head to one of the many beaches to tan and check out the locals
  5. Befriend/enjoy a flirtation with a good-looking bartender from Serbia who executes cheesy courting techniques like writing you a note on a serviette and getting his coworker to drop it at your table (when you’re eating at the restaurant next door to his bar), making you a rose out of a serviette, serving you overly alcoholic post-dinner cocktails then taking you on a personal tour of the island the next day…
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Mykonos Windmills


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Nightlife:  To say Ios and Mykonos are well-known for their nightlife is an understatement. You may have already guessed but my pick of the two is Ios which is full of bars pumping out Daft Punk, Kid Cudi and Rihanna till the early hours. Take your pick from Slammer Bar, Karma Beach Bar, Orange Bar, Disco 69, Redbull Bar and The Dubliner to name a few or visit them all! Drink specials are plentiful and the clubs kick off about midnight/1am. 

Paradise beach on Mykonos is home to a Ministry of Sound club and if you’re gay, Italian or both, you may prefer the party scene here. Things get going at 4pm thanks to a man (naked except for a g-string with an elephant on the front) dancing on a nearby bar encouraging everyone to drink and ‘get crazy’.
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Food: It’s all yummy! On Ios I would recommend Lord Byron’s for dinner and warn you that you’ll most likely end up at Porky’s for a late night/early morning feed. There are loads of great restaurants and supermarkets as well so you certainly won’t starve.

Drink: Jaeger-bombs, vodka, Mythos, tequila, you can find it all in the islands. The daiquiris Mike makes at Ios Resort are second to none!

Getting around: Whilst on the islands you can walk, bike or ride. On Ios and Mykonos we walked or caught the local buses as they were cheap, fairly frequent and reliable. Santorini is a little bigger so we made the decision to hire a quad bike. After a few hilarious lessons in the car park my inner biker emerged and we were off with the wind in our hair…and a few hours later a bloody sore thumb!  

One night on Santorini I also went ‘off-roading’ on a scooter. Clinging to the torso of a handsome American boy we drove along a deserted beach before stopping to run into the ocean and lie under the stars…aaaah such a perfect date! Not recommended by bike salesmen, highly recommended by me.
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Walking is best!
A little advice: On Ios do not go to Harmony and drink 2 cocktail jugs between you and three girlfriends and then follow this with strawberry daiquiris and slammer bar shots. You will end up at orange bar trying to get your ‘free souvenir t-shirt’ by ordering 7 shots and only after ‘winning’ your ‘free t-shirt’ will you realise that you actually need to order another 7 shots so your friend has a t-shirt too.

If you do this you will end the evening sharing a porky’s kebab with your friend (sharing because you don’t want to get too fat) only you will both be so hungry/drunk that you actually ‘share’ two kebabs and the Greek man behind the counter will laugh at you before selling you 1.5 litres of heavenly water. You will wake up to roughly 100+ photos of you and your friend (in your free Orange Bar t-shirts) dancing on a piece of furniture/pashing random English boys/falling down stairs/generally behaving badly. But you know this is just a warning. I’m not speaking from experience or anything…
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Take this as a warning
Don’t forget to take: Sunscreen, swimmers, towel, sunglasses and maybe a hat. Aspirin and perhaps some birth control is a smart move to.
Where I shopped: The local stores are great fun to browse. I bought a dress and a gold ring I rarely take off.
What to read: Trashy magazines galore!
What I wear: Swimmers, shorts, singlets, and lots of summery dresses.
What I listened to: Metric ‘Fantasies’, Peter, Bjorn and John, Ash Grunwald, Daft punk, Rihanna, Katy Perry…

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Yo are you ready for this?

If you’ve been reading this blog you’ll know that I post about a whole range of things from nail polish to music to travel and fashion. But can I write a post combining all of these? It's worth a shot right?

Today I received a gift all the way from the boy in England (Travel: TICK!). It was a leopard print bangle and a black rose ring and I’ve been told that the Zara skirt I mentioned in this obsessive rambling is on it’s way to me as a belated B’day gift (Fashion: TICK)! I know. He’s the best isn’t he?

Anyway, this little surprise made me gleefully happy and I have been wearing both items around the house all day. I ‘accessorised my accessorises’ with my pajamas - Peter Alexander thank you very much - and digits covered in OPI’s ‘Do you Lilac it’ (Nail Polish: TICK).  See?

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I love my surprise gifts so much and not least because they match my nails perfectly. Although considering that this nail polish is the perfect shade of purple and goes with pretty much everything that’s not really that impressive...if you haven’t already got it go and buy it NOW!

Aside from showering me with gifts The Boy also occasionally sends me music videos as part a long-running game of ours where we try to ‘out music’ each other (Music: TICK). Remember I posted about a band called Egyptian Hip Hop? That was a suggestion from The Boy. He sent me one last night but my computer doesn’t not want to play it. I think that lately it has become a little bit too accustomed to ‘teenage dreams’ and getting ‘slizzered’ so I can’t really blame it for not trusting me to play better quality music on it. My bad.

And BOOM there's a post! I ain’t no one trick pony people. I hope you enjoyed a little Daily lovin’ Fresh Prince style.


xx

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Golden times & good friends

In the spirit of keeping my mind from wandering to a sad place, I have spent the morning drinking tea and reading and am now feverishly punching at the keyboard to write this post.

As you know, this past Sunday I had some unfortunate news but prior to this my weekend was actually rather fabulous. So here's a quick recap of some time spent with my wonderful girls L and M.
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Me, M and L :)
On Friday night, L (who has just returned home after living overseas for 4 years!) met me at work and we made the traffic filled trip down to the Gold Coast. I dropped her off with an old friends and continued my drive to pick up M from Coolangatta Airport. After eventually negotiating our way into our unit at Broadbeach we headed out for a lovely Italian dinner which we followed with a bottle of wine on our ocean view balcony eventually stumbling into bed in the early hours..
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Biggest French Toast I've ever seen!

Saturday started with brunch at Broadbeach and then shopping pretty much all day at Pacific Fair. I can honestly say i was completely surprised with the shopping at the Coast. There were so many bargains!! Me bought 2 dresses, a necklace and i think some other stuff but I can't be sure...I may or may not have broken my shopping ban to buy a jacket from Chicabooti.

I know. Terrible aren't I. Although in my defense it will actually save me from buying a much more expensive jacket in the coming months which I was planning on doing anyway so really I am actively saving money by purchasing it right?...Right?

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This is not the jacket I bought. More to be used as evidence that I look awful/9 months pregnant in overly fluffy leopard print jackets and should therefore not buy one!
Anyway. After shopping we napped until L came over and we got LOOSE. Lots of vodka was consumed and way too much information was shared. Gotta love awesome girlfriends.
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Drunk already
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This is one of a series of '10 shots in 30 seconds' we decided to take. They are all hilarious and prove just how drunk we were. I've put it up mainly so you can see my Motel dress and the one M bought (FOR $40 DOLLARS) on my advice a few hours earlier.
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Taken towards the end of the night...
Then we hit Onyx and East and danced our butts off. My neck and shoulders are still sore from tossing my hair around like the dance whore that I am. Overall, it was a super fun-filled couple of nights and on waking to the news that I needed to gohome and say goodbye to my grandma both L and M were amazingly supportive. I honestly love these girls and feel so lucky to have friends like them :-)

Monday, March 21, 2011

Some sad news

This past weekend has been filled with great highs and a great, very deep but not entirely unexpected low.

I spent Friday and Saturday night at the Gold Coast with two of my fabulous girlfriends and we had a blast – but I will cover that in a separate post as there is something much closer to my heart that I want to write about at present. Although it is very personal I wanted to share it on my blog because I find that when I’m feeling upset about something, writing often helps me to process things and to feel better.

So I want to dedicate this post to my wonderful grandmother Olive Grace Kasmar who at the age of 89 passed away on Sunday afternoon.
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She was one of the strongest women I’ve ever met and stubborn beyond belief (a fairly common trait amongst my family members). She had sparkly blue eyes and a cheeky sense of humour often joking to my grandad that he better behave or one day she would leave him and find another fella. Of course she never did. They were together for 63 years and married for 59 of those. It would have been their 60th wedding anniversary this December and I feel lucky to have seen such a love as theirs.

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My grandad called her ‘His sweetie’ and they would still kiss and hold hands whenever they went out together. They’d laugh at each others jokes and smoke cigarettes and drink copious amounts of tea…

I have so many happy memories of them both and while I sat with my grandad today, and we cried together I knew that although she is gone she will always be with us.

Real love really does know no boundaries and I know that she is ok and she will always be loved by my Grandad and family and maybe one day we will all be together again eating fish and chips at the beach.                                                                                
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My grandparents on their wedding day
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One of my favourite childhood photos of my elder sister and I
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My Grandma nursing me as a baby

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My wonderful wonderful Grandad and Grandma
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With mum and Grandma, Christmas 2008

Thursday, March 17, 2011

A batch of Velvets

Today when I got home from work I did a few things (not necessarily in this order):

1. Blogged
2. Packed for my Girl's weekend away
3. Spoke to The 'wonderful' Boy
4. Watched Heston's Fishy Feast (can I marry him please?)
5. Baked a batch of red velvets for my grandparents who are in Hospital and the wonderful staff looking after them. It was a quick and imperfect batch but I think they'll do the job.

I took photographs on number 4 only so here they are. Beware though, you may experience a sudden sugar craving.
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I'm a glamourous globetrotting hippie...in my dreams

Last night I had a dream that The Boy and I went to Morocco. This isn’t really surprising because we had been talking about how cool it would be to go there about half an hour before I went to bed but regardless back to the dream. 

We were sitting in a tea room drinking mint tea and eating a beautiful lemon tagine after wandering the streets all morning. When I woke up I swear I could almost taste the spices on my lips.

As I’ve never been to Africa I’ve no doubt that my dream contained a completely glamorised adventure where I swan around looking like Talitha Getty ( I love her) bargaining with local street vendors and basking (not burning) in the African sun. Maxi dress, flowing hair and adorned with gold jewellery...hmm is it weird that my dream was a lot about what i was wearing and how glam i looked despite still being an 'adventurer'?  Do you ever dream about exotic destinations and fashion together? If so - where and what? Are you at the Rio Carnivale dressed in a sequinned bikini? On an african safari wearing a chic safari suit? Anyone? Anyone? No. Ok maybe it is just me...Oh well, I'm still going to post some lovely pictures of Morocco and Moroccan inspirations for you to enjoy. 

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Talith Getty and John Paul Getty in Vogue. Photograph by Patrick Lichfield
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Image courtesy of Google
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Would you believe I found this on Google too?
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Ralph Ledergerber via Zuniga Interiors
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Kim Myles via Zuniga Interiors
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Vogue, 2008
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Paris Vogue, April 2010

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Image courtesy of suemelissa.blogspot.com