Mark and I have been together a looooong time. As in from the previous decade, before the last one, long! We’ve had a lot of dreams. To travel (ongoing). To have a beautiful family (tick). Buy a house (tick). Build a house (on the list). Live a sustainable life on a beautiful homestead (starting to happen right now!!!!).
The itch to have space, space and more space has become harder and harder to ignore as we’ve got older, and particularly after the weirdness of last year. I’m no small-town girl… I’ve tried it twice before and hated it. But all those times were in suburbia. Which is exactly the same suburbia in big cities (which I’m not a fan of either) – but without the benefits. I’m not sure I’m a natural country girl either (although I do love a pair of wellies). But I want to be. I really want to be. There’s something about the thought of that lifestyle that makes my feet itch and my soul crave. Maybe I am those things I thought I never was and I just haven’t had the opportunity to set them free. And even if I’m not, it’s the space I’ll love. And lucky for me, Mark is that guy – a small town, homesteader kinda guy. So, we’re going to do it and it will be bloody awesome.
We took the first step to make it happen by putting our first home, in a small rural town, on the market. And it feels great. I’m just so delighted that we’ve taken that first step to make the next one happen. And the universe is good like that, it will support us as it’s coming from a place of love, growth and a desire to be better. That positive energy will make magic happen.
Of course, this will come with a lot of change. That doesn’t really scare me all that much. I do love (some) change. I have to regularly remind myself that ‘wherever I go, there I am’ because I’m always dreaming up this or that type of change! If I can’t be exquisitely happy where I am, it’s likely that I won’t be anywhere else either. But if it’s coming from a place of love – then all will be well. It’s still scary though to take a chance. I believe there are no wrong decisions, and we could always make a another decision if this one doesn’t work out. But really, all I’m feeling is such excitement about what could be….
Although we’ve talked about this for years, we’ve recently had some amazing inspiration from a number of sources, one of which was ‘Biggest Little Farm’ on Neon. I actually watched it first on my own, and then forced the family to watch it again the next evening. It’s all the things that we’ve started appreciating and thinking about ourselves.
We’re not going down that path. It was a huge project. But It was still soooo inspiring to see what they did. And so, a number of You Tube clips have followed, all on biodiverse and permaculture farming. Mark is waaaayyyy into it. I know. Riveting watching. But it really is. Being able to grow your own food is pretty frecken awesome!
But first steps first. Sell house. Buy new house. Live the dream. Easy peasy, right? Totally. 🙂
Having babies is a lot of work. Not just making them, but living with them too. You know what’s harder than that? Trying to find a job AFTER having a baby during a global pandemic.
Now we’re talking next level struggle.
Seriously. It’s been hard. Especially when all I want to do is write some epic content and earn some effin money. Seems simple. So simple.
To be fair, it was simple on my first rodeo. Although we didn’t have a global pandemic then. Well, we did actually have a small one in East Africa (heard of Ebola?) but it hardly caused a blip globally.
First baby went like this. “It’s time – let’s have a baby!”. 9 months later – positive test. 9 months later – beautiful baby boy. 9 months later – first job post-maternity.
And the second one? Well, he took THREE years before he deigned us with a positive pregnancy test so the signs were already there that this was going to be an entirely different rodeo! And it has been…. including my 50+ job applications (I stopped counting after that) and 14 interviews. That’s correct. I’ve had some sort of post-pandemic interview/call/zoom with FOURTEEN people – and I’m still mostly unemployed.
I don’t even want a whole job. Just a half one. Or even a quarter. But that apparently makes it even tougher! At time of writing, seek had over 3,138 jobs for full-time marketing roles, and a whopping 479 for part-time roles. So, the odds are well and truly stacked against me.
It’s been more than a year since I first started putting feelers out for work, so I consider myself a bit of an expert now (I do love to be an #expert) and the things I’ve discovered are…
Don’t expect a reply….
Yes. I know. All that effort, none of the reward. For the average job application, I’ll have a good read of the job description, a good look at their website, LinkedIn and other available platforms, and then craft a really good cover letter… but all that effort does not mean that YOU’LL GET ANY SORT OF RESPONSE!
Shocking. Rude. And so absolutely inexcusable.
Is it REALLY that hard to reply to an application with a quick ‘Hey! It’s an employees market at the moment and we’re being hammered by some really strong candidates. You’re likely not going to be good enough, but thanks for making the effort anyhow, ’cause, well you just never know, right? Also, by the way, we’ll only be contacting successful applicants. Have a nice life if you don’t hear back from us’?
Seriously. You can automate this stuff, there’s some pretty good technology out there for those that missed the memo. Agree, not all places are shit at this. For some industries – like recruitment and large corporates – auto-reply is standard, but it’s not always good. (Please check out this lady on how to do it well!)
And then there’s those that nail it…. like this one from Garden to Table – simple, to the point, and leveraging any opportunity to get their brand out there with some social links. Ten out of ten. Spoiler alert: I didn’t get the job, or even an interview, but they did get back to me as promised.
Sadly though, a stellar application acknowledgment really stands out more than it should in this game. Some people totally get this and are trying to make a change.
But sometimes you’ll get a reply – even when you don’t expect it anymore
Ok. All potential employers – listen up! You know that saying ‘rather late than never’. Well, when it comes to letting someone know they didn’t get the job and it’s been more than 4 weeks since they applied – DON’T BOTHER, they’ve worked it out! I’m not sure why, but this really annoyed me. It seems token. And pointless. And a bit of a KPI. Please refer to above point for how it should be done.
When it comes to being rejected – I prefer email
I’ve got a feeling this might be a bit controversial but I would genuinely just prefer my ‘Dear Johns’ via email. I’ve had three calls like this – and they suck. Firstly, when you realise it’s someone you’ve interviewed with, you kind of get excited. A call is good news, right? Um. Wrong. You then have to listen to how it’s not personal, you’re a great candidate… just, well, not as good as the others basically. An email with some solid feedback is all I need, thanks. (Here’s a different perspective for those that like to play devil’s advocate)
‘Hire for attitude, you can always teach skills!’ (Insert a gazillion laughing emojis!)
Um, in an ideal world, this would be #truth. But over here in the real world – it’s a load of bollocks. This and the ‘transferable skills’ line. All bollocks. Experience wins the race. Maybe not all the time, but I’d say most of the time. Interestingly enough, for one of the jobs I applied for (and was knocked back not once but TWICE), the amazing recruitment agent, Sarah from Execucare, mentioned that people who would normally have got the job the year before weren’t even getting interviews. So…. maybe this does prevail at other times, but it was certainly not my experience this time.
Don’t re-advertise the job BEFORE you’ve actually rejected all the candidates
True story. One phone interview. One in-person interview including 2 Ubers, lippy, heels and a blow dry (they seemed fancy!), and they didn’t have the courtesy to let me know that I wasn’t what they were after before re-advertising. I was gutted because it was a company I really liked and had followed for a while. I still get a bad taste in my mouth when I see their posts pop-up. I likely wasn’t a good fit (refer fancy comment above) – but still, so not cool!
Contacts are king (Or queen. Or both. Or just #legends)
This. A thousand times this. Never a truer word was said. It’s the only way that I’ve got work so far. It’s people that know me and are confident in taking a risk on me. They know I’ve got an incredible work ethic, I’ll get the job done, and that I’ll bend over backwards to support however I can. Hallelujah for my contacts. You are all my rock stars in this disgruntling, ground-hog epic.
However you say it – it’s still no
Got some time? Have a read of the range of no’s that have popped into my email over the last year. I’m sure one day I’ll look back at this, and be like, lucky that happened… but mostly I really just wished that someone had seen the incredible potential I offered and taken a chance on me.
Of course I know that my no meant someone else’s yes (damn I love that sentence!), but it still sucked.
However, it is what it is, and there’s no point in crying about it. So instead I wrote about it. That’s what I do. Now, let’s play a game…. why don’t you sit down, grab some tequila (or some other enjoyable something that you can get away with), and have a shot on me for every time you read ‘unfortunately’.
Get ready, team – my loss is your gain – your day is about to get a whole lot more fun!
‘We have been fortunate to receive a huge number of great applications from highly experienced candidates. Unfortunately, in this instance, we will not be taking your application further.’
‘You were a top candidate, however after a very difficult decision I ended up moving forward with another candidate.’
‘We regret to advise that after careful consideration, your application has not been successful.’
‘…we won’t be taking your application further as there are other candidates at this stage who are a closer fit to the requirements of the role.’
‘We have received a large number of applications for this position and unfortunately you have not been selected to progress further.’
‘We have had a lot of interest in this opportunity and we have now reviewed your application and we regret to inform you that it has not been selected for further consideration.’
‘We did forward on your CV for consideration but, when comparing against the Job Brief & other candidates, unfortunately they did not wish to proceed any further.’
‘You wrote a great cover letter and obviously have really good skills, but unfortunately we need someone with experience and skills that fit with the nature of our work.’
‘We have had such an overwhelming run of applications for this position and unfortunately, you were not successful on this occasion as we could only pick one candidate.’
‘We received a large number of high caliber applicants for the role. In this instance, you were not successful in progressing to an interview.’
‘Thanks so much for taking the time to meet with me last week, I really enjoyed our interview. Unfortunately we have decided not to progress to the next steps. We have a few candidates who had some really specific experience that I think will make them more successful in this role.’
‘Based on the availability of other, more suitable candidates, I have chosen not to proceed with your application at this time.’
‘We want to thank you for the time and effort you took in applying for the role. Unfortunately, you have been unsuccessful with your application, whilst you have some great skills and expertise, they don’t quite line up to what we are looking for and we won’t be proceeding further with your application.’
‘As expected, we have received a number of applications and decided to move forward with other applicants whose skills and experience better meet our needs at this time.’
‘We appreciate the time and effort taken with your application including completing a video interview, however after careful review, we have decided not to proceed with your application at this stage.’
‘We’ve been fortunate to receive some strong submissions for the role and unfortunately can’t move forward with every application. In this instance, we have decided to progress with other applicants whose experience was a closer match.’
‘We have been overwhelmed with the response and caliber of applicants and regret to inform you that you have not been successful in your application.’
‘We have had a lot of interest in the role and after reviewing all applications I thought it only courteous to let you know you have not been shortlisted for an interview on this occasion.’
‘I really like you and there is potential, but there are better fit candidates to progress to the second interview.’
Unfortunately, I never got any of these jobs. (That one was free. You’re welcome!)
Firstly, thanks for an ah-mazing bunch of books!! Cross Stitch (now better known as Outlander) was on my radar for ever and I can still clearly recall my mate Kellie raving about them yearsss ago and swooning over this kilt wearing Jamie. But alas, I seemed to never get around to it.
But then we got Lightbox (thanks Spark for that, and now Netflix too!) and I watched Outlander and Oh. My. God – I rushed to my Kindle and purchased that 1st book pronto. It was actually really wonderful to already have an idea of what the characters looked like, and let’s be honest – how feckin hot is that Sam Heughan in this role?? Jamie and Claire have been part of my life for a wee while now (big books for sure) and even though I’ve just finished the sixth book (A Breath of Snow and Ashes), they are still just as wonderful and entertaining.
But I digress…
What I actually wanted to say thank you for was a little nugget of wisdom that you shared in a Q&A in the back of A Breath of Snow and Ashes. The question was…
Jamie has tremendous sex appeal and his relationship with Claire is both passionate and tender. Were you at all surprised by your fans’ reaction to these characters and their relationship?
Part of what you replied was just such an eye-opening realisation to me….
Right? Right? Like wow…. of course I read. Of course I know what I enjoy and find engaging… and from that I’ve rediscovered a renewed fervour around my writing. True, I’ve had plenty of rejections (yes, yes,yes – chiclit is a hard sell, we’ve heard it all before) but I still love to read it, and other people do too… so you know what, I’m going to write for them. And just publish these damned things myself.
So thanks, Diane – thanks for reminding me about my own power.
Ps Because I’m tremendously proud of some of these, here are a few comments I’ve received from a beta group for my first book – ‘Almost mine’ (currently being edited for the next steps of self-publishing):
‘This story has me on the edge of my seat waiting for more!’ – Shauna, Canada
‘Bonita! I loved everything you sent! Really! The characters are all very authentic, and I felt like everything worked…’ – Christina, USA
‘You’re killing me. This is a cliffhanger. Seriously the best book I’ve read in awhile.’ – Traci, USA
And my favourite (and much-wheeled out) line from a rejection letter:
‘Your passion for writing shines through, both in your query letter and your writing sample. Your prose is smart, snappy, and fun to read.’ – Danielle Chiotti
I see you & your beautiful posts. It all looks wonderful & gorgeous and just so not my life – which is what makes it all the more alluring.
And then today, after heading down a bit of a emilyhenderson rabbit hole, I took an unexpected & delightful walk down your memory lane. It started here and landed up here… but i wasn’t reading it for the reasons you would’ve expected. See, i’m obsessed with other people’s (love) lives and admittedly, it’s often because i think that they might be so much better than my own!! (working on this as per my 40th manifesto).
Of course, when you offered me the chance to read about your (no doubt perfect) ‘ups and downs here‘, i was naturally ALL OVER THAT!!!! And then, within the 1st paragraph of reading ‘He’s truly my soulmate, best friend, and generally my most favorite person in the world’, I really hunkered down for a good read on how my own marriage wouldn’t match up to the glamour, ease and all-around awesomeness of yours (hmmm – really need to take that manifesto thing a little more seriously!).
But alas, it was everything but…. it absolutely had the ups AND downs, some genuinely heartbreaking moments, some wonderful ‘eureka’ moments, but mostly it was authentic, honest & real… and i loved how it reminded me (again) that we’re all just people at the end of the day having our own experiences & feeling the same things (both good & bad), just in different packages – and that no one actually knows anyone else’s story simply by their cover (that lesson is ringing bells from somewhere!!!!) – unless they open their story up to let you read their pages.
So thanks, lady, thanks for sharing YOUR love story – and reminding me ONCE AGAIN that life’s simply not perfect for anyone – regardless of how it may seem from the outside… or how beautiful their Instagram page is. (I’ll let you have that win – you really are one styley lady!!)
Here’s to another 10 wonderful years to you both. xx
PS i’ve taken my pledge & do hope to do my bit towards more babies.
You know what’s fun about TTC? Nothing. Not a goddamn thing. Not the sex. Not the two weeks of waiting that’s inevitably filled with all sorts of hope filled nudges – even though you know – YOU KNOW – that it’s all bullshit and the only thing that’s real is whatever means positive on the end of a plastic stick that you’ve pissed on. Not the monthly crashing disappointment that follows said 2 weeks thanks to the big fat middle finger in your pants. And certainly not the redness that punches you in the face again and again and again for whatever reason requires the removal of your knickers. Whether it’s your 1st month of trying (and failing. miserably) or your 10th – it all sucks. Every. Single. Bit.
But you do it again. And again. And again. With no guarantee that you’ll ever see that smiley face, little cross or whatever. Because TTC sucks. Until it doesn’t. Or you move on. And that’s what I keep reminding myself every time I feel like shit & guilty that I’m not satisfied with the glorious gift I’ve already been blessed with once.
I’ve never met you but I just wanted to say thank you for reminding me that life will ALWAYS have it’s own ideas of how things should roll.
You think you’ve got is sussed in your head, on your vision board, Pinterest or whatever, your star sign has indicated awesome changes, and you’re feeling pretty sure with what’s what.
Then life knocks on the door (or in this instance calls you) and gives you something ENTIRELY different to what you expected. So maybe we will land up staying in Waiuku (we’ve just bought the godamn house for God’s sake), but then maybe we won’t… either way, your call was a damned good reminder that we just need to focus on the essence of things – ’cause working out the details of the ‘how’ is defo one of life’s favourite things and she can get pissy when you mess with her plans.
So thanks – message received.
PS I absolutely adore Collete Baron-Reid & she often blogs about this – here’s an example – so do pop over and see her… I’m sure you’ll love her as much as I do!!
Yowser! Good effort on the blog front last year – a whole ONE! Nice work. Ah, well, I s’posse it was better than none. Anyhoo… I digress.
Soooo… big day today – THE LAST DAY OF YOUR THIRTIES!!!! Wow. WOW! If it makes you feel any better – you are theoretically ALREADY into your 40th year, so you should have cried yourself a river last year – as that was in fact your LAST year of your thirties. No? Not helping. Ok, well, I tried.
Sooooo… here we are. Almost 40. Like officially. Interestingly enough, 2017 is a UNIVERSAL ‘1’ Year that represents the start of a fresh new cycle – that means new creativity, learning and growth. Nice. I do quite like those little synergies and synchronicities. But before one can move forward, one must reflect… and that’s why I’m writing to you, my dear sweet self, to have a look at what we’ve done, where we’ve been and what we’ve achieved so that we can look towards 2017 with hope, optimism and a whole bunch of chutzpah.
1997 – Bless, 20 years old and a world ahead of me. If memory serves me correctly, I was just finishing my travel & tourism diploma (what was I thinking with that – what a waste of time! If only I knew about being a psychiatrist or psychologist, journalist, producer, marketer, lawyer – ANYTHING but what I actually studied!!!!!). That was also my last year in Pretoria before heading to Oudtshoorn for love.
1998 – Ah, my 21st! Chubby as hell and not that happy in Oudtshoorn as it turns out. I really wasn’t a small town gal after all and love wasn’t enough. But hey, I was no longer working with ostriches (that MUST be a win) and stuck in the smallest travel agency EVER (seriously, we didn’t even ticket ourselves!). I did however have the cutest blue convertible volksie (thanks, Manne, for that and a whole bunch of other things too) and even though she broke down all the time, dayum, she was cute!
1999 – Another BIG YEAR. My OE beckoned, as did a one night stand that turned into my life partner. Now this year, THIS YEAR was one of my happiest ever. I LOVED Wales (shout out to Gaysie-babes and Dave xx) and I loved London. The Rose of York stole a small part of my hear and the people I met there still live in that tiny corner – Mark, Adam, Julie, Bridget, Wally (oh, how I adored you!!!!), Brenty, Tomek, Steve, Peter (who can forget that old curmudgeon!). The stories, the memories – they can go on and on and on forever. My waist line was tiny and the travelling constant… it wasn’t perfect but I LOVED IT ALL!!!!
2000 – Here it is. The year 2000… and I welcomed it in with the best New Year’s party at Hogmanay EVER!! Sonet was so much part of this year being what it was. I love you and always will my sweet dear pal. Riverboating and Wales with ma and pa. Ireland. Losing Peta. Turkey. Thin and oblivious. Develyn – constant, always there xx. Chellbell.
2001 – Time to go home. Or to New Zealand. But first Africa. What a trip, what a time. 9/11. Auckland.
2002 – Flightie (which I sucked at). First time skiing (also sucked at). First time to Aussie (hello there, beautiful Sunshine Coast…first trip I ever won!). First time to Fiji. A LOT of shopping with Michelle. As in All. The. Time. A strange encounter with a frenemy in the bank that turned into my soul mate (Michelle & Busy get this). My sheep gown – still with me, still loved more than other item of clothing (actually, what does that say about me??)
2003 – Cook Islands – I love you. First ever verbal warning – thanks Christina Boles 😉 (like I said, totally sucked at being a travel agent). Met mom and dad in Sydney. Back to New Zealand with me – 6 wonderful weeks in NZ. Bliss.
2004 – Hong Kong. Bledisloe in Wellington. Make-up course. Call centre job at DHL (the worst – being told when i can pee was defo not for me!!). New start with Mark. Lots of lessons. Lots of change. Yoga.
2005 – Can at last add ‘Event Manager’ to my job title. ‘The Notebook’ instantly added to my Top 10 movies list. Port Douglas. Bali. Cairns. Third nephew arrives into the world. I GOT ENGAGED in Africa. That was cool.
2006 – Ah-maze Engagement Party! United Travel (and later Stella) blessed me with some of the most amazing women to work with – Wendy, Tracy, Cristy, D-dogg, Louise, PG, Nicci, Natalie, Kim, Caryn, Donna, Sally, Vicki, Gordon & James (they totally count in this category!)
2007 – Turned 30. Melbourne with Karla. Best Levi’s I’ve ever owned. Vanuata – three times! THE BACH!! 19 October – 1st panic attack and the start of a very long road back to emotional health! New Years in Fiji with tribe. Bula!
‘Always remember life is short; break the rules, forgive quickly, kiss slowly, love truly, laugh uncontrollably, and never regret anything that made you smile’ – note in my 2007 diary.
2008 – So much around well being – naturopaths, psychiatrists, hypnotherapists, breathing specialists… as I clawed my way out of my anxiety. Heath Ledger – why, why, why. Wedding madness – Paola, Sonet and Amy will never know how much it meant to have them here. All of my family in NZ – mom, dad, Candi, Gary, Basi, Lexi and Thaddy, Gaynor & Dave, Paulie. 19 April – best day ever. SIX WEEK HONEYMOON!! Business class on Air New Zealand. Vegas. New York. Paris. Rome. Cinque Terra. Sorrento. Dinner in Athens with Karla, Chris, Chell & Adam. IN ATHENS! Still crazy when i think that we were all in Europe AT THE SAME TIME. Greek Islands. Thailand. Mel Hawkins. NZFW for the 1st time – I felt sooo damned cool! Barack Obama. Book club (a total fail – realised I just like to read what I want to read). Sunday, 7 December – started my 1st book!!!!!!
2009 – Hawaii. South Africa with Mel. Kings of Leon…ah-maze! Writing, writing and more writing – “Almost mine” blossoms. Could this be my thing? Journalism course. Travel stories published in LUXURY.
2010 – Book rejected more times that I like to admit. But, although it was rejected a million times, there’s always my email from Danielle Chiotti. Gen-i, and a whole new chapter of wins and failures and never quite feeling good enough.
2011 – Work, work & more work. Work, work & more work. Pages and pages of an empty diary. 5,000 words on my 2nd book lost with a bad save – don’t write again for a YEAR! RWC 2011. Mostly a blur. SO happy to see the end of it.
2012 – More work. More empty pages in my diary. Another whole group of amazing ladies in my life. Kim and Hanna. Selena. Tania’s ‘Chicks at the Flicks.’ Citizenship. Mark graduates. A lot of sex. A lot of tears following a period. Eventually a positive pregnancy test!!! Leo on his way.
2013 – Pregnant. Bridesmaid. A baby. My proudest accomplishment in life pulls the carpet from under my feet and life as I know it changes forever. I miss my mom more than anything.
2014 – Diary completely empty bar one lone entry in January. Leo, Leo and more Leo. Photo after photo after photo of this wee little gift of ours. Mom and dad here for a much too short visit. Back to work – thanks Wendy, nice to have something for just me again.
2015 – No diary at all this year!! Still all about my small person and trying to be the best mother that I can be. Sometimes I was, sometimes I wasn’t. Lots of laughter. Lots of tears. Wrote 2 children’s books. #amomslife
2016 – No diary again. More of the same. Except we bought a house.
And here we are in 2017… turning 40, waaayyyy too chubby (think it’s officially called fat now as there’s 10kgs on top of the 10kgs i’ve been meaning to lose since early 2000’s!!), still NOT published and trying to get knocked up again to repeat the empty diary entries of 2013-15. At 40!!!! Holy shit. Madness. Well, lucky for me this is my ride and I get to decide how I’ll buckle up. So, let’s do this. Let’s kick the shit out of the next 20 years and make it EPIC. This bitch is ready for it.
Things I learnt along the way:
I compare myself to others way too much. I am good enough as I am (fake it till you make it, baby!)
Diaries are awesome – I’ll never let them drop off the radar again
I actually like having my birthday in January – starting off the new year with a clean slate feels good.
I can write like a mofo.
I’ve done stuff that I’m proud of and I’ll do some more – I just need to believe in myself and the magic will happen on its own
I love to travel. I miss it. I need to do more of it with my new wee family.
I love movies. I love them whether i watch them in the cinema (this includes the whole process of crazy sized drink, much too large popcorn, and since I’ve arrived in NZ, the good old choc-top that then gets dunked into said ridiculously sized popcorn….H-E-A-V-E-N!!!), or even just on the couch. It’s glorious either way and i just adore being part of someone else’s crazy life. It’s for much the same reasons that i love reading. (I’ve covered this off on more than one occasion as my droves of regular readers would know ;))
A few years ago, i started going to the cinema alone. Yup, as in with no one else. I know – the horror of it for some!! But honestly, you’re in a darkened place – so no one will even notice, and you’re not s’possed to be talking. It kinda makes the movies the ideal place to go to on your own.
And i just love it. When i need to take five, i head to the movies. Last weekend was one such occasion and YAY, ‘How to be single’ was showing. I wanted to see this after catching the trailer at ‘Sisters’ (average at best, sorry Tina & Amy) and it sooo didn’t disappoint. I adore anything New York and hello, Rebel Wilson AND Dakota Johnson! #sowinning. Do go and see it if you want something light hearted and funny, especially with a girlfriend or 12. Will be perfect on DVD too if you miss it on the big screen.
And on the note of movies, DID YOU SEE THE BELOW TRAILER????? There were tears. And snot. The book by Jojo Moyes, which I’ve only just re-read again without even knowing they’d made it into a movie, is one of my all time favourites. I’m sure i’ve crapped on about this before too, but as a writer i totally respect other writers that don’t go with the traditional ‘happy’ ending (‘One Day’, I see you). It’s a big call. I’m not sure I could do it. I usually make an effort to NOT read books that are too ‘real life’ (since it kinda hands it’s own downers out quite freely) or have shitty endings, but this book. THIS BOOK. Lordy, I loved it. Please read it. ASAP. And let me know what you thought. And then see the movie. And let me know what you thought. (Of course I’ll let you know what I think!!)
(As an aside, Ed Sheeran’s ‘Photograph’ makes me sob without even being part of this movie).
After reading ‘Me before you’, I followed up with the sequel, ‘After you’. I was a bit reluctant to read it as it was kinda panned by a lot of readers but I really actually enjoyed it…even the bits that people were bitching about. (And it just reminded me again that only I can judge if i enjoy something or not.. and the only way to know, is to see/read/try it myself.) (‘Luminaries’, this time I’m looking at you. Soz. Didn’t even get to the 2nd chapter. And I’ve read ‘Captain Corelli’s Mandolin’. Twice.) But I digress… still on my Jojo buzz, I’ve just finished ‘The girl you left behind’. Again, really good, and I had real flashes of jealousy ’cause she’s pretty good at this writing stuff, old Jojo Moyes is 😉 I can’t wait to read some more of her books.
On the non-fiction front, i have to mention here that i read Sarah-Kate Lynch’s ‘Screw you Dolores!’ over the Xmas hols. What a hoot. Seriously, laugh out loud stuff. The meaning of the title is priceless and i’ve repeated the story to so many people already. But dear God, do not borrow the book from someone (library ok), or worse, tell her that you did, even if you’re gushing about the content at the time, ’cause she will cut you. But she knows how to make an amusing yarn.
And then i also got through Gala Darling’s ‘Radical Self Love’. Although it took me 2 attempts to get into it, she’s got a lovely writing style and does offer some great advice. With self-esteem being such a major issue with a lot of us, i really love what Gala is trying to do – especially with a slightly younger audience. Loving ourselves (and the self-esteem that comes with it) seems to be a mega issue regardless of age, and to have someone out there saying to you, ‘Yes, go ahead, love yourself – you’re worth it’ (and they’re not selling make-up) can only be a good thing, right? Even this jaded 39 year old took pause on some of her suggestions.
Anyhoo… those are my rumblings for this week on what’s been amusing me. Oh, and Suits. But that needs a whole blog of it’s own!!!
Ooooohhhh, look at me being all fancy with my wordpress blog! I can now totes tick that off the ‘must-do’ list that has only been languishing there for, well, 5 years at least… possibly more!! Slow and steady wins the race, team!!
Feeling like it might well be third time lucky too after my other attempts over here and here. I loved being on blogger (damn the person that scored my url before i could!), but as i want to get serious about this blogging lark, word on the street is that you need to be over this way to be in with the cool kids. And since I’m still trying to get in with them, here i am! 😉
So, on this here inaugural blog… what’s touched me so much that i need to share it with my massive list of followers (so that’s basically my mom and Debs!!)?
Oh. My. God. This. Firstly, the actual music video totally cuts me up to start with so if you throw in a real life story of a beautiful boy whose life was cut way too short way too early…Oh. My. God. The tears. Do not watch is you don’t want to sob. My heart goes out to every single person that contributed to this video. What a beautiful memorial. I do hope that Ed sees it… our Ed is very good at delivering so let’s see what he does tonight at his concert at Mt Smart.
It also makes me tremendously sad though that Andrew will never get to see it. It’s such a shame that the very person at the centre of such an outpouring of grief and love and well, just everything… will never watch it. Of course, he may well – i’m no expert on what happens on the other side… but still, it’s a little sad i reckon.
Oh, i know that we all hope that our loved ones know how very, very dear they are to us. That they’re loved. That they’ll be missed if they weren’t here. But we only seem to really grand stand it, shout it, scream it, and go to these very beautiful lengths when someone has died for reals. If only we could all be at our funerals before we actually need them, hear what others really think of us, be able to bask in the amazingness of being us and celebrate who we are with all those that 100% wouldn’t change a thing.
So, let’s start a movement. Let’s treat every single birthday like a funeral. Stand up there and tell everyone in your life – so that includes anyone whose funeral you’d go to in the unfortunate even that you had to – exactly what you think of them and how they’ve touched your life. Every. Single. Detail. Make that video. Send that emotional card with way too many superfluous, descriptive and OTT words. Or just say what’s in your heart straight to their face. Yes, it may be uncomfortable for some, make you itch, wonder if it’s actually necessary. But it will be. It will because when that very sad day comes along when you have to do it for real, you’ll know 100% that your loved one already knew what you were going to say.