Friday, August 17, 2018

A sad time

My family had devastating news this week.  Our dad who was on holiday in the US, died of a heart attack and could not be saved.  He was 73, fit, and healthy.  I can only take comfort that he was in his favourite country in the world, racing his motorcycle at the Bonneville Salt Flats annual speed week, and basking in the blazing heat that he loves.

He has left behind such a legacy for me, his family and all his friends.  He was my role model to live a different life if you want to.  You don’t have to be like everyone else.  He lived the way he wanted to and did unusual things for a retiree such as set a speed record on the salt flats last year and then better it this year.  His latest record of 116mph on a vintage re-built Triumph motorcycle is pretty fast!  I understand kph better, and 187kph is mind-bogglingly speedy to me.

My dad didn’t want to get old and not be able to be as active as he was.  Even though I would have loved him to spend more time here, he finished up ‘his style’.  If you could write the ending it couldn’t be more perfect for him really.

He was cremated in the US, and I’d say he’d be pretty chuffed to have an American death certificate because, even though he was born here in New Zealand and is definitely a Kiwi, America was his spirit home.  When he first travelled to California in the early 1980s for his business he fell in love with the laid-back and optimistic American lifestyle.  For quite a while now he has been travelling to the hot, dry, desert parts of the US for a few months every year, when it’s cold here and summer there.

I was editing my latest book when I got the call from my sister, and I will continue in his honour.  He was so proud of me for going after my writing dreams and publishing the books I loved to write.  I get my rebel entrepreneur streak from him :)

So, tell your loved ones how much they mean to you, and even better, do it in a handwritten note.  I treasure the few written items from my dad.

Hugs to you and I’ll see you soon,

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

My top tips for glowing skin

I am often told that I have a nice complexion, and the first question is always ‘What do you use on it?’ My response usually results in a disappointed look (‘supermarket products’) so I thought I would go through exactly what I think helps make for a glowing and healthy look.

I drink a ton of water. Starting first thing in the morning, I drink a glass when I wake up. Then more after my cup of tea and I sip all day. If I go out in the car, I take an 800ml (27 oz) refillable water bottle and I always finish it before I return, even if it’s just to the supermarket and back. Water, water, water. The more you drink, the more you want it.

I love the analogy of a pot plant.  Think how a neglected little-watered pot plant looks compared with one that is watered regularly.  Years ago when I lived next door to my great aunt, she exclaimed at how good my outdoor terracotta pots looked and they did! They were blooming with big, lush plants covered in trumpet-shaped petunia flowers.  ‘What do you do to them?’ she asked me. ‘Water them every day’ I said, and it was true.  That’s all I did.

I eat a lot of fat.  I used to joke that camembert and brie was responsible for my plumped up skin, but now I am thinking it is perhaps true.  I also eat butter, olive oil, avocado oil/avocados, eggs, coconut, raw nuts and take fish oil capsules.  I like the premise of the ‘Low Carb High Fat’ movement, because it’s good to lower your intake of carbs and processed foods not only for skin beauty but your health as well. You also need to have higher fat to keep you satiated when you do that though.  Since I started being more mindful of these two things a few months ago I’ve noticed my hair has become oilier which I think is a great thing for glowing skin and youthfulness.

I purposely keep a calm and serene life.  I don’t let myself get worked up over the little things in anymore and am always aiming for a peaceful existence; letting people be who they are, creating order and routine for myself and having kind self-talk. Stressy high-drama people have more wrinkles, I’m sure of it! I value being easy-going, both for my own benefit and for those around me.

I also don’t pack too much into my life.  I’d rather it feel open and free and ready for anything.  I prefer lots of unstructured time and a wish-list of things I’d like to do that day.  Some days I’ll happily tick off my to-do list and others I’ll write one out and happily ignore it :)

I fill my mind with pleasant things.  I read feel-good books such as cheery chick-lit and inspiring non-fiction.  I journal happy inspiration for myself.  I play pretty music when at home.  I write about what makes me feel happy.  I dress and groom in a way that makes me feel successful every day.  I surround myself with beauty wherever possible.  It takes minimal effort to have the bed made first thing and the house tidied up.

I fill my body with nutrition.  I eat much, much less sugar and processed foods than I used to. This has happened over time; I simply didn’t replace foods that I knew weren’t chic nor healthy once they were gone, and because we don’t live near to a supermarket it was a bother to go out if I had a craving.  I started replacing bought items such as gravy mixes with more natural alternatives.  I particularly focused on anything made with canola or vegetable oils after reading how highly processed and inflammatory to the body they are.  This helped me effortless remove potato chips from my life.  ‘The Magic Pill’ documentary on Netflix instantly helped with this – it’s an illuminating watch that will get you all fired up.

You can also read two of my most popular posts on having beautiful skin here and here.

What about you?  What is your best tip for a happy and vibrant skin-tone from the inside out?  I’d love you to share.


 PS. If you would like help with your slender mindset, check out my book Thirty Slim Days.  It’s filled with all my best inspiration to help you click your mind into place when it comes to living a slim, healthy and happy life. 

Thirty Slim Days is not like any other ‘diet’ book and you won’t find a list of what to eat and not eat. I’ve found that when you try to follow someone else’s way of doing things, it feels hard.  I have had my most success when I have inspired myself to create my own path and I share how I've done this in this book.  Thirty Slim Days helps your mind work with you, not against you.  You can read the reviews of this book and order it here.

PPS. The image on this post is a throwback to summer in Auckland.  I love winter, but I'm really craving some warmer weather right now!

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