Monday, November 12, 2018

What I stand for

Ninacat :)

 I was thinking about my blog and writing the other day, because I never know what to say when people find out I am a writer and ask what I write about.  I truly don’t know what to tell them!  Saying ‘pretty things’ is what I want to say, but I can’t imagine it would be very helpful.  I’d also rather say, ‘here’s one of my books, just read that and it will tell you’ because I find it hard to articulate what my topic is.  It’s okay once we get talking, but the ten-second elevator soundbyte you’re supposed to have has always been a challenge for me.

What I love to think about more, is what do I stand for?  That’s easy.  I stand for inspiration, creating and appreciating beauty, and living in a peaceful way.  I stand for serenity in outlook, lifestyle and with food.  I believe in each of us making the most of ourselves and treating ourselves to what truly makes us happy in life.

I believe a positive mindset contributes to our wellbeing, and that each of us has the brilliant opportunity to create our own incredible life.  We can have our feet on the ground and live in the real world, but we don’t need to be OF the real world.  We can be down-to-earth AND have our head in the stars at the same time.  We can design our own lifestyle: our home, wardrobe and our state of mind, as pretty and as delicate as we’d like it to be.  And, we get to choose what brings us joy!  We don’t need to go along with anyone else’s rules.

For me, my world is rose-tinted, rose-scented, and sparklingly effervescent.  I do my daily chores and get things done, but I also immerse myself in my own magical world through my writing, how I keep my home and what I fill my mind with.  I read books, watch movies and populate my thoughts with beauty and inspiration.  My home is quite simply decorated, but it still has pockets of exquisiteness which elevates my frequency.

And none of this takes money.  If you choose to look upon the world as a enchanted place full of possibility and love, it is.  You can be aware of what’s going on and do what you can without feeling bogged down by perpetual bad news which you can do nothing about.

I feel like my role in the world is to share my inspiration with others through my blog, social media accounts and my books.  I know how uplifting it feels to read a book and be bursting with ideas afterwards, as well as feel indescribably happy for some reason.  It’s a fabulous day when I come across a gold nugget in a book which provides me with a new, different, or better way of thinking about something, and I hope you find them with my books too, because that’s why I write them.

What do you stand for?  Think about the things you value and see if they translate into how you live your life.  I value simplicity, so my home is consistently being decluttered, organised, simplified and cleaned.  When I get busy or less motivated and don’t do these things on a regular basis, it feels heavy.  When I pursue simplicity and clean out and clean up, I feel buoyant again.

Love what you love and stand for what you stand for.  Don’t let anyone else tell you how you should be, think or feel.  Please share with me what you stand for and make a commitment to yourself that you will go forth with pride in your choices today and every day :)


If you enjoyed this post, I’d love you to share it with a friend you think would like it too!

PS. I was interviewed by the lovely Michelle Marie McGrath for her podcast 'Unclassified Women', which is all about women who don't have children whether through circumstance or choice.  I talk about my own situation and why I don't have children, plus a bit about my career as a write-from-home author with tips on how you can start too.

You can listen on YouTube and iTunes through Michelle's link here.  I had such a lovely time chatting with Michelle, so I really hope you enjoy this interview!

You can find me here too:

Monday, November 5, 2018

The best time of the year (and it’s different for everyone!)

Are you a lover of birthdays like I am?  For me they signal another wonderful year to come.  I love birthdays a lot (and not just for the presents - I’m not really into gifts so much).  It was my birthday last month, and as soon as the calendar flips over to October 1st, I’m in celebration mode.  Everything just feels fizzier.

It’s my husband’s birthday on the same day, which is fun.  I was 48 and he was 47.  Just a baby!  We decided to host a dinner for our neighbours to celebrate, and it was a blast.  Although, when we were tidying the house and garden and putting together food and drinks for ten we, well I, did wonder W H Y did we do this to ourselves on our birthday of all days?  But I knew once everyone was there it would be fun, and it was.

There must have been something in the air that night because everyone let loose and it turned into more of a raucous house party that you might encounter in your younger years.  Well, perhaps a sedately raucous house party, with the ages ranging from late forties to seventies :)  But certainly different to my usual Saturday night.

My Aunt said that it seems to be tradition in our family that you work harder on your birthday, because we all host our own parties, whether it’s dinner or afternoon tea.  And I did do afternoon tea for my female relatives the following weekend too.

But you will never hear me complain about getting older. I choose to believe each year gets better and better, and that I get younger as I get older. Why not, I say!  I got the ‘younger as I get older’ thing from my flatting days before I met my husband.  I’d spent my twenties being married to my first husband, and was domesticated and definitely not living the wild life.  Then, in my early thirties when I was divorced and flatting with my sister and two other girls, one of our male friends said ‘Gosh, Fiona’s getting younger as she gets older’ because I had a new lease on life.  I thought that was great and took it on as my personal motto :)

I don’t feel like a grown up and I think it’s because I love to dwell in happiness, silliness, feeling light-hearted and looking for things to feel joyful about.  If you want to change the way you are aging, I believe that you simply make a decision – you decide it is so and it will be.  I look forward to birthdays and love being the age I am.  When I wish someone a happy birthday and they say, ‘Urgh, don’t remind me’, I don’t understand that!

Have you ever noticed how some people, even though obviously their age, radiate youthfulness?  It’s their energy – something intangible that you are drawn to rather than just how they look.  It’s a back-to-front thing really: when someone is glowing with good energy and positivity they become more beautiful and youthful, just as a smile lights up your face.

The day after my birthday I spent mostly sitting outside with my journal, Kindle, music, husband and pets. It was beautiful weather and so, so relaxing.  The gorgeous birthday roses on the outdoor table were a gift from a neighbour’s garden.  They are my favourite colour too.  I love yellow and pink together, antique rose and rose gold – all those combos.  So delicious.  The roses on our dining table are from our garden; I am so grateful to have beautiful established rose bushes from the original owners of our house.

Who else is an October baby?  I feel so lucky to be born in what I consider to be the best month and star sign (although I could be biased).  Libra is associated with beauty, peace, harmony, the colour pink, and Venus the planet of love, of course.  We are an air sign, so yes, you could say I have my head in the clouds most of the time.  But it’s so pretty up there… why would I want to be anywhere else?

Wishing you a wonderful rose-tinted day, and please, let me know when your birthday is and if you associate with your star sign.  My Libran readers, are you as flossy as I am? 


PS. We are in the spring season here in New Zealand, but you lucky people in the northern hemisphere are experiencing autumn.  Yes, I love spring and the warmer summer months, but autumn will always be my first true love.

If you haven’t read my book How to be Chic in the Winter yet, why not check out a sample from Amazon?  In this book I share all my ideas on how to enjoy the winter season instead of just enduring it – even if you are a summer person!

I wrote this book for myself initially, because I found I kept doing the same unhelpful things over and over each year to cope with months of the cold weather - eating sweet and stodgy fattening foods, feeling lazy and unmotivated, being grumpy and a generally unfun person.  I started gathering all my thoughts on living an ideal chic winter and this book is a result of that.

Included are my favourite winter recipes because that was my biggest hurdle - coming up with meals that felt comforting and hearty, but which were also healthy.  They are all very simple to make, but also very importantly they don't take too long to put together.  I like to keep prep time to a minimum because I would rather go for a walk or read a book than spend too long fussing around in the kitchen.

I’m sure you will find ideas to transform the way you think about winter, and it all came from my own desire to ‘live slim, happy and stylish during the cold season.’  You can find it on Amazon Kindle here and in paperback too.

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