Spend-Free 2017: A commitment to simplicity and angst

There was a moment last year when I decide to catalogue all the clothes that I had bought over the year. It left me unsettled. How could I have bought so much and still have so little to wear on any given day. New occasions, events, and people had me buying new items as I desperately tried to make myself stand out and not stand out in equal measure. I ended the year feeling overwhelmed by stuff and making a commitment not to buy more as I had end the year with more and yet I didn’t feel more anything.

It seems common these days to end the year with a commitment to simplicity and I can see how attractive this becomes after the richness and excess of Christmas. Certainly I could benefit with a paring down of my possessions and thus,  into existence swept  a list of rules that would see me more prosperous and connected by the end of the coming year.
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Five on Friday: The case of the missing words

​The words are missing and can’t be found. Missing words make writing pretty difficult it turns out.

The words were not on this cracker

At first I was resentful that my fellow lioness blogger had stolen them as she seems to be posting but not me. But then a lovely woman today encouraged me to write about where the missing words might be.


These are the places that I have looked for them

  1. Suzy might have them. Suzy and I started blogging at the same time with the same amount of gusto. Recently she has been posting a little more. Her last post I haven’t been able to read as I was seething with resentment. She’s taken all the words. We were at an event the other day and Shea writing things down and I’m thinking…we’re at the same event, hearing the same words and she’s taking the words and now I can’t use them. I said to the person next to me…she’s frigging blogging.  I did speak to Suzy and she has almost reassured me that there are enough words for both of us.
  2. There was a tip off that there were a bunch of words at the bottom of a large bag of salt and vinegar chips. I got to the bottom. It was a false trail.
  3. There are loads of words on Facebook but most of them are trump and cats and not what I am needing right now. I keep looking in case some want to come home with me. It’s 2am in a manky club and all my friends have pulled and I can’t even get the  really unpopular words to come home with me.
  4. Jenny Lawson seems to have written every word that I have ever wanted to write in Furiously Happy. She leaves me no option but to tell the stories that should never be told. It’s gonna be all xojane, first person confessionals. 
  5. There are no words in shoe shops either. Or clothes shops. Or book shops. But I looked all the  same.

It started to feel like the words would forever elude me. I couldn’t understand when we had been on such good terms. Then I remembered that I had been sad and tired and the words were taking a rest while I looked after myself. They were still there, but they were very quiet. Trying not to disturb me while I got my bearings. As soon as they heard me ask for them, and look for them, they started to show their heads.

A place to lay my head

This week was an odd week. It had the whole range of emotional experience that left me a little tired. I’m not getting any younger and naps become more and more important. With this in mind, it was hardly surprising that I fell asleep in the MRI machine. Continue reading “A place to lay my head”

The  late arrival of The Leather Jacket


When I was young I was a little portly. I was built like a little cauldron.

I swam, I sported, I biked and I also had a penchant for toffee crisps. While this may have felt like the perfect lifestyle balance for me, not everyone else thought so. Some people thought that this finely honed little barrel could do with losing a pound or two.

This was me in Oliver. Even though my singing was weak I got a reasonable part as I looked too well fed to be an urchin.

My mum promised me a pair of dungarees if I could become a more acceptable shape. I don’t remember being placed on any particular diet. I do remember doing “shape up and dance” with Felicity Kendall in my Nan’s lounge. I kept sporting, and swimming and biking and remaining well upholstered. The dungarees were a dream that disintegrated as quickly as the fabric of my jeans under so much pressure. What didn’t disintegrate was the idea that nice things were wasted on the fat. Continue reading “The  late arrival of The Leather Jacket”

Dress Madness

There’s this party coming up in a few weeks that I’m pretty excited about. Its a yearly, movable feast. Last year it was in Taranaki and this year it’s in Christchurch. A couple of hundred of women getting together to celebrate all that is good about women-ness and wellness.  A bunch of women with a kaupapa of unconditional support and no judgement. A group of women that have each other’s backs unfailingly and are cheerleaders in all endeavours.

So if these women are so bloody wonderful then why am I driving myself insane worrying about what to wear?

Continue reading “Dress Madness”

Well, it’s a dirty job but someone’s gotta do it

This seems to have been my theme tune of late. I don’t know why Faith No More 20160623_215007.jpghave taken up residence in my head. I wasn’t even much of a fan of theirs. They provided moments of entertainment as they piped their way out of ancient jukeboxes housed in even more ancient pubs, but they weren’t my cup of tea. (Rage against the machine have been on my internal play list too. This is a reaction to me making far too many rules for Junk Free June and  thus failing badly…Fuck you. I won’t do what you tell me. I will eat more junk in 4  weeks than I have in the last 4 months). Continue reading “Well, it’s a dirty job but someone’s gotta do it”

Its just no fun anymore. Why kids stop sport at such a young age.

According to Michigan State University’s Institute for the Study of Youth Sports, a child’s No. 1 reason for playing sports is to “have fun.” Yet by the time they are 13 years old, 70 percent have dropped out of team sports.

Reading this article in the NZ Herald, on why kids give up sports so early gave me pause. It wasn’t so surprising or shocking to me that kids stopped play sport at the age of 13. Certainly, in New Zealand this is when kids hit high school and the game very much changes. If primary school was about participation, and basic skills, then intermediate upped the ante towards specialism. My experience with and N of 1, was that intermediate still presented opportunities for social sport, for D and E teams, that continued to encourage participation and team work, but there was very much a feeling that this was the beginning of the end. Continue reading “Its just no fun anymore. Why kids stop sport at such a young age.”

Navel Gazing and the Reward Principle

There has been quite a bit of navel contemplation lately. The thought of an MRI has filled with me with dread, not for any reasonable fear, like being scared that an unrestrained fire extinguisher may hurl itself at my head. Nor the thought that some long forgotten piece of metal ingested as a child is going to burst, Ripley like, from my belly. What actually concerns me the most is that I may have to remove my navel ring. Continue reading “Navel Gazing and the Reward Principle”

Problem Arms

Lately, I’ve been obsessed with wearing drop sleeved tops. It’s been a hot summer and I’ve been enjoying a breeze across the boob. They seem a little daring at this age but I love them and they deserve to be worn. Some one commented  in a group that I’m a member of, that they couldn’t wear them as they aren’t as confident about their arms as me. It got me thinking. I don’t think that they I am confident about my arms, beyond a confidence that they will likely stay attached to my shoulders for the rest of the day, and pretty confident that they will behave in public space, but in terms of confidence about how they look. Maybe not. However my choice, to wear an arms out, sides out top is certainly driven my comfort. I may not feel confident but I do feel comfortable and comfort plays the trump card every time.

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A Kettlebell love affair

Thinking about my recent posts, both here and elsewhere, I wondered if I was turning into a one-trick-pony. There’s a running theme of deciding to do something and then having to run the gauntlet of my catastrophic thinking, before doing the thing and actually liking it a little. This is not every experience. Often my monkey mind is quite in control of itself.
Continue reading “A Kettlebell love affair”