If you asked anyone to describe me, you’d probably hear the word creative thrown around once or twice. When I put my mind to work, you can never quite be sure of what the outcome will be, but it’s always guaranteed to be big, bright, a little out of the box and concocted in a way that only I would have done (to be honest, I don’t really know if this is still considered an attribute, or just outrightly strange…).

It’s a creativeness derived directly from my mother I think. She taught me how transform ordinary into extraordinary long before Play School could even develop the “useful box” into script. Nowadays, I pride myself a little on being able to find a good solution to most problems, and put it in colour on an oversized poster in less than 24 hours.

So naturally, I’m always down for learning anything new that involves using my creative side – and when a new little studio down town opened at the beginning of this year offering pottery classes, I couldn’t help but excitedly babble about it to my Mr. To take a pottery class has sat on my Bucket List at #61 for a while now, and with no time being as good as the present – I was keen to check it off the list!

To my surprise, my Mr. was totally down with trying it out himself, and nonchalantly states, “Book us in, baby!” with an all-knowing smile that even if he hadn’t of wanted to, this was here another thing he was most definitely getting roped into!

A couple of weeks later, we’d booked ourselves a spot on a Wednesday class, and after getting a little lost in the back streets of town, found our way to a small shed home to a small pottery studio.

With rows of shelves adorning the walls of the studio with the many creations of pottery-goers before us, we felt quite cosy finding a spot to sit at the bench amongst 437 small clay coffee cups and others of the like.

Our instructor introduced herself as Gabi with a kind and gentle smile. She spend a small amount of time teaching us three prominent pottery techniques before letting us loose with our own clump of clay.

Choosing a slab approach, I started bringing my creation to life. I had already planned to make a coffee cup similar to one I had seen in a cafe recently, even bringing in my own syringe (this is explainable with the statement, ‘I’m a nurse’ for the most part) in the hope to create a melting effect at the top of the cup.

Gabi stated she had never seen anyone do it this way, but helped me mix up a small bowl of slip (runny clay) to experiment with. The tester cup worked out reasonably well, so I decided to go ahead and recreate it on the real deal.

I was actually surprised to find it worked – often things don’t always turn out the way you think they will (it’s why we find the Expectation vs. Reality memes so amusing – we’ve most definitely all been there!) but this one almost looked to have panned out!

As for my Mr.? Well, he did find himself a little too far on the reality side of the well known meme when his coffee cup turned out to resemble something somewhat closer to a soup bowl instead. We laughed about it, but were definitely excited about the prospect of a new two-person-share ice cream bowl joining our ranks at home!

The thing that I really loved about the class though, was that there seemed to be an endless amount of clay on offer. You’d finish one job, and Gabi would then ask, “What else would you like to make?”, before fetching another clip of clay for you.

After a coffee cup, a coffee cup saucer, a small honey pourer and a porridge bowl – I figured I had gotten close to using up my fair share of clay creating my own winter breakfast set. And in all honesty, if my Mr. had let me sit there any longer, I would have probably made a whole table setting worth of pottery – it was simply addictive to me!

We organised our pieces, dated and stamped our initials into the bottoms of our masterpieces and left them in the studio to be placed in the kiln. With a gentle wave, Gabi let us know that in two weeks we could come back to glaze each piece and take it home with us. I couldn’t wait.

I was grinning ear to ear as we walked back to the car, snuggled under my Mr.’s arm – it had truly been one of the best mornings for this creative little heart of mine. Pottery had become a real contender in my line up of hobbies, and with so much more to learn, and ten more ideas left to try – I think Gabi realised we’d be back before she knew it.

Next time we’re planning on trying wheel throwing (which I briefly gave a try in the Philippines two years ago and failed miserably…), so really the fun has only just begun!

But for now?

#61: Take a pottery class – that’s a wonderful big, check!

d x


Fall short.

If there is one thing you should know in this lifetime, it’s that people will let you down. It’s not always that they mean to, it’s just that it’s a human flaw and i figure, it just can’t be helped.

Today, I am let down. So immensely let down. By someone who I genuinely thought would never be the cause of this feeling. I am so consumed by disappointment I can barely eat. I tried to cry, but the tears won’t fall and I’m not sure whether that just simply means that the hurt is too deep.

I wanted to believe that they were a better person. In fact, I did. I trusted in it. I trusted in them with almost everything I had. Which is more profound than I can explain coming from the girl who holds more faith in rollercoasters than human promise.

And yet, here I am. Tucked away in the midst of a summer afternoon storm, craving to be alone with my thoughts, and my confusion over how someone could have so epically fallen short of the mark.

Perhaps I said it one too many times that the happiness out loud theory excavated my own happiness in pursuit of nailing my feet back to the ground. Or perhaps I just couldn’t see through the sugar coating.

Maybe they were always destined to let me down.

And I guess this is where I try to make sense of it. Wildly typing my raw emotions into my MacBook in the hope that it will expose a reason why. Something that will make the hurt make sense, that will make me understand.

And when I finish and the reason remains un-illumintaed, I’ll stop to realise that this, this hurt – it’s part and parcel of life. And that eventually it’ll make me stronger, like a broken bone healing over.

It’s a bit of a sad reality, and I know this blog’s purpose has always been to illuminate the beauty in this world, but I am beginning to understand that there’s a strange beauty in learning the hard lessons too. People will always let you down. You don’t ever see it coming until it’s there, staring you in the face and giving you a choice. And I’ll never give you a more important piece of advice other than to stop walking towards the people who let you down, and couldn’t care less.

I’m a girl who happily gives too much. And maybe I’ll never change despite the broken edges of my heart. But I will learn to be braver in the face of being let down.

Just know that your hurt, just like mine, will fade. And what grows in it’s empty place will bring better days. I have to believe in that. So you can too.

d x

#5: Japan 2016

Konichiwa (and almost sayonara) all the way from Japan! Today is the last day I’m here, and as spontaneous overseas trips go (not that I’ve been on many), this one was pretty great.

Back in April this year, I was working a late shift at the hospital when I received a message from one of my friends. The message said, “Return flights to Japan – $300. Are you in for a girls trip in November?”. Heck yes!

I barely thought twice about it before replying and simultaneously shouting out from behind the nurses station, “I’m going to Japan!”.

If you’ve been following my blog for a while now, you’ll remember that #5 on the Bucket List is to travel somewhere new every year. And a trip to Japan was exactly what I’d been looking for. I had been racking my brain trying to find somewhere to travel to in 2016 on a very tight budget (I believe the title ‘House Owner’ is entirely interchangeable with ‘Broke’). And this was it! Big, fat, CHECK!

Fast forward seven months, and here I am. And if I could wear a Kimono forever-more, I would.

Let me start by saying that if you haven’t put Japan on your travel list, you need to. This place has had me gobsmacked since the moment we landed. Decadent in tradition and more vibrant than a neon sign, Japan is awe-inspiring. It’s full of the most polite and wonderful people I think I will ever meet who made the trip one of the best I’ve ever had!

We touched down in Tokyo at about 6:30pm, so it was dark and after a long day of flying in a glorified metal cabin, we were equal parts tired to excited – plus, definitely hungry. The limousine bus took over an hour to arrive at the doorstep of our hotel, The Cerulean, in the centre of Shibuya. We checked in, and quickly shuffled up to the rooms to change out of the clothes that now seemed to stick to us after the 8 hour flight.

The view from the window was the first thing I saw. Tokyo lit up like a giant Christmas tree. It seemed to go on for miles, I tried to take it all in at once, and simply couldn’t. I was already in love. Think ‘big city lights’, but on the good protein powder. It was amazing!

With a shower, a change of clothes and being rather satisfied having taken 1,98373 pictures of the view. We turned our attention to getting food.

In the centre of Shibuya, is it’s famously busy Shibuya Crossing. You probably know it best from a scene out of Tokyo Drift. We didn’t have the fast cars to drift dangerously around the corner, splitting the near 3000 people on the crossing. But we did manage to spend a whole half hour running back and forth across the busy intersection, thoroughly embracing being a tourist.

There were so many options for food, that we barely knew where to start. But with grumbling stomachs we decided on choosing the closest we could find, and it was the best place we found the whole trip. We couldn’t read the menu in the slightest, our Japanese stretched as far as arigatou gozaimasu. So we picked at random, and hoped for the best. My garlic butter (as I later found out) Ramen, was perhaps the most oeeshi (delicious) meal I had the entire trip.

After roaming the streets of Shibuya into the early hours of the morning, being constantly amazed at how the city was still awake at 1am, when at home we tuck ourselves into bed at 8pm – we finally returned back to the hotel. After spending a great deal of time working out the remote control for the toilet (it even plays music), we snuggled up into bed ready for the trip ahead.

The next morning we woke to stare out the window at a clear sky boasting the presence of Mount Fuji in the distance beyond Tokyo City. I think that’s when we knew, this trip was going to be a good one.

We ventured to Lake Kawaguchiko, Mount Fuji, Hakone, Kyoto and back to Tokyo over the following eight days, and took the wrong train more than once. We dined traditionally, and ate more raw fish than we ever thought we could. We learnt that the microfibre cloths were in no way big enough to cover any body part in the Onsens, and that after the first time you do it, you realise that life is easier naked and in a natural hot spring. We loved sleeping on the floor, and our designated inside and outside shoes (just don’t mix these up, or in an excited rush to photograph mount fuji at sunrise, wear your inside shoes outside through the mud).

We learnt that it is far easier to take a Taxi rather than the Bus – which required much more attention trying to decipher Japanese announcements as to whether your stop was next, or already gone. We ventured to the top of volcanos, and rung traditional love bells to the famous Mount Fuji. We developed a rather unprecedented love for a corner shop named Lawson, which seemed to supply most of our hotel dinners in the form of Pork Buns and Pocky.

We tried all sorts of food and alcohol solely based on the ‘prettiness’ of the label as we definitely couldn’t understand what it said – and surprisingly, enjoyed everything we tried (even the cream cheese in prawn crackers packet, go figure). We took many timelaspes whilst aboard the Bullet Train, and made a mental note to inform the public transport back home of the technical advances in Japan that included phone chargers on every bus, train and taxi.

We hired bikes and visited temples (all 100 of them). We dressed up as Geisha Girls, and strolled around Kyoto in thongs without a heel under the toe – it’s a miracle we all survived. We posed for many tourist photos, for the tourists that thought we were actual Japanese Geisha Girls, and tried desperately not to burst out in laughter mid-photo at the ridiculousness of it all. We dined 637metres high at the Skytree in Tokyo, and found a Photo Booth to commemorate the occasion. We shopped, for twelve hours straight – even we were impressed with our stamina on that one. We found a Bunny Cafe, which sounded so much more fun that it was, but thats a whole other story. We contemplated dressing up as the Mario Brothers and racing around Tokyo on go-carts, but decided our travel insurance probably wouldn’t cover the inevitable injury we would all sustain.

We made more memories than we could count, and filled our cameras with the captured proof. It was certainly a trip to remember.

And as I sit here at Terminal 3 of Narita Airport about to board for the long journey home, I can’t help but notice that Japan has etched itself quite neatly into the confines of my heart. I may have only been eight days, but this place has wrapped it’s hands tightly around me and left a rather large hold.

I can’t wait to come back.

#5 – Travel somewhere new every year: 2016 – Check!

And don’t forget to check out the travel log for tips and places to stay in Japan!

d x

Fifteen Year Predictions

Today I was lying out in the sun with Igloo (who has settled in as if he always lived here!). And I was watching him sit next to me in all his cute-ness, silently wishing that he could somehow just never grow up. 

He may still not know how to use them most effectively, but his little legs are getting bigger each day. A part of me wishes he would slow down with the growing thing, because I’m just not done with him being the smallest bundle of fur!

Then I catch him digging a hole, and I know it’ll be okay when he’s big enough that I won’t have to worry about him being an escape artist under the fence…

But I got to thinking about how long he’s going to be in my life. And I was a little sad when I realised that if I’m lucky, we are looking at maybe 15 years. Which for me, is simply not long enough. 

This put me onto another train of thought, as I tried to picture where I would be in 15 years. 

You see, comparatively – it seems like such a short amount of time when I think about Igloo, but when I think about me, 15 years couldn’t be further away!

I simply don’t understand how in my mind, one could seem longer than the other. It’s the same amount of time devoted to two different lives. 

I know Igloo will spend the next 15 years most likely eating grass, getting sand stuck in his ears at the beach and being loved beyond measure.

But what will I be doing? What does my life look like in 15 years? I’m very curious to know. 

I guess only time will tell, and that’s a little frustrating for little impatient me. I mean, a lot could really change in 15 years and I’ll only know when I get there. 

But time is precious, and as curious as I am, I would never wish to rush time. 

So for now, I think I’ll channel my inner “One Tree Hill” tin box in a brick wall, and settle for writing a list of predictions for the year 2031 (which sounds like another lifetime away). 

In 2031, I predict that:

• I will be married, and happily married at that!
• I will have a child, or maybe even two, to keep my hands full and my heart even more so.
• I will have made CN at work, and loved every moment of it.
• I will have finished my Nurse Practitioner degree, maybe i’ll even be lucky enough to be working as one in emergency, or in a clinic!
• I will own a soccer mum car, and happily fill it with orange slices every Saturday morning for the big game.
• Igloo will be by my side, grey hairs and all. Still as adorable as ever.
• I will have a house with enough room for my shoe collection!
• I will have ticked at least 15 more things off my Bucket List.
• I will have travelled more, and seen some of the most beautiful parts of this world.
• And I will take time each week, no matter how busy its been, to sit down by the beach with my Mr., watch the sun set, and cherish every moment.

I think it will be so special to look back at this post in 15 years and simply see how far I’ve come. Life is everchanging, and we really don’t know what’s in store for us. But we can hope for the best version of our lives. 

I am guaranteed to have some of my worst and some of my best days in the next 15 years, and while I may not end up where I thought I would, I’ll know that it was somehow exactly where I am supposed to be. 

Here’s to 2031. And in the ultimate prediction, I’m sure I won’t believe it when you’re here. 

d x