Go on, have a look at this photo and just try not to be joyful. Isn't that the magic of honey joys? Pretty bird platters and op shopped tableclothes help too. I'm feeling a bit down at the moment because of a few mean people so I need all the joy I can get these days. Yummy power seems to work just as well as pretty power, and as always I'm just telling myself that this is a test of my strength so I can be prepared for the big move to Japan. I'm a very sensitive person and I tend to take criticism very personally and I doubt Japan is going to be all cute kids and silly songs all the time. I need to learn to toughen up a bit and just accept that not everyone is as empathetic as I am. Though really, would it hurt people to just benice?
This whole Japan thing (thankyou for all the congratulations!) has made me think a lot about growing up and life paths and making decisions and all those boring adult-y things. Because in fact, part of my desire to go to Japan was to avoid the whole 'getting a real job and settling down' type of thing that most people do after finishing uni. It just happened to be that I really wanted to run away and live overseas but I didn't want to work in a pub in England or a ski field in Canada, I wanted to do something worthwhile and useful.
And the more I've thought about it the more reasonable it seems for me to live all over the world, teaching English and volunteering and having fantastic experiences. I'm giving myself at least 5 years before I really need to make any big decisions about what I'm going to do with my life, and maybe in those 5 years I'll have fallen in love with teaching, a certain country or culture and have it all figured out. If not, I'll come back to Melbourne, go back to Ikea (I would love to say I'm joking but really..) and sort myself out then, and I'll still only be 27!
So here's to the act of growing up as a result of doing something childish like running away.
Remember how awhile ago I mentioned that I wanted to go to Japan as a Teaching English as a Foreign Language teacher? Well after six months, a bunch of study and an interview with the best (in my opinion) chain of English schools in Japan I received my letter of offer today!
They still have to wait to find out exactly where I'm going and when I'm starting but most of the contracts start around January. I'm so excited and totally freaking out, this is the most amazing thing that has ever happened to me in my life. Who knows when I'll come back, there's so much of the world I am desperate to see after I have had enough of Japan, it could be years before I return! Don't worry though, I'll keep on blogging and taking polaroids while I'm at it :)
Thanks for the messages on my last post, I hope you are all succeeding in fighting your own battles against the universe. As for me, I refuse to let the universe beat me down. Surrounding myself with pretty things is probably not the cheapest way to fight back, but it sure makes me feel good.
You know, I try to do good things and be a good person. I try to be kind and helpful as much as possible. Sometimes I'm not, sometimes I'm in a bad mood or someone will make me angry and I won't be as polite as I could be to them. But I would think and hope that for the most part the universe would see me as being a good person. Instead the universe has been giving me one slap in the face after another this year and I really have to ask, what did I do to deserve this? And I know bad things happen to good people all the time. But when it happens to you (over and over and over), you can't help but feel a tiny bit victimised. So for now at least, there will be no more post its, no more cookies, no more spreading the happiness until I've finished sulking in my corner.
Rockstar cookies for my rockstar co-workers who listen to me whinge all the time and say nice things to me. I got so flustered handing these out to people, it's funny how doing nice things can be embarrassing sometimes.. luckily the best response I got was from the person that I was most excited to give them to :)
Considering how quiet it gets around here I decided I should probably tell you where I am most of the time. Because it's not like I'm out there having a life or something, no no I'm still on the internets, just other parts of it.
Every single time I walk past these in our front garden all I can think of is this picture, and it always makes me smile.
Psst.. Momentile.com is to thank for my sudden increase in photos, as it turns out deadlines are good for inspiration and creativity. I'm trying to take at least one photo every day, which sure is making me look at things differently. Read about Momentile here, if you want an invitation leave me a comment with your email and I'll send it over, it'd be nice to have more people to follow!
I'm thinking I was maybe a little bit too excited for the beginning of winter and instead I should focus on autumn while we have it. The last few days have been chilly but sunny, which is the best find weather because you can wear jeans and a cardi while still enjoying clear, bright skies.
Something that annoys me a little bit about Melbourne is that we rarely get to experience the full range of the seasons properly. Sure summer is hot and winter is cold, but autumn too often feels like winter and spring looks like summer (with more rain). I get super jealous of people who live in places where the leaves actually turn brown, yellow and red in autumn instead of remaining evergreen, so when I see evidence of something like this in Melbourne I really have to stop and admire it.
I've tried to spend the maximum time possible outdoors this weekend as it's been my first weekend off work for a very very long time. Ikea is a bubble, it's a whole other world, especially when working in markethall where there aren't even windows. So yesterday after afternoon tea at the Windsor for my aunt's birthday I dragged my mum (on crutches) to Fed Square to check out the book market and sit on the steps listening to jazz music. We only got snippets of jazz because it was 4pm and they were just setting up for their 5 o'clock show, but it was still a really nice atmosphere there with everyone sitting around and chatting. I think Melbourne (and Australia in general) needs more communal public areas like the town squares they have all over Europe. That way we can actually feel like a group of people rather than just a crowd of strangers. That's just my opinion anyway.
I tried to think of three words to describe me but I could only come up with one: Hopeful.
Five simple pleasures: My morning ritual of tea and twitter. Big comfy jumpers and dvds on the couch. Sitting outside in the sunshine on my work breaks listening to Whitley. Walking on the other side of the street and seeing things differently. Eating cheese and dip for dinner.
Quirky things about myself I've learnt to love: I have a mole on the inside of my middle finger on my right hand, I think it's cute. I make up stories about old houses. I can't stop buying Chinese noodle bowls. I love the beach/ocean, but I'm totally freaked out by it. My favourite part of going to the movies is watching the trailers. I get carried away with my fantasies quickly and intensely. I laugh at myself when I trip in the street. I suck at making eye contact with people, so I smile a lot to distract them. I will eat cheese with pretty much anything.
Just found this on the net, not that I was googling or anything.. This is Bedouin Soundclash at SXSW in Austin Texas, scarcely two weeks after we saw them in Melbourne and hung out with them over the two nights. See the trumpet player? Cute no? Heh. I'll leave it at that ;)
I am so tired that I had to put down my newest edition of Delicious because I was literally falling asleep while turning the pages. The tiredness comes as a result of a change of pace in my work life where I've gone from working between 12 and 20 hours a week at Ikea to somewhere around 35-40 this week. The reason for this is that I've started working in the lighting department as well as on cashline, and when we get the new self-serve express checkouts I'll also be helping to supervise them. This is all such a "so what?" thing to most people I know, but in my jobs I've always cruised along, laying low and just getting the job done.
For me to actually stand up and make the effort to apply for new positions and learn a new department is a huge thing for me. I've always turned down supervisor positions in my previous jobs because I didn't want to complicate the job for myself. It also takes me up a rung in the Ikea hierarchy where being a check-out chick was really the bottom rung. Suddenly I'm trusted with a work phone and I get to use the computers in management, it's all very exciting for me!
I guess the underlying reason for all of this is not only to earn extra money by monopolising over two departments, but also to challenge myself and force myself to continue learning while I'm waiting to go over to Japan. Oh yes that plan is still very much there. In fact tomorrow I might even call up and enquire about that TEFL course so I can finally get the plans in motion. I'm excited to be making plans and taking chances and pushing myself, for such a long time I have just 'settled' for everything in my life. Other than moving to Melbourne I don't think I've really done anything that amazing in my life, so this is my chance to shake things up! Keep pushing me people, I think I'll need a nudge every now and then when I hesitate and lean towards the familiar rather than the unknown.
My title and the inspiration for this post comes from a post by Orangette which made me think about the wonderful things that I've been planning :)
Oh and I graduated, finally! Check out me and my bro being tools before the ceremony:
My new friends, Bedouin Soundclash(should I mention the free ticket to Soundwave?)
It's been a long time between cups of tea (metaphorically of course) and I'm really sorry for that. It's not like nothing interesting has happened to me, I hung out with a band for two days and turned 22, I just haven't been able to find the words to describe it all. The bushfires silenced me and since then I've been trying to reassess and re-evaluate the things that are most important to me as a person (as if I don't do enough of thatalready). I'm trying to spend less time worrying about the superficial crap that usually fills my mind and get to the real root of my happiness (or unhappiness).
I really want to thank everyone who took the time to comment on my last post, I really appreciate that other people would admit to feeling the same way that I so often do. I love that there are so many like-minded people in the blogworld and that it is so much easier to connect with people like myself through the internet. I still have a yearning to search for 'my people' in the real world though, and I've decided that the first step towards this is to immerse myself in a completely new and foreign culture. Like Japan. The connection isn't obvious, I know, but the idea is to take myself out of my comfort zone and try something totally and completely different and see how it affects me and how I grow as a result of it. Once I truly know myself, then I can find people who get me. Does that make sense?
So the idea is to teach English in Japan for one year and if I really enjoy teaching then I can always come home and do a Dip Ed to become a fully qualified teacher. As always I'm full of big dreams and no action, so my next step is to book the Teaching English as a Foreign Language course and get myself a job placement. It's a big, scary, insane step, but I really feel like it's something I have to do. Hopefully putting this plan out there on the big wide web will hold me somewhat accountable, don't let me talk myself out it!
The one thing that is keeping me sane after working 5 days straight at Ikea (apart from the organic soy lattes at Plough to Platter) is my evening cup of tea on my balcony. Occasionally this has been swapped for a beer on particularly frustrating days, but for the most it's been a cup of trusty Lipton's. And with the tea comes the deep thoughts, the 'trying to figure out what I want to do with my life' thoughts.
Right now I'm still trying to figure out what I'm going to do this year now that I'm not at uni and only working part-time. I had grand plans of going to Europe with a friend for a month but we've recently realised that our savings are going down, not up, and it's becoming less and less likely that we'll be able to afford it at all. On the plus side it means I can go to New Zealand with my parents for three weeks instead, which will be really great seeing as we haven't had a family holiday since we went to Queensland when I was in Year 10.
Either way I'm trying not to stress myself out about it but I also know that if I don't do something proactive about it I'll just end up coasting for years without a "real" job like my brother is still doing. The difference is that he can actually get a real job with his degree (Computer Science), I can't. There's a huge part of me that really wants to shake things up and move to the coast or across the world or join the army or something ridiculous, the monotony is starting to get to me here. I also have this feeling that I haven't really found my "crowd" just yet, and while there seems to be plenty of people in this big wide world of the internet who might "get" me, I just can't seem to find people face-to-face who are the same. It's not that I don't love my friends I have, I just feel like there's something missing. Or maybe I'm just being selfish?
1. See more sunrises 2. Drive to the coast occasionally 3. Grow my own vegetables 4. Voice my opinion 5. Make time for tea 6. Spend more time outdoors 7. Picnic 8. Be a guerrilla gardener 9. Attend a film festival 10. Find my own personal style 11. Take responsibility for my own happiness 12. Shop at Farmer's Markets 13. Cook a roast dinner for my friends 14. Learn to run 15. Create and explore
Poladroid has finally gone PC! In case you have been living in a computer-free closet and haven't heard of Poladroid yet it is a magnificent program which allows you to turn your boring old photos into virtual polaroids! Complete with the delightful burring sound and you can watch it slowly develop before your very eyes, genius. For ages there was only a Mac version of poladroid, so I would frequently visit the website eagerly awaiting the release of a PC version.
Ever since getting back from Europe I've been kicking myself for not taking polaroid while I was over there (I had the camera, but the film was dead!), so now I can use the pictures I already took and transform them into beautiful polaroids. The changes in colour and lighting are amazing, making previously dull photos into really pretty shots. Now that I've run out of actual polaroid film and I can't really afford to buy any more for the moment I'll probably be relying on poladroid for a lot of my photos. I know you can tell the difference because my polaroids are normally have more of a hazy-dreamy quality rather than the bright colours, but for the while it will be a fun experiment.
p.s I hope you all had a great Christmas and New Year break, I had intended to post more but got a bit lazy with all the festivities. Thanks to Tara for calling me out on my bad blogging ;)