Sunday, 30 March 2014

A day with lupus.

Jake is in the kitchen, getting ready for work and making noise. The first thing I notice is the heaviness in my body. I feel so heavy! I move a little and it hurts. My joints are stiff and sore. My muscles ache. I open my eyes. It must be early because Jake is still here and it's still dark. I let myself fall back asleep, stirring slightly as he kisses me goodbye.

My alarm is ringing and I open my eyes. Time to get up and ready for Uni. I try to reach out my arm, but it feels like a dead weight. It's 8am. I've had 10 hours sleep but I am still exhausted. Somehow I turn off the alarm. My eyes flutter as I try to keep them open. I slowly move one leg, then another. It hurts but I know I have to get myself moving and out of bed. My eyes start to close again and I shake them awake. Then begins the process of sitting up. I have to sit up so I stay awake. I give myself a pep talk, all the while shaking my head to keep my eyes open. Must make it to the closet. Must get dressed. I'm too tired. I'm not going to make it to Uni like this. 

I make my way to the shower, running into both door ways and stubbing my toe in my exhausted daze. In the shower, I sit and let the hot water wash over me, easing my stiff and sore joints and awakening me. I can't wash my hair today. It will take too much energy. Now, wrapped in a towel, a little more awake, I make my way back to the closet. I sit down to dress, not trusting my aching, tired body to stand. Next up is breakfast to give me the energy boost I need to start the day. 

I'm always late out the door. At some point in the morning, I know I'll fall back to sleep. On days when I need to be up at the same time as jake, he sometimes finds me asleep in the shower, or sprawled on the floor in front of the closet, still wrapped in my towel. Every little task is something I have to build myself up for. I only go to Uni for three hours a day, but when I get home I need a nap again. I'm exhausted. There are days when I start nodding off in the car and scare myself by going over the lines. There are days when I can't cook dinner, because I'm too exhausted. There are days where I literally have to choose between hanging out the washing or washing the dishes, because I know I don't have the energy for both. 

My illness might be invisible, but it's something I will have to manage for the rest of my life. I rarely drink alcohol anymore because its not worth the flare that it brings. If I stay up late, I'm risking not being able to get out of bed the whole next day. There are days that I can't get out of bed even after a good night's sleep, so I know not to risk it now. 

Sometimes I get tired of my lot, we all do, but despite the anxiety and depression this illness has brought me, I will never give up. Every day might be a battle, but whenever I can, I will battle with a smile on my face. 

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Thankful Thursday #6

Some of my cousins and second cousins. Love them!

How are the weeks going by so quickly lately? Seriously, it's Thursday already? What?

Anyway, this week I haven't really thought much about what I'm thankful for, so I'm kind of struggling to write this post, but I think it's because I've had a really good week (in a very ordinary way - i.e.. I was relatively healthy and nothing terrible happened), so this week I am thankful for:

Extended family - I may have mentioned before that I have an absolutely ginormous extended family, and I'm incredibly thankful that at my uncle's 50th on Saturday night I got to see many of them. Get togethers with the Cioffi's are always a memorable and amazing experience. I can't explain my love for my aunts and uncles, my cousins (all 14 of them) and their kids (all 21 of them). It is an amazing thing that our family is so large, yet so close to each other.

Car pooling - one of my friends from school who was a few years younger than me goes to uni the same time as me on Wednesdays and lives about 2 minutes away from me, so we decided to car pool! Besides not having to drive every second Wednesday now, I am so glad of the company on the drive and getting to chat with a friend on the way to uni and back. Still feeling a little on the outer since moving back home, so this simple little thing has helped a lot.

Rain - It's finally cooled dan enough to have soup for dinner and wear jeans over here with the last few days being a rainy and cool 20ish degrees and I'm kinda, surprisingly grateful! I'm a summer baby through and through, but we've had ridiculously hot weather since last September, so I'm feeling grateful for a drop in temperature and an excuse to snuggle on the couch!

Good news - I found out on the weekend that one of my cousins is having a baby in August! I'm so happy for him and his wife! He was my absolute idol growing up and mum always tells this story of how when I was 18 months, I had Giardea and he was only about 12 or something but I wouldn't go to mum or dad or any of my aunties, because I only wanted him and he held me for 5 hours while I screamed my head off in emergency. If anyone needs proof that he is destined to be the most fantastic dad ever, there it is! He will be so great and I'm so excited!

Friday, 21 March 2014

Friday's Finds: The Pyrex Gods are kind!

Last week saw me with a lot of doctors appointments, blood tests and other such goings-on relating to my illness. There was a lot of running around town associated with this and so to break things up a bit, I decided to call into the op shops that are located around my specialist's office. Lately, I haven't had a lot of luck at the op shops as my local ones have inflated their prices a ridiculous amount for anything they think even might be vintage or collectible, but I was lucky on this day to find not one, but three things that caught my eye and were actually cheap enough for me to justify bringing them home.

First was the large Pyrex dish - I don't own any rectangular pyrex and so I had to bring it home with me! It's a little scratched up, but still in pretty good shape for something that  don't doubt was very well used! Then I found the gorgeous little orange and brown, retro Pyrex ramekins for just $1.50 each. There were only three which is a shame because I'm sure they come in sets of four and I would have loved a complete set, but they are cute nonetheless and so I had to have them! Just as I was about to walk out the door, I found that little retro saucepan hidden down on the bottom shelf and I just had to have it! I think I'll use it as a planter on my verandah. Perfect with the floral pattern, right?

Have you had any luck in the op shops lately? Have the Pyrex gods been as kind to you as they have ben to me? I'd love to hear about your finds!

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Happy - We Are From [Byron Bay]

It's International Day of Happiness today, and to celebrate, people from all around the world are posting videos to YouTube featuring Pharrell Williams' catchy new song and the place where they live. This song and this film clip are literally the embodiment of where I live - Byron Bay (well, just south of Byron Bay anyway). I am so happy that I am able to live in such a fantastic place.

Check out YouTube to see if your hometown has a Happy - We Are From video and comment below with the link because I'd love to see your happy place! And, if you haven't seen any of Tommy Franklin's other video's then check those out as well! He is Byron's Dancing Man and is probably the happiest man on the planet, spreading cheer as he dances around the streets of Byron Bay on the daily.

Happy International Day of Happiness, everyone. I hope you find something to smile about today! xx

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Wednesday Wishlist - Three Outfits from Warehouse

Beloved British Brand, Warehouse, has recently expanded it's reach into Australia and their SS14 campaign, "Fashion Shooters", shot by Helena Christensen caught my eye from the moment I saw it. The campaign, to me, really encapsulated the ideal of the fashion blogger where the blogger is both subject and photographer, as Helena Christensen has been. All of Warehouse's clothes are so beautiful - bang on trend, but still really wearable, comfortable looking pieces that would easily be incorporated into any wardrobe. Here I have compiled three gorgeous outfits with different purposes from Warehouse's beautiful range that I think would be perfect for Australians as we come into the cooler weather (which I'm kind of hoping is soon. I'm sick of this humidity!) and which I would love to be able to shoot as outfit posts if I win the $500 wardrobe currently on offer by Warehouse and E-Tail PR.

Warehouse Comfortable and Casual
First up, a comfortable and casual outfit that would be perfect for just going shopping in or hanging out with friends. I love the Peony Print Woven Front Jumper so much! Florals are definitely not just for spring and summer, in my opinion and the hint of pink in amongst those darker colours is perfect to me. 
Warehouse Business Savvy
This look is one I'd be proud to walk into the office in (if I had an office job) and one that I think I'd feel really sophisticated and pretty in doing Arbonne consultations. The Ditzy Print Organza Blocked Top is fun and sophisticated and adds that pop of colour which I think every business outfit needs! The subtle jacquard pattern on the slouchy jacket adds such a nice texture to the outfit, as well  and I think it compliments the tailored pants perfectly. 

Warehouse A Formal Affair
How stunning is the detail on this dress? I am totally in love with it! The femininity, the texture, the silhouette - it is perfection! Paired with the blush coloured coat you would feel like a princess!

What do you think of Warehouse's range? Anything in Particular caught your eye?

Disclaimer: This post was written as a part of a competition with E-Tail PR. No compensation was given for this post and all opinions expressed are my own. For full details of each outfit, check my Polyvore. All Items from Warehouse. Only select items linked in post. 

Monday, 17 March 2014

Review: Arbonne SeaSource Detox Spa Mud Face and Body Mask

I've never really been a fan of masks. Until recently, I had only ever tried the sticky, peely type that always seem to leave a yucky film on your face and one Avon mud mask which I felt did absolutely nothing for my skin. Then Arbonne came into my life, and as with every product I've tried from them, I was blown away! The SeaSource Detox Spa Mud Face and Body Mask feels great on my face. It's kind of tingly and you can feel it working it's magic as it warms up your skin. Washing it off is a breeze and once it is all off, my face feels amazingly tight and fresh! This is a great mask to use regularly, or when you have a breakout as I really feel like it does what it claims. It detoxes your skin, drawing out toxins and leaves your skin feeling tight and fresh. 

Need further proof of this mask's amazingness? I've come home three times now to see my big, burly bloke indulging in a mud mask. He absolutely loves it! If my tradie boyfriend thinks it's worth using, it must be, right?

Disclaimer: I am an Arbonne Independent Consultant, however this does not influence my opinion of the products. I bought Arbonne prior to becoming a consultant and did so because I believe in the products 100%. I could never sell something that I didn't absolutely LOVE and Arbonne's premium, vegan and cruelty free products have won me over completely. If you are interested in trying Arbonne, please email me at or use my Arbonne ID: 613297231 at the checkout.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Thankful Thursday #5

So, I'm making this quick and doing it off my phone because I need sleep right now. My first assessment for this semester of Uni is due tomorrow and it's not complete but I don't care because tired. 

This week I am thankful for:

Good surf - both for my own pleasure as I learn the sport and for the amazing competition that is the Quiksilver and Roxy pro, which I was lucky enough to experience the last two weeks. 

Meeting idols - yep, I met Mick Fanning, Alana Blanchard and Gabriel Medina (winner of the 2014 Quiky Pro, as luck would have it!) and I am so, so grateful. They have inspired me so much, especially Alana as a female competitor in the male-dominated sport I love so much! 

Cake - who isn't thankful for cake, ever. Amiright? 

Wonderful, helpful volunteers - especially those at the Living Museum in Evans Head who are going out of their way to help me with my research project on WWII. They are amazing people and I thank them for the job they do so much! 

My sissy - over the last two weeks, I've been Lucy enough to spent mucho quality time with my sissy and I'm really loving it. Since I moved out, we are so much closer. It's amazing. 

Monday, 3 March 2014

The First Annual Leonardo DiCaprio Awards

So, my main man Leo yet again walks away from the Academy Awards today without an Oscar and leaves me feeling like this:

Seriously, how many amazing roles does he have to play before he gets a freaking Oscar, huh? So, I decided that Leonardo DiCaprio deserves an award night all of his own, and so without further ado, The First Annual Leonardo DiCaprio Awards were born! I turned to twitter for some nominations from my pals, and here we are with seven awards going out to the fantastic Leonardo DiCaprio tonight! And the awards are...

Best Smile

Most Roles as Hopeless Romantic Who Dies For His Love

Most Age-Defying Man

Best Sport at the Oscars

Nominated by Steph for "Being women of her age's first love"

Nominated by Amy for "The little pile of unused Oscar acceptance speeches he probably has by his bed" Award

This picture of Leo crying is made u of tiny little pictures of previous Oscar winners.

Nominted by Sam for "Putting up with Kate Winslet's annoying Rose voice"

Now, a round of applause for Leo, who not only won all of these awards, but won my heart (aww).
Do you have any other awards to give to Leo? Leave a comment below with your nominations!