New Year, New Who?

I don’t know about you but I find the start of a new year to be a little bit daunting.
For as long as I can remember I’ve been on annual leave over the Christmas and New Year break. I almost wish this wasn’t so as this extended holiday mode means I start the year off, pretty lazy. I blame the holidays but perhaps it’s actually because the whole new year concept is a little overwhelming. I was definitely asked more often this year the awful and frustrating question “What are your New Year’s Resolutions”?
It might actually surprise you, but I don’t think I like New Year’s Resolutions. I actually love the idea of self-improvement, goal making, planning, prioritising. I just find it weird that it just happens on January 1st. I find it weird that we all sit around at the one time and make promises to give up smoking or take more holidays, or.. lose weight.
Maybe I actually don’t dislike New Year’s Resolution. I just dislike the pressure. I normally do come up with goals for the New Year but I take my time and it ends up being a while before I decide what I really want. They end up being like Valentine’s Day Resolutions. I’m a big processor and it actually takes me more than 30 minutes to assess the whole year and then decide on how I want to improve upon it and then somehow define and condense that into 2 or 3 simple statements. By then it’s normally the end of January and I feel like the moment has passed. It’s simply too late to have a New Year’s Resolution.
For me, all the typical New Year’s Resolution type things kick in once I go back to work. I can’t suggest to the world how I want to improve my routine until I see it. Until I remember what it feels like to wake up every day and go to a job I don’t love or come home to chores I wish I didn’t need to do or try and walk the work stairs and struggle. That’s when I start thinking up things like: Learn to be content, be more organised, get fit!
And so today, I am back at work. Back to routine. Back to the everyday. So today, I am dreaming. Dreaming of what I want, what I wish for and how I am going to make that happen. I have never been very good at large overreaching summarising type New Year’s Resolution like the above statements. Mine are always specific, small and potentially achievable. They are usually based on a review of years gone by and a dream of years to come. I hope you find some inspiration from these goals and are challenged to continually and realistically challenge yourself this year. Even if you don’t get around to starting until February.

Respond to texts promptly.
Go for a walk 3 times a week.
Save $100 a week in order to Vacation Overseas!!
Finish every book I received as a present for Christmas 2013 – (just 4). Read 8 other books this year.
Start University assignments 2 weeks before they are due – finish strong!
Learn to make lemon flavoured desserts. YUM.
Spend more time working on Connect Group/with Connect girls.
Read the New Testament.
Have freshly painted nails!
Write more. Even if it stays in a notebook and no one ever reads it.

 

These are the specific goals that actually represent several ideals that I want to embody more this year. That of inexpensive living, being present and available with people, working hard and finishing strong, engaging my mind, my body and my spirit in a way that produces a better, well rounded Steffany.
I hope I see you here again and I hope the fear and pressure of New Years doesn’t stunt your ability to dream in 2014.

Things I’ve learnt from OTH.

Say what you will, I like One Tree Hill.

Maybe it’s because it’s just one of those shows that you sort of grew up with, so you’ll love it no matter what happens.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, that it’s important to express yourself.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, almost everything good that I know about music. Every unique artist, I found on One Tree Hill.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, the 5 stages of grief.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, that hoes are over bro’s and clothes are over bro’s too. Thanks B.Davis.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, that love triangles are a bad idea. I was Team Leyton fyi.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, that tours break up relationships.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, that substance abuse is bad, so are bar fights.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, that real life, is no where near as dramatic as, One Tree Hill.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, that no parental supervision for teenagers, is a bad move.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, that music has an amazing power to heal.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, that love conquers all. Always and forever.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, that people can be good and evil all at the same time.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, that you should never podcast intimate details about your life.

I have learnt from watching One Tree Hill, that family is more important than anything. 

March Madness

Things I can be thankful for/excited about in March:

  • The opportunity to celebrate. I think everyone I know is born in March! That’s probably the first lie I’ve told on this blog because so many people are born in July too. But March is an especially big birthday month for me, which is great, I love celebrating people and birthdays.
  • University. Look, I don’t always love university. In fact, mostly I don’t. But I CAN be grateful for it. I start a new major (I think it’s actually more of a minor but I can never tell with my uni) this year and I think it will be a big challenge.
  • I’m grateful for grace. I think I will need God’s grace this month. So many things, so little time.
  • I’m excited about the Hunger Games movie which comes out in March. I LOVED these books and I think they actually won’t destroy them in the movie. I get goosebumps every time I see the trailer and I’m so glad March is here.
  • I’m excited for sweet little moments. I’ve been having so many moments lately where I am so overwhelmed by life. Someone will let me know how much they love this blog and I just die a little with happiness. God whispers in my ear that he’s proud of me and I die a little with happiness. Someone sends me a text that just makes me laugh so hard that I die a little with happiness.
  • I’m grateful for the last year when I’ve been able to see my brother every weekend. He moves to Sydney this month and our relationship will be long distance, along with my Dad. It really sucks to have half your family live in another state but I’m know I’m still lucky.
  • I’m grateful that once Pierson does move, the 4th bedroom will return to the old scrapbooking/study room that I know and love.
  • I’m excited about COLD weather! Well, not freezing weather, but I’m grateful that the sticky, sweltering Queensland summer is on it’s way out. I love scarves and jackets and I want them in my life.
  • I’m so grateful for how wonderfully happy I feel nearly all the time. I’m excited about life and what all of Autumn holds.. but I will especially appreciate and enjoy March, because it is here now.

Happy March everyone! I hope it’s the perfect mix of warm days and pleasantly cool evenings.

Love and hot cups of tea,

.Steffany.

Follow Friday

Blogs you should check out.

Miss Pinches.

My lovely friend Hannah is an amazing blogger. Now that she has an amazing camera by her side, her blog has been ever better. She’s a brilliant list maker and pulls insight out of the smallest things. It’s wonderful to read because I know her and is a great way to keep in touch with her life, but basically, Miss Pinches is for the masses. I laugh and appreciate this blog so much.

My Favourite Colour is SHINY.

This girl can’t be stopped. Like literally, we are looking at a post every single day. So many people start blogs and then stop posting after ooo.. 5 posts. Tegan is getting set to hit 100 already! People who love design and beautiful images will get a kick out of this blog along with some personal insights as well. Hands up if you never want the blogging to end? *both of my hands literally went up*.

William + Laura

I’ll be honest and say that both William and Laura are individually great bloggers. But perhaps not as consistent posters on their own blogs as they are on their couple blog. This blog is pretty darn cute and I think every couple would read it thinking ‘I wish our lives were cool/photographable enough to warrant a couple blog’. Lately they’ve been showcasing their wedding shots which are pretty amazing. I even feature – so you should head on over there and love a little on that blog.

Sarah Starrenburg

If you’re looking for intelligent writing, prose, theological thoughts and other wonderous things I wish I could come up with in my head. You should read Sarah’s blog. She posts daily which for a pure writing blog – is AMAZING. I wish I could write like that. I think everyone does. Except Sarah, she probably wishes she could write better. Sarah is one of my longtime favourite people and is one of the most consistent people I know. Her blog is equally as consistent.

Kendi Everyday

This is my favourite fashion blog. Kendi reminds me of friends I already do have and makes me wish I could be her friend and steal things from her wardrobe. She posts a daily (get it!) outfit and other miscellaneous things thrown in. I think her style is wonderful, realistic, classy and I’m super envious of her hair. Ladies, you won’t regret subscribing to Kendi Everyday.

Girl Removed

This blog belongs to Gemma Bird. It’s a newly created, freshly, regularly updated travel/devotions blog that centres around Gemma’s recent move to Canada. I love travel blogs, they are always filled with funny little stories and tidbits of wisdom. I also love and miss Gemma, so this blog is perfect.

Tips for Success

I’ve had a lot of jobs. So I don’t know if that makes me qualified, or if after a lot of hit and misses I can just tell you what not to do, but overall, I’d say I’m a good administrator. I’m glad to no longer have ‘Receptionist’ as my work title, but I know how it’s done. That’s for sure.

Here are my top ten tips to keeping your job as a Receptionist:

  1. Be on time. The occaisional late day is acceptable and happens to everyone, but everyday? The traffic won’t change, you have to change to suit the traffic.
  2. Listen. If you don’t understand an instruction, or you didn’t hear it correctly. Ask again. Repeat that phone no. back. You might feel stupid at the time, but you won’t feel as stupid in the long run.
  3. Take your lunch break out of the office. Don’t sit at your desk. This basically goes for all roles but especially for receptionists. It looks unprofessional to eat at your desk and when a client arrives in Reception, you can’t swallow and tell him/her ‘Sorry I’m just on my break, let me find someone to help you’.
  4. Keep a working to-do list and calender. If the system you have doesn’t work, change it.
  5. Prioritise. Complete one job at a time and unless you are the BEST multitasker ever.
  6. Know your staff and your clients. You should know which staff accept telemarketing phone calls and which can’t stand it. You should know what clients to put straight through and which to grill for more information.
  7. Don’t take lots of sick days. Receptionists are normally young and people assume the worst. Better to be sent home than to be at home and have them in the office assuming. I’d say a working goal is no more than half the amount you are allocated per year.
  8. Limit your personal chatter, internet use and phone time. Companies only have a certain amount of tolerance, if any, for these things. Learn your company quick, don’t always follow other employee’s examples.
  9. Proof. Nothing worse than a typo in a phone message or on a contract. Double check who you send that email to. Things can always get awkward.
  10. Breathe.Some people just don’t understand how important Receptionists are. You run that office.

Things I care for..

The following list is things I currently care for:

  • Perfect nails.
  • Creative stimulus.
  • My job. Working hard.
  • Writing.
  • People reading quality books.
  • Letters.
  • Hugs.
  • Relaxation.
  • Preparation.
  • Motivation.
  • Sleep.
  • Doing my best.
  • Sweet texts.
  • Sweet postcards in the mail.
  • Understated outfits.
  • Promoting Kindle.
  • My favourite colour is SHINY.
  • People who just make things happen.
  • Innuendo.
  • Boy&Bear.
  • Responsibility.
  • Integrity.

To Do Lists That Matter

I write a to-do list every work day. Some days (most!) it’s huge and then like today, it’s really not. There are so many things I want to get done on the weekends and weeknights that I just never get to. Yet I can always achieve everything at work. The answer! A to-do list for life! This is my current to-do list.

  • Go to Harvey Norman and get a photo of Tegan and I and Laura and I at their respective weddings printed for the empty frames sitting on my desk.
  • Clean out my shoe closest. I have so many shoes in their I don’t wear and it takes me too long to find the ones I do.
  • Transfer all the Kindle files I was given onto my actual kindle. What use is it on a computer?
  • Pack up my books into a box. I own 200 or more books, and they just don’t fit on the bookshelf at Mum’s.
  • Start a book for 2012. Should at least include some goals, some pictures, some thoughts.
  • Sew that button back on those pants I’d normally wear all the time.
  • Bake some cookies.
  • Queue my tumblr up to 100 posts.
  • Tell my sister 6 things about why I love being her sister.
  • Paint my nails. Cut and colour my hair.
  • Vacuum my car.
  • Make some serious calls about this year.
  • Purchase some supplies for university this year.
  • Make myself a pretty calender/planner.

2012 is all about things that matter.

Such a cliche.

I am the biggest cliche. Proof is in the following bullet points.

  • I actually have weak knees. I find myself just randomly collapsing, causing me to look like a foolish school girl.
  • When I meet someone I respect/am attracted to, I clam up. I’m that stupid girl who gets tongue tied and sits still with nothing to say. That’s not even close to what I am like naturally.
  • I love romantic comedys.
  • I love good music, coffee, shopping, long walks on the beach and going to the movies.
  • I’m easily distracted by a great pair of high heels or a certain High School Musical star.
  • Top 5 Places to visit: Paris, Rome, New York, Cairo & Tahiti.
  • I like roses, and red ones too. In fact they are probably my favourite.
  • Take one look at my bedroom. Pinks, poster bed, oodles of cushions, elaborate clocks, lamps and a chandelier.
  • I actually have walked into buildings/poles, tripped over guitar cases/nothing because I am distracted by something. Unfortunately, to make matters worse, sometimes it actually is because I am checking out a good looking gentleman.

However, despite all these things. I’m one of the weirdest/unique/quirky people you’ll meet.

Tick

Over a year ago.. I posted a list titled ‘The last Single Girl’. It was essentially a list of things to try and achieve while I was still single. Here is an update. Shamefully, I have not ticked off as many things as I would like, and at the rate I’m going, I could still be single in 10 years and ticking things off. But I have made a bit of a promise to tick more things off in the coming months. Very soon I get to tick off 68 and 99!

  1. Learn how to change a tyre
  2. Watch Gilmore Girls Season 1-7 in a straight sitting
  3. Learn how to surf
  4. Read every C.S Lewis book
  5. Learn to knit
  6. Sing in a musical
  7. Spend a full day at a spa
  8. Learn how to salsa
  9. Make a creme brulee
  10. Climb a mountain
  11. Go sailing
  12. Take a photography class
  13. Go on a vacation by myself
  14. Go to see a boy band in concert
  15. See the Eiffel Tower
  16. Ride a horse
  17. Ride something bigger than a horse
  18. Go to the Olympics
  19. Sing kareoke
  20. Ask someone fairly random out
  21. Go on a road trip
  22. Bake a cake
  23. Fly a kite
  24. Fall asleep in a meadow
  25. Fly business class
  26. Go to Uluru
  27. Spend an entire pay on shoes
  28. Perform a handbrake turn in a car
  29. Hire out a car that’s out of my price range
  30. Read all Harry Potter books
  31. Read all Lord of the Rings books
  32. Sleep under the stars
  33. Go skinny dipping
  34. Buy a stranger a meal
  35. Go to a drive in theatre
  36. Jury duty
  37. Join a book club
  38. Become a liscenced minister
  39. Throw a surprise party
  40. Write a will
  41. Buy somebody a bunch of red roses
  42. Plant a tree, or a flower bush, or a vegetable
  43. Write a novel
  44. Shower in a waterfall
  45. Learn to juggle with three balls
  46. Go in a hot air balloon
  47. Make a hole in one
  48. Watch every James Bond film
  49. Read a book a fortnight for a year
  50. Leave a love note on a windscreen
  51. Watch the sun rise
  52. Jump into a pile of autumn leaves
  53. Do a first aid course
  54. Go for a full day without talking
  55. Give blood
  56. Spend a whole day naked
  57. Get a regular manicure and pedicure for a year
  58. Be a bridesmaid
  59. Make cookies for someone
  60. Eat an entire pizza on my own
  61. Donate more than a weeks pay to something worthwhile
  62. Preach at church
  63. Skull 2L of coke
  64. Cook everything from a cookbook
  65. Go to the ballet
  66. Write a song
  67. Enter a competition
  68. MC a wedding
  69. Write a handwritten letter to 10 friends
  70. Blog regularly
  71. Turn my mobile off for a week
  72. Be debt free
  73. Be in a TV audience for something. Pref. Ellen
  74. Not shave for a month
  75. Eat a tub full of icecream in one sitting
  76. Balance a checkbook (or get in control of my finances)
  77. Kiss someone I hardly know
  78. Sponsor another child
  79. Make a signature dish
  80. See ‘Wicked’
  81. Buy an iPad
  82. Put $20 in a letter and post it to a random address
  83. Pick wildflowers
  84. Visit the Canadian Rockies
  85. Own all the Lori Wick Books
  86. Sing someone a love song
  87. Get a charicature done of myself
  88. Drive in a limo to somewhere unexpected
  89. Make a dress
  90. See Coldplay or U2 or someone really big in concert
  91. Alphabetise my book collection
  92. Meet Hayley Williams from Paramore
  93. Ride on a bike with tassels and a basket
  94. Buy a house
  95. Be on TV
  96. Dance all night long – like literally all night long.
  97. Get retweeted by someone famous
  98. Faint from excitement or happiness
  99. Watch all my best friends get married
  100. Love Jesus always.

twenty three

In honour of me and my 23rd birthday.

Twenty Three Things I still have to look forward to.

  1. Coming home to my own house.
  2. Coming home to a husband.
  3. Graduating university.
  4. Cruising the seas with my sister.
  5. Deciding what to name my kids.
  6. Meeting my sponsor child.
  7. Actually writing that book.
  8. Changing my last name on facebook.
  9. Becoming crazy Aunty Steff.
  10. Buying my first pair of Jimmy Choo shoes.
  11. Actually owning every single season of Gilmore Girls.
  12. My last first date.
  13. Buying a brand new car.
  14. Long Service Leave.
  15. Learning how to not throw up when my kids bleed on everything.
  16. Learning how to not throw up.
  17. Watching the rest of my friends get married.
  18. Getting married.
  19. Taking a picture in front of the Eiffel Tower.
  20. When my blog hits 1 million views.
  21. My 30th birthday party speech.
  22. When I finally get the nerve to go skinny dipping.
  23. When I’m 46, which is 23×2 and being equally as happy about my life then as I am now.