I have decided to combine these posts from now on
MY FAVE PHOTOS
- I took this photo at Heathrow on our way back to Brisbane after our lovely lovely trip home for Christmas.
- We took a little drive to Natural Bridge when we had some friends stay with us for a week. We had been there before but it was nice to be able to show them the beautiful scenery and also take a walk around as I had been poorly for a few days before.
- On our way back from Natural Bridge we stopped off at the Hinze Dam. It’s a very pretty setting and there was talk of the Aussie bringing his boat here for a sail which should be fun!
- One of my favourite views in Brisbane is the Story Bridge. Also whilst we had our friends stay we spent some time in the city and on our travels we stopped off at Eagle Street Pier where we got to enjoy the gorgeous view of the Story Bridge.
- This photo was taken on our Tom’s Tour on New Years Day. The scenery was just beautiful and a lovely way to start of 2019.
A Star is Born – this movie has been out for a while and it seemed like we managed to catch it in the last week it was showing. I haven’t seen the original version so don’t know if the storyline was the same or similar but I really enjoyed this version. I didn’t realise that Bradley Cooper could sing and could do so so well! The story is really thought provoking but is beautifully written and directed. If you get the chance you really should watch it.
The Favourite – I had been looking forward to this film for a while since first seeing the trailer. The trailer made it look like it would be quite funny and the actors in the film are superb so it was an easy choice to go see the film. The film itself was very quirky and strange in places but from my reading it seems like this is the Directors style. The ending didn’t entirely make sense to me initially but I did some reading online about people’s interpretation and it did make more sense then. I would recommend the movie if it is one that you haven’t been entirely sure whether you want too.
Mary Queen of Scots – Even though I am English I don’t know the history of the Kings and Queens very well. The Aussie is quite interested though and he recently watched a documentary about Mary Queen of Scots and so I knew a bit more about it ready to go and see the movie. The scenery, the acting, the costumes and actors were all fantastic and I really loved this movie.
Grace & Frankie – the new series released on Netflix this month and was as funny as always. It was very binge watchable and I look forward to the next series.
Who we were Before – My friend Kim challenged me to sit down and read for at least two hours during the Australia Day long weekend. We both love to read and used to read a lot but because of life being so busy we haven’t had the chance. I started reading this book way before Christmas and didn’t get round to finishing it so I decided to accept the challenge and finished the book.
The book is about a married couple who have been torn about following the death of their child. The story is not the best written but once I was able to sit down and focus on it, it was easy to read and the storyline kept me interested so that I wanted to know how the story ended and it didn’t really disappoint after the journey they went on.
I have read a few 40 before 40 posts which is basically a bucket list of 40 things the writer would like to do before they turn 40.
I am now a couple of months into my 37th year and so now felt like a good time to put my own list together.
So here are my 40 things I would like to do / achieve before I turn 40 in 2021 eek!
- Get a Tattoo. This has been on my bucket list since I was about 18 and I still haven’t “got round” to doing it. I know roughly what I would like and where but have to get up the nerve for it.
- Apply for Australian Citizenship so that I have dual citizenship. I can apply for this on 14 February 2019 and I understand it might take up to a year to process so hopefully early 2020 I will be attending a Citizenship Ceremony.
- Visit every state and territory in Australia. So far I have visited the Northern Territory, Victoria, Queensland and New South Wales so I still have South Australia, Western Australia, Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory to go.
- Run 5km without stopping. I can run about 1.5km now and then do alternating walking and running the rest of my 5km so I hope / plan to increase the distance I can run.
- Walk the Larapinta trail
- Write and publish a book about my fitness story. I have sort of started this but should sit down and do it properly.
- Visit New Zealand. It is “just” across the water so we really should get there some time in the not to distant future I hope.
- Climb / hike Mount Barney. The Aussie planned to climb Mount Barney in October with his friend but realised he wasn’t really prepared for it so I know its on his bucket list. I would like to be fit enough and capable of doing it with him.
- Donate blood. I hate and am probably terrified of needles but I would love to be able to actually donate blood because it is such a wonderful thing to do.
- Wake up early to go and watch the sunset.
- Try stand up paddle boarding. There are plenty of places around where we can do this so it should be achievable in the not to distant future.
- Meet a penguin. I love penguins and so a trip to Phillip Island to meet them sounds kind of perfect.
- Go to the Glastonbury Festival. As I come from Somerset I was able to get a day pass to the Festival quite a few years ago. The Aussie is keen to go as well and so I hope that we can make that work and also visit during the UK during the summer months as he has only been during the winter.
- Go on a road trip with no destination and just drive. I suggested this to the Aussie for an upcoming public holiday weekend and he wasn’t sure but I think it would be fun even if I normally hate not knowing what we are supposed to be doing and where we are going
- Learn how to speak in public without being terrified. This is an ongoing bucket list item and I really need to nail it for my job.
- Finish the dresser which I started sanding in 2017. It was painted blue and I have removed about 3/4 of the paint. I need to just get it done, probably during the autumn or winter now.
- Climb the Sydney harbour bridge and the Story Bridge. I have walked across both bridges which I loved but both are not cheap to climb. I really want to do both in the not to distant future.
- Learn how to play the keyboard again. I had lessons when I was at school and really enjoyed it so it is time I got back into it.
- Go to Lapland. I LOVE Christmas and have always wanted to visit Lapland around Christmas time so I hope this is achievable.
- Buy frames for prints we have bought and put them up around the house. We have bought a lot of prints across the last few years but none are framed so we need to work on buying the frames and hanging the pictures up.
- Buy a house.
- Re-learn French. Like the keyboard I studied French in school, loved it and wasn’t too bad at speaking it. When I went from secondary school (high school) to college (before university) I dropped all “school” subjects and studied Law, Psychology and Sociology. I still remember bits of it but would like to improve my conversational French because I love the language.
- Drive across the Nullabor. This is part of the route we can drive from Brisbane to Perth and it sounds like a very interesting drive to complete.
- Visit the camels at Broome. When you see photos of the camels on the beach in Australia they were probably taken at Broome. This has been a big bucket list item since I arrived in Australia in 2013 so it is time we visited!
- Fall back in love with photography.
- Join a sports team. I am quite keen on playing netball so should find a local team who don’t mind beginners and see how I get on.
- Write a Will! I write Wills for clients all the time as part of my job so it really is about time I wrote my own.
- Ask 10 friends to recommend a book each and read them all
- Read 10 non fiction books
- Learn to sail. The Aussie has sailed since he was 6 years old and it is a big love of his. I hoped to learn to sail in Darwin but it didn’t happen before we moved so I should do it so we can go out sailing with him.
- Learn Yoga and / or Pilates.
- Have a professional photograph taken to celebrate my weight loss.
- Stop freaking out about it and have a massage.
- Drive the Great Ocean Road.
- Visit New York on my birthday. My birthday is around Thanksgiving and I want to go when it is really festive (and freezing of course) and so Thanksgiving / my birthday seems the perfect time. Maybe for my 40th?
- Read at least one book a month. I really love reading but never make time for it and so it is time I put down the devices and read more. One book a month should be doable.
- Grow vegetables or even just a plant and don’t kill them. I killed succulents we bought from Bunnings (and didn’t fair much better with the tomato plants I tried to grow).
- Watch an Ashes cricket match with the Aussie. I wouldn’t say I am a massive cricket fan but I don’t mind watching it. The UK and Australia have a big cricket match which swaps between countries and it is a biiiiig source of debate as to who won, whether the teams were playing fair etc. It is also quite amusing because me and the Aussie bicker about the matches too (in a fun way) and so I would love to actually go and watch an ashes match, hopefully when they are playing in Brisbane.
- Find and buy a capsule wardrobe with good quality clothing items that iI can mix and match with the more faster fashion items.
- Plan a 40th birthday celebration.
I plan to update the list around each birthday up until I turn 40 and hopefully each year I will be able to tick off quite a few things.
Last year I was lucky enough to be able to take part in quite a few running / walking events and even luckier that both the Aussie and Naomi joined me in the events.
We already have a few events booked in as follows:
- International Womens Day Fun Run on 3 March 2019 – we did this walk last year and it was great to be a part of the event whilst also enjoying a good walk. We are signed up for the 5km walk.
- Brisbane Great South Run on 7 April 2019 – I have signed Naomi and the Aussie up for the 5km event which should be fun although it will probably be quite hot still!
- Gold Coast Marathon on 28 April 2019 – we are signed up for the 10km walk because I got a bit over confident but it should be a good walk for us to get out and stretch our legs!
I am also keen to participate in the following events when the registrations open / funds permit:
- Ballina to Byron Coast Walk – there are 3 different distances you can walk for this event; Ballina to Lennox Head which is 13km, Ballina to Broken Head which is 25km and Ballina to Byron Bay which is 37km. I would love to do the Ballina to Byron Bay distance but I’m not sure it is doable this year so we need to decide which distance to do and get ourselves booked in ready for the walk on 26 May 2019.
- Runaway Noosa Marathon – this clashes with the Ballina to Byron Coast walk weekend and it is completely the opposite direction so I’m not sure it is manageable but if the Ballina walk doesn’t work out it is on my list. now I won’t be participating in the marathon distance but I am keen to try the 5km or 10km at the event on 25 May 2019 if we can’t do the Ballina to Byron Coast Walk.
- The RSPCA Million Paws Walk – we have done this walk the last two years in Darwin and then Brisbane. I love fundraising for the RSPCA and the walk is very fun, not least because of the dog count so it is a must for us.
- The Colour Run – again we have done this walk the last two years and it is one I am keen to do again.
- Twilight Running Festival – I was signed up for this event last year but couldn’t attend in the end so I think it would be good to give it a go this year. I will probably aim for the 5km event.
- Bridge to Brisbane – this was a very very damp event care of the pouring rain but I loved it last year and you can read about it here. I even ran at the end which was fantastic and I would love to give it a go and maybe even the 10km.
- MS Moonlight Walk – this was my first 10km event ever last year and I whilst I was sore I loved the experience which I did with Naomi and the Aussie so it would be silly to miss out right!?!
I have tried to fundraise for various events since I started exercising and participating in these events. I have found it to be quite difficult to get engagement for my fundraising, most likely because of the volume of events I have participated in. I think this year I will play it by ear and see which charities are particularly important to me so I can focus on them.
As we hit the end of January 2019 I have been reflecting on my fitness goals for 2019. I think it is really important to reassess your goals when you are on a “fitness journey” as it keeps you motivated and on track.
2018 was a big year for me health and fitness wise. I started working with Felicity Neale in April, initially focusing on diet but progressing to my exercise regime as well and I saw massive changes in my health and fitness.
Towards the end of 2018 our focus moved to building strength and saw the introduction of more regular weight lifting days which I have to admit I was surprised about, but I loved. Previously to that I had focused on cardio quite a lot and was a bit afraid to branch out into the weights section on my own.
This year I really want to keep focusing on strength and weight lifting because I really see the benefits of strength training and it has so much more of an impact on the development of my body and I love the way my muscles are developing.
I am also working towards having surgery to remove the excess skin I have on my stomach, back, arms and legs this year. I haven’t really talked about this much on the blog but it is a big focus. When I started working out I always insisted I would never have the surgery but I am now at the stage where I can see that the excess skin I have is not going to shrink much at all and I don’t want to live with it for the rest of my life when I can do something about it (I know plenty of people do happily).
I am sussing out the costs and timeframe for having the surgery but it is high on my agenda.
Before the surgery I want to get to my strongest so that this will help with my recovery after the surgery. Felicity and I feel like I need to get my arms and legs as strong as possible because frankly it is going to really hurt if I try using my core to move myself around post surgery.
I also want to keep participating in the various running and walking events which are being held around the Brisbane / Gold Coast / Sunshine Coast areas. I am still not really a runner and half heartedly give running a go from time to time, but the events I want to do are usually still welcoming to walkers and so definitely inclusive for me. I am lucky that Naomi and the Aussie indulge me on this aim and will come along for the ride!
I have been a bit hit and miss with Park Run the last few months. This is mainly because I am just not someone who can walk / run in the heat and its been pretty hot even at 7am in the morning. The Aussie and I did a Park Run in the UK (and I got a PB knocking 3 minutes off my time) and this takes me up to 23 Park Runs so far. When you have completed 50 Park Runs you receive a 50 shirt and I am quite focused on completing the 50 this year!
Finally I want to get braver! The Aussie and I did a couple of walks in the UK and I was terrified of falling over. Now after 30 odd years of tripping over I know what it feels like to fall over and I am lucky that this seems to have reduced considerably with my weight loss (touch wood). I am also always worried that if I injure myself I won’t be able to work out and I really don’t like the risk.
I will admit that on one of our walks I was like a baby deer taking tiny steps because it was muddy, hilly and there were lots of rocks to slip on. I want to get over this because I really enjoy hiking and walking.
I think I need to buy some walking poles because from talking to various people this has helped them enormously with building confidence on this kind of walk. Then when it cools down a bit in Autumn and Winter I hope that the Aussie and I can get out there and start building my confidence!
Just before Christmas, if you are a Facebook user, you will have seen a movie tag going around. The concept being:
“XX nominated me for the 10-Day Movie Challenge. Every day I must select an image from a film that has impacted me in some way, present it without explanation, then nominate another to accept the challenge. I nominate XX”
I was caught by the tag and shared my 10 movies on my personal Facebook account but thought it would be good to also share them here so here they are in the order I posted them on Facebook.
I am not always keen on the “tags” that go around on Facebook and I don’t like the chain letter posts / messages but decided I would participate in this one because it made me really think about the 10 movies which have impacted on me but it was also interesting to see what my friends and family selected as well.
What 10 movies did you share / would you have shared if you were tagged?