Thursday, June 28, 2012

work trip in wellington

/ in the te papa gift shop /
what a whirlwind few days! after our weekend in taupo/hamilton, i hardly bothered to unpack as i was back off to wellington very early on monday morning. i opted to take the commuter train, which meant i departed at 6:15am, but it also meant i didn't have to drive the 2 hours in rush hour traffic. unfortunately the sun only rose about halfway through the trip so i didn't get to see much scenery, but it was great to be able to doze and watch ted talks on the way down.

i arrived around 8:20am and was lucky that there was a room ready at the hotel so i could chill out until my payroll training started. i won't bother saying much about the training course because it was absolutely mind numbing and focused toward the 40- and 50-something office ladies with average computer skills that  made up the rest of the course. despite the training and prep that has gone into this new education payroll system, i still have a sneaking suspicion lots of sh*t will go down when it goes live. i hope i'm wrong!!

/ aquatic wildlife display at te papa /
the highlight of my monday was getting a chicken burrito and margarita from sweet mother's kitchen on courtney place. they have an eclectic menu with mexican, southern, cajun and other selections. i've been 3 times now and have enjoyed every visit.

i was lucky that training finished early on tuesday and i was able to head over to te papa for a short visit. i always check out the animals even though they don't have anything new, i still just enjoy wandering through.

/ part of the nz in vogue displays /
a tie for favorite part of the museum is the fashion wing that is sort of tucked in the back between the kids area and the library. it's actually more of a hallway and you could easily miss it. this time they had a display called new zealand in vogue with fashion from the 50s and 60s.

in a small gallery nearby there was also a small exhibit of fashion illustrations by kate coolahan, which were great! i had never heard of her, but i loved her illustrations and the fashion in them.

/ 1962 display card by kate coolahan /
i also swung by the contemporary collection exhibit in the art gallery, which had a few pieces i enjoyed but i didn't photograph any. before i knew it, it was nearly 5pm, so i made a mad dash to the train station to catch the train home. it was nice to have a break from work, i just wish it was doing something more stimulating than payroll training...  luckily this is the last week of the term and reuben and i are off to spend a romantic weekend at chateau tongariro before my school holidays :)

vintage views of the weekend

/ carved birds /
this past weekend reuben, his parents and i headed up to the all blacks game in hamilton, so i can now check that off my list of nz to dos. i admit that i can tolerate rugby about a million times better than american football, but somehow i think i'll have to attend a few of those when reuben and i get back to the states. fingers crossed alex, jacob or some other interested relative will be available to take him instead....

/ ceramic flowers /
anyway, i was adequately bundled, we were under cover when the rain started up and it was a shutout game in the all blacks favor, so it was a thoroughly enjoyable night on saturday. we actually drove up to taupo on friday night so that we would be halfway to hamilton on saturday in order to reduce the driving and stayed at the wairakei resort, which was actually more of a nice hotel than anything. no conditioner and no robes does not equal resort in my books, i don't care how many pools or golf greens you have.

/ on the main restaurant street in rotorua /
on our way up to hamilton on saturday morning, we went through rotorua so we could have brunch and say hi to emma. she took us on a personal tour of kiwi encounter so i could show reuben's parents where i did my research and they could see some kiwi. there weren't any chicks and only one egg since it isnt currently breeding season so they didn't get to see too much, but there were 4 of the captive kiwi in the nocturnal house, 3 of which i hadn't seen before so it was fun for me to see too.

/ quick stop to look at the inflatable dino /
we made it up to hamilton several hours earlier than we had anticipated so we had a look at the inflatable dino in front of the museum, poked our head into a great little art shop and had a very long and leisurely lunch and drinks before heading off to the game.

/ ceramic katipo spiders /
on sunday morning we decided to go have breakfast at l'arte cafe in acacia bay. amazing! i had heard great things about this place from jan and chris as well as my family who visited on their way to napier before the wedding. not only was the food delish, the whole place was surrounded by pieces from their ceramic studio. i could have bought a suitcase full of things i loved them so much! i settled on a very chunky necklace that i will try to find something to wear with this weekend for our formal dinners at the chateau's ruapehu room.

/ a bee buzzing away in the rosemary bush /
we also had to stop by the caravan in mototere to take down the leaking awning, which was made slightly better by the fact that it was bright and sunny and i got to collect some rosemary from the thriving bush there. i see some lamb shanks in our future this week i think...

Sunday, June 17, 2012

lazy cat sunday

/ gato siesta print by artformen /
we finally bought our cats a big scratching post on trademe. it's a bit rickety but it will do the trick for a few months. at first aston was very wary of the post and even ran away from it, but he has finally made friends with it and has been sleeping on the top layer all night.

/ clouded leopard cub from singapore's night safari via zooborns /
this little cutie and two siblings were born on my birthday :)

dreaming of summer drinks

/ ritzling sparkling reisling /
when we were looking for accommodation for our wedding, lorna and i took a trip up to the bay and stopped at te awa winery where we tasted some fantastic wines as well as had a nibbles plate and a delicious ritzling. i reeeaaaalllly wish it was warm enough to crack one of these open at a sunny winery.

/ spodee manhattan /
since a lot of the blogs i follow are in the northern hemisphere, everyone is writing about their liquor discoveries and the great cocktails that can be created with them. it's just mean. possibly more winter appropriate - this recipe for spodee chocolate cake, but no spodee in nz :(
/ art in the age craft spirits /
all three of these sound delish! and they're from pennsylvania.

/ foss distillery's bjork liqueur /
i am really intrigued by liqueur made from icelandic birch. i would love to go back to iceland and see more than the airport this time!

short and sweet scents

/ charmingly delicious looking lucky charms cupcake by cupcakeproject /
this week's fragrances all had one-word names. short and sweet and to the point. (and what better way to demonstrate short and sweet than with a cute cupcake? i made two types of cupcakes this week but failed to take pictures - doh! - lemon and thyme with a lemon glaze and sprinkle of sea salt as well as carrot and coconut with cream cheese icing topped with walnuts)

/ one word scents and a footrot flats cartoon /
velvet moon bathery - diabolique (discontinued)
miss marisa - zest
good judy - uke
coach - poppy
miss marisa - tropical
velvet moon bathery - masquerade (discontinued)

uke smelled so delicious, i actually used it all up. i wore it a few days in a row and then i mixed the rest of it with some plain lotion to make a little pottle of scented lotion to use on the rest of the days. poppy and tropical weren't bad either but i wasn't much of a fan of diabolique and masquerade.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

garden inspiration

/ beautiful garden, unsure of source /
this summer i wanted to start working toward a vision for my balcony garden. last year i started with royal blue and this year i introduced a salmon pink - both colours of paint were half used containers that i found at the arts recycling centre for about 50 cents a piece. i'm loving the colour scheme above so i think my next trip i'll be looking for some cream paint for a nice compliment to my pinks and blues.

/ reclaimed box from the te manawa dumpster /

/ the expanding mint plant /

/ a bouquet of the last few flowers on the balcony /

designer fragrances

/ miu miu via a glamorous little side project /
i've never really been obsessed by designer labels. i agree that sometimes the big names come up with some gorgeous stuff, but so can the little names. i wouldn't mind owning a pair or sassy louboutins one day or wearing an elie saab gown, but i'm cetainly not going to cry if i don't.

my general indifference toward designer labels is about the same as i feel toward their fragrances. they're wearable, but to me, the small batch creativity of brands like black phoenix alchemy is much more exciting.

juicy couture
marc jacobs - daisy
dolce & gabbana - light blue
versace - bright crystal

i gave these all to my coworker rakapa after last week. she, on the other hand, loves the designer names so she will probably get much more enjoyment out of them. i say bring on the next batch!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

quixotic fusion


at first this starts off and i went 'wow, this is pretty neat', but by the end i was going 'holy crap this is amazing!'

/ still from the ted talk above /
the costumes! the lights! the dancers! go to the quixotic fusion website and watch some of their promo videos - amazing. watching them really makes me want to take up the trapeze...

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

suggestive scents

/ dita von teese via suicideblonde /
this week was a small selection because i knew i would be busy and forgetful: derby, meetings, step class, te manawa, dinner with friends, coworkers away sick, ballet class and all the usual chores. luckily it was a long weekend (queen's birthday on monday) so i could catch up a bit and even work on a craft project. i'll post pictures when i'm finished with that, but i still need to add one last bit before it's officially complete.

/ suggestive scents /
love potion perfumes - elixir of worldly delights
good judy - between the sheets
love potion perfumes - man nip
starring fragrances - the porn star

i wasn't much of a fan of between the sheets as it smelled a bit too much like laundry detergent, but the other three were great, especially the man nip ;)

Saturday, June 2, 2012



love it! but i can't seem to figure out who the dancers are... the reviews make a big deal of the dancers but make no mention of what company they are from.