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IT’S THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR

Christmas is the spirit of giving without a thought of getting. It is happiness because we see joy in people. It is forgetting in self and finding time for others. It is discarding the meaningless and stressing true values. 

– THOMAS MONSON


We made it, it is finally December. I can now blast my favourite Christmas playlist (listen along here), put up the Christmas decorations, wear my Christmas pyjamas and enjoy the neighbourhood light display without fear of being a little too enthusiastic (but really, is there even such a thing?). Similarly, if you're anything like me, you hardly change your phone background so I thought it's the perfect time to do just that. Something quite simple, nothing too in your face, but still festive. The backgrounds above can be found here (first, second, third). 

I really do think the weeks leading up to Christmas are the most magical time of the year; there are plenty of festive parties and gatherings of family and friends. It also gives you time to reflect on the year and show gratitude to your nearest and dearest. That said, I better start writing my Christmas cards... 

Let the countdown to Christmas begin! 

How do you celebrate in the weeks leading up to Christmas?


WHY I ALMOST GAVE UP.

   

"You don't always need a plan. Sometimes you just need to breathe, trust, let go and see what happens. "

– Beau Taplin


I started DearYouLoveEm in 2010. I was just starting university and looking to take on a creative hobby whilst I buried my head in my psychology and commerce studies . The blog back in 2010 would be totally unrecognisable to the one you're currently reading today. The name was different, format was messy and photos were taken on my Nokia mobile. It was awful and my writing wasn't coherent,  but I loved it. It was my little secret.

Move forward six years and it feels like a lot has changed. I finished university, I broke up with my boyfriend and went through what seemed like the worlds worst breakup, I moved out of home, I got a 'real' job and I'm doing everything I feel I can to be a successful twenty-something adult.  I still have days where I want to eat pizza for breakfast, spend money on things I shouldn't but all on all, It's going okay. At least, it was going okay.

Last year was a sad year. The kind of heart-wrenching sad that makes you're heart heavy and your eyes sore. I lost my sister-in-law. She was in an accident and it was all very sudden.  I remember that day like no-other and there was so much about that day and the days that followed that I'll always remember. It's taken me over a year to write about this, and even then I'm struggling with whether or not I should press publish. It still seems so very raw, sudden and tragic.

It was after her passing that my brother informed me that she used to be an avid reader of my  'secret' blog...

"She found your blog... I'm not sure how, but she used to really enjoy reading it. Wasn't she always so sneaky like that? "

 

It was after then that I thought regardless of what happened, what my priorities were and how busy life got,  I would keep blogging. I would fight any writers block that came my way, I would fight my fear of not being good enough. I would do it for her.

At least, that was the plan. 

 

Last year, months after the accident when the support slowly faded and everyone went back to their lives I realised I was struggling on my own. It's hard to say whether it was directly because of the passing of my sister-in-law, but I was quite simply a mess. That, mixed with the blogging world feeling different, contrived, robotic. I felt like I had zero originality and even less conviction. My passion was there, but I felt cold unable to believe in my own message. My blog took a back seat, and I needed time. 

I suppose that takes us to today.

My blog is no longer private, there are people who know about it and that's okay. I am actually really proud of this piece of the internet. I'm happy that Amy used to enjoy reading it, I'm happy that I can still write and although I'm certainly not a writer by nature. I did it, I wrote something. I didn't give up.

PUMPHOUSE POINT (TASMANIA) | PHOTO DIARY

If you had asked me a month ago what my dream holiday looks like I  would have said 'anywhere I can lie in the sun, cocktail in hand with a good book and great company', although after my recent trip to Pumphouse Point I can safely say my answer has changed. Being completely surrounded by wilderness, the snow falling on our rooftop while we were around the fire; cup of coffee in one hand and freshly baked bread in the other, I was in my element.

Pumphouse Point is located upon the southern hemisphere's deepest lake, Lake St Clair. The rooms are understated, modern and stylish. Our room included a couch which looked upon the Pumphouse, and a very generously sized bathtub which made those cold nights all the better. Guests have the use of bikes and row boats however we enjoyed simply walking among the snow, then heading  quickly inside to sit beside the fireplace.

Although our holiday ended as quickly as it had arrived and we were soon thrown back into our all-too familiar lifestyle, I can safely say it was a holiday I'll never forget. If you ever visit Tasmania, Pumphouse Point is certainly an somewhere you must experience for yourself.














Have you been to Tasmania? Where is your ideal holiday? 

#LOGOFFANDLIVE


I came into 2016 with no resolutions or 'goals'. I just didn't have any that I felt passion enough about to pick on and then it came to me. 


Recently I've felt overwhelmed by my dependence on technology. I spend the majority of my week at work on the computer, and spend my lunch time checking Instagram or reading my e-book and then will come home and catch up on tv whilst I write up blog posts. Aside from work, I can say that I honestly love all of it and I don't know where we would be today without my mate Google but there is a time and a place and in 2016 I'm going to live my life a little more offline

20 things to do offline:
1. Visit a library and borrow a book.
2. Learn a new language.
3. Read a hard copy book.
4. Volunteer for something you believe in.
5. Enroll in a short course (try here for free online courses).
6. Hug a friend.
7. Write your bucket list.
8. Make a photocopy album/ scrapbook (hard copy, not digital).
9. Make a herb garden
10. Make your daily commute device-free.
11. Stay off emails/social media for a day.
12. Do Yoga.
13. Visit a local market.
14. Tell someone you love them.
15. Walk on the beach barefoot.
16. Start a recipe book.
17. Learn to meditate
18. Go to a play or musical.
19. Watch the sunrise with someone special.
20. Have a picnic. 

I think that this is going to be a great series on the blog, so get excited for some future #logoffandlive post.

Let me know if you enjoyed this post and I encourage you all to get involved posting your own experience when you #logoffandlive .

FOR THE LOVE OF SWEATERS.

 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6

Those of you in the northern hemisphere may not think there is anything unusual about writing a post about knitwear, however as I am based in Sydney, Australia I can confirm that it is summer. Not only that but I am currently on holidays. Now, before you start picturing me on a sun-bed holding a cocktail let me clarify by admitting that I am currently wearing my Christmas jumper (is that not the weirdest thing you’ve heard in January? Although it's the only jumper I happened to have with me), huddled under not one, but three blankets listening to rain outside and am unable to leave said holiday destination due to surrounding floods. Jealous? I thought so. 

To be honest I really can't complain, I have gone through my fair share of Greys Anatomy (no spoilers please!) and although we are currently running out of food (baked beans anyone?) it is lovely to be cuddled up under layers of blankets and clothing, which got me day-dreaming about some jumpers that may be more appropriate than the one I am currently rocking.

Jumper number six isn't something I would normally wear, but considering the lack of food we have in our current situation  it couldn't be more true!

Which one is your favourite? 

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