November 2016Life Love and Hiccups: November 2016
Life Love and HiccupsLife Love and HiccupsLife Love and HiccupsLife Love and Hiccups

Wednesday 23 November 2016

A Life Changing Reality Check

Pin It

Brought to you by Nuffnang and UBank

If you have been reading this blog of mine for a while or ever had the time to poke around and read through some of my past posts, you might know that two and a half years ago, I chose to walk away from a high paying twenty year corporate career.

I didn’t do it because I had amassed enough money to retire… oh my lord far FAR from it.

I didn’t do it because I had achieved everything I had hoped to achieve in my career… nope, not even close.

I didn’t do it because I was brave enough or crazy enough to believe that I could just flippantly change my mind about my chosen occupation and try my hand at something new.

Nah ah.

I did it for no other reason than an accident that changed my life and a consequential 2am emotional breakdown that finally opened my eyes to what was most important to me in life… my family, and the time I could spend with them.

You know, I thought I had it all figured out when I was growing up. As a child, I watched my mum and dad head off to work everyday to jobs that let’s face it - were very good jobs, but really didn’t make their hearts sing. 

But they went anyway and they worked hard, damn hard to pay for their dream of a house on the beaches that they had always dreamed of, and the chance to provide us kids with the life that they believed would make us happy.

And it did make us happy, we were very happy and we had a wonderful childhood with everything we ever needed. 

We went to great schools and we had most of the things we could have wanted and yet in all honesty… if it all boiled down to it, we would have been just as happy without all of that too because we were so loved by parents who cared for us and would do anything for us and we were blessed to be together and healthy.

When my turn came to go off to work, I did so with the same dream tucked under my arm. The house on the beaches, the money to send our kids to good schools and to provide them with everything they could hope for and more. 

I worked to provide, I worked to amass and if I am honest - I worked to keep up with the Joneses.

I did the long hours, I trekked my way up and the irony is - in my bid to have it all - I spent such a massive amount of time away from the people I loved and the ones I was doing it all for that I questioned why? What is the point?

It just doesn’t make sense does it?

Living within our means, whatever that may be, is SO important to our wellbeing both financially and emotionally. What is the point of putting ourselves so far into debt and so beyond exhausted if at the end of the day we don’t get to enjoy it with the ones we are doing it all for.

For us, it was an easy decision. 

We didn’t want to give up our home… we love every single brick of our home, so we knew I needed to continue to work, which was totally fine by me. 

It did mean however that without the corporate salary, we needed to give up a lot of the unnecessary stuff - overseas holidays, regular dinners out and all the new hoopty doopty new thingumabobs in order to be in a position to keep our home and pay for it by doing something that I not only loved to do, but would allow me to spend more time at home with the boys whilst they are still young.

The long and the short of it was - we decided we did not want to trade ‘stuff’ for regrets because at the end of the day, I would imagine that there are very few people who on their deathbed say “I wished I had spent more time working to pay for more stuff”.

Imagine being told you only have a few months to live… would you change the way that you live?

Would you do things differently?

If you answered yes then let me ask you something… why would you wait for something like death sentence to make the change? Isn’t that too late?

UBank recently made a short film where six terminally ill people share their wisdom and their advice about what’s really important in life to them now that they are facing the end.

I am not going to lie to you… this is hard to watch and for many of us, it will be quite a wake up call.

UBank want us Aussies to reevaluate what is really important to us. 

They encourage us to find a dream that will enable us to afford our ideal home… but within our means. Borrow less and live more and be free to focus on what is really important to us - being with our loved ones without an overload of financial pressure.

What would you do differently given the chance?

Monday 21 November 2016

Elf Espionage.. OR over 100 Elf On A Shelf Ideas. You Choose!

Pin It

OK you guys, are you ready for the onslaught of Elf On The Shelves that are about to land on our shores?

I'm not.

No really, I am SO NOT!

It literally feels like only a few weeks ago that I was waking up at ridiculous hours of the morning going "OH SHIT... the Elf!" and then dragging my sorry ass downstairs to put that once clean but now grubby elf into some kind of position that will delight my children when they wake.

It was fun at first.

But after nearly six years of it, it has practically become nightmare material.

No for reals, it actually IS nightmare material because anyone who wakes in the morning to the sounds of the children hunting for that damn elf who you forgot to reposition the night before... will KNOW the nightmare that I speak off... the early morning wailing "MUMMMMMM HE'S DEAD, ALFIE'S DEAD CAUSE HE HASN"T MOVED!!!!"

I kinda wish he was dead.

Oh OK, alright, I am probably being a bit harsh on the poor old fella.

Maybe let's just go for maimed... or better yet - he got sacked for breaking elf law #479 - one shall not drive a sleigh under the influence of eggnog.

He may or may not have been a victim of elf espionage.

Yep OK I am clutching at straws. Spare me.

This year I have only one believer, so I intend on enlisting the help of the non believers in elf duty. Between the four of us, we only have to come up with 6 ideas each.

Totally doable right?

I reckon.

In case you are intending on starting the elf tradition for the first time this year... here are some links from some seasoned elf experts to help you think of enough ideas for the next 240 days (give or take for 10 years) that you will be obligated to position that elf.... as well as 25 excuses why your elf didn't move.

Alternatively... just make sure that elf gets lost on it's way to you.

Your choice.

You are welcome.

Have you taken the Elf On A Shelf Oath?

Thursday 17 November 2016

It's Time To Get My Butt Into Gear... No Like Literally!

Pin It
How beautiful is the light in this place?

This is the beam of light that shines through at 8.30 in the morning and whilst it's harshness isn't exactly conducive to any kind of photography at this time of the day, it's gorgeous all the same.

We are settling in to our new space and I am finding a new kind of rhythm where I drop kids to school and then come here to work until school pick up time.

I find so much security in routine... which is odd given I am at heart such a free spirit.

OK so confession time you guys...

You know how I said I was going to ride my bike to work every day once I moved into the new studio?

Yeah, well... I haven't ridden yet.

Not even once.

I going to go and blame it partly on the fact that I'm still lugging stuff to the studio every day... but the truth is - it's also because I am a bit of a lazy sod.

I really need to get moving more. I know I do.

I've talked about this for what seems like forever and when I am lying in bed at night I make all the best plans and my motivation is at an all time high. I even pick out fabulous workout outfits in my head and then morning comes and I'm all "nup, where's my car keys, I've got shit to get done".

All the renovating and moving lately has meant that I haven't been a total slack ass... but I'm not really going out of my way to do any extra cardio or anything and this weight I am so deadset keen on losing is not going to shift itself.

The annoying things is I don't actually eat a lot of crap, although I'm sure my nightly G&T probably doesn't help... I think I just don't exercise enough maybe?

I wanted to ask you guys - have you ever tried one of those weight loss groups or meal providers? If so what do you recommend?

What sort of exercise do you do? How often do you do it? And does it get easier over time?

I'm determined to stop procrastinating and do something for reals so that I can feel good in myself. By all means - feel free to hassle me about the bike riding anytime you see me driving my car... you have my FULL permission to kick me in the butt.

Have you successfully lost weight? 
I'd love you to share with me how... if you don't mind of course?

Tuesday 15 November 2016

New Moon, New Intentions & Some Spooky Shit!

Pin It
I promised the kids dinner on the beach last night so that we could watch the Supermoon rising.

As luck would have it, the weather was rather shitty and the vision I had of a warm balmy spring picnic on the beach was kind of replaced with a wrap yourself in anything warm and pick blowing sand of your fish and chips sort of scenario but meh... mission accomplished.

The beaches were absolutely packed, and by packed I mean like those delicious little smoked oysters that get squished into a little tin kind of packed (sorry for the randomness but mmmm smoked oysters) and every available legal and illegal car spot was pretty much full and every road within walking distance looked more like gridlocked highways than the semi quiet coastal streets they normally are.

It seemed every man, woman and child wanted to catch a glimpse of this moon that was creating so much hype and we were right there with them claiming our patch of sand.

We saw the moon though... all be it for the 5 minutes or so that it shone through a gap in the clouds and as luck would have it - my phone ran out of battery before I could take any half decent image to sit on my camera roll with the other zillion photos I have snapped over the last year to keep as keepsakes.

Maybe it had something to do with my intention to be 'more present'.

Now THAT'S some spooky shit people!

I did get this one blurry shot before my phone went dead, and it will do to remind me.

Yep it will do.

Did you know that there are actually (on average) 6 Supermoons a year?

I had no idea.

Last night's Supermoon however was the closest it has been to earth since 1948 and if you walked in a straight line from earth to the moon, it would take you about 170 years to reach the big cheese.

That would surely burn off that fish and chips we scoffed.

Psychics, astrologers and those who hold spiritual beliefs in the moon believe that Supermoons have incredible energy.

It makes sense when you think about it right?

I mean in the lead up to this particular Supermoon the world kind of went crazy what with the Trump factor and the earthquakes and people's emotions all running on high. Apparently that is the type of frenzied energy that builds up before an event like this.

The good news is that all that energy can be put to good use too and a new moon, especially a Supermoon, is the perfect time to focus on new goals and intentions.

Write them in the sand and let the tide take them away, write them down and put them into a fire pit, or write them on paper and bury them... it doesn't really matter what kind of symbolic ritual you choose, you can run around naked and sing them if you like.. although your neighbours might call the 'special white van' on you.

Do whatever you like because as long as you focus on what it is you want with your intention or goal and you approach it with a pure heart and an unwavering belief that what you want can be yours, then that there is all the energy you need to bring your goals and intention to life. The moon apparently helps to magnify that energy though and so that is why a new moon or a Supermoon is the perfect time to do this.

If that all sounds a little higgelty piggelty to you (it's ok, I don't mind, besides my hubby just rolls his eyes at me and says 'yes dear' when I go on about all of this) then you can just find a quiet spot to sit with your family and friends and enjoy the extra bright moonlight for a while and feel gratitude for those you have around you.

You don't actually have to wait long for the next Supermoon, although it wont be quite as close as this one just gone, the next Supermoon actually falls in December... on the 14th December to be precise.

Might be a good time to think about setting some intentions for the new year then. Who knows, it may actually help some of us keep those new years resolutions for once... you know, like the one where I give up fish and chips.


Did you see the moon last night?
Did you set any intentions or goals?

Friday 11 November 2016

Ten Lists You NEED In Your Life

Pin It

I was going to post this earlier this week and then, well.... Trump kind of happened and I got my knickers all in a twist and truth be told - had I written this post then, it probably would have been titled Ten Reasons Why I Think Trump is a Gigantic Turdball and then of course I wouldn't have been able to stop at ten and I would have changed the title to Eleventy Billion and Ten Reasons Why I think Trump is A Gigantic Turdball and I would have like NO skin left on my fingers because I would have spent 2 whole days stabbing at my keyboard to get those eleventy billion and ten items onto my list and off my chest....


Rant over.

I'm not going to say much more about the results of the US election because it's all pretty much already been said. All that is left for us all to do worldwide is to spread love, respect and empathy to each other because love and light is more powerful than anger and hate.

Enough said.

So, it's no secret I'm a list lover from waaaaaaaay back. In fact I think I was probably like some kind of professional list maker in a past life such is my love for lists.

Not only is there something so incredibly darn satisfying in making a list and ticking things off...  I suspect my OCD DNA really likes the organisation and structure of lists too.

That's my theory and I am sticking to it.

To celebrate my love of lists I thought I would share another list.... bahaha. This is a list of ten lists I think we all need in our life and I have picked ten of my fave lists I have pinned to my Pinterest list board.

Yes, I know how loopy a Pinterest board dedicated to lists might make me appear...


Enjoy my fellow list lovers!

52 Ways To Simply Your Life from Let Why Lead

25 Insanely Pretty Bullet Journals from Buzz Feed

20 Beautiful ways To Wrap With Brown Paper from Fat Mum Slim

12 Plants That Create Positivity In Your Home from Power Of Positivity

100 Ways to Un-complicate Your Life from Bellamumma

21 Beauty Hacks You've Probably Never Tried from Smaggle

5 Apps to Help You Sleep And Relax from Katrina Chambers

10 Ways To Help You Feel Less Shit from The MerryMaker Sisters

10 Super Simple All Natural Beauty Tips from Thank Your Body

The Best 50 Fashion Tips of All Time from Instyle

Are you a list lover too or are you anti the structured idea of lists?

Tuesday 8 November 2016

Gratitude In EVERY Sense of The Word

Pin It

Can I just start by saying thank you... thank you for your love and your support and your encouragement and all your beautiful words you sent me via comments and messages and emails after my post last week.

I had hit a real low point, like low kind of low and my anxiety had spiralled com[pletely out of control.

Anxiety and I have never been friends, but most days I am able to keep it at arms length so I was SO pissed off with myself that I had left the door open enough for it to creep in and surprise me like it did.

In hindsight, I was exhausted.

Bone tired exhausted, and as far as anxiety is conerned... being that exhausted is as good as leaving a pizza menu on the doorstep of someone who has given up carbs for lent.

Two words... EASY TARGET.

Last Tuesday night when the panic took hold off me - I begged the universe to give me a sign that it would all be ok... something... anything.

Geez, I was happy with a sniff of a rag used to wipe up someone elses something.

And would you believe it... those signs started coming in thick and fast.

Asides from the overwhelmingly beautiful show of support I received from people far and wide... including YOU GUYS, there were people who out of the blue, walked into the studio fell in love with our space and want to collaborate.

Then there was the incredible energy shared by our guests at our very first workshop in our new home. I could have kissed every single one of them for making me so happy that day.

And then there were reminders of just how many reasons I have to be grateful.

Those reminders were literally everywhere I looked and there were also endless opportunities for me to make a difference to some others who were having a far tougher time than I, tougher than I could even begin to comprehend.

Sometimes it is easy to fall into the trap of thinking that "I don't have any time to volunteer" or "I don't have any money to give" or even the old "I'm only one person - what difference could I make?"

But it doesn't take much to make a difference, no matter how small that difference may seem.

A smile to someone who looks like they are having a particularly shitty day, a phone call to check up on someone else who is having a tough time, ten bucks made up of mostly shrapnel you find around your home, down the back of your couch or in the bottom of your hand bag...

It ALL makes a difference and the bonus you get apart from knowing you are helping someone else - is you automatically feel better about your own situation and grateful for what you do have and all the things that ARE right in your world.

So I have spent the last week with my eyes open for every opportunity to feel grateful and today I can honestly say that even though I still feel the lingering hangover of anxiety, compared to how I was feeling this time last week - I am happier and I am hopeful and I am so damn optimistic about what is to come.

The biggest reminder I have had over the past week has actually come via someone I don't know, someone I have never met and someone who will probably never know how truly grateful she has made me feel.

I'm sure Julia from Five Fairies and a Fella is no stranger to most of you guys, and if so then you surely know of the awful news that her fight with bowel cancer is sadly coming to an end.

Julia's story is not mine to tell, but if you aren't familiar with it - I implore you to visit her Facebook page here or her blog here.

Julia is brave and courageous and a true warrior in every sense of the word... but tragically her battle has been lost and all she has left to do is soak up the time she has remaining with her beautiful husband and girls and to turn every remaining breath into a precious memory to leave behind for those who know and love her.

Her friends have set up a Go Fund Me page to raise money to allow her husband and her little girls to be by her side between now and ... well then.

You don't need to give much if you don't have it. Believe me, I had a mere $20 that I could afford to give, but every contribution no matter how big or small will help Julia's family.

It wil help you too because just knowing that you can do something for someone else is a gift and the reminder that no matter how shit life may seem for us right now... we are doing alright in the bigger picture? Well, that is something that is worth a million times more than money you give.

Simply click the image below to donate whatever you can... if you can... and then go and hug your partner and your babies and say a word of thanks to the universe for reminding you of ALL that you do have right in your life right now.

Thursday 3 November 2016

The Truth Behind The Facade... MY Fragile Facade

Pin It

I have the absolute worst anxiety at the moment, like gut wrenching, diarrhoea inducing, stomach all tied up in knots like that macrame above kind of anxiety... the I can't actually breathe kind of anxiety.

I feel like the post I wrote about the sky not falling in on me the other day was a slight underexaggeration of how I am really feeling and THERE... I said it and it feels kinda good to get off my chest.

Now if only I can get this ten ton weight off my chest too I may be able to catch my breath.

Last night I had the first full blown panic attack I've had in a loooong time. The type where you just feel a desperate need to run away and yet... you can't, there is no where to run.

It was the type where your heart is pounding so hard you can feel the veins down the side of your temple throbbing in time to your beating heart.

The type where you go outside to try and fill your lungs with air and yet the black of the night feels so damn suffocating and claustrophobic.

The type where you know you have to put on the bright happy face, even though all you want to do is curl up in a little ball and pretend that crying will make you feel better.

Anxiety has loved me long time. It's been something I have lived with since my first panic attack at aged 21.

The return of it this time has come on the back of a crazy few weeks of renovating and moving and hemorrhaging our entire savings and safety savings and then some into a business that deep down in the depth of my soul I believe in... however the constant overwhelming questioning I put myself through that includes but is not limited to -  "will it work out? will people still come? will we be ok? will I be able to pay all the bills that have built up?" rings so freaking loud in my head that there is no room for any thoughts other than ones that are created from my own fear.

I'm tired, I'm emotional and aside from the renos and the move, I am working every waking hour in the day on every other possible form of income to try and cover all the unexpected costs that keep popping up.

Somewhere along the way though, self doubt has taken a strangle hold and despite having people around me assuring me "you will be ok Sonia" the thought of maybe not being ok continues to taunt me.

I had my bra stuffed full of crystals yesterday morning. I had so many crystals in there that my boobs literally jangled as I walked.


Yeah pretty much, but hey, I am clutching at anything here you guys that offers me any form of relief.

When I bent over to pick up a pair of PJs one of the kids had thrown on the floor in their daily rush to get ready for school, two of the crystals fell out of my bra and cracked on the hard tiles.


One of the crystals that cracked was a piece of citrine.

Citrine that I had stuffed in there to encourage the manifestation of money.

That was the precise moment I felt the panic start to rise up into my throat.

Less than ten minutes later I received a phone call from my new building manager for Little Lane Workshops who told me that the fire alarm that had accidentally for no apparent reason gone off on my first morning in my new studio yesterday, was going to cost me and cost me HARD.

$1300 kind of hard.

Yep that is apparently what the Government charges these days to send a fire truck out to a false alarm. An alarm that as I mentioned - went off for no apparent reason and despite that - the occupant of the studio in which the alarm goes off has to pay that $1300.

So that person would be me.

That was the point my head pretty much exploded and seeings as I have exhausted all my adrenaline on getting through the renos and the move, I am pretty much just a blubbering mess right now.

In the past few weeks we have spent every last cent we own and then some making over a new studio for my business, less than a year and a half since we spent everything we had then doing up the original warehouse for my business, the warehouse we have had to move out of because we can't get another 12 month lease on it.

We've had financial hit after hit on the renos that have been far from smooth sailing, hidden costs that have come out to slap us, along with the typical costs that come with leasing a new 86sqm studio, two cars being due for rego, school fees, bills and all the usual life expenses we all have to deal with.

Look, I know that this is just money and stuff... and it is NOTHING in comparison to the pain and heartache that many other people are feeling right at this very moment, and I am trying SO HARD to put it all into perspective... I really am, but it feels like a humungous giant to me right now and I'm scared and I am anxious and I guess I just felt like I was being a big fat fraud if I didn't admit to all of that.

I know what people see from the outside looking in -  the images we choose to share on social media and online are carefully edited because really - we don't want the world to see us complaining or moaning or going on and on about our 1st world problems do we?

And so we share the happy smiley pics, the ones that without you even realising it, can be causing other people to feel insecure or anxious in comparison and yet as soon as we put the phone back down, the facade falls away and all the worry and anxiety we hid in the photo - it is still there. It hasn't gone away.

Anxiety can get to anyone... it's not picky in the slightest about who it infects and no matter how cool calm and collected someone may appear on the surface, we need to remember that other people are going through stuff too - bigger stuff, smaller stuff, stuff that scares them whatever it may be, and the more we are open and honest with each other about it... well the better off we all will be.

And so I guess I just wanted to be open with you guys and tell you that anxiety has once again gotten to me.

But I keep telling myself that I will be ok.

I will get through this and over this.

I will put on my big girl panties and man up to the fight and I will look for all of the positives I have allowed to be hidden under my worries and I WILL make Little Lane Workshops everything I know it can be.

I will keep stuffing those crystals into a better fitting bra and I will continue to believe in this dream and myself.

In the meantime, it just feels better to talk about it... you know?

For whatever reason, it just does.

Do you suffer from anxiety or panic attacks?
Anything you want to lighten your load with and share with us? 
I promise, it feels better when you do.

Tuesday 1 November 2016

Turns Out The Sky DIDN'T Fall In After All

Pin It

Well that was a hell of a week... who am I kidding, that was a HELL OF A MONTH.

The good news is, we have moved Little Lane Workshops into our new studio at Warriewood and the new place... oh she is so pretty.

We have big 12 foot high ceilings and windows with loads of natural light flooding in and freshly painted white floors and I love her, Oh I really love her.

Is that weird to talk about a building like that?


Most likely.


Less than a month ago, I was a panic stricken owner of a business that potentially had no home. And today? Well, today I am sitting here on the couch in our new place, absolutely bone tired from all of the renovating and moving, and I have an ankle the size of a German sausage on steroids... and yet I am at peace and happy. Ridiculously, blissfully, cannot wipe the smile off my face kind of happy.

I'll take some more pics when we are all finished, but these are just a few to help you picture what our new place looks like.

The reality of just how incredibly lucky I am to be surrounded by people who genuinely love me and care about me and my family has really hit home these past few weeks.

Nothing breeds courage and gratitude more than realising you have a tribe of awesome people standing behind you ready to steady you if you stumble...

And stumble I have... quite a few times these past few months when things got really hard and honestly, without the unwavering support and belief in me from my beautiful patient hardworking hubby, parents and friends... well I don't know if I would have had the heart or the guts to pull this all off.

As for those girls up there - those girls have been my absolute rocks through all of this.

There are no words to describe my friendship with those two - Kate and Jayde. Not only do they possess the ability to make me laugh... ridiculous gasping for air belly laughs, they also keep me calm when all I really want to do is run around in circles with my arms in the air like Chicken Little shrieking "the sky is falling in".

I have a tendency to get dramatic, ("no shit Sherlock" says everyone who knows me) and every dramatic gal needs a Jayde and Kate in their life to pull them back to earth when they get carried away.

So, we still have a lot more to do this week before our first workshop kicks off this weekend, but we are home and a new kind of normal can now resume and I am so looking forward to snuggling back into this blog here and picking up where we left off some time ago before things went a little crazy.

Thank you for being so patient with me... turns out the sky didn't quite fall in on us after all.

Go figure!

Are you the panicky 'Chicken Little' in your group of friends or family, or are you the 'cool as a cucumber stay calm in a crisis' type of person?