December 18, 2014

Christmas Favourites

I could say so much about Christmas and all the past years of traditions and experiences and things which made it feel like complete magic when I was young, I could also say how much Christmas feels different now, how you try and grab hold of that spark but it disappears before it touches your hand. The perils of leaving childhood. Ultimately though, I love Christmas, I love seeing people put effort into decorations and lights, I love the colours of Christmas, I love the thought of snow and pine trees, but I also love that our Christmas usually consists of sun-kissed shoulders and warm summer nights of light-looking.

As it is now the week before Christmas, I thought I'd write a little list of some of my favourite Christmas things; if you've written your own similar list, comment the link below as I'd love to read them. If I don't get to say this before Christmas, I hope yours if filled with wonder and blessings. xx

Drink | Considering I don't know what the typical American favourite of eggnog even tastes like, I'd probably just have to say wine, we drink wine at Christmas, and when I was young or if I have to drive it's the good old "fake wine" on the menu.

Movie | 'Mickey's Christmas Carol' because every Boxing Day growing up we would finish the night watching or falling asleep to this, spread across the lounge room floor with all my siblings and cousins. I also kind of love The Grinch.

Food | The roast, the Christmas pudding and the brandy butter (mouth is definitely watering).

Album | A couple of albums which were always put on at Christmas when I was growing up, I think they're one of the things which really send that Christmas feeling through me. I'll have to try and find what they are and put them on - I haven't listened to them much the past couple of years.

This Year | We are having Christmas lunch at home, with the smallest group of people since forever. But I'm actually really looking forward to that, simple with just some siblings, Ben, and Mum. Dinner will be at Ben's parents', Boxing day afternoon/evening will be out at my Aunty's hobby farm (a tradition where a bunch of traditions happen and we can catch up with all of Mum's side of the family). Then the morning after Boxing Day, Ben and I are off to Apollo Bay until the new year!

December 17, 2014

Tasmania | Enchanted Walk

The day we arrived at Cradle Mountain National Park we had patches of rain in the morning, but we managed to squeeze in the short walk at the entrance of the park which is fittingly named. Moss and lichen covered rocks, trees which made you feel like you were walking in an enchanted forest, and a stream with waterfalls. When you're made to feel like you could be in the Lord of the Rings, you know you've experienced something good. We got through without it raining on us and spent the other hours of the day looking at the videos and installations at the park centre, the afternoon involved relaxing in the ute at our camp site (where a wallaby came to say hello), and we went to the Tasmanian Devil Sanctuary to watch the feeding as it got dark. We finished the night with dinner at Pepper's and a drive to check out what wildlife we could find - with an outcome of something like 11 wombats (!) and countless other animals.

December 07, 2014

Weekly Notes

I've decided that to help myself in my complete and unfortunate downfall in journaling, I would like to create regular posts on things that have happened, made me happy, that I'm doing or that I'd like to share. I journaled every day for a couple of years and then it just stopped - I can't see myself picking it up again - but that's partly why I started this blog. To bring some of my mind and memories into words again. Here goes!

// I have officially completed my first year as a nursing student (proud moment), it was difficult and I'm so frightened for the future, but I'm going to push it to the side and concentrate on my passion for the time being - hellooo photography.

// We had a garage sale today and although it's sad seeing memories go it's well past the time for it - I plan on greatly diminishing the amount of things I own over the holidays, it's been too long since I've had a clean slate. Wish me luck.

// I'm finally on summer holidays and it's such a great feeling! I need to write a big list and plan out all the things I want to do, time flies when you're having fun and I can't go another set of holidays without finishing that list off! 

// I'm looking forward to Christmas + beach trips + time for photo-taking + blogging + maybe picking up a good book and reading (I think the last book I finished was The Hobbit a couple of years ago - shocking!) 

// I am going lens searching tomorrow; incredibly excited to get a new addition on my camera as my Christmas present - I don't even care that I won't have a surprise gift this year.

Other things:

November 24, 2014

Best Things About Grey Days

We are nearing the end of spring in Australia, but today is a welcoming break from the heat we're having leading up to the hot, dry summer. I thought I'd share some of the things which make you feel good about a stormy day.

No pressure | You don't feel guilty if you're inside all day
Rain | It smells and sounds nice when it rains, thunder is even better, rainbows are a bonus

Comfy | You're allowed to snuggle in blankets and snooze whenever being lazy gets all too tiring

Photograph | Perfect lighting for getting the camera out and taking some shots

Catch-up | It's a good chance to get up to date with anything - blogging, work, housework, etc.

Read | You can finally pick up that book you've been eyeing off

Tea | Particularly if you're only an occasional tea drinker, these are the perfect days

Music | You know your favourites for gloomy days, put them on

Rainy day dates | Cook some hearty warm food and have some quality partner time

Fresh air | Open the door and take a deep breath, you'll be grateful

November 23, 2014

A Shortlist of Places

It's normal for me to get in a worldly mood where I begin thinking about all the places I could potentially visit in my lifetime. I try and think of the top ones, but once I start, it understandably becomes impossible - particularly for someone like myself who has spent many hours growing up researching what I could one day see with my own eyes (the result: an overwhelming amount of wonder). So I've compiled a stripped down list of my current top favourites I find myself constantly day dreaming about, without reading too much into it.

Canada | for the wilderness and mountains

United States of America | for the diversity

Iceland | for the colour and formations

United Kingdom | for the past and greenery

New Zealand | for the fantasy and proximity

Iceland image used in this post is by the ever inspiring Manchik's

October 30, 2014

Tasmania | Dove Lake

I was pretty bummed about the weather this day as it was something I had been looking forward to the most on our trip to Tasmania. This is where we were supposed to see Cradle Mountain, but we basically saw cloud instead (not the first time we've managed to do this!) - aside from my disappointment, it was still a view you can't complain about, in the patches where the rain stopped, everything was golden, and we sat and watched the yellows and greys, the choppy Dove Lake, spotted patches of snow and daring hikers on the mountains. We were going to take the 2 hours walk around the lake, but all I can say is, better luck next time. I'm sure one day I will be back again.

October 14, 2014

Between Lenses | "Mornings"

It couldn't be more perfect timing for this months 'morning' theme to happen. I came back from Tasmania last week and have been so overwhelmed with my lack of spare time since then, let's just say the summer holidays couldn't come around fast enough. I'm dreaming of blogging, reading, being inspired, listening to and discovering music, taking photos, camping and fingers crossed not any homework (for those who don't know, I am studying nursing - blogging to satisfy my creative side, which is always where my passions really lay).

Back to MORNINGS. I slept in the back of a ute whilst I was away and every morning we were up when the light of dawn first appeared, Tasmania experiences some beautiful sunrises and I was lucky enough to see this one when I opened my eyes on a particular morning. We had slept right on the beach, overlooking Oyster Bay and the Hazards (a group of pink granite mountains surrounding the well known Wineglass Bay) - I couldn't be more happy that I got to experience this moment, any of us who appreciate nature and camping dream for something like this.

I have a couple thousand photographs to sort through from my trip, so don't expect them right away, but expect them slowly and eventually!

Keep inspiring and being inspired, have a great week!

// Shani

My past Between Lenses posts can be viewed here.

September 15, 2014

18 months

The things he has done for me in this time is incredible.
Benjamin, you're my favourite, I love you.

I have been so busy busting my brain with my nursing school assignments and tests over the past few weeks that I haven't had a chance to swing my mind into blogging, and I'm missing it... But I still won't be around for up to a month either! Ben and I are leaving for a two week camping road trip around Tasmania, which I am completely ecstatic for and cannot wait to be there, alone, with Ben, and the mountains, and beaches, and uhh, it's going to be unbelievable.

I'll be posting about it when I get back, so if you'd like to know when my photos and videos are up - follow my blog! See you soon.

August 26, 2014

Seaside Day Trip | Ocean Road

This past weekend we went for a drive down to the coast, arriving at Torquay in the morning - where the 240 kilometre Great Ocean Road begins. We wandered for a while then drove down the road 20 minutes to Anglesea, stopping at Bells Beach (well known in the surfing world) on the way. It was the second last weekend of Winter and the weather was gorgeous, which I didn't expect since it's been pretty cold and dreary. Going exploring or driving somewhere with Ben is a favourite day, no matter what the weather or where we go, I could do this forever.


Bells Beach