Thursday, December 16, 2010

It's mah birthday

I'm partying like it's my birthday.

Gonna have a midlife crisis and go all gangsta, cos it's my birthday awwwww yeah.


First thing I did this morning was give Glen my iphone. I love the thing, but I'm pretty sick of checking my email every time it bings, and I'm well sick of Twitter. It is not a good start to the day to flick open Twitter and see half the world moan about the day ahead, so stuff that, I'm going to avoid it and become a blogger again. Old skool stylez.

I got some choccies and enjoyed a coffee this morning with an old (young) school friend. We are young. But also, sadly, not actually as young as we were 20 years ago when we finished school (I shit you not, I may be into gangsta rap, but I finished school 20 years ago, I'm a conundrum). I've got lots of lovely messages on Facebook, I'm not going to avoid Facebook, I like Facebook.

So here's to this year coming up, one which will be filled with excitement and fun, and will be much better than 2010. It started today with the council putting in a hole for our new P30 parking sign outside the shop in town, wonders will never cease. It is a legendary good day.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


We just want to send our deepest sympathies to all the families and friends of those poor men in the mine who lost their lives. My dad is from the West Coast and we know what an amazing, tight knit community it is. It must be terrible there at the moment, our thoughts are with you.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

For the 2 people who haven't seen this, you've been missing out

It is almost December, what gives?

I've had a great day. The lovely Kim tweeted that she had some Toast Martinborough tickets, and quick as you like I snaffled 'em up. My very kind parents obligingly took the kiddies for us, and Glen and I hooned over to Martinborough. It was so pleasant, we don't do much that isn't work or child related, so hanging out together scoffing yummy food was great. I was driving, so I took delicate sips of yummy wine, and we blew our $80 worth of festival francs in very quick time (a single paua fritter, with a sprig of watercress on a little plastic plate was $25, shock). We had a nice walk around and were happy to leave to collect the kids after a couple of hours.

Bullets will have to cover the rest, because I have emails to wade through and bills to pay. I've realised this is why I fail to blog, I open the laptop and am compelled to deal with the flood of work stuff before I can venture further, and the work stuff just keeps coming...

  • We had a wonderful Christmas shopping night in Mt Vic on Thursday, so we've decided to do the same in Petone this coming Thursday (the 25th), there'll be wine, lollies, discounts, giveaways, it will be great fun.
  • My friend Katie recommended Sons of Anarchy, it is good, but my god what a raw, vicious world. I'm going to persist because Katie has great taste, but I think I'll have to steel myself with whisky, like that bloke who had his tattoo torched off. Actually whisky might be necessary each time I remember it.
  • We're going camping very soon after Christmas. I am very, very excited. We bought a tent years ago (it was one of those things we got before the third baby appeared), and this will be our first time using it.
  • I've got nothing else to say really. I'm a bit knackered from all the being a wino with all the luvvies, bogans and 18 year olds.

Monday, October 25, 2010


Crikey, spent the finest long weekend ever in Paekakariki, housesitting for the very generous spirited Helen in her humungous, gorgeous home. It made me realise how crammed in we all our in our little place, and I resolved to straighten out my studio so that it would be an appealing destination to go and pay bills and whatnot. I was so good I spent several hours this afternoon hauling boxes around, and deciding whether or not to keep diaries from 1993, and old essays, and the manual for Glen's Technics stereo he got in 1982 (for the curious: I kept the diary, otherwise I might forget again that I'd studied Foreign Policy, ha! Who knew? And I had to keep those particular essays, because otherwise I may have forgotten that at one stage I was capable of writing the perfect comms plan a Work and Income New Zealand restructure at one point in my life. And of course I kept the stereo booklet. After 28 years I couldn't be held responsible for chucking out something so vital).

I put up a noticeboard, and piled all my fabric neatly, and went through some boxes of business documents from when I owned a catering/takeaways business (I kept them, because otherwise I may forget again that at one point I was capable of pulling together a pretty flash looking catering menu).

Boy, when I die, and it is decided that I am worthy of writing a biography of, the researchers will be staggered at the depth of my interestingness.

We also hung out with a couple of my friends from school. At my age you go around in a perpetual stage of being confused, because how did 20 years pass? How? What happened? Was I asleep? Drunk? On P? Because I understand that P makes 7 days feel like 1 day, and that is the only way it could possibly make sense.

Glen just came home with my gorgeous new clogs, which arrived in the post. Last time I had gorgeous new clogs was 1993. It is in my expenses list in that diary. Those researchers will probably have to do some serious analysis on what this means.

Which reminds me, time for a wine.

Friday, October 08, 2010


In case you were wondering, Glen and I first hooked up at a Dinosaur Jr concert. I'm pretty pleased about this every time I hear Dinosaur Jr. It is lovely.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Weekend the Great

My previous drunken posts probably reveal part of the fun this weekend was. After a lovely, busy day in the shop in Petone, visited by lots of great people and chatting away to all the ace customers, I came home to a delicious bottle of wine. I love the beginning of daylight savings, I know it is a drag for some, but when you've got kids who are waking earlier and earlier, is is psychologically a blimmin godsend. And wine! A good evening of drunken scheming, twittering, singing 80s songs (C4 had a well timed 80s night), awesome.

This morning Lucy was really unwell. Now it is going to sound like I'm a monster, but I loved the cuddles and she napped in bed with me, while the boys did whatever they liked. She was heaps better after a kip, and no more spewing, so we all just hung out and watched telly and played. And the shops were again busy, which always puts me in a good mood.

We got pizza delivered from Wholly Pizza. They have those huge slices like in movies. I just love it, and their service was awesome. We got bagels delivered too, so we're sorted for a yummy lunch tomorrow.

Blah blah happy happy. Things have turned. For some months there was no wine, and no good service from anyone. Happy.

Saturday, September 25, 2010


Even 2 minutes after I wrote that, I realised it didn't make sense, but for Mission Martha's Brain I decided to just Go For It.

Plus Madonna came on the telly, and that bitch is powerful, loves.


(I do those kisses like I'm a rapper goddess, for one day the 40 year old rapper goddess will be queen, youse have been warned).

Utter ridiculousness

I figured at some point in the next decade I had to be hammered.

My god, when you're a little drunk the most awesome ideas are FLOWING. Like my bollywood/80s army, like that bit where I linked about my love of Russell Brown, and then there he was, in my shop! about um, how you can still respect spousal laughing when the headphones are in their ears and they don't realise and that entire sentence should have hyphens but they're a whole different deal when you're typing and how the earthquake gave you a suspician that you're on borrowed time and whisky time!!

Love you all.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Brain exercise

I'm not feeling brainy. I used to feel pretty onto it, but now my brain is FULL of boring staff rosters, GST returns, accounts to pay. Total yawnfest. I don't know how people keep a part of their brain for themselves when there is so much to have to think about, but they do, and I'm going to too. I just don't know how yet. Any suggestions are welcome.

I think what I used to do is, erm, nothing really, maybe that was the key. I'd have some quiet time, and sha-winnnng! Total brainiac!

Perhaps just the exercise of writing on here will be enough to provoke a surge in braincells. We'll try that eh. I remember when I first opened the shop, and I fancied myself sitting there at the counter, writing away. Turns out that isn't how shops work, who knew?

Until the brain mojo returns, read this lady.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Bullet time.

  • I read Room today. I really liked it. I don't read much these days, and I couldn't put it down.
  • I went into the shop last night and tried on heaps of clothes. It is the first time I've done it, and it was amazing, like having my own personal, well, shop (which I suppose I do have). I bought myself this and one of these (not pictured).
  • Things are much better than they were. We got back most of our money for the crashed car in Australia, which was great. We don't tend to take out the insurance on rental cars, and even though we've been caught out the last couple of times, we only actually lost a couple of hundred of bucks, which is what we would have lost if we'd taken out insurance, and not used it. Sounds very circular, I know, but we're happy.
  • The shops are ace. Winter was pretty grim, the recession kicked in, but basically we just realised that last year was blimming cruisy, and the shops are still viable. Talk to any retailer, and this is the year the recession bit. Plus things are definitely on the up now, and we're really enjoying them.
  • I got a new camera, look! It's suddenly like I can actually take photos, even if I can't put them prettily in the blog.
  • IMG_0081.JPG
  • Now I have to go and watch *cough* Glee. Wheeeeee!
  • Oh frack, seems something on my site is misbehaving, and I'm going to have to remove all the links (which were terribly out of date anyway, but still, wish I didn't have to.

Monday, September 06, 2010


Every year I manage to miss anything good on the awards shows, but I found this on YouTube, and it neatly combines my Joel McHale/Community love, 30 Rock new obsession (yes, I'm a late adopter), Glee secret fangirl ness, OMG Madmen/Jon Hamm, and Bruce Springsteen. I could watch it all day. It even has Tim Gunn!

Sunday, September 05, 2010


We've just been having the most insane batch of bad luck for the last couple of months, and it kind of ruins wanting to say anything on this blog, because everything is like "yeah, we went to Melbourne, but the car got pranged and it cost $4000", and "yeah, the shop is good, but then some cheeky motherfucker stole the ipod and it ruined my mood", and trust me, it has been a very long series of these sort of events. Fact is though, we're still very chipper. At this point all the stupidness is almost a joke, and as long as the bank doesn't actually expect us to pay back the credit card, we'll be fine.

And this year has just been full of reasons to not fret about these dramas. I think we've been acutely aware that, while things have been a bit mental, we are still happy, healthy and all those good things. And as if to drive that home a bit more, Christchurch has this mad earthquake yesterday. Christchurch is where I spent my childhood, and I'm very fond of the place. It is definitely my turangawaewae, I always feel like I've gone home when I visit, even though I was only 12 when I left. It is pretty weird to think that all the reasons I love it, all that sort of solid Englishness, has been largely busted.

I've been feeling for years that Petone was a ticking time bomb, but crikey, bloody Christchurch eh? Fortunately everyone in my family is fine and their houses have held up. What a weird year.

Friday, August 06, 2010

On a roll

Not really, but I'm trying to gather momentum, so here I am. I'm going to Melbourne next week, and I intend to have very little contact with the internet while I'm there.

I'm bloody excited. I will be visiting a couple of trade fairs while I'm there, they're gonna be awesome. The ones in New Zealand are frankly very, very marginal. They're worth have a look because occasionally some awesomeness is tucked amongst the Jack Daniels mirrors, plush toys, rude shaped candles and so on, but by and large it is dross. The Aussie ones are full of loveliness and inspiration, which is what enjoying work is all about.

So adieu. Ooh, tell you what, why don't you all leave your hot tips for must see places and eats in Melbourne?

Thursday, August 05, 2010


I really miss blogging, I miss doing it, and I miss reading it. I want to bring it back.

I resent Twitter for quieting the voices that I used to enjoy sitting down and reading for a few minutes. By and large all the old crew have gone quiet, myself included. My own silence I blame on all the factors that have probably afflicted everyone a)twitter b)facebook c) busy-ness d) real life, but WOE. I want the voices back. I want the pleasure of a daily scan of my RSS reader filled with local people, not just people who have managed to make a living out of it (kudos to you if you have).

Twitter is ok, but it is noisy, and busy, bring back the jokes! And the links! And comments! Remember them? Where a conversation would happen over a period of days? Not just minutes?

Turns out I'm old, and I liked things better back then. Now 'scuse me, I have to go and see if anyone has "liked" and awesome update I made.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Blah di blah

Man, it has been ages. This winter has been a bit shit, yes? Everyone seems to be grumpy and down, and I'm no exception. I've been trying to be discreet and grown up about dramas, but hells, time to share.

Our pretty shop in Mt Vic has been a bit of a trial lately. It is trading well, gorgeous, our staff are just fantastic, but we're having a few issues with parking. It is SO BORING that I bore myself talking about it, but unfortunately it is really important for businesses with no foot traffic to have decent parking, and sadly this just ain't the case. I won't go into the details, although I'll talk about it for hours to anyone that is interested in real life, but here I guess I need to keep some professional decorum. It is an ongoing struggle, and tedious as hell.

So during all this stupid drama we got robbed. Twice. At the Mt Vic shop. Le sigh. We have a jolly good alarm, so they didn't get away with much, but you know we love that pretty shop, and it is just sending us test after test. For instance, the night we were robbed we were away for the first time in an eternity for a single night (our broken car had prevented us getting away earlier, as planned), and Glen had to drive back from the Wairarapa at 2am to fix the door. Woe!

See why I've stayed off here? I'm a total bore.

The happy news is that it is all just slightly surreal, and basically we're pretty content and happy. If we only had one shop I think it would've slayed our confidence, but because we have another completely perfect and unproblematic shop in Petone, we know all this bullshit is not our fault, not due to any ineptness on our part, just pure craziness.

I'm absolutely determined not to let a few problems ruin what is fun about being in business, and there is still plenty of fun to be had, for instance I've gone hard out with shopping (for the shop) lately, and that is extremely great, and we're still keen to be the best business people ever, so these testing situations will just thicken up our skin a little for further growth and greatness.

And it is only 5 months to Christmas, and I'm really looking forward to Christmas this year. Summer! Hanging out! Warm weather!

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Possibly my first before and after

Dining area

These are our magic new cupboards. I went up to the Pixies in March, and on my drive I stopped in at a gorgeous wee store in Taihape called (I think) Aunt Bessies Design Store. The place carried really similar stock to us, which was slightly surreal, and had the most amazing fittings. The owner's mum was there, she was awesome "call me Gaga", and she said the beautiful painted bentwood chairs had come from her cowshed, and the cupboards pictured below were from an old school science lab, being chucked out. Well, to cut a long story short, the lovely owner, Mary, called me because she'd been offered a great job in Australia, and did I want any of the fittings?

The cupboards are exactly what we needed in our kitchen, full of character, and with loads of useful storage. The chairs are all being used in the shops to hold up precious cushions.


Friday, May 28, 2010

Almost June

I have high hopes for June. April was shitarse, May has been better, and June is shaping up to be pretty great. Mainly it is great for work/shop reasons. I've had a really good idea for the shop (in Mt Vic), which involves a bit of rearranging, and I think will make it wicked good. We're going to make the side room a sort of baby/child stuff room, and the main part of the shop super sophisticated grown up stuff, and coincidentally all this really cool product has started appearing, which is fun and designery gorgeous.

And the kiddies are fabulous. Lucy decided yesterday she was going to actually walk, rather than dragging herself around on her arse. I'm very pleased, she seemed not very interested for potentially ever, but how can I form her into a mini version of Rachel from Glee if she wouldn't dance? I suppose she could've been Artie. Yeah. I watched too much Glee.

Monday, May 17, 2010

The fine art of procrastination

It is amazing what can be achieved when there is a pressing tax return needing attention. While I should be measuring up my home office, and tallying all my home power bills, I've instead been re-designing the Wanda Harland website. Not the shopping site, the shop site, capiche? Hopefully Glen will be making it live right about now. Mind you, my efforts were thwarted yesterday by Wordpress going down until 1am (the benefit of a baby is that you are often still awake at 1am. Yes. It is a benefit).

And might I just say how much I like Wordpress? I'm not going to change from darling blogspot here, but over there Wordpress is the bomb. As in a cluster fly bomb. Oh dear. Stream of conscientiousness blogging is leading all over the freaking place tonight.

Where was I. Oh yes, I thought it might be time for some bullets (see, we have like a war, bomb kind of military theme going).

  • The new website (over there) will allow for me to more easily upload new products and blather about them. If you like that sort of thing, you can now follow me, since it has fancy schmants RSS.
  • We've been watching Treme, by David Simon, who made The Wire. It is great, for all the reasons that Amanda speaks of over here, and she says it so much better than I could. I'd like to be watching it now, but someone is busy tweaking aforementioned website.
  • We've also become somewhat obsessed with Community, after a recommendation from Ms Hubris. It is sooooooo gooooood. Although Joel McHale is too muscley for someone who looks like him, which is a compliment, because he is very handsome, and the muscles serve as a distraction.
  • We had tortillas again tonight, with rice and chicken and black beans. I think the tortilla press obsession may last a little longer than the paella obsession, which lasted quite a long time.

Thursday, May 13, 2010


Through cunningness, and slight disorganisation (shh), I have an unexpected night sitting on the couch. I can't print t shirts, because they're all in the shop in Mt Vic, and I can't drive in to get them because I fell over and two glasses of cab sav slid down my throat. Which may or may not be a lie. I did certainly have huevos rancheros made with delicious homemade tortillas. I finally treated myself to a tortilla press, and the process of making them is a joy! And yes, we'll admit it, I had a glass or two of le vin.

What a convoluted paragraph that was, if you've made it this far, you've earned a million dollars.

It is freaking mid May now. I don't know how that happened, but I can say I'm delighted. April was a bit ick. Did you think so? I don't know many people who had a good April. I had mountainous tax bills to pay, and stocktakes to price, and boring stuff like that. It was all just a bit full on. And then May hit, and happy days, it is a good month. For one thing, mother's day. I'm not big into fancy gifts and whatnot, but I tell you, any day you get a cup of tea in bed in the morning, and a couple of cute cards made by a couple of cute kids, well, that is a good day. Mother's Day cards
And all I really wanted to do was go somewhere that smelled of trees and oxygen. How hippy do I sound? But sometimes, in this crazy world of commerce in which we move, and in the changeable seasons, it is quite a challenge to get some nature, so we went to the Rimutaka Forest Park and had a beautiful walk. It was like a fairytale, we even saw red spotty toadstools.
Finn and Malo
All the pictures I took looked like the Blair Witch Project.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Booze, and lack thereof.

With an increase in professionalism and and busy-ness has come a lack of pissed-ness. Woe! So tonight I drank some Glayva (only booze left in the house, bar tequila, and you really don't want tequila blogging). And I'm blogging. I love you blogging, you're awesome. The only thing I love more than you, blogging, is twittering. Damn Twitter, it is the whore that stole my heart. I hate it, but I can't look away.

The news? Well, work has gone from pretty part time with me looking after the kids, to Glen looking after the kids a lot, and me working. Dammit. This was never the plan. The problem is wanting it allll. I want to choose the stock, I want to meet the customers, and I want to hang with the kiddies. Things have been a little stressful, truth be told. But probably 500% better than when Glen was working full time, so genuinely quite happy. Stress is part of any successful business.

And with that willowly wafty yawny lame-o update, I'm off to add eggs to the donburi.

Monday, April 05, 2010

Are you geddon it?

Yesterday we went to Armageddon. Oh my, what an eye opener that turned out to be. I have no idea what we were expecting, but let me say we were not expecting the be-costumed soft parts of so many youth. And by soft parts I do not mean rude bits. Just their bodies.

Once we overcame our shock, we got on with the business of enjoying ourselves. It was heaven for the kids, there were storm troopers roaming, or maybe there was just one, but he was a friendly chap and waved to everyone. There was a blue man, not a Smurf, erm, is Nav-i the term I'm after? And then we glanced in at the speeches, and this bloke was speaking -> he was funny, and he was wearing sandals and socks, and talked about how he was concentrating on his "visual art" and his "wire sculptures". I was just impressed he was on Benson and Boston Legal. Oh, and Star Trek, there was a reason he was at Armageddon.

Following that was the very surreal experience of seeing the little black woman with the squeaky voice, from Police Academy (I was going to mention her big boobs, but I don't want to seem uncouth) singing a Tina Turner song. That was utterly weird.

Fortunately she was joined by that bloke from Police Academy, Michael Winslow, who does the sound effects. He was quite awesome, and did a whole scene from Star Wars.

I think we've geeked out enough for maybe the rest of our lives, although I have to say, while it didn't seem fun at the time, I'm kind of pleased we went.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Stuff and things

  • I burned my face! It was dramatic, and klutzy, and will be fine, but I'm hiding for a few days until the scabby bits fall off.
  • We watched a little video we made of the kids a year ago, and my god, what a year it has been. I think we're going to do absolutely nothing for a while and catch our breath. I didn't quite realise how much of a lifetime ago things would feel after we opened the new shop.
  • We're sort of tossing up shifting house. Oops, I suppose I should re-read that bullet point above. Le sigh. We really don't want to move, our house is cutie pie, and we love the 'hood, but we're acutely aware that these children are growing fast. We saw a house we liked, but man, I dunno, selling is a drag.
  • We've been watching this American comedy series called Community. If you have friends in America, get them to send it to you, it is hilarious. Dare I say it, I think we like it just about as much as The Wire. (And all credit to Ms Hubris for introducing it to us).
  • I've gone paint by numbers and bentwood chairs mad. If you have either, please introduce them to me, I'll pay you in real dollars.

Friday, March 05, 2010

Hello possums!

On the off chance you haven't yet seen this remarkable video, have a nosey, it is ace.

Saturday, February 27, 2010


It is a gorgeous day, and I spent a lovely time at a festival in Mt Vic, and ate something that gave me a spell of feeling like death. I'm on the mend now, but eek, moments like that make me determined to stay healthy forever, because illness is AWFUL.

A particular source of inspiration is the divine Rachel McAlpine, a former neighbour of ours, who we have reconnected with since having the shop in Mt Vic. Read her rules for looking young, they're brilliant and applicable to all ages. I particularly love:
5. Hitch up your tits, whether they're beanbags or hackysacks. Wear decent, properly fitted bras.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Rooting for Mrs Brown!

Heh heh, I said "rooting".

But I am. I'm rooting for the divine Karen Brown, a contestant on New Zealand's Hottest Home Baker now showing on TV3, because seriously, she is awesome. I met Karen at my shop, and I believe she has everything it takes (skillz, looks, charm, awesomeness) to win this competition.

Go Karen GO!

xxxxxxxxx from mwah.

Monday, February 08, 2010


Whew, with the previous blissed out, moony post I broke the, erm, dumb brain, I broke the period-of-non-bloggingness (the only word springing to mind was "hymen", and I'm way too classy to write that on the internet.

Anyhow, not that this is a shop blog, but I thought I'd share here, we're having a sale at the moment, and all our beautiful Saben bags are marked down 25% to make way for the next lot of beautiful Saben bags.

And in Petone, all the adult clothing is marked down by 25 % too.

Peace and quiet

Weird. I'm on the couch, Lucy is asleep, the boys are back at school. There is an order I should be packing, but I've done the invoice up, and I'll pull it together later. The house is quite tidy, because we had art group yesterday. For art group I made Pull-Apart Orange Rolls, you really should try them, them absolutely amazing, and quite easy to make. Radio NZ is streaming through the laptop.

It is so nice.

And that is all.