2015, You've Got This. (15 Totally Achievable New Years Resolutions)

For creatures of habit, human beings are funny little things. Why, every year, do we insist on making drastic changes to our lives in the form of new years resolutions? I’m talking huge, life changing decisions that we make at 11:55pm on 31 December, as we drunkenly reflect on the year that was and how we absolutely must do things differently in the year that’s about to be.

We make crazy promises to ourselves, promises that are unrealistic and promises that deep down we know we can never ever stick to. I mean, when last did you ‘get rich quick’ or ‘lose those 5 kilograms’?

New Years Resolution

I gave up on the new years resolutions a few years ago, when I began dreading seeing them through. This year, I’ve decided to take a on a much easier and effective approach.

I Instagrammed this motivational the other day, and it was met with such a positive response, that I figured – why not elaborate on it slightly, and make a list of 15 actionable, manageable and (most importantly) do-able things for 2015 (because, let’s be honest, with a baby on the way a lot of things may just have to be pushed to 2016…)

1. Find 3 hobbies you love.One to make you money, one to keep you in shape and one to keep you creative.

(FYI, I picked voice overs, trail running and Pinterest/gardening,photography and home decor)

2. Sign up to become an organ donor. I’ll make it easy for you – click here.

(If you need some motivation, watch this)

3. Read 1 thing of substance once a month. It could be anything from a novel, to a white paper to a web article. (Start with this, it’s amazing)

4. Give back. Make a sandwich for the beggar you see every morning, collect dog food at your next dinner party and donate it to a needy pet rescue place or pop your spare change in the charity tin at the till. No gesture is too small.

5. Plant something you can use. For me, its herbs and vegetables. There’s something wonderful about eating what you’ve grown.

6. Learn 1 new skill. I am desperate to do a woodworking course – so I can make all the things I find online (instead of begging my husband to do it for me). With this bulging belly, that may be a project for 2016 – so for 2015 I am going to do a self taught photography course and find a course to teach me design and Photoshop.Your new skill needn’t me a huge investment – it could be as simple as learning to knit, or changing a plug.(Hint, Google)

7. Change one thing about your appearance. Cut your hair, invest in a red lipstick, buy a push-up bra. A small change can do wonders for your self esteem and is the cheapest way to get a makeover without the effort.

8. Eat 1 meal at the dinner table. Bringing a child in to this world makes me yearn for the days when we as a family would eat every meal around the table (also, it was in the stone ages, so technology wasn’t yet a distraction).

9. Don’t waste your money on shit things. I am a huge culprit here – I buy a lot of R200 things here and there instead of saving up for one big feature item. A bit like putting lipstick on a pig.

10. Make time for you. Work is work, and apart from those days we all have when a crisis pops up, leave it at the office, go home and make sure you have a balance. Not one Facebook post celebrating 2015 started with ‘I worked more than 8.5 hours a day). No-one cares. (That being said, work hard, make an effort and give a damn)

11. Fix those things that have been bothering you. I have created a Google doc as long as my arm with everything that needs to be done around the house. From things as small as changing a lightbulb, to complete house renovations. It’s amazing how much easier it is to tick stuff off, when you have a list.

12. Remember the good things. A rad chick I know kept a jar in 2014, and ever single time something good happened, she wrote it down on a slip of paper, and popped it in the jar. At the end of 2014 she had hundreds of awesome memories that reminded her just how amazing the past 365 days had been.

13. Find something to look forward to. Remember September? September is the ‘quarter to 5 on a Friday’ month. It’s revolting, and everyone gets in to a slump and starts panicking about the new year and what they have and haven’t achieved, and then makes DUMB NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONS. (Do you see where I’m going with this?) This year, plan something fun for that time – a weekend away, a party, time off, whatever. Make sure you dont get to quarter to 5 on your Friday with no plans. You will be suicidal.

14. Save. My scariest one of them all. Put away as much as you can every month (even if it’s a little).

15. Clear your crap. We live in one of those old houses where cupboard space is tiny and scarce (seriously, did families in the ’80s not have things?!). A rule I (try) live by is that for every new thing I buy (be it clothes or makeup) I have to throw out (or donate) the same amount of existing pieces. Its the only way to prevent hoarding, and also prevents years of rubbish and useless things piling up.

So, that’s it. My list of 15 easy peasy resolutions for 2015.

What are yours?

Find three hobbies you love

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#GLAadventure Weekend

When Mercedes Benz South Africa invites you to be a part of an adventure weekend featuring the new GLA, the bush and some mountain biking, it’s impossible to say no. In-fact, it’s impossible to not jump up and down and squeal like a stuffed warthog (at least not in front of grownups), which I totally didn’t do, of course.

The weekend was part of a series of adventures throughout South Africa to showcase the new GLA and to put this (my new favourite) car through a series of challenges. I was invited to attend the inaugural adventure as blogger and social media person (do we have a word for us? if so, share please). I also happen to know how to ride a mountain bike** which must have helped with their selection criteria somewhat.

The first #GLAadventure took place last weekend in The Pilansberg and I (In very bad wifely form) left my husband at home to unpack and move into the house we had moved in to THE DAY BEFORE to join an amazing crew in the bush for a weekend which promised to be spectacular.

I got to hang out with the Captain of the Mountain Biking SA team, Justice Makhale (possibly the nicest guy in the world. I may just have a bit of a sporting hero crush now). Mzingisi “Ziggy” Ranaka, the winner of the adventure weekend (Ziggy is awesome friends, this man could bottle his energy and sell it), Khaya Dlanga – social media influencer of note. If awards were given for selfies, Khaya would be on the receiving end of many of them. Look!

I call this one ‘The Sunflower”

 

 

The Sunflower

The rest of the team, headed up by Director and Producer Peter Heaney (The man has pet chickens people!) ensured we got to hang with a ridiculously great bunch of people for 2 days.

I arrived at Pilansberg National Park on Saturday, just in time for lunch and a glimpse of the yet-to-be-seen Mercedes GLA. It’s one hot little vehicle that packs a serious punch. I particularly loved the way the seat-belt squeezes you just a little bit tighter – which apparently is the norm for most Mercs – but I’ll take it where I can I suppose.

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The Saturday festivities had started with a sparrows poep hot air balloon ride, so after lunch we were given a few hours to relax in our tents. Sorry, yes, I said tents. This was my style of ‘glamping’ though as the tent had a bed, a fridge and a plug point so my needs were pretty much sorted. I even got to game drive from the comfort of my duvet – as the animals came to us. I spotted these rather cute pyjama donkeys from my door and a sweet little dung beetle on the road.

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Dinner that night was held in the lodges restaurant which was lovely and chilled…and an early night as we knew there was a cracker of a start on Sunday at 5 am.

Sunday morning started off early and misty – and only the GLA looked good in the cruel early hours of the morning. Showoff.

#NoMakeupSelfie
#NoMakeupSelfie
Just chilling with Justice Makhale in the boot of a GLA. As you do.
Just chilling with Justice Makhale in the boot of a GLA. As you do.

I don’t mean to brag or anything but I Got To Drive My The GLA All The Way To Sun City and it is glorious!

We arrived at the Sun City Adventure centre and after a short briefing session “If you see a rhino you must just ride faster, OK?” we set off on our bikes while the rest of the crew jumped on 4-wheelers and disappeared for hours. I suspect up to no good, but who can say.

Riding with Justice is bucket list kinda stuff and he could not have been nicer about it. he even hid his laughs when I fell off (3 times… mud, OK!) and helped me climb on my bike and clip in when my cleats were too full of mud to do so myself. Yes, he literally held my bike in place while I got on, and pushed me off. No, he didn’t make me feel like the loser I was. Yes, I am a little bit in love.

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The 3 of us rode around the most gorgeous bushveld for a few hours and were more than happy to oblige when Peter requested we cycle at deathly speeds through huge muddy puddles and rivers. Anything for a good shot you know, and also, Justice was far too clean and I needed to get him to match my hot look. Look:

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At the end of the ride we were shattered, and filthy and happy and I could not stop smiling. I still can’t believe that I had the opportunity to ride with Justice Makhale. Best weekend ever right?

Unfortunately, being in the middle of the bush, there was no place to clean – so after a brief hosepipe shower (Kearney, keeping it classy) we set off on the final adventure of the weekend, and undoubtedly the most important; Lunch.

Lunch, however, was to take place on the top of a mountain which meant conquering my ridiculous fear of heights and climbing in to a cable car. Cameras were rolling the whole time so I tried to hide the vomiting and screams as much as possible. Thank goodness for my sweet cable-mates who held my still muddy hand and promised me a pizza if I was a good girl. I was. I got delicious pizza.

Oh, we're going in that thing? Aw-sum.
Oh, we’re going in that thing? Aw-sum.
Ziggy. Laughs  in the face of danger.
Ziggy. Laughs in the face of danger.

That whole thing about “conquering your fear”? – totally true. The view from the top of the Harties cable way was worth every anxious sweat drop. It was incredible and not even the photos do it justice. But I’ll try:

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I even made a funny and pretended to jump over the ledge. Because I’m such a nerd I cropped out the deck below. I’m pretend hardcore like that.

Look ma, no hands!
Look ma, no hands!

Lunch on top with this view was an incredible way to end a very special weekend. A huge thanks to the team at Mercedes Benz South Africa for inviting me to join in on this epic adventure, and to the entire cast and crew who made it all happen.

You can follow Mercedes Benz South Africa on Twitter @MercedesBenz_SA, Facebook and Instagram 

The end result? A wicked cool YouTube video!

** Although apparently you forget how to when riding with a professional and fall of and cant get back on and in general just look and act like a complete noob. 

That's A Wrap!
That’s A Wrap!
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