16th, July, 2017

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It’s been over six months since we moved out to Thailand. It’s super hot pretty much all of the time (seriously, the only time I’ve felt cold was an ‘off’ day of 18 degrees. In New Zealand that’s t-shirt weather!) Lately I’ve been spending heaps of time at the pool – and thankfully there’s one really close to my house.

The last few years I’ve basically just stuck to high waist bikinis, and I’ve spent the last couple of months trying to branch out a little more. Sure, I still love one pieces and am giving thinner strapped bikinis a go too (totally makes me feel sixteen again, by the way). I spotted this one piece by Phax Swimwear and decided to try it out.. even though it’s completely like nothing I’ve owned before!

Now, about comfort zones: this swimsuit is TOTALLY OUT OF MINE. I was drawn in by the bright yellow (always!) so decided to tell my nerves to bog off and try something completely new. The result? Boobs, boobs, boobs. It was definitely a little intimating heading down to my local pool to snap some pictures – luckily no one was there, thank goodness! I ended up feeling a whole lot more comfortable than expected though, and looking back at these photos, I feel pretty damn good about myself too.

Since I moved to Thailand I’ve steadily packed on a bit of weight and am definitely heavier than I’d like to be. Most of it seems to have gone to my boobs though, so at least I fill my top out well! I was joking to my husband, Barnaby, and saying people will think I moved to Thailand to join the plastic surgery crew. Ha! Let me assure you these are definitely the result of burgers, plenty of green veggie stir fries and burritos galore. I think I’ve discovered the boob diet! That can totally be a thing, right?

Swimsuit – Phax (via UK Swimwear) / Cover up – Phax (via UK Swimwear)

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25th, June, 2017

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Err, so you may have noticed that I am definitely a sucker for anything novelty (the lemon purse kind of adds to it, right?) It all started when I came across The Pommier; an online marketplace with a massive focus on independent makers and emerging creators. I’m all about supporting talented individuals who create their very own designs (how could you not be?!) and the deal was well and truly sealed when I spotted these Pretzel earrings by Poporcelain.

If you’re a long time reader (hi!) you may have spotted that I don’t often sport earrings. They usually make my ears itch, unless they’re made of high quality metal – and yes, these gold plated pretzels do the trick. Plus, I suppose I just don’t care for earrings (please say this in the absolute snootiest voice you can manage). A pair have to be really, really good for me to say yes.

Clearly, these pretzels absolutely ARE THAT GOOD. The second I spotted them I knew I had to have them. Pretzels are ridiculously tasty! And since you don’t come across them terribly often in Thailand, wearing them is definitely the second best option. A little more about the earrings themselves; they’re handcrafted from genuine porcelain, which means everyone is slightly different (how awesome is that?!) The salty sprinkles are made from gold, as well as the rose that holds it in your ear.

I was also massively excited at just how quickly they arrived on my doorstep. I’m not a terribly patient person, and waiting for packages always makes me slightly agitated (Millennials, yo), and these salty things arrived well within the week.

I may not be much a baker, but for now I’m hugely content with wearing tasty treats on my ears.

Pretzel EarringsThe Pommier 

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8th, June, 2017

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You know when you fall completely out of love with your wardrobe? Yeah, well, the dreaded curse definitely got the better of me a month or so ago. Before moving to Thailand I had the biggest purge and sold or threw out pretty much all the clothing I owned. Ya know, except for my wedding dress and a few sentimental favourites. I took a few tropical kind of maxi dresses with me, thinking I’d get into them once I arrived here.. but turns out that I am WAY more twee than I am boho. And I’m totally one hundred percent absolutely fine about that!

I’ve been steadily adding more pieces I truly love to my clothing collection and it’s safe to say that ruffles and off-the-shoulder fits are right up my (garment) alley. Luckily Thailand completely feels the same so I’m able to buy a lot of the stuff I love straight from the market! ..Well, when they fit anyway! I’m an L here, compared to being an S back in New Zealand (although the mango and sticky rice consumption may be having a bit of an influence on that too!)

Online shopping doesn’t happen quite as much as it used to and I have to be completely head over heels over something to click on that glorious ‘add to cart.’ This dress totally checked all the boxes. I actually love a whole bunch of stuff by the brand (Line & Dot, dontcha know!) so think there will be a purchase (or three!) before I head off to Europe next month. Because if a holiday doesn’t deserve a cute new outfit, then I definitely don’t know what does!

DressLine & Dot / Hat – Vintage / Flamingo FlatsCocoRose London

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28th, May, 2017

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Guys. There is a giant dinosaur themed playground right in the middle of Udon Thani, Thailand. How have I lived here for five months and not known of it’s existence?! Gah, I’m so disappointed in myself. Either way, I am so, so happy we found it and love how these colourful guys look stomping around in the background of the photos. After taking some snaps on my Instax camera and looking at the washed out colours, I realised how much they remind me of the dinosaurs from Palm Springs (even though I’ve only seen them in photos).

One of the first things I noticed when I moved to Northern Thailand is the abundance of dinosaur statues. They’re littered all over the place – particularly around the central city. I asked a co-worker about it and it turns out the answer is pretty simple: a lot of dinosaurs lived around these parts! They still find heaps of fossils all over the place, and there is even a dinosaur museum a couple of hours away. We don’t own a car, we just rent every month or so, and I think this definitely needs to get added to ‘the list.’ And don’t worry, I’ll totally have my camera in tow.

As for now, I’ll just be stompin’ around with all of these big guys. What can I say, just call me Jurassic Jo!

Top & Dress – H&M / Glasses – Miu Miu / Shoes – CocoRose London

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15th, May, 2017

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When I left New Zealand to move to Thailand, I gave up most of my beloved bag collection. Sure, I felt all good about myself giving them to my nieces to play with (I would’ve gone nuts for them at that age. Or at my present age, for that matter), but man, some of those bags I really, really loved.

I suppose this lemon is my first foray into a comeback, of sorts, and BOY AM I GLAD. It’s hard only having two bags, guys, especially when they’re more along the lines of ‘serious’, instead of novelty It was my birthday last week (28 now, dontcha know!) and sweet Barnaby, who knows me super well, duh, gifted this little lemon number. Kind of the perfect present really! It reminds me of my beloved watermelon bag (it’s here, to jog your memory!) and in my favourite shade ever – YELLOW!

Another thing I’m mighty keen on – as is everyone in the world – is gingham. I have a pretty limited collection of clothing (so far) here with me in Thailand, and I’ve noticed that gingham is not-so-slowly becoming the majority shareholder. This romper is no exception. The off-the-shoulder fit is really cute, and I’m really into anything with ruffles and bows, so it really does check all the boxes. Yep, I’m a happy lady.

Right, now if I remember clearly, the bag shop also had a rocket ship and a watermelon a little bit like my last one… Time for a shopping trip, perhaps?

Playsuit – Shopbop / Lemon Bag – A gift / Shoes – Cocorose London / Glasses – Ray Ban RB5226

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14th, April, 2017

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Gah, I love Bangkok! Actually, it’s a bit ridiculous – Barnaby and I worked out that we’ve been living in Thailand for four months and have already visited BKK five times all up! Obsessed? Maybe a little bit ; ) Especially when rooftop pools like this one are on offer (we stayed at Aloft on Sukhumvit Soi 11. Definitely recommend it!)

It seems really weird posting these. Well, namely because I’m currently in Bangkok on a completely different trip altogether! The international school holidays in Thailand tie in with the British dates too, so for April we went to Koh Samui – which was a bit of a tropical paradise (well, when it wasn’t raining!) But more on that later. With a video too. I promise.

This bikini – in my favourite colour, what a surprise (!) has been my latest go-to any time I’m near a pool – which unsurprisingly happens a lot when you live in 30+ degree weather. The colour is described as ‘mango’ which just seems so fitting. And it’s pretty much my favourite fruit, so even better. I would’ve described it as mustard, but hey, I’ve been converted and now it’s mango all the way. Mango for my mangos ; ) I snapped it up from Shopbop – which is now having a massive sale! Remember to enter the code EVENT17 and get 20% off your order. The bikini is here, just if you’re interested!

Bikini – Tavik Swimwear / Sunglasses – Miu Miu

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1st, April, 2017

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Chances are, if you think of Thailand you immediately think of Bangkok (well, that or pretty beaches!) Luckily for us, Udon Thani isn’t too far from Bangkok by flight – or very expensive to do so either. It’s especially lucky as it’s a city I’ve loved since I was a kid – and possibly even more as an adult (the cocktails are really cheap, after all!)

Our last trip was ‘strictly business’ – but it’s genuinely impossible not to have even a wee bit of fun visiting Bangkok. I’m talkin’ burger eating, rooftop pools, H&M shopping sprees (such a novelty for this wee New Zealander!) and just general walking around exploring; possibly my favourite thing of all.

My husband, Barnaby thought I was completely ridiculous as we took these photos. I said I wanted to take “photos that look like I’m in Bangkok” (“but we are in Bangkok!”) and hopefully we pulled it off. It’s busy; cars (and tuk tuks!) are everywhere, it’s a little bit grungy, and powerlines – I’m talking twenty at a time – are hanging overhead everywhere you walk. And yet there’s something just so ridiculously charming about it. I’m there again in the next few weeks, and am really stinkin’ happy about it.

DressH&M / ‘Happy’ Bracelet – Kate Spade New York (via Shopbop) / ShoesCocorose London

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12th, March, 2017

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Finally, some sun! (Although, would you even know it, from my ridiculously pale skin?) Seriously, the only, only time I get eyed up in Thailand is when I walk past skin whitening clinics in the mall. No joke! And I am trying to tan. I’ve even been wearing tanning oil when I go outside – but I guess this is it! Oh well, pale and interesting, pale and interesting!

My husband’s birthday was a week or so ago, so we spent the evening out, before crashing at our hotel for the night. My favourite part was absolutely when we hung out poolside drinking cocktails (they are really cheap in Thailand, it’s awesome!) I tried out my new bikini from Kopper & Zink. I’ve never heard of them before, but the cut on the bottoms is the best I’ve ever had! I definitely want to pick up another of their designs!

Apparently, April is when it gets really, really hot here. As in 45+ degrees celsius! There had better be some more swimming pool visits in store! (Otherwise, you’ll find me as a pile of melted person. Eep!)

Anyway, here I am in all my pale-ness! 😉

Bikini – Kopper & Zink / Sunglasses – MiuMiu (via SmartBuySunglasses)

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14th, February, 2017

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Growing up in South-East Asia; specifically, Brunei, Chinese New Year was one of my favourite celebrations. The music, the colours, the lion dances.. I really do love it all! The moment I hear the distinctive drum beats come on while I’m walking around the supermarket (the music is everywhere!) I just can’t help myself and tap my toes as I walk down the aisles. So I was massively excited to be back in Asia again – after all, I moved to Thailand – so my new hubby could experience it for the first time too.

I sold most of my clothes before moving over and had nothing red in my closet! The closest I had to gold was this yellow suspender skirt from Black Milk which I paired with a sheer sleeved tee I’ve had for absolutely ages. And the hair? My co-worker is INCREDIBLE when it comes to braids, and luckily she offered to do mine up in the most intricate style I can even imagine (!) the day before the celebrations. Ugh, she is the best!

It was quite funny – despite my HUGE passion for CNY, we never actually made it to the celebrations! We headed down to look at the decorations – when we took these photos. But on the night I wasn’t feeling terribly well and ended up asleep on the couch at about 9:30. I vaguely remember waking up at midnight to hear the distant sound of fireworks, which put a definite smile on my face. Here’s to next year then, I suppose! ; )

Pinafore – Black Milk / T-shirt – Old / Shoes – Kate Spade

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11th, February, 2017

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Married? Married?! Yep, you read that right! At the end of December we had what can only be described as a whirlwind wedding. And I really do mean whirlwind! I had already signed my contract for a job I had taken overseas (more on that later) and when we realised due to Visas that my love, Barnaby could only stay with me for three months, we had to act quick. We have been together – and absolutely inseparable for the last 10 years, so basically, that was not going to happen. So the end result was that we had one week to plan our wedding…

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My parents were arriving in New Zealand a couple of weeks before were due to fly out, so I sent my Mum an email that said “Pack something nice. We’re getting married. No biggie!” And the ‘no biggie’ became the ongoing joke of the wedding – because there always has to be one, right?! Unfortunately the short notice meant that other people I love; my brother and his wife, for example, weren’t able to attend. I’m still gutted about it – but it means that in the future we will have to recreate it – with more time to plan!

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There were some really problems on our hands – the dress, suits, location, food, guests, for starters! And I can’t lie – it was a VERY STRESSFUL week! Barnaby was launching a new website for his work, meaning I had to sort out most of the details. Somehow, somehow I avoided being Bridezilla, apart from one occasion where I yelled at my mother in law the classic line – “WELL, IT’S MY WEDDING!” I’m still really embarrassed about my outburst, to be honest!

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I found my dream dress – well, caped romper actually on ASOS, and ordered it straight away. Because it was around the Christmas period I was really worried it wouldn’t arrive in time, so just as a back up I bought a lacey bell-sleeved number from Shopbop – as their packages can get through no matter what! I ended up wearing it the day after the wedding and it was a total beauty too!

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As they say – gettin’ hitched doesn’t go without a hitch (or two!) – and my big one was that my shoes broke! The only thing I splurged on for the wedding was my shoes. I opted for a sparkly set of Charlotte Olympias and spent a few days practicing walking in them in the big lead up – because I never wear heels. But on the day… I tried them on, walked a few steps and the straps broke! I was SO gutted. There wasn’t really time to dwell on it though, so I simply ripped the strap off the other shoe too and wore them like that. Unfortunately they were falling off my feet most of the time, so I wore them for the ceremony, for some of the photos, then just spent the rest of the time going barefoot.

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So that’s that! I’m now married to my sweetheart and living in Thailand. Life feels pretty darn great right about now. Oh, and in case you were wondering – I totally did the whole ‘something old, something’ thing too. My necklace was blue (and it was my Nana’s, so it’s very, very special), my ring was Barnaby’s great grandmothers (old), something new was my playsuit and my shoes, and my something borrowed was silver nail polish I asked my mother in law to buy. Nailed it!

Wedding photos by Frank Visser.