journal

Gold Coast Digger

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A fortnight ago I was lucky enough to score a last minute deal to the Gold Coast. It’s like the Miami of Australia and where our version of Spring Breakers herald every November. Not exactly in with that scene, I decided to postpone Gold Coast digging until the end of January 2015. The holidays I go on are usually intensely packed – sometimes with 3 am wakeup calls and past midnight showers so it was nice to head somewhere sunny without a plan for once. Click the scrapbook to see it expanded and try and spot my dress twin (I’ve been keeping count and so far I’ve seen it once in Gold Coast and once in Sydney!)

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Transport

In order to maximise out time there, we took a 6 am flight with Jetstar! This was probably the most tiring part of our journey but we were in chill mode from here on. Watching the sunrise while we took off wasn’t too bad either. The traffic around Gold Coast is pretty easy to navigate – we usually took a bus or tram. Our hotel was right beside the Surfers Paradise tram station which was super convenient. Check out that surfboard carrier on the tram below – if this isn’t a surfer’s paradise then I don’t know what is!

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Accommodation

We stayed at a 3 bedroom apartment at Q1. It was insanely spacious for four people and had everything you needed: kitchen, 3 bathrooms, balcony, dining room, Foxtel, game consoles, board games and even DVDs (there was Mean Girls haha!). My favourite part were the views! My goodness we could see the jetty, the coastline, I basically could touch the clouds and we were only on floor 31! The facilities were pretty sweet as well. I loved lying on my back in the pool and staring at the tip of the hotel. They even had poolside tents with awnings if you didn’t want to burn.

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Sights

Gold Coast is a bit like Florida because it is home to a lot of amusement parks. Since this wasn’t our first time here, we skipped Dream World, Movie World, Sea World, White Water World. Instead, we spent our days never too far from the ocean or the pool and went to Cavill Mall and Robina Town Centre for shopping.

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Food

Although our apartment was fully equipped with a kitchen and even a food processor, we went out to eat most of the days we were there. Some of my top meals included the all you can eat pancakes from Pancake Paradise (you can order unlimited pancakes and they’re HUGE … I stopped at four), the pesto rosso from Vapiano (the wait is tiring but they make it in front of you) and the Hawaiian chicken with curly fries from Hog’s Breath Cafe.

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Night Life

The Gold Coast is alive up till late and I just loved watching the skyline from up high. They have markets along the boardwalk every Sunday and we would usually walk along the beach back to our hotel in the evening.

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I hope you enjoyed my postcard, one by ones and trademark GIFs!

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Prep To The Top

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If you can’t beat them, prep, prep, prep to the top! Now that you’re all inspired by last week’s post, its time to start preparation. I’m  a big fan of planners because without them I would literally be hopping from foot to foot trying to decipher the jumbled find a word that is my brain. I think Kikki K slays when it comes to planners and diaries and I’ve used their ‘cute’ range two years in a row but for 2015 I decided to upgrade to a planner. Kikki K also greatly dictates what my power colours are for the new year and this year I’m definitely getting my strength from lilacs and champagne pinks.

There are some really beautiful blogs out there that are solely dedicated to planner decoration which involves layers of washi tape, stickers and quote cards but as much as I strive for that aesthetic, its simply a bit unpractical. Instead, I stick to the two most important basics that you’ll need: sticky notes and colourful pens.

I use colour pens to colour code my schedule for example pink pen = social events, light blue pen = blogging and green pen = exercise. Throughout the week, as new appointments, fees, etc. come into my life, I’ll put them down on the day they’re due. Then, on the Sunday of each week I’ll take a to-do list sticky note and write down things I need to do for Monday in order of priority. I usually write a big list that is never finished in 24 hours so by Tuesday I can move the sticky note down and continue checking off my items. However, if something bigger comes up the next day, I’ll layer another sticky note on top, complete those ones first and then go back to my original list.

When you have an empty day, planners seem redundant but when you want to make the most of every minute, this is how to do it! Don’t believe me? Try How To Become a Straight A Student by Cal Newport and 168 Hours You Have More Time Than You Think by Laura Vanderkam for case studies, statistics and activities that will make you feel like an incompetent sloth. Kidding! However, if you do want to see how sloth like you are, create a 24 hour graph and record how much time you spend doing things like a) scrolling through buzzfeed before you get out of bed b) waiting for someone to snapchat you back c) standing in line for free ice-cream taste testing.*

* Kidding Kidding, there is always time for ice cream taste testing!

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Inspired Workplace

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I was talking to a friend yesterday about how I was excited about 2015. Then she re-enlightened me to re-consider my own thoughts because I re-alised that I wasn’t actually excited about the new year but the concept of the new year.

In theory, we could wake up one epiphanic  day and decide today is the day: to quit sugar for good / start saving our moolah / keep in touch with friends  / give ourselves more me time / learn a new language. But in reality we procrastinate these things until New Year’s Eve where we decide that tomorrow will mark the first step to a better life.

I wish you the best of luck in keeping your 2015 resolutions …. but let’s be real, I’ll probably break half of mine by the second of January! Nonetheless, there’s something quite magical and fragile about a new year and like the prepared person I like to think I  am, I’m starting 2015 off with a short series that will hopefully inspire myself my readers to have a kick butt twenty fifteen! Today’s post is all about inspiration, next week’s will be preparation and the one in a fortnight will be reflection so get excited kids.

* {whoops I was going to try to be more selfless this year}

I think one of the best ways to start a work day or study day is to have a clean desk. I think one of the best ways to start a new work or school year is to have a desk makeover. That’s why I’ve been really inspired by WeWork: a platform for creators that  provides the space, community and services every blogger needs for their creative endeavours. They know the importance of finding a place you join as an individual, ‘me’, but where you become part of a greater ‘we’. I wanted to reciprocate their co-working values through my desk area because for me its a place where I can express myself on my blog whilst being part of the blogging community.

To really see what you’ve got to work with, remove everything from your desk so you can have a blank space baby to add your new supplies. Wipe down your desk, test out all those dried gel pens from 6th grade on some paper and then proceed to throw them away.

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Personally I am a big fan of mood boards, they make any bland space grand and this is the first year I’ve done one right onto the magnetised wall on my desk. Go ahead and gather all your favourite pictures and power fuelling quotes from magazines. Or if you can’t bare the heart wrenching pain of stabbing your magazines with scissors, try free papered items that you pick up at your shopping centre (This is the time to use them! Stop hoarding them in your house!). My favourites include Lorna Jane, Kikki K and Broadsheet.

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After papering your walls, you can start adding the little knick knacks and random things that make you happy. Oh and the practical stuff that you know, you need to write things with.

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Here’s a neat little idea for a potential 2015 project. I started a quote journal back in 2014 – its a notebook filled to the brim with uplifting quotes that I’ve collected along the way. It might seem a bit tedious and pointless at first but trust me, whenever you’re feeling down, hopeless or like a quitter, pulling out something like this will get you back on your feet fast!

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Below are some examples of how I decorated my space very inexpensively! Starting from the left: an empty Champagne bottle from Christmas with a single fake rose, an ikea vase filled with unattractive markers and a framed paper bag from Kikki K’s Live Bright collection that clearly bounces off my desk with all that lilac and pink.

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