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Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Mirror Image

I love a little word play.

The fact that there is apparently no word (although I continue to search) in the English language that rhymes with orange, the thing about being able to read a sentence regardless of the spelling of the words within it being jumbled as long as the first and last letter of each word is correct. It lights my fire.

So you can imagine my delight to discover the word 'Racecar' spelled backward is 'Racecar'. Furthermore, I discovered that this and other words (yes, there are others!) that read the same in both directions are referred to as 'Palindromes'.

And there you have it.

Check out the big brain on us then, hey?!

Sunday, 25 December 2011

New word for the day

'Chrimorse' pronounced kri-morssss

The unshakeable feeling of remorse upon realising the cost of Christmas and all the things one could and should have done instead. Eg. Purchase a Spin Bike to improve personal fitness or perhps a ticket to Utah to the Sundance Film Festival to enjoy some culture...oh, and to hang out with Ryan Gosling.

Darn you Chrimorse!

Saturday, 24 December 2011

'Twas the night before Christmas...

It's the night before Christmas,
And all is grouse.
We've wrapped up the presents,
We've tidied the house.

For Santa - he's a coming,
And he hasn't time to talk.
So many presents to deliver,
Why, the average man would balk!

So I've left him a wee message,
My chosen tool is chalk.
I hope he really likes it,
If not, Santa can take a walk...

On the wild side of course!



Merry Christmas and best wishes to all for a prosperous and joyous new year.

Much love,
TLT x

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Things i've learned from Beyonce

Ah, Beyonce.

The average punter might say you've got it all...and they'd be right.

You're beautiful, talented, you've got smarts, you're seemingly delightful (we haven't met yet but I know it's destined), married to a talented gentleman, you enjoy all of life's spoils yet seem grounded, you don't cus, you have a clothing line with your Momma and swan about generally being amazing etc. etc.

You're cool. I get it.

However, the coolest thing about you (in my humble opinion) is that you consistently utilise (and you do it so well) my '3 Commandments' for a great music video and frankly, life in general.

You know what I mean...

1. Thou shalt use wind machines - wind machines make everything better

2. Thou shalt be an advocate of big hair - it's always 'in vogue'

3. Lycra - no explanation required. OK, if it ain't all that, why are ALL superhero costumes made of Lycra? Huh?!?

These elements are practically religion in your productions and for that I say 'Amen, little sister!' and ‘Hallelujah’ for bringing it to the people.

To give thanks, I've put together a little tribute, a dedication if you will, which demonstrates how effectively you've incorporated the '3 Commandments' into your work and why you are the supreme mistress of all things awesome. If you're reading this, grab Jay-Z and a cup of tea (hey, check my lyrical styling!) and enjoy.

'Dance for you' features a choreographed piece in front of not one, but a series of fans (the wind producing variety, not the ones that ask for your autograph). You really are living the dream girlfriend.
  

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NzYbH9FH44c


'Run the World' delights and excites ticking all '3 Commandment' boxes although if we're being honest, I'm not down with the stockings and suspenders. I know, I know. You like them. Just saying...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VBmMU_iwe6U&ob=av2e



'Single Ladies' B, look at me...look at me...I have one word for you.

Perfectly coiffured quiff.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4m1EFMoRFvY


It is said, the reflection of a great artist is translating their talent from a studio to the stage and into their live performance. Ever the dedicated disciple of the commandments, you manage the wind machines, big hair and Lycra every single time. Bravo!

'Dejavu' Live in Las Vegas

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vLMKoaCdbNc


'Sweet Dreams' B, the wind, the hair (love the rocking finger waves) the Lycra. You are, once again, fabulous. Do call me though. I can help you with some sweet 'Robot' moves...See for yourself. I'm the one in the orange.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IS5Rr2kAZU4


See, I told you. I'm not one to brag however I’ve got pretty mad skills. 
 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JlxByc0-V40

‘Crazy in Love’ It would be remiss of me not to include a snippet featuring your husband. Besides the pair of you being great collaborators, you manage to incorporate rain, wind and fire into this clip. I am lost for words.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ViwtNLUqkMY
 


Irreplaceable’ Regardless of your fame and fortune, you remain humble and happy for the world to see you in your rollers...and your sexy brassiere. Good for you.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2EwViQxSJJQ&ob=av2e


Others have and will continue to imitate and emulate but you, my dear Beyonce, have it down like no other. Thanks for keeping it real...oh, and for the super fly eye candy you recruit for your clips.

Much love,
TLT x

PS. If you're done with the vast array of 'onesies' you've sported over the years, please have them delivered to my home address. Thanks in advance.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Mother Nature

It has been cold and raining in Brisbane town recently which is most unusual as temperatures in December usually sit at around 65 degrees with 2478% humidity and a reasonable proportion of the local population (yes, I've conducted an independent survey) is a little grumpy about the situation.

I admit, I am a lover of blue skies and glorious Summer days. In fact, I awoke this morning after a few days of grey skies and rain to be greeted by the sun's golden rays and found myself shouting 'Sunshine!!!' with the enthusiasm and vigour one can expect from the cast of Glee or the person holding the winning meat tray raffle ticket at the local RSL. Woo hoo!

People are declaring 'This weather is depressing!', 'It's a terrible day' and other such palava. I've often wondered why people refer to a cloudy, overcast or rainy day as 'terrible'. Ooh, it's raining, it's a terrible day. Really?

Poor old rain, it cops a lot of flack. So I'm going to wrap my arms around it and give it a big ol' hug. Figuratively of course. Have you tried hugging rain? I have, its challenging and only for the brave at heart, the clinically insane or a task for contestants on those wacky Japanese game shows. You know the ones... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kjWr-pAAT_4

I'm going to show my love through song and interpretive dance - the best way I know how.

So settle in and enjoy some ditties about rain. And remember, you can choose to blame it or choose to sing in it. I know which one I'll be doing.

Doo doo doo doo doo doo doo doo doo doo doo...

Singing in the Rain
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D1ZYhVpdXbQ

It's Raining Men
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hGLZqDXau98

Blame it on the Rain
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rB0Le3oM1b8

November Rain
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8SbUC-UaAxE&ob=av3e

Here comes the rain again
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TzFnYcIqj6I&ob=av3e

Purple Rain
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PJfhGL0F6LE

No Rain
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qmVn6b7DdpA

Rain
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=15kWlTrpt5k&ob=av2e

Rain over me
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SmM0653YvXU&ob=av2e

Summer Rain
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_JEoZMyiW4

I wish it would rain
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z-es4Q8AJaU

Raining Men
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=izo-09kA0eE

It Will Rain
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W-w3WfgpcGg

Raindrops keep falling on my head
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ejR01W8fks

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Further proof...

For those of you requiring evidence (shame on you) about the aforementioned scientific evidence - meet Lars, Head of Analysis and other important matters at
Tough Love Tamvakis HQ.

There, satisfied?



It's been proven!

Scientific evidence proves that Tough Love Tamvakis and a bowl of fibre is the best way to start the day. Ok, ok. Scrap the fibre but read the blog. It'll make you feel good.

Monday, 5 December 2011

Renegade household appliance attacks young Brisbane woman

I've decided to actively include meditation into my daily life. 

Its always been interesting to me and at times I've dabbled a little, however a full time commitment seemed like such a long and laborious process. Plus the expense of incense, soothing instrumental accompaniments and a new wardrobe based entirely on cheese cloth and Thai Fisherman's pants simply wasn't something I was ready to commit to. And until now, I really didn't want to factor an hour or more per day into my schedule to do it. You know, I'm busy and highly important. Yah, yah...

However, it dawned upon me that the people I know and speak with who meditate regularly seem to have their junk together. They seem relaxed. Besides, you can meditate for ten minutes or two hours the choice is up to the individual and according to the pros, you reap benefits either way.

So I figure, why not!

I've coupled the meditation practise with 'The Five Healing Tibetans' which is a form of yoga developed centuries ago by Tibetan monks and distilled into five precise exercises. It's rather nice (and very progressive) of those guys to condense things into a short and sweet little package for us busy, modern folk. Hmmm..Perhaps the practise gives you foresight?! I'll report back.

Anyhoo, the monks believed these postures to be the key to living a long vibrant and healthy life, among other benefits. That sounds good to me. After all, I have loads to do and see so 
I need time and energy on my side. 

Ok, I'm in.

I am currently enjoying Day 2 of my new found Zen and I have already had an astonishing breakthrough. I know. Amazing, right? Here it is.

I like to practise in the morning. It wakes my body up and energises me physically and mentally for the day. Today, I finished up and moved on to some mundane yet necessary domestic duties. For those of you who don't know, I have a RoboVac. You know...a robotic vacuum cleaner. It's the best invention EVER. At the push of a button it glides about, making my floorboards gleam while I get onto more important matters like braiding my hair and writing witty anecdotes.

Sadly, I occasionally retrieve my manual vacuum (ugh!) and run it over the rug as my RoboVac, (or Maria as I've fondly named the 'robot help') can't get into it in the same way. To my great surprise and horror, upon attempting to retrieve the manual vacuum from its hidey-hole it recoiled and the handle came at me like a Mumbai Dancing Street Cobra (you know the ones, they dance to music played on a recorder or small flute for money) and smacked me fair in the eye. Ouch.

Usually, there would have been profanity, followed by tears, more profanity, a cry of 'why me?' and more tears. Not today. I recognised that I was experiencing some shock, put my hand over my eye, took a few breaths, calmly walked myself to the freezer, retrieved a pack of frozen peas (Ah McCain, you've done it again!), wrapped them in a tea towel, placed the package over my eye and sat myself down. Cool, calm and collected. Wowza.

This may not seem like a big deal to most but for the girl that took out the 'Publicis Mojo - Best actress in a Creative Drama' award (impressive, I know), it's kind of a big deal.  

So, I'm going to keep this up and see where it leads me. If you're keen to check it out you can Goo-goo-ley and find it on the Interweb or if you're tactile like me, you can get the little handbook below.  

Meantime, remember. Renegade vacuum parts and other household items can attack at any time. Be alert. And feel free to adopt my new mantra 'Meditate, don't domesticate'. It may just save your life. 



Monday, 31 October 2011

Sweet Lord Baby Jesus! Take II

You may recall a few weeks back I threw on the Lycra (any excuse!) and joined the Michelle Bridges 12 week body transformation.

When I committed to this I had NO idea how positively it would impact my life.

Having just commenced week 8 of the program, I can happily report the physical, mental and emotional transformations are so overwhelmingly terrific that I've signed up for another round. Yep you heard me. More than just a 12 week liaison, this is a way of life. Booshaka!

Here are some things I've learned about myself and others whilst on the road to better health and well being.

On the first season of 'Under the Cover', Jackie Frank, Publisher and Editor of marie claire magazine posed a question to her team 'what's the favourite part of your body'? Not one of them could definitively give her an answer.

Well Jackie, I have one for you and I'll deliver it to you with the same Ron Burgundy-esque gusto when declaring his love for Veronica Corningstone - I love my decolletage and shoulders!! There, I said it! I have kick arse shoulders...like a good girdle, strong, supportive and sexy. Who knew?

In the past, I've allowed that little voice inside my head to talk me in and out of things...

'You can't run...what are you running from anyways? Here, come sit on the nice big couch and watch a movie. Oh, don't forget the giant bag of potato chips'.

'High impact cardio is not for you. Let Olivia Newton John get physical - you take 5'.

'Hey, when did rations become the rage? Surely that's not enough food for you? Pile it up lady!'

Yep - self sabotage. I, like many, have fallen victim to it for years however I've learned to recognise and eliminate it. Don't get me wrong, I'm not completely immune to it (yet). I simply choose not to dance with this devil in the pale moonlight any longer...Bye bye old friend.

If you're lucky enough not to be a self saboteur, never fear! There are truck loads of people that are happy to impart their expertise and wisdom upon you when given the opportunity.

'Don't lose too much weight'
'Probably not a good idea to exercise every day'
'Is that really enough food?'

Phew, it's such a relief knowing people care.

In fairness, I've likely participated in serving up some similar wisdom in the past. And for that, I openly apologise. I'm learning that these comments are more about how I (and others) feel about someone having taken the steps towards personal fulfillment.

These days, I remind myself of the importance of personal observation, education and action. All of us are on our own journey and are entitled to do it with love and encouragement.

So, I've hooked up 'self sabotage' and 'unneccesary opinion/judgement of myself and others' for a quiet tryst. Meanwhile, I'm better, faster, stronger in more ways than I believed possible and I confidently march forward to the beat of my own drum.

When next we meet, I can show you what I'm talking about through interpretive dance...until then, you stay classy San Diego!

Big love,
TLT x

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

The Sixth Sense

For some, the thought makes them gag however I'm much like the kid in the film 'The Sixth Sense'...not so much in that I see dead people, I simply like wearing their clothes.


It's a real treat for me to hit the road on a Vintage/Retro mission. The hunter in me comes to life! So with my eye firmly fixed on a prize and armed only with a pocket full of dollar bills and a heart full of hope, I search. You see, 'classics' are not often encountered so to find something that I love AND that fits me?...Well, therein lie both the thrill and the challenge and when it happens I experience pure joy.


You see, my chassis is a little bigger in comparison to my sisters from the 50's, 60's and 70's. Regardless, I push on like my Spartan forefathers, relentless in the pursuit of victory. For me, it's like the beginning of a crazy love affair...spotting something on the rack, pulling it out to get a full view, flipping the tag over to check the size and OH YES...SUCCESS! I pull it on, I spin about. Oh, to be loved! What a feeling!


So if you're up for a little Vintage/Retro shopping in Brisbane, here are some spots that have served me very well and should you stop in and take a look, I hope you find some of your very own love affairs...


La Bella Donna - http://www.labelladonna.com.au/index.htm

I have picked up some of my favourite old school classics here. Anna, the owner, is particularly friendly and has a knack of getting me to try things on that I wouldn't necessarily notice or choose to try however her 'surprise picks' generally look fabulous. She's pretty good like that.


Retro Metro - Given Tce, Paddington

I have rarely been disappointed here and picked up the most insanely cool (and much to my delight, never been worn) shoes in this little establishment however their wares are not limited to clothing, shoes and accessories. They also stock retro furniture and knick-knacks in their sister store just up the street (approx. 150 metres away) so be sure to check them both out.


Box Vintage - Vulture St, West End

Here you'll be greeted with garments blowing in the breeze, a suitcase filled with accessories and a sale rack to lure you in. Although they do stock some good pieces, I rarely find anything in my size. Nonetheless, it's worth a look...and yes, I live in hope that my time will come!


Retro Stop - 491a Lutwyche Rd, Lutwyche

This store offers a large amount of stock so ensure energy, concentration and hydration levels are high!

Happy shopping!

Friday, 23 September 2011

You can't touch this!

Recently my dear friends Mandy and Peter were betrothed.

Ahh, I love a wedding and t'was a truly delightful affair.

The ceremony was originally intended to proceed beneath a big, old Fig tree however thanks to torrential rain, Plan B was quickly implemented and both Mandy and Peter's declaration of love and commitment to one another and the reception party to 'officially' seal the deal were undertaken in a marquee perched on a hill in the rolling hinterland of Byron Bay.

Regardless of Mother Nature's absolute lashing (we're survivors in the Destiny's Child sense of the word) we partied on.


I was awarded the honourable role of Mistress of Ceremonies or as I promptly and affectionately tagged myself, 'MC Hammer' due to the fact that i'm a self motivator and, well, I was going to smash it.


That said, in the days leading up to the event I found myself alternating between 3 states of mind.

1. Panic - In the event of an emergency assume the brace position and stay calm!

What if I screw this up?...What if they're sitting at the breakfast table 5 years from now, ruing the day they asked me to be their hostess with the mostest? 

2. Motivation - Tony Robbins style

'It's not what we get, but who we become and contribute that gives meaning to our lives.'
Mental note: Focus on my contribution.

3. Action - I'm an aficionado of the method movement



"You talkin' to me? You talkin' to me? You talkin' to me? Well, who the hell else are you talkin' to? You talkin' to me? Well, I'm the only one here. Who the f--k do you think you're talkin' to?"

Post event, i've taken some time for reflection and I got to thinking about how one event is approached so very differently depending on the individuals involved on every level. Be it star attraction, MC or guest - the preparation and execution of such an event is managed differently.

For these lovebirds, the occasion was organised yet relaxed.

My girlfriend Mandy is relatively low fuss.
Frock - check. Sparkly shoes - Check. Dramatic make up - check. Easy.

My mate Peter - he's pretty low fuss too.
New suit and shoes. Done and dusted.

Rather than adhering to tradition (a dish best served cold) they opted out of having Mandy's father walk her down the aisle to meet her Prince. On this occasion Mandy, Peter and their two children approached us and their future, together. Walking through the rain and into the marquee as one. Unconventional? Perhaps, yet it worked so beautifully. It was their moment and we loved it.

Post ceremony, which was beautifully conducted by Marriage Celebrant 'Zen' (we were in Byron Bay after all!) came the bubbles and a few moments for the speeches. They were warm, funny and inspirational. So inspirational in fact that guests began lining up (much like X Factor auditions) for some time on the microphone. Again, more laughs and tears...which provided me with a personal highlight and a memory that will forever make me smile.

It seems my motivating self speak was not to be taken in vain. You see, old mate Tony Robbins was onto something in saying 'The meeting of preparation with opportunity generates the offspring we call luck.' I like it! And it was true for me on this rainy night. You see, the memory that will always give me a smile saw this quote come to life. The stars aligning, preparation and opportunity colliding...

Without expecting it, Peter's sister Jane asked to say a few words. She, like most in attendance, was overwhelmed with joy and emotion. A quietly spoken lady yet clearly loving person, Jane shared with us her love for her brother (nawww...) and how she felt concerned for him when he first ventured to Australia. So far away from family and friends...would he be happy? How would he go without his family? Then BAM! She busted out the old Pai Mei 5 Point Palm Exploding Heart technique - the technique described quite simply, as the deadliest blow in all of martial arts. Or martial hearts in this case.

Jane went on to tell us that she needn't worry anymore because having now seen Peter settled with his new family and the love the share, that all is well in the shire. Well, there wasn't a dry eye in the house and thereafter comes my little piece of magic. The memory.

I approached Jane, embraced the mic, channelled my hopes, thanked Jane for her tear jerking speech and felt compelled to call out to the crowd. 'Can you feel the love in the room?' and I got a Yeah! So, I rolled with it...method I told you. I asked them again - 'I can feel it, can you feel it?' (and cast a look over at the DJ who evidently was riding this cosmic wave with me) to which the guests, now fired up gave me a YEAH! And before you know it, the beat kicked in and the Jackson 5 launched us into the night. Can you feel it..Can you feel it...Can you feel it!! Dance we did. Oh yeah, we felt it alright!

Classic, solid gold, could not have planned it, forever make me smile moment. Thank you universe and respect to you Mr DJ.

And so on this journey I learned a few things.

I discovered that great friendships can surprise and delight you at anytime. They are truly remarkable and on this day I was reminded of how much I appreciate mine. I love you Mandy and Peter.

I discovered the old adage, 'like attracts like' is true of this particular friendship as I too am a low maintenance person and in preparation for my contribution ultimately approached my duties with a touch of 'que sera sera'. My preparation (after all that panic, motivation and raiding the prop box) and execution meant that for my part, I was going give it to them with gusto and from the heart. And it worked out for the best.

And I discovered that it is of utmost importance to have an awesome band/DJ at any occasion that you hope to be remembered. Lip-syncing, butt shaking, finger clicking and toe tapping are all good for the soul.

And in the event you're wondering about how my MC duties went, I think i've done them proud and don't believe the aforementioned 'I rue the day' conversation has or will occur over scrambled eggs anytime soon. One can only hope...Who am I kidding?!? I rocked it like Dwayne Johnson.

Forget MC Hammer, there's a new kid in town...


Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Sweet Lord baby Jesus!

I've done it guys.

I've signed up for the Michelle Bridges 12 Week Body Transformation.

I thought it a fabulous idea to completely expose myself (I view potential for public humiliation as a real motivator) to all and sundry on my journey of personal improvement. Air my dirty laundry if you will. In truth, participating in the 12WBT and documenting the details is a clever ploy, a dastardly plan, which I'm hoping will keep my fingers on the keyboard and out of the cookie jar. Damn you cookie jar!..

Stay tuned for updates as I hit the road (running if Michelle has any say in the matter) to a healthier, trimmer and pain free me. Join me for the highs and lows, the tears and happiness...oh, and the embarrassing images of me in my scanties holding up the Courier Mail. 

Official kick off is Monday, 12 September...Give me strength.

www.12wbt.com
 

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Viva la revolution!

The slow food revolution!

The rules of engagement are simple:
  • Eat clean, fresh, whole foods
  • Chew slowly
  • Do nothing else while eating
  • Focus on and enjoy what's going into your body
Easy enough, right?...Right?

There is NO doubt, growing up in a Greek household has contributed to my eating habits. My paternal Grandmother and namesake, Yiayia Kyrany,  grew up and raised her six children in times of great hardship. Food was a luxury and therefore when available, it was to be enjoyed and appreciated regardless of what or how much was on offer. So, like sands through the hourglass, these childhood and early adult life experiences determined her mindset and beliefs which shaped her attitude and wisdom as she aged.

So, there she was. A woman with healthy appreciation of and positive relationship with food. A bona fide member of the slow food revolution. That's right punters, apparently this ain't some hot new trend...my Yiayia Kyrany had her finger firmly on the pulse back in the 20's!

It's true that my Grandmother would chew soup regardless of others having finished their meal and clearing plates around her. Regardless of being the subject of mocking. Yes, she remained true to her ways. Her philosophy and mantra was simply this, 'Eat slowly, live longer' and she made it to 96 so there must be some method to this so called madness. 

You might then appreciate my absolute confusion with respect to her polar opposite way of thinking when it comes to food and how others engage with it. I suspect this too came about as a result of the aforementioned hardship, however the idea that food is not to be wasted IE. everything on your excessively over portioned plate was to be eaten...yes, ALL of it. The philosophy and mantra in this circumstance - 'Eat, Eat, EAT!'.

Being set in her ways coupled with strong support (similar to that of Kim Kardashian's brassiere) and encouragement from an entire race determined to prepare enough food to feed a small town and proceed to force feed it to you at each meal time has made it difficult. Oh, and let's not forget the double serve of guilt that's dished up when declining a third serve of something. 'You sick?' 'You no like it?' 'Eat, Eat, EAT!'

On the one hand, I wholeheartedly count the many and varied pleasures of the culinary world among the greatest on Planet Earth. The ability a shared meal has to bring people together, to open the lines of communication and the comfort it provides is to be (pardon the pun) relished. And if you're like me, the great satisfaction one feels in preparing something delicious for family and friends is truly wonderful.

Without doubt, some of my fondest stories and memories involve food.

All that said, you might appreciate that learning to balance the act of food for fuel vs. eating until you need to undo the top button of my pantaloons is a challenge and a skill that I'm hoping, no, intend to acquire. How's that for positive affirmation!

Here's my plan...I'm going to pay more attention, really take my sweet time and savour the flavour. You heard me, when I sit down for a meal, I aim to do it with 'joie de vivre!' enjoying every single bite whilst thinking of my Yiayia Kyrany.

Even all those years ago, she was definitely onto something...




Sunday, 21 August 2011

Spring is my destination...

In the words of the Jackson Five, 'Can you feel it?'  I can.

The days are getting longer, the layers are lighter. Yes, Spring is on its way! So here are some fun things (for the lads and the ladies) to plan and do...

Hit the link below to try on any and all of the fantastic nail polish colours in the OPI range. You can choose nail length and skin tone to get a true reflection of how the colours will personally suit.

Careful...it's addictive!

http://opi.com/nailstudio/nailstudio.swf

Looking for a way light hearted yet personal way to let your friends know you're thinking of them? Drop in at http://sendables.jibjab.com/ where you'll find ECards, dancing videos and hundreds of ways to say everything from Happy Birthday to Bye Bye Baby!

Feeling a tad floppy after yet another 'It's too cold to exercise, best get home for some comfort food' Winter? Shake (literally!) those Winter blues with some Zumba baby! This fun fitness sensation is the self-proclaimed “latin-inspired, easy-to-follow, calorie-burning, dance fitness-party” and i've been assured I'll be sporting a J-Lo booty quicker than she can find her fourth husband!

If you're based in Brisbane, you can get hip on the floor J-Lo style at The Met, Fortitude Valley where they pump up the sound system, lighting rig and visual wall giving you a genuine 'club style' (innit) experience. Sounds right up my alley. Wonder if Pit Bull will be hanging about?... http://www.zumbafitbrisbane.com.au/

PS. Clubs across Australia undertake Zumba classes each week - jump online and check it out in your home town.

While you've got your groove on, visit http://www.islandvibe.com.au/

This annual festival held over three days in October on the magnificent Stradbroke Island offers punters a wonderful fusion of music, dance, food, art, craft and culture.

Get yourself a ticket for one, two or all three days and jump to the jungle rhythms of Afro Mandinko, grind to Ghettafunkt and get down to the Dubmarines. And if you do manage to get along please, please, please be sure to head to the Big Top for some smooth and sexy lyrical freestyling from Charlie 2na (pronounced two-na). There's nothing fishy about this fellow. He is a lyrical gangster. Boom!

While you're there, I do encourage you to extend your stay beyond Island Vibe and make a wee holiday of it so you may enjoy all the island has to offer. It really is a perfect time of year and you'll feel a million bucks for it...I promise.

For all things Stradbroke Island, you can start here http://stradbrokeisland.org/

My work is done here. If this hasn't got you thinking about getting fit, fab and funky then you may as well give this a shot...http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xW1fXL3s7bk

I can!

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

My Fantasy Island

It's Exhibition Day in Brisbane today. Yes, that's right interstate and international friends, we Brisbanites are rewarded with a public holiday each year to make our way to what is fondly termed "The Ekka".

You can check it out at http://www.ekka.com.au/

Personally, I have no desire (regardless of the temptation of the famous and exclusively available Strawberry and Cream ice cream) to attend. So you might appreciate I've taken the opportunity to relax...to do and think about the important stuff. 

I began the day with a delicious coffee, ran a few small errands, prepared a delicious leg of lamb accompanied by Risoni before relaxing in front of the computer, listening to tunes and surfing and somehow wound up (as you do on Exhibition Wednesday) contemplating my TOP 10 celebrity crushes. My "Fantasy Island" if you will. I told you, the important stuff.

So here they are, in no particular order and subject to change...

I hope your day has been as productive and enjoyable as mine.

Oh, and you're welcome.

1. Zachary Quinto

 Only a man of disturbingly abnormal hotness can look good as Spock


2. Rhys Coiro

Short hair, long hair, any which way...I don't care

3. Ryan Gosling

The handsome, intelligent SNAG...AND he likes to Salsa


4. Joseph Gordon-Levitt

He's come a long way since 3rd Rock from the Sun


5. Bradley Cooper

Scrum-diddly-umptious and funny AND clever


6. Ryan Reynolds


Refer # 5

7. Jake Gyllenhall

Sweet as sugar, dark as Donnie


8. Johnny Depp

Vintage Gold


9. Josh Harnett

Loved him since I saw him in Lucky Number Slevin


10. Robert Downey Jr.

Bad boy come good. Enough said...



Sunday, 14 August 2011

It's so easy being Green

Although the Cafe Latte will always be in style, there are people a plenty converting to tea, in particular, the Green variety. Anna Tamvakis chats with an Aussie leading the drive to grow some of the best in the world right here in our own back yard.

Anthony Somers is a quietly spoken man with a passion for Green tea. He is also a crusader for Viticulture, the cultivation of grapes often used for the production of wine. "The easiest way to understand Viticulture is to consider this, agriculture feeds the planet by providing resources for consumption while horticulture encompasses plants, orchards - the pleasures of life". Viticulture is an extension of the latter according to Somers.

While enjoying a freshly brewed pot of Green tea you could be forgiven for momentarily drifting away to the "Land of the Rising Sun" however may be surprised to learn it has been produced in a town called Medowie, "Place of many Trees" in the Hunter region of New South Wales.

A self confessed nomad, Somers suggests he's returned to the town because that's where his job is, however as he turns toward me and continues talking about the project his underlying knowledge and excitement is overwhelming. "Japanese Green tea has been cultivated in Tasmania for over ten years now and we are working with Japanese counterparts on experimental growth on the North NSW Coast. The reality of an ageing farming population in Japan coupled with a lack of desire amongst their younger generations to continue the tradition, represents real opportunity for us to be exporting to the Japanese and other Asian markets".

The Chinese have known about the medicinal benefits of Green tea since ancient times, using it to treat everything from headaches to depression. Today, scientific research in both Asia and the West is providing hard evidence for the health benefits long associated with drinking Green tea. A 2006 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association concluded "Green tea consumption is associated with reduced mortality due to all disease excluding cancer".

Somers has personally experienced the benefits of enjoying Green tea and confirms that he has developed a healthy addiction. "My cholesterol levels have decreased dramatically since I started drinking it".

Although Somers' transition from grapes to tea has been a smooth one, communication with Japanese business associates is sometimes lost in translation. The way Australia and Japan conduct themselves professionally is very different and the language barrier is a real one, yet the desire to create "Ichi Ban Cha" (which translates to Number One Tea) is a priority for all involved. Somers description of the processing of the leaf indicates the tea is treated with the utmost care and consideration. "The processing is not done by hand yet the machinery replacing the manual process is such that the leaves are pressed together, even the temperature is regulated to match that of a human being" Somers says.

The pureness of energy in the mission undertaken by Somers is apparent and his commitment unwavering. He is very proud of the product he is helping create. "Being involved in this makes me feel good. Rather than producing a product that harms or creates negative social impact, I feel I'm contributing in a positive way".

It sounds as thought the humble cuppa is in excellent hands.

Excuse me, it's time to put the kettle on.

Friday, 12 August 2011

Welcome!

I am compelled.

Compelled by the many wonderful and tragic things we are surrounded by and with.

So here I am, my first foray into blogging.

I have no clear direction at this point. Personally, I am at a crossroad of evolution (as is in my humble opinion) the world and thought it appropriate to document because...

a) I really do believe both stories will be groundbreaking! 
b) I find i'm forgetting things

So although it's seemingly aimless at the present, I'm hoping that anyone reading this will also feel compelled.

I'll rely on you to agree or tell me otherwise.

Until then...loving you, loving me.

Tough Love Tamvakis.