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Highlights of my week included:

  • Organising the perfect farewell gift for my boss and seeing her reaction
  • Pushing myself to the limit and fighting my fear of heights at Tree Adventures

 

The low of my week was: 

Trying to make a booking at a lodge/backpackers via Airbnb. Their response: we don’t accept payment through Airbnb yet, please Google us and book through our site. I almost don’t want to book with them at all on principle now. And I’ll be reporting them to Airbnb.

This week’s links

MONEY

An interesting perspective on finding the joy in spending, via See Debt Run

How to save by bartering your services, via Making Sense of Cents

TRAVEL

Ashley basically sums up all my feelings about documenting travel

We have some totally wacky birdlife in NZ, as Young Adventuress documents

Rachel Hills reflects on what living in London has taught her

FOOD

All you ever needed to know about the different kinds of Thai curry, via Traveling 9 to 5

Landing Standing suggests a novel way to order when dining out in pairs at a new restaurant

LIFE

Funnily enough, in the same week that I wrote about our unromantic relationship, Married with Luggage blogged about unconventional romance

Tiny Apartment lists the 5 stages of wedding planning

Makeup and Mirtazapine voices a painful truth: at some point or other, everyone you love will hurt you

Like whoa. This woman wasn’t a Sheryl Sandberg fan – until she couldn’t find a job

Finally, I do like Emily Nussbaum’s writing, and this interview in which she explains  how she lucked into her New Yorker job and how much tougher things are today is a revealing one.

I literally feel like I cannot give advice on how to get [my] job, because the obvious ways that the journalistic economy has collapsed and the role specifically for culture analysts within that make it very, very hard to make a living. The clear paths even for people who are already privileged are no longer there. I don’t want to BS people. I feel like I was super lucky—I aged in at a point where when a really desirable job became available that I was actually suited for, I had enough experience to already have the clips in place. But how often does the television critic for The New Yorker step down?

The situation now is biased against newcomers. That’s factual. And I don’t think people should beat themselves up for not being able to make headway in that kind of situation. I feel like young people who get online writing jobs are forced to write a million things with no editing for a small amount of money—that’s not an ideal situation. Sometimes people can become very good writers that way, but it’s not a situation where you are nurtured and brought to the best level of your writing.

I hate that there are unpaid internships, because it means that the only people who can afford to take the gigs are already privileged, but it’s undeniable that once you’re at a place, you can ask to do more, because you’re not a stranger. I’m also seriously worried about what it does to people to get trapped in the low-paid blog mines, but that doesn’t mean that those gigs can’t get you to a better place. Also, while there’s nothing wrong with writing for free early on, the goal is always to get paid. Ask for more, politely. Also, push for more-ambitious assignments—editors want responsible writers, but they also want ambitious ones who have ideas of their own. The worst they can do is say no, and if you don’t ask, you’ll get a no anyway. Might as well go for it.

(It’s true: we editors love writers with ideas. Another reason I would suck at freelancing; I’m not much of an ideas generator. Also, I have never really benefited from much editing guidance myself, having worked almost exclusively online. Nurturing? Definitely not a word that describes this field.)

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How things change. A few years ago we paid $200 or $300 for a 500MB external hard drive. It was huge and had an external AC power plug. Today, a tiny 1TB drive that fits in the palm of my hand that’s entirely USB powered costs $100.

And I still remember when USB sticks and 10packs of blank CDs cost a bomb.

That’s my thought for the weekend.

 This week’s links

I LOVE THIS. 10 things to miss about New Zealand

Travel is more than the seeing of sights, says Nickel by Nickel

At Yes and Yes, a beauty editor in Malaysia shares her morning routine (in another life that could’ve been me!)

Get Rich Slowly on the habits of financially successful people

My Pretty Pennies ponders the benefits of working for someone else

Athena explains how she fits travel into her budget

Adored Manda’s post paying tribute to her body and its amazing strength

Grumpy rumblings on small changes and individual power

I’m not gonna lie, divorce would feel like a personal failure to me. This post on certainty vs security gave me a lot to think about

10 questions to ask if you’re interviewing for a startup job

A huge factor that makes it hard to break the poverty cycle - social ties, aka downward mobility

I’m working on a freelance feature about renting vs buying in NZ and in my research stumbled across this thread. Aside from the fact that most rentals these days are managed by agents, it still rings true. Renting in NZ SUCKS.

Finally, there is so much goodness in this interview with Austin Kleon. You should definitely unpack it for yourself, but here are some of my favourite snippets:

“Be regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work.”

“I have a couple problems with the “do what you love” ideology. The first issue I have is that it is impossible for everyone to do what they love. As a society, we cannot function without people doing the dirty work: someone has to take out the garbage; someone has to make sure the plumbing is running; someone has to make sure the electric is on for all the startups (laughing). The fact is that a lot of people aren’t going to be able to make money doing what they love, so it starts to make people feel bad. That pressure can make someone with a good, stable, bread-winning job feel like he or she has to toss it out because it’s not what they genuinely want to be doing.

“The second issue I have with doing what you love—and I’m sure you two are finding this out—is the pressure to overwork. People are led to believe that if they’re doing what they love, then they should be working long hours, or even all day.”

“In all creative work, there is a balance between what you want to give the world and what the world needs: if you’re lucky, your work is in the middle. Because of that, I believe that every job has a service element to it. If you want to make creativity your job, you have to think about what your creativity is in service of. Think less about how you can be a genius and more about the scenius. What can you contribute?”

“Instead of thinking, “What do I have to give to the world?” you ask, “What does the world need from me?” Sometimes that’s an easier way to get started. Usually, when we talk about creativity, it’s about self-expression, which is great, but for work to be art or design, there has to be someone on the other end.”

 

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Just the other day on LinkedIn I saw that an old friend had a new freelance role at an agency in New York.

It’s been years and years now since we pored over Harvard scholarship application forms in her room, convinced she was going to become a criminal lawyer down the track. Me, I thought I wanted to go to Columbia like my favourite fictional character, Jessica Darling.

How things change. 

Another friend is moving to New York next month and while I’m super excited for her – and envious of all the amazing food she’s going to get to eat all the time  - I couldn’t help but feel a bit parochial when we turned to discussing my career and what I want out of the next few years. For the perfect opportunity, I’d be happy to go overseas for a stint (though the headache of having to find a place to live and set up all the elements of a new life is a daunting prospect). But the odds of something like that actually coming to ME  is, shall we say, unlikely.

I live a small life, I know. In a small country at the bottom of the world. Expat friends are doing cool things in exciting cities abroad, but of course that comes with a tradeoff – a degree of financial security (because I hang with creatives, not lawyers and bankers).

I also have a good career here – I’ve had the privilege of working for great companies in great roles that I really care about – and it would be tougher to continue that overseas. Big fish, small pond…

This week’s links:

I had to laugh at these 10 tips for Japanese tourists visiting the US

20 Years Hence interviewed me about two of my favourite things in the world: food and travel

Even if you aren’t an engineer in Silicon Valley, this post is full of job hunt nuggets and interesting anecdotes (and the FizzBuzz part had me shuddering in recollection of the time i tried to learn Javascript through Codecademy)

A thought provoking post on interracial friendships

Manda reflects on what it was like to lose her father at a young age

Some unorthodox ways to scope out a new neighbourhood

Think twice about these things before starting your own business 

Whenever I get annoyed about the rain or lack of Mexican food here and ask myself why we don’t live in California already, I manage to stumble across something like this … or Scandal reminds me that politics is influenced by the gun lobby  … or I see a LinkedIn blog post that reminds me US employers don’t have to give staff any paid time off. (Also: jobs, family, friends.)  America, I know you can do better!

Goddamn, the human spirit is an amazing thing. This powerful story just got nominated for an award, which is how I found out about it. Masterful use of the second person – I hope it wins. (And the PF nerd in me rejoiced in the paragraph that talks about his retirement account, good credit and platinum card.)

Lastly, I just finished a freelance feature on the basics of personal finance, and changed a line in my author bio from ‘believes that money buys happiness’ to the noncontroversial ‘money buys peace of mind’. But I truly believe money DOES buy happiness, for all the reasons Revanche points out. Too many people say they’d rather be poor and in love than rich and alone without actually having experienced it. I’ve been broke and coupled up and it nearly sank the relationship. I haven’t experienced being rich and alone but I suspect I would prefer it (of course, YMMV, depending on your personality and need for security).

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Okay, it’s not quite five years on from when I wrote this post, but when I randomly stumbled across it while previewing a post I was working on, I decided now was the time to revisit it. Odds are I might not remember to check back in 8 months’ time…

So, here’s my 2009 vision for my life five years later, compared with reality:

1. What time do you wake up, and how are you feeling as you greet the day? I’m up at 7, feeling energised (More like 8am these days. YESSS.)

2. Where are you? If you’re at home, what does it look like? In my own house (maybe a Lockwood) with big kitchen, walkin pantry, garage, ensuite bathroom and decent sized closet (Nowhere near. We do have a lot of storage space here, though)

3. Who is with you? T. Maybe a pet (preferably a cat, but more likely a puppy if T has his way) (Still renting, no pets. T’s still around; we did get married after all)

4. What kind of work are you doing? (if you have no idea what kind of work you’ll be doing or want to be doing, list the qualities you want to find in the work you do and the kind of work environment you want.) I’m in the prime of my career, as a subeditor or a web editor, in an airy, sunny open plan office. I work in a friendly, supportive team and regularly have lunch with coworkers (Pretty much bang on)

5. As you head out to face the day, how do you look? What are you wearing? I look polished and effortless (ha!) I am wearing nice jeans with a shirt and flats, because the office environment is fairly casual. (Okay, the first part was always a bit of wishful thinking, but again, bang on!)

6. How do you get to work? Walk (Oooh, this was true up until we went overseas, then came back and moved! Weird that I said this back then – to be honest, I don’t imagine I’ll ever be able to walk to work again in the future.)

7. When you’re done with work, how will you spend you spare time and with whom? What activities do you enjoy? With T. I’ll bake, catch up on blogs, watch some TV or a movie. I enjoy photography, playing guitar, travel. (Still into the books and movies and blogging. Other stuff, less so)

8. What is your evening like? I might catch up with friends at one of our houses for a few hours – lots of laughs, maybe a silly retro boardgame, good food. (I’ll be honest – I remember writing that and thinking that in all truth, I’d rather just chill at home, but was a bit reluctant to admit it. And that’s usually how it does go.)

9. When you go to bed that night, how are you feeling after spending the day doing exactly what you love? Contented and fulfilled. Glad that it’s nearly the weekend. (Yep, life’s pretty good.)

10. What are you most grateful for and what are you looking forward to as you go to sleep? T, a warm house, great job and good food. (Ditto.)

How does your life match up with your ambitions from five years ago?

This week’s links

WORK/CAREER

A sobering tale of freelancing and the strange state of media today (I felt rather guilty upon reading the quote describing the freelancer/editor relationship, but it is on the money)

Over at Get Rich Slowly: Overwork and the illusion of high paying jobs

A most excellent and comprehensive guide to career planning and progression, over at Fast Company 

Mashable lists 10 questions to ask if you’re interviewing for a startup job

This Toast essay on making art and failing is equal parts beautiful and painful

MONEY

The Simple Dollar realises that poverty is not a simple problem to solve

Well Heeled Blog reflects on the things she used to think she needed 

Tiny Apartment Design on being surrounded by rich people

LIFE, etc

Michelle from Fit is the New Poor used Taskrabbit help to pull off a birthday surprise for her husband (the first I’ve ever heard of anyone using the site that  way!)

Some things you probably didn’t know about Japanese food, from Ever in Transit

Untemplater shares her best hard-learned travel tips

A few clever ways to preserve your travel memories, via Yes and Yes

Oh good, I’m not the only one out there who only washes my bras every few weeks - thanks Corporette. How about you? (DON’T JUDGE ME!) 

 

Carnival of Personal Finance #455: Books, tax refunds, growing up and more

Curating great reads is one of my hobbies, as regular readers know (when was the last time I missed a weekly Link Love?) and doing it for a blog carnival is extra fun.

You might’ve noticed the new look, trimmed down carnival over the past few weeks. IMO, it’s definitely a good thing, as focusing on quality is always a savvy move … and speaking of which, being savvy about money is definitely a common theme this week:

Blogs are where I’ve picked up most of my (limited) financial knowledge, but sometimes it’s hard to beat a good book. Miranda at Prairie Eco Thrifter shares five books that changed her outlook on money and Harry at Your PF Pro reviews The Big Short, packing in some of his own reflections about Wall St, investing and greed vs stupidity.

I’m grateful to have a job I genuinely adore (I might have to pen a post on that…) although Mr. 4HWD argues that work is a lot more fun when you don’t have to work (I’m sure!) while Krant Cents asks if you work to live or live to work.

Are you getting a tax refund? If so, both Monica on Money and The Broke Professional suggested some smarter ways to spend your windfall.

Growing up can involve some painful lessons. For starters, you need to get these 5 documents in order, courtesy of Stay at Home Economics, and like Natalie you might have a student loan to contend with, or you might find yourself in the middle of an unsettling encounter with a stranger demanding money ala Emily from Evolving Personal Finance.

Let’s wrap it up on a positive note! In the quest for financial success, Adam from Stop Worrying About Money reminds us to focus on small steps. Start by pledging to Do 1% Better. It doesn’t get more manageable than that.

Get in on the action at carnivalofpersonalfinance.com next week.

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I like to think that overall I do a good job of playing the role of functioning adult, the kind who contributes to society and all that kind of thing. I was pleased to find that as I read through Adulting last month, I had a lot more ‘yes, I know! Wish I’d had this book five years ago’ moments than ‘damn, how have I made it this far without knowing this?’ moments.

But now I must confess to some things I do not understand and probably never will.

People (particularly renters) who wish to paint their walls. I dunno, I guess I’m not into decor at all, and I grew up with soulless white walls and never gave it a second thought.

People who actually clean baseboards, corners, and under/behind the deep dark depths of large furniture (beds, couches, whiteware). How do I become one of you? (Never mind – it’s never going to happen)

People who eat raw vegetables. Ick.

People who instinctively know what flavours go together and how to fix mediocre/bad dishes. I think it was Eddie van Halen (correct me if I’m wrong, anyone who knows!) who once said that he did not see the frets on his guitar, but rather, musical notes and scales. That, to me, is witchery. Or mastery. I don’t know. Either way, I don’t have it, either in music or in cooking. That said, I’ve learned that salt fixes a LOT of things. I recall ‘tasting’ food for my mum as a kid; she’d always ask if it was salty enough. My immature tastebuds never really knew. Nowadays, I’m a little more sophisticated.

This week’s links

Things I wish someone had told me before I turned 20 - This is so much better than anything you’ll read on Thought Catalog (so by now they may well have republished it)

I personally think the ‘live every day as if it’s your last’ mantra is total crap, so loved Wandering Earl’s thoughtful post: Is it really possible to live life to the fullest? Comments are great too)

“Because I have grown children who aren’t doing time and a car that runs, I am often asked for advice” – An excellent and often amusing piece on our general reluctance to accept others’ advice

Paying off debt is sexy and saving is safe but both are essential, says Girl Meets Debt

Little Miss Moneybags talks work/life balance: These are seasons of my life, and that’s what balance looks like to me – focusing on one aspect of my life at a time. I like that and think it’s very true – you can’t have everything all at once. Balance is a long term thing that ebbs and flows over time, rather.

Thought provoking - are backpackers destroying the world? 

Eyes on the Dollar asks how far we should go in pursuit of impossible dreams

Love the sentiment in this post about how much we should earn in our 20s

12 ways to overcome cost objections from clients, at Make a Living Writing

A Yes and Yes true story starring someone who decided to legally change her name

Leo Baubata on what he’s learned about writing

Some things you should never say to an Asian woman

Finally, I ADORE this post about one woman’s journey to deciding whether or not to change her name. I hate that we feel we have to justify our decision to ourselves and others, either way. I hated that after my wedding, a coworker asked me what my married name was, and when I responded that it was the same name I’d always had, that she kept bugging me about what it *would* have been if I’d changed it. I know she was just curious, but I found that irritating and intrusive, especially since we were right next to my (male) boss at his desk. And in all fairness, I also felt bad for her that she then went on to explain why she changed her name – I hate that she felt she needed to ratify her choice.

 

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I’d made this far in life without ever needing to get stitches, so I was pretty bummed to hear that getting my wisdom teeth out would result in some.

Feeling my dentist sew up my gums was definitely one of the weirdest parts of the whole process. I could feel the cold needle inside my mouth, but nothing else. It probably wasn’t quite as disturbing as the numerous crunching sounds that emerged over the hour I spent in the chair as they drilled, cut, and yanked at my stubborn teeth.

As he promised, there was no pain during the extraction. Hallelujah! I closed my eyes and tried to play relaxing songs in my mind. They rubbed on a numbing gel, waited for it to kick in, then I felt the prick of the injection as they gave me my anaesthetic (which was slightly painful, but once that was done I was totally oblivious).

There WAS a lot of pressure and tugging, and strain in keeping my yob stretched open for all that time (I have a small mouth and I could tell it made his job difficult). It was also very hard to resist the urge to swallow, and I kept swallowing every few minutes – I just couldn’t help myself. I know the chemicals they use are safe, but I am totally grossed out to think about how much of my own blood I probably swallowed.

Because there was a TON of blood. I bled for hours after and went through all the gauze they gave me. Even weirder, I bled a bit out another (female) body part for a few days afterward – am wondering if it was the drugs I was taking afterwards. The antibiotics didn’t taste bad going down, but the codeine was foul. The afterpain wasn’t as bad as I’d worried … Maybe I was lucky, but I really can’t stress how much less worse it was than I’d feared it would be. The way it seemed to go was that I’d have a couple of really good days, then the pain would flare up a little, then leave me alone for another couple of days.

No, the hardest part was the eating restrictions. I was basically hungry all week because I could only eat soft foods and couldn’t really chew. I burn through food fast and have a large appetite, so this was TOTALLY UNCOOL.

It’s one week on, and I’ve heard that some people are in pain for a full month after – but I just had my stitches taken out, and today’s the first day I didn’t take any painkillers at all. So fingers crossed that won’t be me!

This week’s links

Perplexing, infuriating and unforgettable – Adventurous Kate recounts her time in Brunei

I love every single sentence in this post about work and fulfilment. Go and read it immediately

Meanwhile, the comments on this one about passion and long term relationships are fascinating (better than the post) 

Stefanie reminds us that making progress is always a slow slog

Leslie on why having goals can hurt you

Over at Budget and the Beach, the cost of living in paradise (aka Hawaii)

I couldn’t agree more with Figuring Money Out – put yourself first, because no one else will

Here is an interesting discussion about crafting your career narrative (the subject of an upcoming post here…)

Savings means nothing – it’s investing that matters, says Afford Anything

As Cash Cow Couple point out, you can determine how much value you place on something by how much time you allocate toward it

And I was in the latest carnival of personal finance discussing the business of car sales

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Inspired by Save Spend Splurge, let’s get to know each other a little better. Answer in the comments or on your blogs! Or if you just don’t care (wave your hands in the air), scroll down to get to this week’s links, of which there are plenty to get your teeth into.

1. If you could change something about yourself, what it be and why?

I would like to be less socially awkward and more verbally articulate. I’m okay with it and accept it, but it would make life and work SO much easier if I weren’t. .

2. What’s the farthest you’ve been from home?

I think Edinburgh is the furthest from Auckland we’ve been. Either that or maybe Iceland.

3. What is your motto?

Everything works out … eventually

4. What are your hobbies?

Food, travel, books, writing.

5. What is your favourite ice cream flavour?

IMPOSSIBLE to answer.

The answer would be different every day.

Right now I could go for a bit of salted caramel…

6. What two things could you not do when you were a child, but you can do now?

Stand up to my parents / stay up late at night to read.

7. If you could travel anywhere in the world – where would you go and why?

Still on my bucket list are parts of Australia’s east coast, the Pacific Northwest, Galapagos, St Petersburg, Spain, Portugal, Japan, Hong Kong, Mexico … Right now I’d probably pick Russia, since it’s the most difficult to get to.

8. Have you ever met a famous person?

Erm … the most famous is probably Alec Ross (who worked with Clinton and Obama).

9. What is your least favourite thing about yourself?

Hmm. Probably my general lack of energy (I’m not the kind of person who can handle taking on a whole lot, and I need a TON of sleep).

10. One word that describes you?

Sensitive.

11. If you were a crayon, what colour would you be & why?

Red – my favourite colour. Like this.

12. What is the weather like right now where you are?

Rather lovely. Early-mid 20s and sunny.

13. How tall are you?

I think I’m about 5’5. Maybe 5’6.

14. When you were little – what did you want to do “when you grew up?”

Psychologist. (Also, rock star.)

15. Toilet paper. Roll with paper coming off the top or bottom?

Over the top.

16. Favourite sport you like to watch or participate in? 

What are these sports you speak of?!

I hate watching sports. As for playing … I guess running doesn’t count? Either touch rugby or tennis.

17. What kind of food do you prefer eating when you are out?

Malaysian, Mexican, or Italian.

18. Last movie you watched?

Cloud Atlas.

19. Would you like to be famous?

I wouldn’t mind people knowing me by name, but by face? I wouldn’t want to be celebrity famous, that’s for sure.

20. What book are you reading?

I just finished How To Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe and An Abundance of Katherines. Both recommended!

21. If you had $5 million to spend in 5 days, but with the clause you could not spend any of it on yourself or your family, what would you do with it?

I’d seek out causes that are important to me – around women, new migrants, hunger/poverty, disadvantaged youth. The older I get, the more I realise this is something I care about – I didn’t have a perfect childhood and I haven’t had all the advantages in the world, but I definitely had a lot more than some.

22. If you knew that you could try any kind of work/employment and that you would not fail, what would you attempt doing?

I’d still write, but I’d want to try writing in different formats. Being able to call myself a novelist would be rad (though of course I’d need an idea first…) And I think I’d like to write songs;  I consider good songwriting an art. I haven’t done it for years and while it no longer interests me, in this hypothetical scenario why not go back to it, especially if I knew I was going to be successful? (This inspired me to go dig out my old scribblings, actually. Am posting them to Tumblr for posterity; head over if you wish to have a giggle at my adolescent angst.)

This week’s links

TRAVEL

Sneaky travel fees you’ve probably paid at some point

The Asian Pear pays a visit to New York

Amanda details the language of food in China

Daisy explains how moving away from home changed her life and so does Jessica, taking a different tack and discussing both the positives and the downsides

WORK

Funny About Money is undergoing some creative angst

Via Life After College, how to earn the  respect of your new boss

Gen Y Girl lists five ways to fall in love with your job again

Leslie Beslie recounts her time as a factory worker

Anyone else (for no real reason) always get nervous when their boss wants to have a chat?

The three conundrums of doing what you love

On Buzzfeed - can the intern hamster wheel be stopped? (I am personally doubtful.  I’m currently working on a feature about the pervasive culture of working for free in the creative industries which isn’t giving me much hope…)

MONEY

Should you take big risks in your 20s or focus on saving?

Apparently the living wage in Auckland is now calculated at $18.80. At this rate it won’t be long before that completely catches up to me :X

LIFE

What it means to be a woman today (hint, it’s complicated)

Nicole lays out the truth about living healthy

The fallacy of unconditional love

And the key ingredient to deeper relationships

 

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Something I’ve learned over the past few years is that Indian weddings vary widely. Every single one I’ve been to has been different – customs vary between region and country, and the celebrations I attended last month for one of my high school friends were particularly amusing because she’s the most Westernised of our group. Much like I eyerolled my way through a brief tea ceremony the day before my wedding, she endured all the rituals without really knowing what was going on or what to expect.

I wonder what the next generation of weddings will look like. As we discussed with some of their parents, as time goes on, those customs get amended or diluted. Traditions are forgotten, not passed down, or simply fall by the wayside in modern times. My friends all married within their culture, but who knows – their kids may well end up in interracial marriages. Indian wedding rituals are so beautiful, lively, and colourful, though, that even blended with others, I’m sure they will be spectacular no matter what.

Links I loved this week include: 

A bunch of RTW bloggers break down their budgets (and predictably get slammed for spending too much in the comments – YAWN)

Here are 12 apps you need to download before travelling Europe

The perks of travelling with the love of your life

There’s a difference between livable vs visitable cities (Auckland is definitely the former)

tale of trying to buy property in Auckland (for non-Aucklanders: Kelston is supposedly an up-and-coming suburb but has never quite made it and probably never will; and most houses are sold by auction)

Should Budget and the Beach leave LA? Weigh in here

Here’s how to celebrate Valentine’s Day as a single 30-something

And 28 things Lindsay’s parents taught her about love

This chart explains why you have nothing to wear

Stephany articulates SO MUCH about what I experience as an introvert

Fuzzy about what rape culture is? Me too, so read this

I too was more influenced by real-life beautiful girls at school than models in the media

But on that note, I’m feeling a bit let down by our usually awesome national airline – asking people to work for free and going the swimsuit model advertising route - is it a coincidence that all these things happened after former CEO Rob Fyfe’s departure?

Why you should work harder on yourself than  your job

Design Sponge explains how the blogging world has changed, including the fact that commenting died in 2013, or at least took a big hit, and how generally our internet consumption changing. Food for thought for both my day job and hobby…

Finally, apparently American universities are moving away from the roommate model (intriguing – we don’t really have this in NZ – I think at uni halls you get your own room, usually? That said most people share a house/flat as adults and it’s rare to live alone – we have very few apartments)

Happy weekends!

Link love (Powered by crutches and Mexican blankets)

nzmuse link love roundup Ah yes. I’d forgotten how prone T is to inconvenient accidents (be it horsing around with friends/extreme playfighting/sports/mosh pits). It was only a matter of time.

It’s just a shame he had to go sprain his leg on a Friday (weekends are the big sales days) and before he had any sick leave.

(For anyone who cares: last year we visited a trampoline park in California, where we a) got tired after about 10 minutes and b) were bored by all the rules and regulations – thanks, litigation-happy Americans! – and the over-watchful staff. Then last week his friends went along to a local trampoline park on a Friday night, one that was a lot more chilled out, as you might expect. Only he apparently had a bad landing after a flip and wound up in A&E.)

So while we’ve seen each other a lot more than usual this week, we were basically holed up at home rather than being able to get out and about. Ah well, the weather has been temperamental this week anyway.

Also, can I say a huge THANK YOU to everyone who gave me advice the other day. The best thing about blogging is the people, and I clearly have freakishly smart readers. <3 For anyone who’s also socially awkward and wondering how to be a good role model to young relatives who need one, head over and read the comments on this post.

To the links!

I took part in a Q&A about exploring NZ by campervan over on Null N Full

Forget about finding motivation (it’s not Where’s Waldo) and build systems instead, says Ramit Sethi

Sarah shares a few ideas to liven up your old blog posts (the first suggestion is bang on – had to laugh at how perfectly she described my own early days of blogging) and to be a happy traveller

Save Spend Splurge explains how fashion bloggers make money

Kate struggles with asking for help from friends

Finally, here’s The Awl on a macabre yet fascinating topic – cadavers. Now I definitely want to give my body to science. It’s funny how your stance on issues like this can change over time. I can’t tell you when exactly I started to find the idea of being embalmed and buried incredibly creepy, but at some point my inclination moved to cremation and eventually to the greater good. And it’s the same with other things; my thoughts on cheating, feminism and other things have evolved with age too.