Melbourne, Four Years & Easter

Last week Jarrod and I celebrated our 4th anniversary, Jarrod surprised me with a trip to Melbourne for the week which involved quite a lot of walking and ended with us coming home, quite tired, on Good Friday to a good collection of easter chocolate!

The entrance to The Langham, Melbourne.
The entrance to The Langham, Melbourne.

Our trip to Melbourne included 3 hotels with a very fancy one for our anniversary night. As we walked into the entrance of the hotel the above photo is the first thing we saw. It’s this huge, amazing fountain and all the surroundings are quite beautiful. We took 3 steps into the place and promptly someone was offering to take our bags and send them up to our room when it was ready. We eagerly dropped our heavy bags onto him and went to wander around the hotel.

Room View - The Langham
Room View – The Langham

This was the first time either of us had been in such an upmarket hotel and we were pretty amazed by the contrast in service we received from previous hotels we have stayed in. The service we received here was definitely above and beyond and there were many fun perks that came with our booking. We had access to their Club Lounge which was on the top floor of the hotel and they provided a free breakfast, afternoon tea and pre-dinner drinks and canapes, plus you could just sit there throughout the day if you were so inclined. We only stayed the one night but we did get a chance to go up for the pre-dinner drinks and sat at a window seat which looked over the Yarra River. We didn’t want to leave and pondered how no where at home could even come close to equalling the view. It was a very hard place to leave (fortunately we received a late 12:30pm checkout!) and made us never want to go home.

It was fun to spend our anniversary in such luxury! Did I mention they had a spa overlooking the river that was set to a balmy 38°C? It would have been amazing sit in the heat, with the jets massaging your back on a cool Autumn night. It was pretty great during the day on a warm Autumn day, maybe a tad too hot for us though.

It was such a nice surprise from Jarrod, I didn’t know where we were staying until we were, literally, sitting outside of the hotel. The Langham was one of the places I dreamed of staying on previous visits but it was a bit out of budget so it was exciting to get chance to stay, especially as I had no idea we would be.

Street art by Abyss607 on Hosier Lane
Street art by Abyss607 on Hosier Lane

If you’ve been following me for a while you’ll know I enjoy hunting down some great street art. In particular I was hoping to find some work of Abyss 607 on this trip. He used to be based in Canberra but moved down to Melbourne a few years ago and I’ve missed seeing his work pop up around the city.

On one of our days down in Melbourne Jarrod let me drag him around the little lanes in Melbourne on the hunt for some awesome street art. We found a lot of great stuff and I was really amazed by how many people there were taking photos and posing in front of the different pieces. We even saw one guy in the middle of painting a piece, unfortunately it was graffiti-ed over pretty much the next day. I loved the atmosphere there, we were in what could have been a dodgy little lane but it had been transformed into a massive canvas for street art. I wish people in Canberra were that tolerant of it.

Easter Haul
Easter Haul

After enjoying nearly a week in Melbourne we came home on Good Friday and had agreed to give each other Easter surprises that night so we had maximum chocolate eating time over the long weekend. This was my mega haul of chocolate from Jarrod! How beautiful is the Hazelnut Brownie egg?!

I think Jarrod partly did it to make me feel better about being home. I am always sad when having to leave Melbourne. There is just so much to see and do and we barely even scratched the surface in 6 days. Canberra is much smaller with much less history and life in the city and struggles to compare (sorry Canberra advocates) to Melbourne regardless of how much it tries. However, it was nice to lie in bed on Friday night and not hear any traffic or people on the street so there are always positives to everywhere.

There will be more Melbourne based posts to come! I just wanted to do a little overview of some of the great parts of the week that was.. even if we did have aching feet from all that walking!

Sarah

Fighting Social Norms

I’m at an age where people expect me to have ‘accomplished’ certain things. By now I should own a house, be married and have a few kids so that I can be considered as winning at life. So I thought I’d go through the ‘checklist to life’ and see how I’m going.

Owning a house ✓

Yes! One item checked. About 2 years ago now Jarrod and I talked about buying a house but at the time weren’t ready to jump into all that and wanted to save some money first, we’d been together a year at that point and hadn’t lived together yet so we wanted to make sure that was going to work out. I also wanted to get out of debt and actually have something to contribute to a deposit so we decided to rent for a year and then re-assess.

As you know we have been living in the house we bought for just over a year now so we obviously went ahead with that. It’s only the two of us in our house but it has 4 bedrooms and you can guarantee that when people find that out they give us a knowing look and say “oh, planning for the future?” because of course we are filling all that space with babies!

Married ✗

It seems like, in some peoples mind, this is the most important aspect of the checklist. Marriage is the end goal to life. Maybe this might have been true 50+ years ago when society was even more closed off to “alternative” lifestyles and the point of life was to get married, procreate and have your name continue on through the ages but I don’t understand why it’s still considered such a big deal. Perhaps even more so to some people. Those people who have their weddings mapped out from the time they understood the concept, those people who have this idea of the ‘perfect married couple’ and shove it in everyone’s face, those people who have to have a better wedding than everyone they know to show that their relationship is superior.

I have no problems with the idea of marriage and committing to someone for life. Would I get married? Sure. I really just don’t like the pressure behind planning the marriage, specifically the wedding. To me they should be about celebrating your life and future together not about how much you spent on the food or the reception or your clothes or about how many people are in your wedding party. I wouldn’t want to deal with the stress people put on themselves by making it the ‘perfect’ day. I’d much prefer to save a bunch of money from not having a hyped up wedding and use that to have a nicer/longer honeymoon.

Overall, I couldn’t see my life changing too much if I did get married. I’d just have a fancy new ring, a piece of paper and a new surname.

Kids ✗

If one more person tells me “oh you’ll change your mind” when I say I don’t want kids I may bite their face off. My body and my brain are my own and I know how I feel more than you know how I feel. If I say I don’t want kids, I’ve never wanted kids then maybe you should believe I don’t want kids rather than pushing your ideals onto me. Furthermore I don’t care whether someone feels like having a child was the best decision of their life, why does it automatically need to become part of mine? I have to say, I’m not looking forward to being even older and getting the old “you’re clock is ticking” every time the subject is raised.

Obviously having kids is a sore spot for me. It’s the one thing where people just do not understand if you don’t want them. They just can’t fathom that a woman wouldn’t want a baby to look after and nurture. I want to live my life the way I want to live it and not have the burden of a child to look after. I don’t want to have to outlay thousands of dollars on a child I’d much prefer to spend that on doing nice things for myself. Many people would say that is selfish and perhaps it is but I’m not telling them how to live their lives and expect they shouldn’t feel compelled to tell me how to live mine.

Yikes, 1 out of 3 on the checklist but fortunately, succeeding in these things aren’t what keep me going in life. Hopefully one day, as people become more and more open minded the checklist will change and become about living your best and happiest life rather than living the same life as everyone else.

 

 

Sarah

Three Years

It’s Jarrod and my third anniversary!

We’ve gone from hanging out on Friday nights as friends, drinking and doing stupid things to hanging in on Friday nights as a couple, not drinking and doing whatever we want in our house because we can!

We’ve gone from having no where to call our own, seeing each other on weekends and a few hours during the week to living together in the home we bought together, seeing each other every day and night.

We’ve gone from safe foods to Jarrod allowing me to take him places he’s never been before and trying foods he never would have previously.

We’ve gone from being shy around each other (the first time we slept in the same bed, Jarrod wore jeans to sleep in – I told him he was crazy) to letting it all hang out :)

It’s been a happy, fun, interesting, silly, super cool time and sometimes I wonder how life allowed me to find someone who understands and loves my crazy. And then I don’t question it and just be grateful it did.

Sarah

#DearMe

At the moment YouTube is doing a campaign called #DearMe in celebration of International Women’s Day where you give advice to your younger self. I’m too much of a wuss to make videos of myself so I thought I’d do a blog post instead.

#DearMe: Things will get better

Dear Me – 15 years ago

Yes, you’re the weird girl that lots of people like, but some people don’t. Don’t worry about them, they’re not going to matter. Your friends will change and no, she isn’t one of them any more no matter how much she tried to win back your friendship. People will like you for who you are and want to be around you because you encourage them to be the best version of themselves they can. That doesn’t mean you can’t sit on the internet all day or that you can’t stay at home for the entire school holidays and forget where you took off your shoes at the start of them. You don’t need to go out and do everything, there’s nothing wrong with staying home and doing what you want to do.

Don’t feel bad for sleeping in Modern History because you’ll drop that class anyway and wonder how a teacher can make learning history so boring!

Mostly, don’t be sad. Don’t get so angry because no one sees that you’re sad and yes, they probably would care if you weren’t in the world any more.

Dear Me – 10 years ago

That boy isn’t right for you. No matter what you do or try, he isn’t going to change. No matter how much you want to help him. He just won’t. I’m not sure I can emphasise this enough, when the alarm bells start ringing in your head, listen to them, because they’re right. He’s going to cost so much of your energy, your money, your time and he will take a lot of who you are until you’re not sure if there is any of you left. Read up on emotional abuse and realise that not all abuse in relationships is physical. People can be manipulative and emotionally abusive too.

Dear Me – 5 years ago

Refer to the above. You haven’t learnt your lesson yet, but you will. You will see that things can get better. You don’t have to live the way you do and you deserve more. You can be around people that are interested in you for you. People that will encourage you to work out what you want to do and do them.. You might not have worked those things out yet, but that is ok too.

Just remember, you make things get better! It all starts with you.

Sarah

What is Cheating?

A few days ago I watched a Q&A video on YouTube and one of the questions was surrounding cheating in a relationship and what she would consider the definition to be. Her answer, which I think is a decent one, was if you have said or done anything you wouldn’t want your partner to see or know about. Essentially, could you hand over your phone, laptop, etc. to your partner and know they weren’t going to be upset with something on it.

I thought this was a really interesting definition for cheating and I’d never considered it in that way. There are definitely things that I have said and done while in previous relationships that, by this definition, would be considered as cheating. For me, cheating has usually been more about physically being with someone rather than the emotional connection. Which, now that I think about it, is strange because I know how I’d feel if there was someone out there that Jarrod was more emotionally attached to than me.

I would consider myself to be quite anti-cheating, I’m a person that has the state of mind that if you are going to cheat on your partner than why are you with them at all? I would also end a relationship if I found my partner had been cheating, no second chances. So it’s strange to think, looking back, that some of the things I did weren’t really above board.

Fortunately, I can live guilt free, even though my view has been expanded, as I know that I could hand over my phone or laptop to Jarrod and know I wouldn’t be concerned by anything he could find on there.. other than any super cool gift idea that I might have open in Chrome at any given time :)

Sarah