A Love Letter For My Friends
I want to know what makes you tick
What ignites the fire in your heart
Tell me your dreams – and see how we can make them come true.
I want to know what makes you tick
Tell me your fears and troubles
What occupies the deepest darkest corners of your mind?
I want to know what makes you tick
Every beautifully flawed part of you
and love you all the same
Month Of Love – Part One
Day Two: Meditation adds so much to my life. I feel more present and less stressed. Today I did a guided meditation via the Hay House Meditation podcast. Davidji – Stepping into Clarity – it was quite energising and a great way to break up a busy day of work. I then sat down to a healthy whole food lunch which I ate on my own in silence – really taking the time to appreciate each bite.
Day Three: Journaling is such a wonderful practice. So many thoughts are bouncing around my mind all the time. Problems become bigger – worry increases. Once you take the time to write it all out and organise your thoughts on paper slowly and purposely they seem to become much smaller and more manageable. From this place you can create your own action steps in to solving these tiny little “problems” by making little action lists.
Day Four: I love to hoop! For those of you not yet aware – I’ve taken up hula hooping! I love the element of play. I can hoop and hoop for hours on my own – practicing new tricks and transition. I went with one of my friends to buy her first hoop and get something a little lighter and smaller for myself. We then made our way over to Abbotsford Convent and hooped our little hearts out and finished the day with a delicious Lentil As Anything feast. Good hoops – good food – great company. Today was a great day.
Day Five: Podcasting like a boss again! I’ve been reading the minimalists blog for a long time now – it’s definitely something I get a lot of value out of and now they’ve started podcasting too. I’d been missing a few episodes here and there so today I spent some time catching up on the ones I missed out on.
Day Six: Yet another HOOP DAY! Today I dedicated to learning a new trick – and then took my hoops to a party for the first time. I didn’t really know many people there so it was nice to have something to play with in between meeting new people and making new friends. I took three hoops with me and everyone had a go. Loads of fun!
Day Seven: I love to cook – but haven’t been doing much of it recently. Today I made a delicious dinner with a friend. Good food + good company = happy wanderluster.
Day Eight: Life Admin day – seems boring (and it was) but I’m now organised! All those little things that I’ve been putting off finally got done! I took to each task with gratitude and really just got it all done.
Day Nine: I hadn’t caught up with one of my best friends in a little while. We keep pretty different schedules. Today we finally got the chance to catch up and had a gorgeous healthy dinner together. There really is nothing better than sharing a meal with someone you love (especially when they’re as good a cook as Miss Katie).
Day Ten: It’s been a bit harder than I expected this little month of love challenge. Changing my focus back to me and my wants and needs has been pretty tough. I’ve been very emotional and today I let myself have a big ol’ cry. I really needed it. I tend to keep myself pretty busy and expect a lot of myself. Today I just let myself feel all those emotions.
Hope you’ve all been loving yourselves too.
One Month Of Love
Wanderlusters it’s been a while. Sorry I’ve been away from you all so long. It has been a bit tough adjusting to being back in Australia again. I’m still going through the process of finding my place in the place I called home for oh so long. But I’m back – with a mission.
February – the month of love.
Like I said – I’m finding it tough to see where I fit in all the madness. I’m starting all over again. I feel like I’m stagnant – inspired yet unmoving. I don’t like feeling this way so I’m taking action. This month I’m going to make myself my absolute number one priority. I’m going to love myself first every day this month. It’s not a big task to be honest. I’m just going to take time every day to mindfully do something nice for me and periodically fill you all in.
Wish me luck – send me love.
DAY ONE : Febfast! After killing my liver in London for two years and then arriving in Melbourne during the silly season I recognise that I need to give my body a break from drinking and raise some money along the way (DONATE HERE). I’m hoping that it’ll also motivate me to generally be more active and healthier in my everyday life and kickstart me in to creating more positive and healthy routines for everyday life. Today I also decided to document my month of self love here – something I absolutely love doing but haven’t been giving time to since I’ve moved home.
I look forward to seeing where this little self love-fest takes me. Thanks for coming along for the ride. I’d love to see more people get involved in this little journey. So please get in contact with me. You can tweet me @jessicaswander or find me on instagram @jessicaswanderlust
And Just Like That Two Years Went By In A Flash
Two years has gone so fast – the last 8 months has been the best time of my life. I’m so grateful to all the wonderful people who made it so amazing.
I’ve learnt that you can choose your family – that people are generally kind and loving, that home does have a heartbeat, that sometimes love is tragic and magical all at once.
My heart is split in two. I’m glad to be back in Melbourne for the time being but I miss my soul brothers and sisters more that even I can believe. Family dinners and adorable little sleepovers, late nights and early mornings, I miss the way our lives just seemed to flow effortlessly and intertwine. I miss the jokes and all the laughs.
But most of all I’m just grateful that I had them in my life at all. This eclectic group of people make my heart sing. I’ve learnt so much from each of them and love them all so deeply. One day I’ll see them all again – but I just don’t know when.
Sending love and sunshine from the other side of the world.
Pep Talk For All The Single Ladies
For all the single ladies loosing sleep and quite possibly tears over the fact that sometimes nice girls finish last. I’ve collated some bits and bobs from pep talks i’ve given and received over the past few months and noticed that it’s quite applicable to lots of ladies and gents out there.
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You are worth it.
You live with love and treat people with respect – you deserve nothing less in return. No one has the ability to make you feel inferior unless you let them. Don’t let them – know your worth.
You are a strong independent woman and you don’t take shit from no man.
Your standards are not too high – you are a goddamn prize and should treat yourself that way.
Don’t put up with any emotional fuckwittage. Life has been hard to us all. No matter what you’ve been through it doesn’t mean you have a free pass to be a selfish time wasting twat. Every time something terrible happens to us we have a choice to either learn and grow from it or become a victim of it. Be the victor.
You were right to leave that man that didn’t challenge or support you. You did all that you could to support him in his dreams and goals. If he doesn’t respect you and yours then he isn’t worth you.
You are most beautiful when you are being yourself. Follow your passion – there is nothing sexier. Censoring yourself won’t do you any good – if he doesn’t like your quirks then he just isn’t for you.
You don’t have to be all over someone like a rash for them to notice you – if they go for the obvious shiny object all up in their grill they don’t deserve the diamond that is you. Again – you’re a goddamn prize.
Surround yourself with the people who inspire you. The people who embrace you in all your epicly wonderful weirdness. The friends and family that you love and laugh with. They know you’re wonderful – spend more time with them and perhaps you’ll see what they see in you.
Love yourself. Everyone else does – you’re amazing. Now stop feeling sorry for yourself and embrace how wonderful you really are.
Don’t sweat it – you’ll be fine. I promise. You are too wonderful to not be. The universe will conspire to bring someone into your life who is worthy of being with you. Just be you 100%.
Just do you.
Tweet me I love you @jessicaswander or instagram me @jessicaswanderlust
Another year older – and hopefully wiser
Twenty eight today!
Another year older (and hopefully a little wiser.) It’s been a huge year with many highs and lows. I’ve lost my way and found a new path many times over. Over the past year I feel like I know myself better and appreciate myself so much more. I know who I am – I am happy with who I am – and I wouldn’t change it for the world.
I am a very emotional person and I had always thought of this as a weakness – but it’s not. It’s a strength and one that I am so grateful to be blessed with. Yes I am a cryer – yes I am sensitive – but I wouldn’t and couldn’t have it any other way. My creativity is fuelled by my intense emotions. I’ve done all my best work in times of great happiness and great sadness. I am no stranger to heart break. But for me heartbreak doesn’t just happen in a romantic interest. Heartbreak most often comes in the form of a friendship – someone who I love and care for and give and give and give to as that is my nature – someone who lets me down. I will never change – I never want to. I want to fall in love with new and wonderful friends every day from now until forever. I want to love and nurture them – care for them and support them in their dreams and help them achieve all the wonderful things I know that they can. If those friendships then fall apart – drift away – or go in a new direction I am now okay with that. I just feel lucky to have met such wonderful and exciting people on their own incredible journeys and adventures. I’m so happy to be a part of their journey – a character dancing like a maniac in a story that they will one day tell.
For today I am grateful and so humbled to have so many people from all around the world who have made me feel so special and so loved. I appreciate every letter – comment – photo – everything. I’m feeling the good vibes coming my way and intend on giving all that love back out again to all those beautiful souls I’m blessed to cross paths with in this period of my life.
So thank you to everyone for your kindness and your love today and every day. I am honoured to have such magical people in my life.
Until next time wanderlusters x
Tweet me @jessicaswander or follow me on instagram @jessicaswanderlust
OBSERVATIONS ABOUT ENGLISH MEN
How naughty of me – indulging in such fun generalisations. I’ve been involved in many discussions about English men over the past year and thought it’d be rude not to share my findings with you. Note to all English men – this is all based on my personal experience and that of my friends. I’m certainly not saying that you’re all like this – but there definitely is an emerging pattern.
- They are far more gentlemanly. This one particularly applies to the northerners (YORKSHIRE) – they open doors, buy you flowers and make sure you get home safe. Bless their little cotton socks.
- British men tend to have a lot more emotions (yes I’m serious – read on) that they have absolutely no idea how to deal with and certainly can’t talk about – they isolate themselves in their minds and wait for it to all go away. I’ve never met an Englishman who is capable of openly discussing what is upsetting them. They are chronically emotionally constipated.
- They are not particularly sexual beings. I’m not saying that they don’t enjoy sex , they are bad at it or they don’t want to have it. But they tend to want it less frequently and be less of an animal in the bedroom. British men have the least sex in Europe. Fact. In a recent survey English men were voted the second worst lovers in the world mostly for being lazy in bed (German came in at number one for being too smelly). However 11% of British men in their 20s-30s have paid for sex (probably because they can be lazy when they’re paying for it).
- They are terrible people during the World Cup – and even worse when their team inevitably looses.
- They don’t like it when you try to pay for dinner. I’m a bit funny about this particular point – I always like to at least pay my way especially when it comes to dating – I hate the idea of someone thinking that I owe them (I am a strong independent woman and I don’t take shit from no man).
- They avoid awkward conversations up to the point when it becomes in issue. Literally – they make it worse by not talking about it and wait for it up come to a head and then they apologise. They are very apologetic – even when it’s not needed.
- They are excellent flirts and have great banter. You can almost never get bored chatting with a handsome Englishman – oh so cheeky.
Let me know what you think wanderlusters – english men – yay or nay? Go on – indulge in some cheekiness x
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I want a fairytale. I’m not ashamed to say it. But my fairytale doesn’t involve your stock standard Prince Charming, a white picket fence, two kids and a house in the suburbs. In my fairytale we fall madly in love and travel the world having adventures and changing the world in our own special way.
My Prince Charming is two tons of fun, sustainably minded, loves all the critters big and small, and smiles often. We challenge and inspire each other to do more and be more. A life full of laughs, adventures, and stories to tell.
And they lived adventurously ever after.
tweet me @jessicaswander or find me on instagram @jessicaswanderlust
Giving Kindness – Careful or Careless?
The other day someone said to me that he is careful about who he gives his kindness and friendship to – because if you give it to everyone you won’t have enough of it left for the people who matter most.
This i found to be a very interesting view – and a rather unexpected one at that. Generally (and I do understand that this is a huge generalisation) it’s impossible to get any English man to discuss anything to do with emotions. Not only this but it was organically given out as his perspective without any coaxing from my nosey self…
I completely understand his perspective – particularly when taking in to account his line of work – which results in huge numbers of women lining up to try to get in to bed with him week in – week out. But this way of viewing relationships (including friend and family relationships) in general is certainly not one I share.
It got me wondering how other people view such things. Me being the hopeless romantic that I am – I throw everything in to all my relationships – friends, family, work and otherwise. I imagine that I have this endless pool of love that I can keep giving and giving from and never asking for anything in return. My friend and yoga teacher Eoin Finn says that love is the ultimate renewable resource and i know myself this is something that really resonates with me.
I accept that we all have different views and opinions on this matter and that different things work for different people – but if I took this persons approach to relationships it would make me completely and utterly miserable. I love to love – I love other peoples love – no matter what form it takes. It breaks my heart often to be the way that I am but I wouldn’t (and couldn’t) have it any other way. I am most creative when I am filled with emotions – both the good and the “bad” – I am happy and loving and do my best to be kind and giving. People do take advantage of me for it – but I can sleep well at night knowing that my intentions are good, my soul is light and i have an endless pool of love to keep giving out. Sometimes I’m exhausted from loving so so much – but the pool always regenerates itself and I have faith that good things happen to people who do good things. Working hard and sending love to the world one heartbreak at a time.
What’s your view on relationships? How do you tackle this unanswerable question?
Until next time wanderlusters x
You never forget your first (traveling) love.
You never forget your first love. That right there is a fact. Those first awkward moments – the butterflies – the first silly arguments – the sweetness and excitement of it all. But that’s not what I want to talk about today.
I want to talk about first traveling loves. Those relationships I find can be equally as important – earth shaking and core shaking.
My first traveling romance began on Haad Rin beach in Koh Phangan on November 23rd 2007 I couldn’t forget that day if I tried. It was my first international adventure as an adult. We had been in Koh Samui for a few days we had our accommodation booked for months in advance. I’d convinced my friend that we could just jump on the ferry and make our way over to Koh Phangan and find some accommodation when we get there (back then you couldn’t book accommodation in koh phangan through a travel agent and all the hotel websites we looked at seemed pretty dodgy). I was so excited bout the idea of doing this – not knowing where we would stay and what we would do seemed all very romantic and exciting.
Once we arrived in koh phangan we trudged around with our backpacks looking for a hotel that didn’t look like someone was going to come and harvest our pre-pickled organs in the night – we eventually settled for a tiny little room above a seven eleven on Haad Rin beach. Not the most tranquil of areas but we were teenagers in search of a good party and wild adventures.
Once we had settled all our bags down we made our way to the beach for a cheap cocktail and some sunshine on our skin. The beach was packed – people were playing volleyball and ping pong on the sand – everyone was young and tanned and having a great time – it was everything we’d hoped for and more. We found a vacant patch of sand and settled our towels down – exhausted and grateful for the cocktails. There were a group of boys on the beach laughing together and taking turns to swim while someone watched the bags. We all got to talking – three of them were English and two of them were Danish. We chatted away and swam and when it was time to leave we arranged to meet up with them again that night.
Steph and I went to go get some food (I lost a bet and had to eat the hottest chilli I’ve ever eaten in my life) got prettied up and went out to experience the legendary Koh Phangan night life. We found the boys at a beach bar drinking buckets of cheap thai rum and coke. We sat on cheap plastic chairs smoking shi sha – laughed and joked together giggling through our language barriers and somewhere along the way we shared a kiss and my heart was a flutter.
We bonded more and more over the next few days and parted ways sweetly in Koh Phangan – knowing that we would see each other again in a few months.
He occupied my brain and my heart and I couldn’t evict him if I tried. He was my first traveling love all those years ago and will forever hold a special place in my wandering gypsy heart.
Fast forward to 2014 and we’re still in contact (as friends) and I even stayed with him on a recent trip to Copenhagen.
Tell me your love stories wanderlusters x