Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Once Upon...

Love this photo series titled Once Upon from photographer Heidi Lender. Beautiful colours, textures, clothing and backgrounds...
Check out the rest of the series here.

Monday, 6 December 2010

I Heart Market lovelies

So I went to yet another beautiful I Heart Market this Saturday. It seems to be getting better everytime I go! This time it was held outside under the shady trees where it was nice and breezy, which was lovely coz it was a sweltering, sweaty Durban day. Lots of awesome stalls, all so inspiring...

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Tea and biscuits, nomnomnom



a music adventure

I recently stumbled onto this amazing music sharing site, thesixtyone, and I'm totally hooked so far. It randomly selects new music for you to listen to, while the screen is filled with awesome huge images. While the song plays you get written snippets about the band/musician and pics. You can join the site and then heart, share and download songs. It's pretty rad.
There's also a Mood option that chooses music according to the mood you select. There's a mode where you can discover new music and you can select how obscure/unheard you want the selection to be.
You can also choose to create playlists and follow other people's playlists. 
I love how when you click on something, instead of saying boring old "loading..." it says "pondering" or "wondering" or "speculating".

I do find the navigation kinda confusing, it's not all very well explained, but if you experiment a bit you get the idea of what's going on.

"thesixtyone is a streaming media website that uses collaborative filtering to organize, promote, and sell music uploaded by artists, many of whom are independent musicians. The site was founded by James Miao  and Samuel Hsiung and was released in January 2008.
The site takes its name from Highway 61, a route with deep connections to American music culture. According to the site's "bazaar" where users can purchase songs or mp3 albums uploaded by artists, "thesixtyone's guiding principle is to enable the creative middle class, providing talented artists the opportunity to make a living making music." The site also allows artists to license their music under Creative Commons licenses and allow free downloads.
On January 20, 2010, thesixtyone implemented a new design with emphasis on high resolution photography, location, and lyrics."
- Wikipedia

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Snow White & Pogo

Found this video yesterday... It's helping make a crap week a bit more bearable...
Awesome track and cool video :)
Pogo - Wishery

Sunday, 7 November 2010

The Wheel

Did any of you Durbanites used to go to The Wheel shopping centre way back when? I did... I loved it. I always thought it was such an awesome, magical place. I think it was the decor that did it. There's nowhere quite like it in Durban anymore. Looking back now, I'm not sure if it really was as cool as I thought it was, or if it was just my perception of it as a child...

I'm writing this post because last week I saw that it has been turned into a China Mall. I couldn't believe it. First they removed the ferris wheel off the front of it, and now this?! I was horrified. I went to see it, and it made my heart ache. All the awesome history and feeling and richness of its interior has been removed so that is looks cheap and tacky. The shops are all scabby and sis and the level with the Chinese shops on is like a warehouse - no decor at all, just big white rooms.

It saddens me in ways I can't express when places that are so rich and unique and beautiful get reduced to this sort of cheap, synthetic, fickle commercialness. The same can be said about many other areas in Durban. I wish people would honour the history of these places more.

The pics below are from the movie level on the top floor, which still looks mostly the way I remember it (apart from the manky "sports bar" in the corner).

I couldn't even find any info on it online apart from the quote below... Maybe no one else really cares, maybe it's just me that has so much feeling for this structure.

Either way. It is. So sad.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Nev the Barber

Been feeling a combination of demotivation, lazyness and constant tiredness of late, so apologies for the lack of posting. Trying to get back on track :)

Check out this kiff new barbershop next to the Corner Cafe in Durbs. What a rad vibe!

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

A touch of Zen

I just came across these posts on 25 Little Changes to Make the Day More Exciting and Letting Go Of Attachment. I found they were both so inspiring and relevant to events in my life recently and in general. I'm constantly trying to be a better person and to change my attitude towards things. Not very successfully, I'll admit, but I'm trying. I also have huge issues with dealing with change, even though I like to think of myself as someone who embraces change. They reinforced or reminded me about some stuff that I have been trying to incorporate in my life, but end up forgetting to do, and showed me some ideas on new ways to look at situations and issues...
It was a breath of fresh air reading these and a bit of a weight off my shoulders, so I thought I'd share some of the ones I found most important with you :)
It's a bit of a texty one compared to my usual posts, but so worth it. Sometimes we just need a gentle reminder about these things.

25 Little Changes to Make the Day More Exciting

6. Bring your camera and take pictures of things that catch your eye throughout the day. You’ll notice a lot more than you usually do—and new people will likely talk to you to figure out what you’re doing.

8. Start collecting something you often see throughout the day. It will make the whole day more interesting if you have your eyes peeled for rare coins, specific pens, and odd food labels.

9. Make it a goal to talk to five people you don’t know. And I mean real conversations. Ask them what they do on the weekends, what their favorite memory is, and whether or not they like spam. (OK, the last one is less interesting—but I think it says a lot about you if you eat unidentifiable lunch meat.)

10. Commit to complementing everyone you encounter on something. Sometimes it will be easy; sometimes it will be challenging. Every time it will brighten someone’s day and fill you with joy.

17. Practice mindfulness during a boring activity. Anything can be interesting if you get curious about how it works.

20. Commit random acts of kindness. You’ll get a warm fuzzy feeling and you’ll create some good karma for yourself. You never know when that kindness will come back to you and open up your world.

Letting Go of Attachment

"In trying to hold on to what’s familiar, we limit our ability to experience joy in the present. A moment can’t possibly radiate fully when you’re suffocating it in fear.
When you stop trying to grasp, own, and control the world around you, you give it the freedom to fulfill you without the power to destroy you. That’s why letting go is so important: letting go is letting happiness in."

Accept the moment for what it is. Don’t try to turn it into yesterday; that moment’s gone. Don’t plot about how you can make the moment last forever. Just seep into the moment and enjoy it because it will eventually pass. Nothing is permanent. Fighting that reality will only cause you pain.

Hold lightly. This one isn’t just about releasing attachments—it’s also about maintaining healthy relationships. Contrary to romantic notions, you are not someone’s other half. You’re separate and whole. You can still hold someone to close to your heart; just remember, if you squeeze too tightly, you’ll both be suffocated.

Interact with lots of people. If you limit yourself to one or two relationships they will seem like your lifelines. Everyone needs people, and there are billions on the planet. Stay open to new connections. Accept the possibility your future involves a lot of love whether you cling to a select few people or not.

Know you can’t change the past. Even if you think about over and over again. Even if you punish yourself. Even if you refuse to accept it. It’s done. The only way to relieve your pain about what happened is to give yourself relief. No one and nothing else can create peace in your head for you.

Narrate calmly. How we experience the world is largely a result of how we internalize it. Instead of telling yourself dramatic stories about the past—how hurt you were or how hard it was—challenge your emotions and focus on lessons learned. That’s all you really need from yesterday.

Understand that pain is unavoidable. No matter how well you do everything on this list, or on your own short list for peace, you will lose things that matter and feel some level of pain. But it doesn’t have to be as bad as you think. As the saying goes, pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

Vocalize your feelings. Feel them, acknowledge them, express them, and then let them naturally transform. Even if you want to dwell in anger, sadness or frustration—especially if you feel like dwelling—save yourself the pain and commit to working through them.

Write it down. Then toss it out. You won’t always have the opportunity to express your feelings to the people who inspired them. That doesn’t mean you need to swallow them. Write in a journal. Write a letter and burn it. Anything that helps you let go.

Xie Xie. It means thank you in Chinese. Fully embrace your happy moments—love with abandon; be so passionate it’s contagious. If a darker moment follows, remember: it will teach you something, and soon enough you’ll be in another happy moment to appreciate. Everything is cyclical.

Read more at Tiny Buddha and Zen Habits.

And just by the way...

Friday, 17 September 2010

Berries and Chocolate, mmmmm.....

So here's that yummy recipe as promised in the last post. You gotta serve it hot and with whipped cream for maximum nomness effect. Especially perfect for cold snuggle-weather :) Enjoy!

(Trying to get a larger image up for downloads, but Picasa's not co-operating :P Will get it sorted soon :)

Some rad, quirky, feel-good videos :)

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Eid 2010

Some pics from Friday, which was Eid. Decided to go for a different look, something rather unlike me :) Loved it.
(Right-click and select "view image" to view larger images.)

Some background on Eid for you's who don't know...
Eid marks the end of Ramadan, the month in the Islamic calendar during which Muslims fast. It's a complete fast, as in no food or drink at all from sunrise to sunset, for a whole month. It's a really awesome month, coz we focus a lot more on prayer and trying to lead our lives the way we should, and it creates such a great feeling, spiritually. This year especially felt really significant for me personally.
Many people think it's tough and the fasting sounds rather extreme, but it isn't. It's really about self control, empathy, and obedience.
The first day after Ramadan is Eid, the day the fasting ends. We celebrate by spending the day with extended family and eating lots of delicious yummies. It's great :)
I made a delish dessert, a Very Berry Chocolate Tray Bake, that turned out amaaayzingly!
Recipe will follow soon ;)

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Latest book

Sweetness in the Belly - Camilla Gibb
"Lilly, a young white Muslim woman, is eight when her British parents are killed in Morocco, and she is placed in the care of a Muslim disciple, who fills her days with the teachings of Islam. She later moves to Ethiopia, where she becomes a nurse, teaches local girls to recite the Qur'an, and falls in love with Aziz, a medical student who supports the overthrow of Emperor Haile Selassie. Lilly's tenuous ties to the monarchy force her to flee to London when Selassie is deposed, in 1974; there she immerses herself in a refugee support group and waits to be reunited with Aziz. Gibb adroitly flips back and forth between pre-revolution Ethiopia, where Lilly, though a foreigner, is admired for her knowledge of Muslim teachings, and London in the 1990s, where she feels stronger ties to Muslim refugees than to the British, who feel increasingly threatened by the refugees' presence. Gibbs' novel is a gripping and provocative addition to the post-9/11 genre of fiction exploring the many facets of Islam." Deborah Donovan

Do you ever find that when you're battling with an issue in your life or thinking a lot about something, everything you come into contact with seems to speak about what you're thinking? This book was part of that for me. 
I really enjoyed it, it gets 5 teacups! (out of 5)
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