Your shape is like an hourglass but I think the time’s up

At the @mayerhawthorne gig<3 on for @mayerhawthorne

Two days ago I had no idea who Mayer Hawthorne was. Now? I have a serious crush.
Not just because he is adorable, and tall – I do like my men tall – but because the man can sing. And his songs are damn catchy.


I found out he was coming to New Zealand. He was playing the very next night.
I clicked around frantically but stopped myself when I found the tickets were ever so slightly under $60. A bit much to pay for an artist I’ve only just discovered. Especially so close to Europe.

I started following him on Twitter. And Instagram. Then, just a couple of hours later, he posted a competition giving away two tickets to his show. All we had to do was give him the common name for Apteryx Mantelli.

(it’s the North Island Brown Kiwi, thanks google!)

That’s how, at 10pm on a school night, my crush on Mayer Hawthorne was solidified. He gives good show. Damn good show.

Craig even said he would ‘not be too upset if his songs made it on to the playlist’. As if he ever has any real choice in the matter. Adorable.

55 seconds of my favourite song


It comes but once a year

Oh Darling Hearts


Dearest, darling, birthday month, you come but once a year.
This year you are a whirl of unpredictable weather, changeable work circumstances, a frenzy of lines and planning and travel and moving and oh, exhaustion.
I expect. I anticipate. I prognosticate*. But knowing what I have scribbled into my diary? gives me the benefit of foresight.

I enjoyed my fanciful wishlist collage last year** and so? here is the collage du jour, collage 2009:

2009 Birthday Wishlist

This beautiful copy of The Bell Jar, Protea charm & Protea ring by Meadowlark, Cupcakes (!), Peonies, the permission for Craig and I to live in the UK for as long as we like, beautiful underwear, a Kodak Duaflex vintage camera, St Paul’s Cathedral back in my life, a traditional peony tattoo, a black retro-style scooter, Chloe Sevigny for Open Ceremony Wedges, Meadowlark*** pyramid stud bangles, a Marc by Marc Jacobs bag in a berry berry hue.

Not pictured: A French Bulldog, a Nissan Figaro (!), photography prints to sell (and people to purchase them), the ability to whistle, a trip to Paris, gladiator sandals, and the Oxford English Dictionary.

p.s. this year I have manymany hours of work followed by manymany hours of rehearsal on my birthday. And more work the day after. And rehearsal half the weekend. It makes me tired just thinking about it.

* Sidebar! Because a word is obscure does not mean that it shouldnot be used. If you understand the meaning and proper usage then I think I should be aloowed to use it. It bugs me ever so much when people tilt their heads**** when I make use of my extensive vocabulary.

** Following on from last years list? Sir C gave me a PoGo, only to find that the paper is not stocked in NZ, my zelda fitzgerald heirloom ring, and an ice cream cake (he is a lovely lovely man), mes parents assembled my charm bracelet (all London, all the time), and in the year since I have also acquired (my obsessions rarely wane) a large Moleskine diary, a traditional rose 1/4 sleeve tattoo (or near enough), MAC makeup, and a large fuchsia flower pin.

*** Meadowlark meadowlark meadowlark. I just adore their work.

**** Examples from the last few days: Behoove. Misanthropy. Prognosticate. Ire.

Beef, Mushroom, Bacon, & Olive Pot Pie

Oh Darling Hearts

Only occasionally do I feature something I’ve already purchased as something I heart, but this week? I bought a Pie Bird. As in a four and twenty blackbirds were baked in a pie kind of bird.
And this wouldn’t exactly be news except that tonight I used it (him? her? no. it) in the making of a pie so amazing it has wiped all thoughts of material goods out of my mind completely. G.O.N.E. Hmm. I think it was octopus jewellery? anyway.

Four and Twenty

Beef, Mushroom, Bacon, & Olive Pot Pie
(this recipe is most definitely not mine. It was featured in a fundraising recipe book so it didn’t originally come from there either.)

2 cloves of garlic, diced (I used 2 inches of pre-crushed garlic from a tube)
1 onion (I used 2)
125g bacon, diced
1 cup of mushrooms, diced
1kg beef, diced (3cm cubes)
1-2 heaped tablespoons wholegrain mustard (I used 1.5)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 cup red wine (I used Cabernet Sauvignon)
440g tin crushed tomatoes (I used 400g cause that’s what came in the tin)
1 handful black olives (I used 2 handfuls! I love olives)
1-2 sheets puff pastry

Preheat oven to 200°C

In one pan, sautée the onions and garlic in two tablespoons of olive oil until softened but not browned. Add the mushrooms and bacon and stir.

In another pan cook the beef cubes until sealed. This might need to be done in batches, adding the beef to the onions, mushrooms, bacon, and garlic mixture as you go.

In the pan you used to seal the meat put in the tomato paste and mustard, deglazing with the red wine. Stir well to get all the scrapings off the bottom of the pan.

Combine the ingredients from both pans, add the crushed tomatoes, and bring to a simmer and cook until the beef is tender. The recipe I used called for 1-1.5 hours but I didn’t realise that until I had started cooking and it was already getting late so I made do with 30 minutes and the beef wasn’t tough at all. But I guess it depends on the quality of the beef and uh … I don’t know anything about beef. If it looks like it’s getting a bit dry, add some water, or more red wine! Stir in the olives.

Place a pie bird in your pie dish (hee!) and surround it with the delicious delicious pie filling. Top with a sheet of puff pastry (apparently, if you are sans pie bird (a sad life) then a hole cut in the pastry will work just as well. But it will be much less amusing) and make leaves with any leftover pastry. Brush the pastry with an egg wash (or a milk wash) (or forget this part because it seems like too much hassle) (oops) and bake for 30 minutes.

Serve and enjoy!

Perfect for the cold cold threatening storms winter evening Wellington served up tonight. It’s moorish and amazing.

Rouge à Lèvres

Oh Darling Hearts

Truth be told?
Craig is jetting off to Auckland tonight to drive around Rotorua with his father, brother, another shanghai-ed semi-mechanic, and all the mud and rain in Christendom and that means that I have had a little grey cloud over my head all day today.

I did, however, love my outfit today:

I very rarely wear strong lipstick (because of my absurdly small mouth) but today I wore Shanghai Red by Chanel and loveloveloved every second of it.
Perhaps it was the compliments?
Perhaps it was the Rose scent?
Perhaps red lipstick has magical powers?

p.s. also? when I think about what I heart today? all I can think of is the research I’ve been doing for my next tattoo!
p.p.s. I booked the appointment today. 28th August. I’m so so so excited.

Oh Darling Hearts

American Apparel

I know, I know, I’m seventy million years behind in obsessing about American Apparel.
Truth be told, I’ve been wearing AA for a couple of years now, visiting stores in London and San Francisco, loveloveloving their deep-v-tees and classic hooded sweatshirts.

At the moment, however, these items specifically make my shrivelled heart beat a little faster:

Nylon Tricot Blend Figure Skater Dress
$48 USD

California Fleece Cape
$65 USD
(the photo of the black was not as cute, but that, of course, would be my choice)

Fontana Vintage Sunglasses
$50 USD

Unisex Moustache Mask
$14 USD


p.s. the overtly sexual ads? don’t bother me at all.
p.p.s. the allegations against Dov Charney make me purse my lips, wrinkle my eyebrows and say “hmmm” but allegations are allegations. Simple as that.
p.p.p.s I cannot cannot CANNOT buy another pair of sunglasses. If the weather is fine this weekend I will take photos and show you my collection. I think I have a pair for every day of the week. At least.

It’s late and I’m in a horrid horrid mood.

Oh Darling Hearts

Budget Day!

Oh wait, no, that’s right.
I don’t heart Budget Day, I hate it.
(I thought that first bit looked a bit funny.)

It was my first time working wherever-it-is-that-I-work in the huge sprawling amorphous blob of New Zealand’s government (including opposition and periphery.) on Budget Day and it was not fun. It was frantic and tense. I do not heart frantic and tense.

p.s. it was also my first time ever paying any attention to the Budget at all. Talk about one extreme to the other.
p.p.s. I am a political Switzerland. I have no opinion about politics at all. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.