Post-Exam Celebrations

Exams are finally over with, I’m free! Although – I feel like the only times as a student you’re ever truly ‘care-free’ is the first weekend immediately post-exams, then the worries about your grades set in and finally, you’re happy briefly once you find out your marks (ideally being good grades) until the next semester begins. All up that amounts to around… 1 week the entire school year. Yay student life!

However, as exams finished on Friday – how did I celebrate my weekend of happiness?

My Fiance and I decided to go on a little mini-break to a beautiful place called Hanmer Springs in New Zealand. It’s our favourite place to go and we’ve managed to get here just about once a year since we started living in Christchurch. As soon as we make that turn off onto Hanmer Springs Road I instantly feel calmer and happier, it’s absolutely breathtaking. It’s in New Zealand but has a wonderful ‘alpine town’ feel about it. There are a lot of activities to do including horse trekking, golf, skiing, hiking and – our favourite, pampering and soaking in the thermal pools and the spa before having dinner at one of the many fantastic restaurants.

This year the trip also coincided with our 5 year anniversary so we went all out and had the most incredible pamper morning at the spa on Saturday. The spa at Hanmer is so relaxing, the service has always been fantastic and I love their attention to the minor details – right down to underfloor heating in the changing room and the comfiest slippers. Our morning started off with a 30-minute steam which was very welcome after a morning that started off at -4 degrees! We then had a 1-hour full body massage followed by a 1-hour facial. I felt so relaxed and radiant afterwards.

After this, we were, obviously, tired and hungry after a hard morning of getting massages so we decided to grab some lunch and head back to the hotel to watch some movies and chill with some whiskey.

Perhaps not the wildest way to celebrate, but relaxation, good food, and good company are my ideal good time so it was perfection to me.

However you celebrate the end of exams/your equivalent – I hope it was wonderful and good luck for those results!

My hair treat

Today, to distract myself from the horror of exams, I wanted to share something that relates to one of my passions in life – my hair. I have been trying to have long, lush hair since approximately 2006 when in a misguided attempt to be ‘cool’ I cut it all off to about chin length and have deeply regretted this choice ever since.

I don’t ever leave my hair alone, I’m constantly straightening, curling, dying, braiding and playing with it to try and see what I can achieve without the help of an actual hairdresser. Because of this, and due to my serious attachment to all the hair I have – I am constantly worrying about damage and whether my hair is suddenly going to all fall off.

I recently switched hairdressers here in Christchurch as for the last four years I have been hunting for the ever elusive good hair salon with the one hairdresser you click with and can happily trust your tresses to without fearing for the results. I believe I may have found such a place. I’ve been going to Balayage Hair for just about a year now and I love them. My hairdresser Alex unfortunately isn’t taking on any more clients, but every one of their stylists do phenomenal work.

On my first visit there, Alex and I spent a fair amount of time discussing my haircare routine and my main concerns. This prompted her to recommend Olaplex. This white gold of hair care smells amazing, makes my hair feel soft and shiny and also does lots of cool science things to make your hair stronger.

Olaplex itself is actually a hair treatment that is done in the salon when you’re getting colour work or chemical straightening done. Stage 1 and 2 will be done by your hairdresser. What you can buy to take home is ‘stage 3’ which is a hair perfector to top up your olaplex treatment between visits. It’s around $50 a bottle but a little goes a really long way, I use mine once a fortnight and only need around a $2 coins worth to do my ends and mid-lengths. One bottle would usually last me around 6 months depending on usage.

The main benefit of Olaplex (apart from the soft shiny factor) is that it really helps to prevent breakage, which long haired ladies will know is a big deal. It’s not the be all and end all to strong healthy hair, because there are a lot of factors associated with that, but it can go a long way to helping your hair break off less often and therefore enable it to grow longer. I started using it after a pretty dramatic balayage where I went from a deep brown to a warm blonde balayage through majority of the ends of my hair, which is where naturally your hair is the weakest anyway. However, since the Olaplex treatment I’ve noticed hardly any breakage and a significant improvement in the looks of my ends and how they feel. I try to remember to do it once a fortnight, but sometimes I just forget (you have to put it in before you wash your hair and leave it for a while) until I hop out of the shower, see the bottle and thing damn! So sometimes I’ll put it through the ends of my hair and sleep with it in for a really intensive treatment – it smells so nice that doing this does actually help me sleep!

If you’re as hair obsessed as I am then I highly recommend you ask your hairdresser whether Olaplex is right for you, it’s hair-changing, especially if you’re lightening your hair.

olpaplex pic

How to adult?

Hello!

My better half is away off on some soldier type stuff in what I am assuming is an isolated, cold part of the country to be in during Winter – so clearly he’ll be having a wonderful time.

In the meantime, I’m home. By myself.

When he goes away, it’s when I realise that I don’t really know what being an adult and actually looking after myself is. My mum sadly doesn’t live in the same city as me or trust me, I’d just move back in with her for the duration so she could look after me. But not an option.

Simple things like cooking, cleaning or even going to bed just become ten times harder when I have to find the motivation to make myself do it. If I don’t do it… who’s going to know? Who will care? I’ll get round to it at some point but until he’s actually home what is the point? This is the constant mental battle I fight daily. Note: I feel I should just point out I’m not living in some sort of trash heap garbage dump FYI, but maybe I’m not doing dishes or laundry as often as I normally would…

I honestly feel like when I was younger and mum and dad would leave me home alone for the night. It was terrifying. Simple things like checking the doors are locked and turning the lights off before bed have become a mad sprint session around the house to try race to the safety of bed before whatever scary thing I’m imagining somehow manages to get me. Which is ridiculous.

Even cooking. What’s the point in making a meal for just me? I mean sure I could freeze it and be all organised and stuff, but then again, I could just have toast. For every meal. The toast topping options are really limitless and everyone needs carbs. Right?

Don’t even get me started on trying to make a fire, there’s definitely a part of me that tries to avoid doing it no matter how cold it is just because I know once I burn through the wood inside I have to brave the terrifying possibility of spiders in the woodshed to go get more and I’m just not cold enough to be down for that yet. A blanket, 2 dressing gowns, bed socks and a hot water bottle are doing me fine.

I assumed becoming an ‘adult’ would come with some sort of handing down of knowledge about how to be an adult, look after yourself and a house and a car and all the other responsibilities in life. Unfortunately, maybe mine got lost in the mail?

We’re all still figuring this out but please reassure me that I’m not the only adult that probably shouldn’t actually be called a real ‘adult’.