Things I Love Thursday

We missed one last week; I know. I got swept away with Christmas fever but I was sending deliriously happy tremors out to the universe all day, so I think I did what I needed to do! Let’s make this week’s list a humdinger to fill the gap, huh?

2009! I am unbelievably excited about this year. I have so many magical plans in the works, & I am totally hyped (& a bit scared) about putting them into action. My new year’s eve was awesome too — I got to see everyone I wanted to, & there were lots of hugs & heaps of laughter. At about 5.30am I looked up at the sky & decided it was time to disappear. I watched the sun rise over New Zealand while I talked to my taxi driver & sent text messages from the back-seat. It was a great, great night. I hope yours was too!

Skype! What a magnificent invention! It’s all good, all the time. Even in little ol’ New Zealand, where I thought my connection might be too slow to handle it. I have been Skypeing like a nut, talking to cute excitable girls (& their excellent Virgo boyfriends) in Los Angeles & frozen icicle boys in Minneapolis, as well as seeing more than enough CATS on camera! (Chicken & Monster, respectively.) My (literally) sweet friend in Melbourne is next on my Skype agenda. Yes she is. No pouting allowed!

Good music — Some weeks sound better than others. This one has been a goodie. I’d like to thank… Antony & the Johnsons; The Replacements; RZA; Does It Offend You, Yeah?; Mogwai; Tv On The Radio; Dillinger Four; Explosions In The Sky (Jake says, “If the time lapse of life had a soundtrack it would be Explosions In The Sky”); The Hold Steady; Doomtree; Built To Spill; Al Green; Murs; Brother Ali; Bell X1; Common; Yo La Tengo; The Mountain Goats; Blue Scholars; MC Shan; The Weakerthans; Prince; Digable Planets; Company Flow; The Living Legends, DJ Concept, El-P & Spinnerette. Yes, thank you all very much. Well done.

Privileged is my new favourite show. A sweet but geeky & slightly socially awkward girl (who I think is a cross between Sarah Michelle Gellar & my friend Sammy) gets a job tutoring two spoilt girls in Palm Beach. Insanity occurs, & we get to watch it all unfold! For those of us who like our television unabashedly trashy, this show has it all.

Exercising every day — My mother & I are doing an experiment which started five days ago. We’re following a program of cardio & weight-training, & every morning we don our sexiest clothing (um, not really) to start the day off sweating. It’s not glamorous but it’s extremely satisfying! I’m documenting the process & I’m going to write it up soon! I also bought a hula hoop for $6 the other day. It is lime green & made of this awful hard plastic which smacks the bones in my feet when it falls down. It hurts. But the point is… I love it. I am getting really good at it. (Okay, not really good, but I can keep it going for a while now!) It is really fun… I put on the best music & shimmy around the living room & laugh & swivel around until I’m out of breath. I can see how people get hooked on hooping. & really, any activity which involves holographic accessories (sparkly hoops! Insane costumes!) is so me.

Yes Man — I just went & saw this tonight & I LOVED IT. I am really not a movie person normally, but it was really great. The premise is that this guy who is closed off to life starts saying “yes” to every opportunity he’s presented, no matter how ludicrous, & how that completely changed his life around. It was based on the book of the same name written by a British journalist called Danny Wallace, who did exactly this & wrote about the results. Really, I think you should see it. It made me super-happy.

Honourable mentions: Post-Christmas sales; amazing news; having a fleet of international spies of magic & mystery!; parsnip & ginger soup; my super-amazing magical unicorn shirt (you can get your own here!) which I think I have worn every day since I got it; new year’s kisses; Joy Bar ice-creams (they’re baaa-aaaack!); false eyelashes; boys who are really nervous but tell you you’re gorgeous anyway (awwww); friends who are genuinely happy for you; dancing; Auckland anticipation (this time next week I’ll be there!); catching up with old friends; hugs & holding hands & being excitable; loving your friends so much that you feel compelled to tell them every half an hour or so; chance encounters; surreptitious photo-taking & um… can I say my unicorn shirt again?!

I asked my parents to make their own contributions to Things I Love Thursday, & here’s what they said! (Why don’t you ask whoever’s around to add to your list too?)

Mama Darling: Friends & family; relaxation; sun & surf; chocolate; Jamie Oliver!

Papa Darling: People are in holiday mode & calmer & happier; looking out the window & seeing people have fun & frolicking around; people laying fishing nets; seeing the bus go by with virtually nobody on it, meaning nobody’s working; the garden’s exploding with lovely yellow roses; having all our family around us; chocolate-coated ginger; pistachio nuts; being woken up at quarter to 7 by your daughter coming home & her telling you you have “swamp-mouth”; bacon & eggs & coffee for breakfast at 11, as opposed to porridge at 6.30!

“One of the most tragic things I know about human nature is that all of us tend to put off living. We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon instead of enjoying the roses that are blooming outside our windows today.” — Dale Carnegie

How about you? Start off 2009 the right way with a BIG love letter to the universe! Go go go!