A look at the week that was and a little insight into the #bloglife, sharing things I just can’t share anywhere else!
Highlights of the week
Kia Ora, my friend! That’s hello in Māori and totalling in context as TWTW is coming to you from New Zealand this week. Specifically, picture-perfect Queenstown, where the temperature is a rather crisp -1°. I just had to re-read last week’s TWTW because time has gone by so fast, I just can’t keep up. The weeks are going by in an absolute blur at the moment. I still can’t quite believe we’re already 7 days into JULY. It’s going to be Christmas before we know it.
Last we spoke, I was getting ready to take my little sister for her first ever manual driving lesson. It was kind of surreal because it feels like I was only just learning to drive a car myself. When I take a moment to pause and realise that was 14-ish years ago, it blows my mind! She did really well though, only stalling it a few times and getting the hang of it pretty quickly. She’ll be out on the roads, terrorising people, before we know it.
The weekend rolled by all too quickly, with Matt and I working for most of it, getting everything done in time for us to fly to New Zealand. We woke up at 5am on Tuesday morning, loaded up the car and headed to the airport, stopping to pick up Matt’s little brother, Clinton, on the way. Before we knew it, we were touching down in Christchurch and driving toward Lake Tekapo.
I absolutely love New Zealand, it’s one of my favourite places. I always kind of forget just how spectacular the mountains and lakes are, it’s like my memory dulls it or something, then I get here and it knocks my socks off again. Kind of great though, I guess, because I never really get over how shockingly beautiful it is. We arrived at Lake Tekapo and checked into Peppers Bluewater, who had arranged a two-night stay for us in a two-bedroom apartment. The next morning, we woke up super early to go catch the sunrise over the Lake, which I highly recommend! It was absolutely freezing cold, but so well worth it.
After a lovely couple of days exploring, photographing, filming and gathering everything we need to create some great content on Tekapo we piled in the car and headed down to Queenstown. Yesterday was spent up at The Remarkables. Matt and Clinton have the necessary skills required to ‘carve up the mountain’ on their snowboards. I’m a total novice and have only been skiing once before, taking in a lesson 2 years ago. Much to my surprise, I remembered a lot! I had another lesson, of course, but found it all came back to me pretty quickly. I’m still very much a learner and too terrified to go tackle one of the proper runs yet, but with plenty more days and lessons to go, I’m really hoping I can do my first proper ski run before the end of the trip.
That said, one of my favourite parts of skiing has to be that glorious moment you take your boots off and get your hands on a hot chocolate. It’s just so good. This evening we’re headed back up the mountain, this time to Coronet Peak, to check out their twilight session, which includes a fire, pizza and mulled wine (really, that’s how they’re luring me up there). Then, tomorrow, we’re off to Wanaka for a few nights, which includes more snowboarding and feeble attempts at skiing + a whole lot of photography and filming, to put together a whole range of useful guides for you guys. Woohoo!
I gotta say, I’m pretty wrecked at the moment. My energy levels are at an all-time low. I think so many back-to-back trips combined with lots of travel and working like a beast in-between trips are starting to catch up with me. After this one, we’ve got a good break until the next one, maybe two weeks. I’m planning on spending that time at home, locked inside my house, catching up on rest. I say that but I already know how much work I have waiting for me when I get back haha. You wanna know the sick thing about it? I can’t even take a holiday because when I try, I don’t enjoy it as much because I feel so lazy. I see all these great photo opportunities and can’t get my mind to switch off enough to enjoy it. What the heck. Have I totally ruined holidays for myself?!
What I learned this week
I’m turning 30 in a month and I’m really looking forward to! As a kid, I couldn’t picture myself being older than 18. It was like 18 felt like the oldest a human could possibly get haha weird, right?! Now I’m in the last 4 weeks of my 20’s and I keep waiting for the feeling of dread to hit me but it just isn’t. I don’t know, maybe it’s a weird social thing where people say they’re afraid of turning 30 because everyone else says it? Maybe they really do mean it?! I don’t know, but I don’t feel scared, depressed, worried or bad about it.
The start of my 20’s was an absolute mess. I was a mess! I feel like, now, I’ve really got my shit together. I know how to do my makeup well (no more embarrassing, greasy, drunk disaster photos), I’ve got enough money to dress respectfully (no more low-cut/short dresses), I’ve got a great relationship with Matt, my business is exactly where it needs to be and I can feel the swell of energy behind it. My family are all happy, I have two wonderful children (my cats), Netflix is bringing out more good shit, I have good quality wi-fi. I don’t know, it just all feels good to me! 30 is the start of a new, exciting chapter and I’m stoked for it. Bring it on! Life is good!
I've loved plants and flowers since I was a little kid. When I was about 10 I decided I should start collecting, drying and archiving different types of plants and flowers so when the world ended, people in the future could find them and use them to see what the world was like 😂 what a little creep!! I've always held back a bit on posting photos of flowers and plants because they didn't get many likes, but I realise now it's not about that (at all!!) it's about sharing what you love… and I love plants! Photos like this one make me happy 😊
News and updates
Matt’s birthday is actually 6 days before mine, so we’re still formulating a birthday plan. We may go away somewhere for his birthday, maybe just a few nights of trying to relax and not work (I’m not sure that’s possible). We’ll see if we can squeeze something in. For my birthday, we’ll be working haha that’s not a bad thing though, I love my job and am grateful to get to do something I love on that day. Our next work trip will be back up to the Capricorn Coast/Yeppoon region to create some more content for them. We also have a really great opportunity on the cards to take us to a very beautiful, very desirable location in Europe from early to mid-September which I am dying to tell you about but can’t just yet. There’s also another great opportunity on the cards, to partner with a huge travel brand on some video content, which I also can’t tell you about just yet. Lots happening!
P.S Matt’s break from our YouTube channel continues, sorry, just a few more weeks to go and we’ll be back in the clear and ready to tackle it again with refreshed energy 🙂
Phoebe Lee is a travel writer and award-winning blogger with a love for storytelling. Phoebe creates practical, fun and engaging written content designed to inspire and energise travel-lovers and dreamers. Follow her and Matt’s adventures at home and around the world, right here on Little Grey Box and through Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube.