Tag Archives: help

Making a difference….one person at a time

In the days following the February earthquake I sat at my friends’ house for hours at a time transfixed by the images fed to me via the TV and internet.  I cried at what I saw.  And I cried for all the people affected.  And I wanted to help.  So I cried because I was sitting there, not helping.  But, after the September earthquake I wanted to help too….so I rang and emailed places to find out what I could do using my skills.  And no one was interested.  Turns out that so many people did the same thing that there was no way to co-ordinate all the offers of help.

So I sat and watched instead. Mostly feeling numb.  And sometimes feeling completely useless that I wasn’t doing anything.

And I’m sure that all over the city, thousands of people felt the same. I know lots of people signed up for the Student Volunteer Army again – and did a fantastic job.  I didn’t.  For whatever reason.

I did have the opportunity to spend some time at the Pioneer Welfare Centre with the Emergency Relief Therapists, doing massage for the evacuees and the medical staff and volunteers there. And then I organised an afternoon at the New Brighton Volunteer Fire Station. A team of us provided massage therapy to the fire fighters and the families of those who were not able to stay at home and were sleeping at the station. The highlight of my day was seeing the daughter of one of the fire fighters take over my massage chair and give others massage.

Then, an opportunity came up, via my friend Dan, to work with Telecom and help their staff.  I’d like to say that I think the support that Telecom have provided to their staff across the city has been amazing.  I’ve seen it first hand and it’s genuine caring. Continue reading


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Laugh, cry, shout, hug

It’s over a week since the massive earthquake here in Christchurch.  No need to remind you of that.

And as the people of this beautiful city try to adapt to the new normal, there is more danger lurking.


Stress is necessary for your survival and is in fact beneficial in moderate amounts.  However what happened in our city on September 4 and February 22 have put many of us into stress overload.  Your normal coping mechanisms are overwhelmed and the stress can start to have a negative effect on our lives – physically, mentally and emotionally.

Stress manifests itself in so many ways.  Check through the list below.  If you or those close to you can tick more than 5 of these symptoms, it’s likely the stress is starting to get to you:

  • disturbed sleep
  • feeling helpless
  • lack of appetite
  • headaches
  • lack of motivation
  • irritability Continue reading

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Counting myself very lucky

I was at the gym when the earthquake hit, it was terrifying – the noise was like a huge train going past, the sprinkler system burst, glass doors and windows exploded, concrete support pillars cracked, TVs fell, heavy weights were tossed around like toys. I wasn’t concerned for my own safety as much as those around me who were panicking and distraught. I ended up crouched over one of the guys in my gym class, protecting him from any falling debris – he was huddled, cowering, trembling and I felt it was the least I could do to help him.

We were quickly evacuated and as I came down the front stairs, I could see dust rising from across the CBD – I knew it wasn’t good.  I could hear a girl crying hysterically down in front of me, but I couldn’t reach her to comfort her.

For those of you outside of Christchurch, I’m sure you’ve seen all the TV coverage of the devastation – I saw just the tiniest of that first hand, as the gym is on Moorhouse Ave and away from many of the CBD buildings that were destroyed. I did however get the Moorhouse Ave/Colombo St overbridge closed as I could see cracks in one of the main supports and the road separating with each aftershock. I did see people being rescued from a building – alive and well. And I saw the full length of Moorhouse Ave full of silt and water from liquefaction. Luckily my new place is only 30mins walk from the CBD – so I walked home, with nothing but the clothes I wore to the gym. It wasn’t til I got home and saw on TV the extent of the damage, that I realised how bad it really was, and how lucky I was to come out unscathed. Continue reading

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We have choices

I just watched this video posted on Twitter by the awesome Spida Hunter of EHP Fitness about being a victim.  It’s quite a long piece and Spida clearly shows his passion around this topic, so it comes across as a rant in a few places – but he’s taken a stand, and I acknowledge him for that.

It follows on from a news story in The Press about surgery being offered to morbidly obese people in Canterbury.

Kevin Williams - 250kg

Kevin Williams is currently 250kg, although down from the once 350kg.  His weight ballooned after “his marriage fell apart 20 years ago he turned to food for comfort”  – 20 years ago. The article finishes with this “The huge costs involved in caring for him now could have been avoided if he had obesity surgery when he was first referred 15 years ago, he said. He believed he would still be working if he had had the operation, and many of his health problems would be gone.”

I’m with Spida on this one.  We ALL have choices.  Sometimes they’re hard ones.  Sometimes they require persistance and dedication.  Sometimes they need us to change our way of thinking. Sometimes they involve getting help from other people.  And sometimes we need help and encouragement from other people to open our eyes up to the fact that we do in fact have a choice.

It’s the last part that often gets overlooked.  Where were Kevin Williams’ friends and family 20 years ago when he started on the downhill spiral of out-of-control eating that lead to his obesity?  Did any of them say to him “Hey dude, that bucket of KFC you’re having every night is not good for you.  Maybe you need to get some help before it gets out of hand.”

I have no idea.  Maybe someone did.  Maybe Kevin chose to ignore that advice.  I really don’t know what happened, that lead to him getting to 350kg….although to be fair he dropped 100kg to the current 250kg, which is in itself an achievement – but why did he stop?


We all have them.

And too many people spend their lives blaming other people, the economy, the government, their parents – anyone else they can – rather than take responsibility for the shit they’ve gotten themselves into and make the right choices to get them out of said shit.

I’m the first to admit I’ve tried to blame others for the situation I’m in at the moment.  I won’t bore you with the details, but never-the-less, Spida’s post was a wake-up call for me too – I’m NOT a fucken victim.  I made my choices, and I will continue to make choices to get my life back on track.

And I have good people around me who are looking out for me – and I’m putting my hand up to #justaskforhelp


We ALL have them.  Even when we don’t think we do.

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Just Ask For Help #justaskforhelp

How many times have any of the following phrases run through your head? I’m pretty sure there have been times when you’ve thought/felt like at least a couple of the above.  All completely normal responses, I might add.

However, they’re not particularly conducive to achieving anything. So, I urge you to just ask for help.

Don’t get me wrong – I’m not talking about getting other people to do what you’re completely capable of because you’re too lazy to do it yourself.

I’m talking about those times when getting assistance, guidance or advice from someone else would actually be a positive and productive thing to do. So, why don’t we ask for help more often?  Lots of reasons.  I have a great reason.  Well, in my mind it was a great reason.

Let me share the story with you.  Sit back and relax. It started with something that happened when I was just five years old.  Just a tiny, wee thing (I’m only 157cm now, so I was tiny at five)  it involved something like this: Except, that’s not EXACTLY it, since it happened over 30 years ago and I never took a photo – but it’s a hole in the ground.  There was some building going on across the road from my house at an empty site.  I’m not sure what for, but there was a big hole in the ground (and no workmen at the time either).  My Mum and Dad told me to stay away from it. Continue reading


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Packing, packing, packing

Actually, I’m so easily distracted that I’m now writing another post.

But I’ve started packing – just need to get some more boxes tomorrow. I’ve sorted out all the serving platters/bowls/glassware I’m taking.  And which part of the liquor cabinet – all the vodka, the Cointreau (with hot chocolate – you’ve got to try it – divine), Kahlua, Bailey’s, Midori (so I can offer you a “Quick Fuck” – that’s a shot of Midori with Bailey’s floated over it…mmmm) and half the wine.  If you are reading this and travel overseas regularly, please let me know so you can help me top up with duty free – I’ll pay you of course, just need you to get it for me!  I need scotch, tequila, bourbon and rum. I don’t drink it all, just like to have it available for guests.

I’ve already ditched 4 massive rubbish bags of clothes, both from my wardrobe and from boxes in the garage that I kept “just in case” – of what, I’m not so sure.   The Sallies will be happy people.  I think I’ve managed to cull my wardrobe hanging requirements from 3.3m to about 2m  So should be able to get away from just a couple of freestanding racks. Luckily I’m taking BOTH sets of drawers from the bedroom here, so I’ve got plenty of room for the clothes I am keeping/can’t bear to part with.  That means I can probably colour code my t-shirts….light ones in one drawer, dark ones in another.

I now have to sort out power, phone/broadband (or maybe no phone, maybe Naked broadband?), redirect my mail.

Oh – and if anyone has tips on how to get chooks suffering from what I can only assume is PTSD as they stopped laying after the big one, that’d be great.  I’m inheriting 3 chooks from the owner and I want eggs, or I will be making chicken soup.

And if you have anything you can help me with on my list – or know of someone who can….I’d really appreciate it.  I’ve had some fabulous offers so far and have ticked off a few items – gifts, contras and cash…everything helps!

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Welcome to my new world

So, here we go.

Typical – it’s already after midnight and I’m just starting to write.  I’m a night owl.  I’m also a terrible procrastinator.  And despite what many people think, I’m actually quite lazy.  I think I must be quite good at hiding it.

Anyway. I wanted to get this started, because I need your help.  You see, with me moving on I need some stuff.

Hang on…..back up the truck….I’m moving on.  In case you didn’t know, I am now separated from my husband and am about to embark on a new life.  No need to be sorry about it.  It was my decision and it’s the best thing for me.  You probably don’t need to know any more about it. So, let’s get back to the task at hand.

I currently live in a lovely house in St Martins (some of you

One of the few things I'll miss when I move

have been here…it’s got a big kick-ass screen for watching rugby on), which I own half of including all the contents.  And I also own half of two houses in Auckland which will be sold – half the proceeds of which, along with half the value of equity in the St Martins house, will eventually go into my bank.  That could be several months however with the property market as it is.

However, as of next Friday 19 November, I will be the new tenant at a rental in Spreydon. Nice house.  So, I’ve got some stuff that I’m taking with me from St Martins.  Bed and bedroom furniture, my whole office (well the business paid for it, so it’s all mine)….and essentials htat I’ve bought like a vacuum cleaner and home theatre system and an iron.  Hang on WTF?!  I fucken hate ironing! Why did I buy an iron? Oh yeah, it was on special, along with the headphones I got for my iPod for the gym. Neither of which I really need.

Where was I – oh yeah, things I need and how you can help……

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