I loved this post on the High Steaks Farming blog so much I had to share it here with you all – Check out some of their other great posts about the ethical raising cattle and sheep on their farm on the NSW Central Highlands.
So apparently us compassionate foodie types have been assigned a label. We are known as “ethical omnivores”. I haven’t decided yet whether I like this or not. One one hand, it seems like just another attempt to homogenise a group of people with diverse opinions so that they can be categorised, and hence marketed to. On the other hand, if I believe in the principles of ethical omnivorism, perhaps having it well defined will make it easier for others to get involved.
There are various definitions around, but I’d like to present my own, beginning with what we’re not: ethical omnivores are not failed vegetarians trying to appease their guilty consciences. Most of us believe the best way to make a difference to the welfare of animals is to support those farms who are treating animals with compassion and respect. If you’re of the more fundamentalist view that it is inherently evil to kill animals, you’re never going to accept this philosophy; but those who are vegetarian simply because they feel they can’t source meat which is produced ethically, could perhaps try a little harder.
I quite like the fact that the term ethical omnivore doesn’t just relate to meat. Quoting from an article on the subject, “An ethical omnivore may be just as concerned about the production of the bread he or she eats as the meat inside the bread.” http://animalrights.suite101.com/article.cfm/what-is-an-ethical-omnivore Having seen cereal production close up, I’m just as concerned with finding cruelty free and environmentally responsible grain farmers as I am in finding ethical meat.
From what I can gather, the label is here to stay, it seems to have been around for a while, so I’d best get used to it.
The yearly pilgrimage to Darling Harbour for the Sydney International Beauty Expo took place on Saturday and I have only three points to make, well maybe four if you include how awesome the Momos were at the Nepalese food fair taking place just across the way in Tumbalong Park.
So here are my three points.
Soto Skincare is my pick for the NEXT BIG organic skincare brand – unexpected combination of ingredients and fabulous packaging!
Real Safe Flameless Candles are one of the coolest new products of 2010 hands down. They’re a real scented candle, made from normal candle wax, that has a glowing LED light inside at the base that gives an authentic candle glow and flicker. Check the out here The other great thing about them is that they actually last about 5 years!
If I hear “this product contains <insert bogus sounding pseudo medical ingredient here> and will prolong the life of your regular Botox treatment” again – seriously, are we at the point where we just assume everyone is getting Botoxed? Please tell me it isn’t true?
But not a s much as Sharon Perkins from Beaut Vintage…
I noticed Sharon’s website Beaut Vintage when she dropped by to comment on Laura E’s most recent post. I liked the site so much that I asked her to share a little bit about herself, her love of vintage dresses and her gorgeous vintage fashion website. Here’s what she had to say…
My passion for vintage
For as long as I can remember I have always had a passion for vintage – long before it was deemed cool – and before uncool was cool, growing up in the 80s I loved nothing more than to play in the dressing up box that was my mothers wardrobe.
60’s dresses & micro minis, 70’s ethnic tunics & slogan T’s -she had the most amazing clothes coveted from her years spent in London.
Growing up in Ireland there were very few ‘vintage’ shops around however plenty of markets – my nan used to bring me to these hidden away places in the city where the floors would be piled high with clothes and shoes, where it was every woman for herself!
I can only compare it to being a spectator at a shark feeding frenzy…grannys battling it out literally nose-diving into piles of garments in the quest for the ultimate find…I guess it instilled my love (and game) of the treasure hunt!
Collecting vintage has always been to me what favourite hobbies are to others, I love that these clothes & accessories have a history, a story and act as a cultural expression of a time gone by.
Being a hoarder I literally had and still have tons of pieces accumulated over the years.
My first dabble with selling vintage began as a subsidy whilst studying -I practically paid my way through Art College by selling in markets in Dublin, Ireland.
In my working life from event production to retail management I continued to collect & sell vintage. I knew this was what I wanted to do full time, this led to my sister and I setting up Irelands first vintage online store in 2006 which became and continues to be a great success!
Having lived in Melbourne previously I was eager to return and to provide and bring my love of vintage fashion to the virtual dressing up table.
Creating your own signature look
Mass market fashion has never really appealed to me, I love providing vintage as an alternative choice for women where they can create their own signature look with one off pieces that will always be in style as opposed to the latest fashion trend.
It has taken nine months (yep it’s a baby) to get Beaut Vintage off the ground and has been a lot of hard albeit enjoyable work!
At Beaut Vintage women can avail of collections sourced from right across the globe each piece being handpicked on exclusivity, quality and beauty.
SPECIAL OFFER: Sharon is generously offering Gorgeous Things readers a 25% discount – just use the code GORG25 when you order
I’m a firm believer in sustainable fashion and also offer a revamped range-one off pieces that have been reworked from ‘daggy to darling’ with a contemporary twist!
There is so much to love about vintage for me it ticks all the boxes: authentic, unique, beautifully crafted, eco-friendly and great value for money.
I hope I can provide a great service to the gorgeous women of Australia for many years to come!
Don’t forget Sharon’s special 25% discount for Gorgeous Things readers – use the discount code GORG25 at the check out to recieve your discount.
‘Out of three, how would you rate your level of happiness?’
With one being ‘not very happy’,
two being ‘fairly happy’,
and three being ‘very happy’
How can this be right?
According to management consultant, author and speaker, Marcus Buckingham (who by they way, is fabulous if you ever get a chance to get along to one of his seminars) and the more than one million people who have been asked this question in various studies around the word, over the last 60 years, women are becoming a little less happy than they where in the 1950s. In a surprising contrast, men have become increasingly happy over the same time period.
How can this be? We women can now vote, work, have children and return to the workforce, and pretty much anything else that we want to do. But it’s not making us any happier. As Marcus says, it’s not that each of us is unhappy, but it is statistically proven that as a gender, women are becoming slightly less happy. Of course there could be a huge number of reasons for this and anyone with a sociology degree is most welcome to start a list of them for me in comments below if they have a spare 5 minutes.
This study that’s taken place in many countries, including Australia determines what’s called our level of ‘subjective wellbeing’, a psychological term that really just means – how happy we believe ourselves to be in general.
How can we become happier?
I’m curious to know what you think would increase your level of subjective wellbeing? You might say more money, more time to do the things you enjoy or a holiday. It’s interesting to see that in results taken from other studies, Marcus noted that for women an increase in free time didn’t actually increase their level of subjective wellbeing. The same study he said also showed that for every hour of additional free time men are given, their subjective wellbeing rose by 8%.
Another point that I must say, kind of shocked me, is that having children doesn’t actually increase happiness. Please don’t shoot the messenger, but apparently all you mothers out there would probably rate your happiness below women without children, like moi! Now I know you’re thinking “but, but, I love my children, they do make me happy” – that may be so, but statistically, us birds without chicks are chirping a little louder and brighter than y’all. Don’t worry, apparently your lives have more ‘meaning and purpose’ than ours – so it all works out in the end for everyone! (You girls know I’m just kidding around, right? I see no need to make a distinction between women with and women without children – just the same as I don’t make any distinction between what men and women are capable of in all areas of life.)
So, where do you find your ‘strongest life’?
If as a gender we are becoming slightly less happy then it’s incredibly important that we take control of the situation now, before it gets any worse. We owe it to our daughters, our sons, our sisters and brothers, friends and lovers and most importantly to ourselves to take back our happiness by living a life that has the capacity to create more and more happiness.
We certainly can’t create happiness by bitching about a job we can’t stand, or picking ourselves to pieces day in day out or by watching ‘The Secret’ every week in the hope that we’ll magically become ‘superwoman’ just by focusing on what we want – way off in the distance.
(takes 5 minutes at the most) to help identify the role to most invigorate you.
It’s no surprise to me that I was primarily a Teacher with the secondary strength of being a Creator
It’s not about goals way off in the future
I agree with author and speaker Marcus Buckingham when he says that ‘life is about following the moments that invigorate you’, he talks about the notion of to ‘catch and cradle’ those moments that invigorate you. That’s a great term, to ‘catch and cradle’. To catch something you have to be aware of it, you have to be on the look out for it. My best moments have always been when I’m sharing new information and I see a light go on inside someone and they ‘get it’. To cradle these moments to me means to make sure I have more moments like that. I nurture the opportunities I have to share new information and keep my attention focused on finding new opportunities to share what I learn. Like here on Gorgeous Things.
Nurture what makes you feel invigorated
The idea of cradling also says to me (and I’m not sure if this is how Marcus means it) that you don’t need to hold on too tightly to these moments to get the best out of them. If you hold on too tightly you’re almost saying that you don’t believe this opportunity or moment will come along again. After all, a moment is just a moment, right? No need to grab it by the feet and shake it until every drop of moment-y goodness is gone. They’ll be another one soon – because you’ll create it by being aware of what makes you feel invigorated.
Where you can find more information about living your strongest life – the life you were meant to live
Marcus told a couple of inspiring and motivating stories about women who he’s interviewed for his book ‘Find your Strongest Life: What the happiest and most successful women do differently’ and to be honest, I could never do them justice in a paragraph here so I’m going to suggest that you read Marcus’s latest book and find your strongest life and take the first steps towards starting to live it. As I said earlier, we owe it to ourselves and if that doesn’t motivate you, then think of your daughters and the further decline in happiness that their generation will face if we don’t teach them by our own example.
Maybe it’s because it’s Sex & the City 2 week, but fashion is currently taking a front seat in my life. I’m finding myself lingering longer in King St shop windows, touching delicate fabrics with a wistful sigh and fantasising about being able to walk daintily in 6 inch spike heels. And you know when you focus on something – it just seems to have a habit of finding it’s way to you in delightfully voluminous quantities.
If you’ve got a wardrobe full of clothes and nothing to wear, this site could really help you to get your fix of something new without the credit card binge, hangover.
There’s two things that you really need to know about 99 Dresses
Nikki’s idea for sharing and swapping clothes with friends and beyond through a website is exactly what I want. I’ve been to a few clothing swap parties which were great. You get to expand your wardrobe without reaching for your wallet. The problem is – there’s never one on 2 days before an event that I need a new dress for! Nikki has solved that problem for me by taking the concept online.
Nikki only left High School last year! She’s now in her first year at university. Even though I don’t want to make too much of her age, as I don’t really believe that it’s relevant if you have a brilliant idea and the gumption to pull it off. I find her idea and passion for pursuing it, more inspiring than her age. But hell yeah – she’s only 18!
Re-use, re-duce, re-cycle & save!
99 Dresses fits perfectly with the Gorgeous Things mantra of looking fabulous and feeling great naturally and I’m seeing it as a sustainable choice for expanding your wardrobe and getting rid of clothing that you no longer want, need or even fit into.
Being a huge fan of Banana Bread led to me eating WAY too much of it, gaining 5 kilos in about 2 months and then resigning myself to the fact that I needed to go Cold Turkey if I had any chance of fitting back in my jeans.
I’ve been experimenting since then, trying to make a less than Sinful Banana Bread. The first step is to change the name from ‘Bread’ to ‘Cake’, this automatically reduces the calorie content as you no longer feel inclinded to spread it with butter. Funny how the thought of spreading cake with butter just seems far too decadant but the exact same recipe with ‘Bread’ in the title can be toasted and covered in fat with minimal fuss.
So, here’s my Gluten Free Banana Bread/Cake Recipe for all those of you who get a funny tummyfrom all that Wheat Flour.
125g Melted “I Can’t Believe it’s Not Butter” or Real Butter
125g Raw Sugar
2 Free Range Eggs
225g Simple Baking Mix (or gluten-free flour)
4 Very Ripe Bananas
Tsp Baking Powder
Tsp Bi Carb Soda
Preheat Oven to 180c
Grease Loaf Tin
Squish Bananas in a Small Bowl
Add Sugar to Butter in another larger bowl and mix until combined
Add Bananas to Sugarey Buttery mixture and combine
Add Cinnamon to Baking Mix
Add Baking Mix, 1/3 at a time to wet ingredients and stir until combined
Pour mixture into Loaf Tin and Bake for 50-60 minutes
Allow to cool and then remove from Loaf Tin
If you’ve made Banana Cake, make a cup of Tea and enjoy a slice.
If you’ve decided to call it Banana Bread then whack it in the toaster and smother it with butter. Yum!
Tips for making the boring thankless task of household cleaning a little less dreary.
1. Use products that smell great and have minimal chemical content. This will lift your spirits (instead of gassing you and giving you a headache) and ensure your skin is protected from drying and allergic reactions.
2. Playing uplifting musicwhen you are doing tasks you don’t enjoy will make them all the more easy to manage. We recommend Motown or the Bridget Jones soundtrack but whatever puts you in a good mood will do the trick.
3. Get yourself a cute apron. Think the domestic goddesses of the 50′s who took such pride in their domestic chores. It’s simple psychology; it’s been proven that if you smile for long enough when you feel down, you’ll start to feel happy. So, why wouldn’t it work for cleaning, put on the apron, think domestic goddess and before you know it you’ll be on the phone to McMahon & Tate asking what time Darren will be arriving home for dinner.
We’re not suggesting you become a Stepford wife, not by any stretch of the imagination, and we’re not trying to set the feminist movement back 50 years. We figure that if you’ve got to do these chores then you may as well attempt to make it enjoyable for yourself. It’s something to think about anyway.
Photo credits: Geraldine Mills
NB: This post was first published in 2007 but it’s one of our core messages so I thought we’d give it another run with the launch of our new site.
Read this blog for long enough and you’ll start to get a bit angry. What? Angry?
If what you read sometimes here on Gorgeous Things doesn’t make you angry then you’re probably not taking it personally.
Sure we spend quite a bit of time talking about how to take care of your skin without chemical nasties and style your hair without tipping L’Oreal’s chemistry set on your gorgeous hair. BUT I wanted to give myself and everyone else a quick reminder about what’s at the heart of Gorgeous Things.
Beauty & Brains
Awareness & Action
Natural approach first
Nurture yourself so you can nurture others
Nurture the planet
No where does it say that you need to become an activist but we do try to give you the knowledge and means you need to do something positive. Whether it be giving you reviews of earth and people friendly products, or simple ways to cut down your weekly fuel consumption and sometimes ways to feel good naturally so you don’t have to reach for the pharmaceuticals straight away. Continue reading →
In a single moment I felt the deep inner wisdom of what it really means to be a woman. The moment was a simple interaction between myself and an incredibly charming man - and this simply is how it went. Continue reading →