Today is my birthday.
Today is also National Women’s Day here in South Africa, so I get a holiday birthday every year, and a good one, lucky me.
As such, I thought it as good a time as any to share a bit more about me. I am always interested to know more about who is behind a business. So perhaps you are too.
Peoples’ stories fascinate me, because everyone has something unique going on, and a different perspective.
I was born the 3rd child out of 3, to parents who married later in life, for their generation, and who are still married 50-something years later. My siblings and I live on 3 separate continents sadly. We are very different but get on very well, and stay in touch.
Studies & Work
I enjoyed school and university. I played the viola when young, and sang in the school choir. I acted in a lot of the school plays, and danced and sang on stage. How brave I was!
I have had an exotic blend of a career path. I have worked on some of the biggest trade floors in London. I have worked as an environmental consultant. I have worked with an artist and as a recruitment consultant and as a photographer. I have run businesses with my husband. And now I have my own, personal company for the first time, and I am elated.
The cliff jump that went wrong
When I was 18 I jumped off a cliff into a mountain pool and broke my back, and had to walk out of the mountains and then bounce along miles of rough gravel roads in a car. I see it as a real example of the power of the mind because at the time I didn’t know my back was fractured, so simply carried on. I was very fortunate in that I received excellent care and have healed remarkably well considering.
Indonesia on a whim which sealed my romantic fate
I traveled to Indonesia on a whim when I was 22, with a vague plan of meeting my sister there. I did meet her, and also met the man who I was later to marry (many years later).
He was there surfing. We now live in a small coastal village with a very vibrant love for all things surfing. I don’t surf.
My Mediterranean heart
I worked as a chef on a beautiful yacht in the Mediterranean for a season. I learned to cook and help sail a bit, and can still remember lying on my bed listening to the sound of the waves slapping gently against the boat. After late, hot nights of cooking and serving guests, we would jump into the pitch-black midnight sea with the stars shining so bright above it seemed we could almost touch them.
We sailed right through an enormous storm one night and I thought we would die. It was an unforgettably wild and peaceful experience.
I spent 2 years in a Landcruiser with the man I met in Indonesia who is now my husband. We drove around Africa – from London down the West coast, around the South and back up the East coast, and on through the Balkans and Europe until we reached London again.
It was quite a trip, full of wonder and beauty and wonderful people. My overriding memories are of fabulous, simple, free days on end.
I study French every day, for no particular reason other than a love of the language.
My favourite English authors overall are probably Dickens and Tolkien – for their command of English, the characters they have created, and the vivid imagery they conjure up.
I have spent much of my life feeling like a round peg in a rectangular hole – never quite being at peace with focusing on my own unique ‘thing’.
Now that I know better, I resonate with being a multipotentialite: a person who has many different interests and creative pursuits in life.
Add to that I am an Enneagram 7 – the Enthusiastic Visionary who is interested in life experiences and grabs opportunities and sees life as an adventure.
It can be hard for me to sit still.
The simple beautiful dream
This is why I am so drawn to creating a simple beautiful life. It is to me of so much value to be able to create a hub of peace and space, where one can pause, and rest from the wonderful exciting enticing hubbub that is life outside.
I want to help others to create their own simple beautiful lives, because I believe we can.
We have a range of philosophies and religions available to us, and I find it useful to use them as a framework around which to build this intentional life. For me, I am tuned into –
- Minimalism thinking, and
- some Stoic wisdom
- and Buddhism, Christianity…
And such a host of tools at our disposal with which to fill in all the good stuff. For me, I believe in –
- a daily meditation practice
- simplifying everything
- stream of consciousness writing
- ongoing learning and personal growth
I am often utterly flabbergasted by the beauty of nature. I love being outside, but I also appreciate home comforts (which is not a Stoic trait).
My Simple Beautiful Instagram feed has become a gallery of clouds at sunset over the sea here because I find an abundance of beauty on our evening strolls.
But these are two of my favourite pics for some reason; sunrise and near sunset. Perhaps they represent the calm palette of my brand and the beauty to be found in nature.
Thanks for the trip down me-lane. And now I am off to celebrate my birthday.