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Saturday, 8 December 2012

For the love of vegetables!

The electric inter web has allowed for an uptake (and steady increase) of people standing up for the rights of the voiceless. i.e. dogs, whales, gorillas ...Britney Spears. Thing is, I've not heard a single soul stand up and represent one other important, voiceless player so I'm here to raise the issue - inhumane treatment of vegetables.

You heard right.

Forget Britney Spears, I care more about Broccoli Spears. Vegetables have feelings too!

So rather than chop the carrots (Ouch!), slice the cucumber (Eek!) or crush the garlic (Help!) try perfecting the art of Julienne, Chiffonnade, Jardinière, Brunoise, Macedoine and Paysanne. Oui! They are indeed actual (and tres magnifique!) techniques that will no doubt impress your friends AND show kindness to the vege-tables.

Meanwhile, the renewed focus on this simple and repetitive task allows the mind to rest, new energy to flow and ideas to emerge.

So let’s hear it for our leafy friends and get on board the ‘Be Humane to Veges’ campaign.

I smell a revolution people. Viva la vegetable!

Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

One bad ass mamma you best respect!

On my recent visit to NYC I experienced Hurricane Sandy's (a real holiday treat) fury.

Although i'm blissfully aware (and in awe) of her almighty and powerful presence, Sandy was a stern reminder that there ain't no disrespecting the greatest Mamma of them all - Mother Nature. She dazzles us with her spectacular lightness in one moment, then humbles us with fierce darkness the next.

This Mamma so fat - she influences the tides!  

We get it girl - you're the boss. Respect. 
Meantime, as for Miss Sandy dropping in on my whirlwind (pun intended) tour of NYC I refer to Grease - the movie, not the television adaptation for Glee...

"Sandy, baby, I sit and wonder - why-e-eye-eye...
Oh why, you dropped in on me...Sandy baby."

Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Wise people say...

Here's to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They're not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can't do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.” 
Apple Inc.

Monday, 26 November 2012

Is it really all in the timing?

According to sources who knew him, Frank Sinatra had an instinctive grasp of timing. No rehearsal, straight out on stage, the audience eating out of his hand. Magic.

There's no doubt Frank was gifted both vocally and rhythmically yet his mission was crystal clear as a performer and individual. To be his best, give them a show and to make the crowd love him. He knew exactly what he wanted.

Much like Frank, life has a knack of revealing things when the time is right. Resistance to this - futile. An understanding of what you want - essential.

So before leaving your fate to the Gods, get your priorities straight. Have a plan, vision, story board, mind map...whatever floats your boat - just get it out and know it to be true for you and you only. Then go about embracing your days and opportunities with relentless vigour in the meantime. The results will literally astound you.

And if ever you feel a little overwhelmed, things seem to be moving slowly or the timing's just not right, then tap your toes and remember this little pearler from Ol' Blue eyes...

"The fundamental things apply, as time goes by."

Loving you, loving me...TLT x 


Thursday, 22 November 2012

How do I keep my coat so shiny?

It's said unless you're a food brand, people on social media don't care about what you're eating. If that's true, why are people continually posting pics of their dinner and more importantly - asking how I keep my coat so shiny?

I can't ignore the masses any longer, so here it is...

Hulk smoothie, breakfast of champions

100g natural thick yoghurt with live cultures
1/2 cup milk (your choice of organic dairy, soy, rice, almond, coconut) - I use coconut water instead of milk
1 teaspoon honey
1 handful baby spinach leaves
1 banana
1 teaspoon ground flaxseed (linseed) or whole chia seed
½ cup ice

Combine the yoghurt, milk, honey, spinach, banana, flaxseed and ice into a blender.
Blend until smooth, green and creamy.
Serve immediately and enjoy.

This recipe is from

Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Wise women say...

"There's only one very good life and that's the life you want and you make it yourself."
- Diana Vreeland

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Tough Love Tamvakis-ism #06

It's important to keep it real and regularly remind myself of the facts.

I'm may not be a miracle worker, but I am a magic maker.

And guess what, so are you.

Believe it.

Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Monday, 29 October 2012

Ooh baby. That's it...right there!

In hot pursuit of your true desires? Treat them like a lover.

Serenade them, caress them, woo them, excite them. Show them some respect. Realise they may be shy so give them time to come to you. Act like you want them. Make them want you too. 

Personally, I mix it up. Yah, I like to keep it spicy! And today i'm bringing it with a little New Kids on the Block.

Hey, desires...this one's for you.

Step by step ooh baby
Gonna get to you girl
Step by step ooh baby
Really want you in my world

Step, step, step
Step by step

Step one, we can have lots of fun
Step two, there's so much we can do
Step three, it's just you for me
Step four, I can give you more
Step five, don't you know that the time has arrived

Loving you, loving me...TLT x 

Wise men say...

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Wise women say...

When I was younger I thought success was something different. I thought "When I grow up, I want to be famous. I want to be a star. I want to be in movies. When I grow up I want to see the world, drive nice cars. I want to have groupies." But my idea of success is different today. For me, the most important thing in your life is to live your life with integrity and not to give into peer pressure, to try to be something you're not. To live your life as an honest and compassionate person. To contribute in some way.


Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Tough Love Tamvakis-ism #05

Liza sang about life being a cabaret.

Well, I love a cabaret old chum, however truth is - life is a carousel. 

Sometimes you're up, sometimes you're down, yet it only moves in a forward direction. Certainly, you can glance behind you whenever you like but the secret to prevent you from tossing up your Dagwood dog and chips is to keep your eye on the road ahead. 

Round and round this metaphorical circle of life goes. Leaving one smiling from ear to ear and immediately lining up for another round or mildly nauseated and vowing to never to give it another go. 

Either way, it's a short ride and no single state of mind or feeling - good, bad or indifferent is forever.

We might as well strap on a sunny disposition, choose our horse or carriage and abandon ourselves to the music and bright lights. Fairy floss and popcorn is optional. 

Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Tough Love Tamvakis-ism #04

Laughter really is the best medicine.
Ok, laughter and magnesium.
Way to tickle your funny bone...
Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Tough Love Tamvakis-ism #03

The easiest, most effective, feel good activity you can do anytime and anywhere - 
is to stretch.

Keep your mind and body nimble.
Don lycra.
Stretch daily.
Be gorgeous.
Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Tough Love Tamvakis-ism #02

Sometimes, you’ve gotta get ‘em out.
Just place them on the table.
When you’re in doubt,
Or can’t figure things out,
Yep, lay ‘em out like cable.
"I can't."
"I won't."
"I don't know how."
I hear you softly mutter.
Stand firm, be true, I say to you.
Who cares if they think you’re a nutter!?
Now free yourself and live it up!
Proceed with not a doubt,
And should you feel it creeping back,
Seriously - it could save you.

Monday, 24 September 2012

My darling believe me...

Indeed, I say a little prayer for you.
May your day include light, love and belly clutching, tear inducing laughs.
Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Wise women say...

Blue Gowns and Jellybeans

I’ve had the sniffles. Relentless headache, sore throat, runny then blocked then runny/blocked nose, coughs and the sweats...and I’ve not been able to shake it for a couple of weeks.

So, after a stern talking to from a friend of mine (thanks girlfriend), I hauled my butt to the doctor. Good thing too. She took one look at me and muttered a little before donning a face mask and poking sticks into my mouth and gadgets into my ears.

“Open wide!”
“Yes, this ear looks good, now turn to the other side.”
Out comes her stethoscope.
“Breathe in and out.”
“In again, and out.”
“And again, in and out.”
“Once more – in and out. Really big breath this time...iiiin and ooout.”
Geez, this was rigorous however I’d spotted the container filled with colourful spoils and knew that if I played my cards right, I'd receive my glucose fuelled reward. But alas, Doctor declares, “You have a sinus infection and suspected pneumonia. I want you to go for an X-ray immediately” and promptly writes a script for some meds, a referral for some film and strict instructions to call her later that afternoon.

No mention nor whiff of a jelly bean. Outrageous!  

So off I go to the X-ray rooms. I look around and smile at a little boy who smiles shyly then looks away. I see a lone tradie, an exhausted looking woman with her kid, a young professional. I spot an elderly European woman heavily drenched in gold jewellery and embellished clothing flicking though magazines while speaking loudly with a lady who appeared to be her daughter and ask myself, “Are we related?”

Yes sir-ee. We were a bunch of licorice all-sorts and I couldn’t help but wonder who these people were and why they were here. What’s their story?
Suddenly I’m jolted from my bubble back to reality when they call my name.
“Through here”, they tell me.
I’m given a basket to place my belongings and told to strip to my underwear and sport one of the blue gowns on the bench in the change room before sitting in the lounge prior to a radiographer coming to whisk me away for what I had dubbed ‘my silver screen debut.’ I was being caught on film after all. Yes, indeed I romanticised the scenario because a) That's how I roll and b) I felt vulnerable. Besides, it’s times like these that a little romance (and comedy!) can go a long way.
Sitting there in my blue gown, blood sugar levels dropping rapidly (darn you Doctor!), looking around at the others waiting for their ‘debut’, acknowledging one another with a nod and a smile all the while wondering if they were packing barley sugars and how I might get a hold of them - it dawned on me. Once stripped of your belongings and down to your underwear and a blue cotton gown, we’re all the same.

I didn’t know who these people were nor did I know their tales or vice versa, yet what I felt was something intensely human and real. I felt truth in the simplicity of the fundamental commonality among us all in that we want to know that everything is going to be OK.

We all want to love and be loved. We all want a friend, a lover or a golden retriever to share our good, our bad and our blue gown moments with. That sometimes, no words are necessary and that a nod and a smile can really make a difference to someone.

I don’t know if I’m romanticising again (so sue me!) but I figure a visit to the chemist, one box of tissues, a pack of antibiotics and a giant bag of jelly beans (VICTORY!) later, is a good way to further ponder my theory.

Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Tough Love-ism #73

A friend of mine once imparted some sound advice upon me and seeing she's not dispensing this little nugget on the electric inter-web for all to enjoy, I have assigned myself messenger. 

"Hear ye! Hear ye!...Everything before but is bullshit."

You know what I'm talkin' 'bout Willis! 

Examples include - He's a really nice guy, but...Don't get me wrong, I enjoy working with her, but...That dress is SO flattering on you, but...

They be jive talkin' fool!

Now that you know, your BS-o-Meter will tingle like tinea and likely evoke a slight tilt of the lips in an upward direction each time you hear it.

Yah, you'd better believe it.

Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Sunday, 9 September 2012

Pain or freedom?

Truth hurts.
The truth will set you free.
You can't handle the truth!

What do you believe?

There are many ways to frame it, slice it, dice it, put that thing down flip it and reverse it (thanks Missy Elliot) but whichever way you look at it, revealing your truth (or not) may have a butterfly effect. An impact, positive or negative, that is difficult to predict.  

However there's no need to get your knickers in a knot and over think things to a point of 'analysis paralysis'. When in doubt, I choose to keep it real and super simple so I often refer to my old mate Dr Seuss. Aside from giving Green eggs a plug, he has plenty of sound advice. 


And know this, butterflies' lives are all about flight. Their vibrant wings are the largest, most visible parts of their bodies, and they spend much of their time in the air. 

The way I figure it, we may as well speak our truth. You never know, we might find our own vibrant wings and take flight.

Loving you, loving me...TLT x


Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Wise men say...

”Anything is possible. You can be told that you have a 90 percent chance or a 50 percent chance or a 1 percent chance, but you have to believe, and you have to fight.”

– Lance Armstrong

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Hey Spring...

...what's up girlfriend?
I'm eagerly awaiting your arrival. So eagerly in fact, I've coloured my hair pink in your honour.
Let's bloom baby!

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Wise men say...


50 Shades of Ayurveda

After a couple of years of chronic back pain, I've just had a breakthrough. 

It's a very exciting time considering I can't remember the last time I didn't wake up in pain. No reprieve for extended periods of time and undergoing more tests than I care to recall without diagnosis or recommendation other than seeing more doctors and having more tests...I'd be lying if I said it wasn't testing my will. 

I’ve tried many things is an attempt to relieve and manage the pain. Traditional, Eastern, Western, Physio, Cranio Sacral, Chiro, remedial massage, meditation, intoxication, rhythm nation. Nada, nothing, zilch. 

I’ve recently taken up with a Holistic Practitioner who specialises in Ayurveda. At my first consultation she took my pulse and pinpointed (among other things) the exact vertebrae in which I have degeneration. Wowzas.  I just walked in off the street - how does she know these things about me? Ninety minutes later I was whisked out the door with a bag full of potions and a treatment schedule. Here we go again. 

Herbs, dietary changes, Pindaswed and Kati Basti treatments, acupuncture – I committed myself wholeheartedly to the cause of pain liberation. And it’s a great thing because my dedication combined with the care I am receiving from these wonderful practitioners has me on the path to improved health and well being and for that I am truly grateful. 

Now back to the breakthrough...

During my third in a series of eight Kati Basti sessions, my wellness goddess starts gently poking about my lower back and declared in tones of 50 Shades of Ayurveda -

“Ooh, I've never been able to get my fingers in there before!”

“I think we've hit the magic button.”

“Something has released.”

“Hmmm, you're very flexible aren't you? Super flexible in fact.”  She conceded with certainty.

“Well it's time to forget about being super flexible. It's time to get strong. “

Aaaaand I may as well have been whacked in the back of the head with a Le Creuset casserole dish.

Yes! I have been super flexible all my life - physically, emotionally, spiritually and more often than not, put the thoughts and feelings of others ahead of my own. Alright wellness goddess, I see your point and I rise to the challenge to create necessary change.

So here goes - I’m going to serve myself faithfully and first in order to have the energy and capacity to assist others. It’s not about ego. I liken it to aircraft oxygen masks. When things gets pressurised and altitude climbs beyond a safe level, I’ll fit my own mask before helping others so we all have a better chance of making it through. Then, take a deep breath and let it go. Just let it go.

Give up the bend to gain the strength. That’s my kind of pain relief.
Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Wise women say...

"I look at my three little grandchildren, my sister's grandchildren, and I think how we've harmed this planet since I was their age and I just feel - I don't know what I feel. Angry, desperate.

At any rate, there's a saying that you hear very often - 'We haven't inherited this world from our parents, we've borrowed it from our children.'

We haven't borrowed anything from our children.When you borrow you expect to be paid back. We've stolen, we're still stealing, and we've got to do something about it."

- Dr Jane Goodall

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Au contraire? Don't mind if I do...

In October 2011 I quit my job. I was working for a respected publisher with colleagues and clients I liked and respected while earning great remuneration. A role that I was good at and for the most part, thoroughly enjoyed.

Most folks didn't understand. They still don't.

Comments like 'I don't understand her motive', 'She must have something lined up - why else would you leave a job with nothing to go to?' and 'So many people are being made redundant, it's probably not the best time to just give up her job!' started circulating. In fact, one woman told me 'she feared for me' when I told her I was moving on. A little extreme I thought, however I should clarify that it may have something to do with the fact that (hand on heart) I did not have a single clue about what I was going to do next. I simply knew it was time to go.

I can appreciate how many would view this as bat shit crazy but people, there are some things that only the individual understands. Like Julia Roberts with Lyle Lovett or combining ice cream and salted potato chips - people have their reasons for making the decisions they make and it's not for anyone else to tell them it ain't right. 

Needless to say things have worked out well. Phew. I've got an enjoyable part time gig to pay the bills and I have more time to spend on the thing I deem of paramount importance for me. Say it with me now...James Brown style.

UH! Ahh! Ba-da-ba-ba-ba-ba...Cre-a-ti-vi-ty. Owww!

Hooray for more time to write stories, listen to other's stories, take photos, play, give thanks, move my body, spend time with people I know and care about, meet new people, visualise and realise my very own little production. Hooray indeed.

And I'll tell you something else. It's fascinating to me how when one becomes creative in one aspect of life, the doors open to applying the thinking to other unexpected aspects. For me, this now includes the (dreary or I'll leave that for later) subject of finances.

Today I met with my go-to guy when it comes to financial advice. He's a good egg. When it comes to finances, he's got the moves, I've got the motion. And you guessed it, now that we're together we'll be causing a personal economic commotion. BOOM.

I'm seeing him because A) now that I'm earning less, it's a perfect time to get creative with my money and B) I don't want to wind up like so many people I know who have worked their entire lives and have nothing to show for it. Or worse, reach retirement and are in debt. Ouch. And the thing is, it's not uncommon. I listened, eyes wide and mouth agasp at the tale of the fellow who has for the past 10 years earned $300,000 per annum (that's $3miiiilllllion dollars people) and is currently carrying a $40,000 credit card debt and does not own basic shelter. No judgement but sheesh, that ain't for me.

So, we (me and the egg) are formulating a plan to help me do just that - create financial freedom so I may to continue my creative journey and roam the corners of the earth, collaborating with other creative individuals, positively impacting others and this planet and living a life extraordinary.

Today's discussions revolved around risk and the share market. He rattled off a series of questions to gain insight and establish if I am an aggressive risk taker in order to gain the highest return or more conservative in my thinking when it comes to the mighty dollar. FYI - I err on the side of 'balls out - let's get this show on the road'.

With that out of the way and my money personality a little clearer, we discussed some investment strategy. He threw some hypotheticals at me such as 'if you had this much and share prices dropped meaning you'd be down that much - how would you handle it?'  
I'll be honest, he almost lost me at this point (I told you, it can get dreary for me so I have a small window of concentration for these matters) but then he hit me with some insight into contrarian thinking. Have you heard of this? It's when one acts upon things in a fearless manner when all around them are being fearful. This jolted me back.

As I waved him farewell and started the car, it dawned on me that I have applied a contrarian approach to my life. I've taken what is deemed by many as crazy action in times of uncertainty and global financial disarray. I've backed myself with no goal or purpose other than to write, to live truthfully and to be a positively driven power source. I've been fearless when all around me have been fearful. And I can tell you this - it's been one of the best times of my life.

Sure there are times I am doubtful and yes, I have to work hard at reminding myself that my ego is not the boss of me. In fact, i've realised that no one and no thing is the boss of me. And it feels good.

And for those who worried or thought I'd lost my way, take a look at these words from J.R.R Tolkien and know them to be true...for me anyway.

Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Smoke and Mirrors

I have a fascination with images of women smoking cigarettes.

Now before you get your knickers in a twist, I'm not proposing anyone take it up. I merely see beauty in these women and images.

I hope you enjoy them too.

Loving you, loving me...TLT x
I see beauty, pride and strength.

The bunger - oops, candle burned out long before the legend ever did.

We had it all...just like Bogie and Bacall.

Tres glamorous. And that hair...magnifique!

Anyone got a light?

Astounding Audrey.

Sumptuous Sofia.

Breathtaking Bridget.

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

RIP Anna Piaggi

THE doyenne of eccentric style.

Rich, Happy & Hot?

That sounds great to me!

My new virtual friend and business school teacher Marie Forleo, informs me her goal is simple: to deliver the most impactful business-building + life-shifting strategies ever encountered, in one powerful weekend.

Rich Happy & Hot™ LIVE is a 2.5 day annual event in NYC that brings together 250+ women entrepreneurs from every corner of the globe to share ideas, gain skills, and stay on the cutting edge of small business growth.

That’s what I’m talking about virtual friend...

Ok Marie. I’m in an Empire State of Mind - count me in!

I'm deeply grateful and super excited to be doing this. It takes me one step closer to living my dream to add more value to my life through encouraging and empowering others to enhance their own.
Brace yourself NYC –TLT is going to be in-the-house.

Sing it with me. Let's hear it...

Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Friday, 3 August 2012

Wise men say...

"Spock, you are fully capable of deciding your own destiny. The question you face is: which path will you choose? This is something only you can decide."

Thank you ancient practice of Yoga for reminding me of the treasured truth that I am exactly where I am supposed to be at this very moment. Battle armour off (it was chaffing anyways) and time to share the love.

Choo choooo! Here comes the Tough Love train...All aboard!

Thursday, 2 August 2012

It's getting hectic. Battle armour and new strategy required. Today I channel my inner Stormtrooper and reestablish authority in my Galactic empire. Yes. It will be so.

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Wise men say...

"I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by conscious endeavour."

- Henry David Thoreau

Monday, 30 July 2012

Thursday, 26 July 2012


There is so much happening in The House of TLT at the moment and frankly, my head is in a spin. There, I said it.

What first?
What next?
Who can I turn to?
How can I?
Why would I?
Umm, should I?

Many people I speak with tell me they too are impacted by the pressure (self imposed or otherwise) to be or have or do or behave or give or take or achieve or make or...Arrrrgh! Overload people, o-ver-load.

In fairness, I thought twice about posting my thoughts and feelings today. It somehow seemed a small failure in admitting that I have much to do and give and achieve and that hey, I may need some help.

And then I said - "Hey! Cohones out Tough Love. This is what you're all about." That's right people - the truth, the whole truth and nothing but my version of the truth. Even when you're vulnerable. In fact, speaking your truth in times of vulnerability can be most empowering. 

So, here I am. Heart on sleeve. Calling on the Universe to hear my voice. Calling on my family, friends and loved ones to step right up. Encouraging myself to fulfil my purpose, my dream. And finally, taking a deep, conscious breath and turning to one of my mentors for some simple and effective advice.

“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go...”
- Dr Seuss

Ahhh, now that's better. Thank you Theodor Seuss Geisel . Thank you very much indeed.

Now, back to magic making and miracle working...

Loving you, loving me...TLT x

Did you know?...
Green Eggs and Ham was the result of a $50 bet in 1960 between Bennett Cerf and Theodor Seuss Geisel that Geisel couldn't write an entire book using only fifty words. Take that Cerf! Dr Seuss is in da house.

Friday, 20 July 2012

Wise women say...

"I think it is imperative that we learn humility.

This says there was someone before me who paved the way. Paid for me. My responsibility is to prepare myself so I can pay for someone else who is yet to come."

- Maya Angelou

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Girl Scout

Today Team TLT is on the scout for outdoor locations for an  upcoming shoot. May the location Gods be with us. All seven of them.

Hi Ho...Hi Ho...It's off to scout we go...La la la la la la la la la la...

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Do try this at home

Perhaps you're feeling down and out.
Disgruntled with a bland reality.
Well then accept this little mission,
from the House of TLT.

Your mission is an easy one.
It will surely set you apart.
Simply make like Barbarella,
and shoot straight from the heart.

The truth might hurt.
The truth might set you free.
Let's try this social experiment,
let's see what happens, shall we?

Jump right in, sport a hearty grin,
and demonstrate some gump.
Say what you mean, mean what you say,
and ease out of your slump.

Tell your boss you'd like a pay rise.
You're worth it - show them why!
Tell someone that you love them
And be sure to look them in the eye.

Set your phaser gun to maximum,
and aim for the heavenly stars.
The saying goes *you may well miss,
but hey, you could wind up on Jupiter or Mars.

Go have a crack, then hurry back!
I'm waiting for your safe return.
And remember this, to find your bliss,
you must invest to get return.

And that's a fact.

Go get 'em people! 

Pew! Pew!

Loving you, loving me...TLT x

* The saying does go differently however The House of TLT has altered it (for the better as far as we can tell) in the name of creative license and poetic justice. WORD.