I recently attended the funeral of a great-uncle and it was awesome to hear about the legacy he had left behind.  Story after story told of deeply spiritual man who contributed in many ways to his family, his local community, New Zealand and the World and also of a man who accomplished great things in the business world.

Imagine you were a guest at your own funeral.  What would you be proud to hear your family and friends say about you and how you lived your life?

One way to live you life with purpose is to take the time to discover your values.

What are the things you most admire and wish to be part of who you are and are important to the way you live and work?

Our values are our internal GPS and guide us through life.

All human behaviour is belief driven but if we don’t act on our values they are just shallow beliefs.

It is our beliefs that develop our values in the areas of happiness, family, success and our vocations, so our beliefs contribute to our values which forms our attitudes and ultimately shows up in our behaviour.  Without self-awareness of our values we can find ourself behaving in ways that are not beneficial to our growth as a person.

The next step is goals but first we need to discover the values underlying our goals.

There are many lists of values on the internet.  Print one out and highlight all the words that resonate with you – the things you would be most proud to have said about you at your funeral.  Narrow your list down to five core values, then incorporate them into your mission statement for life.

My list included:

























Making a difference




Personal development








Truth seeking




I narrowed it down to my five core values:

  • Communication
  • Connection
  • Growth
  • Making a difference
  • Passion

Then wrote my Mission Statement for Life:

I am a student of life, curious and always learning;

I think deeply about issues that matter to me and passionately pursue my path, acquiring skills to grow and improve as a person by thriving on busyness, seeking to be genuine and real and always prepared to go the extra mile.

With my core values of communication, connection, growth, making a difference and passion guiding me I will contribute and be a valuable team member.

As you navigate your way through life you can pause and ask yourself if choosing certain actions would take you closer or further away from living out your values.


Enjoy the journey,

Mai i toku ngakau,



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Ordinarily, I go to the woods alone, with not a single
friend, for they are all smilers and talkers and therefore

I don’t really want to be witnessed talking to the catbirds
or hugging the old black oak tree. I have my way of
praying, as you no doubt have yours.

Besides, when I am alone I can become invisible. I can sit
on the top of a dune as motionless as an uprise of weeds,
until the foxes run by unconcerned. I can hear the almost
unhearable sound of the roses singing.

If you have ever gone to the woods with me, I must love
you very much.”

― Mary Oliver, Swan: Poems and Prose Poems

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I have been riding the weight loss rollercoaster ever since I had my babies and believe me I’ve tried practically EVERY diet and fad and plan.

Two years ago I attempted to go vegetarian for a month.  My weight clicked over into the obese range for my height and my iron levels crashed.  No disrespect to you vegetarians out there – I probably ate far too many kidney beans and chick peas and not enough leafy greens and my portion size of nuts were more likely the entire bag instead of a small handful!

It was however the catalyst to minimising processed food and becoming more aware of what was printed on the labels of all that packaged stuff, some of which shouldn’t even be classed as food and fuel for our body!

I experimented with the Paleo way of eating then my sister introduced me to Ben Warren and Be Pure and I ticked all the boxes for Adrenal Fatigue.  Ben Warren believes that the primary components of lifestyle that lead to Adrenal Fatigue include; lack of sleep, poor food choices, using food and drink as stimulants when tired, staying up late, being constantly in a position of powerlessness, constantly driving yourself, trying to be perfect, staying in no win situations over time and the lack of enjoyable and rejuvenating activities.

If you ever find yourself having difficulty getting up in the morning, have fatigue that is not relieved by sleep, you crave salt or salty foods, lack of energy, decreased ability to handle stress and increased time to recover from illness, increased PMS and you don’t really wake up until 10:00am then have an afternoon low around 3-4:00pm then I would recommend checking out www.bepure.co.nz or get hold of Adrenal Fatigue by James L. Wilson, N.D, D.C. Ph.D.  There are a lot more signs and symptoms, these are just some of the more common ones.

During 2014 my family were suddenly served up things like chicken heart casseroles and other nutrient dense organ meats in imaginative ways so they were non the wiser.  This was also when I fell in love with everything coconut and when I followed Rapid Fitness’s Kick Start I found bulletproof coffees aka fat blacks.

As my diet improved and my energy levels climbed Ruth Field’s book Run Fat B!tch Run inspired me to hit the road – how could you not after signing her pledge…”I do solemnly declare and accept that I am a FAT BITCH and I want to do something about it.”  and to finish off, “I will stop making excuses for myself and, holding hands with my inner bitch, I will haul my fat arse off the sofa and get out the front door.”

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The 2014 Jennian Homes Mother’s Day Fun Run was my first 5km charity run.  My new-found energy and fitness from running led me to purchasing the PPP (purple pelvic pounder) and I set out into the world of road cycling around our quiet rural roads.

But the real results didn’t happen until the beginning of this year.  It began with a five-day USANA Reset and the help of a personal trainer.  The numbers on the scales started heading in right direction – that is until life and all its frustrations and dramas steam rolled me – plus throw in calving time on the farm,  and all my hard work started slipping away again.

Now I have decided I need a break from the rollercoaster so I can go try out some of the other fun rides in the amusement park of life.

I no longer weigh myself.

I’m not eliminating entire food groups.

I eat whatever I want to but try to eat mindfully.

I’m taking a break from the gym and don’t have a personal trainer making me hyperventilate, vomit or cry.

I try to eat real food and not stuff in packaging.

I am learning to not let setbacks derail me.

I am trying to be kinder with my internal dialogue.

I am realising that it is the small choices we make each day that make the biggest difference.

I try and move my body everyday – even if it’s only out to check the mailbox!

I drink more water and take good quality supplements.

So what should I try out next….. the Freefall?  The Gravitron? Or maybe there is a horse on that Carousel waiting for me!

Mai i toku ngakau



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mum_001 (1)

Let’s journey together toward wellbeing – our soul, mind, body and spirit becoming whole.

Think of the three parts of our being as three legs on a stool.  They all need to be even and strong else it is not stable and fit for the purpose it was designed for.

We may spend a lot of time on striving for a fit, healthy body but if we don’t nurture our soul by feeding the spirit or deal with the negative self talk in our mind then we will not be balanced as a person.

We can get so caught up in the busyness of life and may not even be aware that we are neglecting a part of our being.

We need to actively seek out moments to be still and contemplate what would nourish our soul then PROACTIVELY set about putting those things into action instead of just REACTING to the events in our everyday lives.

Reaction is automatic and when we default to the habit of reacting to the circumstances around us we can feel rattled, like someone else is running our life and we often end up doing or saying things we regret.

By choosing to be proactive we can initiate change rather than just let life sweep us along.

Psalm 46:10

Be still and know that ‘I am God’

Be still and know that ‘I am

Be still and ‘know’

Be ‘still’


Mai i toku ngakau,


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After a while you learn…
by Veronica A. Shoffstall, (C) 1971

After some time you learn the difference,
The subtle difference between holding a hand and chaining a soul.
And you learn that love doesn’t mean leaning,
And company doesn’t always mean security.
And you begin to learn that kisses aren’t contracts,
And presents aren’t promises.
And you begin to accept your defeats,
With your head up and your eyes ahead,
With the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child.
And you learn to build all your roads on today,
Because tomorrow’s ground is too uncertain for plans,
And futures have a way of falling down in mid-flight.
After a while you learn,
That even the sun burns if you get too much,
And learn that it doesn’t matter how much you do care about,
Some people simply don’t care at all.
And you accept that it doesn’t matter how good a person is,
She will hurt you once in a while,
And you need to forgive her for that.
You learn that talking can relieve emotional pain.
You discover that it takes several years to build a relationship based on confidence,
And just a few seconds to destroy it.
And that you can do something just in an instant,
And which you will regret for the rest of your life.
You learn that the true friendships,
Continue to grow even from miles away.
And that what matters isn’t what you have in your life,
But who you have in your life.
And that good friends are the family,
Which allows us to choose.
You learn that we don’t have to switch our friends,
If we understand that friends can also change.
You realize that you are your best friend,
And that you can do do anything, or nothing,
And have good moments together.
You discover that the people who you most care about in your life,
Are taken from you so quickly,
So we must always leave the people who we care about with lovely words,
It may be the last time we see them.
You learn that the circunstances and the enviroment have influence upon us,
But we are responsible for ourselves.
You start to learn that you should not compare yourself with others,
But with the best you can be.
You discover that it takes a long time to become the person you wish to be,
And that the time is short.
You learn that it doesn’t matter where you have reached,
But where you are going to.
But if you don’t know where you are going to,
Anywhere will do.
You learn that either you control your acts,
Or they shall control you.
And that to be flexible doesn’t mean to be weak or not to have personality,
Because it doesn’t matter how delicate and fragile the situation is,
There are always two sides.
You learn that heroes are those who did what was necessary to be done,
Facing the consequences.
You learn that patience demands a lot of practice.
You discover that sometimes,
The person who you most expect to be kicked by when you fall,
Is one of the few who will help you to stand up.
You learn that maturity has more to do with the kinds of experiences you had
And what you have learned from them,
Than how many birthdays you have celebrated.
You learn that there are more from you parents inside you than you thought.
You learn that we shall never tell a child that dreams are silly,
Very few things are so humiliating,
And it would be a tragedy if she belived in it.
You learn that when you are angry,
You have the right to be angry,
But this doesn’t give you the right to be cruel.
You discover that only because someone doesn’t love you the way you would like
her to,
It doesn’t mean that this person doesn’t love you the most she can,
Beacuse there are people who love us,
But just don’t know how to show or live that.
You learn that sometimes it isn’t enough being forgiven by someone,
Sometimes you have to learn how to forgive yourself.
You learn that with the same harshness you judge,
Some day you will be condemned.
You learn that it doesn’t matter in how many pieces your heart has been broken,
The world doesn’t stop for you to fix it.
You learn that time isn’t something you can turn back,
Therefore you must plant your own garden and decorate your own soul,
Instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers.
And you learn that you really can endure.
You really are strong .
And you can go so farther than you thougt you could go.
And that life really has a value.
And you have value within the life.
And that our gifts are betrayers,
And make us lose
The good we could conquer,
If it wasn’t for the fear of trying.

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God wants you to take off all of your masks and be the real you;

He wants you to embark on a journey where you make sense of the story of your life.

To know where you have come from,

To know the path you are travelling and to understand that some things are just detours and not the end of the road;

He wants you to live your life with purpose moving forward to your destination,

This is being free;

Free to be you,

Free to embrace others,

Free to be.

Mai i toku ngakau,


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A few years back when I was helping my dyslexic daughter learn how to read I would often be heard telling her to “chunk it” which was a way of getting her to break long words down into chunks and test the vowel.

Sometimes life can be overwhelming and instead of running off to live on a deserted island or a cave somewhere I figured you could also ‘chunk’ life.

Following are some of the ways I have ‘chunked life’ on my weight loss journey.

  • Vision – Have a clear picture on how you want to be.
  • Belief – Believe you can achieve your goals and challenge your limiting beliefs, no more “this is just how I am”, “Its coz of my gene pool”, “I have a slow metabolism”.
  • Desire – You need to have a convincing WHY you want to achieve a goal.
  • Daily three goals – Its the small things you do everyday that make a big difference.
  • No excuses – “There is a difference between interest and committment – when you are interested in doing something you only do it when it’s convenient – when you’re committed you accept no excuses!
  • Don’t beat yourself up mentally over setbacks.
  • You can’t out exercise your diet.
  • Eat as nature intended.
  • Highly processed food shouldn’t be called food – it’s junk we put into our bodies with no nutritional value.
  • No need to eliminate entire food groups or ban any food item.
  • Ask yourself if you ate this would it help or hinder your health and wellness goals.
  • Don’t tell yourself or anyone else that “you’re not allowed” to eat something – say “I choose to eat/not eat something.
  • You are free to choose to eat whatever you feel like – just not free from the consequences of those choices so choose wisely.
  • Food is fuel for our bodies – don’t use it to relieve stress, boredom or heartache.
  • Slow down and enjoy the aroma, flavour and texture of your food – eat mindfully.


Even the bible says in Proverbs 23 (The Message version)

Don’t gobble your food,

Don’t talk with your mouth full,

And don’t stuff yourself;

Bridle your appetite.


Mai i toku ngakau,


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Get yourself comfortable. Close your eyes and imagine yourself at your very best. The size you are most comfortable being, the style of your clothing and how they fit. How energised you feel and your level of confidence.


Now write down your top three health and wellness goals then under each goal write WHY the goal is important to you. For example your goal may be ‘to lose 15kgs’ and your WHY could be ‘For optimum health and wellness and to take care of my joints and heart. To boost my confidence and self esteem and to model a healthy lifestyle to my kids’.


Every night before you sleep set three specific and realistic mini goals that you could achieve the following day that will contribute to your three goals. For example:

  • Drink 2 litres of water
  • Walk the dog for ½ an hour
  • Cut up some veggie strips and put in a clear container in the fridge for go to snacks

Read your list three times before you go to sleep.


When you wake in the morning read over your list another three times then take a pic on your mobile phone and text through to your accountability partner or group.


The next night when you write your three mini goals either tick or cross what you did or didn’t achieve – no beating yourself up. The following morning send a pic showing yesterdays goals with either a tick or a cross with no excuses or explanations and include the new list.


Your accountability partner doesn’t make any comment or offer suggestions – it is just the action of sharing it with someone else.


It’s the small changes in our daily routine that will make an immediate difference.


Aristotle said we are what we repeatedly do.


Don’t get bogged down trying to think up new goals every evening – repeat them, it takes 21 days to make a new habit.


Mai i toku ngakau,


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One of the key components of health and wellness is surrounding yourself with the things that bring you joy – for me one of those things are my Rhodesian Ridgebacks Bounty and Rika.

Today Riaka Ridgebacks are pleased to announce our 2015 World Cup All Blacks litter – 1st November 2015 – 7 dogs and 5 bitches all with minimal white, good ridges and tails and no dermoid sinus.

As a proud Kiwi and All Black supporter what better way to honour our boys than by naming the litter that was born on the day they claimed their victory.

So pups in the order they were born:

  1. dog, Richie McCaw, 2. bitch, Kieran Read, 3. dog, Dan Carter, 4. bitch, Brodie Retallick, 5. bitch, Sam Cane, 6. dog, Jerome Kaino, 7. dog, Sonny Bill Williams, 8. dog, Beauden Barrett, 9. dog, Liam Messam, 10. dog, Victor Vito,11. bitch, TJ Perenara, 12. bitch, Tawera Kerr-Barlow.

Rika is living up to her name – a Māori word meaning keen and eager.

And now the adventure begins….


Mai i toku ngakau,



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The vision for The Oasis of Wellbeing originated in April 2012 but it was encouragement from Scott Dinsmore, Live Your Legend who believed our journeys should be documented – so welcome to a health and wellness journey, “Our Soul ~ Mind, Body & Spirit Becoming Whole.

Mai i toku ngakau,


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