24 things making me happy

24 things making me happy

My 23rd year didn’t get off to the best start. I had planned big things: a long weekend in Cairns would kick off with a skydiving over the Great Barrier Reef on my birthday. Then my flight was canceled and unable to be rescheduled, leaving me with the very boring birthday plan of working, gym-ing, sleeping.
Christine Amorose on a picnic in Place des Vosges, Paris, France
However, that was probably the lowest point in a year full of highs. For my 24th (tomorrow!), I’ll be celebrating my birthday by kicking off an eight-day cruise of the Croatian coast and checking Croatia off my 2012 resolutions. But to cap off an amazing year, I wanted to share 24 things that made me happy:


1. Skydiving over the Great Barrier Reef. I didn’t give up just because I wasn’t able to do it on my birthday: I jumped out of a plane for the first time for 14,000 feet worth of incredible views and an unbeatable adrenaline rush.

Boats and beach on Gili Trawangan, Indonesia

2. Getting my open water certification on Gili Trawangan: this Indonesian island has a bevy of psychedelic pleasures on the shore and deep-water delights in the sea.

3. Scoring last-minute tickets (and an excuse for a new dress and fascinator!) to the Melbourne Cup, the biggest event in Australia’s Spring Racing Carnival.

Christine Amorose at sunset at the Sheraton rooftop bar in Saigon HCMC, Vietnam

4. Rooftop bars in Bangkok and Saigon: neon backdrop for delicious cocktails.

5. Starting off a new year with an intense yoga schedule in Bali: I have never felt healthier or more balanced.

6. Sunday mornings at Queen Vic market: buy all my fruit and veg for the week, sample homemade jams or cheese, and then enjoy a German sausage with extra spicy mustard.

Christine Amorose and puppy Annie working on the computer
7. Meeting Annie: I fell head over heels for my parents’ new dog when I visited home. We took walks every day, and this 60-pound lapdog was the ultimate snugglebug when I was sleeping, watching DVDs and even working on my laptop.
8. Exploring the MONA in Hobart: still the most innovative and interesting museum I’ve ever visited.
9. Becoming one of the few Americans to reach Australian-levels of Vegemite obsession.
10. Working for Great Dane Furniture–especially the minute after the massive event I planned was deemed a success and I was able to enjoy a glass of champagne with my flash mob. That’s right. I organized a flash mob.
11. Saturday adventures in Sydney that ended at an oceanside pub.
Mimi Paist with a vintage camera
12. Coming home to spend time with my always-fabulous grandmother: I learned how to make almond cookies, nut quiches and Tokyo Sunsets–and discovered where I got my eye for photography and knack for writing.
13. My “rock climb in the morning, lay at the beach in afternoon” schedule in Railay.
14. Sunday sessions at The Branch: too many ciders, acoustic tunes and laughs to count.
15. My iPhone 4s: after two years of flip phones or my 3G, it was lovely to upgrade and subsequently become obsessed with Instagram, Foursquare, on-the-go updates and the incredible camera quality.
Corsica article in Virgin Voyeur December 2011
16. Having a piece published in a real-life magazine: nothing quite like seeing my name in print for the first time!
17. Busting out the cowboy boots for Stagecoach Country Music Festival. And then explaining to an English friend what a “Copenhagen ring” means: oh, the joys of American cowboy culture.
18. Going to a Rugby World Cup game in Wellington, New Zealand: it was awesome to see such an outpouring of national pride on both sides.
Sunset over Luna Park in St Kilda, Melbourne, Australia from my balcony
19. Living across the street from Luna Park: it’s impossible not to smile when you wake up to hot-air balloons drifting over a roller coaster every morning.
20. My Monday through Friday ritual in Melbourne: early-and-nearly-empty tram to a perfectly frothed latte, friendly chit-chat, newspaper and window seat at Market Cafe.
21. Sunrise runs along St Kilda Beach with the lovely JC: they were always the best start to my day!
22. Riding motorbikes in Asia: absolutely chaotic and crazy, but such an adventure!
Champagne in Jubilee glasses on the Seine at sunset in Paris, France
23. Champagne on the Seine at sunset: celebrating my early birthday, a friend’s completion of a massive professional test and the Jubilee.
24. Being back in Europe for my birthday: as usual, travel is the best gift of all!

What’s making YOU happy this week? 

  • What a cute post! I love how positive your personnality is – very inspiring! Can’t wait for next year’s edition 😉

  • Caroline Eubanks

    Happy Birthday! So much to be happy for. My birthday is next month and I already know I will be working, but I need to plan a big fabulous vacation for next year’s 25th birthday!

  • Well isn’t this just the sweetest post I’ve seen in a while…bon anniversaire!

  • Happy birthday and have the best time in Croatia! Can’t wait to hear all about it when you get back to Paris 🙂

  • AliciaC

    Happy Birthday! I’m happy right now just being me. 

  • Amazing, what a year!! And omg Annie is PRECIOUS! What a charmer

  • Have a great time in Croatia! Have you been there before? It’s my favorite place, Split especially. If you have time, walk up the big hill (to your right if you’re staring out at the water from the promenade) and get a drink at the bar overlooking the entire city. Just gorgeous. Can’t wait to go back. Enjoy!

  • Hope you are enjoying Croatia!  Another country visited on your birthday! 🙂  Have a great time on the cruise and happy birthday.

  • Happy belated birthday, and cheers to another fabulous year of travel!

  • Happy birthday!  You are such a talented writer and photographer, so happy to have stumbled across your blog!

  • Happy birthday! Hoping you enjoy everything Croatia has to offer!! 😉

  • ShannonOD

    Happy birthday Christine!! Hope you’re 24th year shapes up to be as wonderful as the things you’ve done during your 23rd!  🙂

  • budgetjan

    Reading this post made me happy.  Loved your “picnic in paris” dress/outfit .  What a wonderful year you have had.  You must tell us about Croatia!

  • RIZ

    Happy birthday Idol! 🙂 btw, love photo#1. Love your dress!

  • Happy Birthday Christine! Hope this year is just as great as the last one.

  • Sounds like a great year!

    And what’s making ME happy this week? The fact that I’ll be in Europe in just 11 days!!

  • Hi, I want your life! 🙂 But seriously, yay for all your fun trips and accomplishments over the past year. Hope your 24th year is your best yet!

  • You’ve done a lot of cool things, but Annie is by far the best thing. Look at that blue eye! Big birthday hugs. xx

  • camorose

    Awww thanks! I was just looking through pictures of this year–don’t know how any year will live up to it, but it’s certainly off to a brilliant start!

  • camorose

    Yes! Think I’m going to try and check one off the massive travel bucket list for next year’s 25th 🙂

  • camorose

    Merci! It was fabulous 🙂

  • camorose

    Thanks! So fabulous 🙂

  • camorose

    Thanks for the birthday wishes!

  • camorose

    Haha YES I absolutely loved being home with her! Can’t wait for the day when I can get a dog of my own 🙂

  • camorose

    I walked all the way up that hill in Split, absolutely incredible view! Had an amazing time in Croatia, would love to come back 🙂

  • camorose

    Thanks so much! Croatia was incredible, absolutely loved my time here. Don’t know how next year will ever follow up!

  • camorose

    Thanks! Looking forward to it 🙂

  • camorose

    Thank you for the birthday wishes and kind words 🙂

  • camorose

    It’s been absolutely fabulous–loving Croatia and being 24!

  • camorose

    Thanks Shannon! It certainly has a lot to live up to 🙂

  • camorose

    Thank you! SO much to tell about Croatia, I’ve absolutely loved it here!

  • camorose

    It’s a skirt and a top–but thanks for the comment and the birthday wishes 🙂

  • camorose

    Thanks Ayngelina! Perhaps our paths will finally cross this year 🙂

  • camorose

    Coming back to Europe has been INCREDIBLE! You’ll have a brilliant time!

  • camorose

    Aw thanks! It’s definitely been a fun year, but 24 is off to a brilliant start!

  • camorose

    Thanks lovely! Having a dog is honestly the thing I’m looking forward to most about settling down (someday)–they are just the BEST way to brighten your mood! xx

  • Just realized you used to work for The Great Dane – how cool is that? Loving the store, wish I could afford it too 🙂 You had a wonderful year, filled with so many adventures! Happy 24th birthday, may the next year be even more exciting! 🙂
    I am happy this week as it is the shortest day of the year today – which means we are getting closer to spring  each day 🙂

  • camorose

    Haha yes believe me I spent most days at work wishing that I could afford the things we sold! Such gorgeous pieces. And thanks for the birthday wishes, yay for it almost being spring in Oz!

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