Kiwitax – Small Business and Property Investors Accounting & Tax Agents

May 17th, 2010

It’s that time of the year again and many friends and clients have been asking me lately if I can recommend any good accountants. As it happens, I definitely can. Whether you’re still trying to tidy up the accounts from the last financial year, or wanting to kick the new financial year off on the right foot, good accounting support is worth its weight in gold. If you’re a small business, self employed or a property investor, my pick is the team at Kiwitax.

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Mao’s Last Dancer

March 20th, 2010


A great movie!  So refreshing to see an original storyline – probably because it is true.  It brought back fond memories of my travels off the beaten track in Asia, and also reminded me how precious our freedom is, and how lucky I am to be born in a country where we simply take this for granted.

A moving true account of the life so far of Li Cunxin – a Chinese born ballet dancer of international acclaim, currently living in Australia.  This movie managed to make me laugh AND cry – the measuring stick of a good movie in my book.

Belinda Duffy – Duffy Design

March 9th, 2010

belinda_duffy_design_aucklandIt’s no secret that website design and development has been a major cause of grief for me over the last three years.  But finally, several web design companies later (not to mention thousands of dollars, hundreds of chocolate bars and countless gray hairs!!) I now have a website that is fully functional AND looks great…. and I love it!!

The woman behind showing me that successfully creating a website IS actually possible is the fantastic Belinda Duffy of Duffy Design.  Belinda was recommended to me by a friend who had endured three years of my website woes over numerous coffees.  And bless her, Belinda took it upon herself to personally guarantee that I would have a positive website experience, resulting in a fantastic website.  And she certainly delivered.

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Fiona Tomlinson Photography

February 5th, 2010

fiona-tomlinson-professional-photographer-aucklandI have used many professional photographers over the years and Fiona Tomlinson is by far the best of them, hands down, in terms of both her photography and her personal and professional approach.

I first met Fiona through the Woman’s Day when she photographed me for my new magazine column. She has since done five shoots for me: a mix of magazine shots, professional branding photos and portraits of me and my daughter, Samantha.

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Amber Haldane – Makeup Artist

February 5th, 2010

amber_haldane_makeup_artist_aucklandAren’t we lucky to have the wonders of makeup to give us a wee helping hand in looking our best? But where do you learn to use it properly, how do you know what you really need in your kit, and how do you know what works to make the best of your features and make you look naturally fantastic, rather than covered in makeup? I have seen the huge difference firsthand in having a professional makeup artist apply my makeup before a photo shoot. The difference in the end result is incredible – it’s the difference between just looking like you, and you looking polished and professional. So how do we take those professional tips and tricks and apply them to our everyday life? Read More


February 1st, 2010


I absolutely adored this movie when it came out on the big screen in 2003, and continue to love it today.  I bought the dvd over the holidays and have taken great delight in sharing this movie with overseas visitors and now my own daughter.   It is the favourite dvd at our place at the moment for both of us.  I’ve probably seen it at least 20 times now and it still brings tears to my eyes.  A very special movie and thoroughly deserving of the international acclaim it received at various film festivals around the world.

The Jane Austen Book Club

January 27th, 2010


A lovely, no brain power required, chick flick.  Heart warming, light entertainment at its best.  A friend gave me this movie for Christmas on dvd.  One of those movies you can watch again and again.  Best enjoyed with chocolate biscuits and a snuggly rug.

Alvin and the Chipmunks – The Squeakuel

January 24th, 2010


This didn’t rate very highly with me, I’m afraid.  Trying to mix reality and animation doesn’t work in my book, I like a movie to be one or the other.  So when I took Samantha to the movies for a rainy day holiday treat, I was hoping for The Princess and the Frog, but I got vetoed.  It was supposed to be her treat, after all.  The chipmunks, and the chipettes, were cute and the music was cool, but the accompanying storyline and cast was disappointing in my opinion.  To be fair, though, Samantha really enjoyed it.

Up in the Air

January 17th, 2010


I have to admit to having a bit of a soft spot for George Clooney, so any movie with him in it has a head start in my book.  An interesting, and I guess timely, look at issues of company restructuring and redundancy.  The makers of the film took  interviews of Americans who have been made redundant in the last year, which gave the movie genuine authenticity.  It also takes a look at individuals who bury themselves in their work at the cost of having real relationships.  I’ve made it sound like an intense documentary, but it still falls in the light entertainment category, albeit touching on real issues.

Happy Feet

November 4th, 2009


I had been wanting to watch this movie for ages.  It’s a lovely story illustrating many life messages such as the importance of being true to yourself,  celebrating our differences, as well as standing up for what you beleive in and that no matter what, no matter how small we are and how big the challenge, our actions can make a difference.   Fun viewing for all the family.