A guide to choosing sex toys as gifts.

I’ve been asked many times for advice on choosing a sex toy to give as a gift to a partner.  I had planned to write and publish this post in the lead-up to Christmas, but the last few weeks have been swamped with work commitments, family engagements and wild weather that left me without power or internet connection for long stretches.  Even though Christmas is over, I still wanted to address the topic of buying sex toys as presents, because it’s relevant year-round.


Choosing a sex toy for another person can be fraught with difficulties.  The potential for embarrassment (both theirs and yours) is high.  You can accidentally insult someone if you buy something that is wildly contrary to their interests, or even potentially make them feel pressured to engage in sexual acts that they aren’t truly comfortable with.  It’s a bit of a minefield but I’m here with some top tips and tricks to help you choose a gift that your partner will find exciting and pleasurable.


Before you begin shopping, it’s really important to have a think about why you’re buying a sex toy for your partner.  Have they expressed an interest in trying toys?  Have they mentioned wanting to dip their toe into a particular area of sexual exploration, such as BDsM or anal play?  Do you live far apart and want them to be able to enjoy steamy masturbation sessions when you aren’t with them?  Or are you hoping that by buying them a toy you’ll be able to pressure them into letting you watch them use it?  You have to be really honest with yourself here.  If you are hoping to increase your partner’s pleasure or open the door to some fresh exploration, then that’s awesome.  If you’re using the toy to entice your partner into doing something they aren’t comfortable with, then you should back off.


Ok, so assuming you’re buying a toy for the right reasons, the next thing to consider is what your partner is into.  Think about the kinds of activities your partner enjoys in the bedroom, and look for toys that will enhance that experience.  For example, if you know that your partner enjoys being restrained during sex, maybe you could get them some gorgeous cuffs and a blindfold.  If your partner prefers clitoral stimulation, try an external vibrator.  Also, it pays to think about any areas of sexuality that your sweetheart has mentioned they are interested in trying.  If they’ve previously mentioned that they find pegging really hot, then a simple harness and small silicone dildo could be fun.  Or if they’re itching to try spanking, a paddle or a crop could be a cheeky addition to their toybox.  Pay attention to your partner’s preferences and desires and choose accordingly.


Another thing to consider is whether your partner already owns any toys.  If they have a budding collection, then it’s worth looking for any patterns in the toys they own.  Do they seem to prefer insertable toys?  Vibrators?  Is their bedside drawer filled with butt plugs of various sizes?  If there is a particular thing that they seem to love, try getting them something similar, with a twist. Dildos in luxurious materials like glass are a great start, as are vibrators with unique shapes or functions.


Once you’ve got an idea of the kind of thing you’d like to buy for your honey, do some research.  Look at online stores for ideas, read reviews from sex bloggers, watch youtube videos and pay attention to what they have to say.  Take into account any criticisms and decide whether these are deal-breakers for your partner.  Also remember that bodies vary wildly and what feels pleasurable to one person can be irritating or even painful for another.


Is your head spinning yet?  I’m not surprised.  Shopping for sex toys can be an overwhelming experience.  There are so many to choose from and so many different factors to consider.  Which brings me to my most important piece of advice.


If you aren’t 100% sure what to get for your partner, get them a gift voucher.  Unless you know for a fact that your partner is drooling over a specific model of vibrator, the best thing you can do is give them a voucher for a reputable adult store.  This way, they can either go by themselves or you can make it an adventure for the both of you to go to the store and choose something that suits them perfectly.


My first ever vibrator was a gift from a partner.  They took me to an adult store for Valentines Day, gave me a budget and asked me to take my time choosing the toy that I most wanted.  I’d been interested in getting a vibrator for some time, but I had absolutely no idea what type of toys were available or even what would work best for my body.  So actually going to a real-life store was the best thing to do.  Not only was I able to touch the toys, press buttons and feel vibration quality and materials, but I got some amazing expert advice from the shop assistant.  She knew her toys so well and helped me to choose a vibrator that I absolutely loved.  I left the store with something that brought me years of joy, my partner was chuffed that he’d given me the gift of pleasure and I didn’t feel pressured or uncomfortable.  To this day, I still believe this is the best approach to giving a sex toy as a gift.


Giving a voucher or a toy-shopping expedition as a gift overcomes a lot of the pitfalls of shopping for a partner.  It takes away all the guesswork or trying to imagine what they might like.  It makes your partner feel empowered to choose something that they would find pleasurable, rather than being pressured into using the specific item you picked out.  Going shopping as a couple can be a really fun bonding experience and you won’t waste money on something that your partner won’t use.  Unless you’re really certain that your partner wants a specific toy, I think that going shopping together or giving them a voucher to spend at their leisure is the best way to gift a sex toy to your partner.


A geek’s guide to online dating: your profile picture.

I’ve been dabbling in online dating this year.  It’s been an *ahem* interesting experience.  I’ve met some fantastic people, and some not-so-fantastic people.  I’ve been on more first dates in this year than I have in my entire adult life.  And it’s been eye-opening.

I truly believe that online dating can be awesome.  It’s a great way to meet new people and broaden your horizons, particularly if you are shy or live in an area where the dating pool is sparsely populated (I tick both boxes).

However it’s easy to make mistakes.  I know, because I’ve made plenty.  So I thought that it might be cool to share some of my do’s and don’ts for online dating, so that you don’t make the same mistakes I have.  I’m hoping to make this into a series, and it seemed logical to kick off with a post about your profile picture.

Keep in mind that a lot of the tips here are based on my own personal opinion.  You may entirely disagree with me and that’s cool.  A lot of them are directed towards men because generally that’s who I’m looking at when I’m browsing online matches.  I do look at women too, but not as often.  So I apologise if these tips are male-centric.

Profile pictures- What not to do

  • The first one is so obvious I can’t believe I have to say it: make sure you’re in your profile picture.  I have seen profile pics that are everything from a cup of coffee, to a guitar and even a picture of Bilbo Baggins.  And I never click on those ones.  Why?  Because I have no clue about the person behind them.  People are visual creatures, and they want to see the person they will potentially be chatting with.  Even if you’re shy taking a picture of yourself, actually having your face on your profile will dramatically increase the likelihood that someone will read your profile.
  • If there is more than one person in your profile picture, make sure it’s obvious which one is you.  I see so many people who use group shots as their profile picture. Or worse- pictures of them with their exes.  I’m a busy girl, and I’m not going to take the time to try to figure out which one of the peeps in the picture is you.  You should be the star of the picture.
  • Don’t use a professional headshot as your profile picture.  I get it, you want to look as good as possible to attract a potential mate.  But a professional shot makes it look like you’re trying way too hard.  A simple selfie is fine and makes you seem more approachable.
  • Make sure that your face is clearly visible.  No blurry shots, no back-of-the-head shots and none of those weird eyes-and-forehead crops.  Show your whole face.  All of it.  I want to see who I’m talking to.
  • Don’t take your profile picture in bed.  It just reads as sleazy.  Ditto shirtless pics.
  • Don’t be holding a gun in your profile picture.  To me it’s a major turn-off for two reasons: 1. I’m really anti-hunting and 2. It makes me wonder if you’re a serial killer.


Profile picture- Things to try

  • Inject a little personality into your profile picture.  For example, if you like to travel you could use a picture of yourself from your latest adventure.  Into animals?  Choose a pic of you with your furry friend.  Even something quirky and geeky like wearing a fandom tee shirt can really speak volumes about who you are and what you like.
  • Use a picture where you are dressed nicely, as you would for a coffee date.  That way you look presentable and approachable without being too over the top.  (If you normally wear full makeup and a cocktail dress for a coffee date, that’s also fine.  Best to be real).
  • A word about cosplay photos: I’m a cosplayer and I get psyched when I meet someone who is also into cosplay.  But I’m iffy about using a cosplay picture as my main profile pic.  The reason for this is that you don’t really look like “you”; you look like a caricature.  By all means, add some of your wicked cosplay snaps to your albums, but I’d hesitate to use one as your profile picture.
  • Don’t be pressured to smile in your profile picture.  I mean, a smile is nice but if you aren’t a typically smiley person then don’t feel like you need to paste a fake grin on your face for the picture.

I think the best advice I can give you is to choose a picture that accurately represents who you are.  That way when people are flicking through loads of profiles they will have a good idea of what you’re about and you’ll be more likely to snag the interest of a like-minded person.


Do you have any questions about online dating you would like me to answer?  What do you think my next post in this series should cover?

What’s new in my world?

Hello sweet blog reader.  I apologize most sincerely for going AWOL for the last couple of weeks.  But things have gone batshit crazy around here and I needed a bit of time to juggle all the awesomeness that I’ve been hit with.  But I haven’t forgotten you!  How could I ever?  Let’s grab a coffee and chill while I tell you about my latest adventures.



My job has been going brilliantly.  Last week I had my three-month performance evaluation and my bosses were very pleased with me and offered me a permanent position.  This was a huge weight off of my shoulders because I’ve been waiting for the other shoe to drop the whole time I’ve been at this job.  After my last job ended abruptly, I was a little paranoid that I wouldn’t last in my new position.  But after three months I’ve learned heaps, I’m constantly improving and I’m really enjoying my work.  The people I work with are dedicated and so lovely and it’s a really positive work environment.  I feel so blessed.


But it’s not all sunshine and roses.  Full time work is hard, y’know?  I feel like I’ve been pushing myself too hard to maintain all of my non-work commitments and it’s been wearing me down.  I’ve had bouts of exhaustion and depression when I’ve tried to cram too much into my days and ended up watering down my performance and enthusiasm.  I really need to take a step back and remind myself that I need to rest and that I can’t do all the things I used to when I worked part-time.




I’ve been balls-to-the-wall preparing for my very first craft fair stall.  I applied for a stall at a boutique market in town months ago, and I was so chuffed to receive confirmation that I’d have my very own spot at the Twig & Bloom market in Benalla.  I’ve wanted to try selling my goods at markets for a while now, and I feel so pleased that I’m taking the plunge and actually doing it.


Lemme tell you something: preparing for a craft fair is no walk in the park.  It’s hard, it’s time consuming and it requires a lot of creative energy.  There is a lot more involved than just making a lot of stuff and whacking price tags on it.  You have to plan out your stall setup and come up with a way of recording sales and marketing and pricing and stock management and all that jazz.  It’s gotten to the point where I’m just worn out with managing all of it.  Once this fair is over I’m going to take a huge break and just chill out and recharge.



Romance, polyamory and coming out.

So, I’ve mentioned before that I’ve been dating and exploring polyamory.  I still am and it’s going brilliantly.  I met an awesome couple who were looking for a woman to join their relationship and date them both.  We have been on many dates and I am totally smitten with them both.  We have loads in common and they are just such amazing people.  I am deeply attracted to them both and I’ve been having a total blast with them and I can’t wait to see where the future leads.


Polyamory was something I never gave much thought to, and admittedly when my beaus asked me out I was apprehensive.  I was very unsure how I would go in a three-way relationship.  Jealousy is something that’s been a problem for me in past relationships and I believed that I’d find it too difficult sharing my boyfriend with another woman, or that she might get jealous of me.  But y’know what? I haven’t felt jealous at all.  It’s amazing how I’ve begun to develop attachment and attraction in each relationship and how our relationship as a trio has grown.  It’s early days yet, but I think I’m onto something pretty special and I’m so excited about it.


This experience is also raising some difficulties for me.  For one, it has meant coming out as bisexual to my family and friends, which is quite confronting.  I’ve known for a long time that I’m attracted to women as well as men, but as I’ve never dated a woman before I never saw a reason to bring it up.  Having to tell my parents that I’m not only bisexual but that I’m dating both a man and a woman was hair-raising.  It’s been tough, but I think they’re getting used to the idea.  So many of my friends have been really supportive too which is awesome.  And I’m still figuring out if and how to tell the rest of my circle.  On the one hand I’m excited about my new relationship and I want to scream about it to anyone that will listen.  But on the other hand I know I’m going to face some opposition and I’m not feeling entirely strong enough to deal with that yet.




I let my geeky streak run wild last weekend when I went with my lovers to Supanova.  I met a lot of fantastic new friends and had fun shopping and geeking out.  I actually didn’t take any photographs to share this time around.  I was enjoying just being in the moment and not wanting to spoil the mood by whipping out my camera every few minutes.  I saw some awesome things, but by far the highlight was meeting George Takei!  We ran into him on our way out of the con and he was such a sweetheart.  It was a fantastic and laid back con and I had an absolute blast.


But enough about me, what have you been up to?


Why being single at Christmas is awesome.

This year was the second Christmas that I’ve celebrated as a single woman.  I’ll admit that in the lead-up to Christmas I was a bit down about going it alone during the holidays.  All the cheer of Christmas can be hard to swallow when you’re all by yourself.  It gets tough fielding constant questions from relatives about your relationship status, reading gift guides for couples and knowing that you’ve got nobody to snuggle up with on Christmas Eve.

But it isn’t all bad being single during the holidays.  In fact, there are a lot of fantastic things about celebrating a solo Christmas.  I’ve been reflecting on all the ways that being single at Christmas is awesome, and today I thought I’d share my thoughts with you.


– There are no fights about whose parents to spend Christmas Day with.  You can spend as much of the day with your own people as you’d like.  You don’t have to rush about, trying to spend equal time with both families.  You can just chill out and divide up your time however you’d like.

– There are no dramas about buying romantic gifts.   You don’t have to agonize about finding just the right gift for your significant other.  There’s no need to stress about how much to spend on your new boyfriend, or whether it’s too soon to buy them a “serious” gift.

– You don’t have to worry about opening a disappointing gift from your boyfriend on Christmas morning.  There’s nothing quite like spending a fortune on a set of gorgeous cufflinks for your man, only to be presented with a gift voucher for JB-HiFi on Christmas morning.

– You can regale all of your married cousins with thrilling tales about your exciting single life over drinks on Christmas Eve.

-You get to entirely side-step the horror that is joint holiday card writing.

– There is nobody to disturb you during your post-lunch nap on Christmas Day.  You can nap as long as you want, without some horny dude trying to fondle you in your sleep.

– You don’t have to suffer through wearing the itchy, ill-fitting “sexy” lingerie that your boyfriend bought you for Christmas.  Nor do you have to open said lingerie in front of your parents.

– You can watch “Love Actually” and “A Muppet Christmas Carol” on repeat and there’ s nobody to poke fun at you when you tear up at the end.

– You are in total control of the Christmas decorations.  You don’t have to compromise and hang the hideous decorations he inherited from his great-aunt.  And likewise, there’s nobody to tell you that you can’t hang the stockings you made in kindergarten.

DSCF9220– There’s no need to stress about your post-Christmas-lunch body.  I would always feel so self-conscious about eating too much on Christmas day, lest I be bloated and sluggish if my boyfriend wanted to have sex that night.  Now, I know that any Christmas night sex will be a solo affair, and I don’t mind if I’m rocking a food baby.

– You don’t have to buy presents for in-laws. You don’t have to take part in your boyfriend’s family’s Kris Kringle and wind up buying a present for his aunt Marjorie who you’ve never met.  You don’t have to buy presents for your lazy or clueless boyfriend to give to your parents.

-You can put Christmas hats on your pets without your boyfriend rolling his eyes at you.

-You can cuddle your cousin’s baby without your grandma making goo-goo eyes at you and cooing “Getting clucky are we?  You two should start thinking about children soon, you know?”

Did you celebrate a solo Christmas this year?  What are the best bits about being single at Christmas?

Things I Love Thursday 9/10/2014

Hey babes?  How’s your week going?  Mine has been a bit of a shit-storm.  I don’t want to go right into it, but I’ve broken it off with the guy I was seeing.  Awesome though he was, it became pretty clear that he and I both had very different ideas of what our relationship was and I needed to get out. I’m hurting, but there are still plenty of things that are making me smile this week.  For example:

– My awesome friends. I feel truly blessed with the  circle of friends I’ve built up over the years.  When the shit hit the fan this week, they rallied around me and offered sweet words, hugs, beautiful compliments and sage advice.  I am so, so very lucky to have such incredible people in my life.

– Caramel Cornettos.

– Getting into the Halloween spirit with some spooky movies.  So far this week I’ve watched Mars Attacks, The Lady in the Water, Elvira Mistress of the Dark, Elvira’s Haunted Hills and Ghostbusters.

-Using makeup to turn myself into Grumpy Cat when I was having a particularly bad night.  Ironically, this really cheered me up.

– Doing my first ever yoga headstand!  I have been totally intimidated by the idea of headstands but also really wanted to give it a shot.  So this week I decided to just bite the bullet, try it out and see what happened.  I got down in front of the wall, prepped myself by getting on all fours and then creating a base with my forearms on the ground and my head cradled by my hands.  I straightened my legs and began walking them towards my head until my toes were barely touching the floor and then kicked off gently.  It was the weirdest sensation, but I got totally vertical without even touching the wall!  I didn’t stay up very long, but I’m so excited to have hit the headstand.  Now to work on holding it for longer.

– Getting an email from a mate who can’t make it to my Halloween party in person, who asked me to tell the rest of my guests that he would be there as the Invisible Man.  Clever.

– Laying on the grass by the lake with my book.

– Seeing a little blue wren hopping about my backyard.

– Lemon tart with raspberries.

– Taking in deep breaths and repeating, “you’ve got this,  you’re going to be OK” over and over.

– A good, hard cry.

– Watching my cats fight with each other.  They love tumbling about on the floor, playing together.

– Daylight savings.  I’m so pleased to have an extra hour of daylight.

What do you love this week?

What’s it like to live alone?

  I had often thought to myself what it would be like to live on my own, back when I shared with housemates or lived at college.  I never thought that I would be able to manage in a house by myself.  Six months into living alone, I’m actually really pleased with my current situation.  There are a lot of benefits to living on your own.

It’s not all sunshine and roses though.  Solo living definitely has it’s pitfalls as well, and it’s not for everyone.

DSCF9100A little while ago I put a call-out on social media for my readers to submit any questions they had about living alone.  Today, I’m going to answer those questions…

Is it expensive?

In my experience, living on my own is very expensive.  When you’re by yourself, you have to cover all the household expenses including rent, utilities and groceries.  When I shared houses with friends there was always someone else to split these costs with.

Although the bills in multi-person households do tend to be higher, paying a fraction of these bills still works out to be cheaper than paying the entire bill for a one-person household.  For example,   although there are two people using the electricity in a two-person house, there are a lot of appliances that are on all the time and use the same amount of electricity no matter how many people live in the house.  So although bills do go up when there are more people in the house, they don’t neccessarily double or triple when you go to a two- or three-person household.  So yes, it is quite expensive to live on your own.

Do you ever get lonely?

I do get lonely sometimes.  However, I don’t get lonely as often as I expected I would.  Also my bouts of loneliness have gotten less frequent since I started living alone.


I’m lucky in that I’m very comfortable with my own company.  I’m an introvert and I enjoy being on my own.  There are times when I do crave human interaction and contact.  Luckily for me, I have family very close by and friends who are just a phone call or a text away.  If I feel lonely, it’s easy to get in touch with someone who will cheer me up.

How do you deal with bugs and spiders in the house?

I laughed so hard when I read this question, because this was one of my biggest concerns about living alone!  While bugs in general don’t worry me, I am deathly afraid of spiders.  I had always gotten my boyfriend or my housemate to deal with creepy-crawlies, so I didn’t know how I would handle it when I was faced with one by myself.

I faced my fear of spiders a few months ago, when there was a Daddy-Long-Legs in my bathtub and I wanted a shower.  I couldn’t handle the idea of washing him down the plughole, so I scooped him up and put him safely outdoors.  It was scary, but I survived and so did the spider.

Bigger, nastier spiders are a different story though.  I’ve only had one of those in my house while I’ve been on my own.  It was a huntsman, sitting on the ceiling of the kitchen one night.  I freaked out, but it was very late and I couldn’t justify calling someone to come and kill the spider at that time of night.  So I decided to go to bed (with the door firmly shut) and deal with it in the morning.  When I awoke, the huntsman was gone, so I didn’t actually have to deal with it at all!

What are the best parts of living by yourself?

Having total autonomy to fill your time with whatever you want.  Cleaning the house and having it stay clean for hours.  Not having to queue for the bathroom.  Never arguing over what movie to watch each night.  Being able to play dress-ups and have dance parties without anyone to giggle at me.

Also, I’ve become a lot more self-reliant.  I’ve had to take total responsibility for myself which has made me a much stronger person.  This hasn’t been easy, and I still have some work to do, but I’m very happy with my progress.

Do you ever feel afraid being on your own?

Honestly, no.  When I lived in Melbourne I used to get freaked out when I’d be home alone and I’d hear a weird noise outside.  In the country I feel a lot more secure.

There was one time when my neighbors had a huge party and things started getting violent.  They were setting off fireworks (on a day of total fire ban) and screaming abuse at one another.  It was pretty scary, and I felt tense waiting for the police to arrive.  But that was the only time I’ve really felt afraid.

Would you ever want to live with someone else in the future?

Sure, but it would have to be the right person.  I’m not about to give up my awesome solo-living lifestyle for just anyone.  A person (whether friend or lover) would have to be pretty darn special for me to want to live with them.


Do you have any questions about living alone?

Thoughts on moving

I’m now officially moved into my little flat.  Although all of my things are here, it still doesn’t quite feel like home yet.

I did not want to leave my house on the other side of town.  I loved that place.  I’d worked so hard to make that house a home, and I was very settled there.  When I’m going through a tough time I have a tendency to retreat into my shell.  I’m a real homebody and my home is my sanctuary.  The thought of leaving the house that was so familiar and comfortable was almost too much to bear.


Not to mention the fact that that house was the home that I’d shared with Ross.  Living there after he left me was a double-edged sword.  On the one hand it was incredibly difficult.  Every nook and cranny of the place reminded me of him.  There were memories seeped into the very walls, and sometimes it felt as though I was living in a haunted house.  There was actually one particularly low night when I contemplated trashing the place, so angry was I at the demise of my treasured relationship.  On the other hand, living in the house made me feel somehow closer to Ross.  Even though he wasn’t physically there, most of his things were.  When I missed him I could go to the closet, open it and inhale the scent of his shirts.  I could go and sit in the room where he keeps his comic books and just soak in the him-ness of the place.  I feel a bit pathetic admitting to that, but it’s the truth.

So you can see why leaving was so very difficult.  I had taken such pains to make that place a home, and when I’d moved in it was with the intention that I would live there for many, many years.  It was heartbreaking to have to dismantle the sanctuary I’d build for Ross and I, knowing that I was heading out into the world on my own.

This week has marked a lot of firsts for me.  This was the first time I’ve ever moved to a new place without Ross helping to settle me in.  Each time I’ve travelled to a new home, whether it was to my new college room or the share house I lived in, it was Ross’s car that took me there.  This also marks the first time that I’ve lived entirely on my own.  I’ve always lived with family, or housemates or Ross.  It’s daunting to live completely on your own, but it’s a bit exciting too.

For the first few days I was on a complete high.  The idea of being able to set up my new flat exactly how I wanted was intoxicating.  I let my imagination run wild.  In a fit of inspiration, I leaped out of bed at two in the morning on my first night here to shift the furniture in my bedroom.  I loved the fact that I could do that without any fear of waking anyone up, or upsetting anybody.  I didn’t have to check with anyone before I claimed a cupboard or drawer.  I could burn candles and incense whenever I liked.  At mealtimes I was free to choose any new recipe I dared to try.  I set the table with my best china and drank $4 wine out of the crystal goblets I got for my 21st.  I was like a little kid who had been left alone in the house while her parents were away for the evening.  There was a pure, childish joy in being alone.  My introverted, homebody self was in heaven.

But on the fourth day it came crashing down around me.  The novelty wore off and I was hit by a wave of homesickness and longing for Ross.   The idea of being alone, all by myself for weeks, months or years was so overwhelming.  The indefinite number of solo nights stretched out before me like a desert,  and I had a massive panic attack while curled up on the floor of my perfectly-decorated lounge room.

When I calmed down, I realised that things aren’t that bad.  Sure, I’m going to be alone a lot more than I’m used to.  But I can handle that.  As I mentioned before, I’m a pretty introverted person and I like my own company.  This experience will strengthen me and give me a chance to explore some of my interests.  I can indulge my whims and revel in being selfish for a while.  I don’t have to answer to anybody, and I can just focus on healing myself and doing the things that make me feel good.  This seems like a perfect opportunity to build a better relationship with myself.  Best of all, there’s no need to be lonely.  I’ve got my family just around the corner, and my friends are just a phone call away.  I’m going to have to reconnect with some people that I’ve neglected, and foster my precious friendships.  But I’ll find a way to make this work.  It’s not going to be easy, but I’m going to do this.  Eventually, I just might love living alone.