Maree

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Daughter to Makerita & Mark – My beautiful but very feisty Samoan, Chinese mother who grew up in the islands met a handsome DIY Kiwi man with a moustache. Big bossy Sister to Ashlee & Marcus, my sister, I rate as one of the best mums in the world and my baby brother never fails to surprise me with his choices in life and fashion – he’s pretty on to it in these departments. A newly married wife to the love of my life James Steele – although he did make me wait 13 years till he popped the question, it was worth it! Last but not least Cat-mumma to my handsome black cat Batman…AND soon to be ‘MUM’ to a little baby due in Dec – my next journey in life.

I love Beyoncé, Sweet Treats, family time, cats (big and small), my friends, sports, scarfs, milky teas, food, staying fit, making my house a cosy home, my iPhone, travel, handbags, scented candles, long baths, massages, getting my nails and hair done, being taken on dates, and most of all my James. I love life and really do believe that it is what you make it to be.  The company you keep, your work life balance, your relationships with family, friends and just people in general all influence how you live.  I’m so grateful for the people I have in my life and I will admit I have been a bit selective on who I let in to my circle, but it’s only to ensure that I have the best people around me to achieve my goals and the happiness I’m after in life.

My friends and family would say that I’m the ‘organiser’.  I put it down to the fact that I really enjoy socialising so I always end up planning our dinners or events we go to.  Guess that comes with the nature of my work as an Events Manager.  Managing or organising events is something I just love doing so when the opportunity came up to take on the role I jumped at it and have loved it all the way through.

Dream. My goal before now were all based around my desire to be a “success” and be seen as a strong, independent woman but now in my new chapter in life I can hand on heart say my goal are completely different.  I want to be a great mum (like my sister) to the little Steele who’s on their way and an even better wife to my amazing husband.  I’ve always had an interest in teaching and one day I know I will be ‘Mrs Steele’ or ‘Miss’ teaching years 3-6 at primary school.  But until then I’m now focusing on our honey-moon/foodie-moon/pre-baby OE around the States and Europe.  It’s going to be very interesting travelling around while pregnant and away for 3 months, but I cannot wait to explore.  I’ve always loved travelling and it’s definitely something I hope to continue doing more of with my future tribe.

I’d like to think I’ve been pretty lucky to be able to have accomplished almost all of my goals in 29 years (almost 30) of life.  I’ve set myself some pretty tough challenges over the years where people even doubted whether I could do it or told me “you’re dreaming”.  The reality was, I truly was dreaming but what made me achieve them was my competitiveness and determination to succeed, plus I hated failing.  I’ve now learnt that I’m OK with making mistakes and I’m no longer seeking perfection – it can drive you crazy! Trust me.  Like Beyoncé put it in ‘Pretty Hurts’ my aspiration in life is to be HAPPY.

Define. I did a GAP year at the end of High School.  Left my James, family and friends and decided it was time to grow up and explore the world.  This was probably the best thing I did, gave up what I knew and just got LOST!  I learnt so much, how to fend for myself, how to cook, how to do washing and how to cope being on my own.  I grew up a lot (and grew bigger – literally) but the best thing was I found my independence and determination to succeed.

When I was about 13 my dad had a heart attack which scared the crap out of my family and it made me realise how precious life is and how much we need to look after our bodies.  My dad ending up in hospital made the light switch on and taught me the importance of a good diet and regular exercise.  Now I’m no heath fanatic but I do appreciate good food and being active.  I also find that if I don’t exercise I end up being a ‘not so nice person’ so I exercise more for sanity than vanity.

Being on the Block NZ was by far one of the most challenging things I have done.  But I’m so grateful for the craziness mainly because I realised that it’s actually OK to be wrong and to fail.  Being someone who was all about succeeding and never admitting defeat, I think the Block NZ humbled me and made me realise that some things can’t always go as planned and some just isn’t worth worrying over.  Man, we worked out buts off and in the end it totally paid off with us coming 2nd and gaining $147K but even if we didn’t walk away with that result I know I came out the other end a way better person and with a way bigger appreciation for my man.  James is by far my biggest and most loyal supporter and before the block I never realised it.  He’s a quiet and super private person – not the typical TV personality or reality TV contestant.  But seeing how much he put himself out there to try new things and to just keep me going was what made me appreciate him so much more.  I guess it’s true when they say being on reality TV will either make or break you.  Since coming off the show I make so much more time for him and always put him and my family ahead of other things and i feel this has helped me to be a better person and really see and be present in what is more important in life.

Style. My style is weak! I’m the typical jeans and a sweater girl in the winter and dress or shorts and cute top in the summer.  I live in my chucks, boots or Jandals but will only wear heels on a night out – NEVER do I resort to flats.  I guess I am a girlie girl but just love being comfortable. For style tips and inspo I generally go to my Sister or Mum who have way better style than me,  other than that I’m a bit of what’s on trend in the basics department kinda girl.

Empower.

I live by a couple of quotes 

Behaviour Breeds Behaviour – relates back to ‘you are the company you keep’, so make sure you have only the right or best people in your circle.

Work Hard, Play Hard – everyone need a good work, life balance. If your reply to the question “how are you” is BUSY! You need to sort your life out.  Find time to chill, go hang out with your friends or family and be you!  Don’t always do what you think you people need you to do.  Be selfish every once in a while and just do you!

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