Moving Along.

Contrary to what many said was the end of the world (2012), it’s actually officially a new world. 2013 is a big year for me in many ways. Not discounting my physical age, this year feels like it has all the potential for a break-out, ‘coming of age’ , seize the moment  theme to live up to.

I’ve dedicated myself to the themes of creativity and fun. The guidelines are set. And I feel like within that I shall set my own rules. Because I can. And… I don’t really know what else to do.

For my ever-straying mind, my quiet ‘voice’ replays (and replays) the guidelines to make sure I’m in the right mode and properly engaged in purposeful action.

Which brings me to what I want to say in this final blog.

I realized quite a few weeks ago that this particular blog had run its course. This blog has been an outlet of expression in the freest sense. I refused to be bound by or enslaved to it, writing what I wanted when I felt like it. And I’m very grateful to all those who read my stories.

Now, I feel bound to commit more deeply to an idea that will manifest in a new blog.

I want to manifest into being and create ‘form’ for the quietest ,most reflective and sacred voice I hear.Because it inspires me to fulfill my purpose.Because it drives me in a positive way towards creating a magical existence.And because it’s the only thing I inherently trust to help combat my fears and slay the dragons.

I could, I suppose just keep it to myself.

But sharing makes me feel good. Sharing inspiration for me is like weaving a basket of hope. And many times in my life, hope is all I had.

With this, I invite you to join me on TheQuietestVoiceSpeaksLoudest or have a look here.

See you over there! xxx


Short Locks.

I can’t even remember the last time I had short hair.









But recent pics I saw of some Celebs with shorter locks like these…….






Makes me think short /shorter/blonder/blacker may hit the streets in an even bigger way in ’13.

And might I add Alicia keys is ‘ON FIRE’ with that cut.( That’s the first time I’ve ever thought that about her styling choice/s.) Whilst Halle Berry, with all her drama, is no doubt the Queen of short.

Here are some of my best shorter hair styles,if you thinking about it or just want to fantasize a bit…

The ALL_TIME_CLASSIC short (for me at least) has got to be THE Linda Evangelista in the 90’s……seen here on her iconic Bazaar covers..back when Supermodels did Magazine’s.

Short can be so G…..damn sexy. Bring on the chic attitude……in’13.

Facebook: Leanne Tee  Twitter: @leannetee   Instagram: @leannetrcy


All pics from the Net.


A Thanksgiving review reveals 6 lessons & they all start with C. Thanks to ‘Sandy’.

As mass consumerism in the form of Black Friday is making landfall (in the US), I feel like the last lingering effects of Hurricane Sandy on mass consciousness is about to be wiped out. So let me try to sneak this post in…

You know the saying, Life is what happens when you planning something else….right? Well, it kinda puts the last month or so into perspective because quite a few things have happened.

It was only 3 and half weeks ago that Hurricane Sandy split Manhattan in half. Half dark, Half lit.

No Halloween.Trick or Treating vanished.Just like the plethora of Halloween pop-ups selling all the paraphernalia.

2 and a half weeks since the NYC marathon cancellation.

2 and a bit weeks since the Re-election of President Obama AND a Northeaster storm brought the first snows and the winter chills.

2 weeks since the other L in L&LtakeNYC returned (Hurricane Sandy turned the tail end of my sisters holiday into Survivor Camp NYC).

And so here we are now at the Thanksgiving table. Taking a moment to be thankful and grateful for everything, before….., well, lets just leave it there for the moment. It’s a perfect time to do a re-view.

Coming from Southern Africa I’ve lived in places where there has been water rations (and at times no water), frequent power cuts /electricity load shedding, no petrol/gas, plenty rain and rivers bursting their banks but never, ever have I seen and experienced what I saw with “Sandy”.

Just the other day somebody asked, ‘how was “Sandy”?’ and I said, ‘it was quite the storm, something like the movies.’

Like, the scene when the power cuts is such a definitive moment-stripping you away from that perfectly snug position on the couch to standing upright,feeling blank but making a million and one calculations all at the same time about what to do next. And I tell you, thank goodness the iEverythings had battery because they doubled as torch lights that first night.

Seeing forces of nature from your living room window reveal their most vengeful and powerful self feels like you are “IN” the movie. Rising darkness, wind, water and rain are ominous scenes. Nothing can prepare you for the moment you check outside your window and see that the East river has expanded itself, carving new path ways by overtaking streets to the level where car rooftops are barely visible.And water is creeping up towards your building, uprooting some pretty hefty oak trees on the way.

Build up to landfall. East River scene .

Through the Trees you can barely see the traffic light pole and water that had just about covered all car roof tops.

In the end we lost power, hot water, steam (for heat) and unexpected school closure for several days but still had water, gas, each other and Uptown (the half lit section of Manhattan). It meant focusing on basic survival i.e. getting heat, light, food, drinking water and connectivity in the urban jungle – and remaining calm and positive.

Here’s some of what my family and I ‘gained’ from “Sandy.”


NYC is one incredible community (that just keeps going,non-stop). It exists as a layered network of communities within communities. There was an overwhelming outpouring of support and love spread between and within communities. There is strength in unity.


Conserve the basics: water, electricity, and food. The key message for me (re-enforced message) is USE only what YOU need. Based on the premise that there is enough for everyone, sustainability is about using your fair share and no more. And I think that we can do with much less than what we think we can.

3.Culture shock

Emergency services personnel and the cities leadership is outstanding. I had this intangible sense of the deep level of respect people have for rescue teams, firefighters, policemen etc. I think because a disaster situation wakes you up to the immeasurable bravery, commitment and above all ‘value’ attached to their service to others. This is incomparable to my home city, Johannesburg. I realize that it’s about a value chain and the attitude and trust within this chain that each person and ultimately a whole community must bring to form the bonds and strong links.

4.City slicker kids learnt a new trick

My 2 city slickers got introduced to this new concept of bucket baths. Bathing from a filled bucket of warm, soapy water in the shower. This was amusing….


My husband was prepared for his second NYC marathon. He was at his fittest and lightest. And was planning his fastest completion time. Boom. Boom. Boom. Then the race was cancelled amidst a lot of frothing. Sometimes you cannot argue with Life. It is what it is.You got to swallow it and move on. As quickly as possible.

6. Conscious decisions (and Calmness) help in the midst of Chaos.

After 4 days, I decided that I was getting back to my own schedule, not “Sandy’s” schedule…even though all I could do to that effect was get up and go run a few miles and then resume the Sandy daily schedule of finding warmth, food, communication, a spare plug etc… It was just important psychologically to make that clear decision for myself. If only to hang in there and stay mentally intact. (And 1 day later the power returned.)

                          Plug in wherever.As long as it’s plugged in.

And after all is said and done, I know that relatively speaking, I can say that we  were merely inconvenienced. There is much to be grateful for. And still lots of love to spread.

Facebook: Leanne Tee  Twitter: @leannetee   Instagram: @leannetrcy


When Curry Snobs go to Curry Hill,in Manhattan…This is what happened…


Thank God for pistachio, cardamom and chillies. Thank God for the waiter getting the order wrong. And thank God for Halloween.

And I suppose I should say thank God for laughter too because this is all we could do. This is all a curry snob can do when they decide to listen to reviews.

The Place

We, the 2L’s, found ourselves in the heart of Curry Hill on Lexington Ave, in a restaurant called Dhaba. A pretty decent looking place, cosy in size and of course with tons of great reviews.

After a bit of indecisiveness we eventually ordered up the same. 2 vegetable samosas, 2 shrimp curries, 1 tadka dal, 1 rice portion and 1 garlic naan. And intuitively, 2 masala teas too.

Now if you were born and raised in Durban like we were, you’ll know that curry and rice is standard fare. Eating and cooking curry is…

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Food Matters: ‘L&LTakeNYC’


I’ve gotten into this habit, maybe obsession, maybe passion, whatever you want to call it, of photographing almost everything I eat and cook. It’s quite a thing trying to get the perfect food shot, to capture the perfect digital food memory before a fork can be lifted or food served. Sometimes it works out -the photos look edible-and sometimes not-they look just plain terrible. But I do it anyway.

I recently thought that maybe this makes me kind of look ‘touristy’ in every restaurant I go especially here in NYC or maybe bizarre but who cares. I take my cue from this:

“Cooking is like love, it should be entered into with abandon or not at all.”
-  Harriet Van Horne, Vogue 10/1956

So given that I’m hanging with my sister,

who happens to share this love affair with food, it’s no surprise that we have taken a few food trips to some of my favorite, local places to eat.

Here’s a peek at our “L&LTakeNYC” food journal so far.

“All happiness depends on a leisurely breakfast.” -John Gunther

We are Big On Breakfast, wouldn’t you say?

“Nothing would be more tiresome than eating and drinking if God had not made them a pleasure as well as a necessity.” –Voltaire

“One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating.” -Luciano Pavarotti

“Orgasmic” I think is the expression she would use. *Sideeyes*

“One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.” -Virginia Woolf

So here’s to Indian,Italian,Japanese and Mexican.

And finally I think this sums it up…

“We should look for someone to eat and drink with before looking for something to eat and drink.”~ Epicurus

It’s almost always better when you share.


P.S For more news on our adventures “L&LTakeNYC” visit elvisisnotmyfather 

Facebook: Leanne Tee  Twitter: @leannetee   Instagram: @leannetrcy


Sister Sister: L&L Take NYC.

In the last 2 years I saw my sister twice. Since her return from her sojourn in South Korea  one of the greatest things has happened-she has come to visit me, my family and NYC.

Now, if you have a sister you’ll know how truly awesome it is to have your sister within laughing distance, especially when you have been living in a foreign country for just over a year, like I have.

In so far as sisters go a lot has been said about how different we are ……which is fair enough.

For starters,  her complexion  is  kind of milky Chai tea latte and I’m more Café au Lait like.

She has hazelnut eyes and I have chocolate mocha colored ones.

I’m a talker and she’s a listener.

She would choose to wear a dress and I would go with a pants suit.

She has more bohemian, gypsy tendencies and I’m exploratory and love stability.

It has also been said that  I have more of a resemblance to my father but  act more like my mother and  even though my sister is strikingly similar to our mother she has the ways and behavior of our father (which may have a semblance of truth if you care to read this)

I figure I might as well add this in too. If you know my father you’ll know this: he is the circus master in our family whose one major talent is taking the mickey out of everything. He loves to tease and will do so until you either laugh or cry.

So a more recent comment from my father went something like this, “You know your sister is more intelligent than you ,but ….you have more drive then her, that’s the difference.”

God knows where that came from, I mean honestly, now, really Dad?:)))

But for all the apparent differences, we do have things in common.

Like an intuitive eye, a love of fantasy and make-believe and of course, food (we are neither shy of cooking nor eating).

And honestly, the best things for me this week highlight just that.

*I purposefully waited for my sister to arrive in NYC before going to see the documentary Diana Vreeland: The Eye must travel at the Angelika Film Center downtown.

I transferred myself into  every word and swirly visual of this extraordinary documentary of  an iconic one-of-a-kind women. And at the end of the movie, as we stood on the upbound escalator and my sister proclaimed with flushed cheeks-“I loved that! I really, really loved that movie “ I knew she did the same.

Like two little puppy dogs, we sat there and lapped it all up.

Can anybody think of a better way to escape into a fantastical make-believe world than through a movie about one of Fashions most influential women –The Divine Diana (pronounced ‘Dee-ah-na’ ) Vreeland?

**One day we had a  “chicken over rice”  for lunch bought from the typical food vendors found on almost every street corner in Manhattan.

We sat on a park bench soaking up the warm, sensual Fall sun, pretending to be reality stars in our very own reality TV program…  with 4 different takes of a homemade video to prove it.

This is the silliest fun to be had and no better person to do it with then my sister.

We laughed and we ate.

***It has become a family tradition to serve any traveling party on arrival a meal of chicken curry and basmati rice. And so it was that my sister, after 20 traveling hours, was welcomed into the city with a classic home-style dinner.

She has since reciprocated with her own home-style chicken tikka-style masala curry for dinner that had marinated in plain yoghurt and spices.

 This is the kind of stuff that STAYS with you – long after the meal is done. And we get to bank another beautiful memory.

To Familia and life’s simple pleasure!

Finally,you can find  @Miss Lisa Marie Lawler …


On Instagram and Twitter @lisamarielawler

to follow our NYC experiences over the next while.


Facebook: Leanne Tee  Twitter: @leannetee   Instagram: @leannetrcy

word wisdom

Not sure what brought this to mind but nonetheless it popped up inconspicuously yesterday morning, like inspiration tends to do sometimes.

You know how (and I don’t know if this happens to you)  there are times in life when certain WORDS just tend to SINK in and STICK. They become so profoundly impactful and supportive. And invisibly act to soothe, hearten, motivate you to that better feeling place.

And then,

you have a moment. Un Momento. Aha!

Ever had that?

Today, I’m inspired to share 3 sayings that have enlightened me, nourished me and boosted me many times over.

1.An African saying that translates into ‘We are who we are through others’. It speaks about our interconnectedness. It recognizes the essence of human-ness/humanity.

When you GET this, it changes you.

2. ‘This Too shall Pass’.Four simple words that bring instant comfort or a dose of humbleness. Because all material conditions whether positive or negative are temporary. I’ve always (re)-gained perspective when re-membering this.

3.”Be the change………” And you know the rest. This saying is a clarion call to act in the name of passion. It’s the perfect pressure. And I never tire of it.

 Do you have any word wisdoms to share?


Photo source:Tumblr,Pinterest ( Caryn Reker via Hediona Spiro)