A five-year veteran at Britomart, Justyna usually rushes between operations management at three HipGroup sites – Ortolana, Milse and The Store. Now she’s tackling neglected home improvement projects.

Hi Justyna. Where are you on lockdown and who are you with?

I am with my family at our house in Red Beach. My husband Campbell, our two girls Milla (9), Celinka (who turns 7 next month), my mum who makes the best golabki (cabbage rolls, a Polish traditional dish) and our cat Leo.

How are you all doing? Do you need any help from the outside world?

We are having amazing family time with our girls. Apart from the occasional food journey, outside our bubble we are enjoying our home time together.

Are you still working, and if so, how?

I am not working at the moment but we still connected with the team. We have group chats on a daily basis to make sure the team is doing well in this current situation.

What will this situation mean for your job, and is there any way the community can support it when a little more normalcy returns?

We are not an essential business, so our doors remain closed until further notice. We hope that in the future people will feel confident enough to start to venture back out and support all our hospitality businesses.

What are the main things you’re doing to stay occupied/positive?

We have some house renovating to keep us busy, as much as we can with our very limited skills! Things that you put off but now there is no excuse! Painting the deck, the girls' bedroom and building a retaining wall are just a couple of things on the list. I am spending a lot of time in the garden… the weather has been amazing.

What are you finding to be the biggest challenge and how are you handling it?

The biggest challenge is keeping the girls occupied! Their struggle is being cut off from their friends so a lot of chats with them to help them stay connected.

Your recommendations for

A series or film to watch Was trying to catch up on Netflix but after all the painting during the day I fall asleep in front of the TV!


An album to put on repeat Dancing it out to the Edge at the moment, with a paint brush in my hand!


A book to read I am crazy about reading. I am currently immersed in Karen Slaughter's Faithless (started reading on our last holidays and never had a chance to come back to it).

An account to follow @amano_nz as we will be posting some easy to follow recipes for some delicious meals you can prepare at home


A site to visit yougrowgirl.com – It is not your traditional gardening site. It describes itself as gardening for the people and it's a whole lot of fun!