the reality ..... online me

I have had some beautiful comments on IG over the last few days. Well, all the comments are always beautiful, but these few particularly got me thinking about what I portray through this online personality petalplum).

Let's start with the first reality right now: I have left the dinner plates on the table, a half washed up sink of dishes, and my kids have Lego spread all across the floor in our teeny leaky shack that I'll probably step on and swear about (and yell about!) later tonight. 

So, the comments I am thinking about made my heart sing to read them as it's so lovely to be thought of in this way. But then my heart got a bit sad because people are thinking I'm zen and productive and creative with no anxiety...... While I can be these things, that's not the whole of me. In fact (and especially if you ask my family) that's only a very small part of me. Mainly am I zen when I'm sitting crocheting, which isn't so productive for getting jobs done around the home or work (paperwork mostly) stuff needing to be done.
It got me thinking about how we (I) portray myself through my Instagram feed, through this blog, and perhaps also while talking to customers at markets and such. For people know very little about me, and certain aspects of me. Only what I share. 

My friends were talking the other day about the lack of reality through social media, particularly IG. How everything is so extremely perfect and beautiful. And how they'd like to see a kid vomiting or something with that realness to it. (Though I'm totally sure they could find that if they went looking!). And I've read a few articles over the past years about people portraying only the fun, exciting, beautiful parts, and how that can affect us by watching and making us feel inferior.

I do get that. That aching feeling of why isn't my life all white walls and perfect antique / modern / vintage / retro in the hottest colour at the moment. Why doesn't my life have the Instagram filter to it! Why isn't my crochet as good, why aren't my kids as pretty, why don't I have those lovely shoes like everyone else. I've had that feeling with blogs and with Instagram. 

I want to tell you why I gave up that feeling (mostly), and how. And also, why I think it's so important that we all keep showing our online personalities as the best we can.....

Firstly - it's so unhealthy to always be looking outside of yourself for happiness, and inspiration and contentment and joy. We must learn to find happiness within, from whatever we have to offer ourselves. I found at times my stomach felt tight and knotted thinking about what I didn't have, and what someone else had, and often breathless. And I was missing out on the beauty of what I do have right here right now. Completely not seeing it, or appreciating it, or acknowledging it. 

How to give this up, you ask? It's not easy. I'll tell you that. And I think it doesn't go away completely, but I think that's ok. I think to feel that occassional tightness and breathlessness means we want to improve ourselves for the better, but first we must love ourselves. Two and a half years ago I stepped away from the blogging world I was caught up in (due to our living situation), and had time to really be where I am here and now. And enjoy and appreciate it just simply for itself. Not to notice it so I could share it online and boast about it, but to soak it up. I haven't found I needed to do that with IG. I've learnt instead to follow people who make me feel inspired by their images, their words and (most importantly) their community connections. And to feel happy for them for their wonderful situations, not jealous - because they are people who deserve good things too, and who work hard for those good things. 


Also - and this is the important one - I've learnt to notice, appreciate and love moments in my life that I can share. Be sharing them on IG and here, I sometimes take more notice of them. By photographing and thinking about a moment I take it in. Sometimes I don't take photos, I simply take in the moment - and that's the best isn't it!
So, instead of showing the ugly, uninspiring things that don't bring me joy in my life and my days, I actively choose to share the joyful creative inspiring nurturing beauty-filled moments. By noticing things I make them bigger in my life. 

I think this is such an important thing for us all to do. Yes, please do keep it real - you don't need to show off to friends, or to impress people, but if you share those moments that bring you real joy and where you see beauty you will notice it more in your own life, and find the anxiety of watching other people's perfect lives will diminish as you start to see the beauty of your life - no-one's life is perfect, those people are simply choosing to share the moments that bring them joy and beauty.

*I am not at all suggesting that we ignore everything bad in our lives, for some things do need to be looked at and dealt with and talked about. I think it's important to talk about a lot of things that are sometimes hidden. But if that's all you focus on, if you cannot find one moment of beauty, please please look harder at a flower in your street or the clouds across the sky or the meal you cooked for your family. (Or please go and talk with someone in real who can help you to love yourself and see the beauty in your day).

And please be kind to yourself!

Ellie xxx

am I allowed to say.....





The other day, while driving to pick up my friend, a thought crossed through my mind (I often have wonderful thinking and singing sessions while driving on my own).
I realised - with no vanity or ego - that I'm really happy with who I'm becoming. Not to say that I'm perfect, or have reached any higher level. I just felt that in myself - how I think of myself, and perceive myself, and present myself - I'm a person I'd like to know, and be friends with. 

Am I allowed to say that....!!?

{I always believe that if you can't love yourself how can you expect other people to love you. If you don't stand tall feeling and believing you look good, are interesting, or beautiful or special, or wonderful or unique; how can you really expect anyone else to think the same!}. 

Anyway. I don't want to gloat. Or pretend that life is always peachy. 

But it's how you look at life isn't it. Yes - we still live in a teeny shack. A shack that leaks when it rains heavily, the sun doesn't shine on it until almost mid-day, the outside creatures can get in (think native mice, rats and snakes), there's no space for thinking or being away from anyone else. Yes - I haven't done one single tiny bit of screen printing all year (yep ALL YEAR). And barely any sewing. And my crochet projects seem to have fallen by the way side. And I don't have a bathroom, or a wardrobe or a chest of draws even for my clothes (those that aren't packed in boxes in our shipping container are stored in plastic tubs under our bed). I don't have a bank balance to zip off overseas, or let alone to go justify going away for a weekend for our upcoming anniversary {house building does that to you - takes everything!!}. I don't have the perfect studio for making or creating any time I feel like it. 

And those things all affect me. And get me down. But then - is it worth being down, and dismal and upset and bitter about these things? Not for me. 

Stop and smell the roses is as old as sayings go. But it's true. It's the stopping, and taking notice of one thing that matters. Of enjoying and appreciating tiny moments and everyday happenings. Those for me make me more than happy. They make me content. 

I think happiness is wonderful. Pure joy and bliss and all that. But high happiness can be fleeting - at least it doesn't last forever. For me, contentment lasts longer, is steady and real and brings about joy and happiness more often. 

Again with the roses :: I brought some home the other day from a local road side stall. And being real roses (rather than grown across the globe to specific commercial conditions) they had lots of big spiky thorns. While snipping the leaves and thorns to put them in water, I pricked myself. My little ones asked my why roses have thorns. Of course it really is so that animals can't climb up and eat them. But it's a reminder that the beautiful and the difficult (ugly) exist side-by-side. Can so-exist. Or that out of hardship can bloom beauty. 

The same as the lotus. That beautiful spectacular flower that blooms from dirty mud. 

{oh, I'm full of the quotes today aren't I?}. 

So - this whole long wordy post is to say this. That it's ok to be happy. It's ok to be content. To say yes I am good and things are good. And that if you're not feeling that way - then maybe take a moment (a long moment) to stop and enjoy those tiny moments of beauty you DO have around you. Sometimes you have to invent or exaggerate that beauty, but it will be there if you look.

The Dalai Lama says: "Choose to be optimistic, it feels better".


** This post was written a few weeks ago, and has sat in drafts until now. Now when I needed to read and remember and say these things. I posted on Instagram today about feeling moody - and what I meant was low and lacklustre and joyless.

Every day is an endless journey to finding my peace, contentment, calm and balance.

stitching things together



Late last night I started stitching this little piece.
Black linen (a tea towel) with white-ish silk thread.
Sashiko style stitches.

I was thinking of my Cumulus Purses from years ago as I formed it.
Stitching by hand - the whole piece.

Oh golly. How can come thread and fabric stitched together make me feel so full and happy.

I plan this year to do more of What Makes Me Happy.
And thread and yarn do so make me happy.

Will you join in, in making happy xxx

I would like to organise some making creating gathering events - stitching friendship / making happy / eating delicious afternoon tea. Would you be interested in joining in, coming along, bringing your friends, making new friends. Creative Gatherings - an idea I'm working on with my neighbour.

just this - tuesday morning







I sat in the sun this morning, after dropping the kids at school, and rolled this yarn into a ball. I drank my tea (bancha), and listened to the birds calling and the bees buzzing. And I soaked up that warm morning late Winter sunshine.
And it felt good on my body and my soul.
{and Sam took some photos of me, to email for print. And I felt self conscious and a bit old and tired. And decided that I need to tone up, and freshen up, and see the beauty in me in again}.
What did you do today?
How do you see the beauty in yourself? Do you look or do you ignore?

A week




Last week was long and tiring and pushed me further than I wanted to be pushed in terms of energy and stress and health. Just a little too much. In reality I think I must be the one who does the pushing of myself. But my body pushed back and said 'no'. Hence I've been feeling tired and sick and grumpy and haven't been able to relax. Sam has been feeling much the same. We've both had anxious tight feelings around our chest - something that keeps holding onto us.

I did not have any quiet moments of just being and not having to rush off somewhere else or other. Always something happening. On Friday I drove into town three times (each trip to town is a 40minute round trip). And yet, I still didn't get the grocery shopping done, so had to go in on Saturday afternoon, after a morning at a kids birthday party (which was thankfully sitting in the sun talking).

Ah well. I think I just need to keep learning that I feel best, more motivated and uplifted when I have some moments of quiet.

I feel the need to write myself an important list of things I need:

To drink a cup of tea in peace and quiet, and if there's a spot of sunshine that always helps.
To do some making of some sort - stitching, sewing, crochet, screen printing, drawing, painting.....
To stop and look around quietly.
To breathe deeply and soak up the good air around me.
To keep the house tidy, and the kitchen table clear - less clutter makes us all happier and able to breathe easier.
To do baking, cooking.
To do some writing; a letter to a friend, in my journal, or my gratitude diary, or perhaps even here.
To spend time with my man just talking and being truly together.

What are you doing this week?
Are you feeling stressed or relaxed?
Did you bake or sew or draw or make?

have a lovely week, my friends xx

{sun}day-ing











What glorious sunshine. So good. It warms the soul and lifts the spirits.

I can't believe how much I love love love these sun images. I took them from the moving car (it's okay - I was the passenger!), with the full afternoon sun streaming through. The trees cut the sun into slivers of shafts of light. The iphone works for some things like that as the camera is so slow at taking photos (often I miss the shot I'm after due to the slow shutter speed), but it worked so well in this instance. I want to print some of these - once we have a wall to put artworks and such on!

Of course there was some crochet work happening. I am working on a small collection of these - planning (perhaps) to sell some. What do you think?

Also - my 10 things I love for this Sunday at up on the Hey Maker! blog if you want to check it out.

happy making





I decided yesterday that I needed some happy making happen'.....

So - I washi-taped some little bottles. I coloured the water with paint. I gathered some flowers and the most wonderful moss, lichen, mushroom covered twigs. And I made some happiness.
{These moss covered sticks are all around in my garden. Whole trees covered with them. Wonderfulness. I saw something similar in a magazine once; these things sell at specialised city florists for $5 a teeny branch. It's like buying tumbleweed from a shop, or bamboo..... Not that I have tumbleweed, but oh do we have bamboo. If you want some - come and ask!}

I also made some little happiness bags and pouches. Pure goodness these are. Heart swelling happiness. The making of them was fun. The looking at them. And then the possibilities of what else they evolve into. That's super good. I'm learning that being creative is creative inducing - you need to make to be able to keep making. Sometimes the making isn't neat.good.art.your best, but that doesn't matter, because it makes more making happen.

So - happiness is easy to make. If you only try. The process of the making was happiness in itself, but the having and looking at and enjoying. That's pure happiness. Yah to finding some happy on these rainy, dismal days.

It's Thursday. So, here's to Our Creative Spaces today.

And in other SUPER exciting wonderful happiness making news. Look where I'm being *featured* this week - one of Brisbane's Finest Intagramers on The Weekend Edition! Super YAH!!

and .....


there's some big big splotches of rain falling on our roof right now. right now.
the sun was up and shining this morning. but those grey smudgey clouds are there now.

i'm writing lists - both on paper, and in my head.
but really i'm thinking about what direction, where to go, where to push and pull, and move.
that sort of thing.


suddenly it's moved into march. well - how did that happen. the year stumbling, flying along.
suddenly i've got lots happening. and need to be using my diary and calendar and planner efficiently.
suddenly i'm busy with all sorts of things.

but really i'm being slow and thinking each thing as i'm doing it. i'm trying hard to do this, to remember to do this. to focus on the one thing in front of me. trying trying.

i didn't do any sewing today. but tomorrow i will. i'll make sure i do. i'll do some crochet perhaps - right now. well, after lunch, how about.

things i'm liking around the webosphere today -
ink & spindle's new colourway range. those shorts sure are good.good.good!
the outtakes from this fashion collection, seen on sang the bird's blog
this year, some good things to do and remember from le project d.amour's blog. found on  satsuma press.
all the new work that Tiel is doing lately. i'm seeing it on instagram, on pinterest. wishing for walls (a house!!) to put something up. 
Hugo's wonderful polar bear party. oh that cake! Kate, you're an inspiration.
Sandrine, you really are making me happy, making me smile. with your words, your images (oh those flowers from your garden!).

tell me, what are you liking today.....
* that's me looking happy, with a postage bag on my head (it was such a great pattern, i was trying to work out what i could make with it).

right now





the kids will be home from school momentarily.
my computer will run out of power momentarily.

right now the sun is shining hard. its pushed the clouds away and forced itself past the rain we've had. the cicadas are calling. they're booming. getting as much said as they can while the sun is warming them.

this pile of crochet circles is steadily growing. bit by bit I tie another one off my hook. I'm finishing all the strings as I go - I think it would be too much to do it all at the end. But then, that may happen too.

I'm making more crochet covered stones and rocks. mostly collected our creek. perhaps we'll visit the beach soon and collect some from there as well. there seems to be lots of stones along the beaches these days. I keep giving away all the crochet rocks. we barely have any left. and I keep planning on making more for giving away as well. I do love making them, and having them around the house - I'd so love a whole bowlful - that lovely wooden bowl we have. but I also love giving them away.

right now. that's how things are happening.
I'm loving ::
Kate's this week list - I wish mine was that delicious sounding.
Jacqui's wrong side.
Kristen's sweet coasters she made for a friend.
Leah's night romantic inky image.
Abby's sweet place and the light in her life.

*in total disclosure. That moment is over. I'm in another moment right now - at my dad's, with my computer charging, and the mosquitos eating me alive. I keep forgetting, ever forgetting that my moments slip away......... endlessly gone into some other place of non-memory/vague forget/sometimes retain. those moments.

a whole lota'






there's a whole lot of everything in my house
- noise
-mess
- piles
- dust
- books
-yarn
- magazines.....

-love love love.
there's a whole lota love in my house!

Ari made up this super sweet little ditty/poem about me.
You're a big fat crocheter
You crochet night,
You crochet day,
You crochet rocks,
You crochet, hey!

There has been a lot of crochet going on. And a lot of running around. We're back at school well and truely now. School week is hard, but good as well.

Happy Love Day to you on this sweet Valentine's Day xxxx

:: moment......






+ i baked some little cookies for the kids to have in their lunchboxes - butter vanilla bean. will have to make more tomorrow, or perhaps this afternoon
+ i've been making bread. today i put my apron on while i kneaded the bread. then we had a cup of much needed tea.
+ yesterday Sam + i went for a bike ride. i laughed and complained. but had so much fun. we will go again another day this week.
+ the little one has been sick. this morning she said she hates school and is bored. she's only been going for 3 days ever. oh dear.
+ we went to the beach yesterday, with my grandma. it was wonderful.
+ Sam put some of our current beach collected rocks in this wooden bowl. it's good to see it while we sit and have our coffee, tea, lunch, chatting.

I am finding small moments of happy and content. Today feels a bit of a challenge. But we are here. And it is good.
off to the bus pick up and then the afternoon rolling into bedtime. we are reading Ivy & Bean at bedtime.
What happy moment are you enjoying today?

the sunshine and Mother's Day


This morning, after Ari went off to school, I went in search of some sunshine. Our little house sits under some big beautiful Hoop Pine trees, which cast a little bit too much morning shade. But as they are giant, and old and native and simply beautiful - the trees are staying exactly where they are. Which means that we need to move around to follow the sun.

We set up a little table, for our second morning coffee, and Mishi's teddy friends came to visit.





What a beautiful time sitting in the morning sun, soaking it into our body. Chatting and reading (Papier Mache magazine's first print issue. What lush images, styling and clothing, and sweet sweet children), and moving our chairs around as the sun moves around.
And on Mother's Day just gone, I did have a delightfully lovely day. I was sick with a head cold, and spent as much time in bed as was allowed. I kept getting jumped on by excited little creatures who wanted to tell me they loved me, and give me cuddles. And of course, I got up to sit in the sun and warm myself up. What a lizard I'm becoming.
While I was sick (still am), Sam looked after us all. He stocked up the fire and got it going again, and made breakfast and good warm drinks that sick people should drink (grated ginger and honey). And he made lunch, and dinner, and swept the floor, and did the washing up. Not sure if it was because I was sick, or due to it being Mother's Day, or simply because he loves me?






He also made a beautiful ikebana display for our table. It was my Mother's Day gift from him. Made with flowers, seedpods and leaves collected from the garden. Such a simple and beautiful work of art.

Little beautiful Ari boy presented me with a sweetly wrapped, and perfectly written card. Each year at school they have a special persons stall where the kids take along some money and buy a gift for their mother / father / grandparents / etc. They are so excited to choose something all by themselves (with some help, perhaps, by the teachers), and then give it their loved one. Ari could barely wait to give me his gift. It's a little ceramic mother birdy, that he chose so thoughtfully and with great care. Mostly it's not the gift they choose, but the excitement with which they present it; but it's so so lovely to see him growing into a person who can look at things and think through what I would like best. I do know a few mamas who received body care lotions and such.

Right now, as a Mama to two independent, inspiring, thinking, intelligent, artistic and active children, I am so happy where I am. I look around the table at our evening meal shared together, and feel joy and contentment swell within me. While there are many challenging and troublesome moments in our days, there are also so many moments of sheer happiness, giggling fun, or perfect raw contentment.





{For me, I think - I aim to be contented in life, more than happiness. While happiness really is a most delicious emotion to feel, it is fleeting, and we always seem to be searching for it. Contentment often slips up, quietly unannounced, and stays warmly in my heart for a long time. A soft ebb that flows earnestly throughout my days. It warms me more to realise I am at ease with where I am, I am content and satisfied, rather than always yearning and aching for the next high of happiness}.

This was written yesterday, Tuesday, but due to photos being on camera and me being lazy, it's only posting today.

and the sun streamed in like butterscotch....



just as i was strolling out the door to pick the boy up from the bus stop,
the sun streamed in the window
like butterscotch.

do you know that song? {you can hear it here}*
i think of it at moments like this. with the sun coming out from behind the dark clouds that have been dotting our skies lately. and the strong light shines in. if only momentarily.

this was the scene on our table. with the sun shining on it. and me heading out to the bus.

and of course, the kids come home from school / preschool and things change.shift.the sun goes away. the afternoon fades towards evening.bed.sleep. tomorrow.again.
and some times some moments during that time we have a moment.one little moment, perhaps two or more of contentment or peace or just to be. but sometimes not.

{these lovelies are from outside, in our 'garden'. the yellows are weeds, which burst open. the seedpods are the most amazing little shapes that look like woven baskets holding their seeds}

*I have just decided that I need to now get all of Joni's music, some how or other... raid my Dad's CD draw perhaps!

important things to do to remind yourself you're still a girl

> Give your man a really big, long smooch goodbye (cause he's taking the kids away for the weekend, and cause giving your man a big, long smooch is a good thing to do!).
> Pack your basket of things for a night away on your own.
> Remember to include a good book or two to enjoy. And some fresh lemons for your grandma.
> Turn the music up nice and loud.
> Put your sunglasses on. Enjoy the look of the road behind you, in the rearview mirror. And look forward to the road in front with a light heart.


> Drive nice and fast*, with the wind in your hair. Sing as loud as you want, and make sure you tap and bang your fingers on the steering wheel.
> Swing past the post office, in town, just in case there's a nice little treasure for you. (Ooohhh, there is.) Ignore the phone bill that came with it.
> Head on up the coast. Wind, music, sunglasses, mountains all about you. Doesn't the car feel just that little bit lighter without the car seats or the kids.
> Stop off for a dip in the ocean. All on your own. At the best ocean spot in the whole wide entire world. Jump about in the waves for just as long as you want. Feel the sun on your back, as you sit on the sand. All on your own. The sand under your feet as you look for rocks along the water's edge. (Ignore the fact that your body doesn't look exactly the same as it did when you where a girl. Or even a bit younger than you are now....). Wrap your sarong around you, and head on back to the car - don't have to worry about drying/dressing/cleaning sand off any body but yourself.
> Head on further up the coast, just a little bit. To your grandma's house. Visiting your grandma is a good thing to do. You still feel like a girl, even though you are the one now cooking the dinner and cleaning the dishes, compared to her doing it for you when you were a girl.

Being a woman is really really good, of course. But sometimes, being a girl again (of indeterminate age) is really really important.

Enjoy your weekend. I'm staying at my grandma's for just one night, then heading back home for some peace and quiet until the noise arrives back on Sunday afternoon. I'll be lapping up every moment of the quiet that living in the bush brings.





*though of course, not too fast, stick to the speed limit please. One of the good things about country living is those road signs that say 'drive to suit conditions'....

{one word} breathe


somewhere in the bloglands i've seen some people who have taken up one word. i can't find any links right now (and with limited internet time, i'm writing about it instead of web-hopping).

anyway.

lately i've been consciously thinking on, trying to live by, be & do by my one word.

{breathe} verb;
~ to pause, as for breathe, take rest
~ to live; exist
~ to express; manifest.

consciously i am stopping and breathing before actions, thoughts, reactions. especially when dealing with the children, and their 'pushing the boundaries' behaviour.

i am trying to remind myself that

Between stimulus and response there is a space. 
In that space is our power to choose our response. 
In our response lies our growth and our freedom.

                                                                                                           Viktor E. Frankl
 
i took these photos around our little home, the other day. when i was home alone. we'd had rain for most of the day, so the sky was cloudy and grey, and the sun was only dimly filtering through. in that afternoon moody light, these textures and colours shone out. i do love love love those green.yellow.chartreuse.moss sorts of colours on the post; the colours slowly mixing together around the wood.
 

* our days are slowly going by. in a happy contented way. i am trying to find a routine, rhythm to get settled into. 

things are good. simple. breathe.

a very nice lunch indeed

 {love how the sunlight came streaming in, just as i was taking this photo. glorious}


now that Mishi goes to preschool three days a week, we have a few times of quiet at home without constant chitter chatter of the little ones.

mostly it seems that between Sam or me, we are running here and there doing things (into town for shopping, picking up our new fireplace, gas hot water system, helping out at preschool rostered days, doing reading with school kids, helping the school kids in their little garden projects, yoga, mowing the large expanses of grass, doing house plans, planting seeds for a Winter garden.........).


but sometimes we've found ourselves quietly settled in our little home, at our lovely wooden dining table*, looking out the window to where our new house will be built.

we found ourselves in just this spot, on Friday. with the house just tidied and swept, the rugs taken outside and beaten, the beds all made, and the warm late Summer sun shining down on our roof.

a simple lunch of toasted bread {as we have no electricity we have no toaster, which means we use a camp toaster over our gas open flame cook top. camp toast tastes so different to machine made toast}, with homemade pesto {more on that later, a lovely saga i'm enjoying}, delicious farm-bought tomatoes, the last of the Parmesan cheese (Australian + vegetarian = no animal rennet), and fresh basil leaves. of course a sprinkling of freshly cracked pepper and pinch of Himalayan pink salt.

combined with the bird calls, the warmth of the sun (we've had a lot of rainy days here), the cicadas, and the scent of the basil. looking at these trees that i am loving more each day.

it really was a very nice lunch indeed.....

{and a few photos of the delicious, juicy lychees we've been nibbling on lately. i'm really loving this spot on the table; lighting our candle for dinner each night,  and adding new flowers, stones, collections to enjoy.}



{this aromatic basil has part of our life for the past few days. lovely lovely}.
 

{camp fire toast..... yum yum}
 

{a corner of our little kitchen}

*we found it under our last house, covered in mud, with an ugly laminate cover that we removed and sanded back to beautiful timber.

things to be grateful for

sometimes i go through my days feeling a bit complainy,
and wishing things were other than they are.
doing that whole 'it's not fair' dance that we humans sometimes do.

well, my mum did used to remind me that life
wasn't meant to be fair.
but, you know what. 
sometimes i think i do just have to keep reminding myself
how fair things really are
for me. 
in my life.
my days.
my family.
myself.

i think i've got better than the fair share of good things.
things to be grateful for. 

i have this little journal that i bought, on a whim,
to help remind me to be grateful.
I enjoy sitting with it, at quiet moments, to stop 
and positively think about the things that are good.
that make me happy.
that make me feel grateful for my life.

This morning I am grateful for:
// the little baby kitten who lives with us. her name is red flower, and she climbs into bed with me in the morning giving me sweet little kisses and kicks her legs about in the air. she likes wearing rainbow dresses and no shoes and eating mangoes and dancing pretty little dances.
// my parents-in-law, for always being there to help me out, with a smile and kindness.
// being able to pick the carrots this morning, with the kids from Ari's classroom, from their little garden (which we have been tending the past few months). to spend time with a whole classroom of growing minds is just wonderful.
// the breeze blowing in through my window, and fluttering upon my face in a soft and kind manner.
// organising enrolments at new schools and pre-schools for both my kids; this means we really are moving, and it's happening so so soon.

*all images borrowed, with deep thanks, from Erin Endicott. Her work uplifts and inspires me, in an usual and strong way. Do go and have a look at her exquisite hand work.

still life {moments}

I should be washing up the breakfast dishes. And then rushing to the studio to cut some more fabric to send to my machinist. (Cute little camisole-style tops in soft flowing hemp / organic cotton. I still have to find just the right buttons to make the finishing details right).

I just wanted to show you this collection of flowers. Still life. Mishi picks them on her way home from the school walk each morning. Plucking them from the tree, or plant (or directing Sam or me to do it for the hard to reach ones). This is her collection from this week. She adds to it each day, as she brings more home. 

The white bottle brush have just started flowering. And the red ones are near the ending of their flowering. Both from trees on the street - council planted trees. The yellows are sweet little dandelion weeds - so pretty and cheery. The little daisy is right from our front steps, a tiny little plant that sprouts up these happy little flowers, and Mishi loves to pick them. All in a little Turkish tea glass (we have lots of them, for our water drinking glasses), in our bathroom.

Little moments of still life. And pretty things to look at while I brush my teeth or put on my moisturiser. Moments to still my mind. To focus on something for one moment longer than the fleeting craziness that is happening at the moment. 

I hope you are having a lovely day and week. That you, too, are finding tiny moments of quiet and still in your life.

{now back to the craziness of organising two workshops this weekend, and then The Finders Keepers market next weekend. I do like to do everything at once, don't I?}.

it feels like monday


but it's really tuesday.

we spent a night at my dad's house, and came home late-ish yesterday afternoon. and i missed yesterday's studio work day.

we walked around the land and chatted and dreamed. and drew pictures, diagrams on the back of envelopes of how our house would / could be.

we talked plans for making sheds {for Sam's car + all the bicycles + all the junk one ends up owning + a smallish skateboard ramp}.

building materials and time frames and possibilites. and what the kitchen could look like, and how the bathroom would be.

i got up early-ish (it's still late Winter after all, so not too early) and watched the way the sun rose over the trees. and saw two wallabies hopping through the paddock. and picked citrus from the trees.

my dad picked perfect white blossoms (which Sam photographed on his phone, and i'll show you another day).

the kids and i walked up the hill. we saw mushrooms and moss and the king and queen of trees. and listened to the birds calling and talking. they saw forest fairies - but i wasn't quick enough to see the magical spots of fairy light.

we came home tired and happy. with lots to talk about and plan and decide.

in six months we will be in a new home, living with the forest fairies (and goannas and birds and mosquitoes). and my kids will become the bush kids that we were........



 *all these photos were taken on Ari's camera (which automatically uses it's flash at times of low-light). but i'm enjoying letting him take the photos, and me not having to carry around my bigger camera.
** he took that moss to school today - with much excitement and pleasure; carrying it in a container with a bit of water and showing all his classmates. so good to see.

sunday afternoon + giveaway winner

I've been sick for the past week and a half.
Keep thinking it's over; but it's one of those flu things that just stays around.lingering.
Lots of night time coughing.
Sam's been sick too; yet still having to go to work every day. Urgh. He's a good man.

Today I have finally have the energy to start getting the house back into order. And get the back-log of washing on the line. Perhaps by tomorrow the house will be looking good again - livable in.

We've spent a beautiful day of picnics in the backyard with my sister + nephew. Riding bikes, chatting, playing bubbles with the next door neighbours, drinking dandelion in the last patches of sunlight on a late Winter afternoon.

Sam and the kids have walked up to the bike shop. They're looking at a new bike for Ari's birthday (in October). He's finally getting the hang of riding, and needs a bigger bike. Mishi will get his old bike (painted pink, purple + silver; as per her request!).

I'm sorting through things (fabrics and associated stuff). Will be working at the studio tomorrow, and need to have everything on hand over there.

Listening to The Audreys.
Loving the lavender and jasmine that the kids are bringing into the house, and putting in little jars of water.
Enjoying this bookshelf and it's collection of things that I've recently put in the front room (during one of my little rearrange-moods).
And this crochet snowflake I made a while ago, and have hanging in the front windows.
Being inspired by this sea quilt. (Perhaps I'll finally get Ari's quilt started.....).
Flicking through the July/Aug issue of VogueLiving that Sylv found at the airport (on her way home from Tasmania a short while ago). {Sorry person who left it accidently and wanted to read the mag while the plane - I hope you enjoyed looking out the window instead}.

And the winner from my tea towel giveaway. (Sorry it's a week late - the flu headaches and drowsiness have been too consuming). Random generator has declared the winner to be Kim from Udessi.

*Come back soon, as I'll have another giveaway later this week.