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Archive for December, 2008

Hermitage

hermitage

Is it just me or does everyone feel like they just want to stay home and not talk to anyone….

The older I get the worse it seems to be getting.  Once I get over the Christmas fun (and it is fun) I just want to hide and not see or talk to anyone.  The thought of a party leaves me feeling slightly panicked and claustrophobic.

I want to bunker down, stay quiet, read books and eat chocolate with my kids.

prayeregg

I need containment.  Rest.  Privacy.  Boredom.

How I crave boredom.  And there isn’t any.

Soon we will escape to the seaside, try to become bored and regenerate a little before the school year swings full again and social interaction resumes, but for now the lights are off.  Isn’t that delicious.

I wish you a wonderful new year full of promise and abundance.  We’ll be watching the sun go down somewhere quiet and waiting for the new year to arrive.  I have a feeling it will be a marvellous new beginning and an extraordinary adventure.

Happy New Year from us to you. 🙂

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Letting go

y-box

Arn’t we funny things.

The only thing that feels better than getting something new is the feeling of letting something go.  Clearing out.  Making space for the new.  Appreciating the absence of stuff.

So why do we stock up?  Is it evolution?  Is it instinctive?  Is it greed?

In my case I think it’s protection of some kind.  The knowledge that there is plenty.  An abundance of choice and the ability to be lazy and hold off the washing for one extra day.

The gift of frugal restraint passed me over.

The next few days will be spent here sorting, sifting, boxing. Passing things on and over, or storing for their next season.

Love it, and find it difficult this process….

And speaking of letting go, only a few more days left to sign up here.

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Before you get pregnant.

domestic

Do you understand the basics of bicycle and basketball ring assembly?

Can you whip up a batch of cup-cakes at 11pm and wrap presents without wrapping paper?

Can you juggle the emotional and psychological needs of multiple children, a spouse and yourself?

Would you attempt an impromptu vaudeville act while making breakfast?

Have entire conversations using body language and facial contortions to keep purchases secret while a child is present (actually I think the shop assistant deserved a medal for that one).

Do impressions of royalty, farm animals and friends?

Make fun out of nothing.  Make fun of yourself.  Make dinner while bathing the children.

zara-arm

Pretend that you know what you’re doing?

My baby is four today.

And after a week of rollercoaster ups and downs from all of us, too much fun at Christmas, huge feelings of love all around for friends and family and extended family, and complete exhaustion, I would say, you should go for it.  Get pregnant.  It’s all so much fun.

princessfoot

The pleasure I get out of my kids is immense.  Those BIG kisses.  Cuddles in the morning.  Impromptu I love you’s and big cheesy grins.  The warm buzzy feelings of knowing you’re doing a good job when they do the right thing without being asked.

SUCH BLISS!

zara4

She is four.  She is perfect.  She is loved and loving.  She is mine.  Happy Birthday little Z.  You rock.

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Festive, fun and feverish

treetrash

I LOVE Christmas.

Childhood memories of an abundance of presents and company.  Every second year with the extended famil(ies) in an extravaganza that stretched from early morning to early evening – and sometimes beyond.  Santa, Marnie’s tree (My Dad’s Mum) with cousins and aunties and presents spilling all over the place, Grandma’s for lunch with my Mum’s side, the full feast with Turkey, Pork, Ham, and a plum pudding for dessert with brandy sauce butter sauce and coins wrapped in foil tucked at the bottom of the bowl.  Another tree with presents exchanged again, and rolling off in the early evening to Aunty Jude’s house for a catch up every other year or so.

When we were Hobart-bound, the party came to us, Mum compensating for the lack of family with a vast array of homemade treats, and the complete Christmas feast for four. Our own tree fearing to topple for the presents crammed under from over the Tasman, delivered in boxes and unpacked with glee.  Oh the temptation to poke was cruel.

These days, we have splintered off somewhat.  Cousins have families of their own, new generational mixes have forged smaller get togethers and new traditions.  My head is still filled with the glamorous memories of my childhood, and I seem to not be able to do that yet.

We made Christmas cards this year, but I havn’t written or sent them.

I have shopped and wrapped, and not made much for presents this year.  It will have to do.

Our tree is sporting all the decorations we have in the box (with the exception of tinsel) in a ‘white-trash’ extravaganza courtesy of Miss Z – who is sporadically redecorating on a whim.  Removing ornaments that take her fancy, and grouping them in the palms of her hands to be tucked back in on a branch – balancing precariously.  Hilariously kitch.

I am missing my Grandma, and feel apprehensive of this first year without her.  She has always been such a big part of Christmas for me, and the call from my Mum yesterday to say that she had found a present for each of the kids bought by her before her passing made my eyes swim again.  It is bittersweet, news of a present from across time like this.  Dear lady.

Today I have been making a ‘Charlie’ doll, a companion for Miss Z’s ‘Lola’ for my son – who has enjoyed watching it come together.  Miss Z got Lola for Christmas last year and the little Mr was more than a little green.  It will be good to close that circle for him.  He is enjoying (bizarrely) how long it is taking me…

Tomorrow will be social, with some catch-ups and some cooking planned, Christmas Eve will be cooking again for my contribution to Christmas Day, and the day – will be fun absolutely.  I really can’t wait.

I wish you a Happy Christmas.  I hope you will be spending it with someone you love, or at the very least with some good chocolate.  Much love and peaceful good wishes from here. 🙂

ps – don’t forget to leave a comment by the 30th if you’d like to play

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closed

You know how sometimes, you see (or hear) of something that is just so fab that you think you might like to be a part of it.

And then it touches you, and you feel privileged to be part of the movement and the pleasure of being alive and part of the human race.

Ever happened to you?

Some months ago I read Leonie’s post here and loved every word of it.  Almost as a footnote she mentioned the ‘pay it forward’ handmade gift project, which sounded like so much fun I didn’t dare ask.

I got lucky, and am fortunate enough to be part of it.  Leonie sent me a gift of such extraordinary beauty that I was quite overwhelmed on opening it, and feel so incredibly lucky to be able to pay it forward now to 3 other people.

But before I continue, you must see this:

constellation

A perfect lithograph of the phoenix constellation by her perfect self.

And this (which is so mind-blowingly gorgeous that I can’t believe I am in posession of it):

open-book

In Leonie’s words, it is an ‘artist’s book…..a star map of the sky I was born under, converted into a knitting chart’.  It’s a lithograph, colour on one side, black and white on the back, elaboratly folded and intensely, intensely beautiful and precious.

I also got this:

alphabet-book

A gorgeous concertina type book, blank inside, with covers sporting photos of mine from the Alphabet Shoot Flickr group where I first got to know her.  It was a belated prize for participating.

Leonie is a gifted printmaking artist, a knitter, and lovely, lovely lovely.  I don’t know her very well, which makes this extra special, and I’m so impossibly grateful I have no words. 🙂

So on to the next FUN part! 🙂

The rules for participating are: that you need to leave a comment here on this post by 3oth December 2008.

I will randomly draw 3 names (and given the amount of comments I’ve gotten lately I hope I get to 3….).  These 3 people will get a handmade present from me sometime early next year.  When they receive their present, they need to pay it forward by sending 3 presents to other people.  Please don’t play if you don’t feel you could do this.

Wanna Play? Leave me a comment.  How fun is this!

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Mmmmmmmmm

choc-oat

Something so incredibly special happened today that I don’t have the words for it yet.  I will soon though.  Promise.

In the meantime some wonderful (insert flashing lights and sparkly music) biscuits have been made in our house.  I was going to blog them last week but they all got eaten before I got the camera out. Really.  A fair few of them before they even cooled down.

Here is batch #2 – every bit as good as the first one – but made smller than the recipe dictates in an effort to make them last longer.

Recipe available here.

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taxi

And as she taxied on the runway she wondered if she would ever be back here again. Oil on wood, 2008, 18cm x 12cm

New work available over here.

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