Sunday, February 14, 2016

the sunset series..and breaking from routine








The new school year has begun.  Back into routine, commitments and after school activities.  Back to getting organised, school lunches and uniforms. Back to being busy.

It all just seems to have come around so quickly already, and perhaps a little part of me is in denial. Our holidays were slow and easy.  We didn't travel anywhere or do anything too grand or elaborate. Sometimes I feel a little bit guilty and worry the kids will go back to school listening to everyone else's amazing holiday adventures, wishing they could have done the same.  

Running a business of your own makes time away very limited, and quite frankly, an impossibility for us just yet.  While the kids had 6 weeks off school, we managed to close down for almost three weeks.  Though its never without interruption, at least we were able to be at home and enjoy some down time all together.

Then I look at where we live.  

During our break we took a sneaky bottle of bubbles down to the beach on New Years Eve. The kids played and swam, we looked at one another and knew we were both feeling the same thing.  We could have paid a fortune to travel somewhere as magnificent, and to do just this.  But we didn't have to, this is where we live, just a stroll down the end of the street.

I've decided that I need to keep this in mind during the everyday busyness of school term. To be a little bit spontaneous and to break away from the routine.  If only just a bit.

Last Monday was the beginning of the first full week of term. Harvey was at Cadets and Nick at a twilight shoot.  I went outside to put away shoes and tidy as I sent the other three upstairs to brush teeth ready for bed. It was such a gorgeous evening.  

I couldn't help it, I yelled out to everyone to grab a jacket and come downstairs.  Then instead of bed, off to the beach we went!

Oh the excitement! It was like the craziest thing I'd ever done! Like we were on some wild adventure somewhere we'd never been before.  Secretly, I was hoping to goodness I wasn't going to live to regret it.  Monday night and all, a whole week still ahead of us.

We weren't gone for ages, just long enough to wander and chat.  To soak in the beauty and explore the rockpools.  To be silly and to feel free.

It was worth it, and I didn't regret it.  Bedtime may have been a little later than it needed to be that first night of term, but everyone slept soundly with the smell of sea mist on their skin and rolling waves echoing in their dreams.


Sunday, February 7, 2016

the sunset series..a shared birthday




We combined a birthday sunset, the baby girl and I.  She turned three last Saturday, but after a busy day of cake, family and ferris wheel rides, she was way too tuckered out to take in a sunset.

Then it was my turn.  It was the most perfect summers day, clear blue skies, the slightest breath of wind, and the beach was calling my name. I was spoilt with a beautiful breakfast on our deck and handmade gifts and cards.  We had a morning tea outing by the sea, swimming in crystal clear waters and pier jumping.

After dinner we headed down to the beach once more to find it covered in seaweed and a thick, humid mist.  Perfect for fossicking and jewellery making, not so pleasant for wave jumping and swimming, but always good for the soul.

Time to sit and breathe it all in, I say it every time, it just fills you up.


Sunday, January 31, 2016

portraits..january 2016

5/52..
turning three & flower crowns
4/52..
early morning shenanigans,
she says "you SO love me" and I say " I SO do!"
3/52..
she has discovered her eldest brother's treasured tools, and I'm so very glad we kept them

2/52..
all the fru-fru, and hair that hasn't been washed in weeks!

1/52..
making peace with the ocean "it's lovely mumma.."


I'm joining in with Jodi's 52 project once again this year.  Looking back at last years moments captured made it difficult to deny participating  for another year.

I've still been using just my iphone, but it really needs to be time for a real camera.  I just don't know what frightens me so much!  Still, I love what we've got here so far.



Saturday, January 23, 2016

the sunset series..where tradition began




twelve months ago, this is right where our birthday sunset tradition began.

this day last year we came down to watch the sun set on what would have been my cousins 40th birthday.  It was a way to acknowledge the specialness of the day, of him.

there was magic in the air that night, and when we got home Eddie said he wanted to do this with his kids when he grew up to be a dad.  So from that moment, we decided that watching the sun go down on birthdays was to be our new family tradition.

and so it has been ever since.

we'd just finished watching a movie and it was time for the boys to go to bed, but instead we grabbed our jumpers and ran out the door.  I was going to wander down to the beach on my own, because Olive was asleep already and everyone else was tired too.  But we left Nick and Harvey at home, and the three of us just ran.

we ran straight down the hill, laughing so much at how funny we must look in such a hurry, barefoot, the little guy in his jammies and my flappy down hill running style.

it was late and the light was fading, but we could see the sky's golden glow as we ran up the path and over the dunes.

the air was humid and thick, the waves rolling in loud and fast.

we'd made it, and the sight was magical!

these nights will become treasured memories for us all, they fill us up, every single time x



Wednesday, January 13, 2016

the big blanket..



I started this blanket back in January last year, slow summer days on the hook when it was too hot or too wet to be outside.

It soon became one of those projects that sat in the 'works-in-progress' basket for months on end because I kept starting on something new.

Every now and then I'd pick it up and crochet a row or two, I'd get distracted or run out of yarn and back in the basket it would go.  It's the first thing I've ever made that I wasn't in a mad rush to see completed.  I'm terribly impatient when I make.  I get an idea, I see the end result in my mind and I want it done now!

I'm not sure why this blanket was different, but it was lovely to have it sitting there, waiting for my attention whenever I was ready, giving me comfort when I needed it, distracting my mind with each new stitch.  Working on this was almost like a meditation.  

At one point I thought it was just not going to work out, but I couldn't bring myself to undo it.  We had a connection this blanket and I.

Eleven months later I finished off the last row, and I love it so very much.  It drapes invitingly over the end of Olive's (spare) cot in our room, and I stop to admire it every single day.  

It's not perfect.  Hiding ends is tricky with chunky, loosely worked yarn like this, and I think if I were to lie it flat it might be a little misshapen, but I have a feeling this big chunky cotton blanket is going to be loved by us for years to come regardless.


Monday, January 4, 2016

the sunset series..welcoming 2016




New Yeats Eve 2015.

We spent a balmy evening wandering rockpools, swimming, sitting and sipping champagne as the sun went down for the final time in 2015.

It's moments like this that ground me, that stop me dead in my tracks and force me to soak in all the wonderful.  This life we live down here on the coast is more than I ever dreamed I could have, what a blessing, how lucky we are.  I'm sure my kids get sick of hearing me say it, but I don't want them to ever take this for granted.

I don't know what 2016 holds for us.  I don't have my 'one word' and I don't have any resolutions. I feel a little unprepared for a new year to begin, and so I'm easing in slowly.  Perhaps I'll just strive to keep my heart and my mind open.  To live each new day one at a time, soaking in the moments and being grateful.

Thanks to you all for joining me here in this blogging space, albeit with less than regular posts these days.

Happy New Year to you all, may yours be all kinds of wonderful x

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

portraits..the final four

52/52..
the way her 'dancer' skirts sit under that belly
51/52..
dumped by a wave, fully clothed, within a minute of stepping onto the beach
50/52..
'Jammy Faced Mary' stories before bed are her favourite
49/52..
sometimes she sits like a kinder kid, and suddenly I want to swaddle her like a newborn


My final four portraits for 2015.
It's the loveliest thing, to look back on treasured moments I want to remember.  One from every week of her little life this year. Snippets of the everyday, of milestones, of the mundane, of challenging times and heart melting moments.  All captured to remember always.  

Special thanks to Jodi at Practicing Simplicity for hosting, it's been a joy x


Friday, December 18, 2015

chance encounters..


As the end of another year draws near, I can't help but look back and reflect on the last 12 months and where we are headed in the year to come.

It's been year of battles, and not many won is how it feels.  A big year of learning, of frustrations and a lot of 'one step forward two steps back'.  It also feels like the challenges will serve their purpose, like changes are around the corner, but just what changes I'm not too sure.

I look back and it seems I've been completely caught up in us, our work, the day to day, and now all of a sudden its christmas time, the end of the school year and summer holidays. 
In a blink! Another year down in the whirlwind of life.  
Last night I felt so overcome by negativity and angst. Unsettled by things that are out of my direct control, like I'd been dumped by an ocean wave and wrung out. Early to bed followed by the first uninterrupted night of sleep in forever, and things felt a bit better. Isn't it amazing how much better we cope with a decent night of sleep!

This morning I sent my excited boys off to school for the last time this year.  I cleaned and tidied, then put Olive and my nephew into the twin stroller for a walk.  As soon as we left I could feel positive energy beginning to flow.  Taking my time time to walk and look around, watching the sea mist blow through the air.  Stopping to talk to people, popping my head into the dry cleaners to share a friendly tip we'd been talking about the last time I was there. We stopped to say hello to Santa selling the Big Issue, who then reached into his sack to pull out a present each for my two happy toddlers. 

We ran some errands, stopped off to buy our Big Issue Santa a morning tea treat and headed home. I walked, apologising to people we passed for our oversized stroller taking up the footpath, some would smile and say hello, others didn't.  A little further on we came to a lady who stopped, made a big arm gesture to allow us to go first and said, smiling "make way for these children, our grand future".  I smiled and thanked her, we stopped and chatted about this time of year, about children, about all the unrest in the world and even about God (!?).  She did most of the talking, but it was lovely to listen to her and to hear her thoughts, albeit a little 'out there'.  
It was an encounter I felt I needed to have today.  Sometimes people are sent to cross our paths for a reason.  We introduced one another as we were saying goodbye, and as I turned to leave she said "I wish for you all that is in my heart..there is a lot in there, and it is all good."

A sudden chance encounter, and I feel just a little bit lighter, a little bit less wrung out.