Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Here I am

Tuesday, 10 March 2015
Goodness, I've been procrastinating. I often do that when I'm uncertain of myself or what direction I'm pursuing. Not long after I started this blog, I started an art blog. I spent more time there than here. It was a lot of fun though.

In reality, I was procrastinating because David and I were having second thoughts, about so many things! Then I stopped posting in my art blog.

Perhaps I can explain a little here.

More explanation is to come. We're not particularly this fickle, just finding our direction sometimes, can be fraught with uncertainty. We're sorting it out.

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

passing time

Tuesday, 13 January 2015
Sometimes you've got to download more in life, than megabytes. I've had some wonderful computer free time lately, which helped engage me in other priorities. Cleaning and sorting made life a little closer to organized, and the weather has been perfect for doing some garden related things.


Click to enlarge


I used some of my gift vouchers for Christmas recently, to purchase a new glazed clay pot, and some Impatients (flowers) and Sedums (ground cover). I love the colours.

I took a bunch of plant material from my existing garden too, and attempting to strike new plants. I'll take some with us, and put the rest in the garden. This year the weather has been so perfect (once the rains actually arrived) that some plants I never thought would bear fruit, actually have.


Never say never!


I tasted my first Brazilian Cherry. It was rather tart but not entirely unpleasant. I was happy to see something I put in the ground many years ago, finally do what it was meant for - self replication! I've already planted the seed from the cherry I ate, and it will hopefully come with us too.


Two seedlings I planted earlier


Between sorting our life possessions, my art and getting our daughter ready for high school soon, I forgot how much I needed to experience life in all its different seasons. In the garden and in my changing family situation too. Children grow somewhat like plants!

It's all happening and sometimes unplugging the technology, helps me to really engage. I'm glad I live in a world with the internet, but some things are just too important to miss as well.

Being my first post for 2015 - happy new year! Whatever you're setting your hands to at the moment, I hope its turning out to be a productive year.

Monday, 29 December 2014

the blues

Monday, 29 December 2014
I was given quite a few lovely Christmas gifts this year, and I say lovely because they were selected in regards to what I like - art, home wares and garden. Even then however, some gifts simply cannot be tried on in the shop, until they're opened and tried out at home. Such was the gift I was given from an extended family relative.




I like metal garden ornaments, but this one was quite blue and showy, for a humble bushland garden like mine. But I refused to judge it, until I found the perfect place for it to live in my garden. I knew there had to be somewhere I could make it work.





None of the plants were going to befriend it unfortunately. They were sporting the latest season of chlorophyll, and blue just wasn't going to work with them.

So then I thought, its a man-made ornament - perhaps it will compliment another man-made structure better...




The wall succeeded at dwarfing the beautiful bird by sheer size, and made it look all the more out of place. I wasn't having much luck. I tried several other places near pots, all of them terracotta coloured, not blue!

But I was determined to find this ornament the perfect home, and I had just one more place I could try...




It did so much better in my potted area on the verandah - lifted high to give it the illusion of size, but also centred, so the bird looked like it was surrounded by foliage.

Thank goodness for plant stands - and my penchant for collecting foliage in pots.




Check out the leaves of this arrowhead plant. A little more daring in how it adorns chlorophyll - so they befriended the blue peacock in no time, and let them hide amongst their foliage.

I can see I'm going to have to buy at least "one" blue-glazed terracotta pot, to introduce into my planted area. I want to limit it to one, because I don't want to dominate this area with blue. I like plants too much, to upstage them.

Where you given any awkward Christmas presents this year? I liked my present (the thought behind it) so I just had to work a little harder to find a place for it to live.

Saturday, 27 December 2014

a busy week

Saturday, 27 December 2014
We were planning to have a small and quiet Christmas this year. Just our family at home, plus an early visit from my mum. That was until we learned where my husband's paternal family, normally gather for Christmas, had extensive damage to their house. The hail storm which passed through Brisbane recently, caught them unfortunately.

So when a request to have Christmas at our house was made, there was no doubt we were going to accept. This made for a tumultuous week of sorting, cleaning and last-minute Christmas shopping - all while David was working six days in the week.




We used some of this mad-cleaning time however, to tackle some jobs we needed doing before selling. There were some old bricks we'd collected somewhere, and instead of stacking them in a corner, we paved a little ramp up to the verandah instead.




This is the other side of the corner, where there's no ramp - showing what it looked like previously. We want to locate more recycled bricks now, for other small inclines to the verandah. It makes such a difference to gently walk up to the verandah, than have to step up to it.

In the clean up, I also re-purposed quite a few things from inside, to the outside. I had a large vase in our house which was meant for flowers, but for some reason, was holding a hoard of glass stones. I cannot remember why these were even purchased.


 

Instead of giving them away however, I placed them around some bamboo I put in a pot recently. Its very decorative and intrigues my son, no end!

I found myself re-potting quite a few plants for different reasons, but while doing so, also found a new home for some sentimental stones. They were part of a present my younger brother made a long time ago. It was a lovely glass container he put together (with my mum's help) with a soldering iron. Unfortunately the glass had broken and wasn't a reliable container any more, so I discarded it recently, but re-purposed the stones that were in it.




The Spanish Iris plant they surround, was originally a gift from my mum too, many moons ago! It's had several babies since, and this is just another. Bringing together some sentimental stones, (and some not so sentimental glass ones) into the potted area, added new life. This is what nature is all about - repurposing things for a greater benefit!

This was one of the jobs, during this mad marathon of cleaning, which I enjoyed doing most! Every time I water, I'm reminded of old things with a new purpose.


Sparkling clean!


Another rather large job which desperately NEEDED doing however, was to clean some of the outside windows and doors. The large sliding doors (above) had become an adobe city for mud-wasps, so it all had to go. My arms got quite a work-out! You can see the difference in the windows too, from before...




...to after...




I'd almost forgotten they were cream coloured underneath! Almost like they were just installed.

These are the tasks which will become the norm however, the closer we come to putting our house on the market. In that regard, this week of cleaning was filled with a little remorse too. Everything was being prepared for Christmas here, probably for the last time by us.


Home made gingerbread people - with help from my eldest


During this week, I was also reminded how old things can be given new meaning too. That family come first, and sometimes chaos reins for a little while - but in the end, everything finds a new place to belong.

I hope you made many memories this Christmas, to store away for later. Some good, some bad, some you'd rather never happened - like why did I eat so much!!? With the new year, just around the corner, its a reminder too, that things always start again.

Have a safe, productive and fun holiday!

Monday, 15 December 2014

paperwork

Monday, 15 December 2014
I'd much rather use paper for illustrating. When it comes to changing anything in life, however, the "official" paperwork inevitably starts piling up!





I downloaded some Compulsory Superannuation Forms recently, to give David's new employers. I filled other paperwork related to his new employment too - forms for uniforms, forms for tax file numbers - forms, forms, forms!

Why do I do it, instead of my dearly beloved? Because I file the papers away like a squirrel hiding nuts for the winter. I know where I hide it all and more importantly, how to put it all back again, lol.





There's a large four drawer filing cabinet (otherwise known as the paper tree) which holds all the documents which let us do things like change superannuation funds, change jobs and tax arrangements, sell houses, open bank accounts, apply for birth certificates, etc.

So while I'd much rather be drawing right now, it will have to wait for this season of squirrelling to be over.

Friday, 12 December 2014

changes

Friday, 12 December 2014
I've made some changes recently, some of them hard and some, very enjoyable. First, to the hard - I closed my Gully Grove blog down today. I did it out of respect to the prospective new owners, who may not appreciate having the privacy of their new home invaded online.

Gully Grove was many years in the making, and while it's difficult to say goodbye - it was also necessary.





I now have this blog though, which details our life as it changes to new locations. While moving seems daunting, it also provides the opportunity to change, let go of things we no longer need, and keep only what matters.

Perhaps it was the urgency of so many changes, that I found myself willing to explore things I may have dismissed before. Like taking up "art" in a whole new way, that has put a skip in my step again. To that end, I've been busy creating a new blog - it's called Make-do Studio, and is about my more creative pursuits.

The Geisha I've shared here recently, has been given a new look and moved house too, so have a quick visit to her new (virtual) home.

In the meantime, school holidays are here and I look forward to writing more, about other changes in our life soon.

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

first time

Tuesday, 9 December 2014
I can cross-off something else on my "bucket list" of things to do before I...well, you know what a bucket list is for, *wink*.

I made KALE CHIPS, yay!!!


About to go in the oven


These were everything I've read about - moorish and addictive. I gleaned my tips from this website and they turned out superb! I prefer mine fresh out of the oven, rather than cooled because they're so much crisper.

Anyway, I'm really pleased I got that out of my system, and will consider growing kale in our future vegetable patch, just for making kale chips.
Thinking small in a big world...

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