Saturday, May 31, 2008


that's what Amitie means, and it's very hard not to be friends with this shop.

I have sold two girls this past week, which continues to be a big thrill, so the half dozen on the table need to get a move along with three already promised, the other three will go into the shop. Material for clothing was required and I seem to have focussed on purples this time, which is not a colour I'm normally drawn to. The two linen blends I just loved, the little dolls I think I'll make into a dress for one of the girls and the other I want to make some new cushion covers for our couch.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


Leila is 16 months old.

She wasn't interested for the first 6 weeks of solids, wouldn't touch anything pureed or mashed. In the end I went straight to finger foods and she was fine but she only wanted to feed herself. She's never really allowed me to do any of the feeding, not really, an occasional mouthful but nothing more.

Now not only am I not allowed to feed her, but I'm not allowed to watch her eating! You think I'm joking. I have to put the food in front of her and then pretend she's not there, it's the only way she'll eat. Last week I left the room in frustration and Ella called out "stay out there mum, she's eating".

When she's had enough she puts her cutlery in her plate/bowl and pushes it as far away from her as she can, or simply hands to all to me. Tonight she got down from her chair (she's only in a booster seat), went to the cupboard under the kitchen sink, opened the doors, emptied her dinner into the pull out bin, closed the bin and the doors and reached up and pushed the plate into the sink. Is that normal for one so young? Then, she went and got the broom from beside the fridge and started trying to sweep the floor under their table, as I do after their dinner. That's the part I find a little disconcerting!

The bin bit concerns me. I mislaid my watch a couple of months ago. It was a lovely classic Longines that Geoff bought me when Leila was born to replace another one the same which I lost, which was his 30th birthday present to me. I have a sneaking suspicion perhaps it went into the bin, otherwise surely I would have found it by now.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Play Dough vs DAS

Sorry, seem to be so backwards in getting my photos to work as I'd like.

Monday, May 26, 2008

It was a gorgeous day

so we spent a few hours this morning with friends at the park near us. They have lovely walking tracks and it's so peaceful, the air almost feels cleaner there. I forget how nice it is and literally only 5 minutes away, we must use it more.

It was Ella's dear friend's 5th birthday today, so it was especially nice to spend the time with them. Happy Birthday Miranda.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Threads and Flicks

A new skirt for Ella copied from a Townmouse skirt we bought years ago. Thanks to Tamara for the recommendation to buy a cutting board - sure it's for a quilt I'm planning to make, but it is very useful - I'm slow to catch on to new tools. I am also one of the legions who have bought Amanda's book, but I haven't yet had time for more than a glance.

Some material and a pattern my mother in law cut out for her daughter about 40 years ago and never finished. As she was handing it over to me she still mourned the fact that she hadn't finished it - that together with the Mousetrap game they searched Melbourne for one Christmas but all the shops were sold out. They bought Cath a Skippy game instead but her face fell when she opened it.

Geoff's off to "Dreamtime at the G" tonight. Ella and I went to the movies to see this together but it was released on dvd this week. The plan is that we'll put Leila to bed, get into our pj's and watch it together.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

So Interested

Ella is so interested in everything. She has always loved to help and from a young age has helped me cook. Before she could stand I would sit her on the bench and let her watch me from very close quarters. From there she would drag over a chair to stand beside me and now that's been reduced to a little foot stool.

This week, however, she's been interested in cooking alone. We started off with pretend cooking making very interesting concoctions from the store cupboard. What she called brain food was, I believe, a combination of cooked rice, bread crumbs, various spices, tomato sauce - I lost track after that. I thought we should start focussing on things she could safely do all on her own, so yesterday she chose salad. We went to the fruit shop and she chose the ingredients herself, we talked about what made a good choice for each type of vegetable and then when we got home she prepared it, with some guidance, all on her own.

The only problem was finding a knife for her to use that was sharp enough to cut and yet not so sharp that it was dangerous for her to use. Has anyone discovered anything suitable for younger children? I can only think of the ones they use on Playschool, which look like a regular table knife only slightly more serated at the end. Something else to add to the "look for" list.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

About Last Night

I feel a little superstitious sharing this information, but I'm so happy, relieved, thrilled, that I just have to. Last night, for the first time since she was a newborn, Leila slept through the night from 7pm until 6am - ahhhhhhhhhh. I didn't open my eyes to hearing her until Geoff brought her in with us at 5:49am. I say superstitious because now I've said it out loud, it may never happen again!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Bag Lady

Some time last year I bought one of the Japanese crafting books on making bags. I have looked at it numerous times and found the thinking part of it too much. I have wanted to give it a try for ages and yesterday Geoff took the girls to the pool and I had time to figure it out. I have to say, it's SUPER EASY. SUPER easy, I can't believe I left it so long. Okay these are simple tote bags, but it couldn't be more straight forward. I tried to take shots of me "wearing" the bags, but I was slouching trying to fit everything in the shot and think I may have received emails asking about my third pregnancy as a result, not flattering.
So, these take about half an hour each to make, start to finish - really! Be prepared, I think this could be addictive and everyone I know will most probably be receiving a gifted bag at some point in the near future.

And the girls declared it "YUMMMMMO"

I do manage to produce some rather tasty bread but it's not always the prettiest. I think perhaps I need to work a little more on my forming, a bit hasty at the end. It is delish, well worth the wait.

Favourite Thing

For many years the family of one of my sisters-in-law had a holiday house down at Ocean Grove. It was what I think of as a classic holiday house - somewhat fibro, somewhat weatherboard, lots of bedrooms (many with bunk beds), the kitchen table was long and church like with reclaimed pews on either side for chairs. The kitchen was stocked with a mix of different items. I believe the house was shared by my sil's parents and aunt & uncle, the crockery and utensils were extras from each respective city house.

We only went with my husband's family once, for a weekend, cricket on the beach, lots of kids, too much food, too much wine. Although only there for a few days, there were two pieces I loved in that kitchen, on that weekend, neither of which are valuable I'm sure, but something about each just appealed immediately. When they decided to sell my sister in law remembered how much I'd liked those two things and when they were packing up and selling off the contents, she kept them both for me. She thought that they had been her aunt's or her gran's at some time. This jug was one of them.

She doesn't move so fast,

this mother of mine - there is no fresh bread for lunch today. A natural leavens takes so much longer than a baker's yeast or dried yeast. I started the bread this morning around 9am, it's now 13:30 and as you can see, we're still a couple of hours off oven time - so it's a dinner loaf today. This is a mill loaf, a combination of strong white, wholemeal and rye flour. I hope, by the end of the day to have some more appetising shots!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Attractive isn't she,

my mother. Come day 3 she's starting to separate slightly, she's also eating more. By the end of tomorrow she should really take off.

The spirit lives on

The Anzac biscuit, do only Australians and Kiwis know their origins, or supposed origins, by this name at least?

I feel I should feel embarassed about showing how badly I care for some of my kitchenwares, as witnessed by the state of one of these biscuit trays. Not sure what it says about me that I'm not, embarassed that is, or at least not too much to share.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Feeding Mother - day 2

"Milly needs a tutu mum"

When your child is sick it's hard to refuse them anything, I find. This took me only a few minutes to put together but it has a fatal flaw, it's not elasticised. I used elastic, but I guess you have to stretch the elastic as you sew otherwise it's not going to stretch, obvious now of course but not before I tried to put it on her. I only ever put elastic through things to then gather, not to gather in its own right. I'll try again, but perhaps not today.

Monday, May 12, 2008

I call her mother,

you may know her as leaven. With the warmer weather my breadmaking slows, but as it's cooled my enthusiasm has returned and so too, therefore, has my mother. I will record her progress over the next week, if you want to learn more you should pick up a copy of this book, it's inspiring.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Dirty Riches

It's always exciting harvesting fruit and veg you've grown yourself, but I think there's something especially exciting about digging up potatoes. Ella and I were both saying "cool" a lot as we collected our lovely fresh kipflers this afternoon. I think it's because the potato plant is so unassuming, even unattractive, and you can't see anything going on, it's all hidden beneath the soil. Because of this you almost don't expect anything to be there and when you tip out the pot, or dig up the plot, and from the dark soil roll tiny creamy potatoes, it's very, well, cool!

Happy Mother's Day

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Soren Sorensen

Do you have fictitious conversations with yourself? I do, often. I have the conversation out loud, when I'm on my own and I'm always myself. I'm actually speaking to someone, be they also fictitious, but I'm having the conversation aloud.

Today I must confess that I watched ten mindless minutes of Oprah. It was an episode on decluttering your life. They took one very overweight couple whose house was an absolute mess and got rid of the "fat" as they referred to all the junk they'd accumulated and which, apparently, was a symptom of them having put on weight. They had the usual amount of schmultzy psuedo therapy and everyone ended up happy.
I can't remember exactly what it was that prompted my conversation with myself and the other person I've already mentioned, but it was along self help lines. The "other" person asked me a question, after some preamble chit chat which I can't exactly recall, "what do you do well?". You know I found myself speechless. I was thinking of all sorts of things in my head, things to do with the house, the girls, Geoff, my job, every aspect of my life and honestly, I didn't answer, I felt I couldn't. I feel that I do okay at a lot of things, but honestly, I don't think I do anything well because I don't do it as well as I'd like. I really floored myself with that. How sad is that? Geoff has said to me, at times, that I'm a glass half empty person, which is so awful to hear, but after today's conversation I think perhaps I am.

A while ago when talking about relationships, love, I made my own hypothisis of why I'm a dissatisfied (not unhappy) person or as I often say, a grass is greener person. I feel that on a sliding scale of which one end is pure bliss and the other is there's nothing to live for my life is over, I truly believe that I, we, my family and I, I believe that we deserve bliss. As a result I find that when I fall short of achieving anything but exactly what I believe is the best, I feel that it's not enough, because it could be more, it could be better.
Is self analysis helpful? I think it's absolutely part of who I am and how I look at things. I can't accept anything without questioning, but I hate that I find a negative in things, not depression exactly, but life is so rich and wonderful and there's much to see and do and be part of and it feels like so little time to do it all, I feel overwhelmed at times, at the sheer magnitude of all there is.

On a cheerier note, the photo was inspired by one of Jenn Causey's websites. I LOVE her breakfast shots. I've even considered doing something similar myself, but the problem is my breakfast is pretty what's in this shot every day. Another thing about me, in some aspects, I'm so predictable.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

The boy, his wife, her crazy hair

Occasionally there is a photograph taken of me that will really take me by surprise. It's very occasionally mind you and my reaction will be "I don't look too bad", and I'm honestly surprised that I've come out okay. This time, however, this photo from the weekend took me by surprise because I didn't realise I needed hair "care" so badly! I've been trying to grow my hair for the longest time. I have had super short hair for about 9 years, not much longer than Geoff's, and everyone commented how much it suited me. Like most things though, you tire of the same thing year after year and this is the third time I've tried growing my hair.

I don't want long hair, in fact not much longer than it is now, but I would like the top bits to grow down and join the bottom bits so it can then be cut into a style. Seeing this photo though, I was unaware how much of a hat my hair has become, it looks like it's all stuck together. I have very thick hair, somewhat unruly, and believe it or not I'd try to style my hair on this day. I even went into Aveda on Sunday and asked about different products, trying to find something to suit. I wanted a miracle fix but couldn't decide between oil serums, straightening creams, waxes, liquid gels and wax gels! I think I'm decidedly middle aged, I find it hard to choose new products, it's information overload and I can only think of the energy that will go into trying to make them work.

I haven't done anything since this photo, since Sunday, the girls are sick again but also I have decided to just let it stay curly and be damned until it grows - yes, it's curly when not dried too. It's not curly enough to be gorgeous, just enough to be messy.

Am I done with the complaining? for now.

PS And honestly, this is the best of a bad bunch, I'm too vain to share the worst!


I dragged the beloved easel inside yesterday and we gave it a workout. Leila did her first painting and given how engrossed she was, I feel there will be many more.


We have been doing a lot of work on our front garden of late. We're finally managing to finish something. We tend to take on jobs around the house and then run out of steam before they're 100% finished. I do love the garden so it's not so much work, but it does take time particularly when you're moving barrow loads of little stones.

We've also spent quite a lot of money on new plants as well. The garden that we inherited was heavy on lavenders and roses, which at one time I've loved, but with water restrictions likely to be a way of life we have changed to a native garden. I know lavenders and roses are hardy creatures who never got much in the way of water from me and continued on quite happily, but native makes me feel better, as if we're making the right choice.

On the weekend we had a lovely time with my parents, an extended 70th celebration for my mum and got home around lunchtime on Sunday after 24 hours away from the house. We live in a quiet, conservative area. We know most of our neighbours and although there are a few at times loud teenagers, it's generally without any adventure. When we got home on Sunday, unloaded the girls and the car, when I got to the front gate the thing glaring at me was the fact that someone had removed the prostrate grevillea I had planted in front of our gate only 2 weeks ago. That's the disappointment part. When I say removed, have a look at the pictures, tell me what you think. Firstly I thought it was vandalism, so looked around for a hatefully discarded plant, but found none. Tell me otherwise please, because I really find the idea that someone could steal my plant to put in their own garden, so thoroughly disappointing, I can't begin to tell you. I actually find the idea of it being theft harder to understand than vandalism. And now what, do I plant again?