Wednesday, November 12, 2014

The complications of loving you (Mary Oliver & I)

“from the complications of loving you i think there is no end or return. no answer, no coming out of it. which is the only way to love, isn't it? this isn't a playground, this is earth, our heaven, for a while. therefore i have given precedence to all my sudden, sullen, dark moods that hold you in the center of my world. and i say to my body: grow thinner still. and i say to my fingers, type me a pretty song. and i say to my heart: rave on.” 
― Mary OliverThirst

{this business of romance and dating and falling in love and getting hitched
and making babies and birthing babies and loving babies and adopting babies 
and tending to babies and fretting over sick babies and reconnecting with partners and 
booking in date nights and returning to family roots and making friends and relying on friends
and needing mothers and needing fathers and needing love and giving love and giving love
and giving love and getting love and getting love and giving love and getting love

anyone else exhausted?

then replenished again buy the promise of that 
heady euphoria when children say to you
(out of the blue and unsolicited by chocolate or cookies or another such sweet treat)

"I love you"}

“When it's over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms. 

When it is over, I don't want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument. 

I don't want to end up simply having visited this world.” 
― Mary Oliver

{my son is 16
he's a young man now

i turned around and he shifted
it felt sudden but it was not
it was more of an epic moment viewed in slow motion
cinematic, heart wrenching  - soundtrack included.

“to live in this world

you must be able
to do three things
to love what is mortal;
to hold it

against your bones knowing
your own life depends on it;
and, when the time comes to let it go,
to let it go” 
― Mary OliverNew and Selected Poems, Vol. 1

{i'm baffled about the future
i keep wondering who he'll fall in love with
have babies with
travel with
argue with}

“Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn't everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
With your one wild and precious life?” 
― Mary Oliver

{i have been blessed with  the kind of love you find
in  a Nicholas Sparks novel - too good to be true 
happy endings all day long
tear jerking moments all day long}

“Sometimes I need
only to stand
wherever I am 
to be blessed.” 
― Mary OliverEvidence: Poems

{i have no frigging idea what I've done to deserve this love
truly I don't}

“Ten times a day something happens to me like this - some strengthening throb of amazement - some good sweet empathic ping and swell. This is the first, the wildest and the wisest thing I know: that the soul exists and is built entirely out of attentiveness.” 
― Mary Oliver

{my tribe are super heroic 
(and both deserve medals in patience and forgiveness)

my tribe help me see the world they way Mary Oliver does}

“Oh Lord of melons, of mercy, though I am not ready, nor worthy, I am climbing towards you.” 
― Mary OliverThirst

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Boring Blog Business . . .

I've been away. Mentally and Physically. Jaunts down south (to a farm stay) and the beach house as well as jaunts to nurseries to plant the garden for spring. Mentally my mind continually vacates to the images and ideas flirting floating around cyber space.
Pinterest be gone! (just kidding . . . come back, sorry! I love you!)

So here's a blurry, visual and sloppy catch up - images and quick captions. Better something than nothing right? (the procrastinator in me keeps arguing for better photos and more time to write poetically and thoughtfully. The realist in me says "who you kidding?" and the optimist says "share the little that you have - it's all life and it's all good enough"

A jaunt to Bridgetown - historical, crafty, thrifty, tasty and pretty much 
everything else we love in a small community

Young  man had his first coffee - well a Mocha to be precise - with a very weak shot of espresso. 
I keep telling him he's got the rest of his life to discover the perils of caffeine 
but he was curious and his friends have tried it.. blah blah… teenagers!)

The locals told me that in winter they call it Fridgetown because it gets so blooming cold.
I loved it and I'm definitely heading back

The coffee saga continued and after much arguing I agreed to let Young Prince have an
Iced Coffee (decaf - shhh don't tell him that) and thank the heavens he didn't like it!
Mum scores and we go back to having quality hot chocolates and milkshakes.

The beach house was a haven (as it always is) for reading, board games, period dramas, foot spas, 
long walks along the beach, killer pasta dishes and family chatter

Treasures were found and dragged home...

… galleries were visited - this piece Humanature by Kim Perrier

of course there was thrifting...

… and sorting ...

.. and planting - we've decided to concentrate on tomatoes this year.
Herbs too - but we thought instead of harvesting a little of everything with a lot of 
trial and error (not to mention slugs and snails) thrown in for good measure - why not see how
we fare planting many varieties of just one veg - or in this case fruit. Fingers crossed!
Having said that I did recently discover these guys and so I ordered THIS and THIS
Hoping to cultivate a few hot seedlings as Christmas gifts.

On the lazier Sunday mornings we trample (pyjama clad) up the back of the 
garden to sit with with the chooks. Our oldest gal Roz has gone broody (AGAIN) but we aren't
going to put chicks underneath her this time - maybe next year though. She's such a wonderful 
mother hen it would be a shame to not let her raise a few more feathered friends.

I'm still working at my Floral Design course - with an eye on improving my bouquet techniques.
I luuuuurve flowers  - have you noticed? This bunch of Stock, Verbena, Irish Bells and Delphiniums
lasted 9 days before showing signs of giving up the ghost. Just goes to show that regular water changes and stem trimming really do make a difference with cut flowers.

We've had blissful days of misty drizzle too and Young Prince has been rising early in order to
"get the most out of his vacation"
This lasted for the first three days of holidays … then we were straight back to sleeping in

I've been striking succulents (another Christmas gift idea I have brewing)
and purchasing preserve jars and mason jars for other homemade loveliness
(we also sorted out our pantry - a three hour job that delivered more satisfaction
than I would ever have imagined possible for such a menial task - I would've taken before and 
after photos had I thought this a blog worthy moment but it was not until we'd completed 
the job, stood back, surveyed the VAST improvement and realised what a mahoosive 
difference an organised pantry space makes  - I smile every time I reach for 
a clearly labelled jar of just about anything now . . . small things - big change)

Speaking of small things - Hubby fixed the running loo.
It ran for quite sometime. It drove us nuts. We kept closing 
it off at the wall to save water wastage. We also procrastinated at calling
the plumber - hoping that something else would go wrong so that it seemed
worthy of a visit from a man charging tiny fortunes to replace washers.

Then came You Tube, Bunnings and steely determination.
(He's so chuffed with himself I swear he'd like 
to wear his underpants on the outside - even for just a day)

However . . .
His success has cast a shadow over my failure.
Kefir - cannot - will not - has not - shall not.
So here's where You Tube and steely determination DID NOT succeed.
(I mean come on . . . I wrapped it up and gave it a heat pad - how much 
more love can you show a strain of bacteria?)

. . . and finally, visits with nieces and nephew
Which are always enough to make my heart sing


So that's my world and all that's been buzzing around it lately.

Big plans, changes and dreams are on their way though.
New look for here, new ideas for work and adventures for 2015
Stay tuned!

In the meantime please tell me what's been happening in your
corner of the universe - spare no details.
I like details.

In finishing off I thought I'd link to a video that has me simply mesmerised
(the song's not bad either!)

Talk soon

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

I've seen it all before ...

How often do you surf the web?

For your consideration... 

In just a few minutes of web surfing you can view hundreds (maybe even thousands)
of images, ideas, foods, faces, places, projects, products,  images, artworks, craft works, 
words, advertisements, complaints ... (head spinning as we speak)...... and let's not discount the exorbitant amount of piffle. At any given moment millions of people are interacting on a global scale  - watching, taking, using, creating, downloading, buying, selling.... you get the idea.

Recently I participated in a debate with a group (all female) of acquaintances regarding the internet and a number of issues that it presents. 

It began with privacy (or rather lack thereof) when it comes to social media and posting photos of your family, your children, your friends, their children, your art, your home, your location!

I'm sure you've seen those posts (on Facebook) warning you that your privacy is being
violated by (Facebooks') new terms and agreements - urging you to check your settings and change them to "espionage stealth status" so that your identity may only be revealed to those who already know who you are, where you live... even when you're home alone (tragic but true).

In a very spirited tone (I use that description in its' most demonic and poltergeist sense) we argued as to whether you had the right to demand rights or was the web a privilege to be grateful for and not challenged. Clearly I was the only person present at this debate who had studied philosophy for I was the only one happy to enter the realms of determinism, trees that fall in forests and chickens arriving before eggs. Many of my attempts to keep things friendly were loosely veiled in profound metaphysical suppositions that were usually met with blank stares annoyance and (often audible) grunts of disbelief. What can I say - I'm a pacifist. 

We debated (rather loudly I might add) as to the merits of keeping one's children out of the prying eyes of perverts whilst behind closed doors but not really having any control over whether or not they were being violated (not my word) on other forums - for example images taken of them by their friends and shared liberally. Everyone became quite passionate at this point but they seemed  - on the surface - to reach a unanimous conclusion: Our children needed to be protected from the absolute certainty that was the dangerous general public. (Oh and quite a few ladies were ignoring their children's cries for attention whilst ardently arguing to their rights as harmless (pffff) little beings... just saying) 

I was amazed at how opinionated people became over matters that they had no personal experience in. Sometimes I wonder whether people actually care that about the things that go wrong as much as they care about having an opinion regarding the things that go wrong.

We debated on the matter of etiquette when it came to posting photos of people without prior consent. Should you always ask? Even at family gatherings?  (one person said that she refused to having her photo taken much less shared on social media - yet she admitted that she looked at the photos of others without leaving comments or likes and would also post photos of others without showing them first - when asked if she thought this was rather unfair she said that she did not. Almost everyone disagreed with her but simultaneously admitted to having shared images without gaining formal approval first) Are we obliged to ask people whether they mind having their faces tagged & their lives shared via your daily post? Is it open slather if everyone's doing it? 

We touched on the rather sticky topic of what you should and should not share -  and how to tell people that their posts, images, tweets were distressing, distasteful, disparaging or (even worse) boring. Most agreed that you stopped following these offenders (or hid their timeline) whilst others suggested that it was best to let people know if they were "sh*t at all things social media" (not my quote... wish it was though)

We contended on the importance of teaching our children that ALL media forms have an agenda - usually money. Was it important to let them know this in order to empower them as further consumers devourers of the web? Do our kids even care as much about privacy as we do? 
Should we be teaching them about the importance of privacy?? (Ok... I'll admit that I threw that pigeon in amongst the cats... oops Freudian slip)

We debated on the matter of credit. The notion that when you take a photo of art (graffiti, public sculptures, buskers etc) are you always obliged to link the source? And what of your own ideas? If you were inspired by something you spotted on Design Sponge was it your duty to say so before you madly uploaded images of your mini kitchen reno?

Was it possible to be too anal? Too liberal? Are any ideas original? 

And what of all the posts, photos, competitions themselves? Is there anything original left to be said? 
Are we sick of slick shots of perfect cappuccinos and cake (guilty) or the flowers that decorated the table (guilty) or the funky decor (guilty) that clearly was not our idea and yet here we are receiving 47 likes for taking a photo of someone elses' styling genius (guilty!!) Or is this act of digital candour merely "sharing the biz love" (NOT my words) 

Is this a ridiculous waste of mental stress? Are we to accept that when they invented "screen shots" they destroyed copyright? And who is they??

Oh it was a colourful and enlightening debate (waste of an hour). I think some friendships are no longer on the same footing and perhaps a few Facebook pals are now unknowingly pissed off, shunned blocked. I left feeling that buzz you feel when you still have things to shout out self righteously say. More importantly I left realising that everything on the web was both unique and ordinary all at once. 

A sort of global school photo. When you squint and look closely you spot yourself but take a step back and you've seen it all before.

What are your thoughts people? 

Come on... speak freely! 


Aside - I'm well aware of the fact this post is fraught with strikethrough text, parenthesis and frightening grammatical errors... that was deliberate and I blame social media. :-) xx 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Pinterest ... the pros and cons

To pin or not to pin? That is really not the question here at all. The question is how not to pin for two hours (or until one's bum goes numb) at the expense of other more productive activities. Indeed no amount of pinning ever gets the ironing done, the dishes clean or the family fed - BUT  - it will show you how to make your own linen spray, stack the dishwasher effectively, cook a vegan feast for twenty in under an hour - I kid you not... If it can be done, if it can be seen, if it can be photographed, catalogued, made, visited, laughed at or stalked... it's on Pinterest. I think of it as a subscription to every known publication on the planet.

I have a few boards (cough cough) and yes, I've pinned a modest (cough cough) tally of images.
I tend to set a timer nowadays  - this way I avoid being judged by my sixteen year old who thrives on noting my "screen time" ..... and let's face it - it can be overdone.

So far I've come up with waaay more pros than cons. In fact, I only have two negatives to note:

1 - Time wasting - enough said.
2 - Bad pinning = bad linking = bad credit = ineffective information = rubbish = internet.

So as a general rule - always do your research. Check that credit given is legit and be aware of the fact that the digital era we live in allows ANYTHING on the web to be manipulated. (ANYTHING)

Having said all that  - I love it. Not as much as the written, printed, three dimensional word no, but pretty darn satisfying as far inspiration, organisation and gathering of ideas.

Here are a few of my pins...

Obviously it's great for creating mood boards that inspire your dream home, sense of style, taste... love of white floorboards, linen and all things rustic... but did you know that you can find your DREAM bathroom too?

... or perhaps you obsess over greenery...

Need artistic inspiration?
Well look no further... Pinterest has you covered....

Paolo Reversi 

David Oliveira

... and if fine art is not quite your talent well then just get 
your craft on baby...

... or pin just the movies & tunes you'd highly recommend
to friends and fellow pinners... 



The Cabinet of Dr Caligari 

The Rocky Horror Picture Show 

... then again if you fancy cooking up a few carbohydrate dense delights
(as I do)  then you you've come to the right place darling. In Pinterest land it's ok to be 
a lacto-ove-vegan-paleo-gluten tolerant-carbaddicted-foodie...

... and plan the outfit you want to wear to that Spring wedding that's coming up...

... or just pin for the sake of sheer beauty...

And if you're anything like me and you love a bit of wit mixed with a few giggles...

I know a lot of people are concerned about crediting images and content correctly.
Of course if you can give credit then it's deemed the proper thing to do.
Problem is the ball of yarn has been played with - the tangles are too hard to unravel.

When I pin artists I check the link first and then (if I can) 
I try to support their social media or link directly back to the source.

It's tough though. A lot of the time you can but when you are unable to 
it means deciding whether the credit is worth more than the beauty of the art
itself. Do you let go or do you pin and just love what you've saved?

And what about intellectual property - that meme that had you in 
stitches all day... who IS the comical genius behind that cat GIF ?

I love a good debate. I'd be keen to hear what you have to say on the matter.
As you can see I've provided links back to my pins but I'm afraid that's as far as I've gone.
I have cleared my conscience with one of my favourite quotes from the essay 

"To give a text an Author" and assign a single, corresponding interpretation 
to it "is to impose a limit on that text."

And on that note I'll sign off with one of my favourite pins..
(Author unknown but this does not detract from the giggle factor)


Last but not least - a huge, heartfelt and gracious THANK YOU to 
all the beautiful people who responded to my last post with care. compassion, warmth, 
kindness, humour and support. Emails, comments, flowers! 
It humbled me so.
 Indeed there's nothing like a huge dose of gratitude to transform ones mood. 

Wishing you all a fabulous and safe weekend peoples

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

What does it mean when you belong to someone?

If you call me up, I'll say a few words

But I'll try not to speak too long
Please to be kind and I'll try to explain
I'll probably get it all wrong

What does it mean when you promise someone?

That no matter how hard or whatever may come

It means that I won't give in

Won't give in, won't give in
'Cause everyone I love is here
Play it once, disappear

Once in a while I return to the fold

With people I call my own

Even if time is just a flicker of light
And we all have to die alone

What does it mean when you belong to someone?

When you're born with a name, when you carry it on

It means that I won't give in

Won't give in, won't give in
'Cause everyone I love is here
All at once, I’ll show you how to get real

Come on now, come on now, can you feel it, I can see it in you

Come on now, come on now, reveal it, turn around won't you

The right time, the right place, right now, turn around

A chance is made, a chance is lost

I carry myself to the edge of the earth

It means that I won't give in

Won't give in, won't give in
'Cause everyone I love is here
Say it once, just say it and disappear

(Finn Brothers)


I've been away for a while
(and that's ok)

It's been a tough few months but I can see the sunshine now
There's been death and sickness and arguing and ugliness

There's also been a lot of love

That sticky glue that wont come off...

... traces of it everywhere - the aftermath of what it means to
love fiercely, ruthlessly and patiently

I'm in awe of this glue
This substance that stitches the human race together
Quilting us into a pattern that cannot be traced back to its' origins

My family astound me with their capacity to heal
They inspire me and give me reason to keep on keeping on
Even when I'm not sure what the heck it is I'm actually doing

That restless heart beats within all of us
It's the Yin that sways back to the Yang
It's the down to show you which way's up

It feels good to be back 

I'd like to dedicate this post to my brother


People think a soul mate is your perfect fit, and that's what everyone wants. But a true soul mate is a mirror, the person who shows you everything that is holding you back, the person who brings you to your own attention so you can change your life. 

A true soul mate is probably the most important person you'll ever meet, because they tear down your walls and smack you awake. But to live with a soul mate forever? Nah. Too painful. Soul mates, they come into your life just to reveal another layer of yourself to you, and then leave. 

A soul mates purpose is to shake you up, tear apart your ego a little bit, show you your obstacles and addictions, break your heart open so new light can get in, make you so desperate and out of control that you have to transform your life, then introduce you to your spiritual master...” 
― Elizabeth GilbertEat, Pray, Love