I have spent all morning looking for this damn photo! What is it?.... 6am?... I have been sitting here looking for it since 4.30am. I was not going to let the search for it beat me. I did do a bit of image decluttering along the way though. Phew, found it.....not in my image folders....but in my iphoto stash. What was it doing there? Anyway, I was looking for it for a client who emailed me for some advice. I know I have posted it before but I keep coming back to it as the inspiration for my next home's terrace and pool. I know that I will not be building on a block as big as last time and I think this is the perfect solution to fitting in a pool, an indoor/outdoor room, and possibly some lawn up the back to the left.... on a narrow inner city block. What do you think? Will this image be dated by the time I find my next project? Seems pretty timeless to me.
PS I'd do a better back fence. Oh, and a smaller second floor so that there is some roof peeking out over the terrace and not just a second floor wall. Oh, and thicker posts (200x200). Just sayin'.
We learn from every experience, every little bit of pain. No matter how small and insignificant it seems in the big scheme of things. Even this 'guitar thing' is teaching my boy about life, the real world, the 'not so good' and having perspective in a world full of pain (we've had a lot of family discussion re Japan and the local catastrophes in our lives of late). To learn, there must be pain in some way.... but you grow so much from it. I showed him all your beautiful comments from yesterday's post. He sat and shook his head in disbelief...... "they're wonderful people, Mum". Don't I know it. You're wonderful. You bring magic into our lives. Your blog love enriches my whole little family. Thank you.
My son's beautiful guitar was stolen from his school classroom over the weekend.
He shouldn't have left it there..... but Friday, he had so many things to carry over to where I meet his little brother, to gather them for home.
It's an old school .....so there are no fences, no security, no cameras... nothing to deter theft really.
..... and "Mum, everyone knows how to pick the lock if they need to get into the classroom". Hmmm.
He's shed some tears... his exam music, everything has gone. Don't you feel helpless when someone takes something that is yours and you know you can't get it back. I stand there thinking, "but it wasn't yours to take. Someone worked hard for that you know".
So we head off to 7am guitar ensemble practice this morning sans guitar. "What are you going to do for a guitar?" I don't know Mum, but I just want Mr N to know that I am still committed".
One can never peruse too many pictures of kitchens I say. This one is a perfect example of 'small can be even more gorgeous than large'. I'd be very happy in this kitchen.... with all that beautiful natural light. Love the industrial look windows and the interesting ceiling..... and the joinery of course. I am also a big sucker for a bit of symmetry too!
Boy, these Mondays come around fast. Slow. Down. Life. Please.
It's the last week of Term One for us here. That went way too fast.
My strategy for tackling 'unsavoury paperwork', with the minimum amount of damage to the soul: find a peaceful local coffee shop, with free wi-fi, a big table, superior coffee, gorgeous piped classical piano music and pretty surrounds.
I powered through my work this morning, in such a beautiful environment, then had enough energy to climb through 'the shed', send off some parcels, housework my way to a sparkling house and pre-prepare an edible meal for dinner tonight. My boys are in zombie mode (it's Friday afternoon so they head to their computer games..... as all that 'fun' is totally banned during the school week!).
The house is so quiet..... I might even pour myself a champers.
.... but it can't really be ....when we're enlisting help... can it? Can you please visit my friend Katrina's blog HERE. She needs some help enlisting tradesmen for a very exciting project she is involved in. You'll be hearing a lot about it on this here blog when it is televised as I plan to be a very raucous groupie.
What is it with waking up at the crack of dawn? Well 3.59am to be precise. Every. Day.
Does anyone else out there rattle around in the dark every morning like I do?
I don't think I am complaining, I am just curious as to why, even when I am dog tired, 3.59am hits, and just like 'GroundHog Day', I am up and at 'em.
Tried everything... and being a scientist by training have administered the 'control' situation as well. Later to bed/early to bed. Alcohol/no alcohol. Coffee/no coffee after 12pm. Milk/no milk. Dark room/not so dark room. Snack/no snack. Small meal/whopping meal. Damn pineal gland.
My Mum says, even as a little tacker, I was up with the sparrows. She recalls a period in my life, when I had just learnt to string a sentence together. I used to rock my (well chewed, lead based painted) cot to the other side of the room and lean out the window to my neighbour ('Mr Ron', or as I called him 'Mr Won) and recite: "NOW the day is coming up", over and over, with emphasis on a different word every time I warbled it. "now THE day is coming up"..."now the DAY is coming up"....now the day IS coming up".... 'Mr Won' always used to call back, "Good morning Mi-Mi". Dear Mr Won, if you'd laid low I might not have done it EVERY morning.
I must admit, the pure dawn hours, when the birds are waking up, are my most creative. Problems that I couldn't solve the night before all suddenly have solutions, fears I have are acknowledged and logically 'dissipated'.... and dawn is the best time to be grateful..... for another day.
The dawn gives you great strength I reckon. Oh, and I get to blog... in the dark... with the birds... in the most 'delicious' peace and quiet.
Is anyone else out there rattling around in the wee small hours? Drop me a line. I'm up!
P.S. Took so many little breaks yesterday to spoil myself (based on your advice) and drank so much coffee (out of pretty teacups) that I ended up with a monster 'coffee headache' last night... so I just had to take a luxurious bath, complete with book and mineral water in champagne glass (due to monster headache). Thanks for all your tips! We need to treat ourselves often don't we.
The lovely Jane, from Planet Baby, sent me something from this wonderful site just when I needed it and I have been hooked ever since. I thrive on their motivating daily emails and am going to take their advice today and spoil myself. I am going to treat myself to a coffee and a cupcake!
Do you treat yourself? Do you do nice things for yourself? A few months ago, my Mum sat down with me and forced me to write a list of nice things I could do for myself. I struggled. My repertoire is still quite limited: go for a run, stop for a coffee, meet a friend for a catch up.
Would love to hear what you do to spoil yourself. And it's guaranteed that I will then steal your ideas.
Happy Thursday my friends... and here's to passionfruit cupcakes. Yes, a trip to Bulimba Bakery is my soul purpose today (besides washing, ironing, cleaning, mothering, school runs, working, music lessons, soccer practice).
Every time I head to the shed for work, or to unpack stock, I make sure I come back with a box labelled 'boys'. I don't want to get to the big 'shed unpacking stage', in the distant future sometime, and find that my boys have grown out of their belongings.
Yesterday it was little one's bookshelf contents. We unpacked the box in the garage, put those treasures we wanted to keep (or more melodramatically those that "I would die" without - although he was doing fine until he saw them all) in a little pile to take upstairs to find a space for, and the others in a pile for our cousins or 'the poor little children' (lifeline).
We had not seen this one particular box for a few years. It was full of kindy books and early childhood memories. I couldn't believe the books my boy chose to keep. You could see his little brain ticking over, remembering why each book was special to him and why he was drawn to it. I thought to myself, 'surely he can't remember when I read that one to him, he was 12 months old'... but yep, something triggered in the memory banks and the book found it's way onto the keepsake pile.
You don't think they remember too far back to baby days but they do. Every experience is layered with another and then another and they become who they are because of every story you read to them, every cuddle you give them.
We sat reading all about Kipper, Tiger and 'Sock Thing' last night, giggling away. Even Master 13 stopped his homework to snuggle up with us, exclaiming, "oh I remember that"! They remember every moment you have spent with them, even if it is buried in the deep recesses of their growing, busy brains. It's a comforting thought..... to know that every moment matters and shapes who they become.
Time moves so fast. Life is so fleeting. Read more 'Kipper' I say!
Fellow Brisbanites, can you feel it? There's a nip in the air! I had a couple of leaves fall on me during my walk this morning. Could we be moving into 'fall'?...... as they say in the Northern Hemisphere. If you really concentrate and 'feel' past the humidity, there is a slight change in the air.... there is a nip. Get those scarves and boots out! Can't wait to not be hot and sticky 24/7!
I thank you from the bottom of my heart for all your emails and comments regarding my PayPal debacle. Just my luck that this has all happened the month that all my lights arrive on shore and I need to take payment for them. This paragraph on the www.paypalsucks.com website pretty much sums it up:
"Lastly, I have to say... PayPal is not crack. You can walk away from it anytime. I hope you'd step back and think about it, why would you want to do business with a company that puts you through all this in the first place?"
Hmmm, good point.
I'm off to tackle the shed this morning. The boys are armed with their ripsticks so they can ripstick to their hearts content on the lovely smooth concrete while I 'trolley' my way into the depths of who knows what. I have a couple of styling jobs to do and the products I need are right at the back of the shed... of course.... the hazards of unsupervised removalists! I will also locate the prizes for my giveaway... so sorry for the delay....didn't think I'd be moving so fast..... and if I can find my teacups, I will be able to be more of a lady when my Mum comes over this afternoon for a visit. Lots of jobs to do...doesn't life get in the way of life sometimes! It's good to be busy though. Grateful.
... well it seems in my haste, to help my fellow man, I rushed into a situation that has made PayPal very unhappy. Apparently I had to have a letter of authority to fundraise or a subordination letter from a registered charity or non profit organisation or a licence to fundraise issued by the Australian Government. Who'd have thought? I didn't have time to run around and sort out paperwork... didn't even know there was paperwork, just wanted to get James a washing machine and Ken some hot water and electricity.... which we did folks... despite the bun fight now behind the scenes.
Paypal have suspended my account as they think I am a money launderer. No amount of business documentation, photo id and proof of everything is making a difference. Makes running a small business a challenge now! Thank goodness I got the funds to Ken and James.... I did get them to sign a notice saying that they received the funds so that's something! Who would have thought such bureaucracy was involved in such a spontaneous act. As I have just retweeted in my twitter account: "Do what you can, with what you have, where you are". Theodore Roosevelt.
So now I fight with PayPal behind the scenes. Maybe I can live without PayPal. Is it possible to live without PayPal? I haven't for such a long time. Looks like I will have to.
Speaking of Ken, I spoke to him yesterday. He is having bureaucracy problems too. He's living in a house with no walls and has to justify his situation to the government to get a flood payout. He is very stressed as everything is moving so slowly. He actually said to me, "I think I might have that post stress syndrome thing". Oh my heart broke. He's old, frail and totally traumatised for God's sake. I have tears in my eyes just typing this out this morning. Mr 'Government Person Hassling Ken', do you have aerial photographs of the flood? I do. Ken's whole suburb was under water. Is that proof enough? Take a look at the photos on my blog. He lost everything. Makes my hassles with PayPal TOTALLY worthwhile. So there. Have had my rant. Yes, I am BEING the reaction this morning! ... and it sort of feels necessary!
PS Think I might head over to the forum here and see if someone can help me: www.paypalsucks.com
Maybe a run first though! Grrrrr.
1. Going for a run on 'bin collection day' is very unpleasant and a hazard to one's health.
2. No matter how much one pays for earphones, if they aren't the ones you stick right in your ear canal, you'll never get a decent bass (I would like to be proven wrong on this point).
3. How can there be 1300 school uniforms to iron at the end of the week, when there are only 5 days in the school week and only 2 children? On the other hand, I look at the ironing pile with such gratitude as I recently received a big pile of hand me downs from a Mum at school. Being the first to have children in my group of friends, I have always been the giver of hand me downs and not the receiver... I revelled in this pile. Thank you sweet friend... I hope you read my bloggy today.
4. Once the 'moving house malfunction genie' takes hold of you, she's hard to shake. Last time it was sewerage, this time it's electrics: kitchen lights are turned on via the bedroom switch, remote controlled blinds wake you up in the middle of the night when they spontaneously open and close, oven takes 4 hours to heat up and then if you're lucky it gets up to a maximum of 145 degrees C... AND the hot water doesn't wake up until AFTER our morning showers!
Good idea Martha., stashing the sheets inside the matching pillow case!
..... I moved. Problem solved.
As George Bernard Shaw said, "Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything".
I took your advice and hightailed it in to the RTA in person. They put me in the picture wrt my rights.
I was not going to live in a display unit, with buyers traipsing through all day at times convenient only for them.
So now they've got their display unit!, a non income producing one, with no furniture... was nice furniture too... left over from 'the house'. They didn't want to negotiate....so I had my tantrum and I moved. Feels good....and I tell you, I'm getting pretty good at it.... moving that is, not tantrums. I was either a 'pre-packer' or a cleaner in a previous life. I swear, I have it down pat.
I now have a linen cupboard... yay.... although not as pretty and organised as this one from Martha. Small blessings though.
...and I have 'lebensraum' ..... that's today's 'Word Of The Day', in my inbox. It means: 'space required for living, growth and development'. I highly recommend www.wordsmith.org and subscribing to the 'Word A Day'. One day I am going to be so eloquent, my mother will not need to correct my grammar or pronunciation... .... at the tender age of 44!
Anyway......the removalists stacked everything to the roof in the shed so now it is going to take trolleys and blood sweat and tears to get to the pretties for my giveaway. I had them stashed in a little inaccessible pile off to the side. What was I thinking? It all happened so fast. Sorry about the delay, prizewinners. Actioning the prizes this week. Oh and custom lighting update over HERE.
I cannot walk past a pile of cushions these days without having a giggle over Faux Fuchsia's 'solemn promise' to "Never Knowingly Undercushion" (FF, 2010).
I walked around the cushion displays at the trade fair saying to myself, "hmmm, 'knowingly undercushioned' ... what a shame". She even has her Dad trained in the art of cushioning.... 'trained, or could it be an autosomal recessive gene? I must admit I do 'undercushion'... but it has been 'unknowingly' up until now. What are your views on 'cushioning'? I used to do the 2 cushions at each end of the sofa but my perspective on 'cushioning' has changed forever and the numbers are growing.... much to the annoyance of those who actually try to sit on the sofa.
I'd like to introduce you to Luma, a dear dear friend of mine.
Luma has an inspirational blog, 'The Soul Dad', which is a delightful collection of his writing - his poems, his daily journal and coursework from the book that he is writing. Luma, his beautiful wife, Inger, and their 2 gorgeous children have been such wonderful friends to me and my boys. He has helped me, and others close to me, transform our lives. Luma inspires me daily to 'enjoy the journey' and 'live in the now', being present in every moment. His blog is so insightful, calming and creative. It really is soul food. I would love you to visit Luma. I would love to share you, my blog friends, with him. HERE.
Say hi from me!