Saturday, April 27, 2013

Thoughts on turning 8

Eight years ago today I held a teeny tiny angel in my arms. Our first. She was perfect

Today she is tall and mature and cheeky and resilient and too much like me.

Unlike with her little sister, I've never had a problem with her getting older. We sent her to school at the age of four because apparently 'she was ready'. She is always after a challenge, she likes to know everything and analyse everything. She is as intense in personality as her eyes are blue. She is passionate and extroverted. She is polite, particular and 'perfect' (in public at least). Her love language is quality AND quantity time. She craves, needs. wants it all. A whole day playing games with her would fill her cup nicely, until tomorrow.

She loves animals and her grandparents.  She can sing and she is clever. She loves to make things and to have pretty things.

She is eight today and wishes she was nine. I'd quite like her to slow down now, to keep her innocence for longer.  She has already begun to pay too much attention to her hair or clothes in the morning. It must be about now that they become all too aware of themselves, their bodies, their face and how it feels to be 'in their skin'. It's scary.

Sometimes she turns into someone who is not my little angel. For 30 minutes or an hour she is uncontrollable, angry, bursting with the insufferable unfairness of life. She yells and cries and can't let it go, can't be reasoned with. Sometimes she knows she is being unreasonable but can't help herself and she is becoming aware of the pain it is to have one of these over anxious complicated female minds. She's not perfect, she is like the rest of us.  She can no more be perfect than I can love her perfectly( although I try) We both need Someone other to love us and accept us perfectly.

She's just started talking to me about sex, telling me she knows what it is and sounding smug when she describes it to me as 'married people cuddling with no clothes on.' Blake and I may have to close our door from now on. *blush*  She can stop now I think, stop at age eight. I tell both our girls that growing is a punishable act in this house and they'll be sent to their rooms if I catch them at it. Lucky for them they seem to grow while sleeping.

And they won't stop. Sigh. Next year they'll walk together to school and that thought makes me not want to think anymore today.....

Happy Birthday to our beautiful Malya Hope.


Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Little Golden Books {in every Nook and cranny}

Do you collect things? Little treasures that mean something to you from childhood or from places you've been or things you simply find pretty?

I collect vintage teacups and linen and pretty, old or useful things. I have a small collection of seaglass.  I collect crocheted cup cosies and classic novels.  But by far my largest collection is my 'stash' of vintage Little Golden Books. I have over 300 in my keeping, some battered or coverless, perfect for preserving through crafty skill, some extra old and precious, and some we just love to read and admire.  Harper has her own collection of twenty odd 'first little golden books', the small ones, and we have a decent pile of giant ones now too.  The earliest copies are from the early 1940's and the earlier they are dated the more beautiful and saturated the pictures are.

Its no wonder you can find a Little Golden Book or a salvaged picture from one in nearly every nook and cranny in my home.

You'll notice I particularly love the Little Golden Books that are illustrated by Eloise Wilkin and I'd like to think I own 85% of these.  I fell in love with her illustrations as a child and when the girls were born I found them comforting in a way.  But there are so many others I love just as much.

Some other favourites:

Outside my window
Susie's new stove
My little golden book about God
Good-bye Tonsils
The Lively Little Rabbit
Snow White and Rose Red
The Christmas Story
The kitten who thought he was a mouse
The wait for me kitten.........

Do you have a favourite Little Golden Book? What do you collect?


Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Those forgettable days

You know those days when everything goes wrong. When you wake up and have to fight back the sinking feeling that its going to be a bad one, to fight the negative emotions and the strongest wish for it to be over already.....

Yesterday I woke around 5am with the dreaded feeling of a bad day ahead. I've always loathed the time changes for day light savings as I'm a bad sleeper. I loved living in Cairns for those two blissful years of no winding clocks back and forward and having sleep-confused babies and a cranky body clock!  After my big weekend in melbourne I knew I'd take a while to recover from the walking and talking and shopping and bag carrying but I'm never prepared for how horrible the recovery is.  The day after a huge event I usually feel hungover and sore but there is still that lingering adrenalin to keep me from despairing and feeling the all consuming malaise that inevitably lands upon me the next day an lingers for two or often three days.

So the forgettable day began and always one to make the best of things, I kept our play date with my gorgeous friend Neesha and her adorable children because we rarely see eachother and threw a cake in the oven for the occasion. FAIL! My gluten free banana cake was a miserable fail and the usual success I achieve from throwing in a bit of this and that and changing a recipe to suit my mood let me down, thanks very much!

Feeling nauseous and puffy eyed we welcomed our friends and for a while they took my mind off my sleep-deprived malaise and this gorgeous 'tea time' print, a house warming gift from Neesh warmed my heart and continues to cheer me.

(photo from Etsy, I haven't taken one of mine yet)

I blundered through the afternoon in a mostly horizontal manner until Harper went upstairs on the balcony and got her knee stuck in between the balustrade slats and it was stubbornly and painfully wedged there for half an hour! I called Blake who rushed home from his worksite twenty minutes away and just as he arrived, Sarah and Amelie popped in and saved the day in Sarah's calm can-do manner which was wonderful but made me feel even more useless and annoyed that Blake now had to work late to make up time. Aaarh.

Today I've slept better but the aches and pains are worse, the girls both have colds and I'm frustrated that another day is all but written off. Wow this is just one big whinge isn't it!? Please forgive me, I just feel like writing it all down.

My lovely hot soothing bath this morning got gate crashed by two little nude bodies who were clamouring for a dip in mummy's big bath. I'd started to listen to the first and latest podcast in the new series on 1 & 2 Peter for our church called  'More than Gold' which I'm sure will be just what I need when I get some time today. It was worth the lack of peace and extra headache to have my not-so-small girls still want to have a bath with me. The old 'they grow so fast' cliche is far too true and I'm grasping on desperately to any time with them that resembles the closeness that we have with our little ones.

I'm nearly at the end of this forgettable day. At the end of each tough day I do come to the conclusion that they are never altogether forgettable. I can always find something to be grateful for, always. I'm going to bed now, to curl up with my audiobook and crochet project. And I promise not whinge again any time soon....


Sunday, April 7, 2013

Things I'm loving

 AUTUMN:: My friend Sarah and I wondered through the beautiful Carlton Gardens to get to the Finders Keepers Market yesterday. There aren't as many autumn leaves about as is normal this time of year but this hardly limited the beauty with the morning sun shining through the trees. Autumn is simply beautiful.

 TEA:: and strawberries with cream surrounded by three gorgeous friends at Belinda's charming cottage. Vintage china and precious company:: things I'm always loving!

A COSY CAFE :: the sight of good coffee usually means I'm with my lovely (crazy) friend Sarah. At Kinfolk cafe on Friday her coffee was instagram-worthy and my peppermint tea was extra aromatic and served in a vintage teapot so with the easy comfort of old friends and the pleasure of people watching we were completely satisfied.

 THOUGHTS TO MAKE YOUR HEART SING:: I'm reading this with my almost 8yr-old and we are loving it! It does exactly what it says, it makes your heart sing :) Malya is really responding to it too and is eager to look up the corresponding bible verses afterwards in our adventure bible.

I DID IT! :: I am loving that I have started (or even finished) the plate display wall in our cubby that I planned aaaages ago, and the vintage hankie curtain I finally sewed together with the window in mind fits nicely across the green cabinet for now. I am loving being back in our home and being able to slowly tick off my half completed crochet, craft and sewing projects. It is really one of the best feelings.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Easter in the 'Forrest'

I've come home from two nights camping in the bush with my little family feeling all spiritually ignited. Just being away with the barest of necessities and focussing each day on His sacrifice whilst exploring and playing and eating was enough to fill me to the brim with gratitude and amazement afresh.

I love the coming home part of holidays, the feeling of relief at the thought of my own bed and our own space and belongings. We chat about our favourite parts of our time away and laugh again at the quirky, silly bits. The girls will have their first bathe in a few days and everything will be washed and put away and we'll appreciate our home again.

Forrest was beautiful.  I didn't make it all the way to the picturesque Lake Elizabeth but little Harper made it and her Dad and sister did the walk plus some twice.

My favourite little cottage (below) with its little red gate and blue hydrangeas down the side no longer boasted the blackberry bush bulging with fruit as it was on my last visit, but we found berries nonetheless on another bush walk. They were sweet and so delicious!  The ray of sunlight in the picture proves we did have fine weather  but it was chilly and wet sometimes too.  We snuggled in our little caravan at nights and were very cosy indeed.

While the two fitter ones hiked the morning away, little miss and I went on our own adventure, wandering along the quiet country road to the Brewery for tea. We stopped to talk to alpacas and a little pony and we collected leaves and tiptoed into someones sprawling backyard for a quick photo under a beautiful maple tree who's branches spread out to create the perfect canopy under which to lie and dream away the day. (bottom)

We ate too much chocolate, mostly in the mornings. (detox this week- maybe..) We played board games and went to a country market where I bought fresh tomatoes and figs, bread and goats cheese dip for nibbling on around the fire pot with my parents who popped down for an afternoon.

Blake is back at work tomorrow. School holidays will officially begin. Life moves forward again after a brief and delicious pause.

I still have some of my big Green & Black's organic chocolate egg left so maybe the detox will begin next week.....