Tuesday, January 29, 2013

A sight you don't see everyday

Our poor neighbours. A whole tree was battered and uprooted in these violent and brutal storms. It was craned off this morning, and their car towed away.

We live in an elevated area, so the flood waters don't rise through our street and into our homes. But the volume of water falling from the sky and the run-off from the houses further up the hill mean that we are still affected. Water has seeped through our walls. Paint is bubbling and sagging. Mould is forming. Carpets are sodden. Today I'm moving furniture and boxes off the sopping carpet and thanking my lucky stars we don't have much, and that it's not worse. In 2011, our downstairs level was flooded and it was coming in sooner than we could mop and up and sweep it out.

In the spirit of gratitude, I've been needing to declutter and clear out, so this is forcing me to get on with it.

I can't stop watching the news, and I can't believe this is happening again - almost exactly two years later. The death of the three year old boy is just devastating, as are the other losses of life.

It's all just too sad.

It's a land of extremes, this country of ours. From bushfires to floods, in a matter of days.

Sunday, January 27, 2013


Roc. Posing. Begging me to take a "photo of my funniest ever in the whole world face mama". Complete with 'warm chocolate' froth on his lip.

My Hamish, deep in concentration. Car-building.
Joining in with Jodi and this wonderful project.

Sunday, January 20, 2013


"A portrait of my children once a week, every week, in 2013"

We often take the boys out for breakfast on the weekends. We have a theory that the more often we do it, the better socialised they'll be. It can be a bit hit and miss, but as they get older and more used to it, it gets easier. Today was mostly a winner.

They look so grown up here. It takes my breath away.

[They ALWAYS want to wear the same clothes. Today's matching hat was most definitely not optional!]

Hamish, just as he is. Wide eyed and innocent.

Roc, concentrating on drinking his eagerly (and patiently) awaited chocolate milkshake

Playing along with Jodi from Che and Fidel. I adore this project. I love seeing snippets of other people's lives, and I can't wait to learn more about my camera.

Friday, January 18, 2013

A plan

I'm a planner. I always have been. As a child, I used to scribble lists of books to read, tasks to achieve, money to put away to buy more precious books. At school, I loved charting class timetables and planning study schedules in the lead up to exams. I spreadsheet everything; even the contents of packing and moving boxes.

I love the feeling of knowing exactly how I'm going to get somewhere, and enjoy knowing that each step along the way is getting me closer. I spend my work days planning out projects for other people.

But a life plan? I don't have one of those, and, actually, I'm not entirely sure why.

I have vague ideas about where I want us to be in 5 years and 10 years. Happy. Doing things we enjoy instead of doing things because they pay the bills. Somewhere with space. Somewhere exciting. Kids roaming outside. Art on the walls, loads of old chairs. Sitting in the garden under a canopy of lights and fragrant flowers. Friends and family to stay. Simplicity.

This fanciful imagining would never cut it at work. There's nothing specific here. No defined objectives. No clear timeframe. No critical path. No clear journey from where we are now to this beautiful place in my mind. No idea how to get there.

So, we'll talk some more. Dream some more. Open our minds and turn off the fear button for a moment to see if it brings us any clarity.

There's always a way.

This year, we'll find ours.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

11 years

My favourite photo of  us.
A beautiful summer's day on Primrose Hill in London; we were young, carefree and having the adventure of a lifetime.
11 years ago, I married the most wonderful person I had ever met. He's still the most beautiful person I know. I'm lucky. We're lucky. We met when we were barely out of our teens. It was the most beautiful young love. And it's still beautiful. We have made our own divine little family and I've never been happier or more grateful. And so blessed. I love you T.


"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013."

Roc, hair sun-bleached pure platinum.

Hamish, quietly contemplative

I love Jodi's '52' project. Thanks Jodi. Join here.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013


Oh, my darling Roc. You have a beautiful heart. You've always been affectionate - adoring snuggles and kisses - but lately you have reached new levels of love.

The other night, when I asked you who your best friend was, you said "Hamey! I love my brudder. He makes my heart smile."

Truly. You did. Those amazing, heart-felt words rolled straight off your tongue. And just like that, my heart smiled, swelled and, well, tears welled. When I told you that you made my heart smile, you looked up at me in wonderment, with the most glorious look of sheer unadulterated happiness on your face. It was one of those perfect moments in time when memories are made that will last a lifetime.

You frequently say, "I love you Mummy. And I love Daddy. And I love Hamey. And I love MYSELF". It's hilarious, but I hope you always will.

Whenever we're walking along holding hands, you cover the back of my hand with hundreds of tiny feather-light kisses, and you glance sidelong at me waiting for me to notice, with the sweetest smile on your elfin face.

I know one day I'll lean in for a kiss and you'll roll your eyes and mutter something like "Eww, gross Mum", so until then, I am going to enjoy every last one.

Monday, January 7, 2013

1 / 52

I'm so excited about joining in with Jodi from Che and Fidel and her 'A Portrait a Week' project. I take so many photos of the boys, but in all honesty, most of them are terrible. I'm looking forward to working on my photography skills (including progressing from my iphone!) and capturing special moments in their tiny lives.

Hamish, devouring a mango "ponkipine". The taste of summer. He asks for this at least five times a day. This one is a fruitarian.

Roc. Finding quiet and calm in sleep. He never stops moving or talking, so I love watching him sleep. I think his lips are perfection.

Sunday, January 6, 2013


Hello 2013. It's so lovely to see you. You and me? We're going to have a beautiful year. I can feel it already.

I'm not really one for new year resolutions. I used to be, when I was much younger - the 'lose 5kg by my birthday' sort that made me feel bad when I failed at them. I think, on the whole, we set too many, they tend to be unrealistic and laden with too much guilt when we don't achieve them.

I do like to think about how to bring more positivity into my life though, and the start of a new year is as good a time as any to remember why it's important. Actually, I've been thinking a lot about it lately, and for 2013 I choose:

happiness, health and simplicity

I think choosing to be happy is one of the most powerful things you can do to take control of your life. Happiness doesn't always just happen. Like all good things, you have to work at it, recognise it, nourish it, and celebrate it. I'm pretty good at being grateful, but like most people, I sometimes get a bit bogged down in the mundane. Lately, I have found happiness easy to find - because I'm consciously taking notice of the little things that happen each day that bring a smile to my face - so I'm going to make a real effort to continue to do just that this year, and choose happiness.

I need to prioritise health this year too. I haven't had a particularly stellar year, health-wise. I don't eat enough good food. I don't exercise enough. I haven't been putting my health first. But I must. I'm no use at all to anyone if I'm not well. But I think most importantly, I want to feel energised instead of exhausted.

Simplicity has been luring me for some time. I'm at the point where the sheer amount of stuff we own makes me feel quite nauseous. This 'just buy a new one' world we live in makes me feel ashamed, and more than a bit ungrateful. I don't need more stuff. In fact I want less! I need to better appreciate what we have, and put it to use. Purposeful, meaningful, beautiful; that's my new test.

We did a simple Christmas this year. Some pickings from the garden. Some home-made clay tags.  Potted gardenias. Presents wrapped with brown paper, paper doilies, and stamped. A simple baked ham. A couple of fresh herby salads. Done leisurely, happily, and with love. Enjoyment and happiness was the only possible outcome. There's a lot to be said for that. Simplicity celebrated.

I want to teach my babies they don't need 'stuff'. I want to teach them to use their imaginations and their hands. I want to be strong enough and confident enough in my parenting ability that I can choose the simple life and know that it will stand them in good stead.

And for a bit of self-development, I want to learn how to use our camera properly so I can take beautiful pictures of my fortunate life.