I thought I’d strike gold, but I found something better …

The wattle is out.

It can mean only one thing.

It must be late August.

The quintessential Australian sign that winter is nearly over.

A riot of delicate yellow fluff …

A promise of sunny days to come …

I wanted to capture it for you ….

but by the time I’d finished work …

I’d missed that beautiful late afternoon light

I’d missed the yellows ….

…but I found you some blues.

Have a lovely week.

And stay tuned for I have some surprises in store 🙂

… in which she discovers the gentle art of random weaving and decides that she’s not quite the basket case she thought she was.

It has been a long time since I’ve had that lovely feeling of being lost in the moment…

Completely absorbed in a simple pleasure

… facing only the simplest of choices

… sitting quietly

… engrossed in the gentle art of making something.

But that’s exactly what I was lucky enough to do this week at a random weaving workshop with south coast artist Harriet Goodall.

Throughout the preceeding week the boys (and various friends – yes you know who you are) had been teasing me relentlessly about my forthcoming basket weaving workshop.

There had been plenty of snickers.

Well you can snicker all you like my lovelies…

because what I knew and you didn’t, is that Harriet Goodall is not your average
basket weaver.

I knew a little bit about her through mutual friends who put together this video for Country Style magazine and when I heard that Sophie Hansen at Mandagery Creek Venison had snagged her to do a workshop, I jumped at the opportunity.

What I didn’t realise, is that Sophie has this fabulous background as a magazine editor and now showcases local producers in her own blog Local is Lovely. She is also a beautiful cook and spent the day – ever so quietly in the background – preparing lots of deliciousness for us all to enjoy.

So it was a good recipe for a great day.

Good host, good food, good company, in a pretty location surrounded
by snow covered hills.

But back to our weaving ….

What I love about Harriet’s work is its organic nature.

It’s relaxed and loose.

And in a world full of mass produced plastic and rubbish, the idea of learning how to take pieces of nature and craft them into something functional is very appealing.

And sure enough, as promised, within a few short hours we had all produced our own unique baskets from bits of flotsam on the floor.

I had this vague idea that I might create a woven fairy castle to hide somewhere
in the garden …

A fairy castle with its own deck.

I’m not quite sure what I ended up with.

But I had the most beautiful day, lost in the moment, creating it

… and I think the fairies will still approve.

Pulling out the pretties

A last night together before our little girl heads back to uni.

Roast lamb in the oven and Gran down for a game of cards.

An excuse to go in search of pretty things.

The lovely sound of teenagers fighting in their rooms.

A chance to pull out old favourites – decades old.

I quite like frayed…

… precious but not too precious.

… special but not too special.

Just a little passing moment

Got to grab them when you can!

Don’t judge a garden from your kitchen window

We’ve had two days of beautiful rain (which makes a pleasant change from ice), yet from our kitchen window, the garden looks sad. Well perhaps not sad, but quiet and withdrawn.

…but I stepped out from the cave this morning with a cup of tea and took a wander …

We always tend to think that the little Japanese maple is at her best in autumn

but I’m wondering if that’s so

because when you catch her with no clothes on

when she’s just stepped out from a shower

wearing nothing but a pair of earrings …

ooo la la!

But the thing is, she’s hidden from our kitchen window because the crepe myrtle steals the show…

and it’s pretty hard to compete with this

Still … take some time this weekend to look in the shadows

You might see something that you least expect.

Have a happy one. Stay warm xx

… a tale of a little lemon tree and has my husband been taking the piss?

It’s been a little while between posts but the last week has been full on.

Between school holidays, son being sick, moving daughter in Sydney, getting her on a plane to India, a busy week of work and now husband in a heap with son’s lurgy, there’s not been a lot of time for anything, let alone creativity.

Added to that, we’re in the depths of a cold Bathurst winter and if you offered me a destination there and now – I’d probably jump at it. Especially if it’s warm and sunny and there are no sick sons or husbands.

But listen, I need your advice…

About a little lemon tree.

Have you ever seen The World’s Fastest Indian? Anthony Hopkins plays New Zullunder Bert Munro who drives his neighbours insane with a variety of misdemeanours including taking a daily pee on his lemon tree – in full view of their kitchen window.

Well I suspect my husband has been taking a leaf out of Bert’s book.

I don’t know whether he’s just taking the piss (explanation here for overseas friends)

but here is my dilemma.

I am now faced with a bumper crop of eight lemons.

Beautiful … yellow … ever so juicy lemons.

Perhaps the juiciest lemons we’ve ever grown.

Just the sort of lemons that would go ever so nicely in an icy gin and tonic.

By God they’re really yellow aren’t they.

I’m at an impasse.

There is only one thing for it.  I shall put on my best hostess voice and …
“Perhaps … I … can ….offer you one?”

Winter sweet moments in a garden of grey

Winter is doing her thing here in Australia. Last week we had snow in the high country.

Our garden is bare … sticky, stalky, exposed.

In amidst the seeming nothingness there is one little bush that you could easily overlook

… but look a little bit closer …

…because in the depths of winter, when everything else is sleeping … she reveals herself

Chimonanthus praecox

Winter sweet.

…quietly, unobtrusively…

Close your eyes. Her scent is intoxicating.

Like a friend who is not immediately beautiful …

but who, with time, becomes so special to you

that just a glimpse of her will light you up … even on the coldest of winter days.

Who dumped a bucket of yellow in my backyard?

It’s a beautiful singular moment in autumn.

It happens after a cold clear night. The leaves have been frosted hard and when the morning sun hits them they snap off the tree and for a good half hour or so, they drop, like kamikaze butterflies to the ground. And when they’ve finished it looks like this…

“So, honey, I was thinking of recarpeting the garden yellow.”

While I miss being close to the coast (see the previous post), I do love living in Bathurst with its four distinct seasons.

The only thing is…

This little display makes me realise which of those seasons is just around the corner.

Time to break out the passion killers!