Community garden

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Rhythm, routines and health.

As I have mentioned, last year was a really tough year for me.  I struggled.  Alot.  I didn't realize how much until recently.  It's like during the school holidays the layers of pressure and stress have been slowly peeling away.  As I reflect back over last years posts, I can hear it in them.  Thankyou for continuing to read and stick with me!  I do so appreciate it.   

These holidays and having the time to be....well it's been wonderful, and energizing.  I feel like slowly as the layers of stress peel away I am beginning to re-emerge again. 

Don't get me wrong, last year was full of blessings and new beginnings.  Im so very greatful for it,
but I'm not sad it's over. 

I have gained alot of weight, (eughhh) my joints ache and my energy levels have been extreemly low.  Middy naps anyone? 

I have been to the Dr and they are giving me a good once over, blood tests and all the like - so far everything is clear and I suspect nothing significant will show up. 

I believe this is simply the cost of stress, and the hormone response chronic stress triggers.  It takes a serious physical toll on the body.  Despite taking the time to be mindful, and slow down last year.  It was still a tough year.  If I hadn't been on this simple living journey, I would hate to think where I would be now.  Very ill I suspect.   

So I have spent some time simply reading and getting inspired about our health again.  Putting back in place old, familiar routines, as well as starting new practices.  I have no words for just how lovely it feels. 

Re-starting my milk kiefer, broth on the simmer, youghrt straining for soft cheese and to use the whey to help soak beans/grains and sourdough starter under the blue cloth.

I have had "Nourishing Traditions" on my shelf for simply aaaaages.  But have been put off by it's size and depth, and a lack of time and energy to give it the proper time it deserves.  But being on holidays, and first half of the house is mostly renovated there is no excuse.  Over the past week I have been nestled down with a pen and paper and cuppa, menu planning, shopping list writing, and taking notes of pages to refer back to.  I am keeping it very simple.  But this slow, simple food resonates with me. 


A couple of weeks ago I wrote about using "click and collect" due to work/study/travel and being stretched for time.  My goodness it is working AMAZINGLY well.  I save time shopping during the day and now I can use that time to food prep/cook.  I have found my cooking mojo!  It's a little fragile, but it's there.

I'm finding I'm shopping every 1-2 weeks.  I have slowed the process right down to carefully look after our produce better.  Taking the time to rotate things in my fridge, store them better, and organize my fridge everytime I shop so nothing gets tucked in at the back.  My food wastage has gone right down.  Not that it was ever wasted - as it went to the chooks, but you know.  When we hurry and rush we forget whats there.  We dont take the time to value what we have.           

As I unpack my groceries I pop the veggies into a sink of water with a good glup of whit vinegar to let them soak.  This gets any dirt and impurities off and they last much, much better.  
They do need to be left to drain well,  especially strawberries. 

Well the boys are giving me the hurry along - we have a mother hen hatching out her eggs today and best we check on her, I hope to get some photos to share tomorrow!
Much love,
Emma
xx



Thursday, 12 January 2017

A day.....

You know those days that start well and go down hill? 

Well yesterday turned out to be one of those.  I had zero patience left by the end of the day.  Infact, I had zero patience left by mid afternoon. 

It was so rediculous I thought I would share my pain with you, my dear readers.  Because there is no use having a painful day with children if you dont then have a good laugh about it with friends.  Also in the aim of keeping it real.  Because if I saw one more calm peaceful family, doing wholesome artistic things, in beautiful gentle light, brewing bloody Kombacha and eating resteraunt style, wholesome snacks on my instagram feed I was going to throw my computer at the wall.  Ha!

Yesterday, was apparently all about the fighting.  Oh my goodness the fighting.  It started off peacefully, and I should have packed them up and taken to them to the beach first thing like I intended.  But I didn't.  I faffed about and did less important things.  You would think now I would know to wear them out by lunch time, wouldn't you?

Don't be fooled by the calm scene....They were simply plotting their next move...

I put on relaxing essential oils, soothing music, turned off all screens, read out oud to them.....No avail.  There was no rescuing the day.

Here are just a couple of the more memorable things I had to say yesterday to prevent the boys from actually killing eachother....

"Henry, we do not hit our brother on the head with a shovel!"  (A big metal one too.....I took it away, and talked to him about the danger, and I would like to say that was the end of that but he found a nother shovel and re-peated it...more then once!  I had visions of my dear sweet boy turning growing into a mass murder...Who does that?!)

"Henry! We do not throw metal cars at people heads!"

"Guys we do not break eachothers creations for fun, it's not OK!" (ensue copious screaming and tears of victim of the creation breaking, mumbled apologies and a truce that lasted not even 5 minutes till round 1372....)

"No, you may not play with your pocket knife today" (Because really, I was not interested in adding a stabbing to the days list of injuries from ferral behaviour.)

"Yes you may play with the hose and fill up the paddle pool."
Not even 5 minutes later....
"Do Not squirt eachother in the face!!!  IF SOMEONE IS SCREAMING AND CRYING IT MEANS THEY ARE NOT HAVING FUN!!!"

This wasn't even the tip of the iceberg of the crappy stuff they did yesterday and by this point I was REALLY losing my cool. 

And then, the topper was William.  Who really did not deserve the outburst, but he hit a well frayed nerve.

I opened the computer to look up a number I needed to book a Dr appointment.  My blog page flashed up and William pondered....
Will - "Mum, you really shouldn't have a picture of your doll on your blog page."
I take the bait....
Me - "why not?"
Will - "Because you don't even sew any more."
Me - ..........................*tries to breathe deeply, fails completly and looses cool*

"THE ONLY REASON I DONT SEW MUCH THESE DAYS IS BECAUSE ALL OF MY SPARE TIME IS SPENT RAISING SMALL, UNGREATFUL CHILDREN, WHO MAKE CONTINUOUS MESS, DON'T LISTEN AND SPEND HALF THEIR TIME TRYING TO KILL EACHOTHER!!!"

By this point I had gone Nuclear.....I had a good old foot stomp, rant and rave.  Im pretty sure the old deaf neighbour could hear me from INSIDE his house.  Ha!

The boys literally ate a big bowl of homemade avocado dip and rice crackers for dinner.  I was done.  But avocado is a super food, so that makes it alright, yes?! 

I would like to say bedtime brought relief but no.......Henry faffed about until 11pm, there goes HIS midday nap.  Little bugger.

Goodness, yesterday was a train wreck of a day.  But today?  Today is a new day.  The rain is falling on the old tin roof, the house is open and the boys are in beautiful, calm, gentle moods.  For now....  ;)

Thankyou God! 

Much love,
Emma
xx






Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Compromise.

Grant and I have been doing some serious pondering lately.  About life, about how the years pass. 

About the fragilness of life after an online friend passed too soon.  A woman who forever left a mark on our heart after her quiet kindness and generosity.   

About finances.

About the farm, we dream of but cannot buy until our business sells. 

About sustainability.

Finally unpacked my special things from all our grandparents after being here for a year.  My eyes prickled with tears from happy memories as I carefully unwrapped everything and put it in its place.  The box to the side is things to donate/sell.  De-cluttering and keeping only what we love is a continuing theme here. 

As many of my long-time readers possibly know we own a rural General Store and Post Office.  We casually put it on the market around the time I started blogging.  It remains on the market which is no surprise as businesses are notoriously slow to sell.  It is a particularly bad time to sell a business like ours.  But in a difficult economy where many small businesses are forced to close their doors, ours had grown and strengthened significantly.  It is a good, solid, reliable business to buy.  But it doesn’t change the fact that it is being marketed in a poor economy, where banks are highly conservative and are not supporting small businesses. 

We have decided to drop the price a little, it's hard.  We need it to be worth a certain amount from it as we need to buy our farm cash - Banks don’t like lending for farming either, apparently growing food that we all need to eat to survive is considered too risky of an investment for them too.  But you know, it’s not risky to loan for an overpriced, fancy brand new car.  Nor is it risky apparently to lend a stack of money to a young couple just starting out for their big fancy, brand new house filled with brand new, shiny things.....Go figure huh.....*eye roll*

Bottling up a batch of nourishing bone broth.  The ultimate frugal, simple food.  Generations of people have been doing this same task through time....Though I have electricity.  ;)

But my point is, we have decided to drop the price on our business.  We have a meeting coming up with our sales bloke, I’m not sure that even the price drop we have in mind will stimulate the interest we need in this deadpan economy.   

It doesn’t feel good to have your arm twisted by the economy, when you know what your selling is good and strong and traditionally worth what it's listed as.  But there is a cost to keeping the focus on what we believe we "should" get in life. 

We could hold out for what we know it's worth, but our children will grow older, these precious young years will be forever gone.  The lessons we want to teach them about farming, the time we want to spend with them working side by side…..It will all disappear if we make our focus on the financial gains in life.  These years we can never get back.

There is a cost for striving for "the best deal".  In our relationships, in ourselves, in our dreams being put on hold.  Sometimes, we need to settle for "pretty good".  Because the cost is not worth the price we would otherwise have to pay. 

In this day and age, we are told we "deserve" the best.  To aim high!  Never give up!  You can do whatever you want to do!  There is truth in these statements.  But not necessarily in the way the media portrays it. 

We do deserve the best – But to give our best to our families, to our relationships, to our loved ones.   

We do need to aim high - to challenge ourselves to work hard, to aim for a strong marriage, to aim for strong relationships, to aim to live within our means.  To aim to leave this world stronger, gentler.   

And we do need to never give up.  To never give up on our families, to never give up on kindness and empathy and trying to understand the world around us, to never give up on being an advocate for the lost, the weak, the forgotten, the vulnerable.  These are what’s important.  It should never be about never giving up on obtaining the perfect shoe collection, or curating the perfect Instagram feed, nor the prefect home. These things don’t even exist as the goal posts are always being moved by an external force that tries to decide for us on what "enough" is.  Or what the latest fashion is, or the latest trend in housing.

A simple dinner.  San Boy Chow.  Fresh, tasty and perfect for a hot summers night when no one is overly hungry and cooking a big meal is completly unappealing.

So, with that in mind we are dropping the price on our business.  We are not going to get "the best price" for it that we would like.  Instead we are looking at how the sale of the business can give us "our best life" together as a young family.  It will make things at the other end harder, but that is why we were created with a wonderful an imagination and the ability to think outside the “box”. 

There is a cost to every single decision we make.  The thing that we need to always keep in mind is, are we willing to pay the price?    

Much love,
Emma
xx

Thursday, 5 January 2017

New year thoughts.

So here we are, a week into the new year already! 

 I have been doing a bit of pondering about this little blog, where to take it and what to write about.  Sometimes I wonder if there is anything you would specifically like to read about?  I wonder if there are things we can explore together? 

I think there will be plenty of renovations to share, sourcing things second hand to do so.  I have been given the job of gumtree scourer.  There will be plenty of gardening, as we try and get this cottage garden into some kind of shape.  Hopefully a touch of sewing here and there!

I'm going set myself a challenge this year and work through "the simple home" by Rhonda Hetzel month by month and then blog about it here a couple of times a month.  I'll write about the changes we make, the things that work and keeping in with my aim to be real and honest- the things that don’t.

January is organizing the year ahead, I will continue to ponder this over the weekend and set up plans ready to share next week.   

Our organisation station.  Notices, invitations, pens, charges and the like all kept in one place. 

You know those people you catch up with that just help you find your calm?  I saw a dear friend yesterday and it was just so good for my soul.  It was nothing fancy, we drank coffee in her ramshackle old house which is in the middle of major renovations while our 5 boys played, splashing full bore, screaming and running like mad the mad things they are.  But to talk about life, both looking for the positives always and sharing conversation with someone who is also striving for slowness and simplicity...well it is a real blessing and a joy.  I left feeling deeply content.

It is HOT here today.  Like seriously hot. We have very little planned.  There is a load or two of washing to do.  There will be a little work on reading, writing and maths to do.  Playing with puzzles and colours with Henry.  Nothing heavy nor serious, but we all need to do a little work every now and again or our brains might actually turn to mush!

Writing letters to the child we sponsor. 

I intend to tackle my little sewing room/office also this arvo.  It is full of dust because of the louvre windows and its turning into a dumping ground.  I need to de-clutter it a bit, pass on fabrics I won’t use and also and lay out my current project which is a queen size raggedy quilt.  I'm hoping pulling it, and freshen up my work space will inspire me to work on it again.  Getting this room organized is important for the new year of study and work.     

Settling in to read together. 

I have also been getting our current rooms ready for the next stage of renovations.  We have sold our lovely TV unit and coffee table which were simply too big for our lounge and sourced something that fits better for $50.  Goodness I love gumtree!  The room is so much more spacious.  Now it works for our family. 

There is now lots of floor space to spread out and play on in the cool. 

The tv is now in the corner and no longer the main focal point of the room.  It feels like a calmer space as a result.  

I cannot love gumtree enough.  It is an amazing resource when it comes to simple living and budgeting.  So many people get rid of so many wonderful and useful things.  Be it due to life changes, moving, down-sizing or simply "getting bored" with the current look of their home.  As far as renovating goes, many companies get rid of “ex-display” stock on the cheap too.  It is a good first point of call.     

A good friend and I are going to do a trade on my kitchen dresser.  My beautiful kitchen dresser is 2m long and simply doesn’t fit along a suitable wall in this little old cottage.  But a good friend is interested in doing a swap.  His is kitchen dresser is significantly smaller and we will trade my dresser for his and his meat safe.  A perfect deal I reckon!  There is no point keeping beautiful things if they do not add to the functionality of your home!  They just become awkward clutter. 

Anyway, I best toddle off and pull out these puzzles!
Much love,
Emma

xx


     

  

Tuesday, 27 December 2016

A new season awaits!

I can’t say I fully managed to find the deep Christmas joy this year after searching for it HERE.  But I did have genuine snippets of joy, periods of contentment and laughter.  Sometimes that's the best we can manage. 

Gingerbread house making - a family tradition.

We had a wonderful time at a couple of carols with dear friends, made our gingerbread house, did the present thing.  The kids had a special Christmas day with extended family kayaking on the lake.  It was beautiful to watch and have a paddle about with them.  We played new board games, drank cold refreshing drinks and listened to the wind and the rain on the little old caravan roof. 

I was surprised at how wonderfully Angus picked up kayaking!

The old van on christmas night....All is quiet, everyone sleeping, no one stirs not even a mouse! 

a boxing day midday nap!

But I am glad to be home.  The boys are playing with new games, Lego, books and toys.  There are tea parties, puppets, and building being done.  This afternoon the tree will be neatly packed away, freeing up much needed space in the little old cottage.  I am glad to be facing a new season.  One filled with hope, rest, contentment and hopefully a slower pace. 

Now that Christmas has been and gone I find myself pondering next year.  What goals to set?  What can we work on?  What have we done this year to survive that doesn't fit in with our "why"?  what can we alter next year to bring in a deeper sense of contentment and free up tension and time?

As I was wrapping our Christmas presents I discovered amongst the bundle of books I had ordered from the book depository/fishpond a book I had bought myself and completely forgotten about.  What a timly find!


The month by month layout of this book is just perfect.  So this book will be my "guide" if you will, to help me stay on track as we take stage two of renovations at the little old cottage and try and bring our life back to a slower simpler pace then we were able to manage over the past year. 

I have been pondering a great deal about our "why". 
What does the life we want to live look like?
Why are these things important to us?
Why are we making the choices we are? 
Why are we not doing some of the things we want too? 

My why statement is simple enough. 

I want our lives to reflect the love and grace we have been given through Christ.  I want to care about others like He cares for us, to live our lives being fully present, generous, kind.  I want to live gently on this earth we have been given the opportunity to be caretakers off.  I want to teach our children how to be strong, and fierce about what they believe in and who they are, to be warriors for the poor, the lost and the vulnerable.  To be kind, gentle and practical.  To be good stewards of the many blessings we have in this world.  To continue to learn how to build our lives so they are gentle on the environment, to learn how to be more sustainable.  I want to live slowly and sit in the moments that make up our lives, to be deeply satisfied with life.  The happy, the challenging, the sad.  I want to do meaningful work.  Work that resonates with my why.  To do my hearts work. 

So now as we make the decisions about the next 12 months - this is what we line them up with.

Decluttering is something we are going to continue with, to simplify further.  I have decided to sell some furniture that is simply too big for our little old cottage and scrounge and buy a couple of smaller pieces.  My beautiful kitchen dresser is too big for our kitchen wall.  So It will be sold, the items inside and on it will be halved and only the most precious kept and a smaller simple dresser bought for a fraction of the price.  Our TV unit which ties in with the dresser will also be sold and I will source one second hand which half the size and re-arrange the lounge so the TV is tucked in the corner.  Our coffee table will also be sold to open up the room.  I just want less stuff and more space to actually live in.  In a small house, space is at a premium. 

Grant and I have tried various forms of shopping this year now we live 30 mins from the big centre.  Some stuff I can get through our shop, but not everything.  After much discussion, I am re-taking the reins for the food budgeting/menu planning.  We have tried him shopping - he forgets stuff, it drives me seriously mental.  I'm the main cook, it makes sense I do it.  But I don't have the time to commute, study, work and do it all.  So, I have been trialling click and collect.  It's a massive compromise.  They use way too many plastic bags, but it is their system.  It can only be done though Coles when I much prefer to shop at Foodland....BUT it is a massive time saver during the day in a season I need to pick sanity and simplifying procedures so I can spend time being present with my boys.  This is not my ideal option.  I would love to shop at markets, but in the aim of always keeping it real and honest on this big wide often superficial internet world, its where we are at in this very point of time. Its ok to make do, to keep the bigger goals of your "why" in the picture. 

So, to try and make up for the less than ideal shopping, I hope to continue reducing our waste in other ways around the house.  I have been greatly inspired by Zero waste living and have in mind the next few changes we can easily make.  Like getting beeswax food covers for the things that don’t fit in my glass containers.  Purchasing better quality stainless steel lunch boxes and picnic containers.  Getting a little more organized and always bringing picnics with us, ensuring there are always homemade snacks in the house, and more than just a couple of spare meals in the freezer.

This year with so many things going on with work, the business, renovating and studying we have not eaten as well as usual.  There has been too many last minute take away meals, not enough bone broth, not as much organization in the kitchen.  There are many contributing factors including being kitchen-less for a couple of months, but the main thing is we have plans and systems in place to help us overcome this "flying by the seat of our pants".  We know we have done a much better job of this in the past and are more than capable of doing it.  We have just struggled to find a system that works.  But we have now.  I'm really looking forward to being more organized.  In both the slowness it provides, the nourishment and the health benefits - I'm getting far too chubby - gah!  Why is it always easier and more fun to get fatter rather then skinnier?!  Haha!

We have some interesting projects in the pipe line this year.  Re-building and fixing the back half of the little old cottage and opening it all up to the gardens, new garden beds, plans for our business to streamline and improve procedures.  Grant has been slowly building up his wood roaches ready to expand his little side business, and we have some interesting little family plans.  The first little one will hopefully be revealed in a few weeks!  Another we have a lot of prayer and conversations to have before we share, but I am deeply hopeful.  ;)

Well board games are summoning so I best get going. 
Much love,
Emma
xx






Tuesday, 13 December 2016

De-cluttering, toys, christmas and simplicity.


Kids toys...I am not entirely sure how they seem to expand and multiply when we are sleeping but they do!

A few "hand-me downs" are kindly gifted, a birthday passes, a grandparent sees something they think a child might like and before you know it the toys are falling off the shelves...again!

Over the years, I have developed a system that works really well for us.  Eventually Grant got on board too.  He has Bower bird tendancies.  ;)

I'm a big believer in including kids where possible, though there are times I de-clutter a little as I’m tiding, but only things I know are broken or rubbish.  I strongly believe this is their home, they are their toys and belongings and they need to have autonomy over their own things I believe if they are going to grow into adults who respect and care for their possessions. 

This is Will's own little succulant patch.  He loves them.  I take cuttings for him when I see new ones out and about, and he does too.  He then plants them up and sells them to us and visitors, budding businessman!

Firstly, we are very matter of fact about life in this house.  We have explained their privilege to them, and continue to teach them about this.  We educate them about other countries, about our own country.  We have shown them pictures of how other families live and we try and help them develop the natural empathy, kindness and love for others that children innately poses.  Not in a way that guilt's them, but instead we use it as a tool to empower them to see how they can help children like them, who are not as lucky as we are.  To show them they can make a difference, even though they are small.  We make it a celebratory time.  I talk about how happy another child will be to receive such a special toy, how happy a parent will be to be able to find good toys for their children and how the money that is raised will go to buying Christmas hampers and so forth. 

The tree is up - but alas its not "real" due to a house full of people terribly allergic to pine trees!

We talk about keeping only what we use and really love.  That way it makes cleaning up faster, and we are happier as we get to do more fun things together.  I re-assure them that I will never throw out or donate something they love of they say "no".  I respect that this is their home. 

 And you know what?  They truly get it.  We go through everything and pick it up and ask if we can donate it.  We chat about if they want to pick it up, if they want it taking up the limited space on the shelves, if they still actually play with it or if they have out-grown it and what it might look like. 

 This is not a conversation we have twice a year, its simply how our family approaches "stuff" in an everyday and ordinary manner.  We focus on what we have, what we love and what we truly want in our house.  After that, the rest is generally easy to let go.

I think if we want to grow mindful adults, we need to challenge and grow mindful children.  In a time where child hood and parenting is made into such a complex situation, I find it helpful to simply step out of all the hype, the "must haves" the parenting experts and just chill.  These days when everything is measured and critiqued, "educational" and getting ahead is pushed and shoved down our throats.   

When we focus on the benefits of donating and how great the kids are doing - it makes the entire process pretty easy.  I have a folder for paintings and special things.  But fortunately the boys are pretty good at letting stuff go.  I don’t think it is an accident they are.  We have worked hard to build consistent and persistent attitudes around this subject. 

That’s the key to most parenting problems with very young children isn’t it?  Consistency and persistency.  In whatever form it takes that aligns with your parenting style. 

The toy situation in the western world is not now nor has it ever actually been about the development of the child, its generally about a company’s bottom line.  Toy companies work hard to get us to depend on their "knowledge" and products.

Here is a little story for you - I’m on a tangent but bare with me. 

I was walking in Big W the other day to buy a new washing basket.  I generally avoid the shops at all costs.  But mine was well and truly broken and ran a risk of snagging my clothes.  So off I toddled, annoyed that "nothing lasts these days".   I was walking to the isle and I heard a group of three middle aged adults taking about the "washing machine specialist" who had advised them that the "ONLY" good washing powder to use was a particular expensive brand.  I was highly amused and saddened at the same time. 

This "specialist" is not a true specialist.  He was not someone who built and repaired washing machines, who cared about maintaining a good working machine.  It was a salesman, who sold new washing machines who most likely worked in affiliation with said expensive brand washing powder.

Companies name these people "specialists" as if to raise them up above us.  To make us believe that they must know better then we do, and when did the turn of phrase "specialist" begin getting applied to salesmen?  I always thought a specialist was someone highly trained, highly experienced in a field.  You know, like a brain surgeon or something like that.     

And another thing, when did the simple task of washing clothes become so "complex" and expensive that we need a "specialist" to teach us how to do it "right'?!  Pfffft.....What a load of absolute rubbish.

But that is the power of marketing and consumerism.  These three smart people had been brain washed by the system.  Then I got sad.  Sad that this kind of information is rife today.  Sad that parents get told similar lies about products they "need" for their children, sad that so many people buy into it unknowingly and it brings them nothing but financial strain, anxiety, stress and a feeling of in-adequacy. 

So, as we approach this season of excess.  Let’s look around, lets donate good quality children’s toys in time for Christmas for those that have less.  Let’s be mindful about the items we bring into our lives, into our homes and the message they send our children.  Lets give less"stuff" and give more of ourselves.  Let’s be confident in our skills and that our children more than likely have "enough" just as it is.  They are always watching and learning from our behaviour. 

Hanging out at the beach.  We hope to be present during the Chistmas holidays, that these will be the memories that shape our children when they remember Christmas. 

Grant and I have decided not to give each other Christmas presents, and that has been the case for most of the year.  There is truly nothing we want, what a blessed life we have.  In our run down little old ramshackle cottage.  Our gift in this season is love, presence and mindfulness.  That to me is the true spirit of Christmas. 

Much Love,
Emma
xx








Thursday, 1 December 2016

A natter from the porch...

I'm not quite sure what the trigger is, but I feel as if the pressure that built over the course of this year has finally slowly been hissing a slow and steady release.  Over the last couple of days it feels like it has suddenly gone "whooosh!"

And I find myself feeling a familiar kind of old "normal".  Like my skin has finally stretched enough to fit all that has been going on in our lives in.  The last 12 months have been a rollercoaster for sure.  Did you know we have been in the little old cottage a whole 12 months now?  Crazy isn't it?  So much has changed.  So much has happened this year.  The devastating Pinery Bushfires occurred just two weeks after we moved to our new-to-us old cottage, helping to renew our local church and starting a family’s ministry HERE, renovations upon renovations.  Remember what the cottage used to look like?  If you are a new reader here are some before pictures HERE, William had his adenoids and tonsils removed, I started Uni, and also started a new part time job as a Chaplain working with women and children after the fires.

It has been a year of heartache, challenges, growth, laughter and new beginnings.  Throughout it all I have had many times of feeling so blessed.  We have been welcomed into the community, mind you having owned the general store and post office for many years helps that.  But finally I feel I am beginning to put down my roots here, the cottage always felt like home, but now the town is beginning too as well.  How long we will stay I have no idea, but it is nice for now, and “now” is all we have isn't it?


So here are some ordinary photos taken this week.  Happy moments.  Moments when I felt rich and deeply connected to our little home here. 

We got a couple of new chooks to add to our flock and they are laying well!  Though I think we could do with a couple more.   

A little while ago a dear friend gifted me her grandmothers collection of sewing bits and bobs - what a treasure chest it is!  It had everything I needed for a little project I undertook!  So handy considering the sewing shop is 30 mins away. 

"Jimmy" needed a "ninja" outfit apparently for christmas so I whipped this up for a gift for Angus.  William will het a library bag out of the Marvel fabric.  Henry might get a similar outfit for his Waldorf doll.



Licking the bowl!  Always fun.

Homemade snacks ready for the weekend. 

Anyway we are off to a christmas pagent tonight so I best get everyone ready!  Grant will be home in about 3 mins and Henry just hopped out of his bath and is currently running around in the nuddy!

Much love,
Emma
xx