Holly’s first trip to the beach ♥


Hi everyone! I know it’s been a little while since I’ve posted on here. Since mum died in April I haven’t felt like enjoying life much sadly😦

But if there is one I should take from mum’s sudden death, it’s that I should be celebrating life more, especially with Holly.

All last year while I posted about my weekends on this blog I was childless, then pregnant. Now I have an eight and half month old daughter! Time has gone crazy fast. Today we took her to the beach for the first time. It was just magical to see it all through her eyes, and watch as she tasted sand and seashells! I also spent some time thinking about mum.

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You have permission to kick my butt


Yes, it’s been awhile. But I have an excellent excuse. I’ve started the new book. Well it’s actually the one I started a little while ago, but for whatever reasons it wasn’t coming together then and with Mum passing away it got shelved.

Well now it’s back, and it’s itching to get down on paper. I haven’t been like this since I wrote Charlie and Pearl.

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Get your glad rags on!

Get your glad rags on!

Ladies, if you’re anything like me you keep your best clothes for ‘best’. For me, this has always included my beautiful wedding dress. Bagged in a protective, er, bag, it hangs at the back of my husbands wardrobe (no room in mine) and hasn’t seen the light of day in six years. Till now.

I can still remember exactly how I felt that moment years ago when I stepped into it for the very first time. It was the 8th dress I’d tried on. All of the previous seven had been beautiful creations. Shades of white and ivory, lace and tulle and inlaid with jewels and sparkling diamantes. Some simplistic in their design, hugging my figure, others full skirted. I had really liked two of them in particular, and had almost decided on one when the saleslady gave me “just one more” to try on.


The moment I slipped into it I fell in love. You know how they say every little girl dreams of being a princess? Well when I put that dress on I became a princess. Every other dress paled in comparison. My wonderful mother bought it for me, and on my wedding day I felt like the most beautiful woman in the whole wide world.

After the wedding it got drycleaned (you know what it’s like at weddings; the odd spilt drink or two and grass stains from imaginative posing for wedding portraits) and hung in the wardrobe and there it stayed. Every time I hung up a shirt I lingered to touch the bag with longing and remember when I was princess for a day.

Last weekend I decided enough was enough. What was the point in having such a beautiful dress if only to wear it just once? That dress was made to be appreciated, to be enjoyed, and to be loved. Now that I have a daughter of my own, I want her to understand that beautiful things in life are to be enjoyed up close, not admired from afar. My 80 year old granddad, bless him, went shopping by himself at Christmas and bought Holly a cute little creamy dress of her own. So I decided that before the weather packs in (just around the corner bugger it – brrr) we would have our own little fashion shoot out at my parents farm. My sister took the photos and my mother stood behind her, flapping like a chicken and jumping like a monkey to make Holly smile for the camera. “Look at silly Nanny!” It worked.

I highly recommend it. Get your wedding dress, or your other most favourite dress, the one that makes you feel a million bucks and gorgeously beautiful and wear it. Take some photos. Get your sisters/mother/aunties/friends together and make an afternoon of it, with bubbly wine and nibbly cheese on crackers perhaps. However you decide to do it, enjoy yourself, and I hope you enjoy these photos ♥














What a difference a smile makes :-)


Hey everyone,

I’m feeling all warm and cosy and I want to spread the goodwill🙂 Life is good. My little family is happy and healthy and enjoying our days. Being a mum is hands down the best thing I have ever done. Even better than having my book, something I’ve written, out there in the world being enjoyed by people, which is something I dreamed of since I was a little girl.

My days are busy, but if you ask me at sundown what I’ve accomplished that day, the list is not very long. Holly pretty much consumes all my time, feeding her, entertaining her, simply just being with her. I’ve realised that she will only be this little for so long, and once this time with her is gone, it’s gone forever. So I need to forget things like cleaning the house spotless (no great sacrifice) and focus on her. We walk a lot, sometimes to get her to sleep but mostly for enjoyment, and it was on one of those walks that I decided to start what I imaginatively call, ‘The Smile Project’. I walk past so many people every day, of all ages and race, and usually it’s eyes fixed to the footpath or straight ahead, and zero interaction. But I’ve noticed since Holly was born and now joins me on my walks that people just can’t resist a baby. Seriously. She hangs in the front pack on my chest (killing my shoulders and neck because she certainly isn’t light, but she’s anti-pram at the moment so it’s that or carry her in my arms), and people smile and coo and go all gaga when they see her. Some even comment, “cute baby” and the like, to which of course I say Yes. Yes she is.

I’ve been blown away by how a simple smile can transform even the most sullen face. It’s a beautiful sight to see😀

So now I smile at everyone whose path I cross, and if they smile back I say ‘Hello’, and I think we all benefit from this simple interaction and continue on our separate ways just a little bit happier.

Why don’t you try it?

Ok that’s enough smugness for one post.

Because I’m home fulltime with Holly, every day seems like a weekend. So I do little things daily now in the spirit of this blog, to reclaim life’s little pleasures. Holly and I have fun in the garden. We smell and touch flowers, listen to birds, feed the birds, keep the cat away from the birds. We also lie on the grass and watch clouds waft by like big balls of cotton wool while one of us sticks our toes in our mouth (see if you can guess which one).  I bake bread and cakes (yep, I’m a regular Nigella Lawson now, have baked three cakes in as many weeks! Unlike Nigella I don’t wear a dress, heels and lipstick while doing so, it’s pretty much pyjamas all the way) while Holly hangs out in her activity centre behind me. We go for walks and forage (i.e. steal passionfruit and grapes from someone’s garden. In my defense, if you insist on growing them along your front fence then you must expect some degree of pillaging).

We had a lovely family BBQ last weekend at mum and dads. It was a last minute thing that Dad thought of around lunchtime, however I flexed my culinary fingers and whipped up a homegrown cherry tomato salad with balsamic, olive oil , garlic sea salt and pesto flavoured feta cheese, and I baked some more of the rosemary bread. A year ago I would have bought a bag of buns and a salad in a plastic container from the supermarket on the way out. Progress is a wonderful thing.

Ok this post is getting a bit long so I will sign off here. I do have an update on the latest art project which I will upload on here in the next couple of days.

Take care everyone x


Holly and her Nanny ♥


Left to Right – My hubby, Dad, nephews Oliver and John, Brother Rob and his wife Ange, and mum and Holly. I am taking the photo (obviously) and my sister is hiding behind me because she hates being in photos, despite being tall. blonde and beautiful. Go figure.

Fun in the kitchen :-)


I sat down the other day to read through the book again, something I hadn’t done in the last few months (since the arrival of the gorgeous little life force that is Holly in our lives), and I was amazed to realise that some of the things that I tried for the first time last year as part of this blog, I now do frequently as just a normal part of my life. And that realisation delighted me. That, if nothing else, this blog broadened my horizons and led to me doing simple things such as enjoying the sunset, baking bread and beachcombing. These kinds of activities are now just an everyday part of my life, rather than a special occasion. But this doesn’t mean that I now take them for granted because I don’t. Not at all. I still appreciate every single moment of the sunset, a chance to reflect on the day and recharge my soul.

We’ve grown a lot of our own produce this summer. I must admit (because he will read this and call me out if I lie about it dammit) that hubby still does the majority (ok, all) of the work in the garden. But I get to enjoy the fruits of his labour! we’ve had potatoes, corn, the sweetest cherry tomatoes, strawberries, blueberries, celery, lettuce, pumpkin…and probably other stuff I’m forgetting. I do have plans to start my own little raised gardens near the house (after hubby builds them) and I would like to grow lots of vegies to sustain us through Winter, especially important now that we are down to one income.

And baking bread, well that’s just fun and so easy! But it’s something I once would never have attempted. In fact my neighbour expressed huge surprise when she asked me for a walk the other day and I couldn’t as I was in the middle of waiting for my dough to rise. She thought baking bread was a difficult and time consuming task but it’s actually really rewarding, and kneading dough is hugely satisfying. It’s a great time to just let your thoughts drift. I made rosemary bread this time, and we ate it with tomato soup on Sunday night and it was delicious hmm….

Here’s a before and after shot of the loaves

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I’m also working on a new art/craft project. It’s difficult to explain at this point what the finished project will look like (at least in my head!) so you’ll just have to bear with me as I slowly reveal it, but here’s how it’s going so far..

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Oh and I made a cake the other day! Only the second one I’ve ever made🙂 First one was a total disaster and only fit for the dog’s consumption, but this one was much better. Banana and I threw a few blueberries from the garden in. Yum!


My cake – I’m so proud!

And last but not least, my much longed for little baby girl is now nearly 4 and a half months old already. We’ve just started her on some solids (if you can call pureed fruits and vege ‘solid’) and she is loving them. Here’s a pic of us ♥


The love of my life ♥



I farewelled a beautiful friend this week


Her name was Kathryn, and she was the most kind, caring, vivacious, funny, positive, inspiring, caring, talented woman I have ever met. She was a huge support to me over the years, both through my writing and also my fertility issues. Those of you who have read the ‘About’ page of this blog when I started it a year ago will realise she was the friend I talked about who survived her brush with cancer. Well last year it came back, and this time she wasn’t so lucky. She leaves behind her husband and an eight year old daughter.

You can read about her here Teachers-death-rocks-local-primary-school

I am so, so sad she is gone😦

It’s made me really think about life again. Originally when I started this blog it was just to be for the year. Of course when I started it I didn’t know I was going to get pregnant a month later (dream finally come true!) so I didn’t as have much energy to devote to this as I had hoped. I had a blast doing the things I did though, and I really do feel like I reclaimed some of life’s little pleasures, whether it was making jam, going for bike rides, sleeping under the stars or studying the flowers in the back garden with a microscope.

In honour of Kathryn, I’m going to carry it on for this year. Of course I now have a 15 week old baby daughter, who is VERY time demanding, and already quite the little dramatic personality (we are going to be in soooooooooo much trouble as she gets older).  So I’m going to go into it a little easier on myself this year and not have the pressure of doing something every weekend, although I will certainly try as much as possible.

I’m also working hard at selling and promoting my book, Charlie and Pearl, available on Amazon here Charlie and Pearl. You can find out more about that journey at this blog

Thanks for sticking round guys, and here’s to another fun year🙂 I leave you with a recent sunset, humbling in its beauty.