Monthly Archives: March 2013

What a difference a smile makes :-)

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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

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Holly and her Nanny ♥

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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.

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Fun in the kitchen :-)

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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!

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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 ♥

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The love of my life ♥