Tag Archives: Inspiration

Holly’s first trip to the beach ♥

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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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Get your glad rags on!

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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.

Well.

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 ♥

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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.

A rainy day at the beach, and some reflections on recent events.

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When I started this weekend blog it was because I wanted to experience more out of life besides work, housework and TV. I wanted to remember the little things that can bring us huge amounts of pleasure and satisfaction and make us really feel like we’re living this life to the fullest.

The awful shooting in America the other night, where those poor people who had simply gone to see a movie and either lost their life or had their life changed forever is unbelievably sad 😦  Reading about it on a news site led me to a blog by one of the victims brothers, which led me to a blog written by the victim herself, Jessica Ghawi. She had survived a shooting in June in Toronto, only to lose her life at the hands of another gunman. My heart goes out to her family and those of the other victims. You can read her thoughts on the first shooting here Jessica’s blog

A quote from part of it:

‘I was shown how fragile life was on Saturday. I saw the terror on bystanders’ faces. I saw the victims of a senseless crime. I saw lives change. I was reminded that we don’t know when or where our time on Earth will end. When or where we will breathe our last breath. For one man, it was in the middle of a busy food court on a Saturday evening.

I say all the time that every moment we have to live our life is a blessing. So often I have found myself taking it for granted. Every hug from a family member. Every laugh we share with friends. Even the times of solitude are all blessings. Every second of every day is a gift. After Saturday evening, I know I truly understand how blessed I am for each second I am given.”

I wish we all thought like this all of the time. We’re so busy we don’t always take the time to stop and remember it’s the little things that feed our soul and rejuvenate our spirits. Appreciate the time spent with family and friends, even if it’s just chatting over a cup of tea, instead of thinking about the washing sitting on the couch or the dishes in the sink, or all the other things you could be doing instead.

I think I’ve mentioned before how lucky we are to live so close to some seriously beautiful beaches. You’ve seen pictures of some of them before, from our failed fishing trips and my beachcombing day.

I was lying in bed this morning and thinking about, of all things, Vitamin D. And how most of us don’t get anywhere near enough of it. The best source? The Sun. I thought about how Monday through Friday, I get up and get ready, hop in the car and go to work where I go straight inside to the office and spend the next eight hours, get back into a car and come home where I shut the curtains and light the fire straight away because it’s winter and it gets cold at 4.30pm and dark just after five.

Depressing.

But it’s the life so many of us live.

Well I had planned on getting some vitamin D today, but NZ is currently blanketed by rainclouds and fog. We decided to go to the beach anyway, and I’m so glad we did. We ate fish ‘n’ chips in the car, watching the waves crash out our windscreen. Then we got our wet weather gear on and went for a walk along the beach. It was beautiful; salty crisp, fresh air. The wind made our cheeks sting but it was a nice pain, it made you feel really alive. Delicious.

Have a great week everyone. Take some time out to smell a flower, read a book you’ve been longing to read, or admire the night sky for a few minutes.

And don’t forget to tell your loved ones how much you love them ♥

Yum – fish ‘n’ chips! 🙂

The view. A little blurry from the rain but still breathtakingly beautiful.

Beach Art

Sad to be leaving the beach, but also sandy and happy and with a new stick to add to her collection.

The reason I’ve been a little slack lately….

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baby Robinson

I’m overjoyed to announce that hubby and I are nearly 16 weeks pregnant! (link to ultrasound picture above)

Obviously we are super excited, although it’s been a nervous and scary time for us as well, having had three miscarriages in the past two years. This baby is strong though, and has been happily swimming away in there every time we’ve had a scan. We feel very blessed.

I’ve had morning sickness pretty bad, which is why I havent been up to much over the past few weekends sorry. It’s been a big enough mission to drag myself out of bed and into work some days! But the sickness has mostly faded (apart from the smell of fried eggs, can’t stand them. or hot oil. Yuck). So I will be back into the swing of things soon 🙂

I spy with my little eye….

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I spy with my little eye….

It's a little blurry on purpose so the wrinkles aren't as obvious.

…lots of beautiful things! Wow is all I can say. Mother Nature, I have really slagged you off lately, due to the whole ‘rainy summer’ thing. But after the beautiful pieces of art I’ve just seen I will admit you do some good work. Read the rest of this entry