Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Books & bits...

It's that weird week after Christmas, but before New Year, when time seems to go all floppy and loose, it's kind of a nowhere land where you're not even sure what day it is. Perhaps it's one of those lands at the top of the Faraway Tree and in a moment we will spin into another...

How are your holidays going? I'm still adjusting to the lack of routine but I am liking the easy mornings and the space. Ok, theres not that much space with all five kids home but it's a different KIND of space I guess.

Speaking of the gang here is all of us plus Mum taken by Charlotte as part of her Year 11 Photography unit. I just love it!

She's not the only one who has been making things around here....

For Christmas this year we made our Kris Kringle gifts, Mark got to make for Dan who we hadn't met yet. Dan goes out with my cousin, Sally. Anyway all we knew about him was that he was a 'typical Aussie guy, into sport etc'. Mark found this old cricket bat at the local oval and turned it into a Swedish Advent candle holder! Cool huh? And there I was thinking he would just get him a bottle of red...

amazing web

One thing I'm loving at the moment is reading. So far I've read The Cutting Room by Louise Welsh (pretty dark but good), The Slap by Christos Tsiolkas (an interesting Australian book, great for discussing with others), Revolution Road (really enjoyed it, sad, of it's time, would like to see the movie) and now I'm onto Love Song, the new book by Alex Miller which my Honey gave me for Christmas. I'm loving the way I'm travelling the world and seeing different lives & ideas through books, it's a blast. Yesterday I went to the library with Rosie. She got two animal stamps on the back of her little chubby hands and I got these...

more books! I was recently visiting Tammie (who always makes me laugh) and she has inspired me to count how many books I read in a year. So I'm off to a good start and it should be interesting to see how many I get through. What are you reading at the moment?

Hope all is well in your neck of the woods, see you soon xo

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Day

Did you have a merry Christmas?

Did your kids wake up super early and hang out near the tree eying off presents? Ours did.

We had a fun morning and the kids loved all their gifts. What lucky children they are.

Christmas can be intense and for some people it's hard to deal with all the excitement and noise. Thankfully most people cheer up and have a lovely day!

After breakfast we headed down to Hepburn to spend the day with mum and our extended family. We don't see some of them very much so it was fantastic to catch up.

Mum's place wasn't quite big enough for all 27 people so we set up a marquee outside and had a delicious lunch, champagne and fun!

The best thing about Christmas, for me, is the celebration of family.

Being together, sharing, having a laugh, chatting, hearing the news, eating, being silly,
dogs and all.

Our kids got to hang out with their cousins, it didn't seem to bother Bill that he was the only boy out of ten kids!

It was great to see my dad who I haven't caught up with for a long time, and his partner Margaret, and of course Tilly the Jack Russell!

Two sweeties,
( is Mark getting told off in the background?)

Two more sweeties, aren't they cute?

I hope you had a happy day too. I'm looking forward to that after Christmas feeling, hopefully some lovely days with the kids and Mark, swimming, making things, gardening, cooking, all the things I love. I'm finding myself going all vague and easily distracted so I haven't been blogging as much as usual. It's harder to find that quiet space lately - this is something I find a bit challenging about school holidays! But I'm trying to just go with the flow. One of my aims for the holidays is to have some special time with each of the kids, and Mark. Do you have any holiday plans? Take care lovelies, see you soon xo

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Ho, ho, quack, quack!

Yesterday I finished off these two dear little bunnies for Phillippa's nieces.
One of the nieces likes orange..

...and the other loves purple. I hope they like their Christmas bunnies, I think their cardi's and expressions are so sweet.

In the afternoon we wandered down to the Daylesford Farmers Market & someone else was arriving at the same time! Guess who?!

Yep, it was Santa!! Rosie was amazed and luckily didn't hear the others muttering something like.."its not the real Santa.." We caught up with lovely Kate & her girls and the kids had fun running around in the late afternoon sun.

Years ago when I was about 10 I went to the Vic Market in Melbourne and came home with a duckling in a box. I called her Chicky Duck and she was a great little friend to me. I used to sit with her on my lap in our old laundry and then as she got bigger she went outside, where I had dug a hole for a pond. Of course a duck in inner city Fitzroy wasn't going to last so she did eventually go to live on a farm. (At least that is what I was told!) Anyway, I've always liked ducks so guess what came home with us from the market?

Yes, that's right...two Indian Runner ducks!! Woohooo!! Quack, quack!! Poo, poo!!! They are called Astro & Jemima and they are just the most gorgeous creatures. I will have to read up on ducks, if anyone has any tips I would be most grateful.

They are only 8 weeks old and so far they seem happy enough in their pen with their blue clam shell pool. As they get bigger we will introduce them to the garden, and the chooks.

Have you got many vegies in your garden? Ours is going crazy with all the rain and humidity we've had. Lots of rocket and lettuce so we have been eating alot of salad. The other vegies all look excellent and I found the teeniest baby watermelon today.

Here is my eldest sweetie snuggled up on my bed. She has finished school for the year and got the BEST REPORT ever!!! How proud I am of her, she worked so hard and has done so well this year. I can't believe she only has one year left at school...where did that time go? And just as she finishes school then Rosie will start prep! Wow! That makes something like 26 years of having kids at school by the time Rosie finishes high school! Phew, that's a lot of school lunches.

Bye bye from me lovely friends, I hope your weekend has been relaxing and not too taxing! I'm afraid I have been a tad hormonal and tetchy but hopefully it will pass asap. Having a house full of children and a fair amount of chaos isn't the best when you are feeling like that but I'm putting a brave face on it!! Lots of love to you all xo

Friday, December 18, 2009

Today is the day!!

How exciting! Today is the day to draw out two, possibly three winners of my giveaway!! Lets get started. Bill, Lucy & Sunday have helped me to fold up all the little bits of paper with your names on them.

Here they are in the basket, ready to be plucked.

And the winner of Archie the Bashful is.....

Well done Yardage Girl!
And little Holly the Cardi Bunny goes to......

Yay!!! She will be flying over to Sarah in the U.K. soon! Philly & Tilly left a lovely comment saying they hoped the bunnies would go overseas to be ambassadors for love and peace isn't that a beautiful thought?
We now have to pick out a third winner as neither of the previous winners were after a red dress so here goes....

and lovely Tammy James from Canberra wins the red Lazy Bones dress!
If you could all email me with your details I will send you out your bunnies and dress. Woohoo!!

Thank you so much to everyone for entering and for all your dear, sweet, lovely comments. They made me feel like a winner too!! I wish I had a bunny for everyone! Anyway, this has been so much fun I think I will have to do more giveaways in 2010 and spread the bunny love. Take care and have a happy and fun weekend xo

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Houses have faces

Driving up and down from Callawadda to Daylesford is quite relaxing in a strange kind of way.

Because I have to sit still and concentrate on the road it's a good chance to unwind a little and not think too much.

I do love to look at the sky, the fields and of course the many interesting and quirky houses and buildings along the way.

Some are forlorn and many are old. Representing all the different times in Australian history they have seen so many different times, and people pass by. Some of the little towns are crumbling and it makes me sad that these once bustling communities are fading away.

This old building is amazing and so inspiring to look at, made from many layers of stone. The stone is so aged and the colours so soft. What went on in this building all those years ago?

I've always thought buildings and houses have faces. Happy, sad, curious, grand, funny, gentle....

I love to drive through these spaces and think about what went before.

Hope your week is going well and that the lead up to Christmas is not too crazy.

I will be drawing out the winner of my giveaway on Friday so if you haven't entered there is still time! See you soon lovelies xo

Monday, December 14, 2009

Harvest & dancing

On Friday I headed up to Callawadda to harvest our crop of organic garlic. This time I drove through Ballarat, Ararat & Stawell, passing through fields and little country towns. (More photo's to follow of some of the lovely old houses and buildings I saw along the way.)

On Saturday our friends the Lotons rolled up to help. Gee it's good to have friends like that who came all the way from Daylesford to give us a hand. Matilda was so helpful and besides pulling out a heap of garlic she also became an expert grader and fork cleaner!

It's hard to get a sense of how much garlic there was from this photo, but it felt like we would never get it all out! It was a whole lot easier having extra helpers. And it's always good to be in the paddock with the blue sky above and a bunch of good mates having a chat and a laugh as we work.

Phillippa and Brendan worked their little buttinski's off, here is Phillippa hard at work.

Michelle & Matilda

And here is me, slacking off in the adjoining wheat field.
I kind of fell in love with the wheat.

It's gorgeous colour and shape, the look of a whole field,
stretching out like a sea of gold against the blue sky.

We did manage to pull all the garlic out and this week we will be hanging,
storing and sorting out the varieties that we harvested a couple of weeks ago.

On Saturday afternoon I left the others to rush back to Daylesford for
the amazing dance concert put on by our local dance school Inside Out Dance.
Three of our girls do creative dance is Rosie (with her new haircut!).

and Sunday (on the left)

and Lucy, who choreographed & danced her first solo.

All the dancers performed with great enthusiasm
and each dance was special, it was hard to pick a favourite.
What a show it was, so inspiring, beautiful and joyous.

Hope all is well in your world sweeties, see you soon xo

ps. Lovely Bec from Edward & Lily has done a post about Dandelion!
Pop over and have a look at her lovely blog when you get a sec. And if you haven't already entered my giveaway it's not too late!