Thursday, 30 October 2014

Travelling Light..

On my path to simple, conscious living I found myself wanting to lighten the load I was carrying in all areas of my life. From the linen cupboard and wardrobe to the craft room and my handbag, slowly I've been make conscious decisions about the things that travel with us from place to place. 

Three moves in two years has taught me a whole lot. It's taught me resilience, that I am not my belongings and it's taught me that home is not about the stuff that fills a space, but the love, the people, the intention and energy under that roof, wherever it is. Once I thought you needed lots of nice 'things' to make a home feel loved.  Now I'm learning that with just a little creativity, the essentials, plants, animals and loved ones, any place can be home for us.  So when the day comes for us to move on from the space, I know I can leave with a happy, peaceful heart, without the burden of packing up a bunch of things we don't really need.

This same philosophy has begun to transcend into to other parts of my life too. Now I find myself happiest when I travel as light as I can. You see once I carried bags full of stuff. Truly, you can even see them in old blog posts.  I'm not even sure why I felt the need to fill my bag up, it was as if I was trying to prove something to myself, perhaps how busy I was, or felt I needed to be.  I look back now and have to  giggle, I just feel so silly.

Handbags really are fascinating though, they say a lot about a person's life.  After we lost Cohen, I didn't leave the house for months, so the handbag I was using up until that day, just sat on my desk, like a time capsule of a previous life. Once we had moved and I was getting back into every day life, I just couldn't bring myself to even open that handbag and to be honest, still haven't really been through it.  I decided the day we moved to Queensland, I decided I just had to start over. To travel light, without all the extra baggage I had weighing me down, physically and mentally. 

So these days, I always carry a small bag, with the bare essentials.  Even the nappy bag is as minimal as possible and you know what, it just makes me feel so much lighter.  Not only am I not dragging around half the house, I know where things are, I have what we need and if it's not in there, then we do without.  It might sound simple, but I'm just beginning to realise, how much of an impact it's having on my every day.  Without that burden and excess on my shoulders, I'm finding myself more calm, more free and most importantly, more happy. 

I look forward to applying this minimal philosophy when packing for our first holiday as a family over Christmas. I'll let you know how it goes!

What's your handbag philosophy? Do you find yourself wanting to travel light? 
I'd love to hear your family travel tips too.  What's essential? What can I leave at home?

Much Love
xxx

Monday, 27 October 2014

Nourishing the Soul..

Last week was just one of those weeks. One of those hot, heavy, cranky weeks, when midsummer arrives before its invited. One of those teething, sore ears, not a whole lot of sleeping weeks. One of those lots of extra cuddles and nurturing all round kind of weeks. I'm so grateful we are through to the other side, that Mercury has finished it's crazy retrograde and that it's the start of of something brand new and wonderful. Reflecting on the week that was, I'm reminded that it's the simple soul nourishing moments that really see you through. 

Moments like..


A spot of Sunday experimental beetroot brownie baking.

Finally heading outdoors in those moments before sunset to enjoy the delicious warmth of the day.


A very happy brown paper package of inspiring craft eco friendly craft supplies and that moment of quiet to quickly crochet a few stitches.

Gathering vegetables from the garden to make our weekly broth.

Cheeky smiles and sweet giggles after a long and happy nap time.


Organic berry, banana and chia smoothies.. with extra cinnamon.

And the delightful scent of lavender oil in Epsom salt baths, to help bring restful nights and sweet dreams.

Wishing you a beautiful week, magical, productive days, and restful dreamy nights.
Much Love
xxx

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Living with Less..

It's been two years this month since we packed up our old life, from the first home we owned, put everything into storage and took off in our little caravan in search of new beginnings. I vividly remember packing those boxes, filled with grief, with burden and frustration. How did I let my possessions overwhelm me? How did I lose my way and forget what was really important. The weight of our stuff was stifling and as we scrabbled to throw the last boxes onto the truck, I remember thinking I'd be happy never to see any of it again. 

Two years and three moves later, life is lighter, easier and so much happier. It's taken a complete paradigm shift and a conscious decision to do things differently and bit by bit we've begun to change the way we see our possessions. 

Getting started was fun and so liberating, but as we got done past the paper back novels and extra (and by that I mean way too much) crockery, things started to get tricky. Nostalgia begins to kick in, family heirlooms are not so easy to let go of and my sentimental nature sometimes get the better of me. Day by day though, I'm learning, that moments are collected and kept precious in the soul, not in useless day to day objects. 

Sticking to our living with less mantra has been a fascinating and at times challenging experience. The whole process is raising big ideas, posing important ethical and environmental questions and teaching me so many big lessons, most poignantly, that I am 'not the sum of my possessions', as Erin so beautifully put it in her recent blog post.

So week by week we try to tread a bit more lightly, choose a bit more carefully and most importantly make the decision to say no to more stuff. The dining chairs can be mended, the vacuum cleaner really is ok and although a new yoga mat would be lovely, the one I have is perfectly imperfect.

We are by no means total minimalists and I'm not sure we ever will be. We still have boxes in the garage that need sorting and wardrobes that are ready for another clean out, but we are getting there and it's that weekly process that continues to inspire our new lighter way of living. 

Much Love
xxx

PS. There are plenty of wonderful resources to create a happy, minimalist life.  One I've found really inspiring is The Minimalists.  They post great daily links on Facebook and have so much useful information on their website.  I'd love to hear about any resources you've found inspiring too.  

Monday, 20 October 2014

42/52..


 "A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2014."

Tallow: The broad bean queen! 

 Joining Jodi's beautiful 52 project
 Much Love
xxx

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Conscious Living - A Love List..

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; it's the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead

List #002.. 
A collection of blog posts, articles, short films & links to inspire and invigorate a more conscious way of life. 

It's no secret I'm completely in love with natural homes.  And I'll admit, I have been known to take notes from cob making tutorials on YouTube from time to time.  There is just something incredibly inspiring and liberating about building your home with your own hands.  These natural homes inspired by nature are some wonderful examples.  

This farm made my heart sing.  I just love seeing people full of joy and doing what they love.  And what a fabulous quote, 'the world needs small farmers'.

And speaking of farms, here's another one that's invigorating our dream too, the gorgeous Church Farm General Store.  Enjoy their little film and interview over at The Vista for a peek into their homespun world in beautiful Billinudgel. 

I'm a super novice when it comes to home canning and preserving, but I'm really eager to learn.  I found this post a really useful place to start.  Do you preserve your produce? I'd love to hear your top tips.

Recently the lovely Bec sent me a copy of Pip Magazine and I just loved it.  Being new to permaculture, it's been a wonderful warm and friendly introduction that's got me so inspired.  

Ever wondered how your wool ends up in a lovely little ball ready to crochet? Be sure to check out from sheep to skeinso fascinating to read Cinnamon's wooly story. 

This blog post left me thinking for days.  I really love Erin's blog and there was something so beautiful and raw about her words that really resonated, particularly the line, 'we are more than the sum of our possessions'.

Also this thought provoking post about the truth of fast fashion and another great post by Erin about creating a conscious wardrobe, something I'm also really striving towards.   

Over the past few weeks I've loved reading A Staple Store's Instagram notes to my daughter.  Such beautiful and powerful messages.  

I just love this print, created by the very talented Millie.  I often think about the idea of tribes and making those gorgeous connections.  I think she's got it spot on. 

And I'll leave you with one of my favourites for the week, a tour of Autumn Farm, a special little spot that feels so authentic and inviting, I'd love to pop by for a visit.

Wishing you a beautiful weekend!
Much Love
xxx

PS. Just a little bit of self promotion.. We are having a special giveaway over on our Wilde Asher Instagram.  Pop by and enter for your chance to win one of my one off, crochet mandalas and one of my sister's gorgeous art prints. x

PPS. Thank you so much for your sourdough tips! I'm back to my regular baking schedule tomorrow and can't wait to try them out.

Thursday, 16 October 2014

These Days - Everyday Gratitude..

These days, I am full of gratitude for our bountiful daily harvests.

These days, wild and windy afternoons call of a match of homemade spiced apple muffins.

These days, these two besties love nothing more than hanging out together. 

These days, the riverbank makes the perfect studio, especially as the gorgeous old paddle steamer passes by.

These days, as we wander past this sweet little garden, I'm reminded of Alice in Wonderland. 

These days, I'm becoming part of our Spring garden.. and I couldn't be happier!

Much Love
xxx

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

41/52..

 "A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2014."

Tallow: Late afternoon gardening & grass observation.. 

 Joining Jodi's beautiful 52 project
 Much Love
xxx

PS. Tallow is wearing one of my dear friend Steph's, gorgeous Little Wren creations.  Perfect for balmy summer nights. 

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Tallow's Rainbow Party..

A few Sundays ago, on a gorgeous Spring afternoon we gathered some of our much loved tribe together to celebrate Tallow's first birthday.  Rainbow themed for our rainbow girl, we enjoyed a low key gathering in our backyard with a barbecue and some lovely rainbow treats.   

We kept the decorations simple with some colourful tissue pom poms, crochet bunting & a big vintage fabric chandelier. 

 Rainbow fruit skewers and rice paper rolls added lots of yummy colour to the festivities and nothing says party treat like a fabulous rainbow blondie, made by the lovely Annie.  After pouring over cake ideas on Pinterest, I decided on something sweet, simple and easy to bake in my (temperamental) rental oven.. rainbow cupcakes with vanilla butter cream icing topped with a handmade banner created by my very clever sister.    

The last minute addition of a gazebo to the backyard the ideal shade solution from the afternoon sun and provided the perfect hang out spot between hula hooping sessions. 

We even got a clap and a smile when it came time to sing happy birthday.

 Happy Days Tallow Frankie! We love you all the way over the rainbow! 

Much Love
xxx

PS. Thanks to my sister and my dad for capturing many of these precious party moments.   

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Snippets of Happy..

It's always a funny feeling coming back to blogging after a little bit of time away.  So much happens in between, sometimes its tricky to dive back in, where you left off.  I have so many posts I'd like to share, an epic amount of photos to sort through and ideas to navigate, but right now, I'm adjusting to life with a one year old who has decided that afternoon naps are over rated, the kitchen cupboards are super interesting and that walking is the cool thing to do. So while we find sweet new rhythms to our days, I thought I'd borrow a post idea from the gorgeous Kate and share a few snippets of happy from around here.  

So here's what I've been up to lately..

Admiring: Lovely jars of snapdragons from the garden and the gorgeous new art prints my sister has created for our shop, Wilde Asher

 Crafting: Rainbow party decorations with my very favourite ladies. Giant pom poms really are a most lovely way to fill a room with happiness. 

Making: All natural makeup removers and dish washing liquid.   Both have been on my to make list for so long and after finally getting my hands on some lovely castile soap, I spent Saturday morning experimenting with these lovely recipes.  

 Harvesting: Broad beans.. We have a lovely little bumper crop and have been finding all kinds of creative ways to use them!

Gathering: Lavender from around the neighbourhood.  How can I resist when there are so many beautiful sprigs just waiting to be enjoyed.  

 Baking: Wholemeal spelt bread.. It's been weeks between loaves and I'm so glad to be baking again.  There's something almost magical about pulling a loaf of bread from the oven.  I've also been loving my go to banana bread recipe with coconut and chia seeds.  

Decorating: Our mantelpiece with crochet and a rainbow of gorgeous first birthday cards & gifts.    

Loving: Spending time with family.. Especially delightful moments like these. hooping in the garden with my sister. 

What's been happening in your world?
Can you believe it's October?

Much Love
xxx

Sunday, 5 October 2014

39/52 & 40/52..


"A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2014."

39/52 -  Birthday Girl!
40/52 - Just hanging out in the garden, making silly faces at Daddy.

 Joining Jodi's beautiful 52 project
 Much Love
xxx

PS. What a fabulous rainbow whirlwind of a week it's been! We celebrated Tallow's first birthday with our amazing families, enjoyed precious time with grandparents and made the most of the wonderful Spring weather.  We waved goodbye to the last of our visitors on Thursday and are enjoying a quiet long weekend of pottering, gardening and settling back into our everyday rhythms.  Can't wait to share more from our celebrations next week.