a first day. surprising happiness.

The first day of both children at school spanning before me And I don’t have to drive the 50km round trip, and I fulfilled my promise I would swim in the river and then be home all day and read in bed in the morning and try to nap and refill after staying awake way too often since we returned from Tasmania, unable to unwind with all the transition and change and shifting happening in and around me at this time. Life is looking so different and I’m facing such new possibilities and being pushed towards things I never thought I wanted and here I am home alone for hours. 3.5 more self directed hours. I promised myself a day of following my whims and going gently towards what I wished to  while also planning to taking care of a couple of  household needs and making some dinner too so I could Just  hang out with the children when they return and you know do some washing and mow some grass and vaccumn and maybe have a good long talk with my mama And talk about parenting the adolescent  And wonder what the new phase brings and what shall I do now, just like so many parents around the country this week who choose school for their kids and have sent off their littlest one, hopefully I will cherish a few moments in between productivity and work to just be me and feel so grateful for this day,

and then without planning it, I had a surprising  piece of fun when I followed a lesson from great storytelling teacher Justus Neumann at the Tasmanian circus festival and allowed the words to bubble out spontaneously and fast and follow them without a thought and write them down, instead of listening to them babble on while I wanted to nap and there, in it, was the sweetest reminder of how fun it is for me to write and play with words and see what untamed combinations of verbs want to play with me without fear and inhibition, And the effervescent chuckles that land on my tongue when I’m really having some of the quiet wordy solo type of fun and how balanced I feel and contented afterwards.

So here is my fun, lightly edited as computers come up with the most profoundly amusing types of word suggests when you type so fast ones keypad can no longer spell, spell checked and not for judgement, just for fun and to share a bit of my fun because not everyone’s fun looks the same but maybe my fun will connect to your fun or maybe your fun will respond to my fun or maybe not but you’ll think about fun and what you’ve done just for fun just for You todayand maybe I will hold this reminder of fun as what brings me a slice of happiness pie. Fun!

I began with a phrase I’d created spontaneously in the workshop with Justus. By the way Tassi Circus Festival was really fun! More another day!

  

The child blew away, the child blew away that day

 And left Behind was a husk of crisp leaves and stick and stones and dry earth bones and the query of where in the sky do you go when you die as who you used to know

When the wind blows and blows and you want to go go go go go

up there it was so blue 

Blue blue Blue Azure cerulean heraldic blue

Like an eye like the depth of a lovers eye where you can melt and join and drift and rise lightly like A balloon set free from a small fist without a cry

The child blew away and I was the child too and I lifted up into the sky and was immaculately free

To be me and to see with such vast all seeing eyes what had been revealed just for my sight 

That inside, the child had blown away and without her I was a dry crispy husk of leaves and dry parched earthen bones and that

With only stones I was no fun and that my joy to live and caress life with my gift of creativity and sight had left me high and dry

Like a ship with no sails and only seagulls on the gunwales and seagulls are not patient by nature and squawk like a nagging sagging fish wife and that was what a slice had become of my precious life when. I let my child blow away, always it was a contrast of being freed and being me and being dreamy and high but I was left with only the fishwife who knew not what it was to be light and blow with life and find the heart in all matters and people fun and to be poked and poke fun and revel in the disturbances of living and think of more than . Which fish needs to be scaled or which mountain needs to be nailed or which duty needs to be mailed

Because the joy and the flight was up up up in the blue blue blue and the child was where the happiness flew and the child needed the big child that was Me to hold her hand and . Guide her across the land of living and being me but she so needed it also to be one of the many faces to see to have fun you see you see to have fun like a child unaware like a child without a care like a child who is truly there present truly there in the moment and not thinking if she’ll be liked or lied to but just there in the moment to be and have fun freely and be safely held and sheltered and trust the wind

And so when we blew away it wasn’t whinging id left my shoes at home, it was with the beautiful trust that I as mother was there holding the string that joined my soul to the earth and in my great knowing pocket was everything i ever needed to fly.

Roselinde

PS what are you doing for fun?

Spookiest to the punctuation prefects. (Read; Apologies, see isn’t it fun what the computer auto suggests…) 

Advertisements

Makings in Advent/Cinnamon star recipe

Makings in advent. 

Air dried clay ornaments,( in between arguing over who had more clay)the children had a great time making me guess what implements had made what impressions.  We used cookie cutters to cut them out and they took 2 days to dry thoroughly.   
    
  So many stars…  
 
Sweet Swiss wood cut decorations from our time in the Interlaken region this year.

 lily made her own cosy house transparency one morning.   
As we love our Swiss Christmas biscuit tradition so much, I will share 

I have a new favourite Zimpt Sterne Rezept / cinnamon star recipe this year

This one is gluten free also. 

 (sorry S for giving you the sticky old one…)

I can’t remember if it’s a copy from somewhere or if I adapted something else. It’s written on a scrap of torn paper with a swimming lesson note on the back….

Zimpt Sterne/Cinnamon Stars

250g almond meal for the biscuits

150g almond meal Extra for sticky dough or dusting while you roll out

1 cup rapadura sugar

2tsp ground cinnamon or more to taste

A small pinch of clove powder

2 egg whites beaten stiff

Mix 250g almond meal, sugar, spices and egg white to a pliable dough. Add more almond meal if it’s too sticky. You will know! It really shouldn’t be a painful messy experience! I knead the dough quite vigorously in the bowl. 

Dust with almond meal and roll out on/or between baking paper to about 5 mm thick.

 Refrigerate overnight or at least three hours.

Cut out your stars, rinse your cutters if they’re getting too sticky, dust everything with almond meal as you go if needed. 

Bake at 180’c for about 8 minutes. Pull them out of the oven when the bottoms are going slightly brown as I like them when they’re more chewy than dry and crisp! Oops many a black star has come outta my kitchen. 

Cool them on a rack and invite me around for a cuppa and a biscuit. 

I mean share them with your friends and family…. 

As an option you can mix beaten egg white with icing sugar and decorate them pre baking. More sticky messy fun! I bought a piping bag especially. Then you have snow capped biscuits. So appropriate for Advent in summer Australia, don’t you agree? 

Inspired by The Children Of Noisy Village(Astrid Lindgren) Cedar suggested we have a bean guessing game and make a prize cookie from all the scraps of dough. They got a jar of chickpeas and a notebook to record all the guesses from our home and neighbours. The children ran around giving biscuit samples and collecting guesses, displaying the prize cookie!
Well done J for guessing 1004, hard to believe this little jar held 1163 chickpeas! mm enjoy that cookie! I was sure there where only 381…..

  
Peace

X Roselinde 

right now…

  
Amidst illness, parenting challenges, life challenges, menstruating, mess, lethargy, humidity and losing my life map temporarily as the end of the year screams towards me…..

Happiness is a coconut leaf harvest basket, full of colour and scent for dinner

These tiny moments keep me sane and happier! 

It really is the small things people.

Lebanese cucumbers

Green yellow AND purple beans

Chinese greens ( self sown, great weed suppressor)

Lettuce

Basil

Lemon sorrel

Pineapple sage flowers

What are you harvesting from your garden or your life?

X

Roselinde

simply advent

  



Advent unfolding

Slowly simply 

Plant colours dried and dyed

Gold and silver, mint and rust

Dusty green and watered silk

Scented with eaucalypt 

Light a candle under the wreath

Light a candle in my dark night

Pray for grace

Play for space

Gently unfurl

What is genuine in this moment

Admire and melt into summer colours and 

Breath of wind and starlight kisses

Unadorned and humble 

Feet on the ground

Candlelight in the window

Calls me into myself

Xx

Blessings

Roselinde

 

Bateau Bay Floral Reserve

On the Central Coast of NSW, the Bateau Bay floral reserve is delightful in spring! High above the sea the wildflowers and trees sing.  I walked this track with Cedar, Lily and Jesses mama Jane in the week after our return from Europe. Walking the land and basking in the wildflowers, views, textures and scents helped me reintegrate my arrival. It’s an easy, level path, forest/scrubland walk. We walked from the Rushby street Carpark in the direction of Crack neck lookout. 

  
    
   
   
    
    
    
    
    

 
   
    
    
    
    
    

    
    
    
    
 

How much Can a Koala Bare?

  
A koala is not a bear, but they are absolutely adorable and fascinating marsupials. It seems like this one has claimed the territory around our house and property and we’ve seen (him) a few times in the last weeks. We hear a lot of grunting snorting at night which is more evidence of koala presence. The first night Lily remarked she had heard the weirdest frog on the night! When we spotted Sir Koala in the morning the mystery was solved. It’s so precious for me, as growing up in WA there are no wild koalas about and I had only seen a couple in the wild (Adelaide, Rosebank,) until I moved to NSW 6 years ago. I have only seen about 6 wild koalas since then so it’s excellent to see this plump patchy grey fella just outside. They perch on some thin branches and snooze swaying some 25 metres above ground. When they wake up and stare placidly with their endearing fluffy ears and comical nose I can’t help but be cheered! We did rescue a baby koala after a flood, when Lily was three, which was incredible to nurse the little one on my lap after we paddled home. We had been out boating looking for the lost pieces of our friends bridge when I spotted “a puppy in that tree” my brain could not comprehend immediately what I was seeing. Koala habitats are greatly endangered and I just read our local Koala habitat protection zones where reduced by 40.\’ At least one or two are safe on this land we stay on thankfully!

Taking Stock

Returning home and taking stock. Thanks to Pip at Meet me at Mikes for the word list.

  Making :

time to stroll around outside before children wake up. counting leaves and flowers and feeling that everything is really happy I’m home

and fantasise about all the gardening I will do… I have some cheeky plants that went ballistic while I was away and still a few gaps to plant in….

Cooking : snow pea, red capsicum and pineapple sage flower salad with lemon and mandarin dressing, also young broad bean and leek sauted in lemon juice. Mmm

Drinking : mango smoothie, mangoes foraged by Jesse. What a man, he brought in about 300 mangoes last season! Now we enjoy the last frozen cheeks…

Reading: our ash grove blog, beautiful and creative and wondering how does life look homeschooling with 5 children?

Pondering: how to grow with the children and stop my default repeats.

Wanting: a massage, a shiatsu or a kahuna therapist to knock on my door right now…

  Looking: at cobwebs. Lots of cobwebs. Overflowing suitcases, washing and general debris of returning home. Flowers! Lots of flowers!  Also looking at some of my favourite things. Is this really my home?

Playing: a game where i am employed by this house for domestic duties and I get paid holidays and good hours… And other perks…

Wasting: time searching for cherry red flannel sheets on the internet. I know winters over right, but  maybe for next year… 

Sewing: lots in my imagination! Like a whole new rack of simple stylin lady fashion. 

Wishing: spring was 6 months of the year, I could teleport and whistle really genuine bird calls. Not at the same time.

  Enjoying: the reward of planting bulbs at Easter and seeing a bed full of freesias bursting with colour and fragrance in spring . No instant gratification involved. Patience. I think I’m growing up!

Waiting: to grow up and be more patient. To get a hold over this overactive mind. To visit  my newly moved mama and papa in Tasmania!

Liking: the morning sun as I meander the gardens and check on the fruit tree buds and seedlings and the caress of the cool breeze and bird song. Spring mornings in Bellingen are delightful. 

Delighting: in the wild creatures, on the night of our arrival home we are greeted by the first cicadas, the fire flies and a python on the verandah. Welcome home!

Wondering: if I will be able to do all I dream of in one day.

Loving: gathering my family for a home cooked garden dinner by candlelight, at home, at our own table for the first time in a long time. Sweet.

Hoping: the children will have a great swathe of warm memories from their time in our care.

Marvelling: that Cedar has just had his first doctor visit! I was a bit out of depth for this cut and am grateful for the medical help when needed and to Jane for holding my hand and standing up to the pushy Dr. And so grateful he has been a well boy thus far. I know dr help is a big part of some families reality and it’s fantastic when you need them and there they are! 

Needing: to practice to say what I think even if it might be uncomfortable. 

  Smelling: something delightful on the air, floral, springy, mystery blossom.

Wearing: daggy old clothes and feeling ok about that. 

Following: my own adventures on my own blog. Now that’s good for perspective!

Noticing: sometimes I write something I’m proud of. Sometimes I take a photograph I’m proud of! 

Knowing: I need to practice believing in my gifts and talents.

Thinking: about the simple gift of a safe home to go back to and all the people who don’t have one right now.

Feeling: a bit helpless to make a difference right now on a global scale and remembering to practice peace at home.

Bookmarking: hmm. Any suggestions?

Opening: an illustrated envelope, with a handwritten card containing old photos of myself and friends from another life, a gift from a dear friend today to make me smile!

Giggling: at the sweetness of being seventeen.

Feeling: incredulous that it’s only 6 years til I have my own sweet seventeen year old child! 

Quoting: family life is like music, some high notes, some low notes, but all together a sweet melody.

  
All photos from my springy garden! I didn’t shoot the crazy bits.

Waking up to.

waking up to.
this fine nest of eggs.
jesse nest
this wild woven willow nest was Jesse’s gift to me upon return from a recent trip to New Zealand. in such contrast to my own methodical approach to weaving which is my meditation and pleasure, i am moved to joy with Jesse’s wild cohesion. his first basket i believe. and for me. oh.
i’m touched that he has spoken to me in a language i understand and have great fluency. the concentrated placing of stems, the twining, the listening with fingertips to the song of the sticks, the bend, flex and play, the creation of something beautiful and useful from nothing and deeply pleasing is the remarkable willow perfume.
it enraptures me as i pass and underlies the blueprint aroma of our house at present. slightly spicy, true tree essence. this scent turned me onto a new road in my life when i entered Mike Lillian’s willow weaving workshop in Kakanui in 2008. as i entered this richly scented haven, more baskets than i could poke a stick at and bundles of rods, graded and waiting! i was entwined with a deep knowing of familiarity and a sense of coming home. i think i have done this before. Mike gifted me with a willow technique book and as we drove home from Sydney to WA i was weaving my first willow basket. he gifted me with more guidance and great yarns on subsequent visits.
this willow so recently harvested by Jesse’s hand on Mike’s farm on the south island; where he grows all his willow stock for the years intricate weavings. these wildly twined together green shoots tell me a beautiful story from Jesse’s fingers and travels.
this morning it found it’s purpose. mayhap one day it will hold eggs from our own hens. i would have hens laying various coloured eggs. white for dyeing of course, pale blue, tiny speckles, sturdy brown, the pale pink/apricot, and on and on.

my beloved also brought me a master basket of Mike’s, a French ‘panier a jour’. a lightweight and sturdy market basket which has already had a few fruitful adventures. if i wasn’t using it so much it would be high on the wall of honour.
IMG_3096
i won’t question why these wonderful woven vessels make me so happy.
i shall simply rest in the joy of it all and carry on weaving.
my friends, i am a true basket case.
and looking forward to north queensland’s abundant coconut fronds for weaving in just a couple of weeks!

ps much love to you Mike and AnneMarie, thanks for putting some fat on Jesse x