Monday, February 28, 2011

Good Things

Image Courtesy Betty Broccoli. Tumblr

Ok, so I am all fired up after my workshop yesterday.

First thing I did, when I walked in the door, was sit my boys down and say, "please tell me now if there is anything that I am doing as a mother that you feel would lead you to need therapy when you're beautiful young men". Big one took it seriously and launched into a dialogue of how I am a great Mum as I let him go to the last school dance (where 6 girls kissed him... I know.. so forward... "but Mum they kissed me"... 13 years of age.. I was still playing with Barbies and boys had severe germs when I was 13). Little one just looked at me and blinked. This is the one who took great offence at me stating "I don't know anything" when helping big one with his homework the other day.. "but Mum, you know EVERYTHING". Good, he's still in the 'Mum can do no wrong stage'. Big one thinks I'm cool... so we're travelling well.

It was so good to get back to basics and also surround myself with beautiful people who also want to grow and love more. It was good... I cried buckets, not just for me but for the pain that others have had to endure in their lives. Oh, the destructive behaviours passed down from generation to generation. We all have so much in common, us humans. We are not alone in our problems or fears. I came out into the sunshine yesterday feeling strong.... and grateful.

So this morning, inspired by Martha's concept of a "Good Things" list (although hers is all about stuffed turkey burgers and dishwashing liquid bottles)...  I felt compelled to create a list of 10 good things in my life. Just off the top of my head... this is what came to mind. Would love to hear yours too!

A-M's List of Good Things

My boys
My family and friends
Good health
A hot shower
A warm bed
Cold water to quench a thirst
A view
Being needed

Happy Monday!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Sunday Morning

Thought I'd take you on my walk with me this morning (I walk on the weekends... more serene, not as fierce) to see how our suburb is progressing after the floods.

Beautiful Orleigh Park is on the mend. The river went up way over those light posts.
It is still hard to fathom the volume of water that went through this place.

You might want to listen to this, while you walk with me.
The original TOTP 1978 version.
My big boy is learning this on the piano.
Gives me goosebumps hearing him play it.

West End Ferry Terminal and Bus Depot. The damage was so unbelievable.
The water exposed all the old tram tracks (from the 1960's, buried under the road) and completely washed the road away.

The twisted wreckage which was the ferry pontoon.....

.... has been removed. The ferries just cruise past now. No stopping here.

This is where James used to sell the 'Big Issue' for a living. 
The whole terminal was completely submerged and is still full of mud and sludge....

... and the river made it's way up to the second level of those yellow apartments in the background. 
They are deserted now.

Still reminders... every street, people are still hauling out damaged fittings....

.... and stuff...

.... or selling up their riverfront properties.

Still grateful....

... and working out ways to still be in business.

Life goes on.. but it takes time. 

Everything is on the mend though..... including me :)

Speaking of mending... I am off to a personal development workshop today.
Yep, a total PD junkie now... like a reformed smoker I guess. 

It's amazing what I am embracing these days.

Happy Sunday!

Saturday, February 26, 2011


Something pretty - courtesy Arden Stephenson

Secret - it was my 44th birthday the week before last. James reckons I don't look a day older than 33... and that's with my beetroot running face and sweat matted hair... not a particularly good look. He's a charmer! Thanks James (he says hi by the way and is still saying thank you to you all, with eternal gratitude). I had a spring in my step after his compliment. Please creaky body, stay 33 in spirit and not 44. As Mark Twain said, "Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter".

My boys showered me in pretty presents... and... a fabulous blackjack kit, complete with a professional playing felt and chips! Oh fun! We mastered our blackjack prowess under miners lights during the flood blackouts. Shhh boys, don't tell Gran.. she would not approve of your mother teaching you how to gamble!

"There is a fountain of youth! is your mind, your talents, the creativity you bring to your life and the lives of people you love. When you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age" -  Sophia Loren.

I'd be interested to hear your take on ageing. It's 5am, I feel like a chat. Is anyone awake out there? Northern Hemisphere? Oh how I wish I was not an early riser... especially on Saturdays.
My kingdom for a 'sleep in'.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Extended Birthday

Scissors, paper, rock outside piano lessons!

We had no time for birthday frivolity yesterday as we headed straight to piano lessons after school and then soccer training..... so... even though it's a school morning and total madness... we are putting in a serious session on the new X Box this morning, before school. Sorry to cut and run.. I promise something pretty tomorrow. This post is living proof that I really make every post up on the spot first thing in the morning!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

When I Grow Up....

At Grans

"When I grow up, I want to be a little boy".  ~ Joseph Heller, Something Happened, 1974

My 'little boy' is now 13 years old. My eldest is a teenager! ..... we stand eye to eye (which isn't hard as I am a shortie). 13 years have gone in the blink of an eye.

He is a gorgeous young man... kind, compassionate, insightful, funny, eloquent, bright as a button, athletic, musical and handsome! I am so so blessed to be your Mum, my darling 'Brynley'... you are more than I ever imagined I would receive in a son. I look forward to being your Mum through everything that life throws at you. I will be there, when you need me, 'til the day I die.
I love you my beautiful boy.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Told You

.. couldn't help myself. Actioned an order within 5 milliseconds of stepping off the plane. I'm such a sucker for a good light. How good would this look in a Great Room... stone fireplace, high ceilings, bookcases, piano....hmmm, or in a stairwell! HERE.

A Word From Ken

See, he gets this blogging thing! Good on you Ken!


Saturday, February 19, 2011

I Wish You All Could Have Won

Image Courtesy KnitStorm Etsy - isn't this the cutest!

Yay, it's Saturday! Tea is brewing and we're all feeling better... thanks to your well wishes and wonderful remedies. It appears that the best thing for my cough was fretting over my sick little darling.... who is now bouncing around like a little flea... a skinny flea. He is now eating like there is no tomorrow so I hope those little ribs aren't sticking out for too much longer. 

Good news and 'semi not so good but not tragic' news.....

Good news: winners have been drawn for my giveaway. I received over 200 entries via comments and emails and I so enjoyed reading all about you and meeting some of you for the first time. I wish I could package up 200+ little packages and send you all something. 

'Sort of not so good 'news: prizes will not be retrieved from shed and posted until I get back from the trade fair later on this week. I am heading off tomorrow and the thought of battling that shed today is just too much after the week we have had.

Winners drawn by barrel boys:

Starfish Napkin Rings: Lori R, in the US.
Starfish Napkin Rings: Snappy Di, also in the US!
French Clock Door Knobs: Tricia Rose, Cabin On The Water
French Clock Door Knobs: Amanda, Homely One (found another set)
Cake Stand: Anne-Marie, I kid you not... we screamed when we pulled your name out A-Mi!
Beads: Andrea, Fabric Epiphanies
Beads: Sara, via email, Canada!
Beads: Sharyne, Golden Valley 50

Can you lovely winners please email me with your postal details at: and I will endeavour to battle the shed next week and send off your goodies!

Thank you everyone for stopping by and commenting, introducing yourselves and overwhelming me with your beautiful words of support and encouragement. I would like to thank each and every one of you for taking the time to leave me comments each and every day. They warm my heart. I only wish I had more time in the day to visit you back and comment more frequently on your blogs. Please know that I cherish the time you take out of your day to make contact with me in your comments and emails.

So I'm off to the trade fair for a few days. I might take the time to take a bloggy break... famous last words... most likely I will get all excited about something and have to tell you. Who knows? 

Looking forward to some 'me time' but missing my boys already and I haven't even walked out the door :(

Have a great weekend!

Friday, February 18, 2011


Remember this? I posted this picture of my little one, almost 2 years ago now, just after we had moved into the house. He had been in bed, crook for days. He finally got up and about and I found him there, sitting enjoying the sunset.

That's how long it has been since he has been sick! ... almost 2 years. We've had a rough couple of days. I have literally cried with the discomfort and fear he has experienced. He has not been out of my arms. Oh motherhood hurts sometimes. He rallied yesterday afternoon and the relief I felt was overwhelming. He's still just as tiny as that photo and oh so skinny. So skinny :(

Hopefully he will feel well enough tonight to be my barrel boy and draw the winners of my giveaway.
You can still enter. It's a few posts down... the 'shed' post.

I think I am glad it is Friday!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

In This Home.....

Via SweetHomeStyle. Tumblr

Amen.....especially the 'loud' bit...and the 'real' bit.... and the hugs!

Well actually, right at the moment, in this home, we're all crook. Little one is out for the count and will be spending another day home from school today with the most shocking fevers and headaches... oh how I despair when my babies get sick.... and me? ... fevers too.... and that damn cough.... where did it come from?... this time every year .... and I haven't even been on a plane yet!

Maybe if I chant, "I'm an athlete, I'm an athlete", it will go away fast. 

Any home remedy tips for a dry, unproductive, persistent cough? 

I know it's a virus, which then becomes pneumonia.. but I am willing to try a 'non controlled', 'non placebo-ed', 'non randomised', 'non multi-centred', 'non blind' remedy as the statistically significant, medically trialled remedies just don't work.... oh except hospital... but that usually happens in June... and it's all rather dramatic.

C'mon, I gotta kick this, I have 2 kids to boss around :)
A-M xx

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Local Talent

Ok, so I was starting to fancy myself as a bit of an 'athlete', with this whole 'morning running thing'.... and then.... bam... head cold and fever. Damn it. Not to be broken, I still went for a walk yesterday morning though..... headed in the opposite direction for a change.... and I am so glad I did... as I met 'Bill'.

I had to stop and compliment him on his attention to detail... see the little bottle of flowers on the table?

It's all in the detail.

There he was, sketching away, on the riverbank, surrounded by flood carnage, his life's belongings neatly stacked in his shopping trolley and a little bottle of flowers elegantly displayed alongside his artist's tools. Some beauty amongst all the brown which was the flood. We got chatting about the flood, the view, his landscapes and the meaning of life.... as you do.

Aren't they lovely! He offered me one. I couldn't take one. He was too generous.

I said I would ask you if I should. Should I accept one?

He's very talented. He almost makes the view of Toowong, over the river, look a bit 'French' with his style. I suggested he head on up to our local florist (who sells local artwork) to market his talent. He took notes.....wrote down everything I said to him..... even my new mantra....."trust life".

Bill's subject - the real Toowong, viewed from the muddy, recently repaired (look new rocks!) banks of West End.

So nice to meet you Bill :)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Time For A Kitchen

Does it get any better than this? 
A masterpiece by Arden Stephenson. 
Very "Somethings Gotta Give-ish". Love the little pops of green.
.. and I spy a view too. Perfection.
I'd wander over and stare at the view all day and never get anything done.
PS. That light above the topiaries could have been a pendant I reckon. Just sayin'.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Me Time

Can you see that pretty silver tea urn in the centre? - we all have to have one now.

I stole some 'me time' yesterday and headed off to the Ivy and Piper workshop and tea party, here in town.

Heaven on a stick... teacups and scones, vignettes and chatter. We learnt all about the elements of design and got to rearrange their whole showroom and bookcase... all with champagne in hand.... it was fabulous, girly fun.

Check out the pink floral chair - totally heart stopping.

I had to giggle when my team was doing our bookshelf vignettes and Jasmine and I were scheming on how to incorporate more blue and silver into it, stealing props from the beautiful morning tea table. Always gotta have some blue :)

Speaking of blue.. this cushion stole my heart... the most delicious blue ever.... in a gorgeous linen.

And I have totally stolen this vignette idea for my bathroom
 - silver tray, glass votives, fresh roses and a perfume bottle stuck in the middle... totally stolen.

If you ever want such fun, sign up for the Ivy and Piper newsletter on their beautiful website HERE.
I think that's how my invite came through..... so glad I said yes. It was just lovely!
Thank you Melanie and Elizabeth!

... and a Happy Monday to you all my friends. Happy Valentines Day :) I am going to give my boys a big 'Valentines smooch' when they wake up. I think I can hear them stirring now. Time for coffee!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Sunday Musings

Image Via Viktoria Tumblr

"Between stimulus and response, there is a space.
In that space lies our freedom and power to choose our response.
In our response lies our growth and our freedom"
Steven Covey

Between whatever happens to you and your response to it...... is a space! In that space is your power to choose how you react. And in your response lies your growth and happiness. You could even choose a response that affects the stimulus itself. You could become a force of nature.

So simple, yet so powerful.

Learning to bite my tongue :)