Well more like 'giver's remorse'.... I was out on my run yesterday morning thinking about my lovely, 'now almost empty' shed and some impending stock arriving for my 'soon to be store'. I was having slight remorse over giving away some shelves which would have come in handy after all.......... but then I saw this! ... propped up on a wall, out in the weather, outside an op shop. Ha! Thank you very much. Just what I needed at that precise moment in time. I love my suburb. It looks after me!
Yep, the little water colour in the background is St Ives in Cornwall
I love that place.
On the weekend, I bought some pretty lavender to brighten up my kitchen. I was inspired by the post on potted colour that Leigh did, over at Brabourne Farm (see Leigh I did go out and get some!).
Ok, so how do I keep it alive and perpetually beautiful? Will it stay alive?.... in a pot? Would love some advice please. Nope, can't plant it as I have no garden. Does it need full sun? How often do I water it? It did not come with instructions as it was a 'roadside deal'. If keeping it in a pot is bad news all round, I can cope. Hit me with it!
How about we start off the week with some pretty flowers? These beautiful orchids were given to me by my friend A-Mi (Anne-Marie with a i)..... yes shoved in a water jug... my kingdom for a vase. That photo was taken on our rainy Saturday... boy did it rain... from my little kitchen table.
Here is the first load of the contents of my shed heading off to various locations. I know that bed of mine was slept on last night by a woman who escaped domestic violence. My bookcases, desks, side-tables and armchairs were going to a family who has been homeless but now they have a roof over their heads. My treadmill and exercise bike went to victims of the flood, trying to put their lives back together. And my ping pong table is going to a men's shelter.
Yes, this is another big plug for 'GIVIT'.... head on over there and list things that you don't need, that are in good nick. You'll be contacted by a charity who needs your things.... specifically needs your things for people who have been through the ringer of life. You end up knowing exactly where your things are going and they go straight to those in need.... not into an overpriced op shop! It warmed my heart to know that someone was going to be sleeping in my bed last night.
I did a little dance in my empty shed. My life feels lighter. More portable. I only have what I need now. The last bits of 'The House' have gone. Now, what to do next?!!
For the prettiest dose of 'pretty', head over to 'A Country Farmhouse' to check out Trina's new patio table and chairs. They are perfection. Big statement. But true. And once you recover from the beauty that is her patio scroll down a bit to feast your eyes over her 'garden shed' and read all about it's transformation.
I'm sorry but does it get any prettier? It has 2 rooms... big enough... I could so live there!
Another week gone. It's been a good one. I've been tired though. Why do a couple of really late, fun nights take so long to get over once you hit your forties?
I have been trying to 'run' through my tiredness. I am REALLY getting into my running. I sat and googled 'why I love running so much' last night and found a few kindred spirits. We all enjoy that runner's high and the sense of achievement completing a run. It's hard work. You feel invincible when you get to the end. I am always challenging myself too. I sprint up hills and then not allow myself to walk to fill my screaming lungs... I have to keep moving, even if it is a shuffle. It's a great way to clear your mind too. Why is that? Is it because you are so focussed on the physical task at hand? I'm like a reformed smoker. I will never go back to 'non running' (unless my knees fall apart... they don't sound too good... I am ignoring them). So I am off for my last run for the week now. I rest on the weekends. I am getting stronger though. It's a great feeling.
Speaking of great things... my Givit Charity is clearing out my shed this weekend. I am looking forward to the biggest declutter of my life. Everything is going.. as I don't need it. I am only keeping what I need..... simplifying my life. As the great Faux Fuchsia says, "clutter is the devils work". So I am now using my clutter for good, not evil.
Have a great weekend. I am looking forward to my bacon and egg burger at the soccer. Season is ending soon. How will I cope without the weekly burger treats?!
Oh and don't forget the Boutique Markets in Sydney and Hobart this weekend!
It was my little one's sports carnival yesterday. He came 1st in the Year 3 400 metre race... out of all those kids way bigger than him!!!! He's tiny.
I was so proud.
I almost missed the whole thing though. I was chatting away and noticed this little blonde thing, tearing up the straight. I thought to myself, "gee that kid is flying"..... and then I recognised him as my own. I got the shock of my life and ran alongside him for the last 100m, screaming like a banshee. I am sure I 'frightened' him over the finish line!
I noticed other little ones who did not have anyone cheering for them.... so those whose names I knew, I stood near the finish line (as they were seriously flailing) and screamed out their names. As they heard their names.... they sped up to get to that finish line. It almost made me cry to see how their spirits lifted just when they heard their name. Someone was cheering them on.
I had a 'gratitude moment', right there and then... so grateful that I have the flexibility in my life to be able to be there at these special moments in my boy's lives. It's so important.... being there for them. Making them feel that they are the most important person in your life at that very moment. Goodness, I almost missed a very special one due to my gas-bagging. Thank goodness I noticed him in time. He was bursting with excitement.... but humble....good boy .... just the way I've taught him to be. I was the one not so.... jumping up and down screaming with delight for him. One mother came over and said, "we could hear you from the grandstand". Nothing could have shut me up. So grateful I could be there.
Kirsten writes, " I read your blog this morning and couldn't help but feel Kathryn's front steps are so similar to mine. When we bought our house, it was basically a tea tree out the front and dirt/grass. Our house was also peach/green/maroon. Ick! The hedge is lily pily, planted just over a year ago, and the small garden in front of the steps is rosemary and lavender. It works really well in a Brisbane climate. We did roses along the path and some ornamental cherry blossoms on either side, which should flower soon. Anyway, maybe you could pass this on to Kathryn, it might help!"
Look! Everything that we have been suggesting! A garden path, plantings, colours, lattice doors, wire gate at front! It's almost as if Kathryn is looking at the 'after 'of her house after applying all the advice she received yesterday..... ta...da!!!
.. and look at this glorious verandah. What a great spot! Ooh love the lanterns too!
This is Kirsten's 'Before'..... what a transformation!
Thank you Kirsten, for sharing your beautiful home. It's wonderful to be able to inspire others by generously sharing what has worked for you. I think Kathryn now has some great advice to sift through.
Well I'm off to my little one's sports carnival this morning. That's if it isn't raining. I haven't even looked out the window yet.
Speaking of carnivals, those of you in Sydney and Hobart.... the wonderful 'Boutique Markets' are coming your way this weekend... for the first time!
Here are the details so you can pencil them in your diary:
The lovely Ness, from Marley and Lockyer, is trading at the Hobart Markets. That's reason enough to go for a start! I mentioned this to a group of girls at the Melbourne Market last weekend.. and we all had a giggle as every one of us has something from Marley and Lockyer in our homes! Ness, you're viral!
If I could be there I would..... but I have been galavanting around the country way too much and need to stay put for a while!
A bloggy reader, Kathryn, wrote to me the other day and asked me if I still did my WWYD ('What Would You Do' posts)? Goodness, that's going back a bit. You've been around a long time Kathryn. Thanks for sticking with me since then!
Kathryn has just bought a new house, a colonial Queenslander, and although she loves it, she wants to make some minor changes to the front over time. She was hoping you'd be able to give her some advice. I said I was sure you would help her.... after all, you counselled me through my whole house build!
I'm sorry, but my heart skipped a beat when I saw Kathryn's photos. Isn't it a dream!!!! Deep breaths.
Kathryn writes: "The main issue is privacy and lack of gardens. I'd like to be able to sit on the front verandah and have coffee in my pjs, but currently anyone walking or driving by gets a full view. I've had a few ideas, like maybe a lattice door and a row of lily pily shrubs, then possibly lavender along the front of the house, but would welcome any other ideas. We want to keep it quite traditional and pretty. In a year or so we will also want to repaint in something other than yellow and green, so any garden plans will need to take that into account - and we would also welcome colour suggestions. Thank you! Looking forward to ideas".
So girls, what do you reckon?....a beautiful blank canvas, screaming out for us to sink our teeth into. What would you do?
PS. I am sooo going to work on an invite and get to sit on that front deck and have coffee too!
Believe it or not, I haven't seen the final show yet as I was on a plane coming home when it aired last night. I sorta know how it all ends. It was slightly devastating when Katrina and Amie's house was passed in at auction. I cried. I did. It sold after auction for the reserve. I cried a bit that night. It was Josh and Jenna's fault. It all started when Josh proposed to Jenna before it all started. I'm a sucker for a good proposal. I met them later on that night. They are a gorgeous couple.
Ok so more importantly, didn't the girls look beautiful!!! Oh they shone! I spent the night with Katrina and Amie's family and friends. We played up a bit. Especially during the bidding. Every bid, there was a whoop from all of us. Our raucous behaviour was not televised I have been told (funny that).... but we made sure that Katrina and Amie's auction bidding was the most exciting!
There was some very nice scenery! Sorry about the iphone blur.
Katrina's hubby looks happy doesn't he?!
Sorry Mr Chambo, you're fair game now that you've been on the telly.
Treens, your hair looked gorgeous.
I tried to get a photo of the back of Shelley's 'do'..... it was lovely. ... but she moves so much! She has lots of energy! I had a special photo taken with her for my boys as they are big fans.
See, she didn't stand still!
Speaking of 'dos'... loved Katrina's too.
... and didn't Polly look gorgeous. Loved her frock.
Where I was sitting. Name the celebrity head. Hint - judge.
My boys have informed me that they freeze-framed the whole show and found me via the big flower ring I was wearing. They said they could see me clapping with my hands in the air. I got very involved in the whole thing. It was all very emotional after Josh and Jenna's house got passed in. We were all on the edge of our seats the whole night.
Apart from the disappointing outcome, I did have a fabulous time. Thanks for inviting me Treens. Loved meeting your gorgeous friends from Wagga and Albury... hi guys!....and your lovely family. They're gonna kill me but here they are at the 'after do' in their jammies. Yes, immaculate movie star hair and makeup.... and pyjamas! I think that just about sums it all up!
Girls... good things..... good things are gonna happen for you two. Congratulations!
Well, I'm down in gorgeous Melbourne this weekend to attend 'The Block' auction! I am so nervous for 'the girls'... they must be beside themselves. What a ride it has been for them!..... megastars! Every time I turn on the telly, there's a snippet of their last interview or a promo for their next guest appearance on some game show! As I said in the beginning, "good things happen to good people". It has been so exciting following their journey and so wonderful to see all of 'bloggy and twitterland' get behind them. Who is going to win? I am sceptical about the betting odds as all it takes is just one person to give them a win.....someone who is desperately in love with their house... who will battle it out and win the auction... no matter what the price!!!! Hopefully I will catch up with Katrina before the auction. I come bearing gifts from some of her Queensland fans! Fingers crossed for Katrina and Amie.... go girls!
It's all happening here in Melbourne this weekend. The Mathilda's Market is on in the Hawthorn Town Hall on Sunday 21st August.... 360 Burwood Rd Hawthorn, from 9am to 1pm. I'm heading down there first thing so I hope I can meet up with some of you. Come and see what all the fuss is about and drool over beautiful high quality handmade and limited edition goodies made by some of your best local talent in art, craft and design. The coffee is good too!
Murphy's Law that I am in the most comfortable hotel bed in the world but awake at 5am. Too much going on!
Have a great weekend!.... GO GIRLS!!!!!
... and see you at the markets!