Tuesday, August 22, 2017


My time of quiet and reflective absence from regular blogging became more of a blessing than I had hoped. 
Faith lessons, personal insights and a deep felt understanding of where I'm going from here are just a few of the many wonderful things which surfaced during the days and nights of distancing myself from a routine I love but which takes more of me than I have, or need, to give. 

Over time I'll share bits of what I've come to appreciate more, and what I am learning to desire less. Each day is a process of adjusting my focus so that what is most needed becomes clear, and what is not necessary fades from view. 

Life is about learning, growing, becoming, letting go and moving forward. I think I finally understand this.

So today, just some snapshots of what has held my attention at home while I ponder, pray and sing through the closing days of winter...


Outside on the deck new buds are appearing on my cherished hydrangea, the cherry tomato has burst into flower, and there are buds appearing at the tips of our schlumbergera cacti.

Seedlings of oregano and parsley are bring planted in pots...

...as well as sweet peppers, spinach and more cherry tomatoes. Next weekend we'll shop for more pots and set up sprouting trays for salads as well. As much as we're able we shall grow fresh produce before the tropical sun becomes too fierce.


Ten days of a fruit and vegetable detox infused my system with more energy than I've had in quite a while, whilst also giving my digestive tract a good 'clean-out'. No description necessary, right? 

After those ten days I slowly added a little meat in again and re-acquainted myself with a few old favourites which have been off the menu for years because I'd lost the recipes.
The slower days and calm mindset had boosted my memory and I remembered giving Blossom a number of cookbooks a few years back, books which held the recipes I was after, so I borrowed them from her.

We used to have a free-form meat pie every couple of weeks when the kids were still living at home using Nigella Lawson's pastry recipe so I started with that, firstly making a beef bourguignon filling and leaving it to 'mellow' in the fridge for a couple of days to enrich the flavour. 

It was even yummier than I remembered and we had enough left over for lunch the following weekend. 

The second lost recipe was for a chocolate cake my daughter Anita had made me for Mothers Day one year, a cake which from then on graced the table of many family celebrations. 

As I prepared the batter I prayed for this sweet daughter, a mother herself now, and gave thanks for such a precious memory stored in my heart for always. 

Mr E came down with a mild dose of the flu this week which prompted me to make a pot of hearty chicken noodle soup...only later realising that this too was a recipe not made for a number of years. 

A loaf of fresh bread baked, lots of nourishing ingredients brought together for health and flavour and thirty minutes to simmer...

...this soup brought a smile to both our faces and the next morning my beloved man was well on the road to recovery.

I've also been making my own nut milks, cashew creams (savoury and sweet), fruit salad breakfasts and wholesome smoothies for in between meals.
A sprinkle of nutmeg is a sprinkle of love, the spice I most associate with my dear Nana who raised me...

A nice thing I'm learning during this quiet and calm rhythm of kitchen life is to embrace a balance between the goodness of nourishing ingredients for health in the body, and the occasional treat of a favourite cake or dessert to nourish the soul.  Each without guilt or rules.


The occasional garage sale bargains are slowly being utilised, especially a set of shabbied frames which my husband wasn't sure how I'd use. 
They became borders for a new set of designs, seed packets in fact. 

With all the September stitchery patterns completed it's October designs which now stand waiting for their moment to shine. I've been watching season three of Poldark, some good documentaries and a few re-runs of baking shows while I stitch each afternoon. The light is perfect at that time of day to sew...

My plan to make new aprons did not eventuate but that was okay as my old ones were re-used each day, and even mended from overuse. 
This week though, the fabrics are out on the table and I have the well-worn apron that Fee made me many years ago as my template.

All in good time, the right time.

Tomorrow I will be picking up my new glasses, blue ones. I love blue. I share blue eyes with my Mama and my Nana.

It seems the dramatic increase in my migraines may well be related to my eyesight. You see, my distance vision has always been bad and I needed glasses to drive. It's only been this past year or two which has brought about a change so that I need slightly magnified glasses to embroider without squinting. 
But I had an eye exam two weeks ago and my distance vision is now 20/20, so no more prescription glasses for driving!
Now it's my close-up vision which is deteriorating and I can't just pick up a jar and read the ingredients anymore. I need glasses to read a recipe easily and to stitch without strain.

So tomorrow a whole new experience of clear vision shall be mine. And hopefully a reduction in migraines will soon follow.

I won't be blogging as often anymore...but I will blog. It's in my blood, it's part of me.
Thanks for reading along today, wandering beside me as I point to this and that around home and share a little of what's moving my heart.
You're rather special, trust me.

Now I'm off to finish the last of that soup and relax afterwards with a good book until it's time to start dinner...

Be good to your mind, your heart, your spirit, and your body.
Rest, eat, pray, walk, sleep, love, listen...all in balanced rhythm.



Deborah said...

Thanks for your encouraging words. I hope your days remain restful and peaceful.

Anonymous said...

It sounds like your resting time has been good to you & giving insight on how to have a healthy balance in life. Totally understandable that you need to take care of yourself to be creative & also have a good home life. As much as I find your frequent blog postings so enjoyable I respect your need for quiet time away from all the busyness. You are a gentle soul, a very special lady & I so appreciate what you give to all of us! - Diane from Minnesota

Nanna Chel said...

I am so pleased you are recovering, Jenny. The quiet time and detoxing your body have been just what you needed by the sound of it. I do worry about some bloggers who blog a lot and wonder where they get the time and whether they feel pressured to write up a post. Your readers will still be around whether you post a lot or a little I am sure.

Glenise said...

Thank you for posting this blog and I am sure that all your followers like myself know that you have given us far more than we could ask for and understand the need for you to spend more time looking after yourself firstly and your loved ones. Us followers want you to be healthy and happy so dont feel pressured to blog. Look after yourself and relax and enjoy being you. Love every stitch you do and dont want you to stop enjoying your stitching. Rest up Jenny and look after yourself. Xx

Leeanne said...

Sounds like just what you needed.................xxx

Little Penpen said...

Enjoy your restful days!! I love your thought of eating without guilt or rules! The vegetable and fruit cleansing sounds like a delicious idea too.

Janice said...

You sound very refreshed and revitalised. The break sounds like it was just what you needed. Here's to a nice calm future that you can see perfectly.

Dee M said...

Lovely post. Hoping the new glasses will solve the migraine pain issue. I cannot see anything up close without my glasses, and my distance vision has worsened, as well, so I use glasses with progressive lenses. Now I have the start of cataracts, too!

Unknown said...

I feel calmer just reading your post. The stitching the pies and the softness of your words. Have a blessed day--you just made mine a little nicer!

e said...

Change isn't always a bad thing. Only we and our God can tell us when the time is right. Blogging should be fun, a time of sharing and not necessarily a long term commitment. Much like getting a long-awaited letter in the mail, catching up on things that are important to a dear friend. Blogging has made a way for those of us who have trouble connecting with people to make good friends that have a way of working into our hearts and lives for the long term. We don't have to touch base daily, but when the heart moves us and our souls need a bit of re-energizing.
I'm grateful for your blog as it was one of the first I read and has connected with me like-minded ladies who have become very good, important friends. I still enjoy reading and stitching your patterns after many years. Thank you for continuing to share your world and talents.

Michelle said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us today. As Christian women, we need to remember that there are seasons for everything, so watching for God's direction in our lives is important. Watching you realize how important home and family is to you, inspires me to nurture those in my home and to take time to slow down and relax. I'm glad the detox was good for you and the time away from blogging. Thanks for your encouragement through your words and your stitchery designs. Keep reading God's word and stay in the faith.

Lin said...

Always lovely to have you around Jenny, in your own time. xx

judith said...

Enjoy your time and Thank you for sharing your this and that's of what is moving your heart.
Looking forward to when you do share again.
Rest in the Lord and He will provide all your needs.
Huggs ~ Judith

Jan said...

I really enjoyed reading your lovely blog. ~♡~

Anonymous said...

Blessings dear friend, blessings for you and your family.

You have given so much and when you can blog we will greatly appreciate anything you desire to share.

So many of us are being called to be still and quiet, obedient, and cognizant of His joy. The Lord of glory first, husband then family and all else afterward. You encourage us to this end!

Thank you!!

Anonymous said...

Just reading that post is very calming. I'm glad this time off was productive in many ways. Your gardening plans are wonderful and there's nothing like a garden to soothe the soul, I think - just losing myself in the details of starting new life is relaxing. I do like your bird seed packet, and what a great frame that makes for the piece.

Helen L said...

The stitchery club patterns are so beautiful this month!! So glad I joined! I'd be sad to have missed those! Glad you are feeling better: yes, we all need some down time to regenerate our minds and bodies!! Hugs, H in Healdsburg

May said...

Beautiful post Jenny, I adore my Stitchery club August set they are amazing... I am so happy you are feeling better in yourself it makes me calm to read your words... Your post is full of beauty...stitches, food, garden & family love... continue getting stronger have a blessed week ahead... May

Julie said...

I am slowly catching up reading your blog. I think I'm only a year behind now but I occasionally read the latest one. Your writings have brought me a lovely calmness, why I can't tell. I loved the August patterns, all printed and waiting the time to start which I hope is today. Please carry on. You have become a lovely light in my days. Julie

Kathleen said...

I just had a longer than expected day with my 2 1/2 year old granddaughter and I love her dearly, but I was quite tired after she left. Fixed and finished dinner and sat down to catch up on my emails. I actually feel rested after reading this post! A very enjoyable and calming read.

Jacqueline said...

I always enjoy your blogs. Thanks for sharing.

Kezzie said...

Glad that you're feeling more peaceful and rested. I always enjoy reading your blogs as you have many wise thoughts to share. I pray that you will continue to be led by God in how He wants you to remain peaceful every day; and for His guidance as to how often to connect with social media.

Blessings to you and your family


Allie-oops Designs said...

So very glad you're feeling better, and Mr. E too! Sounds like you had a lovely time away, a rest is as good as a change my grandma always said. Lovely seed packets, Jenny, those frames are perfect.

Tena said...

You are always such an encouragement to me as I struggle with slowing down as well. I wish you many days of rest and peace ahead as you find God's plan in all that you do.

Winifred said...

That bread looks scrumptious Jenny.

Hope the glasses help you to get rid of the migraines.

Take care.