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.