Been an odd week. Hubby went back to work on Tuesday, then Thursday was Anzac Day so he was home again, then today back off to work he went, in my car because the Jeep is broken (again). It all felt a bit stop-start after his initial two-week school holiday break, which kind of trips me up with regards to the gentle rhythms of housekeeping, meals and running a home business. I've been telling myself (a lot) that routines will fall back in place soon.
Honest, have to laugh at how much I need routine to feel balanced mentally. Hubby says, "You're a funny old girl" with a twinkle in his eye. But there are some things about each of our personalities, yours and mine, which are as natural as breathing and when someone says to let it go and chill out you know deep inside that's not going to happen.
If I have ever told you to chill out because you're unsettled by changes in your daily routines please forgive me and accept a gentle ((((hug)))) from my heart. I'd offer you a piece of raspberry slice and a cup of nice tea if you were visiting for real.
I think that's been a good epiphany for me this year, to know that my individual quirks are okay, that they're me and always have been. They don't harm anyone else and they certainly don't stop the world from turning...and in some odd little way they are comforting because each one is a part of my day to day rhythm. Maybe I've come to a place of peace with who I am, the me who doesn't quite fit the mould others might prefer?
Well, whatever, there's a niceness about that epiphany and I'm really grateful for my husband and Blossom who love me just as I am, and sparkly Cully May who brings out the kooky side of Nana-hood, and Rafaella who melts into my arms and buries her head in my neck for the longest cuddles.
People who love us. That's got to be one of the greatest gifts you can't buy.
Surprises are nice too. Especially the ones that pop up in the garden after it's been covered in compost and sugar cane mulch.
One tomato plant made an appearance and I got so excited that it shouldn't be alone I went and bought two more to keep it company. They're all doing well and this weekend I'll add some herbs between them.
My old basil plant self seeded a thousand babies (okay, slight exaggeration...massive exaggeration?) and I've re-potted a few and have more to put straight in the garden. Between the tomatoes.
The garlic chives have gone a bit crazy too after the army hair cut I gave them in March...
Bob-the-dog went to stay with Blossom for eight days because he is, after all, her dog.
He had a ball with her, Ross and the girls but after more than a week of being chased and loved on by Cully May and Rafaella the old boy needed some time out so he came back to us. I think we're his retirement home and Blossom's is his holiday lodge. Or maybe his occupational therapy lodge cause he sure has to run around a lot when he's there. LOL!
Since Bob's been away we've been visited every morning by two Ibis and I don't mind them being here because they aerate the gardens and the lawn with their long skinny beaks, though Mr E warns them "don't eat our worms!"...
Normally they try to visit every day but as soon as they land Bob-the-dog chases them away so it's been nice watching them strut here and there unhindered lately. Of course this morning when they arrived Bob was out the back door and letting them know of his return before I had a chance to stop him. Sigh.
Did you notice my apron up there at the beginning of this post?
Rhonda at Down to Earth had an apron sew along this month and I decided to join in as who has enough aprons?? My supply dwindled after the January floods so this is the first of a few which shall be made over coming weeks.
When I hung the apron outside to take a photo it occurred to me that it could almost pass as a pretty scarecrow, but I want to wear it so that idea was scrapped rather quickly.
Now that the sting of our tropical summer has eased and the days have become bearably very warm we don't need the air conditioners on very often, just the ceiling fans, which makes working around the house far more pleasant. Fresh air flowing through one door and out the other is my favourite thing this time of year, something I miss dearly during the long humid wet season.
These days also inspire me to 'spring clean in autumn' and make lots of good healthy fare for easy dinners outside at the end of the day.
We don't have carpet here anymore but there are three rugs and two cotton couches so I make up a mix of bi-carb soda and eucalyptus oil to sprinkle over them and after rubbing in I leave it for a few hours before vacuuming away.
It's amazing how lovely the house smells afterwards!
I also do this to Bob-the-dog's bed cause one of my quirks is that I don't like dog odour around me, but I make sure every bit is removed before he gets his bed back. By his reaction Bob loves the smell of eucalyptus too.
We love fresh juice but to be honest I've been really remiss in making it since we moved here so it was time to get back in the habit again.
The other day I bought a 5kg bag of huge juicing carrots and made up six litres of carrot, apple, ginger and lemon juice.
I popped four litres in the freezer so we could pull out one at a time over the coming week and we drank the other two that day because we could!
Plenty of vegetables found their way into the oven for quick and healthy salad lunches and I bought a bag of eight avocados for $7 so we're living the high life right now!
I love making coleslaw but my way is a bit different than what I grew up with. Nana just did cabbage and carrot, but I add in spring onions, finely chopped cherry tomatoes and cucumber, red capsicum and herbs before dousing in whole egg mayo, pepper and lemon juice. Oh my it's delicious, and we usually have it generously piled atop oven baked potatoes and guacamole. Mr E loves to have this once a week!
I also made a big pot of spicy dahl this week which was so yummy poured over a mix of brown rice and quinoa. I always have it the next day for lunch as well because I can't stop thinking about it after the night before.
Do you have recipes like that, the kind you just want to keep going back for more?
For lunch yesterday, because hubby was home, I made chicken, avocado and vegetable rice paper rolls with a simple dipping sauce of tamari, lime juice. chilli sauce, chopped spring onions and fresh coriander. Extras are always made for hubby's work lunch the next day...
Yes, I've been sewing, putting together Phyllis May's Kitchen *at last*!
There's 16 blocks to bring together in a secret project (not a quilt) and I've completed four so far. I'm piecing and quilting two a day and writing the patterns when they're done because I do not enjoy pattern writing so to sit and write sixteen patterns for the blocks and piecing and then the 'secret' pattern as well - oh no, I'll go two at a time and save myself the stress.
Here's a wee peak...
The plan is that these should be ready as a Block of the Month in mid May.
It has to be May because Nana was Phyllis May and June just doesn't seem right.
Some other sewing I did this week was to mend my torn living room curtain. The hole was about six inches across and as we're rather budget minded these days the only sensible thing to do was take needle and thread to close the rip.
But what's the fun in that??
Why not use one of these for a touch of prettiness...
After I stitched the hole closed I pinned a large crochet doily over the top...
...and carefully stitched it in place.
I'd often seen similar things on Pinterest and loved them so once the idea came to mind there was no stopping me. Blossom said I should sew a few more on the curtain which is exactly what I had thought too...
...although Mr E just rolled his eyes.
I quietly reminded him he could decorate his huge shed any way he liked.
He laughed and went on his way.
WOULD YOU LIKE....
to stitch those little redwork motifs I used on my new apron?
They're only small and stitch up quite fast so you could embellish a pocket, a cardigan, a bookmark or an apron of your own. In fact if you have other ideas please share them!
These are a simple free gift, me to you, so enjoy them, okay?
The weekend is only hours away, there's roast chicken with an abundance of vegetables in the oven for Friday dinner and I have a book to finish tonight, a real favourite.
I bought The Turquoise Table as an audio book over a year ago and have listened to it ten time, I kid you not! Now I have the hardcover book so I can underline and share snippets here.
Highly recommended reading. Inspiring, happy, thoughtful and makes you feel good.
Also makes me want a turquoise table and an accessible front yard. There are downsides to electric gates after all.
May our wonderful, loving, gracious, kind, forgiving and LOVING God be your all-in-all today and bring you hope, healing, peace and joy in overflowing abundance.