Quote for the Day : Learning to Fly

Quote for the Day : Learning to Fly

“The Guide says there is an art to flying”, said Ford, “or rather a knack. The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.” 
― Douglas AdamsLife, the Universe and Everything

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I’ve been dreaming an awful lot lately, about flying mostly.  I am someone who tends to have a lot of bad dreams and full-on, screaming-and-waking-yourself-up type of night terrors, so to have some nicer dreams about flying and being powerful is quite a change of pace.  I used to dream about flying all the time – for a while there I was convinced I was actually astral travelling because I would experience and see things that were so vivid, and even go places and witness events that would later turn up on the news.  But, of late, I have mostly dreamt of sad or painful things, break-ups and losses, death and monsters.  So it is certainly nice to have a few pleasant dream experiences thrown in for good measure.  Dreaming about flying has lots of different meanings and can be interpreted in lots of ways, entirely dependant on the dreamer’s life and current worries/hopes/stresses.  As I seem to be flying along quite happily, apart from a few wonky starts or inability to get off the ground, I think mine are saying I’m feeling freer than before and that, fears aside, I am “taking off”.  Something like that.  It could also mean I am full of hot air and have my head in the clouds.  Whatever.  I’ll take a flying dream over a being-chased-by-a-blood-thirsty-demon/vampire/ghost any day.  And the sooner I am free of the husband-leaving-me-again nightmares, the better.  Those ones suck!  Why don’t I get to have sexy Johnny Depp/Hugh Jackman/Robert Downey Jnr dreams?  My subconscious mind is so dull and chaste! Even as a teenager I didn’t have those kind of dreams – while my friends were re-counting raunchy tales of somnambular trysts with pop-stars and actors, my brain was showing me fascinating images of things like exploding spleens (true story – I had a nightmare about an exploding spleen) and graffiti that multiplied and smothered the world.  Also, the giant, evil pencil that I couldn’t hold on to whilst doing an exam.  Cheerful stuff like that.  I think it’s possible I should have sought therapy of some kind…

With dreams of conquering the world with my artistic vision (ha!), I tried making cards today but didn’t do a particularly good job (so I won’t show you – I have my pride!).  I have too much else on my brain at the moment, I think.  I’m off to Sydney in a couple of days for the dementia conference and I am focused on that (ie I am worrying about that) and all the accompanying plans and requirements.  Once that is over and done and I am back here in Perth in my little house with no threat of real flying (the dream kind is ok, just not fussed on the actual in-a-plane kind), I will relax and get back into things.  I did finish off my little clay quotes spheres/orbs (above) and I think they look pretty good.  I’ve displayed them on my bookshelf.  Next time I will make them bigger (these ones are like tiny marbles – why do I have to do everything in miniature?) and make more so I can display them in a bowl, maybe.

Gotta go and make soup for my lunch tomorrow and do some more worrying about my trip.  I AM worrying but I am trying to temper that with “you’ll be ok” type positive thoughts.  I’m getting better at those.  Because I have to.  Time I threw myself at the ground, or aimed for the sky – eventually I figure I will land somewhere and with a bit of luck it will be somewhere cushy and enjoyable.  And devoid of enormous expanding pencils (I can’t help but think that one is slightly sexual in origin but I am ignoring that fact and pretending it means something about something less, well,  phallic) or exploding spleens.  Sigh.

Have a lovely week everybody.  Fly and dream and, above all, love.

x

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Swap Meet Sunday

Swap Meet Sunday

Brrrr….2 degrees?  Really, Mother Nature?  Really?  Don’t I have enough trouble getting up already?  I can’t physically wear any more layers of clothing and I’ve forgotten what it is like to be able to feel my extremities.  This is Australia for Goodness’ sake!  Sure, it’s Winter, but really!

Got up early on this bright and sunny (but frickin’ freezing!) Sunday morning to go bargain hunting at a huge swap meet in the Northern suburb of Wanneroo.  My two friends, FK and MD, asked me if I wanted to go (last night) and I thought about it for two seconds before saying an enthusiastic “Yes please!”  We set off early as the real “pro” bargain hunters go at the crack of dawn and we wanted to make sure there were still treasures to be found.  We rugged up (I even wore my knitted hat – that only comes out when I am beyond caring about what I look like and aiming for the prevention of frost-bite) and set out into the crowds, ready to snap up some cool stuff (hopefully).  We struck gold at the very first stall (always a good sign if you spend straight away) – lots of lovely plants for sale, predominantly succulents.  MD and FK LOVE their succulents and so they parted ways with the cash pretty quickly.  I too bought a little cactus – an adorable little guy that looked like a bunny.  Had to have it.  It was only $3.00. Will try not to kill it (yes, I can murder even a cactus with my black thumbs).

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Further on, I picked up a lovely white geranium – have wanted one for ages but they are always so expensive.  This one was just $4.00 and a good size and in great condition.  Gotta find a nice spot for it to go in my garden.  MD and FK bought a few more succulents to go in their respective gardens at home.  FK also snagged a bright green wheelie bin that she is going to use as a compost bin on her balcony.  Those bins are normally around the $20 – $30 mark.  She got it for $3.00!  Another stall-holder tried to buy it from her for $10.00 so he could sell it for more himself.  No chance!  Unfortunately, another gentleman thought it was a real bin and threw his half-eaten burger in it.  Ew.  He removed it again though 🙂

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MD herself also found a great bin, suitable for compost.  It’s asking price was $14.00 but we haggled the guy down to $9.60.  Bargain!  Of course they were now lugging around two big bins but it was too far to go back to put them in the car (we’d already done that with the plants).  I managed to pick up an awesome spice rack for $9.00 (I should have haggled but I’m not so good at that…still, it was a good price) which I am going to use for my beads.  It’s perfect for that and fairly compact in size so will save space and free up some room in my other bead boxes and jars.  It was bloody heavy though…wish I’d found it at the end of the day instead of the beginning!

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I also picked up these pretty Wood & Sons “Yuan” vintage plates for $3.00 (for the three plates).  Such a nice design and I love the blue. I’ve had a look around on the internet for prices for these plates and they’re going for anything from $5 to $40 per plate!  Definitely got a bargain here!  Doesn’t matter to me really though – I just thought they were pretty! 🙂

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FK found a watering can and paid $5.00 for it – it fitted nicely in her wheelie bin so at least she didn’t have to carry it as well.  I was happy to grab some paint brushes that were being sold by the bundle – only $3.00 a bunch.  The lady at that stall was eyeing off my spice rack – but I wasn’t giving it up!

MD got the biggest item of the day – a six-seat dining setting for $130.00 including delivery!  It was a nice set – expandable table with good, solid chairs.  We were amazed that the stall-holder would deliver on a Sunday and only charge $20.  Crazy!  But such a bargain.  The seat cushions were a little grubby but will probably come up nice and clean again with a bit of sponging or MD could maybe re-upholster them pretty easily and cheaply.

After three hours we were pretty pooped and ready to go home for a nice hot cup of tea and to look at our purchases.  Will definitely go again – maybe take Mum as she needs some new plants that won’t cost the Earth.  Love a good bargain hunt and today was no disappointment in that category.  The weather actually was pretty nice after the first chilly hour or so – beautiful blue skies and sunshine (although I still had a big jacket, scarf and my hat on!).  A nice way to spend a few hours on a Sunday.  I came home and made one card (meh…I’m still getting back into the groove with card-making) and a necklace (trying to use up my chunkier beads…).

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Hope you have had a good weekend – enjoy your week! 🙂

Keep your friends close…

Keep your friends close…

The old saying of “keep your friends close and your enemies closer” may well ring true for a lot of people, but I prefer to shorten it to “keep your friends close”, or, better yet, just “keep your friends”.  Over the course of the last year, whilst dealing with the whole marriage break-up “thing” (it’s moved down a notch from being a “drama” or “nightmare” to just a plain old “thing”) I have never felt more sure of the friendships I have.  It was one of the things that kept me together when all I felt like doing was falling apart.  And I did feel like falling apart – oh Lord did I ever! I felt like hunting down a Medusa, getting her to look at me so I would turn to stone, and then crumbling into a million dusty pieces.  I felt like there was not enough glue or safety pins in the world to keep me in one piece.  But I didn’t fall apart (well, maybe a little bit – I think that’s allowed and probably healthy) and I didn’t crumble, though there was a fair amount of near-crumbling, lots of ugly tears (the snotty, don’t-look-at-me kind) and a fair bit of self indulgent wallowing.  I mean, you’ve read this blog, you know what I am talking about.  I still have the odd moment of over-dramatic despair and sadness.
And then it goes away.

And you know why it goes away?  Because I am loved and liked and coddled and supported and listened to and cherished and comforted and taken under wings and looked after by special people in my life.  I am so very blessed in that I have so many people around me that care about me.  From my bosses to my Mum, from my school-friends to my work-mates, I am so lucky to have wonderful, nurturing, supportive people around me.  I’ve never felt really alone, even when I was at my lowest point.  There was always that little voice in the back of my head that kept saying “You are loved and you will be alright”.  And that voice has gotten stronger over the years as I realise that I can can make it on my own and I can manage and survive and do what needs to be done by myself, because I am never really by myself.  And I am so grateful for that.  I’m as grateful for the looking-after-me friends as I am the kick-me-up-the-bum friends who tell me to get my act together and stop moping around.  I admit maybe the latter kind of friend is sometimes less welcome that the former, but they all, in their own way, keep me together and make me a better person.

I admit I am not a sociable person.  I could easily be a hermit who only surfaces, blinking and grumpy, into the light every now and then to stock up on groceries and make sure the world is still turning.  I could do that so easily.  But then I would miss out on being part of my friends and families’ lives.  And I would hate that.  Over the last year or two I have been guilty of having my head up my own arse (for want of a better, more polite expression) and have perhaps been a little bit less attentive and supportive of people I care about. Truthfully, because I was hurting so much myself and couldn’t see past my own problems and dramas and couldn’t bear to add another layer of unhappiness.  But as I am coming through the fog of emotional upheaval, it is time to start being there again for everyone else and get back to being a good friend or family member to the people I care about.  In some ways, to be honest, that is a little bit daunting.  I’ve been able to hide away in my own problems, use them as a shield to keep other “stuff” away.  I know people kept things from me, wanting to protect me in my “fragile” state and not wanting to burden me with anything else that I would have to deal with.  But it is time to put on the proverbial big girl’s panties now and hitch my wagon back on life’s little road train (God, where am I getting these sayings from???) and deal with stuff, whether it be my problem or someone else’s.
Because I want to keep my friends close.  And my enemies?  Well, I am lucky enough to say I don’t have many of those, and don’t intend on collecting any more if I can help it. Life’s too short and time too precious.

I spent some time today with my lovely friend CW who has been a tremendous support to me over the last few years – through my illness and work worries and, more recently, the dreaded marital strife.  She is an amazing person, and someone with whom I feel comfortable discussing life and some of the more esoteric subjects like karma, one’s purpose and place in the world and whether or not cake is a suitable food to have for breakfast.  I have cried in front of her (well, let’s face it, I have cried in front of pretty much everyone – that’s just a given) and poured my heart out and told her my fears and worries.  I don’t know if she knows that she is very important to me, even though we don’t see each other very often or if she is aware that she is a calming presence in my life and someone I admire and look up to.  Because I know, with her, I can be me.  I don’t have to pretend to be anyone or anything else.  She understands me, or, at least, doesn’t judge me.  And that is such a blessing.
So to her, I say, with much love and gratitude, Thank you.

Hope you are all sharing your weekend with friends and family or planning to do so soon.  Life is short and time goes by so quickly.  Remember to spend that time with people you love and people who make the world, your world, a better place to be yourself in.

🙂

Cleaning is a “sometimes” activity, right?

Cleaning is a “sometimes” activity, right?

I was supposed to be cleaning my house today.  It has become quite feral due to me being a.) unwell this week, b.) out a lot this week and c.) just plain lazy and too prone to distraction (every week).  I want to be a good little house-wife, I do.  Even if nobody sees the house except for me and the occasional property manager when I am due for rent inspection.  But I fail miserably every week at making any kind of serious attempt at actually making my house spotless and tidy.  I just don’t have that gene.  The tidy gene.  It doesn’t bother me most of the time, but just lately I have felt that I am failing at being a grown-up.  I don’t do my dishes every night.  I don’t fold my laundry when it comes off the line.  I don’t even put it away.  I am slack.  There is no other way to say it.

But it just feels as though there are more important things to be doing.  Like today, for instance.  I was determined to get the place looking spick and span so I would have tomorrow free to craft or do something else that is constructive and meaningful (unlike cleaning, which is not).  I had just put a load of washing into the machine when my friend GK phoned to see if I was up for a catch-up and coffee outing.  I didn’t take much convincing, despite the little voice in the back of my mind yelling “What about the hoovering?! The bathroom needs scrubbing! You haven’t done any dishes in three days!!!”  So out for coffee we went.  When GK surprised me by asking if I wanted to go op-shopping and show her the good places to get a bargain (she NEVER goes op-shopping) I was powerless to say anything other than “Yes!”  So not only did I once more ignore the cleaning that needed to be done, I also ignored the fact that I have just had a large dental bill to pay and that I shouldn’t be recklessly spending my money. Sigh.  Definitely failing at being an adult.  A responsible one anyway.

So off we trotted to a row of op-shops that I frequent, um, frequently.  GK was hunting for some new jeans and I needed a plain black, long-sleeved top.  I also desperately needed some new beads.  Honestly.  Scout’s honour!  Well, I didn’t need them.  Need is a strong word.  Wanted is probably a better term.  So I rummaged around and found a couple of necklaces with some nice glass beads on them for less than $5.00 (plus I found the black long sleeve top I was needing and that was only $3.50!).  GK got two pairs of awesome jeans which made her happy and even luckier still, they were the right length (she’s short like me – everything needs taking up) and I snagged a great pair of black pants for work and another striped top (I have a thing for stripes…).  I really like the necklaces I got…

…these spotty blue glass beads are unusual and pretty…

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…and this purple/grape-coloured necklace has lots of different shaped beads on it in various sizes and shades…

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I have made a few pieces of jewellery this week as I had some orders to get done and I can’t concentrate on anything until I get them done and dusted.  First up, a blue and brown necklace which was requested by a lady at work who had bought a similar piece from me before.  She asked me to replicate it – I didn’t have enough of the same coloured beads so I substituted where I was able to and I think it turned out ok…

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…I also made one in a similar style but using red beads instead of blue…

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…I made this pink and green one for my buddy CW who I am visiting tomorrow.  She’s been having a crummy time of things lately and I wanted to give her a little treat to cheer her up.  She had bought a pair of earrings from me before that had these same colours in them and had mentioned she would like a matching necklace one day.  It’s taken me nearly 6 months to make it for her but finally I got it done…

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…I also made this pretty (well, I think it’s pretty) pastel necklace using some of the wooden beads I bought at the last craft show

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…and this bracelet which I’m not convinced about…it was getting late and I think my colour-matching was a bit off…


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…I’ve also been doodling and working on some card designs.  I draw some funny little birdcages but didn’t get as far as actually making a card with them (yet)…

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Tomorrow, I have promised myself, I will finish tidying up and make my house clean and neat and fit for human habitation, or maybe even real life visitors!  I will leave a little window of time in which I can craft and create or maybe spend a couple of hours organising my craft room.  Or, more realistically, I will spend half an hour hoovering, get distracted by some beads or ribbon, paper or paints and give up on the whole idea of tidying up.  I am nothing if not consistent 🙂

Hope you have a wonderful day (dishes be damned!) x

Everybody needs a tiger in the garden, right?

Everybody needs a tiger in the garden, right?

Last week, when I was out with my Aunt, Uncle and Cousin, we spent some time in a little pet-supply-cum-garden-decoration place.  My Aunt and Uncle love it there and enjoy looking at all the amazing animal sculptures (fibreglass I think) you can buy for your home and garden.  Some of them are so life-like and would look great hiding amongst some foliage or peeking out from some ferns or tropical plants.  They also had dinosaurs (my nephews would have loved them!) that were almost life-size and some enormous garden gnomes which I kinda liked, despite not being a garden gnome kinda person.  My Aunt was in love with a rather dilapidated donkey statue which had seen better days – we eventually convinced her we didn’t have room for it in the car boot – and I found myself wondering if I didn’t actually desperately NEED a tiger in my front garden, y’know, just to add a bit of interest to it…

I’ll leave the pictures to speak for themselves…

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I’m off to the dentist shortly to have my temporary crown fitted and also my new night splint to stop me gnashing my gnashers at night. Not looking forward to it or the pain involved (in my mouth and in my wallet).  Oh well, could be worse I guess!  Hope you have a great day and do not have to go anywhere near a dentist!  Send me happy thoughts and courage (I’m not too bad at the dentist but my anxiety can get the best of me at any time so there’s always room for a little bit of extra bravery!).

🙂

 

Rose-tinted days (and the dentist)

Rose-tinted days (and the dentist)

I spent a lovely afternoon at a garden centre with my cousin, Aunt and Uncle last week.  I love my Aunt – she is so amazing and despite battling many illnesses (not least of which is chronic renal failure) she is always upbeat and cheerful.  She never lets anything get her down and she is so strong and tough.  She does her own dialysis at home (I could never be that brave!) and is just an inspiration. So it was lovely to get to spend some time with her and my Uncle.

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Despite the cold weather, it was a beautiful sunny day and we had a delightful morning tea, and enjoyed a nice leisurely stroll around the centre, looking at all the beautiful flowers that were in bloom.  Such gorgeous roses!  In every colour imaginable.  I wish I had a greener thumb and could keep beautiful plants like roses alive and well but, alas, I am a killer of all things green (except for a few herbs) and can only swoon and sigh at other people’s horticultural success.  Just look at these fabulous specimens, beginning with the “Abracadabra” rose:

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Unfortunately, that day I also had an appointment with my dentist.  I am not what you would call a “regular” at the dentist.  So much has happened in the last year or so that I have allowed my dental health to get overshadowed (i.e. ignored).  I enjoy a visit to dentist about as much as I enjoy doing my taxes.  Both things are painful, take too long and usually end up costing me money.  This trip was no different… I have been experiencing pain and locking in my jaw for a while now and it has been getting worse, to the point my left side of the jaw is a bit out of whack.  I grind my teeth a lot and I thought maybe that had something to do with it.  My dentist confirmed that the night-time clenching and grinding (that sounded far ruder than I meant it to!) has indeed made my jaw a bit off-kilter.  It’s also cracked one of my back teeth almost in half.  Dr W said “it’s like the Grand Canyon in there!”  which is not something you really want to hear in regard to your teeth.  He said it was amazing that it hadn’t actually fallen apart completely or caused me any pain.  Anyway, I am now getting a “splint” for my bite so that I can’t grind my teeth at night, and a lovely, blingy gold crown for the cracked tooth.  So gangsta, yo!  I had the choice of gold or ceramic, my Dr W said he recommended gold as it lasts forever and as it is at the back of my mouth it won’t really show.  All this for the princely sum of about three grand.  There goes my new couch I was going to buy this month.  Oh well…couches can wait.  I don’t want the tooth to crack entirely and fall out or get really infected or anything so I need the crown and, in order to prevent any more cracked teeth or jaw issues, I have to get the splint as well.  Apart from those two things, I am really lucky to have good teeth – no signs of decay or need for fillings.  I’d hate to have ongoing dental problems – it’s so horrible and expensive!

It’s a long weekend this week so tomorrow (Monday) is a day off!  Hooray!  I am going to try not to sleep in (did that yesterday – slept for 17 hours, which is awesome but also DISGUSTING!) as I want to get some things done around the house and find some time for crafting as well.  Hope your weekend is going well, and, if you do have to go to work tomorrow, I hope Friday comes around again super quickly!  I’ll leave you with a funny little note I saw at the garden centre this week :

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🙂