Image

Quote for the Day : Horizons

“…Don’t place your mistakes on your head, their weight may crush you. Instead, place them under your feet and use them as a platform to view your horizons…”

— Unknown

IMG_2687

Advertisements
Quote for the Day : Learning

Quote for the Day : Learning

“The best thing for being sad,” replied Merlin, beginning to puff and blow, “is to learn something. That’s the only thing that never fails. You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for it then — to learn. Learn why the world wags and what wags it. That is the only thing which the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting. Learning is the only thing for you. Look what a lot of things there are to learn.”

T.H. White, The Once and Future King

IMG_9088

Watercolours & Waterbabies

Watercolours & Waterbabies

Mum and I took a watercolour class yesterday hosted by the University of Western Australia (UWA), off campus at their Taylor’s College site.  We arrived bright and early (being ridiculously early is a habit of mine – I spend a lot of time waiting around outside venues and people’s houses, class rooms and doctor’s offices because I am always there, as I said, ridiculously  early) and had a bit of a wander around the lovely garden and old buildings.

IMG_4270

IMG_4272

IMG_4273

IMG_4274

IMG_4275

IMG_4276

IMG_4277

IMG_4279

IMG_4280

IMG_4281

It was a bright Spring day – not too hot, not too cool and the birds were singing in the trees as butterflies and bees visited the rose garden and sampled the pollen .  It seemed too nice a day to sit inside but, as we had paid the fee (and not a cheap fee at that) we eventually found ourselves a seat in the class room and waited for the class to begin.

Our teacher was Debi Riley  and she guided us through 11 different watercolour techniques including wet-on-wet, charging, dry brushing and gouging.  It was a fast paced class and the time went very quickly, despite it being all day.  I have had horrible back pain all week and was dreading having to sit still for hours on end but, luckily, I was kept too busy to think about my back and we were often up and out of our seats to watch what Debi was doing in her demonstrations.

Debi went through all the materials and equipment needed with her recommendations for different products and supplies.  Mum and I baulked at the squirrel hair brushes – an ethical, synthetic version will be used by us – but it was good to know which paints are better than others and what paper we should use for the best results.

My Mum is not a novice at painting (although she told the class, during the introductions, that she had “dabbled a bit”) but I haven’t done a lot, other than the basic stuff and some folk-art.  I haven’t ever sat and learnt a proper technique before.  So basically my work was rubbish ha ha.  But it improved as the day went on and I think, perhaps, I might get better with a bit more practice. I was very pleased with one piece I did where we had to use a paint knife and “scrape” it on to very wet paper, until I realised that we were supposed to be creating a mountain landscape, not an abstract image.  Whoops.  Don’t know where my head was at when she mentioned mountains…

IMG_8309

Whoops…but I still secretly like it

I did do one mountain scene which looks kind of Japanese-y.  It still leaves a lot to be desired as a work of art though!  So we’ll call it a work in progress!

IMG_8304

Mount Fugi? Hmmm, maybe not…

I quite liked my trees and their greeny-blue mottled tones but I didn’t like the scratched trunks we were supposed to add (with out finger nail) – it looks a bit dumb.  But next time I will know what I am doing so maybe I will get it right then!

IMG_8307

Trees!

I think I was happiest of all with my gum leaves at the end of the day – I think, with some more practice, I could make a half-decent attempt at them.They were enjoyable to do as each one came out differently, adding to their natural look.

IMG_8312

Leafy!

So, all in all, an enjoyable day and nice to spend it with my Mum who is now all enthused about getting back in painting and art in general.  I found the class very informative and gave me some new skills and techniques.  I want to sit and paint now but I have no time and I am still getting
ready for my market stall which is in TWO WEEKS time (aaaghh!).

I am rather behind in announcing the birth of my brand new little niece, Amity Jane.  She was born on the 15th and is just a delight.  I am an Auntie again for the fourth time and am already thinking about putting my babysitting fees up ha ha.  Mother and bub are doing well (my brother’s partner, Anna, is AMAZING and the best Mum ever) and I am so blessed to have another little person in my life.  Her brothers and sister are also besotted.  And why wouldn’t they be – just look at her!:

IMG_4262

So cute!

Well, it’s time to make dinner and sort out my dining room and do some ironing.  At least one of those things will probably not get done.  I vote for ironing!

Hope you have all had a good weekend and got to enjoy some time with your family and friends.  That’s what weekends are for.  Well, that and crafting!

Have a great week everybody – thank you for visiting 🙂

Things I have learnt from moving

Things I have learnt from moving

We are all moved in to our new place.  It is a bigger house with more rooms and an extra bathroom.  It is not quaint nor does it have great character – it’s just one of those modern, soulless villa’s that are popping up all over the place in secure complexes around the country.  But I like it.  I loved our old, cute and quirky house but it was too small for us, freezing in the Winter and less than secure when burglars or other dodgy types came a-calling, and, anyway, we had to leave as the owners needed to move back in themselves. 

So, on the 27th of December we moved.  It was horribly hot – sun blazing down, humidity up and the new house is much warmer than the old one.  The removalists grumbled about the amount of boxes we had (“You’re both librarians!  You work in libraries! Why do you need your own books!?”) but they were friendly enough and chatted pleasantly throughout the SIX HOURS they were there.  Yes, that’s right.  It took six hours to move all our stuff.  I didn’t think it was ever going to end.  I was on my own (hubby was conveniently at work) and I thought I had entered some sort of Twilight Zone universe where a demonic moving van was forever full, never emptying and would continue to reveal more and more layers of stuff.  I actually helped the guys move and carry stuff (I’m not good at standing around doing nothing) and I think that helped to cut out some of the time I was paying for. 

Anyway, we finished cleaning and tidying up the old house yesterday, handing back the keys and bidding the place a final adieu.  I was going to take a small cutting of rosemary from the garden but forgot so will have to plant a new one at the new house.  We have no garden to speak of there – sand and dead bits of grass is all we look out on through the dining room window.  But I will try and make it look presentable – grow a few pots of herbs and flowers, maybe put up some trellis or something if we’re allowed and get some climbing, flowering plants to cheer things up a bit.

Moving is not fun.  I don’t know why people like doing it.  I never want to relocate ever again.  Ever.  But of course I will have to at some stage.  We don’t want to rent forever, after all.  I did learn some things whilst moving though, and I guess that’s the important thing (well, that and having a roof over our heads). 

Things I Learned from Moving

  1. Just because a box is labelled, doesn’t mean the contents match the label.
  2. Be careful when labelling boxes – think about what you are writing.  For instance “Bedroom Toys” will make people snigger and go “Ooooerr!” until they unpack said box and find it is full of teddy bears that you keep in your bedroom.
  3. You DO have too much stuff.
  4. There are not enough boxes in the country for you to move all your stuff.  You WILL have to beg, borrow and steal boxes from your friends, family, co-workers and random people on the street.  
  5.  For someone who has “nothing to wear”, you WILL mysteriously have more clothing than the entire population of Paris during Fashion Week.  And several hats (which you don’t remember buying).  You will have nowhere to put them and they will sit in sad little piles all over the house.
  6. You WILL regret leaving your portable wardrobes behind at the old house.
  7. In the process of packing, you WILL become so tired that you find yourself sleeping, standing upright, leaning against the fridge with a waterproof marker pen in your mouth.  You will have black lips.  The stain will not come out for three days.
  8. You will learn that friends with utes, trailers and any other large vehicles are extremely useful. 
  9. You will learn that moving during the Christmas/New Year period is a really crappy time to do anything.
  10. You will learn that your bed, at the end of a very long day, is the most valuable thing you own. 

We are still without phone or internet so I am blogging this quickly at work (it’s ok, it’s a Saturdayand I’m not actually working today).  I hope your Christmas and New Year’s were blissfully stress-free and lots of fun.  I wish you all a wonderful 2013 – hope your resolutions are easy to keep!  (Mine are going to include de-cluttering and culling my stuff…we’ll see how that pans out!).