Image

Quote for the Day : Grander than the Sky

“..There is one spectacle grander than the sea, that is the sky;
there is one spectacle grander than the sky,
that is the interior of the soul…” 

―- Victor Hugo :  Les Misérables

IMG_4547
Swan River (from King’s Park) Perth, Western Australia

 

Advertisements
Image

May the Road Rise

Another quick and simple card today.  I did think about adding to this one, but it seemed pretty much “done” from the get-go, with just backing paper, birdie and blessing.  I shaded the bird a little, with some distress ink, so that he was tonally matched to everything else.  I’m glad he was holding on to a branch because it meant I didn’t have to cut out teeny weeny toes like I normally do 🙂

I wish the sun was shining warm upon my face today, but it is bleak and rainy and bleurgh.  It’s been so jolly cold – lots of I-can’t-feel-my-toes kind of days and I am now suffering from a horrible lurgy, made all the more miserable by the grey and depressing weather.  Getting up in the morning is hard enough when it’s dark outside and drizzling with rain , but then add to it a stinking head cold and you might as well forget the whole thing and stay in bed. Which is very much what I wanted to do today.

Until we meet again…x

IMG_3776

Image

Beach Blues

We are having some wacky weather this month.  Due to Cyclone Stan in the North, we are experiencing cool, windy, stormy, wet weather.  Yuck.  Actually, it’s not so bad and a bit of a relief from the usual stifling Summer heat.

I think I do get a little bit affected by Seasonal Affective Disorder because I am usually pretty miserable all Winter (ha ha – or most of the time, let’s face it) and this last week or two have been decidedly down.  It doesn’t take much to knock me off my perch, mood-wise, and I think the dull weather really bothers my psyche.  So, I have been a bit sad and stressed and in-the-dumps.  Just struggling a bit with life in general I guess, through one thing or another – the murky weather mirroring my mood (or the other way round).

Anyway, yesterday I went snorkelling with my good friend SR.  Yesterday was NOT perfect snorkelling weather, especially when you’ve never snorkelled before (like me).  The water was very rough and a bit churned up, the wind was cold and it was not the lovely, sunny and bright conditions you would ideally like when mucking about in the ocean.  However, we still had a nice time and saw so many fishies!  I was surprised at how many were that close to the shore (we were only 3 metres or so from the beach) just swimming about amongst the reefs and rocks.  I wish I had an underwater camera so I could have taken some pictures but, alas, I do not.  You’ll just have to take my word for it – there were fishies!  Little white ones and spotty ones and I don’t know what any of them were called (George, Fred, Martha?) but they were very cute and plentiful despite all the people bobbing about in their environment.

It was so nice to be in the water, even for just a short time, and I do so love the beach, in any weather.  We went for some walks up and down the shore too, just to talk and catch up.  Just having your feet in the sand and the wind in your hair is enough to blow away some cobwebs and get your mental well-being back in to check.  I will have to practice my snorkelling technique (well, I don’t actually have one at all right now…) and improve my swimming strength, but all in all, I would happily go again.  I should make the effort.  I am always saying I love the ocean, but I never go.  It’s always too far or no one wants to go with me or it’s too sunny (I burn) or too cold (I freeze).  No more excuses now.  You’re my witnesses.  It did upset my vertigo a bit (it’s been really playing up lately) but I’m not going to let that put me off, if I can help it.

Anyway, it was a good morning with good friends and an equally good breakfast afterwards at the Soda Café (Field Mushrooms with Polenta and Goats Curd – yum!) and just what I needed to get rid of the blues, at least for a few hours.  The sun did eventually come out, after all.  Hopefully I can keep it with me for a little while longer 🙂

IMG_2345IMG_2344IMG_2347IMG_2346IMG_2343IMG_2338

Stormy Weather

Stormy Weather

Yesterday afternoon we had a magnificent storm.  Thunder, lightning, heavy rain, winds – the whole shebang.  It was lovely after several weeks of relentless Summer heat.  Which, normally, I don’t mind – me being a cold-blooded little fishy – but the storm was so cleansing and made everything, including my brain and spirit, seem fresh again.

I nearly cancelled my afternoon walk – I didn’t particularly want to get electrocuted and really couldn’t be bothered getting my raincoat and other wet-weather gear on.  I decided to wait it out, make myself a cup of tea and see if the rain decreased enough for me to attempt some outdoor exercise.  The rain slowed down and became just a light shower, and the winds calmed as well.  There was less lightning too, so I decided to brave the elements and get moving.  I’m so glad  I did – the walk was just what I needed.

I encountered very few people out and about (wusses!) and, other than a few bedraggled cormorants, seagulls and magpies, I was able to have a peaceful, solitary walk.  Bliss. The air was cool and fresh, and the light rain on my skin felt wonderful.  I didn’t even care if my hair frizzed, for once.  I didn’t bother with an umbrella or raincoat – I just walked in my usual gear, stepping gleefully into a few puddles as I went.

The sky was black and murky, but beautiful with impressive cloud formations.  Flocks of birds twittered happily through the spattering of raindrops.  Grumpy-looking cormorants dried themselves off on jetties and shorelines, their fat little bellies all fluffy and damp.  I took photos and just breathed in the air.

Kinda wish every afternoon could be like that – it made exercise so enjoyable and less like a punishment ha ha.  It definitely cleared the cobwebs out of my brain and made me feel good again, ready for the rest of the week.

Hope you are having some weather you enjoy or, at least, can find elements of it that make you feel happy and alive.  I’m yet to find anything about cold weather that I really enjoy…but storms make me happy every time 🙂

Thanks for visiting x

IMG_2066IMG_2059IMG_2056IMG_2062IMG_2061IMG_2058IMG_2060

My Week in Pictures (July)

My Week in Pictures (July)

How did it get to be Sunday already?  Where did the week go?  Did I sleep through it?  Why am I asking so many questions?

I’ve had a busy week, despite having three days off (not due to illness or anything medical, for once.  Just needed a few days off to prepare my house for rent inspection – which was cancelled! Gah!  I did housework for nothing!!!)  and being quite lazy and un-motivated.  My desk at work had so much stuff piled up on it but the time I came back from my mini-break, that it looked as though I would be staying back every day for the next three years in order to get through it all and catch up.
But I ploughed through it on Friday and am now back to just being regular busy, instead of frenzied busy.

I did go for a couple of walks during my lunch breaks, just to force myself to get off my bottom and get some fresh air.  It is not unusual for me to spend 3 or 4 hours at my desk without getting up at all and that’s pretty bad, not just for my waistline and backside but for my general health and mental state, not to mention my eyes and back.  I had been told there was an op-shop down the road from our work place but had, as yet, not visited it (shame!).  I toddled down there one day last week and, boy-oh-boy, had I been missing out!  This place was huge with lots of lovely things to browse through.  They had a huge shoe collection – check out these “classy” numbers:

IMG_6058

IMG_6059

I was good and didn’t buy anything (mostly because I had not taken my purse with me…) but I will return again another day!  Next door was the “Book Bazaar” which was also a dangerous place to visit.  Sooooo many books!  Everything from craft to language books, fiction to gardening…will be back there soon…

On my walks I took the opportunity to take a few snaps of the various pretty flowers, plants and foliage around my work.  As there is lots of bushland there are often wildflowers in bloom, but on this occasion it was mostly weeds and introduced species:

IMG_6066

I think these flowers are African Daisies…(but don’t quote me on that!)…

IMG_6060

These too…

IMG_6061

…A pretty little vignette designed by nature 🙂

IMG_6063

…even weeds can be pretty…(a type of oxalis)…

IMG_6062

…bee butt!  I can’t help myself…if you are a bee and you’re butt is poking out of a flower, watch out!
This little guy would NOT keep still, but eventually he found this Soursop (another type of oxalis) flower enticing enough to be worth lingering on…

IMG_6064

…soursop foliage…

IMG_6065

…even the sky was beautiful on this day (though those clouds brought rain later on…)

The weather this week has been alternating between blue skies and sunshine (though still cold), to freakish winds and thunderstorms.  At any rate, it has been too cold for me and I long for Summer.  I am tired of dressing like I live in the Antarctic.  I feel fat and lumpy, pale, bulky and sad in the cooler months.  I wish there was a giant beanie than would not just cover my head but my entire body in wooly warmth.

IMG_6069

I helped my brother run a stall at a local toy and collector’s fair last week.  My soon-to-be-ex normally gives him a hand but was unable to, due to being on holiday overseas ( will not bitch, I will not bitch) so I said I would be his assistant for the day.  We did pretty well – there wasn’t a big crowd but we made steady sales (my brother sells model kits and figurines).  I had dinner with my brother’s family that night and got to hang out with my little nieces and nephews, including this cutie (whose smiles and happy face is enough to cure any Winter blues I might be experiencing) :

IMG_6081

Yesterday, I bought a couch.  I went out to buy toilet paper, took a bit of a detour and bought a couch.  As you do.  I have been putting it off forever and I finally bit the bullet and ordered one.  No photos as yet as they have to make the couch to order.  I have to wait 4-6 weeks which seems like an age but I have heard that some people wait 3 months, so I won’t complain.  I want my lounge room to be inviting and cosy, as well as slightly quirky and stylish.  My brother and his partner were getting rid of an old mirror and I grabbed it before it got put out onto the verge collection.  I’ve put it up in my lounge room behind my twiggy tree, along with my squirrel ornament and metal crow.  When the tree is lit up with the tiny fairy lights I got at Christmas, and it all reflects off the mirror, it is so pretty and pleasing to the eye.  Well, my eye anyway, and I guess that’s what is important.

IMG_6083

Today I slept in (I’ve been so tired lately – I think it’s just a bit of sadness weighing me down) and then faffed about until mid afternoon when I went out to the movies with my friend K from work.  The day was bright and crisp, with blue skies and a gentle breeze.  The pretty Autumn leaves on all the trees were such gorgeous combinations of colour…

IMG_6107

The movie we saw was the French film, “Belle & Sebastian“.  So lovely.  The scenery in the movie was beautiful and the story itself (though a little bit cutesy and Lassie-ish) was compelling and tear-jerking.  Mind you, all the snow and ice in the movie left me feeling absolutely freezing and it was nice to get into a nice warm car and drive home to my PJs and Ugg boots 🙂

I had some nice news this week – my kidney function has increased to 49%!  I am so happy about that and also grateful and surprised.  Every percent is an absolute gift.  I am still praying I get to 50% but am very content with 49!

Hope you have had a good weekend xxx

IMG_6106

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).

IMG_5903

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 🙂

IMG_5904

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!

IMG_5905

IMG_5921

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! 🙂

IMG_5907

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…).

IMG_5922

IMG_5916

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