My broccolini was ready for harvest on the weekend.
After washing all the white waxiness off the leaves and stalks, I was treated to a gorgeous splash of rich, deep greens.
I love stumbling across weird and wonderful things in nature.
A few weeks ago, our family drove out to a very, very deserted beach.
Water and sand stretched out in both directions, as far as the eye could see.
And dotted along the shore were these AMAZING looking balls of seaweed twigs.
My husband’s theory was that… from the masses of seaweed that were constantly washed onto the shore… small bundles of seaweed broke off, and were rolled up and down the beach with the waves… creating these beautiful twiggy spheres.
But our kids said they were sea dragon eggs, which had been laid onto the sand.
We found more than 20 of them. From tiny ones the size of apples, to ones bigger than watermelons!
We kicked them down the beach, we threw them into the waves, we rolled them into a line, we even tried to make “snowmen” with them.
And then we chose 5 special, perfectly sphere-shaped ones (for each member of our family) to take home.
They look amazing as a dinner table centre piece. And every morning, the kids eat breakfast, and joke about when the sea dragon eggs will hatch.
I had my first kid when I was 25.
Some people say that 25 is pretty young to start having kids, others say it’s a great age.
At times, in moments of weakness, I find myself wondering whether I’ve done the right thing to have kids so early. Whether it was right for me.
I get updates and photos of my peers traveling all over the world. I watch their careers skyrocket and the number of their properties and cars multiply.
There are some times, I think – Good grief, here I am trapped in this bottomless pit of domesticity, a life of never-ending nappies, never-ending school lunches, never-ending laundry and never-ending shouting at the kids…
But hey, then again, is it really so bad?
The reality is, most days I enjoy the fact that I’m a young mother.
I really, really enjoy it.
I’m in my 30’s and I have 3 kids!
It spins me out when I say that.
Because I still feel like I’m 25.
I love the fact that I can play tennis on the street with my 8 year old. Play basketball with my 6 year old. And dance with my 2 year old.
I love that I can kick a football, skateboard, play cricket, cycle and do stupid stuff like swing on the park swings so high that I make myself dizzy. Just because I can. I feel extremely blessed.
I love that my ambition, my brains, my passion, my energy, my excitement for life… are all still in me.
I’m looking forward to many more years of being active, and keeping up with my children.
The other day, we went to a friend’s place for a dinner party. Before dinner began, my friend revealed that TODAY was the perfect evening for him to open a bottle of wine that he had been keeping in his wine cellar for so long.
He was going to share it among the 6 guests. This meant that we would only get one small glass each – which suited me fine, since I can only tolerate very small amounts of alcohol.
There was lots of ooohing and ahhhing over the French wine bottle. It was so old that it had literally gathered dust. It’s not every day that you get to drink an 11 year old bottle of French wine (well not for me anyway).
When the wine bottle was opened, there was great relief when the cork came out cleanly. My friend explained that the bottle had been stored upside down, and the wine kept the cork moist – so it would not crumble.
Dinner took some time to prepare, so we were all in quite a state of anticipation when we finally sat down to eat – and drink.
But then a funny thing happened. My wine loving friend ate two mouthfuls of the pasta, and a tiny sip of the wine, and then he said “Everyone stop drinking! This is not the right dish to go with this wine.”
At first, I thought he was joking, but then I realised he was absolutely serious. The pasta sauce was “too robust” for the wine’s “character”.
And since it was his wine, we all ate the rest of our meals with our wine glasses untouched.
Talk about fussy wine-drinkers!
About fifteen minutes after dinner, we allowed to resume appreciating the wine.
There was lots of discussion about how subtle the flavours were. How the wine had matured in “complex” ways. And how French wines were far more sophisticated than Australian wines, which typically have “bolder” flavours.
I thought the wine was just okay, and to be honest, I really enjoy wine with stand-out flavours. You know, tough enough to take over your mouth and say “I’m here!!!”
So, I’m afraid that the wine was wasted on my “uneducated” taste.
(I can only hope that my friend does not read my blog!)
It’s usually quite difficult to spot a coin in the sand.
And perhaps more difficult to resist the temptation of stooping over to snatch it up.
Yet, it’s probably even more difficult to… reach into your bag, pull out your camera, take a few snaps, put your camera back into your bag, and then stoop over and enjoy the sweet moment of picking up the coin.
And no doubt, the most difficult of them all… is to do all of the above before your children sees what you’re up to.
I, my friends, am a master.
Our orange tree is producing a lot of good looking fruit!
There are probably 6 more loads like this still hanging on the tree.
As for their taste, they are a quite sour with a hint of sweetness. And unfortunately they’re not nice enough to eat or give away.
So the kids helped me juice them up. We squeezed them until the skin on our hands turned funny.
Served with a bit of sugar, mint and ice… they turned out very yummy!
I have been living in my boots these last few weeks.
I just pull them on in the morning… and leave them on until I have a shower in the evening.
I stomp around in them all day. In and out of the house.
Haha I even leave them on while having an afternoon nap on the couch!
I guess, when you find a pair that are so heavenly, comfortable and warm, there’s no real point switching to house slippers or woolly ugg boots.
(However today, I had to take them off before chasing my toddler around in the sandpit.)
A few weeks ago, my husband came home with a very old book.
It was quite possibly the oldest book I have ever seen, touched and smelt. (You don’t smell books too?)
It was old, worn and ragged. It was very cool, like pirate’s treasure book, or some ancient spell book.
When my husband first requested the book, the librarians couldn’t find it on their shelves. And librarians don’t like that. They had to go down into one of their deep book vaults to find it.
And when they did find it, they gave it a new barcode sticker and scanned it into the computer system – for the first time in it’s existence. This book had been slowly mouldering away on a shelf, in a deep dark room, for a very long time.
When I opened the book, on the inside, it was like new.
I thought was a bit odd. It was published in 1925, but the pages were still white, and the print still crisp.
I was amazed that the outside was so old, and yet the inside so preserved. How could that be?
And then I looked at the old fashioned “due date” stamp in the back… check out when it was last taken out and opened!
For the past week, I have been a bit sick, with flu like symptoms, a bad cough and no sense of smell.
Thankfully it’s all resolved, and this is me celebrating my new found ability to smell again.
The musky, rich and heady smell of rose petals.
I love the crazy, firework colours and patterns on this rose.
Hot, buttery, honey smells from homemade Anzac biscuits.
I made these for an after school snack for my kids, here’s the recipe if you’re interested.
Warm, fresh, soapy smells from the children’s bathroom.
All three of them piled into the bathtub and went crazy with the bubbles.
Slow cooked lamb stew, with fresh herbs from the garden.
It sat on the stove for 2 hours, bubbling away, filling my house with the most amazing aromas.