Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Behind The Scenes

Two weeks slipped by so easily between posts.

So now I'm making space to reflect which is something we don't do enough in the busy times we live in.

If we just continually strive to keep up with the busyness, how do we ever change track if the busy one isn't getting us where we really want to be? Isn't fulfilling us?

That's why I think making time to reflect and appreciate is important.

And for me that usually means writing.

So, what's been happening over these past two weeks?

Well, I made pastry. By hand. From scratch.

I rubbed butter into flour, then poured a couple of tablespoons of chilled water into the buttery, floury mix and 'cut' the water in with a butter knife like I watched my great grandmother do a thousand times standing by her side when I was a child.

Her kitchen was a haven for me. I learnt so much and every time I make pastry I think of her and think how lucky I am to have learnt a skill that not many people learn now as part of their childhood.

I rolled the pastry out with a yellow handled wooden rolling pin gifted to me by my friend Lucy who I haven't seen in years but I have such warm memories of our old friendship, of a time when all our babes were babies and we spent more time together because life was running slow on 'baby time'.

Lucy would call me on a weekday morning and say "I'm making pikelets, come 'round" and we would sit with the children, drink tea, chat and eat pikelets dripping with butter and jam.


This year was the first year that Melbourne Cup really bothered me - sorry to my friends who love frocking up and having a flutter - first and foremost what bothered me most was thinking about those beautiful horses and what they endure, and then there is just the excess that goes with the whole thing.

I know it translates to jobs across lots of industries but there was just something about it this year that made me feel...icky. It was interesting to see amidst the photos of fashion and opulence there was also so much backlash against the Cup on social media this year. I took it as a sign of evolution!


I marvelled at grace this past week.

I have a darling friend, Tess.

Tess is amazing and wonderful and talented and funny, strong and smart, she's a damn fine cook,  a natural born writer, loves a wilderness adventure, a mama to two beautiful boys, wife to a beautiful man. And, she is living with cancer.

The cancer part completely sucks. To say the least.

Not so long after Tess was diagnosed we upgraded our friendship and adopted each other as sisters, which is a gift I treasure.

Last week we got to go out for lunch together and when we arrived at the cafe, a spunky young waiter beamed a smile at us and welcomed us in, he asked 'how are you?'

Those three little words rang through me.

Tess smiled graciously, said she was good and we were seated at our table.

Despite all the pain and nausea and vast unknown that is cancer, Tess was gracious and warm and engaging with every person we encountered.

I mean, I know when people ask 'how are you?' they're not expecting to get your life story - or sometimes even the truth - but this day Tess was grace personified and it stood out to me.


On the weekend I opened the Sunday papers to see my friend Georgie and her gorgeous fam smiling back at me, a story featuring their beautiful home and Georgie's art.

Looking at those pages, well it all looks so effortless right G? :)

But we all know that behind every success story there's hard work, determination, highs, lows, wins and losses.

You see Georgie used to be a cosmetic sales manager, she was great at her job but she had a natural born talent with a paint brush she wasn't using.

We all nudged her along, 'what are you doing?!' 'you should be painting!'

I wrote the press release for her first exhibition.

The paintings were beautiful. Deep, moody hues, her signature take on florals and blooms.

Georgie worked fiercely to paint those paintings with a baby at her feet and side jobs to juggle to pay the bills and make it all happen.

And happen it has, but it took courage and faith and focus and a whole cheer squad which I'm happy and proud to be part of.


Another gorgeous talented friend (lucky me to have so many lol) leant me a copy of Lunch Lady this week, ooh how I love it! The writing is so good. The recipes simple and yummy. The design is fun, love everything about it.


And I've been listening to Ann Patchett on the Beautiful Writer's Podcast, so inspiring about committing to one's craft and just Doing The Work.


Scary moment of the week was receiving a text from a school mum friend to say that Sol had broken the news to her son that...SANTA ISN'T REAL!!!! Omg.

That's what happens when you have a big brother.

I had a chat with Sol and borrowed the advice from my sister-in-law, explaining to Sol he is now the keeper of the magic of Christmas for the little children so it's best he keeps that special knowledge to himself.

#disasteraverted #magicofchristmassaved


There are always so many layers to what goes on behind the scenes of people's public lives, how we all have private stories and that more than ever being kind to each other really matters.

I'm making time to count my blessings and instead of being hard myself for all the things I haven't done, I'm noting all the things I have done and moving forward feeling happy from there.

Because big hearted love for this life with all it's highs and lows, hurts and triumphs is what's needed.

(Coffee, chocolate and wine are not the answer. Take it from me and my pants that came back from the dry cleaner this week and don't do up).

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