Friday, July 30, 2010

Oskar Rex turns six

My Nephew has just turned six, wowsers! He's no longer a toddler or a tike, he is now a little boy who loves dinosaurs, Iron Man and playing his keyboard - which he got for his big spectacular birthday, thank you very much!

Oskar has grown up so quick, and in those six years that I have been his aunty - possibly favourite, I'm sure Fifi would see otherwise though in the title for best Aunty - anyhoo, I can still remember the day we found out he was on his way, and the day that he came into the world, and even the days when he used to sit on the floor, watching the wiggles and being hand fed pureed pears.  He was a little cutey, and he still is now, with his cute gappy smile, blonde hair, and hilarious humour, Oskar is just wonderful, and I'm so glad that we could celebrate his big milestone with a space party! woooo, calling all robots and aliens, Oskar's Birthday Party was out of this world.

My eldest sister Sarah hand covered spaceships with alfoil, hung them from string, made up galactic space loot pags, and ordered cheese pizza for Oskar and his gang to munch into after their afternoon of crafting their own spaceships, and running around the back yard like a bunch of crazy geese - man, six year olds are so effortlessly cool, and so fun to spend the afternoon with.

Monday, July 26, 2010

I dig my home town, do you?

If I could paint you a picture of the good ol’ town I grew up in, well, I wouldn’t even know where to start; located in rural Central Queensland, it’s a little mining town, with a large reputation of being a money making hot spot full of small town gossip and a growing population of folk who pretty much know everyone and their business within a 10 mile radius…enough said? No, not quite.

Some see it that way, I admit, I do too sometimes, but for a schmick little sec, I will take off my town thrashing glasses, and replace them with some rose coloured ones to shed some light on the small little town I call home. The small little town, where I feel comfortable going to Woolies in my pj’s, and the place where I had an ace childhood with bike races, cubby houses on the trampoline and friendships that have seen me through 5th birthday parties to 21st bashes.

I love coming home from uni, I love coming back to work in the coal mines and I love what it represents sometimes. So I will drip a few drops of paint onto a canvas for you of what a typical day could be like in the town I grew up in, and the generosity that most often gets looked over, I know, how dare they for not seeing this, let’s all flip them the bird, so it never happens again.

Waking up when it’s cold, pulling on your jeans, and buttoning up your high vis shirt, means a lot in this town. Standing out on the curb you can see the headlights of mine cars all driving down the street. Every car in the neighbourhood pulling out of their driveways at the same time – a little too Stepford Wives sometimes, but anyhoo – they act like a convoy as they head up to the highway, stopping in to get a fresh brekkie at the bakery, or to pick up a plastic wrapped treat for smoko. It all sounds very poetic, and in fact, it quite is. The men, and women here heading off to work in the morning, even before the sun has risen, is an ace part of this town that would seem wacko tobacco to people from the city, where rushing to Starbucks in the morning, carrying a briefcase and catching the train are everyday normalities – yet here, that’s not quite the same.

But I like working here on the holidays, and being able to do the mine thing again, getting to work early, opening my car door and sometimes letting out a curse when it’s far too cold for my liking, but also wanting to tell my self, “Bravo, you’re up early, you get to see the sun rise, and you get to have a cup of coffee when most people are still in snooze land counting sheep”.

I enjoy seeing the workers walk outside with their socks and thongs, smiling as they carry their crib bags because they’ve finished another shift, and they get to go home, but not before stopping in at the newsagency to buy the paper. It’s humorous the banter that goes on and pretty dang generous I say, working long shifts, surviving off barely any sleep and doing hard manual labour so families can have luxuries.
I’ll admit, growing up we used to sneak down to dad’s car, raid his ash tray and steal his coins so we could buy ice-creams, it was always a joke, and still is now – of how us three girls, four including mum, milk him for every penny.

You have to love the generosity in this town, and the folk who more than often don’t lock their car doors. Thanks dad, add another thank you on top of that for all the ice-creams you paid for over the years, unknowingly of course.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Sewing on a Sunday

‘twas a lovely day on Sunday at home. I was up nice and early and packed up my little car to head to the markets for the day. I was up sewing a storm the night before, and made some little singlets, bloomers, brooches and dresses, all to take along for the ride.

I was at the markets early, carted my duffle up to the deck, and unpacked my loot and then Fifi was my offsider for the day.

We had chai lattes first up in the morning of course, and then socialised with our local friends, talking about the little outfits and how they would look cute ‘teamed with tights as a smock’.

What a lovely morning it was, Fifi was such a good help, taping up my brown packages with decorative tape, and chatting to the customers, (who were mostly her friends with adorable children).

She then surprised me with some pikelets with jam and cream for a little morning snack – best market offsider ever I say – bringing me coffee and treats, and even wearing a brooch to show off my creations.

Mum came down with Darbie, and they soirée’d all day, sipping on coffee and tea, and then hanging around for a salad wrap or two. What a lovely outing for that pair of ladies that luncheon.

Three coffees later, and the markets wrapped up, I packed up the rest of my kit and caboodle, headed home and was overwhelmed with the kindness of the lovely people in the town I grew up in. They were all just a bit cute and generous thank you very much, hurrah for market goers!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

I'll Take a Puppy To Go Thanks!

I think something must be in the air, because lots o’ babies are being born left, right and centre.

Our family was certainly given a spring in our steps with the big excitement that came our way when my sister’s dashing dog’s became parents to a lovely litter of seven.

They are just lovely, laying around with their little wrinkled noses and peachy keen tongues darting in and out as they gorge on milk – and don’t they ever, sometimes I think their poor mummy is going to dry up, or develop a voice box to exclaim that, “This milk bar is closed!”

Anyhoo, here they are, our lovely puppies, who are going to give my sister a hard time when it’s time to give them up – except one of course, and I think she already knows which one they are keeping – I’d say the one that sleeps with her, and continues to get cradled all day long, naww.

Hurrah for puppies, wrap 'em up to go!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

How Does Your Garden Grow?

On Sunday I was enjoying a lovely morning at my sister’s house with plenty of cups of tea and lazing around in the yard. She has three boys under 6, so it’s nice to round them up and head outside so they can run around, drive their trucks and explore their huge backyard.

We like to sit on the grass and chill out though, as they run a muck around us. We did however, stroll down the back and check the garden out. My sister has a very cool veg garden, so cool that I think Jamie Oliver would be a tad bit jealous. I dig going to her house for dinner (literally sometimes I do dig, ha!), with lots o’ fresh produce – squash and zucchini are my ace pics for the moment, and grilled up on my plate, they look schmick- take that Woolworths!

Silliness aside, gardens are very cool. They are so organic and relaxing to tend to, and it’s nice to do your part for the environment by growing your own food, and limiting all the chemicals that sometimes manage to sneak their way into supermarket finds.

I can’t wait to start my own veg garden. I’m thinking it will be like a full time job though, with gumboots, an apron and a straw hat – noice.

* Little Henry also loved the garden, he hobbled on down and squashed some lettuce with his little mitts, hopefully no ladybirds were harmed

Friday, July 9, 2010

Findings Things and Keeping Them

Bonjour, Bird and I are back from our holiday to the big city, and we had a fabulous time. We headed down for the fabulously eccentric Finders Keepers Markets, and while in Brisbane, stood on a bridge listening to Josh Pyke and drank chai lattes in a nifty little nook on the Queen Street Mall - It was tough.

We stayed in a little brick building just two streets back from the mall, and on day one we wandered around the streets, stopped in for coffees, (hot chocolates on Bird’s behalf) and enjoyed relaxing and taking a break.

The Go Between the Bridge Concert was on while we were there, so we scarfed up, walked to the bridge, stopped for Beer Battered Fries and then parked our keesters on the bridge to listen to Josh Pyke, Bob Evans and Angus and Julia – it was pretty ace, and the calzone and pizza afterwards really topped our night. We really enjoyed being able to swing into a restaurant at 10:00 at night and still be able to get a meal, I love how cities never sleep!

The Finders Keepers were the next day so we woke up pretty dang early for both of our likings, and strolled down to the mall for a very ‘ladies who luncheon’ breakfast at pretty much the cutest café ever. I enjoyed yet another Chai Latte and some field mushrooms as Bird sipped on a Hot Choc and crunched on Turkish bread. We seemed to drink our way all over Brisbane… in our defence though; the weather did call for us to warm ourselves with shopping, scarfs and hot drinks!

The markets were superb. The Old Museum was so very vintage inside that the stalls fit in perfectly, and the record player reminded me of being a little girl again, with the tunes that were playing, I almost felt like dragging out a skipping rope.

Bespoke Press was my favourite for the day, I had already been pre-shopping on their website, and one of my very first posts was about a tea cup letter press print that I was in love with – well guess who now owns this little print? It’s fabulous.

I also loved Able and Game, I have bought their cards before, but seeing them all lined up next to each other really won me over, and I had to buy more! So many designers were very kooky and cool, and Laura Carney’s bearded men stickers are just waiting for me to peel the backing off and plaster them all over brown paper packages.

We shopped for hours, and bought way too many prints, and then headed on down to the garden to enjoy some cupcakes and a sunbake whilst listening to some uber cool live music. People were lining up for tea and coffee everywhere, and then snapping away with their cameras and enjoying the lovely weather. I love the art crowd.

We had the best time, and topped the day off with some more shopping – for stationery of course. And we tried on some very fabulous shoes in David Jones – Miu Miu clogs are killing me at the moment, and my bank account will certainly not allow it, they were incredible though, and the knock off’s in Sportsgirl are just not the same in my eyes.

Anyhoo, we strolled, chatted, window shopped and treated ourselves to a truffle from a very swanky chocolate store. Who knew Lavender chocolate would be so amazing?

The Finders Keepers won our hearts, Brisbane food satisfied our hunger and we were left wanting more of the city life. On our last night we frocked up, painted our lips red and headed to see Sex and The City for take 2, and then dined on pasta, alfresco style…what an amazing end to a perfect weekend getaway.
Before heading home, Bird and I scarfed up for the last time and enjoyed one more Hot Choc and Chai Latte before we jet setted home.

Finders Keepers I love you x

*P.s How adorable are the fabric softie mushrooms, I wanted to pick one up and take it with me