May

May

May seems to have arrived and (almost) departed with quite a frenetic pace. It’s been a busy few weeks – Adam and I have had some long days at our respective offices, we’ve both had work trips away, there’s been a rather nasty cold that ‘s affected the entire family and working bees have started in the garden of the new house – next month is moving month!

Adam and I are putting in a great deal of thought into our new garden. We plan on establishing several distinct “zones” around the house, including a large grassy play area for Paul, a sizable allotment style vegetable garden and an extensive terraced garden. It’s a project that we know will take many months of work and before we launch into it all, we want to make sure we’ve got a clear vision for how we want our outdoor areas to look.

A couple of weeks ago I got the opportunity to visit go to an open day at local nursery, Ladysmith Park Perennials. What I discovered was the dreamiest space. The living embodiment of what Adam and I had fallen in love with in magazines, books and online…

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March

March

Often, when you move to a new town you spend the first little while visiting local attractions. Then if you end up settling in that community, those trips to landmarks get fewer and farther in between. Eventually it turns into years, and you start to forget why these places were top of your list.

I found myself in that exact situation earlier this month, and when I revisited one famous local spot I was pleasantly surprised at how it had grown and changed…

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February

February

February. The shortest month of the year. The summer’s end is near and after a particularly sticky few months, I feel ready to wave goodbye to the sun-bleached landscape, the airy cotton dresses and the constant hum of the air-conditioning. This month seems to have hit me at full force. There’ve been some particularly busy days at work, what feels like an uptick in toddler tantrums, and a late summer cold. Add to that, the devastating scenes coming out of Ukraine and the inundation happening on parts of Australia’s east coast, and I feel like I’m somewhat limping towards the end of this month, and season.

But despite that frenetic energy at times, there have also been moments of still and peace – and of new discoveries.

This is what’s caught my eye in February…

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Swedish meatballs

Swedish meatballs

I think most people around the world can easily rattle off a couple of meals that are tried and true classics in their family. Dishes that are cooked regularly, consumed by all, and generally well loved and regarded. In our house, that meal is Swedish meatballs. I’ve been making these for many months now and they’ve quickly earned legendary status. We probably eat them every other week, Paul adores them and Adam and I have discovered they go really nicely in a wrap or sandwich the following day too.

If you haven’t got a meatball recipe in your repertoire, I highly recommend giving these ones a whirl…

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Banana and pecan bread

Banana and pecan bread

Bananas are a very divisive subject in our house. Adam hates them with a vengeance, I don’t mind a ‘lady finger’ every now and again and Paul loves identifying them (‘nah-nah’) but will only eat them at daycare, never at home 🙃. So when I found myself with a couple of small, very over-ripe bananas the other day, I decided the only solution was to make banana bread. I’ll confess, part of my desire to whip up a loaf was the fact Adam won’t eat it and Paul isn’t partial to cake – I knew I’d be able to slowly devour my sweet treat over the course of several days…

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Two

Two

Last week Paul turned two. We spent his actual birthday, just hanging out as a family. There were presents and video calls in the morning, and an afternoon spent at the park. This weekend past we had a little party for him (well, as much of a party one can organise within the current COVID restrictions). There were lots of ‘bloons’, a construction inspired cake created by Adam to reflect Paul’s love of ‘diggies’, and plenty of playing with some of gifts he received from near and far.

He’s changed so much in the last 12 months. Now a boy, rather than a baby. While getting to that first birthday felt like such an achievement, for both him, and Adam and I – it almost feels like this last year has been even more of an accomplishment…

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What’s making me happy: August

What’s making me happy: August

August has turned into quite a month. It started with catch-ups with friends and exploring local parks. It’s ending with working from home and shopping for essentials only. The one week lockdown that was recently announced for regional New South Wales has turned into two and it’s anyone’s guess as to when restrictions will be lifted.

Despite the recent onslaught of statistics and information relating to this latest COVID outbreak on Australian’s eastern seaboard, I’m still finding little joys in the every day. Now more than ever, it feels like that’s important and should be celebrated.

This is what’s been making me smile this month…

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Lockdown life

Lockdown life

After more than 12 months of relatively ‘normal life’, in this COVID era we now find ourselves living in, regional New South Wales was placed in official lockdown this weekend past. It’s a situation many of you know well and with it brings a sense of anxiousness – about what we’re dealing with right now and what might come over the weeks and months to follow.

At this stage the lockdown is set to last seven days, but as recent history has proven these lockdowns often get extended. Last time we were in lockdown at the start of this COVID crisis, I was on maternity leave with a baby a few months old, Adam’s business took a huge hit and it was really stressful not knowing what the future had in store. This time round, I’m an essential worker, Adam’s business has evolved to assist in times like these and Paul is an active toddler full of words, opinions and adventure. In some respects it feels like we’re in a better situation this time round, but with that position comes a whole heap of new stresses too.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the challenges this next week will bring, and also how to go about processing this current state of uncertainty too…

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What’s been making me happy: July

What’s been making me happy: July

Midwinter is upon us and it certainly feels like it. This month has been damp, cold and over the last few weeks the COVID situation in New South Wales feels like it’s gone from bad to worse. Deepest, darkest winter is certainly living up to expectations. On the flipside, the rain’s been good for the garden and local farmers; there’s been ample time for snuggly stories with Paul; and I’ve been able to wear my favourite jumpers on repeat. So there’s that – and a few other things too.

This is what’s been making me smile this month…

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