Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Yikes - gratitude list for days 26 - 30

An out-take from my Laurel photo shoot
Hello - and wow!  Where has the time gone? ...

So, I'm going to make a gratitude list for the past few days, then explain why I've been in absentia:

Gratitude for -

1.   I'm grateful for Little Man being able to catch up with friends at the end of the week
2.   I feel privileged that a friend felt comfortable enough to let her little man have a sleepover with my Little Man.  Much fun was had - and it involved playing with real toys like Lego and making up stories - shock, horror
3.   My trip to the op shops with a lovely friend and gathering treasure for upcycling
4.   My sewing machine - I love it!
5.   Having a good old fashioned movie day - and all the family were in the same room at the same time - yay!
6.   The weather being cooler which meant ...
7.   ... we had breakfast outside at the weekend ...
8.   ... and quiet time with my hubby in the backyard, sipping coffee, chatting, reading
9.   Spending time with Little Man today, going to the pictures and watching Iron Man 3; secretly happy that when he gets tired, or worried or scared he will still hold my hand (but don't tell anyone!)
10.  Finishing something for a contest deadline, and having the photos done to upload to Flickr on time - feeling great about it, when at several times throughout the entire experience I wanted to give up!

Number 10 gives the reason for my lack of blogging - besides family stuff, I've spent all my time stepping up to the sewing machine and making a dress and top for the Colette sewing contest from the Laurel pattern.  If you follow the link to the Colette patterns blog you'll be able to read about it and visit the Flickr group to see the lovely Laurel creations.

Lounging around in my Laurel dress - it's very, very comfy
 Thank you to everyone for sharing my gratitude journey, maybe I'll make it a daily exercise, it certainly puts a smile on my face to think of all that I'm grateful for, and the more I think about it, the more I find to be grateful and happy for :)

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Day 25 ... ANZAC Day ... I am grateful for ...

Today is ANZAC Day in Australia and New Zealand - and it seems very fitting that I am grateful for all the men and women who fought and cared for others in the World Wars.  I don't think I can say more than that.

Thank you.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Day 23 and 24 ... I am grateful for ...

Yesterday, I was happy to be able to celebrate my hubby's birthday with the whole family - for once we were all in the same house, for a little while at least :)  I'm also grateful that the cheesecake (an alternative birthday cake) and the lemon tart, both of which I'd made for the first time yesterday, worked out really well.  Phew ... not that I like to put myself under pressure or anything ...

As for today, I'm grateful for time spent with friends, one of whom shared lunch with us - we met other friends in the forest on our walk with Charlie Dog so it turned into quite a social event.  I'm also grateful for the afternoon visit into the village with my Little Man - we visited the library and he chose cool chapter books that he's started reading by himself, whilst I chose a pile of crafty books and reserved the last book in the Hunger Games trilogy.  Then we moved onto the shopping centre, bumped into more friends and Little Man got some playtime in the shopping centre atrium whilst I tried on a new pair of super doody red trousers :)  (Bargainsville at $10 so I'm pretty grateful for that little treasure too).   And we mustn't forget the visit to the English lolly shop  ... yum, yum ...

It's definitely getting easier doing the gratitude thing as each day passes by :)

Monday, April 22, 2013

Day 22 - with some gratitude for days 18-21 as well :)

Oops - would you believe blogging stopped because of a few germs :(  But that's my gratitude moment for today - it's the first time I've felt healthy for several days - yay!

So now I'm having to think over the past days and find moments of gratitude from each, here goes:

I'm grateful for ...

  • brainstorming with friends who have encouraged me to follow up on an arty opportunity that keeps knocking
  • finding inspiration on great sites such as, and ok, buying some embroidery designs for my stash, but they are oh so gorgeous, go look-see for yourself
Icarus - choice of hand or machine embroidery - image courtesy of
  • someone else cooking dinner when I wasn't well at the weekend
  • chocolate - always grateful
  • being part of the celebrations for our friends big 5-0 party last week, honoured to be there xx
  • hexagons on my quilt
  • my meditation sessions
  • conversation with my teenage kids, who although they do have their moments, are still happy to talk to mum :)
  • big, squishy hugs from Little Man
  • making a Lego model with Little Man on the last day of term, when we rushed to the toyshop from school to spend saved up pocket money
  • sharing these moments with you ...

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Day 16 and 17 ... I am grateful for ...

Some of the fabrics shortlisted for the sewing contest ...
From day 16 ... I am grateful for my sewing machine, Australia Post (I posted my pressies to my niece and nephews yesterday, only 3 months late), the internet again for giving access to a sewing contest, friends for encouraging me to get out there and follow my dreams ...

... and from today ... Big B for being so patient when I was looking through my crafty stuff in their boxes, which are situated right where he was working (I even smacked him on the head with one), Turkish Delight ice cream, family dinner times around the table when we can all have a laugh with each other as well as a hearty meal.

FYI:  For those who are interested the sewing competition is being run over at Colette's site here - she's released a new pattern called 'Laurel' which is a beautiful shift dress with tons of possibilities - I've got lots of ideas which I hope I'll be able to bring into being by the end of the comp on the 30th April.  Go and visit this site too for the Colette patterns; the patterns are just lush!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Day 15 ... an odd gratitude post today!

Today I'm grateful for being able to watch a group of hyenas frolicking and playing in their water hole at the zoo.  We took their wagging of tails as a sign that they were all happy - hoping that hyenas have the same language as dogs.

And in a strange way, for the first time ever I'm glad I'm not in the UK - all I can see is bitterness and hate as the funeral of Margaret Thatcher approaches.  I thought the British were good for being able to turn the other cheek and being able to move forward, but guess that's difficult when so much hatred abounds.  Made me very sad.  (That's just my views from a personal perspective, I actually have no interest in politics at all).

Halfway through the month, lots more gratitude to go!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Day 14 ... grateful for ...

Today I'm grateful for the internet, as it's the home of my little place in cyberspace and I can look up info in different countries to try and find a solution to a challenge we have at the moment and find great recipes like this one for magic bean cake, all without leaving my armchair.  So thank you internet!

Which leads me on to the enormous gratitude I have for the little silicone cupcake cases I use - they are simply the best thing since ... sliced bread ... to keep up the baking theme.

Yum ....

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Day 12 and 13 - what am I grateful for?

See those splodges on the tile - that's from the rain we've had - yay!

Well, I didn't get to write my blog last night as we went out to see friends and ended up staying out longer than anticipated, so I guess I can say I'm grateful for having friends and connections and the chance to meet up. 

I've also been thinking over the whole gratitude thing for the past couple of days.  This last month or so has been rather a challenge for one reason or another, and sometimes I've struggled to find what I have gratitude for.  In my previous post I decided to go right back to basics as I couldn't think of anything else - and before I knew it I had a lovely list of things that I am grateful for, which made me very happy.  So I think the key is to just make a start, and the rest will follow, even if all you can start with is "I'm grateful for the sun coming up, for getting out of bed, being able to put slippers on my feet, having breakfast ..." and so on - you could give it a go too if you find you're getting stuck on the gratitude journey.

As is my way, I did have a moment of doubt the other day in that I was wondering why I was on this journey and was I really achieving very much.  I did decide counting my blessings was in fact helping me feel lighter in spirit and the lovely ladies who've been following and leaving their comments on gratitude have encouraged me too.  (Thank you so much xx)  And I also received a comment from a new 'traveller' (and you'll have to read the comments on my previous post to see the words that made me smile!) which made me realize that sharing my moments of gratitude were in their turn touching somebody else's heart.  So I'm grateful that we can all have a positive effect on others sometimes without realizing.

... and to explain the pic at the top, most of this thinking went on in the forest behind our house and I'm so grateful for this natural world that helps me contemplate, and this is a beautiful banksia seed pod which I picked up, a symbol of my outdoor world.  I love nature!

Phew, that's a whole lot of gratitude - do you think my blogging mojo is making a comeback?  :)

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Day 11 - I am grateful for ...

Struggling a bit with this today, so will go with the basics:

I am grateful for waking up this morning, for being able to get my Little Man to school, spending the morning with friends, chatting with HB over lunch and having food on the table at mealtimes.  Also for the computer to type my blog on and have contact with the world.

Not a bad list when I look at it.  Thank you xxxxx

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Day 10 - gratitude - difficult when it's so hot!

It's been in the thirties for the past 10 days or more, and I'm getting seriously grumpy!  Today at 35 degrees it was beyond a joke and hard to be grateful for a girl who prefers the cold weather.  It's been the hottest April since the 1970's you know ...

But today I am grateful for ... little gems that arrive in my email inbox.  Today I was sent a marketing email to join a presentation by Jean Houston who is one of the founders of the Human Potential Movement - appetite whetted I checked out the link and found something I like very much.  The belief that we can imbue "every moment with purpose and potential no matter how “ordinary” the moment may seem to be".

And it did me good to take on that perspective; I grabbed a pile of gifts I'd left in a bag just waiting and wrapped them all up ready to post to the UK.  (Only late for birthdays back in January and February this year).  I sat there and imagined how excited my niece and nephews would be to get a parcel from Australia and it made the time fly and it appear like less of a chore.  Happiness on both sides of the world :)

(The presentation is free if you want to join, just follow the link, but be quick as it takes place on 11th April)

Day 8 and day 9 - two lots of gratitude

Day 8 - yesterday - grateful for mother's intuition AND for actually listening to it!  I knew something wasn't quite right with Little Man and let him have the day off school.  Good job too as it would not have been pretty - he was a very poorly little boy ...

Day 9 - I'm grateful that I can read, that my mum encouraged me to love books and reading, and that I have a library just down the road - today I borrowed 'Catching Fire' the second in 'The Hunger Games' trilogy by Suzanne Collins.  If you loved the movie, then read the book as it's loads more exciting, un-put-downable even.  Then read the other two books before the next movies come out!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Day 7 - I am grateful for ...

... something really puerile - my 'Violent Veg' calendar:

and a phone call from my dad  xxx

p.s. and colour co-ordination - just look how wonderfully it all goes together with the office walls!

Day 6 - gratitude delayed ...

Oops - this one is a day late, but it is because of the thing that I was grateful for happening and making me forget to blog ...

Firstly, this is a strange one, but I did say at the beginning of the month that gratitude can be for anything however small; I am grateful that I have a left hand as well as a right as my carpel tunnel came back for a while yesterday after cutting back plants.  Secateurs are the scourge of my hand health!  Still, some ibuprofen and deep heat later, plus a few hours rest and all was fixed.

I am extremely grateful for Skype and the fact I could use it to talk to my lovely, lovely friend in the UK last night.  It's almost as good as being in the same room, but a bit difficult when you want to hug them because you are so pleased to see them.  Needless to say the smile our meeting brought to my face is not going to go for several days yet.  Next time we're going to have chocolate cake and tea as well as conversation.

How are you travelling along your gratitude journey?

Friday, April 5, 2013

Day 5 ... grateful for ...

One of my favourite TV programmes is 'Secret Millionaire' ... I love it that some people find a cause close to their hearts and help out because they have the money to do it ... and a generous heart.

So today I am grateful for all I have.  I do complain about lack sometimes, but really I have so much to be grateful for.

Thanks also to those who have come on the gratitude journey with me - I'm hoping you find it as enlightening and uplifting as I am xx  ... grateful for your company xx

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Day 4 - contemplating gratitude ...

Today I'm grateful for meditation - I only meditate once a week, because I make time for it by going to a friend's house, but wish I would find time for it every day as part of my self-care routine, because it makes me feel calm - for a while anyway :)

And ... I'm grateful for random conversations with my children ... today on the walk into school "I like kangaroos.  What are your favourite things mum?  What name do you like best?"   All asked within 60 seconds - keeps me on my toes and makes me smile xx

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Day 3 - I'm grateful for ...

... contact from home ...

This one should have been acknowledged a couple of weeks ago, sorry people xxxx

I received a couple of pressies from home a little while ago, a lovely purple scarf from my sister and this gorgeous tea cosy from my bestie in the UK - I found it today and it reminded me of the importance and loveliness of continued contact from loved ones.  I think it goes very well with my 1970's kitchen tiles, which I am also very thankful for :)

Actually I can feel this gratitude exercise beginning to work - not only am I giving thanks, I'm also looking for things to be grateful for so that I have something to write about here - I'm getting a double whammy of gratitude.  And it feels good.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Day 2 - I am grateful for ...

Today I'm grateful for chocolate cake - and for friends and family to share it with, and for my birthday buddy for sending me the recipe xxxx

I'm also grateful for the lovely people who visit my blog, and for those who take the time to comment when they feel they want to - thank you Janet for your comment on yesterday's post - I so hear you!  :)

Let's spread the gratitude around the world - share what you're grateful for ...

Monday, April 1, 2013

A month of gratitude starts today ...

It's been a hard few weeks - I've totally lost my blogging and emailing mojo :(   Even creative pursuits have been thin on the ground.  Sure, I've made an Easter hat for Little Man, Easter eggs for the kids and am quilting hexagons like there's no tomorrow - but it's just not doing it for me.  I've lost that spark ...

So in an attempt to get it back, I'm using the age old counselling and coaching tool of listing what I'm grateful for.  Gratitude should help me get back on track - I'm really hoping a month long of gratitude noted down will help me find my creative mojo again.

Today I'm grateful for tea being prepared by someone else (thank you Duncan xxx)  It is lovely not to have to cook a meal, and just get to eat it!

Why don't you join me?  It doesn't have to be huge, monumental things you are grateful for, just something that made you smile on the inside and made life sparkley.  Let me know how you get on xx