Sunday, July 27, 2008


What a heavenly thing all that snow. Misty, delicate, cold and abundant. A brilliant day with the Hens, a couple of toboggans, a thermos of tea and a few Gender- Non-Specific Snow Persons that crumbled instantly at the hands of a small snow tiger.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Heidi in the sun

Ok I think I've Moved On from the theme of the last two posts now. Can talk about other stuff...phew.

Beau and I and the Lovelies from the West spent the afternoon at the Heidi which in the 6 years I have lived in Melbourne, I had never visited. Beautiful winter day, quiet, hardly anyone there.

Beau got through the day splendidly despite being unable to touch the most touchable sculptures and paintings. It was fun looking with him, not with an artist's eye but with a child's eye. I love how your kids pull you into their private world when you are in public, into their adventures with innocent disregard for social and cultural etiquette.

Joy Hester Girl With Book on Head. ( Love her work).

I could imagine John and Sunday Reed, and their Siamese cats, and fellow Penguin friends (and their kids!?), hanging out, making art, waxing lyrical and philosophical, growing veges, having affairs, lots of walks beneath those glorious trees and drinking some good wine......

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

come on baby light my fire....

The lovely Ms Hen, CB and BB arrived today from the West. We are planning a snow visit with them on the weekend. Neither K nor Beau have ever seen snow so we figured it may as well be now before we return to the Mediterranean-like shores of WA where there is not a snow flake's hope in hell of seeing a snow flake (although it did snow briefly in Kalamunda a few years ago I hear...) Ms Hen came baring gorgeous gifts (thanks again and to Tim's excellent thrifting eye). That apron is totally fabulous still with original tag from good old Boans department store which was an institution back in Perth's old days.

I've been having the odd freak out over leaving Melbourne and so it's good to be reminded of the good folk on the other side too!

Still reading the Divided Heart (see last post) and finding so much juice in it. One thing that most of the women Rachel interviewed seem to share is the ability to work very fast and be very creative and productive in the small chunks of time available in a day just "by sheer necessity". Mostly during their babies' nap times or in the wee hours of the morning before everyone else wakes up . Many of them talk about how productive and exciting those periods of time were in early motherhood; that the experience of early motherhood was so deep and rich and confronting and raw, they were compelled to create, sometimes in order to make sense of it. I'm wondering how it is/has been for all of you? Is that how you work? Was early motherhood like that for you?

If I think about my experience with Beau as a baby, I was so exhausted with mastitis and so absorbed with navigating the unknown waters of early motherhood and really it's only recently that I've started to think about sitting down to any kind of project let alone something as 'big' as writing a book or painting towards an exhibition, or recording an album. These are achievements that I find truly awesome given that unlike many of the the women Rachel interviewed, I haven't felt driven to do anything but get through a day with everyone fed and happy. But definitely I have been gathering seeds for the future. And similarly to those women, I feel that motherhood has opened my eyes and my heart and I feel so much more strongly or perhaps clearly about things that I couldn't really have expressed prior to being a mother; I feel everything more intensely. The primal act of giving birth and the reshaping of the psyche that comes of it is such a gift; in the way a Shaman has to experience a symbolic death and rebirth in order to fully step into the role. It's as if I've stepped into myself more fully since and so I feel I have things to say.

I've often wondered where is the fire in MY belly that so many people seem to have, that drives them into acts of greatness and beauty (or not!) and on into the next thing and the next. I do see it in the day to day events of my life; a drive to make the best of the mundane existence, to beautify it, make it meaningful. Rachel asked one woman something to the effect of "Do you try to perfect a life or a work?" I wonder can they be one and the same? I see in so many of us the deep commitment to our children; consciously parenting and endeavoring to do the best we can as an artist would in the midst of a project. Would I be satisfied to look back on my life and see that motherhood was my Magnum Opus? I think lately I am being more realistic and taking notice of the elusive 'thing' that I catch glimpse of; a shimmering something out the corner of my eye, something that wants to be caught but we are still just flirting with each other. It started to appear not long after I began blogging. I don't think it can be helped. If there's even just a smoldering coal of an artistic life in one's heart, it's obviously going to get fanned by witnessing the work and lives of women who are stoking their own blazing fires or at the very least giving them a bloody good fanning!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Frock on Friday and Wake up Wednesday

Mostly my post titles are to amuse myself. Can you tell?
A frock so 'purdie', care of The Sartorialist ....

On Wednesday evening I went along to my friend Rachel's book launch; see over there to the right, The Divided Heart; Art and Motherhood, (a series of interviews with well-known artist-mothers) which I have already started to read and am finding it very inspiring, encouraging, and deeply resonant with my own wish for both art and motherhood to co exist in me without conflict. The launch was supported by friends and family who are all amazing, talented, devoted parents/artists. I came away feeling that something in me had been launched; harshly, like a bottle of champagne across my face! But necessarily so. I had yet another good cry; some more waves to wash off the built up crap on the surface and break open a bit more of what lies beneath. I found all sorts of stuff down there including of course the attitudes of my mother (nothing new there), greater compassion for her and myself, deeper appreciation for the people around me and the reminder that we will only ever benefit those around us when we follow our passion. I try to parent as creatively as I can. What's more naturally creative than conceiving, birthing and guiding a child through its life? But I still need to be reminded that it's OK to follow my own thread. So thanks be to Rachel for following hers and presenting such honesty and love.

The blessed outcome of all this is that I will now have regular weekly time to pursue my own thread of creativity, seeing as we are fortunate enough to have the flexibility for both K and I to do so now that he is working from home . It means more quality time for Beau and K, more family time for all three of us, and a shot at creating a lifestyle that is transferable to a small country town.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

6 Things I Like Today - simple stuff...

(yesterday for me too...) Tagged by Esti

1. Morning tea with my boys and D and M and little R, in Carlton out in the glorious winter sun.

2. ALL the washing getting dry in the sun.

3. Beau spending a long time 'loving [his] tree'.

4. Gazing at clouds (and my new boots).

5. Afternoon walk with my three favourite boys.

6. Last bit of colour as the afternoon sun fades.

I tag msaims and jo; if you would care to play ladies. xxxx

Sunday, July 13, 2008

What the sky gave us, blue and auburn from a ridge up high, and a moment so still and cold.

We drove home from the country in peaceful silence, Beau and Flash asleep in the back.....brought memories of, and excitement for Nullabor crossing.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

woolly gifts and a new groove

Soft, warm woolly scarves for dearly beloveds. I'm thinking about all the patterns/motifs I can dry felt onto finished pieces.

Oh this cold, cold day.....we resisted going out into it until 4 o'clock by when Beau and I were in great need of our afternoon walk. Despite the cold he still prefers getting shoes, hat and scarf off. I'm like a sergeant major running behind him trying to cover his flesh from the attacking wind. Lately Beau has been talking a lot about his 'different house' with his 'different mummy' and 'different daddy'. When we go out walking he says "do you want to go to my different place? It's just around the corner. You can stay there too!!' we never get there though it's always just around the corner. The last two afternoons on arriving home he has been in tears because we didn't go to the different place. The strength of the toddler imagination is unrivaled. Oh to have a glimpse of what that all means to him/ how it looks from his dimension.

K and I still trying to find our rhythm together. We are aiming for a comfortable groove like a bossa nova or more ambitiously a sultry tango, but we seem to be stuck in some kind of out of whack jazz improvisation where we keep having to stop and look at the chart to work out where the hell we are.....K has come back from India deeply and profoundly moved and drawn to being at the mountain again, preferably with us. I also feel a pull to the place. But I also want very much for us to have another baby and find our 'home'. So we are kind of pushing and pulling and bumping back into each other and then floating out again..trying to relax about it too and trust that we will find a way to compromise to the satisfaction of all three of us. Rinpoche talks about all people/beings experiencing life from completely different dimensions. We don't really know anything about anyone though we like to think we do. So my practice at the moment is to try to look at K as though I know absolutely nothing about him. On the rare occasion I can get my head out of my arse, that practice makes all the difference to our day!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Some boats, some trees, some excitement....

We are still in 'holiday' mode with K home and the days stretching out before us, lists of things to do but our own time to do them. Lots of walks and a long morning at the boat house. I've always loved sitting at the harbour or jetty where boats are tied, listening to the sound of water lapping and ropes creaking and boats butting. Beau can spend hours chasing birds, feeding ducks, hopping in and out of boats watching the water....

I do appreciate Melbourne as a city with many places of nature and beauty to spend time as a family; the creeks, the boat houses, gardens, Children's Farm, CERES...As long as we end up with a good chunk of land on which to build our little oasis I promise not to pine for them at all!

Lots of knitting going on here. Scarves for the bro and another scarf with dry felting on the way and then socks. I found easy vest and beanie patterns. My friend discovered two glorious wool shops on the other side of town and showed me her booty today. I never dreamed I could get so excited about wool. And yet here I am. I'm excited.

I must also share with you my apprehension toward the film 'Love In The Time of Cholera'. The book is my all time favourite, read many times, once out aloud with a previous partner on the road around the country. I love this story so much that I am tentative, dubious, cautious, down right scared damn it, to cast my eyes upon someone else's visual interpretation lest I be disappointed yet again by another adaptation. Will curiosity get the better of me?? Stay tuned....

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Friday, July 4, 2008

out and about

Good to get out in the cold afternoon by the creek near CERES .
Finding our rhythm as a three person household again. Plans to move West are being discussed.
Today I went out on my own for the first time in 5 weeks. God it was blissful. I just pootled for 3 hours. I finally got to go to the Handweavers and Spinners Guild of Victoria such delicious wool/colours/textures.

Then I hung out in a book shop...dawdled, browsed, faffed, drank coffee, stared out the cafe window, vagued out completely. Loved it.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Out of India

The man left India but India has not left the man. It remains with him in a way that one can't really know I guess until one has been there, but the video footage K has taken gives a little taste. Needless to say we are looking forward to visiting the mountain all together one day.

VERY nice to have him home. My lovely man. Beau is radiant.

Knitting more scarves and starting on a pair of socks. Will post link to sock pattern next post.
Haven't started the doll. Quite an art it seems and I think I need some guidance!