Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Year of Fear - January

year of fear monthly blog challenge

I hopped across the rocks to carefully position the camera on the other side. There's this moment where I almost slip and I tell myself to slow down and be calm. My heart is pounding, I have an instant headache, a sudden urge to visit the bathroom and all because I'm really afraid to do the next thing coming.

Okay, lets do a little catch up before I literally dive in. Firstly, some perspective, I never put my head under in the shower. To wash my hair I just lean back to rinse never letting the water run over my eyes. I've developed a set of swimming styles that let me avoid putting my head under, which means I feel like a really inadequate swimmer and I'm also scared of heights. All of this means, when I go for a swim I find the spot closest to the water, slide my body in (slowly!) and make sure my head stays well above. When I thought about doing a year of fear project, jumping into water was a non-brainer, a definite fear for me.

This Summer (in Australia) we've been swimming in our local water hole daily and I've been talking about my fear challenge and thinking about which rock I would jump off. I'd also began to pay attention when Ben and Lowy would jump in, asking questions and getting some solid pointers. Somewhere around the end of December I did my first mini jump in preparation which was utterly awful, I didn't hold my nose, I jumped in a weird, forward-leaning, style which meant I had water go up in places it shouldn't. Ben and Lowy suggested I try not to replicate whatever style I performed during that mini jump. When the first of January rolled around I chose a slightly higher position to jump from but this time, my brain decided mid-way through the jump that I actually didn't want to jump which resulted in an especially uncool jump style. Ben told me what I did, was probably the only thing I could do that would result in being hurt, oh yeah and my boobs didn't enjoy the landing (tighter swimmers next time!). Which brings us to today's jump (or at least from when these notes were written!) where I went down by myself, set up my new camera and came back around to do my jump. I did a lot of pacing, playing with my ear buds before I yelled out “year of fear” and committed to diving into nature knowing she had my back. Guess what? It went really well, it felt super amazing after I had jumped to then swim up to the surface and open my eyes in the process (goggles help!) a slow stretched out moment of bravery. As I surfaced I turned to face the camera and gave two thumbs up. I or you will never see those glorious two thumbs up because when I went to retrieve the camera it had only recorded 5 seconds.

I've since jumped this rock or jumps like it almost everyday of January. We have a handful of swimming holes we rotate and so the footage below is Ben recording the day after the failed 5 seconds of footage. To look back on the clip is completely laughable and so crazy to think I was (or still am) scared to even just step into the water. I've set higher jump goals for the year and one really really big jump that I have given myself till December to concur which I'll get Ben to film when I do it. Mostly I'm already so hugely proud of myself. Even though my step down is laughable it's this really big deal to me and I'm proud for literally stepping through and past what was holding me back previously

So the year of fear, is my new monthly challenge. I'm still trying to piece together what fear I'll pick each month, I already have a handful of ideas and realising a lot of my fears are based in social interactions so it will probably fall heavily into that scary social anxiety arena – eep!

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Found Money 2018

I think my 2018 can be summed up by my found money total - $15.38! Wowzers such a year of abundance

Check out that fiver I found one Saturday morning on my daily walk (down a small country street)! Just proves you can never predict what/where and when life will gift you but if you stay open, abundance awaits!

2017's total was $7.45 (doubled that in 2018!)
2016 - $5.95

Credit for this idea goes to the lovely Emma of Letterloves 

Also, big props for Ben for keeping his eyes peeled and adding to the collection!

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Year of Blooms - December

floral blog project logo banner

red and pink flowers

december spelt out in flowers

flower in ocean

floral walk finds - frangipani in glass

pink orchid close up

white flower in ocean

single pink rose in vase

flower bouquet

bodies in nature portrait

morning walk flower finds

pink rose in vase

flower at the beac

purple flowers

holding flowers between fingers

single orchid bloom

white gerbera white background

orchid flower

hand and white flower

flowers in plastic at the beach

pink socks and white gerbera

flower in the ocean

This post wraps up the project so I thought I'd share some ideas I've accumulated across the year

/ throwing seeds into soil that was already put together in hodge-podge way will yield less-than-superior results. Starting them off in little containers is a much more sensible idea (thanks Jane for that one!) 

/it takes time to learn how to garden but don't be afarid to ask or seek out the info and once you start gathering information it will all start to come together and make sense

/seed bombs are more complex than they may seem but don't let that deter you from doing good work and planting! It's way better to try out things and fail then to never try at all.

/flowers are amazing and bring so much joy

/there is never the perfect time to plant, don't be scared if you're a renter or may need to move soon, just the act of planting is an incredible thing and plus there's always the ability to plant in pots that allow you to bring your plants to your next home - plus the bees will thank-you!

I'm super glad I embarked on this journey and I will continue to grow flowers as the years go on.

 I hope I've inspired someone out to dive in as well :) 
Thanks so much for reading along and stay tuned for my 2019 project!!

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

2018 Year in Review

Looking back at 2018 fills me with loads of contentment. When I was kid, I'd hear things like "just wait to you're older" and not in the good context either, more like, when you reach this mythical age of adulthood you will be swamped by the stresses of the world, with money problems and things that you'd never even imagine as a kid. Now I'm 34 and each year just keeps getting better and better.  I have more control over my time, I have more vision to my direction and I just feel super happy and grateful to be alive! I'm so stoked for 2019.  I was super eager to put away our Christmas stuff on boxing day not because I wanted Christmas to be gone just because I'm ready for the next chapter!

handmade pink wooden shoe

In 2018, I continued with my bought/gift/made series!

rose garden mosaic tile paver

Carmen and Ben's mum came to stay with us at the start of the year and she taught us mosaics!

logo for flower blog series

I successfully completed my year of blooms project (still have December to post!) It was such a great project to do, I feel like I learnt so much about gardening and flowers and just got deep on the nature appreciation tangent, which is exactly where I want my life headed!

pink clay poodle

Although clay died down when we got to our new place, the first half of the year was strong!

pink artificial flowers in cemetery

Ben and I celebrated out 8th year anniversary and took a trip down to Brisbane

ceramic angel necklace

I had a go at kick starter!

Patricia Piccinini sculptures
We visited Goma and saw the Patricia Piccinini exhibition

yellow spotted pumpkins yayoi kusama
Yayoi Kusama!

collecting rose petals

I got into paper making and hoarding petals to include with my paper.

growing zucchini in a veggie garden

I continued learning about gardening, set up a garden at our old place and a new one at our current home

hand made wooden stool with sunflower

Focused on making my wooden stands and establishing my side project Spirit You.  
To be honest about 70% of my free time went to this and I have zero regrets!

cane weaved basket

Lowy taught me how to weave a basket out of cane

film photography mountain scape

I didn't take as much film as I'd like but I did throw myself into a more active lifestyle, continuing it over from 2017. Lots of mountain climbs and bush walks and swims and I tried stand up paddle boarding for the first time and loved it!

mosaics and art in nimbin

For my birthday I visited Nimbin and tried glamping for the first time

rainbow polka dot ceramic clay bowl

I also gave the pottery a wheel ago and stuck with it until I was able to produce something half decent

giant rose quartz

I also visited Crystal Castle on my birthday which was an utterly magical experience

black and white cat

I'm not sure if I ever shared on here but Gremlin's health took a really bad turn this year.  After moving he developed feline urinary disorder which we narrowed down to the stress of moving into a new environment and change.  There was a stage where we had to race him to an emergency vet and lucky Ben had the funds to go ahead with whatever was needed to save him.  He now has to be on a special diet for the rest of his life and we just have to keep a super close eye on him.  

cat hiding her eyes

I love our cats so much, the thought of them not being around breaks my heart!!

seaglass knolling collection

I made some beach trips this year and added to my collection

vegan eyeliner

I also devoted hours to watching youtube makeup tutorials so I could learn cat eye! Not an expert but I'm a lot better than I used to be! I also started growing out my bleached hair to let it recover and in the process noticed lots of tiny greys :P

woombye house

We said goodbye to our house in the country and moved into suburbia

gold etsy earrings minimalist

I finally was able to wear earrings again after having sensitive ears for so long

nambour house
Totally in love with my new room and the ability to decorate it!

vintage red brooch

Although I didn't get to go as much as I'd liked I still made solid efforts to go thrifting when I could!

chalk painted pink wardrobe

I bought my first large piece of furniture and got into chalk painting!

pink orchid

We visited an orchid show and I fell further in love with orchids this year

bonsai and bougainvillea
We visited Ben's mum out in biggenden and his brother down in Port Macquarie earlier in the year

wooden vulvas
And I finished the year off creatively by making Spirit Yonis!

Every year I fill out a little questionnaire of my year (just for myself) which I save in a folder.  One of the questions is, "what date remains etched in your memory?" and for me it's Nov. 14th.  I don't think I talked about this on my blog but I finally found out I have endometriosis.  I might do a big blog entry on it at some stage its just progressed at such a slow pace with many moving parts that its never felt complete to share. Nov 14th stands out in particular because it was my first time to have surgery and general anesthetic.  Looking back it was a really amazing time in my life, it made me slow down and refocus and I'm really grateful for it and all the amazing free health care I received and continue to receive and Ben being around.  I now have loads more clarity on my health an amazing feeling when previously I'd felt in the dark. 

I'm 100% positive for 2019, apparently (according to Elizabeth Peru) it's going to fast paced creative year and one where you'll need to avoid the negative chatter around - I can do that, I think!

I wish each and everyone of you an amazing year ahead!!!