December Diary: 2021 Day 26

I always find the day after Christmas Day a bit strange. I don’t know how everyone else feels about it but for me it’s a combination of relief and sadness that it is over. When I was younger I loved the anticipation for Christmas, but these days I find it more difficult to get into the vibe. The best thing about Christmas now is family. That’s what matters.

What I am looking forward to, however, is having more time to do craft and art. A lot of my time over the last week has been spent on getting ready for Christmas, so yeah, more time for anything and everything creative related sounds good. I find it such a good way to relax.

For our Christmas get-together we had a picnic at the Hamilton Gardens. There was 10 of us and we found a perfect spot under a tree. It was so nice to be outside and enjoying each other’s company in this way. I would definitely do a picnic again, it was super cute. It was, however, extremely hot and we had to keep moving as the sun moved… haha.

Today, (26 Dec), we are relaxing at home. We got a board game for a gift so may play that later. But really not doing a lot. Resting and relaxing – that’s the call for the day. I’ve been doing little plant sketches from our own pot plants, I think they are really cute and I’d like to try creating them again but in ink and water colour. Anyway that’s my musing for the day.

Hope you are all well. I will catch you tomorrow xxx

December Diary:2021 Day 24

This post is an image essay of our trip to Devonport.

Ferry from downtown Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland to Devonport.

Devonport Jetty

Then we took in the cites of this cute area, love the second-hand book shop, just lovely to walk around and take in the vibe.

Tomorrow is Christmas day, which we are spending with family. I will post again on the 26 December. I hope you are all well, catch you then. xxx

December Diary: 2021 Day 23

Christmas Eve’s eve.

Yesterday I took my mum out and met my sister for coffee. It was lovely to spend time with them both, especially as in lockdown I wasn’t able to visit.

Pohutukawa Tree: New Zealand’s native Christmas Tree

Everything is a bit Christmasy, tinsel and trees in most shops. However, not as busy as usual. I think, even though we are not in lockdown now, many people are still keeping away from places where people are.

It’s been a difficult year.

Olivia, my daughter, arrives tonight and will stay for a week. So looking forward to having her stay. Its easy to get stressed out around this time, as commercialism can take over, but if we concentrate on family, friends and relationships it can ease that pressure. That’s my take on it anyway.

Tomorrow Grant, Olivia and I are heading to Devonport, it’s a lovely spot with quant shops and cafes, so looking forward to head out and enjoy the day with them.

That’s it from me.

Catch you tomorrow xx

December Diary: 2021 Day 21

Well, today has been interesting. I’ve been having terrible trouble with my sinus resulting in the most terrible headaches.

About 4 weeks I had a CAT scan and the doctor found some issues on the left side of my head behind my ear. So, today I’ve just seen a specialist and I need surgery. I was really hoping for an outcome today, but I didn’t expect that.

I’ve been on antibiotics since the scan, and apparently I need to stay on them until the surgery, which could be months away. Prebiotics, probiotics…. Yep, that’s me for awhile.

Sorry, hope I’m not over-sharing. This is a creative blog. But the reality is when I’m suffering from severe headaches I’m not actually doing much making.

But I am thinking and planning for creative endeavours 2022. I’ve got something exciting In the works. And, I just can’t wait! Every time I think about it I start to smile. So, good. Isn’t that good? Good to have something that brings hope and joy. I know it will be a ‘shit”’ load of work, but totally believe it will be well worth it.

Didn’t have a picture for today, so here is a pic of our cat.

That’s it for today – Catch you next time xx

December Diary: 2021 Day 20

Did some crafting today. Mainly finishing a hand made journal for my daughter. I sewed together a journal for myself and thought it would be a good present, so made her a more refined version. Click here to read a post on this process. But today I finally had time to finish it.

It was just a lot of cutting and glueing, which I find stress relieving. I also wrapped some presents in plain brown wrapping paper, and put just a small amount of decorations on our tree.

We bought a living tree. A little pine that will grow over time, but at the moment he’s just a little fella. Yes, he’s a boy and I’ve named him Ralph. It’s a good name for a Christmas tree.

I could only put light-weight decorations on him, some home made felt ones and a few other bits and bobs. But Yeah. Ralph the tree. I’m hoping that next year he’ll be able to hold a few more.

That’s it for today. Catch you next time xxx

December Diary: 2021 Day 19

It’s time! Christmas shopping! And, it starts with coffee.

I’m so tired after yesterday’ moving house mission, but I want to get as much of this done as I can today, so, taking you along for the ride. If you want to read my yesterday adventure click here.

I don’t shop for many people. And, I try to shop sustainably. Don’t always get it 100% right but every year I get a lot better. I also make and recycle where I can… Trade Aid is an amazing shop, and I’m always purchasing items from there when I can. The picture above on the right is their Christmas decorations.

There are a lot of people around, wearing masks and scanning in, which has become second nature. It’s strange that this is the second Christmas with restrictions and COVID but we are so lucky in Aotearoa New Zealand compared to many countries. I’m very grateful.

How I shop is a bit different from some people. I look at everything then write down what I like and go to the next shop and continue this process until I’ve got a long list of options. Then sit down somewhere quiet and go through it all circling the items I want to purchase.

It takes more time, but I’m more considered this way.

Anyway, that’s me for today. I hope you are all well.

Catch you tomorrow. xx

December Diary: 2021 Day 18

We were on the road today. We left Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland early, with a trailer to pick up all the furniture left from our old house. During COVID lockdown we were not allowed to travel, so this is the first big day trip. So I thought I’d blog my day.

We stopped for breakfast at this cute rural cafe, and enjoyed their food and Christmas decorations.

It was so nice driving through the country side, we haven’t been through here since August, just so nice to see the green spaces of the Waikato region.

When we arrived the real work began. It was a major sort through and some strategic planning on how to pack the trailer as we had several drop off points. Some friends are taking some furniture, some is going to a secondhand shop and the rest to storage.

The morning moved along quite quickly once we figured out how everything had to be packed. It was strange being in the house that we had lived in with our family for so long with new owners. But such is life. We have moved on and I’m so happy the new people love the place.

We stopped off on our way back through Kirikiriroa Hamilton to a favourite ice cream shop ‘Duck Island’ love their flavours. I had pavlova and vanilla. Then hit the road again. Had to get the rest of the stuff to storage.

Huge day, feeling so tired. But, so satisfied that this job is done and dusted. Now back home at our apartment for a well deserved glass of wine.

Catch you tomorrow xx

December Diary: 2021 Day 16

It was the last day of work, pretty hectic but managed to finish all the odds and ends by the end of the day. And now the break.

It’s so odd having a break, in some ways, because I wish for it all year long and when I get here I often don’t know what to do. I know rest, relax and all that but it’s a tall order when life has been so stressful. How to stop. How does one stop? I have no idea. I just make plans to fill the spaces up.

However, I am going to try to take more time out. Without my phone, laptop, camera… just away from things and distractions. I really need to clear my head. More than ever.

I wonder what 2022 will bring. I want to be hopeful, but the last 2 years have been so strange I don’t know what to think. It’s late and I am rambling after a long day. I am positive, I am hopeful.

Yesterday’s photo was the city view looking back from the harbour, todays is the same idea but from a different position and much later.

Just a short note today

Catch you tomorrow xx

December Diary: 2021 Day 13-15

Yep I’ve missed a couple of days blogging, but you get that. It has been so crazy at work finishing up for the year. I suddenly realised I had so many small things to round up before I could sign off for the holidays that my days and nights have been packed.

But such is life.

Tomorrow – will hopefully be my last day. I’m extremely fortunate to be able to take time off work, I know so many people can’t, so even though I’m busy and tired I am full of gratitude.

Coming to the end of a year is always a good time to reflect, and I think more than ever I have some big aspects of my life to reflect on. I know a lot of people are saying things like this more than ever and I wonder if COVID 19 have affected us in a different type of way than say just socially or financially – but also philosophically. I feel like I’m asking bigger or deeper questions of myself than I have before. Not just reflecting on my year – but reflecting on my values.

I made a short YouTube clip on this which you can watch here. But it really is saying the same thing in a different way, trying to formulate a new way of thinking about how and why I make some of the decisions I do – and if those decisions are still serving me.

Anyway that is all I have today. I will write again tomorrow. The photo below is of Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland. We went for an evening walk after dinner and this is our view. How grateful am I.

Catch you tomorrow xx

December Diary: 2021 Day Twelve – A City Apartment

I can hear music filtering through the wet traffic,
and, smell something cooking from the restaurant across the road. 
The sky is silver-bright. 
A couple walk past, laughing, sharing something between them. The city is vibrant, full, exploding, imploding. 

A bus pushes past with breaks that squeak. 

The air is muggy, the breeze pushes past my legs as I sit here writing on the laptop beside the french doors ajar to the noise, to the city, to the rain, to the exploding and imploding.
I think the music is a Christmas tune, I can't quite make it out but familiarity sits behind it. I close my eyes for a moment, sinking into the chair, sinking into the city vibe, allowing the exploding, imploding to wash over me. Swirl around. I abandon myself to it all - its abundance. 

A car alarm sounds, it is on another street so there is a softness to its rhythm. A city apartment. Above a street where I feel full, alive, clear to what it next.

You can see an update of my move and changes I've made on my YouTube channel here. 

Catch you tomorrow xx