From the monthly archives: September 2013
We got to let love rule...

We got to let love rule…

This morning I had the pleasure of being a guest at a poetry recital hosted by my eldest daughter.

Lovely in its own right, the poetry recital was the result of a lot of planning and practice by a bunch of enthusiastic nine-year olds and was for a special cause. The girls are raising money to build a library in Cambodia as part of a school wide initiative (Room to Read). I also see it as another great example of the school and the teaching community (including the Mini-Fashionista’s wonderful teacher) to foster the girls understanding of compassion.

I think it’s such a wonderful life lesson. Developing compassion for others helps us care more for our communities, our environment and just  makes you a nicer human being all round.

My own cup of love and compassion is somewhat endless, there is always more love to give (that’s sounds a wee bit over the top doesn’t it?).

I am by nature a hugs and kisses kind of person (again a bit OTT, but very true). Over the years I have had people I work with and am friends with question the amount of compassion I show, as if I have a limited amount available to me and it would be silly to squander it all on something small. I see it as a cup that is continually getting topped up.

I take every opportunity I get to let my little tribe know how much I love them, along with the lovely Big A (my patient and solid as a rock husband) and my family.  Each morning I make sure I give everyone a kiss goodbye, and there is always time for a bedtime kiss and cuddle. This all comes back to one of the traits I love to foster in my little tribe, compassion and love for others. As the wise and talented Lenny Kravitz once sang, ‘we got to let love rule’.

Enjoy xx

Find time to be kind... (via www.randomactsofkindness.org)

Find time to be kind… (via www.randomactsofkindness.org)

Over the weekend, driving through a busy part of Perth with the tribe, we had a near miss (in the mining industry, where I work as a scientist, that’s what we call it when an accident almost happens) with an elderly man who wandered out into the middle of the road.

Luckily (for all of us) I was driving well below the speed limit, so I could stop the car safely to let him cross the road. It was then that I noticed a lady on the other side of the road, struggling to carry a printer, paper, and various IT paraphernalia. She was waved to the man, then caught my eye and mouthed ‘sorry’. The elderly man crossed the road safely. Just as the lady got to the edge of the road she stumbled and dropped everything at the edge of the road.

The car behind me roared around, clearly impatient at the hold up.

I had a choice to make. Should I do the same? Or should I help? How could I help when I was travelling alone with three little kids?

I choose to stick around, I was not in a rush, and even thought I didn’t know the lady or the man (daughter and son? friends?), they both looked like they were having a tough time.  I thought about it, then decided I could help without putting myself or the kids in the line of fire (more mining talk for placing yourself in a hazardous situation).  Putting my hazard lights on to warn cars behind me that I had stopped, I waved to the lady to let her know I was stopping. There were two lanes so I figured they could go around. I sat waiting for several minutes until the lady had retrieved her printer, made sure the elderly man was ok and off the road.

Then we drove off. I thought about it, and realised that by taking the time to stop and wait we may have averted something nastier than a near miss. And really, what was the cost to me? A few extra minutes added to my trip? Nothing really in the grand scheme of things.

Have you helped someone out lately?

Enjoy xx

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Thank you to the lovely ladies at Pavement for some top shelf service!

Thank you to the lovely ladies at Pavement for some top shelf service!

Remember years ago, when you could go to a service station and somebody filled your car up and checked the oil and washed the windscreen?

Remember when retail was an experience and not just an exercise in buying something as quickly as possible?

Well, I am pleased to report there are still some very bright sparks on the retail landscape, and today I wanted to talk about two that made me smile.

First up, to set the scene, on the weekend I was playing host to 17 very excited little girls for a birthday party, for three hours, at our home. Crazy right?

Actually the reality was pretty cool, because a) they are great kids, and b) it was an all girls affair, so the entertainment had a clear target audience.

As you could imagine, I was a little stressed when I headed out in the morning to source party supplies including some small gifts to give to the girls. Add to this a busy week work wise, four slightly grumpy tired kids, and well, you get the picture.

Enter some brilliant service from a lovely young chap at Coles. Not only was he super-quick, and friendly, he then proceeded to walk around and lift all the heavy bags into my trolley!  With a dodgy knee already giving me grief, I could have almost hugged him for helping me out. Such a small gesture made a huge difference to my mood.

Next up I ventured to a new store for tweens (Pavement) at the local shopping centre (Claremont Quarter), to see if I could find some little gifts for the  party guests. Feeling a little distracted, overwhelmed and already over it I was just about to walk out, when I heard someone ask if I needed help. I quickly ran through what I was after, and in no time at all I had a neat package with great little gifts, bags, ready to go. Complete with a smile.

Faith in good service restored, I headed home feeling calmer than I had before and ready to host some very excited little girls.

Have you experienced great service lately?

Enjoy xx

*Please note this is not a sponsored post, just a reflection on a couple of great experiences.

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Feeling like a square peg in a round hole?

Feeling like a square peg in a round hole?

Life can be hard-core at the best of times.

The road can get even rougher when you add work, kids, study, and anything  else the universe throws at you.

When I was younger, I thought the way to make it all a little easier was to try to blend in. Whether it be clothes, hair, taste in music, you name it, surely it life would be a little easier if you could just blend in with the crowd?

People can be pretty brutal when you don’t fit the norm.

Too fat, too skinny, too smart, too eccentric, too loud, too quiet, too fit, too lazy, too ambitious, too laid-back…

Argh!!  How on earth do you get it right?

I think the simple truth is you never will, not if you only focus on what others think is right. For you.

The beauty of experience is you (hopefully) start to appreciate who you are and become more comfortable with who you really area. I have been thinking and reflecting on life, work, and well, me, over the past week. Maybe it’s this rainy weather we’ve been having in not so sunny Perth…

I had started to think about why I continue to work in a male-dominated industry (mining), and why I also find the energy to write, create and connect with people here.

It all boils down to what’s right for me. I love working with people, listening to their stories, helping them out, guiding, coaching and leading people.  Would I love to see more women in the industry I work in? Hell yes! It can be more than a little confronting being the only woman in the room, being a square peg trying to fit in a round hole.

Does that stop me from working in this industry I have grown to love? No way.

I also love being creative, so I chose to work out a way to have this too. For me, it’s my blog and my little online retail space.

It’s not a textbook approach to having a career, but it’s one that works for me.

In fact it’s one of the many reasons I feel like I am thriving, not surviving as I navigate my way through life.

What makes you thrive?

Enjoy xx

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Fab finds: art and colour (see below for details)

Fab finds: art and colour (see below for details of where you can find each gorgeous piece)

One of the driving forces for owning my own home is the ability to hang art wherever I please. My dream home would have endless walls and space to hang art, prints, watercolours, and the flexibility to move my brilliant collection around to create inspirational spaces. This is one of the many reasons I love Fenton and Fenton! Living in a space surrounded by a collection of beautiful objects that you can change, and move to create gorgeous vignettes of found objects must make for an inspirational way of living.

For me, as a mere mortal with a somewhat limited budget and four little helpers (who can be a little messy plus accidents do happen occasionally), it’s more challenging to find ways to inject fun and colour into our home.  With this in mind, I set myself a challenge to find seven fab pieces to get your creative juices flowing without breaking the bank.

1. Travel West by the wheat field  via here on Etsy

2. Poplar Slate print, from Urban Road

3. Fabulous zebras by the very talented Jessie Breakwell’s jungle series

4. The Truth Will Set You Free by Urban Road

5. Gorgeous Floral Elephant by Be Wild and Free  via Etsy

6. I Love You Alphabet by 2142 Stuart  via Etsy

7.New York City Manhattan Skyline by idillard via Etsy

Enjoy xx

*PS – in case you’re wondering, this is not a sponsored post, simply a collection of gorgeous prints and art that I have found and love.

We love board games!

We love board games!

I had one of those parenting moments this week, or maybe it’s a life moment, where I did the reverse of what I wanted to do and it turned out wonderfully.

My eldest son came to me with a board game he’d been given as a gift and asked if I wanted to play.

I was busy doing my own thing at the time (creating some fab little frocks for my store) , and thoroughly enjoying myself.

Plus I was on a roll.

Plus it was MY time out.

I know, that sounds very selfish, but if you have kids, you know what it can be like. Time out is precious, and you can go a little nuts without some.

So back to me (see, selfish again). What I nearly said was ‘later mate, I’m busy right now’.

Instead, I put down what I was doing and said, ‘I’d love to’ and sat down on the floor to play a game.

The look on his face was well worth it.  We then spent the next half an hour playing the Dinosaur Adventure game together and both had a brilliant time. Later that night we coaxed the whole family into having a game, and it was one of the highlights of the week.

Lots of laughs, lots of ribbing each other, and lots of fun time together.

I think this is what well-meaning child psychologists and parenting experts are talking about when they discuss quality versus quantity in spending time with your kids.

Do you still play board games with your kids?

Enjoy xx

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