Sunday, 24 June 2012

Of Pomme, Josephine & Open Hearts

I have been thinking a bit lately about when I had small children & we were involved in play groups & kindy & you'd meet new people all along the growing up way and the kids played with other kids & made new friends all the time. Then there came a day where they would all take themselves to school & gradually that social contact changed & diminished & if you're a quiet sort of person with vintagey sort of interests & you don't really like to sit around talking to people for hours or feel like joining the local women's netball team it's actually quite a challenge to meet new like-minded people, in fact, you could be forgiven for concluding that there weren't any out there at all!
You ever found that?
Until....I started blogging & lo & behold I discovered that I was not alone at all!
And in that community & with all the other contact that it generates (like friends & aunties checking in too) I have discovered that the world hasn't changed so tragically after all...phew!!
There is still so much goodness & kindness, care & concern, so much sharing of patterns & recipes, gentle advice & encouragement, that for the first time in my life, I have to say that the world is a good place to be & I no longer feel invisible or alone. Thanks to you all...just being there, I can live my life more fully & bravely & I am so grateful.
The door of opportunity is always open to learning, growing, making a new friend, supporting & encouraging someone else, believing (truly believing) that their really is love & kindness & goodness in the world.
Suddenly, I can hear the words that Mary spoke at the end of the Secret Garden so clearly:
"The spell was broken. My uncle learned to laugh, and I learned to cry. The secret garden is always open. Open & awake, and alive. If you look the right way, you can see the whole world is a garden." 
   I am so glad to have made a new friend over the last few months...Julie of My Threadbear Life.
She lives in the Waikato here in New Zealand
 & has the dearest little Threadbear Cottage set in a country garden, only 6 minutes out of TeAwamutu. I'm sure that you couldn't miss the spot with Isabella on the job out the front waving to all passersby & visitors.
 Julie's little cottage is full of handmade crafts & other sweet collectables. Do pop in & visit her blog here or click on any of her photos. I know that she & the charming "Josephines" would love to see you.
Early this week we managed to get ourselves over to Napier (only 20mins away) & finally do some of the errands we'd had planned for a while now.
 Of course, one of the most important being, to have coffee together at The Kitchen Table.
One of us had a cheese scone.
The swan was our table marker.
 Not sure what we were meant to do with the knitting needles?
 We had a marvelous time dropping things off to the auction to be sold & selling some other bits & pieces to the Antique Centre...which all amounted to exactly enough to buy this wonderful big glass water dispenser from Madisons for our larder.
I had a very illuminating chat with a friend a week or two ago & discovered that just down the road, right in the middle of my beloved Showgrounds sits a large bore with a tap so that the water comes straight out of the ground & is NOT fluoridated. So for making things like my apple cider vinegar & kombucha this scheme will be perfect. And should there be a disaster & the jar managed to not fall off the table, we may even have some clean, spare water to keep us going.
 I came across this great chalkboard on Pinterest the other day.
 I might add, the actual author of the words & concept can be found here.
 So I did buy vintage like I showed you last week....& the face of our Improved Salter Family Scales came up beautifully don't you think?
 This morning, early, was very crisp & chilly & there were furry creatures lurking in the plum tree.
 Being chilly as it was, gave me the urge to unearth my embellished cotton sweatshirts (what a silly term...a!!) This one was originally a beefyT & is a lovely heavy cotton & just the right pink.
 The beads on our Melia tree are like sunshine in the sky even on the most dismal day through the winter months.
 I am so glad that Mitre 10 Mega (more ugly words!!) moved premises to just a block or two away from us. They actually have quite a reasonable garden department & these potted colour plants are really good value. Aren't these obconica primulas so sweet?!
 I heard whispers on Facebook of a new pop-up shop opening in town on I went hunting & found...
 Pomme d'amour a dear little shop full of an electic mix of vintage
  & retro treasures.
 And best of all, Florence...a local fellow blogger and wonderful photograhper!
 I am sure I'll be catching up with Florence again soon.
 Pomme d'amour is where I found this colander. There is something so creamy & delicious about it. i just love it.
 We have now just passed through the winter solstice here & despite frosts & very chilly mornings I was still able to pick these true winter roses in the garden today.
 The pretty tablecloth I found in the Hospice op shop in Napier during our visit last week.
 I am always in awe of such fine handwork...& the quality of the cotton fabric used.
I think I'll be in love with vintage linens my whole life!
Thank you for being such a sweet & lovely part of my life!!
Hope you have a peachy week...with some sunshine & rainbows where ever you may be in the world.


  1. Hello Gathering Katie!
    Oh, your words are so lovely and true!
    I LOVE your embellished sweatshirt! It's pink and cheery!
    I just bought an annotated version of The Secret Garden and blogged about it.
    I love Mary.

  2. Hello Catherine,

    I have been following your blog through Google Reader for a while and so enjoy reading everything. Just love that tin sign, I want one!!!

    Happy days.

  3. I came back to take another look at your lovely pink garment! I'm going to be on the lookout for a pink "sweatshirt" so I can make one of my own. Can you send me a few photos of yours? The back? The whole front? Thank you, good friend.

  4. There is so much grace and beauty here! Let me tell about solstice, however! Your winter one is of course our summer one- and every year Prince Charming goes out to the garden and lights all the magical lanterns and stokes up the chimera with wood he'll have been salvaging all year, and then he lays out a sumptious supper for just the two of us late at night with our suns abed but the sun still lingering- lovely! I look forward to it all and every June. This year we passed it on the sofa under a blanket- my still uncompleted ripple, and ate our sumptious supper and drank... the nice wine we also have ready? Oh no. Hot and steaming, cheery mugs of tea! I am guessing most confidently that our summer solstice was colder than your winter one!!

  5. Hello dear Catherine, Well THANK YOU SO MUCH - from my heart, honestly, thankyou for your very lovely & kind words - reading your post most definately made my week & I couldnt stop smiling. You are so very kind & generous. I see a couple more followers popped up on my blog - how wonderful & amazing is this blogging friendship we all have! ?
    Your post was inspiring as always - your scales look amazing. As does your pink top, & your pot of primulas & vase of roses. Some cheeriness in the midst of winter. I loved that Buy Vintage Chalkboard & would very much like to visit that shop that has popped up in your area. Have a wonderful week dear friend. Love/hugs Julie X x x

  6. Catherine I can always relate to you. My son will be seventeen this year and over the years so much changes. There are so many wonderful talented people out there including you!
    You create such magic at your place. Love your table cloth...
    Have a wonderful weekend,
    Hugs Rosemary...xoxo


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