Sunday, 25 August 2013

Yvonne & the Boys & a Little Pixie Williams

Treading Gently, Being Thrifty, Living Simply
is truly the grandest way to be living.
Not really something to touch on occasionally, more a charming, healthy way of life.
Since Hettie Brown suggested this thought provoking topic a month or so ago I have realised just how satisfying it is to make the choice to live each day:
Treading gently, Being Thrifty, Living Simply...& it's catching too.
As I continue to sift through & re-evaluate our collections of "stuff" & let go & move much of it along, I find myself re-visiting many of our gatherings, stroking them gently, thanking them & then releasing them to a new life & purpose. (No I am not turning minimalist, just trying to find the floor).
I acquired some wonderful old, very early gramophone recordings, somewhere in my meanderings. A few, I am now listening to once more; others have gone to be admired elsewhere.
Pixie Williams singing "Maoriland" caught my attention this week...
How intriguing to discover that this lovely post war New Zealand singer had only just recently passed away on the 2nd August of this year. I found this lovely little recording of her "Blue Smoke"  that was the first single to be locally recorded and manufactured in New Zealand.
You might like to have a little listen too.

I was amused by the writing on this cover:
I guess there'll always be "modern music" in every age.
These recordings have survived over 7 decades & are still playable on my "modern" op-shopped turntable. I loved the stamps of royalty
& inspection.
My being thrifty took me to sitting on the couch with a mushroom one evening this week.
I decided to make an attempt to repair the hole that had worn in one of our treasured, heavy, vintage cotton sheets. Maybe we'll get a bit more wear from it yet, we'll soon see.
I told you about our fridge fiasco a while back, where we were seduced into thinking that we could replace our faithful, rusting Little Leonard, only to find that the imposter wouldn't fit through the larder door. Well, Imposter was happily received by the nice man at "The Good Forecast" secondhand shop in town, the fridge lived to see another day, our money was almost fully redeemed & Little Leonard got to stay where he belonged...
& got a spruce up. I arrived home from gardening last week to find one Master Restorer with gloves & mask on & the stop right there hand up. Yikes! Little Leonard's door innards were spewing all over the garage floor, messy, but fortunately not, (as it turns outasbestos. Rust is now fixed, undercoat & sanding complete...almost there & new insulation inserted between the layers.
Here's Little Leonard before our impertinence. Quite rust doory & snuggled in beside "Yvonne"
When I contemplated what we should call "her" this picture immediately sprang to my mind.
Yes, definitely Yvonne.
People are always scaremongering & tutting about how uneconomical these old fridges are to run, but we've "tested for ourselves & found that they make no difference to our overall power bill what-so-ever!
Oh & he is:
A stately old retired fridge, now cupboard, that lives in the garage.
Yes, yes, I more fridges!

I have pottered on with my crochet.
I've hand stitched the cover on to some pretty vintage blanket & I'm thrilled with the result.
What do you think?
Little Nina came to visit the other day, she's 3.
She took one look at my crochet & said "That would make a lovely dollies blanket".
Lucky we share the same tastes since she's my niece!
Guess what I've started..
A little more Cath Kidston has arrived on our doorstep.
I am selling things to buy a few bits that I really love.
And I am making my own cushions & filling them with inners from the op shop.
This fab stripe is for the less flowery end of Lucy.
I love to try new things & am delighted by this white sprouting broccoli that the lovely people from Links Organics have had at the Farmers' Market recently. It is very sweet & tender.
My tiny tete a tete daffodils have naturalised very nicely down the back of the garden under the lemon tree.
They are so simple & so very small.
Sheltered flourishing nasturtiums tenderly receive & cradle fresh raindrops.
These soft shades of Banana Sundae are pretty in pansy form.
One of my favourite camelias. I wish that I knew what it was called. It has a peculiar habit of sporting deep pink flowers randomly amidst the others.
A truly inspired choice to plant these magnolias planted right here.
 These magnificent beauties serenade an interesting Art Deco commercial building just down the road.

Thirsty for the coveted spring sunshine.

The utter generosity & extravagance!!!
This afternoon two good keen lads, at a loose end, came by to prune my trees.
Practicing acquired skills is always a positive & healthy pastime. Sharing them is even better.
Alex wanted a turn of sawing & decided that he didn't need the ladder.
Bored boys are welcome in my garden any day!
All chopped in bits & cleaned up too.
 I am utterly chuffed.
They went a way with four different kinds of ferns, strawberry plants & muffins.
I am so grateful to them both!
David is full of tales of thrift these days & was very proud of his two mackerel for $2 (supermarket mark down) that he took home & filleted himself & his huge stock up on the wardrobe at the Salvation Army for $40. He's even cooking brown rice & using silverbeet from the garden where he lives.
See, it's catching.

Lucy is my sweet golden carriage.
Betty fancied a pumpkin one.
I found a Pixie carriage, this week, for us all.
A Margaret Tarrant picture I have never seen before.
Isn't it cute!
So lovely to see you.

Sorry this was such a long & winding post..
but do join in with the wonderful:
if you'd like to.
It's easy to get carried away with thrifty ways & stories.
Thank you Hettie are so very lovely & also brave.
Hugs & friendship to you all.

Monday, 19 August 2013

It Looks A Lot Like Spring!

Kindness, thoughtfulness and friendship are surely three of life's most precious transactions.
One morning this week (in between rain & earthquakes) we discovered the Postie had cycled passed and left real letters in our letterbox!
There is nothing quite like real mail, don't you agree?
Even better, amidst the bundle of envelopes, was a wee parcel from Threadbear Cottage.
I carried it carefully out to Lucy with my morning coffee & savoured every second of my sweet gift.
Some people are just such fine & thoughtful gift givers & others, not so much.
What an absolute blessing this little parcel was.
With orders pressing & much to be done Julie had still found the time to stitch a special vintage blanket bunting for our lovely girl.
 I love this verse:
The lovely gardeners soap, so sweetly fragrant, fills up the whole space with it's fresh presence.
 It's all about taking the time isn't it.
About seeing who another really is.
All my life I have been a Cinderella, unnoticed by those I lived amongst.
 It's a very lonely way to live, like you're just plain wrong, a nuisance, The Problem.
To open a parcel like this filled with kind words, friendship & care & to be seen, really seen is the most precious gift there ever was.
Thank you so much Julie, my friend.
Thank you too for all of you who visit & share this journey with me.
Thank you for seeing me & your comments & emails & contact & sharing your life snippets with me in return.
Here are some daffodils for you.
I celebrate each one of you.
 We have been very brave as the days grow a little longer & sometimes a little warmer & done some new work in our Lucy.
I am so grateful that Rob is so clever at fixing things.
 If you click on these smaller pictures you'll be able to see them better.

Signs of real spring are everywhere..
..buddleia brings the butterflies out to play.
I visited with my friend Ruth again on Thursday before she heads away for a month,
leaving the plums to blossom valiantly in her absence.
We scampered over the wee creek down the back into the Secret Garden..
 it's the same place we gather walnuts in autumn.
Such an amazing legacy left by a very fine man.
We don't always think of that, do we, that when we plant good things, good seeds, we leave a legacy for those to come after us, that will bless & enrich their lives; perhaps even for generations.
Daffodils are made of sunshine.
I shared them around my little neighbourhood.
I said to Audrey "Audrey when I was picking these I was thinking of you & how I bought you daffodils when you were in hospital last year (she couldn't get up one day: Parkinsons) here I am again with daffodils & look how far you've come in that year!" 
We both smiled.
 Last week in the rain I picked roses. Some of them have flowered all winter..amazing things!
The camelia is Scentuous.
 I love winter roses too.
They have been very glad of all our rain, as have the violets.
 Primulas are such happy spring flowers & come in many lovely pastel colours.
 We are having rain, rather than frosts & for the first time ever..
 Christmas Cheer is blooming very robustly, untarnished.
 It is always the first rhodo to arrive on the early spring scene.
I laughed when I saw this card on Pinterest recently.
"Cheery Wishes to a Shut-In"
The original get well card?
 I do hope that you are all well & not at all shut-in!

And just one wee question before I you think Cinderella might have changed her name, you know...after the ball? At least I have my golden carriage, her name is LUCY!

Thank you so much for visiting.
With very much love & friendship.
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