Saturday, 9 August 2014

Gather: It's a Good Thing

A number of people have mentioned to me this week that they feel that the world is a harsh & scary place to be in just now. That's true, there's so much trouble & mayhem & hatred & chaos going on everywhere; which makes it all the more important that we live everyday with us much grace, love & care as we can possibly muster.'s the little things that really, really make life worthwhile & give us peace & satisfaction.
It was the weirdest thing...when I first crashed through into menopause a few years ago & my health collapsed & my soul said "Right let's deal with some things right here, right now. Are you listening?" And suddenly I had constant indigestion & almost no appetite. I had no idea how vital it was to have a desire for food, for living. Delete your appetite & all food begins to taste like cardboard & cooking becomes a chore. Life isn't meant to be like that. So, I began to listen to what my body & my true self were trying to say (it turns out it was a lot) & I started to learn a fresh new way of seeing & living. I established a whole raft of nourishing traditions & I flagged the guilt about looking after myself first & foremost.
Anyway, I've discovered that I do quite like life & food after all, but being an HSP (highly sensitive person) I need to watch a few things like: I really am best not to watch the news or read the newspaper...ever & I don't actually have to spend time with toxic or negative people or doing things I hate. I am still healing so it's ok to keep things simple & not expect to be normal just yet!
So it seemed like a really good plan after Rob worked 8 mornings out of 9 to take ourselves to Napier for a night last weekend & to spend some time doing some lovely things together. Napier is only a 20 minute drive from home so no stress to get there! At the bottom end of town on a sunshiny winter's day we found the Napier Farmer's Market so we greedily gathered up our bags of organic "greens" for the week. Robert (the grower) had left home at 5.00 am that morning to be there. That made me feel very humble & grateful.
These palms must have been planted an awfully long time ago...first settlers maybe?
I love words.
 I love the word gather.
The shop was friendly & delightful too.
Gather speaks to me about resource & connection. These two things are very close to my heart.
 I love the blooming resourcefulness in our lives & I am healing the pain & shadow of abandonment through connection. I am spending time with nice people & resolutely closing the door on those who have been shouting rudely & ranting judgements at me my whole life.
I am amazed to discover that the world is actually full of kind & gentle people; intelligent, caring & knowledgable too. The blog world, for instance, is really just a gathering of kindred souls who come together to share, befriend, & inspire one another. So many of us have found that we finally have a voice, we're allowed to speak out/speak up &, that we make a difference.
It's ok to be me.
More than's a wonderful thing to be me.
In self-love, self-acceptance we gather & share.
It's mostly what we're here for.
It was a refreshing thing to step out of our lives & walk in someone else's park, sit in somebody else's ancient old tree & find a deep peace walking in the Botannic Gardens of Napier.
We walked on the hill & looked at gardens & old houses.
The magnolias just arriving.
It's good to stand on a hill & look down on the whole picture; see from another perspective.

And watch the sun go down...
still early.
We bought okra, fresh turmeric & black tahini from Chantel (organics).
We went to Vetro the Mediterranean food store & bought sundried tomatoes & cashews & red rice.
Just along the road, still stands this lovely building....
quintessential Art Deco style.
We also popped in to the huge "barn" that is Savemart, full of second hand clothing & linen & roamed the aisles for a while. I was aghast at the volume of stuff that was piled up in these wool phages. There were even way more on the other side. Rob found a wonderful assortment of really nice Aertex shirts & several pairs of shorts. Such a fantastic economy the secondhand life!
It was freezing & raining again when we got home. But soon the sun returned to bath my sweet little pansy faces.
Light is a wonderful thing!
As the seasons change so do the themes at Cath Kidston. These clock waffle tea towels arrived in my last order.

 Lucy quite likes them too.

Tuesday morning we walked around our own neighbourhood & gathered discarded egg cartons as we went our merry way. Found some free grapefruit at someones letterbox too. Just in case you're, didn't feel the slightest bit of shame or embarrassment. Egg cartons are great for lighting the fire with a few pine cones...our marvellous wood fire that in turn heats our hot water. Isn't hot water coming out of a tap in your own bathroom the most remarkable & comforting gift!
Have a wonderful week my friends & thank you all for popping in; those who are able to comment & those who quietly come & go. I appreciate the lovely emails that some of you send from time to time too...thank you. All sunshiny blessings to you.
Much love Catherine x0x0x


  1. I like this post - gather is a word that I have been looking for as I scramble around picking blackberries this week! I think you are sensible to reycle the things offered free- egg boxes, why not! I would love to warm myself at your wood burner. Blessings across the miles to you as you gather home comforts. Betty x

  2. Beautiful photos and you had a lovely day. Your towels are bright and so pretty. Love the idea of egg cartons and pine cones for the fire.

  3. Sounds like a wonderful day out. We too light the fire with egg cartons and pine cones. But wish we had a wetback to heat the hot water - oh what a saving. Love Leanne

  4. Catherine I completely agree with on watching the news - I never watch it any more & rarely even watch the weather forecast. I just take each day as it comes.

    Beautiful post, beautiful pictures & thoughts from a sweet beautiful lady. I love your picture in the tree. :o)

  5. Another beautiful post Catherine - I would've loved to pop in that Gather Shop & have a bit of a browse. Your pic made me feel like digging out my sons old racing bike & spray painting it Hot Pink !!!!! Napier is really such a lovely city isnt it. My Dad came from there. Your pansies look just beautiful in the winter light, some poly's in there too. Its still bitterly cold here but like you, I try to be thankful for things like hot water & a cosy fire, even though it seems lots of work at times, I think about people that cant heat their homes. Your egg cartons made me smile, youngest son has taken my small collection as he is trying to "soundproof" a room to record music, apparently they are the very best thing. Keep warm my friend, Julie x0x0 (p.s It certainly is OK to be you, don't ever change) x0x

  6. Dearest Catherine, how much you have grown as a person in the last few years. This lovely post is full of understanding and acceptance of yourself and appreciation of who you are. Understanding ourselves is so important so we can give ourselves what we need which is what you are doing. Well done for putting in the hard work (I know what it takes) to get to a place where you can be honest with yourself. I love the way you are appreciating the things in life we often take for granted like hot water, we do have so much in a world that is so needy. I don't listen to the news either, refuse to have any relationship with negative people and those who suck the energy out of you. It's about making boundaries to protect yourself and you are doing that so well. Your pansies are so beautiful, they have such pretty faces. Have a lovely week.
    Anne xx

  7. Hello, I've been a long time reader and just had to comment on this post. I'm going through a very difficult time personally and have been recommended by the psychologists to go on a journey of self-discovery. I thought I knew myself fairly well, and gained a lot of confidence from that, but some of the things that have led to my being taken advantage of (and domestic violence) stemmed from my personality (INFJ) and way of seeing life (I'm a highly sensitive person, an empath)...I avoid conflict, avoid exposing myself to harshness and things that don't fit in with my 'world view', which means that it was easy for me to fall 'victim' to the terror I have lived at home the past year or so. I'm at the very beginning of this journey of rediscovering myself, of learning how to omit toxicity from my life, of learning how to set boundaries, and I must say your wonderful blog helps me enormously. So thank you for that. I love to drop in and see your wonderful photos, to hear about your walks and trips out, to read about your wonderful gratitude-filled life. Its an inspiration, so thank you for that. Best wishes, Helen

  8. Hello dearest! I love all the pink of YOU! You spread that special brand of softness!
    Prints are soul inspiring, aren't they!
    God be with you today, good girl.


So lovely of you to leave a comment. Thank you!! ♥

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