Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Giving The Fairy Feet

I've never really been a wishful thinker or a flibbety-gibbet. I'm not a dreamer or a schemer, nor do I get lost in fairytales. I would have liked a happy life.
Just that.
But we don't get to chose our heritage, do we. We are given what we get!
And then it's our work to do, to resolve, heal & redeem.
My journey has been hard. Many times I have nearly drowned, yet here I am, having plumbed to the bottom in the murk, now gliding in calm clear waters.
The tools I need to build with are now in my hands, the strength is in my back & the fairy now has feet, at last.
I am well practised in the language of authenticity & the arts of imperfection. I have let go all the structures & the judgments of the past & I now rest.
I rest in being me; fully.
In the early days of blogging I "met" a dear kindred soul who wrote at Fading Grace. Many are the metamorphoses of Sophie who quite recently wrote this truly charming dedication to her followers & friends over at 
hettie brown

...."It seems a shame to me to give way, to the more popular, more stylish, younger, thinner, perfect bloggers, although they too have their place. What about the not so perfect, the slightly wonky, the ones who admit to their failures and crapness at times, I think we are worthy too.

So I continue to scribble away here, with my heart on my sleeve, with my successes and total pants failures. I am being brave, I have no idea who reads it, and some idea of those who do who i wished didn't.  When i dont write , I miss it, when I stop missing it, Ill stop writing.....

So I dedicate this blog and all its writings from this post onwards to the

Wonky, broken people who happen to stop by,
to the shy and introverted, and maybe not so,
who always drop their dinner down their fronts and mostly look like they've been dragged through a hedge backwards,
to those who wear big knickers and knit their own socks,
who are fraying and maybe greying a little round the edges......
To all the misplaced souls who strive for perfection and never quite reach it

I write this blog for you


Here I am one of the wonky & not quite so broken ones, only dropping my dinner down my front on occasions. As to the big knickers...well you'll never know!
Sophie's words make me feel right at home; found.
Another friend passed on the writings of Jeff Brown on Facebook about New Year. Every day I am encouraged & expanded, empowered & strengthened by what I read.
It's about giving the fairy feet.
It's about finding romance in the naked fires of everyday life.
Oh yes!
Jeff Brown
(The little ballerina is me, by the way)
So what does all that mean?
It means taking Pollyanna & making here real, grounding her...& I don't mean sending her to her room! As an old Pastor friend once preached....let it work grace.
In the fiery yet enervating heat of summer we fill our paddling pools in the garden & sit & rest & chat, not fussing that there's nowhere to swim. 
We fill our pretty jug with cool water & lemon & we drink!
A little music might be nice...streaming jazz is great, the reception not so much.
So he put the little speaker up here. That's better.
A kindy teacher from way up north kindly sent me some of her giant sunflower seeds. I figured growing up the nice high wall might be good
 but the traitors just stand there waving at the neighbours!
 The birds come & feast on the early figs & they are welcome, yet time & again I go to the tree & find one is being eaten & right beside it one is ripe yet untouched. That's kind sharing, don't you think?
 Bright & early one morning, quite recently, there was a knock on the door. I opened it to find...
 a long package containing a stick!
Fortunately the other half was waiting in the letterbox.
Shoes everywhere, leaves & debris scattered all around.....not so perfect (fairy feet)!

A spontaneous & thoughtful gift from my dear & treasured friend Julie who lives a creative, crafty & truly inspiring life near Te Awamutu.
Our birds are so used to us by now, they made themselves right at home immediately.
I have been trying to grow hollyhocks in my garden for years now, without success & especially trying hard to grow the double dwarf variety. I've tried them in all the places I was sure that they would love & even in pots but time after time they would curl up their toes until...just one, grew right here. Apparently they are an oak-leaf variety.
 I have tried some more along Margaret's front fence next door. Some are single, some are double most are quite wonky but they all make the most delightful hollyhock fairies.
 I think I may need face drawing lessons.
 It's easy to walk in to the Garden Centre (Green Door...marvellous place!) & see everything flourishing & vibrant & fabulous & feel discouraged that at home it's all flagging, messy & pooped
 and that the snails have crept out night after night & munched through the middle of your petunias,
 that even though you followed the instructions for pruning hydrangeas to the letter they are so late & lanky & are being very sparing with their flowers, like there's a shortage.
 Sometimes life just feels like the paint spilled in the middle of the plan.
 But then you turn around & look again & there...right there in front of you is the most stunning fragrant beauty that you'd forgotten you even planted & you inhale the heady fragrance & wonder whoever chose the name Heart Broken?
Outside the kitchen window high up in the neighbours elm tree we realise that the tuis have built a nest....right here in town! The tree should have been a golden elm but part of it reverted & got taller & taller & made suckers that come up through our garden...yet, had it not, the tuis wouldn't have built 
right there for us to watch them & hear them feeding their babies.
But even in the beautiful & happy-go-lucky world of the tui things go wonky. This wee one arrived on to the middle of the lawn. early one morning  The parents were extraordinary & we all looked out for him for a week until one day it all became too much, his wing was damaged & he'd never fly. Margaret found him last week under the fig tree, dead but unharmed. So....we rang Anna & she came & collected his wee body & will use the rarely found & beautiful feathers in her flax weaving.
And so...having "got to the bottom of things" in me, it was interesting to notice as I drive past every week the old house, the funny little place where we lived when I was little...where I fell madly in love with feijoas, made my first attempt at concocting perfume, got a little potato stuck up my nose & had to be carted off by flustered parents to see Dr Earle to have it removed, 
where we lived when I first started school & where my best friend Wendy lived just down the road (still a bestie after 53 years!) was empty & being prepared to be removed. 
Just the right time to say goodbye to the past.
Everything seems overwhelming in the sweltering heat of summer & we wonder how we normally manage to do life & feel a lot less prickly. Best idea is to plan an hour or two at the river & revive,
however, upon arrival the river banks were busy, someone was in "our" spot, another crowd had their builder's boom box up full bore tuned to the radio & there was rubbish all over the show so...we had a little paddle & a wander round & found another little shady spot to picnic that was quite perfect & very soon the noisy one drove off on his way,
leaving us to gently descend in to peace & tranquility.
Life is just about the moments.
So here's to hettie brown & Jeff Brown (entirely coincidental!) & the wonky ones, the cheerful ones, the kindly ones, the ones still getting-to-the-bottom-of-things, to fairies' feet & you.
Much love,
Catherine x0x0x


  1. Magic bird feeder, what a lovely surprise! but that's Julie for you!

  2. Another beautiful post Catherine ... I did not know Hettie Brown was back again after writing as The Woven Nest - thank you for letting me know as I do love her writings. I am pleased I too have stopped dropping my dinner down my front now ... only occasionally when there has been alcohol consumed !!!! I did laugh loudly at Rob standing in the garden trying to get reception. Your pails of water reminded me of working in the stinking hot gift shop all those years ... I asked my Boss to instal air conditioning & she bought in two plastic buckets .. one each for us to stand in. Shame about the customers tho !!!! Your hollyhocks are amazing & your garden is still looking wonderful .. we are wilting here & turning rather brown. I knew immediately that was you in the photo as a ballerina. Have a wonderful weekend Catherine - its a long one over here, Auckland Anniversary. Stay cool if you can my friend x x x x

  3. I remember HBs post and have followed her from one morph to another as I like her wonkiness being wonky myself. I am definitely a member of the club and glad to be - perfection is not something to strive for any longer!

  4. A great post Catherine. I do love your writings. Your garden is superb and I adore the Hollyhocks. Such a peaceful picnic you had (or at least after the getto blasters departed). I would have fallen asleep in the shade with a smile on my face with the peacefulness of the surroundings. It is so hot over here in the Waikato.

  5. It's so nice to see you! I hope you keep writing and writing and writing because you are SO wonderful!


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