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Friday, December 19, 2014

Friday Bits and Bobs.

We had such a good ending to the school year yesterday with The Moon picking up not only the top academic award at her school, but an award for good citizenship, (basically for being kind, caring, good-humoured, and helping other people!), which made me so proud. In fact, I was thrilled with the latter to the extent that the academic award was just a kind of icing on the cake.

Sorry about the brag, but I'm so proud of my girl and how much happier she is, with renewed confidence after the trials of last year. And to be honest, it's also quite vindicating. What's more, The Moon's classmates were so lovely, telling her that she deserved those awards, and giving her hugs and wishing her genuinely well. Such a contrast to the school culture she was in previously.

It was all a big surprise for Moon, and she sat in the car with me on the way home, getting a bit teary, and feeling overwhelmed by the acknowledgements. My girl is actually seen and embraced for who she is, and that means the world to me.

I'd better get to these linky things...

The Theory of Everything is a film I definitely want to see. The performances are supposedly remarkable.

I found this story beautiful. Not just the money that was raised for this kind, homeless man, but that ultimately, it's a story of connection; and of recognising the dignity and humanity in one another. 

The paintings of Pieter Bruegel the Elder are, to me, endlessly fascinating. I adore the detail and life they depict, and the wealth of historical, mythological, and religious references that spill over the edges of his work. And here's where I make the art historian's faint with my crass comparison, but I also love the Where's Wally aspect of Bruegel's paintings. Picking out the interesting, hidden characters or details in the paintings. To be honest, it was Bruegel's paintings that got me interested in art as a child. These paintings just invite children into them, so rich in colour and story are they. I used to imagine the myriad threads of story, contained in a single painting.

Pieter Bruegel the Elder, Census at Bethelehem. Image from here.

Yule Twelfth Night Casting Herbs - for throwing on a fire or bonfire. I've made my own version of these before with juniper and pine, and frankincense among other things. The aroma is truly sublime. 

Lately, I've been gazing at Raquel Somatra's gorgeous mystical and mystic art. There are antlered women, Little Red Riding Hood, and enchanting creatures. 

I'm going to try and get to the Bohemian Melbourne exhibition at the State Library:
"Revealing Melbourne's enduring counter-cultures, Bohemian Melbourne celebrates a who's who of creative free spirits through their art and the bohemian legacy that has shaped the character of this city".


Oh! And you extremely lucky Brits get to hear this serialisation of Good Omens on BBC4.  


Well, it's the Bloke's birthday today, (yes, he's one of those people who's birthdays tend to be overlooked because of the whole Chrimblemass palaver). So I'm going to bake a cake, (singular), and organise some gifts. And time and tide wait for no woman...

Wishing you a very happy week's ending, and a peaceful weekend. xxx

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

School Concerts, And Some Hugelkultur Progress.

Such a couple of days. Calamities, and Much Ado About Nothing, (as well as A Minuscule Ado About Something).

Also Moon has officially finished primary school, which was kind of poignant, as well as a relief too, because there have been so many school events to try and remember to turn up for...and school Chrimbly concerts. Need I say more?

There were reindeer hats, music I can't even begin to comprehend, and a lovely buoyant innocent excitement amongst the children. It was also slightly feral, with pre-Chrimbly scrums of hyper-stimulated children hurtling through enclosed spaces.

It's funny though, I feel at home walking into a lecture theatre with 400 people, (a bit nervous, but in a delicious way), but put me in a school and surround me with 5-12 year olds and I become awkward, and gauche, and don't know where to put my feet. I feel like the scraggy, freckled red-haired kid in the wrong clothes who never quite fitted in, all over again.

But seeing The Moon wind up her year so happily was nothing short of wunnerful.

As I sat with the crowd of parents, amongst the fold-up chairs, picnic rugs, and plastic cups of lemonade, I couldn't help but let my gaze wander over to the large dead gum tree, situated near the wild field at the back. The trunk is large enough to house 4 elves, and at least one witch. It has a red painted door attached to it, (The Moon helped paint that door, she tells me). That red door looks so entrancing, so inviting, that children, and the childish (ahem), can't resist its lure.

Moon tells me that it's just a door nailed to a tree, but I still had to ask her, "Hey, honestly? Have you tried opening it, walking in there, and calling for Mr Tumnus?"
She looked at me as though I'd taken leave of my senses, leant over, and whispered to me, "of course I have! And while I was painting, I decorated the inside of it in my mind. It's my cottage in a tree."

There's got to be a way in, don't you think?

And on a random note, here is my little garden I created from a scrap of wild space near the woodshed.

Do you remember this? From this post?

The Beforeness
And now...pumpkins and wildflowers (California poppies, cornflowers, Queen Anne's lace, and...other unidentifiables).
And now.
The pumpkins are about to go completely mad. They're heavy drinkers, that lot. My rainwater tank is getting quite depleted, so early in the Summer too. Might need to perform a rain dance.

Well, cheerio. I'm going to bed with multiple authors. xxx