Life is an adventure of the heart, an adventure into love

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

An early Spring...

My Great Grandmother-in-law (phew, that's a mouthful!) gave me a pot of beautiful Narcisi bulbs for Christmas this year. I am always thrilled to be given bulbs as I absolutely love Spring flowers. I put the pot with the hopeful green leaves on my Kitchen windowsill, not expecting to see any flowers until Spring (especially because my kitchen is unheated!). But, as you can see from the picture, only a few weeks later, tiny yellow flowers have erupted on my windowsill, filling my heart with hope as only Spring can every time I see them.

In order to have early flowers, you have to trick the bulbs! You have to 'force' them to flower early, by putting them somewhere cold and dark (like the fridge) for several weeks and then bringing them out into the light and warm. The bulbs thus are 'tricked' into 'thinking' it's Spring and out come their gorgeous flowers! Ok, so this has spoken to me so much because I can relate to it on a deeper level. I feel like the past year of 2010 has been one where I have been 'forced' as it were, like the bulbs, on a fast track to fruition. I read a quote the other day that for me perfectly summed up 2010: "Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strength. When you go through hardship and decide not to surrender, that is strength." I thought 'Yes!', last year was really hard for us on so many levels, mainly relational, but also financial. But all those struggles have been forcing me to produce a deep root system inside of me, and I find myself at the end of the year so much stronger than I was at the beginning- and so much clearer on who I am and what I want life to be.

I read this quote this morning: "You can have anything you want if you want it desperately enough. You must want it with an exuberance that erupts through the skin and joins the energy that created the world." In the past I've found these sort of quotes difficult as I've felt a pressure that it's my responsibility to get what I want, but something has shifted now and I feel completely different. I can feel myself agreeing with the quote, 'yes I do have a dream, and I can't wait to get started... I'm so excited', rather than, 'uh oh, I'd better do something.'! I can feel change coming now, it's like all my 'roots' have gone down deep and I have a well of strength to draw from. 2011 is going to be a year when I start to see some beautiful flowers coming out! I just can't wait to get creating!

There will still be obstacles, difficulties, things to uncover, I know that, but at the same time, there will be more and more flowers! I feel really set on an upwards path.

"What you get by reaching your destination is not nearly as important as what you will become by reaching your destination." Zig Ziglas

I love this picture of the woods near my house, just wanted to share it!

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Christmas Creativity and more!

So this is me, right about now! 35 weeks pregnant and surrounded by Christmas. I'm not really sure exactly what I want to say today, I just know that I really, really want to write a blog entry... so here goes!

I've been having lots and lots of fun with Christmas this year. Yet again I did leave way too much until the last week before Christmas, but I still managed to really enjoy the busyness of it all. Money is tight for us at the moment, so we had to be really organised and plan all our presents in advance, making sue that we weren't going to blow our bank account! I've done home made gifts for quite a few years now, but this year was a little different as I would usually go down the edible gifts route, but instead made bubble bath and sewed some purses out of some of my Japanese Kimono fabrics that I love so much! The inspiration for the purses came from a book I've been reading, and I made my first one for my Mum's birthday in early December. I was so proud that I'd made something that actually looked nice, and that I'd been able to teach myself. I loved the sewing and I feel like I'm discovering a real passion for it through making these gifts. This is something I really want to develop next year, because I know how much I love making things from fabrics and I really want to learn more techniques and skills. Anyway, here are a couple of photos I took of some of the purses:

The bubble bath was great fun too, and so easy to make! You can buy 'bubble bath base' online, my favourite website for soap making is the soap kitchen which I've found to be the best value for money and the greatest range of products. To the bubble bath base, I added a range of essential oils that I thought would smell nice, mixed it together and put it into some gorgeous bottles, which I also found online, here after hours of searching! The hardest part was getting the bubble bath into the bottles, which I eventually did with a disposable piping bag (after a few messy attempts!). A little photo for you:
My daughter also made her own gifts of glycerine soap and chocolate truffles. The soap was really fun, you buy glycerine and then melt it and add essential oils, colours and even flowers and herbs, let it harden and then cut out shapes using biscuit cutters! Chocolate truffles are also incredibly fun to make with children, as all you do is melt the chocolate, add cream and any other flavours (we added brandy!), let it cool overnight and then dust your hands with cocoa powder and roll into balls!
It blew me away just how much my daughter, Amber, loves giving. She was just so excited to give gifts to people. On Christmas eve, she was busy at her creativity desk, and later on after she'd gone to bed I found this pile of presents, all drawings she'd done, cut out and then wrapped in more paper and masking taped together under the Christmas tree! The wrapping paper said things like "mama" on them and had little smiley faces next to the names! It was so adorable it brought tears to my eyes! She had also 'borrowed' my fabrics and 'wrapped up' some of her toys and put them under the tree, I will never forget her reaction when I opened up her plastic phone and acted really excited, her little face just lit up, it was gorgeous! I love involving her in present making, and I think it will get more and more fun the more capable she gets, as there are still lots of things that are quite difficult for her to manage.

I have loved decorating our cottage this year, being in this home, I have just wanted to spread Christmas everywhere, and I've realised that I'm very much a traditional girl at heart, I love bringing foliage into the house and I love gingham, yep, I'm a self- confessed gingham addict! I made quite a few things out of foliage, including a wreath for the front door, a 'swag' over the fireplace and a table centrepiece. When I was making these arrangements, I kept thinking over and over in my head 'I love this, I was born to do this'! It was wierd, I just got lost in it. Here are some pics:

So lots and lots of photos of our living room! It's so fun to discover that I love something- like foliage arrangements. Christmas has really inspired me to 'get going' and keep making things... I'm seriously hoping I'll have my own little business up and running this year. I'd better have our new baby first though! It's quite fun to  have the 'excuse' of being pregnant, as it has meant that I've had to stay at home, which has given me more time to discover what I love and start playing around with ideas. Even if I wanted to get a job, I couldn't right now and I think it's all beginning to make sense to me. The idea of having a creative business and being a Mum, just suits me down to the ground right now.

I'm hoping I'll be able to blog a big more regularly in the new year as I try and fit everything into my day! I'll leave you for now (as I'm aching as only a pregnant woman can!).