29 January 2013

do you like shacks?? i took photos of stacks!!

Greetings all,
I have loved shacks, sheds, barns, machinery-lean-tos & rambling old broken down cottages, forever.  I recently took a string of photos of such visual delights up & down the Pacific Highway between Sydney & Brisbane.  I wasn't sure if they would be well received & posted them on Instagram . . . it appears many of you like #stacksofshacks too!! 
 Some are quite long barns, industrial & booming in their day.
 They have been left to the elements . . . 
 to reveal the most beautiful weathered wood & rust.
 Really loved the feedback on this image - referred to as a 'salty car window at high speed' filter.  It's not perfect & i think that makes it even more special, even with part of the car window blocking out the bottom corner.  I'm not a professional photographer & don't pretend to be either.
 The dramatic skies & lush paddocks add to the character of this cottage.
 This mossy shed was my favourite, collapsed & consumed by the landscape.
 I much prefer these open machinery sheds with light flooding through . . .
 because these dark enclosed sheds freak. me. out.  Creepy!!
 The lean on this old gutted barn is amazing.  
 You can just spy the Clarence River in the background of this image of an open shed near Grafton, so this would now be completely flooded over.  I've seen some lovely old wooden shacks lifted off their foundings & floating flooded rivers in Queensland on the news.  Crushing.
It was pretty lush & waterlogged when i took these images a month ago, the water will have nowhere to go but create a massive flood plain.  Heartbreaking for the locals.  Stay safe flood victims, love Posie

26 January 2013

happy Australia day!!

Greetings all,
Happy Australia Day!!  
We're celebrating with banana smoothies, lamingtons & Australia-shaped watermelons - a surprisingly good taste combination.
 Looking through snaps on my phone - i found this quintessential Australian landscape shot, across Lake George, on the curve of the home stretch into Canberra.  To me, a Sydney girl, this is now very much my home, in my heart & my mind.  
 Of course, Canberra is the only inland capital city in Australia, so a trip to the beach isn't happening today, although it is scorching hot today.  Our Christmas holiday stay on the water in Yamba, North Coast NSW, is a memory, a very happy one.  We'll always have our Basil Bangs beach umbrella though, i could gaze at that fringing all day, actually i did!! 
Have a gorgeous long weekend Australians, love Posie

24 January 2013

i make stuff, i'm a mum - should i start my own business??

Greetings all, 
"I love what you do, i make stuff too, should i start my own small business??"  
This is something i have heard countless times, especially when i was in the height of my design business 2-5 years ago.  While i am positive & encouraging, you have to seriously think about why you want to - the driving forces, positive & negative.  If you told me it was so you could be your own boss as your current one is awful, oh hells no, change jobs instead.  
Being your own boss actually means EVERY SINGLE CUSTOMER IS YOUR BOSS.  You are accountable for every detail.  
You put in long hours, it's your heart & soul, it's incredibly personal running your own business, it's a challenge to switch off.  You need to be extremely strong minded, dedicated & determined, enormously talented & highly organised.  I was in the 'children's things industry' as i had young children, it was the world i lived & breathed, i knew my demographic.  However, back in 1999 when i was a new mum, sewing as a hobby in Darwin, websites/ on line shops weren't happening.  I was honing my skills while working full time in the oil industry, making/ selling bags, soft furnishings & baby clothes to friends/ family.  
Keep your business small & make small mistakes.  Be patient for growth, then you will handle it with grace & skill.  
It wasn't until 2001 when i had twins & farewelled a salary, that i realised my potential.  By then i had experience, feedback, a growing range of products & was ready to turn it into a business.  I never took a loan, i never paid for childcare & i never got into debt.  I would sell a bag & invest that money in business cards.  I would sell a quilt & reinvest the cash in materials.  We moved to Sydney & my husband went to his second war zone, i had all night to sew & create (being a wife takes up a lot of time!!)  I started babysitting two little boys & their mothers kindly took my products to their work places to sell (in the magazine industry, hello, free follow on advertising!!) 
I let my business grow slowly & was able to maintain being a dedicated mother, housewife & babysitter - preparing my sewing during the day - then sewing at night without distractions.
When my 4th baby arrived, i took my business on line, after the near impossible search for a web designer.  I now had 6 children in my charge most days & as the orders increased - so did my efficiency.  I'm a high energy person & the children were fantastic.  I specialised in custom design with orders from samples, so i never had excess stock.  A year later my eldest daughter started primary school, twins commenced preschool & both boys i babysat moved away . . . circumstances change with small children - they grow up!!  Then we moved back to Darwin & i started attending markets.  I waited until my son was weaned at age 2, then took the readymade stock i had & paid $20 to do a stall at the local Sunday markets.  I think i made $100 in 6 hours, the feedback was encouraging & i was cross questioned as my products were new, different & exciting.  It was exhausting, however, i had fresh ideas & American fabric shops were finally shipping to Australia = my fabric range increased & i started selling fabric too.  I attended that local Sunday market each fortnight & built up to larger handmade markets - as my confidence, abilities & range increased, so did the income.    
Then we moved to Canberra - with an affluent & larger population - i invested in an EFTPOS machine.  People holding $20 worth of products would say "oh you have EFTPOS" & gather up $200 of products!!  It's not cheap to maintain the machine, however, they are essential at large markets if you want large sales.  This is where my business hit its peak, doing about 6-8 high end markets a year & stocking one select store . . . i closed the wholesale label down too.  Among all this, my husband went to Afghanistan 3 times & my 4th child started primary school . . . my interest in being a 'just a mum again' beckoned & i needed surgery on both my wrists (carpal tunnel) so i put the brakes on my business & refocussed, 18 months ago.       
 My big tips for small business, especially handmade . . . 
your friends will be nice & not tell the truth. You will know if they really love & believe in your products, as they will a) put their money where their mouth is & purchase them, & b) happily tell all their friends = flow on sales.  That makes them paying clientele, making you a real business, i.e. making money.  Listen to feedback, do your research, check out the competition - attend markets as a customer, ask a million questions (many people don't realise they are giving away all their secrets, some share happily) & be really honest with yourself - capabilities, stress levels, skill set & time you truly have to dedicate to this. 
If possible, save up before you commence your business/ start as a serious hobby while you are gainfully employed, then reinvest money from your initial sales into your business - try to avoid a loan & if you do get a business credit card, control the spending.  Avoid over ordering & getting swept up in the next new product trend - your competitors can undercut you/ advertise better/ be more popular with a great reputation, you're stuck with dead stock.  It's very difficult to break into any market now - cupcakes, dresses, candles, toys - as i'm afraid to say . . . anyone can get an Australian Business Number, create a website, order wholesale, copy your handmade products & sell on line.  There are also plenty of mums running businesses on line for the passion, joy & stimulation . . . they are very wealthy & not desperate for sales.  They are still your competition.  There are many different reasons why 'mumtrepreneurs' exist.  
Check your ego, do you want to be able to say you are a designer or actually make money??    
Business advisors will say "it's a small business when you pay yourself a weekly salary, otherwise it's just a hobby."  While i understand this, i also feel we work-from-home mummies who are creating an income while still caring for our own children, all sales make a difference as we're still doing our own child care/ washing/ cooking/ cleaning/ IT/ web maintenance/ mail/ materials purchasing & production . . . my on line side of the business has always hummed along slowly, compared to the commission work & major cash injection from quarterly markets, i could never balance 'a steady salary' as i paid for fees, fuel, food, fashion & fun.  My husband's income took care of the big expenses & investment property mortgages.  If my husband was highly paid, i'd JUST be a mother sewing for fun, however, the money i made was essential to keeping us financially afloat.  If i wanted to earn the big bucks, i would have been a pharmacologist, but imagine 4 children in care & the hours + commute & fortune i'd spend on outsourcing, it would never sit right with me. 
My handmade goods developed as a wholesale label 7 years ago (when my son started preschool) . . . selling in 50 stores around the world.  Along with my collaborations/ designs/ patterns/ ideas/ products being published in several craft books & 100s of glossy magazines, my commissions included clients like Opera Australia, BazMart, John Butler Seed group & various festivals/ events/ markets.  It all sounds amazing on paper, however, it's hard work & calls would come through my mobile while grocery shopping with 4 children.  I always had 'mother & creative director' on my business card as i refused to apologise for being a mother or having children in the background, my children always came first, i didn't factor in overhead charges to my prices, clients appreciated that 'discount'.  
If you're yelling at your children to be invisible, work-from-home is not for you.  Imagine how they feel??!!
Now i have come full circle & refer to myself as a 'semi-retired-designer' & i'm selling off my stock on line, no more markets, i'm focussing on my children (next year i'll have 3 in high school, i don't want to miss a minute) . . . that is what suits our family now.  My husband has just spent 3 years living interstate & overseas, away from us, i want to spend my evenings with him, not my sewing machine.  It would be near impossible for me to work in my actual field (Pharmacology) + i have zero plans to retrain or study again.  Being a full time mum with some random orders on the side, suits me at this stage.
An essential part of working from home & small business is communication.  Social media is free, use it!!  
People love to learn more about the person behind the business, via social media & see the full range of your products/ abilities.  I started my blog when i developed my wholesale label & started posting regularly 3 years ago to compliment the strong local following my business held.  Later i started Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest & most recently Instagram.  While my business is on hold, i have 6000 followers to interact with & maintain my passion for design & communicating my thoughts.  You must be internet savvy, even if you only do markets, i assure you - half the customers will ask "do you a have a website??"  You really must be able to say 'yes' & hand a business card/ information slip over, even if it's a blog address, Facebook site or etsy shop.  
If you have committed to being a genuine stay-at-home mother yet have the urge to make money, you really have to make it fit into your own spare time.  It's not fair on the family.  A part time job would be much easier than starting your own business.  Like my pathway - circumstances change, you have more children, then they start school, you move interstate, husband goes away to 5 war zones - my sewing & the income it derived - sparked my intellect & on top of all the savings i made (breastfeeding, cloth nappies, making all our meals from scratch, no holidays, no babysitters) . . . it's totally paid off in the long run + my children understand the value of a dollar, they are incredibly creative & REALLY appreciate their parents.
Finally, if you can't handle high pressure, your children have special demands & your husband isn't going to support you, it would be one miserable journey of work-from-home-mummy you are about to embark on.  
Never put off having sex with your husband because you have an order to fill - that's the direct path to resentment.  
You simply can't fool yourself.  Will the running costs outweigh sales if you can't give it 100%??  Possibly.  Websites, accountants, materials, shipping all add up.  I cannot stress how fierce competition is, no matter how lovely your product or unique your skill.  Tap into a niche market, you might get paid what your product (materials, labour, design, ego) is worth.  While i have excess stock i purchased wholesale, i can always give them away as gifts i'd have to pay retail for, so nothing is a loss.  All my fabrics will be used up personally, eventually.  My handmade items . . . i'm happy to sell them at a discount, i had my time as the popular one, in the limelight, i made great profits & i was top of my game, i'm now moving on.  Posie Shop sale continues.  
I hope this advice was useful, from a 12 year small business veteran.  I have so much more to write about . . . Intellectual Property . . . hunting down clients & stores who don't pay or play fair . . . my opinion on paid commissions . . . getting too personal on business social media platforms . . . falling out with colleagues . . . holding your own against the competition . . . perhaps in a different post.  Love Posie

22 January 2013

why is breastfeeding even a 'debate'??

 Greetings all,
So why exactly is breastfeeding even a debate??  
Straight up, i agree that if you are breastfeeding in public, you should be discreet.  However, breastfeeding is not a debate, it's natural & wonderful.  End of story!!  I can't recall EVER seeing a mum breastfeed in public, where i've seen 'nipple' or more than the top of her breast, above the baby's head.  I see a sweet baby, then realise it's being breastfeed, i smile, move on.  Ditto all the men in my family.  If i saw a full bosom, i'd think "that was not necessary" & dismiss it as a boob-on-the-loose when babies suddenly pull away & leave you bare naked.  Before i became a mother, my experience with breastfeeding was that my mother couldn't breastfeed any of us, yet my sisters-in-law had breastfed my nieces & nephews.  I just assumed i would breastfeed - it sounded GREAT!!
It was!!  I had a fantastic obstetrician & midwives (same set for each pregnancy, delivery & birth) who delivered my babies onto my chest & asked "want to give breastfeeding a go??" &  that was the beginning of feeding my first born for 18 months.  I worked full time & was able to express easily into a vacuum pump - 1L per day (she was a hungry & active one!!)  I expressed at my office during lunch (i was the only girl & the ladies bathroom was also the Sick Bay, so i had privacy) FYI expressing is VERY different to breastfeeding!!  I would NEVER feed a baby in a toilet - or a parent's room for that matter, they are HORRIBLE!!  I fed my daughter anywhere, anytime, tucked under my top, no shawl.  As my job in the oil industry involved many dinners/ galas/ opera/ events at the finest venues with senior executives, i'd collect my baby from her Nanny & take her to dinner, breastfeeding at the table (my husband was in East Timor when she was 3-10 months) . . . she was so happy, quiet & we were discreet . . . even the CEO would tickle her feet & not realise where her head was attached.  It's possible, it's peaceful & well practised.  These were men of the 1960's & when they realised i was breastfeeding they'd say "magic, better than them crying!!"  My father thought breastfeeding was absolutely incredible = the calmest babies who fell asleep at the breast, no dummies or rocking, they were out cold for hours after a feed.  
Next pregnancy i had twins & fully expected to breastfeed them too.  Twins were fantastic, i used up all the milk i had each feed & finally experienced feeling 'empty'.  I twin fed with their heads together, bodies under my arms.  Here they are a few hours old, they were 6kg combined & arrived naturally at 37 weeks, no need for oxygen; twin 1 was delivered & handed to my husband, twin 2 delivered onto my chest, then i was passed twin 1 & told "they look hungry" so another 18 month journey of breastfeeding commenced.  I never twin fed in public, that required a large foam pillow & coordination + i had a toddler . . . on the occasion i had to feed them while i was out of the house, i'd do one at a time, ye olde fashioned way.  Twin feeding is boobs galore!!
 When i had our son, same routine, only this time i wasn't stopping at 18 months to get pregnant again, so i fed him until he was 2 years old.  Now that goes into the tricky area of breastfeeding ages, he was starting to 'help himself' by lifting up my top.  To me that was enough & my husband wanted my boobs back too, i was turning 31, he hadn't touched them since i was 23!!  Oh boy had they changed.  Now my breastfeeding journey was wonderful, i never even had a red nipple, i had plenty of milk & was able to breastfeed full time beyond the 12 month mark, it was very natural & easy for me.  Financially, we never had to purchase a single tin of formulae for babies or toddlers, our children never ever had a runny nose, cough, cold, infection or conjunctivitis.  Thank goodness as we had 4 children on under $40K, before baby bonuses were available.  I also did cloth nappies to save a fortune & toilet trained them before they were 2.  This is just how it happened for us, i was encouraged to breastfeed, i was supported by my husband/ Nanny/ workplace & never experienced negativity - apart from the twin club saying breastfeeding twins was impossible - i didn't accept that.  The most unhelpful comments come from your peers sometimes!!
 There is something i loathe . . . just because you have had a child, you don't have to be some invincible "i am woman, hear me roar" everything-about-me-is-now-amazing & i'll fight anyone who says otherwise.  You are not the first or last woman to have a baby.  Yes, it's wonderful, but don't jump on every criticism - you'll exhaust yourself . . . many bizarre ideas, comments & assumptions will fly your way as a mother, you have to get over them, especially if they come from a man, don't attack - educate.  If it's in the media - it could well be a stunt & COMPLETELY taken out of context by competing channels.  The MOST important thing you need as a mother is self esteem & confidence, so if someone asks you to move along or cover up while breastfeeding you can handle it - after checking you don't have a stray boob-on-the-loose - say "actually, i'm fine right here thank you, it's perfectly legal & natural" rather than fall to pieces, no matter how confronting.  You are your child's advocate, save your energy, as there are plenty more challenges in your parenting future.  
While i'm here, i never understood mother's meeting in cafes either??!!  Children want fresh air, parks, play equipment, freedom . . . especially if you have a toddler along.  Plenty of room for your prams, easier car parking & many venues have coffee facilities too.  I don't drink coffee or eat morning tea, so maybe i'll never understand the cafe crowd??  I know i felt a lot more comfortable (physically) breastfeeding on a park bench or picnic rug than in a shopping centre.  Love Posie

18 January 2013

choosing chicken breeds for your needs

 Greetings all,
I am constantly asked about keeping chickens - how, why, which, what, when & who.  It's quite flattering as while i'm a huge cheerleader for the backyard chicken, we haven't even had them for a year yet.  I do my research & a lot of love, goes a long way to keeping animals alive, happy, fed & flourishing.  Toss in 4 eager pairs of hands to help, you have tame, friendly, healthy & vibrant pets!!  
Today was a scorcher - all around Australia - 40C here in Canberra with a hot wind blowing in your face . . . & we were off to collect a couple of 3 month old Plymouth Rock pullets.  WHEN: we've only had baby chicks in Winter, keeping them alive during -5C nights was quite manageable with their feather coats & older hens' wings to snuggle under.  Of course, as new borns, they were indoors under heat lamps on tiny blankets.  Raising chicks over Summer requires water, shade, cool breezes & more water.  
HOW: our chickens have a coop (bought on line, half the price of pet stores, even with delivery) under waterproof shade cloth, with extra nesting boxes, all elevated on crates - off the ground.  We have extended the chicken wire from the side passage - the full length of the garden, so they have over 40m of wandering, under hedges & shrubs too.  Chickens prefer covered spaces with trees overhead, so don't discount the idea of extending a chicken run around/ including bushes, they'll love you for it.
WHY: we chose Plymouth Rock chickens today, for a few reasons . . . a) it's a breed we haven't tried yet, b) we could purchase some locally, c) they are beyond pretty with amazing feathers, & d) they are both an egg laying & table bird breed, something to consider when we move to a real farm to produce our own 'meat'.
 WHAT: we prefer the slow growing breeds - so their legs can hold their weight.  The average/ inexpensive chicken raised for supermarkets are fast growing (it's all about profit, maximum turn over, mass production) & their legs cannot support the weight of their 'huge breasts' = cruel.     
WHICH: a mix of breeds is fun, interesting, aesthetic & an adventure.  We have Spangled Hamburg, Pekin Bantam, Rhode Island Red, ISA Brown, Wyandotte, Araucana, Silkie, Indian Game, Plymouth Rock & cross breeds.  The Pekin Bantams would be my pick for young families - so friendly, easy to handle & not at all overwhelming, loving a cuddle; the Wyandottes are nortoriously unfriendly, shy, aloof & our Saxophone (white Wynadotte) prefers to stare at a fence than let us love her.  My favourite is the Araucana as they lay coloured eggs (blue, green, lavender, khaki) & they know they are the princesses, soak up the attention, love a little adventure & are so pretty.     
 WHO: this is 'who' humans??  Chickens thrive on a wonderful variety of healthy kitchen scraps, ours adore the animal husbandry & time we put in - cleaning & freshening up food, water, scratch piles & nests.  By extending the run to the back fence, they have a hill to wander, endless places to dig cool dirt nests during the hot days & chat to us through the wire/ windows/ gate all day.  They lay a fantastic amount of eggs & we appreciate it.  One day we will breed a table bird group for eating, but we won't tell them that, just give them the best lifestyle . . . until it's our dinner time.   
I would invest in a couple of books, don't overwhelm yourself with internet searches & information, keep it local, then experiment with different breeds, starting off with ISA Browns is excellent - they are fabulously friendly, inquisitive & produce almost an egg-a-day, however, they are very common.  We use The Contented Chook from the ABC Shop as it's Australian, filled with common sense, ideas, recipes & local know how.  They require simple feed, water, nesting boxes & perches.  
Above all, they make the most lovely pets, with interesting personalities & quirks.  They are fantastic school holiday entertainment . . . teaching children the highs & lows of real life, love & loss.  You have to ensure your chickens are safe, from foxes, hawks & dogs.  Some chicks stop thriving & fade away, but best give them a fighting chance with absolute security.  
I've been tagged on Instagram #5shotinstachallenge theme #chooks, if you want to see more.  Enjoy, love Posie

16 January 2013

an iced tea Summer adventure

Greetings all,
I'm new to tea drinking.  I loathed the smell of my mummy's can't-get-out-of-bed-without-English-Breakfast morning cup of tea, so when i decided to start drinking tea last Summer, aged 36, i wanted it to be fresh, tastey, organic, caffeine free & without milk.  So i went into T2 for ideas, bought a couple of their iced tea jugs & started experimenting.  I like it weak, i like in a glass stuffed with fresh herbs & i like it icey cold.  Very different to what i thought 'drinking tea' was all about. 
 Best of all, my children enjoy it too - coloured water to them - they play around making ice blocks with cold brewed tea, brilliant!!  Now T2 teas are the expensive trendy option, so to reduce the cost of my drink adventure, i bought some Twinings tea bags (Raspberry, Strawberry & Loganberry to be precise) & popped a tea bag in a tap-water-filled 1L bottle, gave it a swirl & popped it straight into the fridge.  After a few minutes i removed the tea bag (to my sheer delight, it slid on out) & left it to chill.  It was delicious & how simple??!!  25c baby.  Use two bags if you want a stronger flavour, then toss tea to the hens.  
So our Summer afternoons look a bit like this - cold grapes, fresh mangoes, iced tea & homemade iced tea blocks.  FYI ice tea doesn't stain white laminate kitchen counters like food colouring does!!  
I take jugs of iced tea to the pool, i would never buy iced tea (more sugar than coca cola, are you kidding me??!!) & have a neat little picnic while escaping with a home lifestyle magazine, almost every day.  We usually drink it with a straw too, so no teeth staining.  I learnt that from The Hills - thanks gorgeous girls!!  Love Posie
PS i used to sell these ice block makers in my on line store, they sold out quickly every time i restocked, i do have the rocket ship version, on special for a song!!

12 January 2013

eleven opinions on the eleventh

Greetings all,
What a full-steam-ahead new year we've experienced.  On New Year's Day we drove from Brisbane to Canberra & since then . . . we've checked out more local farms for sale, started training for a triathlon (the 14 year old girls programme, don't laugh at me) & i've turned the house insideout during my biannual psycho clean.  Invigorating!!  I'm also powering along over on Instagram, just completed a Vignette Challenge & now i'm doing a series . . . Stacks of Shacks, with images of the shacks i photographed from the Pacific Highway at high speed while holidaying on the north coast of NSW.
Before i thrust my opinions on you, imagine soothing dolphin noises.
I receive lovely, kind & sweet comments about being nice, friendly & fun on social media.  Why thank you, however, i also have an opinion, or eleven . . . on everything!!  I've done around 50 Social Commentary Sunday posts now, proving very popular with wonderful engagement . . . so here goes something new.
1. It's a new year = everyone proffering empowering quotes like "be yourself, everyone else is taken" & "don't let the bastards get you down" . . . so here is mine - you cannot control what people think of you, perception is reality, run with what you love & your happiness will be contagious
2. I really don't understand the hype about Justin Beiber, however, i really like the duet Beauty & the Beat with Nicki Minaj, i can't help but sing along.  He sings like a breathy girl anyway, suits my one-tone-voice. 
3. Les Miserables the movie is brilliant.  I grew up with the musical masterpiece . . . the cinema version is gripping & fantastic.  Hugh, Russell, Anne are all excellent; the children were amazing; Amanda Seyfried completely stole my heart; handsome Eddie Redmayne was perfect; & Samantha Barks who played Eponine - broke my heart, she was INCREDIBLE. 
4.  I think fire works are a waste of money & create pollution.  I appreciate the idea of a sky spectacular, but seriously, millions of dollars literally blown up in coloured gun powder??  NYE in Sydney is getting out of control, sure it's a tourism investment & 'gift to the people' - perhaps half the size & divert the funds to where they are really needed.
5. The only way they can ruin MasterChef Professionals - is by over advertising it.
6.  Australian Mummy Bloggers Making Stacks of Cash.  I'm Australian.  I'm a Mummy.  I'm a Blogger.  I'm not Making Stacks of Cash.  Do i have a problem with it??  Of course not.  I believe the professional blogger's content improves with the paid promotions, their grammar certainly does!!  If you don't agree, unfollow & support someone else - don't join a disgusting-hate-filled-forum (available for public viewing) to bitch about them!!
7.  Are you guilty of posting on social media, that you are "so busy" - there are a limited amount of times we need to hear from people each day, get your job/ errands/ tasks/ children's dinner done  . . . so you are not "so busy!!"
8. Is posting holiday snaps of your amazing beach house/ exotic island trip/ cocktails by the pool at a resort . . . boasting??  I quite enjoy the free holiday by viewing them, if you have the cash flow to spend, good for you.  If you don't & you're jealous, leaving hate filled comments doesn't help anyone - the happy holidayer or feeding your own misery.  
9.  Taylor Swift breaks up with boyfriend.  Who cares??  Surely someone that impossibly busy can't have a relationship with anyone beyond her immediate travelling business posse.  Certainly not with someone who is also famous/ busy/ travelling.  She's young, she's meant to date, break up, date, break up.  Why is this a headline??  Use that prime-time-celebrity-news-spot on one giving their attention to a charity instead.  
10. John Travolta.  He's a QANTAS Ambassador & at all the G'Day LA events (celebrating Australians in Hollywood) having a ball.  Have we forgiven/ forgotten all the accusations/ divorce situation.  I'm not a fan, so i haven't followed it.
11.  Even healthy eating, vegetable juicing & home-bake-from-scratch mummies like me eat McDonalds for dinner with their children once in a while.  I have been cleaning like a maniac for 3 days straight, my husband is interstate for a week, honestly . . . it was McDonalds or nothing tonight, this post would have not happened without it as i was physically spent.  The children were shocked with the treat & enjoyed it.   
I think i might do this every month - solving the world's problems with my opinion pieces.  In the meantime, i've still got my head buried in the sand!!
Pippi Beach, Yamba, north coast NSW, we had a fantastic holiday.  Love Posie

08 January 2013

Summer is bush fire season in Australia

Greetings all,
Skies over northern Canberra tonight, smokey from grass fires & we've heard sirens all day.  I know many of our wonderful (& handsome) firemen are off into NSW fighting fires as they are at the mercy of catastrophic conditions - where things here are under control.
It's still pretty steamy here tonight, i think i'll flick the air conditioning on low to sleep soundly.  Such a luxury - i know many people are without electricity or running water.  Thinking of them all, those still in danger & the heartbroken who have lost everything.  Stay safe Australia, love Posie

06 January 2013

social commentary Sunday . . . 'hopes & dreams for 2013??'

Greetings all,
Well hello 2013 & happy new year!!  I didn't meant to leave a 2 week gap between posts, we're just back from a wonderful Canberra-Sydney-Brisbane 3000km beach holiday, which was too dreamy & busy to blog!!  
I have a mix of plans for this year . . . some personal, private & pure; others public - to play out on social media.  I want to get back into creating on a daily basis, i miss it . . . i want to earn the time to do it though - family, housework, exercise & health comes first, or i'll end up over doing it again (FYI 11 months ago i had surgery on both wrists/ 18 months ago i completely burnt out physically, mentally & emotionally from sewing non stop professionally for a dozen years!!)  Always seek balance . . . tick.
Publicly, i am only going to commit to light & pressure-free social media links, like #lifeflashes for Donate Life week.  I just can't keep up with daily/ repeat/ multiple memes.  Only commit to really special causes . . . tick.
This was our view of sunrise on the first of January 2013 - heading out of Brisbane back to Canberra, about 4a.m. by the time we hit the NSW boarder.  The roads were empty & we took our time doing the 1201km journey, with 4 active children & a German Shepherd!!  Lots of beach stops down the coast. I love waking early, i achieve so much more in my day & sleep more soundly.  Wake at sunrise, even in chilly Winter . . . tick.
Walking on a treadmill is one thing, going to the gym is another, however, walking in nature is incredible.  To do it with my husband each morning while he's on leave, is magic.  We see things each other doesn't notice.  So i'm not going to renew my gym membership, instead, commit to yoga,  running & cycling from home.  Workout - outdoors . . . tick.
 We haven't taken a family holiday at Christmas before.  Sure we've stayed with family interstate & had 'holidays' exploring new cities we're posted to with the Army, so this was a really big deal (expensive) but so so fabulous!!  We don't need a break from our lives, or our children . . . our holidays are not an escape, they are just a change of backdrop.  As we live inland & want to purchase a farm this year, we can't afford a full on serviced apartment beach stay again, however, we can take beach trips on weekends, it's only 90 minutes to the coast from Canberra.  Visit the beach more often . . . tick.
 In the meantime, this view will stay with me for a very long time.  Spend more time daydreaming . . . tick
 Do you have grand plans for 2013 or will you just make small changes & soak it up like me??  I turn 38 this year, sounds so grown up & sensible.  It's a big year for our family as our eldest daughter starts year 9, apparently the 'dreaded' year of school, but she's too beautiful to turn evil quickly.  Our twins are in year 6 & will rule their school, then this time next year, will be trying on sack sized dresses for high school!!  Our gorgeous boy, my baby, is 9 & in year 4, like a flash, he's a young man.  They each got stellar school reports, fantastic grades, wonderful comments & best of all, they show plenty of personality.  They are truly, the people i hoped & dreamed them to be, only so much better!!  
Wishing you well for 2013 & if you're keen on Instagram, check me out at Posie Shoots where i post a few photos each day.  I'm loving this smart phone caper.  Love Posie