Wednesday, July 23, 2014

beans in winter

We had saved these bean seeds from a heritage variety Jed grew a few years ago. Finding them in a drawer, he asked whether they would still grow. After a bit of research into viability of bean seeds after 2 or 3 years we decided the only thing for it was to test them out. Hence the winter beans.

We germinated them in a mason jar on the kitchen windowsill. We stuffed the jar with damp paper towels and laid the beans against the jar so we could see them germinate. I know I have photos of this somewhere in my bulging photo library but I can't face fossicking around in there just now. Sorry folks.

It never fails to amaze, that little germinating miracle thing. Lain dormant rattling about in a drawer for years. Add a bit of warmth, water and light and hey presto...bean seedling!

We potted them up and they grew beautifully but before I could get them in a polytunnel they they got pretty badly thrown around by that crazy storm. Nutty time of the year to be a bean, but hey, we know the rest of that seed is viable for next season!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

sneaking slices of sunshine

 We are in the depths of winter here. While the temperatures aren't anything near as cold as when I lived in Eastern Europe or even in the Pyrenees, it's pretty darn cold for around these parts. The fire is doing double-time, the garden is very very full of water and we have had some truly massive storms. The hot water bottles are getting a good outing most nights. 
In between the rain and wind the sun just feels so good. We've been curled up reading in puddles of it on my bedroom floor. In between the bouts of rain we try and make the most of the sun on mini-adventures. If it looks good, we'll drop everything, grab the scooter and turn my phone off, and head out.

Yesterday, we got chased off a new town beach we were exploring and raced laughing back to the car. We sat in the rain and ate morning tea, telling stories and looking out at the ships passing. It was a moment. I had to get over myself a bit before I could get there. I was looking forward to walking along this beach and was a bit miffed at the rain. But being miffed at rain never got anyone anywhere, especially not to the present moment. And when I got there, to the moment, to what was happening, it was good. Really good. 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Most Treasured Possession - Dee from Dee*Construction

That means it is time for my favourite thing at the moment:
I have asked some lovely bloggers to share their most treasured possession with us and let us know why it is so treasured. 
Unfashionable in this age of decluttering, simplifying and tiny houses I know…but we all have our treasures.

This week with her Most Treasured Possession is the lovely Dee Rolston 

of Dee*Construction blog. She is also the co-creator (with her husband) of the amazing Needle and Nail and Dee makes the most beautiful dolls as Tiny Eyes. 
Clever much?! YES!

If I'm truly honest, my most treasured possession doesn't really belong to me at all.
But every time I think about the possibility of losing it, I feel devastated and there is really nothing else (that I can think of!) that I feel that same way about.

So, if I can share it with my daughter (who is the actual owner), my most treasured possession is this little notebook called the 'You & Me' book that we write notes to each other in.
You can read more about how and why I started this notebook in this post , but this is basically how it works - my daughter, Jada (now 10), will write in the notebook and leave it on my pillow for when I go to bed. I usually will write back straight away and leave it beside her bed for her to find in the morning. 
We use it to congratulate, encourage, draw silly pictures and it's also a really good way to say the things that are difficult to say out loud. It's pretty much our favourite thing to see laying about ;)

Seeing my daughter mature and learn and question and grow through these back-and-forth notes over the last few years is already priceless and I can only imagine how amazing it will be to see (read) her growth into adulthood in the years ahead. I hope this notebook will one day be as priceless to her as it already is to me.

But I seriously need to get a copy of it to keep for myself before she leaves home!

Wow, I love this idea. That is one super precious book! Thanks so much for sharing this with us Dee. 
And Jada for letting us peek into her world too. 
Have a great week everyone.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

a study in signs

I had all sorts of plans for the end of last week but we got to Wednesday and Jed voted for the rest of the week to be quiet. Not driving anywhere major. It was so nice to let go of that internal expectation I had of needing to do a bunch of stuff in town. It's been perfect. Lots of reading and playing games by the fire. Making good food and art. 

We did fit in a few local adventures to our favourite spots. Me all rugged up against the chilly winter wind, Jed begrudgingly wearing a hoodie over his T shirt, mostly to humour me. I came home with a memory card full of signs from one afternoon. It amuses me how my photography will run along a theme, sometimes I don't realise until I download them later.

It's been so nice to have a change from our usual homeschooling rhythms. We'll ease back into sessions this week. I have a few surprises in store. So fun to plan!

Friday, July 18, 2014

Plant Medicine Workshop next month.

A few of you have been asking when the next Plant Medicine Workshop is. You're in luck, I will be giving one called Kitchen Table Herbal Medicine at the Kaipatiki Project on the 9th of August. 
I learnt from old women in Eastern Europe who had learnt from their mothers and grandmothers. It is simple knowledge to maintain our family's health. It is all of our birthright. Simple, safe and always fun. We learn, we laugh, share morning tea, I bake you something yummy and you leave with a copy of my Plant Medicine handbook. No note taking required. 
I would love to share the herblore with you.
For more information and to book go to Kaipatiki's website. My workshop is called Kitchen Table Herbal Medicine and it's listed under their Nana Technologies category. Do it!