Hi friends – something a little new here on the blog at this half way point of the year.
I have long wanted to join in with Emily P Freeman’s monthly post and link up called “What I Have Learnt” which covers anything from the profound to the trivial to the simply fun that she has learnt in the month just gone. (You can read one here)
The thing I’ve found though as months have come and gone, is that I’m not all that great at articulating what I have been learning, big, small or anything else. Any one else like that? But I would like to be. So as a way of easing /tricking myself into paying more attention to what I’m learning, I thought I’d start by paying attention to what I’m doing and enjoying and finding because that tells us things too. Worth a try. So this is my first “What I have Found” end of month post. It‘ll be things I have found at the op shop or online or possibly in my garage because I’m always finding random things in there to paint or fix up or reminisce over. Remember this find? It will be things I’ve found interesting, fun or inspiring as well and maybe some others I haven’t thought of yet. There will be an element of “just because I like it and you might too” with hopefully a good balance of house shaped and heart shaped finds.
So yes I am going to just go ahead and assume that you are as interested in a good find as I am. So here goes and if you have a favourite find yourself feel free to share in the comments.
Lets start with something practical.
1. I found this cane basket at my favourite op shop – yes I know its just a basket like a million others and I know they’re not at the top of everyones must have list, but me – I have a soft spot for a sturdy cane basket. They’re just the handiest things to have around and this one just so happens to have helped turn my school morning rush around. I started putting it on the corner of kitchen bench in the morning and throwing everything I need for the day when I walk out the door in it. Wallet, phone, book, glasses, snack, paperwork/letters etc. Now you might think ” well I have a handbag for that purpose”. Good point and I do too but it wont sit neatly on my bench – it falls over and I can’t see into it at a glance – so this just works better for me. Now I don’t take it into the shops or to the bank or out for coffee because I am not 3 (or 90 for that matter). It just it sits on the passenger seat in the car and I have things at hand when I need them.
2. This well loved copy of Under The Tuscan Sun. Found in a rambling country shop in Berrima on a cold, blustery and wet Saturday afternoon when most normal people were at home. So warm and cosy in the shop we hid out in there for a good while and my apologies to the owner, despite the loveliest range of clothing, artworks, stationary and homewares all I bought was this book off the 2nd hand book rack.
So of course I’m reading Under the Tuscan Sun a good 10 years after most every body else has. The movie is one of my favourites and as many a movie goes they didn’t let the truth get in the way of a good story which is fine by me but its been a feast to read the original memoir where the countryside and the food and the buildings and Bramisole itself are the leading characters. And as with all books your drawn head and shoulders into it’s not long before you find some of yourself hidden in there. Its always these stories of fixing up and pulling straight and uncovering beauty that’s been there all along that speak to me loudest and hold me longer.
We arrive at the house dazed by the events and the grappa. Anna and Lucia have washed the windows and exorcised layers of dust as well as many spiders webs. The second floor bedroom that opens onto a brick terrace gleams. They’ve made the bed with new blue sheets and left the terrace doors open to the sound of cuckoos and wild canaries in the linden trees. We pick the last of the pink roses on the front terrace and fill two old Chianti bottles with them. The shuttered room with its white washed walls, just waxed floors, pristine bed with new sheets, and sweet roses on the windowsill, all lit with a dangling forty-watt bulb seem as pure as a Franciscan cell. As soon as I walk in, I think it is the most perfect room in the world. page 23
What this snippet leaves out is the total shambles the rest of the place is in. Too good. So during this cold and rainy June I’ve had a little trip to the warm Italian country side each time I pick it up. What drew me in – apart from all of it – wasn’t the idea of escaping to an idyllic life in Italy (although who would argue) but the theme of appreciating and celebrating the good and simple things in life and the reminder for me that that has much less to do with location than we might think. This Instagram feed has been a perfectly timed slideshow to my reading.#tuscanywritersretreat
3. Speaking of books I found out how to reduce my long list of “must read” books without spendings big $. (My kindle for mac app has had one lonely book downloaded on it for ever and my Pinterest board of Books To Read was getting longer and longer). So I now follow the authors of the various books I want to read on Instagram and they very nicely let you know when the kindle version of their books are on sale. $1.99 for some, $2.99 for others. Now thats a find.
(Another option is to subscribe to the Amazon daily deal and it is tailored according to your search history. How handy is that). So I think I might have gone and learnt something after all and it’s just how much I love to have a good read on hand. A good book – like a friend you can always turn to for a little quiet, solace or even a laugh. Not all of them deep and soul searching, some just a soft place to fall.
4. Next find was a couple of Fan Iris’s.
Now I would really love to say I found them at a beautiful nursery that sold amazing plants and pots and coffee and homewares and that they called my name from across the top of my cappuccino – – – but I can’t. I found them on sale in BIG W. Yes thats just how glamorous things get around here.
So I mention Fan Irises like I chose them especially but I’ve had two empty cement planters for so long that I truly didnt care what went in them. The tags on the Iris’s said “loves pots”, there were two, they matched, they were on sale – so Fan Irises it is. I’m hoping with a bit of TLC they might show me some blooms at the appropriate time.
5. I found this short, to the point but truly inspiring post “A Filmmakers Journey” by Mitch Teemley.
It’s my goal as a filmmaker to impact people’s lives. But will I? How many people will remember Over-the-Rhine (or my name, “baby”) a thousand years from now? Heck, how many people will remember it five years from now?
Read more of this post here
And this one
The Magical Key to Doing it All – and of course there is no magical key to doing it all. This one is so worth the read.
Each of you has the capacity to do what’s important to you, but there’s no way that can include everything. If you expect a perfectly clean house, manicured yard, homemade food on the table every night supplied from your flourishing vegetable garden, a fulfilling job, margin for personal creativity, community with friends and family, involvement in the community, 60 minutes of daily exercise, time to read and watch TV, and all the other things you think you should do, you’ll literally become an insane person.
Read more of this post here
6. And I found this very lovely instagram feed @brushed_ interiors Its decorating on a budget at its prettiest and finest.
I found out, which means maybe I learnt – that even when everything in my world seems to be going to hell in a hand basket (a sturdy cane one probably) that it really isn’t. That there is always a way through, that there is always One who leads, One who makes a way when I haven’t the slightest clue. We know it and then there are the days when we live it for real. This Women Connect post says a little more.
So thats my finds for June. What did you find?
Love from my home to yours