From little things…

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                                           Love deeply, love often

I want to start something. A general interest group, if you will. For people with interests such as the environment and sustainability, cooking, crafts, books, vintage and up-cycled fashion. I want to meet with like minded people and come up with creative ways of sharing sustainable ideas. Ideally we would have a creative and DIY attitude to grass roots sustainability. I’d love to hold gatherings and discuss everything from vegetable gardening to op shop finds to book reviews. I want to encourage people to get back to simple, fulfilling hobbies and run work shops on various topics. I’d love to see this group have a voice in the community and be able to affect change, albeit on a little scale (to start with). 

Sharing ideas and talking to others is such a rewarding and stimulating activity and can inspire, nurture and grow ideas. Anything is possible with support and all great things start as ideas.

I’m going to work on this and see if I can get some interest from those around my local area. I’m not talking weird ‘hippy’, sit in a circle and share our feelings and hold hands type group, rather a get together for people who have notions of wanting to change the way they do things and those who know a little already, all wanting to share experiences and have a chat, probably around a picnic and definitely over good, locally brewed coffee.

That is the idea I had whilst running this evening. Any further and I’d have had plans for world domination…..

From little things, big things grow.

E. x

manners, please.

Offering to share his morning tea.

Offering to share his morning tea.

I’m a bit old school when it comes to manners. I think they matter. I’m constantly surprised when young children actually use them, which I think is terrible.

I have a couple of very simple rules with OB that I hope will help him in the future to show respect and courtesy to those around him. I’m not a crazy-rule-Mum by any means but I think a few simple expectations on his manners are a good thing.

He must ALWAYS say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ when necessary. This includes saying “May I please have…” when choosing something from a shop and talking to the shop attendant. He always says “Thank you” when we leave a shop, whether we have purchased something or not.

At dinner time he is expected to help me. He ‘sets’ the table for me. OB must ask to leave the table before getting off his chair and once dinner is finished he must take his plate, cup and placemat into the kitchen sink.

All of these little things are working (mainly) very well and he knows what is expected of him. Just don’t talk to me about the ‘toddler attitude’. 🙂

E.

Bits and Pieces

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How we look when on an historic steam train ride, yo!

I have been a busy bee recently and I am loving it! I have been trying lots of new recipes, hunting through secondhand shops and being an awesome homebody. The last one is something I’m working on and I have to say that I think I’m making progress.

A big part of my focus this week has, again, been on simplifying and appreciating the little things. I managed to visit a dear friend of mine from primary school that I haven’t seen face to face in years. I also had the pleasure of meeting her girlfriend for the first time. OB and I had the most relaxing and fun afternoon with the girls, playing in the local park, taking a stroll and making lunch together. These simple activities, when done with people who mean a lot to you, all of a sudden become something special and note (blog) worthy.

Seb made an exciting purchase at an auction way out west over the weekend. He bought two beautiful, old wagons that are going to be pulled along by his steam roller (of course!). They are big, made of wood and steel and Seb believes them to be an integral part of his ‘Steam Empire’ that, apparently, he is building. Ha! What a weirdo. 🙂 His quirks are what I especially love.

OB just loves all of Seb’s train and steam related ‘toys’. They bond over it and it’s very cute. I have purchase an annual pass to the local steam train ride/museum located in Seb’s hometown. Now, whenever OB wants to go on a quick steam engine ride or peruse the many aisles of historic railway carriages and locomotives, we can! It wasn’t particularly expensive and I know that we will definitely made good use of it. They also have beautiful picnic spots and a glorious park. I envisage many mornings spent walking up to the museum with a packed morning tea of homemade treats, brushing up on our railway history, eating our spoils and playing in the park before strolling home again. Sounds tough, doesn’t it?

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Getting informed and fired up, People!

In unrelated news, I have given up on the fiction book I was reading in favour of Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer. Far more my style of writing and definitely my kind of subject. I’m only 30 odd pages in and I’m hooked. That’s where I’m going as soon as I finish typing here. I’m a little embarrassed that I haven’t already read it but better late than never, I guess?!

The op shops have served me well recently and OB’s winter wardrobe is shaping up nicely. I unfortunately missed out on a gorgeous hand knitted, maroon jumper with a train pattern across the front due to a lack of small change. However, in the same trip I did find him some ‘never worn’ winter slippers with proper soles for $1 and I scored a beautiful vintage striped dress for $8. It will be perfect for layering when the cooler weather finally graces up with its presence. My goal is to only buy secondhand for the winter season for OB. I definitely think it’s achievable. I’m keeping a running tally of how much I have spent so I can report back here and hopefully inspire some readers to consider buying more secondhand and therefor reduce the demand on mass produced items and encourage the support of charity clothing stores. Stay tuned for an update on that!

As an extension of that, I have decided to try my hand at making OB’s winter pyjamas. I’m keeping my eye out for cheap and cute flannelette material. I have a few projects for my own wardrobe but I’m going to start with our winter pyjamas to brush up on my skills.

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New vintage find and really good coffee!

Recent adventures have included another coffee trip to the viaduct in Picton with my love as well as quite a few different and local parks with OB. We have had A LOT of rain here recently which kept us holed up inside for many a day. We popped open the craft box and got our glue on! Baking and cooking has also kept me occupied and OB has been getting involved wherever he can. Pouring is apparently his ‘thing’, so he has told me.

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The best bit. As if you don’t do this, too.

I have a couple of projects that I’m keen to try and I will keep you in the loop with their progress. One involves large pieces of wood and the other pom poms. As you can tell, I like LOTS of different mediums when it comes to creating and I think it’s what keeps me interested.

I’d love to know what you’re planning for the cooler months. Sewing, soups, adventures, goals?

Peace.

E.x

I Heart Veganism

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Some beautiful and inspiring books on the ethics of food and the benefits of a vegan lifestyle.

I had been an avid vegetarian for ten years. It always felt good, but not great. There was often a part of me that questioned whether or not to go further and become vegan. I used a lot of excuses and I often felt as if I didn’t have enough knowledge and or self belief to be able to stand up for what I believe in.

Life experience over the last couple of years has given me a lot of confidence in myself and consequently, the conviction to be vegan full time and to be able to explain to people, when they inevitably ask, why I have chosen this lifestyle.

Last December I decided that it was time to make the change and stick to it.

I always knew my best friend (Hi, Ella!) would support me all the way, she always does, but I was a little concerned about telling Mum and Dad and my partner, Seb. Boy, was I silly to worry. My parents have been through my previous attempt at veganism before and, whilst the don’t understand it, they were supportive enough. My partner on the other hand was, and still is, SO supportive. I nearly cried out of relief. This is not to say that I thought he would be super negative about it but it is a totally new concept for him. He and I go out to cafes and restaurants quite a lot and I was worried he would see it as a barrier to a favourite activity we share. He asked me why I wanted to make the change and once I explained it to him, he was nothing but supportive and understanding.

It’s funny how sometimes, even when we think we are strong, we can still be reliant on the approval of those we love. I don’t give two hoots what Joe Blogs thinks about my dietary choices, but when it comes to those closest to me, it matters. I guess it’s a two way street when I think about it because those that really care about you will understand why you do certain things and love you for it all the more. There is definitely a relief and comfort from knowing that those closest to you have your back and you can count on them to support your endeavours.

I have a couple of friends who are vegetarian but none who are vegan. This is not a problem thanks to the amazing world wide web where I constantly find inspiration and support for the cause I so passionately believe in. Instagram is another medium that facilitates that community feel when it comes to being a vegan. I love that this connection can feel so strong and be so inspiring. I feel as if I identify with this ever-growing community of like minded people, even if it is through pictures and blog posts. (Through these networking opportunities I have also come to the realisation that I NEED to be in Melbourne. full stop. NOW  *sigh* I will live there permanently one day and soak up all the juicy goodness that the city offers.)

Anywho, back to veganism. If you’re thinking of making the switch but can’t quite comprehend explaining the ‘extreme’ lifestyle change to those around you, I urge you to press on, start the conversation and know that there is an entire community of like minded people out there, people who live cruelty free every day and are all the better for it. And at the end of the day, only you can make those choices for yourself. Stick by them and the sceptics will see the benefits, if not in your overall physical health, they will notice it in your outlook, your demeanour, your ‘gumption’ levels because you will feel better for it, if you believe in it.

OK, rant over. This applies to anything, though. It just so happens that my experience is with veganism and I also totally dig it.

Stay true.

E. x

Passion // Environment // Change

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Oh, boy! Am I inspired and buzzing! I have just read a couple of articles in the latest issue of Peppermint magazine and my heart is a flutter! In years gone by, it would have been because I need that new watch or am busting to try wrap my nostrils around the latest chemically enhanced fragrance. Not any more. It’s because I feel empowered. I feel as if I can make a difference and that ‘1’ doesn’t look like such an insignificant number anymore. I am excited about the beginning of a vegetable garden and sustainable and ethical fashion.

If you read my ramblings regularly you will know that this is not a new found interest of mine but a slow burning fire that has recently ignited and filled me with passion, drive and a sense of purpose. Nothing has ever resonated with me so deeply as playing my part in creating a sustainable future. My words are failing me as I type as I cannot describe this feeling in my chest with near enough clarity or feeling.

It is deep, it is real and it is here to stay. 

I have ideas whirring around my head of swap meets for local parents, creating a book club, writing about everything I am learning, making new goals for my family and the part we can play in making the planet greener. Shoot- not even the over ripe bananas are safe! They’ll be a vegan cake by the end of tonight to share with loved ones tomorrow.

I almost can’t type as quickly as the words are coming to my head and I know I will have trouble sleeping tonight.

Clarity of passion is something relatively new to me but damn, it feels good. The topic of sustainability makes sense to me, like nothing ever has before. It sits right, fits right and puts a fire in my belly! 

I’m off to pen some ideas and then make a beautiful zucchini and cranberry loaf. Vegan, of course. 🙂 I’ll definitely be doing some dancing while I mix as well. haha

Peace.

E. x