Thursday, November 6, 2014

on the eve of 37 . . .


life is full and it's rich. i feel a true contentedness. even with the daily struggles. there's a deep to the core gratitude for all that i have. these beautiful, crazy, demanding people i share my life with. who give me so much. fill me with pride. the buzz of family life is constant and loud. i crave quiet and calm. time in my own head. but i feel the intensity of the early years starting to fade. these small people are growing bigger. slowly stepping out from under my wings and into the world. life feels good.  

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

back again | taking stock . . .














Making : lists and plans
Cooking : lemon pound cake via my primal pal helen
Drinking : kombucha first thing every morning
Wanting: less stuff and more time
Looking: forward to a broome holiday
Playing: twister with elliot
Deciding: to run a sewing workshop
Enjoying: a bit of sleep at last
Waiting: to plant out the veggie patch
Liking: trips to the beach
Loving: the change of season but
Pondering: how little rain we've had
Considering: getting an au pair
Watching: out for snakes
Hoping: to take some art classes
Marvelling: it's 20 years since i finished school
Needing: not much 
Smelling: lemons
Wearing: open shoes again
Following: yogagirl 
Noticing: broad beans growing
Knowing: i should be in bed
Thinking: positively
Admiring: energetic people
Sorting: room by room
Buying: sam a birthday gift
Getting: a load of pig poo delivered
Bookmarking: yoga sequences
Disliking: blowflies
Opening: my book every chance i get
Giggling: at baby words {back-pack, weet-bix, piz-za} 
Feeling: moments of bliss
Snacking: less 
Helping: aila sound out words
Hearing: frogs outside
Wishing: you all well

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no better way to launch back in than with a bit of taking stockthe pictures are some i took for elliot's school a while back. it seems i haven't picked up my camera since we returned from melbourne. my apologies for the recent radio silence in these parts (and thanks to those of you who let me know my blog was down) - an extended blogger enforced break and a matter of finding the time to sit down and work out how to fix it. it's good to be back.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

this boy | my heart . . .






he is demanding and delightful. crazy and cute. he has a way of making himself heard above the constant noise of daily life. he ensures he is noticed even though he is the smallest. he has planted himself firmly in our family. when i pick him up his little arms reach out. they hook around my neck and he pulls me in close. if i'm lucky, he smacks his lips together three times, before pressing them squarely on mine. he seeks out danger at every opportunity. a hot oven. a sharp knife. something to climb high and leap fearlessly from. he is walking and talking at a rapid rate. racing to keep up. taking on the world. he leaves me utterly exhausted and equally elated.  

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{photos taken on our recent trip to melbourne. we had the pleasure of calling this gorgeous place home for the week}

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

when friends come to stay. . .


when you pick up where you left off all those years ago. when your children buddy up and find firm friends in each other. when you share so many passions. when you experience the coldest wettest run of days you can recall. when you have so much to catch up on. when you feast on plenty of good food. when every seat around the table is filled. when the house buzzes with excited energy all day. when there is calm and conversation at night.
it truly is a wonderful thing.

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{photos by tamsin. such a treat to hand over the role of photographer for a bit.}

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

at the olive grove | picking and pickling . . .






pictures from a wonderful long weekend at the olive grove. the cousins enjoyed catching up and spending some time together. i think we all did. i returned home with a bucket full of green jumbo kalamatas ~ picked by many hands, big and small. right now i've got them soaking in a brine solution. my first attempt at pickling. i'm using the method that judith used {you can find it here}. all going to plan, they'll be ready for eating in the next week or so. 

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{i'm so thankful that judith kept her blog. i can hear her voice when i visit there.} 

Monday, June 30, 2014

around here . . .


there's a chill in the air. misty mountain mornings. arms full of kindling. a fire to feed. breathtaking light in the late afternoon. extra blankets at night. there's are a trip to the nursery. holes to dig. trees to plant (chinese tallow, liquid amber, silver birch). renovations to the chook yard. a pile of bush poles to work with. there are fruit trees to prune. a worm farm being built. there's some kombucha brewing. a bucket of kalamatas pickling. there are mid-winter celebrations. wild and wet lantern walks. a baby who can walk (but chooses not to). there's end of term tiredness and tears. talk of plans for the school holidays. dear friends coming to stay. plus a little trip away.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

things i learnt from the whole 30 . . .


for the month of may sam and i committed to following the whole 30 program.

no grains. no dairy. no sugar. no alcohol. no legumes. for 30 days.

what we did eat, was a lot of meat and veggies. pleanty of eggs. some fruit. some nuts. healthy fats. good quality whole foods.

it's a fairly rigid way of eating, but for 30 days it's pretty achievable. the benefits were well worth it.

when you remove the bread, pasta and rice from your plate, there's a lot more room for veggies. i felt like i was really feeding my body. i felt good.

i ate a lot of food on the whole 30. three cooked meals a day. big huge servings. filling up at meal times put a stop to my all day grazing. (but because i'm still breastfeeding i needed a substantial snack in between meals too)

i spent a lot of time in the kitchen. making everything from scratch. mayo. sauces. bone broth. nut milk. i found a lot of great new recipes and realised there is so much you can still eat within those strict guidelines.

for the most part, i didn't really miss alcohol. a sparkling water with a wedge of lime and a few ice blocks was my substitute. enough to trick my mind that i was having a special drink. most days at least.

i now realise that when i drink wine it's the sulfites in it that make me feel like death the next day, more than the actual wine. i'll steer towards organic wine from now on, when i can.

i thought i loved dairy but it turns out i can live without it. it's like i've lost the taste for it. i'm making my own almond milk now. i'll eat a little cheese and butter here and there, but too much dairy makes my stomach feel sick.

i realised that gluten makes me feel pretty yuck. reading wheat belly a while back had already convinced me i was better off without it. cutting it out for 30 days sealed the deal.

when i eat well, i sleep well. i seemed to have more bounce and less drag. even with all the usual baby related night wakings, i woke up feeling fresh and ready to start the day.

eggs for breakfast is where it's at for me. a cook up in the morning rush is a bit of extra work, but well worth the effort. it keeps me full and fuelled like nothing else can.

i didn't weigh myself for the 30 days. instead i tuned into the other changes going on in my body. i noticed how my foggy head cleared. how my clothes fit better. how my energy levels were steady and carried me through the day.

i'm not sure if it was the absence of sugar or grains or dairy (or maybe all three), but i lost the sticky out belly bloat that usually haunts me. i felt lighter too. even with all the meat i was eating.

i discovered that i love licorice tea. all of my life i've only mildly tolerated herbal teas. this is one i truly enjoy.

i bought a couple of new cookbooks (this one and this one) and found a lot of new recipes to try.

the amount of meat i was eating on the whole 30 felt like too much for me. i think i function best with a few meat free days in my week. i was happy to go back to simple soups and salads for lunch.

since we finished the whole 30 i've been baking a lot of healthy treats from wholefood simply. easy recipes which are generally grain, sugar and dairy free. i can recommend this banana bread recipe. (i make it up as muffins and keep them in the freezer for lunch boxes)

at the end of the month i'd lost 3kgs. that wasn't my main motivation for doing the whole 30, but definitely a bonus!

possibly the biggest thing for me was breaking my deeply ingrained food habits. the sweet something at the end of a meal. the all day grazing. the way i would unconsciously finish off what the kids had left behind. the tired and emotional eating. i feel like i've rebooted that part of my brain.

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when i first heard about the whole 30 i thought it sounded ridiculous and extreme. then after a while i got curious about people's claims that it had changed their life. i'm glad we did it. it has definitely shifted the way we eat and the way we feel. 
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i'm rachel. i'm a thirtysomething mother and wife. i'm a maker of things. i'm an op shop trawler. i'm a gardener of sorts. i'm a champion tea drinker and scone baker. loving life on the south coast of western australia.