enjoyed things, baths, wellbeing, lately

Wed 6th, Aug, 2014

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white flowers coastal vintage style abeachcottage.com


I have been having a calmer, less rushed, more relaxed week this week…towards the end of last week let’s just say the not so nice stuff hit the fan, I thought it was bad and then on Sunday something else happened to make things a trillion times worse…nothing life threatening and really in the grand scheme of life nothing major, but you know when you have one of those weeks?  That was the week that was for me.

On Friday I texted my friend M, who along with a couple of others, had girl-therapied me through things…I told her of my elaborate plans for the weekend and she hit straight back with girlfriend you need to get yourself some down-time…hmmm, interesting…funny when someone points that out to you isn’t it?….so I thought about it a bit and thought she’s right, shelved my plans for the next day, cancelled Friday night, ran a bath, got my oils going (you can read my thoughts on using essential oils here, the Get Well oil recipe we used while in hospital at the beginning of the year here, and if you are interested the blend I use to cleanse the house of yukky things and get it smelling fab here), found my book (which I am loving, leant to me by another friend) and hopped in…2 and a half hours later I emerged feeling a lot better…not really sure why I am telling you this…I guess I am telling you in case you are having one of those weeks, your head is down, your butt is up and you are thinking about everyone else, you are working and keeping it all together and yadda yadda yadda….if you are doing that, top tip, step back, re-group, run a bath, re-charge…so worked for me.

I wrote before here on this blog how what happened to our family was a huge wake-up call to me and from now on I am 100% aware of and determined to partake in, the benefits of slowing down, mooching around and re-charging…I started it once my life was semi back together a few months ago and apart from the few odd weeks where I run around like a headless chicken and don’t come up for air, it’s making me a whole lot happier (you’ve probably noticed less posts on here and though I love this little corner of the web just for me, I love that you too adore quilts, rugs and white paint, it does take time and effort…cutting back has made it much more enjoyable for me…sorry to those who have emailed me re the lessing posting schedule but I’m finding it’s fitting my groove quite nicely).

a beach cottage blog coastal vintage sea trunk blue abeachcottage.com

I’ve been doing  little bit of moving around, including trunks, I haven’t done furniture moving for ages and we are talking about getting rid of the tv in the family room…I don’t know how it is in your house, but here we are finding nowadays that it’s rarely on…none of us watch a huge amount of tv, all of the kiddos are out at least a couple of nights a week with sport and it more goes on for a certain program (like the kiddos love The Batchelor, I have absolutely no idea why, the most cringeworthy show to ever hit the globe for me…like who wants to stand up and get chosen for romance, euuuuuh, shiver me timbers)…so with it gone it would open up the room to a few more different arrangements….because you know, I need to do more furniture arranging in my life.

The blue trunk above (remember that beach cottage beauty with coastal style all over it, more on it here) is one such thing that needs moving around…it didn’t work as the coffee table in here…basically the overall size of the top is too small…we use the back family room a lot to hang out, have cups of tea, do homework on, store magazines and iPads, candles etc and it just worked out too unfriendly for all that…so it’s been out on the other side of the deck for a while, but I was worried out there it would rust too much, and so today I’ve slotted it in next to the chair and wonder how that will go (I’ll show you some more pics soon)…btw if you have any ideas of what else I could use the trunk for please leave me a comment x

abeachcottage flowers

One of the things I vowed to do when re-assessing my whole life and what I do and do not spend my time on, was gardening, unfortunately since the California trip I’ve not done enough of it, so that was another thing at the weekend that took place of the mammoth schedule of things I was planning to do…an arvo in the garden, pottering, puttering and looking up at a gorgeous Australian sky is one of the best downtime activities for me…

But my garden is still not as I would wish, despite all sorts of ideas, plans and schemes, it is a hot, sandy and dry place…no matter how many times I stalk Pinterest and swoon on Instagram at the English gardens in their Summertime while I sit here in the cool Sydney weather, I will not get the garden to be like that, that deep wet british garden full of roses and flowers…even just the colours aren’t the same here in my lovely new land…my garden is bright, the things that work in the heat (frangipani, hibiscus, geraniums) are bright, the sky is bluuuuueee, the light is hot…

And then there are the ******* critters…if this were not a family friendly blog I would be much bluer in my description of them…I planted a whole load of things recently in a veggie bed Mr BC made me from old skirting boards (link is here if you want to read about that), only to get up the next morning and the WHOLE lot had gone, all demolished…nibbled down to the teeniest of bare roots left…every herb, geranium, parsley, sweet peas and the cauliflower and broccoli that I had been nursing for months….I was pretty upset as it had taken me a lot of time and also laid out quite a bit of money…I’ve moved on though, I resolve to beat the critters…I WILL have sweet peas and veggies, I will battle on….

So now, planting round two is about to begin, I now have mesh for my beds (we are pretty sure it’s rabbits doing this, but really, who knows) and I’m getting lots of stuff planted on Friday…more of the plants the rabbits don’t like and more of the things they do to replace the last lot…

herbs abeachcottage.com

When we were in California, one of the hotels we stayed in, in Santa Barbara was absolutely laden down with succulents, these succulents were huge and I guess have taken decades to get that big and lovely…but with what is I am guessing a similar climate (as in warm)  I looked around to see what was flourishing and succulents sure were…they were dotted here, there and everywhere around the hotel and so I thought I would start to establish a few more at home…

succulent cuttings abeachcottage.com

I already know they grow well here in my hottie garden… so at the weekend I started taking cuttings from what I’ve got and also agave and aloe vera cuttings (which I’ve already planted and amazingly they seem to be taking…I just yanked them off the big mother plants, shoved them in the beds and watered…so far so good)….so stay tuned for more on the rabbit avoidance…leave me your ideas for getting the critters the heck out of your gardens too…

In other news, I am still working on Well-being, boring really that you have to make it a thing isn’t it, but after a glut of holiday eating and, quite frankly, being lazy in the weekday daytimes with food, I am back to smoothies, yoga classes and having a sit-still lunch (when I am busy I tend to skip lunch, not good when you don’t eat breakfast either)…the one quick and easy way for me to do good food is a smoothie and even when everything else is bad I pretty much have a fruit smoothie every day… mostly I make my own but I do also buy them from juice bars (if you are local my favourite is the de-tox juice from Manly Wharf juice bar, so good)…

…I think the juice bar juices are good if you are needing goodness, might otherwise eat crapola and, to be honest, can’t be faffed to make your own, though at $8 for a juice here in Sydney, (we were gobsmacked how much cheaper a juice was in the States), someone somewhere is sitting on a very pretty pile of money from celery and kale juice and people who are happy not to pay to make their own…

fruit smoothie abeachcottage.com

I find if I buy lots of veggies weekly for smoothies and whatnot I’m good….I pretty much just buy what’s on offer and so in season and shove it in my smoothies, pop it next to our dinners and at the end of it all furrow around in the bottom of the veggie drawer for soup…suits all quite nicely…

abeachcottage veggies

From this little lot of delicious veggies I came up with the one below…it turned out very green, hahahah, it looks scary right, trust me I thought it would be revoltingly toe-curlingly vile…in it blood orange, apple juice, yellow beetroot, a huge bunch of kale, parsley, a handful of oats…I braced myself for the first slug and omg it wasn’t bad it was truly ok…actually quite delicious…

smoothie abeachcottage.com

…in the sitting down and still for lunch department I always struggle…but I love these Swedish crackers for lunch…easy, quick, store-cupboard and you can top them with all sorts…this one cream cheese and anchovy with parsley…

crispbread abeachcottage.com

lemonade abeachcottage.com

Lastly in my more downtime, more re-charging life we invested in a new chiminea…I bought a pre-loved one a while ago on the internet, paid pennies for it and we LOVED it….after the fire-pits we had before we love how much easier the chiminea is, how warm the clay gets, and how it looks nice…that was in the Autumn though and the first part of Winter, as it’s gotten chillier here we found it too small for us all to sit round…I did a bit of research and rather than another clay one, opted for an iron one (it’s supposed to get hotter..it does), where the top comes off and it doubles as a barbecue and pizza oven (oh yah)…with the smaller one we were precariously balancing chorizo kebabs and all sorts of things across the top and we knew we wanted to be able to ‘cook’ or at least warm on it…so one with a grill was the way to go…and now it’s with us and I lurrrrve it (always good to take a photo of the thing you are talking/blogging about, sorry I thought I did…anyway below is the wood for it)…just call me a lumberjack…

firewood wood basket hunters abeachcottage.com

And that really is it, I’ve rambled, I know, but hey, now nice is it to sit and ramble to a little corner of the web who love the same…

Be seeing ya, stay tuned for the next instalment of Beach Cottage What Will the Critters Eat Next and Where Will that Vintage Blue Sea Trunk Live.


white flowers coastal vintage style abeachcottage.com

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14 Responses to “enjoyed things, baths, wellbeing, lately”

  1. Alison says:

    Excellent ramble. Very comforting after the day I had yesterday. Yes, damn those critters. I’m over them too. I had an excellent smoothie recently-baby spinach, banana, milk and peanut butter. It was icy cold so maybe the banana had been frozen?

    Keep rambling,

    • Sarah says:

      I hope your day wasn’t too bad! mmmmm peanut butter, nice in smoothies, yeah I use frozen banana all the time for smoothies – especially good to pop them in the freezer when they are on the turn xxx

  2. merilyn says:

    morning sarah! and Alison we’ve been around for a while!
    I am glad you’re “back baby!” … very clichéd I know!
    loving your posts covering all and sundry … that’s what is missing from other blogs and why I came to you in the 1st place … what ever you can put out there at the time is good with me! always popping by to look at recipes etc.
    prolific lately I thought! enjoy downtime when needed!love m:)X
    abc … still my favourite blog! … thanks hun! <3m:)X

  3. Kathryn says:

    Hi Sarah, I found that with the rabbits in our coastal town of Metung in Vic, and the snails are bad too but they don’t touch the succulents, & gazannias which come in lots of bright colours, not to mention the agapanthus that come back every year. Wish you had a twin in this state, I would love to have you in my neighborhood, ps watch ABC Gardening Australia Sat 630pm for organic tips compostings etc, love that show. Have a great weekend.

    • Sarah says:

      thanks yeah I am starting to record gardening australia so I can learn more…I will try gazannias :)

  4. Selby says:

    Hmmn not sure if there’d be room but might the trunk make a good ” boot box” shoe tidy type thing in the front hall?

    • Sarah says:

      yes thanks I hadn’t thought of that, it’s just big enough to slot in around by the shoe cupboard and I think it would look nice… x

  5. Oh my goodness..gardening!! I SO need to get out in mine and do something…anything…before Spring is upon us!! And I do believe that pretty blue trunk is crying out to live in your bedroom…how good will she look parked on those white floor boards?!! Xx

  6. Helen says:

    Kia Ora Sarah, really enjoyed this post love the journey you walked us through, family, gardening, down time, looking after yourself are all timely reminders we have to care for ourselves in order to care for others. Regards Helen

  7. Helena says:

    any room for that trunk in your bedroom or the boys? – it is so lovely!