my life

Reading lots of romance novels, nothing worthy, nothing memorable … just sweet dilly dallying on the couch in front of the fire.

Chatting craft and blogs and books with friends, and crocheting again, and baking some brownies (which turned out not as a good as usual).

Enjoying watching the rain, and watching the ducks enjoying the rain and being inside while it rains outside.

Having afternoon tea at our favourite cafe with my sweet kids. Hot chocolates with white marshmallows (no pink ones) and a coffee for me and some potato wedges with sweet chilli sauce.

Finding myself annoyed at my preteen daughter who is in the throes of hormonal upheaval and then reminding myself to be understanding and patient and loving and then realising that I am also a hormonal mess and I should avoid confrontation and arguments when this mood is in the house. Explaining to my 10 year old son that he is likely to have an extremely annoying sister for a few more years yet and then she might turn out to be his friend.

Using up the pantry stores rather than going grocery shopping.

Going for some lovely neighbourhood walks and taking photos along the way. Being observant.

Thinking about what is for dinner tonight – Friday night – something yummy. Maybe a hearty curry vegetable soup followed by chocolate cake, or perhaps roast chicken and roast vegetables with apple pie and cream, or a big bowl of chilli con carne and custard tart.

Finishing up the latest Action Pack Magazine (sneak peek pic above).

Planning what to do on a rainy weekend this weekend, thinking about more trashy novels and more crochet while curled up in front of the fire … and having another crack at those brownies.

Whipup crafty news

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oh and one more thing – do you know of anyone looking for a house in Canberra (Australia) next year – academics on sabbatical for example? Our listing is here.

 

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My here and now

by kath_red on August 14, 2012

in my life

A little midweek photo essay – ‘My Here and Now’. 

 For my birthday I received an ereader – something that I have been researching and mulling over and thinking about. So very glad someone else took it upon themselves to make the decision – A Nook was chosen and I do love it very much. Similar to the Kindle, slightly different shape, but with the same nice features, touch screen and back light for night reading is handy, the Nook takes epub files rather than mobi files, which means I can borrow ebooks from libraries. Right now I am reading all of Jane Austen – which are available online for free from various sources – Project Gutenberg being one of them.

Our fire is going well, we now have a pile of wood to chop and stack, kindling to collect and a hearth to sweep. And amidst the clutter we have a little spring.

What is your Here and Now?

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Happy birthday to my girl

by kath_red on April 25, 2012

in my life

It is my beautiful girl’s birthday today. Otilija turns 12! Such an incredible person - independent and clever and creative and gorgeous. She has always had attitude and is strong willed – nobody walks all over this gal! An interesting life ahead. xx

 

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I turned 40 last year – I wrote a little bit about it then, but recently I have realised that turning 40 changed me in more ways than I at first realised. I have discovered that I care less about some things that I used to think were important, and I care more about other things that never even made it to the surface before.

For example, money: these days money is not at the top of my list, it is not even near the top of my list. It is not that I don’t need it, or think about it, or even worry about the day to day of household budgets or anything like that, it is more that my decisions about how I live my life don’t factor it in — it is no longer a reason to do or not to do things. I find if I don’t have enough money I just live a little simpler that week, we eat leftovers or use up what is in the pantry, if I am running low I don’t buy new clothes or go to the hairdresser – I save the money for the big important things and live simpler day to day. I know for some people money is closer to their mind because of need and for others it is because of greed, but for me money is just a side issue to what is really important in life.

Another example, what people think about me: of course I do still fret about this and I do care what people think — it is probably why I get so nervous public speaking, why I am shy at parties, why I hate small talk, why I am such a homebody … but as I get older, what people think of me or what I think they might think of me is no longer a deciding factor in my decision making process. These days saying ‘f*ck that’ is way more likely! I don’t hang out with people who suck my energy, I prefer to be with people who I can exchange energy with, who make me feel alive, and that is just as important with internet relationships as it is with real life ones.

I have been musing over these two points these last few days, in the aftermath of the f*ck quilt project and the ‘N’ quilt and reflecting on what it all means for me and blogging. How people’s reactions affect what I might choose to post or say here on my blog. I want to discuss advertising on blogs — yes I have a few advertisers on this blog, and it pays for the running and hosting costs and the various things that go into the IT support of the blog, that little bit of cash is nice, it is nowhere near to being close to an income, I don’t think I put enough effort into marketing and managing ads for that to ever happen. So when a few people in the comments of last weeks post asked me whether I had considered my advertisers before posting a guest post, it stopped me in my tracks — no of course I didn’t — why would I? What my advertisers think of each post was not and has never been a consideration of mine. When a business chooses to advertise with whipup they do so because of the large and varied craft audience, because of the longevity and reputation and because they get value for their money. But when some mean folks got a bee in their bonnet and decided to email my advertisers and tell them that their loyal customers might not return if they didn’t stop advertising with whipup this issue became real. Should a blog tell their advertisers what they will be posting in advance? Of course not — But when advertisers come into the mix the situation gets sticky. Maybe bloggers do pander to their advertisers, maybe they do think twice in case of offending advertisers, maybe some blogs are consciously or unconsciously being not so confrontational or real because of a perceived notion of what folks want — it is like the pastelisation of the home/craft blogging world – maybe I sometimes do that too?

If you add up the standard reasons people blog and continue to blog year after year (building a platform, selling a product, discussing a project, sharing a life) and then you remove the items that either no longer or never did apply to you, what do you have left? Once you and your blog evolve past a certain point, it is time to reflect on what/who/why you are doing it all for. For me, after blogging for going on 8 years, I think that my blogging style has evolved considerably, as have the reasons I blog and continue to do so — despite the hard work that goes into it, the soul searching, the writing, the answering of the emails, the behind the scenes maintenance — all of that — despite all of that — I still continue to enjoy blogging — sharing and being a part of this craft blogging community that has evolved with, and alongside, whipup.

This is all to say that whipup is not going to go through any drastic changes, it is a mainstay on the craft blogging scene – an essential component of a thriving and exciting blogging community. Whipup will however continue to evolve and this is just one little step on that evolutionary path to enlightenment. So while I am not sure exactly what form these changes will take, I know there will be a few, but I will continue to post what is real and raw in the craft world – I have no idea where that may lead — but craft activisim and the intersection of art and craft is more prevalent than ever before and I will continue to seek out the interesting, bold and new. But I will still be posting what is important to me and to you in the everyday craft making realm too — crafts for your kids, home and self, crafts for health, for practicalities, for creativity, for charity as well as those crafts that are purely for the joy of it too!

So thank you to readers who have supported whipup over the years and will continue to visit every now and again. This blogging thing is a bit of a roller-coaster emotionally (sometimes) but it is rewarding and it does come with its benefits, so I will be sticking at it for a while yet!

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Lets discuss slow

by kath_red on January 11, 2012

in my life, Newsletter

This year I am trialling something new and old for my newsletters – still going with the same provider who I started with last year, but returning to my old ways with posting the newsletter here at whipup as well. That way you can read it online here or via email – easy for you and easy for me. I would be interested in your feedback – if you are receiving this via email already — let me know how you like (or don’t like) it.

Today I want to talk about slow. This year I am going to concentrate on not rushing, not hurrying, not stressing about rushing and hurrying, and in doing so I am sure I will get more done.

I have started off the year by taking it slowly, easing my way into the routine, cooking slow dinners, relaxing in the evening with a snack and then cooking together with a relaxing glass of wine. I am not going to worry about the perfect meal, not going to rush to the shops to pick up something, instead I am going to eat half an hour later if necessary, or I am going to make omelettes for dinner or allow myself to declare cheese and crackers a perfectly acceptable meal. And then on weekends I will put on a casserole to cook quietly in the corner — emitting delicious aromas — while I get on with the business of life.

I am going to take this slow idea and ease myself effortlessly into housework by not rushing, not yelling, not stressing about a little mess and dirt here and there. I am going to declutter and throw things out or give them away if they don’t have a home. And then I am going to do the laundry only once a week – not every day – yes you heard me not every day! Let them wear yesterday’s clothes for another day if they are desperate. And then I am going to delegate tasks — the boys can clean the toilets! But in delegating I am not going to fuss if it is not done to my exacting standards, I am going to let it be (maybe give some advice here and there — that’s allowed), and let them get on with it with some trial and error. And while we are on the subject of housework, I am going to give myself permission to laze about on the weekends — yes, the dirty cups can stay dirty for a few more hours, I am not going to be cleaning the kitchen for the whole of the weekend — I am going to read my book . on the couch . maybe getting up for a cup of tea . or to update my twitter . so there!

Slow is also my mantra for work, for emails, for this blog and for crafting. I am going to take things one step at a time, write lists to help me get organised, and on those lists I am going to include some fun activities that I never seem to be able to fit in anywhere of late — like spending time in the garden or going for an evening walk, having lunch with an old friend, or starting to make that new pattern I have had bookmarked over on ravelry — lists will become my friend and slow will become my mantra. Will you join me on a quest for slow in 2012?

On whipup this week you might want to read about Sayraphim Lothian’s project Gilding the City or a read about a new book – Soul to soul parenting, make a sleep mask, or perhaps get into some crafty recycling. All good things to start the year off slowly.

If you would like to read whipup in your email, then you can subscribe to this weekly email here.

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