Ambushed – by a moment of happy

I have done and seen some amazing things. I have lived in a war zone and communes, seen the Northern Lights, swum with dolphins in Indonesia, and danced to dawn at festivals. These days, my adventures are of a simpler … Read More

Something I found on my dining room table

I have been thinking about starting a feature called ‘Things mama’s find in strange places’. Seems to me there’s a book or an art exhibition in the odd things we find in strange places.  Yup, this is what I found … Read More

Office on the beach

  I have gotten out of the habit of taking my flash camera around with me. This is both good and bad. Good because it means I hide behind it less and am more in the moment rather than thinking … Read More

when cute turns brute

Remember these cute little critters? Yeah, well they’re not cute anymore. The rest of the ducklings we fostered for Bird Rescue grew up, found homes or swam down the stream into the wilds but not these two. Nope. Tiny and … Read More

summer shoes

My favourite shoes this summer. I had been eyeing some Saltwater sandals online but they were way too much money for me to justify buying them. The next day I was at a school fair and there was a pair, … Read More

Heroic Garden Festival

It’s that time of the year again!  If visiting other people’s gardens is your idea of a good time, take a friend along to the Heroic Garden Festival. You’ll have access to 22 fabulous gardens all over Auckland on the … Read More

Meet Frank

Gah! Is anyone else struggling to get back into the work headspace? I love my work too. I feel for those who don’t have that motivation.  Some consolation is cracking open the new diary. The lovely Julia from Do Good … Read More

Community service

Each year I choose a community service or theme of activism to focus on for the year. Last year I was feeling overwhelmed and needed to put all my energy into finding more work, juggling multiple contracts and keeping my … Read More

Bring on 2017!

I feel so grateful. I started the day doing a huge pile of dishes remembering good times with friends and have spent much of the day in the garden, walking, playing on the land and harvesting. Look at the yellow … Read More

Seasons greetings lovelies.  Whether Christmas, Yule, Solstice or Kwanzaa is your thing, I hope these days are full of all the good things for you.  It’s a hard time for many. On Christmas morning we were walking the dog and … Read More

end of an extracurricular era

I have been a contributor to Extracurricular magazine for years. The latest issue has just landed. It’s always a joy to sit down with a cup of tea and see it all in print. I will miss it. Yes, because … Read More

In praise of stuff.

In praise of stuff. A comment on the culture of a clutter free life: Someone walked into my house and said ‘my, you have a lot of stuff’, like it’s a bad thing. Again. You’d think there were piles of … Read More


After a month out of action because of a back injury, I am back in the garden. It’s such a big part of our lives, this pottering in the garden thing. The growing our own food, tracking the seasons by … Read More

General Collective

What a week it’s been.  We have so far to go, we humans. I have a lot to say about the US elections and the outcome. Others will say the same things more eloquently than me tonight. The hardest part … Read More

Garden goodness: then and now

We’re in the first of the warm spring days. Last weekend was the official start to planting out the garden with summer crops but my greens garden has been going off all winter and it’s still going. I planted celery, … Read More

catching koura

It was the morning after friends had slept over at ours. I had promised to make the boys a ‘training course’ so despite the post-flood sogginess I created a series of activities to do around the property. It ended with … Read More


Jed has wanted to foster ducklings to help out the local bird rescue centre for years. Our new house has a stream running past the front door, a big garden and a fenced off area (for when they get a … Read More


How fabulous are these jocks?!  There are three pairs, but one pair went on straight away and you know, it didn’t seem right to take ’em off to take a photo. Ahem. This colourful lot arrived in my mailbox last … Read More

rainday cape

It’s rained all weekend. Hasn’t stopped. The stream next to the house has broken its banks and the constant rain has turned into a downpour. I am not sure what the garden is going to look like come morning. I … Read More

Proof of spring

Duckduck is at it again. She’s not the most devoted wanna-be mama, preferring to potter around the garden and bask in the sun showers on our deck with her friend Patches for most of the day. But look what she … Read More

colour for spring

As winter gives way to Spring here I find myself drawn to colour. While in an op shop looking for a gift I came across a pile of these vintage blankets. Seriously. There were about six of them. All in … Read More

how things are

The dog and I headed for the hills together after coffee. I’m on a mission to explore the area. We’re still pretty new to the area, even though I lived ten years in a little community a few minutes away, … Read More

last throes of winter

 I stacked all three square metres of this firewood by myself. It took me three days in between work and the rest of life. A few months on and we’ve almost gone through the whole lot. We live in a … Read More

winter fruit

Within a few metres of my front door I can pick a fresh orange and sit in the sun on the bridge and watch the massive eel in the stream.  I really love it here. I am super busy with work. … Read More

Chickweed pesto – Free greens!

I try and eat wild greens every day. Chickweed is one of my favourites. My garden is running wild with it at the moment. It contains potassium, calcium, iron and zinc and because it’s picked and eaten fresh, you benefit … Read More

Wintry goodness

 Phoenix went from sleeping in a patch of sun to tearing out the door in a split second. His enthusiasm was infectious, I found myself running after him. Both times we’ve gone for a walk on the beach we got … Read More

tardigrades and moss

It started with an article in a magazine I picked up at the library. It was about tardigrades, micro-critters who live in lichen or moss worldwide. They are cute, at 1 mm fully grown they are visible under a microscope … Read More

the local dump shop

Sadly I don’t have much time for fossicking in op shops at the moment. We just moved into our new place and needed a few things. Budget was super low so we checked out the local dump shop after a … Read More

RIP Chester – the best bunny

This photo was taken yesterday. Phoenix and Chester hanging out in a patch of winter sun. At my side while I worked. (The rabbit was the boss in this relationship, if anyone’s wondering. )And I say ‘was’, because when we … Read More

Winter garden madness

It was the neverending summer until it wasn’t.  I had bare arms working in the garden ten days ago. It’s been sleepless nights with gale force winds, crazy rains, flooding streams and a frost since. I have been stacking wood … Read More

new members of the family

Meet the new girls. Actually, we took them on when we moved into our new home. The muscovy ducks have lived here much longer than us. They’re free range, love porridge and roost at night on a tree overhanging the … Read More

moving house

I have moved a lot in my life. I lived out of my backpack for vast chunks of time. Or set up house, worked and dreamed in one place for a months or years, then gave it all away and … Read More


I love our library services. We had just moved into our new home so were a bit out of the loop about any holiday goings on. Friends told us about a frankentoys session they’d been to at our local library. … Read More

Learning centre at the dump

One of the homeschool mama’s organised a trip to our local refuse and transfer centre. Otherwise known as the dump. I had no idea the council had a learning centre up there. It was all kinds of awesome. The women … Read More

an advanced version

It took us a few days to build this one. The satisfaction was huge when we’d finished. It was the first build using the motor. That was exciting. There was great fanfare as we switched the motor on. And super … Read More

Hands on homeschool physics

We belong to a Homeschool Science Kits group here in NZ. Every term we get to choose a science kit to work with. This term we’ve had this Fischer Technik Physics set. You work your way through building the different … Read More

Nature immersion

Being in nature always helps. Though I may grumble about ‘not having time’ to go to the beach or for a bush walk or hang out in the forest, I never regret being in nature. It feeds me, grounds me.  … Read More

The Luisa plum

 Luisa plums have to be the cream of the plum crops…they are kind of pear shaped, sweet and juicy with yellow flesh. And taste so good. Our local orchard had ONE week when these beauties were on sale. They went … Read More

100 Acts of Sewing

And so life goes on. With a good measure of sewing therapy to ease things along. I had to admit to being envious of the winner of the big holiday GrowMama giveaway. I promised myself I would buy one of … Read More

So many tears

I have been quiet on the blog this week. Last Sunday I received the kind of call I hope you will never get. A close friend was killed. Our son’s are good buddies. We live just down the road from … Read More

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