swapping social media for simple pleasures

The world can feel a bit much sometimes. We’ve trouble stirring in our little community, with someone anonymously campaigning against dogs (not quite sure how else to describe it) and rather than talking to owners, going straight to the authorities. … Read More

Thinking out loud: about life, death and summer

Evening walk on our nearest beach – extra points for spotting the dog doing a meerkat impersonation After a long rainy spell, we’re suddenly in summer. Even the overcast days are warm. Evening walks and picnic dinners as the sun goes … Read More

Thinking out loud: I want the whole story

Photo credit to Giacomo Ferroni  Reading through the blurbs of each fabulous woman in the NEXT Women of the Year 2018 nominees list I was wondering why I wasn’t grabbed by their stories. Every one of them is doing amazing … Read More

Thinking out loud: the danger of bubbles

We live in houses or apartments that are fenced or clearly delineated from our neighbours. Often in neighbourhoods made up of people similar to ourselves.  Yup, some of us live in bubbles.  We leave our homes to get into the … Read More

Thinking out loud: On social media

I wobble between loving my facebook feed and needing to take a break from it. I love that it has me feel connected to people I love scattered all over the world, and for the ways some posts inform, inspire … Read More

Taking stock

Taking inspiration from Pip (over HERE) in taking stock: Making: the Fen dress. Longsleeved this time, in a navy linen I’ve had stashed for the just the right pattern.  Cooking : lasagne. The ingredients were out on the bench but … Read More

A different kind of Christmas

I used to despise Christmas. I was uncomfortable with the consumerist hijack of a religious holiday and the societal pressure to have your Christmas look like a Hallmark card. I was sensitive to the highlighting of poverty as people stretched … Read More

Counting blessings

 In our last moving house episode I unearthed this cup. It was mine when I was a girl.  It used to be stained on the inside from Ribena – does anyone remember that stuff? We loved it and I remember … Read More

School holidays rantypants

My son and I were talking about different parenting styles today. The conversation grew out of overhearing two mamas at the mall. Their kids were all within earshot while they commiserated about how hard the school holidays were and how … Read More

Blurry guavas and slumpy creatives

It’s been a great guava season and not much else great happening. Even the ports on my laptop are fried so I am reduced to taking photos on my phone. Hence the blurry guava. Gah. I have to-do lists in … Read More

A single mama sort of birthday

Oh my goodness, how to respond to the lovely texts saying they hoped I was spoiled rotten for my birthday today? My lovelies, I am a single mama. There was no breakfast in bed, no gifts, no cake, no sleep … Read More

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

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

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

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

Tis the season

For years I avoided the consumeristic side of Christmas. I lived overseas for a big chunk of my life so it was easy to go bush, or just work through and avoid the commercialism of it all. Now, with a … Read More


We visited friends today. They have four new chicks to raise and integrate into their flock. It was stinking hot. It’s gone from freezing winds to baking summer weather in a day here. We hung out with the babies in … Read More

a different pace

Every now and then I get a glimpse of the young man Jed will be. The baby/toddler/and young child days are long gone. He is doing more activities than ever before, taking on more responsibilities, is more focussed and needing … Read More


I learn a lot from the sea and it’s shores.  It is constantly changing. The colours, the waves and tides and what the high tide brings to lay upon the sand. I can never predict what the sea will do. … Read More


A great thing about having a dog now is we HAVE to get outside a few times a day. It is easy for us to get caught up in our projects and classes and work inside. But outside is soooo … Read More

balls in the air (and on the ground)

When things are hard at home, everything else wobbles. That’s my experience anyway. And when the wobbles are on a repeat cycle, ill health can creep in. It’s just that much harder to keep the balls in the air. I … Read More

lemon, honey and ginger

 Jed and I have succumbed to colds and have been laying low, keeping warm and enjoying the homefront. Our little lemon tree is laden with fruit and I am so grateful to have homegrown lemons on hand. I use them … Read More

Rantypants: Why Homeschool?

Rantypants. This could  be a new feature here on GrowMama. Today I tackle homeschooling and the myriad reasons why folks choose it. I was in the unfortunate position of overhearing someone who has known my family for years rant about … Read More

seasonal fruit

Feijoas and lemons from our trees, tomatillos from next door, apples, mandarins and pears from the orchard just over the hill. It’s as seasonal and local as it gets. Oh, except for the pineapple lurking in the fridge…that’s from a … Read More


We talked about martial arts for years before we visited classes and found one Jed felt comfortable with. And came to love. He’s only been doing karate for awhile but he practices all the time. At home his training is … Read More

hold onto your hat busy

I miss you! With things being hard and busy my end I haven’t been here nearly as much as I have wanted to. I have had my hands full here at home lately. I’ve had a bunch going on. Foremost … Read More

somebody likes meditation

By the time I get time to do yoga and meditate, I have fed everyone, we’ve run wild down at the beach and Phoenix is ready for a nap. Nothing like a warm lap for a snooze. This is about … Read More

Our own Easter bunny

The long Easter weekend has been a blur of sunshine, egg hunts, a 13 hour catering gig, swimming, cocktails by the pool, 1920’s fancy dress, bunny antics, therapeutic sewing, good friends, puppy shenanigans and deep reflection. Not necessarily in that order. Day … Read More

rainbow moko

The little guy surprised me with this beautiful rainbow moko. I love all the colour and shape and movement. Especially how one area flows into another. Which reminds me of a random thing. We were playing Junior Monopoly and talking … Read More

The beetroot motherlode

I am loving greens, peppers and beetroot from the garden. The beets especially. Grated into a salad or in a juice, something about the nutty freshness and the zingy colour is just happiness.  There is nothing like a health scare … Read More

the small things help

It’s been a full time. I am struggling a bit. It’s strange…things are easing yet now I fall (just ever so gently) to pieces. It is safe to now I suppose, there is space for it. Ups and downs of … Read More

The very very hot summer

Summer. It’s been a stonker of a summer here in New Zealand. We’ve pretty much been swimming every day for two months. Many an afternoon it has just been too hot to do much of anything but flop in the … Read More

Taking stock:February

Joining in with the wonderful Pip Lincolne and taking stock. She provides the list, I free associate late at night. And will either cringe or be cool with it in the morning! Making : lists of things to do. I am … Read More

kids work

Jed solved a dilemma for us this week. He’s figured out that the space under the deck of the sleepout is sheltered from the rain and dew and makes a jolly fine place to hang our garden tools. Revolutionary! First … Read More

Seven words

In my line of work and in the circles I roam in, I get to hang with a bunch of different naturopaths. In my work at East West Organics the staff are all into various modes of healthy living and … Read More

thanks and goodbye 2014

LOOK here 2014…you have been a doozy.  I had no idea what I was in for. I went gaily into you all full of lofty plans and am coming out the other side somewhat out of breath. You had your … Read More

snapshots from the road

This is my current favourite hat. Every five years or so I find a hat I love and it becomes a kind of temporary trademark. This felt one is the hat of the moment. We’re partway through a holiday roadtrip … Read More

slowing it down

I strive for a simple life. Somehow, the busyness has snuck up on me. It’s a cycle. Balance, peace then…taking on a few new freelance jobs, a workshop here and there, a few social engagements…fast forward a few weeks/months and … Read More

not being graceful and therapeutic sewing

Goodness. What a week. What a month. Or quite possibly, year.  I haven’t been managing to juggle all that is life very gracefully lately. At all. I have been running around trying to make things on time, always feeling like … Read More


Every year when our spring seeds start to germinate, there is same pause. An intake of breath. A moment of wonder. A heartbeat of gratitude for the simple miracle of a seed beginning to grow and reach for the light. … Read More

1 2