Thursday, July 2, 2015

Working, winter chills and ills....

I have not clocked any time to write, blog, be creative or attend to any business in about ten days. I had no plans for this to be happening, it's one of those things that just happened because the winter chills and ills have hit.

They have hit us hard here at home in a big way and stopped us in our tracks. Some regular winter colds and fevers that appeared in clear in the kids nearly two weeks ago, back flipped and took us all down one by one very quickly from about ten days ago now with bronchitis. 

Ben, myself, Cohen and Sarah have all been very ill with a serious bout of bronchitis with Cohen also suffering a bad ear infection in one ear and a mild one in the other.  The healthiest and happiest child in the house has been Fraser, which is not only wonderful but it has also been challenging with us being so sick and having a not quite two year old with bundles of energy wanting to use us as a trampoline and amusement park, when we have nothing to give.

There has been no option but to pull out all stops on the home front and put all reserves into trying to get us healthy. So there have been a lot movie marathons, snugly blanket beds and naps on the lounge room floor, cuddles and cups of tea and utter mind numbing laziness going on here.

Despite the yuckiness and the feeling that comes with being sick, the only upside has been the wonderful connected and quality time we have been having as a family, all nursing and nurturing each other back to better health this past week and a bit. We are all still recovering as I write this.

Today is my first day trying to get back into the swing of things with blog and business, so as I work to clear a back log of things that need to be attended to expect news coming soon over the coming days and week regarding:

* The up and coming Everything Deco to Retro Fair from July 17th - 19th.
* Feature post about some amazing nursery rhyme family heirloom art.
* DIY/How To post on how to make your own Tape Measure Brooch
* Basic Care and Conditioning of vintage tooled leather bags

So hopefully I will be able to get back into the swing of things and kick the remaining yuckiness associated with this illness. I do hope that you and yours are all well and are doing a better job of fighting off the winter chills and ills than my crew and myself have been.

Take care and when in doubt, take note of below it at least helps warm the soul.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Lady Penelope Farquhar and the Crazy Bird Lady....

I said late last year, when we added to our menagerie it would happen! It would seem like there's a chance I'm turning into a crazy bird lady with another addition to our brood and plans for more.

First thing let me introduce you to Lady Penelope Farquhar, she is a feisty pretty little thing, but settles if you let her do her thing.

I assume you want to know about her name like friends have, so here's the deal. It's just what rolled of the tongue when I was jokingly explaining to the kids how pretty she was and how she deserved a grand name. After letting those three words out, Lady Penelope Farquhar, I stopped a minute to see of I could ponder any other names, and there was nothing else coming to me so it would seem just like that without thinking and with that quick roll off the tongue, her name was born.

In keeping with her being a pretty lady, I have jokingly told the kids that they can't talk about her or play with her unless they refer to her by her full name Lady Penelope Farquhar. I've told them jokingly I'm very serious about this rule (perhaps they haven't picked up on the fact I'm joking), so I'm currently deriving great pleasure from hearing the kids have to stop juggling their way and get through saying her full to finish what they're talking about.

As you can see Lady Penelope Farquhar likes it among the vintage prints and hanging out on my hip, so clearly she has taste. Expect to see more of Lady Penelope Farquhar because we're having a great time hanging out.

We're looking to add a few more budgies to our brood and a larger cage upgrade is in the pipeline and we've even discussed babies. Budgie babies, not human babies, to be very clear. My mum used to breed budgies before I was born so we're lucky to have some experience and advice on hand.

I'm loving having birds in our home, as a child bar a few short periods of time I nearly always had pet birds either budgies or cockatiels. It's nice to be sharing my childhood knowledge, stories and memories with my kids.

Are you a bird lover or give your pets crazy names, I'm getting a lot of laughs from others and asking why the hell would I name a bird that? I say why not! You?

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Finds: The extraordinary people you meet at garage sales......

I have meet some incredible people over the years through my thrifty adventures and I've heard even more incredible stories from how collections were accumulated and how far they traveled. It's somewhat of a beautiful privilege to be passed on such trinkets of information, wisdom and knowledge.

A few weekends ago now we had a long weekend here, on the Saturday and Sunday, I had seen a particular sign for a garage sale but the way the weekend was travelling I was left no time both days to drop by. But given it was a long weekend when I traveled by again on the Monday I saw a sign saying 50% off and they were still conducting the sale. Well as luck would have I had the kids in tow and I did have time on the Monday so we dropped in and I'm so glad we did for so many reasons, far beyond the treasures I came away with.

I'll pepper the post with some pictures of the finds throughout. Like this sweet tin picture of a praying toddler with it's dolly and teddy. Just incredibly sweet and innocent imagery, perfect for a little ones room.

So about the garage sale! It was being held by two beautiful ladies who were full of joy and smiles and were instantly accommodating and understanding with me having my three children in tow. They kept assuring me I didn't need to worry. Unbeknownst to me they had clearly been watching my interactions with Cohen and when I had to address his obsession over ever single animal and nature related thing there, they said:

He's autistic isn't he?

I found it funny that they were able to sense he was in such a short period of time. Cohen is high functioning ASD and most people wouldn't even know that there are a whole array of things we're constantly dealing with to help Cohen. But nonetheless they sensed it and they were right, they instantly said we know, we have three special needs children here.

A sweet 1985 My Child doll with long brown hair, such innocent sweet looking dolls, no wonder they fetch pretty prices these days with collectors, especially those who wish to take the time to restore them to their former glory.

Speaking of beautiful brown haired girls, these lovely ladies introduced me a lovely girl who they were carers for, they explained how she too was autistic and also had cerebral palsy and how autism was her strength.

We chatted for ages whilst I fossicked about in the garage sale offerings, they opened there hearts to my kids and entertained all their crazy carry ons and accomdated Cohen with his endless questions and queries.

These incredible women were such a privilege to meet, so far ahead of me on the learning curve of caring for child considered to be special or of higher needs. They were putting all their efforts into a garage sale to raise money for one of their older special needs child they used to care for who was going to be exchange student in Germany. They were throwing everything they could at raising funds for him so he wouldn't miss the opportunity.

Another woven cane dolls basket, always popular at fairs.

This stack of old vinyl kids kindy chairs send me back to my kindergarten days.

Selfless, open hearted, honest people like these women are just such a privilege to meet and garner wisdom from, it's a wonderful reminder of there being some truly remarkable people living right in our neighborhoods.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Style: Want to try the plaid trend? Hit the Op Shops....

I'm going to start out by saying that I don't see plaid or tartan as fashion trend and a bandwagon I need to jump on to and must get into my wardrobe to be up to date because it's something that is always there for me. It's true that tartan and plaid are having their moment again in current fashion trends if you read the glossy fashion magazines and follow the top designs blogs.

But as far I'm concerned plaid and tartan patterns are classics and they've been around FOREVER, but as fashion and trends go it one that rolls around in many different forms through the seasons and decades.

Simple Sheer Print White Long Sleeve Tee: Retail
Plaid High Waist Shorts: Op Shopped ($1 how cheap is that to try a trend?)
Fishnets: Retail
Brown Suede Ankle Boots: Hand me downs from a friend
Beads: Op Shopped

For me there has always been tartan and plaid patterns throughout my wardrobe since I've been a kid and I've sported crazy yellow plaid and funkiness on the blog before. However if you're someone who would like to give the "trend" a go and aren't sure about if it's going to work for you, let me give you one piece of advice.

Hit the op shops!

Scope out plaid and tartan pieces at the op shops, I swear there is never a shortage of all sorts of variations of tartan and plaid items in op shops from jackets and coats, wool skirts, suits, pants, golf shorts, ties and scarves and more

Don't be scared to check out the men's section too at your local op shops for tartan and plaid pieces they often have some wearable pieces that women can wear with some interesting styling and a play on the masculine feminine look.

My shorts are recent purchase nabbed for a $1 and love them as they have a high waist, I'm also excited to style these further and try some sexy looks with sheer blouses and other pattern mixing and added some stiletto heels. In fact I have a girls night coming up and it's very possible I could rock the plaid to feel fabulous. We will see!

Are you a plaid lover?

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Taking a first timer op shopping....

Stop the presses, there is no normal or standard post here today, there's a different game plan going on here today. Give me a second and I'll tell you what's happening. last night my plans today changed at 8 pm when a friend text messaged me and asked if I wanted to go op shopping with her in the morning to help her search for an outfit for an upcoming fancy dress party.

You don't need to ask me twice to go op shopping of course, but I couldn't do it on Thursday which she had initially suggested and was her preferred option, so I suggested we make it today but it would have to be with our younger kids in tow after we do school drop offs in the morning.

Now why am I telling you all this?  Well my friend has never ever been op shopping before. She quizzed me earlier yesterday about prices she could expect to pay and when I told her she was gobsmacked.

Anyway today's change in plans is sure to have some great laughs, while we are popping my friends op shop cherry and we are wrangling two four year olds and a twenty-two month old.

If you have any advice for a first timer who has never set foot in an op shop before, what would it be?
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