The First Hundred Days

It has been exactly one hundred days. 

I checked. 

One hundred days since I last went to work, outside my house. 

One hundred days since I reached for the remote control to the building’s carpark. 

One hundred days.

The freeway lanes have changed. There are barricades up, and the emergency lane is now a traffic lane. 

The new rail overpass is finished. They’ve removed the old tracks I used to drive over, and laid fresh bitumen. 

I think they’ve painted the balustrade of the building’s spiral staircase, but I’m not sure. 

I missed 100 phone calls. 100 even, over 100 days. Isn’t that weird?

I missed watching a whole season unfold. 

Last time I was on the street where the office is, the trees were full of green leaves. 

Today, the trees were bare. 

I missed the everyday unfurling of autumn’s beauty. Just like that. 

I missed one hundred days of looking up as I drove to and from work. 

One hundred skies. Sob. 

Hundreds and hundreds of awesome songs on the radio. 

Cyclists, pedestrians, colleagues, packing leftovers for lunch, filling the car with petrol, deciding what to wear… all missed. 


I have missed these previously ordinary things, and I’ve come to enjoy the new rhythms of the last hundred days.


I wonder what the next hundred days will bring? 

I truly hope that we will see the curve flattened out again, as some parts of Melbourne go back into lockdown tonight. 


However your your last hundred days have been, I hope the next hundred are mostly good days. Days where you notice the light is different at 5pm, or you see evidence of a new season bursting into life. 

May there be lots of days when you really enjoy the people you are “stuck with” at home. May we continue to be kind to each other, appreciate what we have, and be the first ones to step back when public spaces we are sharing are tight. 

Let’s cook through our stockpiles of tinned tomatoes, chickpeas, rice and pasta before we fret about getting more. If you need TP, let me know!! 

A lot can happen in a hundred days. 

Don’t forget to #lookup, wash your hands, and keep me posted by dropping a comment below. 


Annette xx 





Taking Stock: February


February is almost over already… can you believe that?! Great time for a stock take, don’t you think? 

I’ll dive right in, with thanks to Pip Lincolne for the prompts. 

Making: Marks, using watercolours and pen. 

Cooking: Burgers. Lentil and mushroom bolognese. Roast carrot salad. I’m mad for carrots. 

Drinking: Lemonade with a splash of raspberry cordial. Soda water and lemon cordial. Coffee to start the day. Water. 

Reading: This great book, and enjoying reflecting on how much we owe to women of the past. Thank you Marjorie! 


Next read: Not sure yet. I have plenty of unread books to choose from. 

Wanting: To know how much I actually need to know to feel okay. It’s a conundrum. 

Looking: Up. I highly recommend it. 

Enjoying: That I can sense autumn lurking on our collective doorstep. The leaves are already changing and falling. 

Waiting: Is difficult. You can get stuck in overthinking and worst case scenarios.

Buying: Soda water, olive oil, canned goods, tissues, lemon cordial and toilet paper by the trolley load! I am stocking up for my recovery period; no heavy lifting allowed. 

Watching: Sarah Off The Grid. Top Chef Colorado. Scandal. Project Runway All Stars. 

Next watch: Hard Sun. 

Hoping: My pacemaker op goes boringly routinely and I have a hassle free recovery. 

Marvelling: That I will have a pacemaker inside me in less than two weeks. Two weeks! 

Cringing: At the thought of the actual procedure. Ugh. 

Needing: To remain positive, to plan as much as I can and then just let it all go. Control is an illusion. 

Questioning: The blindness of some sectors of the USA. How can they not see they desperately need better gun control? 

Smelling: Rain. And stinky body odour from next door. #grossneighbours

Wearing: Denim shorts, a crop top and a stripey tee. Fashion is my life. 

Worrying: Trying not to. Mostly succeeding. 

Noticing: Clouds. Branches. Crooked paintings. Typos. 

Knowing: I’m lucky to have a boss who hasn’t thrown up his hands at all the sick leave I’ve needed to take in the past year. 

Admiring: Glennon Doyle. Revolution and coffee, that’s the way. 

Getting: Myself and my house ready for my pretty much one-armed, can’t reach for things recovery. It’s coming along. 

Coveting: Nothing but a small pile of extra cash, but I can get by without it. 

Disliking: Guns and the way some people confuse their “freedom” and owning weapons designed to maim and kill.

Feeling: Good, if a titch unsettled, I’ll be glad when March is mostly over. 

Snacking: Corn chips, carrot sticks and avocado dip. Mmmm so crunchy! 

Opening: Some lovely mail lately. It’s so heartening to receive handwritten cards and letters from people.

How about you? 

What are you pondering, admiring, making and most importantly, snacking on? 

Tell me everything! 

Here’s to a change of season, to releasing all that needs to fall away and embracing all the colour that bursts forth. 

Big hugs, 

Annette xx 


Sunday Stuff

Hello friends! 

I’m a super slapdash blogger these days, but never mind, here I am again. 

My Sunday matinee of choice, which I’m watching while wrapped up like a giant pink burrito in my exceedingly cosy (and very pink!) dressy gown, is Julie & Julia. 

Have you seen it? 

It is a charming film about the magically intertwined lives of American cooking legend Julia Child and a post 9/11, Queens-based, cubicle dweller, blogger and foodie Julie Powell. It’s a feel good film about food, marital love, exploring creative outlets, and it is served up with a sweet dollop of romance. I’m a mega fan of Amy Adams, Meryl Streep and Nora Ephron. So much talent! A perfect Sunday afternoon film. 

Aside from afternoon movies, I’ve been enjoying snapping photos of the glory that is autumn in Melbourne. 

I just CANNOT get enough of it. Can you? 

This glorious old house is just near the post office that I scurry to every few days, toting Very Important Packages. I couldn’t resist whipping out my phone and snapping the gorgeous branches, light and ironwork. Sigh. So beautiful. 

On the book front, I started reading this last weekend, Option B by Sheryl Sandberg & Adam Grant. So far I am finding it really sad, and helpful and bolstering. I must finish it, my bookish mojo is hovering around the same low level as my bloggy mojo lately, but I always love the feeling of being lost in a book. 

Got any tips to help me get back on the bibliophile track? 

And for a seasonal treat, I bought myself new sheets! 

Is there anything more comforting and pleasing than the two-fold joy of finally finding cute and affordable printed sheets (on sale!) and then having them arrive on a day where you were able to wash and LINE DRY them?! I think not. They will never see an iron, just like me! I love them. 

While we’re in my bedroom (oooh saucy!), I will soon be framing a few new artworks – a collection of heart shields – and hanging them over my bed. The first one arrived this week. 

As some of you know, I’ve been having a few health issues recently, and I decided I need some good vibes in the form of paintings/sketches/collages above my bed, which I can draw strength and inspiration from. 

Ergo, #heartshields. 

My super talented Pipster pal Dawn painted this piece, and I am utterly delighted with it. Dawn was gracious enough to allow me to request some elements I wanted, and she surprised me with others. Can’t wait to frame and hang it. 

You should most definitely read Dawn’s blog Kangaroo Spotting and follow her on Instagram. She’s super rad! 

{You could even buy one of her incredible abstract works and hang it above your bed, in your stairwell, or on your living room wall. #notsubliminal #shamelessplug #notsponsored}

Autumn sunshine is the BEST sunshine of the whole year. 

Just look up! Isn’t it beautiful? 


In this life, we never know what’s around the corner. Never. 

We think we do, which is how we plan and keep going I’m sure, but we are at best, back seat drivers in the ride through life. 

One day I was feeling badly short of breath so I went to the GP, and she sent me off to get an X-ray. A few hours later – heart failure. Bam. Plan B. 

A lovely Instagram friend of mine just got diagnosed with cancer. All of a sudden, she’s in the midst of a massively unanticipated Option B pivot. She is navigating the ups and downs of absorbing shocking news, scheduling surgery, and she is still looking up, and drawing strength from her family and many friends. Bam. Plan B. 

We make so many plans, and while some of them fall beautifully into place, some of them crumble around us. 

We can’t control that part. Oh, we wish we could but we can’t. 

We have to hold our plans and dreams loosely.

Sometimes when Plan B drops out of the sky on us, we forget to blog, to paint, to create, to breathe – because we are consumed with getting our heads around the new realities we are facing. I am hoping this is a temporary lull. 

There is something I can do right now – a simple, deeply symbolic, powerful act – I can look up. You can too. 

I can look up, and I can take photos of the beauty I see. 

And I will. 

Feel free to join me. 

We’re all under the same sky. 


Annette x 



10 Things I Love About Autumn

It feels like it’s finally here – my favourite season.

Oh Autumn, how I love you. 

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Let me count just some of the ways…

  1. I love reaching for a cardigan, a blanket, or the dial on my trusty Vulcan heater. Cosiness is everything!
  2. I love the changing light. The brightness of summer mellows into wispy cloudy skies and I revel in the shortening of the days. 
  3. I love the food of cooler months. Today I got my slow cooker out for the first time since last winter. My gorgeous sister Lisa gave me a ‘grab bag’ from her freezer – satay chicken curry which will feed, and warm, me for days. 
  4. I love the sound of rain on the roof. This morning at about 6 o’clock, a thunderstorm rolled over my house. The windows rattled and the rain pelted down, and I smiled a big sleepy smile and snuggled further under the covers. 
  5. I simply ADORE autumnal foliage. The way the trees shed their incredibly brightly hued leaves… it utterly captivates me. A wet footpath strewn with a beautiful autumn leaves, yes please! 
  6. I love the way my home’s decor changes. Treasured vintage blankets come out of the ottoman, reminding me of my grandmother. Candles come out and create a cosy flickering glow at nighttime. 
  7. Hot showers become a place of refuge on chilly mornings. Steamed up bathroom mirrors make me happy. 
  8. Weekend drives up to yonder hills take on a magical quality. Between the bracing air that hits your face as you leave home and wait for the car’s heater to kick in, to the rich colours of the landscape and welcoming warmth of favourite cafes, a weekend drive is a special treat.  
  9. I’m inspired to create as the weather cools. I might pick up leaves that catch my eye, or snap 20 photos of a particularly gorgeous tree, or sketch leaves for days, and days. Autumn is my muse. It’s why I love to look up. 
  10. Last but not least, autumn reminds me that life is cyclical. It may look like an ending, but it is really an opportunity to recharge, to draw on unseen reserves, and embrace a few months of life at a slower pace. 

Welcome back autumn, I missed you. 



Oh, I forgot one of my favourite things about autumn, it’s my birthday in a week! Autumn babies are the bestest. 

Are you a lover of autumn? What’s your favourite thing about this time of year? 


Annette x 



Taking Stock: April 2016


How are you? I hope you’re feeling chipper, ace, cosy and appreciated. If not, please accept a virtual hug and a high five from me right now. I think you are awesome! 

It’s a gorgeous autumn Saturday here in Melbourne, the perfect afternoon for a taking stock post, a Pip Lincolne tradition that lots of people have embraced. 

What I like most about taking stock is that you never know where the list is going to take you, so here goes! 

Making: Art. I love being creative. 

Cooking: I think it will be saucy meatballs and penne tonight. Yum. 

Drinking: Last night, I enjoyed a piccolo of bubbly. This afternoon, I’m on the lemon cordial and soda water train. 

Reading: Daring Greatly by Brené Brown. She is one tuned-in, smart lady. 

Wanting: Confirmation on a job offer. Quietly confident. 

Looking: At the breeze ruffling my living room curtain. Curtain flutterings make me happy. 

Playing: Solitaire and WordFeud. 

Deciding: Whether to pre-emptively add some channels to my Foxtel package, before I hear about the job. 

Wishing: Only good things for you. May you know yourselves well, love courageously and find strength, and even beauty, in your scars. 

Enjoying: These strangely fine and sunny autumnal days, and the rainy days. I’ll take anything autumn’s offering.


Waiting: On that confirmation. 

Liking: My life. Myself. Creatively inspiring people. 

Wondering: How I will cope with going back to full time hours. It has been almost three years! 

Loving: AUTUMN, and my dad. Grateful for his help today. 

Pondering: Where things might lead me. What’s next? 

Considering: Buying ALL THE THINGS once I’m working again. Well, not ALL the things, but some of them. 

Buying: Yesterday, thanks to my pal Deanna’s generosity, I got to buy lots of groceries. Thanks Dee! 

Watching: Grand Designs House Of The Year 2015, and looking forward to more Scandal, KUWTK and MasterChef. 

Hoping: To stay positive, whatever comes this week. 

Marvelling: At my sister Lisa; she’s taken to motherhood so beautifully, it is a truly special thing to witness.

Cringing: At Malcolm Turnbull. His rhetoric around refugees turns my stomach. Is there a basement office at Parliament House where they teach Fearmongering 101? Misty-eyed, really? You sir, are DEPLORABLE. That’s not leadership, that is naked ambition and playing to the lowest possible common denominator out there, fear.

Needing: I don’t need anything really. I have so much, even as I wait for good news about employment. Need isn’t just about finances or things. I have amazingly special people in my life, I have creativity and the sky. I’m all good. 

Questioning: I will never understand political ambition. How (and why) would you deny your humanity, and deaden your heart to stay at the top of the heap? There’s a question. 

Smelling: The aromas of the beautiful essential oils my friend Louisa sent me this week. 

Wearing: Trackies and a fave 17Sundays stripey tee. 

Following: My instincts. 

Noticing: Birdsong. So many chirpy, tweety birds seem to be around at the moment. It’s lovely. 

Knowing: That things are seasonal, in life as in nature. That I am more than okay. 

Thinking: About how important gratitude is in my life. 

Admiring: My sisters. Clementine Ford. People who stand up for what they believe in. Dissenters. Artists. Rebels. 

Sorting: Nothing much. 

Getting: Addicted to new podcasts, the latest being The West Wing Weekly. It’s so great to revisit the greatest television show of all time via this podcast. 

Bookmarking: Lots of cookbooks, I’m looking forward to making braises, soups, stews, and warming fruit crumbles as the weather cools down. 

Coveting: A good internet connection. 

Disliking: The politics of fear. 

Opening: Country Style magazine.

Giggling: At the word package. 

Feeling: Positive. Good. Grateful. Curious. 

Snacking: Salt and vinegar chips, cheese and crackers, hummus on Turkish bread. Bring it on. 

Helping: Myself to more chips.  

Hearing: Birdsong, the afternoon sonata is in full swing. 

That’s life for me, in a list-y nutshell. 

How are you? What are you listening to, liking, cringing at, smelling and thinking? 

Tell me all about it. 

Don’t forget to look up today. We’re all under the same sky.

Autumnally yours, 

Annette x

Deciduous Heart

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I think I have a deciduous heart.

According to Wikipedia, deciduous means “falling off at maturity” or “tending to fall off”, and it is typically used in order to refer to trees or shrubs that lose their leaves seasonally (most commonly during autumn) and to the shedding of other plant structures such as petals after flowering or fruit when ripe. In a more general sense, deciduous means “the dropping of a part that is no longer needed” or “falling away after its purpose is finished”. In plants it is the result of natural processes.

Hmmm. I might just have to stop and read that again.

The dropping of a part that is no longer needed.

Falling away after its purpose is finished.

That’s got to be about more than just leaves, right? That’s got to be about the soul too. Maybe it’s a deciduous soul thing, rather than a deciduous heart thing. Whatever it is, it’s a metaphor I can dig.

Maybe this is what #theviewfrom48 is all about? I wrote about the view here and even though I haven’t written much more about it, I have been thinking a lot about the where, why, who and what of being me. That’s nothing new for me, it’s a theme I return to often, and gladly.

It feels right for me to regularly take stock, because I think it serves me well to be mindful about my life, to look at what’s working, what is no longer needed, and to observe what’s fallen away.

Change can be so incremental that you barely notice it, and it can sometimes feel immensely unexpected and violent, leaving you reeling. I’ve known both types of change.

The things that I have let go off, that have fallen away, are as important, if not more important, than the things I’ve collected and added over the years.

I’ve let go of fears – that I wasn’t enough, that I was broken, that I was damaged goods.

I’ve let go of the idea that another person can complete me.

I have let concern about what others say about me fall away.

I have joyfully let go of living by others’ expectations.

I’ve shed plenty of leaves, heck, I’ve dropped branches.

And the falling leaves are beautiful. And the branches make great firewood.

Living isn’t about what we’re sold, or what we accumulate.

It’s about growing, and it is about letting go.

I’m growing.

I’m letting go.

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That’s the thing with seasons, they don’t just happen out there, in nature.

They happen to us, in us. We all experience seasons of ease, of change, of growth, of barrenness, of renewal.

I think the thing I’ve learned is not to fight that. I’m still learning that.

That’s the beauty of having a deciduous heart.

Autumn leaves aren’t afraid to fall.

I don’t want to be afraid to fall either.

I’m going to keep looking up,

Annette x



Good (Friday) Things I’m Liking

It’s Good Friday, and the day started goodly indeed, as I made myself a festively appropriate breakfast of a toasted hot cross bun and a lovely cup of coffee, then hopped (#seewhatididthere) back into bed and enjoyed my first fix of the podcast Stuff You Should Know. 

Pleasingly, I now know more about Carl Sagan, and Grimm’s fairy tales and how continents got their names. 

Do you like podcasts? They’re certainly super popular at the moment. I like Serial (though season 2 isn’t as captivating as season 1), Short & Curly, Let It Be and now I definitely rate SYSK. 

Podcasts satisfy and fuel my curious nature. I think it’s super awesome that we have access to so much information  just with a press of a button. My SYSK playlist (so far) has episodes on mass hysteria, passports, colour, Tupperware, ocean currents, pyramids and the Enlightenment. Bring. It. On. I’ll have to go back to the library soon, so I can download more eps. 

I had another lovely creative time with my niece Matilda this week. Here’s our latest collaboration. I am loving my role as “the creative auntie”. 

This week Matilda chose acrylics, and I encouraged her to mix some colours. 

I think this pink house with Matilda mixed blue-y green window frames looks sensational. 

At my house, there are no mistakes when you create. Art critics be gone! 

We sat side by side at my small desk, collaborating on where the stripes should stop and the spots begin — so much fun. Hopefully not just for me! 

And you can’t create on an empty stomach, so we made a batch of pikelets and gobbled them happily. 

Autumn seems to be kicking in properly, at last. The temperatures are dropping, and the sky has been super blue. I often stand at my back door and snap pics of the sky. Blue skies and gutters – which captures your attention? 

I choose the sky, though the lines in this shot make me smile. 

I’m still sketching/painting/drawing every day, dipping in and out of online challenges and my obsession with all things autumnal. I’ve got 84 consecutive days under my belt. 

There is endless inspiration in nature, as well as in every day domestic things. In fact, wherever I look I see beautiful lines and shapes and colours. I want to have eyes to see beauty in the ordinary. 

I see it in buttons, in a fallen leaf, in a collection of house plants.  

I hope you’re cosy and close to a hot cross bun and a cuppa. And I hope you always have the ability see beauty in ordinary things. 


Annette x 


PS If you love autumn too, tag me in your fave autumnal pic on Instagram @igiveyoutheverbs, or jump on to my seasonal hashtag #crushingonautumn.