The Friday File – Springtime

Isn’t Spring a glorious season? Watching the trees bud and blossoms burst, it’s a tonic for the soul.  

The days are getting longer, daylight lingering until I get home from work. 

The drive home is becoming one where I have to resist being distracted by the colours of magical sunsets. 

I think a lot of us feel like we perk up in Spring, right along with the blossoms. 

The urge to shake things up and move things around must be why hard rubbish collections happen at this time of year! 

We might re-arrange furniture, pack away the winter woollies – well, not all of them, this is Melbourne after all – or dream up a new exercise program as we shed the layers of a stagnant, cosy winter. We pack away the slow cooker and start making salads again. We are seasonal creatures, without a doubt. 

Today I had to post some letters, so I wove through the back streets, admiring trees, and parked opposite an old church under renovation. 

I stopped to feel the coolness of the stone wall and wondered how long it’s been there. 

After dropping my letters off, I picked a blossom and took this photo. Fragile petals against solid rock; both elements of nature. 

I love the contrast of structure and wildness here, it feels like the branches and vines are trying to reclaim the very ground the church is standing on. 

Churches can be rigid places, focused on dogma and exclusion, rather than existing as compassionate, safe spaces for spiritual exploration. 

Nature just chuckles, and busts through every attempt to tame her. 

I do love that about her. 


Friday afternoon shadows create funhouse mirror-like silhouettes. 

Do you like my car’s waggly little ears? So funny and sweet! 


Look up, look around you, notice the moon hanging low in the afternoon sky. 

Keep an eye on the trees in your street. Are they budding or blooming yet? 

Pick a flower, lean on a cool stone wall, drink your coffee outside. 


Stop for a moment, breathe deeply. 


This life we often find ourselves rushing through – it’s precious. 


That’s all. I just wanted to pop in and share that with you tonight. 


Look after yourselves, won’t you? 


Annette xxxx



Lately I’ve been…


I haven’t written in a while. Who knew life without a job could feel so busy?

How are you? Well? Happy? A bit snowed under? 

Here’s a little update on what’s been happening lately. 

BIG NEWS first, I was asked to contribute an article for the Uniting Church magazine, Crosslight, as part of anti-poverty week, which was last week, and you can read it here. My first freelance piece. Hooray! I’m so fancy I even organised myself an ABN. Let the empire building commence! 

In the ongoing search for other paid work, I’ve been a bit miffed by a few silly HR people. I’m sure the two I encountered are the minority, but geez, I copped stupid questions and a lecture-y tone from one, and had another lurking in my peripheral line of sight while I was part of a group interview. She then berated the standard answers to the dry as chips questions we were asked, without even introducing herself. Not cool. Not cool at all. 

I went to a fantastic bloggers’ meet up last week, hosted in my ‘hood at Our Little Caravan. I was a bit grumpy when I got there, I needed caffeine, but I perked up and the morning turned into afternoon as we chatted blogs, life, apologising for no reason, feminism, careers, craft and all of the things. 

Inchmeal Cafe 👌🏼


It was FANTASTIC to meet new people and see newish pals again. Such great ladies, and such a pretty, crafty shop and cafe. Yay for that! Put Inchmeal Cafe on your must-visit list if you’re in Melbourne’s south-east, and enjoy browsing through the gorgeous handmade wares while you’re there. 

I’m off to the op shop again today, where I’m involuntarily volunteering. My red apron is super snazzy and the people I’m working with are fun and friendly. I’m finding treasures and sharing them on Instagram using the hashie #opshoptreasures. Yesterday I found baby helmets. True story. 

I’ve snagged a pile of books which I’m looking forward to diving into, and I scored myself a groovy scarf yesterday. Yay for op shops! 

People have started talking about Christmas, a lot, shoosh!! Not ready to see the end of another year quite yet. 

Spring is swinging wildly between ferocious winds and rain and beautifully mild days. Go Melbourne! 


Kindness continues to come knocking, and on Saturday I met up with an Instagram pal, Lisa, who gave me a beautiful calendar by one of my favourite artists/illustrators, Lisa Congdon. Thank you Lisa! 

Artistically, I’m in a bird phase, which is fun! Can’t believe I’m almost up to day 300 of my daily sketching project for 2017. Chirp chirp!! 

That’s about all from me, I hope that you’re enjoying spring or autumn, wherever you are. I confess I’m already looking forward to autumn again, especially when I see amazing photos of fall foliage on Instagram. Happy sigh. 

In the meantime, here’s to blue skies and counting our blessings. 

Later ‘gator, 

Annette xx

Taking Stock: Spring 2016

Spring has sprung! It has been a confusing start to the season, we’ve had an explosion of blossom trees, some gorgeous sunny days, tee shirt weather, followed by rainy days and rummaging for a jumper, then more sun… nobody knows what to expect! 

The new season seems like a good moment to stop and take stock of where things are at. This is a Pip Lincolne idea, which lots of us think is quite terrific, so you’ll see Taking Stock posts pop up here and there, and I find it’s always an exercise that takes me to unexpected places. 

Here we go!

Making: a mess as I tidy up, you’ve got to go backwards before you can go forwards it seems. 

Cooking: pikelets – they are so easy and deliver every single time. Yummo. 

Drinking: coffee in the mornings, peppermint tea when I have a tummy ache, and my afternoon beverage of choice is soda water and lemon cordial. Sometimes I add a splash of vodka as the sun goes down! 

Reading: I just read Ruby Wax’s (Waxes?!) book Sane New World, which I found super interesting and engaging. The  brain is an incredible organ. 

Smelling: spring blooms 

Wanting: work. 

Looking: up. Even on days when I’m feeling sub-chipper, I do try, literally and figuratively, to look up. The sky is such a reassuring presence. Clouds, sunshine through branches, all that blue that goes on forever. Sigh, I love it. 

Playing: old Tina Arena tunes; Chains, Sorrento Moon, Heaven Help My Heart. Such great songs and what a GREAT singer she is. 

Deciding: what’s for dinner every damn night is painful at the moment. I’ve temporarily lost my kitchen mojo. 

Wishing: I had a personal chef, or at least someone to stock my fridge. 

Enjoying:sunny days ☀️☀️

Waiting: for my kitchen mojo to return. I’m hoping that flavoursome, simple, crunchy salad days aren’t far off. 

Liking: that other people seem to appreciate my artistic endeavours.

Loving: spending time with special friends. 

Pondering: where new things might take me. 

Buying: new pillows! I think it’s time, and a friend gave me a little “pick me up” voucher recently, so I can afford a simple treat. 

Watching: diverse documentaries on iTunes – Kill Switch, Tender, Herb & Dorothy, Copy & Paste. 

Hoping: for good things for you. Yep, really! 

Noticing: there’s strength in the sunshine again. 

Knowing: I have good people in my life, I am not in this alone. 

Thinking: about collaboration, encouragement, words, and creativity. 

Admiring: the makers, the dreamers, and those who get up and step into the arena. 

Disliking: #Trump2016 

Opening: new tubes of paint.

Feeling: positive again, after a shaky few weeks. 

Snacking: on strawberries, or Twisties. 

Hearing: birdsong #tweettweet 🐥🐥

How are you feeling about the change of season? I’m happy to be seeing more blue skies than grey, that’s for sure. 

But I’m also a teensy bit jealous of those of you moving into autumn, spring is a beautiful season, but autumn will always have my heart. 

What’s your favourite season? 

Have you got a fabulous (and frugal) salad recipe for me?  

Keep looking up, 

Annette x 

Monday musings

I’m breaking one of the cardinal rules of blogging by being a fly by the seat of my pants, blog when inspiration strikes, rather than to an editorial calendar, blogger. I  do it knowingly, almost wilfully. 

One of the problems with being a “personal” blogger is the broadness of the scope before me. 

I could write about spring luring me into the garden earlier today, secateurs in hand, and the satisfaction I got from giving my wild jasmine a good prune. It gets so heavy in spring, the battered, broken trellis fence is almost toppling over under its fragrant heft. 

I could write about how the job hunt is going, but that post could be two words long. It continues. 

I could write the post that’s been kind of tapping at the back door of my brain, about my experience of depression and why it still feels risky to write about that topic. I should write that post. I will. 

I could…. I could…. 

That’s the curse of too much time on my hands I guess. 

So, I choose to just touch base, to say hello. And ask, how are you? 

What does your Monday look like? 

Do you want to ring my neck for having time on my hands? That’s okay – it’s just a season, though longer than I’d anticipated. 

What I will choose, for now, is to go into the library and do some planning for a project I’m just a tad excited about – it is blogging related, and I think it could be fab.

Cheers for now!