Retreat! Retreat!

Hello weekend! 

I posted this on Instagram last night. 

By the time I got home, I felt entirely peopled out. I may only have a chain on my front door, not an actual drawbridge, but closing that door on the world, particularly on a Friday night, and hearing that metallic slide… it’s one of my favourite sounds.   

The past few weeks have included shouting, doors being slammed, and seemingly endless defences rather than fixes… it’s exhausting. 

After a scramble to fix a last minute oversight, it was just more of the same. I’m so worn out by it. Worn out. 

Yesterday there were tears in the afternoon (mine), and today I’m left feeling depleted and a little trapped in my current situation at work. Ugh. 

So, this weekend is all about retreat, replenishing my emotional tanks and enjoying the simple things. 

Things like the sounds of morning birdsong and turning over to snooze for another hour or two, the comfort of pjs, downloading new books from Amazon (thank you 99 cent sale!) and fossicking in my kitchen for simple snacks. 

The news coming out of Paris today is just horrible, and after watching a little of the coverage, which in the early hours of an attack like this quickly becomes looped replays of politicians and police at barricades, I switched back to easier-on-the-heart design shows. 

My beautful friend Sarah was in Paris just a matter of days ago, and her social media feed showed the power and beauty of that city. I am thrilled that she is safely back in the arms of her family today. Thrilled and relieved. 

We are so fragile, whether we consider ourselves safe and secure or not, we are ultimately not in control of our lives. 

We go to Bali and get stuck there by ash clouds, we go to a concert and find ourselves in the midst of a massacre, we go for a drive and get in an accident, we get bad news from the doctor. And we sometimes feel fear and lack of control in our homes, workplaces and hearts.  

We need to look after ourselves, and each other. 

We need to look after ourselves, and each other. (It’s worth saying twice, don’t you think?)

In that spirit, this weekend I’m in retreat, staying put at home, looking after myself. 

I’m heartened by the words of love and solidarity with the people of Paris that I’ve seen on Twitter and Instagram, and relieved that I can retreat, knowing others can’t put up the drawbridge on the issues they’re battling with. 

The thought of being out of control in life can be daunting, and while I think it’s something we need to acknowledge, I don’t think it’s healthy to dwell on it. 

The best thing any of us can do is get up and get on with being kind, putting good energy into our relationships, doing our bit in times of trouble, keeping an eye out for our sisters, neighbours, colleagues, Instapeeps and blog buddies. You can add the guys at your school, soccer club, craft crew or Trekkie hangout to the list. 

Keep an eye on those people. They need you, and you need them. Keep an eye on yourself too. You matter. 

I’ll be getting up and getting on with it too, but not for a few days yet. 

Big love to you and yours, 


Annette xx



Sociable Saturdays and Slow Sundays

My weekends are proper weekends again. Hooray, and phew, only two days not working to do things like switch the sheets, hang out with people, paint, shop, get my recharging time in, blog, sleep late – I’d forgotten. Looking forward to Fridays is back on my radar! 

This weekend has been a fantastic combination of the social and the slow. As an introvert, I really enjoy people’s company, and I really enjoy, and need, big chunks of time by myself. 

I set my alarm for Saturday morning and headed to Carlton for a #BWPmeetup organised by the lovely Naomi. A group of eight Blog With Pip alums got together at Travelling Samovar, a beautiful tea house, where we sampled a range of iced teas, learned about cold infusions and a little of the history of tea, and we even got to blend our own tea to take home. We all had a wonderful morning in their sun dappled courtyard. 

BWP fun at Travelling Samovar

One of my favourite moments was chatting with one of the owners, Pascale, about the BWP community. If you read more than one Pipster’s blog, I’m sure you’ve heard a lot of praise for Pip Lincolne, and hand on my heart, without elevating her to sainthood, I’d say Pip’s greatest achievement as a teacher is fostering a truly supportive, encouraging, online community. This is rare! As we all know, the internet can make people lose their minds (and manners) a little, as anyone who spends time reading comments, message boards, or hanging out on Facebook and Twitter would have seen. 

I was so proud to be able to tell Pascale about our community, how those of us who live near each other arrange meetups and how some travelling Pipsters have arranged international meetups, and how I have friends like Rach in Auckland thanks to blogging. 

So Saturday started out with a fun and social vibe. A few of us went on to lunch a few doors down and we had a great conversation over pizzas and salads. I enjoyed a cheeky glass of midday wine! 

I was so happy that I got to meet a few new people, and enjoy a gorgeous summer morning with such quality ladies. 

The rest of the day was solo and quiet, which also suits me just fine! 

This morning I baked a KILLER loaf of banana bread using this recipe by BabyMac. I love that #sundaybakingsunday has become part of people’s routine. I love seeing all your delicious pies and cakes and lunch box treats on Instagram. 

Bev’s Banana Bread

Mmmmm… so good!


I’ve done a little painting, hung out online and am showered and wearing fresh pjs! For bonus points, it is Fresh Sheets Day. Ahh, life is good. 

Time is precious. 

Whether you enjoy it more in the company of others, or spending it alone, or a combo, time is a real privilege. 

We have only this moment. Today. 

I hope that thought inspires us to treat each other with kindness, to be mindful that everyone we meet has battle scars and victories that have shaped them, that the best thing to do if we feel unsure of someone’s intention is to ask, politely, and as appropriate, to engage more with each other. I wish I could look you in the eye as you read this. I truly feel like I’m entering into conversation with you here. I want it to be a genuinely open dialogue. 

So here’s to slow Sundays, social Saturdays and the simple joy of putting my head down on fresh sheets tonight. 

How has your weekend been? Got a story to share? I’m listening. 


Annette xx