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Monthly Archives: October 2012

“You don’t have to hang out in the dark shadows today; cultivate magic by crossing over to the sunny side of the street.”

Simply words that make me smile. They appeared, of all places, in my horoscope long, long ago. 

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Posted by on October 28, 2012 in life

 

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The quiet inbetween

I’m often asked, now that the tourist season is pretty much over, what it’s like during the week. We have one more weekend to open to the public, then the only public will be here during special events and pre-arranged tours.

I’ll let the photos speak for themselves. Enjoy the absolute peace. It’s tangible!

magical light

Magical light

 

mossy tree

Mossy tree

 

office entrance

Entrance to ‘the office’

 

the office

‘The office’ where I work

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Posted by on October 22, 2012 in photography, seasons

 

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A mending library – what a brilliant idea!

I take my hat off to someone who can do this… not only can, but does. So many of us (I include myself here) put a lot of thinking and talking into doing good in the community, but few actually get there. Right now, Michael Swaine is my hero. Do take a moment to read the article. You’ll definitely be inspired!

mend·ing/ˈmendiNG/

Noun:
Things to be repaired by sewing or darning

This man is mending a lot more than clothes. He is mending hearts and lives.

San Francisco artist mends clothes and builds community — just by giving a darn | Grist.

 
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Posted by on October 20, 2012 in inspiration

 

Good morning, Autumn!

mist

A quilt of mist

covers frosty grass

as a blue sky blazes

overhead

I walk beneath

a fiery green bough

on paths of gold

and red

Diamond dew

sparkles on leaves

draped low

over the beds

 

asparagus

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Posted by on October 15, 2012 in seasons

 

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Amalie is painting this day blue

Amalie's stunning photography

Amalie’ site: I am painting this day blue.

My friend, Amalie from Norway, posted this beautiful song with its very inspiring lyrics. The song is in Danish and Amalie has very kindly translated the song into English. If you love nature and the seasons as I do, you’ll love this song!

 
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Posted by on October 14, 2012 in friends, inspiration, music

 

They sailed away for a year and a day…

We ‘set sail’ from Brazil a year ago on a mission of sheer unadulterated madness – according to our contemporaries anyway. We got a slew of comments ranging from the positive “Go for it!” type to the “Are you crazy?” to “How irresponsible”. I eventually stopped telling people about it just to stop listening to the naysayers. Call me an ostrich.

The contrast was beyond description! I was trying to look for images that represent each place. We went from this…

SP

Sao Paulo epitomised everything I hated in a city…. the dirt, the litter, graffiti, pollution, vile smells, concrete. I ached for green, for softness. I would plant tufts of grass in planters in our tiled yard. This photo puts our city life into a nutshell, the very close proximity of neighbours, the concrete and our striving for green even there.

To this…

wales

Wales… how can I even describe our impressions there? Unlimited beauty, open space, Grass! Air that was clean and pure. Even animal dung had a clean smell about it. We worked hard… very hard… but it was good and satisfying. I enjoyed the goats! We fell in love with Wales. What a beautiful place in every sense of the word.

Wales came to an abrupt and rather tragic end due to circumstances out of our control. In a bit of a panic – we hadn’t planned to move on so soon – we went to stay in Northampton at the centre where Tat used to work.

northampton1

We met wonderful people and had the chance to relax and recoup… until relaxing became a chore. We weren’t used to it, but weren’t allowed to do anything. Luckily, there was a stunning nature reserve nearby where the hours could be whiled away pleasantly.

northampton2

Oh… and we got to see our first Snow!!!

Of course, we couldn’t stay there forever. We were in the guest rooms and they had an event they were booked out for, so we were on the move again. Moving on was becoming a little scary. None of this was in the original plan. This was where old and dear friends stepped in. We were on our way to Hemel Hempstead.

hemelhempstead

Northampton had prepared us for being back ‘in town’, though we were very much on the outskirts right next to a nature reserve. Luckily, Hemel Hempstead was a pretty place. We had fun times with our friends who’d known us since Tat was just two bricks and a ticky high. It was a time of shared memories.

Towards the end of our visit, I started stressing again. I got very sick with a cough that wouldn’t let go. I got to a point where I literally cried to the heavens one day… “Where to next?” The answer came from New Zealand and we applied to a place in Ireland.

Ireland

Our first steps on Irish soil after the ferry trip over… a very special moment! As I stood listening to that ocean, a deep sense of peace came over me.

tirnasi

Tir na Si (Land of the fairies) was a delight to the senses! Most of my work was in the tea room, but I snuck out whenever I could to spend time with my donkey friends. The animals were my favourite part of Tir na Si. Our hosts were lovely and we had a very comfy room. When not working, the farm was so nice to explore and relax on.

We were happy… but again, ‘fate’ stepped in. There was a mixup with our dates. Jurgis had mentioned the date of our return ticket that had to be changed (the booking system didn’t have a ticket date far enough in advance) and they misunderstood. Family was coming over from overseas and they needed the room we were in. We were sad to go, but our next ‘home’ was so exciting…

killruddery

Killruddery… there is so much to this place that it needs numerous blogs of its own. Adjectives fail me here. We’re very privileged to be living in the main house and need to walk through the tour part (I call it the museum) to get to our apartment. It’s so funny how one drops to a whisper when entering that part of the house. Jurgis is in piggy heaven. I work in paradise. That’s our lives in  a nutshell right now. We’re hoping this is going to be long term(ish). We’re super comfortable, loving our work and the people here are beyond amazing.

In short, this year has been a hellava ride. Would I do it again? Absolutely! Would I do it differently? Absolutely! Am I sorry I did it? No… not in the least. There are things I miss about Brazil. I was thinking of my students tonight. I miss them. I miss a few personal things that got left behind and yes, I miss the comfy salary I had and having two computers (sharing a laptop has it’s challenges). There are things about Brazil itself that had wormed its way into my heart.

Each place we’ve been to since has a place in my heart too. We’ve learned some valuable lessons and made life-long friends along the way. We definitely have come off with many stories to share when we’re old and senile ;) Here’s to the next year or ten! Cheers!

 
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Posted by on October 10, 2012 in brazil, england, Ireland, travel, wales

 

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Off season

Off season

We’re closed to public during the week now. The still is so profound. The silence around me is broken only by the rustling of wind in the trees and the occasional krrrk of some bird hidden in the foliage. Even the chickens are quiet, except when I walk past, when they squalk indignantly that their daily bread and cake diet has come to an end.

Our new chick (seems there is to be only one) is thriving…

image

The pigs are bashing in the warm autumn sun. Now that’s the life!

image

Ken, gardener friend, found a newt among the plant pots. I took the little guy to the pond in the field usually reserved for sorting calves. We thought it was dead at first, but it slowly warmed up and was quite lively when I left it.

image

Lunch was a delicious bagel with smoked ham, roasted red pepper, chickenand some fancy cheese (I’ve forgotten what cheese it is), served with a rocket salad I’d just picked and freshly-picked apple.

image

Have you ever put your noise to a freshly-picked apple? Heavenly smell!

image

The working day ended with the loading up of three little boars into the horse box, then I took Meg for a walk up to the lake. Who can resist this face?

image

 
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Posted by on October 3, 2012 in animals, dogs, harvest, life

 

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