A Tricky Week.

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I’m not quite sure why, but this week I fell victim to something that felt a lot like stress.

“How can this be?” you ask, when I’m surrounded by the serenity of the countryside and wake up to birds singing and nothing to do all day except tend to the veggies.

Well, life still catches up with you no matter where you are and after a week of being joined to my computer and a list a mile long of things ‘To Do’ I took a much needed day off away from technology to unscramble my brain and reconnect to the tranquility! Cam has been away being A Businessman and trying to get things in place for the big ‘End of Things’ mid March and I have been holding the fort with the Chocolate Drop and the chooks. Perfect for me to get a whole lot of things sorted out I thought. Accommodation was researched for our trips, wedding suppliers chosen and booked, meetings with the builder and architect arranged for our imminent renovation and then I started choosing tiles, taps, doors and windows,ovens, benchtops and toilets etc etc. So, as useful and convenient that the internet is, it means many, many hours on the damn computer and not much time out in the real world.

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This little cartoon resonated with me! I guess we just have to learn to unscramble our minds and see and enjoy what is right in front of us….

So I had a day off….

I felt guilty not doing some of THE LIST and a bit twitchy not being ‘connected’ but it was good for my soul and I enjoyed some local walks and a trip to Bowral. The drive was sublime. Blue skies and fields of bleached straw with little hay bales dotting the landscape. Beautiful homesteads with their deep verandas and tree lined driveways and cows, horses and alpacas grazing in paddocks that stretched endlessly into the distance. And to top it all off at the end of the scenic drive there were shops…!!

With Paris this Autumn in my mind I purchased a rather stylish pair of ankle boots to sashay around St Germain in and I couldn’t believe it when the girl told me it was the last pair! For heaven’s sake we’re still in the middle of Summer and these are the new Winter season stock – CRAZY!

This is a little snapshot of my most local and regular walk. Luckily this is right on our doorstep!

Funnily enough one of the things I’ve missed the most from my old life back in England is the hedgerows. Little winding country lanes with hedges of blackberries and raspberries all interspersed with brambles, huge stems of cow parsley and healing plants like nettles, burdock, comfrey, dandelion and dock leaves. You can walk for miles in the English countryside because we have hundreds of public footpaths running in between privately owned land with stiles to go over their fences making it wonderfully accessible and communal. Australia doesn’t have this sadly, which means we are limited to walking along roads and in the National Parks. The only trouble is no dogs are allowed in The National Parks so our dog walks in particular hinge on having some nice local country lanes to wander down. In our instance we are blessed to also have the magnificent 7 mile beach to walk along but there is only one small part that is an off leash dog area.

Some little Aussie hedgerow plants!

One good thing about being home alone is that I haven’t had to cook and it’s been easy to start the NEW REGIME. Instead of giving everything up simultaneously I have slid gently into my new eating plan and hopefully I will stay on track having the odd night off for a dinner out or at home with friends. My squidgy bits have to go!! I’m so lucky to have a wonderful Pilates Studio near me and a very dedicated, knowledgeable and patient teacher who knows just how far to push this old body!!! A couple of hours a week there in conjunction with some walks, stretching and a general awareness of posture will hopefully make the difference I am looking for. This young lady looks like she is appreciating the rather drop dead gorgeous view from the reformer too (makes that awful glut work a bit more bearable!!)

I finally found out where the other rock pool was in Gerringong. It is tucked away around the corner from the main beach in what was the old boat harbour back in the late 1800s. Produce came and went from here to Sydney and other towns along the coast and it’s position in a naturally sheltered bay made it a perfect place to also build a ‘Ladies Baths’ to be kept quite separate and away from the ‘Mens Baths’ of course!! I love swimming in rockpools as I’m pretty hopeless in the surf but LOVE the sea! It is a lovely place for a swim with the water being naturally replaced with the tides and always fresh and clean. If you read and believed the accompanying risk warning however you would probably think twice before entering! All this before you ever get to thinking about sharks……..

Bailey is now the proud owner of a new bed.I am hoping that it won’t go the same way as her first one which was chewed to death. She doesn’t really chew things so I think it was the fact that every morning she awoke to the holes she’d made with the stuffing tumbling out tantalisingly close that she couldn’t resist. The new model is a lot harder to ruin and I can cosy it up in winter with something snuggly.

So I’m choosing to forget her prior indiscretions and remember that

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