The Joker

There has been a Batman theme in our home lately, as the older kids review iconic films. I love these images, taken in a well known city lane way. Interestingly, we had just visited the Top Arts 2012 VCE exhibition at  Federation Square which was great inspiration for all of us. And then to walk only a few blocks further to see street art, graffiti. What do you think, is graffiti real art?

How to think about Decisions?

Decision making. How do you make good decisions? Good choices that align well with your priorities for faith, family, work, finances, friendship and health? I am aware that many of us make decisions, based upon whether something feels right or good. Others pull a big life decision through a grid of girlfriends and a few coffees or wines, hoping that you might reach a good decision by consensus. Others are even tempted, and I am sure you have seen this in action, to decide via Facebook input. Depending on the number of likes and comments that come via your social media network of choice you will make a decision.


Many of us haven’t analysed how we decide about who we will marry, how many kids we will have, whether to work or not, go for that career advancement, make a new investment, when to take a holiday, how to give to charity, whether we should renovate, rent or build a new house, buy a new car, boat or gadget. You get the picture. Sometimes we are simply influenced by the community or network around us into making decisions just like our peers. We keep up with the “Jones family” without realising that is what we are doing. And we are stressed, unhappy and discontent as a result.


In an ideal world we would all have clear priorities for life, a supportive network of friends and confidants who can encourage us or challenge our thinking, a faith framework that ultimately guides our approach to decision making and an awareness of our self that allows us to see where we might be investing poorly. But there reality is we can seldom tick all of these boxes.


Perhaps you would like to start thinking about life and how you could do life better. How do you think about decision making?


Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Proverbs 3: 5-6

Est

Another treasure of handmade goodness is Est in Auburn. It carefully stocks a range of Australian artisans who create beautiful useable products from wool, cotton, linen, leather, felt and more. Gifts abound, smells delight and there is something to wear and use for everyone! The owner who has a background in textiles has ensured that there are bolts of linen of various quality and style in an abundance, which always inspires me. I noticed that the media review on the Est website has them reviewed in Slow magazine and Dumbo Feather, Pass it on. Have you read them? Est is worth a visit and I will be telling my creative friends to get there goodies there pronto.

Scarlet Jones

My good friend took me and the girls on a whirlwind tour of several inner Eastern op shops and a few treasures. This shop is one I have wanted to visit for a very long time. Scarlet Jones. Think French furniture, linen bed sheets, beautiful clothing, fine jewellery and leather bags.

My photo has distorted the fine, muted tones of Digard’s work. The one below is a more realistic representation of her colour ways. But I wanted you to see the detail.

One of the stand out finds of the day was work by French artist Sophie Digard. She hand dyes all her wool and makes the most exquisite scarves and jewellery pieces by crocheting and piecing them together.

Just thinking…..

How do you cope with anxiety? It plagues the lives of so many of us, women in particular. Many women are isolated with small children at home and lose confidence to interact with the adult world, others have just been caught in patterns of behaviour and thinking that lead to more worry about the past, the present and the future. Nothing protects you from it – not money or status. For some women there are issues of fear and anxiety over health, wealth, fidelity, success, fertility, ambition, career and calling.  Many women, myself included are tempted to believe in things that are not true – lies that we take from society, a family member, a friend. 


I found this list interesting. 10 Lies women often believe:

I will never let someone hurt me again
I can depend on this guy to meet all my needs
I think everyone is talking about me
I’m not as beautiful as she is
I can’t do that even if I try
I must do ________, so I’ll be loved
I won’t let it hurt my feelings
I’m not good enough for him
I’ll never recover from that mistake
I know this guy would never disappoint me
Does anything on the list resonate? Have you spoken out about your anxiety before? Do you have a friend and confidant that you can share with? How would you help a friend who is paralysed by fear and anxiety?

Be Anxious….

There are some days that in spite of your knowledge of all the amazing good in your life, fear and anxiety plague you. I have woken up feeling this way today. I was sitting in our front room sharing a coffee with my man and realised that the tape inside my head was playing at double speed, the track “Be anxious about…..” So today I have to be actively countering the old tapes of anxiety. I have to present it all to Him, assured that peace will come and transform all ills. It is a day to preach to myself. Do you have days like this?

“The main art in the matter of spiritual living
is to know how to handle yourself.
You have to take yourself in hand,
you have to address yourself,
preach to yourself,
question yourself.
You must say to your soul:
‘Why art thou cast down’–what business have you to be disquieted? 
You must turn on yourself, upbraid yourself,
condemn yourself, exhort yourself, and say to yourself:
‘Hope thou in God’–
instead of muttering in this depressed, unhappy way.
And then you must go on to remind yourself 

of God,

Who God is,
and what God is
and what God has done,
and what God has pledged Himself to do.
Then having done that, end on this great note:
defy yourself, and defy other people,
and defy the devil and the whole world,
and say with this man:
‘I shall yet praise Him for the help of His countenance,
who is also the health of my countenance
and my God’.”

Polyvore

So I will put it out there in hope that you will help. Polyvore. It creates mood boards for those of us that like to collate our favorite things. Have you used it? Do you have something similar that works? Great for arranging images for play or work…..

Digital Magazines…

Magazines. Will the real thing ever be replaced? I am sure we have had this conversation before, but in a week when I am mindful of technology and how I use it, I have to revisit this debate.

I have stacks of magazines all over the house. In fact there are probably mags in each room in my house. Recent publications, a 20 year collection of Vogue Entertaining and Australian Gourmet Traveller from my catering days (which I cannot bring myself to dispose of), a few special mags I bought for a particular feature. They all make up colourful towers here and there.

 I re- read EST magazine last night on the iPad and it was sooo beautiful and such a delightful experience. I thought I would miss the paper, the quick lick of the finger to turn the page. But…ummm, well, no? Are you reading your mags online in digital form? The real thing won’t go away in a hurry. But as big name newspapers revisit how to make more money and opt to go digital in the very near future, it makes sense that more magazines will be launched in digital format.

Maybe that should be my next BIG project?

Apps on your iPad/iphone

This is somewhat overwhelming no? The App store is an endless source of possibilities. Only today over lunch with a few girlfriends I heard of apps that calculate your calorie intake and plan your route for your next run. Do you have many apps that are really useful on your devices?

I enjoy Instagram ( cute instant photo app), Redstamp ( easy to use invite/letter maker), HomeBudget ( home finance records), Pulse (organisational tool for all of my blogs and news reading) and of course the Facebook/ebay mobile apps. Of course there are many that are designed to entertain the kids. What do you use?

Do you have a must have app that you would like to share?