Visitors

They said I was mad to plant milkweed… but here we are six months later hosting Monarch caterpillers. Now, I’m as ambivalent to all things American as any Australian ought to be, but the romantic tale of the arrival of the Monarch or Wanderer in the late 1860s and via New Caledonia has me intruiged. And the caterpillers are so full of character. How could I resist?

The thief

Somebody has been pinching my mulberries! Chewing the fruit from the tree and leaving just a stump. Its not the chooks, they are safely away in their new run. Its not flying foxes, the tree is too small to support their weight. That leaves possums and rodents as the most likely suspects. And no mulberries for me until I figure out who it is and how to protect them…

gratitude #8/10

I am grateful for my body today.

So, I started a dance class a couple of weeks ago and I am pretty crap at it. Now my brain is a perfectionist – If I’m not immediately good at something I pack up and go home, but my body is a completely different beast – it just loves to move, it loves to try and fail and try again and practice the moves while washing up, watering the garden, carrying a shopping basket up and down the aisles at Aldi… Wherever, whenever, my body loves to MOVE. And eventually this joy is contagious and I find myself laughing with total joy and abandon as I flail about enthusiastically in class, and even more when I realise that I am moving in the opposite direction as everyone else. Hahaha!

What is not to love and appreciate about this marvellous joy machine that I have been blessed with?

This week my mulberries decided to get all dressed up!

 

20170907_065907
Beenleigh Black. CC BY 4.0

This week my mulberries decided to get all dressed up! I put them both in the ground last spring, and this the first year the black tree has fruited. It has also grown, and is just taller than me – about 6 foot.

In case you can’t tell from the photo, the fruit are sweet and super juicy! They also leave a violet stain on your hands.

gratitude #7/10

Neighbours, today I am grateful for my lovely neighbours. Yesterday I was feeling a little low – I had taken a week’s leave to get the garden sorted, and a big list of projects to complete. Six days later I realised that despite having worked really hard and being exhausted, I was not going to get it all done. Then the ladies from across the road popped by and one told me she was glad someone was giving the house some attention and the other gave me some empathy for the overwhelm I was feeling. She also shared her plans for her garden. So I got some acknowledgement, appreciation, shared reality and connection. I am feeling re-inspired today 🙂

Two mandalas in my front yard planted with a mandarine & mulberry and veggies under the mulch

gratitude #6/10

crested pigeon, minnippi parklands
Crested pigeon, Melanie J Cook. CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Yesterday, on my third day of leave I sat in the long grass, in the shade of our callistemon and right next to the new chook run my daughter and I made the day before. I was exhausted from an hour’s digging, so I sat very still and quiet for a while. Still enough and for long enough to be approached by a pair of usually timid crested pigeons. They hopped, one at a time onto the chooks water container and had a little sip of water, just a hand’s breadth from me.

When I was young I thought these birds were drab beyond belief – just grey and beige and a few black stripes. Yesterday, I got to see them close enough to notice that their stripes are iridescent, purple and green flashing in the sun. The beige is like a blush shawl, dusted gently over the shoulders. These little birds are also delightfully dainty, especially when sitting among my fat hens.

I am grateful today for the beauty in the ordinary and for having taken the time to notice.

Thank you also Melanie J Cook for the beautiful photo.

 

gratitude #5/10

I’m grateful for writing today, for reading, for writing, for literacy. I’m glad I can get my thoughts and feelings out on paper, or on my screen, to be fully explored and expressed. I love the sense of relief and satisfaction when I have something satisfactorily writ down.

I’m glad to read the thoughts and feelings of others, for a sense of shared reality. I love the sense of quiet and contemplation that can flow easily into a written conversation when all participants take a little time to reflect and go a little deeper than may happen in the spoken world.

I love reading and writing beautiful things, opening little windows and exposing the word in it’s raw, wild, unfathomable beauty. I love poetry.

I love the practicality of writing a list, a note, a memo or email, jotting it down into the external drive, so I don’t need to endlessly toss it around in my mind. The freedom and release of letting that go!

I do wish my handwriting was a little more legible though 🙂