Keeping Cool

20140117_Lemon Mint Drink_000January in Melbourne and you're bound to get a few day over 40. Hot days melt into hot nights and with no air-conditioning, I turn to cooling drinks to get me through.  This one is one of my favourites; ice, lemon, mint and a healthy spoonful of raw sugar. Add water, stir and sip. Close your eyes and imagine yourself onto a hammock or beach with cooling winds and gentle waves lapping at the sand. It is a drink that is almost impossible to improve.

I'm solo-parenting at the moment. M is away for two weeks and it's me and E ruling the roost.  I'd love to tell you about all the fun we're having but to be honest it's doing my head in.  E does not cope with change very well (what kid does?) and there have been too many changes in her life recently.  Tantrums and outright disobedience are a regular occurrence and I find myself caught in that tricky situation of not wanting to reward bad behaviour but needing to reprimand for safety's sake.  It's a tricky line to walk and this week I feel like I'm failing. I keep having to remind myself to be gentle - on her and on me - this solo-parenting thing is no walk in the park but neither, I'm sure, is being two.  Gentle. Calm. Cool. This will be my mantra as the temperatures rise this week. Just like the heatwave this solo-parenting gig will end too and in the meantime I'll keep sipping my mint/lemon tea and try to keep my head cool.



20140125_Elle Home_011 as Smart Object-1"A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2014."

E: it's been such a big week, too many changes all at once. But today, oh today! You let loose with your cousins and you smiled and laughed and everything felt good.

Linking up with Jodi.



20140114_Mimi Portrait_021
"A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2014."

E: Showering by yourself. "I big now Mama. I don't need you anymore." Slow down, sweet girl. Don't move so fast.

Linking up with Jodi.



20140108_Mimi Portrait_006"A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2014."

E: Television has slowly crept into our afternoon rituals; episodes of Spot and Peppa Pig while we're busy cooking dinner and you're too tired for anything else.


The 52 project

I've been thinking a lot about what to do with this blog. I dipped in and out of this space in 2013, wanting to be here, but not quite knowing how.  The transition back to Australia, into motherhood and back to work has not been easy.  Like many women I have struggled to find my voice. At some point in 2013 I stumbled across Jodi's blog practicing simplicity. Her voice and her words resonated with my own longing for quiet and her 52 project seemed like a manageable 'something' that I could do. 

In Jodi's words: "There's a common saying amongst mothers, first coined by writer Gretchen Rubin in her book The Happiness Project: “The days are long, but the years are short.” Indeed, our days of mothering babies and young children can be tiring and messy; a cycle of washing, settling, cleaning and playing. Sometimes they’re monotonous and seemingly endless. But then, without so much as a blink, the sleepless nights and mornings at the park are over, and we’re sending our children off to school, hesitantly cutting the metaphorical cord once again.

And so, I plan to take "a portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2014". A manageable 'something' that will keep me here, keep my camera in my hands and yet not be too much that I give it all up for some other, more manageable, goal.

If I am being honest, this may be the only thing that appears on this blog this year.  A post a week. And that will be okay.  


And a wonderful party

And that, my friends, was the end of a magical fairytale party. We were so very lucky that we found Silvia and Alessandra from Wedding's Sicily who made all my Pinterest dreamings a reality. Francesco from Borgo san Rocco  was also fantastic and I feel so very, very blessed to have fantastic sisters and friends who fussed over me, E and M and organised the little (and big) thing on the day so that I didn't have to worry about a thing. And, of course, thanks to Claire Morgan who photographed the day.



Music, sun, laughter and little feet dancing. These are the things that I will treasure about our day.

Photography by Claire Morgan



20 children - 12 toddlers, 2 newborns and 5 middle-sized children to keep things interesting. Three languages and four nations represented at the wedding ceremony. Our wedding wouldn't have been ours without them.

Photos by the wonderful Claire Morgan



I can't leave 2013 behind without leaving you with a taste of our wedding. One fine day in September we stood amongst friends and family and said 'I do'. 

It was a magical day made up of hundreds of tiny, magical moments. There are so many things that I want to share with you about our day. I've thought long about what 'spin' to put on our wedding - DIY, destination, cross-cultural - because it was all of that, but what I most want to share is that we included everyone in our day. Twenty children - 15 toddlers, 2 newborns and 5 middle-sized kids! With a bit of planning and not much more effort we wove them into the fabric of our day; lavender to throw at the ceremony, folk music for dancing, balloons while we drank and at the end of the night babysitters to supervise sleep while the grownups danced the night away. I'd be lying if I said I didn't have a vested interested including the under 5's, but honestly I wouldn't have had it any other way. 

And so here it is - our wedding (in 4 parts) - told through the eyes of the littles and one that as a mother, I am proud to tell. 

Venue: Borgo san Rocco, Savoca Italy
Wedding planner: Wedding Sicily
Photography: Claire Morgan
Dress: made by Michelle de Lacey, Melbourne Australia
Hair piece: etsy