Sunday, February 26, 2017

pockets of normal

That is what this week has felt like. Pockets of normal found in a very sad and strange time.
So much of the last week we have been preoccupied with saying goodbye, with coming to terms, with talking and spending time with our friends and community. Coming together in mourning of our friends' passing and in celebration of her life. 
But in between the coming and going there has also been some time for...

sketches to accompany a piece I have written for Juno magazine
mountains of this
making our daily bread

some of this...
 and plenty of that...

Friday, February 24, 2017

an empty space

On Monday we lost a friend of ours.
It was so cruel, so sudden, it has left us all gasping for breath.
The reality of her passing has not yet sunk in.
The space she has left is enormous and gaping.
There will always be a space where she should have been.
She left behind four children, whose pain I cannot even begin to imagine. 
For me personally she was a witness. She was one of the few people who knew me when I first moved here, another life time ago.
She was a witness to the changes in my life when my marriage broke down, she was a witness to the changes in my life as I came into myself and she was a witness to the changes in my life when I met and fell in love with Garry.
She always rooted for me, had a kind and supportive word and a radiant smile.
She will be missed always.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

days like these...

 oh how I love days like these! We had nothing we had to do today, no where we had to go and time stretched ahead, an uncommon luxury for us these days.
Our day began with pancakes and paper games.
 Rebe and Benny made paper swords while Ena and Joa drew and read. After that Rebe asked if she could use the marzipan that has been in the fridge since Christmas to try and make something...
 The morning had been wet and over cast, perfect weather, I thought, for a snail hunt.
I have always found snails to be the perfect toddler's insect. Funny looking, easy to watch and pick up and slow enough to enjoy without getting a fright. As Ena had yet to see a real life snail we thought that we would take her on a snail hunt. So after Brock woke from his nap we had lunch and headed off on a snail hunt.

We looked for snails on the walls and stones all down the hill stopping to answer several million 'Wot dat?' questions from Ena
 Our first discovery was a worm, but he was too wiggly for Ena to touch. Rebe picked him off the road to show her and to rescue him into the grass. We hunted on and finally found a snail...
 and she was so pleased!

As the weather was getting finer and Brock very happily asleep in the buggy the kids asked if they could stay and play on the beach for a while.
It was wonderful, the clouds slowly lifted and a wonderful game of 'camp' began. This has been such a long favourite game; building a camp from whatever they find on the beach.
 It got more and more elaborate, with a small orchard of 'berry trees', a vegetable garden complete with veggie off cuts that someone had thrown into the sea to compost and a fire place.

 Firewood was gathered and a spit constructed using bits of old fisherman's rope.
On the menu...roasted leek!
 The kids went on to make weapons for hunting: Rebe made a bow and arrow, the arrow had a stone head and feathers tied onto the quiver. The boys both had axes and Joa told me he loved going for beach walks with me because I was so good at tying stones onto sticks (I have had years of practice after all).

After several hours of play, energy started to wane (despite the roasted leek) so we headed on to the cafe for a coffee and an ice cream.

 On our way home we stopped for another play at the camp, I fed Brock on the beach chatting with friends. All the kids found playmates and it reminded me of summer days on the beach. It reminded someone else of the summer too so much so he decided to get into the water, spiderman costume, shoes and all! So with a soaking wet boy and dinner time approaching we reluctantly came home. But, oh what a wonderful day!