Browsing Tag



Watching as the locals pass silver balls…

4 October, 2012

It would be remiss of me not to include a lyric from Ben Fold’s “Adelaide” about the city we just got back from visiting for our niece’s wedding. We didn’t actually pass the silver balls in Rundle Mall on this trip (and it’s been over a decade since I’ve done it!) because we were in the Barossa region north east-ish of Adelaide. Sadly, this post is silver ball free but it is enriched with the soothing power of grapes.

Collage (clockwise) of blue sky through wisteria vines; wisteria flowers; and an arched window sitting in a wall covered in vines.

We went to six wineries on our day trip, but the most memorable and photographic was Seppeltsfield. Featuring an amazing range of ports that Nick partook in tasting (I stole sips) the winery also boasts 100 year old ports! We got the opportunity to smell 1910’s vintage and I swear it smelt like a sexy lady. I honestly can’t think of any other way to describe the rich perfumey scent! After elbowing in on the port tasting I’m beginning to think I may just be a port drinker after all.

Me peeking through wisteria vines wrapping around a rotunda.

Six HUGE barrels of wine, each about the size of an elephant torso.

A bottle of 100 year old port in a wooden presentation box.

Myself, standing amongst grape vines, arms outstretched and enthralled with my first encounter with a wild bunny.

We ventured back to the Barossa for the main attraction, our niece’s wedding, held in the garden of Lyndoch Hill which contains a ridiculous amount of rose plants (reportedly over 30,000!) Many of the roses were in bloom, but the bulk of the garden wasn’t and while disappointing, I’m sure it’ll look absolutely incredible whenever the roses do decide to pop out.

Jacqui and Kris surrounded by family and friends on their wedding day.

After the garden wedding was crowned by late afternoon sun peeking through the branches and the clouds, we headed up to the hall for delicious food and wine, meeting new people and singing raucously to The Righteous Brothers as we waited for our dinner! It was a lovely day to celebrate Jacqui and Kris and I feel so blessed to have been there to witness it.


Goodbye Nana

20 August, 2012

A photo of my Nana with hand drawn roses and freesias surrounding and a banner saying “Nana 1926-2012”.

My Nana died on the weekend. She has always been an exceptional woman, and an exceptional Nana. Her love and support for me and my creative work have been unflagging, and she helped me a lot with setting up my shop.

I still don’t really know what to say. I spent yesterday scanning photos and making a slideshow for her funeral. She still feels alive! I can still hear her chuckle and feel the way she’d grab my arm when she wanted me to listen to her.

Nana in 1946 at 20, wearing a cute square neck dress and a curled fringe.

She was a cool lady. You should have known Nana.


Giftmas of 2011 past.

2 January, 2012

Purple, pink, blue baubles on the tree (including tiny mirrored disco balls!)

I know everyone’s already posted their holiday photos but we were staying at Mum and Dad’s and I only just mustered the energy to pull all the photos off my camera. We had a quiet Christmas, a claim Nick would object to coming from a small family, and spent the day with my immediate family, our cousins, and some family friends. It was really hot and I wasn’t feeling fabulous. Yes, it’s me your resident Scrooge!

Enjoy my Giftmas spam, or How To Celebrate Christmas When You’re Atheist And Vegetarian. I’ve put the photos behind a link because there are a lot!
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Fashion, Life

Happy day Dad.

4 September, 2011

A photo of my dad smiling at the table sitting behind a plate full of blue "sea" frosted cupcakes with one white frosted cupcake in a paper boat with a sail saying "Bite me".

In Australia and a bunch of other countries it’s Father’s Day today! Happy day to all the fathers over the world, and also love to those with fathers who aren’t here.

I made my Dad a cupcake diorama displaying his little boat “Bite me” in a choppy ocean. Of course there are some inaccuracies. His boat doesn’t have a sail, it’s not made of paper and the sea isn’t made of butter-cream. That aside, I’m quite proud of it and I hope Dad liked it!

We had a nice family lunch today, the meat eaters were spoilt with pork belly, prawns and oysters. I made the famous zucchini and ricotta galette from Smitten Kitchen, I urge you to eat this at least once in your life! Our Miffy met my sister’s dog Moose, I couldn’t get a good photo of them because they were moving too quickly but they had a grand time playing in the backyard.

A photo of the cupcake and paper boat sailing over the sea frosted cupcakes.

A photo of the food laid out on the table, including oysters and my galette.

A photo of my lunch: Two different salads, a spinach pie and zucchini galette.

A photo of my sister's awesome bowl which is white porcelain shaped in an arc with the bowl sitting in the middle, and an old fashioned milk bottle.

A photo of my other sister's dessert, a stack of chocolate cake with cream, jam and ganache.

A photo of my dad grinning broadly with a chocolate stack in his hand.

A photo of Miffy from above, she's looking up at me and standing on large grey tiles as palm fronds cast shadows across them.

An outfit photo of me wearing a short black dress with white polka dots, black leggings with little dots around the calves and I'm holding on to Miffy's leash.

Outfit details:
Dress: Evans
Leggings: Not sure!
Shoes: Evans

I hope you had a good day today everyone.

Thanks for everything, Dad.



10 July, 2011

A photo of a mindmap I've drawn for our lounge room action plan for Sunday.

Today we started packing in earnest and began sorting stuff we will take with us, stuff we will dump and stuff we will sell. Tomorrow: more of the same as per my enthusiastic mind map pictured. Please forgive me for this reflective brain dump as I prepare to move to a different city and minimise the things that have come into the possession of Nick and I.

I don’t really ever think anyone will want my crappy shit but Dad is insisting on helping us with selling things on ebay. It’s difficult… basically all our belongings are hand-me-downs or gifts and scaling back possessions means having to throw out old birthday presents or sell wedding gifts. I mean, they’re obviously things we have little use for or that we flat out dislike but I worry about offending people. Then there’s family furniture we’ve accumulated that needs to be stored with Mum or rehomed. Nana’s display cabinet, Mum’s old washing machine, my parents’ liquor cabinet, a chest of drawers I used when I was little, and my uncle’s desk. Oh and the lounge suite.

A photo of my legs and feet draped with a pink blanket with a coffee table and a cabinet in the background.

This is what I did tonight. I’ve been snuggling up on the couch with my baby blanket at nights for the last week. We have to get rid of the lounge suite Mum gave us and even though it’s hard to get out of it’s super comfy for snuggling up in and reminds me of being safe in my parental home. I don’t think anyone will want the suite. The once gorgeous floral upholstery is stained and tattered, even though Dad always says that the frame is solid and sturdy. This couch has lots of memories that people can’t see. Like how Phoebe (our black toy poodle) used to walk around the base of the seats grooming herself and leaving dirt stains from her frolics in the yard. How we’d come in from swims, assuring Mum our hair was dry and watching TV as the salt water and chlorine leeched into the cushions behind our heads. When I was sick I would pass out on the couch and Mum would bring me tea as Phoebe sat in my lap looking after me.

At this moment what I’m experiencing is perhaps a kind of grief for things that have furnished my life for the last four years in the same space with Nick. At times I feel so frustrated that I just want to take everything we can’t bring with us to the dump! And then other times I wander around our unit completely overwhelmed before being drawn to the warm hug of the tatty floral couch. I see “lifehacking” articles about people embracing minimalism in their lives, but I’m just not comfortable with that idea. Obviously!

They’re just things, man, but they’re things that prompt me to remember and give me a sense of home. We’ll be moving in a fortnight to live with Nick’s Mum, and then we’ll have to readjust to a new sense of home. I suspect things will go better than expected, it’s just that the transition is quite discomforting.


A nice winter day in Brisbane is nice.

26 June, 2011

Today the Mind, Body, Spirit Festival is on in Brisbane and Mum really wanted to go check it out. She collected my sister, Nick and I and we toddled off to the RNA Showgrounds. The convention was absolutely packed! Being somewhat of a skeptic, I was mainly there to get out of the house and catch up with Mum and my sister, but there were also lots of pretty crystals to look at.

We lined up for a quick reading from a medium called Jade-Sky, and I really didn’t have a question prepared but she said that I was a teacher, someone who gathered people around me and influenced them. I’m always surprised when people say things like this (and there have been a few, but none of them clairvoyant!) because I don’t see myself as that kind of person at all. All I could blurt out was, “Well um, I have a blog?”

A photo of me, Nick, my mother and sister smiling.

A photo of poached eggs, sliced avocado and a grilled tomato on toast.

After battling our way around a few aisles we emerged with hungry tummies so deserted the festival in search of food. Some guy even offered to take a group photo of us, so that was nice! After lunch I mentioned that Kerbside was a cool place to hang out so we went there and found a Zoe and a Sonya! Horay Brisbane!

A photo of some white lattice and green astroturf with "Garden Party" written in chalk on a black beam. Some butterflies are also stuck on the beam.

A photo of Zoe, me and Sonya standing together, looking fabulously stylish.

An outfit photo of Zoe, fat and pale skinned, wearing a floral dress, military style jacket, with black leggings and floral Doc Martens.

An outfit photo of Sonya, chubby and pale skinned, wearing a red dress, cream and black striped cardigan, with black tights and black patent oxfords.

An outfit photo of Mum, leaning awkwardly and professionally as a future fashion blogger!

Mum got in on the outfit photos too. Check out this next level awkward lean action! Future blogging maven, definitely.

An outfit photo of Mum,a pale skinned woman with short brunette hair, wearing a black top and pants with a cream cardi and scarf with black ballet flats.

An outfit photo of me, fat and pale skinned, wearing a cream floral dress with a cropped denim jacket, teal tights and brown ruched boots.

A photo of me, smiling in front of pretty fancy wood doors.

And then back to moi. Naturally.

Dress: via Such Moonshiners
Jacket: New Look
Tights: We Love Colors
Boots: Torrid


I do like the beach, but I do not like sand.

21 April, 2011

Writing has always been my way of expressing things that daren’t pass my lips but as my blog stats grow and grow I feel like blogging and emailing have also morphed into another way of talking. This tricksy world has forced me into communicating my feelings instead of keeping them bottled up. How dare it!? I am very fortunate to have a network of loving people around me who really really love me and want the best for me. As I’m rather awkward at verbalising how much I appreciate all this fussing I want to take a moment right now to write about how I’ve been so moved by everyone’s support in the last few weeks.

When I was in hospital I was overwhelmed with lovely messages across all the various forms of internets I use. My parents came to visit me twice over that weekend, while Nick came to see me every day. I would see other patients who’d been in for months look at me with all my abundance of support with sadness, and I wished I could share around the visits with them too. I did the next best thing by sharing all the food Mum snuck in for me! My Auntie and Nana sent me care packs when I got out and my mother-in-law insisted I come down to stay with her for a few weeks.

It’s a testament to how powerfully isolating depression and anxiety can be when you are still struck with horrifying dark thoughts even when love is demonstrated to you on a regular basis. When you stumble into patches of lightness and love, like a clearing in a rainforest, and see all the people in your life who are watching out for you it can be embarrassing too. Sometimes I’ve edged back into the darkness under the canopy because I am so ashamed that I can’t be healed by all these wonderful people’s care, and I am mortified that they may see these relapses as rejection or poor manners. Oh but it is a lot more complicated than that, I’m aware!

So thank you everyone. Thank you so much for having a care in your heart.

This week I was invited to stay with my Mum and sister at a holiday house up the coast. It was terribly relaxing. I took some crocheting and work up with me, but found myself helping my sister sew a skirt and reading Russell Brand’s autobiography. I did some work, promise! I’m making up the fat necklaces over this long weekend to send out next week. Mum and Michelle couldn’t resist trying the gold mirror necklaces on!

Even though the beach was a stroll away we only went once and that turned out to be pretty lucky considering my lack of balance and coordination at the moment, which led me to falling over THREE whole times in the space of 20 minutes. This is a very ominous stat and I shall be keeping my sand trekking to an absolute minimum until I get better! I blame the last fall on my sister, who spun around quickly as we walked along the shore at twilight and screamed something about a shark. Mum and I immediately bolted, but I didn’t get far before realising I was going down. As I surrendered myself to any available sharks in my proximity Michelle burst into hysterical laughter, telling us she’d seen land on the horizon. Not sharks. Thanks land, for infiltrating my camera lens and my clothes. I hate sand more than ever. It is a gritty menace that tricks me and swallows my feet.

Do you want to see photos? Go on, everyone loves photos. (Unfortunately none were taken of my falls because I didn’t think to flip the camera on and document the beach coming up to hit me in the face.)

A photo of my sister and mother's legs with feet planted each on very large stones, which are amongst lots and lots of large, grey stones.

A photo of my red paisley skirt and feet in wet sand. My toenails are shockingly pink (literally, China Glaze Shockingly Pink!)

A photo of my sister sitting on her haunches looking into a rock pool.

A photo of a large expanse of flatish rocks on the shoreline with pink and purple puddles sitting in them. The sky is a fantastic pink/ purple gradient.

A photo of my Mum and sister sitting on a rock against the shoreline and waves.

A photo of the waves rolling in at sunset. The beach curves around from the left foreground to middle background and the sky is a gradient of purple to pink.

A Beautiful Life

Merry happy.

26 December, 2010

A photo of Nick and I standing to the right of a Christmas tree.

Even though I’m not big into Christmas I do like spending time with family and taking photos because Mum usually does pretty decorations and we’re all in the same location. This year it was awesome because we have our new camera and while I’m sure my photos aren’t that great, it’s good to have an opportunity to use it and practice.

I like to post photos of the Australian Christmas experience because lots of my northern hemisphere friends just can’t conceive of us celebrating the day in shorts and thongs! In my family at least, we don’t really eat much heavy winter food that is so typically eaten in the northern hemisphere and instead we eat barbecued prawns, cold meat, salads and what not however I think I did spy roast chicken and pork too. Since I have been vegetarian this year my Mum was a bit baffled as to what to feed me, but I had some lovely green salad and waldorf salad with a roast vegetable pastry concoction. It was great!

Photo of my mother, a middle aged lighted skinned woman with short light hair, and sister Amanda, a young slim dark haired woman, in the kitchen. Mum is drinking wine and smiling and amanda is holding a knife and looking at Mum and grinning.

Photo of lots of photo frames, silver trinkets and a purple wrapped present sitting on a sideboard.

Photo of my Nana, an older pale skinned woman, and my Auntie Sharon, a middle aged pale skinned woman, and Amanda, young slim woman, at the table. Nana is holding a knife and getting ready to cut the pavlova that in front of her.

Close up photo of shiny red cherries sitting in a clear bowl.

Photo of Nick, a bearded pale skinned man with glasses, holding Molly the dog whi is white and fluffy and looking at the camera dolefully.

Photo of some apricot and rum balls on the table with some red and green shiny bon bons sitting behind the plate.

Close up photo of Mum's green (fake) Christmas tree with aqua tinsel and silver, magenta and aqua baubles hanging off the branches.

Bonus: Nick and I singing Two of Us last night, recorded on my iPhone.
[audio:|titles=Natalie and Nick – Two of Us]

A Beautiful Life, Fashion

My sister’s wedding

2 October, 2010

My sister got married yesterday (which is why the desktop isn’t up yet, sorry!) so I want to share some photos with you. Where my wedding was more unconventional in its styling, Michelle and Jordan’s wedding was more traditional with the big white dress and veil as well as dark suits for the groom and his men. Lemme just wack the photos up so I don’t bore you :P

Collage of four photos, clockwise from left: Four girls all standing or sitting getting their hair done; macro photo of pink ruffle detail; a fancy fame, and some hair clips sitting on the table; macro photo of the bridal bouquet consisting of white and pink flowers.
Collage of four photos, clockwise from left: Michelle in her big white strapless wedding dress with looong veil standing with Mum and Dad; Michelle turning around with a shocked look on her face; the groomsmen, groom and MC standing around under a tree wearing smart dark suits, photo of the leaf strewn muddy ground with petals scattered around.
Collage of three photos, clockwise from top: Panoramic photo of the bridal party arriving, hedges block a little of the view; Michelle walking down the aisle with Dad, arms interlinked; Jordan (the groom) looking at the arriving party and smiling.
Collage of five photos, clockwise from left: Photo of the bottoms of the bride's white dress and veil, and the bridesmaids' pink and white ombre dresses, Michelle and Jordan holding hands facing each other with the celebrant (my godmother!) standing in front of them; Michelle in front of the Storey Bridge; the bride and groom standing against the Brisbane River and buildings in the CBD; the bride and groom signing the papers with the bridal party standing behind them.
Collage of five photos, clockwise from left: Michelle wearing Groucho Marx glasses with the fuzzy eyebrows and moustache; me wearing Micky Mouse ears; Misho, one of the bridesmaids, dancing with my brother Sam; Michelle and Jordan cutting their cake; the couple dancing the bridal waltz.
Collage of four photos, clockwise from left: Full outfit photo of me wearing a shiny black dress and bolero, black shoes with an ankle strap, and a black clutch; with Nick; head and shoulders photo of me, my hair and make up were done professionally and my hair is curly, my eyes are dark with bronze while my lips are nude; and close up of my nails painted pale pink with pink bows on the tip, I've got a chunky black ring with blue accents and a rhinestone.
Of course you want to know what I wore, am I right? Here are the details:
Dress: Collection from Myer (Thank you to Kiki for sending it to me!)
Bolero: City Chic
Shoes: Evans
Necklace and clutch: borrowed from Mum
Bracelets: City Chic
Rings: City Chic and Evans
Nails: MOI!

If foot agony is the measure of a good night let’s just say Michelle and Jordan’s reception scored off the charts and required an ice bath followed by a warm water bath (and many tears.) There are so many more photos I wanted to share but I didn’t want to bombard you with my (potentially boring) family stuff, but I really wanted to blog about this happy occasion!

I’ll endeavour to get the desktop up tomorrow, but ALSO! I got my Beth Ditto stuff from Evans finally… I haven’t had a second to try the polka dot dress, silver mary-janes or the grey skirt on yet, but I LOVE the drapey black t-shirt. I can’t even describe it.

A Beautiful Life

Love ya Mum

9 May, 2010

Today is Mother’s Day in Australia, so my family had lunch together. It was kids (mostly all grown up now!), Mums, Dads and Grandmothers with everyone bringing a plate of something yummy. It’s nice to share meals like this, and I often take for granted how great and big my family is.

I made some cards…

Mother's Day 2010
My sister made profiteroles.

Mother's Day 2010
Mum, Nana and Granma.

Mother's Day 2010
The lovely ladies.


I made carrot cupcakes, delish!

Happy Mother’s Day to all my mothers, and to all your mothers and you, if you’re a mother.