Monday, January 31, 2011

happy monday

My first week back at work has been a little like this image - ever so slightly blurry!
I feel as though I have a million and one things to do, but I'm lucky if I even achieve the 'one'.
One thing I do know however, is that it felt great to walk into the store each day.
Each time I am reminded that I am incredibly lucky to go to work each & every day doing something that I really love. 
And to feel this way despite all the trials and tribulations of life in the retail sector, and the stresses that all business owners feel, is something not to be sneezed at or taken for granted. It means that even on a tough day there will still be light at the end of the tunnel. (Even if some days it is just a glimmer.)
To say that I go to work to play each day makes it sound as though I don't take things seriously, and this isn't for a moment what I'm implying.
But to still be as passionate about my business, and to feel that there is still much to be achieved, is a great way to start each day.
Do you feel this way too?
Happy Monday everyone ( and hello to some new followers!)

Amanda xx
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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

reality check

There comes a time when one must pull one's head out of the sand, both literally and figuratively.
And if one was also the sort that looked for 'a sign' then four days of non-stop torrential rain was surely a rather strong message that it was indeed, time. Time to return to reality.
So, we've packed up, and picked up, and today was the day.
Back to work. I was late. It was hard.
But it is nice to be back, and tomorrow is another day!

Amanda xx

P.S And I am looking forward to catching up with some blog reading...
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Thursday, January 13, 2011

easy breezy - quick fix no. 12

The beach is a very convivial community.
Somehow this week I have managed to garner dinner invitations every night.
There are only two rules to beach entertaining, be it drinks or dinner.
Everyone brings something to share at the table, and you take your own glass (and something to put in it.)
It's that simple.
Being about an hour from the nearest supermarket means that sometimes the biggest challenge is actually finding something to concoct. It's like the Master Chef mystery box. Just what will the fridge reveal? But despite these challenges, with the abundance of fresh fruit produce in this area, we won't be fading away any time soon.
On New Years Eve we had 24 sitting down for dinner at our place. In Wellington that would throw me into a major panic. But here, even with an ancient stove which has only two elements that work, and the most rudimentary of kitchen equipment, even Brunnel commented on how relaxed I was.
Always concerned with aesthetics, I was fretting more about the table than the food, which I wasn't worried about at all.
Luckily, my perfect houseguests had brought dahlias all the way from Wellington. The best hostess gift anyone could give. Jan & I rounded up all my little bottles and old preserving jars to use as vases which we massed in the middle of the long table. A few moroccan glasses for candles, a little extra greenery and some agapanthus and we were both happy.
The look was simple and bachy. The trick is always to work with what you have on hand.

And now, with no dinner invitation tonight, I have to cook dinner for the first time since last Friday.
What will the fridge inspire tonight!!

Amanda xx
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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

totem treasures

I was inspired by Anna Spiro's recent post about family traditions and shell collections.
Like Anna and her family, I can't resist picking up beach treasures. There is always a shell or piece of pumice or stone washed smooth by the sea that inevitably finds its way home to the bach.
On a visit to the beach over the weekend, Milly spotted this little driftwood totem family. It was a grey overcast day, and we were the only people on the beach. (Such a special rarity!)
The totem family had been left in the sand. Just them and us. Naturally, my magpie daughter couldn't bear to think of them washed back out to sea, so she collected them up, and transplanted them in to the garden at the bach. 
I feel secretly guilty for saying this was OK. They feel somehow different to a shell or piece of pumice.

Amanda xx

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Friday, January 7, 2011

a simple life

Life is pretty simple here at the beach.

Lots of sleeping (along with sneaky photos taken by children).

Lots of eating. Drinking in moderation of course.

Conviviality in abundance.

A multitude of friends for the girls to catch up with, especially at the 'kids disco complete with bubble machine'. 

And of course, swimming at the beach every day. It is, without a doubt, a winning combination.

In fact, the only thing that is not simple is blogging. Or anything internet related. Standing around on the point of the beach, waiting for the sun, moon, stars, clouds and satelite to align so that one can get online, just doesn't seem to be an option. And believe me, I have tried. The phrase 'don't call me, I'll call you' takes on a whole new meaning. Maybe I would call, or email, or comment, but I can't.
Of course, when on holiday I suppose this shouldn't bother me. And for the majority of the time, it doesn't. But just when I have the time to do a little blog reading, those magic bars just don't want to show up.
I hope you'll bear with me. Bruno and I have driven 20 minutes over the hill to our closest reliable internet spot so that I can post this. If only you could see me now!!
But oh, thank goodness you can't!!

I hope all is going well in your world. I can recommend this simple life.
Happy New Year!

Amanda xx

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