Friday, May 29, 2009

Write about what you know?

Should I? If I did that all the time then there would come a time when I was finished writing. I think I’ll take my chances and sometimes deliberately write about a topic I know bugger all about. It takes me on a journey outside the square. Then again I can be surprised starting off penning down a story I eventually realize I know at least something, or quite a lot, about.

We peoples like stories. We love them, we cherish them. Why? We like to be:
Entertained, so we can laugh
Have our place in the world affirmed
To forget our current situation
To relate to the story and therefore to learn
To feel safe and be comforted

There are different reasons. Why do you think browsing on the internet is so popular nowadays? Distraction through entertainment. Which means: we have too much on our minds and like to fly away somewhere else or be on a holiday. We work ourselves to the bone, worry about spouse, kids or family, work and so on. Which gave me another idea: maybe I should start up a company where we can paint big canvasses using our hands and feet opposed to brushes, throw pancakes at each other and have a legit reason to act like a child again. I think adults forget how to play and they tend to be so serious all the time. It’s quite boring really being so serious all the time. God knows I haven’t found the cure for adulthood except to behave like a nutty whenever the chance. Other than that I’m reasonably reasonable. Well within reason. Or not.

Getting back to the writing again. How do you think it SHOULD be? What does THAT mean? Who says what anything SHOULD be like? I’m not fond of the words HAVE TO and SHOULD. They turn me off big time. I’d rather like to say CHOOSE TO or LIKE TO. Life is a choice, not something to be resigned to. I’m not saying you ‘should’ relinquish your responsibilities as they are part of being an adult and not a kid. (That’s why so many grownups have such fondest of fond memories of their childhood, the carefree playing etc etc, the wind in the trees, the muffins made by mum. Whether that’s all realistic is verse number 284.) But for heaven’s sake do something fun or ridiculous at least once a day. You know: shake off the shackles of predictability. Just get jiggy with it. Woohoo! Pass me that trumpet. Thank you kindly.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Summer in wintertime

Every morning I see a whitish world, crisp air hanging and every being seems to be reverted into stillness. In the evenings it's hot chocolate, woollen socks and early nights by the fire. Winter certainly has its moments. I'm also looking forward to seeing us move into Summer again, big blue skies, sun and luscious wavy green grass displaying snoring animals and yellow flowers. Birdsong is filling the air. Clear singing by the fantail, the tui birds and the bellbirds. Time to bring the bbq out again and lounge on the deck wearing sunblock, a hat and sunnies.... ah the memories....
So to sustain us in colder times read this.


Waves of laughter
Ice creams and music
salty water
Jandals and lycra
Walks and
Dog and frisbee
Sunburns and sandcastles

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The art of silence

There’s a funny thing about saying sorry. If I feel justified in my opinion I have a very hard time getting those words out just to make polite amends. If I’m wrong and know it I’ll say it straight away. Still, one has to be wise and ‘get over it’. Whatever ‘it’ is. I upset people from time to time. 'It's a funny thing', but not literally. Lately I found I have done it deliberately which is a change. Heck I’ve managed to upset a few people. You know consciously pushing some buttons. It's been interesting. I never used to do that. What does that tell you?

“Bottling up your feelings is not a good way of managing stress. In most cases, this leads to resentment, frustration and pent up anger. If something or someone is bothering you, learn to express your feelings in an open, yet respectful manner”

Uhuh. I think the key is in the respecting. That and learning to shut up at appropriate times? Most of all it can be sensible to not react and just choose to not say a thing at all. Not because I think I'm so right because that actually doens't matter so much, no, more because my energy is better spend elsewhere instead of some arguing. It's simply not worth it. I may still need an additional course in Zenny centering and shuttupping anyway, just to round me off and send me on my merry way.

Why did I tick several people off lately? (I made a lot happy too so my brownie points are sitting brightly on the top shelf.) I think because a) I needed to get it off my chest to feel I could continue to look the other person in the eye and b) I notice I say things when something happens that is either unethical to me or when I have the impression no effort has been made. You see, I rather am in the business of liking people opposed to disliking them. There's a difference between having respect for someone and agreeing with them. I never used to consciously upset people as unharmonious settings gave me stress. Because things change so much it's the more important to choose ones priorities carefully and not be taken off the path we are wanting to follow. I always focussed much on other people and their welfare, Nico and I agreed it's time to focus on ourselves more. We need to be there for us now.

Making clear choices and sticking to my guns makes me more straightforward in my communication. Sorry about the bouts of honesty but it makes me not having to attend anger management classes etc. etc. which is lovely as I enjoy spending my time at home looking after the fuzz man Zodiac and my dear husband. Also I don't have the habit of relying on friends to share stories or vent. So to prevent any inner injury I might as well say things from time to time. Don't worry I say plenty to myself too. Also I am seriously thinking of taking up karate. It may not be Zen but I do like to able to use my muscles well.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Niche

I like that as a name for a coffeeshop. Go grab it while you can! Actually I had another name as well for a cafe, which Nico and considered registering the domain for and haven't. I mean, truly, there's so much a girl can do.... sometimes I wish I had more time or learned to use it more effectivily instead of prodding ideas around. So if you're in the market for a name, no problemo, just email me.

Right: The Niche. As I've told you before, niche is the future. Why? Because we are unindated with information every minute through modern technology and all the vibes we receive emitted by other human beings. Trying to make sense of it all we make selections or develop hard hearing. In reality this means people listen to you less or hear less of what you are trying to get accross. Time is short and peoples attention span is half of what it was 10 years ago. We have to differentiate in a market to make ourselves heard, we have to repeat our words to ensure the other party has snapped up some of it. Whether we're understood is another matter. (Check this by repeating your question again.)

So: how to create a poppy syndrome for the better? Develop your brand and message. Find you USP (unique selling point) and stick with it. I've noticed with everyone trying to sell their product you really have to look at that which sets you apart. For example: I've been doing some homework into where to advertise my woman accesory designs and is a fine starting point. There's one downside: it's becoming more and more mainstream as more people join and therefor it's now flooded with a lot of the same products which dillutes the quality and snazziness. I liked the site better 2 years ago. The site has grown too big and therefor too large for the niche to be very effective or effective at all. It's like trying to get your babyclothing label noticed at K-Mart so obviously it makes sense to market it differently. I have luckily discovered another website that has not yet developed the same syndrome. It would be more sensible for me to invest my energy there eventhough less people may visit it, but at least the ones that do see my work instead of it being drowned out by the average status quo. Better to find your target customer then to try selling to everyone. Sell less in quantities, but sell more quality.

"Many companies and business strategies right now are focused on not necessarily catering to the masses, but specializing in a smaller subset of customers. These subsets are called niche markets. A niche market is a focused and targeted portion of the total market. A company or a product category will address a need that is not recognized by the mainstream market. These ventures are generally profitable because of a lack of interest or specialty resources in large businesses. The key to capitalizing on a niche market is to find or develop a niche that has customers who are accessible, that is growing fast enough, and that is not owned by one established vendor already. If no one else sells it you have found your niche!

So there you go, don't sell another latte but either go for the simple black or the one with hazelnut cream. Don't go for the standard sock but the one where you're feet actually stay warm. Don't hang a dead deer on the wall but a design from cardboard or a knitted version.

Find your talent and develop your niche. There's too much of the same around already. Recession or no, there's always opportunities to be had so get moving. Stop poking your nose, poke the fire instead.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Designex Trade show Auckland June 2009

My fabric baby has been born: 'Cows and Couches' by Hemptech has been printed in 3 colour ways...

Designex 2009 in Auckland. You might think heck another tradeshow. For me, it's the launching of my fabric design career, a chance again to catch up with my friend Beverley, and to scout around for avenues for my woman accesories as an add on bonus. Above picture's design will be plastered over the Hemptech stand for all to see. Of course I'm proud of that. Really because I'm still amazed it all actually happened. It's the greatest fun and Lynne and Colin have been so lovely and supportive. I am flying up to check the fair out for myself. As you know there's always tons to see and you need coffee breakes in between even though there's not really time for it. It's been ages since I have been to a big trade show and this will be excellent!

As I have told you I'm also keen to get into the woman accesories and otherwise designery niche market. I have designed a few by now and am waiting to receive my first batch of my design attempts. Nailbiting stuff! Ah back to the glory days of nerve wracking anticipation.... Anyhoo: the aim is to have fun with design and to share this with others. Once I have received my first results and done some photo shoots etc I will share that with you too. For now I'm bouncy balling about the Cows and Couches with likely more designs to follow. Woohoo! Marvellous. (Ok I better have a coffee now before I will prematurely collapse in exitement.)

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Our wicked ways

People are beautiful and hilarious. We are full of scandals and stories, whimsical activities and dreams. The more different the more interesting. Still, we have to make some sense of the world in the world. Most of us try to. Maybe the less we try the more it will come to us?

How do we learn most? By doing stupid things of course! When did you ever discover profoundness by something that was easy or gentle? I know it can be done, and I think the mystic forces support us in learning in a more gently manner, however I think I passed the exit and am still on that highway of life making some mistakes along the way. They shape my future. If I can look at it that way then the ‘o God no moments’ do no longer seem bad but very helpful. I feel no embarrassment but joy in achieving these insights. How lovely!

By no means would I urge you to deliberately do something off the wall. That would be stupid and unfortunate. (Well unless you need it I suppose.) Maybe we do not intend to be foolish but it helps to do so from time to time. I have to say I've been quite sensible lately though. I know! Life's been good to me. Still: perfection is very dull. Have you noticed?

Friday, May 22, 2009

calf update

Today is calf posting time. I know, it's been a lot of the Farm News Gazette lately but that is what has occupied us quite a bit. As you can see our Zodiac has been living in the kitchen with us and now he's out with the goats and the kune kune pig and loving it. The wee fuzz man and fullblood highlander is nearly 4 weeks old and has had a growth spurt. Now he's interested to eat hay with the goats, munch grass and guzzle water and is onto the calf grains as well. We're proud he's done so well as it was touch and go for a while with his mum not able to feed him herself. He's a quiet character and cute as a button.
We're looking at another 4 weeks of bottle feeding and we have developed a routine so it's all doable, even if we have to leave the house at 7 am. His mum Elsie will be pleased she'll have him back in a month. Kuddles our other calf is with his mum Kate, auntie Elsie and dad Carlin and despite the sleet, hail and snow he's warm en dashing about the paddock.
We are looking forward to a weekend with hopefully some sun between the rainstorms to look after these animals. It's a good thing highland cattle have a thick coat of fur that keeps them warm. Glenn the sheepdog has been settled on a layer of hay in his pen (which is his winter duvet) and everyone else curls up in the stuff as well. We'll stick to the real duvet thing as the hay's been making me sneeze enormously...

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Plastic fantastic

Yes I have one credit card; it’s the one where you are only allowed to take off what you had put on it in the first place. Is very good for me as it immediately ensures I’m always in the positive. You know me, I prefer to stay in the positive, and better yet I’m open to be indulged in flowing Exuberance financially speaking. Meaning: I’m happy to make loads of money so I can have fun with it and share it around. I’m still keen to secure that wondrous pool sitting lazily on the lawn. As yet it’s not on the priority list; we’re talking tractors and utes at the moment. Indeed, not very womanly topics, but necessary for a lifestyle block all the same. Of course a pool is not essential for a farm but it’s enjoyable.

Because that’s the only thing money is good for: to acquire some goodies if needs be and to cover the essential factors in life primarily: shelter, food, sleep. I like the Star trek philosophy better: cancel the money system and let people do their thing voluntarily. As our species has not yet progressed to this stage I’m happy to settle for plastic fantastic and a steady stream of income until it does. We live to hope.

Lately Nico and I have had quite a bunch of additional payments which mucked up our normal system. As you know we had the home kill last week, and I paid for 3 portraits done by Sean Waller the week before that ( I said to Nico well that’s rationing the groceries this week babe so no cookies for a few days until I can raid the supermarket again. Crippling I tell you, no chocolate bikkies and my period is due. Lousy timing. However: we are fortunate to be in a position where double income and no kids means we can still do quite a bit of stuff and sleep well at night. (At the moment we do with the woodburner still going and two blankets on top of the duvet.)

I had to learn long ago that I can’t just spend my hard earned dollars just because I have seen something I really want. You know what works well: leave it for a week and see if you still desire it, with big things, leave it for 3 months and see if you still need it. I find at my work if I still like a furniture piece or accessory after many months it’s a winner. More often than not you get over stuff and that’s one of the best ways to ensure your treasured cents have not gone galloping out the door. My dear husband says: you can only spend it once! This is so Dutch it makes me laugh but he’s quite right in his viewpoint that no, it’s sensible not to flash it around just because you can. It’s such a bugger to regret it later.

Whatever you do: don’t buy on credit! I never have done so in my life and I don’t intend to start now. If you don’t have it, don’t get it. It's that simple. Oh and if you need a credit card, get one of those positive things, so your world doesn’t turn negative. Mucho clever you know and no harm done. Well, you might have to wait for a while if you run out of your postive balance but heck you can be strong and patient right! (Man I can do with some TimTams right now… craaaaavings. Oh well. I’ll just have to suck it up.)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Tomorrow! Tomorrow? Today ace

Ok, it was one of those days. You drag yourself through the day hoping for it to turn round. Doesn’t. Better yet it is to go to bed and ponder no more. There’s always too much thinking going on. Just cross that one and leave it alone.

Next day: hurrah the sun comes out. Beauty. (We have got snow today but I did see sun shining on the way in to work so one brownie point for me.) We hop out of bed, get into action, have the sunny smile on our face and all that. What shall we do?

Sunnyness creates anticipation which then turns into action. Passiveness has rarely created exuberance, with the exception of monks in prayer possibly. God knows what goes on in their minds. Action gives us focus, drive and motion. The wheel turns and off we go.

Someone said to me, wouldn’t it be better if we enjoyed the journey as much as the outcome? Most of us are focused on the results as that is the ‘goal’ we strive towards. I think that’s true. I can be like that, hurry-hurry-flurry and splutters and sighs when I’m exhausted from running around like an idiot. I guess that's why I've got bouncy curls, I need the flexibility. It can be prudent to sit up and think hang on: why are we doing this again? Then we look at the diary and go o.k. make choices and get on with it. Works quite well. Prioritizing and all that jazz. Lately saying no works very well for me, you know being candid to the point of embarrassment. I try to do it nicely and I say it gives huge relief to speak one's mind or say no. I'm going to make a habit of it.

Creating a belief board
Steve Pavlina has recently blogged about belief boards (vision/dream boards) which I thought appropriate to share here, considering we are on the topic of goals and the sunnyness that is us:

"When you set a new goal, an important step on the road to achieving that goal is to gain the belief that you will get there. If you don’t believe you’ll succeed, then some parts of you will resist your goal, and your progress will be frustratingly slow.
In order to believe you’ll succeed, you must believe your goal is possible for you, and you must also believe that you’re actually going to reach your destination. If you don’t believe your goal is possible for you, you’ll block yourself. If you believe it’s possible but you don’t believe you’ll realistically get there, you’ll block yourself."

In short: you can be on the way of sabotaging your fabulous self and not even know it! Drama's enfold, acceleration drivels down to a plod and before you know it you're in bed exhausted and waiting for WINZ to pay you. Well, no, that's never hoing to happen is it, because you will have your belief board! Thing is we people can be stubborn, here in Kiwiland they always say 'ah she'll be alright' but truth is, without effort and conviction it'll dwindle to nada baby. Mais oui.

So it's bootie time once again, up you get!

Creating a belief board
" Get a cork board on the wall and put several pages on it. Each page contains a single belief that you’re working to install. Some of those beliefs are based on specific goals or habits, while others read like general positive affirmations.
For example, the first item on my belief board says, “I am extremely productive.” That’s not a clear and specific goal per se, but it is a positive belief to install.

"Is it effective? For me the answer is yes, most definitely.
You are capable of taking action based on your own conscious decisions. For example, you can decide how you’ll spend your evening and then follow your plan. But interestingly enough, most, if not all, of the ideas that float through your mind actually arise from your subconscious. And those ideas will be filtered through your subconscious beliefs. If you have a lot of self-limiting filters there, you won’t even be able to form and hold onto certain thoughts in your conscious mind that would otherwise empower you. You won’t be able to seriously set certain types of goals because your subconscious will simply block all the thoughts that would enable you to accomplish them. And if your thoughts are being blocked, then so are your actions and your results."

I will be honest: my belief board is still in progress, meaning I wonder where to stick it at work so I continue to see it. Ah found it! Well that'll be fun and up there in no time. I will add the cheque I'm printing from the secret website as well, so it's all in unison. Friends of mine have their dream board up in their lounge. It contains all the aspects they are aspiring towards and visually remembers them what they are in the process of achieving. I think it's a great idea, as is the belief board. The belief board I reckon is more detailed and in the now so I'm running with that one.

Oh, and you can only win lotto if you actually buy a ticket. Makes sense, no? Beh oui.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

It's the expression

It's not the age, it's not the look, it's the expression. Ever come accross a 13 year old who's already a fashion icon with her own blog? Tremendous stuff.

13 year old garden gnome with the brain of a wind-up monkey, posture of a crotchety old hag, and tact of Larry David. I enjoy vulgar thoughts, rapping about Rei Kawakubo, and reenacting scenes from the Lion King with 10-month-old babies. I am not cute."

Check it out on:
It's amazing, suprising and also inspiring. Crike she must be a 20 something in a teen body.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Every day

Every day I:
Brush my teeth
Go to the toilet
Wash my hair
Have breakfast, lunch, dinner, no desert
Drink black tea, green tea and red bush tea
Make a chicorei coffee or a milo
Kiss Nico
Talk to my goats
Walk Glen the sheepdog and also talk to him
Feed the chooks and Johnny the rooster
Phone people
Talk to people in person
Send emails
Have brainstorms and dot things down
Read up if I have time
Organize stuff for the farm
Sleep well at night
Do at least 2 enjoyable things a day
And write to you about it.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

power of creation

Have you noticed that whenever you are in a 'figuring out' period - when you can't quite make up your mind yet- that things are a bit fuzzy for a while? There are no great peaks or falls or growth. It's all a bit vague.

This brings me to: it is very certain that things will go well for you if you believe in them, love them and give it all your attention. Why? Because you use emotional power to Create. It's energy in movement. We create every day every moment every second. Most of us just think we don't have the power to shape our world or our life but we do. I'm convinced we do. And I'm not talking about pseudo positive thinking. It makes sense to me that certain things stop working well if you lose the belief or affection for them and that other things increase when you give them undivided loving attention.

As humans we are born to change and experience. That means that it makes no sense to do the same thing for decades on end unless we desire this. Also it might be an idea to give ourselves time to grapple with situations to become clear to us. I have found with various activities that I lost the appetite for them and started to care less and less. I went through several stages where I tried to reconvince myself that it would be better if I stuck with it which is the conscience thing or the -be-a-good-girl-thing. Now I can see I'm just ready for a new phase and it's better to let things unfold and let go of hanging on to old stuff. It's an incredible relief, which makes me very happy.

So what to do with the power of creation? It's always a cool idea to actually be aware of it. I've been less comitted to creating positivily for a while because I felt tired and got a bit bored with certain things. It's healthier for me to be creativily inspired. I can see now that in a sense I let myself become sick and that it was neccesary to wake up and start re creating differently. So all the time I had actually deliberately created boredom and stagnation apparently.

Awareness is the key to improving one's life. I wasn't feeling very zingy for a while but it was my own choice to feel so I guess. I'm not saying I gave up, I again understand that one is always able to choose again. This is a great thing. Because we have the ability to choose again we can devote our new found enthusiasm to areas where it's needed. So if taking responsibility for ourselves is the start, then whatever comes next is the result of that awareness of choosing which creates. (Still with me? Read that again if you need to.)

Here's the cookie part: we receive what we can let go of. We receive what we give to others. Interesting no? (Yeah I know bit of deep stuff today. Get used to it. Otherwise feel free to flick youtube.) Anyway: if you hang on to something or someone too much it will leave you. If you let go of something it can come back to you. If you give to others freely they will return the favour. If you treat others well they treat you well. If you show resentment it's harder for the universe to return love to you as you do not send that out yourself. Tested and tried amigos, swear to God.

Telling yourself that something should work is gobblygook. I've been good at that and it's a waste of time. Being a stubborn bugger is one thing, but truly, it doesn't help matters and it stresses yourself and others out. Like gee whiz get with the program already. Sometimes it's just ok to realize that a period has come and gone. Raising the curtain and drawing it on others will reveal new suprises and new inspirations. Isn't that just wonderful? I think so. Crike, it's a groovy world out there. And if you can shape it - how glorious and fun can it become? Woohoo! I'm keen, so I signed on, logged in and subscribed straight away. Love it.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Reaping and sowing

People tend to wonder what I’m about. I mean there’s so much a girl can do so why do too much some say? Why not be good and work in one area, maybe two? Specialize and play nice. Be good to your husband, massage his feet, bake muffins and never be grumpy when you get your period. Consider getting pregnant as you can’t leave it too late when you’re already 34! (Ding ding ding! Last round last round!) Settle down and be satisfied. Good girl. Pat pat. Sigh… I see many more 35 –ish year old women like me struggling with this theme it’s not funny. Enough of that already.

Having a 64 acre farm with 34 animals (was 50), being at work 49 hours and having my own business naturally has its merits. It gets harder if there are other things also in the equation like a social life, trying to see friends, going to business networks, designing logos and illustrations for overseas relations and fabrics for Auckland with also wanting to do some writing. My days are filled from dawn till night and I enjoy them. Most of the time. I stopped watching tv because by the time we can the news has come and gone hours ago. Now there’s a calf living in our kitchen. Nico just phoned to say he’s off to Invercargill for several days. If that's ok. Of course it is. I feed the animals and bottlefeed the wee fuzz man.

So when do you know you do too much? Well for starters when I started to hear Nico grumble more and more. Very loudly. We had to sit down and discuss a few things. You get the picture. This was last year and we managed. For me everything is about the enjoyment of achieving and learning and it’s about respecting myself and my life partner. It’s about choices and about learning to take time to do nothing. That last part is incredible challenging: therefore it hardly ever happens. It’s a very rare event to see us lazy butting about.

People think everything just happens to us and that maybe we got ‘lucky’ living the lifestyle ‘dream’. The truth is we work harder then hard; we have to tend our relationship so we don’t drive each other mad and we have to learn to take our foot of the gas pedal to just enjoy life. This is hard for us. We sweat to make things work, plow through the paddock with hail, rain and snow in gummies and we are still thankful for the animals we care for, the people we have met and the way things worked out for us. Gratefulness creates happiness. Sometimes we forget and get tired. Very tired. Then fortunately we are kindly reminded by someone or something that all is well and to roll with it. Thank you world for the changes in our lives and the inspiration we may receive and give to others. We also say thanks for the wondrous calf that is our temporary flatmate. He can't cook but he's a lot of fun.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

In Memoriam

Today is a bit of a sad day for me. Two of our friesian cows have been shot by a homekill butcher this morning. This nice man is not to blame for their deaths, we are. Because we are too weak to become vegetarians our freezer is filled with patties, mince, sausages, all sorts of fancy steaks, roasts, silversides and salami. Yes it's the best meats you can eat, but animals have died in order for us to enjoy it. It's murder and I'm not proud of it.

The sound of gunshots is unnerving and the sight of a cow dropping down on all fours because its brain is no longer functioning is heart wrenching. I know very well that it's basically me pulling that trigger. The first time I felt like a murderer was when I had to point out 2 cows the butcher had to shoot. Just the pointing out is enough to give you nightmares. It's by far a crappy experience, we had it done before but this time it's an animal I cared about and I am feeling upset about it. So there you have it. No fluffy airy fairy stories today I'm sorry.

The world is a beautiful place and also a place where things happen we regret, or don't enjoy. I don't believe that toughening up is good anytime of the week for anyone. Why would hardening up be any good at all? It would just mean we slowly kill off our feelings and no longer be affected by anything; we no longer would be human. I'd rather embrace my emotions as they are not to be feared but simply experienced.

Animals DO have different personalities and are not just 'another beast'. They are not so complex in character as humans but still deserve better treatment then they are often getting. My consolation is that our animals will never go to the works as this is a horrible place to go to. At least our girls died eating grass, staring at the sunrise and we know they had a great life. They had days snoring in the sun and being fed with nice bikkies. Many bovines didn't have the luxuries they did. They leave their 8 month old girls behind, who we put in another paddock and whom we check on to make sure they are 'ok'.

Luckily I have come accross many fellow humans who care deeply about their animals too and do all they can for them. This is reassuring. It means that as a race we might wake up to the fact that the choices we make in how we treat other beings reflect on how we treat ourselves, and that in fact we will alter how we choose as we wouldn't want to harm ourselves. We might learn to take responsibility for those choices and say yes I did that or no I won't do that. Hopefully this realisation will effect how we choose differently in the future.

In the meantime I will tell you this: my husband is looking forward to a new stack of patties and I will not eat my friend Koe. I however will eat the other cow Freya. I don't know if this is hypocritical but at least I know what I'm eating. All those people who buy meat from the supermarket, and easily forget that that red packet was once alive, are probably deceiving themselves more. In any case: I have lost my cow friend and I will remember her for the personality that she was. I hope she is having a good chow upstairs and that she may forgive us for what we did to her. Will I forgive myself?

Friday, May 8, 2009

boldly forward jazz

Yes the famous Entreprise crew has returned to the big screen and today the movie is being released in New Zealand. I'm quite a fan of the kiwi actor Karl Urban and also happen to be a bit of a Trekki. More sci-fi in general really. Have you ever read Enders Game by Orson Scott Card? If not, get onto it. It's the best sci-fi book ever. Why they haven't filmed it yet is beyond me.

Anyhoo: it's beam me up time once again! Steve, let's plan a time with Sus and see it. I know Nic'd be keen.
Here's the trailer...

Aye aye captain.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Lifeproofing by setting goals

What the heck is that, being 'life proof'? Well I'm sure all us have thought that: how can we cope, how do we know things, how can we proof the future? Do we know what we want? Unless you are able to see into the future, most of us have to decide we want clarity and stand for what life we like to create. Owe up to it and stop hiding behind excuses. Shape it activily and let go of old stuff.

Times are interesting. Things happen that were not quite anticipated and other things were and roll by the wayside. Quite funny really. One thing is for sure: nothing is. The new certainty is change and we do best to embrace it as there's more and more of it to come and it will come at faster paces. I'm working on going with the flow as when times change at an increasing rate the information and movements will go too fast for us to absorb. Hence my preference for Zenning at the farm. I currently focus on 3 things: home (farm), work and my own design work. I've decided to drop other activities that no longer positivily add to the experience.

I booked my ticket today to go to Auckland to visit the DesignEx fair held the end of June. It will be so exciting! I'm looking forward to seeing my friend Beverley up there and see if she's keen to join me for a day of interior faring. I'm also greatly looking forward to meeting Lynne, the marketing director of the fabric company I did designs for. They will have it up on their stand and I've been told it will be advertised in all the magazines as well which was extremely humbling. OMG stuff. Nico will hold the fort at home which is very kind of him. He's been more then great, my husband. I love him to bits.

Yesterday I rung the vet. Turns out that our dear highland calf Zodiac (nickname Wobbles) will have to be seperated from mum and bottlefed for the next 6.5 weeks, twice a day. Zodi will go in the same paddock as the goats and the kune kune pig this weekend and I think it will be quite hilarious. We feel sorry for mum Elsie but as the calf is not feeding with her -and trust me we tried!- then this is our last resort. It will make feeding easier for us as now we have to seperate them first before we can feed. Being poked by 2 hornes by a protective highland cow is not our idea of a good massage. We are very happy that Zodi is so lively and doing so well living only on our milk replacer. And yes, he's cuter then cute, as all calfs are like wee teddybears (picture Rainy Day last year). Cuddle therapy we call it.
So aside from the swings of life, I am trying to set clearer goals. This is challenging at times. One of my next projects will be keeping financial books better and to abide by Steve Pavlina's idea:
"H.L. Hunt, a man who rose from a bankrupt cotton farmer in the 1930s to a multi-billionaire when he died in 1974, was once asked during a TV interview what advice he could give to others who wanted to be financially successful. He said only two things are required. First, you must decide exactly what it is you want to accomplish. Most people never do that in their entire lives. And secondly, you must determine what price you'll have to pay to get it, and then resolve to pay that price. "
The point is that with goals, you have to be specific, use a timetable and mean business. It requires vision, determination and self discipline to keep the pace up.
"Clear goals allow you to achieve the first half of H.L. Hunt's success formula. By deciding exactly what you want to accomplish, committing it to writing, and reviewing it on a daily basis, you bring your goals into reality with the power of your focus"
Well let's keep on humming I say.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

the chair fettish

People are funny. I have my moments too. As promised I hereby disclose the fact I love chairs more then shoes. As I am in fact a woman and have about 20 odd pairs of shoes, this could be interesting. To date I have not got a designer chair in the house, but I do have 2 beautiful handmade waterhyacinth chairs, given to me by my previous employer in Auckland. Nico has moved these in the bedroom recently and we ditched a few nondescript 2nd hand ones. You know, the famous 'getting by ones'?

The chair fettish is one that has stayed with me for a few years now. Last year there was a discussion where my husband aka the pookems (after Calvin and Hobbes snookely pookems) had expressed his interest in securing a recliner. Horror! Never I said. Nicely. You're welcome to a chair, all fine, slippers inlcuded, but not! repeat, not! a lazyboy type recliner if my life depended on it (Rule number 1, try to stay clear from lazy boy recliners (with all due respect)). If you have to ask why then unfo you didn't get the point. The pookems expressed some surprise at my opinion, raised his eyebrows and said well then, what do you suggest?

2 options really: the T21 "James Bond" chair from Tessa (below, which yes you can get through the place I work) and comes with an optional footstool or the famous Eames lounge chair (above with cat). The latter we are exploring. I haven't found a chair I liked better yet. Turns out Nico is too tall for the T21 with his 6 foot something which makes the headrest sit too low for him, therefor we have to look at other options.

Now getting back to the fettish. What makes a chair alluring, interesting, oozing wickendness and seduction? No idea, but it grabs hold, like a blanket of flu in winter or an overexcited teen on a icing rink. (Depends whether it sneaks up on you or pounces like a tiger.) It speaks, it talks, it whispers, it makes you feel excited. Basically it's like chocolate, but then the kind you can actually plant your tush on. You get the picture. It's cozy, softening and enfolds you. A good chair is like a good friend: it supports you and has only the best intentions at heart. It sticks around and is honest. Rule number 2: never buy a product you don't trust.

This dining chair (above) is called the Tango. It's expensive but the best dining chair I ever sat in. It's incredibly comfortable, it beautifully moulds around your back and it's suitable for outside as well.
(Yes you can get it through my work and it comes in black also.) Ofcourse I try and indulge my fettish chair thing at work as at home it's a work in progress. This is fine. In my mind i have gone over many chair designs I would like for this or that room.
Why bother with chairs? Well why not bother? It's your spine, your health, your happiness, your relaxation. Chairs give comfort, they support and they offer rest. For the wicked.

Rule number 3: don't deny yourself rest or quality. It's fine to settle for something less as a temporary measure. Then when you are ready, get the oozing wonderfulness you desire. It's worth it.

Friday, May 1, 2009

This n that

I had a topic in my head but realised there's several things floating around I could have a crack at. Thoughts pop up like fizzers. I'm thinking of our 4 day old calf that is still not drinking with mum despite our efforts. We are continuing to give him milk with colostrum morning and night and will attempt this weekend to lock mum in and show this wee fellow what that pink udder thing down there is good for. We wonder if he'll make it but we sure hope so.

One of my dearest friends has send me an email about how she's going at the moment. Dad sent an email that some nutcase drove his car straight into a crowd of people waiting to see the Queen come past in her carriage in Apeldoorn on National Queensday in Holland which is the 30th of April. 5 people died, the driver's in prison. Some of my Dutch family was close by and had to see the whole drama unfold. So I'm thinking of my 2 nieces as it must have been scary for them. My thoughts are with all the lovely people who were looking forward to a fun family outing, seeing the Royal family outside of their palace (the same one I visited last November) and instead went through something else entirely. It's such a shame that these extremy things happen. Just one person literally not being in their right mind.

I went to a fundraiser in the form of a Quiz night last night that was great fun and had tons of laughs. I stayed with friends which was really lovely. The butcher had phoned Nico in the evening to say he couldn't do the homekill this weekend but would do the next. I'm thinking of trying to phone the transport company again that will pick up the two highland heifers we have going to Central next week, which means we have to get them to the neighbours place before hand as he's got proper yards. Nico and I agreed we would get pizza tonight.

You know, that sort of thing. The cold has hit so the heater is back on and the front door closed even though it's sunny. I've met some really nice people today and it's just been great. It's just funny what can occupy us when we 'doodle' in our mind. Right now I'm thinking of making a milo to warm up. You have a great weekend and oh yes! I was going to write a blog on having a chair fettish. For some reason I have crushes on chairs (so to speak.) So that will be next week to look forward to...