Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Of Istria

The lavender scented stone house.

The hammock under the walnut tree, made the best swing replacement for a little girl who loves swinging of any kind.

The skies of Croatia, oh the skies. Such a beautiful blue.

On which the clouds arranged themselves differently everyday.

It was another world, where accordion music played from one of the houses in the tiny village and an old lady sat outside smiling with all her hard earned wrinkles at the children.

And where sweet sticky figs grew in abundance, not like the cursed fig tree of long ago. Thankfully.

Thursday, July 29, 2010


Island in Spain. With blue sea peeking through the trees below the house, the heat seemed bearable.

Such a different feel to beaches back home, here it felt like Peter might just be spotted fishing in the bay.

I loved the buildings, with their warm clay coloured stone. And the dusty fields, with trees that despite the ground had green leaves. And the shuttered narrow quiet streets that seemed to have no life, but if you walked slowly you could hear the sound of people, escaping the intense heat by shutting themselves up in their courtyards.

And at night..

Sitting on the still warm rock, in the dusk, I drew close to Him.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Second Summer

Two summers. But such a different summer is this second one I am in the middle of. Of course some things are the same, the beautiful heat that lingers long into the evening, raspberries that hint of velvet, splashes, pools and glasses of water, shades of green you could never count. But the surroundings....

Fountains that have seen more summers than the people that drink from them.

Roses that scent the walls they climb.

Churches that people walk into day after day, churches that speak of centuries and architecture and skill. And I wonder. Do people realise you can meet him anywhere, that he isn't confined to ancient walls. God of the ages though he may be.

And I want to drain the cup that he gives me, but I don't realise it will never empty. Because his water never stops flowing and I sit still in this second summer, and drink.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Munich On A Rainy Day

Umbrellas everywhere.

Flowers don't mind the rain.

The always changing view from under the umbrella I hold.

Everywhere I walk in Munich turns up something new to make me take a breath. I have so much more to explore but my eyes are already so sated with beauty.

But I don't think you can ever have to much beauty. And Munich is beautiful even in the rain.

This little fellow walked some of the way with me. So grateful for the one who always walks with me. His name is wonderful.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

By The Lake

A week spent by a lake, in an ivy twisted, high storeyed house overlooking the white sails which echoed the clouds above. Swinging under the ancient fruit tree, feeding the swans that hissed imperiously when there was no more bread, sitting down to feastlike breakfasts. It was so lovely and then at the end a dashed visit to Switzerland, to see a friend's face. We sat with our toes in the Rhine, drank far to much coffee, and just revelled in the fact that we could catch up so far from home. God is good.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

And Life In Germany Begins

I made it! After travelling for thirty hours I landed in a verdant, sunshine filled Germany, but what made it even better were the welcoming faces that greeted me. I have slowly been adapting to life in another family and culture, and having so much fun getting to know the children. They are such cute little characters, and it is holidays here at the moment so it has been great to get to know them on a relaxed basis. Germany is just beautiful, my notion of it being some sort of second cousin among it's European neighbours has been well and truly squashed. And as for the arch above? That leads to the green door of my little garden room, which even has geraniums on the windowsill. I am blessed.

Monday, May 17, 2010

A List Of Lasts

Lots of lasts happening here at the moment.

Last weekend for a while with my darling friends, amongst the candles and laughter and sweet sincerity.

Last roadtrip down to Auckland to the church that began to feel like family, with my brother and Mum this time!

Last preschool music group, instruments ringing with the little lisped voices and shy smiles and raucous laughter.

Last gathering for a while of friends and family, fare-welling me with love, so much love and also tears. I feel so blessed.

But oh oh oh, how I am looking forward to all the firsts!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Slipping Days

The days are slipping away quickly now. There is such a lot to think about and yet I am trying to savor the moments and life as it is now. I have been catching up with my close friends, who are all very busy so I treasure the time I can spend with them. I've deliberated on cupboard handles for the new kitchen with Mum and Dad. Spent another day in Auckland with my brother (and some friends of his this time). Made jelly from quinces and feijoas, baked sourdough bread. Whipped up sourdough pancakes. And of course smelled roses.

Monday, April 12, 2010


Ben and I zoomed down to Auckland yesterday to go to church. Loved spending time with my brother as it is only six short weeks till I leave. And I feel so encouraged by the people we met and the words they spoke to us. We stayed for lunch with some of them at a Thai restaurant and then went shopping until the night service. Which was incredible. The sun was shining in more ways than one.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Feijoa Picking

The studio where I have been teaching lately has a big feijoa tree outside the front door. Briar and I went to pick some today.

The ground was covered with them. So we ended up with three big delicious bagfuls.

This little kitten came along at the end and climbed the tree. I think Briar would have taken it home if I had suggested it!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Thank You

For two thousand year old mercy. For a savior that bled. I feel such a failure, for me you say? Yes for me, even me. The notes play, waves of love and triumph. He is good this one and only God. He IS love.

Sourdough by Candlelight

Sourdough bread. Made with no yeast, just a bubbly starter mixture given to me by a Finnish friend. Because of this it takes a long time to rise, 7 hours to be precise, but all that meant is I had the fun of baking it by candlelight. So very scrumptious.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

"Great and Exciting Time"

I have been spoilt this week. One little student bought and gave me a chocolate bunny (with his own money), then Carlos gave me another one of his famous biscuits and then this. A card, drawn meticulously in vibrant color with such lovely words inside. I'm going to miss my little students.

Sunday, March 28, 2010


The last two mornings when I have walked out our front door I have just had to go out of my way to smell this beautiful rose. If only I could bottle it's scent up so I could wear it as perfume.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

130 Year Old Cake and A Tea Party

Today Briar came running to give me a note asking me to a tea party. Since it was a beautiful day I suggested we have one outside and then we went to work making a cake. Not just any cake.. I used a recipe out of my 130 year old Mrs Beeton's cookbook just for fun.

I have to confess we didn't wash the fruit and dry it, I think our dried fruit these days doesn't need washing? And we also didn't use the lard! But I did use a teacup for the measurements.

After making sandwiches and getting teacups and plates out of my stash in my top cupboard we were set.

The cake was interesting, a gingerbread coffee tinged flavour. Perfect with tea.

Afterward we read a storybook with exquisitely painted pictures about a little dutch girl. Briar had wanted me to read it to her ever since we started it and then couldn't finish a while ago. It was the perfect finish to a special afternoon.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Scrabble with Solly

Last night Solly wanted to play a board game. Miracles never cease! We ended up playing scrabble. In the middle of the big empty living room that is being renovated. On a table covered with some old carpet and lots of building things we cleared a space. And we pondered and puzzled until there were no more letters left in the bag. (Or words as Solly kept calling them.) And he won!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Sunset and A Mad Goat

So on Sunday I had lunch with my gorgeous friends, Emily, Laura and Amy. It had been far too long since we had been all together so we had a lot to catch up on. But the most pressing thing to talk about was Amy's recently announced wedding! A week before I leave. I am so happy I get to be there for it.

Amy was house sitting for friends and later on in the evening when the others had left Amy and I wanted to go for a walk up the hill to see the sunset. But we had to outwit this rather vicious goat in order to be able to watch the sunset as he lives on the hill we had to climb. After having him menacingly come towards us quite a few times we managed to shut him on the other side of the fence and were able to watch the sunset in peace. It was stunning.
Amy remarked as we were walking down: "At least he doesn't run fast, he only plods." No sooner had she said this than he turned around and came tearing down the hill straight for us. We couldn't believe it and were so glad to have the fence between him and us as otherwise we would have been rather sore. I never thought a goat could be so grumpy!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Fig Tart

Luscious ripe figs, gift from a friend. Ben and Laura came for dinner, and afterwards we squashed into the makeshift living room to eat this and watch old family videos. Much hilarity ensued.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Deck Living

The renovating continues. And so does the outdoors lifestyle. Dishes dry in the wind. And early in the morning we shiver a bit, scurrying around to get ready for the day.

But in the afternoon, when the sun is out, it is a lovely place to work.

And inside the work goes on.

It is getting there! And soon we will have a lovely new (much bigger) kitchen!