You tricksy Melbourne weather, you! Both this morning and yesterday morning, I awoke to blue skies and sunshine – it was lovely! So appreciated!
But before the hour was even out, you’d sent in the heavy clouds, gusty wind and rain. Sigh! And to think, I’d coveted the delicious hope that by the end of this weekend, the top half of our newly acquired ($20 on eBay) Estey pump organ (circa 1880) would be scrubbed, all its lovely golden wood grain revealed. No chance.
So after a morning shuttling the Year 12 child back and forth from a Japanese examination workshop – not the examination, just a 3 hour workshop on how to prepare for the examination – there was little else to do but embrace the indoorsiness of it all.
Julian settled in for an afternoon with his guru – Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall – we will know all of Hugh’s puns and witticisms off by heart by the end of the year. Fu snuggled up beside him. Abby scorned homework and spent hours needlepointing little dolls of her favourite characters from her latest anime passion – a series about volleyball players ?!
And I jumped into the marvellous paper lover’s edition of Flow that came out a couple of months back. Now, I’m really dreadful with this kind of thing. I gleefully buy it. Reverently look through it – often over and over. Sigh over all its loveliness … and then do NOTHING with it because it’s too special to use.
Which means it never gets used.
Well, not today! A gloomy wet day was the perfect day to pull out the saved prettiness and put it to good use.
Now we are a paper doll family – I indulged something shocking when Abby was little. We have a vintage suitcase full – Little House dolls, Narnia dolls, American Girl dolls, Russian Royal Family dolls, Curious George dolls … including more that were saved from my childhood. But frankly, our paper doll playing days are over.
Yes I know, we should all be embracing more play, but it’s not happening. So I took Flow’s dear little paper Raccoon doll and her outfits, had Abby scan them in to the computer, copy and flip one (and it’s costume) around, make another copy child size, popped them all on a USB and in between that workshop shuttling, printed them off at Officeworks for the grand total of $3.75.
I laid them out on a recently bought Muji wooden tray – like a little stage set, complete with a little string of Flow bunting …
… then chose the lightest spot in the house to sit – at the old singer in the dining room window – and set to glueing and sealing it all with ModgePodge. Julian was obligatorily horrified – why would I DO this to a perfectly nice wooden tray. You’d think he’d understand by now, hmmm :-) Anything plain is just waiting to be Lilified.
In fact, I’m thinking of buying another wooden tray and the Phoebe Wahl paper dolls from Taproot and make Julian a FARM version. He’ll love it.
And so flew past a couple of sweet hours. Hugh took his first pigs to the abattoir (yet again), made Parma ham (yet again), went diving for scallops (yet again), made lamb mince pies to sell so he could afford a goose for Christmas (yet again), had his Christmas eve gatecrashed by his apple cider / skittle mates (yet again) – whilst Julian ooohed and ahhhed with ever-growing excitement and regular detailing of next years plans to Abby who jabbed her needle up and down whilst answering “Mmhmm! Mmhmm! Mmmhmmm!” She’s very excited by the prospect of farming ;-)
And now we have a dear little wooden tray decorated with gardening raccoons that we can use come spring and summer when all we want to do is sit in a sunny warm garden with good food and a drink or two by our side.
Ah winter – you delivered a topsy turvy one today, but it simply didn’t matter. There was too much goodness to be found inside to notice.