29 August 2008


I got my glasses today. I guess they are more purple than pink. Pretty groovy if you ask me :) I dont know who is the brand but I really love the sparkles so the person must have good taste!! It does feel weird to wear them because I'm just used to wearing sunglasses where I cant see the frame. I guess it is good to see things a bit bigger now and hopefully less headaches :) Have a nice weekend everyone ^0^

27 August 2008

menu and the ability to read it

I mentioned I had changed my shopping habits to try and cut down on wasted food at the of the week and try to save a few extra $. I spent some time creating several weeks of food plans (which was actually quite fun) and from these lists I made the shopping lists. Since week to week is a bit different when my loved one is away, these plans dont always work but when everyone is home it works a treat. Having never really shopped with a strict list I now realise how much time I have wasted wandering around thinking of possible dishes and things to make....hence so many wasted veges (especially). Above is this weeks plan and its so good!! I dont have to start worrying about 4pm what I'm going to make for dinner and all the ingredients are there and ready. I mean, its not brain surgery to figure this out, just a conscious change of habit, and that takes some effort. But already it is a very rewarding change.

In addition I had an eye test today, prompted by some severe and prolonged headaches and yes its true, I'm getting old....I need glasses, just for close up work......the test was actually quite fun but one of my eyes is actually quite bad.....Im afraid I will end up like a little mole or worse with a milky eye....it is a just a matter of accepting the changes as you get older, grey hairs, etc....really its just the surface stuff because I think, with time, the inside gets better at understanding this world and our life and just keeps getting better :) .....Oh, my glasses are pink with sparkly diamentes on the top corners.....

25 August 2008


Heres some of the WIP for the curtains I'm making...yes, I am a bit shoes obssesed but havent been buying any, just drawing and photographing them. This is a hard task in the 'most beautiful shoes in the world' shops in Tokyo.

23 August 2008

making stuff

I've been doing lots of drawings but kind of feel I'm going in circles...I have started to use paints again but I'm very rusty. I'm not too sure if this is the right thing to do as in addition to making some curtains, working on several card ranges, continuing my illustration folio for work in Japan and for my website devt, among other bright ideas...is it any wonder I'm just making a lot of stuff and feel like not much progress.....at least not much direction....I'm sure I will be steered again soon. If I clear my desk it will hopefully clear my mind and I can start to make some cuts here and there and have some nice neat progress. In saying this, the whole creative process is not about keeping organised and neat and tidy. For me, the exciting ideas, inspirations and accidents cannot flow with all the ends tucked in neatly. This means that the stuff on my desk might have to stay there a few more days.......all in the name of creativity of course!!

21 August 2008


I thought summer was on the way out..................................

20 August 2008

daily lessons

Heres a little lesson I can share with you, its a guessing game. This is a word, it is English but it is Japanese. It is probably useful if you come to Japan. See if you can guess what it is.
Suta-baru.......there is an elongation of the letter a
If you break it down it looks like this: su-ta-ba-ru......any luck yet?
Ok, if you are with your buddy and you want to go and get a coffee you say "Lets Suta-baru"....
Essentially it is is Japanification of the word Starbucks! So if you desperately want a coffee, on the street ask where is the closest Suta-baru :) ii desu ne!! (great!!)

19 August 2008

i dont want to forget

all the pretty and meaningful things I see in Tokyo....................

and the simple yet beautiful and thoughtful details................

but it feels like time is moving so fast, 6 months we have been here and already our plans to come home at xmas are in place and things we want to do next year are in the planning then it will all end and it will be time to do the next thing. Our time in Tokyo is precious but sometimes it is hard to feel that way, every moment, only because life feels normal and not so special. I do often think about how lucky we are so have such a great opportunity and hope for moo it will be the beginning of his desire to know about other people, cultures, languages, lands, foods etc......
Sometimes it is nice just to stop and listen and make a mental note of my surrounds, sounds, smells and sights and keep that thought so I can revisit it years later.

17 August 2008


Wow Im not kidding, today was 20 degrees, yesterday was 40 degrees!! It is so nice. This is not the temple of weather but a small temple on the top of a shopping mall actually a mega, mega mall. Its the first mega, mega mall I have visited in Tokyo. We were there for about 3 hours and had time to wander a little and eat and then go to the biggest toys r us possibly on the planet......I managed to pick up a small toy that teaches kids how to use chopsticks......

16 August 2008

lucky day

It was another schhhhtinker today but look what we found!!!! About 1.5 hours from Tokyo and a view of Mt Fuji is this beautiful, clean, quiet and peaceful lake. Well, actually it is one of the many lakes around the base of Mt Fuji (in Kawaguchiko area) but this one has so few people in it. Lucky day!!
And it was much cooler and there was grass and it was just so nice :)

And to top off a great find was a multitude of cafes and restaurants looking over the lake. Wonderful :)

15 August 2008

hot hot hotter

What else it there to do when its 40 degrees outside day after day? Make this awesome chocolate cake!! One bowl, you cant fail....please go to this lovely blog to get the recipe. I realise I am quite miserable in summer when I cant go to the beach.

13 August 2008


Shimane is on the west coast of Japan, low population, lacking in any sort of coffee or much hope of a bright and sustainable future. Its just full of old people with most of the young people going to the cities for their life and opportunities BUT...Shimane is one of the most special places to me. Having lived there for 3 years a while back, it gave me the chance to learn a lot of things and more importantly meet a lot of amazing people. Returning there now, after almost 10 years, was a wonderful experience. Almost nothing has changed, except all the people I knew there now are married and have kids (or left). The oldies still live everyday amongst the gorgeous nature and it is no wonder everyone is so relaxed about life. Shimane is the yin to Tokyo's yang, at least that is how I felt. Sitting on the bridge in the morning in the middle of town while moo just scurried about the rocks I felt it impossible to have all that nature and the convenience of the city. I feel so lucky to have the chance to be part of both worlds with both making me feel happy and content in different ways. I also know I am part of the world in Oz too which is an extra special layer of happiness.

Picking blueberries and eating them off the tree was so cool. My friend was so happy to let her kids run off while I was constantly checking to see if moo was not getting bitten by a snake/spider/falling in a ditch......it was nice to be around such relaxed Mums....

These were for us to taste test in case we needed any more convincing to pay the $10 to pick as much as we could!!.....in addition the lady had some frozen face towels so when we returned from picking she had them ready to cool our very hot bodies...I forgot the incredible kindness, thoughtfulness and politeness of Shimane people. They are so infectious that when I see/feel them it makes me want to be more kind, thoughtful and polite.
Green tea and local sweets are just normally given to any guest at this friends house. This family are farmers and while there I always get to try some new kind of fruit or vege from the garden. This time the nuts from the lotus flower. Tastes like coconut to me....The Dad in this family is the son of a local scholar who wrote history and poetry so their house is filled with lots of writings on the screen doors and beautiful artworks and sculptures. Being summer the house is wide open so you can see the moutains and river outside and smell the sweet air mixed with incense.

This huge river filled with fish and ducks cuts through the centre of town.

The main street is often deserted....

These are the kinds of people who never leave your heart or mind.

Plums drying in the sun ready to be made into umeboshi (pickled plums) eaten usually with rice. At this stage they taste more salty than a huge mouthful of sea water......

This is my ever lasting image of memory of Shimane. Rice, quiet, peace, friends, water and time. Time always seems so short but in Shimane it seems there is always enough time to do everything you need or want to do.

7 August 2008

wip finished!

One of my most favourite, all utility skirt - a brown canvas non descript thing from Target went missing somewhere in our move (along with some other random things). I have been trying to find a replacement, not too tight or short and with pockets...no luck so far. I was about to throw out a pair of denim long shorts which would have made the saggy baggy elephant look good or rather, thats what they made me look like...anyway...I had a vision!! I cut the legs out and re-joined them into a skirt and added some bits from the leg parts and some red stitches and the above shot is the finished product..just about 4 months in the making (actual time about 2 hours) the rest of the time the cut out parts collecting dust. Major happiness!

6 August 2008

now im in...

I must be a real creative person now because I have my very own moleskin sketchbook.....I always thought they were a bit expensive myself and since I have gone through at least 10 sketch books this year.....the moleskin was not to be my choice of notebooks......this was a gift (thankyou xxx) but now I dont know if I want to unwrap it.....I should finish up my current sketch books first.....that would be logical.....the blue cat is a diversion because try as I may, I cannot for the life of me draw a dog today......

5 August 2008

input day

For sometime now I have been wanting to have a weekly 'input day'. This means a day (or sometime during a day) where I go and see something inspirational, creative, colourful, enriching or fun but all related to being creative or at least a creative spin (input day does not include going to the supermarket...). It is also kind of a treat (sanity -reality haven) as I can go when Moo is in daycare. I have found I have much better quality output when something goes in. And, it is always a wonderful feeling to be inspired and impressed by others peoples imaginations. I had the luck today to kick the 'input day' wheels in motion. I visited this awesome gallery to find it was full of interactive exhibits, things to really make you ooh and ahh! A sculpture called 'juggler' by artist Gregory Barsamian was so cool. If you have some time to play the videos Im sure you too will get a huge kick from how clever he is! There were other great things to do and dark rooms to walk in and participate in other peoples ideas. So refreshing. My darling has taken off again to work and some r&r in blue waters...so Moo and I are heading back to the boonies of Japan. The place I used to live (about 7 or 8 yrs ago). It is best known for its eldery population and therefore dwindling population and never ceasing roadworks. What I think is wonderful about such an outwardly boring place is that the people are just so lovely and the beaches are CLEAN!!! So, Im going to the beach this weekend....sooo, sooo looking forward to a swim in nature. Photo above is some wrapping paper I'm making to cover the gifts for said lovely peoples :)

2 August 2008

my window

In case you thought it was all doom and gloom here, there is some prettiness and brightness here and there :) this is my sill over the kitchen sink. It looks out over the next doors house so you need some kind of window cover. This doily helps to get some light inside but provides some privacy too!! The small bottles are from a very nice 'free gift' that some milk sales rep dropped off the other day. Maybe only in Japan would you get so many samples for free and delivered to your door by a very polite person. The idea is if you like the product you fill out the catalogue (which came with the samples) and then they deliver your order twice a week (and pick up the empty bottles). Nifty.....if I liked the samples that is..........yoghurt drinks have never been on the top of my yumness list.........great service though....

1 August 2008

local dogs

So many cute as can be dogs....they seem to be wearing less fashions as the weather is so hot.......I also so the prairie dog out on the lawn this morning...surely that is not quite right as a pet? I think the owner of the prairie dog also has a ferret. I saw her taking it for a walk on the lead the other morning.....weird......I wonder what other treasure are at their house?