Friday, April 13, 2012

home again

Hello, oh, hello!

I don't suppose anyone's here? I feel like I've left my own birthday party, gone for a long walk, and come back well after the last person's gone home. All that's left are sticky punch marks on the table, potato chip bits on the floor, one light flickering in the corner, streamers dangling…

… it's quiet and it's dark…

but hey! I'm back now, and it was a good, healing, happy walk. The best kind of walk to take :)

So how were my wanderings? My month off, and away?

Where do I begin??

Well, first off, straight after my triathlon, there was

a week-long homeschool camp down south,
where the kids made friends, did science, drama, archery, went abseiling and swimming, and learned to use Diablos. Such an adventure!

It was all so fun, and challenging, and new and exciting…but I have to confess that my favourite afternoon was this: when the kids and I strolled up the hill to sit quietly under two enormous fig trees to draw. With the wind lifting from the lake and birds chasing each other through the blue…
it was lovely.

And then there was
a concert where my son played with 168 other kids
in a Megaband that my husband directed
wearing the band t-shirts I'd designed (for the 5th year in a row!). Such fun.

And there were other concerts, jazz and classical…

And art gallery days…

And new sewing lessons for a girl…

And writers workshop…

And visits with dear friends (with much tea and talking and laughing!)…

And visits to Sydney to see my mum, my sister, my niece…

And visits from my husband's old friends from the US (including Dominic who, along with his wife, reads this blog. Hi guys, sorry 'bout all the quiet!)

And there was even a date night in Sydney, with my husband, to see the extraordinary, captivating, James Vincent McMorrow.


There's been homeschooling, as always, which for a number of reasons looked a bit more schooly this term…
but then this month we drifted—inexorably, inevitably, sweetly—
back to our most comfortable way of being…

which was doing what felt right… in the moment,
for the moment, and
learning all the time.

There has been a LOT of cycling! And walking. And beaching. And happy dog strolling.

The weather has taken a turn for the Winter, but the sun's still mostly out. Beach is still, and always, beautiful.

There has been going to bed early
and eating well
and exercising
and seeing the health-care people I need to see
and talking with my family and with friends.

And there have been tricky bits, like the meltdown moment I had the other day. It brought on a classic case of what I've come to call "The Sends."
If you're a homeschooler, you'll know exactly what I'm talking about! That moment when everything suddenly gets too much and you find yourself saying: "This isn't working! Looks like it's school for you!"

The moment passed. I apologised. And the kids have now got me pegged—the only time I ever threaten school is a) when I really need to eat, and/or b) when I really need walkies. So, as long as I'm fed and let out at least once a day for a run (bike/swim/walk), they know they can be clear of school forever. Clever kids.

I've done a lot of thinking about this Blog,
and wondering when I'll get back to writing in it.

I've had words to write every single day. Truly! But the days have careened by and all of a sudden, every night, it's bed time or talk-to-hubby time, or a beautiful child needs an extra cuddle, and so the time moves on.

I've felt bad for not visiting other peoples' words—all your lovely lives and thoughts and wonderings. I found myself thinking, "I shouldn't write here—not if I don't stop and say hello to you all. But I don't know how to fit it all in, the living and the exercising and the getting well and the writing and the saying hello."

But then, today I figured, "You know what? I'm just going to write here and stop worrying."

'Cos that's how it's supposed to be, isn't it?

You're supposed to be true.

Be kind, to yourself. To others. Be with those you love.

Be well.

Go for long walks. Take the time.

And then,

just write.

Oh, and I've started a little other blog, a side blog, a moonlighting blog…just today, in fact.

It's called Vegan Stories, and it's a place for me to write about our vegan journey. I've been thinking about it a lot, this vegan thing we're doing—I've been learning more, cooking yummy meals, thinking, thinking, thinking. I thought that if I wrote it all here, it would change this blog too much, give it too small a focus. So I decided to create a special place to share all these thoughts. :)

I hope you stop by, all you dear people who are still here!

All of you knowing I was just out walking,

knowing that the gathering, talking, laughing could begin again

the moment I returned.



  1. Of course we are here, Helena!

    Homeschool camp sounds terrific. And I see your girl has joined the Cool Hat Club.

    (, I gotta get me a cool hat)

  2. Still here under that flickering light!

    Glad to hear that you've been enjoying happy family days!

    Sorry to have missed the camp--maybe next year when the youngest is 6, and less timid.


  3. Yay! Welcome back from your walk, lovely to see you again.

  4. Yay! Helena's back baby! Might have to get me to that camp one of these years (while they are still kids). So glad to hear you are well and looking after yourself :-)

  5. :-) Can you see my big happy face? My poor blog sits in a terrible neglected state. Your month of living sounds glorious! I spent mine in a whirl of wool and worry! LOL So looking forward to camp and finally getting to HUG you in person! <3 I am still trying to find my writing freedom right now. Too much life happenings that I just can't seem to voice with typing yk? Much love, hugs and happy thoughts. xoxoxoox

  6. I am here, I am here!! I will be here always...I come often to hope that you have posted, but I understand that you need to just be....

    Your last month looks amazing. Oh my gosh, where do I begin! The homeschool camp looks so cool! But my very favorite picture is the kids on the tree drawing. LOVE THAT.

    Sounds like you had a great time. Filled with love and laughing and music! I know your boy and your husband were just on cloud 198!

    I too have been struck with "The Sends" from time to time. Keilee doesn't believe one single word of it though. :)

    Glad to see you back my sweet friend.

  7. I am here, too! And, I am so glad that you are well and happy :) You are absolutely should definitely just write when and where you feel like it and not worry! Never let the blogging world be a worry!
    Happy to see you back :)
    I'm planning to pop over to your newest blog for a visit now.

  8. Ah so that's what you've been up to - I've been wondering!
    You write so well....keep it coming!!
    Everyone has a meltdown from time to time! Gosh I do anyway!

  9. I love this:

    "And the kids have now got me pegged—the only time I ever threaten school is a) when I really need to eat, and/or b) when I really need walkies. So, as long as I'm fed and let out at least once a day for a run (bike/swim/walk), they know they can be clear of school forever. Clever kids."

    If you made it into a poster and put it on Pinterest, I think it would 'go viral'. :)

    I haven't been blogging or reading blogs much lately either. Life goes through those phase shifts where our attention is required elsewhere and it doesn't matter, not one bit. It will all be here when we get back to it.
    Now I'm even sadder we didn't go to Jenni's camp this year. Another lovely person I could have met IRL.


I love hearing from you! Thank you for your heartfelt, thoughtful responses—they lift me, and give me light.