Sunday, December 16, 2018

It's time to resurface and come out to play again...

I was walking in the garden this morning, thinking about all the beautiful flowers I have during this season, when I realised that Christmas is less that 10 days away! I was brutally awakened to just how fast this year has been flying, and then how busy I have been - so busy indeed, not to notice that Christmas is upon me - and I haven't been blogging since August!!

So what's been occupying me? Well, I finished my MBA (I hope), so I wanted to give my last assignments some good effort. I have also been incredibly busy with work, trying to get a very large project off the ground - which I'm please to say is now running with some great engagement from my  stakeholders. And, on my weekends, I've been focusing mostly on getting my garden up and functional for summer - which, as you can see above - is producing some good food for the table.

This is the flower of one of my favourite vegetables - the leek. Leeks are great for anytime of year, although sadly most of mine are now in seed - but it's a beautiful flower - so I let them go.

I love the self sown secrets in my garden - these little tommies came up in the rose garden - and they are just like little bombs of sweetness. We have to race the dog to these...

So what's happening next here at Thyme-for-tea? Well, I think summer brings with it some new adventures... 

  • bike riding - for pleasure and fitness
  • swimming - I plan to try more beach swimming this year, as I live all of 5 km from the beach!
  • gardening - for which I love and it brings me peace
  • reading - I'll tell you wants on the list in a minute
  • time with my Dog, and my partner and friends....
Here's my reading challenge - and for those who know me - its HUGE! 

The ambitious major new novel from this internationally celebrated writer, on the scale of his bestselling 1Q84. With its massive 704 pages!
 So until another day - Have a great week.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Out to conquer and achieve my goals

So despite the rain, despite the long list of chores to do, despite the hubby being less than inspired, I am pretty happy with myself. I have been trying to increase my total kms each month since I got home from a month in India in April. Winter doesnt help my motivations, and my working commitments have been the only numbers rising in my life. I find that ive been working 9-10 hrs alot of days, leaving less hours in a day to fit in my walking, cycling and swimming goals. Im going to take charge of this...

While my career is somewhat important at this stage in my life, I'm also very aware I need my good health. And that takes work.

I've set some goals to get me motivated, some of the goals are based on how many kms I can walk per week/month, how many kms I can cycle (including hills) per week or month, and how many sessions I get get to the pool. My ultimate goal will be to complete a nearly 200km community ride at the end of January 2019, as part of the Tour Down Under.

Work will just have to stay within its boundaries. Especially as I am about to go back to uni to finish the final subject of my MBA. ..... managing time is always a challenge.
Currently reading (Thanks Bellezza for reccomendation)

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Sprint is on its way

No winter lasts forever - No spring skips its turn .... Hal Borland
Spring is definitely on it's way, and I'm loving it. My morning walks take me past some beautiful sights, like this gorgeous Magnolia in bloom. I love looking into the yards of my neighbours, and watching what they've planted or what mystery is coming up. One of my neighbours has a very productive veggie garden in the front yard - and I've noticed they've got lots of garlic, beans and probably zucchini coming up. It motivates me to get out in my garden too. I also love watching who keep flowing bulbs. The surprise of seeing freesias, jonquils, or daffodils turn up over night is such a joy in spring.

  Spring is not quite here tho, as it's still chilly and windy, reminding us that the changing of the seasons is not on a single date. The transition period is important for the land, the trees and the flowers. Transitioning seasons is also important to me - I find this transition time very important to my wellbeing and sense of person. If I allow the transition period to pass without due attention to it myself, then I feel out of sorts and unprepared.

The transition to spring is for me an important time for re setting goals - now the days are getting longer, and mornings are not so cold, and my friends are coming out of hibernation. It's time to reset the balance - a time to find what's important to me in this new era. Social life, healthy life, intellectual life, and personal wellbeing.

The challenge is that the world around me is also waking up to the new season - and business is abound. Work commitments, my voluntary circles are asking more, and family activities are being planned.

Here's to finding the balance, being fair to myself, and remembering to enjoy the moment - smell the flowers.

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Paris in July 2018 - la fin!


My finale for Paris in July - and afternoon french rose! 
 Je vous remerci mes amis... I thank you all very much my Paris in July friends. I have enjoyed 2018 Paris in July so much. Every day I had a new link and new things to learn about Paris and all things French. We have all been very active, sharing our love of France,  our memories, our favourite food, authors, books, movie directors, painters, and so much more.

Hosting a blogging event is kind of like hosting a dinner party. You spend some time preparing the site, inviting the guests, setting the scene. Then after you've prepared the menu, you then spend some time in the kitchen. For me, I put some energy into calling for participants assistance - with things like the buttons. And haven't we had some great buttons to choose from this year. I particularly loved this one. But I also note some of you created your own boutique buttons - Like Mel U @ the reading life.
Designed by Lisbeth at The Content Reader
A mon avis, or in my opinion, the best part of the dinner party is the interaction with the guests, and it's much the same for a blogging event. I have loved the genuine interest and authenticity of interaction between the Paris in July guests and participants. And just as dinner parties end up with a variety of conversations happening around the table, Paris in July lights up with those different elements of conversation - from artists to their models, from recipes to the place settings, from the monuments of Paris, to the french inspired furniture in local stores, from Yiddish poets and Jewish artists escaping Paris in WWII through to memories ofliving on the street of the velodrome de hiver. We have had some deep and meaningful conversations in every corner of the room. 

Paris is certainly a city to celebrate - it's parks, green chairs, lakes and boats - through to it's patisseries and boulangeries - the wines of France through to the Creme Caramels. It's artists, musicians, composers, authors, poets, chefs and directors who engage us, challenge us and romance us.  There's so much about Paris, France to love. 

So around the table, the party starts to beak up. It's time for guests to go home, move on, and some may have to recover... They leave the room with cheers and appreciation, one by one - and having thoroughly enjoyed the company of like minded friends for another month long 'dinner party', the guests remark.... 
encore! jusque' a prochaine fois! meme temps l'annee prochaine?  
Bien sure, mes amis - peut-etre une autre fois.... 2019.

There's no more mr Linky - but we'd love to stay in touch.  If you're still to post your Paris in July Wrap Up - you could link it in the comments here. And as with all good dinner parties - this host has a little cleaning up to do. I hope to add this years participants list and summaries into my Paris In July page (TAB at top of my blog)  as a collection for 2018's Paris in July memory. 

Dont you love to pop into your favourite sweet or Gelato place after eating too much at a dinner party?

A bientot!

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Paris in July - Visit to Arles

My Paris in July friends, dont forget, we're live until this saturday - slightly extending July... which is giving me a chance to post some of my own memories of France. 
 In 2011 my partner and I, with two good friends, went to France for the purpose of watching the tour de France. For us, an absolute awesome year to go, because the Aussie Cadel Evens won!  When Aussies go OS, we try and make it worth the money and the 17 hour trip.. So after following the Tour de France, riding our bikes for most of the same routes as the race, my partner and I went to Montpelier to join a French Language school for two weeks. While staying in Montpelier, we did a day trip to Arles to do a walking historic tour. It was a great way to see the local historic sites. Our local guide - Jean-Jacques - played the pan pipe to collect his tour group after free time. It was like the pied piper.
Arles Arenas or Arles Amphitheater (french, les Arènes d'Arles) is a Roman amphitheatre. 
This two-tiered Roman Amphitheatre is probably the most prominent tourist attraction in the city of Arles, which thrived in Roman times. (reference
 During out walking tour, we walked along the top of the arena walls and then down into the centre. It was just amazing being surrounded by such history, and a strong connection with the roman era.
It has a shape of an ellipse. The facade includes two levels of sixty arches in arches, separated by side walls, massive of rectangular section. A wider opening points out the ends of the two axes of the monument. ................... It is estimated the initial capacity of the monument to some 21,000 people. To allow visitors to access the different stands, had developed an ingenious device of horizontal passages, and arranged alternately stairs circular galleries. (reference
We loved our day in Arles, which is also the home of Van Gogh.. 
Vincent lived in Arles in the South of France for more than a year. He experienced great productivity there before suffering from a mental breakdown.
Vincent arrived in Arles on 20 February 1888. After two years in Paris, he was tired of the bustle and demands of city life and longed for the sunshine and vibrant colours of the south. When he got to Arles, Vincent took a room at the hotel-restaurant Carrel, and later, one at Café de la Gare. In early September, he moved into the Yellow House, which he had begun using as a studio on 1 May. (reference
Here's a little clip I found which made me smile - people in Arles who are HAPPY. 




Sunday, July 29, 2018

Paris in July -I think there's another week left - week 5

 
Breaking News! I'm going to wind up Paris in July 2018 next weekend - 4th August - so you have a few more days to finish some of your wish lists. Its just to hard to do a wind up post mid week.

This past week has been such a delightful journey - thank you everyone for another very diverse and inspiring week. we have some reoccurring themes

  • books - ones that take us Paris, food inspired novels and recipe books, novels by Parisian Authors, books by french people for french people, short stories, and reviews (mostly by Mel U) bringing to life Authors of Yiddish background or those who experience Paris in WWII. Mae was even bold enough to post on a disappointing book about Paris. 
  • Recipes & dinners - french onion soup by Jean @ Delightful Repast was one that made my mouth water. Lisbeth hosted a french dinner, matching her wines with the menu. 
  • TV series and Films - Art @ Ripple Effects reviewed Cleo from 5 - 7, and Lisbeth @ the content reader reviewed Le Bureau des Legends airing on Swiss TV. 
  • The French Hutch shared with us her Place setting that reminded her of Franch - the Soleil and Laguiole cutlery. Beautifully representing the yellowness of french fields and sunshine. 
  • Memories of Paris - such as Sami's first visit in 1984..
I wanted to thank Sami for reminding me of some of my first memories of Paris, and other french cities. I think I'll do a post about a trip I did to Arles a few years ago. I've also been learning so much from Mel U about Paris in WWII through reviews on Yiddish or immigrant authors in Paris. Mae's review of a book about french food idioms was pretty engaging and is calling to me now.

So here we go - into our final week of Paris in July 2018! What will you focus on in these last few days? ps. I note some of you have started you 2019 Paris in July lists already.... anyone else have thoughts about that? 

 


Saturday, July 21, 2018

Paris in July - Ready for week 4?

 
Bienvenue à nos nouveaux amis se joindre à la dernière semaine. It makes my heart smile when I see new people joining in during the month we celebrate Paris in July. We have been treated to many new aspects of Paris and french living in the past week, and I suspect the next week will be another full week of options.

For me, I have been resting and recovering at home after being hit hard by a virus. So my French experiences have been slightly passive. I have been enjoying my subscription to TV5Monde which allows me to watch a range of shows in french.

I've also been enjoying a picture book I have. French Essence Here's a couple of images I'll share from it that inspire Frenchyness ....

The author speaks about collections...
samples of french items that create an ambience french.

 
then there are those images and colours that you expect of french culture....

And the essence of summer living in dreamy Provence....

What evokes the French Essence for you?

Here we go - Enter your new posts for week 4 here.