As part of my DFH course, we’re (optionally) formed into small groups who meet fortnightly to talk through the material, support each other and all those good nourishing kind of things. It’s been really rewarding to discuss big topics and go a bit deep with people who I wouldn’t normally encounter.

We had our last meeting for the first phase on the weekend and the group observed that I’m struggling with the possibility of change – mostly in a career sense.


This may have been very obvious to you, dear reader, but it was shocking to me. I realise after much reflection that I really only adore change when it is thrust upon me and I can bust out my mad adaptation skills. Instigating change, not so much. Not so much at all.

Mind. Blown.

Anyway, this has lead me to start creating my CV. My most recent version was from 2007 and I’ve had five roles in the intervening years. No, of course I’ve not kept those annual lists of my achievements that I tell *everyone* to keep.

Compiling it is utter torture – so much torture – but I am solidly and slowly plugging away, with a goal of end September for completion. I have absolutely no role to escape to in mind, but I’ll be relieved to just *have* the document, should an opportunity arise.

When I have a completed document I will buy this gorgeous vintage kimono robe (assuming it is still available) and swan about ThePalace(OfLove) like a fancy lady.


woke to this**

My second vaccination went without a hitch and very few side effects, slight lethargy maybe for a day or two. I kept pretty sedate to let my immune system creatures do their good work.

I inadvertently booked the GP across the road from the mass vaccination hub for my vaccinations, instead of the mass vaccination hub as I’d intended – and was super thankful that the internet gods steered me in the direction they did! Both visits I observed huge queues at the hub and I’ve heard horror stories about 3-4 hours waiting, queued in the sun. My experience was really very good – seamless, very minimal wait both times.

Yesterday our lockdown was extended until the end of September. This came as a surprise to absolutely no-one, but grim and depressing all the same. This iteration is hitting most people harder than last year’s – I think because we’d all tasted that sweet, sweet freedom. We’re now 87 days in.

From Monday we’ll all need to wear masks outdoors except when doing strenuous exercise (walking does not count as strenuous). In some areas there’s a curfew and you’re only permitted out for an hour a day. Thankfully that doesn’t apply here yet – though I’d not be likely to exceed the limit anyway.

The rules overall are arcane, variable depending on suburb, quite complex, and everyone is regularly exhorted to “do the right thing”. But often the “right thing” is mostly incomprehensible. For example – you cannot travel more than 5km from your home, however you can travel more than 5km from your home if you remain inside your Local Government Area (LGA), and you can travel outside your LGA if it is within the 5km from home limit, unless it is into an LGA of concern – you can’t enter those, except under [long list of conditions]. There’s much (much!) more, but I will spare you.

Ah fuck – in the midst of typing this, today’s numbers were announced – 825 new cases, up from 644 the day prior. This is the highest daily number in Australia since the pandemic began^^. We’ll probably hit 1k mid-next week.

I trimmed Don’s hair with the clippers this morning, the results were slightly better than expected – though his hairdresser definitely has nothing to fear. We’ll draw a veil over the ermmm … slightly shorter wee patch at the back where I got a little too enthusiastic.

I’m now at the “hey! maybe it would be a good idea to a Japanese shoes-making kit! ” stage of lockdown

I definitely do not need a Japanese shoes-making kit – however cool.

** hazard reduction burning
^^ yes, people elsewhere have had it significantly worse


at least (for now) we can still get out for walks

I get my second shot of Astra Zeneca tomorrow which is terribly exciting.

With covid numbers creeping up and up, speculation from several sources is that we’ll be in lockdown until at least mid-November, which is much less exciting.

We enter the “give Don a haircut” phase of lockdown this weekend.


spring in winter

Select items from that Things to bring in list
♥ Commit to taking care of my physical self
♥ Invite more music into my life
♥ Express gratitude and appreciation often
♥ Be comfortable with sitting quietly doing nothing
♥ Pay attention to my intuition
♥ Commit to intentional use of internet
♥ More nature – get out in it
♥ Try new things / activities – even if I’m not convinced I’ll enjoy them
♥ Read more widely, deeply and with intention
♥ Radiate good and positive energy


detritus on a morning walk

Select items from that Things to let go list
♥ Bringing grumpy / negative energy into ThePalace(OfLove)
♥ The idea that I can or will learn to skateboard
♥ Letting SML consume my brain in non-SML time
♥ Comparing self unfavourably to others
♥ Reading daily news, news live feeds and updates, news comments sections and hot takes on the socials
♥ Not starting projects after I’ve acquired materials – letting perfection get in my way
♥ Regret at not having particular life experiences
♥ The idea that I will do the splits, back bend or (yoga type) handstand
♥ Treating reading as a race, reading superficially. I’m not a human blinkist
♥ Avoiding connection, over-cocooning


One of the interesting things about home yoga in the Not Craft room is the rather large mirrored wardrobe doors, which mean that you catch glimpses of yourself at often inopportune moments.

I’ve learned for example, that my face in downward-facing dog pose is not at all pleasing to behold (shudder) – so red, so flabby!

This week I caught sight of myself when trying to settle into seated meditation and learned that I don’t sit up straight. I think I’m upright, but I’m actually stretching forward at a pretty extreme angle.


At least I am not slumping to meditate. Be assured that I do slump dreadfully most other times, particularly when sitting at my desk.

I don’t know when or how this stretching forward started. Maybe this has always been my seated posture? I’m surprised to have not been called out/corrected on it in a yoga class, because goodness knows they’re not averse to correcting for … everything**.

This is where I take some issue with the usual yoga teacher exhortation of “don’t use a mirror to check your posture! go by how it feels!”. What if your feelings are wrong? Mirrors henceforth!

Now that I’m sitting straight I’m certainly aware of my hip flexors in a way that I definitely wasn’t before! I think it will also help with abs – because I’m now feeling those too. Seems I was holding myself up mostly by my back muscles. Little wonder my core is jelly.

** I’ve heard that at at Iyengar HQ in Pune – you’re corrected by being whacked with a stick.


That week off was just glorious and really needed to be longer. I feel rested and calmed. So calmed.

Yoga every morning was so helpful. I definitely will cling to that daily practice as long as I can. I have a goal of getting to a yoga retreat at some point so it would do be well to claw some fitness back – and likely quite a bit of time to build it, because it is very unclear when we’ll be out of lockdown. Maybe October? Maybe Xmas? Maybe 2030?

I spent time each day journalling – getting *stuff* out, facing some *things* and working *things* through.

I listed a bunch of *things* (ideas, behaviours, beliefs) on slips of paper that I want to let go from my life. Then ceremonially burned them!

Cliche and totally cringe, but very cathartic! Recommend!

I also wrote *things* I want to cultivate or bring in to my life. I might plant those in with a tree or something. I’ll wait while you finish rolling your eyes.

I think all of this has put me in a good place to start the really hard work of working out what is next for me. What areas do I want to explore? What would a post-SML life look life for me? How do I gently expand back into the world when I have spent the last few years very much drawing inward? All the Big Questions!

I really have no joy in the idea of getting back to (remote) SML on Monday.

This is quite good reading: Caitlin Flanagan: You Really Need to Quit Twitter.

I haven’t had a twitter account for years, but it is way too easy to get caught up in it even if you have no account. I’ve stepped away from the endless scroll in the last week which has been incredibly beneficial.

Theme for the rest of the month is more less internet.

In wildly exciting gardening news, we’ve had our first jasmine flower of the year!

I bought a small pot in maybe October last year, shoved it in a bigger pot and it absolutely thrived in the very, very harsh conditions.

I had to put up a trellis to contain it. From memory it’s common jasmine, we also have star jasmine in another pot, but it is much more restrained.


We have another month of lockdown ahead of us. The daily cases are nowhere near as high as in other places, but we’re a small country and there’s a growing sense that things are getting out of control.

Vaccines were *finally* made available to everyone over 18 in the past fortnight – more correctly Astra Zeneca has been made available to everyone over 18 and is now recommended for everyone (I think the recommendations have been variously >60, then >50, then back to >60 and now >18). Prior to this announcement no-one under 40 had access to any vaccine except in exceptional circumstances.

This article in The Guardian about our feeble response to covid is pretty good reading.

But in exciting news both Joe/Frank and Bessie had their first doses last weekend! And my team at SML who are all under 35 have had theirs too. Everyone is getting out and doing their bit – which is gratifying and encouraging – maybe we’ll even get out of lockdown by December.

In the past week I’ve cut down news and social media consumption which was kind of getting out of hand – tons of doom scrolling and hate reading and general ugh. The reduction has definitely improved mental health and returned me to a more loving and generous view of humanity.

Ah well. Embracing the great indoors for a good while yet.

Catching sight of myself in various shiny surfaces recently, I realised I have way too many garments in my wardrobe that are totally washing me out. Why so many light grey garments? What was I thinking with a cream hoodie?

In order to address this without buying a whole new bunch of clothing, I ordered some indigo dye online, grabbed a cheap stock pot from Kmart and set about dyeing 2 shirts and that hoodie last weekend – taking action before I started over-thinking** and let the project languish for months/years.

I was reasonably pleased with the outcome. Very slightly blotchy and … ermm … rustic. The colours are lighter than expected – entirely my own fault for not paying attention to proportions.

I have made a pact with myself that I won’t let perfectionisting about pretty average photos prevent me from posting, so behold some process shots:

before and after – not two tone đŸ™‚

** It occurs to me that once (long, long ago) I did not dither about projects. I wonder what changed because now *all* I do is dither about projects.

I have a week of annual leave next week.

I let work fill way too much of my brain space in non-work hours. I really need some time away from SML and I plan to use the break as an opportunity for thinking and reflection and hopefully a bit of resetting – and yoga – and intentional use of internet.


winter colour

I have now reached the “buying of unnecessary items” point of lockdown.

I can highly recommend a jade facial roller. It feels very soothing and will be delightfully cooling in the summer.

I’m also planning to give dry brushing a crack, because my skin is not doing at all well in the cold and dry weather. My legs resemble an admittedly oddly shaped, very shiny (patent, if you will) and rather flaky crocodile. I don’t know if it is an advancing age thing (likely), but this seems to be worse every year. Moisturising doesn’t quite cut it anymore and although I am unconvinced that scrubbing enthusiastically at my skin will be helpful – why not? YOLO and all that.


In really delightful news, Joan and Ovi have received permission to be married in early August!

As is the way of these things, there was much gathering documentation and organising translations and navigating obstacle courses of Swiss bureaucracy – and approval not guaranteed.

We haven’t seen Joan for over 3 years, nor have we met Ovi – and it’s very sad for all of us that we cannot be there.

But we’re really thankfully she has some certainty and can settle down, rather than applying for exemptions to stay every few months.

I will spare you the rant about our utterly incompetent government trapping 40k citizens overseas – but be assured that it is extremely ranty and extended.

Tighter restrictions were finally announced yesterday, such as you’d expect with an actual lockdown. I think IKEA is still open though for those essential tea lights and meatballs – and a recent mass exposure site.

I think the most difficult of this (for me at least!) is with first lockdowns there was such a hope that we would all come out of this to a better society, that everyone would learn and grow and things “couldn’t go back to how they were before”. So you felt like there was some greater purpose to it all. Kumbaya, namaste and all that.

Nope. Once out, it was back to as it ever was. Possibly worse.

My days off were a bit of a fizzer. For those not up on their Australianisms, despite appearances to the contrary (it sounds bright and bubbly, right?), “fizzer” is not a good thing.

I mean, I feel kind of rested and started a bunch of pretty uncomfortable inner work, which is ongoing and necessary – so necessary – not a complete loss.

I think I’ll take a whole week off in August – I’m fairly confident we will still be locked down – but I feel like I will probably have settled in a bit more and feel more inclined to embark on fun projects.

Yesterday I recommenced those lovely daily morning walks to the park. I made it 20 metres from my front door when I became distracted by a neighbour’s bamboo and twisted my ankle.

Yep, the very same dodgy ankle that was doing so well lately.

I continued my walk which was, in retrospect, not the most brilliant idea. Now it is all purple and resembles a little loaf.

In lockdown impulse buying yesterday I decided I needed a physical version of an astrology book (yes, I know – judge away!).

I tried the usual suspects (both out of stock) and kind of resigned myself to book depository – but then I remembered Gleebooks! They had one copy in stock and could ship it.

Imagine my astonishment when they delivered it to me the same afternoon, by hand, for free because I was in the local delivery area! AMAZING!

I’ve resolved to make them by preferred book vendor.