Creative Chaos

Creative Chaos

Tuesday 31 July 2018

Best city in the world - Melbourne, Australia

We'd talked for months, even before we knew Mum was sick, about going somewhere in the July school hols, after my intense 6 months at university without a break. Nothing was actually booked though as when Mum got sick, we knew no time frames for doing anything and I wasn't leaving the city.
But then, Mum died a lot quicker than any of us imagined and we found ourselves booking a trip a couple of weeks before the July hols. It was a trip to my favourite city in the world - to Melbourne, Australia. The place that i dearly, dearly love - the one that 15 years on from living there, I still think, why did we return back to NZ...
It does not matter how many times I go, there is always some thing new to see, The feel of the place. The vibrancy. The food. The art. The alleyways. The volume of people to tiny little Auckland. The incredible bookshops. The Museums. The just walking and walking and walking. The neighbourhoods.
Um... Aldi, Readings, Muji, Uniqlo ( ha!!!). Big W for books..............

We hired a bike down at the Docklands and zipped around for a few hours - a rather neat way of seeing a part of the city I was not really that familiar with - standing under the Bolte Bridge is something else!
We met with an old mate of mine on a rooftop bar on the Friday night - fabulous fun, then went into the wrong restaurant and never clicked until we looked at the menu... quite funny.

The rest of the weekend was just spent exploring - not really leaving the city proper as there is so much to see... waiting for the eldest to arrive.
We left two teens behind as Australia is not cool enough for them it seems ... the only kids I know who turn down a trip to Oz (well they inform me they aren't really interested in their own country either anymore... they are pretty well travelled really...!). I find that bizarre overall, but hey, it is a lot cheaper travelling with 3 than 5...

Here's the city... photo overload....

We then spent a few days over in Tasmania too - it was so fabulous as well.

I've actually had the husband mutter a few times this week... "maybe we should move back...."

Monday 30 July 2018

crafting finally

It has been virtually months of doing very little and basically next to zero crafting.  I would have thought I would have knitted, but my go to thing this year has been letter writing instead - lots and lots and lots of long letters written and I guess this has replaced the knitting up till we were finally on our first break on June 30 (and a month later I still feel like I'm on holiday, even though university has been back a week..... I need find my motivation somewhere...)

I started and finished this adorable Lizzie Kate cross stitch in the past 3 weeks.  I'll cycle up to university today and drop it into (a new to me) framers after my one Monday lecture.

This is so true !!!

Now this is my Beeswax scarf which I started on January 4 this year... Knit in gorgeous Zealana Heron, which is partially possum. I am hoping to get this off my needles later this week. I'm not doing it as long as the pattern suggests as I am a shortie.... I'd love to knit the mittens and the hat one day too - actually Amy is doing a KAL with the hat at the moment...

During the hols I started and finished a Rattan Shawl. This was perfect travelling knitting too. I used Zealana Cozie from the stash and love it too.

 And started and finished in under a week,  I give you my Nurmilintu. I used the absolutely beautiful Happygoknitty Kashgar (although I discovered two ties in it, - husband had wound it for me - which resulted in two un-do rows and when there were lots of yarn overs - argh!) - a mix of 50% silk and 50% merino - it is just beautiful to knit and so, so soft and warm. I love the little picot edge (a new skill for me!). It is a fabulous one skein project.

 And I'm now starting Posie's "Summer Storm" cross stitch. It is knit on 32 count french linen which is incredibly soft and thin, so took a bit to get used to!

I'm taking all the little things in life on - i remember mum saying to me to just do what you want in life - if you want to go on a trip, go! Want the book? Buy it! Want the wool? Buy it! Life is too short! (...but don't go into debt... ha - not me!).

I am rather hoping that this semester is a bit more study/life balanced!!! But I also really need to start doing some work....

Have a happy week everyone. xo

Friday 27 July 2018

I'm still here....

My sister-in-law in Switzerland asked me last night when I was going to blog again... well here I am.
My last blog post was March 8 and I wrote...

March 19 - PE essay 1500 words
March 26 - health essay 1500 words
April 2 - Peerwise - 5 science videos up for others to critique (involves an hour of work a night)
April 6 - Technology assignment
April 6 - education issues essay 2500 words
April 8 - Peerwise 2nd part
April 12 - Maori essay 1500 words
April 19 - 4 maths games sourced with lesson plans and in a maths kete (to sew)
April 30 60% assignment for Literacy (essay 2000 words)
may 6 - Peerwise finished
May 11 tech assignment 2 due
May 16 - 60% science test
May 25 - maths essay

Life WAS and IS MENTAL. I can't under-estimate what I've been through since that post! We were doing 7 courses/papers in semester one - a normal uni workload (well at least in New Zealand and I think Australia too) is 4 courses/papers per semester. Then we had our school practicum's on top... we've had multiple people drop out - the course is basically incompatible with any other thing in your life ... I did not cook, nor do the grocery shopping, nor take much notice of my family really (thank goodness for teens who are pretty self sufficient and independent!) for centuries. It took me a few weeks longer than most to hit the daily crying mode..... 

But then, if I thought that was crazy, things got crazier from a phone call from my Mum on Easter Sunday (April 1) morning. She rang to say (after multiple trips to the doctor and then me telling her on the Saturday to get to the emergency weekend doctor), that she had cancer. It took a couple of weeks to have a confirmation of pancreatic cancer. The FUCKED one. I won't apologise for my language as that truly is what it is. The one where you find out what it is, is too late. 
Queue more spinning from me - my parents live only 26km from me, but if anyone knows Auckland traffic, it can be pure hell. I was doing round trips of 50 km, but those trips could take anything from 1-3 hours to drive.
It was horrible - time (of which we all need to give to people), but time I struggled to get from 8am - 5pm lectures, then sitting in traffic for visits which weren't really that long; then the GUILT of not being able to physically do this more than 2-3 times a week due to said uni workload (weeknights were a nightmare - taking 1.5 hours one way; still having to come back and attempt to write assignments while crying/having no brain nor a clue what the heck i was trying to do while taking the diagnosis on!).......
Family flying in and out from the UK and Switzerland. Trying to work around family politics (yeah.. fun... NOT) - trying to figure in chemo (i basically wagged uni and then caught up) - it was only 2 sessions in the end.
But really, it all only lasted a 6 pathetic, short weeks, before mum passed away on May 23. Not unexpected BUT TRULY TOO FAST and faster than what anyone ever expected. We knew she didn't have years; or more than likely even until her birthday in September, but not this fast. Not going into hospital just to get fluids back up and for this to happen suddenly.
I had a maths assignment due 2 days after and a huge 50% assignment due a week after - there was no way I getting extensions due to an upcoming 5 week (some of it full control) practicum, so just did them... i really don't know how, 8 weeks on, I managed anything really! (and to get A+ grades for both...).

It all seems just a blur really, and also still not real... family have all gone back (actually my sister left without me even knowing....!) and life carries on with a massive, massive gap. You realise all the things you should of, could have done, talked about, visited more, the guilt, oh the guilt around uni and doing what I could... April was the most intense month of semester one which is when everything happened...

This is my dear mum....

More later....