Wednesday, January 30, 2013

River Dreaming - On the farm

Today, while I'm pushing myself to meet my working deadlines, I can't help but dream about the peace and freedom of our future River Nest farm.  It's times like these, when the coastal temperatures are soaring, my work deadlines are looming, and everything feels a little chaotic that I dream up big (almost wishing I could fast forward time) about the simplicity of our future years on our highland hideaway River Nest. Then I remind myself to take a breath, slow down, and  be happy with the 'now', as challenging as it may feel, and as impatient as I am, we are exactly where we are meant to be, right this very moment. Here are some of my most recent inspirations for our future farm days. 

1) This cosy little kitchen
2) Cooling off in this amazing farm style bathroom
3) Creating a lovely rustic bathroom vanity
4) Life without dreams is like a broken wing bird. 
5) Tending to absolutely gorgeous goats
6) Simple pleasures of farm life
7) Collecting daily eggs. 
8) Creating the perfect peaceful vegetable garden. 
9) Picking pink ladies off my very own apple tree

Happy midweek dreaming to you all! Don't be afraid to manifest it! 

Tuesday, January 29, 2013


"A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2013."

The break in the weather came with perfect timing. Our long weekend was filled with visitors (thankfully the road opened after flood water subsided), beautiful food, music (triple j hottest 100), endless swims and sunshine! He swam so much that his goggles left imprints on his little cheeks. The dove orchids are back in bloom, an old wives tale that more rain is on it's way. 

A belated post, after optic cables were damaged in the Queensland floods, leaving half of Queensland without internet or mobile coverage for over 24 hours. My thoughts and love pour out to everyone effected by the crazy weather within Australia at the moment. 

Pop over to the lovely Che & Fidel to play along! 

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Colour Burst

As the rain slowed, I covered myself in mozzie repellant and ventured off into our yard. A moment to escape my computer screen and never ending funding submissions. It feels like I haven't stepped outside for days.

The wet season brings with it a colour burst, mainly iridescent green, but also lovely hues of pinks and yellows. I love this time of year, when everything is at it's brightest and is saturated in rain drops. Here, the air is humid, the mozzies are thick, the days are short, we awe at the afternoon thunder, and the sound of rain pouring down on the roof is just oh so beautiful to fall asleep to at night. There is something so incredibly cleansing about a tropical wet season. It's a wonderful way to start the year. 

I look forward to more ventures into our garden and trying to capture the essence of the wet season. Hopefully someday soon, I will even work out how to make my photos supersize, all in line and with even spaces. Right now, I have to get back to work. 

Monday, January 21, 2013

River Dreaming - Fresh



1) Creating a beautiful cubby house by the river. 
2) Starting  the day with mega super foods, including super green smoothies
3) Simplify and create a beautiful kitchen space. 
4) Staying optimistic about my looming work deadlines. 
5) Challenging myself in yoga
6) Creating the perfect blackboard vision board. 

As a new week begins and we return to work and daycare for 2013, I'm dreaming of hide away spaces, nourishing foods, beautiful kitchens, daily yoga, and manifesting all our dreams on a beautiful vision board. 

Sunday, January 20, 2013


"A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2013"

The wet season has finally arrived in Far North Queensland. Dressed in his summer attire, he's off with his umbrella ready to explore (muddy puddles mostly). 

Pop over to the lovely Che & Fidel to play along. 

Friday, January 18, 2013


During my tidy up today, I had the pleasure of reliving Christmas by unpacking and finding homes for the wonderful gifts that were given to us. I thought I would share some of the gifts that we gave among the three of us.  Among our little family we always try to source either local, handmade, fair-trade useful gifts for under our tree. 

New books, always a favourite of mine. This year between Caleb and I, we added these titles to our little library 

From Ba'il we received a scrapbook full of photos of him throughout the year, playing or creating , as well as every single piece of art he created at daycare. My heart almost burst with love when we opened this. It was a rather teary moment for us both.

From us, Ba'il received some local Little Lom vintage inspired pants and an Udderly adorable cape and bandit mask.

Ba'il also received some beautiful Sunday Morning pillowcases. He loves trying to find new forest creatures in these amazing handmade pillowcases with screen printed designs. Oh, and they are SO soft.

If you have any favourite links to beautiful online shops, I'd love to know about them! I do 90% of my shopping online because it's a long way to the shops for us. 

Today is our last day of holidays. I'm thankful for all the wonderful time I have spent with my boys over the festive season. As our holidays come to an end I will spend the last day making the house fresh and tidy, and making dinners that I'll freeze for the coming week, so the first week back at work doesn't feel too overwhelming. 

There's something very satisfying about being prepared. 

This afternoon I'll be thankful for the sent of lemongrass that lingers after cleaning, as everything will be neatly in it's place for the coming week. I will take a big deep breath. The afternoon will be spent by the pool, maybe with a glass of wine, a BBQ , and even a movie. 

Happy Friday. I hope you can find something to be thankful for. 

* You can find these lovely wise words here.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Rise & Shine

This morning we woke early, drank down our coffee, ate our breakfast, threw a few things in the beach basket and drove to the beach. One thing is almost certain with Cape York beaches... you are guaranteed to be the only people there, and if your not, you jump back in the car and go to the next beach down. It's a luxury I will certainly miss once we decide to return back to southern civilisation. 

Just us three. And Todd & Copper who have never had a blog introduction before. Named after the Fox & Hound (of course), our six year old Jack Russell x Terrier brothers are always ready for an adventure in the wilderness. Just like us, they are lovers of wide open spaces through and through. 

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

River Delicious

River Delicious will eventuate to be a series of weekly posts on delicious food that either inspires us or is cooked in our kitchen. Of course I'm super excited to share real River Delicious posts of future camp oven and fire cooking sessions from our occasional visits south to the River Nest. 

Both Caleb and I are the cooks in our kitchen and as I type, I'm smelling the spicy aroma of his Thai beef curry simmering away, and the brown fried rice he's making for Ba'il. We take dinner duty in turn and we each contribute different skills to our kitchen. Each afternoon and especially on the weekends, you can find us in the kitchen trying out new recipes, adjusting old ones or experimenting with whatever is in the cupboard. It's very much a social part of our household, especially with Ba'il in charge of the measuring cups, wooden spoons and bowl licking (at the end of course). 

This year we have both vowed we will simplify our cupboards and stretch our kitchen creativity not only by cooking/preparing more vegan and raw meals but to also learn a little more about raising our own poultry, butchering our own meat, making our own cheese and catching wild game. Little by little we will learn important components that will take full form down the track when we are living in our River Nest which has an endless bunny and fish supply and will be home to our little menagerie that will sustain our family instead of the shelves of Woolwroths. 

For now, the first River Delicious post is of a basic Raw Chocolate Fudge Brownie made in our cosy and very conventional Cooktown kitchen. I've tried a few raw fudges and although they all have pretty much the same base ingredients, this recipe has turned out the best. Possibly because I love the sweetness and the fool proof component of the ganache so much. 

You will need - 

Basic Brownie Base - 

  • 2 Cups of raw cashews
  • 2 Cups of shredded coconut 
  • 12-15 soft delicious dates (pitted) 
  • 1 Cup of raw cacao powder 
  • 1/2 Cup of raw agave syrup (or honey or maple syrup) 
  • A pinch of sea salt

Basic Ganache - 

  • 1/2 Cup of raw agave syrup
  • 1/4 Cup of unrefined coconut oil 
  • 1/2 Cup of raw cacao powder 
  • A pinch of sea salt 
  • Shredded coconut to sprinkle the top 
In your food processor simply process cashews until fine, add the coconut, then the dates and continue to process until it's all well combined. Then add the cacao, agave and salt.  
Scoop out into a lined brownie tray and pop in the fridge while you make the ganache. 

Back in the food processor you combine the agave and coconut oil and then add the cacao and salt. Process until it makes a lump-free shiny ganache. The coconut oil makes it smell extra delicious and shiny. 

Pour the ganache on the brownie and top with shredded coconut. Refrigerate for an hour or so until it's firm. 

Guilt free, 100% raw, vegan, gluten free dessert or snack. I try to use local, Australian and organic products as much as I can, however because our closest health food shop or local market is over four hours away, sometimes I have to substitute.... you can use whatever brand of food is best suited to you, to prepare any of these River Delicious recipes. 

*While Ba'il loves to lick the spoon after this one is made, I don't let him eat too much.... as a nearly 3 year old high all afternoon on raw cacao is not my idea of fun. 

River Dreaming - Bold

Dreaming of pendant lighting and a simple kitchen. 

Growing a healing herb garden and making a herb drying rack.

Creating the perfect entrance to our River loft.

Delightfully simple children spaces

Beautiful gift tag ideas and children holiday fun.

So here is a collection of some of my favourite latest pint rest pins. River Dreaming will become a regular post featuring lovely images that inspire the feeling we are manifesting for our River Nest. Right now I am dreaming of industrial pendant lighting, white walls, bold artwork, healing herb gardens, spiral staircases, home libraries and new ideas for holiday craft sessions. 

My hope for my River Dreaming posts is to inspire the daydreaming inner stylist in me to achieve the worldly ambience we want for our cosy River Nest; And in doing so, trying to always opt for the most environmentally conscious and self sustainable ways of achieving such a feeling for our home. 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Welcome 2013

We welcomed 2013 with open arms. For us 2012 was full of endless travel, weekends away from home and a rather fast and chaotic whirlwind of a year.  We entrenched ourselves in our careers and remote lifestyle, we adjusted to sending our son to part time daycare (sob),  and we purchased our dream 20 acres and river cottage. 2012 was a year of readjustment and intense lesson learning. Thankfully after we chased the Solar Eclipse and finished up work for the year, we started to slow down into holiday mode.

For 2013 my wish is to move slowly through the year, day dreaming less and doing more, and continue manifesting our big River dreams for the future. This year we want to live by our morals that little bit more by adopting some chickens, making more preserves, reusing and recycling more, perfecting some vegan and raw cooking, traveling less and spending more time at home being creative and enjoy living in the remote wilderness while we are here.

To start the year, my little family travelled down the hill to the coast, and caught a ferry to the magnificent Fitzroy Island. An island that in my teenage years was notorious for backpackers and schoolers parties.... But not anymore. The new resort is amazing, and while we are by no means resort going people, we lapped up the comfort of our ocean view apartment, cocktails by the pool and the crystal clear ocean. It was the perfect "slow" start to our year, just the three of us.

The pirates left a treasure map for Ba'il while he was sleeping and when he woke, we wondered around the island following the map to find where X marked the spot on the glorious beach. We kayaked around the island exploring the coral reef and spotting turtles swimming ahead of us. Caleb scouted the beach to find the coral letters that spell "I Love U" and "Ba'il" (a tradition he has kept alive since we first met 10 years ago when he found my name in coral).  While he scouted, I read, napped, admired the delight Ba'il found in island life and took photos. The peacefulness was just delicious. It gave me that much needed chance to sit, relax and reflect on the special parts of the passing year and to remind myself what is important for the year to come.

We are hoping we carry a little bit of our four days on the island with us throughout the whole year, to remind us all to go with the flow, not swim against the tide, and to take things easy by delighting in the simple things that aren't far from home. 

I hope you all had a reflective, relaxing and rejuvenating start to your 2013.