spaces in paradise

So, Sarah Wilson is my new favourite blogger and health guru.  I like to have myself a health guru, sometimes three.  Today she wrote Build gaps in your life.  Pauses.  Proper pauses, which I really liked.  She quotes someone called Thom Yorke who if you like Radiohead will mean something to you.  It didn't mean something to me, but nevertheless I could see the value of his comment (also quoted by Sarah Wilson):
I think what makes people ill a lot of the time is the belief that your thoughts are concrete and that you're responsible for your thoughts. Whereas actually — the way I see it — your thoughts are what the wind blows through your mind.

Then I found a link at the bottom to an older post from Sarah which is also pretty good: Sunday life: on the importance of having space. and then this: Sunday life: in which I plunge into mess.  There were more but you get the picture - Sarah Wilson is an inspiring read.  This is a great title as well as post: Sunday life: the gorgeous value of strangers.  Below are some pictures of the places where I make some space and life feels special as a result.
 Pictures from paradise.  It's not an award-winning photograph, but it was a beautiful sunset.


After several years without tulips, I have tulip beauty in my life again.  In the right background is part of my garlic crop.  In the left background is a jungle.  But it's a jungle with a red fence, and there are wayward roses, lemon balm, lemon verbena and some tropicanna lillies and red hot pokers in the jungle at various times of the year.


 Irises, with flowering kale behind and beside the irises, and some iceland poppies amongst them.  The silverbeet is still growing without going to seed, and there is some rocket growing in the gaps as winter vegetables get eaten up.

Yesterday I came home at lunchtime and planted aquilegias and basil.  The basil went underneath and beside my cloche-which-used-to-be-a-plastic-bin and the aquilegias went to the forefront of these irises, to replace some eaten-up crimson kale.  Aquilegias are also known as granny's bonnets, and it was my grandma who introduced them to me, about 20 years ago at the Royal Show in Christchurch. 

Today, after the sport-and-swimming whirlwind and a quick trip to McDonalds (treat of the year for the short people), we ate our takeaways by the beach and then collected lots of spent cabbage tree leaves from the public walkway near the beach to use as kindling for the fire (yes, Aucklanders, the fire is still on each night!).

Those ready-made pizza bases?  Which the food purists look down on?  I've only discovered them in recent months and I think they are at least as 'good' and definitely as useful as sliced bread.  For round #2 of dinner (Maccas never suffices for long), we had meat lovers pizza with freshly picked spinach hidden under the cheese and everyone was happy.

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