A Cacophony of Thoughts

Ponders, musings and rather ignited thoughts. That’s the state of things round these parts at the moment. I’ve flitted from one topic to another in an effort to write a post this morning. With thoughts dancing all over the shop, I suspect it’s just easier to run with what I really have in there.

Unordered, and certainly not perfectly word formed. Not this week anyway, today I’m not going to project that into a calming post. Instead a cacophony of words and thoughts in a stream of conscious writing style. I’d love to have your thoughts on any of them that might resonate, (or feel free to add your own- obscurities most welcome, or maybe you’ve had something you’ve been mulling over during the week that really could use an airing.)

WIKIPEDIA: In literary criticismstream of consciousness is a narrative mode or method that attempts to depict the multitudinous thoughts and feelings which pass through the mind.

 

What’s your story? (Not what do you do, because that’s one of the most tiresome question surely.) But what’s your story? If you were free to describe yourself to a stranger in written form, what would you write? How do you define yourself when there are seemingly no parametres? 

What is freedom? How do you speak of freedom? What does it mean to you? For each person depending on their circumstances that answer is going to vary of course. But for you…what does freedom mean for you? Are you free? (I took quite a long time to get a wobbly answer for this one.)

Is challenging yourself a curious human trait, that other animals simply don’t do, because they don’t need to? Why do some people challenge themselves mentally, physically, creatively and others, this will be of no interest what so ever. An easy contentment with what they have surrounding them… Why rock the boat unless you have to?

Creativity and silent gender narratives, how do they impact your life? Can you put a price on your creativity if it’s to be sold? How do you speak of your creativity and all its many facets? Own it, or a little apologetic? Why?

While it truly has been a cacophony of thoughts the last week, it’s been a good thing. I’ve liked the challenge, the why’s, the push, the questioning, the pondering, and it’s certainly caused a rejig of a few things round here.

For that I’m grateful.

 


Stream of conscious writing is also great method for unlocking some of that creative goodness, that on occasion can get a little stuck. No rules. No time frames. Just get in there. 

 

 

 

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Permaculture and Creative (urban) Living

permaculture and creative urban living

Having been throwing myself into all things permaculture minded for the past good few years, it was a little tricky looking over at all the identical perfectly mown lawns and not think of how I would like to quietly rip a good proportion of all that grass up.

Sure it wasn’t mine to rip up, but what an enticing dream it would be.

Instead of perfectly manicured ornamental gardens with impeccable weed free edging, there instead might be a line of fruit giving trees all the way up the street as far as the eye could see. All within easy reach of the foot path, all for people to pluck as they needed, and as often as taste buds sung out.

This line of fruit trees would also give a little shade to those that chose to walk the many uphills under a blazing summer sun. The ones that forewent the air-conditioned comfort of cars, that would drive on unseeing to all that food yet to be foraged by knowing fingers.

Or maybe there would be a canopy of beans to walk through, that might be right next to a forest of nuts and bananas, a pedestrian round about, with herbs circling in a mandala kind of fashion.

The possibilities are deliciously endless and certainly not restricted to the street side. So how does permaculture entwine with creative living?

Well in my mind they lie hand in hand, it’s an ability to think outside the square. To be able to create and be adaptable to the environment that you’ve been placed. Making do with what you have essentially, and in a sustainable fashion, thriving from within it. There are patterns, there are creations, and there are probably a multitude of pops of colour.

finding patterns

finding patterns

The more formal definition of permaculture…

What is Permaculture?

‘Consciously designed landscapes which mimic the patterns and relationships found in nature, while yielding an abundance of food, fibre and energy for provision of local needs. People, their buildings and the ways in which they organise themselves are central to permaculture. Thus the permaculture vision of permanent or sustainable agriculture has evolved to one of permanent or sustainable culture.’ [David Holgrem]

Finding a definition of creativity is a little harder to narrow down. There are so many branches to the word, and as there should be, the word in itself is a creative one of which meaning depends on the user alone.

Not restricting the word to the art world, I did like this line though when reading through the many variations…

‘Creativity is the ability to transcend the ordinary’

And that brings me back to those perfectly damn mown lawns again.

Whether you live in a busy city studio with a cat named Peter or an off grid farm that is the dictionary definition of diversity. What would you do with a street full of perfectly manicured, grassed gardens? Tell me… or even better, what HAVE you done? I’d lovvvve to know.

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(This post is 1 of 3 in a series on creativity.)

Extra Bits 

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” Maya Angelou

Permaculture Principles– a mighty resource that will get you started.

Buderim’s “Eat Street”Urban Food Street, a neighbourhood initiative that started from a conversation about over priced limes 7 years ago. This initiative now covers 11 streets, with people moving into the area, because they want to be involved.

Urban Farming- The Leaky Pipe

 

Squeezing creativity into the cracks of the day

cityhippyfarmgirlcityhippyfarmgirlcityhippyfarmgirl

Chasing light, building ideas

and wearing boots.

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Busy weeks followed by a busy mind. Things have been a jumble of ideas, thoughts and words round here, I’m swimming through them, trying to work out what works and what doesn’t, (I’ve also been wearing boots.)

For a long time I thought being creative was fairly indulgent and something you did in your spare time. Then I realised I was wrong. So wrong.

For me being creative is like breathing. I need it. There aren’t massive chunks of creative time, so I squeeze it into the cracks of the day, in different ways, whenever I can.

Somedays it’s simply a different kind of slash on a sourdough. Another day it might be scribbled words in a notebook standing up at the kitchen bench. This week, I was chasing light with the camera. The kids didn’t need a second asking to be running outside, grabbing their scooters, as they flew out the door.

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What have you been up to this week? 

 

Creative Consumption

This weekend was a long time coming, and boy was it worth the wait. Those two days were an absolute cracker. You know what the excellent thing about social media is? Connecting with amazing people in an online environment all over the place kind of way. You know what the next best thing after that is? Meeting them in real life and hanging out doing things you are all interested in. Also throwing a delicious sprinkling of creativity into the mix to keep you going for quite awhile. Yep weekends like that? They rock. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA The weekend originally came about over thinking of the multitude of wonderful creative courses that are available around the place, without the exceptional price tag. Everyone has something to offer and things for others to learn from. In a collaborative type environment, ideas, options, thoughts, creativity can be expanded on. All those things jumped on and most beautifully run with. (At the very least, encouragement from some like minded souls, and a little recharging of the batteries.)

cityhippyfarmgirl.com

How it all came together… A group of instagram and online buddies coming together in Sydney. Accommodation was through AirBnB, which served as a bed for our interstate friend and a place for us to gather during the day. Cameras? Yes, they were essential. Awesome food brought in for the first day, and awesome food sought for the second day. Win win there.

Creative challenges, sharing of knowledge, a wonderful goodie bag to be taken home each, and more laughs squashed into a two day period than I’ve had for a long time. So. Damn. Good.

For anyone else who has looked longingly at a seemingly unachievable course that they would love to do due to finances, where they live or just general unsureness.

Jump in, create your own course. Find some like minded people and bring it all together. Collaboration is a wonderful thing, create what you want rather than staring wistfully in from the side lines.

Like I said, this weekend was a long time coming, and there were rather a lot of speed humps along the way. But it was worth every bump, and there are already plans for another.

Wonderful places we went, and awesome things we utilised

AirBnB

Eveleigh Markets

Dumbo Feather

The Grounds, Alexandria

Salt Meats Cheese, Alexandria

Kitchen by Mike, Rosebery

Koskela, Rosebery

Mitchell Rd Antiques, Alexandria

Clovelly Beach

Three Blue Ducks, Bronte

Suzie Q, Surry Hills

guilty rambles with a divided heart

denby || cityhippyfarmgirl

From the very first page I started underlining sections. Highlighting paragraphs, drawing arrows to particular lines I liked and folding tiny corners of the pages back.

I nodded, I sighed, I sat back and contemplated. I understood, I could identify and times I simply wanted to shout YES!

This was the book that spoke to my very bones. Rachel Power understood, and all these wonderful women that she had interviewed understood. They spoke of the joys, the heart ache, the balancing acts, and the guilt. The guilt that seemed to go hand in hand with being a mother and living a creative life.

And yet I carried my own special little brand of guilt. A slightly different slant of guilt, as I felt guilty in even identifying with these famous women. I wasn’t a composer, a journalist, a musician or writer. I didn’t make a living from my creations, not even slightly- I didn’t make one dollar.

And yet, there the guilt sat.

I love writing and I love taking photos and would dearly love to get better with both of them. So, I get up early, I go to bed late and utilise the hell out of nap time. My children always come first during their waking hours but come sleep time, and the call to create can be hard to ignore. I greedily want that time to myself or at least partially.  I want that time to somehow put my creative stamp on the day. I know I’m a more levelled parent and considerate partner if I have had that time and yet still the guilt can quietly sit.

the divided heart || cityhippyfarmgirl

To solely write or just take photos as an individual act can often feel incredibly self indulgent and selfish in contrast to parenting; where at times it can feel you are giving, giving and giving to everyone within in the household on a 24 hour basis to all but one.

I am lucky, in that I quite often also use food as a creative outlet. I can get creative and feed my family at the same time- incredibly convenient for all of us. I’m also lucky in that doing things in five, ten minute increments- can actually feel incredibly satisfying at times. I’ve been doing that for so long now, I’ve got no idea what it would be like to just sit down and write for six solid hours. Bliss I would imagine. Sheer bliss. My mind would probably go into a spark inducing overload, the inability to multitask would feel quite strange.

And yet occasionally there are those moments of a couple hours to myself. Everyone is out and a whispered ‘write, just write’ is called as the door pulls shut. Then the pressure is on, the pressure to create something of note in the allocated time. I twitch, I feel scatty, I procrastinate and then finally something clicks and the fingers begin their work. Immersed in the moment, the intensity, the zone- I’m finally neck deep in words and suddenly you hear little people voices in the stair well, the key in the lock and the shout of what’s for dinner?

I reluctantly give a deep sigh, the silent click of ‘save’ and you greet them with a loving hug and a kiss, wondering too, what on earth we are going to have for dinner?

Reminders

* Having a clean bathroom isn’t nearly as satisfying as having written something and edited photos for an hour and a quarter during little girl nap time. Grout will always be there- coherent words falling out my head, no. They can disappear in a blink of an eye.

* Giving chocolate ice cream as a starter for dinner- 1/ gives you bonus points as a parent, surprises the hell out of everyone when it’s suggested, buys you crucial minutes to pull together something more nutritious to follow on with while they happily eat it; and being the awesome little vegetable loving imps that they are, they will always eat their greens after their ice cream.

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In the lead up to International Women’s Day on the 8th of March– this post is one of three with a feminine curved theme.