I want more fish

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As I type, I can still taste the smoked flavour of the salmon topped, fried egg on gluten free toast which I made for a delicious breakfast this morning.  Ok so I may have added avocado, salt, pepper and sour cream.  I’m feeling hot, tired, and energy depleted.  As much as I love Carman’s deluxe gluten free muesli with Aussie honey, I wasn’t satisfied. I simply wanted more. 

In a world full of materialism, we constantly ask ourselves do we have enough?

Do we want the latest clothes, even though our wardrobes are abundantly full?

Do we desire an updated kitchen every few years?

Are we seeking for more, all which is better and bigger?

Are we competing with what others have?

Will we ever be satisfied?

Is our vision blurred of what we want rather than what we need?

Are our wants holding us back from living with our needs and being ok with that?

For most, our needs are met. For others this is not the case.  I believe, it is a myth that the world is over populated.  It’s seems to me, it’s possibly a problem that there is uneven distribution in our world.  Their is corruption and there is greed. It’s obviously more complicated than that and we do have a serious problem with poverty.  We also have a serious problem with spiritual poverty.  

Could we become minimalists in our own right? I’ve seen the documentary and it was good. I feel however they were missing something. Who is to say what each needs? Some people need more books than others for instance.  A single man will simply not need as much to live by in comparison to a family of five.  A family of five in one country will have different needs than one in another.  Now there’s nothing essentially wrong with updating your material objects per say, but I believe in a balance.  We live in a world with people obsessed and addicted to buying.  We have an unhealthy attachment to our things. We are slaves to consumerism.  We are constantly acquiring more and more items  which we do not need.  Does this mean we give away everything? Maybe not, but wouldn’t we have more freedom, if we were able to walk away from our material possessions because we are not attached to them? Does that mean we don’t respect what we own, of course not.   We can become minimalists, and we will still yearn for more because we are yearning for something else.  Their is a void and it needs to be filled. 

When are your happiest memories? It’s been said children who have more are unhappier than those who have less, wouldn’t this apply to adults as well? 

Apart from food, shelter and clothing,  we each have a another need in common which is food for our soul.  God’s love. Now for me as a Catholic, this I why I frequent the sacraments.  The human desire for God which we can ignore or try to  fill up by purchases is supernatural, a void which only God alone can fill.   His love is a love which will satisfy our souls, if we let it: ‘Come Holy Spirit’. He gave us His only son, He denied Himself so that we have a chance to live forever and be happy with Him in heaven, not here. Let us not be confused that we must live a life of sorrow.  How can we imitate and permeate this love in our own lives? By focusing on loving others rather than objects. 

We are all searching or hungry for more.  It is a natural desire, one which we were all born with, because God wants us to yearn for Him.   We don’t have to be rich or famous, have a better house then the neighbours, nor a poorer one for that matter.  We do need to continually look at our selves and die to our wants because they bind us here and one day we will physically die and we can not store these treasures in heaven.   If we’ve spent our time acquiring earthly goods, have we spent it wisely?

 We can sometimes feel that even we do not have enough to give.  Give yourself and all you have because it counts. Do not believe the lies told to us by the devil that we do not have enough or we ourselves are not enough.  As we journey through Lent, we look at the miracles performed by Our Lord to teach us something. We remember  the story where Jesus fed the five thousand from all of what the little boy had to offer. He did this because He knew it didn’t matter how much the little boy had, it only mattered that he was willing to give everything he had and that God would make it enough, more than enough.  
We trust in the God who wants us and made all the fish in the ocean in the very beginning, to make something out of nothing,  how hard could it be for someone like that?

Dear angel, please help me find a car park

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‘Then the devil left him and behold, angels came forth and ministered to him’  Mathew 4:11

During Lent, we meditate on the life of Christ.  We recognise our sins, and our need for purification.  There is also room for joy.  We must be reminded by the stories of Our Lord during this time, that God will not leave our side.  He will send his angels to be our companions on this journey. 

Devotion of our guardian angels has been in existence since the first Christians.  They have an angelic mission in all human life.  Traditionally, they are described as powerful friends, placed by God, alongside each and every one of us.  To accompany us.  We are invited to make friends with them, and get them to help us.  Whether we are baptised, or not, we have our own angel.  They give us courage like in the days of St. Peter when they freed him from prison.  They were there to guard Moses in Exodus 23:20.  They have always delivered   messages from their God.  Their mission is to help men in the face all temptations and dangers. To help us in choosing good rather than evil.   If it is good for ourselves and others, they can also give us material help.  Maybe you have experienced their help? Maybe you’ve been privileged to see one?  Though they have been known to help with warnings about danger, we should never hesitate to ask them for their co-operation in the most menial tasks like finding a car park.  A bargain at the store or the perfect gift for a special someone. We must treat them like we would a good friend.  It is such a pity when we forget or ignore their company.   From the moment of conception, to our death, our angel will not leave our side.   Unlike God, our angels can not read our thoughts, therefore we must talk to them regularly.  We must tell them how we feel, what it is which is on our mind. 

Last prison of Sts Peter & Paul, Roma

We can pray to our enemies angels to help us get along better.  For our friendships to be ones which behold better communication skills than before. For the protection of our loved ones. 

Ask them to take up to the Lord, our good will and that the spiritual waters of Lent will run deep within our souls.  Let us ask Our Lady who was spoken to by the Archangel Gabriel, to teach us to get to know our angels better particularly this Lent.  

O angel of God,

My guardian dear,

To whom God’s love commits me here,

Ever this day be at my side,

To light and guard to rule and guide, Amen.

Roma

moonlighting in la la land.

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Since September, it’s rained a lot which is unusual for the Wild West.   I’ve been in my own la la land.  I’ve been moonlighting in Paris & Rome with relics of my friends the saints. 

St. Catherine Laboure
I’ve been picking flowers, planting more and watching others bloom or die. 


 I’ve been dealing with some important family issues.  While the elder two are at university studying history and nursing,   we’ve  been engrossed in our study of the Human body and the Middle Ages.  For pre- primary and year 4, we are using the rather fabulous project pack: Knight Games which is a ready to assemble hands on unit approach lapbook from In the Hands of a Child (complete review coming soon). 


Miss five who swears mushrooms taste exactly like eyeballs, has been busy illustrating a book of her narrations.  This term we are using Aesop’s Fables along side IEW’s Primary Arts of Language: writing, for the story summary section.


I’ve been absent from my blog, yet present in my life.  I’ve been at the beach with ten kids for ten days.  


I’ve been drinking copious amounts of espressos and introduced to a new drink which has a sweet taste: cold brew coffee.  The last 6 months have been played like the song which was written by Geoff Mack and made popular by Lucky star.  The one which Hank Snow, Johnny Cash and my own dear mum sang,  I’ve been everywhere man!  And now all of a sudden, it’s Lent which means my favourite colour purple is used liturgically. 


Our youngest son often talks about Jesus dying on the cross.  He wears a basketball shirt everyday.  He makes sure he practices shooting hoops.  He acts like the point guard.  He never gives up, he keeps score even when he’s misses the basket time and again.    He also searches for rosary beads or priestly stole from our Montessori mass kit constantly, to drape around his shoulders like he’s putting on his armour to fight the good fight.  He thought I was asleep in the featured photo.



I explained to him I was just closing my eyes yet I was wide awake.

As a child, we don’t want to miss anything, our eyes are wide open, we need help with filtering what’s good for them and what isn’t.   I realised, as an adult, I close my eyes a lot.   I close them to sleep yes, It maybe Ash Wednesday with sushi for dinner made by miss eight, but I’m not a fish right? 


However much I’d like to catch more shut eye, I’m not writing about sleep.  I close my eyes when I received the ashes on my forehead this morning. I closed them when I received Our Lord in holy communion.  I close them when I hear bad news and beg for God’s help.  I close them when I hear good news and thank God for His blessings. I close them when I think of the hidden past and of the bright future.  I close them to cry.  I close them if I’m in pain, and during the shower as the water massages my aging face.  I close my eyes in my Pilates class to concentrate on finding my core again which I’m sure I left back on a trampoline somewhere over east along with my pelvic floor! I even close them at the movies, in the shops or elsewhere to avoid sin.  I’m a visual person so I often have to look away. I’ve been trying to breathe more the presence of God in each facet of my life. I’m doing a Marian consecration using the book True devotion to Mary by St. Louis de Montford and  I’m closing my eyes where I can so I can focus. This has had me feel the need to close Instagram  over lent so I’m not distracted.

On the flip side, I must not close my eyes when I shouldn’t. With proper guidance,  I need to be like the little child and have them wide open.  I’m able to see better where my temptations lie.  I want to keep my eyes wide open when they need to be. So I can see what kind of  wife I need to be to the actual love of my life, my husband, who is suddenly growing a distinguished beard!  I hope to truly see what our children’s needs are for food requirements, discipline or one on one time. I pray to see more clearly, when Mount Mumma (that would be volcanic me) is about to blow and why.  I can see I’m often too proud and need to eat humble pie, frequently.  I can see the Word of God in my minds eye and how it resonances in my life.  I can see that I needed my reading of the Bible to be more spiritually contemplative this year, rather than a scripture study, so I purchased Catholic Women’s Devotional Bible and made it my New Year’s resolution to read it everyday.   I purchased a Protestant Tyndale bible journal and I can see how I enjoy sketching.  I can see our house needs more clearing out of things we don’t need, things which aren’t our favourite which collect dust.   By the current readings of the mass, I can see who my true friends are and that I need to be able to spot my enemies.  I can see I need to love them all.


My findings have been that when you are searching to live a life of intention, you must say yes to the Holy Spirit like Our Lady did.  During this lent, I’m going to commit to looking after myself better so that I can do my job properly.  Mothering is very important and it requires focus.  With work must also come adequate rest.  What is God asking of me? Is there anything I’m not seeing which needs to be addressed this Lent? I must be like the point guard in basketball.  A point guard (PG),  is one of the five positions in a regulation basketball game. He or she is  perhaps the most specialized role of any position. They are expected to run the team’s offense by controlling the ball and making sure that it gets to the right players at the right time.  Above all, the point guard must totally understand and accept their coach’s game plan.  A point guard, like other player positions in basketball, specializes in certain skills. A point guard’s primary job is to facilitate scoring opportunities for his/her team, or sometimes for themselves. This involves setting up plays on the court, getting the ball to the teammate in the best position to score, and controlling the tempo of the game. A point guard should know when and how to instigate a fast break and when and how to initiate the more deliberate sets. Point guards are expected to be vocal floor leaders. A point guard needs always to have in mind the times on the shot clock and the game clock, the score, the numbers of remaining timeouts for both teams, etc.  A point guard primarily defends on the perimeter, just as he primarily plays on the perimeter on offense. On defense, the point guard is tasked with making the opposing point guard as ineffective as possible. A defensive point guard will try to accomplish this with constant pressure on the ball, making it difficult to maintain possession. A defensive point guard will also pressure opponents in passing lanes in an attempt to generate steals and scoring opportunities for his team’ (Wikipedia – the role of the point guard) .  Do I value my role? Could I improve on a few things this lent? 

During Lent, I can see my inner self, a reflection in God’s eye.  What I will offer up? what I will do more of is personal and up to me.  I’ll play my part over the next forty days to examine my conscience, which should enable me to pick up my cross and carry it, like the one traced on my forehead.  I close my eyes to remember the ashes I’m made of and to contemplate the passion.  I will follow the Lord.  I’ve  somewhat adapted the words of Johnny Nash,

I can see clearly now the rain is gone

I can see all obstacles in my way

Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind

It’s gonna be a bright (bright)

Bright (bright) purple- filled day

It’s gonna be a bright (bright)

Bright (bright) purple-filled day.

Lent is a time to pray, fast, make changes, set good habits, live intentionally, deny oneself receive grace, so you can be on guard, stay wide awake and bloom for Jesus like the flowers in the springtime which needed the rain,

Leah 🌿

P.s if you haven’t given up movies for lent, then I recommend Mom’s Night Out for a hilarious laugh and some great truths about mamahood.  

Confessions of a jam addict

I have confession today, down the road with an authorised priest for the purpose of obtaining forgiveness.  It’s where I confess my actual sin.  There are two types of actual sin, venial and mortal. 

 Venial – a less serious offence against the law of God.  Some venial sins are deliberate.  They displease God.  Some are not deliberate.  They are committed through fear or without thinking. If we do our best to improve, Our Lord is pleased.  A sin can be venial in two ways.  Firstly, when the evil done is not seriously wrong.  Secondly, when the evil done is seriously wrong; the sinner sincerely believes it is only slightly wrong, or does not give full consent.  

 Mortal – a grevious offence against The law of God.  Three things are necessary  to make sins mortal.  Firstly, the thought, desire, action, word or omission, must be seriously wrong or considered seriously wrong.  Secondly, the sinner must know it is seriously wrong. Thirdly, the sinner must consent to it.  

To Make a good confession, I must admit to my sins, tell the truth and leave nothing out.  These are the chief qualities of a good confession.   It’s freeing to know ones sins.  It does not get me down.  I am human, I am bound to commit them, yet I will not let them bind my life.  I don’t like the way they make me feel.  The same with sugar. I don’t feel good after eating it. I feel sick.

Why do I go to confession frequently? Because I know it’s good for me.  Do I think I’m holier than anyone? No, not at all. In fact, it helps me when I’m feeling depressed.  It cleanses my soul.  It helps with my struggles. It helps me know myself.  I may never get rid of some of my addictions, but I won’t give up fighting against them. Confession is a sacrament.  What’s a sacrament?  A sacrament is an outward sign of inward grace.  

One eats good food for our bodies right? Well the sacarament of communion where a catholic receives the body and blood soul and divinity of our lord Jesus Christ is food for ones soul.  We drink kombucha for vitamins and probiotics.  Well consider the sacrament of confession medicine for ones soul.  I was addicted to sugar.  Addictions keep us from Really living.  I used to be addicted to sugar. I love jam! However, there is so much sugar in jam! I wanted to make a decision which changed my life.  I wanted to cut out the bad things. So, I cut out sugar. When I cut out the sugar, I seriously had more control over other failings.  

Make sense?

Make sugar-free jam?

Recipe for organic berry and chia jam (organic berries don’t have pesticides. If you are trying to change to organic, start with berries.  Non organic have a tonne of spray, I was told by a farmer, you can’t ever get rid of it.  Not even by washing them through a dishwasher! Yikes. 

1 cup of organic berries, fresh or frozen.

1-2 tablespoons of rice malt.

2 tablespoons of chia seeds.

Place all ingredients into a saucepan with 2 tablespoons of water, and blend with a stick blender, or leave as is. Heat pan over a medium heat until he mixture begins to bubble. Reduce the heat and stir until thickened.   Store in an airtight container for a week or freeze for up to a few months. 

I confess, this jam doesn’t last long in our house.


Go easy on yourself if you desire to give up sugar. It takes time, if you fall off the wagon,  forgive yourself and get back.  Don’t be disheartened.  It’s a journey.  You might feel a little nervous about admitting any addictions.  Can you talk to someone you trust about it? This post is not about judgement, no human can judge another.  But our struggles or habits with food, can have a domino affect with our struggle in our souls.  For me, I know the two were linked.  Do I still struggle? Absolutely, but I’m aware of my struggles and that’s the difference.   

You may wonder, if I  ever get nervous about confession? Yes, I do Sometimes.  Only because Old hairy legs doesn’t want me to go.  Who’s that? Me in the winter yes, but old hairy legs is another name I call satan. He knows there’s grace involved.  He doesn’t want me to receive it.  He wants me to forget that it’s totally private, it’s Jesus himself not just a man.  When I leave the confessional, I leave all my sins behind. I feel so relieved after it.  I say my penance and make reparation.  I say sorry to who ever I need to.  Is it humbling? Absolutely. Freedom is in forgiveness.  Asking for forgiveness is humbling.  Without humility, we can not be like little children who need their loving Heavenly Father.  A child needs to be able to trust they can tell their parent anything. I confess I’m sometimes afraid in life, but trust He is with me in everything.  As an adult, I don’t fear God, I fear living without Him and because of that I desire to please him and do my utmost best not to sin again and eat sugar-free jam forever with Him in heaven.

Love Leah🌿

Feathered girls and a soup for days

Picked up the girls yesterday, the feathery kind. So far we have had Iggy tell us his is ‘chicken bok bok’,  Cece has called hers ‘Miss Rose Mary’ & Olivepip has called hers ‘Miss Anne Shelley’ πŸ“.  We went with Isa Browns because they tend to be more like pets, and they are, they are so lovely.  We’ve carefully clipped a few wings, done properly, your chickens should not even notice.  The feathers will be sent to our penpals


It’s finally Spring here in Australia, so I’ve cleared the gutters, topped off the compost bins, mulched the existing plants and spotted the worms.  PIanted poppies to make poppy maidens, Rosemary, nasturtiums and rocket to make tea, to eat and for the chickens. The raspberry & strawberry plants are in the fairy gardens where we will picnic around ready for the warmer days ahead.  If you live in western Australia, we have found great fairy garden pieces from the shop ‘Rave Discounts’. They make sweet gifts too. 


I’m not a great gardener by any means. But I like the idea of keeping costs down and doing things organically where I can. Plus the children have always used nature as their playground no matter how big our land is. We don’t live on acreage. I wanted to move to a farm but that was not God’s plan for us. We have a block next to the city. We are trying to live off our land as much as we can, the land where God wants us. I love living where we do. We have a friendly, kind community. Our dear neighbour was sweet enough to give the children a box full of gardening gloves for their little hands all the way from England. We don’t have many toys and so books and the garden are our thing.

 The book, ‘Sunflower houses’ by Sharon Lovejoy is an oldie but a goodie. It Helps kids make things out of what they grow. Though we don’t have fireflies sadly where I live, we are able to do most things suggested.  


Today the weather has turned from glorious to nasty.


Some of us are not feeling well.   Though gifts from friends, lift their spirits.  


This Chinese style corn soup in the tastiest, easiest soup to make for when you or your loved ones don’t feel well or even when you all feel excellent but need an easy meal. With a bit of supervision and practise, responsible kids can make this. 

Sweat on the stove – one can of creamed corn with one onion chopped up and a knob of butter or about a tablespoon of oil. Add as much chicken stock as you desire per the size of your family. Bring to boil and stir in a few egg whites, cooked when they turn white. Add shredded chicken for a more heartier soup. Serve with sour dough bread or whatever bread you have. ( for larger families double the other ingredients

There are discussions about oxygen, carbon dioxide and why we need trees.  Reading and thinking skills are being worked on, lactose free food planned by a twelve year old foodie who is designing a website for a free computer class which is provided by our local council.   There’s the demands for sharing of blankets in the patio lounge room whilst eating roasted zucchini sprinkled with Himilayan salt and left over kale salad, topped off with Nature’s Way Cacao Pepitas (a favourite snack which has 5 times more antioxidants than almonds).  Off the iPad, ‘The Green Ember’ and classical music stream from audible.  Nomenclature cards have been pinned to Pinterest for printing later on whilst leaves and rain can be heard playing tag on the roof as the girls look on.  My girls, the ones that fill my days with noise, joy and laughter. 
Love Leah 🌿

Cross my heart spreading peace with my avocado.

I was recently given ‘A book of saints for Catholic moms’ by Lisa M Hendey by a lovely friend.  I’ve been reading it each morning and I recommend it.  I love the saints, they are my great friends, I’ve learned so much from their lives and love the tradition of asking them to intercede for us.  Speaking of traditions, Have  you ever wondered why a Catholic blesses themselves by making the sign of the cross before and after prayers?

Well it’s simple and yet pretty significant.

By marking ourselves with the sign of the cross, we are making a profession of faith.  One of the deepest mysteries is that of the blessed trinity.  When we use the words, In the name of the Father, the son and the Holy Spirit, we are performing a statement of belief.  We are connecting our beings to the cross.  One mustn’t be tempted to rush this for it is a prayer in itself. 

I bless myself often.  Not just before prayers, at meal times before and after grace, in thanksgiving, when I’m nervous, feel panic striken or even when I want to make a phone call and need guidance.  Making the sign of the cross give me peace.   

I received a phone call recently from our son informing me that he and his sister were in a bad car crash.  Immediately my heart began to race. I blessed myself, over and over again.  My husband was away and so Jesus stepped in.  On the way down to the scene, I repeated the process over and over until I made it to my destination.  Though my teeth were chattering from the cold and the shock, I remained calm.  One of the attending mothers who cared for my children until I arrived, asked me how I was so calm.  I explained to her what I did the whole 40 minutes of driving.  I can honestly say, when I bless myself, It helps me to concentrate, to breath slower and deeply, to truly focus on what’s at hand.  According to my kids, at the accident scene I was not a happy camper,  πŸ™„πŸ˜© but imagine if I hadn’t blessed myself! 

You don’t have to be a catholic to learn how to bless yourself.  This is how we do it – 

Using your right hand, you should touch your forehead at the mention of the Father; the lower middle of your chest at the mention of the Son; and the left shoulder on the word “Holy” and the right shoulder on the word “spirit”.  

Try over breakfast tomorrow, spreading some peace by blessing yourself with the sign of the cross before you spread your avocado, you just may find its the perfect start to the day.  Not to mention, a favourite blend of tea currently is – passion fruit with a twist of hibiscus by Tetley.  It will be a hit the next time you invite your friends over for a cuppa.

 Love Leah 🌿

Making cream cheese is whey too easy

God morning, 

As promised to a few of my lovely friends, here’s a quick post on how to make cream cheese-

Buy 1 litre organic full cream (I use unhomogenised) yoghurt.

Place a tea towel or muslin cloth over a large bowl and pour or spoon contents into middle.  

Gather up and clip or tie.  

Hang it up somewhere safe in your kitchen and let the whey drip into a bowl.  No fancy contraptions in my kitchen, see above, wooden hanger used.

Drain for 12-24 hours.

Store cream cheese in fridge for up to a month.

Freeze the whey in an ice cube tray.  

When frozen, then transfer to an airtight container.

  This can be used for making mayonnaise and in your fermented produce. 


With dairy issues have you ever tried cumin, cloves, nutmeg or cardamom?

Apparently they are great digestive aids and assiste with mucus forming foods.

Hope your Sunday is blessed,

Leigh 🌿