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Moving and simplifying

I blog sporadically don't I?

Anyway...Husband and I are in the process of buying a house! Our offer has been approved and we are now waiting to hear back about our finance (silly banks don't like work-at-home sub-contracted sub-editors).

For some reason the prospect of moving (and the book I was reading - Simple Spirituality by Christopher L Heuertz) ignited a decluttering spree. I realised I didn't want to pack up a bunch of stuff I never use, just to never use it at the new house. Somehow that got me researching day and night about decluttering, minimalism and simplifying. (I go through phases of things - probably why I keep changing my blog name etc - and I spend hours and hours researching and reading until the next phase comes along. Right now I am stuck on living with less stuff).

I have so much STUFF. Why? Cos it makes me feel hapy for about five minutes? Seems harmless enough but not if I am choosing to spend money on myself and on things that make me feel good rather than being obedient to God with my finances and blessing others.
The Message paraphrase of the Bible says, "Your houses are stuffed with what you've stolen from the poor." (Isaiah 3:14ish).
Ouch.
Yes - my house is stuffed full of possessions I have chosen to spend money on instead of blessing the poor.

As a consumer currently in recovery I don't think stopping shopping altogether is realistic or wise. But I am going to be mindful about what I buy and where I buy it from. I won't put myself before the poor.
Buying products that are Fair Trade certified (like from the Oxfam Shop) ensures a better deal for those in developing nations. That's where I should be putting my money first - not the chain store that exploits its workers.

I'm still learning and soaking in all this information so I realise this post is a bit...jumbled. But writing it down helps.


Harri

"If you have two coats, give one away," he said. "Do the same with your food." (Luke 3:11 MSG).


It's in the bag

Here I am again after a bit of a break...still don't know if I can be bothered doing the blog thing but every now and then some other blogs get me inspired.
Anyway I have always had a fascination with what is in other people's bags (and closets) so I thought I would play.

Here's my bag:


My mother-in-law gave it to me this Christmas. It's so great when people just know what you like. This bag is so me and it goes with all my stuff :)

Inside I have:


* Two little toiletry bags
* My cute wallet
* A Russian doll print iPhone pouch (which I use as my overflow wallet)
* A little book for when all my magazines at the doctors' suck
* A hair clip
* And of course my phone should be there but I was using it to take the pics...

A closer look:


I love these wallets :)


This toiletry bag contains mints, hand sanitiser, nail stuff, a mirror, tissues, lip glosses and some random paper


This one contains three Hogs Breath stamp cards (don't ask), a little book about fear (for when I need a bit of help), a plastic bag, all different kinds of tablets for all different kinds of needs, hand cream, tea bags, face blotting paper (these were amazing when I was in Indonesia 3 years ago but I don't think I've used them since), ventolin, butter menthols and bobby pins.

Wow! What a lot of stuff! And I actually do use most of it!
That was fun...

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

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My favourite things - week one

So I am taking part in the High-heeled Housewife's My Favourite Things challenge (I am not a very technical blogger so I don't know how to link her website - but it is www.highheeledhousewife.com).

Week one is focusing on my favourite part about being a wife or woman.

Well my favourite part about being a wife is being my husband's helper. When I was little, I wanted to be a wife when I grew up. I wanted someone to take care of, encourage and share my life with. I love living with my best friend, I love seeing the joy on his face when I have done something or said something to bless him. It is a very rewarding role.
One thing I think I could do as part of this challenge is to be aware of my words and the power they have to uplift or pull down the people around me, especially Josh.

My favourite part about being a woman is the opportunity to be a mother or, if not an actual physical mother (which I am not), to have a mother's heart and the ability to nurture those around me, especially children.

This is the first challenge I've participated in! Hopefully I will remember to actually blog each week....

A peek into my life

 


Some other blogs I read have been doing this 'peek into my life' meme and I thought I would give it a go. It was quite revealing - it shows you what you do a lot and what you probably don't do enough of. If you read this I think YOU should do it too.


 

Monday


 

I usually get up at around 7am when my husband's alarm goes off. While he gets ready for work I make him some sandwiches to take with him. Then I make some cocoa and turn on my computer. Mondays are my heaviest work days so I like to get an early start so I can finish when Josh gets home from work.

I sub-edit news articles for four different regional newspapers – basically I proof-read the stories and correct any incorrect spelling or grammar and check for legal issues.

Sometime during the morning I will get dressed and have breakfast, whenever I have a gap in the work.

At around 2pm my work lessens and I water my herbs (I do this at some point every day!) and make some lunch – usually stirfry or left over dinner or something.

Lunch is only a short break because I have a big afternoon of work – this keeps me busy until about 7pm (yep it's a 12-hour day on Mondays!), when Josh gets home. I usually haven't finished the work by 7pm but I save it for the next morning.

I don't have time to cook a proper meal on Mondays so either Josh will cook something or we go out to a cafe which is nice after a long day of work!

If we have enough time we will watch a movie or an episode of Scrubs or The Office on Josh's laptop before heading to bed at about 10pm.


 

Tuesday


 

I wake up at 7am and make Josh's lunch then head to the computer, where I work solidly until about 1.30pm. My work is usually all finished by then but I have to stay near the computer (AKA in the house) in case stories need to be cut or fill stories need to subbed until the layout staff have finished at about 5pm.

So in the afternoon I am free to do anything I like and I aim to clean the house, make bread, do some washing, plan meals for the week and any other house-wifey things. Sometimes I can't be bothered doing any of that and I just look at blogs, read or watch a movie...

I want to make myself use this time wisely though and try and get the chores done and also exercise at home. But after yesterday's massive work day and the big morning I want a break and that usually lasts until dinner time!

I try and read my Bible and have a proper prayer time (I pretty much pray throughout the day, every day as I am on my own but I find it is good to have a dedicated time as well).

When the papers are signed off and finished at about 5pm I sort out the dinner. It is always a vegetarian meal because I do shopping on Wednesdays so by Tuesdays all the meat is gone. I try to only do two to three meat meals a week to save money though.

Josh loves his meat though so I try and make hearty vegetarian meals like nachos with kidney beans or vegetarian pasta or something.

We usually watch a movie and relax on Tuesday nights and then head to bed early.


 

Wednesday


 

Wednesday is my beautiful day off. This is also the day I volunteer at my local primary school at its Healthy Breakfast Club. So I have to leave the house by 7.40am and I walk to the school which is about a 10-minute walk. While there I mix up cordial and make toast for the children who weren't able to have a healthy breakfast at home (or did but are still hungry!).

This takes me to 9am and I walk back home and have a quite time and read my book.

On Wednesdays I make any appointments I need or go shopping for the week, catch up with friends for coffee, do any house chores etc.

Sometimes I spend the day with my mum and sister-in-law and nephew and sister if she is free.

On Wednesday evenings we almost always go to friends' houses for dinner or have people over for dinner. This week we had friends over for an Indian night. YUM.


 

Thursday


 

On Thursdays I try and relax as much as possible before my work starts again. I still get up early and make Josh's lunch but then I read a book or bake or potter around the house. Some Thursdays my friend and I catch up with our crafts. We are hoping to start an online to store to raise money for orphans. I make jewellery/art and she does a bit of everything. As it gets closer to Christmas we will get together and make Christmas presents/cards.

I also try and clean the house/wash clothes etc and get some exercise in on Thursdays. I am really bad at scheduling exercise into my week but I am trying to get better at this!

By about 3pm I will have enough work in my inbox to start but sometimes I leave this until the morning if I am busy as it is not urgent.

We often have friends over/got to friends' houses or my parents' place for dinner on Thursday nights or if we have a really busy weekend I will try and keep this night free and make a nice dinner just for Josh and me.


 

Friday


 

I get up early and make Josh's lunch and start work by 7.30am. On Fridays the work comes in steadily but regularly so I spend the day at my computer but I have time to check blogs and make bread/butter or any other simple chores. I read my Bible/pray in between working and watch online videos of Joyce Meyer's sermons and Kenneth and Gloria Copeland on the Believer's Voice of Victory. I find these videos encourage me and motivate me so much. I can tell when I haven't been getting enough good teaching as fear creeps back into my life and I feel discouraged and confused.

I stop work at about 5.30pm and start cleaning up a bit and organising dinner. Josh loves Mexican food so I try and make that once a week.

We usually stay up a bit later as it is sleep-in day tomorrow!


 

Saturday


 

We TRY and sleep-in on Saturdays, which I am terrible at. I always seem to wake up really early but Josh loves his sleep so I will sometimes get up and go and read in the lounge until Josh gets up. Josh and I try and do something fun together on Saturdays, whether it be going out for a meal, going shopping or the movies or something.

He also likes to have time playing computer games so he does that while I read (again!) or whatever.

In the evenings we sometimes go on a 'date night' or we have people over/go to someone's house etc.

We usually watch a movie in the evening!


 

Sunday


 

On Sunday we get up at about 8am and get ready for church. Our church is one hour's drive away but it starts at 10.30am so that means we don't have to get up too early!

Church is in a pub for one hour and then at a park where we cook up a sausage sizzle for the community until about 2pm.

In the afternoon I sometimes make a meal or a salad or something to take to our friends' house in the evening. Us and few others (usually 15-20 altogether) eat dinner together every Sunday night. The hosts are this amazing, hospitable family. We love going there and we always have a good time.

We get home at around 9pm and have an early night.


 


 

What I have learnt from writing this down


 

  1. I don't have a quite time every day

  2. We have people over a lot (but it is probably only once a week)

  3. We go to friends'/family's houses a lot (probably three times a week!!)

  4. I read whenever I don't have to work

  5. This looks like I don't shower or get dressed or wash dishes, but I promise you, I do all of those things!

  6. I barely exercise

  7. Despite not owning a TV, we watch a lot of movies!

     


*Note - yep I am technically an 'editor' but I am not that great at editing what I write before I post it - so sorry if this is full of mistakes!
 


MIA

Yep I've been off finding some inspiration...can't say I found a lot but hopefully enough. For some reason I felt the need to define myself. So here it is...

i am harriet. i am 26. i am newly married (almost nine months) to an amazing man. i work from home editing four small newspapers. i would like to be an author. i love my family dearly and think my nephew is the most adorable, wonderful, joyful thing in the world. i love africa. i would like to adopt every orphan on the planet and make them feel loved and wanted (but i might just start with one). i have too much stuff. i love shopping and wish i didn't. i hate exercising and wish i didn't. i am fascinated by religions, cults, sects and all that kind of stuff. i am interested in natural health. i LOVE massages.

i believe God sent Jesus to earth to die for my sins and to bring me healing. because he loves me. i believe life should be lived to the full! i am on a journey to faith (the size of a mustard seed).

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

Blogger's block

I am oooooover blogging. My life just isn't that interesting. I don't know what to write.

Right now I am...listening to a Joyce Meyer teaching on the tongue. I am trying to listen to her free teaching online every day. She is great.

I am praying that...Josh will find a job. He has been self-employed for a year but is struggling to find work and is now looking for full-time work outside of home. I pray God will bring him the right job soon, although I will miss working from home with him! Please pray with me.

Later on...I might go to the gym. Or I might not. Right now it's looking like not. But later, later on I am going to attempt to make lasagne for the first time ever!

I am learning...that I need to unlearn a lot about what I thought I knew about the Bible, God and Jesus. I have bought into common beliefs that people have come to because of their circumstances and not what the Bible says about it. Particularly about healing. It is interesting when you reject the common belief and look at exactly what the Bible says about it. It is life changing!

I am looking forward...to not being so cold. Not to be hot mind you, just not so rediculously freezing.

I am reading...too many books. Right now I am reading Overcoming Doubt by Neil T Anderson, The Word, The Name, The Blood by Joyce Meyer, Health Food by Kennth E Hagin and the Bible...

Well that's all for now. Hopefully I will get some kind of blogging inspiration next time...

Testing times



I have found that usually (maybe that should be almost always) when I resolve to make a change in my life, I get tested - big time. The tests are sometimes more than I can bear and I want to go back to how I was before, with my head in the sand, without the tests.
I have a yukky phobia. It has followed me around my whole life, sometimes at a distance, but sometimes on my shoulders. All my life I have hoped, wished, prayed, pleaded for it to just go away.
But it doesn't work like that. Phobias and fears are entwined in your thinking and it is hard to unravel 26 years of wrong thinking and start over. 
I know all the BIble verses. Take every thought captive. Renew my mind. There is no love in fear. I have not been given a spirit of fear...but practically how do I defeat this?

Since I have been staying with my in-laws I have been hearing a lot of good teaching. One DVD by Terri Savelle Foy reminded me again that there is no love in fear. So when I am afraid, I must tell myself of God's love. I just need to say, "Thank you for loving me."
She also talked about how the opposite of fear is faith and how faith comes through hearing the word.
"Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ." (Romans 10:17).
I am pretty good at reading the Bible, I can do that easily. But hearing it is another step.

I have been thinking about these things in relation to the phobia (I call it the phobia not my phobia because I don't want it to be mine!) and let's just say I have had more oportunities to put my faith into action.

But I don't want to go back to burying my head in the sand and wishing it would go away, even though that seems like an easy option right now, and less scarier than going through any tests of faith.

So I downloaded the audio New Testament on my iPhone and it is just playing over me while I am working. And I'm praying God strengthens me through it.


"I have my fears. But they don't have me." Peter Gabriel.

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Holidays

Well, hello there.

I have been on holidays. I am on the other side of the country, in Victoria with Josh's family. We were very blessed that Josh's mum spotted cheap tickets and offered them to us! We took a week off work for the first week we were here but now I am back to work.
Working from home is awesome. I'm not sure how working from someone else's home is! There is also the slight matter of a two-hour time difference so I am hoping the next three weeks go smoothly...
Since I have been here my diet has been thrown out the window which I am annoyed at myself about. I can see all my hard work getting undone with my skin breaking out again and my jeans feeling tighter. Hopefully now I am back to work I will be better able to stick to a healthier routine...hopefully.

Last week I started my novel. It has been a long time coming (and I mean a long time) but I have finally put finger to keyboard. The biggest challenge I have found so far is showing not telling. Having been a journalist for so long I have ONLY told the story, the bare facts with no embellishment. It has been hard to transfer how I write as a journo to how I write as a novelist. But it has been done before (the move from journo to author) so I am going to give it a go too.

One thing I have really enjoyed about staying with Josh's family is how much his mum listens to good teaching. I barely ever listen to Godly teaching apart from what I hear at church. I read a lot, but listening is different. Watching is even better. I know my faith needs to build and I think daily HEARING the word (even if it is just me reading it aloud) will help me to do that. I think I am going to invest in some good teaching DVDs and CDs....

Well that's enough rambling. I don't have much desire to keep this blog going at the moment as I am too shy to tell anyone about it and no one knows it is here...If people knew it was here would I write more? Probably not.
We'll see...

My life to-do list



1. Write my novel
2. Adopt a baby that needs a family
3. Study naturopathy
4. Own a horse (or at least borrow someone else's - a lot)
5. Get to - and stay at - my goal weight
6. Make and sell artwork/photography to raise money for orphans
7. Go back to Africa
8. Have children
9. Travel around Australia in a motorhome
10. Travel the world with my husband
11. Never work outside the home again!
12. Buy a house and decorate it awesomely
13. Go on a relaxation/health retreat
14. Read all the books that are waiting for me to read
15. Grow closer to God
16. Less of me and more of Him
17. Own only second-hand or fair trade clothes (I stopped shopping new in February)
19. Chilllll outttttt!
20. Pray for my husband every day
21. Whittle my scarf collection of 35 down to seven
22. Whittle my bag collection of 20 down to five or....ten to start with
23. Whittle my jewellery collection down. Just down
24. Eat healthily and exercise most days
25. Make a quilt (or at least buy a really awesome one)
26. Get laser eye surgery
27. Live in the country
28. Learn how to make more things and buy less things (like soap and skin products)

... To be continued!



Sometimes when I should be working...

I procrastinate by doing quizzies!

What's your current obsession?
Ummm heath probably. I soo want to be healthy.

What are you looking forward to this summer?
Being healthier! I don't know, it is too far away...but every summer I look forward to Christmas :)

What are you wearing today?

Oh man, I look rediculous. I went for a walk this morning (yay me) so I am still in my trackies and hoody from that. BUT I am freezing in my ice-box office and also have on a scarb and black and white checked ugg boots.

Why is today special?

Today is special because God made it.

What would you like to learn to do?
Natural health.

What's for dinner today?

Monday night is Josh's cooking night :) sooooo not sure yet, but he's a great cook so I'm sure it will be yummy.

What's the last thing you bought?

Groceries yesterday, how boring.

What's your favorite weather?

I love cold weather but I feel the cold really bad so not tooooo cold. I love thunderstorms and rain but only if I am inside, reading with hot cocoa mmmm (not wanting to go for a walk).

What's your most challenging goal right now?

Losing a lot of weight.

If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished anywhere in the world, where would you like it to be?
I am so unsettled when it comes to settling...sometimes it's Perth, sometimes its Melbourne, sometimes its Lesotho. Usually its Fremantle though.

Favorite vacation spot?

It wasn't a vacation but the best place I have ever travelled to was Lesotho and I would go there again, no questions.

What would you like to have in your hands right now?

Hot cocoa...but I'm tryyyyying to be goooooood.

What would you like to get rid of?

Do I need to answer this? Weight!

If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go?

Only for an hour? Argh...um....a nice coffee shop with lots of happy friends

What's your favorite thing about the city you live in?

It is close to the country, the beach and the city

If you had $150 now what would you spend it on?

Stuff from Tree of Life

Do you admire anyone's style?

Yep...they are all a bit hippie-ish!

Describe your personal style?

Changes a lot. Right now I am embracing my boho-ness and wear a lot of long skirts :)

Who is someone your heart is missing right now?
I miss my YWAM friends. I miss kindred spirits far away (Careys!).

Name 3 things you'd like to do, visit or see in the next year?
I want to lose weight
I want to travel
I want to write my novel. But actaully do it.

General mumblings


So it looks like my study dreams are floating away. I contacted the associations that recognise naturopaths and they won't recognise distance education :-(
So if I complete the study I wouldn't be able to practice on my own, from home or whatever, which is what I wanted. So until I'm not working it looks like those dreams are on hold.

In other news I am a week into no sugar! Yay for me! And it hasn't been hard at all (thank you agave nectar!). My skin looks better already :-)

On Thursday I went to the naturopath and she (shudder) weighed me. I have put on SO much weight it is crazy. I had a terrible day on Thursday with a lot of other horrible moments but somehow in there I found a whole bunch of motivation to really get my act together and lose weight. I have been really good since then (I'm following the Eat-Clean Diet) and have exercised every day. It has only been a few days but I haven't been this motivated in ages.

The thing is though, I am already scared of losing motivation and being naughty again. I desperately don't want to go back to my old habits but I know how easy it is to do that.
If you read this, please pray for me! I need all the help I can get right now!

Something I said I'd never do

After 12 awful years of school I swore I'd never study again. I was done with school work, exams and anything study related. I much preferred working where once the day's work was done, I was free to do and think about anything I wanted.
But almost 10 years after my last horrible exam right I'm thinking about studying again. It's because I've found something that interests me enough to learn about it: naturopathy.
I've always thought that God probably had created cures for our problems in nature that we use man-made drugs and chemicals to heal. Although man has made some amazing drugs to heal all sorts of diseases, when it comes to the kind of problems I get, I'd rather not treat them with chemicals.
Anyway I looked into studying naturopathy last year but concluded that I just couldn't afford it right now. But the other day I was flirting with the idea again and realised that the government offers fee-help! Yay!
So it looks like I might be hitting the books in August.
I'm scared though. What if I hate it? What if it's too hard? What if I get too stressed with studying and working?
I guess I'll never know unless I start right?

No sugar...day two


Well, today is my second day of not adding sugar to anything or eating 'sugary' food/drink.
I would love to go totally no sugar but I don't think my body (or my husband) could hack that.
So yesterday and today I have cut out hot chocolates/milo (which I loooooooove and I add extra sugar to!) and any sugary snacky foods. I have really wanted to have a hot choccy on numerous occasions over the two days, which I am a bit ashamed about. But I haven't given in!
I have been reading about alkalising my body and I have a lot of the symptoms of having too much acid. I am hoping that cutting out/down on sugar will start me off on cutting out acidic foods and consuming more alkaline foods.
We shall see...
I have heaps of that yummy quiche leftover so once that is out of the way I will try and do the whole alkaline thing and then hopefully that will help clear up my acne/acid reflux/overweightness!

Peace, Harri
 


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Cooking day

Today I had a bit of a cooking day.
First I made hommus:


My sweet neighbour makes the most amazing Arab food and she gave me the recipe which I varied a bit.
Ingredients:
1 clove garlic
Can chick peas
40gm lemon juice
2 tbsp tahini
1 tbsp cumin
A bit of paprika
Salt and pepper
Method:
Blend!!

Mmm this gluten-free vegetarian quiche is so yum. I combined two recipes to make this sweet potato and caramalised onion
quiche.
Ingredients:
4 eggs
1½ cup milk
3 tablespoons melted butter
½ cup self-raising flour
1½ cups grated cheese
2 cups filling of choice - I used sweet potato and caramalised onion
Method:
Chop up sweet potato Into small cubes and slice onion. Cook sweet potato in hot preheated oven until soft. Fry onion in a little oil and add a tablespoon of sugar to caramalised. When it is done, mix through a teaspoon of wholegrain mustard. Leave sweet potato and onion to cool and melt butter. Mix in all other ingredients except cheese. Fold in cheese and sweet potato and onion and pour into quiche dish (24cm). Cook in preheated 180-degree oven for 40mins or until set.

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Well I said I was going to be real...


I had decided not to blog about this, but then I remembered I wasn't hiding my true self anymore.
So here it is.
Right now I just feel like I want to curl up into a ball and disappear. Isn't that awful? I know I have a blessed life, I should be happy, focus on the positives etc etc but right now I just feel...flat.
I don't want to do my work, I just want a hug and a hot chocolate.
Maybe I should go spend time with Jesus instead of whinging.

Ponderings

Josh and I have started going to a home/connect/cell group with a bunch of other 20-30-somethings. It is the first time I have been in a connect group where I am not leading it since....ages. It's nice to just be a part of it and not worry about everyone.
In this group we are watching John Bevere's DVD Extraordinary. I'm finding it challenging (and I don't just mean his energetic 'everyone say amen' preaching).
Last night he spoke about image and how we all have three images: projected image (the me I want people to see), perceived image (how people really see me) and actual image (the real me, how God sees me). To truly reflect God, we need to be living out of our actual image.
Man that's hard.
I worry so much about what other people think. This was my thought pattern just before: I can't be bothered going to pilates, maybe I'll just stay at home. But I didn't go last week - the teacher is gonna think I'm lazy!
I think most of the time I do live out if my actual image but then I worry about how I'm perceived and this isn't right either. And what if I'm working on myself - trying to better myself - this then changes my actual image and therefore how I'm perceived.
Am I just making a simple thing complicated?
I want to be myself. I want to reflect God. I want to give up worrying about what people think about me, especially how I look.
God help me, please.


Making peace with my hair

This might seem like a vain post...but in the almost 26 years I've had this shaggy blonde mop of hair on my head I have never made peace with it.
Some bits are curly (they hide underneath), some bits are straight and some are just plain frizzy.
For years I've either straightened it all or curled it all - never just let it do it's own thing. But I've just decided to make peace with it - the curls, the straight parts - even the frizz. And I'm going to try and love it the way it is.

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Me

This is me. This is my blog. I'm not trying to impress anyone anymore. This is real, raw and honest.

Chai goodness

I am trying to perfect the art of making chai. Every time I do it it comes out differently. I'm hoping to find the perfect recipe soon.


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a note

my job is to proof, edit and check editorial copy for four newspapers. as a result, i should be really good at proofing, editing and checking my own work.
but when  i am writing for me, i just...write. i don't bother to stop and check if everything is spelled correctly or makes sense.
cos i don't really care.