I did a painting once for an old friend and called it 'Live the Rainbow'. It was a pretty wacky and wild piece, with a smiling face sitting under a big rainbow, complete with big Yin and Yang signs in the corners. As always, it was bright and bold and lots of fun. I was trying to give this friend of mine a happy painting to look at that would remind him of our friendship, but also, most importantly to depict a good life that was balanced, colourful, joyful and vibrant.
I must have thousands of photos that I have taken over the last couple of years, sitting on my computers and today I have had a quick look at some recent ones for fun. I have selected a few that I like and posted them here. As I look at them and think about what they mean to me, I have realised that I actually do 'live the rainbow' and what a special, valued and treasured way of life it is.
I am blessed with 3 gorgeous children, the youngest getting ready to start school next year. She is a little gem, full of personality, confidence and beauty. Her name is Julia and she has just turned 5 years old. She is at Kindergarten this year, having a wonderful time learning and preparing herself for school. She brings me home some very interesting paintings and I adore them. You can see that she has a wild imagination and puts a lot of effort into her work. Her art work is so young and innocent, so childish and new, that it always reminds me of the wonder of childhood, as she explores, develops and learns. She has a sharp mind and this is shown in her work. Julia would have to be the colour blue in my rainbow, her favourite colour.This is a photo of my garden last Summer, my most loved season of the year. I spend hours out here and enjoy to grow a huge supply of fresh, organic vegetables. There is something so fantastic about being outside in the sunshine and fresh air. My garden is always evolving as I continue to improve on it, it seems to be a constant process that never stops. We don't have a huge property and live in the inner suburbs of Melbourne, but I make the most of it and have used every bit of space that I have. My garden is my happy place and I like to see it thrive, I call it my little jungle at this time of year. My garden is obviously the colour green in my rainbow, lush and full of life.
Here is that little girl I was just telling you about, my little dynamo, Julia. This photo was taken as part of an activity for Kindergarten where she had to spend time with 'Simba', a funny, floppy soft toy. We went to the local shopping centre and here she is in front of the Florist. When I think of my daughter, I think of just this, a little blossom amongst a mass of colourful flowers. She brings me immense joy.
Birthdays are a special time in my family. Here my first born son Adam, is turning 12 and about to demolish his birthday cake. I make a fuss for my children's birthdays, I cook them their favourite meal on the day, we celebrate as a family, always have a special cake and I hope that this will give them some treasured memories of their childhood to carry with them through their life. Adam is fast growing into a handsome and responsible young man, he makes me proud and is the colour purple on my rainbow.
Now that Winter is over, I have to say that I am very happy about this. But the cold didn't stop up enjoying a beautiful day at the beach along the Victorian surf coast recently. The tide was out and the water was a shining sheet, on top of a huge expanse of sand. My kids played along the water's edge and we walked along the peaceful beach. The beach is another one of my special places, I have always lived near it and could never be very far away from it. It is magical and the rhythm of the waves rolling in and out is so soothing. In Winter, the salt air is so fresh and crisp, we had a great day that day.
I could never stay indoors all day and all night, even in Winter. I like to spend time outside and this year, we spent many afternoons and evenings enjoying an open fire and cooking roast dinners on my rotisserie spit. Here is a funny photo that I really like of my son, Marc, and I, holding up our 'Winter weapons'. He has his stick and marhsmallows ready to toast on the fire and I have the skewer ready to load up the spit. Marc is my second born son, a real character, Mr Personality, cheeky, with lots of spunk. He is adorable and is the colour orange on my rainbow.
Any excuse to dress up is a good one for me. For a few years now, I have had fondue nights at our place in Winter. This year was a great laugh, here I am as 'Sister Soul'. The night had a 70's Disco theme combined with Christmas in July. Welcoming friends into our home and having fun nights like this, with plenty of good food, music and good vibes, is one of my specialities and over the years, we have had lots of nights like this. I love to get people together, to share in the good times, have a bit of fun......after all, you're only as old as you feel! Winter is the perfect time of the year to indulge in fondue and is always a winner when you're feeding a crowd. I am the colour yellow on my rainbow, the colour of sunshine on a Summer's day.
My husband and sons are mad car enthusiasts and this year I was dragged along to a festival called 'Greazefest'. It had many very groovy cars on display, rockabilly fashions and music and was a good day out with the family. My husband has lots of good ideas for fun family things to do and we should make the effort to do more. As the kids get older, it is becoming easier to go out together. On this day, I was amazed at how loved these vintage cars were and what wonderful condition they were all in. My boys loved to see them all up close and learnt a thing or two.
We have a wonderful open range zoo near our place and it has an African theme. There are countless animals roaming in open areas and visitors can travel throughout the zoo on a bus and see them up close. Here I am with my children, basking in the hot sun on a Summer's day. Right now, I am dreaming of being able to dress like this again for I am so sick and tired of rugging up to beat the cold. It is always a fun day out at the zoo and my children love it. I enjoy teaching them about animals and how to care for them.
I couldn't possibly 'live the rainbow' without painting, could I? I have recently rediscovered my love of creating art and painted a piece for a friend's birthday. I often set up my paints on the outdoor table, in the middle of a sunny spot and paint in the garden. I put on some classical music and lose myself in it all. It was a complete joy to do this painting and since then, I have started another one, but this one is taking a bit longer to do. But at least I'm back in the swing of it all and have all my painting gear at the ready for whenever the mood strikes me.
I could not 'live the rainbow' without this man, my husband, David. We have over come many challenges in the 20 years that we have been together and continue to go from strength to strength. He is a big calming force for me, as solid as a rock, although he can be a nuisance too! Marriage is never easy and is certainly not all about romance, champagne and chocolates......it takes a lot of work. At times, I feel as though I could strangle him because he can be so irritating and I am sure there are times that I don't impress him either. But at the end of the day, we are so much a part of each other's lives now that these negative feelings never last long. We know, more than anything, that we are a great match and work together to achieve a certain quality of life that we are both very proud of. David is the colour red on my rainbow, the colour of my heart.
My boys were both Scouts for a few years and last Mother's Day, I went along with Marc for a special night for mums. The activity for the night was for the kids to dress up their mums for a night out at the Logies. Here you can see that I have a lovely 'dress' on and superb make up, all done by Marc. It was great fun and we both had lots of laughs. My boys have learnt many valuable life skills from Scouts and I have enjoyed watching them participate in many fun and interesting activities.
I could not 'live the rainbow' without this lady, my mum. She is an incredible influence in my life and I am very close to her. She also enjoys to cook and we often get together and get busy making some sort of creation. Here we have made some fresh egg fettuccine and it turned out perfectly. We made 3 sauces that night and enjoyed a family feast. My mum is very special, I care for her and much as she cares for me. She gives me strength, keeps me strong, showers me with love, gives me hope and courage and has taught me so much about life. She is an exceptional human being and is the colour pink on my rainbow.
I will finish off with this photo that pretty much sums it up. In life, we all have our own rainbow, we all have many things that we do each and every day that are full of beauty and colour. Beauty is all around us, you just have to take the time to look. Take time to enjoy simple pleasures, take time to enjoy the journey, take time to hug your children, take time to do the things that bring you pleasure, forget your worries for a while and look around you at how many day to day things are joyful. Remember to live a little, love a lot........and live the rainbow :) xxx