Saturday, November 26, 2011

Rowdy, rough-and-tumble types...

My babes are wrestlers.
They’re also fast-running-around-the-table, rolling around in mud, climbing dangerously high (and jumping without fear), and fake laughing in the mirror kind of kids. They do everything in a loud way; will shriek and screech over the smallest finds, and love making up circus tricks and tumbling down the hallway. They make loud, scary noises when pulling faces, breakdance to bad 80’s music, and sing off key to our favourite songs. I never dress them in white. Ever.

Even though I’m more than aware of their boisterous beginnings, this week I had the opportunity to see a work in progress performance in an inner city theatre, a play for two-to-five year olds all about play – and I must admit, I hesitated. Especially because when I was reading the email invitation, Judah was standing on the dining table shouting ‘Fi! Fi! Fo! Fum!’ and beating his chest like King Kong, and I could hear Lou outside squealing repeatedly over a colony of ants that she’d found in the mud.
But then I thought, why not? They may just surprise me…

As it was, my energetic two were very good, and aside from a few feet stamping and jumping on cushion episodes, all went beautifully. But the thing I love the most?  How seeing the performance has influenced their own imaginings and the way that they play together: Judah’s been pretending to swim around the house, holding his breath so his plump little cheeks stick out, breast-stroking at a furious pace, and diving onto the couch to paddle-kick his legs at breakneck speed. And Lou has been exploring with boxes, copying Judah’s enthusiastic swimming displays, and hiding under sheets – just like the actors did.

It was an interesting lesson for me – perhaps I box my wrestlers/mud rollers too quickly, and don’t really give them the opportunity to experience new, quieter things because I’m afraid they’ll be too disruptive. But I’m thinking that we may just become a theatre-going family after all… which is very, very cool.

Have your children ever surprised you in a similar way?


Ps. Only one more week left before we draw the winner of our $50 Quill & Ink Handmade gift voucher! To enter, all you need to do is post a photo on our facebook page of your Quill & Ink product with its new owner, and like us (if you don’t already). Simple as that! Best photo wins…. x

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Market Wrap Up: Mathilda's

And so begins a mad month of markets for Quill & Ink Handmade!
Yesterday we peddled our wares at the lovely Mathilda’s Market, which was brimming with eager Christmas shoppers – we met so many lovely people, ate enormous portions of Happy Little Dumplings pork buns (oh my goodness, so delicious) , and had moments where our stall had so many people buying that it was tricky to see past them – very exciting!

Next up: We’re off to take part in the Racecourse Road Community Christmas Event, with a big market hosted by BrisStyle, and held on the grounds of the beautiful St. Augustine’s Church on Friday 25th of November, 5pm until 9pm. The whole of Racecourse road will be taking part in this lovely community event, with carols, roving entertainment, great food, and a visit from Santa - plus all of the local restaurants and cafes will be celebrating in style, with Christmas menus and delicious specials. We’re so looking forward to it!

Will you come along too?


Image from BrisStyle.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Win Me!

On the fifth of December, Quill & Ink Handmade will be a whole year old. Even as I write, I’m thinking of the year like a mother contemplating the galloping of time, and remembering our first tentative steps towards a more creative life, the joy of selling our carefully crafted goods, and the loveliness of being surrounded by other like-minded creatives, who put their whole hearts into the treasures that they make.

It’s been a rosy, glorious year for us, furnished with lots of new ideas, some tears (born from frustration and tiredness), tricky juggling and a whole lot of coffee and cake, but I look at us now – a well oiled creating machine – and I’m so proud I could burst. Sometimes taking a step into an unknown can be the best thing, you know?

So, we’re celebrating.
And we’re thanking you, our wonderful customers, readers, and followers, for all your support, by hosting a fun photo competition to celebrate all the Quill & Ink goodness that’s been bought, given, passed on and delivered this year.

It’s so easy to win! All you have to do is take a photo of your Quill & Ink Handmade item with its new owner, post the image on our Facebook page, and ‘Like’ us (if you don’t already) to be in the draw to win a $50 Quill & Ink Handmade gift voucher to spend on whatever takes your fancy in our Etsy Store. The loveliest photo will win – simple as that!
Entries close on 5th of December – just in time to have your Quill & Ink parcel delivered before Christmas.

Hurrah! We just love giveaways!


Ps. Image from here.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Slow Slithering...

(Lemon Jellie, this post is for you!)

So, some of you may know that our house is a mecca for creepy wildlife. There’s something about backing onto a creek that brings out the beasties, and among the hundreds of bearded dragons, giant spiders, and a myriad of birds, bats and lizards, are many, many snakes in all different varieties that I’ll often find in really unexpected places (and usually in places I need to be).

I have to admit, when we first moved in here, I was absolutely petrified. I already had a paralysing fear of spiders, and would regularly find them on the inside of the shower screen, the toilet seat, on a random towel or behind pots and pans, and once on a cardigan that I pulled out from my wardrobe. There was much shrieking and a whole lot of obsessive checking of things; but thankfully, as the years have passed, I seem to be coping much better with their surprise visits.

Just recently, we had a mad month of snakes at our house. We’d find carpet pythons, metres long, exploring the front verandah, slithering over the kids bikes, curling around our outdoor furniture. Snakes that sunned themselves in the backyard, mated in our side garden, used trees as ladders, and sneaked from one end of the house to the other through the guttering. Night after night, they’d mate in our roof cavity, sliding over beams, the rough sound echoing through the sleeping house. And there were plenty of nights that we sat up, at two in the morning, drinking tea or eating ice-cream because the noise of them was just too loud.

And then, nothing.
Not a trace of them around the house; no persistent scraping noises in the roof, no shrieking of local birds who followed and alerted us of the snakes when they were migrating in the garden. And weeks go by in blissful silence.

But this morning, look what I found:

Last year, we found baby pythons under the couch, or suddenly in the hallway, or writhing on the bathroom floor. The kids, ever fascinated, would sit on their haunches and watch as we tried to shepherd them into boxes or bowls, to be released near the creek.

Finding the first skin this morning was a cue to be a little more vigilant around the house – hopefully there won’t be too many of them wriggling into our lives this season!

Do you have interesting wildlife at your house?
Or got a snake story?


Sunday, November 6, 2011

Market Wrap Up: Blackwood Street

It really is beginning to look a lot like Christmas, isn’t it?
We had a wonderful day at the Blackwood Street Farmers Market yesterday, and loved talking to so many lovely customers about their Christmas plans. It was deliciously hot, and we were surrounded by the best gourmet and locally produced food – which makes for a pretty perfect Sunday morning.

We’ve got two weeks to tackle (and conquer!) a maddening list of sewn goodies, and then it’s off to our last Mathilda’s Market for the year. If you’re in Brisbane, come on in for a look - The line up for this market is just divine, and featuring a lot of our favourites, including the very cool Furious Kingston, lovely summery Kaftan Kids, the bright and eclectic Wimcee, and the snuggly Frankandharps. And there’ll be dumplings for lunch from Happy Little Dumplings – delish!

We’ve also been hard at work creating some fun new products – one in particular I absolutely can’t wait to see transform from sketch to reality. Think small tattoo, nautical, eye patch, and ‘Land Ho!!’ (Sneak peek soon!)

Have a wonderful Monday,