Okay :)

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It’s been so, so, so, so long since I’ve written for myself! >.<

It's bad. I can feel myself getting so frustrated and restless and angsty. It took a while to realise that I haven't written in such a long time! I mean I have – essays, assignments, speeches, statuses (statii), posts, comments, messages, emails, letters, texts…. but nothing for ME! Nothing that I WANT to be writing.

The glorious feeling of release that comes with seeing your thoughts sprawl into words on a screen, or physically on paper, is unlike any other! – Stephanie Iversen, 2013

[You may quote me on that. hah!]

For some people (myself included), I think forgetting to write on a regular basis is as ridiculous as forgetting to breathe or forgetting to eat …. when I was young I used to flip out and forget how to swallow, which is a story for another time perhaps… It NEEDS to happen. It is a part of you, and you need to do it to be able to continue functioning correctly.

I encourage others who have forgotten to make time to write lately to get back into it. It feels like diving into a cool spring on a boiling hot day.

Utter.
Relief.

The Dreaded Macaroon

A stack of sin.

A stack of sin.


It’s interesting. Over the past few months I have noticed a growing obsession of mine.

I am becoming obsessed with macaroons.

Thing is, I can’t really eat macaroons. And I’ve only had possibly 5 of them in my whole life. But I think about them often.

What even are these strange colourful discs? They look more like decorations than delicacies: something to stack up on a shelf rather than nibble on with your tea. And really, do they even taste that great anyway? They are kind of meringue-y, soft, and often overpoweringly sweet.

I am obsessed with macaroons because I can’t eat them! Because I am diabetic. And I only have been for just under a year, and I weirdly think of these little colourful pucks of sugar because I know that they are the epitome of my intolerance to sugar and carbohydrates.

gossip girl macaroon

It may also be that they appear just so pretty. As Blair Waldorf greedily indulges in a box of them in her bath tub in Gossip Girl, my stomach lurches and swirls, craving these ridiculous things that provide the body with next to no nutrition whatsoever!

Ah, so sue me. I dream of macaroons. There are worse things.

The Beast in the Jungle – Henry James

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As a text for my class ‘Communicating the Self’ this year, we are focusing for a week on Henry James’ The Beast in the Jungle. After studying last year his Daisy Miller, I was like ‘ugh, this is gonna be boring’, but man!!! I was wrong. This short story stirred something in me. I thought it was incredible.

Here is a short excerpt that caught my attention and caused me to read with a greater admiration for it:

“Isn’t what you describe perhaps but the expectation – or at any rate the sense of danger, familiar to so many people – of falling in love?”
John Marcher wondered. “Did you ask me that before?”
“No – I wasn’t so free and easy then. But it’s what strikes me now.”
“Of course,” he said after a moment, “it strikes you. Of course it srikes me. Of course what’s in store for me may be no more than that. The only thing is,” he went on,”that I think if it had been that I should by this time know.”
“Do you mean because you’ve been in love?” And then as he but looked at her in silence: “You’ve been in love, and it hasn’t meant such a cataclysm, hasn’t proved the great affair?”
“Here I am, you see. It hasn’t been overwhelming.”
“Then it hasn’t been love,” said May Bertram.

This passage resounds beautifully with the end of the story, but I won’t ruin it for you. Go and read it yourself.

An Indian Adventure

Two days ago I returned from a trip to India. I spent three and a half weeks there on a missions trip helping out at schools, aiding a health clinic, spending time with locals and assisting with church ministries. I cannot even begin to describe how amazing it all was, and how God worked in my life through these beautiful people.

(At back) Joel, Ashang, and myself

(At back) Joel, Ashang, and myself

The children were so adorable, and though wary of us odd white people at first, eventually they would run up to us when they saw us approaching, cling to our legs, demand hugs and fight over who got to hold our hands.

Lila and her family on the beach

Lila and her family on the beach

This woman Lila is one of the many amazing people that came across our path. She worked at a shop on the beach in Goa, and would walk up to talk to tourists, insisting that they look at her shop and buy things. When she talked to our group, it immediately turned from a chance to sell, to a chance to talk about what God has done in her life. Amazingly my name ‘Stephanie’ prompted her to ask us ‘do you know Jesus words?’, as a girl called Stephanie converted her a couple of years back. We were blown away by this – as spreading the love of God is why we were in India! She became a great friend over the few weeks we were there (and provided some lovely discounts from her store too!).

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Known for its beautiful vibrant colours, India had some beautiful materials on offer! In fact most of the souvenirs I purchased consisted of material. It is so cheap in India, and good quality that you would never find in Australia. Check out my stash:

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I must say that my favourite is the teal/green set I picked up from an Indian clothing store. The point was to get it sewn in store and measured to fit, but I had no time for this so will attempt to stitch my own at home!

Fave

Fave

Provided I am inspired enough to actually complete my imagined projects, final products will be posted up here eventually :) What an amazing way to remember this adventure.

Merry Christmas – here’s a dress

Earlier this year I completed this dress, which I actually whipped up in only a few weeks (not bad, for a serial procrastinator).
Blue Dress

I have only worn it a few times, but yesterday for Christmas I decided it was time to whip it out again. Compliments are nice, especially when you can follow them up with “thanks, I made it myself!” :)

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The trick is to not look too closely at the dress – there are a lot of awful mistakes. Struggled with the zip and the sizing. But ultimately, I think it turned out okay.

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I love the full skirt. It is incredibly fun to dance in, when I’m up for a sneaky dance.

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And there’s Josh…. being a weirdo. Cheers for taking the photos, cameraman :)

Merry Christmas all!

Corner Shop Kids: An Article

Remember hanging out at the milk bar in the late afternoon sun, nibbling on milk bottles and gummi bears, scooter in hand – not a care in the world?

It is this carefree childhood memory that gave three local teenagers inspiration for the name of their band: Corner Shop Kids.

Ryan Fellows, Josh Walton and Tom Simpson describe their music as “pretty chilled… something positive to listen to when you are in a bad mood”.

Their mellow, catchy tunes do indeed remind you of a place in which worry is not a problem, like a place where kids hang out happily at the corner store.

What is especially striking about the boys, though, is that this attitude not only infiltrates their music, but also their lives.

Sitting in a Mount Martha café with them is not a quiet affair – every second person stops to say hello to the well-known local lads.

For these guys though, it isn’t about the popularity or even making money.

Working alongside City Life Foundation, Corner Shop Kids have donated all profits of their first EP to helping homelessness in the Frankston area.

“The ultimate idea is that we’re not trying to be the best band,” Simpson said.

“There’s been plenty of awesome bands out there, but we’re just trying to be a band that wants to help, to be leaders in the community and to shape people’s perceptions of what a person should be like.”

Despite performing at some extraordinary events, such as last weekend’s Harvest ‘n’ Graze Festival, it hasn’t all been smooth sailing for the boys.

They recount playing at the “grand opening” of Coles in Patterson Lakes as one of their less glamorous gigs, but an opportunity nonetheless.

“It was ridiculous,” Walton said, “and the power went out half way through – everyone was just shopping in the dark, it was hilarious!”

All three boys are currently finishing high school and plan on taking the band as far as they can in future.

They are driven by the desire to see that worry-free state of hanging out at the corner store spread throughout the community, even among the homeless and less fortunate.

Check them out:

A poem for today

I feel blank and empty, like my brain is malfunctioning software.
There is a bug, a glitch in me, and I am frozen on the same page, unable to reload or restart.
Just stuck.
I feel these dark, sickening forces swirling thick, grey and purple, in my stomach.
It’s a poison I can’t cough up.

My heart beats like machinery in overdrive. My body can’t contain this black anger any more.
But everything in me forces me to shove it back down into the simmering pit of my feelings.
Eruption imminent.
No hope.
No cure.
This is hell on earth.

I tried to find an image that would sum up how I feel, to go along with this poem. Thankyou to the artist who created this :) Can be found here.