Making Pickles + Other Stuff

Yesterday I harvested six gigantic cucumbers from my summer garden, sliced and salted them, added chillies and onion and garlic, and tonight I’m making jars and jars of bread and butter pickles. I don’t really like cucumbers, but I’m mad for pickles, so it works for me. I’ll post photos on instagram if they turn out, and but this recipe is a secret.

It’s February tomorrow and I’m not ready for the summer to be more than half over, it feels like we’ve only just got started. Everything is feeling so fleeting, in a way that it never has before. When I was a kid, it felt like school holidays lasted for a lifetime, but now I can completely relate to old people who say that their children grew into adults in the blink of an eye.

So what else is happening?

I got two gorgeous picture books in the mail this week – Antoinette and Gaston by Kelly DiPucchio and Christian Robinson. They are so cute, but then I love any story about a dog.

The kittens are out of the bathroom and wreaking havoc wherever they go. It’s kind of exhausting as they are constantly getting into mischief. Posie and Rupert are coping very well with the whole thing, though fights happen here and there. Every now and then, we’ll have a few magical moments where everybody is calm and sometimes even sleeping, and this little home of ours feels positively cozy. And then it’ll be back to racing, barking, fighting, scuffling, eating each other’s food, knocking things off the dining table and getting tangled in the cables behind the television.

I’m trying to plan a few little diversions in this first half of the year, and so far I want to go to Canberra to see the Pre-Raphaelite exhibition, to Phillip Island to see the fairy penguins (since I’ve never been), and out on the Great Ocean Road to see the Twelve Apostles. I got an email alert for cheap flights to Tokyo today and was sorely tempted, but unfortunately no. Though, we are tentatively planning a possible trip to Taiwan in the third or fourth quarter, if all goes to plan.

Aside from all that, life right now is…

Trying not to eat cake.
Laying in bed watching The Crown.
Cups of tea made by my husband.
Being brave enough to eat the world’s hottest chilli pepper, but not brave enough to let the seaweed touch my feet when I’m swimming at the beach.
Turning the other cheek when people act like toads after you’ve done something nice for them.
Learning how to knit on double pointed needles.
A carpet burn from leaping onto the floor to break up a dog/cat fight.
Taking my vitamins and washing my face.
Reading all about the current debacles with the royals and feeling simultaneously grossed out and secretly enjoying that I have something even more dramatic than the Diana years happening in my era.
Finally taking the plunge to buy expensive bedside table lamps after having fretted about the purchase for almost a decade.
Practicing my driving and daydreaming about what sort of car to get.

Not very exciting, but I’ll long for this kind of calm soon enough, I know it.


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