THE BEGINNING OF A JOURNEY IS NEVER EASY

I think, I think a lot! And this means being on my own so much is not always the best thing. Simple tasks become a monstrous battle of logic and emotion. And this is why I started these posts, ‘On My Mind…’, I figured it was time to get everything out on paper. But that didn’t work as I would just keep re-writing the same line over and over again making sure it was neat enough, several journals, and many pages torn out, later and I took the next step to putting it online.

I type as I think which makes it easier to get all my thoughts down before they escape me. I want these entries to be straight from my mind. So they are disjointed, erratic and the grammar is not always the best, but do thoughts worry about grammar, past and present tense. I know mine don’t.

I find a part of me constantly trapped in the past. I wonder how things got so bad so quickly, how I had everything and then managed to almost have nothing so quickly. So I dwell on what was and what might or had happened, I go over it once, twice, ten, thirty times and still nothing quite makes sense. I hear you have to start at the leaves and then work your way down the twigs, to the branches, joining in with the trunk before heading to the roots.
Her mindMy problems are not dyer, I have not lost a loved one although loosing friendships and people close to you feel just as I imagine loosing a loved one would feel. I start to look around me and climb out of my world which has become so small and I see so much colour, I hear music and fall in love with things all over again. It reminds me that I care, I care a lot, I love people I love all the living creatures on this planet. I feel a real need to reconnect to these emotions, I lost my way and together lost what these things mean, I tainted things – I over-planned, over-thank and under appreciated people, life and the like. I allowed my constant hanging onto the past to ruin the amazing things that were happening right in front of me.

I am having trouble getting used to the fact that things will never be the same again and in the same breathe I am hoping things get better and brighter for those that are dear to me. Sometimes when we lose our way we panic, when all we had to do was stop, breathe and slowly find our way back. So here I go…

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Printable via: French Press Mornings – http://goo.gl/rMTtH5

I like movies, I love books but I don’t make enough time to read. I like to learn, I like to explore and discover. I love moths and butterflies, I love orchids although I am not doing a great job with keeping them all alive – I over-care for them, worry over them and get finicky. I like the rain, the wet ground under my feet, leaping into a large body of water, lying on my back and staring at the sky. I long for starry nights and longer days. I am learning to be comfortable with my 6ft3inch self, I am fighting for my dreams, I encourage others to do the same. I look at the beauty in everything and find the best in everyone.

I am on a journey, to discover my core.

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A LITTLE REFLECTING

Three steps forward, three steps back…three steps forward, ten steps back… This seems to be the ongoing process of my progress in work, projects, relationships…life! A lot can happen in a year…

Work: I have a great job, with amazing people. I get to work on a variety of brand’s social media pages, figure out what the fans want and really understand the ‘marketing world’. Although my job is not dealing directly with clients, I have to interpret what the client wants and blend that with the information I have gathered from interacting with their fan base. So I guess you could say my job is pretty important.

I have always taken everything I do very seriously and in this I tend to take a very long time curating content, which I find seems to throw off my time management – which has already been thrown off with taking leave and being handed, what I consider to be, a rather large brand to take care of. I want to do nothing but please my superiors and produce only my best work. This is where I tend to fall short, I consider what I am already not doing enough and so push harder and start to really dive deeper and deeper! In truth I am doing a good job, I know this as my superiors have said so, and fans don’t need to have a full analysis of a post – they just want to see what they want to see, finer details are not always needed.

So in the evenings I have been slowly trying to get back on track and re-approach how I execute each of my daily tasks. Organisation has not been on my side as I have allowed my ‘outside of work’ insecurities cloud my mind. I hope we all make it Projects: I have been working on projects on and off for several years now. One of them is in fact something I am very passionate about, I would like it to become something big. At the beginning of the year I allowed myself to feel threatened by a friend who I had a hick-up with, over something silly combined with a lack of understanding on my part – but which I had felt really strong about. I also feared that there was a need for them to distance themselves from me…but more of that a little later. This project that means so much to me has never quite taken off, although I have had stores waiting  for the past two years and a constant  interest by others …nothing happens.

I am embarrassed by my continuous inability to produce stock which I have been promising for so long, and worried that someone else who actually has the skills and time will end up doing what I have been working on for so many years. I knew that my lack of motivation and exhaustion at the end of the day was the reason that nothing was going to come of this. After all ‘no one idea is unique’!

This year has been a struggle of finding someone to assist in the production of my creatures and other bits, only to have them fall through. My lack of confidence, losing friendships (and in turn support and encouragement) and lack of assistance in production left me in despair. Months have past when in strode ‘My Lion’, a contact in hand, a possible solution to my desperate desire to get things going!

I have gathered my sketches, fabrics and those creations I have prototypes for and off they have gone to be measured and recreated! I am now terribly excited and am holding thumbs that this is the start of production and not just another ‘fall through’. building the new Relationships:
I have a nasty habit of pushing things beyond good, happy and progressive. I get to a certain point and then out of fear of it disappearing I over compensate, suffocate and smother those around me. I love people, I love being around people, especially the ones I have ‘chosen’ to be my family. They are smart, beautiful, creative and are lovely souls. I have admired one friend in particular, we have been friends for several years. She is intelligent, kind, honest and has a flair for style I only dream of. I have looked up to her and wanted so much to have her, what I interpret to be a  carefree approach to life. she has often laughed softly and reassured me that she is not as perfect as I make her out to be, and I know that she isn’t perfect, but it was those things that drew me to her. The imperfections, quirks and the all the previous mentioned qualities.

Now I have come to realise, over time and many conversations where she has been nothing but a good friend. Listened to my continuous circles and silly insecurities, given advice to the best of her ability and always, always reassured me that I am a good person. But I feel I have failed here, you see I WASN’T listening, listening to the strain I was putting on our relationship, the pressure that every one of my moans and insecurities was putting on her.

I was drowning my best friend, by not listening, by thinking it was okay to continuously talk about my woes. I know now that this is not okay. That she was willingly, but then knew she could no longer, absorb my negative energy! She was right to step away. I do not hold it against her. I understand why now. And I miss her, I miss her very much.

But it is all up to me now. to figure things out, to discover the core of who I am. This ‘journey’ starts with me stepping away from someone I love dearly, not forever, but for the time being. So we can both discover happiness in ourselves so that others will find happiness when around us.

Life:
I am positive that things will settle and then pick up. I have learned that everyone heels in their own time and not to feel desperate when their process is taking longer than mine. And perhaps this has taught me that I don’t take enough time to ensure all is well with me. My distress and worry has caused hurt to those around me, I want to change this. I want to be a better friend, a better partner. I want to create, grow and above all I want to know, within myself, that I matter. Nothing can bring you peaceEliminate the unnecessary!

A FLOOD OF THOUGHTS ABOUT…ME

I like aspirational quotes, I often want to share my every thought and desire with everyone I come across, I want to give, I need to create, I often say things that make no sense what-so-ever but it makes people laugh and I like that. I talk a lot, I talk a lot often leaving out crucial punctuations which leaves me out of breath at times, but I keep talking, because I have this need to constantly communicate. To share, to listen.

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I will be on my own contemplating what to do, then I have to put it through many filters; Is that me, how would others respond to it, how would my friends respond, how would my family respond…should I do it, why am I doing it, does it cost money, do I have the time, what if no one cares…

I have been in conflict with myself for many years and have had my friends there to help ease the battle inside my head, but it is no longer their place. I have pushed those close to me away and no shade of brightly coloured hair, amount of tattoos or piercings will be enough, antidotes don’t last very long before the next episode of massive overthinking attacks again.

I have a big heart, and I care about everything and everyone. I have become very aware of energy others give off, how they speak, the words they use and what they say to know something is up. I read into situations and overanalyse ever situation. Moments are not just moments, they are well constructed events which require planning and detail…this is how I have become to live.

I crave spontaneity, eccentricity and a feeling of being light and free. Free from myself and the mess I leave behind with my constant controlling and planning. I wish to embrace everything and everyone as I once did, to always smile and laugh at the beauty and complexity in life.

I like the colour purple, I own many dresses ’cause pants are too short, I can never decided how I want my hair to look. I like high heels but rarely (pretty much never) wear them, I want to take the time and really enjoy doing my makeup everyday like I used to. I don’t have a particular look (but I seem to wear a uniform of leggings a top and boots whenever I go out), I often don’t feel like I fit in; that my interests are juvenile, my ideas are unachievable, my expectations are far too high and that everything I want to say seems stupid.

I like art, I fall in love with poetry and characters in books. I enjoy horror movies, the thrill of doing something I shouldn’t. I love the outdoors, the country, animals and adventure. I dream, I collect and I document. I am a picture taker, moment keeper, yet I find that I can’t recall somethings. Those close to me remember the smallest details in something I mentioned years ago, and I can’t remember their favourite colour. I want to be a better friend, I want to really listen, I want to be there no matter what…but not too much.

...more than you are afraid of it...I want to inspire and bring joy to others lives, I want to matter.

Goodbye Autumn

Autumn seemed to have been a rather short this year, and with the days, weeks and months racing by I seem to have almost missed it, so I decided to have a small indulgance for the last day of Autumn.

I sat snuggled on the couch in my Durban home watching Coco Avant Chanel, sipping on some tea and slowly relished each morsel of the Chocolate Buttermilk Cake with Earl Grey Frosting and Caramel Drizzle which I had baked.

Just Rosemary Chocolate Buttermilk Cake with Salted Caramel and Earl Grey Frosting

The cake itself was easy enough, but then came the frosting, a little more challenging, especially when one has never made syrup/candy syrup before. So without a candy thermometer I rose to the challenge, focused and cautious as sugar burns are not to be taken lightly.

With the frosting done and sitting for it’s 2 minutes, I went on to make the salted caramel drizzle. Again, something I have never made before, caramel. It seemed straight forward enough, and it turns out my first try was not bad after all!

Just Rosemary Chocolate Buttermilk Cake with Salted Caramel and Earl Grey Frosting

Just Rosemary Chocolate Buttermilk Cake with Salted Caramel and Earl Grey Frosting

Just Rosemary Chocolate Buttermilk Cake with Salted Caramel and Earl Grey Frosting

This chocolate delight with it’s floral notes and salty sweetness was the perfect accompaniment for the story that is the complicated life of Coco Chanel. It was also the perfect Autumn inspired cake to bid it farewell until next year.

World Bake Day

In the spirit of World Bake Day I thought I would share this great recipe I tried  two days ago. It’s a gluten free sponge cake with mascarpone cream filling. I was inspired by the recipe I found on ‘G-free Foodie‘, this recipe used sherry soaked berries which I would like to try sometime, but I felt like pears and I added a teaspoon of cinnamon to the cake batter.

Just Rosemary Gluten Free Autumn Sponge Cake 1

I have never caramelised pears before and this recipe from ‘Not quite Nigella‘ was so wonderfully simple and delicious. The pears I used were a bit ripe so next time I think I will try the golden pears as they are also a little firmer.

Just Rosemary Gluten Free Autumn Sponge Cake 2

Just Rosemary Gluten Free Autumn Sponge Cake 3

Just Rosemary Gluten Free Autumn Sponge Cake 4

Just Rosemary Gluten Free Autumn Sponge Cake 5

Now to find something delicious to whip up later today.

 

The Gluten Free Kitchen | 001

BOX MIX BAKING

You read right, don’t scoff. I don’t see the shame in using a box mix, especially if it is a great box mix! Now for this particular occasion it was due to my gluten sensitivity which I brought up in my post ‘Self Defining’ at the beginning of the year. Most recipes call for far too many flours and alternatives than I can afford, or sometimes find.

Luckily gluten free, and vegan friendly options have become readily available in box mix form at most health stores, although the range is not big, it still allows for some experimentation with some trial and error. I for one love toast with avocado and a cracking of salt and pepper, soft bread with jam and cheese…fresh bread, who does not love that! So today I tried a gluten free bread mix…

Just Rosemary gluten free bread mix1

A very easy set of instructions, with the option of adding milk and an egg instead of the oil, which I did. 5 minutes to pour in the ingredients, mix and then spoon it into the tin. I left mine to stand for 20 minutes in a warm dry place before cooking it for the full advised 35 minutes. And what you get is a beautiful rustic top and a super soft and light inside.

Just Rosemary box mix gf bread

Although not pleasant on it’s own, it is perfect for all and any toppings. Best when sliced nice and thick right after cooling, and even more superb toasted on a skillet. That said, I still risk my gluten sensitivity and indulge in glossy sticky pastries, fluffy baked goods smeared in frosting and ridiculously decadent treats and delights.

 

Goodbye Baby Kitten

Yesterday I said goodbye to my beautiful cat. I can’t say it was easy at all, but I stayed by her side and and loved her up until the very last moment. She was a creature that has been so special to me that I wont ever forget her. I miss her already but I know she is no longer in pain and suffering.

0a42cc563c8e11e2bd6322000a1fa42a_7I love you with all my heart Annie and I will never forget the 16 wonderful years you have spent with me. Rest peacefully my Baby Kitten.

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My dear kitten, best friend and devoted companion.

Often highlights and positive moments get clouded over or erased by sad, and stressful events. We need to make a concerted effort to remember these happy moments and hold them close to us to get through the hard times. But mostly to remember all the good.

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My dear kitten, best friend and devoted companion is dying of Feline Lymphatic Cancer. It has happened so fast. I think about her everyday when I am not home and how I would give anything for just one more year, to have her by my side and snuggle with her. But the reality is, I have about a month.

So I have been sitting here, scanning through all my photo files, sharing happy memories and thoughts with my beautiful feline friend, as she lies next to me purring away despite her condition.

I would like to share some of my favourite pictures with you…

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This image was sent to me by my mom while I was living in Cape Town. I had to leave my lovely girl behind. This is a picture of her cooling off on the couch arm in front of the court yard door catching the breeze.

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When it came time for cutting and sewing stock for ro-ro Annie would make sure that she was included in every decision; the choosing of fabric, the laying of the fabric, the pinning and of course the cutting. Threads and stray pieces of fabric were the perfect toy in between work.

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The above two images where taken in 2011; Annie was glad to have her mom home and back from Cape Town. She did a lot of sleeping on my pillows and ensuring she was always close to me.

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She is a lot less agile now and sleeps almost all day. I treasure these days with her and talk to her making sure she knows how much I love her.

Self defining.

JUST ROSEMARY, the title of my blog of course refers to me. But I never really thought about what it would mean. I would share all my interests, adventures, stories and so on. Recently I had an epiphany!

I need to define myself, really find out who I am. Don’t get me wrong, I know who I am, and I’m not crazy. I just noticed that I wanted to be a part of so many things. Everything started to share the same priority level or the same amount of energy and focus. One eventually starts to feel a bit overwhelmed and lost at times…unsure of their true selves.

I started to make a list, to narrow who I am into a few points;
-I am sensitive to gluten, become gluten free.
-I am interested in people and marketing for small/entrepreneurial businesses, find a full time job that incorporates both.
-I am passionate about Makeup, styling and my brand ro-ro, turn them into hobbies and one day they might become my job.
-I am happiest when I look good, indulge in some beauty and wardrobe therapy.
-I am happiest when I feel good inside and out, get out there and get fit! Tone, tone, tone!
-I am lover of the outdoors, dust off that old tent and get my adventure gear on.
-I am a friend, make a concerted effort to stay in touch and get together on a regular basis (when possible).
-I am a daughter, understand that my parents just want whats best for me and return the love they give unconditionally.
-I am a sister, do more sister bonding activities and try to understand them better (I’m 1 of 3 girls).

Now to ensure that I focus on these key points I must ‘clean out my closet’, literally and figuratively speaking. Off I go!!!

All the best for an absolutely fantastic, grand and marvelous TWO THOUSAND AND FOURTEEN!!!

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Lady of the Night

This night I see a luminescent trail
Of powdered stardust, faint and pale,
Across the sky, like moths in flight.
A crescent moon of phantom white
Is tangled in the filmy veil.
My heart responds in quick delight,
I greet the lady of the night.

--- Illustration and poem by Don Blanding, c. 1935 ---
— Illustration and poem by Don Blanding, c. 1935 —