A Satisfyingly Late Start to My Day

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“I made a nap this afternoon. I made it out of two pillows, a bed, a sheet, a blanket, and exhaustion.” 
Jarod Kintz

 

This morning has been fabulous. After the first night of Bluesfest I hit the pillow last night and slept solidly until 7.32am. No meditation, no blogging – a complete fiesta of relaxation for me!

Once I could muster the enthusiasm to swap pyjamas for clothes we ventured into Bangalow for an early morning coffee at Sparrow – Coffee On The Fly – a tiny hole-in-the-wall espresso bar owned by Tristan and Cas, locals who founded and also own one of my favourite food destinations – Harvest.

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Oh hooray for good coffee. Here’s mine, complete with my beautiful five-day Bluesfest wristband.

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Here’s another cheerful-making thing: the bowl of red geraniums perched outside Sparrow. How can you look at this and not feel happy?

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Of course we ran into so many friends that our quick trip to town took two hours. Now I’m relaxing at home at the farm in the sunshine, reading a book, resting and getting ready for another night of outstanding blues music.

I hope you are all finding a little time for yourselves too, this Easter Break.

Lots of love, Nicole xx

Singing the Blues while baking Easter Treats!

Bluesfest

“I think music in itself is healing. It’s an explosive expression of humanity. It’s something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music.” ~ Billy Joel



Just one more sleep and it will be here. Bluesfest! The music festival in my own home town that showcases the best of Blues and Roots.

We’ve got five day tickets, and our gumboots are lined up at the back door, ready for all kinds of weather.

I’m not sure just how much dancing there will be for me this year. I’ll just be happy to be out, soaking up the atmosphere, listening to music, catching up with friends and getting a soul injection of the most wonderful kinds of creative expression.

Ben has his best outfit picked out…

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And I’m already dreaming about chai and Byron Bay Organic Donuts.

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I’m not quite sure how much time or energy I’ll have left over for posting in the next few days, but I’ll do my best.

In the meantime, here are some yummy Easter Treats for you to make. Just click the links to follow to the recipe:

Best Coconut Ice Recipe

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Delicious Marshmallows

toasted-coconut-marshmallows (1)Five Minute Fudge

fudge (1)Cherry Ripe Slice

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What’s Your Carrot?

Image from Kinolife

Image from Kinolife

“Dangling a carrot in front of a donkey—or anyone else for that matter—is not nice, and not fair, unless you eventually plan to give it up to them.” ~ Vera NazarianThe Perpetual Calendar of Inspiration

 

Traditionally a carrot was dangled in front of a donkey to keep him moving forward, even if he didn’t want to go. He trotted along, all the while hoping to get his mouth around that sweet juicy treat.

We all work better with a little incentive. When we plan something and work towards it, or choose a reward for the achievement of a certain action or purpose it allows us to hold a pleasurable image in our head, even when where we are right now is nothing but pain and hardship.

It will be worth it, we tell ourselves. It will be worth it because…    there’s that juicy carrot at the end of all of this!

Image by Bev Ribaudo

Image by Bev Ribaudo

Early this year, while I was still so sick from my latest round of lyme drugs that I couldn’t get out of bed, my husband put a deposit on a cruise holiday next year. You need to have something to look forward to, he said.

What a wise man.

On the nights when I couldn’t sleep, wracked with pain and fever, miserable with both lyme disease and the side effects of the drugs that are treating it, I would google that holiday. I’d read reviews from people who’d taken the trip already. I searched out the ports we’d visit and what we might do there.

I even googled the onboard cocktail lists!

For me, that trip is a shining light at the end of a dark tunnel.

What’s your ‘because’? What’s your carrot?

Are you being mean to yourself by holding that carrot so far away that you never have any chance of being able to take a bite?

Worse still, is there no carrot at all, leaving you with nothing but work, work and more work?

I challenge you to find a carrot sweet enough that it will motivate you to do (or keep doing) the thing you need to do.

Little carrots. Big carrots. Allow yourself the pleasure of anticipation, and the thrill of the reward. You’re worth it!

And do share with us what your carrots are. Maybe you’ve got an idea that will be just the inspiration someone else needs!

Image by Relo Mary

Image by Relo Mary

A Flower Mandala for Heart Chakra Healing

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“It’s so curious: one can resist tears and ‘behave’ very well in the hardest hours of grief. But then someone makes you a friendly sign behind a window, or one notices that a flower that was in bud only yesterday has suddenly blossomed, or a letter slips from a drawer… and everything collapses.” 
Colette

 

I’ve been overwhelmed with a sense of gratitude since coming home to our little farm.

I have also been overwhelmed with a shimmering grief. And really, that’s okay.

As I work on the rough draft of my Kimberley story, I’ve been remembering not just all of the wonderful things that have happened in my life, but also the difficult things, the sad things, the things so hard that I can scarcely breathe for thinking about them.

While I stood in the garden sipping from a mug of hot tea yesterday, the blooming camelias reminded me of my childhood, and I thought about how flowers connect me to some of the most treasured relationships in my life.

I decided to use my afternoon meditation time to make a mandala for heart chakra healing – and to send out love, blessings, gratitude and compassion for all of the people who have crossed my path (including you!). The mandala is centered with a blue howlite Crystal.

Of course, Harry and Bert helped immensely in the construction of our floral offering too…

We offer this mandala to you with much love ♥ xoxo

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Simple Meditation for Connecting With Your Guides

"Sun and Flowers" by Alice Mason

“Sun and Flowers” by Alice Mason

“We are like islands in the sea, separate on the surface but connected in the deep.” 
William James

“We begin to see that we are spiritually linked with people halfway around the world, and with those who lived hundreds, even thousands of years ago. We begin to see that we emerge from, and are the expressions of, a single consciousness that is limited by neither time nor space.” 
Hal Zina BennettSpirit Guides: Companions & Mentors For Your Inner Journey

 

A little while ago I had a request for a simple guided meditation to help you to create and strengthen a conscious connection with your Spiritual Guides, those Beings who watch over us and guide us from afar.

This meditation is suitable for even the humblest of beginners on their spiritual path. All you need to do is find ten minutes where you won’t be disturbed, sit or lie comfortably, and follow along to the sound of my voice.

I recommend that you have a notebook handy so that, afterwards, you can write down anything important.

It’s fine to do this meditation more than once.

When you’re ready just hit the play button below:

Nicole Cody’s Meditation for Connecting with Your Spirit Guides


Sending lots of love your way, Nicole xx

PS: Do let me know how you go with this meditation!

Apple, Pear and Chia Seed Warm Pudding Recipe

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“Life is uncertain. Eat dessert first.” ~Ernestine Ulmer

 

I came home to our farm last night, too exhausted to cook dinner.

Problem was, I was hungry.

The thought of a salad, or anything cold and raw was completely off-putting. I needed warmth and nurture.

Solution? A lovely bowl of warm pudding – healthy and delicious but creamy and sweet enough to feel like an indulgence. This easy-to-digest meal is gluten-free, dairy-free and vegan. Perfect for those with dietary restrictions, to tempt a fussy eater or for someone who’s unwell. And the coolest thing about this recipe is that it makes an outstanding breakfast too!

The apple and pear give sweetness and texture to this comforting pudding.

Chia seeds are often touted as a superfood. I have to agree. They are high protein, high fibre, gluten-free, packed full of omega 3 fatty acids, potassium, calcium, Vitamin C, iron and anti-oxidants, plus they help heal the digestive tract and stabilise blood sugar. Win!

Ingredients for four serves:

Two ripe pears; two apples; 2 tablespoons of water; 1 heaped teaspoon of cinnamon; zest of a lemon; juice of half a lemon; 2 teaspoons of natvia, honey, maple syrup or other sweetener of your choice; 2 heaped tablespoons of chia seeds; 1 and a half cups of water; coconut cream and a little extra maple syrup to serve.

Note: It’s also fine to use four pears or four apples, depending on what’s in your pantry or on your list of available foods if you are working with dietary restrictions.

Method:

Place the chia seeds and the cup and a half of water in a bowl. Stir and leave to swell for twenty minutes. Stir occasionally to avoid clumping. The seeds will absorb the water and produce a jelly-like substance. (Try not to think about the fact that right now it looks like a bowl of frog spawn!)

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Dice pears and apple. Add to a saucepan over medium heat with two tablespoons of water and the cinnamon, lemon zest and juice. Stir for a few minutes until the fruit softens. Now pour in the chia seed mixture, which will have a runny jelly-like consistency.

Stir well over medium heat until the mixture is thick and warm – about five minutes. Add a little sweetener to taste.

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Spoon into serving bowls and add a generous dollop of coconut cream. Drizzle a little maple syrup over the top.

Devour happily.

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Any leftovers can be stored in fridge for up to three days. Try spooning the mixture into glasses, layering with a little yogurt or coconut cream to enjoy cold tomorrow as a breakfast parfait. The pudding also reheats well. Just use gentle heat and add the coconut cream in before you heat it!

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Last Night I Flew Alone

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Image by Marco Redaelli

“Love is how you earn your wings.” ~ Karen Goldman

 

Last night I lifted from my bed and took to the night sky. I flew the way that Auntie showed me. But last night I flew alone.

As the land fell away beneath me the air was soft and cool, and it smelled of coming rain and the sighs of the earth.

On I soared. There you were in your own bed, far below. Down I flew. I watched you, connected heart to heart. I heard your thoughts and felt the throb of your blood pulsing gently beneath your skin. I breathed love into you, and moved on.

House to house, heart to heart, on I flew.

Some of you, whose light burned too dim, I worked on you.

Some of you, whose light shone so bright, gave me reason to rejoice.

One of you had an extra tiny light in your Aura. A baby for you soon.

This work swells my heart so.

We are all frail and strong and beautiful. So ageless and so temporary.

What a privilege it is to work the night skies.

I woke this morning smiling.

I love you. All is well.