nature

DUST by Organic Merchant...

Chocolate Nut Muffins  by Organic Merchant, Photographed by Pia J B.

Chocolate Nut Muffins by Organic Merchant, Photographed by Pia J B.

It’s no secret that I’ve been an enthusiast of naturopath Chalimah Jeanne’s organic teas for many years. I first came across her collection when we moved to Sydney in 2011, while wandering through Paddington Markets. Chalimah has such a beautiful energy and incredible wealth of knowledge, and I found myself coming back for more. For those who’ve been around for a while, you might recall I featured her teas in a story I wrote for Country Style back in 2013, and have continued to use her teas over the years for styling projects and as gifts for clients.

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Last year I had the pleasure of collaborating with Chalimah to photograph both her new packaging (you’ll see these sensuous images soon) as well as the recipe cards for her new Dust Collection. Dust is a range of healthy & delicious raw cacao infusions, designed to improve mental focus and physical performance. There are six infusions in the range: Super, Sex, Soothe, Spark, Shine, and Spirit. Each one is designed specifically to enrich the characteristics we need to strengthen within us.

Chalimah wanted to create some beautiful recipe cards that show the many ways you can incorporate the infusions, as they are not only wonderful as warm elixirs but also scrumptious in pancakes, muffins, smoothies and popsicles. So one morning, she made an incredible array of some of her favourite foods and I came with my camera to photograph them all on her long wooden dining table.

Would you like to see some of the photographs? I took many, it was such a beautiful setting. And there was a gorgeous natural coppery light that came through, infusing everything with a warmth and glow. Here are a few of my favourites…

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Chalimah has been sharing a few of her delicious recipes on instagram and on her website, and I’ve included a few here for you. They are all so yummy…

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Nourish Bowl…

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup buckwheat hulls

  • 2 cups plant mylk

  • 4 heaped tsp DUST infusion of your choice

  • 2 tbsp chia seed/flaxseed

  • 1/2 cup fruit – currants/raisins (optional)

How to assemble:

  1. Combine ingredients into a bowl and soak overnight to allow hulls/seeds to soften.

  2. Once soaked, transfer to saucepan and cook over low heat for 15-20 minutes or until thick and creamy. Add more mylk or water if needed.

  3. Serve into bowls topped with your choice of suggestions from the list below.

Suggestions to add…

  • Grated apple with cinnamon

  • Fresh figs with honey and walnuts

  • Poached pears with vanilla

  • Pomegranate jewels and pistachios

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Cacao Pancakes…

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup buckwheat flour

  • 4 heaped tsp DUST infusion of your choice

  • 1 tsp baking soda

  • 2 tbsp coconut sugar (optional)

  • 1 to 1.5 cups plant mylk

How to assemble:

  1. In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients and stir well.

  2. Whisk in mylk to create a batter.

  3. Set stove top to medium and add butter/coconut oil.

  4. Gently pour 1/3 cup of batter into pan using ladle/large spoon to create pancakes roughly the size of an orange.

  5. Flip pancakes over once bubbles have risen on the surface.

  6. Set / stack cooked pancakes on wire rack or plate and continue until batter is finished.

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Chocolate Nut Muffins…

Dry ingredients:

  • 2 cups buckwheat flour

  • 1 cup ground seed/nut meal

  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar

  • 1/4 cup DUST infusion of your choice

  • 1 tsp bi-carb

Wet ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup plant mylk

  • 2 eggs or chia egg replacement*

  • 2 ripe bananas mashed

  • 1/2 cup hazelnuts/frozen berries

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil/butter melted

*Chia egg replacement = 1 tbsp chia seeds + 3 tbsp of water. Combine and set aside for approx. 10 minutes.

How to assemble:

Preheat oven to 180 ̊C.

  1. In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients and stir well.

  2. In a smaller bowl, combine all the wet ingredients and stir well.

  3. Add wet mixture to the dry ingredients and combine (It’s OK if the mixture is a little lumpy).

  4. Spoon mixture into muffin tray or baking cups.

  5. Cook for 20-25 minutes or until skewer comes out clean.

  6. Cool in tray for 5 minutes then transfer to wire rack.

Store in airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. 

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There are more wonderful recipes at Organic Merchant so please head on over, along with more details about the full Dust range and where to purchase them. And Organic Merchant’s instagram is here.

Enjoy!!

With Love,

Pia xx




Amy's Wonder-Walking world in the palm of my hands...

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In October I wrote about Amy T. Won’s kickstarter campaign to produce her beautiful wonder-walking card deck. It was very successful and Amy was able to get the cards made and all the orders have been sent out - I received mine this week and wow, I knew they’d be amazing but not this amazing!!

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Amy’s attention to detail is incredible, so I knew the quality of the cards and her watercolours would be nothing short of stunning but I wasn’t prepared for the level she would take it - the box in itself is a work of art, with exquisite gold foiling in all the right places. Amy’s concept with the cards is to connect us to nature (and in doing so, our intuition) in new ways. The idea is to pick a card from the deck before you head out for a walk, and the card, along with Amy’s notes, will trigger new ways of exploring and seeing your surroundings.

Nature needs to be at the centre of all our attentions these days and I am all for enabling pathways for people to make connections any way they can. This deck for me, is an incredibly creative way to ignite that all important connection…

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In my patreon collective, I do an ancestral card reading for each new moon, and now I will be adding Amy’s card reading as well to enrich the connection. The idea of these readings is to connect each member to their intuition, to make more intuitive choices in their work and home life throughout the month. I am thinking about adding individual readings for each member too, so I’ll be talking about that over there soon. Serendipitously, this was the very first card I pulled in the deck while I was in my studio…

HOME.

HOME.

I’ll be sharing the meaning of this on Patreon later this week.

Thank you Amy for sharing your beautiful world with us in these wondrous ways. X

Panoramic Bushscape: bookbinding & watercolour workshop...

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Last Sunday I spent the most wonderful day at Eramboo Art Studios, learning all about bookbinding and watercolour techniques with photographer & book maker Sam Mackie, and watercolour artist Ingrid Bowen. I knew Sam from years ago when she ran my favourite cafe on the Northern Beaches, The Cook’s Larder in Avalon. And Ingrid I’d met online and admired her work, but had never met in person until Sunday. They are both incredibly talented women who are so generous with sharing their knowledge and time, it was such a treat to spend the day with them, learning new skills and meeting new people…

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Sam had set out all the materials we needed to create one of her stunning accordion books, using beautiful watercolour paper, explaining all the varying qualities of different styles of books along the way, what to use them for and why she uses various materials. We also learnt how to make the different cover pockets. Sam has an incredible eye for detail and is so generous in sharing her passion & knowledge gained over her years of making books. I can’t wait to try making another book with Sam’s instructions, I have a few ideas to try out.

After a delicious lunch and chat, we all eagerly observed Ingrid paint in her signature style - using the bush as her inspiration, she creates watercolour scenes often using only two colours. Ingrid shared her tools, techniques, watercolours and inks, and encouraged us to play with these techniques to see what would come about. Like me, Ingrid works intuitively - her tools and techniques are uncomplicated, her style is completely her own. It was so much fun to sit and paint using her tools and techniques to see what would transpire. Both Sam & Ingrid’s aim was for us to paint directly into our newly created books, and I think most of us did manage to do so - I loved walking around the room to see how unique each person’s book was, what a treasure. I didn’t finish my book as I wanted to come up with a specific idea for it, and I knew it would take a little time to evolve. I have the idea now, and am looking forward to finishing the book, it will be a gift to my daughter and I’ll show you when it’s finished.

Here is where we hung out for the day at Eramboo, nestled in the bush. As soon as I got out of my car and took a breath, I reconnected with the land of my youth…

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For more information you can head to their websites, I’m sure they’ll be sharing new workshop dates soon, it was a hit and I know it will be popular! So check out: Ingrid Bowen, Sam Mackie & Eramboo Artist’s Environment. I would also recommend joining the newsletters so you don’t miss out on upcoming workshops and events. Thank you both for such an inspiring, nurturing and soul-nourishing day! xx

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School Holidays...

I love seeing the aftermath of painting as much as I love the process and final creation.

I love seeing the aftermath of painting as much as I love the process and final creation.

I seem to recall a few months ago I said somewhere on the socials that if there was enough interest, I’d post about what we get up to during the school holidays, and I do recall there being quite some interest but then life got busy and here we are at the end of another school holiday! So here I am, better late than never, offering a brief recap of some of the activities we enjoy during the holidays, to spark you if you’re feeling like you need some ideas…

Firstly, I thought I’d share what my intentions are during the school holidays. As you know, I am passionate about arts, music and nature education for kids, and the public school system here in Australia (and I’m guessing everywhere else in the world judging by the state of affairs and the current interests of the nations!) does not cut it. The kids spend a lot of time and focus on reading and maths and although I too feel those subjects are important, to me they come second to arts & music. In that art is the beginning of reading and writing, and music is the beginning of maths - which is guided by our intuition, so imagine if we learnt the skills of reading and maths through art & music! All the kids who struggle due to thinking expansively rather than linearly would benefit and those who are linear thinkers experience a new perspective. I feel everyone’s life skills would be much improved! I have much to say on this topic and will save it for another time.

So during the school holidays I focus this time on art, music and nature. While I do my best to not book in any work during this time so that I spend most of it with Laly, sometimes it doesn’t happen that way - this school holidays I had a week long shoot (of a two week break! with Easter in between!) but since I used my backyard as the set, and as the producer & photographer I create the shooting schedule, I made the shoot times short to fit in while Laly was occupied elsewhere. She also assisted me during the times she was around and she was fantastic, being my hand model and assistant set builder - this will be her first paid job at the ripe age of 7, and what a wonderful introduction to the working world, knowing you can make money from doing something fun that inspires thousands of people. I’ll share more about this particular shoot when the photographs are published in a couple of months.

A couple of afternoons spent like this, working on her bedroom painting, read on for more details…

A couple of afternoons spent like this, working on her bedroom painting, read on for more details…

This school holidays, I invited Laly to make her own bedroom painting. I bought a large artist’s board, and talked about where this painting would hang in her room, that is would be something she would wake up to every morning so she could think about painting something that would spark joy for her. Not surprisingly, she immediately chose to paint a rainbow! So away we went with this idea. For me it’s a lot to do with the process and not just the final piece so I use these ideas as a way to show her what’s involved in making art. First we needed to prime the board and then paint the background colour. She chose blue. But instead of just using the paints straight from the tubes, I suggested she make her own colours - to make her own blue. I helped her with this. The next day once the background was dry, it was time to paint the rainbow. I let her know that the rainbow doesn’t have to be the colours you see in other pictures, they can be whatever colours you like - in fact, it can be a rainbow of colours that you love, what colours do you love? I said colours out loud that weren’t the normal colours (ie turquoise, acqua, rose, indigo, etc) and she lit up with ones that she loved, so her intuition was well ignited. Then we set out creating the colours. It’s not as easy as it seems it would be, which is why I love this experience because it gives them an understanding of what’s really involved in art making. Once she decided she was finished I offered her some special gold paint to finish it with. And then I encouraged her to sign her name at the bottom. Her art work now resides in her bedroom and I also get to see it every morning, sparking my joy. I will add, it’s also a great experience as a parent to go through this, as you really need to let go of your control and let them make their own intuitive decisions here - this was by no means what I thought she’d paint, but I didn’t interfere. It takes practice.

…….

I’ve noticed we’ve created a few traditions and rituals over school holidays now, here they are…

  1. She loves being active, she has bundles of energy which when she was younger I found rather exhausting but now she is older this energy can be directed into things she loves doing…oh how I remember the hundreds of hours spent at all the local parks and how frustrated she was when she couldn’t reach the monkey bars or climb onto the roofed play equipment! Now she climbs up there and takes a book to read, as if she’s in a treehouse. So during the holidays, she has been enrolling in the wonderful Active Arts, run by beautiful Elena from Dance Domain in St. Peters. Active Arts runs for 4 days, 9-3pm, and the kids get to try everything from rock climbing, trapeze, dance, drama, martial arts, and clay making with local clay artist Agatha who I’ve done a few mother & daughter workshops with as well, and have absolutely loved it, Agatha is a wonderful teacher.

  2. MCA school holiday workshops - this is something we’ve been doing for two years and it’s the most wonderful experience. Laly and I make it a date, we set off from my studio in Balmain and walk to the ferry, and take it under the harbour bridge into Circular Quay, then walk the five minutes to the MCA (Museum of Contemporary Art). We love watching the buskers along the way and Laly brings some of her money from her donate jar to pop into musicians hats she likes (there’s some music appreciation right there!). We head up to the kids area to buy the tickets and then find out what we get to do! As an adult I find it a fabulous way to experience the art in the galleries, from the perspective of a child who is encouraged to interact with the work and find ways of connecting with it. The kids (and adults!) then get to make things in the atelier space which is always the most fun, this holiday it was about making sound with art, using all sorts of found materials and objects. Laly made three, she was very inspired by this project! After that we head up to the restaurant for lunch which is always a treat, the menu is fantastic. Laly and I have been invited to be part of the kids committee this year which means we help the creators of the workshops design them and figure out ways to connect kids to art. Which means more dates to the MCA for us two! Happy days.

At the MCA this school holidays, playing on a handmade ping pong machine. So.Much.Joy.

At the MCA this school holidays, playing on a handmade ping pong machine. So.Much.Joy.

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…from a kids workshop at the MCA in January. The idea was to think of a place that is special and create a textural collaged ‘map’. Laly chose her Mamy’s (her grandmother in France) garden and got busy picking out fabric swatches that made her think of playing with Mamy in her garden. Heart-melt.

…from a kids workshop at the MCA in January. The idea was to think of a place that is special and create a textural collaged ‘map’. Laly chose her Mamy’s (her grandmother in France) garden and got busy picking out fabric swatches that made her think of playing with Mamy in her garden. Heart-melt.

…from a past kids workshop at the MCA making posters with their own messages. This was Laly’s message to the world: LOVE YOURSELF.

…from a past kids workshop at the MCA making posters with their own messages. This was Laly’s message to the world: LOVE YOURSELF.

3. Beach days or nature walks. I try to get a few of these in if we are not planning a holiday away, then I make sure we do a few local day trips.

And plenty of playdates with friends, where there is always some magic potion making happening in the backyard…

…Laly and her friend made this wonderful array of mud treats yesterday!

…Laly and her friend made this wonderful array of mud treats yesterday!

And a number of nothing days in between! I’m not a big planner as I like days to flow naturally/intuitively especially when school is so scheduled, however, I found this particular break busier than usual which happened because I had the shoot as well as my regular mentoring connections.

Also, during this school holiday I’ve also set a great screen time intention that incorporates art & music, I think it might be of interest to some of you, let me know if you’d like more information and I’ll write it up a separate post. Today was the first day I implemented it and it worked so well.

Oh and I nearly forgot, Tiny Doors! This was one of the highlights of our last school holidays, Laly and I had an absolute ball treasure hunting these all around the Northern Beaches. I’m not sure if it’s still on but here is the link, and you can start at Manly Library to get a map and go from there (call the library first to check the maps are still available and that the doors are still around) - we’ve almost found every door, there are only a few we haven’t been on the search for yet. I highly recommend it. And I hope every council picks up this idea and runs with it!

So, school holidays: art, music, and nature. I feel these ideas can be adapted to wherever you live, as there are always art galleries, nature and music venues around. I tend not to do the expected school holiday activities as, if I’m honest, I find them boring, exhausting and some things are torturous - like kids concerts and some kids movies (the exception being Moana, I will happily see that at the cinema a dozen times!). My idea is to make it joyful for both of us, so it’s not just about her but us together, to find experiences that ignite us both, as these will create ideas and memories for her forever. Let me know what you get up to and please do share your ideas here so others can find out, or link to any posts you’ve written about too for others to find you.

Vivent les petites artistes! xx

New Work: The Confetti Effect for Happinez...

The confetti is actually over 50 years old - it was in a box in my grandmother’s home many years ago and I’ve kept them all this while. They are made from tiny shapes of paper and I just love them. For the diary shot above, I combined them with petals and pods found outside my studio entrance. The beautiful ribbon is from  Tinctifolia . Little glimpses of joy are never far away.

The confetti is actually over 50 years old - it was in a box in my grandmother’s home many years ago and I’ve kept them all this while. They are made from tiny shapes of paper and I just love them. For the diary shot above, I combined them with petals and pods found outside my studio entrance. The beautiful ribbon is from Tinctifolia. Little glimpses of joy are never far away.

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Here is my latest work for Happinez Magazine, featured in their Intuition edition, out now in The Netherlands. The assignment was to create 6-8 photographs inspired by the book and talks by Ingrid Fetell Lee. Ingrid’s concept with The Aesthetics of Joy is devoted to a simple, powerful idea: that our greatest source of joy is the world around us. The art director wanted me to come up with simple ways to showcase this, through little things in our everyday lives - be it a new page in your diary, light & shadow play, or nature. My assignment was to translate this feeling to a colour range that fitted with their moodboard for the issue. I also needed to give the concept a bit more depth, meaning and spirituality. To say I enjoyed creating this series is an understatement - it was pure joy…

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I foraged most of these flowers from the beautiful nature reserve down by the water near my studio.

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Moon cookies! I made these using all natural ingredients with only a little coconut sugar. If you’d like the recipe let me know and I’ll write it up in a seperate post.

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Citrus and pomegranate seeds are bursting with joy! This shot came together beautifully,

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The sparklers were quite smoky and I was worried the studio fire alarm would go off!! It was a tricky shot but I love the effect. And the shadow and light play I created on the studio porch, using the sun as my muse.

xx

The Ever-Evolving Wreath Tutorial...

My ever-evolving wreath for 2018: it’s wild & free, like my heart.

My ever-evolving wreath for 2018: it’s wild & free, like my heart.

How are you feeling as we near the end of the year? The frenzied energy is well & truly upon us! For those like me, who feel… what’s the word… resistant? Yes, that’s what it is for me - resistant…we might feel inclined to retreat and search for solace at this time amidst all the busy-ness. That is what compelled me to write my new book Festive Season Reimagined - to find ways to reconnect with our inner strength, resilience and joy. That’s our intuition - it’s something we all have, something that no one or no thing can take from us: it’s our heart, our jewel, and I absolutely love supporting people in finding their heart and letting it take the lead in making their everyday decisions. It’s a way of life that is unique to you and when you are living it, you’ll know. It’s a wonderful feeling.

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Last week Diana Moore from Home Beautiful wrote a lovely post about Festive Season Reimagined, featuring an extract on the “ever-evolving wreath”. If you have signed up for my emails and instagram after reading the Home Beautiful post, welcome! I then posted on social media a photograph of my ever-evolving wreath for 2018. It took me only a few minutes to make, and it now adorns the front door. I asked if anyone would like a tutorial and the answer from many was yes. Then I realised what I’d said!

One, I’m not great at tutorials because I work in such a free-flow way and two, it’s the end of the year and life is hectic enough! But it is so much fun to make these wreaths and it’s one of the most effective ways to connect to our intuition, the nature around us and embark on the journey of reflection, so here it is, my super simple tutorial which is just as much a tutorial on intuitive play than it is making the wreath. I’m a 3-stepper, which means whatever I create needs to fit into 3 easy steps because anything more I find we lose our intuitive connection. So, are you ready?

STEP ONE: FINDING…

Find yourself a loop of some sort - it can be a discarded embroidery hoop, a piece of heavy wire that can be looped (even a coat hanger pulled into a round shape, leaving the hook at the top for easy hanging), a bendable branch, anything at all. This one I have is the top of an old basket that someone had thrown away. I love the organic shape of it…

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The other part of the FINDING is to collect your botanical materials! Find something in abundance that can be the backdrop for your wreath. This year, I decided not to go with green as the backdrop and instead was inspired by a dried up patch of seeded grass in our neighbourhood, a place we have walked by hundreds of times this year, never thinking much of it until I began looking more closely at the flora along the walk to school and found the beauty in it. What can you see when you walk in your neighbourhood?

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I picked big handfuls of it for the wreath, and also gathered whatever else touched my heart - some beautiful wattle, a few kangaroo paw, golden reeds, flowering lemon verbena, and the star of the wreath: a branch of fuchsia bougainvillea. Then I found some ribbon to hang it with, a few bits of string and my scissors…

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STEP TWO: ASSEMBLING

So for the assembling, I gathered the grass into three bundles. I wanted to have an off-centre wreath, allowing the basket loop to be exposed, so 3 bundles is all I needed, but if your heart wants to have a full covered wreath then you just create more bundles! With the 3 bundles, I tied them onto the loop with string. No fancy floral wire required, just use what you have on hand. And don’t be too precious, perfect or neat. I find the quicker you work the better, otherwise you start to overthink it and criticise your work - if you realise you’re doing that, let those thoughts float away like clouds - there is no place for them here!

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Use the grass bundles as well as the string you’ve used to attach the bundles to the loop as your place of attaching the accent pieces - just stick those pieces into the string and thick grass, it will hold them in place and if it doesn’t, tie a bit more string around to hold it in place. You can keep adding foliage to cover the string until you are happy with it.

STEP THREE: REVIEW

For this step, you need to hang it up either in the place you want it to go, or just on the wall with some tape so you can step away and see it in place. When you step away, you’ll see some empty areas, or you’ll see where you need to tweak the foliage or add more foliage. As my main art medium is photography, I tend to ‘look’ through the lens so to speak, when I look at something I’ve just created - not literally, just in my mind… it’s an automatic thing for me from years of working in photography, but what might help for you is to put your hands up in front of you in the shape of a square camera lens, to allow you to block out all other distractions around the wreath and see it ‘through the lens’. You could also cut a square or rectangular piece of cardboard out of a larger piece of cardboard to act as your ‘review lens’. It might sound silly but it honestly works! It just helps you to focus on what you’ve created and not get caught up in what else is going on around.

When you step back, you may also see bits of grass hanging loose and out of place, so grab your scissors to cut those bits off - don’t pull them, just cut them, otherwise you might end up pulling large chunks out of place. Again, I tend to be loose and free here, not making it too neat, because the beauty is in the freedom (as it is in living whole-heartedly)…

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After I hung mine in place on the front door, we had a huge storm sweep through the area, but it held up well, there were a few bits loose but I just pushed them back into place. And I still add to it when I see something I like, that’s why I call it ever-evolving, because it’s something you can continue to play with over the season.

I’ve posted more about the making of this wreath in my stories on instagram if you’d like to check it out, my handle is @piajanebijkerk, here it is.

In book news, Festive Season Reimagined sold out of its first print run in less than a month! A huge thank you to everyone who purchased a copy last month. I’ve ordered the second print run which will be ready in the next week or so, for those who are patiently waiting with your orders, thank you! And if you’d like to purchase a copy, please click here for all the details.

But for those who really want to read the book now but aren’t feeling patient, you can purchase the ebook. And today, I’ve decided to do a flash sale for the ebook - just for 48 hours, it’s on sale at only $10. So if you’ve wanted the book but haven’t been able to purchase it for whatever reason, here it is now for you in ebook form, at the lowest price it will ever be, please enjoy…

Reflection is a BIG part of growth at this time of year, and I’m delighted to let you know that Shona Smith - my fabulous podcasting pal & I have released a bonus episode for our podcast “It’s All Up From Here”: it’s all about how to reflect on your parenting. It’s a fun, thoughtful, raw & honest episode, I hope you enjoy it, click here and scroll down to the end to have a listen. You’ll also find our last episode of the season there, all about Christmas or as I call it, the Festive Season. Shona and I couldn’t be more opposite in our feelings about this time of year, so if you feel like a laugh, have a listen! And tomorrow, I have another wonderful announcement that is also for your listening pleasure, to get you well and truly inspired to reflect.

And on Patreon, I have uploaded the next piano composition, with another one coming in a couple of weeks - when you join me there, you are able to download all the songs for the year so far to create a playlist designed to connect you to your intuitive heart space, and learn more behind the scenes of what I’m working on and where I am on my personal journeying.

With love,

Pia xx

A Deck for Wonder-Walking by Amy T. Won

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My friend across the pacific and fellow artist + heart wanderer Amy Won has just launched her long-awaited kickstarter campaign offering her 2nd edition deck of 32 wonder-walking cards, and I had to share this with you because I know so many of you will love this as much as I do…

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"This is an invitation to the human experience: A call to open our eyes and see more, feel more deeply, and observe closer.”

I absolutely love the way Amy sees the world around her. I have been enamoured with her enchanting watercolours and creative outpourings for years, and I’m so excited for her to be creating this collection and sharing it far & wide. Amy has featured my piano composition titled “All this, yes” from my Spirit & Flight album as her background music to her launch video which is so beautiful, I am honoured. Check out her video here.

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Amy has poured her heart and soul into this project, she has an incredible eye for detail and an understanding of what we seek to experience in our everyday…

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Only days into her campaign Amy has reached more than halfway to her goal, and it’s easy to see why when you peruse her page, there is so much to enjoy. I’d love to see her reach beyond her goal to enable her to offer her stretch goals, one of which is a printed version of her beautiful Journal of Wonder-Walking, currently available as an ebook.

I’ve learnt over the years that most people have no concept of how much of our individual time and energy goes into projects like these. I once had someone comment on my first foray into crowdfunding when I self-published Little Treasures: Made by Hand that they were disappointed that once I had reached my crowdfunding goal I was still promoting it and encouraging sales. Rarely having received comments like that in the past, I was dumbstruck and felt guilty for a long time, as if I’d done something terribly wrong by believing in my work and wanting to share and expand it. I began a journey to understanding that most people don’t know how much work, skill and personal funds go into these creations, and that most artists who take the brave steps towards something like crowdfunding or self-publishing, will never receive enough money to pay for their own time because of the current value system of the world, but are incredibly grateful for whatever they receive to pay for the hard costs like printing, framing, and any services they need to outsource. Because I’ve lived this all my life, I couldn’t comprehend that others who have not lived this, did not know this. So hook, line and sinker, this commenter got me! I finally snapped out of it, but learnt a valuable lesson: I gained a knowing from my core that I will always give my all in what I do, and I am allowed to receive money for it too! And so it’s with absolutely pleasure that I encourage and share the work of other artists and creators whose work I adore and know how beneficial it is to our everyday expansion. I know that by investing in work like Amy’s, we are building the world we want to live in…

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“In a world of vicarious living, we can choose instead to discover life for ourselves… I believe that a reconnection begins with a walk and a wonder.”

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A big congratulations to Amy for bringing this beautiful work into the world, and I wish with all my heart that you reach your goal so that people around the world can experience their surroundings in a new way. Click on the button below to learn more…

And to visit Amy’s wonder-filled instagram, please click here.

I’m also delighted to let you know that Amy & I are in the midst of collaborating on something amazing together! Which, once we both get through our current projects, we will announce. I’m incredibly thrilled to be working with her and can’t wait to share our news. xx