I really hope you’re not! I hope you’re not in lockdown at all. But if you are and you are looking for some light reading to keep you away from yet another bored foray to the fridge (well that’s what I did in lockdown, I ate!), I have a special book for you.
For a very limited time, I have a special additional gift with each copy of THE VINEYARD IN THE HILLS – a lovely sliver of handmade soap from Moonhaven in my hometown in Western Australia (near Margaret River where this story begins).
I have scooped the last print copies of The Vineyard In The Hills from my publisher… once these are gone, that’s all folks. UPDATED 1 September 2021. Sorry – these are all gonski!
But if you still want to read The Vineyard In The Hills – it is available in e-book from all your regular retailers. Amazon for Kindle. Kobo. Apple store etc.
Winding down another school term, one week until school holidays in WA. It’s been a landmark kind of term. I’ve been busy, and today I’m feeling lazy.
I’ve finished writing Book 2 of my Chalk Hill Series. This is The Cafe By The Bridge, following Water Under The Bridge (both working titles), with Water Under The Bridge (Book 1) due out in September 2018. (I’m now under a year till release day and counting!)
Book 2 is currently with three fabulous readers and friends, which puts me in that nail-biting time of waiting to see what they think.
I’m feeling lazy because it’s the most stunning spring day and I’ve just been on a 2.5 hour walk on the Cape to Cape track on the beautiful South West coast. There are wildflowers out, glorious yellow coastal wattle everywhere… and I really do think yellow is my favourite colour in nature’s garden.
Every few metres or so along the track we heard a skittle or scuttle of a gecko or skink (I refuse to think snake)… and we saw donkey, cowslip and pink lady orchids. Plus, my lovely friend Carrie got her arse wet posing for photographs… and that always makes me smile!
Aside from working hard to finish The Cafe By The Bridge I’ve been reading, a few different books to my usual suspects, plus beta reading for Juanita Kees. I’ve also rediscovered two long-dormant hobbies.
The first of these is tennis. I’ve been talked into donning the tennis whites to play a Thursday game with some local girls. The last couple of Thursdays we’ve gone up the court for a hit. OMG!! Major fail! Two weeks ago I tried four serves, none of which got over the net!
I took the plunge and bought a new racquet and this week the ball seemed to come off a little better, and I got some serves over the net. Perhaps this will not be a complete disaster.
So tennis and Lily. It’s a thing. (I even found proof in the dusty trophy cabinet of the tennis club, dating back to 1992-1993! My name engraved on a plaque for ladies singles! OMG I feel old 😉 )
One of the books I read in August was The Barefoot Investor by Scott Pape. The book was a Kindle Monthly Deal on Amazon which meant it cost me about $5. Really good book. If you’re interested in paying off your mortgage, saving money on things such as credit card and bank fees and private health insurance; if you’re keen to find out how much Life Insurance, TPD and Income Protection you might need, or want to know if the fees you’re paying in Superannuation are fair, middling, or over the top; or you want an intro to shares, or get a sense of how much you’ll need to fund wine purchases in your retirement… this is a great starting point. I’m convinced the Barefoot way makes good sense.
The interesting thing is, in the last week at my work (my admin work) I’ve seen two customers come in with debit cards that had ‘splurge’ written across one, and ‘direct expenses’ across another, and of course now that I’ve read the book I recognised these terms. I commented on the words on the cards, and then had a chat with these two ladies about The Barefoot Investor and the Barefoot methodology.
I like to think I’m reasonable with managing money, but it’s still good to get a practical sense that you’re doing the right thing, and you’re on the right path.
So… The Barefoot Investor brought me to my second long-ago passion, though this one isn’t really a ‘passion’ as such. Many many (many) moons ago… (although not quite so long ago as the tennis trophy), a much younger Lily dabbled in the sharemarket. She dabbled so-oooo much she got completely wrecked in the Tech Wreck… (those old enough will understand the exact Tech Wreck I mean!) I’ve never touched the sharemarket outside of super since, but now after my read of the Scott Pape book, I’m prepared to dabble again.
This will be a different sort of dabble because I’m at a different stage of life. This will be a bluechip dabble, not a speculative seat-of-my-pants dabble. This is supposed to be a middle-aged lady sort of dabble where I won’t stress myself out based on a 10 cent swing…
Tennis and the stockmarket, hey? Who knew it was a thing… hmmm… maybe I should just stick to the writing. Watching Amazon rankings is its own kind of sharemarket rollercoaster ride!
I had the huge pleasure last night to join two talented Cowaramup artists, painter Kerry Sibly and sculptor Alan Meyburgh, at the launch of Kerry and Alan’s exhibition for this year’s Open Studios.
My connection to this clever and versatile pair is that Kerry illustrated and designed my Butterfly House ‘Who Killed The Bride‘ book cover… plus he lives in the same street as me, and in our street we’re always up for a party. 🙂
About 80 people came along to the launch, held at Kerry and Wendy Sibly’s house. The house itself made an amazing frame for an art exhibition. At different times Kerry and Wendy’s home has been in the lens of programs such as ‘Grand Design’; and on the radars of some of Australia’s house and lifestyle magazines. It’s an incredibly special place, filled with personal traits, tricks and treats.
Kerry and Alan made a combined sculpture that they offered as a prize on their launch night. Alan sculpted the heart, and Kerry (in his words) “added the rusty barbed wire to it”.
We were thrilled to have the sponsorship of Stella Bella Wines and the Margaret River Dairy Company for our launch. There’s nothing like viewing art, sculpture, and books whilst enjoying classic Margaret River wine and cheese!
The Margaret River Region Open Studios (MRROS) is now in its fourth year, involving artists of all pursuits from Busselton to Augusta who open their studio/shop/shed or workplace to visitors where people can peruse and buy artworks, but also talk to the artist and see them at work.
Over the next few weeks, I’m relocating my ‘writing room’ across to the Sibly’s house for several mornings a week, and I’d love to see you for a cuppa and perhaps to chat all things books, writing, and reading…
If you are in or around the Margaret River region, please look for the Open Studio signs everywhere, or visit www.mrros.com.au to see what’s on offer.
Kerry and Alan’s exhibition is No. 51 in the Guide. They’re open every day from 10am to 4pm, including ANZAC day.