thoughts from the wee small hours . . .

Time moves on, things change… this I have always known but several years into living the reality of my long-dreamed aspirations it’s apparent there are certain matters I need to take stock of. Thoughtfulness around such things takes the opportunity of early morning serenity. My contemplations in the early hours of this morning included…

Sleep vs creativity. Today’s writing is a comfortable and familiar muscle memory exercise of fingers on keyboard beginning at about 4.30 am to exorcise thoughts which had been eddying since 2.30 am. Perhaps finally an opportunity after several years of catching up on and enjoying more sleep than our city-working lives allowed to persuade my body on an ongoing basis that the wee small hours are a propitious time for peaceful creative endeavours.

Wee small hours
Collecting my thoughts from the wee small hours

Pickles. It’s almost show time: back in the day of my city office job and long hours communing with my own thoughts, one of my cherished dreams was firstly, learn to make; secondly, enter a jar of pickles in our local country show; and ultimately win first prize… of course. Several Macksville Shows have come and gone since I began pickle making, circumstances conspiring to delay the dream’s fruition: the pickles were all eaten; we were out of town; the pickles were made outside the cut off date. I have a cupboard full of Choko pickles I made last week. However, I admit to myself, the dream has died… it is enough that I enjoy the process of making something out of almost nothing and that my family and friends enjoy eating them.

Choko pickles
Homemade Choko pickles, I declare you a winner in my household

Wellbeing. While I manage my blood sugar issues well enough, yet again my body is struggling with old foes psoriasis and candida. After recent flareups I stumbled upon research that suggests there may be a connection between all three. The resultant tumbleweeds of investigations via a plethora of online sources roll around in my head*. I am long familiar with their respective natures. Environmental and dietary mould, fungi and their host conditions are not my friends. I’m loathe to exorcise too much of anything from my life… everything in moderation is my motto. However, accomplishing an effective balance isn’t easy. Certain things I’m very fond of such as sourdough, pickling, baking, mushrooms, cheese, wine are moot. More research. Sigh.

Sauerkraut kit
Dabbling in sauerkraut… moot

Dad. My seventy-six-year-old Dad’s health challenges of the past few years continue. A week on from his recent Easter long weekend visit with us he looms large in my contemplations. In my head, I know most likely it is what it is but in my heart I wish there were magic words I could say to kindle the lifestyle changes he needs to and could make if the incentive was preferable to the status quo. Sometimes I feel too far away, other times not far enough.

Dad on our verandah
Dad enjoying the sun on our verandah with the G.O.

Blog. My writing-blogging crisis of confidence -exacerbated by innumerable demands on my time- continues. Does the world need my thoughts in long form… does our oversubscribed culture need more of anything? Many of my longstanding blogging community are absent, sporadic and/or moved on to other creative projects and/or migrated to the immediacy and brevity of alternative social media offerings.

Page from Sketchbook Project
Other creative endeavours… a page from my Sketchbook Project

Big. Corporate, Food, Pharma, Chemical, Agriculture, Government… Have you watched Stink? Have you listened to this ABC Conversations podcast interview with Beth Macy author of Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors, and the Drug Company that Addicted America? Do you worry about pesticides in food? Despite being as diligent as our time and means allow, the G.O. and I are increasingly chemical sensitive, and disheartened about the welfare of our environment.

I worry about Glysophate and wheat…

Cupboard. My latest project which goes some way to explaining the aforementioned innumerable demands on my time.

The cupboard project… rescued from the neighbour’s wood shed, stored under our house, ready for a clean up today

And, ever-present… will the photography course I enrolled in last semester then cancelled by Tafe be offered for the later part of this year… will I be able to continue with my studies… if not, what will I do with my time… life… in the vege garden, if the Elephant Garlic doesn’t shoot should I plant beetroot?

In my garden…

“Morning is wonderful. Its only drawback is that it comes at such an inconvenient time of day.” ― Glen Cook, Sweet Silver Blues

*Links re Candida, Psoriasis, Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome:

22 thoughts on “thoughts from the wee small hours . . .

  1. I know it’s not enough of an incentive if you no longer feel blogging is enjoyable, useful, valid or meaningful, but I’ve missed your thoughts, news from TA, and your particular take on a greener and more sustainable life. I’d like to put on record my request that you carry on, even sporadically. Your posts don’t go out into a void; you have friends out here who have missed you…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love blogging, and my blogging community. I have hmmmmhmm half written blog posts in my W.I.P folder. I recently upgraded my blog to ad free to incentivize myself to just press publish… but I get so distracted. You are wonderfully kind to share such beautiful sentiments. I’m not going anywhere.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Good evening I can imagine you in the wee hours stretching your fingers to reach out to your keyboard and your community..your words so beautifully written touch so many I think , your dialogue resonates your concerns with environment life commitments and our social craziness. Pickles honey they are a gold medal winner hands down ❤️Beetroot is a great substitute for garlic hands down 😂Keep on keeping on your real in a sometimes unreal world.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Every little thought on every topic, resonated very loudly to me. I loved your pickles, I’ll give you first prize! Things have a way of finding their own path, just be lead instinctively. XX

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Dale – I read this last night and wondered just what, half-way meaningful, I could say. I am older than your Dad, with probably more health problems . . . do paidwork and study and work here and internationally with all who think I know how to help full-time plus and manage to poke my nose into social media as well . . . I am thrilled by the opportunities each day brings but never waste a moment of ‘thinking-time’ in analysis. Dear-heart just follow the teaching a dear Buddhist lover of mine gave me a long time back . . .’Go with the flow, Eha, go with the flow’ . . . . I do and IT works . ., .

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Like Kate I treasure your words, and welcome them whenever they drop into my inbox. So much of what you wrote resonated with me, but particularly about your Dad. I too worry about the health of some people in my life, and just wish for those magic words to make it okay. And sometimes I’m just cross and frustrated!
    I love your award winning pickles 🏆

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Time is both our friend and our enemy…I am also very aware of it slipping away and try to treasure every moment. Congratulations on your winning pickles, sometimes doing something well is award enough. Especially if your friends and family enjoy them. I’d love to see some of your pickle recipes, it’s something that gives me great satisfaction as well. Please do keep blogging.


    1. Thank you. Always happy to share recipes 😊 The choko pickles link in this post will take you to my blog post about a batch of spicy choko pickles I made… spicy by accident… but they are delicious, like an Indian pickle, and I’ll make them again. My standard choko pickle recipe is to which I add powdered ginger and turmeric in equal amounts as the other spices. Another favourite is this cauliflower pickle recipe but I omit the gherkins. Happy pickling.


  7. I love your posts… they resonate with me and I find a lot of comfort in that. My desire to write is always on the cusp of my thoughts and brain-workings. The stories flow at every turn. I don’t have the time to write as often as I’d like, but there are times when I simply must find the time to put these stories out there. I suppose it’s rolling with life, as we do. And that’s enough, when we have so much on our plates.

    The little updates you share are priceless nuggets – a little “snack” of life to satisfy.❤


    1. Thank you. This wonderful blogging community shares their stories and glimpses into their -real- lives, read mine, and are generous with their kindness and understanding that, as you say so well, we are all rolling with life, at different paces but with a wonderful commonality that brings us together, that I am so very grateful for.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I love your blogs too. Do keep going. I find early morning is my best writing time as it is so quiet and peaceful.
    Country life is wonderful- most of the time. However, we are so disappointed with our garden this year as drought so severe-no chokos or green tomatoes for pickles, nor any beetroot. With the high temperatures, the fruit cooked on the trees. Trying to think of ways to help with this problem for next summer’s crops.
    I can understand your concern for your Dad. Life is challenging after you hit those three score years and ten, especially with health issues. The only way is to look at every new day as a bonus and live it as it comes, in the best way we can. Keeping busy with creative projects, sharing with family and friends and savouring every minute of it. Do what makes you happy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We love our real life here in our village in the beautiful coastal valley… it’s everything we dreamed of and more… sometimes less… dreams are wonderful but sometimes not practical… similarly our garden was under par last summer but we celebrated anything that managed to grow!


  9. It’s funny how creativity seems to sneak into the brain at ridiculous hours. Going with it is the best response. Being out of the rat race means hours are no longer dictated by the clock or the light. I love that freedom and I can see that you do too, with your little work station set up, ready to go.
    That crisis of confidence in writing often strikes us all- it’s a bogeyman that needs to be shooed away. In the end, writing a blog is about creative expression and It’s like any other form of crafting or art- it needs an outlet. And so those of us who like words, manipulating them into pleasing paragraphs,using wonderful tools like thesaurus along the way, creating verbal images for readers to enjoy, or not, is worth continuing, otherwise those wonderful words and ideas just get locked up in an old journal, never really see the light of day. Blogs are the antithesis of instagram, which depend totally on visual appeal, with the use of word grabs that require no literary ability and demand nothing from those who see them. They speak to me of the dumbing down process of language, that you can express an idea in a hashtag.
    You use words so well Dale- I am often overwhelmed by your ability to capture an idea so succinctly. It is a skill you have and one that you should continue: the audience doesn’t really matter. Do they need to read what you or I might write? Perhaps not. But that isn’t the issue. You are a brilliant writer: you need to keep writing.


    1. Just. Wow. Thank you from the bottom of my soul for your wonderful, kind, generous words. I can’t help but play with words.. my Sketchbook Project drawings are littered with haiku… including #hashtaghaiku… even with Instagram I can’t help myself… I love playing with hashtags, and many of my Insta community tell brilliant [very] short stories via commentary and photos. I am wondering, waiting… and searching a little for what comes next after studying horticulture for two and a half years… an imminent void I would be happy to fill with words.


  10. Just came upon your blog via a comment on Celia’s and her use of roadkill jeans. I adore blogs like yours that celebrate green living and everyday life. I do the same thing in my blog. As far as I’m concerned, the more the better. We need a circle of green around this beautiful blue planet.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Laurie. Our global and green blogging community is a fine thing, it has informed and inspired much of how I live well, and lightly… transitioning from city to country life I have had constant friends with me. Thank you for your lovely comment.

      Liked by 1 person

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