Tag Archives: Garden

Happy Mauvember!

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When Spring looks like a French Autumn, the only thing you can do is put a hat on, grab your bestie and chill out with a latte! Nasim (from Iran) and I are always on the same page when it comes to enjoy life at its best!

Spring has been so lazy to come this year. We experienced a lot of morning showers, grey sky, wind and some severe storms in September and October. In one hand, it was a bit depressing + there was a “major” water leaking in my house (one morning I woke up and water was coming from the ceiling, click here for the full story) but in the other hand, it is really good for mother nature because the trees and flowers look amazing right now with beautiful deep and lively colours. I guess you can’t have it all!

These past few days, spring is back on the track and it feels good to wake up with a big bright sun in the bedroom. I like to ride my green bike in the parks with this beautiful weather and explore new places whenever possible. In Australia, you have to wear an helmet (it is the law) and I must say when the weather is warm (sometimes around 40 something) I miss to feel the refreshing wind in my hair when biking! But again, I know this is for my own good so I am just going with the flow…

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A romantic vision of a young girl with a white dress walking on the Jacarandas’petals on a sunny spring day.

Maybe you will think I am a fool but one thing I was really expecting was to see the Jacarandas blooming! They are my favourite trees and their romantic purple flowers appear the first weeks of November announcing that spring is here and summer is only a month away. This year, because of the strange weather, the Jacarandas only started now to spread their vibrant colours in the whole city. Their mauve flowers petals are falling on the pavement like confettis and it brings a “je ne sais quoi” to the streets of Adelaide. Someday when I will own a house with a garden I will plant a Jacaranda tree to gaze at it!

At the moment, my friend Jessica (Mexico) is encouraging me to practise “mindfulness”. I started doing it in London with my yoga teacher and I must say it is a really calming and grounding state of mind. We are so busy with our everyday lives sometimes, worrying about the past and the future that we forget to fully live the present moment. Maybe it will seem odd to some of you but sometimes just taking the time to stop for a minute and gaze at a tree or a flower can make a big difference  in the rest of your day ❤

Just try it and tell me in the comments below how it felt!

Follow the white rabbit!

Wonderland is never far away and sometimes can be closer than you think. Just pay attention when walking in the West End and look for the white rabbit on the eclectic Hindley Street. Maybe for a minute you will think you are lost, it can’t possibly be there but keep going and you will be surprised like Harry Potter discovering the platform 9 3/4!

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I love to chill out outside with a latte on sunny days!

Right in the middle of the buildings and the busy city life, appears like magic, Peter Rabbit café and its beautiful garden. It is so tempting to just sit here outside on one of these colourful chairs and enjoy the beautiful weather. Come with friends for some lively conversations or all alone to relax with some readings in this friendly atmosphere.

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Chaï latte and almonds croissant ❤ all beautiful!

But let’s not stop here, why not  indulging your coffee cravings?! You got me, if you are a coffee lover, then this is the place to be. My friend Ana (from Colombia) is an expert when it comes to coffee and she confessed that the Cuppa is really beautiful. Last time I was there with her, she had a black from Colombia and she loved it!

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Painted  lady in the background (Australia) staring at Nasim (Iran), who is gazing at Jessica (Mexico) who is looking at me (France) while I am myself observing Nasim! That’s 4 continents sitting at the same table 😉

The staff is really friendly and I love the attention to details they put into the decoration but also when serving coffee. If you want to pet some rabbit, just go at the back of the café and you will make some good friends ❤ As for me, I was so enchanted by this little wonderland that I could not help sharing this secret place with some other friends.

So next time, you find yourself walking in Hindley street, and you happen to see a white rabbit, with a waistcoat and speaking English. Don’t hesitate, follow it, open the garden gate of the hidden Peter  Rabbit and enjoy the journey!


Peter Rabbit

234-235 Hindley Street

Adelaide SA 5000

Tel: +61 4 2813 2704

Colour the world, colour your mood

Lately I have been obsessed with coloring books for adults. It’s the new trend and it is nearly impossible to miss them when you are in a Bookshop. Anyway I own a few of them and I really enjoy using those books whenever needed. I believe coloring has a grounding effect.

It all started when my friend Ana (my former Spanish teacher from Colombia) offered me a postcard from the artist: Johanna Basford! When it comes to coloring book, this girl is a GURU, believe me! Her work is amazing: have a look at “Secret garden” (my fav), there is so much poesy in her art, she managed to create a real enchanted universe.

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Colouring book for adults “Secret Garden”, Johanna Basford

So I started with her books and her postcards that I would share with some friends. Sometimes we would go together to the café, with some pencils and we would colour some beautiful magic scenes while chatting. It turned out to be very effective, especially when we were stressed or worried about something. It acted like a colour therapy session and it was a very calming and a comforting activity.

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Texturing and colouring my breakfast bowl: a good way to start the day happy and zen 🙂

It is a combination of little things that separately are just details, but when all combined, it is like a ritual where all your senses are activated. The colours that are dancing in a farandole in front of your eyes, the paper texture under your fingers, the soft  sound of the pencils pressed on the paper, the delicate smell of the drawing in progress and the taste of gratitude as the image starts to appear more and more alive.

 So now I extended my selection to other colouring books such as: Enchanted Forest by Johanna Basford, The mini Mandala by Susanne Fincher, the little book of Mindfulness colouring by Holly Macdonald. I really enjoy them as they are a great help to meditate , to relax and sometimes to escape .

What about you? Have you ever tried it? Tell me all about it in the comments below. I can’t wait to hear about your experiences when it comes to coloring books 🙂

Tin Cat Café

“As every cat owners knows, nobody owns a cat” – Ellen Perry Berkeley

You don’t choose your cat but he definitely chooses you. And the Tin Cat Café is no exception! Last year, I was living in North Adelaide and my favorite café was the lovely E for Ethel. It was maybe 2 minutes away from my home and I often went to this place to blog, enjoy a nice latte or have a little chat with my friends. When I moved to Kent Town, I was a bit sad because I knew I was going to miss this charming café and it would not be the same. On my moving day, I went to E for Ethel to say goodbye and enjoyed a last green smoothie and when the owner learnt I was moving away, she said that she knew just the right place where I would feel welcomed, happy and comfortable to keep my old habits. She knew the perfect place and it was just near my new house and that is when I heard for the first time about the Tin Cat Café ❤

But I was so busy with my life at that moment that I did not get the chance to visit this place. Few months passed and Elaine (an Australian friend) was in my neighborhood and wanted to have coffee with me and sadly the place she had in mind was closed so I recalled about the Tin Cat Café and we decided to give it a try and I have never been disappointed since. I guess it was meant to be this way! Actually, after this episode, I went there MANY times with my friend Ann (she is Australian too) whenever she needed to practise her French and also Nassim (Iran) and Jessica (Mexico) had breakfast with me there one day and it was really nice 🙂

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One of the numerous friendly dinning areas

This place is so cute and it has a really special vibe. It has a home feeling, probably due to the fact that it is located in an authentic terrace house (in the very typical Australian style). I also like the vintage decoration of the place and the staff is so lovely!  The café supports local artists so there are always paintings to be seen and interesting stuffs to discover and to talk about. It is absolutely charming and it has this “gilmore girls” feeling that I like so much!

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“Esprit guinguette” in the backyard!

It is pretty big, with several rooms and it has also a nice garden in the back which is absolutely lovely during summer time. One Sunday, my friend Ann invited me to a book launch at the Tin Cat Café that took place in the garden and it was so lovely, many people, good food, lovely colours… again I felt very welcome and it was like visiting some dear relatives!

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Today Chai Panacotta and peanut butter mousse cake!

As for the food, you won’t be disappointed, there are always nice treats! The Chaï Latte is lovely and so is the coffee and I recommend you to indulge yourself with their sweets. They have a nice selection of desserts and the presentation is always lovely with a big smile!

Sadly, good things have an end and I guess that for the Tin Cat Café  it is time to explore new fields. The café will be gone soon since the Terrace house has been sold and it is a real pity. I am sure a lot of people will be missing this spot. So if you are curious to know more about this cute little café, please hurry (only a few weeks left from now on) and visit this little gem, you won’t regret it ❤

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Tin Cat Café

107 Rundle Street

Kent Town

Tel. +61 8 8362 4748

Web : http://www.tincat.com.au

Celebrating christmas… in Australia!

It is not easy to get in the mood of christmas spirit here! First, my family is far away and normally this celebration is all about being with your love ones, sharing stories, eating good food, exchanging presents… Secondly it is summer here in Australia so it does not look like christmas to me. Normally when talking about christmas, I am thinking France, winter, cold, snow, christmas tree, family reunion, turkey, coat, warm socks, fireplace, wool blankets, hot cocoa. I am picturing myself looking through the window while the snow is falling and the wind is whistling and children are wondering if Santa Claus is going to make it and deliver all his presents and how he is going to fit in the chimney!

But here like I said, it is summer, it is so hoooot… Yesterday and today the temperature was around 38 during day time and 28 during night time! All I am thinking about is : air conditioning, refreshing drinks, fruits, music, swimming, bathsuits and going to Bali! It happens I am in the mood for summer holidays which makes sense 😉 But I don’t want to be the one complaining or refusing to adapt, afterall I am really happy to live in Adelaide so I have to make the most of it. Maybe it is up to me to turn christmas mood ON!

Yesterday, I bought some decorations because I thought it could help me to reaslise christmas is coming very soon. I kept it simple but it sends a pretty clear message, you can’t go wrong with green and red combination and wooden christmas trees! Besides, the TV spot is pretty strategic because you watch TV everyday so it will be a gentle constant reminder of what is coming in a couple of weeks, it starts with a C……

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It looks so cute! I love this disco ball, so shiny!

I also thought it would be nice to decorate the garden with some red bows. Unfortunately I am too small so I could only reach the bottom of the tree but still, it is looking pretty good I think. Aussie trees deserve also to celebrate it, it is not because you are not a fir that you can’t be a christmas ambassador!

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My very own Aussie christmas tree looking proud & fancy

And for those who are wishing to send me their christmas greetings, I am all ears and actually my letter box is looking forward to receive your nice post cards and letters ❤

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I know there are spider webs everywhere around my letter box 😦 wild country!

Enchanted Nantu Wama

I really enjoy walking in the parks around Adelaide: there is always something nice to discover! A couple of days ago as I was walking in the North Adelaide Nantu Wama park, I suddenly noticed a hut made of wood. I could not resist getting closer and visit this secret little place! I am always fascinated by children imagination and creativity. It was nicely built and there was a whole little world inside: a door, a window, a bench and even a pot with “food”!

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The magic cauldron

I must say it was a pleasant surprise and it reminded me of this artist I am crazy about at the moment. Her name is Johanna Basford and she became in a short time very popular with her colouring books for adults! You have probably heard about “Secret Garden” or “Enchanted Forest”… or maybe not?! Well they have been sold out in NO time and it is very difficult to find them in stores especially abroad (the artist is based in UK).

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Johanna Basford’s hut from “Secret Garden”

I must confess I have never heard about this artist when I was living in London! Actually I had to come here to Australia to discover her amazing work! One day, my Spanish teacher, Ana (from Colombia) offered me a postcard with a beautiful garden scene drawn by Johanna Basford and I really felt in love with the design! I like the poesy she puts in her drawings and all the tiny details that make all the difference. It makes me dream and I wish I could create a little universe full of wonderful creatures and splendid landscapes 😉

So have a look at Johanna Basford’s lovely books and maybe next time you are walking in your garden or in the forest, you will start to see the world differently! A simple hut made of wood would become a secret and poetic hideaway in the trees ❤

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Nantu Wama park’s secret hut!

 

Peaceful Adelaide Himeji garden

“If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden”

Do you have a secret place where you enjoy going to dream and clear your mind? A poetic place where you feel free and inspired?

I know a lovely garden in Adelaide that is an invitation to inspiration. It is as beautiful as it is peaceful with its enchanting trees and flowers. It is a Japanese style garden celebrating religiously the beauty of nature. I like to walk slowly surrounded by the sound of silence on the stepping stones so I can admire every tiny detail. I enjoy gazing at the calm water of the lake and listen to the birds singing happily in the deep blue sky. I love the sound of the chanting waterfall melting poetically into the beautiful landscape.  Everything is in harmony with nature and my heart feels at peace here.

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The lake: the soul of the garden

I like to kneel in front of the magic stone bowl and feel the fresh water on my hand and my face. It is said that the holy water will purify your spirit and your soul: it is like leaving all my worries behind me and starting from fresh with a humble attitude.

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Water bowl (Chozubachi) so visitors may purify themselves

I like to contemplate the sea of sand. It is the perfect spot for contemplation thinking of the immensity of the sea, the waves, the continents. If you close your eyes, you can hear the sea… As Buddha said “With our thoughts we create the world” and it is up to us to make it beautiful!

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Sea of sand

I could spend hours in this enchanting garden: dreaming, reading, having a picnic, doing yoga… but suddenly I hear the ‘clack” of the Shishi-Odoshi: a large bamboo tube filling with water until horizontal and then emptying causing one end to hit a rock with a deaf noise. It brings me back to reality: happier, rested and aware of the beauty and power of nature… already time to go but I will be back soon, I promise 😉

 

Adelaide Himeji garden

South Terrace

Adelaide SA 5000

http://www.postcards-sa.com.au/features/himeji_garden.html