Friday, September 28, 2012

Love People

Last night a friend of the world was taken in a car accident.

I say a friend of the world because this young man was exactly that, a friend, to everyone.

I know its easy to exaggerate when someones passed away, to make out like they were a hero, but I never heard this young man say a bad word, he was always so happy to see me and others, always hanging out with friends, always so positive.

When I first met him I said "I want to name out first son *****", exactly the same name as his. The first person I had met with the name. For a year he thought I was joking and would always have me on about it. Until he realised. Nope. Totally serious. He was stoked!

The last time I saw him I accused him of bunking school, he was at my local mall in a white shirt and tie, turned out he was actually working there and laughed his head off at me. Said my daughter was the cutest girl he's ever seen.

It seems odd to celebrate a life after they are gone, but the truth is I could have easily given him this praise when he was around to his face, and I often did. He was charming, sweet talking, always had kind words to say and a joke prepared. When my husband and him were together it was like they were brothers. So similar.

Gone too soon? Of course. But I think in the time he did have he used it well. He loved people. On his facebook wall today there is not one bad word spoken about him, a whole lot of testimonies about how he was a brother to someone, led them to church, loved them.

Beautiful. and surreal.

Today I'm praying for his friends and family, for comfort, and that they wouldn't forget what he had taught them in his few short years.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Dear Baby - 12 month update

birth1 | 2 | 3
4 | 5 | 6 | 7
 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 

 I still haven't found the words to express my feelings over my baby girl turning One. Life goes on, we grow around each other, and before we know it we have a toddler.

This last year as been an absolute joy. I underestimated how much my love bank could grow for a such a little person and my husband. Our family.

I will always look at this first year and remember it fondly. We have grown so much and be a part of so many amazing memories.

Laying in bed in the sun when Dad went to work for the first time after your birth, coming into the spare room to find you and Dad tucked up together taking a snooze, following a trail of candy hearts and finding you on our holiday bed in Akaroa holding my birthday present, picnic at the park with the Burgesses, holidays in Westport and coming home to find you screaming her head off with Nana and then as soon as you were back in my arms perfectly happy, rolling for the first time and not believing my eyes, Gigging at Dad playing cricket, loving your mashed broccoli, playing on the grass at the Vogels, crawling and standing up in the same day I nearly died! Yelling in your cousin Shires face when she came too close, clapping and standing up for the first time on camera, dancing (forever dancing), worshiping at church with your hands up, being pushed over by Lucy, geocaching in the rain in Hanmer and then getting an elbow to the head, the "oh oh oh"s as you drove forward facing for the first time.

And then, all of the things you have learnt to do with ease. On your first birthday you can say "ta", "rawwr", "Mum" and "Dad". You can crawl, roll, stand, wipe (lots of wiping around here), bounce, get off the couch (or bed), wave, clap, point,

Three days after your first birthday you took your first step and haven't stopped since! Going from one step to 20 in one afternoon!

This world is better off with you in it. You light up a room and melt strangers hearts. Surely, goodness and peace flow from you to make this world a better place.

Milla is a 'wiping' pro. 


Dearest One Year Old,

This last year has been a journey and it will continue to be for the rest of your life. 

Work hard, aim for success and most of all be kind. Know that there is power in hard work, achieving will get you places, but being kind and loving will keep you in those places. 

Grow and develop deep friendships, have fun, love and laugh with one another, have a friend whose shoulder you can cry on when you need it. Be a great friend in return. 

Love your family.

Look after this earth, treasure it like Gods creation, pick up your litter, care for the plants and animals and find peace within a sunset. Take moments to get out of the big cities and see the stars again. Send up some prayers and realise how truly small we all are and how truly big God is. And thank Him for that. Even though we are so small, He loves us. 

Your name means female warrior and servant of the Lords House. That is my prayer for you. Be strong and serve God - who knows what could be achieved

A lot of love can be found in this world, Camilla. I hope you will see the love and beauty that is around you.  

Love you Milla Moo,
Your Mama xx

Millas first year in video

See Millas monthly progress here

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Spring Fabric Swap

Thanks to Treena I was involved in a Spring Fabric Swap! We were each given a person to receive from, and then give to. Since all of the sign ups were in Christchurch we decided to have a little get together while we swapped, trying on dresses at Miriams, swapping birth stories and telling Amy all about our post baby bodies. Woo.

My swap partner was Holly who wasn't able to make it on the night so I gave my parcel to her later in the week. I gave her a whole range of denim and 3 pretty fat quarters and matching thread.

From Amy I received::

::pretty vintage sheets (which I never ever own (because I never go op shopping) two balls of wool (you'll see one of these featured in a post soon), some plastic buttons (from Miriams stash) and paper doilies (i've already used one in a birthday card!)::

Thanks to the ladies who joined in!

Treenas post on the swap

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Advertise on Sophie Slim in October!

Blogs, small businesses, crafts, events, and ideas! Advertise on Sophie Slim for $15 a month, with reviews and giveaways available.

Sophie Slim has a huge range of followers from NewZealand and around the world, with 500 daily views it is a perfect opportunity to introduce your brand to Sophie Slim readers!

Email me on for a Media Kit with more detailed information about my readership, statistics and stats.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The Birth House - Book Review

The Birth House - by Ami McKay

I'm a bit of a home birth nut so when I saw a book review on Mrs Read-a-lots book club written by Leonie at the beginning of this year I knew I wanted to read it.

The Birth House by Ami McKay is a story about a midwife during the first world war in Nova Scotia, Canada.

I laughed, cried, nodded in agreement, gasped in horror and was incredibly thankful I am living in the time that I do.

The Birth House is set right as doctors and science began to take over birthing mothers. Its long been known that if you are having a normal birth (no complications) the safest place for you in is your own environment with supportive people around you. This story is set in the beginning of that time, where it was thought that every birthing mother should be relieved of their pain, put to sleep and have the baby taken out of them.

My favourite extract from the book that depicts this senario:
Page 110:
" Ginny's child is extracted. His head misshaped, a little bruised, breathing like he's exhausted and can't catch any air... Ginny's eyes open and her hand reaches out to me. The rest of her body is still, as if she's afraid to question what's just happened. There was no moment of celebration at the end. She's feeling left behind, unsure. The doctor sees this as normal. A kind of bliss... She's weak on her feet. She can't keep food down. She thanks him for his accomplishment. She waits to hold her child."

Home birthing aside, this is mostly of a tale of life during the war for women left behind, while most are left unsatisfied by their (i'll say it, abusive) husbands and are looking to find their place in the world. A time right before electricity, before women had the vote, and women were being masturbated by their doctors to treat their "hysteria" (there, I said it)

While this story isn't epic (no huge twists or turns or battle scenes) if flows smoothly in the form of the young midwifes diary, telling the happenings of her small town as she seems them. Avery good easy read that makes you feel well connected with the female embodiment.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

The Sisterhood - Why We Exist

For months now I have had it on my mind to simplify The Sisterhood, figure out where its going, put some organisation in place so it runs a lot more efficiently and smoothly. And most of all, figure out why we exist.

I know, I say it all the time, "we exist to bring smiles to an otherwise bleak day". But theres more to it than that.

Let me take you back to that night when The Sisterhood began in my bedroom, around midnight on a Friday, amongst tears and anguish as I blogged my heart out. I was angry with the world, with God, with life, my own brother had gone for days that week without any food to eat. He had the flu as well. Life is hard for him and I was furious. Life is hard. Theres a lot of people doing life very tough out there.

Then my anger lingered onto other situations, the ones who are doing it hard but dont say a word, they just get on with life - they balance kids, work, family, sickness, study, dreams. They balance it all and dont ask for anything in return.

Yes. Those people. The quiet ones. I love those ones. I wanted to know about them, I wanted to love on them, to tell them they were noticed, to let them know they were valued, appreciated, loved. I could think of countless women in my life who needed to be intentionally noticed and appreciated.

I heard God say yes. An audible YES in my room. It was urging, positive, Yeesss...

I have heard two audible words from God before, words so loud I can't help but stop in my tracks and know they weren't from my own head.

The first, I was driving to pick up a friend and heard an audible "SAFETY" being yelled at me, I almost died. I was scared, and started praying over and over and over for safety, I didn't know why, I just asked for Gods protection. After I picked up my friend I didn't mention it to her, half an hour later we were in a car accident. A man on drugs ran a red light as we were going through our green, at full speed, and hit the side of my car. We were supposed to have passengers in the back but 5 minutes before hand plans fell through, they didn't come with us, I was told there would have been death had we had back seat passengers. Safety. I thanked God. Seriously. I honestly with all of my being know that was Gods voice. Not my own.

So when I heard YESS. I knew. An out of this world YES. A heavenly YES.

The Sisterhood was born. Since then, God has spoken to me regularly through prayer, scripture and general "knowing" regarding The Sisterhood.

I'll be honest, I can't do this without him. In fact, I don't want to. Without God, The Sisterhood is just works based. Its just chocolate in the mail. And while thats cool, that can get boring, tired, unfulfilling. I really believe that what makes it successful is whats behind the chocolate. A load of prayers, a word of encouragement, a prophetic word of Hope, a Holy Spirit inspired poem, a vision of heaven.

One of my most fulfilling moments in running The Sisterhood was when I was preparing our first round of multiple LOVE BOMBs. A blogging friend, Simone, had sent me a mix CD in the mail, she urged me to listen to it, I put it on as I assembled the love bombs in their piles, took photos of them, boxed them up and addressed them. The CD was filled with beautiful happy songs. And worship songs. As I photographed and boxed I sang my heart out, I thanked God for caring and loving and saving me, and for caring and loving all of these women. I prayed for each of them and for each member of The Sisterhood.

In that moment I truly felt like I was doing exactly what I was called to do. 

Over time I have come to realise that what we do at The Sisterhood is really what God has done for us. 

Its us, knowing of someone. We are a stranger to them, but we know them, we know of their struggles (well, I do) and we want to help. We go out of our way, we reach out, we join together everything we have to say "here, take this, we love you, even if you dont know us" Loving despite geography, knowledge or circumstances; just because.

The Sisterhood is here to show LOVE, just like Jesus does for us. Just in a more earthly, physical, chocolatey way.

And you know, deep down, its really Jesus showing the love anyway. 

I really have to think about these things (The Sisterhood). When you are in charge of something as awesome as The Sisterhood its important to be clear as to why you're doing it.

When I get emails from women saying their sons needs an ipad, and then sending constant emails asking why I haven't sent one yet, its gets a little stressful. Or emails from I dont know how many women saying they have no money for groceries, their husbands in jail, winz has cut off their benefits..

Its a little stressful.

I have to think about these things because when I get an email every week asking if someone can start their own Sisterhood I need to know why they're doing it. For glory? Riches? God?

Its important to be clear. Who are we helping here, why are we helping. We have to know these things.

(I really dont mean to sound unhelpful, these stories break my heart, but I get these emails everyday, I'm realistic, I know we can't help them all so its important to know who we can help)

I know most of you are strangers to me, you "signed up" because a friend told you you could get free stuff, or you could do some baking, or they told you that The Sisterhood is the best thing to ever happen, ever.

I love that they told you something about the sisterhood, but they might not have told you why we're doing it. So I need you to know. I need that bridge between us to be broken down and replaced with reality: I am doing this because I heard GOD say YES. (If you've been around here for a little while this wont be news to you.)

I don't believe God has called us to buy ipads or groceries or to pay for someones internet bill.

He has called us to love those who are doing life well, the hard workers, the women with their heads down bums up, taking care of life. This hard life. He has called us to notice them, to flex our generosity muscles and to tell them that we notice them, just like he notices us. 

We will send gifts to people of all backgrounds, and people of all faiths can donate. 

The Sisterhood is a collection of different women all over New Zealand with different world views, religious beliefs, skills and circumstances all joining together to create something amazing.

Some of you may not like this God stuff at all, I'm thinking if thats you you have probably already stopped reading and removed yourself from our email list (but not before sending me an opinionated email) I'm okay with that. Feel free to do whatever it is you need to do.

Some of you may disagree but still put up with my God babble and will continue to join in. If thats you, I really like you. Thank you for still liking me and being here, even though you aren't into what I am but can see the bigger picture ;)

Others will get this God Thing. Thank you for being here. I really want your help.

Throughout this journey its important that I stay true to who I am, The Sisterhood was started because I heard YES from God, not because I thought it was a good idea or I might get more Facebook friends. Because of that, I'm not too worried about losing Facebook friends, but I AM worried about losing sight of God in this.

Therefore, I will continue to be me, and The Sisterhood will continue as usual, not growing The Sisterhood for the numbers or reputation, but continuing to share the love that God has to offer by way of chocolates and treats and loving on those unappreciated hardworking women.

Just needed you to know that, kay?

I love you all, whoever you are. Thank you for being here, and if you still want to do this journey with us, well, I think you just became my new best friend :)


p.s - I am currently working on documents that will help us and help those overseas wanting to expand The Sisterhood. We all need to be reading off the same page.

If you would like to talk to me about anything I have mentioned here please email me on - I will respond to every email, even the nasty ones.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Hunger Games Book Review

I know, its taken me how many years to read The Hunger Games? Generally, I have an aversion to anything that I simply must see or do, and felt no drive to see the Hunger Games at the movies, or to read the trilogy, somehow recently I was persuaded and after watching the movie I simply had to read the books.

I started to live and breath Hunger Games.

The first book (Mocking Jay) was my favourite. I think it was the woods and nature that drew me into the story. I loved that in a world of technology and convienience they were in a stark contrast arena with nothing but nature (and a few genetically engineered animals..) I love learning about the humans basic need for survival, how we will do anything to achieve it, survive, fight, out-last, how in times of stress we change. I was drawn into seeing the absolute depravity of this world, how we in the present are only a stones throw away from being from The Capitol. A place you want to loathe, but not very much unlike ourselves.

I loved the first book so much I watched the movie again.

As for the second (Catching Fire), I found myself trying to guess what happens next, trying to figure out where the author would take us. At least one of my theories was right most of the time (I had a lot!) but I was still left surprised occasionally. I enjoyed the new characters but the cast was large and I found myself getting confused between them. I liked that the author could create something original from her already established story.

The third book (Mockingjay) is centered around politics, not my most favourite topic, and it was there that my interest started to wain "I signed up for the Hunger Games" I thought, not to follow the politics of Panem. My want to know more of the Hunger Games and that primal instinct of survival which I enjoyed so much came second. Politics won. Boo.

I think a small part of me wanted to side with the districts "I am like them" rather than relate to the Capitol, of which we are so alike already, however once you learn more of the district, especially the one the third book is based around, you learn that we are all alike. Capitol or not. We are depraved, power hungry sinners. Much like regular life really.

Over all I enjoyed the Hunger Games, and couldn't help but relate it to Battle Royal, a fight to the death concept that was explored in 1998 through a japanese novel and then a film. Do Hunger Games fans realise they are almost the same? Unsure. But they are.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Cycle Runway Fashion Show

Last night I attended my very first fashion show with a small group of Christchurch bloggers! We were there to be inspired by sustainable fashion - recycled, upcycled, quality, fashion-lasting pieces were the stars of the evening, designed and shown by local artists worn by modens on adorable 50's cycles. Yes, bikes down a runway, it made for a few giggles in the first half with some very nervous (read: wobbly) models.

I loved attending this fashion show! I definitely think I could get used to this life, drooling over such lovely creations!

Best of all, we got to see our beautiful bloggy friend Nin of Sailor Spy showcase her range of beautiful, well tailored and detailed clothing! It was such a pleasure to be a part of it and cheer her on!

Afterwards we went out for coffee and talked and talked and talked. As bloggers do.

Myself, Juliet & Miriam  (Roz was behind the camera, preferring to stay anon!)

During half time of the show I had some photos snapped, attempting to join into Wardrobe Wednesday (now hosted by Miriam). Here I am, on the catwalk, strutting my stuff ;)

Dress: Lippy (3 years old!)
Leggings: KMart
Necklace: Equip
Red Lipstick: Clinique

First fashion show, first time with Wardrobe Wednesday! Who am I!?

Why I Love Your Daddy Even More

[I found this blog post in my drafts folder, originally written on 23/11/2011, I thought it was high time I published it unedited]

I love your Daddy even more now because he has grown into a new man since you came into this world.

Your Dad is a provider and a carer. He works hard with a smile to give us the life we have and when he comes home he has even more smiles to give us. They are never ending, just like yours. You light up when he walks in the door, he comes straight to me for a kiss, and then he is totally focussed on you.

He spends so long making you smile and giggle, doing the booty dance, kissing your chubby cheeks, bathing you, dressing you, rocking and burping you. He loves you dearly and is so proud of you.

Every ounce of love he gives to you, my love for him swells by the pounds.

As your Mum he treats me so well. He often tells me how proud he is of us both and he helps me whenever I ask of him. He has been so patient with all of the changes that happen after a birth, is so kind to us, even at 3am, he cares for us so lovingly and gently

He is a really great husband and father. We couldn't have asked for better.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Millas Teddy Bears Picnic - 1st Birthday Party

We celebrated Millas 1st year with a teddy bears picnic with friends and family on Saturday.

There was grass, blankets, teddies, bubbles, sand, water and a whole lot of wind. 

It was so nice to have everyone in one place and to thank them for being in our lives as well as Millas. 

We really appreciate all of the relationships we are able to build with people, we have amazing support and such loving people in our lives, its a real blessing to us! 

This whole party took a lot of planning and very little $. Guests were told to bring their own picnic lunch and aside from that mostly I was able to use my own supplies and creativity to make it special, I especially loved making the sign for the front fence and the cardboard kites by the food table. I was trying to recreate the front cover of the teddy bears picnic book,  Balloons, kites, blankets, pom pom strings (these lay inside completely forgotten about) and a menu board. 

I was able to borrow the spotted table clothes and bubble machine from our church and the rest was made.

My thoughts on Millas first birthday
How we celebrated on her birthday

Friday, September 7, 2012

Milla Turns One

My one year old. Wearing a princess dress, forever innocent, forever being kissed by Daddy.

Unwrapping presents but far more interested in the paper or a mobile phone

Receiving her "chocolate cake license" a big step in a womans life. 

Spoilt to pieces by her grandparents

Last week my little girl turned One. It was a great day with a lot of sunshine, we both wore pretty dresses, and she was continually commented on throughout the day. We enjoyed story time at the library with Liv and Kenzie, and baked a cake! Later on, our family surprised her later that night and sang happy birthday and ate all her cake up with her! 

We love you so much, princess.

My thoughts on Millas birthday
How we celebrated: A Teddy Bears Picnic

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Completed Creatives

Here's a cot blanket I made using the same pattern as Millas single bed blanket (which I'm still working away at). This blanket was supposed to be rainbow coloured but I substituted orange for pink and I think that was a mistake (no orange! anywhere!). What do you think? Are you a traditional rainbow-er?

This one will be for sale in my shop soon :)

Notice the bunting in the photos too? this was made from scrap booking paper and some ribbon, super easy (now that I have a glue gun!! YUS) The pink one is for Millas room and the orange one hangs above our bed in our room.

Currently reading The Birth House by Ami McKay after Mrs Readalot talked about it

There has been a creative flurry here this last month and I'm making the most of it, but some times this happens and everything gets put on hold:

Millas birthday party this weekend! Woop woop! Can't wait! (fingers crossed for clear (beautiful) weather here in Canterbury!!)


Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Fathers Day

My brother with his daughter, My husband with his. Matchy Matchy.

Fathers Day this year was a lot more exciting than last, being that Camilla didn't spend the majority of the day asleep (and wasn't 7 days old).

We woke up and I made Mr Moo coffee and toast, as he went to sip his coffee he discovered his face on it, with Millas and "greatest dad" written on it. Cheese? Totally! But let us indulge, its kind of exciting.

Fathers Day is always spent at Church in the morning, I love their special services, the Dads each got kebabs on the bbq afterwards and during the service were treated to SUCH a cute video of our kids in kids church. Oh my. It bought tears to my eyes with all of its cuteness! I wish I could show you it. 

That afternoon Mr Moo played tennis with some friends while we were at home and Milla was learning to walk!!! The best fathers day present ever, by the time Moo got home he was treated to witnessing 20 steps! Amazing stuff! 1-20 in one day!

We posted the video on Facebook (I wish I could show you that video too) and our Sister in law promptly dressed her daughter in the same dress for our dinner out with my own Dad, which the Moo Moo inlaws came to aswell.

A pretty great day if you ask me (and yes, Mr Moo loved his mug)

I'm very proud of my husband.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Sisterhood and $10,000!

I don't want to have to do the spiel on you, you all know The Sisterhood. You come here each day and read my thoughts, most of them to do with the Sisterhood and seeing hundred of women blessed around New Zealand.

Right now we are in the running for a $10,000 scholarship. Theres 5 in total available and one of them is a people choice award. They are going to kiwis with great ideas, but the peoples choice, well, thats open to any thing really.

Would you vote for The Sisterhood?? Would you tell anyone and everyone that goodness is still alive and kicking in New Zealand, that kindness towards strangers still exists? Would you email, message, text, invite, blog about this is spread the word?

Join the Facebook group here

Vote for Sophie Laughton-Mutu (and The Sisterhood) here

Thank you in advance xx

Monday, September 3, 2012

Mission Complete! Sisterhood Ninja Cookie Drop

The Sisterhood has done it again! 77 bakers, 170 baking drops, 170 blessed families around New Zealand this weekend! 

The mission was to be a stealthy Ninja and deliver baking to your nominated people. We took nominations from all over New Zealand and I split them up and sent their details to the registered bakers, some thought they could bake more so many extras for neighbours and friends near by, others drove hours to deliver their goods (rural godesses!!), there were many ninja moves over the weekend - crouches, speedy getaways and short cons! 

You all did me very very proud.

"Oh my gosh !! I don't know what to say :) I went outside to talk to my brother in law and noticed something in the letterbox, went over to check it out and it's a HUGE jar of yummy home made cookies with a note that touched my heart ! I am in tears that someone thought of me !! I never expected anything like this !
Thank you to whoever nominated me, and a BIG thank you to the wonderful person who made my yummy cookies !! 
Shared with the brother in law & daughter :) 3 very happy people !!"

"Bless the sisterhood, thank-you so very much for my beautiful parcel, im touched and it even brought a tear to my eye! just amazing! xoxo"

"What a wonderful surprise to find some delicious home baking in my mailbox this morning! To whoever nominated me, THANK YOU! You certainly brightened mine and my kids day! Such yummy baking too! Feeling very spoiled right now ♥ What amazing women you all are!!"

"Oh my gosh! How generous and lovely and wonderful are you people!!?? My 8 year old son was very excited to find a box of goodies on the doorstep, and they were for ME! Of all people! With a beautiful note that left a tear in my eye and lots of warm fuzzies in my heart! And it was oh so timely! what a 'pick me up'. Thank you so so so much whoever organseid all this. You really don't know how touching it is. I'm feeling rather blessed right now xox I don't know what more to say, but thank you, really, thank you so much !"

Other bloggers talking about the Ninja drop:
Miriam of Create, Hope, Inspire
Ange of Tall, Short and Tiny
Meghan of MnMs
Simone of Great Fun 4 Kids
Amy of On A Crafty Adventure
Leonie of 3x Sunshine
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