Six weeks into my course and an OM Gosh I’m turning 23…

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That’s right. As of this coming Friday I will be a year away from being in my mid 20s! Now, I’m not one of those age fanatics that are always freaking out about how many candles are on my cake. However, emotionally speaking I’ve barely just managed to wrap my head around the fact that I’m no longer a teen, let alone register that I’m actually making inroads through my 3rd decade! (Like, what just happened?)

So lets take a moment to let my mind do a surprised blink, and then we can move on.

… Ok moving on.

As the title suggests, I am currently taking a course. I know, I all but took an oath to never take any kind of formal education ever. But this one’s a good one I promise. Instead of mostly book work with the occasional field trip, (or no trip) this course is mainly field trips with a bit of “You gotta prove you did it.” type paper work tacked on at the end, without being workshop*

*Workshop type courses are great fun, but tend to just skim the surface of the thing you are learning. Great for getting a taste of what the particular thing you’re learning about entails, but never with any meat to it* 

Farmhand is a great course which gives you a foundation in any agriculture or horticulture type thing you may be interested in. despite what the name suggests, it’s not only for those who are wishing to go into farming. I for example, am there because I’m interested in growing my own plants for food or Naturopathic uses.

We can even learn the basics for caring for bees there, so I can throw in a benefit for my candle making. 🙂


Happy New Year

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So I’ve moved house again.

However, I am determined not to let that become a hurdle this time. I am even currently writing this to you via my cell phone as I don’t have access to the internet at the house any other way right now.

My new room is great. I have a little Sun Room coming off it which a I’m turning into my craft area. I even have a brilliant new (to me) work bench left behind by the previous tenants that is just perfect.

I also found an old hook lying around that my new land lord very kindly drilled into the desk for me that is going to make a beautiful macrame anchor. So now I can do allot more if the intricate stuff.

My mum got me some carving tools for Christmas, so I’m not restricted to just chip carving now.

And last but not least I got myself a  little lipstick making kit for fun. (And because I don’t trust cosmetic companies)

I made a batch earlier today. Didn’t turn out as dark a colour as I hoped it would, in fact it’s more like a lip balm then stick, but it’s still nice.

So yes. Lots to be thankful for.

I am determined to make this year a good and productive one.

And I’ll be writing to you again soon with a full post on the new tools and lipstick.

Happy holidays everyone.




Hopes and Dreams…

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Moutain Range-fancycrave.comSo, in my last post I told you that the reason I had so much trouble focusing was because I wasn’t sure what I wanted to focus on.

It’s true that I’ve never really had one career in particular that stood out to me; but I have had a dream.

A reoccurring daydream that has come to me in many forms over the years, but which has always got the same theme at its core.

It’s a dream that I’ve never so much as mentioned to anyone in passing, because it’s such a big and complicated dream. It might as well be fantasy.

That dream is community.

True, community. Not some hodge-podge of strangers cobbled together like most places are. I’m talking about a town where everyone is almost extended family. Where the labor is shared among everyone, where everyone is encouraged to learn and grow and become great at something other than fitting into someone elses work force. Where education and food and health are a right not a privilege.

The only thing similar that I’ve every even heard of in reality are religious places, but I’ve never been interested closed cult living. In my opinion that’s not a healthy way to be. No, I want a place that is open and welcoming to people of all walks of life.

A place where anyone can come to find inner healing, but also where they can stretch their wings and fly.

Thinking I’m a hopeless dreamer yet?

I mean first of all, land. Where is this fantasy place going to be? Hm? That’s the first really great hurdle right there. Second of all, people. Now I’m just one little girl sitting in her room daydreaming. Can’t make a comunity out of one human being, and I’m not even a social person!

But you know, I’m a book worm. And fantasy is my genre.

I’ve spent my entire life breathing in mythical figures who face impossible odds and triumph. Most times that is brilliant fun, but every now and again it’s a little disheartening.

In stories you can watch someone literally pull a forest fire down through them selves and send the heat into a far away glacier in order to save a caravan. It’s an amazing miracle, but it’s not one that could ever happen in real life.

Sometimes it’s important to remember that miracles can happen in real life. Less obvious, less flashy, but no less impactful then anything our imaginations can dish out.

So I’m going to try, maybe I will even succeed. But either way, I’ll have tried.

Long Time No… Anything

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**Note: Just to let you know, so that you don’t get half way down this post and feel like I’ve cheated you of your time. This post is more of an explanation of what’s been going on these past few months, and doesn’t actually discuss anything to do with craft at all, so if you want to you can just skip reading it all together, or go down to the bottom where I talk about the directions I’ll be taking the blog in the future and other choices I’m making**


Yes, I know.

I did it again. I went completely offline with no warning what so ever.

My only excuse is… I have no excuse.

I’ve been at a point in my life where it seems like you have to make all the big decisions about nothing you completely understand but which will define the rest of your life.

Like being given a menu in some language you don’t speak for food that you’ve never tried before, and a bare bones description of what types of food each section has. “those are spicy.. these sweet ect.”

Well, what type of spicy? And how sweet? And when they say that section has worm food, what exactly do they mean by that? Are they soups? Pies? What exactly is a pie?

I’m talking about my career.

I’ve put off making any kind of solid decision for nearly 5 years now. But that really is what it feels like most of the time.

Some people grow up knowing what they want to be. One of my favorite authors talks about how as a child she would see the words “New York Times Best Seller” on the cover of books, and decided that some day she would do that.

I never had that one thing that stood out to me.

There are in fact a number of things that I think would be cool and that I would enjoy doing.

The best choise for me after high school would have been to get an apprenticeship, because I’m a person that learns by doing things, and physically seeing them happen with my own eyes.

That’s the biggest reason I could never easily keep up in school. My teachers could yack at me for as long as they wanted, but even with me trying to pay attention I could never remember even half of what they said.

The class I absorbed most from was unsurprisingly my Drama class. The only class where I was never forced to sit in front of a white board and copy. To this day I can tell you what an Iambic Pentameter is, all about the Urban Drift (of NZ), Commedia Dell’arte, and “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner”.

But ask me about Classical Studies, which was the class I was actually most interested in, and all I can give you is a shrug and a few mutterings about how we talked about Pompeii and read the Odyssey.

I could tell you a bit about the story since I read it myself.

“But wait,” you say, “what did the teacher tell you about it.”

Me, “Ah.. I remember he said that the word Odyssey meant a long journey………..”

My mind just isn’t cut out for listening to lectures.

This is what I'm talking about with the D'Da's.

This is what I’m talking about with the D’Da’s.

But I know what an Iambic pentameter is. It’s a certain way of speaking that is used in poetry, and is designed to utilise a humans natural speaking rhythm and breath pattern to maximise the beauty of the words. It is what all of Shakespeares plays are written in.

Basically, you break the sentence down into 5 notes, and then further break those into two syllables.

“D’da, d’da, d’da, d’da, d’da.”

I know this because I spent time actually speaking quotes from Shakespeare and writing little lines above the words to figure out how the Iambic Pentameter fit into each sentence.

And now I’ve gone on a wee bit about stuff which you likely don’t care at all, so to wrap up my point quickly I’ll just go back to where I said an apprenticeship would have been the best option for me after high school.

It would have given me the opportunity to learn through doing. However, our brilliant government here in New Zealand doesn’t support Apprenticeships at all, and consequently, someone who wants to take on an apprentice is left with what amounts as an employee who doesn’t know a thing about what they are doing. Needing to be taught, they suck up time the person needs to be spending on earning money to feed themselves and wont be able to contribute to brining in income for some time.

As you can imagine, this leaves pretty much all small time businesses completely incapable of taking someone on whether or not they want to.

The only people who offer apprenticeships now days are big labour work companies. Like builders etc. that I have no interest in.

So with an apprentaship off the table my options are either University, with those amazingly huge lecture halls I keep hearing about, or self study.

And that’s the original reason why I began this blog. To give myself a space where I could do the whole self study thing.

But if there is one thing that I have learnt in the past few years, it’s that self study takes discipline, and focus.

In order to focus, you have to at least know what you want to order from the menu.

I managed to narrow it down to one section, craft, right at the beginning. Mainly because I enjoy making things and I figured it wouldn’t be an impossible thing to teach myself.

But as you can see if you look back at my earlier posts, I haven’t really even tried to be consistent with even one type of craft. Except maybe candle making, and I haven’t really focused on that either.

It has gotten to the point now where I need to make some truly solid decisions and stick with them.

Over the past few months I have been thoroughly researching my metaphorical “menu,” ruling out sections I know I have no interest in, and highlighting and further dissecting those parts that I do.

Then going over what’s important to me and trying to decide if tertiary education wouldn’t be worth it after all just for the easy access I’d have to information. Even if it means recording the lectures and then reteaching myself everything I was supposedly taught that day when I got home.

Which I know, sounds completely and utterly ridiculous and tedious. Notes(which I am pathetic at taking) and recordings are supposed to be able to help you remember your lecture, not be a stand in for a text book.

But if I can’t make use of their lectures at all, then what’s the point of giving them my money?

**Note: If you took the read only the bottom option, start here**

I need to decide what I’ll be doing in the next week or so.

I have a pretty good idea, but I don’t want to say anything online until it’s definitely set in stone.

One thing I do know is that I will continue with craft, but probably in more of a hobby type capacity. I’ll be narrowing my focus on what type of crafts too. Candle making definitely, anything else I’m not sure about yet.

Although I’ve been taking a class in Jewellery Making with the polytechnic just for fun, and to dip my toe into tertiary study.

I’m enjoying it so far, and I’ll tell you more about it in another post.

I’ve decided not to continue with my other blog, as I’m not a quick writer and one post tends to be almost a days work for me. So hopefully narrowing my focus to just one blog will alleviate some of the time pressure and allow me to write more often. Because I do enjoy writing on this blog, I just have to choose between it and anything else.

I’m also thinking of using it to talk about whatever it is that I focus my studies on in the future, whether it is self study or otherwise. So you might find me talking about other things as well.

As I said, I’ll tell you what that would be once I’ve nailed the lid down on my decisions.

So, I hope this post has helped you understand the erratic nature this blog has had since it’s beginning. I will be getting allot more focused in the future one way or another.

And I hope you find the reading experience to be more steady and enjoyable from here on out.


Making Progress


paraffin candle and stone brasletSo about two weeks ago I came to the point where I was so frustrated with my lack of progress that I just sat down in front of the computer and told myself that I wasn’t getting up until I either had a double boiler or a pour-pot on the way for making candles.

I went straight onto amazon, ‘cos even if they weren’t a good choise for long term suppliers, I knew I was likely to find some kind of kit there that would come with the basic equipment.

In the end, I ended up getting a simple paraffin first timers kit, ‘cos it was the only one I could find that had a pour-pot in it and would ship to New Zealand. (FYI this is the only time you will ever, ever. See me use that poison in my candles.)

About four days ago the kit arrived and, and yesterday my friend and I used the kit to make 6 candles, 3 each. Plus two little extra ones I did with the excess wax I had.

One positive thing that came out of the whole experience was that I learned something about sink holes in candles; ***For those who don’t know, sink holes are what happen to wax as it cools down, the wax shrinks and sinks down like you can see happened to my candles in the photo. The way you deal with sink holes is that about 15/20 minutes after you first pour the wax, you poke holes into the top of the candle to release and trapped air, and then you pour a second layer of wax into the holes***

You can’t poke your holes in the candle and then re-melt your wax that’d been cooling for 20minutes. You have to pre-reheat your wax, and then poke your holes! Because as you can see in the photo, reheating after the fact doesn’t get you anywhere.

The two of us also went to our local bead store while we were waiting for the candles to cool off completely, and made bracelets from the semi precious stones that they had there. – I also managed to make a second simpler bracelet because he took so, long, to decide which beads he wanted.

I’ll be making a resource page later on how to make the stone bracelet, so you can check in to see that. But I can’t share how I made the second one with you unfortunately because I copied it off an original design by one of the girls who work in the bead shop, and it’s not really mine to share.

Happy crafting,


P.S. 10minutes after I plased the order for the paraffin kit(because when else), I finally came acraoss a New Zealand site that sells non industial supplies. Which is greate, and I ordered a soy kit from them as well. It hasn’t arrived yet, but when it does, I’ll be giving you a complete review.

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