When we choose to align ourselves with the seasons, we learn to seek and embrace all that is good about each particular time of year.
Sinking into the season at hand allows us to welcome the particular pleasures that only this season provides. When we're focused on escaping or evading the season, we miss out on the small joys.
How do we align ourselves with the current season? I believe it begins with presence. Before we can find and create everyday beauty, we need to be present with the everyday in the first place. As fabulous as a mid-Winter tropical holiday can be, it's not always an option and even if it is, it only provides a temporary fix. We can choose to be present in the season at hand (which is currently Winter here), to not try to escape it but to instead immerse ourselves in it and find the treasures that it has for us.
If however, we focus on all that we don't like about a season (something many of us are more inclined to do during Winter), we miss the beauty and opportunity that await us.
So, let's embrace Winter. If you find yourself at home more than other times of year, why not learn a new craft or skill or immerse yourself in books that make you want to go to bed early? Cook with seasonal produce, make some mulled wine for the end of a cold day or have a picnic with friends complete with a thermos of something hot.
Winter can traditionally be a time for introspection, for inner work. Take the time to think, to journal, to come out of the darkest season of the year with a little more strength and grace than you had when it began.
And as so often happens.. what we learn from nature, serves us in the course of our lives. What we learn from embracing the different seasons of the year teaches us a lot about living well through the different seasons of our life.
Some seasons of life are easier to love, just like the seasons of the year. But that doesn't mean there aren't joys, wisdom and beauty to be found in each of them.
It is always such a thrill when an idea that has long been swirling around in your mind comes to fruition.
Our delicious organic teas used as the base for cocktails, creative seasonal food paired with each cocktail and a mix of people ready to gather and celebrate warm Spring evenings and the beginning of the party season... this combination of sumptuous elements combined to make the Tea Cocktail Party!
A collaboration between Nourish and Nest and Reay's Place, it brought together such a fabulous mix of people. My favourite elements of all our gatherings are seeing people catch up, others meeting for the first time, guests laughing, connecting, relaxing and smiling across the table at one another. This event was no exception but with the added bonus of live music and an impromptu dance floor too. Love.
It was everything we had imagined and more. Thank you to everyone who came.. I hope you're inspired to try and mix a few tea cocktails yourself or at least enjoy some iced teas this coming Summer.
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Call us biased, but we think this is really going to be the Summer of the tea cocktail. Need some tea to make your own at home? Shop our delicious, refreshing range here.
Special thanks to Garry & Nicole Reay and their gorgeous staff for looking after us, Event Lighting Hire for the lights, Sasha Crofts for the photos, Marissa Walsh for the styling and Kenny & Amanda for serenading us.
The season at hand may technically be Autumn, but in my neck of the woods at least, the weather is still rather warm. Now is the time to bask in the last of these tepid afternoons and pleasant evenings and what better way than with drinks in the garden?
Gather a couple of friends, throw a few of your prettiest trinkets on the table, as well as some flowers, candles (always candles!) and download some chilled tunes.
Serve ice teas, some bubbles and simple snacks like fresh fruit and corn chips with queso dip.
Sink back in your chair and allow yourself to enjoy relaxed conversations and the last of what has seemed like an endless Summer.
It has been a little while between drinks but I am glad to be back in this space and looking forward to sharing some fresh and exciting things here on the blog this year.
Earlier this week, I gathered with a small group of fabulous women for a photo shoot for the Nourish and Nest range of Organic Teas and Herbal Tisanes. It was such a fun, refreshing, inspiring time and we finished with afternoon drinks in the garden.
It was a perfect late-Summer style of gathering and I will be sharing all the images in the coming days as well as some ideas and inspirations for gathering and celebrating the last of the balmy weather.
Sitting at the table and enjoying relaxed conversation (well, as relaxed as you can be when you're having your photo taken!) and iced teas got me thinking about all that is fabulous about this time of year. I am also aware of how easy it is to get caught up in always anticipating the next season and in doing so, missing what is in the here and now.
The end of every season is a time to relish in the goodness that is unique to that particular time of year. The awareness that seasonal delights may soon come to an end makes them all the more precious, be they Summer's balmy nights, Autumn's crisp mornings, Winter evenings spent fireside or the freshness that comes with Spring.
And so, as we find ourselves in late Summer, I am grateful for the particular pleasures of this time of year. One of my favourite aspects of this season is the ease with which we can gather with our friends. There is a simplicity to Summer entertaining - a blanket thrown on the grass is really all you need.
I am also delighting in the little things - my youngest babe naked in the backyard as she waters the plants, simple dinners based around what's in the garden (which is predominantly chillies at the moment - not that helpful for feeding children!) and the warm evenings that allow us to work on projects around the home late into the night.
Part of the Nourish and Nest philosophy is to align yourself with the seasons. It is so easy to always be looking ahead to the next season (in the cycle of the year and in our lives), to what is to come. To be 'here' physically but not mentally. But in doing so, we often lose our contentment and miss out on the everyday beauty and opportunity that surrounds us.
Whilst as a lover of Autumn I look forward to the season that is to come, I am also choosing to savour late Summer and all that it entails. I hope you are relishing all that is good in your current season - in the year and in life.
Image credit: Sasha Crofts
We are off on a Summer adventure, so although our online store will remain open 24/7, please note that our next shipping day will be Monday 18th January.
I am looking forward to re-charging the batteries and making the most of these fleeting and precious Summer days.
Whether you are holidaying at this time of year as well or are in your normal rhythm, I hope that you find some time in amongst it all to explore with wonder xx
I hope you have enjoyed the festive season and that there are some beautiful Summer days ahead for you!
Before the month ends, here is my list for December. Please feel free to share in the comments what is filling your days and inspiring you at the moment.
This month, I am:
Enjoying the last few days of having a Christmas tree in the house. I am thankful for a meaningful season, many a fun gathering and some precious moments, but also looking forward to some calmer, more carefree Summer days ahead.
Preparing to take a digital sabbatical!
Heading on a camping trip up the coast. Hello blue skies (hopefully), good swell (to keep my surfer love and friends happy), balmy nights, free range kids and no mobile reception.
Adding another lovely stockist to our list - The Store at Lee & Me.
Loving homemade ice teas. All of our organic teas and herbal tisanes can be made into ice teas, with Refresh being my current favourite blend to drink cold & a little sweet.
Harvesting tomatoes and zucchinis.
Letting myself plan and dream a little for the blank slate that is 2016. Inspired to stop and ponder what the New Year might look like for you? Check out this post.
And that's a wrap. Enjoy the last of your December days good people!
What's not to love about Spring? As I mentioned in my previous post, it is a time of year that seems to invoke a sense of possibility for me. There is a rejuvenating freshness that makes me want to breathe deep and feel grateful.
It was a real pleasure to work on the aromatic blend for our new Spring candle - honeysuckle jasmine, cherry blossom and lime blossom. It is a little bit of whimsy captured in a candle and I am enjoying burning it each night.
I thought I'd share a few behind-the-scenes photos from our Spring shoot (which took place long before Spring of course). Running Nourish and Nest mainly looks like a lot of time (usually solo) in my shed making and packaging and a lot of late nights in front of a computer screen, so photo shoot days are a particular treat. Along with my favourite dream team, I got to spend the day in a beautiful home (thank you Amy!), surrounded by an abundance of candles and flowers. I could think of many worse ways to spend a day!
Photography: Aaron Hughes
Model: Katelin Trollope
Styling: Chloe Skipp
It is incredibly fulfilling to see an idea long thought about become a tangible reality. And so it was with a very full heart that I took my seat at the table for the first of our seasonal gatherings at the start of this month.
The concept was simple - to gather in celebration of the season at hand. To engage with good company over good, local, in-season food.
And so, 20 of us ate and drank and talked and laughed in celebration of Winter.
As is fitting for the coldest season, there were multiples fires lit, hearty food, warming wines and teas and a bit of much-needed decadence to entice us away from our homes and encourage us to linger at the table until the very late hours.
We were rewarded with food that exceeded all expectations from our talented chefs, a full blue moon, new people met and the soul-warming goodness that comes from taking time over a meal with no distractions bar good conversation.
The menu focused on fresh, local, in-season produce and was created to highlight the aromas of our Winter candle with its notes of sweet pine forest, earthy cedar wood & smokey campfire.
A Winter's Feast was generously supported by:
We are incredibly grateful for their support as well as that of Amy & Mark who opened their beautiful home to us for the night (the same home we used for this shoot) and (as always) to our fabulous Katelin (of Atolia fame) who is behind the scenes (or in front of the camera) for much that happens around here.
Keen to gather with us for our Spring celebration? If you sign up for our newsletter (left hand side of our homepage), you'll be the first to know when seats are available at the table.
Winter is such an opptune time to nourish your creativity. We naturally spend more time indoors during the cooler seasons and if we don't have some intentionality about how we spend this extra time in captivity we can end up mindlessly watching too much TV and restlessly longing for beach days and balmy nights to return.
Far better it is to embrace the possibiltiies of this season of cosy and invest a little time in learning a new skill, reigniting an old creative passion or gathering with people who nourish your soul (I have waxed lyrical about the idea of Winter gatherings here).
And if this creativity results in something beautiful to feather your nest with? Well that's all the better.
We have a Weaving Workshop coming up (more on that in a moment) but some other ideas to nourish your creativity include:
If you're a fellow Coal Coast local:
Getting along to a Wild Rumpus workshop.
Getting your bake on at one of the Mill Lane workshops.
If you live further abroad:
Doing an online lettering course, such as this Starter Class by Sean Wes (it relaunches later this month)
Signing up for absolutely anything held at The School.
If you're looking for something free:
There are options galore for getting creative via these gorgeous online spaces:
Now, to let you know about a little something special we have planned.
Part of the philopsophy of Nourish and Nest is to 'connect + create'. So it brings me much pleasure to be able to host a Winter Workshop that combines these two elements and helps people nourish their creativity (me included!). Nourish and Nest are hosting a cosy Winter's afternoon with the talented weaver Kirilee from Loom Loom Shake.
Want to come and connect and create with us? Simply register here.
When it comes to gathering with friends, whether it be as simple as stretching an evening meal to feed a couple of unexpected guests or as lavish as an elaborate weekend party, we often think of Summer as the rightful time of year for entertaining.
But allow me to argue the case for Winter gatherings. I think it is when evenings turn dark early and nights leave us desiring warmth that we need the solace of good company and good food more than ever. Where the warmer months bring with them a carefree whimsy and a quest for fun, Winter can allow opportunity for thoughtful conversations over bowls of soup, for sitting fireside and appreciating the warmth of good people, for being able to fulfil grateful friends' basic needs with a bowl of something nourishing and delicious.
And if you do want to gather people at this time of year, may I suggest a few sure-to-please meals?
Gnudi with wilted bitter greens (this was my favourite go-to recipe when I discovered it last winter)
Pumpkin, Spinach & Fetta Pie via Rethink Nutrition
Nigella's Gingery Hot Duck Salad
Hello Sweet Pea's Roast Pumpkin & Fennel Soup
Pioneer Woman's Rice Pudding (this indulgent and warming and involves a kick of whiskey. Enough said)