The Open Home

living with an open heart


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{July Gratitudes}

For play dates with cousins and a friend to grow up with.

For new life, new cousins, new friends and more play dates!

For alfresco summer snack times and a dump truck that make the perfect serving dish.

For alfresco summer snack times and a dump truck that makes the perfect serving dish.

For the French - they make good bread.

For the French – they make good bread!

For my humble hairdressing skills that are good enough for her.

For my humble hairdressing skills that are good enough for her.

For grannies and grandpas and snuggles before bedtime.

For grannies and grandpas and snuggles before bedtime.

For a Husby to miss and sweet reminders of love that arrive just when you need them.

For a Husby to miss and sweet reminders of love that arrive just when you need them.

For moments like these that fill my heart with joy and my home with laughter.

For moments like these that fill my heart with joy and my home with laughter.

These are some of the inserts from our family gratitude journal during July, reminding us that God is good and that we are blessed!

What have you been thankful for this month?


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{Daughter Diaries} #15

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Dear Blossom, your ingenuity and bravery never ceases to amaze me. Finding you sat in the porch like this did tickle me somewhat but unfortunately it didn’t last long before the buggy soon capsized. Mummy to the rescue! Dear Bubbles, you have grown so fast into a bouncing, babbling baby. I miss seeing your sweet face as we stroll around, it made hiking back up the mount all the easier. Dearest Daughters, I love walking through life with you two, I’m your loudest cheerleader and promise to always pick you up when you fall.

What have your little ones done to make you laugh lately?


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Making a Statement

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It’s finally up! We’ve been tweaking this family purpose statement for about two years now, waiting on it and then tweaking it some more until we finally had no more tweaks to make! Whatever you want to call it, a vision statement, mission statement or purpose statement, these are the words that ring true for our hearts. Short simple phrases that help guide and encourage us as we continue on this journey of life. A huge thank you to Sarah-Jane at Bird & Bloom for creating this for us. We love it!

Do you have some sort of guiding statement for your life?


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{Projects Around The Open Home} #1

Today marks four months since we moved into our new home and so far we’ve been busying ourselves trying to make it feel like our own. These last few months we’ve mainly focused our attention on the outside of the property, figuring we can be cooped up indoors painting and decorating over the long and wet winter months. Here’s what we’ve been up to lately…

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Pressure cleaning pretty much everything – from the steps and front wall to the patio and even the shed.

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Utilising all the spare bricks on the property to create a flower bed in the back garden.

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The finished bed awaiting it’s new plants and the lawn after we removed about 50+ bulbs from it!

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The Husby playing with his new toy as he tidies up the forest above the man cave.

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Proof that I too get my hands dirty!

Our attempt at land scape gardening.

Our attempt at land scape gardening.

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Our newly painted shed thanks to the help of a lovely volunteer.

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Freshening up the paint work at the front of the house – so grateful to these sweet young ladies!

What projects have you been working on around your home?


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{Daughter Diaries} #14

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Dear Blossom, I’m sorry that our home is no longer directly under the flight path to the airport, plane spotting never got old to you or me. Daddy-Daughter dates at the airport will hopefully give you your fix for now but how about a future career as a pilot? Dear Bubbles, by now you will know well that Mummy doesn’t like to stick to the rules and can often be found buying clothes and toys for you girls from the “boys” section of the stores. I think it may be up to us to educate the world, because you know what? Us girls like playing outside too. We also like trucks and dinosaurs and are even partial to the odd sport! Dearest Daughters, may you always challenge the stereotypes the world throws your way.

What “boy” things do your girls have (and vice versa)?


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{Books Lately} July 2015

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Today I am linking up with Quick Lit over on Modern Mrs Darcy to share with you some short and sweet reviews of the books I’ve been reading lately. Here are the notable.


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Women Are Scary by Melanie Dale

Since becoming a mother I have realised that women are indeed very scary. This mummy gig is pretty isolating and with most of my friends either working nine to fives or living overseas I knew it was time to branch out and start dating some other mums. Enter Melanie Dale and her humorous book on developing ‘mom-lationships’. I enjoyed Melanie’s down to earth writing style, which is consistent with the writings over on her blog. It is full of lots of common sense advice that acts as a helpful reminder on how to pursue new friendships. The baseball analogy used was particularly helpful and enabled me to identify potential friendships and evaluate the bases my current ‘mom-lationships’ are at and come up with a strategy on how to move these forward. It’s an easy read which will have you laughing out loud.


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Replenish by Lisa Grace Byrne

Motherhood is one of the biggest blessings, it brings so much joy and yet it drains so much energy. This is the paradox of motherhood that Lisa Grace Byrne describes in Replenish. As a mother there is a fine line between sacrificing for your children and neglecting your own self care. After reaching a point of complete burnout, Lisa Grace Byrne identified eight core essentials that we mothers need to work on to experience true health and vitality. From nourishing food to joyful movement, authentic connections and anchored quiet – these were the cores that shouted for my attention first. Full of insight and practical tips on how to care for the woman behind the mother, her studies in biochemistry, nutrition and public health along with her accreditation as an holistic therapist fill you with confidence, she clearly knows what she is talking about! This a book all mothers with kiddies still in their nest should own, it’s a great manual for motherhood, a book you will keep coming back to. Five stars from me.


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Clutterfree with Kids by Joshua Becker

It turns out I’m a minimalist and didn’t even know it! I just thought I was a neat freak who didn’t like clutter. Living clutterfree with kids is definitely more of a challenge though, hence why I got a copy of this book. I ended up skimming through it in the end rather than reading it in it’s entirety as a lot of his suggestions were just plain common sense to me and already long established habits in our home. However, I found the chapters on keepsakes and artwork particularly helpful as I tend to be a sentimental creature, hoarding every memento and piece of paper that may be able to document our lives. After reading this I was able to sort through my two boxes of keepsakes and narrow the items down to one box. So although a lot of this book was not new information to me, for the slightly less organised, less tidy people out there it definitely could give you some practical tips on decluttering, which will then free you up to live a better, less distracted life.


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A Life That Says Welcome by Karen Ehman

A Life That Says Welcome is a practical introduction to the art of hospitality, which has much less to do with entertaining and much more to do with the condition of your heart. I’m not entirely sure what I was expecting from this book, but the title appealed to me and I enjoyed it nonetheless. In part it is a record of the authors own experience of running an open home, as well as a practical guide covering chapters on decluttering, cleaning and even easy recipe ideas to help you get started. It’s definitely a book to read with a notebook at hand, ready for jotting down all the ideas you can transfer to your own home. I particularly enjoyed how she affirmed our call to hospitality through searching the scriptures and in particular her reference to Mary & Martha has really stuck with me. She had some refreshing points about these two sisters and from now on I will remember that opening my home and serving others first starts with opening my heart in the presence of the Lord.

What books have you been reading lately?


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{Ten on Ten} July 2015

It’s the tenth of the month and I’m linking up with Rebekah Gough for Ten on Ten.

Here are ten shots trying to capture the beauty in the ordinary…

1. Starting the day with the usual smiles and sticky faces.

1. Starting the day with the usual smiles and sticky faces.

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2. A glorious surprise awaited us in the garden this morning.

3. For long awaited deliveries and summertime patterns.

3. Loving my new summer dresses that arrived with todays post. Finally, something pretty to wear!

4. As requested, or rather demanded, another cuddle time with her wee sister.

4. As requested (or rather, demanded) another cuddle time with her wee sister.

5. Sweaty summertime naps and still smiling!

5. Sweaty summertime naps and still smiling!

5. Another baby for my girls to befriend and time to loan out my pretty eco-baby book again.

6.  Time to loan out my pretty eco-baby book again – another sweet baby on the way!

6. Burning off some energy before bedtime.

7. Burning off some energy before bedtime.

7. One final job for the day and one I love! Folding up the cloth nappies, they're so cute.

8. One final job for the day and one I love! Folding up the cloth nappies, they’re so cute.

9. The real life daughter diaries. Jotting down some love letters to my girls.

9. The real life daughter diaries. Jotting down some love letters to my girls.

10. A quiet evening all to myself, pure bliss!

10. A quiet evening all to myself, pure bliss!

What beauty did you find in the ordinary today?

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