Wrapping the week up…

Langkawi sky

Selamat datang!

It has been a busy week. My day job boss (I do one day a week, as a kitchen hand and serving at the counter, for a vegetarian takeaway in the Smith Street mall) asked me to fill in for an absent co-worker.

I grabbed the chance to earn a bit more money because, last Wednesday night, I did a pretty crazy thing: my friend Jenni, who lives in Langkawi, sent me Air Asia’s latest Promo Flights e-mail, and as I was  clicking through the destinations and the prices I thought, “Why not?”

I’ve never been to Malaysia. I have a few friends there. I love the multicultural influences of their Indian, Nyonya, Malaysian, and Chinese cuisine. I’m comfortable and familiar with Southeast Asian culture. And the flights were thrillingly cheap…albeit travel dates were all the way in February 2012.

So I booked a flight to Kuala Lumpur, with plans of heading down to Langkawi, and over to Penang. In a daze, I told Kris that night “Um…I’m going to Langkawi and Penang…” His response was (and this is Kris, all over), “Great idea! When do you go? The food is Penang is fabulous…” Have I said how much I love this man? Well, I say it again. ❤

“Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it!”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Penang MalaysiaThen that same night I received a comment over on my other blog from pc, the warm and enthusiastic craft and family-life blogger of MeiJo’s Joy. She lives in Penang. It seemed like a sign that I had made the right move. I wrote to her, and she replied with a thrilled “Selamat datang!” We’ll be meeting up when I get there. I know it’s half a year away, yet, but I can’t help it, I’m excited!

 The Royal Darwin Show

The Royal Darwin Show

An annual event, The Royal Darwin Show is happening next weekend (from Thursday, the 21st to Saturday, the 23rd). This is its 60th year, and so there’s going to be a bigger celebration this time around. I must confess that I have not yet been to a show…these large agricultural & community shows are a facet of Australian culture that I haven’t been able to relate to, not having such a thing in the Philippines. Should I get a denim shirt and a slouch hat? ;D

Well, that’s all about to change…I’ve been asked to come to The Show as a judge of entries in the newly created Bookbinding section. I had to laugh when they asked me…I haven’t had a chance to enter my own work in the event, and here I’m going to be judging! I fret that I’m not qualified to judge other people’s bookbinding creations…it seems like a big responsibility to carry around. But I said yes, and will try to do the job as gracefully as I can.

I’ll let you know what the Show was like, after I’ve been. In between being all big-gestured and swaggery, seein’ as I’ll be Ms. Judge an’all, and everyone callin’ me “Yer Honor,” (You’re not that kind of Judge, Nat!) I’ll be firing my camera like mad. What should I be on the lookout for at The Royal Darwin Show? Can you give me some tips? I hope I spot cowboys…I really want to shoot some cowboys. *yee-haw!*

Heritage Collection Banjo Patterson lady's hat in fawn

The Homemade Gift Wrap


And a spot of color to end this post: I sold another wooden journal through my Madeit shop the other day, and the lady who bought it said it was a “gift to herself”, so I thought I’d wrap her purchase up…just a bit of ‘pretty’ to surprise her when she gets her parcel.

I know there are fancy cutters and dies that you can do this with, these days…as well as lovely printed papers and matching cutouts, decals, tags to be bought at shops. But I like to do things myself, using what I have, and putting a bit of playfulness and care into the job. Buy yet another machine, just to do this? Why? When my goal—half the time, anyway—is to be creative, see what I’m capable of, and make things intensely personal? (To spend less on ready-mades and mass-produced items being the other half). I don’t want to be dependent on companies, shops, specially-made niche-market products, and spending, just to make something pretty; and I don’t want to have to share my satisfaction, when it’s done, with a brand name.


It isn’t perfect. I made a little tear in the red paper when I was pulling the masking tape off. But I don’t mind, and I don’t think my buyer will, either. After all, it’s just something she’s going to remove when she gets her journal.

I took some pictures when I did this (really, you don’t need pictures, it was that easy, but anyway…) and will put a post up on From Hell to Breakfast soon, if you want to see how it’s done.



9 thoughts on “Wrapping the week up…

    1. Just your regular agricultural and local talents country show—surrounded as we are by farms, homesteads, and cattle stations. See link to the Darwin Show’s site for more info.


  1. That is brilliant Nat…off to the show and as the Judge….you’re special.
    I have to confess I’ve entered a show or three. As kids we rode horses at pony club and our parents took us to the shows. It was a lot of work but heaps of fun. We bred the ponies , broke them to ride and sold them when they had won some shows….Our family wasn’t wealthy so that meant we could afford the gear etc…. I think it was good to learn to win and loose….I got my kids to enter our local show…I still put in some craft and cooking or flowers.
    You will make a top judge….My idea of a show entry is that it should be Clean, have good skills / workmanship and fit the purpose….As for what to photograph….I’m sure there will be some sights
    good luck…..Shazzy
    Penang sounds great…..


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