Thursday, 31 July 2014

Love and gratefulness.

It's windy outside.
Flurries of air throwing itself in unexpected gusts.
I feel overwhelmed.

The internet is feeling too much for me.
I don't know what to write. I don't know what to read.
So I just don't.
I feel like I don't know what to share & what not to.
Where do I start?  Where do I stop?

I'm afraid of not knowing important things but so much of what I see is so big and so heavy that I feel as if I can't process it.
So much information so much of the time. Do I really need to know all this stuff?
How do I sift the stuff that really is good for me to know?

I've stopped looking at Facebook and stopped looking at twitter.  I have even stopped looking at Instagram.

So much bad news.  So much stuff. Stuff I just don't feel I could get my head around.
Sometimes it all gets too much.  I feel as if the struggle to keep up with everything becomes this cloud growing like a mushroom over my head.
Yet at the same time I am sucked down a rabbit hole clawing at the falling.
I want to look. I don't want to look.

It's hard right to find the balance between keeping informed and being overwhelmed? How do we pare down the info we look at to just the stuff that is important? How do we find the sensible, clever writing in amongst the sensationalist non-news stories?
I don't know the answer to that.

I started to think about it and I didn't like how I felt.  More questions than answers. Just this overwhelming spinning feeling.

My friend Kate wrote this yesterday & just felt like I was nodding along the whole way.
Her words spilling on the screen as if they had spilt out of me.
It was more like a little shake up/wake up.

Times when things are so overwhelming is the exact most important time to step right back into our inner most selves and find the only things that matter.  But the ones that in times of cloudy busyness get lost first.

I kept looking at what I do thinking "I need to be a better me, I need to be a better blogger, I need to be doing better at the work I do, I need to be a better mother, a better wife, a better daughter, a better sibling, a better friend".
I am doing so many things, not feeling like I am doing anything very well at all.
Really I need to just learn & trust (again) that I am ok.  And OK is good enough.

And then today I wake up and it's the baby that I borne yesterday's SIXTEENTH birthday. How am I even the mother of someone so grown up & so magnificent?
I look at him and feel such pride at what an ace human he is.
So full of optimism, complexity, intellect, humour, thoughtfulness, sensitivity and just so so nice to be around.
I'm so so grateful. My family make everything make sense.

So many things don't make sense.
But I need to remember that making sense of stuff doesn't always amount to anything of importance.
What does make sense is that all that matters is love. And gratefulness.
So today I will focus on these two very important things.

Grateful for all I have.  Grateful that my life is filled with love.
And that in itself is more than enough.

Slow Cooked Spiced Pork Belly with Peanut Chilli Sambal:
This is what my kid has requested for his birthday dinner.

I have published it before here.

For the Sambal:

  • 3-4 cloves garlic, chopped fine
  • 1 lime- zest & juice
  • 3 red chillies, chopped super fine (de-seed if you are not keen on firey chilli!)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted peanuts , chopped fine
  • 2 tablespoons Palm Sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Fish sauce
  • 2 eschalots
  • the roots of 5-6 fresh coriander plants chopped super fine
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • water if necessary
For the Pork Belly:
  • 1.5kg Organic pork belly (have your butcher score the belly well)
  • 2 tablespoons of Salt & Pepper spice mix (recipe here
  • extra salt


Preheat oven to 120C.

Boil a full kettle of water.

Place belly on a rack in the sink and pour entire contents of kettle over the belly & let drain away.

Dry with paper towel and place rack onto baking tray.

Rub well with Salt & Pepper spice mix & extra salt (not more than a tablespoon) to coat skin well.

Add about 2 cups of water to the baking tray and pop in oven, skin facing UP.

Roast for 8 hours.

You can make the Sambal while the pork belly cooks slowly.

Heat canola oil in a saucepan to medium heat and add the eschalots and garlic.

Cook till soft & fragrant and add the chilli & palm sugar, stirring well till the sugar melts.

Add the coriander roots & peanuts, stir to coat.
Now add the fish sauce & lime juice- adjust if necessary to taste.

Add water if necessary & simmer for 5 minutes.

Set aside to serve with cooked Pork (can be reheated if desired).

Once Pork has been cooking for 8 hours turn up the temp to 220C.

Roast for a further 20 minutes or until crackling is crisp.

Remove and serve with steamed rice, Asian greens & Chilli Peanut Sambal.


  1. It's a strange time right now. Lots of people feeling disjointed, out of step & overwhelmed. The need to be all over everything is sometimes all consuming. I think it's good to step back from it all sometimes, re-calibrate & find the things that really matter.
    Big love Ruth x

  2. I totally get it. All this stuff can be so overwhelming. I have an emotional raincoat for times just like these, and I've been wearing it a lot lately. I can't change all the things that are happening in the world and I can't be responsible for everything and everyone in it. But I can change my attitude, and be grateful and positive about what I do have, and all the good stuff (because there's lot of that too,) and in so doing, be the change that I want to see in the world. And for the record, the love that you have for your boys, and the way you and your family work together, that totally makes sense. You are raising five fantastic humans xx

  3. I was reading about terrorism on a news website this morning and thought to myself,'no more'. I just can't worry about any more STUFF.
    Time to step back and listen to more David Bowie. Wasn't he just beautiful when he was young? Love this song, thanks for the clip xo

  4. I hear you and I have similar feelings.
    Happy birthing day to you and happy birthday to your young man.
    cheers Kate

  5. Dearest daughter Ruth, You are the very best daughter I could wish for. (Much more than OK) You have always striven for more and I'm so happy to read that you have decide to concentrate on gratitude, really relishing what you have and who you are. It's no surprise you feel somewhat overwhelmed. The astounding amount of activity you put into any one day is quite phenomenal, as is the energy you put into caring for your precious boys. Above all giving them the benefit of your wise and practical love. OK, you're not perfect. So? You're always honestly doing your very best - and a damned good job you're doing too. You're just right.


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