31 December 2011

The year that was.

Tea tastes better in Kate Spade

Thank god the year is almost at an end! It has been the worst year of my life, I mean, how could it not be? I began the year by giving birth to a dead baby.

I am so sick of the pain that surrounds my life every single day. I would do anything in the world to have someone erase the memory of Grace from my mind. I know (hope) that one day her memory will bring me comfort that at least I got to carry her for those precious 6 months and at lease I got to hold her after she was born and tell her how much she was loved. But, at the moment (still only 11 months since her death) her memory haunts me every single day of my life.

I can't go anywhere without imaganing myself with 2 little girls. I imagine how old Grace would be and what she would be doing. At Christmas, I imagined the joy that she would have brought the whole family, some meeting Grace for the first time.
At the park, I'll see a mum with 2 little girls.. one Sophie's age and one a few months old and I think 'that should be me'. But it's not because my little baby is dead.

I get asked almost every day "Is Sophie your only child" and I hate the answer, whatever way I choose to respond (The truthful way or the socially polite way). All the mothers in my mothers group or playgroup with kids that are the same age as Sophie have all had baby number two and most have even had baby number three. It kills me. It kills me every day.

I still wonder why this had to happen to us. I sometimes imagine the alternative universe where Grace is alive and how happy I am. And then I sometimes wonder if I will ever be truly happy again. Grief is like a blanket that has been pulled over the entire world.. There are lots of wonderful things but they are all a little less bright than before.

On top of the unbearable pain of grief, the anger, frustration and sheer heartbreak that I feel after almost a year of negative pregnancy tests is really starting to get me down. I know that another baby will never replace Grace, but really, the only thing I want in the world is to have another baby. I have watched almost every single friend I have either fall pregnant or give birth this year. Of course, I am happy for them but it hurts soo much. I just think "why not me?" And I am soo sick of Tom telling me that it will be my turn soon.

I did a pregnancy test this morning. I had a really good feeling about it. I thought it would be so nice to end the year with the best news ever, but it was negative (again) and now I just want to go to bed and hope that this year ends.. quickly.


It's funny though, because it's also been a good year (if you take away the grief and frustration). Moving to Perth has been wonderful for us and I am really glad we decided to make the move. I have made soo many wonderful friends in Perth who have all put up with my whinging about not falling pregnant (even when most of them are pregnant themselves), I have loved being close to Tom's family who are all so wonderful and supportive and I really feel at home here.

Sophie has made so many lovely friends, we found an excellent montessori school where she has just thrived and she just loves being close to all her grand-parents and aunties. Tom loves his new job here and has remained the eternal optimist throughout everything.

I guess that I do still have quite a bit to be grateful for. So, after that little rant.. I hope that you all have a wonderful 2012. Thanks for all your support over the last year, especially all your kind words and encouragement. I am really, really looking forward to a new year..

Night everyone x

P.s Tea definitely tastes better in a Kate Spade tea cup

30 December 2011



Sophie turned 4 a few days ago. We had a little get together with the family and a few close friends as Sophie had already had her birthday party at the beginning of the month.

It was a bittersweet day for me. It's so lovely to see our beautiful little girl growing up (of course that is also sad in it's own way), but for me it was a tough day because I can't believe that I have a four year old and... no little baby.

Anyways, happy birthday my darling girl!

29 December 2011


It's really not..

Tom's little sister (who is a super trendy young designer) brought several bottles of this Champagne to Christmas.
I rarely drink alcohol (I think I drank enough in my uni days to make up for a lifetime of future abstinence) but I couldn't resist a glass of this Champagne.. I am such a sucker for pretty labels!

(Actually, I think 'Sparkling wine' is the correct term, but eh.)

Christmas etc.

Christmas 1Christmas 2Christmas 3

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. We had a lovely Christmas in sunny ol' Perth.

Christmas in the Porter family is filled with traditions that have been going since Tom was a kid..
The night before includes reading 'the night before Christmas' as a whole family before leaving milk, cookies and carrots out for santa and his reindeer. The next morning everyone draws a name out of a hat to take turns in opening presents while we have tea and croissants. (This takes about 2 hours as the are so many people and soo many presents).
Afterwards everyone heads to the beach for a swim before coming home and getting busy in the kitchen.
The rest of the family arrive at about 3pm and there is another hour or so of opening presents before we all sit down to a late lunch/ early dinner that goes well into the night.

I can't wait to share some of the lovely things I got with you..

22 December 2011

Secret Santa

rob ryan plate

Last month Chantelle from Fat Mum Slim organised a 'social media secret santa'. It was such a great idea and I got the best gift ever.. a Rob Ryan plate that I had been dreaming about for some time.. I could not believe it when I saw it!
So thanks for organising Chantelle and thanks to my secret santa.

You can find the same lovely plate for sale at Lark.

21 December 2011

Homemade Christmas

homemade marmalade

Last Christmas we made every single gift that we gave to family and friends. We made marmalade, lemon cordial, roasted muesli and I made clothes for all the kids. This year I had the same intentions.. we were going to make chutneys and pestos and all sorts of things, but we have been so busy that we never got around to it.

I made up for it though, by buying everything from lovely little shops in my local area like this one and this one, that sell handmade (and often Australian) products. It was actually nice to choose thoughtful little gifts, and I know that Tom's little sisters will be happy to get something other than muesli! (Do you really think that a 19 year old uni student wants lemon cordial for Christmas?! Especially since before Tom met me (and had a lovely disposable income) he would spend about $200 on each sister every Christmas (remember he has FIVE little sisters)! Of course, none of them would ever complain about getting a bottle of homemade cordial after they are use to getting a new MimCo wallet (they are all lovely, down-to-earth girls), but I think they will be happy to get something non-edible this year!!)

Did you do a homemade Christmas? Any suggestions for things I can make next year?

Only 4 more sleeps..

19 December 2011

The weekend that was..

Picnik collage
Picnik collage2

Life is so busy at the moment, but in a good way! Can you believe that is it less than a week till Christmas? Crazy!

We had a lovely weekend.. We celebrated Tom's dad's 67th birthday with a big family breakfast and pavlova later that night, We went for a swim at the beach and tried to teach Sophie how to surf, We went up to the farm, We went out to Sushi train (Sophie's favourite), We did some Christmas shopping, We had lovely Christmas pies from this bakery (Tom's little sister flew in from Melbourne and had picked them up on the way to the airport), I spent a few hours curled up with the latest issue of Frankie and a peppermint tea, Tom and I went to the Moonlight Cinema and drank Champagne together under the stars*, We ate more pavlova and then (all of a sudden) it was Sunday night.

*It sounds like it was very romantic, but I should note here that I complained about all the people spraying insect repellent on every inch of their body and how it was toxic and I could not breath and it was stinging my eyes, and could we move somewhere else and Tom told me that I have the ability to find something negative in every single situation. We still cuddled under the blanket though.

15 December 2011

Garlic prawns

garlic prawns

Dinner = Bill Granger's garlic prawns,
Salad, Crusty sourdough, Olives, Dukkah.

13 December 2011

Patchwork tutu

patchwork skirt (in motion)

patchwork skirt

There is the loveliest little fabric shop just a few minutes walk from our house. The girl who owns the shop is called Sophie too and (my) Sophie loves going there almost as much as I do.
A few months ago, Sophie (the owner of the store) showed me how to make this kids skirt made out of scrap fabric pieces and tulle. She does private lessons in the store and I had the loveliest time there, drinking tea and learning how to make this skirt.

In full bloom


I have had 4 close friends all give birth to baby girls in the last few weeks, so I have been busy making little baby bloomers in sweet fabrics. I finished one pair late last night and hope to finish the rest in the next few days.
It's so nice to be back on my sewing machine. I have not been sewing for a few weeks as my back was so sore after the accident and then I was busy preparing for Sophie's birthday party.
I actually think I get a bit cranky if I don't sew for a few weeks.. Maybe sewing for me is like exercise is for some people!?

12 December 2011



I found this beautiful French brand of kids clothes the other day called Louloueskimo.
I wish they made that polka dot skirt in my size.

11 December 2011

The weekend that I needed. (Gotye included).


We had a lovely weekend up at the farm. (We call it 'the farm' even though it is really half vineyard and half horse stables.. I think because "Shall we head up to the vineyard this weekend" sounds a bit wanky).

It was just what I needed I think, and best of all we went and saw Gotye play at the Belvoir Amphitheatre (it's the most amazing outdoor venue) that is conveniently located about 5 minutes from the farm.

Tom and I used to go and see live music all the time and we both really miss it. The Gotye concert was really good, but I must be getting old because it was so loud and went soo late (I'm such a granny!)

I was thinking today about all the good music we went and saw before Sophie was born. Seeing the French singer Camille live in concert was probably one of the best things I have ever seen, and pretty close second was C.W Stoneking and Regina Spektor.

So tell me.. what was the best concert you have ever been to?

Photo of Sophie and her cousin Ella (and Tom's feet) up at the farm.

09 December 2011

Kids room


I love this room. In fact, I love the whole house.



I have been making quite a bit of pavlova lately. Such a perfect desert on warm summer nights.
I just have to learn to stop at one piece!

The Dance

mumma's shoes

Sophie likes to wear my shoes.
She also likes to dance.
Lately, we have been dancing to this song and this song.
And, if you want to see the best moves ever, watch this.
(Sophie is going to kill me when she is 21!)


moscot sunnies

I bought these Moscot sunnies a few months ago. I never usually buy expensive sunnies because I am sure I will just loose them or drop them, but I saw a mum wearing these at the park and I fell in love with them (I'm obsessed with olive green at the moment).
I guess if I wear them everyday for the next year it will be worth the cost, right?

P.s If they are good enough for Johnny Depp, they are good enough for me!

07 December 2011

C'est Moi


My lovely friend Annelie took some photos of me for my new website (It's coming one day.. I promise!)
If you live in Perth and need a good photographer, I can highly recommend Annelie.
You can find her website here.

Rainbow Cake

rainbow cake

I'm not sure what on earth possessed me to make a rainbow cake for Sophie's party, especially since Tom is the champion baker around here, not me! ..But, I did it!
It took me till 1am the night before and it looked so bad the next morning (it was 35 degrees in Perth that day and all the icing kept melting off) that I quickly made a chocolate cake just in case I needed a back-up!

It turned out alright.. not the prettiest cake from the outside, but hey.. none of the kids seemed to care.

Party time. Before..

party bags

cake making

rainbow cake in progress..

06 December 2011

Milk jug


I really like this milk jug. Perhaps someone will get it for me for Christmas?

Speaking of Christmas, If you want to see something funny... watch this.

Milk jug (and other nice things) from here.

And sometimes life sucks


Last week I had an acupuncture appointment where my acupuncturist told me that it's very important to remain as calm and stress free as possible around ovulation. (Apparently they did a study and proved that the mental state of the mother can affect conception.. Hmm.)

So, the next day I went to a Christmas festival and while Sophie was playing giant chess with her friends I turned around and said something to my friend and when I looked back Sophie was gone. GONE. I spent the next 15 minutes running around like a crazy woman yelling at the top of my lungs. The police were called. I was certain she had been kidnapped and then finally the police found her. Worst 15 minutes of my life (almost).

The day after that I had a terrible car accident. I was waiting at the lights when a car ran into the back of me at 70km an hour and I then hit the car in front. I spent the whole weekend in bed with the worst back pain. I have had chiro appointments, physio appointments and remedial massage and I can now move my head. Woo hoo.

Then I saw my fertility doctor who told me that I should just sit tight for the next 2 months and we can start fertility treatment again in February (I think it's because he wants to go on Christmas holidays) and that made me unhappy.

Then I did another pregnancy test and it was negative. Again.

And then I cried.

(Random photo. At least it's strawberry season!)

29 November 2011

Pear, chocolate and pistachio tart


How amazing does this tart from 'Cannelle et Vanille' look?
This is going to the top of my to do list!

Image from 'Cannelle et Vanille'

28 November 2011

I could not have said it better


'Lighter things will happen to you, birds will steal your husband's sandwich on the beach, and your child will still be dead, and your husband's shock will still be funny, and you will spend your life trying to resolve this.'

Except from 'An exact replica of a figment of my imagination' by Elizabeth McCracken

23 November 2011

News + shoes


Want to hear a funny story? The winner of my lark giveaway was a woman who lives in WA, when she gave me her address I asked her (as a joke) if she knew some friends of ours who lived in the same town. Not only did she know our friends, but we realised (after several emails) that her husband went to primary school with Tom and used to live across the road from where we live now. Tom had not spoken to him in years, but remembers spending school holidays at his parents holiday house! Seriously, how small is the world!

I have to go to the hospital every few days for blood tests at the moment as part of my fertility treatment. I look like a human pincushion.. my poor arms are full of holes!

You may have noticed my new blog design. I am so, so happy with the re-design by the very talented Mervi from 'My Best Friend Jules'. If you are thinking about a new design for your blog I can highly recommend Mervi. She was such a pleasure to deal with!

And in other news, Sophie likes to dress like me. Sometimes she even gets changed just so she can wear "the same as mummy". Its a little embarrassing. Hence the matching shoes (luckily not the same colour)!

22 November 2011

Party time


It has taken us 4 years to realise that no one wants to go to a party the day after boxing day (Sophie's birthday). So this year we are having her party a month early.

I bought these gorgeous invitations and party bags from Poppies for Grace.

How cute are the lolly bags! I really love this brand, even if the name makes me sad.

19 November 2011

A to Z


A. Age: Almost 29.
B. Bed size: Queen, (but dreaming of owning a king).
C. Chore that you hate: Cleaning the compost bin.
D. Dogs: One day.. when we buy a house with a backyard.
E. Essential start to your day: Usually I can't even open my eyes without a pot of english breakfast tea, but lately I have been drinking fresh vegetable juice instead (as part of my 'fertility diet').
F. Favorite color: Teal blue.. but wearing lots of olive green and coral at the moment (not at the same time!)
G. Gold or Silver: Silver.
H. Height: 170cm
I. Instruments you play: I used to play the clarinet but Tom actually thinks I am tone deaf, so maybe I should stay away from instruments (and singing!)
J. Job title: Hmm.. full time mum for now, soon to be small business owner and one day a nutritionist.
K. Kids: Sophie. (I hate this question!)
L. Live: Perth, Western Australia.
M. Mother’s name: Dianne.
N. Nicknames: I don't have one.. I'll think of one by the end of the day and insist people call me that from now on.
O. Overnight hospital stays: I had glandular fever when I was a teenager and ended up in hospital for a few nights and then I spent 3 nights in hospital after Grace was born/died. Sob.
P. Pet peeves: I can't think of any at the moment.. I'll get back to you on this one. EDIT: Smoking. I hate smoking. I think it is disgusting and I can't understand why anyone would do it.
Q. Quote from a movie: 'Idiot' from Napoleon Dynamite is the only one I can think of. We quote '30 rock' quite a bit.
R. Right or left handed: Right.
S. Siblings: 3 half brothers and 3 half sisters (who are all at least 20 years older than me) and 5 sisters-in-law (Tom's younger sisters).
T. Time you wake up: Anywhere between 6am and 9am depending on what I am doing that day. But, the later the better.. I am not a morning person, but I wish I was.
U. Underwear: Yes thanks.
V. Vegetable you hate: Hmm.. I'm not a fan of cooked carrots but love them raw.
W. What makes you run late: Everything, Anything.. I'm late almost everywhere I go. Always late.. no matter how hard I try not to be. Sorry!
X. X-Rays you’ve had: A few.
Y. Yummy food that you make: Well, Tom makes much better food than me, but my rice pudding is pretty yummy.
Z. Zoo animal: Elephants are quite good.

Thanks for the idea Mervi!

18 November 2011



Tom made this pasta for lunch the other day in about 10 minutes. Bacon, spaghetti, mixed lettuce, lemon juice, olive oil, cracked pepper and parmesan. Yum!

15 November 2011

Fun, Not so fun, Fun.

little fairy

We went to a fairy birthday on the weekend. Sophie thought it was the best thing ever.

Today I had a Hysterosalpingograph. (Yep!) It is where they inject radioactive dye into your uterus to make sure your fallopian tubes are working. It hurt. ALOT.

Last night Tom and I went and saw 'Midnight in Paris'. I thought it was brilliant.

14 November 2011

The Winner!!

Here we go..

who will win?

The winner of the Lark giveaway is.. (drum roll please)..

the winner!

Congratulations Tea with Lucy!

Woo hoo!

13 November 2011

The production line..


Busy, busy.

And yes, I have calmed down since yesterday.
Onwards and upwards I guess..



Tom has been making bruschetta quite a bit lately.
Such a great dish for warm (almost) summer nights.

12 November 2011

The F word.


I am so friggin sick of seeing this stupid friggin single pink line.
For F sake, what the hell is going on?!

Month after month of disappointment.
It's killing me.

All I want is to be pregnant again.
Having to deal with infertility on top of the pain of losing Grace is unbearable.

Completely unbearable.
(Insert F word here).

11 November 2011

Husband of the year..


Exhibit A.

This is my husband. (In France. Ooh la la.)
This morning in the time between getting up and going to work, he..
-made a pot of tea, took his dad a cup of tea in bed (like he does every morning.. so cute!)
-showered, dressed, dressed Sophie.
-cleaned Sophie's room and packed away all her toys, folded all her clean clothes
-made her bed
-hung out the wet washing that I forgot about yesterday
-Put on and hung another load of washing
-did the dishes
-made Sophie's lunch for school
-made Sophie pancakes and then..
-brought me pancakes IN BED!!!!!

He did this all before I had even opened my eyes, and this is actually what he does almost every morning before I wake up! Sometimes he even fits in a run too.

I know. You hate me.
P.s Did I mention that Tom speaks fluent French too?

10 November 2011



I'm having an orange moment. Any shade will do.

Maybe it's my Dutch blood?

09 November 2011

It's almost here..

Summer, that is.


One of my favourite things about Perth is that the sun sets over the ocean.
It's such a novelty for someone who grew up on the east coast.



Is this the most perfect pear you have ever seen?

07 November 2011


A few months ago we spent the day at our friend Rosie's place in the country.
It was the most adorable little cottage I have ever seen..








Can you believe that it is actually one of the oldest buildings in Western Australia? It was built around 1830.
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