Sunday, October 7, 2012

This blog had moved!

It's ben a few years ago now but while I'm here I thought I'd let u know anyway: Find me at: www.dailymusement.blogspot.com

Saturday, February 5, 2011

First Week of February

On Monday I got a call back from Adore Tea. I didn’t get the job. I prayed a lot about this job. I’ve been asking constantly that God will only grant me a job that He wants for me. I wasn’t expecting that after the interviews and trial, the final answer would be ‘no’. But, at the same time I was secretly relieved. Adore Tea is located 45 minutes away by bus and I had to work 6 days a week to start off with which means that I also have to work on weekends. But I didn’t care about those things when I applied; I just want to get hired.

What Greg said to this situation was, “Come on Fionna. I’m disappointed as well, but do you really think you’d be able to work full time, run your Etsy store and do music at the same time? You’d probably look back at this in a few weeks and just be glad you didn’t get this job.”

With that confrontation, I had one of those twisty embarrassing feelings that goes something like- ‘yes I know what I’m in for, but I was hoping you don’t so that I could overlook all those risks and start working however hard I want! I hate to know that you know this all along!’. But all those thoughts sums up into hiding under a pillow going,“O, shut up! Shut up! Shut up...!!!" Greg’s mum also mentioned that she didn’t think the job would be good for me if I have to work on weekends, because that would mean I have to spend less time with Greg.

Knowing that, I thank God for His wisdom and for laying His hands in my situation, as well as everyone who had prayed for me. That night I also learnt what humble cake tastes like. My parents put me through a private school, I travel a lot, have a degree, and yet I don’t need those things to get a job. But with all those privileges, I still grew up feeling like the world is impossible to live in.

The next morning, my friend Meg Milton sent me a quote of encouragement. It is from the writings of Andrew Murray when he was asked from a friend of how he coped during a time of crisis:

“First: He brought me here, it is by His will I am in this strait place; in that I will rest.
Next: He will keep me here in His love, and give me grace in this trial to behave as His child.
Then: He will make the trial a blessing, teaching me the lessons He intends me to learn, and working in me the grace He means to bestow.
Last: In His good time, He can bring me out again--how and when, He knows.
Say: I am HERE--By God's appointment, in His keeping, under His training, for His time.”

I rest on those words knowing that God had answered me once and He will answer me again. I picked up what’s left of my courage and my pile of resumes and start knocking on florists doors again. I was scared and tired from the heat, but I’m glad I went because at the end of the day, I found 2 things:

A Canberra handmade shop had opened last year in April. I just happen to walk pass it because it was next to a florist I had hand in my resume into. It’s basically handmade things appearing in the commercial world- and stuff like that just doesn’t happen in Canberra. Caberra is full of talented artists, but there’s always a definite line between ‘retail’ and ‘market’ unlike places like Melbourne or Sydney. I saw so many items there that I’ve seen sold on Etsy and kindda felt like I was meeting familiar faces. So I went up to the counter and ask what do I have to do to get my stuff in the store.

Turns out they also have a big market happening 3 times a year at the Convention Centre. This is really huge for me... it seems like the logical next step as a handmade artist to be involved in stuff like this.



Just before I left for home, I went to Prickles florist near the bus stop. Last week my friend Simon told me that they were interviewing people, but I didn’t go because of Adore Tea. Turns out she hadn’t found anyone yet and after she saw some photos of my flower arrangements, she slot me in for a trial. When she said ‘trial’ I thought it was only a couple of hours of work to see if she likes me or not. Turns out it was actually a 3 months trial period... I only realize this on my first day at work.

My first day at Prickles was nerve racking because there’s A LOT to learn and it’s a very different florist that I’ve ever worked in. I felt like I have to move and learn fast all the time, so it makes me really nervous. With that being said, I only work 3 days a week plus some weekends if there’s weddings involved. And the shop is only 10 minutes by bus from home.



When Greg’s mum heard about this place she said, “It looks like your name is written all over that one”. My friend Amanda wrote to me on facebook ,” what wonderful news. The type of job you want. The place you want. The hours you want. What more could you want?”. Oh my goodness, she’s SO right! If that’s what I want then the job at Adore Tea wasn’t even close to what suits me! It’s really funny how sometimes our friends and relatives are more aware of what you are and what you need a lot more than yourself. Those things are a sign from God... a big fat ‘YES’ coming down from the sky. Maybe sometimes my head is just crazy and unreasonable. I’m just SO thankful to know that someone BIGGER than me is taking control of my life.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

January in a Nutshell

Oh my goodness... is it REALLY the end of the month already...???!!!

I’m STILL unemployed but for some reason my time had been chewed up like a caterpillar on a basil leaf. How can this be?



On the 5-10th, me and 4 other random comrades hiked for 6 days along the famous great ocean road. And what I mean by random is that we only knew one or two other person on the team but not the rest. Nevertheless we all got along extremely well to the point where we were reluctant to reach the end. It was a pretty cruisy hike though. The track was very well paved, 3 out of 5 campsites were connected to civilization, and there’s a long drop with a view and toilet papers on every campsite! I even hiked with my snickers. We started from Cape Otway through to the Twelve Apostles.



This photo was taken at the end of the hike, Bec, Jake, Liz me and Amanda posing in front of the Twelve Apostles.

When the hike was over, I tried to get back to Canberra as soon as I can and I was lucky that Amanda was planning to do the same. I was missing my husband and also, my parents are coming to stay over for 5 days, on top of that my friend Sienna is scoring gigs out of nowhere and she asked me to join her band. Of course I jumped right in to that opportunity!

The day I reached Canberra, I looked up for jobs online and found one by “Adore Tea”- a tea house that I have submitted my resume almost a month ago. So the next day I wrote to them regarding their ad and the resume that I’ve submitted. It took me half the day to write to them. An hour after I pressed ‘send’ , I got a call back from them pretty much giving me a phone interview. 15 minutes later, I got offered a face to face interview.



My parents were eagerly waiting for me in my tiny home as I caught the bus back from the interview. The interview went well and I have passed the second test,but they wanted me to have a work trial before they decide if they want me or not. Oh geez, it’s a tea shop! Who would’ve thought it would be this hard to get in?

Having the parents around the house were a bit bittersweet too. Initially they refused to stay at my house because it was too small and dirty for their standards. So I let mum do her motherly thing and she started cleaning re-arrange the whole house, gave up my bed for them while Greg and I slept in our sleeping bags in the living room. Though, I’m just glad that we manage to entertain them enough. Lyndell, Colin and Simon were my knight in shining armour in this matter. They gave me ideas of things to do and has time to do those activities with us! We also celebrated my dad's birthday with my friends. I hope spending birthday with 10 kids in their 20's will make my dad feel a little younger? Maybe?



2 days after my parents left, it was time to go camping with Greg, Liz and Caroline. We’ve been planning this trip since December. By then it felt like I’ve slept more inside a sleeping bag than on a bed. We went to a place called Picnic Point, Liz’s childhood Haven.... I remembered I was feeling very frustrated with myself that whole week in Canberra. When I suddenly found myself sitting in Liz’s car, listening to Jack Johnson driving towards the beach, the feeling of extreme frustration was instantly switched into pure joy. It felt rather comical.



We only stayed for one night in picnic point, but we managed to swim in the beach a couple of times, went exploring, collect wood for the fire and cooked yummy things on it. It was soooo relaxing! I really didn’t want to go back to Canberra by the end of it.





But sure enough, the week after that is spent back in Canberra again. During the week I tried to get myself back into playing music again. I also worked very hard in opening up my new Etsy shop this week. But when I opened it up for critiques, I found myself shaken by some of the comments and didn’t feel very satisfied with the things I was proud of. I’m still trying to process the feedback and evaluating the results for my next point of action.



This is the photo of my name card and jewelry boxes I've made for the new shop I've been working on this week. I've sticked to the name of letterstoamuseme.etsy.com

Australia day on Wednesday was good. Greg was with me at home while I play some tunes on the piano. At night some of our friends and us went for a picnic around the lake, with the rest of Canberra. We saw some live music and enjoyed the fireworks.

So that was January in a nutshell....

Today I’ve done my work trial at Adore Tea and will find out whether I get in or not by tomorrow... can’t wait!!! >.<

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Sparkly New Year...!

Me, Greg, and his brother Luke, were desperate to get away to the coast this New Years Eve. I've been told that it used to be a Melmoth tradition to go away to the coast in Narooma after Christmas. The kids are all grown up now and the house in Narooma is sold, so it's time for us to make our own plans! It doesn't help to plan our holiday 2 days before new year... everyone else had probably booked their campsites 6 months in advance, and everything is booked out.

I decided to give Liz a call to see if we could stay at her place in Tathra for New Year. I was embarrased to give her a call 2 days before new year, but she and her parents were open to our spontaneity and let us stayed in their house. And so, we spent the last day of 2010 hanging out with Liz and her fam, swimming and eating fish and chips in beside the beach in the afternoon. it. was.
AWESOME...!!! A really good break from Canberra really.



We head back home for showers and decided to go back out again for NYE. Out of all our choices, we decided to settle in a secluded nudist beach called 'Moon Bay'. We had to drive down into the forest and walk for about 20 minutes to actually get to the beach. We're really curious about what happen if we do run into those people, but I can tell you now that the beach remained completely empty for the night.



We lit a fire and toasted homegrown strawberries and marshmallow with 3 hours and a bit till midnight. Most of the time we tried to collect sticks and wood to keep the fire going. We also have 360 sparklers waiting to be used. Liz was wondering if we could take sparklers photos with the timer, and somehow that idea evolved into us shaping words with the sparklers.

This is our first trial run trying to write 2011:



Eventually we got better and spent an hour or so doing these:



And then we went crazy and did these (you can sort of figure out our crazy dance moves by the the sparklers. The dots on the ground is pretty much Greg or Luke falling flat on the sand)



And this is what we did with the rest of the sparklers:

video

So just before 2011 commences, the 4 of us managed to discover the art of drawing with sparklers... who knows,it might catch on. Happy 2011 everyoooooone...!!! :D

Monday, December 27, 2010

This Christmas...



I couldn’t say too much about what we did this Christmas, apart from that everything was so pleasantly simple. Since harvest is still going, we decided to celebrate Christmas in Greg's parents farm as a small family. The rain that’s meant to bless them this year had ruined some of the crops instead. They lost the quality of the grain which means they will worth less money, but the quantity of grain will make up parts of the damage.

The Christmas tree had no tinsels or had been over-decorated, and although the room had been decorated with some Christmas items, it wasn’t overdone which was really nice. The usual 'Melmoth' Christmas is basically to wake up in the morning to go to church, came back home at 11am and sit around in the living room with some snacks while we open up the presents. We had a few people visiting us during the weekend for some snacks, a chat and a laugh. It makes the house is sitting in the middle of nowhere feels unbelievably alive.



I never celebrated Christmas properly in my own family. I love it that I get to experience my first Christmas as a married woman sitting around the living room, and exchanging presents with the people we love- the way most people would celebrate Christmas properly. Hopefully Greg and I will be able to make our own Christmas tradition this way when we have kids.

We got some unexpectedly awesome stuff this year. Greg’s brother Luke gave us some money for us to buy ourselves a pet fish because he couldn’t wrap them to give it to us. I used it to buy some neon tetras and a catfish with it so far. His other brother, Phil gave us the book, “Ministry of Cooking” by Jamie Oliver which I’ve been burying my head into throughout the weekend. Greg’s parents bought us 2 fold up camping chairs, a tent and a set of gorgeous handmade glass coasters.

Here's some photos for a sneakapeak review of what's going on in the Melmoth house:








Greg's mum got a bicycle from her husband which was a big thing. Greg's dad is really into cycling and so he bought her a snazzy bike in hope that she'll ride with him whenever they can. Although she's not sure if that's what she wants for Christmas, but they end up going for a ride in the evening to test it out. The dog, Lizzi went chasing them away as they ride up along the road and back again. You can see her in the photo chasing the bike, she was pretty determined! She was so exhausted after the run that she collapsed straight to her cushion for a nap.





I had the honor to cook the family Christmas dinner for the night. I was making Indonesian fried rice and the Indonesian fruit jelly that I used to have all the time growing up. Both dishes turned out to be disastrous!!! I'm not used to the house’s electric stove and didn’t realize that I didn't cook certain things through properly. The jelly didn’t even set and we just end up having this failed jelly fruit soup. I was so embarrassed, and I can’t believe everyone ate it regardless. They said it was part of their responsibility that they're willing to take when they agreed to accept me as one of the Melmoths. Hehe… how gracious! I love my family. At least I didn’t make them get sick in the morning! :p

I didn’t take a photo of that moment at all. It was all too embarrassing and I made sure everyone quickly ate all the evidence before somebody took a shot with my camera. So in case you feel cheated, you will get to see some photos of the wheat harvest in action instead…





So, how’s YOUR Christmas been? I'm really looking forward to hear everyone else’s stories when all the madness is over. Happy holidays! =)

Friday, December 17, 2010

Amuseme vs Beadsforpeace


So, immediately I need to clarify the reasons behind changing a shop entirely even though I’m still focusing in jewelry for both shops. One reason behind it is because I moved from Indonesia to Australia, so automatically everything changes. I have to change the details on every info in listing I give because of the location difference, the postage, the policies, and the list goes on and on. I could still keep the name beadsforpeace and change all those details, but I think this is a great time to wipe it all out because I’ve learnt A LOT after being 2 years in Etsy and felt that Amuseme is going to be too big of a step up from beadsforpeace for them to be combined together.


When I opened up beadsforpeace, I absolutely had no idea what I was doing. I just needed a creative outlet from my super deadly boring job that I’m totally not passionate about. Beadsforpeace was more like, I’ve got stuff, a computer, a camera and internet, let’s do it! Etsy is so affordable that I thought the shop would just be a mini gallery where I can show people the stuff I made. And so, that one fateful day as I was listing my first few items, I got a sale WHILE I was listing them. The moment I found out I ran hysterically to my mum and we started jumping around her room like nuts and spent the night trying to figure out how to pack the stuff! Hehe, that was fun! So, this is gonna sounds a bit silly but unlike my expectations, the night I opened the shop was the same night that I was actually open to the reality that I AM a seller. Though, I was still a bit shy and I never really promote myself or tell people that I’m doing this. I only have one way to promote: do nothing, let mum do all the talking.

Of course everything didn’t really go all that smooth. Year 2008/2009 was pretty much wasted on my stupid 12 hour job (9 hours in the office, 3 hours in traffic) So boring that I thought I might as well be dead. Think that year was like, 60% being bored to death 15% getting strange diseases, 15% travelling and 0% socializing. Anyway… the point is, I just didn’t create enough to actually run and learn about the shop and to be happy.


Year 2010 however, is looking up, waaay up! I can almost say that besides dealing with loads of silly paperwork to move and be married, I spent this year predominantly getting high on creating stuff, and it has been super awesome!!! It’s probably the side effect on being bored to death, I suddenly have the capacity to just burst like crazy. Unlike beadsforpeace, I’m actually planning what I want to see in Amuseme before I open it. My motto, my goals, how I will market my stuff, super exciting stuff like that….

The product is going to be different between the shops because I have found myself getting so ADDICTED to wire. Maybe it’s one of those “You don’t choose the medium but the medium choose you” sort of situation. I just go through rolls and rolls of them without realizing, and the busier I get, the more of a wreck my house gets… I know I’m a girly girl, but I still wish that I’m better at multi tasking than I am now….

So...it’s exactly a week before Christmas… hope you all are getting your preparations sorted and have fun while doing it! :D

Xox

Monday, December 13, 2010

Another Beginning



2 weeks ago, I stayed up late sketching round about what my new Etsy shop is going to be like. The what, the branding, the logo, the do’s and don’ts. The next morning I unconsciously made the ultimate decision, that being an artist is going to be my primary concern. If I get a job, it will only be part time or casual. Before this I would be looking for full time job if I could. So I went to go for more job hunting in the rain. I came home to the conclusion that the jobs I'm interested in are not available until after Christmas, and I thought that worked out well if I want the new Etsy shop to open up properly by January/Early Feb.


It wasn’t hard to know why I made this decision and what I’m going to do with it, but I try not to think where this journey is going to take me.

I’ve come up with the shop name ‘Amuseme” one frustrated afternoon, it was one of those days when I know I’ve got lots of stuff to do but don’t know what it is…. And the name sort of struck me like someone shouts at my brain. I’ve taken a poll to some friends about the name and they seem to like it. I’m sure whatever it is, it will eventually grow on me.

Although I try not to think about the importance of the brand name when choosing one, I picked up a valuable point from the acapella group ‘The Idea of North’. When they picked their band name, they intentionally picked a completely random brand name because they don’t want their music to define by the brand. I personally think that’s a really good decision to go for. So instead of calling my shop ”beautifuljewelry” I’d rather call it “Possums n Squirrels” or “blah” even.


As soon as I made the commitement, everything seem to fall into place, and my days are becoming more purposeful. I’m suddenly chased by time and becoming more focused in developing my shop before Christmas is over.

It seemed like it was the right decision to make for now. I’m loving my life everyday to just drink tea, be creative, work at home while listening to movie commentaries in the background. I’m really content to just work from morning until the husband arrived home in time to cook dinner. Some days a friend would call to meet up for lunch and it feels SO good to just go without having anyone sneering at me.

One of my favorite things to do for short breaks from work is watching my plants grow. I only planted the seeds with my friend Liz a couple of weeks back, and they’re already sprouting so beautifully and looked sooooo cute!


They're all the flowers and herb seeds I've received from wedding presents and from the bridal kitchen shower. Think I've planted most of them already. The flowers I've got are Dahlia, Nasturium, Forget me Nots, Swan River Daisy and english daisy. I've also planted herbs and cherry tomatoes.


Oh the simple joys in life… I may not ever be satisfied with my own achievements, but I gotta say that God has been very good to me to let me experience this level of happiness in life. =)