Come on a journey of inspiration & adventure while renovate & restore a beautiful Victorian home 'St Elmo' in the picturesque Hunter Valley, Australia & laugh at a few of our family adventures along the way.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

My Christmas Wish List......its HUUUUGE!!!!

Dreaming's free right......

Just as well because my Christmas wish list certainly isn't
I feel like I am ending this year on a bit of a personal low. I don't feel I have achieved any real personal goals. I do feel you should always be learning & improving upon yourself, working towards being a better, smarter, more accomplished person each & every year. I have really dropped the ball this year.
I can say I feel my photography has improved & I have tried to work on lots of different genre's from landscape, portrait,pet photography, home styling, food styling, flat lay & macro

 I have also just purchased a subscription for Adobe Photoshop & Lightroom & a little mini course to teach me the basics on how to use it all because WOW, what an incredible piece of software, the applications are just endless.

 My local photography group are offering a few meet ups in the new on this very topic so I have decided to step out of my comfort zone & instead of just admiring their beautiful photo's on Facebook I will join in & learn from them as well, why not meet a group of people in my area with like minded interests. They do a lot of sunrise meets & this is something I would love to photograph but am often to scared to venture off into the dark alone. Perfect hey, this learning problem is sorted!!!!

Image via ISCD

Whilst working in a tile store is great & affords me the opportunity to help people make design & colour choices for their homes I really do crave a whole lot more of this. I have done a self interest Design & Decoration Course which offered a great deal of useful knowledge but I really would like to take this a whole lot further. 
Whether that means working for myself or someone else Im not sure. I do know I need some more formal qualifications in this area, some in depth knowledge.

At this stage I would be more than happy to study a Certificate IV in Design as a starting point & quite like the look & feel of the course offered by the International School of Colour & Design
ISCD it comes at a cost of a bit over $4000 which you can do through Online learning which suits me with my current work & family commitments.You have 18mths to complete the course & then, if you would like to take it further, you have the option of doing a Diploma in the area you prefer to specialise in.

 Sadly I have to get approval for such a large spend from the financial controller of the house & Im not to sure I will get him over the line on this one.

 Image via The School

I would also love to do a day session or two at the master of design Megan Mortons
 The Styling Inspiration course would be a wonderful way to get started in a career as a stylist & photography 101 would be a huge asset to have as well to co-ordinate with that styling.
Image via The School

It would be awesome to be able to creatively add a professional edge when photographing your vignettes to effectively advertise your work.

Image my own!

So as you can see, my wish list is pushing Santa way outside the realms of gift giving & perhaps the more realistic approach would be to buy a lottery ticket....Ha ha ha.
Do you have a wish list as long as mine with a price tag of around $5000....eeek!!!
I guess it could be worse, I could be dreaming of a single piece of jewelry, I will sooth my guilty conscience by telling myself its all about improving my future,building a great career as the most fantastic designer & stylist the Hunter Valley has ever seen.... ha ha ha!!

Merry Christmas everyone & cheers to a year of self improvement in 2016

Trish xx

P.S all photos are mine unless otherwise stated!

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Pantone chooses two colours for 2016 Colour of the year

I am a little excited about this news.
 I cant believe Pantone have chosen not one, but two of my favourite colours for 2016 Colour of the year.
This means everything I love will become available in my favourite colours, not just in home decor trends but also fashion
Insert a squeal of delight right here!!!!

Here is what Pantone have to say in regard to the latest colour selection

For the first time Pantone introduces two shades, Rose Quartz and Serenity as the PANTONE Color of the Year 2016. Rose Quartz is a persuasive yet gentle tone that conveys compassion and a sense of composure. Serenity is weightless and airy, like the expanse of the blue sky above us, bringing feelings of respite and relaxation even in turbulent times.

This beautiful vignette from French Country Cottage is a stunning example of how to use Rose Quartz. I am seriously obsessed with pinks & coppers at the moment.

How stunning is this inspiration image from the Taubmans website.

There is nothing more serene than coastal style decor wouldn't you agree...
Whilst these colours are great as a stand alone accent the reason Pantone have chosen the two is because they work so well together.

Texas design firm, Collins Interiors
 certainly know how to combine pinks, blues & neutrals to create a serene yet very stylish space.

I wish I had some photos to show of my first ever home back in the early 90's. Yes, I am showing my age now. It was painted pastel shades of blues & pinks throughout,  showing that all things come back into vogue eventually, either that or my style has never changed & I have been waiting for fashion to find me, again, he he he!!!!

What about you, will you be embracing these fresh new colours & incorporating them in a small way in your home, or going completely nuts & painting the entire house?

I have recently purchased some gorgeous new pink linen to sew up some new cushions but that will be for another post.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Trish xx

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

My Christmas Inspiration

Do you have a Christmas theme or colour scheme?

Each year I try to change it up a little, although I have recycled the gold, silver & white them 2 years running just because I got a new tree last year so I got to change my look without changing the theme. I know, I may be a little obsessed. Christmas ornaments can be expensive so I generally only change a few elements from year to year so as not to get to out of control with the decorating budget & I blew my budget on my new tree last year......oops!
I also like co ordinate my wrapping to my tree to complete the look, do you do this as well?

I'm not a tinsel fan but I do like to use white feather boa's.

 They are a great inexpensive way to fill the gaps in your tree as well! 

Of course you cant forget the rest of the house, you've just got to keep the whole theme going right.....

This year I"m planning to add a little pink to my Christmas scheme, pink, gold & white should have me covered.
I started to drift in that direction last year without realizing it, just because I had beautiful fresh hydrangeas from my garden that I couldn't resist placing around the house.

 I would love to decorate pink, copper & white but I am determined to not over spend in this area, so I will just be adding a few inexpensive pink decorations to my already extensive collection of Christmas bits & bobs.I don't imagine the copper trend will hang around long term where as gold & silver will always remain classics.

I love the idea of using pink hydrangeas on the tree, which I can also use around the house at other times of the year as well so they could be a multi use expense.

What do you have planned for you Christmas decorating this year, do you have an uncontrollable urge to change things up each year like me or are you much wiser & happy to decorate your tree the same every year?

If you would like to catch up on some of my previous Christmas posts just click on the links below

Trish xx

P.S All of the images above are my own from my past 3 Christmas's, thankfully I can see my photography & styling has also improved over time, there is hope for me yet, he he he!!!

Friday, September 25, 2015

Sunsets through my iPhone

I love combining my hobbies and fortunately fitness and photography play well together.

Whilst its not practical to carry a bulky DSLR with you when your trying to get a workout its no hassle to carry your phone.

I use an app on my iPhone, combined with my Fitbit HR watch to track the intensity, speed & distance of my walk, which sometimes lags as I stop to take photos...... Wooops!!!!

I am fortunate to live in what I think is a wonderful  location & manage to constantly have something catch my eye. , that I think is photo worthy. 

No doubt others might find my happy snaps boring, but thats okay, it all makes my day better. I love seeing the beauty in my surroundings & often find myself having a small smile for no real reason.

Its not unusual to see me crouched down in a bush trying to frame a shot, or lying on my tummy to get a better angle, people must think I am a bit of a weirdo at times. I even pull over to the side of the road when I am driving because I can't bare to miss capturing a beautiful sunset. In fact My Instagram account is flooded with sunsets.

So if you want to see more pop by my instagram @dreamhousetrish , there is photos other stuff as well, he he he!!!!!

Trish xx

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

What we've been up to lately

Life just seems to whiz by of late, please tell me you notice it as well.
Progress on the dream house has seemed some what slow , in fact almost at times, its been at a stand still, up until the past 3 weeks that is.

The bathroom renovations are still on going but with a house that needs re peiring its not just a case of doing one room at a time. Piers around the area you are working on also need to be replaced to prevent cracking the parts you renovate further down the track. So no pretty pictures yet just mess & cracked walls......Yes, I am finding it hard to be patient.

There has been lots of rebuilding due to old termite damage, as you can see by the photos above they built great nests & had a real feast on some of the timber. Thankfully they are no longer active in the home.

This is what this room looked like before we purchased the house.

We have 95% of the fixtures & fittings sitting in a spare room ready to go & have even done a test run on a temporary wall in our living area to perfect the layout of our mirrors & wall lights so the dream guy could batten out the walls where they will all hang.It would appear that I have a knack of choosing heavy items so a little extra bracing is required.....ooops!

We have had a plumber in & all of the ground work is now done for the plumbing side of things, the electrical wiring is in place & we are just waiting on quotes from a couple of tilers for the tiling & waterproofing
The dream guy has been super busy with his electrical contracting business so even less time for renovating but I think the work side might be the priority at this stage.
If you need an awesome electrician & you're in the Hunter Valley area give him a call

MJE Electrical 0417945526

Sorry for the shameless plug

I am working on design boards for the rest of the house at the same time as this, trying to nail down the perfect kitchen design, including a butlers pantry & choosing the perfect paint colour as I want a cohesive look throughout the house, but these will all require a post of there own.

Until the next update.....

Trish xx

Thursday, June 4, 2015

A plan to kick start clean eating & working out

So if you've been reading my occasional blog posts for a while now you would know I started off the year with so many good intentions, especially in the fitness & nutrition department.
 I was also going to blog super regularly. As always I haven't followed through on ANY of these plans. I am really disappointed in myself for this as I don't even have a real excuse, other than I have over promised & under delivered.
No point whining, it is what it is & I am the only one that can change these things.

You can go back to January read about my original plans on how I intended to get Fit & Healthy if you like or we can just start from scratch, togethor,today.

I have a few issues that hold me back from achieving my goals, the biggest one of all being terrible sugar cravings. That stuff really is addictive & the more of it you eat the more you crave it & the more you make it TABOO, the more you crave it.
I read this great article
from the My Fitness Pal blog & it really makes a lot of sense in saying that we need to learn to just allow ourselves to have a small serving of the foods we crave & even if you feel like more give yourself permission to have another helping on another day.
No more TABOO foods should help minimise those cravings, time to action some portion control instead.

Next up its time to tackle the exercise situation, the plan here is to just make sure I do something 3-4 days per week rather than 6 days a week sometimes twice a day.
I am a real self punisher, so I set these harsh, unrealistic goals of  an extreme exercise regime & perfection in the clean eating department & when I don't achieve it I punish myself with lots & lots of negative self talk & I don't allow myself any luxuries, like new clothes, shoes, haircuts or even a massage on an aching body. This sets off a vicious cycle then of stress & emotional eating, followed by bloating, weight gain & more negative self talk.
How am I going to tackle this craziness, by being kind to myself, loving the body i am in & trying to add some sort of consistency to my training.
My training program is going to consist of a minimum 4 workouts a week. To start I don't care what the workouts consist of, as long as its challenging at the time. It could be weights, a circuit, a brisk walk or some interval training. As long as I am moving & breaking into a sweat it doesn't matter.
I know when I get into the habit of exercising regularly my body then craves water & good clean food, so one really does help the other.

So thats my plan to kick start clean eating & working out
No TABOO foods just portion control & healthy choices 

Workout consistently 4 times a week with reasonable intensity. 

Do you suffer from these issues as well?
How do you tackle the problem?

Trish xx

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