This week seems to have had a lot of 'special' days in it. Shrove Tuesday found me flipping pancakes for the children's supper. You could say that they were just a tiny bit happy, that instead of eating something healthy, with vegetables included in it ("oh no, not vegetables again!!") they were instead eating pancakes with jam and cream. We are not particularly religious, so I'm not giving up anything for Lent (although frankly, with the horrible diet I'm on at the moment, there isn't much left to give up anyway....water maybe?). 

Some random scenes from the week, blurry iphone style:



The outfit I wore to dinner on Wednesday night. We went into the city to one of the Clubs for a Science talk on Trilobite fossils - one of the best sites in the world is at Kangaroo Island, where we spent our Summer Holidays. It was a very interesting talk, despite me not having a natural history background, and the food was very good and Spanish inspired- the guest speaker was one of the world's foremost authorities on these fossils, originally from Spain (now based at Adelaide University). Dad was my date, as Mr AV as per usual got back too late on the plane from Brisbane (despite it being in his diary for a few months....). I wore this giant liberty print inspired dress, with my pearls and persimmon coloured patent wedges.


Here's my 2 year old scooting off to his Nursery School the other morning. As we make our way down the street, I often see people in their cars start laughing at how hilarious he looks with his little Union Jack helmet, gliding along, mini backpack on.


Valentine's Day is a non event in our house. I gave Mr AV his favourite chocolates, just to make him feel guilty he'd got me nothing - a box of Haigh's Peppermint Creams. This was only because I was passing the factory the day before, so stopped to go in and peruse the discounted seconds section. The factory is not like a normal industrial factory out in the sticks. It's in nice suburban Adelaide, and is quite small scale, with a very large shop at the front. I love Haigh's chocolate - very good quality and definitely the best chocolate made in Australia,  and the company is still privately owned by the Haigh's family in Adelaide.


Last night was my cousin A's engagement party. She is 10 years younger than me, and also an Architect. It was a very hot night - around 35 C and humid at 10pm. The party was in a marquee at my Aunt and Uncle's house. I wore this brown dress - from Cue bought for a wedding around 6 years ago, with these Italian shoes with their little wooden flowers on the toes and stripey fabric platform, a very small Gucci handbag and matt gold bamboo hoop earrings. 



On the house front, I know there are a bunch of people who have been waiting impatiently for something to happen on this blog that isn't just pictures of me in dresses. We are still waiting for the building permits, they should come through in the next week and then we can start demolition. I've finalised the design for the kitchen this weekend, so will draw up the final plans and post them on here soon. 

One thing that was exciting this week was meeting with a Landscape Designer.... I decided that I was overstretched with making decisions about the house, and as the garden is a huge part of the overall design, and I'm not a particularly experienced gardener (more an enthusiastic one at this point) I decided it was better to get in an expert, just as I'm always telling people to do when they're designing their house (you know, that they should hire me). It was a great meeting - I feel that we are definitely on the same page with the design of the garden, and it is always good to get someone else in that sees things differently and with fresh eyes. Some of the images that I gave her of gardens that I like are below - Victorian style, with mixed lush and textured planting. We discussed the front garden, which I put in last year, and she had some good suggestions there too.... It'll be very interesting to see what she comes back with for the overall concept. The first two pictures are of Bronte House in Sydney. Isn't it beautiful?





Hope you had a lovely week. xx

28 comments:

  1. Dear Heidi

    Master 2 is completely adorable on his way to nursery school.

    The garden shots you've selected as examples for your Landscape Designer are all so beautiful - can see they'll work well with your house. It must be so exciting getting to this stage. Best wishes, Pamela

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    1. Well, it's been a long time coming Pamela - I'm very excited that we're about to knock down the back of the house, and my horrible kitchen will soon be gone forever. I can't believe it will be almost 2.5 years....when we moved in I thought it might be 6 months! xx

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  2. One of my favourite book's is Leo Schofield's Garden at Bronte- it is my ideal garden- a cottage style with a lot of typical plants. big chunks of sun and interesting paths. And all that height and texture and coloured foliage is pretty nifty too. x

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    1. I'll have to try to buy a copy of Leo's book. I haven't read it before, but I have "Rural Australian Gardens" and my favourite garden is "Possumwood" which was by the same landscaper - Myles Baldwin. I love all the spiky grasses etc mixed with salvias and sedums. Good contrast. xx

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  3. You looked gorgeous in the flowery dress and pearls! The garden at Bronte House looks stunning.....when I went to the auction at Leo's most recent house he had lots of lawn and big beds of lavender in the garden....the spherical shapes instead of being topiaried box were sandstone....I suppose that the climate down here is much drier than Sydney. His veggie patch was to die for! Rx

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    1. I thought it was fairly wet in Tassie? Shows how much I know! Maybe just colder? Leo had a lovely collection of furniture too I seem to remember. I have specified a veggie garden somewhere in my new garden design.... but I've specified quite a lot of things, so the designer is going to have to cull a few things. She told me "you have a lot of ideas".....! xx

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  4. Oh you are a pretty lot over in Australia, I love your style Heidi and the plans for the garden are getting my thumbs up too, I love mature gardens that are a little bit overgrown.

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    1. When we bought our house it had a very rambling garden, which I loved. It gave a lot of atmosphere. Sadly much has gone with droughts and building works, but hopefully we'll recreate some of that Secret Garden feel in it. xx

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  5. Oh - the gardens are so lovely. We spent the weekend in our garden (it had finally cooled down enough that outside work was an option) cleaning up so we could be ready for the next stage. I bit the bullet in the end and have also arranged for a garden designer to pay us a visit. February is so hard on gardens here that I feel I need some advice about suitable plants etc that will give the look i want and survive summer.

    I like the flowery shoes too.

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    1. I think we're getting your weather now from Perth....it's been hellishly hot all weekend, and today is going to be 39. Please send the cool weather our way too! I think you garden in very challenging conditions - farm gardens are always tricky because of the water thing. Hopefully you'll get some good advice, a garden does add so much to a home xx

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  6. What species tree is that in the second to last picture, do you know? A maple perhaps? Just curious, the forester in me emerging I guess... Love the shoes!

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    1. Hi Liene, I'm not sure what the tree is - it's Pierre Berger's garden I believe, but the leaf shape doesn't look maple shaped... maybe someone else reading will know! Elm maybe? xx

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  7. Love the floral dress. your little one is so adorable!

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    1. He's quite the little character! xx

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  8. Those gardens are stunning. I have no idea what I am doing in the garden, having grown up apartment living in Hong Kong... we had some lovely landscaping done at our ski home in Colorado but I left my husband (together with the professionals) to work out what could grow at our high altitude, etc. The professionals definitely knew their stuff, as it is all looking great 18 months down the line.
    I love the outfit posts... and your little boy looks adorable. I'm was just contemplating ordering a stars and stripes helmet for my 2 year old actually!
    x

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    1. Definitely get the stars and stripes helmet for your 2 year old - they look like little mini stuntmen/women in them! I can understand your difficulties with the garden....our last one was a courtyard, so the current garden is absolutely massive by comparison. xx

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  9. I have a J Crew belt in a aquamarine-y color in the almost exact print as your dress!

    So cheery - the pearls look lovely as well.

    I wish I had scooters when I was two - it is such a great accessory...

    PS the house plans are going to be great fun but for the time being so are the dresses. x

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    1. I have a split readership - there are those that only comment on the house posts, and those that seem to prefer the lifestyle stuff. The house plans are not great fun today - problems with windows. Arghhhh! Time consuming and irritating and fairly boring.

      The dress is a tribute to a liberty print, so your J Crew belt is probably the actual real liberty print in the blue colourway. My daughter has a skirt in the same print, so we can do a mother/daughter matching look. Just like an American Christmas card! xx

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    2. I do see your point...I love it all, houses, plants, dresses, shoes, food - so whatever it is - keep it coming!

      I am doing house plans myself - and so is next door so I might also do posts of their progress as well without them knowing hehe.

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    3. Yes please! Would be very interested to see what you're up to.

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  10. Totally agree about Haigh's, so good!

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    1. I don't think the packets of seconds chockies are going to last that long! xx

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  11. Beautiful gardens! Would you mind saying who you are using for landscaping in Adelaide? Please post about the 'problems with windows' I need to be well informed re house renovation potential problems!! Can't wait for the next house instalment! X

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    1. I'm using Virginia Kennet for the landscaping, she tends to like the style of garden that I've posted pictures of above, so I think we'll suit each other well. As for the window problem....it's very dull. Basically, I've sized all the windows to a particular manufacturers standard sizing (as steel windows are very expensive, this will keep the cost down), and they've quoted for them, the quote has elapsed by under one week, and they've in the meantime changed all their standard range of windows and the windows I've used are now custom sizes (ie much more expensive). As all the planning and engineering has been done with these sizes, it's hard to change them..... so I'm in discussion with them over the pricing and supply and what can be done about it. Very dull, and very, very irritating. I'm about to meet with my Builder to talk it over. xx

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  12. Love the dress, love the shoes, love Haighs!! Must visit there soon for Easter treats, as my husband and youngest son can't have dairy, but can eat Haighs dark chocolate. Your little boy is adorable on his scooter. Good luck with the windows - brings back memories from our renovations which we started in 2010. The builders are long gone, but everything still not finished - thanks to all the jobs my husband elected to do 'himself'!! Jo xx

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    1. Ha Jo! That sounds like our last place....there were a couple of things that didn't get finished until we decided to sell. As for the renovation problems...this is the start I think! There's always something going wrong on a project, get ready for the weekly moaning updates xx

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  13. Love the liberty print dress Heidi - gorgeous colour. I miss Haighs chocolates! I would sneak in for a truffle or frog at least once a week in the Regent Arcade.... And I do love the factory outlet too! Have you been on the free tour there? I did it a long time ago (really just an excuse to buy some factory seconds), but it actually was really nice to see where everything is made and hear the story of how the family business developed. Hope you have had a great week x

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    1. I haven't been on the tour yet - I was thinking I'd book in to take the children next school holidays, although it could be quite an expensive tour after all the chocolate they'd no doubt con me into buying in the shop! xx

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Architect & Interior Designer. Mother of three. A sometimes Cook, Baker, Reader, Gardener, Fashion Lover, Renovator, Writer of random things in South Australia email me on anadelaidevilla@bigpond.com
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