Tuesday, January 12, 2010

I Still Call Australia Home

Lately I have been a little homesick.

Australia at this time of year is stinking hot, so Christmas is so different back there than it is here in the US. Not that I don't love the winter Christmases in the US, but I haven't been back home in seven years, so I am missing it.


While I do consider California home (where I lived before Texas)- Australia is my true home. This year, the day after Christmas, I planned a Cricket Match. The day after Christmas in Australia is Boxing Day, and that's when everyone gathers around the TV to watch the Boxing Day Test (Cricket) on TV - so in homage to my home traditions, I hosted a Boxing Day Cricket Match. It was a lot of fun, but made me all the more homesick.

So walllowing in my homesick state, I was delighted to come across Dearne from Mainichi, a lovely Etsy store based in Melbourne Australia. Being so far from home, whenever I come across a fellow Aussie - I feel some sort of connection with them. Dearne's lovely store is such a haven of lovely handmade wearable art. She sells really unique leather necklaces, and the cutest little felted pins. Everything has such character to it.


Dearne first came across the Etsy phenomenon when her friend started up an Etsy store selling toys for children. She showed Dearne the community spirit behind Etsy, and spoke about blogging and selling items online at a Creative Women's meeting that Dearne had set up. Dearne's inspiration comes from traveling, her husband and son, fashion, blogging, and her city of Melbourne. It's full of creative people, interesting architecture and unique design. She is also inspired by the Faythe Levine "Handmade Nation" DVD (watch the trailer, it definitely looks inspiring!).
Her favorite colors are combinations of bright hues tied in with a little charcoal grey, but she also enjoys mixtures of neutral shades.


While Dearne enjoys art and creating, she also enjoys a good dessert. One of her favorites is an Aussie staple (that I miss sooo much!) - Pavlova. It's basically a meringue topped with lots of fruit and whipped cream. And when she feels like something different, her alternative favorites (because everyone needs a backup! LOL) are Chocolate Brownies and Aussie Chef Stephanie Alexander's Middle Eastern Orange Cake.

Dearne is generously giving away to prize to one lucky reader - their choice of either an Embroidered Felt Face Pin or a Digit Leather Necklace. To enter, please leave a comment here letting me know what makes you think of home when you're away. I will announce the winner on Sunday.

(PS. My latest article with Meylah is up. It's all about blogging and crafting etiquette. Stop by and leave some comment love!)


Linz said...

I got engaged in Melbourne... I don't blame you for missing Australia. Oftentimes, I yearn to pick up my roots and move to Australia.

Although it's pretty cliche, the one thing that makes me think of (ache for) home: Family. I've lived in Los Angeles all my life, but when my brother and his family moved to Texas, this city suddenly felt foreign to me. Especially during the holidays, my home feels strange, as if I lost my way in a foreign country. It's been over 2 years since our entire family (parents, brother and his family, my husband and I) have been together. The day we're all together in one house will truly be the day I feel like I'm home again.

Linz said...

Please keep me posted on the next Blogger's Brunch in LA! I'd love to attend. :)

MYSAVIOR said...

I love the items in Mainichi. I love recycling.
The world is full of triggers that will bring you back to home. A vignette withing a landscape, an aroma. Just a glance of something can bring me back to something in the past.
If I were in the desert with no trees and came upon a beautiful plant, I would be reminded of my home.

Laura said...

It sucks being so far from home. I'd never expect Australia to stop being home for you just as Scotland will always be home for me. I used to get homesick every month and then I stopped because I just couldn't handle it. I was missing out on so much by dwelling on the distance. Now it hits me a few times a year really badly and I just have a good cry and feel better - there's no point fighting it, eh?

I try to skype regularly with family in order to feel at home. When my mum sends me a parcel I empty it and stick my face in the envelope so I can smell her house. I swear in british, make my own comfort food and try to think of home a little every day so it feels closer.

I wish I had an actual answer, something that would work for you. I think you just need to go home though. Leaving home again is hard but once you get over the bawling on the flight home it really helps for a while.


Amanda said...

I'm lucky in that i only live about 2 hours from my childhood home, so I get to visit often. This hasn't always been the case, however - and I remember being wracked with homesickness during the period of time when I lived far away.

I wasn't on the other side of the world, though, so I feel for you!

The smell of burning leaves in the fall always reminds me of home - my dad used to build a big bonfire every October/November and burn the leaves that had gathered in our back yard. Every time I smell burning leaves, I'm instantly transported back to third grade and playing outside with our dog Annie while my dad raked and burned leaves.

Emily said...

Getting postcards from my father. It makes me miss home so much!

Jill Turner said...

What a lovely Etsy shop!

Pictures always help remind me of home, but being away from friends, family, and familiarity always makes my heart long to be there in person.

Right now I am interning in Washington DC and every time I talk to my friends and boyfriend (who are in Athens, GA) and they're all at a party or going out to dinner I get a little homesick. It also makes me homesick when my Mom calls me and my entire family is at my house eating dinner.

In the end, It just makes me love and appreciate those people more, though!

Barbara said...

I still feel as though I am from Michigan although I've lived in Florida for a long time. 30 some years. And I have family up there. Guess you never get over the feeling.
At least I get the chance to drive up there once a year!

JennTRC said...

Every time I drink chai tea it reminds me of back home, where my long distance boyfriend is.

I started drinking it when we first started dating, so anytime I find a good cup of black chai tea..I swoon!

City Girl Chicago said...

Australia is next on my travel list... this is for sure.

Chicago is home to me ~ people may think of deep dish pizza, Oprah, or now President Obama when they hear Chicago, but I think of summer picnics by the lake. I'm a simple girl~

Erica said...

I am so sorry you are homesick! That face pin is adorable!

Katie said...

Seven Years! Wow, I didn't know it had been so long for you. Ok, well let me paint a picture for you. It's 8am, I'm still in my jammies (just light shorts and a singlet top). It's hot already and I can hear a pile of cicadas and birds doing their thing. Outside smells like summer - freshly mowed grass, hot asphalt and... heat. The sky is that impossible blue, where it almost hurts to look at it. The prediction for Brisbane is 32, so I might put the a/c on soon. Poor old Perth has been having ridiculous temperatures - 42, 43 and above. I would happily swap some of our heat for your cool right now!

jen said...

Fortunately, or unfortunately, I've never been that far from home for any real length of time. Just vacations. I guess it would be missing my kitties, or my bed, or my husband if he's not with me!

Lola said...

I understand the way you feel. I moved 8 years ago to Florida from my true home, Puerto Rico. Food, family and friends makes me think of home while I am away. When I visit my family, I take lots of picture that I see when I am homesick.

Melanie's Randomness said...

You came from Australia? That's so cool. I've always wanted to go there. One day. What cute lil felt buttons!! I love the face one!!

Hmm what makes me feel like home is the traffic & the high-pace of New York. =)

Meghan said...

I didn't know you're from Australia! How amazing!

What makes me think of home??? Things like the lakefront, deep dish pizza and laidback attitudes remind me of Chicago when I'm away:) On a more personal level, just my hubby's voice!

helen said...

When im away from home the first snowfall reminds me of home.I love the beautiful face brooch it's darling.Thanks for a great giveaway.Helen


Lily said...

Oh my goodness there are so many things that make me think of home. Must of all, I would say tornadoes and really hot weather because I am from Oklahoma.

Phoenix said...

I have always wanted to go to Australia...and I loved hearing your accent when I met you at the brunch, it's one of my favorite accents of all time. (Of course, WE'RE the ones with the accents in Australia) :)

Sorry you were feeling homesick...do you have any posters or maps of Australia to make you feel loved and at home?

Kaye Prince said...

I actually really consider Toronto to be my home, not the tiny village (200 people) where I grew up. I consider the place where I feel happiest to be my home, and that place is definitely Toronto. I also find myself getting homesick for it when I go to visit my Mum or somewhere else. I don't think anything reminds me of Toronto specifically, but I sure do think about it a lot when I'm away.

Great giveaway Dionne - her shop is tres cute!

Little Miss Tiara said...

Oh dear, how can you draw australia?? ahaha... I'm impressed, I can never really draw something geographical. :|

if there's a place I have to visit, Australia is sure in the list, for it is so close to Indonesia and sooo many friends of mine study there. Ahh... <3

plus I want to see Koala, ha! :P

Amber said...

When I'm away from home (Chicago) any windy day makes me think of home - the Windy city!
Thank you for the giveaway :)

Meg said...

i would love to visit australia, but i don't know if i could live there... the opposite seasons might be too much for me! i don't know if i could handle an even milder christmas than the ones we get in vancouver :)

Barefoot Chic said...

Don't I know this feeling being homesick. I often find myself being homesick and not even want to see anything that has to do with Hawaii or Japan...

Though I have never been to Australia, I'd definitely want to visit and see everything!!!


Jeanette said...

I know exactly what you are saying, although my home is not across the seas, and although I have been in Southern Cali for over 17 years now, Colorado is still my home, and I miss it...

Dash said...

I know EXACTLY what u mean dionne! I miss perth so much , i dream of it in my sleep. I can taste the turkish kebabs, I can feel the cold water from the beach, smell the musty waft in the corridoors of university and hear the cackling laughter of my friends. I want to go back soon!!

Biddy said...

Oh man, I know how you feel. So many things remind me of home, which is California by the way. Anything from music on the radio(there's like 100 different songs about Cali, look it up on Wikipedia you'll see), to the weather patterns down here in Texas. Cali was always sunny with beaches everywhere! Here in Texas, there's a Toranado every five seconds followed by bright and sunny 90 degree weather...ok, maybe I'm over exagerrating just a tad. :)Even movies or shows like TMZ remind me of Cali because celebrities always seem to be hanging out in L.A....Oh, I better stop because the list goes on and on...I MISS YOU CALI!!!!

Jason said...

You really do have a great blog here. I have a blog myself which brings inspiration and guidance to people all around the world. Life is hard enough, and I hope my site can contribute anything positive to someone's day.

I'd like to exchange links with you to help spread some traffic around between each other. Please let me know if this is possible. Until then, keep up the good work.


Nicole Marie said...

7 years wow!!

we moved a lot growing up and i still sometimes miss the different places but i always felt that home is where my family is so it didn't matter what state or city we were in.

vadjutka said...

What makes me think of home......well, to be honest: nothing :-)....except for food. I love travelling, and when I travel I dont think of home. Of course I think of my family, friends etc...but I dont miss them. What I miss is - after a while - the food. Particularly salami and sausage. :-)

vadjutka said...

oops, I forgot to mention that thanks for this great giveaway, I really like your shop!

and I also forgot to mention my contact: vadjutka.etsy.com

L'Atelier said...

oh i sooo get where you coming from! i havent lived in Switzerland for 11years! now but it is and always will be home... went there in december for a short visit, and have been feeling homesick- which is really ungrateful i think considering how close my last visit was- the last few days
7 years is a very looooooong time and i hope you will be able to visit soon
the shop is amazing and really inspiring.
wish me luck :)
sending you lots fo sunshine and love from the southern hempisphere

ps i lllllooooooovvvvvee cricket :)

Paula said...

I'd sooo love to visit your "home state".. I bet I'd never leave! Visited your blogging/crafting article & found it quite informative, thanks for sharing Dionne:)

Kym said...

Hello, I am a new follower! It is nice to met you from on Aussie to another! I don't think you have missed much lately with all the rain and now the heat! I have family that live in the States too, so we have people all over the world! What I missed about Australia when we traveled for a number of years was a few things, some silly like being able to hang my washing out and have it dry in 5 minutes and not use a drier! But mainly I missed the blue sky, not the clouds and over cast skies of London. When I am away I think, oh today would be a great day for the beach, but then it gets so hot I remind myself that inevitably it means burnt shoulders! and burnt feet when running to get off the boiling sand!
Did you know soils from all over the world travels in the wind, maybe you have a piece of Australia in your backyard and don't even know it :)
Thanks for the awesome giveaway!

Wishful Nals said...

i love home. when i'm away, i think of the brownstone buildings, the brick walkways + the smell of fires in the winter. i think of clam chowder + the ocean.

Camille said...

I took a few of my mom's hairbows and necklaces when I went to school, and I always think about home when I wear them :)

cam22190 at gmail

Carissa said...

I love the Digit Leather Necklace! it is amazing! so unique and stunning. I'd love to win!

I haven't been homesick that often because I haven't often been away from home! or at least, not that far. I guess I was a bit homesick when I first went off to college, even though I was only 45 minutes away, and perhaps when I went to DC for a semester, but I honestly can't remember. but if I am ever missing home, I think a phone call to my friends or family usually makes things better!

by the way, I'd LOVE to visit to Australia one day... I'm sure it is just lovely, though I think I'd have to be slathered in sunscreen 24/7!

Kristin @ Contented Me said...

Sometimes I get so homesick it almost hurts. And I'm only three hours away from home, so I can't begin to imagine what it must feel like to be on the other side of the globe. Will you be able to get Down Under any time soon??

This is a super sweet shop. Those face pins are adorable.

Sidewalk Chalk said...

Sorry you are feeling homesick.
I feel homesick a little when I see an old-fashioned bottle of Coca-Cola because I'm from Georgia. But usually a phone call or letter from home helps ease the pangs.

Thanks for posting this etsy shop -- the digit necklaces are beautiful. Thank you for hosting this giveaway!

- JoAnn

Mel said...

There are a few places that I associate with "home" - my momma's house, the apartment I share with my boyfriend, and a certain big lake surrounded by good skiing. Whenever I see a little kid running around, it reminds me of playing with my little half-brother at momma's house. A jar of Tapatio sauce in a restaurant reminds me of the giant one that my boyfriend always has sitting on top of our refridgerator! And every time I see a picture of a tree or a fish or anything natural my mind is transported to a little cabin on that special lake.

daisymay said...

I come from Wales (although don't often leave so I can't really miss it much) when I am away and think of home, its the iconic welsh things that come to mind. If I see daffodils I think of Wales, If I hear a male voice choir I think of Wales, If I hear Tom Jones Im back in Wales and if I see beautiful rolling hills I think of Home, thats why I love Wales!

Damla said...

I've never been away from my home, lucky me:) Just rarely vacations and then I miss my internet:)

annabell_lee_dk (at) yahoo.com

Fé... said...

Your pastel pictures are so amazing, Dionne!

NWTyping said...

enter me please~!

i love anything ***pink***

keep creating! :)

hope i win!!
thanks for the contest!

International Giveaways said...

Hills or mountains remind me of home. I grew up on the Andes Mountains and I've always loved the view.. there's nothing quite like getting away from the city and just staring at the quiet and immensity of the massive mountains. So whenever I'm by a cliff anywhere or the smallest of hills, it makes me think of home.

BTW, I blogged about this giveaway:



Tender Branson said...

When you say you planned a cricket match what do you mean? You set up one for some friends or you got two teams together for it? This sounds very interesting. I've always wanted to learn about the sport of cricket because when I'm playing soccer I see some other people playing cricket. They always finish early, however, so I haven't had the chance to talk to them.

june_spirit2628 said...

When I'm away from home I think of the smell of pine and snowcovered ceders. I crave this smell... it's part of who I am.


Daya, muito prazer... said...

I always remenber home when i listen Sad But True from Metallica, i used to listen a lot in my bedroom

Daiane Negretti

Jessica said...

When I am away from home, I love to have my bedding with me (pillows, sheets, blankets). Also, I try to keep in touch with my loved ones while I am gone!
ms.johnsonmahs at gmail dot com

arlette said...

Am I still on time?, I do have the same weather as the aussies does, we have christmas in summer, too funny, while in other countries, the snow's all around, we're melting over here. Oh well, diversity is... weird, doesn't it?. What makes me think of home when I'm away?, I had the oportunity to live a year and a half, overseas, dang!, I missed the food and the tasty fruits we have here, nothing compares to them, I surely missed that ALOT!!!

Dionne said...

Thanks for your comments, this giveaway is now closed.

Sarah said...

How did I miss out on the fact that you're originally from Australia? I am a big fan of New Zealand and want to go there so badly...

I bet Australia is beautiful in this winter months (way different from the US). :-]

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