Outlaws

We might have got a little excited for our first #bookweek.  🙂  Angus woke at 4:45 am becuase he was too excited to sleep given that he is wearing his Harry Potter costume today. Hamish decided just two days ago that he wanted to be Ned Kelly, and luckily for us a friend Sally showed us a costume idea 🙂

 

catcuddlecafe-brisbane

Cat Cuddle Cafe

Sometimes all you need is a hug.  A hug actually makes you feel better, because a hormone known as oxytocin is released from your brain and sends messages to your body, which promote feelings of devotion, trust and bonding, which well, they make us feel happy. So if you’re in need of a hug, or just a different location to have a cup of coffee, or an activity to entertain the kids, I recommend the Cat Cuddle Cafe!

catcuddlecafe-brisbane

The Cat Cuddle Cafe was opened in 2015 by Pussies Galore Rescue, and is Brisbane’s first cat cuddle cafe.  

catcuddlecafe-brisbane

Why a Cat Cuddle Cafe?

Let’s ask them:

Cats are our passion and rescue is our mission. We wanted to create the perfect environment for cat lovers to enjoy and interact with cats.

To fulfil our mission of rescuing a ridiculous amount of cats, our cats will be highly trained to make you fall in love with them, ultimately leading to more adoptions. Seriously, they will be working it.

All of our kitties will be rescue cats. Unlike other cat café’s around the world, our cats will be up for adoption. Our adoption process though, is very stringent. Don’t think you are just going to walk out with one of our cuddle stars without being given the Spanish Inquisition.

We need to know that you have considered adding a fur baby or two to your family very seriously. This commitment is for the life of the cat and could be more than 20 years.

catcuddlecafe-brisbane

Location:

The Cat Cuddle Cafe has moved from Red Hill to Lutwyche.

483 Lutwyche Rd, Lutwyche QLD 4030

catcuddlecafe-brisbane

catcuddlecafe-brisbane

What is that hole? Is it alive? I shall pounce on it!

Need to know:

  1. You need to BOOK to have a cat cuddle experience. It is $10.50 per hour per person.  Coffee and cake are additional.  Book here
  2. Please do not disturb sleeping cats.
  3. Check what time the cats are most active- we had a 10am booking, and most of the adult cats were asleep, which meant that given the number of adults in the room, my kids were a little disappointed. They got a chance to play with the kittens, however, with around 10 + adults and kids all wanting a cuddle, the kittens soon tired of it all. They were happy to play with all the toys, however, Hamish didn’t really get a cuddle.  The manager helped out by bringing cats and placing them on his lap, however, they kept jumping off. Next time.
  4. You can do Yoga with the Cats (Thursday night $25) and also Knitting with the cats! Check the site for details, and if you do any of these- please send me photos! hello@katische.com

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catcuddlecafe-brisbane

catcuddlecafe-brisbane

Berrinba Wetlands- Logan

Travel: Berrinba Wetlands

Berrinba Wetlands- Logan

Say the word Logan, and it’s not usually associated with “tourism”. On my quest to keep discovering the greater south-east I went exploring the Berrinba Wetlands. The wetlands are man-made as the result of sand and mining operations after WW2, and I think the locals and the council should be commended for their efforts in conservation and the creation of new habitats.

So what’s different about these wetlands in Browns Plains?

Berrinba Wetlands- Logan
  • The number one difference which makes it worth a visit is the paved paths that surround it- there are eight kilometres of paths! You can walk or cycle or jog- we cycled.
Berrinba Wetlands- Logan

Great features of the wetlands:

  • Quiet
  • Easy to access
  • Ample parking
  • 6 electric bbqs
  • Plenty of space for picnics
  • Saturdays you can join in the fun of a free family 5km park run at 7am.
  • 8km of walking paths
  • Wheelchair-accessible toilets
  • FLAT WALKWAYS
  • An abundance of lotus flowers- I only wish that I had a long lens with me rather than my multi-purpose lens.
Berrinba Wetlands- Logan

Wildlife in the wetlands

  • Pelicans and Herons which we saw
  • We didn’t see Koalas, Frogs, Wallaby, White Bellied Sea Eagle, pygmy goose, gliders and the Wallum Frog and possums
Berrinba Wetlands- Logan

Impressions:

  • The interpretative centre needs an upgrade as there are only a few posters left in what was once obviously a high-tech centre. I contacted Logan City Council to speak to someone in Tourism or in maintenance to see if there was a scheduled upgrade for the wetlands, however, despite speaking to a couple of representatives no one with the correct information could be pinpointed.

My recommendation:

  • Go early before it heats up!
  • To see more active wildlife, visit at dawn.
Berrinba Wetlands- Logan

For further information visit www.visitlogan.com.au

How to get there:

Eat Pray Love Made me do it.

Eat Pray Love Made me do it

Recently to celebrate the anniversary of Eat Pray Love, Elizabeth Gilbert called for submissions to be included in a book of short stories titled “Eat Pray Love Made Me Do It”. Naturally, I jumped at the chance. My submission was not successful, and I thought that I would share it with you, so that those of you who are new to this website, can gain a sneak peak into my life, and why I am a photographer and writer. (The original article was not submitted with photographs)

Katische

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In the early scenes of the movie Love Actually, Jamie (Colin Firth) comes home to discover his semi-clad girlfriend cavorting around the lounge with his brother. Suitably devastated, he retreats to a lake house to write a novel on his old-fashioned typewriter. I too, have retreated to a lake house. With the dissolution of my marriage, I have packed my things and brought my children to a house overlooking a lake in Witta, eager to create a fresh new future.

I don’t want to move back to my hometown of Brisbane to be pitied. I know that just like death, divorce is a taboo and most people in society run from those who have failed in marriage rather than come close to support them.

I want to be alone to lick my wounds. I feel ashamed. My heart feels black with grief and I need the freedom to be in the emotion of the moment, to be sad or mad or angry, to achieve nothing other than simply getting through the day. I am now a recipient of a government pension and my ego does not like it. I refuse to live in a depressing environment. I know that if my house is hell, then my mind will descend there.

I know I need time to heal, but with two children under four and a dog, I cannot escape the country to an Ashram, so I choose to make my new life in Witta a healing adventure. I create my first blog and name it ‘Adventures with Munchkins. It is a way to document for myself the experience that I am going through. I want to write about the change in my life from an uplifting point of view. From a perspective of adventure, from the rose tinted lenses of a woman who thinks she can face fear head on and make an adventure out of the experience of being a single mother.

I know that single motherhood is one of the biggest fears married women face, and parents have for their children. It is the main reason that abused women remain victims, and others who are in a loveless marriage remain until the kids have left home.

Single mothers are blamed for everything. Bad behaved children, truancy, rises in crime and drug usage. A single mother is someone to be pitied, not inspired by. A single mother also usually earns less and works more, and holds the greatest guilt over not being a super human and giving her child every experience possible. One in four children in single parent families in Australia live in poverty.

I am determined that I will not be the object of pity. I am also determined not to let my single motherhood change my parenting wishes. I wish to be a present parent, even if that means I am a parent who remains on a pension longer.

My number one focus in life is to recover from my marriage breakdown to ensure that when I am ready to return to work, I am an asset not a liability. Eat Pray Love becomes literally my bible. I feel like Liz Gilbert is the only person in the world who understands me.

I highlight passages and every time Richard from Texas counsels her, I feel as though he is talking to me. Especially when I am sad, and then angry. Both which are natural stages of grief, experienced as a result of a separation and divorce, both equally disturbing and overwhelming.

“Groceries, you need to learn how to select your thoughts just the same way you select what clothes you’re gonna wear every day. This is a power you can cultivate…Because if you can’t learn to master your thinking, you’re in deep trouble forever”.

And so I learn how to watch my emotions rise, and monitor my thoughts like passing clouds. At some point in time, I stop being angry, start to accept my lot in life, and starting seeing the beauty around me.

Eat Pray Love

I am filled with awe of the clouds and the fog and the mist of Witta, and how they interact with the mountain range. The mornings are filled with spectacular sunrises and the evenings with even more amazing sunsets over the lake. So begins a fascination with recording the beauty I am seeing on my iPhone.

Eat Pray Love

The day I started to see beauty in my own yard, changed my perspective on life.

I change the name of my blog to ‘The Lake House Writer’ and my journey takes on a new dimension. Each week I post images that I have taken that are blended with quote that reflects how I feel, the inspiration that I am seeking in my life. I create my first photographic video that incorporates images I have taken on my iPhone with Tibetan music and post it on the blog.

I decide to undertake a photography challenge with my friend also named Liz. We no longer live around the corner from each other, and as a way of continuing the friendship we decided to upload a photo a day. It just has to be a single photo, something that we had done or seen or eaten that day.

Eat Pray Love

From this point onwards my brain explodes. I allow my brain the space to be silent whilst my eyes filtered the experience of my life through a camera. I experience the complete spectrum of emotion through the excuse of photography. This enables me to see the emotions that I am experiencing at a safe distance, and I can correct them so that I do not go too high or too low.

I can now view my photography and say ‘wooah that was a dark day yesterday’, better make today a light one. I then simply seek an adventure where I photograph something beautiful in nature, to make my mind focus in that direction.

Eat Pray Love

I have a whole new culture at my fingertips. Living in Witta, I am exposed to the freethinking Bohemian living citizens of Maleny. People here simply view life differently. They take you as you are. They explore all facets of life, all theories of existence and all forms of healing. Nothing is too strange, too unacceptable, or too radical.

I decide that if I am going to live in the middle of nowhere, I might as well embrace it- put on the glasses of Peter Mayle for a while. It may not be rural France, and I am living in a brick rental house rather than a crumbling Chateau, but the experience for me could be the same. I needn’t travel overseas to live an adventure. This realization gives me immense freedom and tears off the tape that is binding my wings to my side.

My blog becomes the place that I explore my fascination with life in Maleny. It is the best medicine for a broken heart. I simply operate from the place of knowledge that I know nothing about repairing a broken heart and that I will take any advice, and try it. Any remedy, any alternate therapy any approach to life and any friendship that came my way. If it doesn’t work, there is nothing lost.

Eat Pray Love

And nothing is lost, because, a year later, we return to Brisbane, ready to face the world again. We face a bigger battle helping my father face an early death in the form of prostate cancer and again Eat Pray Love comes to my side to help cope with anxiety, depression and grief, all the same emotions, this time in a different form.

the hardest goodbye

When the grief passes I take Richards advice,

“Take all the time you need to heal, but don’t forget to eventually share your heart with someone”.

A couple of short relationships later, my heart has been wedged right open, and I am optimistic that in time, I will find the right long term relationship.

Eat Pray Love

Words by me, image by Russell Stevens.

My writing and my photography has been a constant for me through this journey and I’m now both a professional photographer and writer. I’ve just put the finishing touches on my manuscript, which I have been writing since that first blog as a newly single mother.

Eat Pray Love

So from the bottom of my heart, and also from my children, who have gained a mother who is passionate about her work, I thank you Liz. By taking the courage to be vulnerable and share your story, you have helped me through my darkest times and provided me with the never-ending light of inspiration to guide me on my way. Your Facebook posts have impacted and helped me on a daily basis and you Liz, have become my Richard from Texas.

 

*Note- one of the many challenges that Liz and I took was a structured challenge from Fat Mum Slim.  These photo challenges are a fantastic way to get started with photography. In time, we decided to create our own challenges, but highly recommend the structured approach to get you photographing and give you some confidence.

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Photography: Grab your loved one by the hand

One of the wonderful parts about the development of mobile phones into smart phones has been the camera. We no longer have to lug around heavy cameras to take candid happy snaps of our friends and family. We’ve all been recording impromptu moments of fun and learning along the way, naturally, what works with photography.

But if you’re like me, in the process, you’ve gotten so many pictures, that you don’t print them out anymore, and they sit on your computer’s hard drive. I also don’t have any nice pictures of myself with the kids- you know, “keeper” photos.

Impromptu attempt. however, one child wouldn't get in the photo with Santa- you can see him behind me in the blue striped shirt

Impromptu attempt. however, one child wouldn’t get in the photo with Santa

Recently, I have been approached by a number of friends to take candid family photos for them. I’m always hesitant when the word “family portraits” are used because I have heard so many stories of husbands and wives investing fortunes in family photography only to have one spending more that was agreed, and the other feeling ripped off. When people look at the “package deal” photos on the wall, they no longer see the smiles, they see dollar bills in flames. Which is probably why I like photographing trees…

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So I have set about testing the water, and have used the opposite approach to many. My approach has been to create a situation which involves the maximum fun and laughs and the minimum stress. I’m not about styled picture perfect Pinterest portrait shoots. I let the kids run wild, and make the parents hold hands and kiss. It’s amazing how many couples have not held hands for a long time.

I'm a bit nervous about this kissing thing!

I’m a bit nervous about this kissing thing!

And as for kissing in front of the kids… I make a song and dance about it, and do shots where the kids pretend they are not looking and then make them look. Those photos are never going to be the ones that they put on the wall and frame, but guess what. The after effect is amazing. Ask a couple to hold hands for five minutes and make them kiss and the world changes. Literally.

Kids might squeal but deep down it gives them immense comfort and satisfaction.

Kids might squeal but deep down it gives them immense comfort and satisfaction.

We get so caught up in the world of making a life, and doing all the things we need to do that we forget about the things that mean a lot and make real memories. Not just photographic memories, I’m talking about impressions on our mind that will make us smile when we are 75.

It's the moments when you're not posing, that mean the most.

It’s the moment’s when you’re not posing, that mean the most.

Here’s some behind the scenes videos of a couple of recent photo shoots. I think they are best summed up by the gentleman who said to his wife “wow, that was a real feel good moment right there”. Yep, heart swollen.

You want me to what?

You want me to what?

Grab your loved one by the hand.

For further information about portraiture contact me at hello@katische.com or on 0411 040 688. Limited spots left before Christmas.

Photographing the essence of a kindred spirit

chantal1

Meet Chantal

You never know when you’re going to meet a kindred spirit. For me, it was at school pick up. My son started prep last year, with a little girl named Sophie, and I have had the pleasure of getting to know her mother Chantal. Chantal is inspired to help people live their lives authentically, with passion and in a way that helps them glow inside out, from healthy thoughts and food.

Recently I was excited and honoured to take photographs for a magazine article that Chantal was writing, and Chantal chose one of my favourite places in Brisbane to be photographed- the Mount Coot-tha Botanical Gardens- Japanese garden. We started our shoot with a Japanese tea party and centred ourselves so that we could capture both the beauty of the location, and the relaxed and spiritual nature of Chantal. I hope you enjoy these photos as much as we did taking them- here are a selection of my favourites.

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Chantal has kindly provided some delicious recipes which she has created- you can purchase the doTERRA oils through her website.

Chantal Roeloefs

Rosemary, Toasted Pepita and Spelt Breadsticks :

Makes about 60 sticks
– 5 Tblsp of pumpkin seeds (or pepitas)
– 4 Tblsp of olive oil
– 750 gm of spelt flour (and a little extra for kneeding the dough, shaping up the breadsticks)
– 2Tblsp of dried yeast
– 1 young tender stalk of rosemary leaves, very very finely chopped
– 5 drops of dōTERRA Rosemary Oil
– approximately 350ml of warm tepid water (enough to get the dough to the right texture)
– small dish of olive oil with some sea salt to brush the sticks before you put them in the oven.

Lets get cooking :
Dry fry the pumpkin seeds in a frying pan over a low to medium heat for about 2 minutes, tossing regularly, until lightly browned or toasted. Grind the seeds with a Tbsp of olive oil, into a smooth paste with a mortar and pestle (or grinder).
Sift flour into a bowl, add the seed paste, yeast, rosemary, rosemary oil, and then mix in enough water to form a soft but not too sticky dough. Knead vigorously on a well floured surface, then cut the dough into 30 pieces (I cut the ball of dough into 2 – then those 2 into 4 – then those four into 4 – then 4 again, and again…till they are the size to make a decent breadstick). Roll each piece of dough into a 15-20 cm long rope.

Lay the dough sticks on 2 large, oiled baking trays (or baking paper), spacing them slightly apart. Brush lightly with the remaining olive oil, and cover loosely with a tea towel or plastic wrap. Leave in a warm place for about 20 mins, or until they have risen a bit. Remove the tea towel or plastic wrap (and honestly most times i don’t bother about this rising process…. they work out great.)

Bake breadsticks in a pre-heated oven at 220 degrees celcius, for 10 -15 minutes. The sticks should be a little golden brown at the edges.
Put a few breadsticks in an airtight container and use within 24 hours. Pack the rest into a freezer bag, or plastic container, and seal and freeze for up to 6 weeks. Take out a few at a time as required. They don’t take much time to thaw. Great for picnics and lunch boxes !

 Smashed Avocado with Lemon Oil :

1 x avocado
4 drops of dōTERRA lemon oil
celtic or himalayan salt
black pepper
(1 drop of dōTERRA black pepper oil – optional)
Halve the avocado, and spoon the flesh into a bowl, and smash it with a fork. Add 4 (or a few more if you want it very lemony) drops of dōTERRA lemon oil, a good pinch of salt, and a good grinding of pepper to the avocado and mix through.

Top some sour-dough toast (I used a spelt sour-dough) for a yummy breakfast or snack.

Other optional toppings on top of lemony avocado toast:
– Goats Cheese
– Tomato and finely sliced basil (try with dōTERRA basil oil)
– Soft Poached Egg with shaved/ grated parmesan

: Thai Noodle Dressing ::

3 x Tblsp Fish Sauce
3 x Tblsp fresh lime juice
150 ml coconut cream
2.5 Tblsp palm sugar – grated, or cut into really small pieces – ready to dissolve into dressing
2 cloves of garlic – crushed
1 Tblsp finely grated ginger
handful of mint leaves
handful of coriander leaves
1-2 drops of dōTERRA ginger oil
2 drops of dōTERRA lime oil
1 drop of dōTERRA lemongrass oil
(finely cut chilli – optional – to taste)

Put oil dressing ingredients in a bowl, and whisk until the palm sugar dissolves, and the ingredients are infused with each other.

Use this dressing over 150 grams of softened mung bean vermicelli noodles (softened in boiled water for about 5 minutes – then drained of water), and toss through about 12 cooked prawns.

If you enjoyed these recipes, subscribers to Chantal’s website receive a complimentary cook book!

If I can be of assistance with helping you update your profile picture for your professional or personal social media accounts, please don’t hesitate to contact me at hello@katische.com

 

 

 

Heartfelt thanks

 

Photo by Michel Poknee of Chicoz Photography

Photo by Michel Poknee of Chicoz Photography

It takes a village… thank you to all my wonderful friends and family who came to and supported me for this exhibition. It was a mammoth exercise to shoot, collate, print, pontificate over, market and organise this exhibition.

I couldn’t have done it without the support of my kids and my mother and my sister, Liz, the wonderful support of photographic buddies Amanda and Russell, the Instagram community, the Chapel Hill S.S community.

To those who travelled from the coast, and those who I hadn’t seen since I lived in PNG or who I went to Primary School with!!

Thank you to my B.G.G.S school buddies- you are bloody legends- always supporting me. Truly a wonderful year group.

Thank you to each and everyone who spent time with me this weekend, and thank you to those who are ill and sent me messages from their bed.

Thank you to everyone who supported me from the sideline and especially those who valued me and my photography and purchased. You are truly special people and I am blessed to have you in my life xx

Photo by Michel Poknee of Chicoz Photography

Photo by Michel Poknee of Chicoz Photography

My new bespoke cushion-available for order by contacting me.  Image by Michele Pocknee of Chicoz Photography

My new bespoke cushion-available for order by contacting me. Image by Michele Pocknee of Chicoz Photography

The green side of the room- featuring my new bespoke cushion based on the ‘a touch of paradise’ photograph. All my photographs are now available as a cushion for $100 plus postage. Two weeks order time. Thanks again to Michele Pocknee of Chicoz Photography for this photo.

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If you were unable to come to the exhibition, all the photographs are now available for sale at this link http://katische.com/product-category/wonderment.  Contact me if you are interested in international orders as I work directly with your local printer to ensure quality of reproduction and to eliminate costly international shipping charges! There are a few printed canvases available from the exhibition in the 36×24 $400 and 24 x 24 size ($250), please contact me hello@katische.com to find out which ones these are.

Happy Snaps posted on social media. Thank you to everyone who entered the selfie competition. The winner is Tanja Prell, who wins the display canvas of  “Solitude”.  Tanja please email me to organise collection of your photographic canvas.

Wonderment

Wonderment

 

I’m excited to invite you to my debut photographic exhibition. I’ve chosen the Richard Randall Art Studio because I love the botanical gardens.  I thought the location was fitting given the inspiration for my photographic exhibition is my personal awe of nature. On display will be a collection of my favourite rainforest and beach photographs, with a couple of florals as well.

The Richard Randall Art Studio was purpose built in 1900 by George Randall, for his son Richard. Richard was one of Queensland’s leading artists at the time. This studio is where Richard painted, taught classes and held exhibitions until he died only a short time later in 1906. The studio was originally located in Cordelia Street, however it was finally moved to the Botanical Gardens in 2008 where it was restored to National Trust standards.

Please note that I believe in accessible art, so these images are NOT limited in number and inflated in price. You will be able to see the photographs in large format, and then if you are inspired, choose between the actual image at the exhibition, or a size that suits your home or office the best.

I look forward to sharing both my passion for nature and photography with you, and meeting you in person.

Portraiture with a twist of fashion

 

charlieanddogs

Recently I had the privilege of attending a portraiture workshop with my favourite photographer Carla Coulson. Carla is an Aussie who traded in the corporate life in Sydney, moved to Italy, learnt to take photos, and now lives with her husband in Paris. She is famous for not only her travel photography but also her portraiture, which has a twist of fashion.

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The four day “Picture This” workshop was every photographer’s dream. Stunning locations, access to the best make-up and hair artists, and stylists and down to earth, but incredibly good looking “everyday” people who posed for us and pretended to be models. Everything was thought of, and organised for us. The food served each day was delicious and nutritious, and we had access to a small team of Carla’s trusted photography assistants to show us the ropes.

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Having spent a week prior taking landscapes, my brain took a little to adjust to the different mindset.  Carla’s approach is to utilise natural light in all situations. There were no flashes, no tripods and no studio set ups. I can’t begin to explain how much I learnt about my camera and myself during this workshop.

RubyCotton1Instagram

For further information about Carla Coulson visit her website.

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All photos taken by Katische Haberfield. Click on any image to enlarge.