An Invitation

Summer solstice journaling ritual  
“Green was the silence, wet was the light,the month of June trembled like a butterfly.” ― Pablo Neruda,
In just a few days Journal as Sacred Vessel will be offering the next journaling ritual and you are all invited to join. Just pop back over here on Solstice to join in the creative fun.
To get you going here is some information and journaling questions: https://www.box.com/s/dc1ychf9hkl13k9j5i42. You also might want to pop over to Soulodge, where Pixie is offering some free journeying leading up to solstice (link in the side bar or here). And if you are in the Southern Hemisphere heading towards winter solstice: https://www.box.com/s/6n0w7862216x8adaz9ko
Galia Alena Queenstown Snow
View from here
Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, I am moving towards the longest night of the year, and I'm feeling the need to go quiet and hunker down with my own muses. Warm tea, a blank journal and solitude is what is being called for. Right now, I'm sitting in front of a fire under a fury blanket with a snow day expected later in the week. Yet I know that come Solstice, even though its only the beginning of winter here, we will begin to move back towards the light delicately but ever so noticeably. And so the two hemispheres hold each other in eternal balance and we get to savour the visiting seasons with their unique gifts.

“What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.”
― John Steinbeck
Galia Alena Queenstown Gardens Snow
White Magic

Gratitude: Feel the love and pass it on

My friend Joanna of Live Love Whimsy, is doing a month of daily giveaways to inspire and delight you. It is a gift as an act of gratitude for her, gratitude being the theme, and is designed to fall in line with Thanks Giving. I am honoured to be providing one of the pieces to be included in this offering so I am sitting with the muses to see what that piece might be. Get yourself over to her digs and sign up, it is a free gift.

In the meantime, some recent iphonography:
Galia Alena Photography, Queenstown

Galia Alena Photography, Queenstown

Galia Alena Photography, Queenstown

Galia Alena Photography, Queenstown

Galia Alena Photography, Queenstown

Galia Alena Photography, Queenstown

Everything Blooms

I've just finished experiencing my first real spring and I had no idea, absolutely everything blooms. Back home (Sydney) we don't really have seasons other than jacaranda season, followed by mango season (otherwise known as Daiquiri season) and so on, it's one warm weather rolling into another. Here I am astounded by how the place has literally come to life- I finally get daffodils, heralders of all that is to come. They had always seemed rather an obvious flower but now I can only imagine the sweet joy they bring after months of bitter cold, promising warmth and growth.
And those 49 rose bushes I pruned back in the snow without gardening gloves (with my new found admiration for the dedication of Prince Charming- I'm pretty sure he didn't have gardening gloves either), have all sprung to life in a kaleidoscope of colours. They remind me of all the effort my grandmother put into her suburban garden back in Sydney, a garden that won awards and had garden tours, never did all her efforts result in the bounty that my neglected rose bushes adorn my garden with. So many plants that I looked at and thought "I should pull that dead bush out" have now come alive to amaze me (and make me thankful for my lazy gardening skills- zealous ignorant gardener probably not a good mix).
As for the mountain side, it was dripping with blossoming trees heavy under the weight of their abundance and is now covered with patches of yellow everywhere, interspersed with purple. It is absolutely amazing.
My wonder knows that it is a wonder that can not be truly captured on film, and so I didn't even try but here are a few snaps from the iphone as I wonder what summer will bring and I wait for the ripening of the blueberries and strawberries. Wishing warmth to all of you in those cold places snuggling down ready for snow.

Spring- who knew...

One Perfect Day

Galia Alena Photography Queenstown
The Picnic
Galia Alena Photography Queenstown
The View
Galia Alena Photography Queenstown
The Treasure (from my son )
Galia Alena Photography Queenstown
The Inukshuk (we built & left for the next travelers)
Galia Alena Photography Queenstown
The Walk Home
Into the Setting Sun

Today was a perfect day
Today the children saw magic
& the light delighted across the water.

Today was a perfect day
when all were nourished by
the sweet silence of a pristine land

and we all drank deeply
of the water at our feet,
hands scooping purity to our mouths,
quenching more than our thirst.

Scenes from the Art Space

I'm very much missing my art space with the beautiful rainforest view out the window. As I look around myself now surrounded by a sea of boxes I wonder if I can create such a space again. I know everything is here in the boxes somewhere (minus the rainforest) but the new space is different, it offers different oppurtunities and lacks other familiarities  I long for when I look at this photos. Stay tuned to see what emerges from the chaos.
You must have chaos within you to give birth to a dancing star. Friedrich Nietzsche
Some scenes from the week:

Galia Alena Photography

♥ Instagram- come and play.

Still Waiting

I'm still waiting for furniture to arrive which maybe delayed by the "worst" snow storm in 50 years (lol), but this is what I look at while waiting!!!


Winter sun
Rosy cheeked children
the lake
anticipating snow
a community unfolding
open fires
exploring our new lives
hot chocolate with bush honey
the kindness of strangers
a carpet of snow

Holding Pattern

Galia Alena Photography Sydney Harbour Bridge
 I'm sitting here in holding pattern for way too long now- moved out of my old house, my old home and my old country, sitting in the new country waiting to get into my new house, waiting for my furniture to arrive so I can re-establish my cocoon and finally exit the land of limbo.
I've said good by to the fair city of Sydney- I will miss your cafes, Gardenias, the fabulous Thai restaurants, I won't miss the traffic, the rudeness, the congestion, or the inflated house prices.
Galia Alena Photography Queenstown