The Small Batch List
October 12th, 2018

Some thoughts for this week:

1) I've been sending a letter every week to my mum for the last few months. She put the pressure on me in the Summer by saying, "You know, it would be really nice if we wrote one another letters, like I did with my mum... they are so nice to have. Just rambly thoughts." At the time I rolled my eyes (the ones I have in my mind, not my actual eyes, that would have been rude) and thought, "Ah gawd, another thing to feel obligated to, another thing to suck at...but ok, it's my mum." And so I started writing. And boy, is she regretting it. She has unleashed my inner letter-writer, who seems to have a lot to say. She's now the one feeling guilty and obligated for not writing back. Not only do I write an enormous number of pages filled with ridiculous anecdotes from all of our lives, but something has compelled me to make each envelope a work of "art". I am pretty sure the Postal Officer at the Binalong Post Office thinks my mum is receiving a lot of mail from a collage-crazy 8-year-old Canadian. Stickers a-hoy! Is it weird that these collages are giving me the most artistic pleasure right now?

I started doing some reading about mail art and came across this article, and the exhibition discussed within can be found and explored online here: Pushing the Envelope
2) It's the last week of the Taika Waititi Film Festival here on the The Small Batch List. This week I bring you two fun features. Hunt for the Wilderpeople is one of my favourite films of the last couple of years, mostly due to the fabulous script and the performance of young Julian Dennison as Ricky Baker. And I happened to stumble upon a screening of Thor Ragnarok while in Australia last year and enjoyed it so much, only realising later that it was directed by Waititi - yes it's a superhero blockbuster, but the almost Pythonesque moments of humour make it totally enjoyable. 
3) A favourite instagram account this week: @Grickle14 posts a funny little single-frame cartoon every day and, without fail, they bring a wide smile to my face, even sometimes a great big chuckle. 
4) I loved these Parisian apartments for sale posted on Messy Nessy last week. These photographs give me a pang - so beautiful. This little apartment got me thinking about the apartment in one of my all time favourite movies, Roman Holiday. Did that sweet little bohemian apartment actually exist or was it a Hollywood set? Roman Holiday was shot entirely in Rome and yes, handsome Joe Bradley's apartment is a real place on Via Margutta - a tiny little street filled with artist studios. Roman Holiday created soaring real estate prices, forcing all the real artists to move out,  but more recently it has been reinvented as a "design destination" and is again filled with studios and artists. 
5) With the latest iOS comes Settings > Screen Time. Real time reports and time limit settings, parental controls and down time scheduling all encourage us to think about life-screen balance. After a week of checking in every day I was alarmed at how much time I was logging. It was not quite at the level average American adult who clocks in at 4 hours per day... but long enough. More alarming (but really not surprising upon reflection) is how much time my kids were spending. It's got me thinking about distraction and creativity and how boredom has ceased to exist. Boredom often equals creativity - no surprises here;  This suprisingly emotional TedTalk from April 2017  by Manoush Zomorodi talks about time use and addiction and encourages us to learn to love being bored. Visit the Bored and Brilliant project podcast to take 6 days of challenges to free up your mind. With all my extra time I'm going to be decorating envelopes.
See you next week!

Claire Robertson,
The Small Batch List


p.s. 100 points for guessing the quote in the subject line! Last week was the first line from Under Milk Wood by Dylan Thomas. Want some goosebumps? Listen to this recording by Richard Burton.

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