Sydney has had the most abysmal weather the last week and a bit. The clouds have hung low and the skies have emptied torrents of rain. It’s been cold and bleak to say the least. Sadly, the weather has at times matched my mood. I’ve tried hard to blame the weather for my mood, but the truth is – sometimes life is hard and it can be tricky to remember the good times through the tough ones. We’ve had bad news on a personal level that has weighed heavily on our hearts and work has been busy, but oh so stressful.

Is it just me, or is it especially difficult to be motivated, much less inspired when life is challenging?

This weekend despite the weather and it’s grey overtones, Matt and I took the time to wander the city of Sydney. We didn’t spend a long time there, just enough to tick a few jobs off our ‘do-on-a-rainy-day’ list. As we were wandering back to our car we happened upon the Marimekko store. It’s been open for a good 6 months or so and has been somewhere I’d been itching to visit, but never had the time or reason to go. I can’t tell you how much a quiet peruse of this design emporium lifted my mood – but what’s better, I left feeling inspired! It was as though I’d walked into Springtime when I walked through the store doors, and all the misery and sadness of Winter was left at the door. The bold, beautiful patterns and lively colour palettes warmed me and helped remind me the delight that it is to design. In every nook and cranny was something to catch my eye, something to appreciate and take in.

I was so thankful for that time. In the half hour or so that I was there, it was as if I could feel the thick haze I’d been struggling through gently begin to lift. And you know what? Today, two days later, it’s sunny again. The air is still crisp, but the clouds have parted – and in that simple process I’ve remembered, how necessary the rain is for nourishment. That it’s part of the cycles of the seasons and that “bad” weather can indeed be so very good. In the same way isn’t it true that the tough times in our lives are the times that grow us and shape us?

The precious time spent on a wet, dreary Saturday reminded me that we are refined by fire, for the better.

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