We are Melanie and Drew. We would like to welcome you to Blue & Sunny, a business we have created to help ourselves and others just like us to use more natural alternatives in our daily lives.
Woah, now before you go all “eco-warrior” and “zero-waste” in your head about us, let us tell you a bit more about ourselves, and how we ended up simplifying our lives and moving to the Strzelecki Ranges in Gippsland to raise our kids in a rural village.
We met each other way back in 2007 through connections with friends in Melbourne, we were living the busy city life working hard and not realising the freedom we had before kids!
Busy with careers for the years that followed, we were travelling throughout Australia as well as overseas. It was a life that kept us moving from one place to another, and while we had some amazing experiences being exposed to other cultures, it was rewarding and hard work, we knew we couldn’t keep up the pace of it forever. We are both very social people and longed for a permanent home together in a place where we could make and keep friends. Together we hoped to find meaningful human connections.
Finally, a one year stint in accommodation provided by an employer really brought home to us what we were missing. We had found ourselves living in a concrete compound, complete with fake plants and fake grass to boot! We longed to be with our family and surrounded by nature, some real greenery, once again.
After much deliberation we made a conscious move to Gippsland to live in a small close-knit community. It is located exactly halfway between Drew’s mum and Mel’s dad and it ties in with our philosophy of living simply. Connecting with people, we now have a place where our kids can walk to school and there is always one parent at the school gate.
We grow our own veggies, chop our own wood for the fire, and seek out ways of living modestly and looking after our kids here in the country.
Finally we got what we wanted, a colourful life out of the rat race, with no fake grass in sight!
We Know it’s idealistic to think you can just up and move to the country. We are always looking for natural alternatives, of making small changes to make living sustainably in the country work. After all, we can only do what we can. We agree wholeheartedly with the adage that a billion people doing small things will help make the big changes that the world needs for our kids and the future.
So Drew came across Soap Berries one night on the internet and became a little obsessed with the idea of naturally being able to clean our clothes and use a plant-based detergent in our septic tank. He combed Gippsland and was able to find a small 100gm bag of them locally, they really weren’t that easy to find.
We loved using them to wash our linens and clothes and most of our family, friends and people in our circle hadn’t heard about them.
So we ordered a big bulk box and doled them out to the family. Mel took them out to the Kongwak Market and now she loves heading off there and having a chit-chat with visitors about all sorts of things, she is the social butterfly of the family.
Today we are so proud to bring you these Soap Berries and complementary eco-products that we use ourselves and have sourced for you.
Through our online shop you can purchase to use them in your home. Our new website and business called “Blue and Sunny”, named lovingly after our two small boys, is allowing us to step off the treadmill, get out and connect with people from all over.
Being able to share the benefits of using Soap Berries and natural alternatives with our village is what it’s all about.
We know we can’t change the whole world, but by modifying small habits, we can make a difference.
Keep it real and do what you can,
Mel and Drew