Summer Daze

Hey, hello, howdy!

Welcome to my first blog post for 2019 – will it be one of barely a dozen, or one of many? Nobody knows!

What I do know is that I am deep into my summer holidays, with another week to go.

So far I’ve done pretty much nothing except lob around at home, Christmas celebrations aside.

Isn’t it funny how Christmas seems so long ago already? Time is a such a weird bendy thing.

I received some fabulous books for Christmas, and an unexpectedly fierce summer cold and cough from my sweet nephews.

I’ve been coughing and spluttering for about 10 days, it’s been kind of gross. On the upside, I’ve been able to rest lots and take naps and drink loads of orange juice. I am still coughing as I type this, but my ribs don’t ache anymore.

Back to the great books – thank you to my sisters and sister-in-law – I absolutely loved Kon Karapanigiotidis’ The Power Of Hope. As you may know, Kon is the founder of the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre (ASRC) in Melbourne and he is a human rights activist, lawyer, an amazing vegan cook and an incredible storyteller.

The things that stood out to me most in the book are Kon’s unquenchable passion and his vulnerability. He writes straight from the heart, detailing the sacrificial work ethos of his migrant parents, his lonely university days, how the ASRC came to exist, and his desire to be a father. I can’t recall a more candid book by a male author.

I highly recommend this book to you. Thank you Kon. You rock.

I’m not a maker of resolutions. Are you?

I don’t buy into the “new year, new you” crapola that absolutely saturates media around this time of year. I don’t see the need to start a new year weighed down with a list of lofty expectations as long as my arm. I figure I made it through 2018, no radical course adjustments necessary.

Things I definitely do NOT resolve to do:

Weigh less

Talk less

Be less

Take up less space!

Hmm, ever noticed that resolutions seem to have a diminishing theme? Yuk.

What I would like to have, just as I wanted last year, is more creativity. I’ve decided that Fat Mum Slim’s Photo A Day challenge is a simple way I can engage my creative eye this month. Four days in, and I’m killing it!

Holidays always means loads of TV watching for me. I unashamedly love TV!

I just binged the wonderful Marie Kondo’s latest series on Netflix. 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

She has such a great spirit about her, don’t you think? I found, even with the language barrier, it feels like she’s really non-judgemental and genuinely wants people to live calmer, happier, tidier lives. She gets the undies folding a bit wrong, but one person can’t know everything!

That’s pretty much my holiday wrap up so far. I do hope I’ll get a few fun activities in before I head back to work, maybe some painting or sketching and a nice lunch out somewhere? We shall see!


Keep noticing the ordinary, extraordinary things won’t you?

I was bringing my rubbish bin in a few nights ago and noticed my overgrown lawn was putting on a show. Popped the bin away, grabbed my camera and spent a few minutes taking photos – of a beautiful weed. Glorious! Did you know that dandelion means lion’s teeth? Neither did I! I can see why though.

How does something so fragile hold its form? Hmmmm, maybe there’s something in that for all of us.

Here’s to those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer, and to the coming of autumn!

Tell me how your summer is going.

What did you get for Christmas?

Favourite read of the summer so far?

Are you pro-Kondo?

Much love,




PS: This is an unsponsored, friendship based announcement!

I would like to give a shout-out to Bron of Real Mum Style, and promote her upcoming Body Confidence + Wardrobe Happiness workshop for Melbourne peeps. It’s coming up in March, and I think it’s going to be a corker. Bron doesn’t do formulas and rules for dressing, she does confidence and fun!

Bron is a wonderfully colourful, fully down to earth, positive vibes giving lady who decided she was sick of talking shit about herself and her mum bod, so she stopped!

I am pumped about this upcoming event, and there are only a handful of tickets left. More info on Bron’s Instagram (or if the effing link will work) here!

Making room

Today I revelled in something that I haven’t enjoyed in far, far too long. (And it wasn’t voting.)

Today I visited another world, a world which drew me in so completely that I wanted to tme travel to see what was coming round the corner. 

This world was created by Emma Donoghue, in her engrossing, moving novel Room

I didn’t anticipate that I’d read all 401 pages today, but Room wouldn’t let me go. 

At one point, I actually toyed with the idea of skipping ahead because the tension was almost too much for me. 

Written from the perspective of a four, then five year old boy, I was enthralled by the story of a mother and child held captive in an 11 foot square room, in a suburban garden in an unidentified American city. Abducted off the street as a 19 year old, Room explores the relationships between a young woman and her child, and their captor, Old Nick.

The story unfolds at a fantastically captivating pace, and as I sat reading in my small living room, I had no idea where the story would lead me. As a reader, that’s the most exciting feeling! 

I felt like I was in the room with Jack, as he described his daily life with his mother, their routines and songs, their moments of quiet connectedness and of fear. Jack’s vocabulary was wonderful, and I could hear my niece’s speech patterns in the mangling of tenses and jumbling of ideas. That room was all Jack knew of the world, and I loved feeling him grapple with the notion of Outside, which is something I think we all grapple with from time to time. The world is a big, uncertain, and sometimes scary place to navigate. 

The setting reminded me of another favourite book of mine, The Collector by John Fowles. 

Something about people behind locked doors appeals to me for some odd reason! 

There’s something special about reading that’s different to binge watching a favourite TV series, or even going to a movie. 

I’d go so far as to say that reading captures us in a deeper way, because we are participating in the story. 

When we read, we determine the pace at which the story unfolds. 

I was holding my breath at various moments, willing Jack to be scave. 

Today reminded me how much I love great writing, because writing has the power to transport us, to move us, to teach us and to expand us. 

Sadly, it seems easy to forget how awesomely satisfying a good book can be. 

I don’t want to forget, I need to make room for more reading in my life. 

I don’t know if I’ll get through another 400 pages this weekend, but I’m definitely going to move reading up on my priority list.

Do you like reading? 

Have you read Room? What did you think of it? Should I see the film adaptation?

What’s on your bedside table or iPad at the moment? 

Got a recommendation to share? 

Thank you Emma, Room was a wonderful ride. 




Sia versus the rest

Good morning blog-world!

Today I have a few thoughts to throw around – don’t worry we’re not talking reinstating the draft, kale versus spinach or anything controversial of that ilk.

Hang on a second, I just have to stop here and point out the idiocy of people saying versing instead of versus, a habit which seems to be taking over in certain circles. You’ll see I’ve written kale versus spinach, not kale versing spinach. When you compete, on Family Feud or in a game of footy, its you/your team versus your opponent. It is NOT EVER versing – if it’s a word at all – it is what poets do!

Everyone clear on that? Okay, let’s proceed.

As I was saying before that knee-jerk diversion into a grammar lesson, I want to muse about a few things today and I’m hoping you’ll join me and share a few of your stories. This blog is a conversation, not a monologue!

Right now, I’m listening to Sia’s latest album 1000 Forms Of Fear and it’s SO GOOD. Some of you may be rolling your eyes and thinking, ‘hello… Sia has been rocking my world for years’. I’d sung along to Titanium when it came on the radio, but I’d never delved further into the creative genius that is Miss Sia of Adelaide.


The reason I’m listening to Sia is because of the amazing Inspiration Information course I’m doing, run by cheery lass and creative life coach extraordinaire Pip Lincolne. Pip does not sponsor every (or any) mention of her on my blog, she’s just been really ace and influential in my life lately! Everyone needs a Pip, even if her name is Shirley, or Gary, or Eugenia.

So, as part of the Inspiration Info course, Pip introduces us to creative types to broaden our ideas of creativity and expose us to new artists, thinkers, creators, and artistic champions. The list has included Patti Smith, Charles & Ray Eames, Sia, Wes Anderson, Bjork – authors, painters, musicians, designers… living and dead, diverse, and wonderful.

Listening to Sia got me thinking about how the stuff we listen to, read, watch on telly, download, and talk about gets on our radar.

I think a lot of it is by osmosis, maybe we hang out at our friend’s house and they’re listening to an album, and a week later we’re downloading that album. Maybe we make the connection to where we heard it, maybe we don’t, but either way, we become fans of a new thing.

Cool, right?

Sometimes we deliberately put ourselves in a place to see and hear new things, and entertain new ideas – by signing up for an online course, or taking a class at the CAE, or going to a gallery opening, or out to dinner with our friends and some of their friends. There are loads of ways we can broaden our horizons, with or without a passport.

So in the spirit of that, here are my questions. Pop your answers in the comments, so everyone can benefit from our collective wisdom, or at least our eclectic taste.

What are you reading, listening to, watching, and talking about?

What’s got you inspired, grossed out (Wicked Campers, anyone) or enthralled?

Should I watch Game of Thrones?

What was the last book you read and couldn’t put down?

I’ll go first – my viewing recommendation is The West Wing. I am conducting an ongoing experiment to see if you can wear out DVDs – so far, so good. I still laugh at Aaron Sorkin’s brilliant writing. I’m still moved. I love those characters. Any show that revolves around a team with a lofty goal, and I’m in. The West Wing, The Newsroom, Grey’s Anatomy… sold.

I’m reading The Fictional Woman by Tara Moss. It’s intelligent, timely and topical. Get thee to a bookstore.

So, over to you, what’s on your radar? How did it get there?







How I went to France and met Frank Lloyd Wright




This may look like just a stack of books to the untrained observer, but it’s actually a photo of my passport.

Just by flipping open a beautiful book and drinking in the words and images it contains, I can be somewhere else in minutes, and completely alter my mood. No wonder there’s a history of book-burning – they’re practically hallucinogenics!

These books are some of the many I own which allow me to travel, first class, to places I’ve never seen, where I get to meet new people and peek inside amazing homes.

My books can take me anywhere – from the test kitchen of Aussie food guru Donna Hay to a breathtakingly beautiful French vista, or perhaps a weekend visit to the most famous home in America. I can cross borders, time travel and delve deep into other people’s artistry, or my own imagination.

I’ve always been a book lover. I don’t know why, or how, that happened, but I’m super grateful to be a bibliophile.

If you think I’m just a nutso bookworm who needs to get a life, I’ve got the backing of an esteemed doctor!

“Be awesome! Be a book nut!” — Dr. Seuss

And if you’re more of a rom-com lover, even the queen of that film genre has something to say about reading:

“Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to talk about later on. Reading is the unbelievably healthy way my attention deficit disorder medicates itself. Reading is escape, and the opposite of escape; it’s a way to make contact with reality after a day of making things up, and it’s a way of making contact with someone else’s imagination after a day that’s all too real. Reading is grist. Reading is bliss.” — Nora Ephron

Thanks Doc, thanks Nora – I couldn’t agree more.

When was the last time a book transported you?

Where did you go?