21 Feb

Mum and Dad have been Married for 50 Years

Yesterday my parents celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary. No big fuss was made by them, they are happy as they have always been being together.

cake & Mum and dadI must admit I have taken their solid relationship for granted most of my life. I haven’t been able to duplicate it and have watched them for signs or formulas about how to have what they’re having. I’ve even asked them flat out what the ‘secret sauce’ is. They don’t make a big deal of it.

They have achieved a lot in their 50 years together. I could run through the stats, the six children, the home, the extended family and the good times but that would be my perspective and they are private people.

I don’t have the definitive answers, but what I have observed is they genuinely care for one another. Many of my friends when I was younger and even ex-boyfriends would say to me how wonderful my parents were and what a great relationship they had but I took it for granted and didn’t think it was that special. As their first child who will be 50 in another 10 months I’ve had a lot of time to watch what they do and this is what I’ve noticed.

mum and dad and familyThey have totally embraced one another’s families. Sadly they are the last two remaining people alive in this photo. I have been blessed with a family that gets along. At our family occasions, both mum and dad’s families have been welcome, included and have enjoyed being together. My mum’s younger brothers and sisters (she came from a family of 8 children) have demonstrated as much love and respect to my dad as to my mum and that kind of sentiment is earned not demanded. My mum has also been lovingly a part of my dad’s smaller and close family. I never got the mother in law jokes when I was a child because both my parents showed genuine love and care for their parents.

They were a tight unit when I was a teenager. The only time I got to play one off against the other was the Richmond/Collingwood football Grand Final in 1980 and I did have to consult Google for that date. I do recall I wanted to go to a Blue Light Disco in Morwell that evening and mum said ‘No’ – she barracks for Collingwood. When dad returned from the GF he said ‘Yes’. I quickly took off and didn’t wait around for a discussion.  It was rare. I still remember it :).

They made a lot of time for each other whilst we were growing up. They would go out for dinner or away for weekends – which gave us lots of time to become close to our grandparents. My Auntie Pat also looked after us a lot. They allowed others to be a part of our lives and thus carved out precious time for themselves. They clearly have always enjoyed being together.

I am blessed to be the child of such a stable relationship and all the security and love it has freely brought to me. It’s given me the strength and support to do all that I’ve wanted to do in my life. I haven’t been able to replicate their great union, but I’ve had the freedom and support to do what I’ve wanted to do. I no longer take their strong foundation for granted and I appreciate the love and home that I was gifted by their commitment.

As an interesting aside, they had a wedding breakfast. They got married on a very hot day. Wedding BreakfastMum borrowed her wedding dress. Dad had just returned from Darwin. They seriously wanted to be together and it wasn’t about the party – but it looks like a good party.

I am grateful for all involved. I was brought up in a happy home.

19 Feb

New Moon in Aquarius – Thursday 19th February

The new moon this morning at 10.47am is at the last stroke of Aquarius and slips straight into Pisces only a minute later with the Sun following it into Pisces three minutes later. The second Aquarian New Moon is only briefly there before becoming the next sign. Lynda Hill has a voice recording about whether this new moon is Aquarian or Piscean – listen here. Big Sky Astrology :Aquarius New Moon – The Greedy Cusp takes a different view of where this moon stands. Enjoy!

It’s the Chinese New Year at this new moon. The year of the Green Sheep by Kim Falconer will bring you up to speed on the energies of this year according to Chinese Astrology. I like to look at the previous years of the current sign and think about what kind of years they were, see if they had anything in common.

A- Line Sunflower from Church Street Morwell
A- Line Sunflower from Church Street Morwell


The dark moon caught me yesterday and I was asleep by 10pm last night.

I visited the Morwell A Line site yesterday and the sunflowers are bursting out there as well. I’m glad there are cameras on the sites capturing the reactions of the people passing as the few I get to see are heart warming and it will be great to have a record of the smiles.

At the VRI, sunflowers are bursting to life as the first site planted we have flowers blooming fast now. Every day is more saturated with the brightness and the courts are buzzing with bees. The VRI has swung into activity with people attending 6 days a week for a variety of activities. I love seeing the variety of people contribute their efforts to restoring the space inside and out. It’s great to be part of a team of people and to be able to call on others knowledge and experience, as well as time and energy. Life is busy and good. We have lots of visitors coming along to enjoy the brightness they are bringing to our part of the world. We are holding our garden party on Sunday 1st March between 1 – 4 and I hope you can make it along.

View from #TheVRI kitchen #getsunflowered

View from #TheVRI kitchen #getsunflowered



06 Feb

Your Everyday Superpower by Janette Dalgliesh

What can brain science contribute to the deliberate creation/LOA discussion? Janette Dalgliesh is an Australian author who explores this in ‘Your Everyday Superpower’. This book is a quick read about how the latest research on/of our brains can empower us. Janette explains in an easy to understand way, how our brains work. This book is well recommended on the Amazon page and I recommend it too:).

‘Janette’s journey of enquiry began when she encountered leading American psychiatrist and author Norman Doidge at a writers’ festival, where he was launching his bestselling book, The Brain That Changes Itself. She devoured the book on her journey home – nearly missing a train stop – and discovered a deep passion for this extraordinary new brain science; the world of neuroplasticity.

Were the mystics and philosophers right all along, when they claimed that humans have the power to create their own reality, physically and literally? Could this science reveal the biological ‘missing link’ that helps us understand how an altered reality is possible? ‘
Book Description on Amazon

04 Feb

Full Moon in Leo – Wednesday 4th February 2015

This morning at 10.09 the moon will be full here in Australia. Leo is a warm, creative sign, ruled by the Sun. As Kim Falconer writes in Full Moon and the Creative Heart it should be a vibe lifter. I love the sound of that.

Leo Full Moon: Filled with You Own Light on Big Sky Astrology, call us to ‘to place yourself at the center of your own solar system’. Leo likes to express and take centre stage. I cringe at the thought of being in the spotlight, it’s easier to let someone else put themselves out there as April writes in her post.  Creative people put their work out there and it is a risky business as this recent cartoon I found on Tumblr illustrates ‘If other professions were paid like artists’.

I hope this full moon gives you an extra boost to Shine On and Jessica Shepard says ‘Leo confidence is born of trust that the world is loving and good, and so are we.’ Read the whole post to inspire you.


02 Feb

Monday Love

I’m happy to get back into work today. I know Tom has arrived safely in San Fransisco and I’ve done my time letting go. I had a good weekend clearing up the debris of all those going away parties – mind you we missed the recycle bin due to a late night last fortnight so it’s not going to be properly cleared till later this week! I also celebrated my mum’s 71st birthday with her family which is always a pleasure:).

The year is starting well for our projects. I met with two of our local secondary schools today.  I got to discuss many opportunities we have to offer the young people at school to participate with the wider community at the VRI. Community lunches, pamper days and a class with Olaf Meyer, for projection artists for the Reactivate Latrobe Valley Winter Night Festival are some of the upcoming events we chatted about today. This week we have yoga, art for children and drama classes running at The VRI.

I met with Carol who is doing a project for Traralgon Cemetery Trust on WWI veteran’s who are buried or lived in our area. We are exploring the ways that Digital Shed students will be able to gather and share stories and research about these ancestors who took action in the past on our behalf. There are some great resources available. This will be open to all students in our area, so if you are a student or teacher who is interested in participating – shoot me an email – joh@digitalshed.com.au.

Our VCAL has one full class and still enquiries are coming in, we are working towards a second class due to the great demand. I met with the teachers at Federation Training last week and we are all excited about starting next week. It’s wonderful to have this opportunity to offer a community based, hands on, student driven education to the young people in our community for whom school is no longer where they want to be. I’ll be teaching class as part of their course too, so I’m looking forward to getting to know our new students. A handful of students I taught when they were in year 9 have enrolled. I used to joke with them that I would start my own school when I wasn’t continuing at their school. They encouraged (nagged) me to keep my word and it’s happening :).

We’ve been able to employ two amazing, talented supervisors for our ‘work for the dole’ (would love to change the name) program. Max Employment is working with us to provide some great work experience for people who haven’t been able to find work.  All the participants I’ve met so far have been enthusiastic about building this place with us.

Our sunflowers are getting taller every day and I can’t wait to post a flower photo – any day now I reckon. The VRI site is called ‘Love/15′, and we are planning a tennis themed event as part of #getsunflowered, so stay tuned for details about that. There will be food, music and dance – what more could we want?



31 Jan

Going, going, gone!

032My son is going away. Again. I know you’ve heard it before. It’s not like he’s been a stay at home son. I meet parents who want their offspring to spring off, but mine have. Why hasn’t it got easier? No amount of ‘farewell parties’ (and there have been many) is making it any better.

When I got up this morning I read this blog post he’d written – Nothing’s as it seems, had a cry and then tried to pull it together to hug him goodbye properly when he got up. I didn’t – Meghan came to drive him to Melbourne and almost as soon as she arrived the tears involuntarily flowed. Then there were some more after he left.

He’s travelling with a good friend. Daniel has gone from being a rival on the basketball court to a close friend. Knowing Daniel, as his teacher for a year and recent years of sharing meals, drinks and long chats with lots of laughter, I’m happy to know they will have this adventure together. I’ve heard them plan and prepare for this trip for so long and I’m genuinely happy it’s become a reality, except that I’ll miss him.

I am grateful to my mum as a role model of letting go, with six of us who at various times scattered around the country and the world. Mum and dad are gentle and understanding with me. They have been amazing at allowing us the freedom to pursue our own paths in the world. I went to Darin’s this afternoon and hugged his kids, watched them play thinking how fast time goes.

I appreciate the technology we have access to as well. I know he won’t be tethered to his devices- if he needs to contact us -he can. I can stalk him on Instagram:).  I’m glad I love my life and work and that I have amazing friends and family close by to distract me from this gap. There are lots of wonderful things happening with our projects and after I’ve had my day of feeling, I’ll be easily distracted.  I want him to have fun and adventures.

The bottom line is I know he is a strong, resilient adult. He has proven he can take care of himself. He makes top friends. He knows how to have a good time and make the best of things. He will amble into this and learn, observe and connect to a larger world, and we’ll all be better for it. His stories will bring us laughter and wonder in the future. Safe travels!

20 Jan

New Moon in Aquarius – Wednesday 21st January 2015

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center https://www.flickr.com/photos/gsfc/

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center https://www.flickr.com/photos/gsfc/

There will be two Aquarius new moons this month. This one is at 0 degrees and its new at 0.14am here, just making it into Wednesday. If you have any zero degree points in your chart – this will aspect it. If you want to get your chart, Astro.com is a free site to generate charts that I haven’t mentioned for a while.

Aquarius is ruled by both Saturn and Uranus. It’s a quirky, sociable energy that encompasses community, friendship, technology, the future, humanitarians and making the world a better place generally.

New moons are fabulous for setting new intentions and this new moon asks what do I want for the future ? How would I like the world according to me to be? How are my friendships travelling? Could I broaden my social circle to add more to my life?

April Elliott Kent is spot on when she says:

“Social networking sites are not about deep, personal friendships. They’re not even really about friends, in the strictest sense of the word. Rather, they’re about belonging, and being part of a community.” This is the vibe of Aquarius.”

Exploring  Facebook as an Aquarian vibe as a manifestation of much of what Aquarius personifies. The Big Sky Astrology: New Moon in Aquarius: Friend Me post also goes on to say

Aquarius’ talent lies in those friendly connections with others who cross our paths – the relational grease that keep society’s gears moving smoothly and that joins us in together in collective identity, purpose, and responsibility.’

It’s a great reflection on this moon and I recommend it to you.
Jessica Shepherd describes another aspect of Aquarius in her post Moonkissd: Aquarius New Moon: Liberation Moon, the Uranian energy, that’s disruptive and tends to shift us to more authenticity – ready or not.

 “Seek out Soothsayers and Truthsayers – friends you trust, to tell it how it is. Heed the spontaneous call of your intuition. What we label as “crazy talk” is often our intuition trying to burst out and bring more clarity and truthfulness to a situation.”

Kim Falconer’s blog The 11th House (Aquarius) has a link to her latest free podcast about the moon  for those interested in learning more about astrology – What Your Moon Wants You To Know .

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