#754 5 out of 6 ain’t too bad

I have already driven 5 hours today.

Off to the other side of town with baby girl for an appointment: 1 hour 20 minutes

Then to my parents place for a few hours: 20 minutes

Back in the car to drive back home (now through Long Weekend traffic, general bullshit inefficient drivers, and car accidents where rubberneckers couldn’t help but slow down to look at a collision that WASN’T in their way): 2 hours and 20 minutes

Back in the car after a 5 minute stopover at home, now to drive to work: 1 hour and 20 minutes


And that’s not even ALLย of it. Because I still have to drive an hour home later on… at the terrific-ly beautiful time of 3-4am.

Yep. All you Aussie peeps will be dreaming your sweet little eyelashes off, and I will be driving down the freeways, getting home as late as possibly 5am.

YAY! for me (not sarcastic, at all).

Seriously though, what the hell have I got to be grateful for here?


  1. One hard day like this is almost down, with only one to go
  2. I am in a good mood despite racking up so many k’s todays
  3. And I have driven 5, out of 6 hours. I’m almost there.

So close.

I am happy, so very happy, despite all of this, and being happy while at work, amidst busy days, and so so so soย SO much driving….???

It makes me even more happy. And grateful. ๐Ÿ™‚




#737 35 minutes from company, makes for excited Hosts

At our closest, we have family that lives 35 minutes away. Most of the family are a cruise-control freeway length of 40-45 minutes, while the rest of them, well…


We can be driving for hours to see someone. An hour? Yep. 90 minutes? For sure. 2 hours?

Yep even that far.

Our own parents, who used to live 7 and 15 minutes away from us, are now a day-trip length of 80 minutes.

We aren’t really catching up with anyone on this ‘side’ of town yet. In this town. We haven’t been here long enough to form those kinds of bonds, just yet.

I mean, we knew what we were in for. It wasn’t as if we didn’t know where everyone lived, or we didn’t know that we knew absolutely no one in the town we were moving to…

Still, it can get a little lonely. We wouldn’t change our location or house for the world, we genuinely really truly love it. However when we got home from our little Barwon Heads getaway on the weekend, after being just the trio of us for days already, we so desperately were seeking company, and needed to be with someone other than ourselves…

But locally, there was none to be found at our immediate disposal.

That’s why we are so happy when friends and family pop by for a visit. We had such friends pop over tonight, and we went to all efforts to make it a fabulous night.

We genuinely enjoy having people over and hosting, and being the fact that we are now further from many of them, we make the concerted effort when they do arrive on our doorstep.

Whether you have friends popping by unexpectedly, driving a long distance to see you, or you need to organise the meet up weeks in advance…

Having someone want to come and visit you, is happiness in itself, without all the food, the drink…


Even the CAKE.

Feeling grateful for those in our life who make time for us, and more so the wonderful friends who came through our door tonight.




#726 Date with the folks

I can’t remember exactly how long, but going into today it felt like it had been ages between catch-ups with my parents.

As in, a face-to-face one. We met up with them today at a local shopping centre on their side of town for some lunch, where we ate in a little cafe, chatted, caught up on some stuff, and just generally enjoyed their company.

It was so chilled, and yet so necessary.

We had things to do during the day, but had promised that when we were done we would then stop by their house on our way back home. What was meant to be a half hour visit, turned into a 4 hour “let’s just stay for dinner now” visit.

The backyard was the best bit. Sitting around the small table, chilling under the fruit trees, enjoying the cool breeze wafting on through, and talking about goals, dreams, life, and making plans and exploring ideas about it ALL.


I swear their backyard is THE BEST. The greatest memories have been had amidst those trees. Baby girl went a bit rampant with my phone and took the above photo of Hubbie my Mum and I, and then as I wasn’t watching went ahead and took a whole lot more…

Topping off the night was an impromptu visit to Gino’s pizza to grab our dinner, and unless you’re from the North will you only understand the institution that Gino’s is – that it still is, even after the owner’s have changed! If you don’t get it, I’ll just tell you this: people go out of their way to pick up the pizzas as Gino’s don’t do delivery, which is what we had to do tonight even though I started off with saying “let’s just get a pizza delivered.”


Having a classic pizza you haven’t had in ages, in your old hood, is pretty damn awesome.

Under the Pear tree, Parents, Pizza… Ahh. Pretty Perfect ๐Ÿ™‚

And just for show, check out the photos baby girl took in the backyard while we weren’t looking:


(The garden duck she bathed)


(Legit she took this, it is soooo beautiful)


(In an art gallery this one would be called ’80s Flashback – The Clothesline against a sea of Corrugated Plastic’)



#712 Family Fun on Jan 26th

Today is a day that divides many people from the land down under.

January 26th – Australia Day. A national holiday to celebrate our achievements as Australians, to recognise how far we’ve come, and to reflect on our culture.

The local park down by the beach ran a huge Australia Day event, and naturally, we all headed on down.

It was a very pro-Australia Day experience. Flags abounded, Union Jacks on clothing, and green and gold was the norm. Massive theme park rides were spaced on the perimeter of the park, food trucks on one end, and a stage for live music on the other.

These people came here to celebrate Australia day – or as was in our case, to take advantage of the free entertainment.

But there is a movement, a wave of people that has been increasing exponentially, that believes we should not celebrate Australia Day on January 26th.

And I agree.

BUT that does NOT mean I am not proud to be an Australian.

January 26th is not the day the First Fleet landed in this country, as many people are led to believe. In fact it is believed to have occurred in 1788, somewhere between Jan 18-20, and the 26th is the day the Union Jack was raised in Sydney Cove, to declare British Sovereignty.

Australia Day was celebrated in Sydney on January 26th in those early days, before other states took on the holiday too, but they did this on different days, like Tasmania’s ‘Regatta Day,’ or South Australia’s ‘Proclamation Day.’ This was the case for 200 years, and only in 1935 did it become nationally recognised and celebrated, even then only being declared as a holiday in 1994.

In that way, Australia Day as we know it today, is fairly new.

The day January 26th, is known as ‘Invasion Day’ or ‘Survival Day’ to these Anti-Aus Day Jan 26-ers. Because it signalled the end of 50,000 years of Indigenous occupation on this land, which then led to brutal colonisation. Massacres of the Aboriginal people took place, land was taken, and children removed from their parents. The stolen generation was born, and many Indigenous descendants grew up not knowing where they came from.

The pain, suffering and loss the Indigenous community experienced is more than profound. And that doesn’t include the repercussions echoing out to this current day. To think of what they have had to endure, not just over years, but decades and centuries, with oppression and hate and discrimination, when all they were doing were living on their land… a sorry will just not do.

But it was done. In 2008 the Australian Prime Minister formally apologised to the Aboriginal community – for the successive laws and policies of previous governments that inflicted severe pain and grief onto their families and communities.

January 26th, the day the Union Jack was raised in Sydney in 1788, is then a representation of all that preceded, and all that was lost to the Indigenous community when the First Fleet arrived. The slavery, the violence, the oppression. It is a day of mourning for many. Rightly so.

My ancestors were NOT from that First Fleet. In fact, in 1788, my ancestors were probably farming cattle in a remote and poverty-stricken land somewhere in the Balkan region of Europe. My parents came to Australia in 1970, for a better life. It is the story of so many European immigrants, and continues to be so to this day. They came from nothing, from having to work so hard just to be able to obtain, I don’t know, a bike… over the span of a YEAR… and the opportunity to come to a “land of plenty,” where stories of filling up a trolley with fruit and vegetables with only $2, and realising after their first pay check working in the factory, that they could achieve so much more here in months, than they could achieve over there in years… that is the history I grew up with.

I grew up hearing, how Australia saved my parents. In doing so, they saved my sister and I. I grew up hearing of the comparisons between my parents’ beloved native country, and the ‘lucky country.’ They have such respect for where they came from, and when you ask them their nationality – they are Australian. Proudly so.

I have seen more of my family come from overseas. They didn’t come here to brutalise and oppress any minority or otherwise group, just as my parents didn’t. No, they came here for a better life, for a chance at something greater, even to escape WAR. They came here because they heard things were good, and they wanted to see things for themselves.

They have all stayed. We ALL have.

The Australia I have lived with, and which has been represented to me, is a good one, a noble one. I know things are not perfect, and there is always something the government must do better. But here, there is democracy. Freedom of speech. There is strong multiculturalism. People are kind. People are friendly. People love to connect.

However, bad things were done, many, many years ago, and despite the fact that we can’t go back, we can try to make things work as a unified community.

A country, united as one.

Both black and white, coming together.

But it has to be a conscious and integrated effort from both parties. There are white people I know that complain of the country we live in, or talk about how shit Australia is, or how that ‘other’ country is soooo much better.

Well move then. Go on, piss off (as a true blue Aussie would say). Don’t hang around here gaining benefits and working and earning Australian coin, when you know of so much better.

You are ungrateful. We don’t want you.

Likewise I have heard some other pretty horrible things today. I have heard of Indigenous people at Invasion Day rallies, saying “F*&k Australia, hope it burns to the ground.”

This makes me terribly sad. Sad for the mourning this person would have experienced to want the country they live in, the country we ALL live in, to burn to pieces.

Like I said, both parties need to want to move forward, peacefully. Slandering will not make things better. And it unfortunately won’t change the past.

Whether like me, my ancestors were not part of that First Fleet, or like other Australians, perhaps they were… the power to want to change the future is out there. People want to make amends for the past, whether they are white or black… but a person living in Melbourne today, should not be blamed for what their Father did in February 1st 1985 for example… just as today’s First Fleet descendants that want to change for the better, should not be blamed for what their ancestors were part of from 1788 onwards.

The idea is out there, that Australia Day needs to be moved to another date, or it is abolished all together and another day that celebrates both Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities coming together, is created.

I believe this is the only way forward. I think respect needs to be shown to the original people of this land, and January 26th and Australia Day, are synonymous no more.



I went to the park today. I was happy to be amidst our community of proud Australians – Australians that love the country they live in, the people in it, and the culture that lives on.

Was I celebrating Australia Day? Hmm, not quite. I was celebrating the life I live…

But that I do every day. Because I am grateful for the place that I reside in the world.

I am grateful for MY history. I am grateful for the choices my parents made. And I am grateful that change is coming to respect the life and culture of those who inhabited this land 200 years before any white people were on it.

I had my own family fun day, and I enjoyed the fact of some extra time together, with them.

I hope wherever you were in the world, your day of January 26 was great too…



#695 Sand Creations by the bay

I had really wanted to take baby girl last year, following on from our Sea Change move… but alas, time, and circumstance just didn’t allow it to happen. Even though the entire event ran for a goodย 4 months.

This time however, I was set. Following on from the Christmas theme in December, baby girl and I ventured over to Frankston Sand Sculpting to view their ‘Aladdinย & The Arabian Nights’ display.


The sculptures were impressive and exquisitely intricate, however to a 4 year old, the most excitement was when she saw the Aladdin and Jasmine character on the magic carpet. I mean, she is 4.


(Baby girl going all Sia-esque on me again).

Off to a sand pit to play with some buckets for a bit, into a nearby marquee where there was some free face (hand) painting to be enjoyed, and then I soon discovered the other marquee, where she could reap the benefits of the Supa Pass I had purchased for her…

Sure, the floor in there was all sand. Really, other than the beach, I would never willingly take my daughter to a place where the floor is replaced by this texture. But it was all for a purpose. Tables were assembled, coloured sand of all kinds was on each table, and on it you could create sand art and sand bottles.


This was GREAT. I didn’t realise until I sat down with baby girl, how much fun it was. We strategically peeled back stickers off of the yellow paper, revealing a sticky substance underneath, so that sand was applied, and then shaken off… voila! The sand colour of your choice remained.

Parents were close by to their kids, enjoying the art and creativity as much as their children did. And children sat so patiently, so happily, so willingly, choosing their colours and applying the sand where necessary. We happily made baby girl’s choo-choo train picture, and also took home a sand bottle which she had filled herself.

I know the drawcard of the event are the sculptures themselves, but the sand colouring bit was by far the most entertaining part. Baby girl said to me as we left “thank you for taking me to sandcastles.”

Awww, sweetheart. You are WELCOME. I had the best time too. ๐Ÿ™‚


#687 Starting afresh, day 1


Photo by Bryce Barker on Unsplash

I remember hearing from somebody when I was a teenager that the first 5 minutes after the clock striking midnight on New Years Eve were vital – they represented the state of the following year.

So if the first 5 minutes of Jan 1 were happy, so too would your New Year be happy.

If they were crappy – so too would your New Year be crappy.

And so on.

This was later updated by someone else, to say that the first hour after midnight was important, as it represented the upcoming year… and then somebody else said it was none of the above, rather the first day that meant anything at all.

Basically you had 24 hours to pull your shit together and make it the best representation of what you wanted the upcoming year to be.

Really…. I do think it is kind of BS. I used to be more highly superstitious and hold these things closely to my heart, freaking out if I had anything but ‘happy happy joy joy’ thoughts when the clock struck twelve on New Years, but I now realise that your year, will ALWAYS be what you make of it. And you can always start again, whenever you like. You don’t have to wait a whole year for it.


Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash

Having said all that, I was STILL pleased that during the New Years Eve party yesterday and on day 1 of the New Year, today, it was spent with some of my most favourite people – my family.

They were there last night, and then because we clearly didn’t get enough of them then, Hubbie, baby girl and I headed over to my sister’s place again today for some more familial love, comprising of leftovers, after-party discussion, some ‘light’ drinks, and chill time.

And then quite surprisingly, my parents just walked in! Just like that! They had decided to join the party too, and suddenly all was well in the world.

Half of us headed into the pool, and the addition of water fun, play and relaxation, just added to the calm yet loving nature of the day.

It was a great start to the year.

And although there were also components of today that were crappy, or annoying – I dismissed them from mind and care.

Just as I will try to do for anything that doesn’t serve a purpose of happiness, growth, and fulfilment in my life this year.

Happy 2018 folks.


Photo by NordWood Themes on Unsplash

#680 Another Christmas at my parents

I don’t care how many times I post the same heading. Because I will always be grateful for it.

Each time there will be joy, but each time it will be different too – the fun will come from an unexpected avenue, we will sing different songs, eat different food and our time together will always be more cherished than the last time…

Because all of life is fleeting. We don’t know what is around the corner, and so when we are given something precious, a beautiful moment, or a special someones

Take stock, grab hold, and run with it.

This morning at our home, there was loads of presents…


and in turn plenty of wrapping paper to show for it.

Baby girl assisted Hubbie in their present to me –


And I LOVED the personal red touches and care given by baby girl, as much as the present itself.

The tree at my parents house is now smaller than it used to be…


But the same joy and love and good times remains. The alcohol still ‘goes’…


VERY quickly. But that is how we do things around here.

And there is dancing alright… not in the kitchen. But the GARAGE. Parents house, old school style.


And I love it all. I hope you too had an amazing and memorable Christmas with your loved ones… and if you don’t celebrate, well I hope your day was special anyway ๐Ÿ™‚