Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

Roaring White Rollers
June 28, 2017

Again, I have dug deep into my archives with this charcoal drawing made in August 2008.

The roaring, white rollers crash onto the beach,

We are content in our beach pursuits.

16th August 2008

On a beach just south of Sydney, my sister, Kathryn, and 3 year old, Gemma, paddled in the shallows. Max who was looking forward to starting school in 2009, was engrossed with creating a new landscape out of sand. I was busy drawing the paddlers.

Amelia Jane
July 14, 2016

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Now for something a bit different……….My niece, Gemma, commissions me from time to time to make some object on her wish list. In 2015 it was a Minion Beanie, this year, an Amelia Jane doll.

When I received the commission, I had no idea who Amelia Jane was. It turns out Amelia Jane is the primary character in a series of Enid Blyton books in Gemma’s possession. Gemma and I spent some time examining the changes to Amelia Jane’s appearance over the decades since the books were originally published and Gemma provided me with her preferences……..and this is the result.

I was enormously relieved and pleased that Gemma was very happy with her custom made Amelia Jane……especially after the blood, sweat and tears (not to mention profanities) that went into her creation.

Amelia Jane was concocted from the blending and adapting of free crochet patterns I found on the Ravelry website.

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Down The Calder
January 11, 2016

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Each month, Katie and I travel from Castlemaine down the Calder Highway to Melbourne where I stay for 2 to 3 nights. I visit my father who is 91 years old, other family and friends. Katie gets to hang out with Kliff and Lucy, the canines who reside with my brother, Malcolm and sister, Beverley.

In the collage, I am passing Mt. Macedon with its Memorial Cross and low hanging cloud – quite often mist, fog or rain.

Whilst I am glad to catch up with family and friends, I am also glad when it is time to return home.

When I first moved to Castlemaine, I was told the longer I lived here, the harder it would become to return to Melbourne. The people who said this were right! If I knew nobody in Melbourne, there would be no reason for this monthly trip.

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Here are Lucy, the Golden Retriever, and Kliff, the Bull Arab X, sunning themselves.

My niece, Lily, took the photograph.

 

 

Collage: These are a Few of My Favourite Things
August 22, 2014

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“When the dog bites,

When the bee stings,

When I’m feeling sad,

I simply remember my favourite things and then I don’t feel so bad.”

As sung by Julie Andrews in ‘Sound of Music’

I made this collage about some of my favourite things about my home:

The strips of toilet paper wrapper – my house is light and bright, full of colour and texture,

The red tea bag wrappers – the pleasure of drinking good quality green tea. I’ve run out. I need to get some more.

The art work made by my nieces – their greeting cards give me a lot of pleasure. Gemma wrote 61 all over the turtle’s shell to mark my 61st birthday.

The pieces of knitting – knitting is calming. Balls of yarn settle on various surfaces in the living area. Most days I am extracting yarn from Katie’s mouth. Katie loves anything soft and chewy. She prefers my yarn to her yarn which lives in her own special yarn bag.

The keys – keys to my heart, keys to happiness, the keys I can never find when I need them.

The beads – the joy of my own creations which adorn my home.

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Katie who just wants to have fun.

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Arlo, The Magnificent, who doesn’t have much time for Katie.

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Belle, The Huntress, who is sitting on the kitchen bench which is forbidden. That reflective collar isn’t there for decoration. Belle is Katie’s favourite playmate.

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Collage: I Choose Joy
February 1, 2014

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I awake

A heavy, grey mist enveloping me.

Slowly, slowly my mother is fading away.

My father struggles with pain

He struggles to remember the events of the morning

His grandchildren are strangers to him.

My uncle rails against the bitterness of infirmity

‘Oh Death, where is thy sting?’

My cousin, her father’s full time carer,  bears it patiently.

I reflect on the line

‘Old age isn’t for wimps’

In the mean time,

I choose Joy.

I  wrote this a few weeks before my mother died on the 16th of December 2013.

My father’s health and memory have improved since he entered aged care accommodation.

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In Memory
July 24, 2012

The Glory of Life is Love

The Glory of Life is not that it endures forever,

 but that, for a time,

it includes so much that is beautiful.

It is a tree to those who grasp it,

and happy are all who retain it.

Its ways are ways of pleasantness,

and all its paths are peaceful.

We do not demand that the flower shall never die,

nor that the song shall never end.

Nor would we be angry with life because one day its beauty will be dust,

its music silent, and all its laughter and tears forgotten.

Life, the reality, is ours: we would shape it as nobly as we can.

We will not linger, like timid sailors in port,

but will live dangerously, devoting ourselves with vigour

to what seems to us good, beautiful and true.

The Glory of  Life is Love. Unending.

This reading formed part of the Fernlea House commemorative celebration held on the 8th of July 2012 to honour the memory of those guests, staff and family members who had died over the past 12 months. 

I dedicate this reading to the memory of my aunt, Anne, who died of cancer on the 16th of July 2012.

 Anne and I took great pleasure in wandering around gardens which opened during the Festival of Gardens held every two years in and around Castlemaine.

We lingered and admired the gardens lovingly created by their owners,

We sniffed perfumed blooms and picked dead heads from the irises,

We sat on garden seats, gazing dreamily into the distance deep in contemplation,

We chatted to the owners, patted their cats, dogs and alpacas and startled the goldfish,

We sipped cups of tea and sampled scones and slices.

Anne’s day was not complete until she returned to the car laden with the plants she had purchased.