Showing posts from February, 2011


Adolescence is a period of rapid changes.  Between the ages of 12 and 17, for example, a parent ages as much as 20 years.  Author Unknown Our children can bring us much joy, they can also cause us much grief and sadness.  Teenagers are, well (very) difficult at times and I know many parents, me included who wish we could speed up the years so we can skip the teenage pains (or send them off to boot camp for a few years).  At times it can become a little too much. I don't think any parents goes through the teenage years without a number of fights . . . when words are spoken and then regretted. They can be over the silliest of things . . . the one with my son was over cans in the cupboard (don't ask).  Someone asked me the other day the following question " if you could capture time, what age would you like you son to stay ". . . my reply was " two ".  They were so sweet at that age.  Innocent, funny and just gorgeous.  At 18, things have changed considera

Finding joy

Joyful, joyful, we adore Thee, God of glory, Lord of love; Hearts unfold like flowers before Thee, opening to the sun above. Melt the clouds of sin and sadness; drive the dark of doubt away; Giver of immortal gladness, fill us with the light of day! All Thy works with joy surround Thee, earth and heaven reflect Thy rays,
 Stars and angels sing around Thee, center of unbroken praise.
 Field and forest, vale and mountain, flowery meadow, flashing sea,
 Singing bird and flowing fountain call us to rejoice in Thee. Thou art giving and forgiving, ever blessing, ever blessed,
 Wellspring of the joy of living, ocean depth of happy rest!
 Thou our Father, Christ our Brother, all who live in love are Thine;
 Teach us how to love each other, lift us to the joy divine. Mortals, join the happy chorus, which the morning stars began;
 Father love is reigning o’er us, brother love binds man to man. Ever singing, march we onward, victors in the midst of strife,
 Joyful music leads us Sunward in t

Week 8

My week - in summary Not many highlights this week, my youngest son went on a school excursion to the Art Gallery and thoroughly enjoyed himself.  My eldest son impressed me with his maturity and ability to negotiate a 12 month lease on the unit he is renting.  He was so pleased with himself for achieving it without anyone's help.  This is something he would never have attempted a few years ago, another sign that he is growing up.  The weather has been glorious and I praise the Lord for providing such a mild end to summer - yes, officially summer comes to the end next Monday and them we move into Autumn, my favourite season.  It is perfect weather for sitting outside and watching the world go by - which is what I did on Wednesday afternoon.  Small moments of joy. (below: these are 2 little guys who live in my garden ) All week (in the evenings) I have been busy working on a photo album for my parents - I have gathered up and scanned all their old family photos and I have been

Friday Trivia

I am a curious person and often wonder about things, strange things. . . one question I have pondered was " what happened to all the rubble in Berlin after World War Two ".   You may wonder why - well, I have read many books on WWII and and one thing led to another.  FINALLY I know the answer and I was sort of exciting about sharing it.   Teufelsberg The Devils Mountain The mountain rises 80 metres above the city and is completely man-made.  It was built by the Allies from the rubble of Berlin during the following twenty years as the city was rebuilt. One estimate for the amount of rubble is about 12 million cubic meters, or about 400,000 buildings. It is higher than the highest natural hill (the Kreuzberg) in the Berlin area. Once completed the Allies used the hill to build a Listening Station (white tower at back of photo) to spy on East Germany.  Up to 1,500 were employed at the Listening Station at the height of the cold war.  Now it sits in ruin as Berliners deci

A true home

A true home is one of the most sacred of places.  It is a sanctuary into which men flee from the  world's perils and alarms. It is a resting-place to which at close of day the weary retire to gather new strength for the battle and toils of tomorrow. It is the place where love learns its lessons, where life is schooled into discipline and strength, where character is molded. What are some of the secrets of happy home life? The answer might be given in one word— Christ . Christ at the marriage-altar;  Christ on the bridal journey;  Christ when the new home is set up; Christ when the baby is born; Christ when a child dies; Christ in the pinching times;  Christ in the days of plenty;  Christ in the nursery, in the kitchen,  in the parlor;  Christ in the toil and in the rest; Christ along all the years; Christ when the wedded pair walk toward the sunset gates; Christ in the sad hour when farewells are spoken, and one goes on before and the other stays,  bearing the unsh

Art Wednesday: By request

Balmoral Beach I was asked the other day by one of my  readers if I liked D'Arcy Doyle as it was her favourite - I didn't know much about this artist so I thought why not - once in a while do a "by request" and here is my first.  My favourite painting is the one above. D'Arcy William Doyle (1932–2001) A painter of Australian landscapes and historical scenes Aged 18 years, Doyle joined the Royal Australian Navy with some friends and served for seven years, seeing active service in the Korean War. After finishing in the navy, Doyle worked as a painter and sign writer. In 1961, he found the confidence to become an artist on a full-time basis.  He was completely self-taught as an artist. Influenced by Norman Rockwell , the well-known American illustrator, d'Arcy Doyle gives us a nostalgic impression of post-war Brisbane and Ipswich as he recalls it.  The Kite Fliers Big Ring Dad wasn't ready Roman Artist Old Gum Trees Sir Donald and His Trus

Have you tried to change your husband?

Have you tried to change your husband?  I'm sure we all have from time to time - their deficiencies can drive us mad and we often make it our pet project to "remould" our husbands into the way we would like them to be - to always pick up their dirty washing, replace the toilet paper, arrive home on time, have more patiences . . .  I cannot be the only one who has done this. We frequently face situations where we are tempted to think harsh and critical thoughts.  Sometimes as wives we are more inclined to concentrate on what our husbands are doing wrong than what they are doing right.  We are more more aware of their deficiencies than areas that they excel in. . . . Rather we must focus on our husbands' many commendable qualities.  As we do this, we will be amazed.  We'll start to discover more and more qualities that we were failing to see because we were blinded by our critical thoughts. from Feminine Appeal by Carolyn Mahoney What is interesting is that we a

News and current affairs

Is it just me or has the news become less news and more entertainment (slipping towards the gutter at a fast speed).  I don’t know about you, but I watch the news on TV to watch "news".  What is happening locally, nationally and internationally.  I do not want to hear about the latest love nest between an ex cricket player (Shane Warne) and a B grade actor/model (Liz Hurley).   All last week on the news  one of the lead stories was about Hurley — who spent a romantic week with her lover.  The fact that both have children, that Hurley has only recently separated from her husband and Warne is divorced doesn’t seem to matter. No one seem to see anything wrong with this story at all. For me it demonstrates how far we have slipped in society towards such a sinful way of life, that a very public affair — a lustful fling — is considered newsworthy and acceptable.  Children watch the news (more so older children) and what message are we giving them — that this is ok as

Finding strength

God is my strength and power: and he maketh my way perfect. 2 Samuel 22:23 Seek the LORD and his strength , seek his face continually. 2 Chronicles 16:11 The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? Psalm 27:1 God is our refuge and strength , a very present help in trouble. Psalm 46:1 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me . Philippians 4:13  Trust in the Lord to provide the strength you will need as you go through the coming week. God of our strength, from day to day Direct our thoughts and guide our way; O may our hearts united be In sweet communion, Lord, with Thee. God of our strength, on Thee we call; God of our hope, our light, our all, Thy Name we praise, Thy love adore, Our Rock, our Shield, forevermore. by Fanny Crosby ~oOo~

Week 7

Sydney Harbour Bridge taking from the Manley Ferry Family My son hasn't been feeling very well this week and missed a couple of days of school, and this is only his 2nd week back at school.  He is looking and feeling much better today.  I have no idea what bug he caught, but that is nothing unusual. My DH has been trying to fix a problem on his laptop and each evening he came home from work and spent ages trying to figure out the problem - getting more and more frustrated. Finally on Thursday (with the help of a on-line technician) he cracked it and was so relieved. Otherwise it has been a very quiet week. Weather Mostly cool with one day/night of rain followed by humidity. Since the rain I have heard the crickets chirping happily.   Shopping Had to buy a new kettle as ours wouldn't turn off when it boiled.  Kettles range in price from $9.00 through to almost $200!! Who would spend $200 on a kettle unless it made the tea and brought it to me!!  Our last two kettles would

Friday Trivia: All about the rain

Whilst on the topic of weather (last Friday was about cyclones ) I often hear the weatherman telling me we may have a "shower or two" or "a few showers" and typical me, wondered what it really meant - here are my findings!! Some made me laugh!!  Showers : Usually begin and end suddenly. Relatively short-lived, but may last half an hour. Often, but not always, separated by blue sky.    Rain : In contrast to showers, rain is steadier and normally falls from stratiform (layer) cloud. Liquid water drops greater than 0.5 mm in diameter.   Drizzle : Fairly uniform precipitation composed exclusively of very small water droplets (less than 0.5 mm in diameter) very close to one another.   Thundery rain : Rain with embedded thunderstorms.   Shower or two : Not many, less than a few. Used to describe showers occurring infrequently.   Few showers : Not many, amounting to a small number. Used to describe a small number of showers over a time period.  

Getting on my soapbox

I thought I would climb onto my soapbox and have a little rant.  Its about one aspect of women's fashions that I really dislike.   This will make me sounds very old fashion — but I will have a small rant nevertheless. . . .but I think many of you will agree with me. Why do women come to work (to an office) in very short floaty dresses, the sort that would fly away with a gust of wind and make bending over to pick something up very difficult.  When I walk around the corridors I see plenty of very short dresses (and skirts) and lots of long legs and stilettos (I read this week that this is the "latest fashions").  I assume some men love this look (both my DH  and son tells me they don't) which must be part of the attraction why women dress like this. It must be hard for men sitting in meetings to have a pair of long legs and short dress in front of them, what temptation. I am not a male so I can not assume that I know what they think  —but from a female perspecti

Art Wednesday

Surprise Norman Percevel Rockwell (February 3, 1894 – November 8, 1978) 20th-century American painter and illustrator Norman Rockwell was a prolific artist, producing over 4,000 original works in his lifetime. Most of his works are either in public collections, or have been destroyed in fire or other misfortunes (in 1943 his studio was destroyed in a fire and numerous original paintings were lost). Rockwell was also commissioned to illustrate over 40 books including Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. Rockwell's work was dismissed by serious art critics in his lifetime. Many of his works appear overly sweet in modern critics' eyes, especially the Saturday Evening Post covers, which tend toward idealistic or sentimentalized portrayals of American life— this has led to the often-deprecatory adjective "Rockwellesque." Consequently, Rockwell was not considered a "serious painter" by some artists, who often regard his work as bourgeois and kitsch. Howeve

How should children address adults?

When I was growing up I would never have considered calling my friends parents anything but Mr and Mrs X it just wasn't done.  Even now when I meet my friend Kathy’s mum, I still call her Mrs W and wouldn’t dream of calling her by her first name.   I was brought up to call my teachers MR/MRS, likewise any friends of my parents.  However I think this is changing as I have noticed an increase in teenagers calling their teachers by their first name (I had some teachers who I didn’t even know their first name) and calling me by my first name rather than Mrs XYZ — are first names ok these days or does it demonstrate a decline in respect for elders — and the separation between children and adults? When my sons attended pre-school they were asked to call their teachers Miss Mary and Mrs Elizabeth — I do wonder if this (in their minds) gave them permission to continue on through school. My son doesn’t call all his teachers by their first names, only his favourites — they don


The true meaning of love Love suffers long and is kind;  love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own,  is not provoked,  thinks no evil;  does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.  1 Corinthians 13:4-8, 13 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved,  put on tender mercies,  kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering;  bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.   But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.  Colossians 3:12-14 ~oOo~

Week 6

Canberra, garden walk near Lake Burley Griffin Family Everyone is well.   My youngest started year 12 this week — so far so good.  He has struggled with school over the years and many prayers have been said and once again prays that this year goes with as few dramas as possible. Weather Mild —temperate between 25-29C (77-84F) Humid and overcast today - I do hope it rains. Shopping I went looking for a dress to wear to my son's engagement party but couldn’t find anything that I liked – all the dresses I found were too casual, too short, wrong colour, too tight, just plain ugly . . .   so I finally went on-line and found what I wanted.  When buying on-line there is always the worry that it won’t sit nicely or the fabric will be horrible or I have the size completely wrong — but I am very pleased with the dress, perfect for a party on a summers evening.  Just need to find some silver sandals to go with it.  I just love the colour and it is one that really suits me. It is the typ