Category Archives: Family

100 years today

My Dad was born today 10 December 1918, to an unwed School Mistress in Yorkshire.

To my Grandmother for being the strong woman of her time, for her parents who supported her when she lost her job, for having a babe out of wedlock. I did not get to know you, but thank you.

To my Dad, a World War Two Veteran – thank you for your service.

Thank you for being there to dig the children out of the collapsed movie theatre during World War Two. For sailing far from home, to protect home and country. For getting back on the ships after being sunk on them. Thank you also for being part of Dunkirk, though you only spoke of it once, and to my sibling, I know you would have thought of it as doing your duty.

Thanks for being there throughout my childhood. We argued whenI became a teenager, and fought more than once. But you were a man of your times, and that you became in your own words “A feminist” helped me grow into one too.

We may have disagreed more often than agreed, and we were too alike to see eye to eye for long; you were still there after Mum died. You held her through the long fight with cancer, cared for her, and finally told her that you loved her. We held you as you cried that night after she died, the loss of the one constant in our lives.

Before the cancer and the madness, you met the one I would wed. You knew then, that they were a keeper. That they would provide the comfort and protection when your own cancer would take you. Thank you for welcoming them into our lives.

You didn’t get to meet our child, or see the grandkids you had then go on and have children of their own. I wonder, as does my child, what you would have thought of them. Whether your true colours would have shown through, or whether you would have been just glad that I had finally “caught” up with my siblings……

Your birthday is today, I’ve baked a cake to celebrate and honour you. I’ve lit a candle for you as well. I will gather my little family around, and we’ll sing you a Happy Birthday, for without you, there would be no us.

I miss you Dad.




We need to talk about suicide more

Suicide prevention is something close to my heart. I still remember the phone call, 17 years ago, from my Father, and the desperation in his voice as he reached out for me, and eventually the help we could source for him. The phone call from my organisation’s HR department querying my leave of absence, and their total silence when I told them that the leave was to needed to get to my Father ASAP, still makes me wonder what was going through their heads.

I had the privilege of supervising a team of returned military members, 12 years ago. One of them made a decision, that another team member managed to intervene and halt, which would have been a tragic death. I remember sitting in my office, talking to each of these members separately, and with the other members of my team, as we spoke about how little support at the time was being given to these folk. What they had seen, could never be erased. I supported, and sought out counselling for them. I was there for them.

This article and the articles in USA Today are required reading. If you or anyone you know needs help then I can suggest:



“It just happens” – we need to change male attitudes now!

I’m raising a son, in a world which is saturated with sexist and misogynist advertising and movies. But I always make the point of calling out the behaviours to him. We now have a game where if we watch a movie, we call out the behaviour. (Like we did with saying Language whenever anything colourful is said).

I’ve got nieces, and great nieces though and they’re in a world which I think is perhaps more conservative now than when I was younger. A world in which they’re judged more, and I hate it.

So when I came across these two posts I wanted to share them with you, education empowers and can over power these barriers.

That’s Just One More Barrier to Coming Forward

A professor who studies teens and sexual violence on the very obvious reason girls don’t report these crimes.

One in Ten Girls Is Catcalled Before Age 11

A series of Tips on How Parents Can Protect and Empower Their Daughters.

We can stop this now. Call it out, encourage everyone to call it out. Stop it before more lives are damaged.


Red Dead Suffragettes: When violence against women is reflected in our culture

As a parent to a child who plays video games, I’m concerned by the content of the games. So far we’ve had a great deal of control over the content our child is exposed to. We have an open dialogue about what games are suitable for them, how often they should play it, and setting limits to how much screen time is suitable.

I came across the Red Dead Suffragettes story and wanted to share it with you. Again it calls out the violence against women, that is endemic in my society. The politics of power and privilege play out each and everyday, and it is our responsibility to call it out for what it is. We need to change how we view violence at every level, if we are to enact the social change this world needs.

Thriving School Libraries Change Lives


For more information and to get involved in protecting School Libraries visit Students Needs School Libraries.

School Library Specialists

School Libraries Matter.jpg

Top Three ways to change a child’s future

I’m an advocate for reading. Reading to me opens the doors to an education every child should be able to access. Without basic literacy skills your child will fall behind. They will struggle at school and in their future years.

We need to invest time and effort into helping our children learn and grow.

So my top three pieces of advice to make this happen is:

  1. Turn off the electronic devices. Yes that includes your phone, tablet and computer. Sit down beside your child with a real book, and read the book together. At first it will be you doing the reading, but as your child grows in confidence, they will join in. Then one day they will read to you. Trust me that is the day you reap the reward for turning off the devices and reading together.

Libraries app for lap

2. Model Reading. So yet again I’m asking step away from the electronic, and pick up a magazine, a newspaper a book – something real and tangible. Pick it up and be caught reading by your child. You don’t have to be reading for long, your child will gravitate towards you if you’re sitting still reading. They might climb up beside you, or onto your lap. Make it time for the both of you to be together.

two kids reading.jpg

3. Walk the Talk. Talk about what you’re reading, and ask what they might like to read. Open up the conversation and talk about different genres, about fiction and non fiction. If you need help, talk to a Teacher, Librarian, neighbour, friend – anyone who is a passionate reader. Trust me they will help. Or drop me a line and I can help, I’ve been where you are, and my own child is now a passionate, active reader.

child reading.jpg

We make a difference in a child’s life when we open the doors to reading – it’s the gift that keeps on giving.



Crazy quilts are unique and innovative quilts created from scraps of materials. This expresses my hope for young people.


Humanising! Indigenising! Decolonising! Thriving

T is for Training

10 Years of Sharing Knowledge One Call At A Time

Ta-Nehisi Coates | The Atlantic

Thoughts, Ideas and so much more

This is Lit

Book Blog

Kylie in the library

Musings of an emerging information professional

Sarah Cawkwell's Blog

"The difference between fiction and reality is that fiction has to make sense." -- Tom Clancy

Yellowstone National Park Lodges

Thoughts, Ideas and so much more

Life in the Information World

Mother Jones

Smart, fearless journalism

Librarian Lisa

school library consultant


nurturing the compassionate maker, the reluctant reader, and embracing #librarylife

Australian Aboriginal Languages Student Blog

A place to share anything at all that's interesting and related to the languages of Australia. WARNING: We wish to advise that this blog may contain names, voices and images of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who have passed away. We strongly urge readers to exercise caution when viewing the blog so as to avoid distress.

I am Jessica

A student's attempt at environmentalism.


simple connected living, city style


Fitness Community

L-B the Librarian

Use your library

Imogen Crest

Creative Artist - Time Travelling Nature Hermit - Soul Food Cafe

Cybils Awards

Thoughts, Ideas and so much more


moneyless low impact living

Nikki Skies

I am a lover of perseverance. I am folklore. I am consistency and contradiction.

Whispers of a Womanist

A Black Female Perspective...

When Women Inspire

Inspirational Women | Health and Lifestyle Tips

Eliza Grace Quinn

Feminism, feelings and faraway places.

Jason's Movie Blog

A Movie Blog for the Latest Movie Reviews, Trailers, and More

A Library Lady

News and views from the world of children's books and libraries

Spoonie Authors Network

We love words and manage spoons.

Loving the Library Life...

living and loving life as a middle school librarian

Just So Stories

Random Reviews and Ramblings from Redcliffe

Matt Doyle Media Dot Com

Books, Cosplay, and viewing Pop Culture in a positive light

Simply Etta

Inspiration for the Heart, Mind and Soul

Sophie Rai Liur

An Australian living abroad in Dili, Timor-Leste

The Hub for Just Kids' Lit


Supporting Bilingual Learners of English in Highland Schools

Australian author of young adult fiction

R&R Book Tours

Author Services, Publicity, Blog Tours & Other Promotional Events

Confessions of a Parentless Mother

My journey as a parentless mom

Blood Red Velvet

★Books ★ Art ★ Creation ★ A dream captured in a crystalline moment.

A Kids Book A Day

Reviewing a children's book from 2018 every day