Oh my, you did, didn’t you?

Well, America, you certainly did it. How could you do this to all of us?


I have always laughed at those preppers with their millions cans of beans and bottled water, but I am starting to feel like I should start putting my shoulder to the shovel to dig a fall-out shelter into the side of our hill. One thing for sure, I have promised myself to stop following the political media and much of the news for my own health and sanity.


I just can’t believe it – Trump? Really, that was the best you could do?


Ever since Bush2 dragged Australia into his global fights I have argued for Australia to stop following so meek and mildly into every American bully fest. The time is overdue for us to cut some ties now. Australia needs to stop trying to punch above its weight on America’s soiled coat tails.


Perhaps young middle class women don’t realise how hard the fight was to get them the freedom they trashed yesterday by voting for Trump. We, mothers, have failed to instil in our daughters how easy privileges and rights can be taken away.


My argument has been for a while now, that there has been too much change in our generations and many people just can’t keep up with the momentum. They are frightened and exhausted. A demigod who promises a return to what they think were “the good old times” is a salve to their dispirited world view.


I just can’t believe all this is happening



I shouldn’t have got to my age without knowing these things

red shoes 1

Immerse myself

Cherish imperfections

Take whatever time it needs

Play with the elements

Know what I can control and what I need to let go

Pay attention to my world

Embrace experiences, big and small, negative and positive

It doesn’t have to be complicated

Slow can be give unexpected gifts

Trying thing you aren’t good at, can help you find your talents

Time and motion proceed together, so just start

Expect rejection

Expect success

Use the tension

Capture moments

Use the ugly

What is today, may not be tomorrow, so try again, again and again

Nurture your need, your passion, your obstinacy

Show my flaws

Pick up the pieces and start something new


none so deaf, none so blind

mens group 1

We have a friend, well, actually he is Mr FD’s friend from university days, so he is an “old friend” in many ways. Over the years we have maintained the exchange of Christmas greetings and occasional visits. Now Mr FD and Friend are semi-retired and have more time to use social media and exchange media.

An issue has arisen in that friend, a baby boomer as we all are, has a very binary world focus. This was highlighted recently when on a recent current events panel program on television, a man asked a question about tax cuts and then had to suffer the arrows of the public media as his private life was trashed. He asked one very respectful question to a politician and the hounds went for his throat. Friend was one of the hounds.

It seems that the if you fail in anyway, you must be punished. Everyone must be held responsible for who they are and what they do. It doesn’t matter if you are mentally ill, intellectually impaired, been mentally and physically abused, a member of the Stolen Generation, or any of the myriad other issues that work against children from the minute they are conceived.

Once, Mr FD and I probably would have held a similar opinion, but through the years, education and life experiences we have completely walked away from such a binary paradigm. If generations of your family have been used and abused, if you have been born with foetal alcohol syndrome, if you grew up in abuse and violence, extreme family dysfunction and poverty, can it really be expected that you are going to make all the right decisions in life not to end up on welfare, homeless or with a substance abuse problem?

I am not saying that a murderer shouldn’t be imprisoned. I am asking that a wider lens than black and white be applied. Friend cannot entertain the position we hold and has taken to writing long editorial type sermons on social media casting against our personal views. We have taken the steps of blocking him, sadly.

Mr FD doesn’t have a large number of friends, but he has decided to part from this particular friend, for he finds his opinions and behaviour abhorrent. Obviously friend always had these views but due to the small amount of contact we were able to overlook or tolerate his views through politeness, but now that he airs them daily on social media, and within the inner friendship group, his racist, narrow minded mindset is fully revealed.

If you sit by and say, or do nothing, are you not saying that prejudice is all right? Does it not reinforce postures that destroy individuals and divides society? As I explain to my students if you stand by and do nothing, then you are part of the problem too.

Mr FD has told friend why he can no longer sanction his views, and of course friend then had to make some very personal attacks on Mr FD, even suggesting that Mr FD has severe mental issues (and we all know only I can say that!). Friend just can’t tolerate the idea that someone may not think he is the fountain of all knowledge and that his edicts are incontestable.

My point is, that no matter our age, or what stage of life, we need to reflect on our values and acknowledge that just because we were friends with someone one, doesn’t mean we will always remain so. I think it is important to know our values, to stand by them and to live our lives accordingly. I also refuse to give up hope that one day friend will experience empathy for those who have the harder road in life.

to thine own glass be true


Jam jars and vegemite jar glasses played a large role in the first third of my life. In my childhood, if  I drank water, milk or cordial if was from a glass that had once been a jam, honey or vegemite jar. My own children were raised in the same tradition. A set of everyday, drink glasses that matched were sheer luxury.

So, the mason jar trend has been an oddity to me. What is so great about drinking from a jar. That is a marker of civilisation, how? It is also not up cycling if you buy a purpose made mason jar. I thought we had hit tipping point when I saw a collection of mason jar baby fruit juice bottles with a sippy lid, in the supermarket.


In Perth this week, lunching by the seaside I spied diners served drinks not in mason jars, but one of those hexagonal jam jars. I probably have three exactly the same in our fridge back home! Oh, half a set! Late Christmas gift!

Luckily, I ordered wine and they did had the finesse to serve it in a wine glass, but no doubt this will evolve as the next step.

Drinking from a jar does not make anyone sophisticated in my opinion. To me, one is but a mindless follower of “fashion”.

Perth has a couple of things that have really irritated us.  The major roads have no or few road signs that mention regional towns. If they have them then they must be hiding them as state secrets.  The road signs just mention highways to take, but if you don’t know which highway you need to take to get to a certain town or city then how the hell is a highway sign going to help anyone?

And it doesn’t help that being from the east coast our reference point is east is the coast and west in the inland. In Perth, the ocean is west and the inland is east! As a person who has no sense of direction, trying to get my bearings is near impossible. So we need some clear signage please! Please tell us we are lost earlier rather than later!

Before you say it, yes we do use the GPS on our mobiles. Well, Mr FD set the app on his phone, but being Mr FD his mobile is always near flat battery and so right at the important turn if goes down. I now have the app on my phone and it is always charged.

Then there is the problem of the bumpy roads making the mobile screen jump so that X no longer marks the spot. It has nothing to do with random and ill advised finger movements…

Let us not forget that the Perth drinking water is shit. I think that I actually read somewhere that it is in fact shit, recycled. Even if it isn’t it is shit. Too many chemicals. Thank heavens Daughter2 has a water filter jug, otherwise life would be intolerable. To make a cup of tea, the tea bag has to steep for sometime to overcome the chemical flavours. It is a fine line to not steep it so long that the tea becomes bitter black tar, but not allow the chemicals to flavour the brew. I have perfected  the task, of course. It’s a stress though.


the nasty is back

bothers me

Things that annoy me:

Books used as design accessories

Bookcases and shelving that don’t care for the book

Lists – lists of the things I need to have, books I must read or places I need to visit before I die. I don’t read them.

Businesses, or people just trying to sell me something, following my blog.

All those web site creators who keep sending us emails to tell us that they think our website is crap and that they can do a better one for us.

The 9,463,821 chocolate cake recipes pinned to Pinterest. It’s a chocolate cake people.

The amount of time I spend on Pinterest.

People writing my first name on work lists or emails in a shortened form that I rarely use and have not given them permission to use. If I sign the diminutive form to an individual it means you are a member of my inner circle. Do not presume.

Teacher who fob off teaching referencing skills to me, because they are too lazy to do it. They went to university, they know how to do it as well as I do. There are also apps to do it now. Look for the reference tool in Word.

People who think that just because I am a librarian I know every book in the library.

People who think librarians read and drink coffee all day. I drink tea for a start.

Teachers who think that just because a TL sits at a laptop for long periods of time that they are doing nothing. How do you think those databases get built? Who finds your websites?

People acting as though you can only read a traditional paper book, or an ebook, but not alternate as desired. That is the same as saying you can only eat beef and not chicken.

This one we probably all hate – bosses who ask for your input when they have already made up their minds.

Being told by bosses to run to the left when we have all just run to the right. You know what I mean.

Applauding people for just doing their job. Maybe they haven’t been doing their job and now that they have, and someone noticed?

All those sickening quotes about adversity making your stronger, or dark days make you appreciate the good days. Bullshit. Adversity is like being pecked to death by ducks. Shit just happens.

The colour yellow. In a yellow room I become very agitated.

How when you tell someone that you are having a medical procedure or surgery, they need to tell you the one horror story they know related to that issue, not the 999 good outcome stories.

People who tell toddlers that they need to be a “big” girl, or boy now. No, they are toddlers, let them be. Plenty of time to be “big” and it is not what it is cracked up to be, anyway. Enjoy, little.

Climate deniers and creationists. What is your agenda?

When you say that you are hot or cold, someone replying, “I’m not!” Was I asking if you were? Does you being not hot make me less hot?

People who make a fuss about drinking tea or coffee and then drink cola or an energy drink containing caffeine.

People who complain about needing a new life and then do nothing about it. There is no fairy godmother.

Drivers who get annoyed at me for driving exactly the speed limit. Exactly the speed limit. Who gave you permission to speed and risk our lives?

Telecommunication companies.

Supermarket chains pretending they are warm and fuzzy and caring.

Lame children’s  “book nook” images. What is wrong with reading on a bed, in a beanbag, on a couch, or at a table?

Parents who have their kids in so many activities that they are too tired for school, or too busy to do homework.

Parents who allow their high schoolers to work so many hours in their part time job that the kids neglect their education. Education before stuff.

The ease at which I have been able to create this list…

bother me


The particular individuals who annoy me list will follow at a later date. It is much longer.


All wrapped up with a side of volcano

bali too

Back to school tomorrow. Wasn’t that a fun holiday? Well, I guess I got to tick off some important “to do” health tasks, so really the staycation glass is half full.

The colonoscopy appears to have gone well. I remember nothing of the actually procedure which is as it should be. Some things we do not need to make memory connections with or to.  I didn’t read the prep notices until the day of the prepping and so received an ugly surprise regarding the “new procedure” which entailed a second round of drink mix. I needed to rise at 3am for that as I was required to be at the hospital by 6.30am.

One polyp was removed, and the full report will follow. No one voiced any concern so we will proceed with that mind set. Five years, hopefully, until the next round, and I sincerely pray someone has developed a more humane prep by then. A virtual colonoscopy would be good…

lego librarian

Checked my school emails and found out that I have been moved from one ICT class to teach two religion classes. Well, one middle school religion class and a senior religion and ethics class. No unit information provided, so no lesson planning until we return and I can catch up with the curriculum leader. Will make for an interesting first day if I have to teach either class tomorrow! I am really looking forward to the”ethics” part of religion and ethics. New challenge.

I always love first day back and having to listen to all the travel stories of other teachers who actually don’t stay home and have colonoscopies. I am wondering how many will be trapped in Bali, due to the volcano dust forcing flight cancellations. I’d love to hear that phone in teacher absence message, “I am absent today due to a volcano.”

Personally, I have no desire to visit Bali. I am sure it is a lovely country but it does have a rather “ugly Australian tourist” image attached to it – cheap drink and drugs holidays for the suburbanites. However, I can think of worse places to be marooned for a few days. Better than going to work!

My niece and her family are currently renting a villa in Greece for six weeks. They didn’t ask me…

moving right along…

James Eaton Whirligig

Gosh, people, where have I been? Up and down the highway back and forth to doctors, it seems.

Monday; to the City to visit my “old doctor” for a regular visit. I do visit a local doctor, but I just can’t form a real relationship, as yet, so I tend to return to my City Doctor from time to time. This was for regular scripts and a referral for a colonoscopy.

While there, it was decided to remove a mole low on the side of my neck and a few other skin issues related to my childhood spent in the Australian sun, but of course that couldn’t be achieved that day, so I had to return on Wednesday for that. The mole removal resulted in three stitches and it is just where every movement of my neck pulls on the wound. The driver’s seat belt also rubs right over it, something I didn’t realise until a few days later when Mr FD wasn’t chauffeuring me about the countryside, and I was solo in my car. Necessity being the mother of invention, I was therefore sighted driving down the highway with a cardigan rolled up and placed between neck and seatbelt! Viola.

I also had the “good fortune” to slot into a cancellation for a colonoscopy, on Friday 10th, which is still vacation time and so not needing a day off work, but we had to go back to the city for a preprep appointment and to collect my instructions for the days ahead. Things are moving along, shall we say. I have to take Movicol twice a day, start a low fibre diet from Monday, and then have the “explosive fun night” on Thursday. We have to present at the city hospital at 6.30 am Friday, meaning I have to rise at 3.30 to drink and do, before an hour’s drive to the city. Oh happy day!

Petite Fille and her Mummy came to visit for a few days as I was zipping up and down the road. One day, the local show (fair) was on, a shadow of what it was in my childhood, but Petite Fille enjoyed watching the dog show, the cows being prepared for judging, and the chickens. A man on a big red vintage tractor drove by and that topped our morning off. However, the best thing was the whirligig on a long stick that Grandma FD bought for Petite Fille. There was sheer joy on her face as she walked along with the whirligig spinning in the breeze. Priceless, as they say.

And please, do not say “there is a spotty dog” to Petite Fille, who will only reply that it is called a dalmatian. Get it right, Grandma! On the plus side, I just have to say the word “tough” and Petite Fille falls into giggles. I adore the mind of a 2 1/4 year old.

I actually followed them back to the city on Saturday, as it was Daugher1 and Mr Boy’s fifth wedding anniversary (yes, five years!) Mr Boy had asked me to babysit while he took his beloved to a fancy restaurant. It was quite the evening, where they sampled salmon, black ants and apple. Yes ants. Mr Boy stated his tasted like lemon, but D2 said the ants gave her move of a shock or zing in her mouth. They also feasted on duck egg, truffle and toast, which I had money on daughter selecting when Mr Boy shared the online menu with me. Daughter1 knew she was going out for dinner, but not which restaurant so it was a fine selection by Mr Boy.

Petite Fille and I feasted on kranksy sausage hotdogs at home, before retiring early. It was a full evening.

So week one of the holidays down! Body maintenance is the theme of the holidays. Stitches out Thursday also.

And a big yellow taxi

Dear Readers,
This is my new “other” blog. Fear not, Flamingo Dancer remains steadfast!

As an educator, I am passionate about creativity, life long learning, and nurturing a growth mindset. As we age, I believe these are even more important to enable us to enjoy a sustainable, old age. Creative Habits, as the title heralds, is my journey into creativity. It will be what it will be.