“L” plates for parents.


‘L’ is supposed to stand for Learner Driver.

‘P’, for Provisional Licence Holder, in other words a driver who has just graduated from ‘L’.

I am suspicious the single letters are subtle codes for what Transport Department officials have covertly branded parents, who are attempting the teaching.

L for Laughable,

or Ludicrous, or even Loser.


P for Paranoid

and Pathetic.

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This is no fairytale..A novel step-mum read.

Here’s a novel idea.

A story where the central, strong and well developed  character is a stepmother but not vain or evil.

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Let the Games Begin!! Homegrown Olympic village.

Like so many people I cannot wait for the Games to begin.

It seems like only four years ago I was there, brandishing my valued infinity pass which allowed me  access to…well everywhere.

In the Birdcage mid-track aka Usain Bolt (see pic), courtside at the US Dreamteam versus Boomers game, Federerside at the tennis, poolside at the Phelps eight medal haul, podiumside at the cycling…ahhh the glory days.

But in the theme of inspirational sporting quotes such as :

“The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not winning but taking part; the essential thing in life is not conquering but fighting well.”
Pierre de Coubertin (founder of modern Olympic Games)

… it’s not really that far removed from my own amazing Olympic village at home…the competitors all take part and they all fight!.

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I’ve got a lovely bunch of coconuts!!

He didn’t scale the palm tree with his bare hands and feet.
The modern ladder was a much more efficient method to reach the top quickly and stand there safely, while he machete’d the ring of green coconuts to the ground.
There was no denying however, his traditional Fijian coconut gathering and chopping skills.

It took just seconds for him to spin the coconut in his hand and slice off the top in equi-distant portions and puncture the perfectly formed crater, to then present to us a full-to-the-brim green cup of coconut water. The kind we now know to be chock full of electrolytes and about five bucks or more a bottle. We just added ice (ok, some added vodka) and drank the refreshingly, pale liquid pretty much all day.
For free.  Read More

Suprise! What kids do to amaze you!

When it comes to kids and surprises, there’s nothing that, … well, suprises me!

This car is an example, as you’ll soon see.

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Forced to give up your kids…Could you imagine anything worse?

It’s on the front pages of all the papers and on all the television and radio news reports.

The mum on the Sunshine Coast being forced by the courts to give up her four children and send them to live in Italy with a father they claim is abusive.

At the moment the girls are in hiding with their grandmother and aunt but the two women have been ordered to front court to reveal the children’s location.

So that they can be put on a plane to Italy.

It is the most traumatic of circumstances.

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Step parenting is not a packet mix!

The from scratch cakeThis is the birthday cake my youngest made for her closest in age step-sister.It was a, from-scratch classic chocolate cake that unfortunately bore no resemblance to the perfect snap on the recipe page.

But she tried hard and the good intentions weren’t half-baked.

Her arty touch helped salvage the creation, that had spilled into the oven during cooking, then collapsed on exit from it.

The icing features a chic design of a girl with a pretty dress and flowing hair, that she had sketched on paper before drawing it on flour.

Only days before,  the birthday recipient of this cake had made one for the chef, who was also celebrating a birthday. A pretty pink, oversized, cupcake with silver balls that was a fusion of packet mix and superb icing.

To me , sweet examples of happy step-family flavour. And one I wish would come out of the box on more occasions.

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100 and a half..Goodbye Grandma x

My father was sorting through his mother’s papers last week after she passed away and found a newspaper article from decades ago, titled, “The high cost of Funerals”.

Grandma had circled a number of points that she wished to be enacted for her funeral one day.

No eulogy, no silly poems, no soppy music, no speeches and for the coffin to be closed and to make sure it was ‘nailed down tight’.

Like kids sneaking out after dark, my dad, his brother and sister had the wicked joy of ignoring their mum and doing the complete opposite but this time without fear of retribution. After all the nails were in pretty tightly.

At the funeral, except for the shut coffin, there were touching speeches, four eulogies, a DVD slide show of her life set to music from her teens, some tears and plenty of hilarious recounts of her life.

She would have been cranky but secretly would have loved it.

Doris Maud Donovan was born in 1911 and lived for exactly 100.5 years.

A pretty remarkable milestone, considering for 100 of those years she was in fine health and had all her faculties. But a bad fall and a break, triggered the end of a full life.

She never drove a car…

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Raising kids…it’s kinda like sailing..

This Easter, for the first time, our family is scattering in the wind.

Almost literally for my husband.

While I am heading to Perth with the youngest daughter for a waterpolo competition, two of my step-daughters are heading to their mum’s, the other two are spending the chocolate break with friends, while my husband is putting all of his hands on deck to sail in the Brisbane to Gladstone yacht race.

I went and watched him in training last week and he’s not bad at hoisting.

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The great kid clothing rule!

My fabulously opinionated, often indignant and perhaps slightly delusional,  second eldest daughter, just walked into my bedroom…Angry! Furious!

She was steaming having discovered that her sister, the next one down and almost three years younger,  had stolen three, (not one , no,  not two, but) THREE! of her shirts.

In her words, her sister ‘bleeps me to tears”.

Despite the lack of tears, she expressed her fury at this clothing indiscretion, as she wore a pair of orange, skinny jeans that belonged to the said thief sister.

And she had in fact made the unbelievably outrageous discovery as she herself was rifling through the bandit’s wardrobe to try and ‘just” borrow some of her clothes.

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