Saturday 28 November 2009

Weather Forecast

On Tuesday night I started feeling really awful - bad headache and nausea. Hubby and mom dragged a VERY green me to the doctor on Wednesday. It seems I have managed to acquire an inner ear infection.

I've been laid up ever since - not so much feeling "under the weather" as "weather-beaten"! I've been unable to move much, any kind of movement makes me dizzy or want to throw up. So reading, watching TV, and going online has not been possible except in small slow doses as I can't watch anything on TV that involves fast movement.

I'm having to type and not look at the words as I type as even that makes me feel green and gross. Life is slowed to a plod and very boring. I'm not sure when I'll be back online properly so until then...
HAPPY THANKSGIVING to everyone in the USA

I'll be back to reply to blog posts as soon as I feel better....

Monday 23 November 2009

Newsflash for Autumn


Wise words

Bunny boy has gone away for winter. :-( He did that last year as well. I suppose snoozing under the barbecue isn't as much fun when the days draw in and the wind turns icy. I wonder what he does over winter... go visit his parents?

The good news is the geese are back. :-) I love hearing them calling as they fly over and I love watching them fly past in long skeins. They make the coming winter feel exciting.

The best entertainment this Autumn was the BBC's AutumnWatch. The home videos were often the best, especially Woody, the wood mouse who gobbled all the peanuts in a bird feeder and then got stuck when his fat tummy wouldn't go through the feeder hole. You can find all of the videos on their website. The baby fox cubs on the trampoline was also very cute. Woody was set free, by the way, in case anyone's worried about him.

My Wise Words choice for Autumn are from Bogey.

Life is funny. You shut up and listen long enough, you find out that life is not as bad as we think it is. Ya just have to look in the mirror of somebody else's soul.

The strongest spirit this Autumn was one of connection. Even in the mutual gloom-and-doom of many internet friends suffering losses this year there's been that sense of similarity and sympathy. We really are One. Hopefully this coming Winter will lead us all into a bright new Spring where we can share good experiences and joy.


Family life this Autumn was quiet. We've had our fair share of struggles and woes, but we keep keeping on!


The lesson of Autumn was to respect natural rythms more - to learn to slow down. Nature understands that. Every year Autumn arrives and the animals and plants match their energy to the world around them. Only humans try to push on at the same pace every day of every season.

My Artist choice for Autumn is Noa. I'm picking this track for my mom, because it has her favourite musical instrument - drums. :-)

The biggest smile of Autumn was the wonderful love and friendship shared by everyone who took part in Mimi's Blogblast for Peace. With bloggers reaching out from every part of the globe... it's like we hugged the planet.

It's now three months since my hernia operation. It still hurts a bit when I roll over at night, but otherwise my middle feels better than it has in over two years. I'm mostly feeling loads better, just getting tired a lot, which is probably the fibro's fault. BUT I am learning that taking a nap can be a good thing. In fact a few weekends back I spent an entire Saturday sleeping! It was wonderful. :-) Next life I definitely want to be a critter that hibernates.


Friday 13 November 2009

Good Memories

I found some old photos in my computer today. I took this one in the Eastern Cape on honeymoon. The sign on the right read:
Specialists in Tweeds and Tartans

We went inside... but it was a post office. Not a sign of a hat or a tartan... or a McDuck! In fact, not even a sign of anything else they advertised on the outside and since no-one inside spoke English... we'll never know the story behind McDuck and his hats.

I still chuckle every time I look at this photo and think of the mysterious McDuck making tartan deerstalkers in the middle of a very hot dry Africa!

Wednesday 11 November 2009


For Peace...For Remembrance...

For Hope...

Let the rain come and wash away
the ancient grudges, the bitter hatreds
held and nurtured over generations.
Let the rain wash away the memory
of the hurt, the neglect.
Then let the sun come out and
fill the sky with rainbows.
Let the warmth of the sun heal us
wherever we are broken.
Let it burn away the fog so that
we can see each other clearly.
So that we can see beyond labels,
beyond accents, gender or skin color.
Let the warmth and brightness
of the sun melt our selfishness.
So that we can share the joys and
feel the sorrows of our neighbors.
And let the light of the sun
be so strong that we will see all
people as our neighbors.
Let the earth, nourished by rain,
bring forth flowers
to surround us with beauty.
And let the mountains teach our hearts
to reach upward to heaven.


a prayer for the world - rabbi harold kushner - 2003

Saturday 7 November 2009

The Rain-Bird Award

November the 5th was Guy Fawkes in the UK (and colonies) and Peace Globe day to hundreds of bloggers. Personally... it was also a really horrible day in what has been an extremely difficult year.

I started Nov 5th with a bad news phone call caused by bad news mail. From there I dashed to the doctor (check up) to discover I need MORE medication and then on home to bad news by email! Not surprisingly I still haven't read most of the wonderful Peace Globe posts listed on Mimi's blog. Last year they were such a joy I could hardly wait to read, but this year I was too busy, too angry, then too tired...

...and finally, last night I had my first migraine in over a decade.
This morning I feel like I've been thrown against a wall repeatedly. Typing is... s-l-o-w.
BUT I have finally started to read the other Peace Globe posts and the quality this year is just as impressive as last year. Wonderful writing, gorgeous graphics and lots of music videos (which I'll go back to enjoy when my head feels normal once again!).

Reading through some of the Peace Globe posts this year I couldn't help but compare them to the emails my friends have been sending me this year. This has been a very hard year for so many people. Swine flu, global economy in tatters, ill health, lost jobs, deaths and destruction... all we need is a few plagues and we'd be Biblical. Oh wait... we do - we have Swine flu!

It made me think of a story I read years ago about Peace. In trying to remember it my mangled brain mangled the memory, but I did manage to find a version online. (I love the internet!)

There once was a king who offered a prize to the artist who could paint the best picture of peace.

Many artists
tried. The king looked at all the pictures. But there were only two he really liked, and he had to choose between them. One picture was of a calm lake. The lake was a perfect mirror for peaceful towering mountains all around it. Overhead was a blue sky with soft clouds. All who saw this picture thought that it was a perfect picture of peace.

The other picture had mountains, too. But these were rugged
and bare. Above was an angry sky, from which rain fell and in which lightning played. Down the side of the mountain tumbled a foaming waterfall. This did not look peaceful at all. But when the king looked closely, he saw beside the waterfall a small tree growing in a crack in the rock. In the tree a mother bird had built her nest. There, in the midst of the rush of angry water, sat the mother bird on her nest – in perfect peace.

The king chose the second picture.
“Because,” explained the king, “peace does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble, or hard work. Peace means to be in the midst of all those things and still be calm in your heart. That is the real meaning of peace.”

~Author Unknown

It's easy to talk about peace when life is calm and smooth. Creating peace when your life is a mess and the world seems in chaos... that's the real challenge!

I know so many dear friends (and family) who sat their doctorate in "Peace under Pressure" this year. I think I came in as a third year... hopefully with honours.

In honour of us all I have created the new Rain Bird Award - for Peace under Pressure. I dedicate it to every person who has come through their own personal "war" with... if not their dignity and sanity intact then at least with compassion and humour! ;-)

If I had to list them all it literally would take 90% of my email and blog list. Instead I'm only officially handing it on to one today - the Queen of Peace herself... gracious Mimi, who stood by her Peace Globe promises as she stood by the side of her dying father.

I know they're both proud of you Mimi, little girl.
(but Papa picked the flying heart)

If you're one of us, one of those who's been sitting out the storms and rain lately, then please feel free to accept the award below for yourself. We all need to remember to pat ourselves on the back for getting through the tough times. This is for all of you...


Thursday 5 November 2009

Dona Nobis Pacem 2009 ... Peace Starts Here

...When I first started looking for ideas for this year's Peace Globe Day I went browsing worldwide symbols of Peace. What surprised me was discovering how many of those symbols stir up anger or even fear.

The Nuclear Disarmament symbol is considered evil by some...
...and the white poppy has its own hate group on Facebook.

How can a peace symbol have a hate group? Why would anyone misinform the masses into believing that a peace symbol is evil?

It seems to boil down to two main misconceptions:
  1. Pacifism is the easy way out – flight not fight.
  2. Those who wear Peace symbols must hate soldiers and have no respect for those who die in combat.
Anyone who thinks standing up for your beliefs against opposition is running away has clearly never tried it. As for seeing any Peace symbol as a hate symbol? How ridiculous and sad.

I wanted to wear a white poppy this year because I have loved ones who have fought in wars, not in spite of them.

In “spite” of them…

Says it all doesn’t it? You cannot blog for Peace in spite, you can only claim Peace with empathy and sympathy.

  • I blog for Peace because I have a 26 year old friend who has war injuries that will cause him problems for the rest of his life.
  • I blog for Peace in memory of friends and relatives who have fought and died so that others could live in a better world than they did.
  • I blog for Peace because ordinary people die in conflicts while politicians argue over which choices will bring them the most power and financial gain.
  • But mostly I blog for Peace because I want a better future for our world's children.

Peace is more than a lack of wars and terrorism. Peace is a lack of wanting, or needing, to cause violent harm. Peace is realising we aren’t countries, cultures or religions who need to overcome and subdue each other – we are one planet that needs to work together in order to have a future for our children.

Every mother wants a positive future for her children… the Earth as Mother is no different.

I had intended to use the white poppy for my Peace Globe, but the Earth Mother image took over along the way... Mother knows best? ;-) Goodness knows thinking of the Earth as our Mother certainly made me look beyond the surface issues of this planet we all share. That in turn led me to create the video about what Peace really means to me.

All good mothers understand that children need to claim responsibility for their own actions in order to grow up to be responsible adults. Good mothers know that pointing a finger and saying, “It’s their fault” or “He/She made me do it” never solves anything. Good mothers teach their children concepts like sharing, being considerate of others and good manners. What a different world this would be if countries acted more like mothers and less like global powers.

Peace alludes us when we chase after it because it never was out “there”. Just as creation of life starts within, the responsibility of creating Peace starts within each and every one of us.

Peace starts here - it starts with you.