Wednesday, 23 December 2015


Christmas is upon us and we want to wish you all a jolly good Christmas! We are sitting here on the deck writing to you and

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Naz: 'Tis the Season

Treasured decos the kids made at school
‘Tis the season to be jolly— who said that?  I say it is the season to feel stressed and overwhelmed. You see, I have a love-hate relationship with this time of the year

Monday, 14 December 2015

Fiz: To deck or not to deck

Christmas decorating was on my to-do list—something I had been meaning to do but hadn’t got around to. Then a thought snuck into my mind: maybe I won’t.

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Naz: I'm back

Time out now for some fun 
I’m back— it’s over—it’s done and dusted—and I passed!   My final kinesiology theory and practical exams for the year are now behind me. 

Before the exam I was frazzled—I worried about how my sometimes inaccessible memory bank was going to hold up on the day of the exam and I was anxious—questioning the ability of my mind’s search engine and the speed it was capable of to retrieve  the key information I needed.  With great resolve, however, everything went to plan—I am happy, happy and can breathe again—relaxed and quietly proud of my result. 

Now the fun starts— it’s time for action as I put everything I learned into practise.             
PS   still working on my website….it will be launched soon.


Sunday, 6 December 2015

Fiz explains about being AWOL

Wine tasting in the Hunter Valley: my son's expression says it all!
Do you sometimes lose bits of yourself? It can be permanent but it can also be a temporary out-of-touch thing.

Monday, 2 November 2015

Fiz: Hay days!

How’s it going with getting older? Most of the time, I’m amazed that I am in my sixties. Well, until I look in the mirror or go out on a weeknight. But with 65 looming, I think it behoves me to ‘make hay while the sun shines’ as my grandmother used to say.

Ah, those old sayings. They still prompt me along life’s way. Just when I think that ‘near enough is good enough’, I hear the voice of my father intoning ‘If a job’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well’.  And so I fiddle a bit more to get it just right. And yes, there is a certain satisfaction in doing something well.

Saturday, 24 October 2015

Fiz: Miracles do happen...

Miracles do happen—just ask Barb and Clive Holden. Two years ago they began Coolum HeARTS which offers free lessons in art, drumming, and singing with a community choir called I’m still standing. Barb and Clive wanted to create a place where people with significant challenges in their lives could spread their wings and fly. And with local support, they have done just that…

Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Naz - Back before Christmas

You may have noticed my usual outspokenness has taken a vacation in the recent weeks and my ‘Bold’ presence missing.  All however is not as it appears and while on the blog front I have been laying low, there has been a lot happening in my world.

With my final kinesiology exam scheduled for the middle of November, copious assignments still screaming for attention and the realisation that I need to study, study, study (what a shock that was), I have made the decision to focus solely on passing this exam. I actually have waves of terror pass through me when I think about it but figure getting it done and passing will not only save me a lot of embarrassment and self-reproach but will allow me to enjoy Christmas and the New Year without the ‘I should be studying’ voice whispering in my ear 24/7— and of course, it will be very satisfying to achieve this goal—one I have been working hard on all year.  So, until December; ‘adieux’.

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Fiz: Mind matters

Most days my life has an optimistic, cruisy beat. Of course, there are irritations and annoyances but nothing too horrid. Every now and again, however, that familiar tune of joy de vivre just isn’t there. There’s a void that begins to fill with feelings of self-doubt, limitation, pessimism: everything seems a bit ordinary and difficult. 

Monday, 28 September 2015

Fiz: age appropriate cool

How do you feel about age appropriate clothing? I recently read an article decrying the notion. Indeed, the author said it was dead. The supporting evidence against having to worry about age appropriateness was a photo of a woman hitting 80 in perfectly-fitting denim jeans and jacket. She looked great: but of course she did. The professional photographer captured her beautifully—svelte, minimal bare skin, designer denim, and fabulous jewellery. Mmmmmm I wasn’t convinced.

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Download in colour

Each and every moment is a memory in creation—how I file this emotional picture is up to me.  I do my best to download as colourfully as I can—I make it my daily challenge. Some days I create brilliant rainbows transporting joy and gladness and others a more sombre spectrum of shadowy greys; but always memories that I find ‘gratefulness' in—something to hold on to and grow from.

Lately I recognized my posts have been short descriptive stories—sort of digressing a little from our original vision for BOLD—‘doing oldish with style and panache’.  Instead, I have written narratives sharing recent experiences that connected with me in some way.  I admit—I love descriptive writing.  It is fun. 

Why am I heading down this track?  Fiz says it’s the writer in me.  In honesty what really motivates me to write is watching others, and when I see boldness in them I look for that in me.

Friday, 11 September 2015

Fiz: How to be

I have written before about the glass cage  that has boxed me in, and that I am trying to break free from. I don’t think I am breaking out of the glass cage so much as extending the space within, so I have more room to move. Caution, self-doubt, timidity still hem me in, but I am feeling less confined by them. There has been no major shift: I am just loosening those self-imposed ties that limited me.

Do you too feel the restraints, which held you tight in your earlier years, relaxing a bit: that one of the bonuses of getting older is a certain freedom: a freedom to just be?

Sunday, 6 September 2015

Naz: shake it off

She was like superman; but—she was all woman.  She had no fear, no sense of imminent danger, nor safety for her own person.  Her focus was on the rescue—to save a life.  It was in her DNA, her destiny, her design.

Without hesitation she wrenched off her runners, skimmed her socks from her feet and threw them aside.  It was a cold winter’s morning and the crispness of the air became vapour as it met her breath.  She fluidly unwrapped her sweat shirt from her body, abandoning its warmth for the sharpness of the elements.    With a not-so-graceful spin she spiralled from her clothing, leaving only her shorts and shirt.  With her sunglasses thrown to the ground, and hat—who knows where, her focus remained on the movement in the water.  She never once allowed her attention to wander.  She had a job to do—her time was now!

Monday, 31 August 2015

Fiz: Confessions of a 'mature' driver

Life changes as one gets older. I think I have become more sensible—just one cup of coffee in the morning, one glass of wine at night, forget the stiletto shoes, and in bed with a book at nine. I am becoming more and more content to let younger people take centre stage. They have vitality and freshness and the world’s their oyster!

But sometimes— only sometimes— I just want to show them that I can’t be completely sidelined. Are you with me with on this?

Monday, 24 August 2015

Naz daydreams

Last week I had a rave about The Fisherman and presence.  This week is about smashing illusion and again, with focus on The Fisherman.  Man he has left some lasting memories!

Watching from the rocks above, I thought I had him all worked out.  My imagination, to be honest, had his life dissected and him catalogued (can you really do that to a person?)—his age was 60 to 70, he was soft and kind and very relaxed.  Nothing was a bother to him and he lived in the moment. His love for his dog was foremost and they were friends…experiencing their days, their life together, loyal mates—bla…bla…bla.

The flanno checked shirt and green waders portrayed a seriousness for fishing.  I had him living

Monday, 17 August 2015

Fiz: Meet Ellie and her range

I want you to get to know a lovely BOLD woman who—every day—provides a touch of luxury to my life. Meet Ellie Jackson, alchemist extraordinaire, creator of the most fabulous natural beauty products that I have ever used. I’m so glad that I have a connection with her; she is the mother of my son’s partner. But as any bold woman knows, connections count for naught if the product doesn’t cut it. Ellie’s products definitely do!

I have written about one of her products in a post at More Bold, but now I want you to learn more about Ellie’s life at ‘Maintop’, a 2,149 hectare organic-beef property at the very top of the Great Dividing Range.

Sunday, 9 August 2015

The Fisherman - Naz

Being in the present—the here and now—totally focused as if time stands still.  No worries, fears, doubts—just total concentration in the moment.  Who cares what needs to be done later, tomorrow, next week.  This is now and I surrender, assigning my total attention to this gift.  I feel, I hear, I smell, I sense, I see, I perceive, I understand, I enjoy this moment as if this is my last. ….. Yeah right!!

I do try, and yes, in my real world I have set a goal to achieve this within a realistic timeframe—this life!  It may take that long or it could take an instant.  It may be for all times or just for some—to quieten my mind and live in the moment.

I was reminded of my objective last weekend during what was going to be a short stop at North Shore rocks to catch my breath and let Sachi (my dog) explore.  I sat looking out to sea, breathing in the ocean’s energy, revitalising my spirit and hoping to catch sight of a whale or two.  I was blissfully unaware that I was about to be given, ever so eloquently, a powerful lesson on presence.

Monday, 3 August 2015

Fiz: I heard on RN ...

I was driving along the freeway Thursday morning listening to RN when Julie Bishop’s speech to the United Nations Security Council was played. I thought, wow —I am hearing something fine here.  I felt the sincerity of her outrage at Russia’s veto of a draft resolution for the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17. Her words had substance. There was passion but also eloquence as she presented a logical and coherent argument. I felt proud.

And that’s saying something because I haven’t always been a fan. I had an almost allergic reaction to the way Julie Bishop conducted herself in opposition—too much the snarky head-prefect type for my liking, and I remember her being very ordinary in the role of Shadow Treasurer. Since becoming Foreign Minister, however, she is one of the few politicians who shine. And I want to give her a cheer because I think we need to praise our pollies when they are doing a good job—regardless of their shade of politics. It is a tough gig, and impressive moments are few and far between.

Monday, 27 July 2015

Fiz on tacos, choc cakes, and online dating sites

Donna Hay's molten peanut butter and
 chocolate fondant cakes
I had forgotten how good tacos tasted, and chicken skewers, and all those other yummy child-friendly food.  It’s been a wonderful treat having my grandson staying this past week. It has certainly kept me on my toes: school lunches, homework and making sure he is in bed on time. It made it easier having my son and his partner staying too:  my grandson had fun with them and it meant I could still nick out to yoga and the like.

I had also forgotten about the feeling of fierce love and protectiveness that the trust of a child engenders. Trying not to fuss—he is eleven years old— but worried about him not keeping the bedcovers on, what he is accessing on line, having a good day at school.  He is rather cool though and was kind to me. He is off to high school next year. I feel a pang when I think about him leaving behind the ‘boy’ years.  At the moment, I only laugh at the occasional ‘neeeeer I don’t know’.

Friday, 24 July 2015

Fiz's dressing table

I am not much into cleaning but the arrangement of jewellery and bric-a-brac on my dressing table had deteriorated into a dusty jumble. I needed to set it right. I put it off, lingering over the weekend paper, luxuriating in the absence of work-day rush, but it was annoying me so I set to work.  I cleared everything off and started to polish—and suddenly I was sixteen and listening to 4IP with my cousin Di.

It was cleaning the dressing table on a Saturday morning that did it because it was the same dressing table that my cousin and I cleaned on Saturday mornings all those decades ago. I became immersed in memories of the time that we shared a room together.

Monday, 20 July 2015

Naz: Celebration of life

The enormity of death can be felt in a heart.  When one stops beating another breaks.

Celebration is not on the radar when grief takes a hold. Instead, there is time to mourn the loss— permission to wallow shamelessly in sadness—to share with others the void that a person’s passing has left in your life.   Why shy away from our own mortality or ignore our fragility? Could it be more healing to face death courageously and with softness, vulnerability and reverence for this gift of life with its own unique existence—to truthfully acknowledge the reality of death and cradle, for some time, the sadness.

Why avoid the initial feelings of loss and pretend to be happy, because

Monday, 13 July 2015

Fiz: Grand finale

I greeted one of the Coolum Communicator members
before the meeting the other night and asked him about his day. He said that he had officiated at a funeral. ‘So it has been a sad day’. ‘Oh no!’, he  replied ‘it was a celebration of life’.

Mmmmm I get it about the importance of recounting tales of a person’s life and what that person has meant to those attending a funeral. I love hearing details about a person, and laughter at the funny bits seems totally apt. But what is so wrong with sad. Funerals are one of the few places where it is (or was) ok to express sadness—loss. The person is dead. They are not coming back. It would seem fitting to mourn the loss—to not be joyful. Where but at a funeral can there be mass support for grief? I mean, we have plenty of opportunities for celebrations. This is the one time when we can be sad with people feeling the same emotion and providing mutual support.
And then I read Karen Armstrong’s article in the Quarterly Essay [i] titled Dear life on caring for the elderly and was challenged by her take on death:

Friday, 10 July 2015

Naz: part two - show me the money

I love this quote.

I realise talking about money and finances can be pretty boring but I also know, on the flip side, the benefits that can be gained from understanding this sometimes misunderstood commodity.   The Oxford Dictionary’s definition of money is ‘a current medium of exchange in the form of coins and banknotes; coins and bank notes collectively’—a very non-emotive and sterile explanation. But it is the wonderful experiences and material things that money can be exchanged for—for you and others that deliver the real happiness and satisfaction.  Whether it is providing financial security, a safe and nurturing home, giving our kids a helping hand when they need it or better still, when they don’t; having the ability to donate to the charities and causes that move and inspire us; to travel; to play and to create adventures that feed our soul—money is the resource we use to traverse our life and create our goals—it really doesn’t have to be the root of all evil.  Who said that anyway?  In contrast, George Bernard Shaw’s quote ’The lack of money is the root of all evil’ is something to ponder.

So here is part two of the series – show me the money.  I hope

Monday, 6 July 2015

Fiz: Bold solidarity

Don’t you like the feeling of solidarity that you get from women about the same age? The feeling of—hey, we are in this together. The understanding that we need to be supportive of each other isn’t a given, but it is definitely there more often than not. And let’s face it—we do need each other!

Encouragement, insights and compliments from our peers are gold because there is that element of understanding that comes from having lived through a similar number of years. It is a shared experience that can lead to a woman I don’t know giving me a smile or a nod, and the delicious surprise of a compliment. (Note to self: must do this to other women more often!)

Monday, 22 June 2015

Fiz: Tired of not having enough time?

I was nodding off to sleep watching the 7.30 report when the phone rang.  It was a market research person. Now, my policy is to participate in surveys because I want people to participate in mine: but ….I said incredulously ‘It is Friday night.’ and then with petulance ‘I’m tired’. (Did I detect relief from the market researcher that I declined to participate.)

I am generally tuckered out by the end of the week—well, end of each day really. Is this because I’m wearing out? Is it an ageing thing?  I had a bit of a rummage around in the literature and I was surprised that there were very few studies specifically about ageing and tiredness.  However, findings from a large US study* show that tiredness is not automatically linked with getting older. The researchers found that people aged 65 years and older are actually less tired than people 15–24 years of age.

Saturday, 20 June 2015

Naz: show me the money!

To free up some cash flow I am considering selling a property I have been holding for some years and due to my age wondered if there were any financial implications I needed to be aware of.  Some of the questions I needed answers to were:  if I sold could I borrow money again i.e. get a mortgage for another property —would the banks lend to me and how much would they be prepared to lend and for how long?  The older my age I think it realistic that the maximum term of a new mortgage must somewhat lessen.   Taking out a 30 year mortgage at the age of 58 somehow doesn’t add up — do the maths — 58 years plus 30 years = 88 years….ouch!  Would this add up to a lender? Would they consider this a risk, a high risk? It was time to ask some serious questions from someone who knows their stuff.

Monday, 15 June 2015

Fiz: Follow your passion!

Last week I put in a plug for the African Children’s Choir which has been touring Australia and has a concert this coming Saturday night on the Sunshine Coast This week, get to know the woman who is organising the choir’s visit to the Sunshine Coast: Yvonne Corstorphin—musical director of the Cool Harmonies Community Choir, Zumba Gold instructor, and terrifically BOLD!

Yvonne is someone who has followed her passion, and she inspires me to keep following my interests and see where they lead me. I hope she inspires you too!

Monday, 8 June 2015

Fiz: soul food
I feel as though I have had a huge dose of soul food, listening to Collusion Chamber Orchestra and other musos in the little hall at Eudlo, one of our small hinterland towns here on the Sunshine Coast.  I loved the intimacy of the setting—the country-town feel of the place; the creative energy—people sharing of themselves; but also the excellence—that only comes from a mixture of talent, love and hard work. The concerts—there is a series of them throughout the year—are just another reason to enjoy living where I do.

I think I have already written about my delight in walking along the beach; and this Queen’s Birthday long weekend, I am particularly thrilled that I am here at the Sunshine Coast. I am thrilled because it is just the right place to remember JLR, a local bloke, a surfie, who died 42 years ago on the Monday of the long weekend. He was my husband for such a short time. And what I like is, even though I loved again, he is not forgotten because our time together is part of who I am.

Monday, 1 June 2015

Fiz: the Melbourne bond

There is nothing like a bit of big city fun! I totally love living at the beach and having a kangaroo hop through my yard at night but it is also great to be where things are happening—the energy and vibrancy of a city.  My son’s fiancée (is this term still used?  Nowadays, ‘partner’ seems to cover most versions of being one half of a couple) and I are doing Melbourne for a few days while my son is there attending a post-graduate workshop at RMIT. 

I am chuffed that Jodi wants to hang out with me. She has never been to Melbourne before and I am enjoying showing her my favourite haunts and discovering new ones together.  It is a time of getting to know each other in a one-on-one female-type of way. I am grateful for this opportunity as the relationship between mother-in-law and daughter-in-law is notoriously tricky and I want us to get off to a good start. I want to get to know Jodi as she is herself so I understand her and my son better as a couple.

But to be honest, the reason

Thursday, 28 May 2015

Naz gets the sign

It’s been a challenging week! Well to be honest, a couple of weeks now and my creativity and boldness have selfishly and without notice taken leave with not one hint of when they will return. Words just don’t come, fresh ideas are non-existent and motivation is at a record low—the overwhelm wins; I feel pushed to the limit. The erroneous perceptions that everything takes so long, that everyone wants something—now, right this very minute as well as the frustrations from all kinds of things, flying at me, unexpectedly, rock my equilibrium.  My will, resolve and persistence are tested and my patience meticulously measured. I feel like I am spinning my wheels, making rash, random decisions and rushing at a pace I can’t keep up to while at the same time, essentially going nowhere.

Only two weeks ago I was spruiking about smelling the roses—being in the moment and staying present - savouring the experience. My, how things can turn around—a reminder perhaps that I am human and here to learn and experience.  Can I boldly pass the true test of ’presence’, being in the moment, peaceful calm and conscious when faced with inflexible time constraints, demanding work commitments, intense studying and stressful exams?  Add to that people backing into my car, break-downs on the motorway and road works at every corner.  You know, that pompous traffic controller that doesn’t realise the danger he puts himself in when he steps out in front of me, menacingly thrusting his annoying red stop sign in my face.  With shoulders back and chest out he confidently strikes his ‘I have the power and you aint going nowhere’ pose.  I eyeball him, fiercely willing him to mentally catch how much disruption and inconvenience he has caused by making me stop.  Doesn’t he know how stretched my timetable is or the length of my ever growing ‘to do’ list! 

After locking gazes for way too long, he finally offers me the yellow ‘slow’ sign and I

Monday, 25 May 2015

Fiz: happy thinking

Now all you boldsters / recycled teenagers / bloomers know that it is not all fun. As Naz shared in her blog there are roses but also dental problems! I don’t know about you, but I don’t always cope well with signs of wear and tear. I get it that it shows that you have done stuff; but I still feel outraged that parts of me that I thought were my ‘better features’ are the worse for wear.

Take my hands, for example, I have always liked big statement rings—probably in part because they looked good on my slim fingers. They drew attention to a feature of me that I was proud of. And then one morning last year, I looked at my right-hand little finger and the knuckle seemed a bit swollen. It is now quite crooked and painful. And there are other bits that have let me down—my right breast which had always been the better of the two now has a lumpectomy scar, my once neat navel shows signs of key­­-hole surgery that had to be extended. And my legs weren’t half bad either in their day. By now I can hear some of you thinking what a whinger. Is that all she has to complain about.

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Fiz: my yoga teacher— taking a bold stance

Wendy Sugars

Meet Wendy Sugars from Coolum Yoga Centre

I interviewed Wendy on a rather chilly morning at the Bent Banana Café in Peregian. I have been going to Wendy’s yoga classes for about three years. I go because I love being pain free, and physically able. I also like the feeling of quietness that settles on me towards the end of a class—preparing me for a busy day or helping me unwind at the end of one.
As we sip our coffees, I put the following questions to Wendy:

You are a certified senior Iyengar yoga teacher who has been a student of yoga since 1977 and a teacher of Iyengar Yoga since 1986. What first drew you to yoga?
I was in the film industry and I needed something to balance the craziness of my world. It helped me cope with the film industry pressure. I tried going to the gym but it wasn’t for me, I also did tai chi but it was yoga that gave me the energy and centredness to cope.
I tried quite a few different kinds of yoga and found that Iyengar Yoga  gave me the best result. What makes Iyengar Yoga different from other forms of yoga is the:
  • ·         precision and alignment in all postures of the poses so that the stacking of the bones eventually creates an effortless pose
  • ·         sequencing—what pose follows after another
  • ·         length of time you hold each pose
  • ·         the use of props.
Wendy laughs as she tells that she went through an addictive phase where she was 
constantly doing yoga to a place where she is now not so obsessive.
 What do you gain from yoga now?
Yoga continues to give me balance. The poses create space in the body— releasing tensions and allowing it to expand; and this is transferred to my outlook on life. Yoga has become part of my life. It has been a tool for developing my character, and it makes me feel more courageous handling life.
With Iyengar Yoga, you are not doing the same thing all the time. There are a variety of ways to achieve the same results. This keeps me creative and inspired.
The poses in Iyengar Yoga are adapted to suit different cultures and groups. You
can  go anywhere in the world and go to an Iyengar class: you may notice variations, but they all have the same foundation.

Sunday, 17 May 2015

150515 - Naz's day to smell the roses

It has been one huge week.  I have felt everything from severe excruciating and unrelenting physical pain to extreme happiness and gratitude that left me in tears…… and then there was everything in between.

A fifty-eighth birthday that just wouldn’t take no for an answer and a problematic tooth swept this week into chaos and a whirlwind, see-saw, and merry-go-round of emotions.  While for most of the week it was difficult to focus on anything but the thumping pain in my jaw, the inconsistent symptoms left me confused. I hoped it was simply a sensitive tooth from grinding my teeth in my sleep or maybe, just maybe, the pain would magically disappear. After restless nights, anxious pacing and urgent visits to two different dentists I finally succumbed to the reality that this was much more serious.  I now have an appointment at the endodontic specialist (there goes my new carpet or ritzy new barista coffee machine).  I guess my tooth is far more precious.  No I am certain it is.  Also, the unsympathetic and offhanded comment from my dentist reminding me that losing teeth is simply a symptom/sign of old age didn’t ease my grief either as I sat uncomfortably in his torturous chair. How dare he bring this to my attention at this shaky moment!  I refused to listen.  I’ll do all I can to save that tooth.  I have an appointment in two weeks.  I will be brave and I will be bold—not old.

The antibiotics have kicked in and the pain has subsided—birthday time!

Monday, 11 May 2015

Fiz: what we need is better branding

My brother asked how I was the other morning, and I replied with one of my stock phrases: ‘Not bad for an old chook’. He said: ‘Don’t say that. People will think you are old’. ‘But I am old’ I replied.

But am I really old. Is ‘old’ really my descriptor? I hear quite a bit of talk about ’60 being the new 40’, ‘pushing the tide back’, ‘age is just a number’. I find it all a bit irritating. I have already done forty. What’s so wrong about being in one’s sixties? Why aren't we proud of approaching our sixties or, in my case, being well into them. Why do we try to hide our age, are almost ashamed of it.

Part of the reason is that we just don’t feel like what we thought ‘old’ would be. Some of us are having the time of our lives. This surely can’t be ‘old’. I don’t want to deny my age. I want to be proud that I have made it this far—that I have a bit of experience under my belt, that I can roll with the punches, that I have a bit more confidence, that I am breaking out of my glass box.

Friday, 8 May 2015

Mothers Day by Naz

Mother’s Day on Sunday.  Once again I am presented with a dichotomy of emotions and experience.

With Fiz’s excited reference to ‘My Mothers Story’ by Kate Grenville and ‘Mother’s Day’ looming this Sunday I visited to find out more about this eagerly awaited book.  The site offered a number of praises and a short video by Kate sharing a little about her Mum, her Mum’s memoirs, her Mum’s boldness—things that inspired Kate to write the book.  What a discovery to find her Mum’s hand written words—perhaps letters of curves and style, un-abandoned flourishes and personality etched onto musty paper, yellowed by time—treasures now left behind, replaced by impersonal type from the tech era of keyboards.

Mother’s Day—a day celebrated in many countries including US, UK, India, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Turkey, Australia, Mexico, Canada, China, Japan and Belgium.  Google the meaning and origin of Mother’s Day and you will find conflicting opinions—differing statistics of years, dates, places and people; from the ancient Greeks and Romans to England’s Mothering Sunday in the 1600’s. Names such as Julia Ward Howe in 1872 and Anna Jarvis are also added to the mix.   But the obvious common thread that links them all is the specialness of time set aside to honour all mothers —all mums.


Monday, 4 May 2015

Fiz's sober start but fun ending

Last week was sober: the horrendous suffering in Nepal; the death by firing squad of Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran; the riots in Baltimore. And locally, five people killed in flooding from the heavy rain on Friday.

But there were also highs: if you haven’t watched the Four Corners program about the women fighting against ISIS, take a look on ABC iview or at   What incredibly gutsy women! Wooohooo!! (It’s their spirit that I applaud. I am side-stepping the issue of fighting itself.)
No Free Steps to Heaven (Eddie Gerald), ABC
And – judging by the proliferation of anti-high rise posters in local front gardens—most of us in the neighbourhood were delighted that the proposed high rise development on the Yaroomba foreshore did not get the go-ahead from Council.

And now it is the beginning of another week

Friday, 1 May 2015

Red Poppies by Naz

Fiz’s post this week—it spoke directly to my heart, on more levels than one. Not only did it inspire me to also share my Anzac Day experience but it invited me to consider my own self constructed glass cage and its unrelenting demand to adhere to its restrictions and invisible boundaries. I know its limitations need to be reviewed, assessed and maybe smashed if I am truly to live my life in the BOLD lane. But, my Glass Cage will be for another day.

This week my thoughts are with the Anzacs.

I was undecided.  I procrastinated about attending an Anzac Day dawn service.  I was staying with my son at Caloundra and although we had discussed it briefly we hadn’t intended to contribute, preferring to sleep in; show our respects and extend our gratitude at a more respectable hour. Obviously a decision was made for us (by someone, somewhere) when both my son and myself woke at the crack of dawn with the same thought; ‘Mum, are you awake I hear from the bedroom down the hall’.  ‘Yes, I am, I reply, are you okay?’  ‘Let’s attend the dawn service at Kings Beach’ the wide awake and motivated voice urges.  With no hesitation I instantly replied ‘yes, let’s do it’.  Two minds in synch.

Let’s get out of our warm comfortable and safe beds, feel uncomfortable for a while, feel the chill, stand for a time, shift from leg to leg to stave off the cramps, delay the warm morning coffee or tea, allow the hollow feeling of an empty stomach to just be—just for this morning.

Monday, 27 April 2015

Fiz's glass box

In the run up to Anzac Day I felt an element of unease about the commemorations. I decided not to attend any events but instead to quietly mark the day at home.

I was tired out by the time I got to bed Friday night and I was glad that I didn’t have to set the alarm for an early wakeup. I slept soundly. Then it was 4.37 am and I was wide awake with the words LEST WE FORGET booming in my mind. I thought what the heck: looks like I am going to the dawn service after all. And, naturally, I was thankful that I did.

It is our young people who do it for me. And praise to the organisers, especially Coolum-Peregian RSL president Bill Powell, who allow our young people a voice. It is wonderful, inspiring, reassuring to know there is such a brilliant crop of them. The high school students nailed it with their speeches brimming with thankfulness, respect, and inclusiveness. Who could not be touched by the innocence in the voices of the children’s choir; and the sometimes quavering last post by Harry in Year 6 was so deeply, deeply moving precisely because the rendition wasn’t perfect.

Later down at the beach for the oar salute, it came so strongly to me that what I have is life and I damned well better make the most of it!

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Gorgeous woman making gorgeous things

I’m so happy to introduce you to an amazing bold woman, a friend since high school, who is never afraid to follow her heart and do the things that bring her joy.  She told me she loves being creative and never hesitates to put any new skills into practice.  Today I heard about the woman behind Sanchay Jewellery and discovered what inspired her to become a silversmith, creating unique pieces using quality gold and silver.   She designs and crafts exclusive jewellery (no two pieces the same) from her Caloundra studio and has customers from Melbourne to Cairns and as far away as Europe.  Introducing Linda Jones and Sanchay Jewellery:

1.  Linda, where have you come from? – I grew up in Strathpine and attended Pine Rivers State School and then Pine Rivers State High School.  From an early age I had a love of fashion and style. In contrast to the ‘in’ fashion and what my friends were wearing at the time, I entered a modelling competition dressed in black gaucho pants, yellow shirt, black boots and a black sombrero hat.  It was 1972 and I was 15 - I won the competition - a Vicki Keo deportment and modelling course.  At the same time I was offered a hairdressing apprenticeship and chose that over modelling.  Not pursuing a modelling career didn’t really bother me at the time because my generation was focused on getting a job and setting ourselves up for our future and, to be honest, hairdressing appealed to me more.  I started my apprenticeship at the Lawnton Beauty Salon, owned and run by Phyllis McNamara.  I had already been working for her as a tea and tidy on the weekends and school holidays and loved the industry so it really wasn’t a hard decision to make. 
2. A bold question - how old are you?  I am 57 years bold, have experienced a lot of  things, gained a lot of knowledge and believe it or not have ticked off my bucket list, achieving everything I wanted to do.  I am enjoying life – sharing with my husband, lovingly ‘putting up’ with four very special little people (grandchildren) and filling my days being creative, hairdressing, making jewellery, and my new love… befriending the native birds that come to feed on my back deck. I have at least nine king parrots, lost count of the lorikeets as well as a beautiful pair of pale-faced rosellas visit daily.  I also feed the kookaburras by hand.  I have a real connection with the birds.  My friends call me the bird lady – I’m happy with that.   
Feeding the kookaburras off my back deck
3. When did you decide to change career and become a silversmith? When I finished with the café. I needed something to get me back on track, back to normality. I had the time then – I hadn’t had the time or energy before.
4. What has made you change directions in the past?  I have changed directions a number of times throughout my life - trying new things, but always in parallel to my hairdressing - I worked for five years with kinesiology and published two gluten free cookbooks.  My daughter had severe allergies and was gluten intolerant.  To help her and to ensure she didn’t miss out on eating a variety of foods, I developed gluten free recipes. Wanting to help others as well, I published these in a series of cook books.  
It was inevitable - my interest in food and creating recipes led me to setting up and running my own café.  Quickly I learnt how to cook, how to run a café and how to be a barista - and all at the same time.  We had the cafe for two and a half years and honestly, it nearly killed me.  After it was sold and still high on adrenalin from constantly running flat out, it took me months to get back to normal.  It had been ‘go, go, go’ for so long my body had forgotten how to relax.  To help wind down I decided to have one-on-one classes with a silversmith I had been introduced to through the cafe and I really enjoyed it.    And so I began learning the art of crafting jewellery and becoming a silversmith - the last thing on my bucket list.

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Fiz on a Tuesday

It is great being with young people.  Their enthusiasm, optimism and recklessness rub off on me and I tend to forget just how old I really am.  And it is so good to have a man’s point of view. To see things from their perspective (interesting man’s view in Summer house with swimming pool by Herman Kock). Yet there is something ever so comforting and reassuring about chatting with other women of a certain age.

It is just nice to know that they too can’t wear high heels anymore (thrilled with my new flats – so, so comfortable );
that they wake up in the middle of the night and can’t get back to sleep (my sister recommends hot milk with nutmeg. Reading something ‘worthwhile’ rather than ‘gripping’ generally works for me. Geoffrey Blainey’s The Story of Australia’s People got me back to sleep for weeks.); and not nice but nice to know that I am not the only one with eyebrow issues (mine were always dark and orderly; now they are running a muck. It’s the white hairs that are the unruly ones—I yank them out but then I worry that there will soon be gaps so every now and then I dye them, but not sure if I should keep doing this.)

Friday, 17 April 2015

Naz gets a call

An unexpected phone call, a name that vaguely stirred my memory; a person I had not thought of for forty six years!

There was a primary school reunion being organised for the grade seven students of the class of 1969.  I felt a flutter of excitement as I thought about reconnecting with the kids, (obviously now very much adults; mature oldish adults) who I had spent seven impressionable, happy, fun and at the same time, challenging and often scary years of my life.

On the end of the phone a voice not ever heard before but somehow familiar is inviting me to this event.

Monday, 13 April 2015

Fiz says: contribute to everyone's health—IMMUNISE!

Here’s me thinking I’ll write about nail polish or whether eyeshadow works on saggy eyelids and then Naz opens up the immunisation debate. I have been strongly pro-immunisation for decades so it is good to be confronted by the opposite view. Naz raised two important issues (a) childhood immunisation and (b) adult booster immunisation.

I checked out the websites links she gave. Two presented convincing arguments for immunisation backed up by quality research. One suggested vaccination might cause other unrelated harmful health conditions but did not provide any supporting back-up evidence. The other webpage was no longer available. I was re-assured by the weight of evidence that the benefits of immunisation far out-weighed any negatives.

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Non immunisation needles some.

A controversial issue - immunise or not:  to take responsibility for your children’s health and confidently make one of the most important choices as a parent.  There is pressure from doctors, government, others and even family.   There is copious information, documented studies, research, statistics, reports and professional opinions – weighted evidence and reasons both for and against.  There is judgement, even threats, manipulation and ultimatums.

This provocative topic came up today over lunch with my mum and sister.  My mum, now seventy-six years of bold, lived through times when childhood diseases such as whooping cough, measles, mumps and polio were rife.  Fearful that she may be next, she watched helplessly as classmates and friends contracted polio.  She experienced their pain and suffering and the double-edged sword if they survived the disease – their struggle being left crippled – immobilised—locked into heavy, metal calipers and destined to endure years of cruel ridicule and teasing as they watched from the sidelines.  Their life and dreams restricted by a past illness.   

From our lunch conversation, I discovered how these memories invoke real fear in my Mum. 

Monday, 6 April 2015

Fiz: the kids aren't too bossy yet

Baking pikelets with a daughter sounds just the type of thing being bold is all about – because aren’t relationships the essential core of being?  And when they get tested as invariably happens, those precious connecting times offset the exasperation, annoyance and hurt that we may feel at other times.

And have my two children taken charge? Well not yet… is more like we are all independent —for the moment. Not that we don’t support and care for one another. It is just that I no longer feel that same degree of responsibility for their wellbeing and their actions. The hierarchy of mother-children has flattened. My son sometimes calls me ‘mother duck’ and I feel that they are now swimming beside me, rather than under my wings or following close behind.

I remember one writer describing her children as being ‘done’ in the sense of how a cake is ‘done’ when the cooking time is up. I feel my children are ‘done’. Extra cooking time will not improve them. I am just glad that they turned out so well.

Thursday, 2 April 2015

It's all about the love

Boldmag was never intended to feature recipes and baking; how to do the best Sunday roast or get the perfect rise on that sponge – you know, the one Granny used to make using her secret recipe that has been handed down through the generations.  The one that you are told in no uncertain terms never to share with anyone outside of the family or you may lose your life!   No, Fiz and I wanted this blog to provide information to help traverse our 50+ years, discuss things that inspire, share ideas, ask questions that provoke thought and debate and to ultimately encourage you to engage in our conversations; to have your say too, to offer your own unique wisdom and advice no matter what age you are. 

Today, however, I am guilty of contravening our intention and want to share an experience that involved the kitchen, food, a recipe and some family love—one that made my heart sing and one that I absolutely reveled in—I baked pikelets with my daughter and then, together, we devoured them shamelessly; calories, GI and sugar content—cautions thrown to the wind, all valid concerns parked for another day.

The last time we shared baking pikelets,

Monday, 30 March 2015

Fiz: the great book escape

The dementia diagnosis is one of the toughest. Unfortunately, the probability of having some kind of dementia increases with age as does the loss of mental acuity. Thus I told myself firmly that—rather than a sign of Alzheimer’s—I had just been trying to do too much too quickly. The kindness and helpfulness of the library staff didn’t help. I would much have preferred a matter-of-fact: ‘You have the date wrong. The talk is on the 26 May not the 26 March.’  I wished I didn’t have white hair. (I normally like my hair being white but how easy it is to be type-cast).
A section of my bookshelf

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Naz's intro to 'hubris'

Each morning I randomly take a book from my bookshelf - one I am drawn to. 

To-day the words that jump out at me are from a book titled Soul lessons and Soul Purpose by Sonia Choquette: ‘She’s let her hubris run amok, and it’s ruining her life’ speak to me on more levels than I want to acknowledge.

For a start, I don’t even know what the word hubris means.  I head straight to my computer searching for its definition. Strangely, it’s not listed in the Word thesaurus and, no synonym list either.  I browse in the all-encompassing knowledge bank, Google and there it is – boom - ‘excessive pride or self-confidence, arrogance’. Adding that to the implication that my hubris was running amok makes me squirm.  Apparently, the word hubris originated in ancient Greek times, is derived from ‘Hybris’ and Wikipedia goes on to highlight ‘When it offends the Gods of ancient Greece, it is usually punished.’  Do I have need for concern some 2000 years later?

I really want to know why this sentence screamed at me from the page.

Monday, 23 March 2015

Fiz: Go for Gold!

I presented at a work conference last week. I felt confident that I had adequately prepared my talk but what was I going to wear?! There was no need for anything flash — just something understated in a casually professional way; something that would make me look and feel credible. We all know that feeling good about what we are wearing gives an extra energy boost to our functioning, and yet finding these clothes isn’t easy. Where are these clothes?

Let me hasten to qualify, where are these clothes for someone in their sixties who has midriff flab, can no longer wear high heels, and has a limited budget? And there are more qualifications; I don’t want granny clothes or ho hum clothes. If I am going to do old boldly, I need the clothes to match!

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Frazzled this week!

What a week!  It has most definitely been hectic and now, today I’m feeling a tad frazzled!  To be honest, more than a tad.  I am trashed!

The three removalists and the truck, transporter, ‘carrier to be’ of my cherished possessions arrived at 11 yesterday morning.  By 3.30 that afternoon its shipping container was full to the brim, my personal belongings, wrapped and stacked, inventory lists and condition reports finalised and storage documents signed and dated.  It was over.  The truck pulled away and as I watched it disappear through the gate a hefty layer of overwhelm dispersed and I stood back for a moment and breathed.

Monday, 16 March 2015

Fiz's stars

One of my stars -- my older sister
The changes to Naz’s life remind me that life runs smoothly for only so long before there is a rough patch and it all becomes rather difficult.  Ultimately it is up to us to navigate our way through   challenging times but we can be helped immeasurably by those around us. I have experienced much love and support from family and friends when things have been rough. There have been big tangible gestures but other seemingly small things have also buoyed me up. It is metaphorically as well as literally true that the stars shine brightest on the darkest nights. And I am immensely thankful for the stars—the people in my life—who have shone brightly for me.