You’ve come to a family-friendly website and short story blog.
“Love in a little black diary” is a memoir, at least in part. Much of it is autobiographical, my life story, revealed in random miniature sketches. But it is much more than that. It includes stories about people, amazing individuals who have touched or enriched my life, my family history and the history of my husband’s family as well.
Memory is essential to my storytelling.
Having lived with and cared for someone with dementia, I praise and thank God daily for the gift of memory! But, thankfully, I don’t have to rely on memory alone. I am blessed to have access to my own and family diaries, photographs and memorabilia. I have items from one side of the family dating back to the late 1800s; from the other side of the family, the family tree has been traced back to the mid-1700s.
One item in my possession is a diary from the early 1940s. It is my grandmother’s war-time diary, which inspired the title of my short story blog: “Love in a little black diary”. I won’t tell you why here – that is the subject of A Mother’s Love (24 October 2015). However, I suggest you read Grandparenting: Joy and a joy-giver (September 5, 2015) before you read “A Mother’s Love”.
This short story blog covers topics such as: kids and parenting (and grand-parenting), relationships, local and family history, lessons learned, work, care-giving, ageing, mortality, God, Jesus and the Bible, and Christian ministry. My entire family loves food and almost all of us love to cook, so there are lots of stories about food and the art of cooking. The blog includes stories about places with a connection to my own and my husband’s family history and places where my husband and I have lived or visited. Finally, my blog includes amusing narratives, anecdotes and poems, what I call “little gems”.
Photographs and memorabilia help bring my stories to life.
The photographs I post on my blog are essential to my storytelling, as they help bring the stories to life. Some images are digital reproductions of photographs and memorabilia from my family archives and some are from my husband’s and my extensive collection. I am indebted to my husband who is an avid collector of memorabilia and who encourages me to take photographs. I must admit to complaining on many an occasion about his “stuff”, which fills many boxes in our storeroom, and saying to him “Do you really want me to take photos of this?” Now I am so grateful for our accumulated “stuff”, our many photographs, and my husband’s persistence when I didn’t want to be bothered taking photos. I am also indebted to my late mother, who left me with her wonderful stash of kept items and family photographs. Some of these items are more than 100 years old.
I always wanted to write stories.
I began writing a “book” when I was about 10 years old. It took about 3 months. I recall handwriting the story, chapter by chapter, and my father (bless him) typing it for me. How he encouraged me! I still have the handwritten copy, and my father’s typed pages, evidence of my childhood aspirations.
Writing gives me much satisfaction. I enjoy writing. It’s a creative outlet for me. At secondary school, I won prizes for my essays and poems, even prose and poems in French! About 10 years ago, I took some courses in writing – telling your life story, use of dialogue, how to sell your writing, and more. At that time I was working full-time and I didn’t have sufficient free time to pursue my storytelling dream.
I’ve done a lot of formal writing over the years, including two major academic theses.
The first,”Towards Better Mathematics Teaching“, is a report of my Master of Education research of a teacher professional development program conducted by Education Queensland in the early 1990s.
The second is my PhD thesis “Chaplaincy in Queensland State Schools: An Investigation”, which I self-published in 2002. It examines the nature and development of chaplaincy in Queensland State Schools, with a focus on the role played by early campaigners and Scripture Union Queensland. The thesis, which is very readable, is available online at The University of Queensland website: http://espace.library.uq.edu.au/view/UQ:184700.
Writing and interpersonal communication have been central to the various positions I have held in my working life. I have been a secondary school teacher, teacher of adults in a tertiary institution, researcher, mediator, investigator and strategic planner. When I left the public service in 2007, well before retiring age, my colleagues asked me what I intended to do in my spare time, and I said I wanted to write…stories! But it took me until 2015 to get started.
I look forward to sharing my stories with you and I invite your feedback. Hopefully, I will post a new story on my blog every 3-4 weeks.
Once again, welcome to my website and blog!
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