Tuesday, December 27, 2005

"Don't obey me, my child"

Continuing my catch up on nvc-parenting archives, I paused again at Isabell Peters' poem. I'm trying to work out with what I feel connected, and which parts disconnect with me. (permission to share with others off-list, message 6532):

Don't obey me, my child
(Isabell Peters/2005)

Listen to me and open your heart
when I open mine
when I reveal myself to you

or indoctrinate you - then tell me
if you are irritated.

Should I say "you have to"
don't believe me, my child -
Just bear with me
when I know no other way.

When I think I know better
What's good for you
don't believe me -
just bear with me
when I seem to have no trust.

Listen to me and open your heart
when I open mine
even when I reveal myself
with lack of trust
with my pain
with my disorientation.

Never obey me, my child!

Yet follow me if your heart approves.

(Translation: Sara Hartmann)

Connection: "Yet follow me if your heart approves" - describes the desire I hold that my children might follow my instructions because those instructions are such that would meet my children's needs.

Disconnection: Actually, probably not disconnection, so much as my fear that the number of times my instructions may have been made with my own needs rather than the children's in mind may have created an inclination in them for lack of trust that my instruction would be worth following with approval.

Obedience, compliance... surely they are not needed if I have earned trust?

Sunday, December 25, 2005


GUF is visiting over the festival season. I have learned a lot about the history of World Championship Chess, enjoyed the influence of my uncle on my sons, and received the kind of loving support and reassurance that only an uncle can give.

Which reminds me that I caught up with GUK on Skyhero Chat this afternoon.

Do you Sudoku? Cricket and I did (this morning) while watching our new Voyager DVDs (thanks GUF). Then Kitty did too, and she is again, with GUF, while I blog. Earlier we watched Madagascar and played Ingenious.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

More to read when I have more time...

GUF will arrive soon, and I must take food to mum's for lunch, but first I want to take note of the site brought to my attention early this morning, to remind me to read it in more depth later: CNVC are considering a sociocratic style of structure, operation and governance - which sounds hopeful.

Googling, as I do, led me to Spirituality and Globalisation: Visions of a different type of social organisation by Wolfgang Fischer. Hmmm....?


Thursday, December 22, 2005

"For words, like Nature, half reveal...

and half conceal the Soul within." - Alfred Lord Tennyson, In Memoriam

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Black Hill

Oh Memories... and new family joy.

After tea I dragged the boys on a walk to Black Hill. At the foot of the hill: "I remember that cliff", "I remember that path... it goes over that rise and there was a tunnel through the blackberries", " Yes I remember this road, if we go around here there is a reasonably easy climb through the pine trees". "I remember this soil smell". While we found new spaces, and experienced our own new adventures, I related the dangerous and tame adventures of my teen years. "See the edge of that cliff behind the tree? We climbed that, up the pink and orange sandstone ... and over there? there was a wider space, just as steep where we took the younger cousins up, all of us tied together". We climbed up and down, and walked around, and each bend and rise brought back more memories, and new rocks for Fish to collect.

Passing a dozen interesting paths to take "next time", we decided eventually to take a loop around the long way rather than retrace any of our path. "This reserve - it was a tip... the smell when we rode home from school... yeuch", "On the way to school, down this hill on bikes, imagine our speed"... "and the time a car was turning as I neared the bottom of the hill, and I squeezed the breaks and my back wheel started to come around and I came this close to this storm water drain". Memories mixed with stories, and jokes, new discoveries, and plans and ideas, filling our hearts with the joy of creating new memories to share.

Next time: water bottles says Cricket, a camera says mum, a bag for the rocks says Fish.


calling to mind the thrill of making connections.

Google Quote of the Day:
"I can't bring myself to say, 'Well, I guess I'll be toddling along.' It isn't that I can't toddle. It's just that I can't guess I'll toddle." Robert Benchley. 

Fresh on the heels of yesterday's learning: he was an Algonquin Wit!

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Acmeism & Algonquin Round Table

The Information Services Librarian strolled me through our online databases during training today. Scanning the Gale Literature Resource Centre I caught sight of "Acmeism" and "Algonquin round table" as Literary Movements or Time Periods. What on earth?


Ah... thank you Lindsay Malcolm and
Martin Kich. Acmeism... check.

I believe pbs American Masters give a more enjoyable read about the Algonquin round table than Wikipedia, although it was nice to hear from the Algonquin Hotel themselves.

I shall always remember Mrs Potter, my Grade 3 teacher: "You will learn something new every day".

Monday, December 19, 2005

Ready to Swish & Swipe

Overtaken by the cleaning bug this morning... feeling quite proud of my efforts (vacuuming whole house, bathroom, washing, kitchen) ... and relieved that I stopped in time to prevent backache ... this evening I bought a new toilet brush so I am ready to Swish (and maybe Swipe).

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Pleasant Sunday

Thanks to Parents Without Partners, I cruised from Southbank to Toorak and back on the Melba Star: learning the history of the various bridges and Herring Island, why the Yarra is the upside-down river, and snippets of socio-economic interest of either side of the river. Passing the Melbourne University boathouse reminded me of an old buddy from Uni... watching her rowing race, but also being amazed at her energy - she will have been up, across the city, trained, and back to the residence before I was up for breakfast!

While others gambled or shopped at Crown Casino, I perused the DVDs and CDs at Sanity... until lunch, during which I discovered that a new acquaintance was also a homeschooling mother. We watched the Crown's Christmas display (YAWN) and heard their choir, before strolling and talking until it was time for the bus to leave.

I just remembered a very happy sight as we left the Atrium: A mother was breastfeeding. I have to admit that I was so impressed I stopped to express my appreciation: this mother provided an opportunity for young people at the Crown to subconsciously process the perfectly natural activity of breastfeeding.

This was an excursion that I had planned to let pass me by. While the river cruise would have been attractive I had to pay for it with hours at the casino: I am trying very hard to find a way to not say "I hate casinos"... but I really cannot, yet, imagine any way in which gambling in a casino (or anywhere beyond a charity raffle) could be at all appealing for me.

All up I did not even enter the event on my calendar... but then on Thursday night PWPBP appeared to be disappointed with the low number of bookings, and I recalled that I would have no particularly pressing obligations and likely short on inspiration... so I booked. Having now met "Clare" (the homeschooling mum) I am glad that I did: discovering homeschooling in common was an easy bridge, upon which we found more points of similarity and agreement/compatibility.

Yes, in retrospect, a pleasant Sunday.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Lives Touched by Breastfeeding: Writing Competition

From today's Australian Breastfeeding Association announcement

Only seven weeks left to get your entry in for the ABA 'Lives Touched by
Breastfeeding' writing competition! Take the time over your holiday break to
focus on your short story and send it in before February 3, 2006.

Entry forms and flyers are on the ABA website under the Noticeboard section.

Someone is going to win the fantastic prizes, as well has having their story
published in Essence magazine! The first prize in each category is a book
pack to the value of AU$250.00 plus AU$140.00 in cash. Second prize is a
AU$50.00 Mothers Direct voucher plus AU$35.00 in cash. Third prize is a
AU$25.00 Mothers Direct voucher plus AU$25.00 in cash.

Edge: The World Question Center: What's your Law?

As this blog is mostly here for me, not you, I'm posting first how I arrived at What's your Law this morning... because I generally find anyone's path to a particular destination as or more interesting than the destination.

D.H. Lawrence mentioned in passing in Kangaroo that "The man by himself" was one of the names of Erasmus of Rotterdam, so I googled to remind myself (my only inkling of a recollection was something to do with Martin Luther) of this man of my family's geographical origins. Wikipedia was very helpful, and I followed a link to learn about Erasmus' Apophthegmatum opus , whereupon, curious to discover whether an apophthegm is some sort of pithy saying, I followed the apophthegm link which diverted to "adage". What's your Law was an external link from that "adage" Wikipedia entry.

I generally apply
Gardner's First Law: Don't ask how smart someone is; ask in what ways is he or she smart.

I figure O'Donnell's Law of Academic Administration:
If it feels good, don't do it.
extends beyond Academic Administration, based on the justification.

from Minsky's:
Minsky's First Law
Words should be your servants, not your masters.
Minsky's Second Law
Don't just do something. Stand there.

I went via his bio to remind myself what I had read in The Society of Mind and surfed a while through Listmania ... overload.

I'm getting back to work, but later I'll get back to reading what Daniel Gilbert (of Gilbert's Law: Happy people are those who do not pass up an opportunity to laugh at themselves or to make love with someone else. Unhappy people are those who get this backwards.) says about AFFECTIVE FORECASTING...OR...THE BIG WOMBASSA: WHAT YOU THINK YOU'RE GOING TO GET, AND WHAT YOU DON'T GET, WHEN YOU GET WHAT YOU WANT

Thursday, December 08, 2005


I am feeling very grateful to have found today, in the nvc parenting archives (thank you Judy in Vermont):


Admit something:

Every one you see, you say to them,
"Love me."

Of course you do not do this out loud;
Someone would call the cops.

Still though, think about this.
This great pull in us
To connect.

Why not become the one
Who lives with a full moon in each eye
That is always saying,

With that sweet moon

What every other eye in this world
Is dying to

[Hafiz :c.1350; tr. Daniel Ladinsky]

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Revolutions in library design

Geraldine mentioned during induction today that the face of libraries appears to be changing towards a retailing approach, although those changes will probably take many years to reach us.  She mentioned shop fronts and not having a central circulation desk!  Interesting concept, but it sent me looking online.

Now Procter Library does not appear to be without a central desk - but its design is quite intriguing - hope to visit it one day.


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