That will teach him :-)

Recently my sister-in-law said she had a tetanus injection and that we should too. She works in public health and knows about these things. I couldn’t see the need for being immunised, but my husband thought it was a good idea. As I spend more and more time in my garden, he is concerned I may injure myself and has reminded me that I should have an injection.

I saw my GP today and while there, I told her my husband thought I should have a jab. She agreed it could be a good idea and then asked, ‘Has your husband been immunised?’ All I could do was laugh. As we came out of her office she called to my husband and fairly forcefully suggested he should join me in this adventure.

needleWe both have sore arms now but I don’t think he will recommend any more health treatments for me – unless he is prepared to have them as well :-).

If you are interested in knowing more about tetanus, here is some information from The Better Health Channel

Tetanus is a serious bacterial disease that causes muscle spasms and breathing problems. Tetanus is uncommon in Australia because of the widespread use of the tetanus vaccine. Some types of wounds are more likely to encourage the growth of tetanus bacteria, such as compound fractures, animal bites, burns or any wounds contaminated with soil, horse manure or pieces of foreign objects. Immunisation is available and serious side effects or allergic reactions are rare.



Daily Post: Mr Sandman

A recent Daily Post Prompt asked, “What kind of sleeper are you? Do you drop off like a stone and awaken refreshed, or do you need pitch black and silence to drift off to dream?”

So, what kind of sleeper am I? NOT GOOD!

I am nearing the end of Week 1 of a four-week trial in using some really interesting equipment to help me to sleep better at night. Teddy offered to model the two masks for me for this blog today :-). It is for the relief of sleep apnoea.

You can click on the link HERE if you would like to read more about it. I am feeling much better already 🙂

Up close and personal


Many local “baby boomers” are taking part in a new four-year study on healthy ageing. I recently received a letter in the post inviting me to take part and I happily agreed to participate.

The State Government is contributing $1 million to the Busselton Population Medical Research Foundation Inc to conduct the study. The Foundation is working in conjunction with researchers from The University of Western Australia, Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, Edith Cowan University, Curtin University, Lions Eye Institute and Ear Science Institute of Australia.

18 February 2014 006 (Copy)

I had to fast from midnight and arrive at the facility at 7.30am this morning. The process started with a range of blood tests, including one for my DNA. Afterwards they provided me with toast and Vegemite for breakfast, then on with lots more tests.

I was there for three hours in total and there wasn’t a minute where I wasn’t being tested for one thing or another.

The study hopes to include about 4,000 people. There are around 7,000 “baby boomers” living locally but not everyone wants to take part in research. From my point of view, it was a great opportunity to get a comprehensive medical check-up for free!
Researchers are investigating factors related to:

  • Obesity, nutrition and physical activity
  • Heart and blood vessel disease
  • Stroke and disability
  • Dementia and mental disease
  • Respiratory and sleep health
  • Physical function
  • Spinal pain
  • Hearing loss
  • Vision loss

Media references from the original press release in 2009.

Jennie Hui (Busselton Population Medical Research Foundation)  (+61 4) 11 233 458
Janine MacDonald (UWA Public Affairs)  (+61 8)  6488 5563  /  (+61 4) 32 637 716

Is this book really mind bending?

Post number 496

DSC00475I bought Reality Hunger by David Shields (Penguin) at a News Agency at Melbourne Airport in March this year. The topic caught my attention and I was sold on the reviews! He may be well-known but I had never heard of him before. Here are some of the reviews that got me in…

‘Mind-bending’ THE NEW YORK TIMES

‘Bold, entertaining, contentious. Essential reading for readers and writers’ GUARDIAN

‘Give(s) bourgeois traditionalists a right good kicking’ OBSERVER

‘An invigorating shakedown of the literary status quo: recommended for readers, essential for writers’ TIME OUT, New York

Well, I have to admit I just couldn’t get into it. It is not written like a ‘normal’ book – you know, chapters, paragraphs etc. Maybe I am behind the times. There was one good outcome for me though. After I admitted defeat and was putting it with my other books I happened to notice on the second last page some information about another of his books titled “The Thing About Life is that One Day you will be Dead”. 

I found it on Amazon and downloaded it to my Kindle. To my surprise I really enjoyed it! He confronts our mortality in a unique way that is not threatening or negative. I would recommend it 🙂



Self belief

Prescription placebos used in research and pra...

Prescription placebos used in research and practice (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


I watched a TV show last night about an experiment where several people took part in what they thought was a scientific trial of a new drug. There was a lot of hype to build up their belief in the drug, which in reality was a sugar pill. These people were able to do incredible feats such as overcoming their greatest fears, giving up smoking and finding relief from allergies. This all was made possible because their believed in the “miracle drug” they were taking.


Eventually they learned that the scientific experiment was really about the effectiveness of the placebo and their belief in it. The progress they achieved continued after they learned it was just a sugar pill. And why not? They ACTUALLY DID achieve the results themselves and they could rightly be proud of their achievements.


So what can we do to increase our belief in ourselves? I wish there was a pill that would do it for me, but, failing that, here are some ideas that have helped me:


  • Driving – sometimes I get nervous when driving: I remind myself of my experience and good record on the roads
  • Social situations – if nothing else works I just keep quiet and keep breathing and smile 🙂
  • Work situations – I try to choose words that inspire confidence – even if I am not feeling confident at the time
  • I recognise that I am not alone in doubting myself at times and have compassion on myself.


PLEASE share with me what works for you. I could really do with some inspiration today 😉






Today’s special guests

Last week I found this fellow in my bathroom…

bathroom spider 003

Just now I found this fellow who came inside with my laundry… I guess they don’t eat very much! I confess I was tempted to put my foot down but decided to shoot with my camera instead 🙂

spider unknown origin 001


A new take on the meaning of life

I saw Steven Hawking on this TV  program recently (Steven Hawking Grand Design – The Meaning of Life). He said something that really made a lot of sense to me.

I greatly admire the genius of Steven Hawking and many other scientists, however I can never accept scientific theory as 100% truth. History has taught me otherwise. Our learning evolves just as we do. What we believe today may be laughed at in another 50-100 years time.

Hawking used the term best fit model to describe scientific theories. They are the best we have at the time, to describe the theoretical understanding of the universe. When considering the meaning of life, we can only see it through the constraints of our own personal experience and perceptions.  Therefore the meaning of life for me is what makes the most sense out of my own personal best fit model of reality. I like that 🙂

I found a review of the program by another blogger – if you are interested in getting another point of view on the program: What is reality?



PS Whatever life means to you – I hope that 2013 is a wonderful experience in your journey of life 😉

Art vs Science

Today I would like to consider an article by Jeri Kroll, from Flinders University, titled Creative Writing as Research and the dilemma of Accreditation: How do we value what we do? This paper is part of my current studies and got me to thinking about what we value and why!

The context of the article is broadly about funding for creative arts in universities as compared to the funding of scientific research. He asks some provocative questions and suggests that the only current measure is that “funding is proof of worth”. In the broader community, I wonder, how do we decide that a piece of writing or a work of art is of outstanding value unless there is a monetary value attached to it. Is it a case of my writing is only good if a publisher agrees to publish it?

Krol says that “Creative writing has a range of purposes and benefits for the community. It provides entertainment and intellectual stimulation, but in a larger sense, it preserves and promotes our heritage”. What do you think of that comment? To me it seems that writing can be as snapshot of our lives and the communities we live in today, in the same way that Dickens wrote about the society he lived in.

Bringing the debate of art vs science back to the here and now – what is supported most in our society? An Arts Degree or a Science Degree? In my experience the scientists can be elitist about their field and look down on the value of the Arts. How can the Arts gain greater credibility and value in our society? I don’t know the answers to these questions, I just wonder about them. Surely there is a place where art and science can become one and be viewed as beautiful as well as intrinsically valuable!

thanks for reading


 Reference – Jeri Kroll, TEXT vol 6 No1

Twelve wishes for all children

Family. Mural in lunette from the Family and E...

Image via Wikipedia

What a wonderful world it  could be if all children knew and experienced the following traits from their parents, extended families and schools:

1. Know they are loved just as they are – it is not about what they are good at, but just because they ARE.

2. Resilient – life can throw lots of things in their paths and they need to be able to bounce bank every time.

3. Respect others and know respect in return. This can be as simple and as commitment to treat others as they like to be treated.

4. Self assurance – the ability to believe in themselves and engage fully in what life has to offer.

5. Confidence – the ability to speak up and express themselves in all sorts of circumstances. They need to know that their contribution is welcome and valuable.

6. Courage – to know fear but to be able to overcome it. Courage is not the absence of fear but the ability to act in spite of it.

7. Compassion – sensitivity to care for others when they are hurting or suffering in some way. Compassion for themselves is just as important.

8. Sense of humour – this is so important, the ability to laugh at something funny; to laugh at one-self; and see the lighter side of all situations.

9. The appreciation of beauty – the ability to be touched by the beauty in nature; in art; in music; in writing; and in people.

10. Appreciation of the ordinary – so often the ordinary is taken for granted. It is only when it is taken away from us that we realise how important it is.

11. A fascination and open-mindedness about science and spirituality and always willing to learn new ideas and experiences.

12. Inner strength – the ability to make commitments or decisions and to go the distance. This inner strength may also be called on to recognise a different path and to turn around and start afresh without giving in to discouragement.

Many of these characteristics overlap, I know, but it is good to look at each on its own and appreciate their importance in the developing child.

When I was at school there wasn’t much emphasis on learning these character traits. For me, I believe that one of the most important traits is resilience. Which ones do you think are most important. I would love to hear your ideas on this.




Topics, topics, topics…

fancy logo/writing for use in MBTI articles

Image via Wikipedia

I really want to write a blog today after a few days away from my computer. I don’t want to write about the designated topic today so what other options are there?  Here are a few of my ideas…

* Capitalism and the work ethic – why do many of us work hard to acquire ‘things’ we don’t have time to enjoy?

* Why do we need religion? Even if it can’t be scientifically proven, can it still offer a real and valuable contribution to society?

* Death – a friend’s father passed away today and I know it will raise all sorts of questions and emotions for her, as it did for me.

* Finding a good match between my skills, training and knowledge and something worthwhile I can do in society – isn’t that something we all seek in one way or another?

* Myers Briggs Personality Type – what it means to be an INFJ and how that has affected my life so far.

* What is it like to have a daughter? That is something I have often wondered.

* Is the world getting to be a really crazy place – more so than usual, or is it just me?

* Why do some people ask so many questions?

Maybe I will try answering one of them tomorrow.

Cheers 🙂