Saturday 17th March 2018

My Last Meal Was. #LifeThisWeek 11/52. 2018.23.

My Last Meal Was. #LifeThisWeek 11/52. 2018.23.

When I made this prompt up initially it was “My Last Meal” but that conjured up those of prisoners who are about to be executed (yikes) get to choose their last meal. I have wondered, as you do, how on earth ANYONE could actually EAT before they were led off…anyway, I need to lighten up…and here we go.

It’s hard for me to write about a meal in actual fact . I can have meals of course and I have written about what it’s been like to eat after cancer surgery here and tomorrow is the part two of that series.

It’s really been more than a year since I have been able to chew or crunch with success. My upper front gums were very sore and inflamed before we knew it was cancer. See here if you are new and missed that post back in May 2017. So even before Christmas 2016 I was seeking food that was softer.

Onto the now.

I cannot cite my ‘last meal’ because I am writing this pre-Monday. Every day for many months I have had two weetbix and milk for breakfast. Before I discovered I actually did not mind weetbix I was struggling to get something resembling toast down. I no longer try that. I can’t. Yet.

But here are some main/lunch meals I eat now with 8 front lower gum teeth and my strong tongue!

Each of the above requires a lot of time (I used to be a 10 mins and it’s eaten girl) and concentration so I do not overfill my mouth and can swallow with ease.

I always have water near me to help the food go down and for me, a long-time talker at meals, I try not to chat and to get my food down safely. I have been fine to date! I have had to use my ingenuity in this LONG (over 8 months now) post-surgery journey as I miss variety, textures and tastes.

Each of these was borne of my need to have all of those within my limitations.

I am quite proud of these. But will be glad in a few months when chewing and crunching may return!

Here’s two meals I had in the past that I will be looking forward to have again. Simple but nutritious and very comforting!

Now I realised “this” is not a meal. But oh my gosh it is both comforting and delicious and I do not have F.O.M.O. when I treat myself to this!

As I cannot bite into a donut, I break off tiny pieces from the BEST BIT, the edges and place them in my mouth. I leave the middle ….I never liked that much anyway.

I wonder what your last meal was….I must say I have stopped being envious of people who get to eat what I cannot yet as it was not helpful to me or to them.

Eating food we like is such an enjoyable event I would never want to put someone off theirs!

Here’s to eating well!


Joining with Alicia for Open Slather here…and let me say, some of her food pics are wonderful and almost everything is home-grown!

You can link up something old or new, just come on in. * Please add just ONE post each week! * Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not. * Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do! * Check out what others are up to by leaving a comment because we all love our comments, right! * Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere. I don’t have a ‘button’ so a link in text is fine! *Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog and the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. * THANK you for linking up today!

Next Week is the optional prompt’: 12/52.  “Out My Window I See.” 19.3.18.


Taking Stock 1. 9/52. #LifeThisWeek. 2018.19.

Taking Stock 1. 9/52. #LifeThisWeek. 2018.19.

This week, and every 9th week for 2018, has the optional prompt: Taking Stock. Giving credit where it is due to Pip Lincoln here.

I had a quick look to see back how many of these posts I have done in recent years and it comes to six. I am not looking at previous content until I finish. And even then I may not. Life moves on for us doesn’t it? So, on a Saturday afternoon in late Summer in February 2018 here is my Taking Stock.

Making:  great progress in my recovery from cancer surgeries x 3 over 8 months.

Cooking: chocolate cupcakes this week for my husband’s 69th birthday on Tuesday. Side note: this means his last b’day in the 60s. OH.

Drinking: a cup of coffee made by a barista in one of the coffee shops I visit in the area. Sometimes it’s a piccolo latte, other times a latte with double shot. Got to have my hit!

Reading: the Sydney Morning Herald every day. I even had a letter published recently. Go me.

Wanting: not much other than for me and my husband to remain as healthy as we can* see note about about birthdays!!

Looking: at rental houses which have ducted air as our lease is week by week from now but we still have till August to move out.

Playing: a four dots connecting game on the Ipad thanks to a bloggy friend’s recommendation.

Wasting: not much these days at all. Time nor real items.

Sewing: hah! You joke with this prompt! Oh maybe I could praise the excellent needlework of the surgeons for #surgery 3.

Wishing: that I had found the courage to explore more about what the white spot in the gum was even though it was tested and found to be candida in 2015. But hindsight, it is a wonderful thing.

Enjoying: time with my husband as we have both settled into a gentle routine of retirement and it is most pleasant.

Waiting: for a few weeks to pass and then I will be back at Westmead Oral Health for a temporary prosthesis (teeth) in my top gums.

Liking: warm weather but an overnight shower or two is always welcomed.

Wondering: who will be brave enough to finally end the Gun Lobby in U.S.A.

Loving: the updates on Instgram by my friends with little kids. It reminds me so much of the fun we had with our grandchildren back then.

Hoping: a blogging friend going through a serious medical/surgical procedure soon for her Crohns Disease comes through with flying colours.

Marvelling: still…at how the surgeons made my upper mouth from my leg.

Needing: maybe some cooler weather clothes when I am off my #febfast of spending on clothing.

Smelling: aroma of frangipani as soon as I open to back verandah door.

Wearing: a different outfit Every.Single.Day for Outfit of the Day pics on Instagram and loving the challenge of it. Now been going for over 120 days without a repeated outfit.

Following: I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here…via IQ so I can fast forward the messy eating bits but I do like the people (except David Oldfield)

Noticing: that I have a steady mood almost every day and that if I go a bit down, I can pull myself back up with no problem.

Knowing: that it is normal for people to have a range of emotions and I am not alone.

Thinking: that maybe Barnaby Joyce could be a lonely man and father to 5 because the current partner will eventually leave him – based on various media reports about the why they got together.

Feeling: very fortunate to be in the best surgical hands for head and neck cancer with my team led by Professor Jonathan Clark.

Bookmarking: some facebook quotes and articles

Opening: my mouth a lot to…talk, eat, drink and to show the doctors and dentists!

Giggling: at some of the random videos which pop up on facebook. It can be quite the rabbit hole!

Feeling: content.

Do you take stock regularly?

Thanks for reading this blog and commenting too. It’s the comments that make a community!


Joining with Alicia on Mondays for her link up Open Slather.

Life This Week 9/52.

You can link up something old or new, just come on in. * Please add just ONE post each week! * Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not. * Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do! * Check out what others are up to by leaving a comment because we all love our comments, right! * Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere. I don’t have a ‘button’ so a link in text is fine! *Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog and the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. * THANK you for linking up today!

Next Week is the optional prompt’: 10/52.  “SHARE YOUR SNAPS” 5/3/18.


Share Your Snaps.1. #LifeThisWeek 5/52. 2018.9.

Share Your Snaps.1. #LifeThisWeek 5/52. 2018.9.

Welcome to the first week of Share Your Snaps.

Every 5th week, the prompt will be this one and it is open for everyone to share their photos. Of course, if you have a post that is not photo-based you too are welcome as this is a prompt-optional link up!

Late last year I chose to add to the weekly prompts a space for sharing photos as there are no (known to me) photo link ups in Australia any more.

So come on in: share yours!

Mine are from January 2018. Enjoy.

I hope you enjoyed viewing these and have shared YOUR snaps too, this week!


Joining with Alicia here for Open Slather.

Share Your Snaps 1. #LifeThisWeek 5/52. 2018.


Bye to 2017. #LifeThisWeek. 1/52. 2018.1.

Bye to 2017. #LifeThisWeek. 1/52. 2018.1.

It’s New Year’s Day 2018 and for me, I need to move slowly into the new year before I let go of the old as I need to reflect and comment as I do. Some years we are so glad to see the back of, and others we may be holding on for as long as we can. In my case, I am in the middle as far as 2017 is concerned as its lessons taught to me have taken me further than I ever might have gone without those lessons.

Being the teacher and liking things to be done in an orderly fashion, I am going to approach this post month by month. Hold on, here we go.

Oh and it’s long. As usual I have a lot to say and photos to match. Grab a cuppa! Cheers and Happy New Year!


Memories of making a ‘word’ for the year: Kindness and deciding each week to have an intention as a direction in my life started 2017. I had begun the month on  a personal level at high anxiety status, and typically of me, wanted to do more to help myself. The ways in which I chose were not that helpful as I resisted (thanks brain!) strongly and ended up being stuck. Not helpful. In fact, harmful to my emotional health too. My mouth and gums were sore. Often. Visits, under difficulty for me thanks to stress/IBS, were made to my dentist and a periodontist in the hope that my mouth would be better after deep cleaning.


On the blog it was a great start with #LifeThisWeek link up and I was posting quite often each week. Over time, however, I know this was not sustainable and as different events in my personal and family life impacted me, I knew that I needed to self-care moreI completed my first #takingstock and it was replete with more negatives than positives which is a portent to what I was experiencing. Knowledge of a  family crisis impacted my physical and emotional health. I cannot share this news but to someone who feels her emotions it was a big shock to my system. Over the year as it has gone on, my responses to this have eased.

MARCH 2017.

If there is a way to try to explain what I know I was going through emotionally whilst trying to live intellectually then I would. Suffice is to say, that this month, as in the previous ones and back into 2016 I kept trying to discover not only what made me tick but to seek out people who could help me be a better friend to myself. I listened to a lot of people and found their philosophy on life simpleaccept what cannot be changed and that life is suffering. Simple to write but hard for me to practise.

Luckily I had have a very patient listener and teacher, my husband and his words always repeated: stay in the present. And all the while, my IBS was prominent, I could not leave the house for long. I certainly could not visit my father in Sydney. I was in so many ways stuck. Oh. And my mouth hurt. A LOT. So much so that I finally got the dentist to agree to taking my front teeth which were attached to a bridge in April. Before we go there, here is what I wrote about the first 3 months of 2017.

APRIL 2017.

For those who have read my blog and updates you may already realise the significance of what I was able to achieve, despite being fearful and unsure, in April. I had been told way back in January that for me to gain further skills in being able to take my thoughts  and challenge them by actions I would need to do some exposure challenges as I re-framed them. In other words, being dead scared of doing something can be fear-based and have no connection to the reality of the situation but still we can STOP ourselves by thinking the brain is right. By early April my mouth was painful all the time, it smelled and I had troubles even getting to the doctor I had found in 2015 at Wamberal. I knew I needed to do something and bravely I DID.

With the help of my husband who had already found us an amazing GP only 5 minutes from home who began his first consultation with me telling me he could help me with some meds for IBS. Wow. As arranged in March, on 6 April, I was the passenger on valium and some immodium to reassure me I would be OK, in the car when my husband took me to our dentist some 20 minutes away and I bravely (with 2 mini-breaks) had the painful bridge and teeth removed. The healing time took ages but the deed was done. I had done this. I later was able to drive myself to subsequent check-ups….and best of all for my confidence, to see Dad in Sydney. Go me! And I posted this.

MAY 2017.

I started this month with some trepidation about the continued state of growth in my gums so visits to my GP for the last time saw her GASP at the sight of them and promptly order CT and X-rays….and to the dentist the next day in early May for his opinion which was “biopsy asap” and the next day (Friday before Mother’s Day) for that to occur at the oral surgeon’s place on the same day as the scans etc. Phew, I thought the Monday after Mother’s Day when I was told all was clear.

Then… was the phone call no-one wants to take…..the news from the further investigation by the pathology team that squamous cell carcinoma was found in the gums. I have written about that here. From that day it was FULL-ON with trips to Sydney to see the Surgical team at Chris O’Brien Lifehouse and to Westmead to the specialist dentist who would assist in my mouth re-construction over time. To say my exposure therapy was tested is no exaggeration! My GP and my dear husband did all of the supportive things they could but in the end it WAS up to me and through my tears and fears I managed!

JUNE 2017.

After the shock of May’s news, this month was surprisingly quiet but there was always an undertone of tension, anticipation and wonder about what the surgery ahead might mean and my future after cancer. We had visits from our family in Sydney and that was special as we had not seen some of our grandchildren for almost a year. I did find the most amazing support from  my blogging community and facebook friends both met IRL and those not. The outpouring of care for and about me was overwhelming at times but always appreciated.

I took myself out and about when I could knowing there would be few chances for independence once a surgery date was set. I also did some reluctant shopping (because of the reason!) for undies and nighties. I made meals in batches to help me eat once I could again. I went to my GP and psychologist who both told me they believed I was managing my emotional health well. My husband of course, helped me in so many of the not-so-good times. There were a LOT of tears and fears!

JULY 2017.

The month it all happened. I did wonder IF it ever would ….the major surgery I mean as it was a wait of 7 weeks. In the meantime the associate professor was happy to answer my MANY questions via email. This was because in the 2.5 hours consultation and planning for surgery appointment ONE day after learning I had cancer I could not think of anything then as I was processing what on earth it would be like to have this surgery AND to spend time in ICU and have 10-14 days in hospital.

The photos below and captions tell the story of July. Some of it anyway. I did have 11 hours under a anaesthetic and only 3 days in ICU but it took a toll on me mentally so I could not even add comments on IG and I certainly did not blog for two weeks. I wrote here and here for those who did not read the posts then.

AUGUST 2017.

My recovery time at home was mostly unremarkable as they say but that does not mean there were no times of a bit of anxiety as I feared any sign I may not be recovering according to the doctors’ predictions. At the end of July we went back to Chris O’Brien Lifehouse for a post-surgery check up where I learned that whilst my cancer had been found in the jawbone it was the head of the team’s opinion that the cancer was gone and no follow-up treatment such as radiotherapy was needed. This was GOOD news but of course I needed to remember that TIME for healing from this surgery and needing more surgeries for mouth reconstruction were ahead.

My right leg, which was the place that gave my upper mouth bones and flesh needed regular treatment and care by the community nursing service. My leg was sore and it was hard to stand or walk much but I am a determined person and made sure I did what I was told but also had some initiative. Blogging sustained me and gave me connections to the world outside I loved. I blogged about my reflections about having cancer. Here and here. By the end of August my right leg no longer needed the boot and I was able to drive. I would still need covering of the wounds for showering and fewer visits by the nurse into September. Full independence was on the horizon!


This was a GOOD month where my new normal became more aligned with my needs and wants. I had greater independence and by mid-September my leg wounds were so well-healed the community nurse visits stopped. I got the green light to have a shower without covering my leg wounds sometime later. I became completely independent in meeting my meals needs rather than my husband helping out. I made many mini-meals of foods I could eat for the freezer and me! This blog’s Monday link up turned one.

My GP continued to encourage me in my recovery when I had some moments of doubt and needed some professional advice. Needing to face my worries and fears I used my skills in exposure training to drive to Sydney, solo in my red car, in mid-September to see my Dad at Dee Why. He was amazed at my recovery and my appearance did not bother him at all. Maybe this is just me, I think. I had been sending him updates with photos and blog posts too along with chatting regularly. This month was when I returned to the beach to dip my toes in again. Marvellous!!


Moving into this month with the beginning of the 6 months of daylight saving. I don’t mind it but I liked it better when it was for 4 months. I blogged about this and many other topics of course but also slowed down the number of posts per week in keeping with the the fewer numbers of link ups. Enjoyed linking up each week with Kylie Purtell for I Blog On Tuesdays, Leanne from Deep Fried Fruit, Kell from All Mum Said andAlicia from One Mother Hen . The blogging community is a very caring one and I have been delighted to make IRL and on-line friends there!

My link-up will continue in 2018 with each 5 weeks being photography-centred. Had one visit to my professor at Lifehouse for my first 3 month cancer check and to tell me there would be a second surgery in November. Bring it on, I say! Good friends from the last school I worked at visited me for lunch and it was wonderful to see them again.


I had been unwell from the end of October until early November with a nasty flu-like virus that was not the flu. So it kept me quiet and at home as I recovered. I must admit I was not the most patient patient as I had enjoyed my newly regenerated independence. Nevertheless I recovered to visit the specialist dentist in Westmead in preparation for the second surgery and then on 15 November we left home at 6.00 am for me to have day surgery that morning. It went for 2 hours and adjusted the free flap to expose the implants and add some skin from my right thigh into the area as well as abutments to my implants. Whilst I came home on the same day, the new ‘moving things around in my mouth and stitching them in’ hurt more over time and slowed the ways in which I could eat.

I kept myself distracted as much as I could and it was within November & into the next month that found myself again in terms of physical care and outward appearance. I continued to post photos everyday of what I wore and had fun choosing the clothes (and buying some new ones!) and accessories. I no longer saw myself as OLD, FAT and  having CANCER. I saw myself as many others do, through the eyes of pride, love and achievement and it was a game-changer. Turning 68 I donned a dress for the first time in 15 years and we celebrated my birth with a cake I could eat in the company of our eldest granddaughter.


Almost the end of the year as I write and this will be published on the first day of the NEW year. This month has been one for reflection and for me to consider the many changes I have made for myself. I can say it has been on some levels harder than I imagined to deal with my anxiety and IBS but also easier in some ways to manage the news that cancer was found and what I had to do to recover from it. Determined person I am, I have been getting on with life and taking myself out for a coffee each day somewhere different in each week. I am finding I am good at finding bargains in the clothing department. I drove to Sydney to see my Dad and brother and that was good.

I am finally, as I wrote here, admitting all that was challenging me in my life as a fat person. One big event for me was to attend our granddaughter’s 21st in Sydney. Back in January I felt my anxiety was too high for me to manage such a trip, but I did with NO problems and the bonus was seeing each of our 8 grandchildren. I have missed this contact with one side of our family and it made my day to see them. I sure hope we get to do more of this as 2018 unfolds. We had a quiet Christmas Day as we expected. Then our 3 oldest ones visited for morning tea and my specialty of cupcakes were back on the menu.


The depth of love and appreciation I have for my husband of almost 47 years can barely be measured. He has endured calmly as I suffered almost crippling anxiety and fear even though he knew what I could do, I did not believe it for quite some time as I said earlier. His patience is beyond anyone’s I know. He is my best friend, my rock and the most loving person who, despite his discomfort and pain from physical ailments always finds time to help me and encourage me. His strength and wisdom and downright practicality cannot be underestimated in the recovery process for me. Thank you to my husband. Sending all love your way as always. Denyse xxxx P.S. He is my IG photographer for my every day style too! Love him for this especially!!

Well, if you read this far! Thank YOU for your interest and support. It did take me a few days to write and in turn it helped me recognise the significance of 2017 for me. So, the first post for 2018 is up. And the first link up for #lifethisweek is open.

I welcome you and hope that you continue to join in the link up each Monday! It stays open from Monday 5.00 a.m. until Wednesday at 5.00 pm (previously it was Thursday). On or off prompt posts are welcome as are old or new ones. The list for the first 10 weeks is on the home page here.


This post will also be added to Leanne’s Lovin’ Life Linky on Thursday.

#LifeThisWeek. 1/52. 2018.

You can link up something old or new, just come on in. * Please add just ONE post each week! * Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not. * Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do! * Check out what others are up to by leaving a comment because we all love our comments, right! * Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere. I don’t have a ‘button’ so a link in text is fine! *Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog and the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. * THANK you for linking up today!

Next Week’s Optional Prompt: Word or Intention for 2018. 








Today I Will. #LifeThisWeek 48/52. 2017.131.

Today I Will. #LifeThisWeek 48/52. 2017.131.

Today I will.…I wondered what I thought about when I made this prompt! It was a while back so when I re-visited it to write I decided to add in what was current for this week coming AND, by popular request, post my recipe for Lemon Meringue Pie! Oh yes….the first 10 Prompts for #LifeThisWeek 2018.

  • Drive to Sydney’s suburb of Dee Why to see my almost 94 year old father. Dad remains very well and independent and has many friends where he lives, some of whom he tells me are only a few years older than me. Thanks Dad! I cannot believe it but in checking my calendar this year there will have only been 3 trips to see him in total. I got very stressed about driving on M1 relating to my IBS back in the early part of the year and so did not go anywhere near that road. Until I had to. In fact, the first time I had to I wrote about here and it was the start of me overcoming my fears and anxiety with exposure therapy. So, Dad got his first visit for the year from me  in late April 2017. We talk on the phone each week as well. Then my life imploded with the news I had cancer…you can read about that here if you weren’t following the blog back then. The second time I drove down solo to see him was in early September and then my recent planned visit was cancelled as I had a bad virus. So… I go today.

The day I finally went to Sydney for the first time in almost 5 months.

  • Congratulate our daughter on her graduation from Charles Sturt University (Wagga Wagga campus)  with her Masters of Education (Teacher/Librarianship). She has spent more time doing this part-time than she ever imagined when she began the 2 year part-time course and was the Teacher-Librarian in one school until the end of 2014 and then BEGAN a brand-new school’s Library from January 2015. Family and health issues of hers and her grown kids meant she had to take some breaks from Uni (study is on-line) but for her to keep the role she loves in her school the course was to be completed. Today she graduates! We are so very proud of her achievements under difficulty and that next year she is back to school full-time and in charge of the School Library once more! She and her 4 children are attending the Graduation ceremony at Wagga Wagga on Monday at 9.30 a.m. We will be there in spirit!


  • Complete the cupcakes for the 21st Birthday Picnic next weekend for our eldest granddaughter who is 21 just before Christmas. We are so happy to be able to see her for her birthday and we will drive down to the park where it is all happening. This young woman has faced quite a few personal health challenges when she was diagnosed with Crohns Disease but she makes the very most of her life and as you might recall I wrote about her here and she allowed me to add her YouTube. It was an amazing and memorable day when I met you, JR, in the San, on a Monday and there you were..a beautiful little girl who would one day call me “Grandma”.


  • Add the recipe here for lemon meringue pie which has been  synonymous with celebration in my family from when I was a child. Once I learned to make the pie I added the variation of sometimes making it in little tartlet cases. It really IS a simple recipe but you make it to your taste in lemony-ness. I recall requesting it on special occasions and when we had all of our kids/grandkids for a meal back in the ‘living in Sydney’ days, lemon meringue pie would make an appearance. Since my mouth is severely compromised for eating I search for food ideas I can literally eat and swallow and this lemon meringue pie passes! My dad totally loves it too and will have some memories of Mum’s cooking when I take him a container of mini Lemon Meringue pies in January to celebrate his 94th Birthday!

What better way to say “Congratulations” on completing your degree KT…than Lemon Meringue Pie!

  • The Recipe: You will need 2 eggs, separated. One can of condensed milk. 2 lemons. Small amount of castor sugar. A baked pie shell. Can be your own or purchased as I did.

First: Oven should be pre-heated at around 150 degrees. It is just to help the pie ingredients mix and to get a nice brown look on the meringue.


1. Separate the eggs so that you have two yolks and two lots of egg white. I do this one egg at a time into a glass to ensure there is NO yellow in the egg white or it will not whip into meringue. I put both egg whites into a small bowl. Nearby I have my castor sugar ready.

2. Cut and squeeze the juice from two lemons. If you like a really tangy lemon, you may add a bit more juice (from a 3rd lemon) as you taste test the mix. You have to really. Leave juice in juicer. For now!

3. In a separate bowl you place the two egg yolks and the contents of the condensed milk tin. Yummo. You may lick a little bit but not the lid. Ouch. Mix with a spoon to ensure all the egg yolk is combined and add the lemon and keep mixing until it is all together. Taste test to see if ‘lemony’ enough. Leave this for now.

4. Get your electric mixer and beat the heck out of those egg whites and as they begin to combine and go lovely and smooth white, add up to 2 tabs of castor sugar gradually. To know meringue is done, when you lift the beaters, the mix should form peaks.

5. Place the lemon mix in the prepared shell. It all fits in one this size above.

6. With a tablespoon, add some of the meringue to the top of the pie so that edges are covered. It does not have to be neat!

7. Place the pie in the oven  and DO NOT go far. It does not take long for the top to get a nice bit of brown on top and then it can be removed.

8. Eat it in slices when it is warm (mmm) or leave it to cool where it might be easier to slice (mmmm) and ENJOY!!


  • Add the first 10 prompts here for #LifeThisWeek 2018. THANK YOU for joining in #LifeThisWeek in 2016 and 2017 and do come along, when the mood takes you, to join in 2018. Every 5 weeks will be a photo-based post of any type you like. With the loss of many link ups relating to photos, I suggested this on the blog as a place to SHARE YOUR SNAPS and I hope you will! Without further ado: here are the first 10 Weeks of #LifeThisWeek prompts for 2018. 

  • 1/52. “Bye to 2017”. 1/1/18.
  • 2/52. Word or Intention for 2018. 8/1/18.
  • 3/52. Favourite Weather. 15/1/18.
  • 4/52. What is Kindness? 22/1/18.
  • 5/52 SHARE YOUR SNAPS 1. 29/1/18.
  • 6/52. Starting School Stories. 5/2/18.
  • 7/52. Who’s a Worrier? 12/2/18.
  • 8/52. February is… 19/2/18.
  • 9/52. TAKING STOCK 1. 26/2/18
  • 10/52. SHARE YOUR SNAPS 2. 5/3/18.

I will add this list to the Home Page soon.

Next week the last prompt for 2017 is Christmas Plans. Then there will be no #LTW on Christmas Day. First day back on the blog for me will be on Monday 1 January 2018. The prompt is always optional. Link up an old post if you are in holiday mode or not. It would be great to see some links but being New Year’s Day I would understand why there might not be many!!

Thank you for joining in this year. We never got to 52 weeks of the prompts thanks for my cancer surgery but hey, only missing 3 is not a bad innings!!

Take care and I look forward to reading your posts and responding soon!!


I do not know what breaks Alicia or Kell are having but for this last time in 2017 I will link up too. Thanks for sharing your space ladies!


You can link up something old or new, just come on in. * Please add just ONE post each week! * Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not. * Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do! * Check out what others are up to by leaving a comment because we all love our comments, right! * Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere. I don’t have a ‘button’ so a link in text is fine! *Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog and the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. * THANK you for linking up today!





LTW is ONE. #LifeThisWeek. 35/52. 2017.105.

LTW is ONE. #LifeThisWeek. 35/52. 2017.105.

A Little Bit of History.

Kirsty from My Home Truths had a wonderful and friendly link-up called “I Must Confess”. It was fun and popular with readers and bloggers. But somewhere along the road in 2016 Kirsty decided to finish her link up because she was getting fully into her research, writing and presentations  for her passion, Kids with Autism. Sad as it was to see Kirsty “retire the link-up”, I, along with many added their fond farewells to her. I wondered though, in an email to her, what she thought about me doing a Monday link-up after she finished.

Generous soul she is, she said “go for it, and I will tell people about your link-up as mine finishes”. That was exactly what happened 12 months ago. Kirsty and I have known each other for over 5 years and friends from blogging care for and about each other. I decided to name my link up Life This Week as I already wrote in that category each Monday and it was a general enough name for anyone to join in. And just in case anyone wanted some ideas for posting, like Kirsty had done, I added optional prompts. We were good to go on Monday 12 September 2016.

The First Link Up.

I was hoping there would be some bloggers link up for the first week where the prompt was Beginnings. In fact, to my delight 24 bloggers linked up. That is almost a record number. What a thrill it was to see the blogs added and have the people commenting. Great start.

I made it my practice to reply to everyone’s comments on my post first during the day Monday if possible and then, either that evening or the next day, go to the linkers’ posts to comment. Commenting is my currency in blogging and why I blog. I love my blogging connections and value each and every one.

We were off!

How It Has Proceeded.

The numbers of linkers has remained between high teens, into the low twenties with a few low teen numbers. It is the consistency and those who have made it a regular event for them to blog and link that I love. It’s like I get to wake up each Monday and think “oh I wonder who will be there today to have a chat with?”

Each 9 weeks I posted the next 9 optional prompts. The 9th week one is always “Taking Stock”. I have also endeavoured to make the prompts date or time of year specific …more for my brain actually..and bloggers have liked some of these ideas. I guess as bloggers, anything which kick starts a post on some days is a win.

The highest number of blogs which linked up was this year on the week of Valentine’s Day with the prompt “Love.” Some of the lower number to link up appeared closer to holiday times which is understandable.

Where Will The Link Up Go Now?

Right now, I am finding it stimulating to determine what the prompts will be and have already got as many done as there are weeks left in this year! I leave them in draft form for a while and review them before announcing them. They are already on the Home Page and are listed in my post for IBOT tomorrow. I know some bloggers link up without the prompts and this is fine. The only real rules (despite my list!) is one link and it be family friendly. I added this because, ahem, someone added a link one time which was not!

The Link Up will go on into 2018 and I look forward to more connections on-line. I truly love the community of bloggers and those who link up here are extra special because we are getting to know each other. During my recent cancer diagnosis and subsequent surgery it was overwhelmingly apparent to me that I have people who care for and about me and I am truly humbled. Thank you all.

Without any more words…really! Here’s to the First Year of #LifeThisWeek.


I link up on Mondays here with Alicia for Open Slather and here with Kell for Mummy Monday. Join in there too!



My First Car/Bike. #LifeThisWeek 34/52. 2017.103.

My First Car/Bike. #LifeThisWeek 34/52. 2017.103.

I made this prompt My First Bike/Car with an initial thought to write about my first car. Here’s the backstory.

However, I seriously could not find a photo of my first car probably because I did not have it for long. Towards the end of my first year of teaching, newly in love with the man who is my husband, I turned 21. My parents, back in Sydney, were not “quite up to speed” with how quickly our relationship had progressed and when I flew back to Sydney for a family 21st lunch and party with Sydney friends (no B with me!) I was surprised by a 21st gift of a second hand Blue Datsun 1000. OKayyyyyy. It was a part gift and part, ‘you can pay this off back to us’ present and I was delighted to have four wheels to call my own and to drive back to the country. But life, for us, took quite a different turn with our marriage early the next year and living in the bush (real bush!) meant my little car was not exactly road-worthy there nor was my now husband’s so we did a very practical thing and got a bigger car, a Ford Falcon. Not enough space to tell you the stories of us and cars. And I waited for another 10 years, when we were finally city-based for me to get a new car to call my own.

So much for not mentioning the car.

Not even a first bike story…it’s a tricycle.

When I was a little kid, around the age of 6 I was given a BLUE tricycle (not even a bike!) because…well just because I was six and it was cool. My brother could even sit on the back part of the bike and I could give him a ride. I am sure he loved that. Not. At the time this photo of me was taken there was an school fete on and a decorated bike competition. I remember Mum putting fresh flowers in the basket and I can see there are streamers in the spokes. I also notice I only have ONE black patent shoe on. That, my friends, is because earlier in that week barefoot me had trodden on a kid’s garden rake that had been left outside (shall I say, probably by my brother, because I was a perfect child) and I landed on it and the prongs when into my heel. Cue blood and crying but in the end OK but very sore.

I do not know if I won a prize with my bike but I sure do recall being very proud of it. I got my first BIcycle aged 11 once we had moved to Sydney. It was brand new and brown (who picks a brown bike? My parents I guess) and it was cool for 2 years and I rode it up and down the many hills in our Sydney harbourside suburb and then I sold it to my brother for 10 shillings. I was off to High School and a bike was not part of my needs. I also have no idea how long my brother kept the girl’s bike for as I cannot imagine HE pedalled to school on it.

And an ending as a little tribute to Dad. Father’s Day was yesterday. I did send a card and talk to him. Due to my cancer I have not been down to see him in  Sydney for over 4 months but I am feeling well enough to do this next Monday. Looking forward to it.

Here we are: about 66 years difference in the shots. Thanks for being my dad…even if you and I have clashed over the years I am very grateful for your love and care and support.

I look forward to reading your stories about bikes and cars too if you have gone along with the prompt.


Joining with Alicia here for Open Slather and with Kell here for Mummy Mondays.


NEXT WEEK: This link up is ONE.  I have made that the prompt for the week and I will be posting about the community that we have grown here and how it’s been a constant in my life and has helped me very much. If you link up and like the idea of this special prompt use your post to tell us how it’s been for you in this 12 month period to link up. And, of course, THANK you for doing so!


Winter. #LifeThisWeek 29/52. 2017.93.

Winter. #LifeThisWeek 29/52. 2017.93.

Almost 2 months into a southern hemisphere Winter and it’s not been anything much other than mild. For those who live inland from the coast there have been under zero C temperatures and frosts and for those with a high altitude on some of the mountains and hills where snow can fall – in both New South Wales and Victoria – the season of snow has begun.

For those of us (I include many on the east coast of Australia), Winter means much less daylight, some colder days and evenings and at times some wild weather. This Winter, touch wood, we have had little of the wild weather, in fact you could call in mild weather. The southern coast of Australia has had its share of cold and the northern end of Australia is sunny with less humidity. Western Australians have a temperate climate too,

So, as I am still somewhat in the fog that is post-surgery I am adding photos to express my Winter this year!

How has your winter been to date? And to my northern hemisphere readers, what WAS Winter like for you?


Outside temp today: 13.3 and inside 20.5 thanks to air con.

I like the clouds in Winter!

I LOVE how the sky is so beautiful in winter

Sydney scene in Winter

A different day..a different Sydney scene!

No leaves nor frangipanis while it’s Winter

Across the Harbour Bridge on a Winter’s Day.

Clouds get me taking pics every time! Local Beach in Winter.

P.S. This post was written at the end of last week, and this weekend is the last in July. I believe in NSW we have one of the driest Winters on record and by gee I did notice that in our garden when I got home from hospital.

I link up each Monday here: with Alicia at One Mother Hen and with Kell at All Mum Said. Join them too!
Here’s my Monday linky…#lifethisweek 29/52.

You can link up something old or new, just come on in. * Please add just ONE post each week! * Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not. * Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do! * Check out what others are up to by leaving a comment because we all love our comments, right! * Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere. I don’t have a ‘button’ so a link in text is fine! *Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog and the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. * THANK you for linking up today! Next Week: Birth Order.