Tag Archives: family

Not forgetting

My mother in law is a collector.

Mismatched crockery, linen, crystal, small pieces of rope tied together to make a longer length…


Fifty percent annoying, fifty percent admirable.



She’s from that practical generation.

The generation that understands hard work and knows what it’s like to save and wait for every possession.

The generation with an innate sense of frugality and of worth.



A strange item that my mother in law keeps has morphed, over the years, into a rather odd collection.


Remembrance cards – the little memorial keepsakes that are handed out at funerals.

She has hundreds but displays just a handful – they’re taped to the inside walls of a glass-fronted cabinet, in her kitchen.






Greek immigrants to Australia formed solid bonds in those early years and together they built strong communities.  Growing up, we have always known elderly Greeks – we’d call them θεία and θείο, Aunt and Uncle, an extension of the family.  As the years passed on, they did too – I’ve often accompanied my parents to funeral services. I have a distinct and early memory of hugging my mother’s leg at a burial, my child’s mind silently questioning why the coffin was going downwards, when heaven was clearly up.



More often than not, the local Greek newspapers have entire pages devoted to death and memorial notices – quarter page photographs with a biography detailing the village in which they were born, their work in Australia and the names of their partner and children. It’s a rite of passage in the Greek community, it is customary to attend the funeral of someone you knew.  Our religion is dutiful in its commemoration of the dead and so is our culture.




Koliva is a symbolic wheat recipe that is blessed and served at memorial services.



My mother in law’s remembrance cards are an offbeat assortment of the dead.  The photographs on some of her little cards are of young people, others are middle-aged but most are elderly.  They are relatives, friends, acquaintances, neighbours and compatriots.

People she knew, lived with and loved.


She looks in this cabinet every morning as she takes her pills and countless times throughout the day, her gaze drift through the glass door.


A steadfast reminder of mortality, the brevity of our existence and the importance of all we are left with – our memories.





I learnt from my mother in law to keep remembrance cards.  They’re in my wardrobe, in a little cardboard box.  With each passing I attend, I add to my collection.  To me, they are primary evidence I can one day show my children – each card reperesents a life and each life has a moral to its story.


There were people before us. 

People who led rich, abundant lives. 

Some were sick, others were killed and some just grew old.

Value the people in your community and you too, will be valued.



The other day, I jovially asked my mother in law why she keeps all those cards.

She hesitated, let out an uncomfortable laugh and then said that she just can’t throw them away.


Neither can I.



I have never lost someone exceptionally close to me but I wonder, if that time comes, will I tape their remembrance card to my kitchen cupboard?  Will someone tape mine to theirs?


Do you keep mementos?  How do you, not forget?



Robo X


Linking up with Miss Jess and #IBOT

Yesterday’s Virgin

So 2014 started with a literal bang.

Here’s my list of bangin’ events, so far.




Illegal fireworks organised by some fellow campers at inland NSW.  On the way back from the short bushwalk to said fireworks, I lost my camera flash.

Karma.  Participation in illegal activities.




Upon returning home to Sydney I was hit with news that I would be hosting a family function.

Fifteen people, ten kidlets, one day’s notice.

Fun.  And a great excuse to speed clean the house.




The night before this function, the impossible had to happen.  I innocently killed a couple of stray ants that I found in my front room with a little fly spray.

Upon returning to the front room twenty minutes later, I found an absolute gold mine of ants.  Tablespoons full of ants.  Some dead, some dying and others trying to get the fuck out to safe ground…

It was apocalyptic.

Too apocalyptic for the month of Jan.




Today, the day after the big family event, I realised that I have a serious case of silverfish.  Six t-shirts ruined with tiny weird looking holes.  My friend, Google says I’m fucked and need to head to Bunnings.  Stat.

But that’s a job for tomorrow.



So how’s your New Year?

I hope it’s awesome coz mine is a bit on the ‘how’re you going’ side…






And as for the title of this blog post.  When I googled silverfish, this book cover popped up.

What a byline…  I think this protagonist, too, has encountered a few silverfish.



 Happy 2014!

Hope it rocks!




Robo X

Sunday Night

Watching an aimless movie, sitting on the lounge.

Only a few things I need to do to get by for the week ahead.


Kitchen’s messy, but manageable and clothes were sorted, earlier in the day when energy levels were high.  Now, I get up every 30 or 40 minutes to unload and reload the machine. When I refill my water bottle, I time it to the advertisements and spend five minutes in the kitchen, washing, wiping or packing,



I love my weekends, especially if they are productive in the garden or the house.

But this is my usual Sunday night.

The energy stores are reduced by the week and finally expended on Saturday’s commitments.



But Sundays are for family, the home.

The energy stores replenish for the week on Sundays. We see friends, build Lego, play dolls and get out.  Man and I talk on Sundays, have a drink together and plan for the next weekend.



But this is my usual Sunday night.

I wonder what you get up to on yours?



Have a wonderful week.





Robo X

Australian Idiot

No old favourite for me, so I’m linking up a new fave over at The VI Blog

The Lounge Logo

Don’t wanna be an American Idiot.

One nation controlled by the media.

Information age of hysteria.

It’s calling out to idiot America.

Green Day

Skype.  Facebook.



#morningrun  #dinner  #goingtosleepnow  #sweetdreams



Green Day were right.  It’s becoming too much.


These days, when I type, I find myself going back to correct spelling because words often runinto eachother.  Like that.  Like a web address, or a hash tag.

I’ve coined my own term for editing: “Going back to do a space bar run”.

It’s embarrassing.



I love media.  But I’m a bit over all this online business.

I’m over knowing everyone’s business, all the time.

I’m over being accessible. All the time.



I’m processing so much information that I’ve lost track of it.

I don’t even know what I know anymore.

I’ve stopped asking questions because I’m receiving so many answers.

I’m speaking but at times I’m not certain it’s me who is thinking.



Technology is exhausting.



I sit next to my husband at night but we’re both immersed in a little screen.

I take a screen when sitting outside with the kids.

I feed my kids while they’re watching a screen.

And I interrupt special moments by picking up a screen.

I want to start closing some screens.



I don’t want this to be my normal.  It never used to be.

Inspire me please, with ways to realistically manage the household internet.



Robo X