Sunday Mass with Mother

Queen Mary & Aunty Daarling

Queen Mary and Aunty Darling bless all the apron wearers. Image by Aunty Mod

Our mother goes to mass every Sunday, and twice a year I (Aunty Darling) join her at her local church. You know – just to keep my options open.

Easter and Xmas are the big ones. These masses always go forever and Easter Sunday was no exception (clocked it at 1 and ½ hours). To help the time pass, I do little mediation, breath deeply and enjoy the ambience*.

Mum always gives me coins for the collection plate and I find her the correct page for the hymn. The wood on the pew in front of me was so soft that I could scratch it with my fingernail (tempting), the incense was rather intense (!) and the hallelujahs reverberated beautifully.

Then …  the priest said something interesting that made me prick up my ears and put a halt to my meditation.

He was talking about how the women who discovered Jesus’ body was missing from the cave were not initially believed by their community. It was only after the men went to have a look that the message (that Jesus had arisen) was accepted.

The women were dismissed outright and their message not validated until some blokes said – ‘yep that’s right’. Women had a really rough time in those days. I guess history is called HIStory for a reason. But with the advent (good Easter word) of social media, many women may have found their voice plus a whole new audience.

And they don’t need anyone to validate what they are saying.

God bless social media.


Aunty Darling

*Ambience vs Ambiance


Talking to a machine.

Dad has a stroke

Text yourself into and out of trouble. Note: ‘v b’ = VB = beer

Aunty Verve here:

I’m talking to a machine! Yes, really. Actually it was worse than that! I was texting to a machine!!

So excited about getting my Collingwood membership card I responded to an auto email from my phone! After the ‘fab’ response I even added Go Pies.

Lucky it was rejected and I quickly deleted the message.   Hmnnn ….

Should have taken a lesson from Dad.

Maybe not!

Knitting Season

Every few years I get an overwhelming urge to knit, I wouldn’t necessarily call myself a knitter but I have tackled the odd knitting project. Indeed, one still sits waiting to be finished; it’s all cable and tricky stuff, beautiful Aran wool (bought in Ireland).

Even though the back and sleeves are finished, I can’t bring myself to pick it up because I am scared there is not enough wool to finish the front! Pfft, what’s the rush? It will be genuine vintage by the time it’s done!


A more recent project took several years to complete. For the life of me I cannot figure out HOW I missed the word JACKET in the pattern book, and for the duration thought I was knitting a cardigan.

It looks funny when I put it on… because it’s not a cardigan. It’s a jacket.


Ahh but this year. This year I knit. And, if I’m knitting… first, I must stop biting my nails, which I’ve wanted to do for ages. Bonus, I get something new to wear (or gift to some poor, unsuspecting soul).

My Seven Phases of Knitting:

  • Phase #1: MINDSET; stop biting nails.
  • Phase #2: RESEARCH; peruse lovely knitted things, discover lots of crafty websites for a staggering amount of inspirational items, and free patterns.

Note: Phase #2 can take awhile, which helps enormously with Phase #1. I also remember I have 8 large balls of wool, bought in a sale and tucked into a cupboard. So back to Phase #2: what can I make with the wool on hand?

  • Phase #3: DECISION; I will use re-located wool, and make a wrap. You know, to sort of fling around my shoulders slow motion, glamorous fashion.


  • Phase #4: MATERIALS; purchase new needles.
  • Phase #5: BEGIN; this is it, here we go. I can never wait to see the first few inches, so knit like a woman possessed; fingers aching, eyes stinging… why am I doing this? Stop and check dimensions… arrgghh. Discover if I keep going I will have a square, not a wrap.


  • Phase #6: FRUSTRATION; the only way forward is to unravel it. It happens. Back to Phase #5 BEGIN. Wool is piled up around me on the couch, like a puppy. How can I not love it? Undeterred I start again. It’s looking like a scarf now, not sure I need another… but I can’t stop now.
  • Phase #7: DONE; celebrate. This phase is still quite away off.

Feeling confident now that I’ve pushed through some challenges. You may observe that I am writing a blog, not knitting. But that’s how it goes, and knitting season has only just begun.

I wonder what the other Aunties are knitting this year?

Aunty Beads xxx

Aunty for love.

The other day I was digging about, pretending to spring clean. I found these glorious images drawn by my friend’s little girl. Let’s call the friend Tamara, and let’s call her little girl Davida. The drawings were done when she was five. So she was little then, and she is always likely to be little to me.

Story goes that a few of the girls were visiting Tamara, laughing up a storm, drinking copious cups of tea and downing the odd scone. Tamara is an artist, so paper, pens and paints were in more than adequate supply. Davida decided to create a portrait of each of the girls. She started with her mum of course, a girl’s mum is her mum after all.

mum i love

mum i love by davida (age 5)

Notice the love hearts (hard to miss that many). Tamara was wearing a beret with badges on, and earrings and rings on her fingers. What a joy to see what a little girl notices about her mum.

Bawdie was there too. She got her own portrait.


bawdie by davida (age 5)

Bawdie always had interesting hairdos, bright eyes and shorts, and that’s what Davida saw too. A special love heart too that floats in the air above her.

Aunty Mod was there as well. A portrait to sit or stand for.


erin by davida (age 5)

 Aunty Mod (Erin) stood out with her wide belt, necklace and some weird feathery tiara. A scribble love heart, and glasses front and centre.

And then there was Kaz, always colourful Kaz.


kaz by davida (age 5)

Her flowery shirt, her colours, and love hearts. And I think that might be the artist behind her, looking on appreciatively.

And Fagyn, nibling of The Aunties, and daughter of Aunty Mod, was there too and got so much adoration. There is no greater love than a little girl has for a big little girl.

all you need is love

all you need is love davida fagyn by davida (age 5)

In each portrait the faces all the same size. The eyes are bright. Everyone smiles. Such joy. How warm do you feel looking through the eyes of one who loves you?

All Aunties are created equal. Some of the best Aunties can be found in your immediate circle. And that circle can be made by family, by love, by friendship, by neighbourhood. And occasionally by money, just don’t tell Aunty Lush!

And sometimes it’s important for Aunties to look at themselves through the eyes of nibling (those younger folk in your life that you care about). Love ourselves like they love us. Respect their love.


Aunty Mod

Race Bombing

I am now considered somewhat of a phantom owner in the racing fraternity. I don’t own a horse, nor do I lease one but my friends do and I love going to watch.  It’s perfect – no fees, no trainer stories, no bets (not mandatory ones anyway) and all the fun.

My friends are very generous and get ‘owner’ tickets for me, and ‘happy to oblige’ husband Peter, to accompany them.  Off we go into the Moonee Valley members for drinks, then into the owners pavilion for a bite to eat and to watch the Friday night races in perfect weather.

My horse today is ‘It Is Written’. “He has to win again” I whisper to myself. He won last time we were with him at Moonee Valley and has placed other times we have been present. But Moonee Valley is his.

He has to win. He looks beautiful. He looks fit… I feel the pressure!

The race starts, as it unfolds he is 5th on the rails. Will he get out? Can the jockey steer him on?  With a step to the right and jump to the left he is on his way. He ran on with victory in his eyes. He bobs his head and is pushed out. He puts his head down and presses on again. He makes ground slowly, inch by inch, bob by bob, they hit the line.donna and cup

He WINS!!!!  My beautiful horse… my racing record intact. There were screams of elation, kisses and hugs, shouts and tears from all of us ‘owners’!

I was called straight into the winners circle for presentations and photos. Husband Peter (the punters pal) came running up with arching eyebrows, rolling eyes that said ‘What on earth are you doing in there?’

I smiled and blew a kiss over my shoulder, as I was being whisked away into the racing committee room for celebrations and more photos, this time with the cup, more congratulations than I have ever had in my life.

I love my horse, I love being an owner. Even if I’m not!

Love Aunty Verve

I want a puppy…

I’ve been saying this for years, and no doubt, I’ll be saying it for a few more…but how can one resist?
Just look at some of my favorite furry friends.

Monty who loves yoga

Monty loves yoga

…Gigi, a pretty girl who loves to dress up

pretty gigi

and Lilly, oh don’t be fooled that little sweety is not napping she’s just trying to avoid a walk!

sleepy lilly
However, there is one problem…I don’t like poo, or more specifically, picking it up! Many moons ago, when I was doing a Nanny stint in London, I looked after Sophie (aged 9) who’s little dog (Pepsi) loved a walk. Anyway Pepsi did seem to have some bowel issues…needless to say Sophie and I had many robust conversations about who was picking it up!

Maybe I should get a fish, just to start off with?

Love Aunty Beads

Creating my own moments.

Aunty Darling here. I am at the local outdoor pool at the ungodly* hour of 8.00am. Thanks to the pool’s digital display of time and temperature, I know it is 9 oC but I do believe the wind chill factor has taken it down to -5 oC.

My only company are two fat ducks.

Two Fat Ducks

I’m in training you see for the Lorne Pier to Pub. Aka the P2P, 1.2 km swim that is held at the coastal town of Lorne early January. Another Aunty has thrown her cap into the water. Thank you Aunty Verve for your company in this madness.

verve and darling startBeing a Virgo and an Aunty, I do like to be prepared. Hence the training 3 months out. I figure, if I can swim non stop for 45 minutes in the pool then surely I can make the 25 minute/1.2km swim with 30 minutes up my sleeve. This will hold me in good stead, just in case I get washed out to sea and it takes the lifeguard 15 minutes to spot me. Mind you the wetsuit holds me up like a cork. Couldn’t dunk me if you tried.

colleen at lorne

So, why do the P2P swim? I guess, I’m looking to shake myself out of my middle class/middle age/middle ugh comfort zone. I am not a strong swimmer and the ocean waves scare me witless. The bottom is a long way down and the swell is not so swell. Overall, I have to admit –  in the ocean I swim a little freaked out.

However, I am envisioning the end of the swim – the run up the beach and the beer at the pub! I know I’m going to feel like superwoman. It’s a great feeling and one that I’m happy to chase.

I am creating myself a moment!


Aunty Darling

ungodly* Okay, 8.00am is not so ungodly, but would you agree if you knew it was my day off?




Mum Sayings

"I wonder what the poor people are doing?"
"Did you see anyone you liked better than yourself?"
"I've had that new coat forever."
"Go on, you deserve it."

Yummy Aunties…

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