Monthly Archives: January 2016

Writer wins 2016 Award

Mordialloc Writer, Mairi Neil, wins the Kingston Australia Day 2016 Citizen of the Year Award.

program mairi

At 7.30am on arrival at the Moorabbin Town Hall for the Australia Day 2016 Awards celebratory breakfast we were greeted by members of the Kingston Council, music by the Mordialloc Jazz band, laughter and a hubbub of chatter from over 300 guests .

crowd lisa

Lisa Hill of ANZlitlovers wordpress blogging fame is an amazing woman who took the time and trouble to nominate her friend and colleague, Mairi Neil for the main award. Lisa’s blog is for lovers of Australian and New Zealand literary fiction and she is an ambassador for Australian literature. Click the link above to visit her site. You will be delighted with the book reviews featured there.

3 girls

Many people feel that Australia Day could be celebrated on another day that doesn’t focus on the arrival of white people to this country, but that is a different debate. This Australia day ceremony was about  celebrating the many groups and individuals who willingly give of their time and energy over many years to make the City of Kingston a great place to live.

It is a long time since I have seen a Wurlitzer Theatre Organ rising  out of the depths and I was delighted to listen to it accompany amazing young voices when Scott Harrison, Leea Nanos and Will Atkinson sang iconic Australian songs. The morning began with the Welcome to Country by Kingston Mayor, Tasmin Bearsley and flag raising ceremony followed by  Advance Australia Fair , I am Australian and later, that rollicking popular song,  Waltzing Matilda.


New Australian citizens were sworn in and were given a native plant to commemorate the occasion. The award ceremony began with the 4th Mordialloc Sea Scouts winning the Young Community Group of the Year. This was followed by the Young Citizen of the Year, Jenner Shea.  Then the  Outstanding Citizen of the Year, Greg McMahn, principle of Parkdale Secondary College and the Community Group of the Year awards went to Beach Patrol Australia, Kingston group. At last it was time for the main Kingston Council Australia Day Citizen of the Year Award to be announced.

I rose and aimed my iphone camera, all set to record a video, when the battery died and the iphone closed down. Dimity Pollard of the Chelsea Red Cross Unit came to my rescue and took the following photo with her trusty digital camera of Mairi with Mayor Tasmin Bearsley

City of Kingston Citizen of the Year

Mairi’s list of achievements spans over twenty years of unstinting service to the community and includes producing annual anthologies for the Mordialloc Writers Group, the last one titled Kingston our city. She teaches writing at many Neighbourhood Houses. The list of her involvement in community projects is endless and it is wonderful to see her selfless passion to support all writers and their writing be rewarded.

Congratulations, Mairi


Lights, Music, Laughter…

It’s time. Time to put away the decorations and to pack up the myriad of lights decorating the house to celebrate Christmas and the New Year.

lovely house

Time for the boat to go back onto it’s floating dock after many a trip around the salt water canals to see the myriad of Christmas lights reflected in the water.


It is now 2016. Time to get cracking and to gear up for the coming year. Resolutions? I have heaps. Will I keep them? I’ll just have to wait and see. Fingers crossed that I do. I’ll let you know if my manuscript becomes a book, manage to learn more about blogging or ‘do something’ with all the articles I’ve written over the years. And that’s just on writing without even starting on personal resolutions. But I have my list…always a list .

A friend posted this graph on Facebook. It’s so true I wanted to share it with you. Next week we are going to the Gold Coast to visit family. Guess what I’m trying to do. I’m trying to get everything done before we go. Festive lights packed, labeled and up in the garage roof. Garden weeded, house cleaned, refrigerator sorted etc. etc. and trying to sort out my emails. I do all this with the ipod up load playing inspirational music…Chariots of fire, YMCA, I will survive…anything to keep me going

vacation graph

But before we go there is a very special family occasion. Ainslie and Ty are getting married in Sherbrooke Forest in Victoria. They are a gorgeous young couple and Ainslie is so beautiful that if she wore a material bag she would look fabulous.  My outfit is hanging in the spare bedroom ready for this special day. There is nothing like a wedding to bring families close together and yet it is also tinged with sadness. A mother and father fare-welling their daughter. Siblings realizing that family dynamics change. But the overriding emotions are love, joy and happiness. May Ainslie and Ty have a long, happy life together filled with joy.



May the road rise to meet you
May the wind be always at your back
May the sun shine warm upon your face
The rains fall soft upon your fields
And until we meet again
May God hold you in the palm of his hand