Friday, March 23, 2007


Photo by John Mitchell
And the LORD shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.
Isaiah 58:11 / KJV

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Ode to an Opp Shop 3

Isn't it delightful.
And Miss Eagle has an idea.
Does anyone out there in the blogosphere want to come to play?
Miss Eagle is suggesting a day - a Saturday or a Sunday - in Upper Gully.
There is the PWP Opp Shop which opens Saturday and Sunday.
There are the Upper Ferntree Gully Markets open Saturday and Sunday.
We could lunch at the Royal Hotel.
Or we could drive ten minutes up into the Dandenongs to Sassafras.
We could browse the tea leaves and the tea pots at Tea Leaves.
We could lunch at Ripe.
Miss E thinks this could be a planning day for a major blogshopping onslaught on Opp Shops. Gina from Patra's Other Place has THE BOOK.
She knows where seams of gold are to be mined.
Perhaps Leanne from Pear Tree Cottage could be prevailed upon to notch up a mile or three to Melbourne.
Word has it that Sharon from Beyond the Blank Page might be showing some interest.
Sharon has not forgotten that she wasn't able to join Gina and Miss Eagle on their marvellous day last year.
So, dear Reader, have a thunk!
If you think you could stand the strain of a day in Upper Gully, if you could get your head around planning a blogshopping event please drop me a line off the sidebar.
Miss Eagle expects to hear from you soon!

Ode to an Opp Shop 2

Here are more photos of the Parents Without Partners Opp Shop at beautiful Upper Ferntree Gully. What can one say - I just marvel at it.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Ode to an Opp Shop 1

Parents Without Partners operate an Opp Shop at Upper Ferntree Gully. Last year, the shop front became a giant canvas/workspace as Work for the Dole participants in Knox City executed a wonderful mural entitled "Jungle Rhapsody". The work is huge and gorgeous. Miss Eagle doesn't know how long it took to paint, or how many people were involved but she does know it took quite a while to photograph it.

Monday, March 19, 2007

The family that tables together.......

Throughout history, humans have tabled together to break bread.

The simple ritual of the shared meal reunites us with our families and brings balance to our lives.

These words are taken from the review of Art Smith's book, Back to the Table: The Reunion of Food and Family. Art is Oprah's personal chef.

Counterbalance this with the views of Australian educationists that more children than ever are present at school with language difficulties. And what do they think is to blame:

"Families aren't sitting around the dinner table any more every night talking about what's happened during the day and engaging with the children," Ms Trimper said.
"Children are sitting in front of televisions more and computers playing computer games. It's dinner in front of the television, video games after dinner, or parents both working and time poor — all those issues have to impact on children."

Back in 2005, Miss Eagle recalls hearing or reading that Kathy Letts, that well-known expatriate Australian, had rid her London house of the dining room table so that the room could become a home theatre. Miss E was horrified. Letts was reported as saying that, if the family wanted to eat together, they went out to eat. More horror!

What about privacy - what if something unforeseen invaded mealtime: argument and debate, outrageous laughter and hysteria, practical jokes. All of these Miss E knows can arise at family meal time and a good thing too. But what happens in a restaurant or some public eating place: a child’s terror of having to behave?

The failure to table together as a family shows no respect: no respect for the food, where it came from, the person who prepared it. It shows no respect for ourselves and what connects us to life and to each other. And now the kids are paying the price at that most basic form of human connection, language.

In Britain, there is now a movement called Back to the Table - because Mealtime is Realtime they say. There are some big names swinging behind the campaign - including celebrity chef, Gordon Ramsay.

Miss Eagle would love to hear from you, dear Reader, on this subject: your projects involving food and kids; kids recipes; fun meal time stories etc. If you want to email me to include your contributions as a post complete with pictures, all the better. If you really have something to say about families, food, and connection you might also like to guest on Food from Oz. Please email me.

Lets put fun, families, and people into meals. Let's get rid of the pit stop mentality where food is just a refuelling of whatever is handy. Let's take time to think about our food, how it is produced, where it comes from. Then let's take time with its preparation. And above all, let's take time for one another.