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Finally, the time came for us to fly away in an aeroplane! This trip to Queensland was cancelled twice due to covid and now we have made it to the sunshine state. I am so glad I am here in the Spring, with the temperature in the mid-20s, it is so hot and humid. H is suffering from wearing the pressure garments as the fabric does not breathe too well. Well, at least it prepares her for summer in Melbourne and staying up in her room in the shade. It seems like the longest weekend so far, as we only arrived on Friday as we are in holiday mode and sharing a bungalow with two teens it seems the time has just slowed right down. I still have to be motivated to study as well, which can be pretty easy with no distractions from crappy free-to-air TV.

We spent time with the family yesterday and today my son met a friend who lives locally and we went out to a Tex Mex joint for lunch – Cactus Jacks. As we are wandering around, I have been admiring the amazing spring gardens here as anything can grow in this sunny weather. My mum’s garden is flourishing with lavender and a rare-looking monstera. Plus, I am loving the warm change of weather and seeing the sun every day with the wonderful bird sounds in the morning. The nighttime has plenty of scary sounds, so I did some research and they are just possums and bats fighting in the darkness.

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The last couple of makeup days for placement were done and I received a lovely report from my mentor teacher. It is good to have it completed!

The good thing that happened at our house on Thursday and Friday was that H is going to be featured in the Christmas Campaign for the Royal Children’s Hospital. We had a film crew who recorded video and also a photographer and graphic designer to do the photo shoot with a massive fake Xmas tree. It is made for the donors of the hospital and will be on their social media channels and other marketing collateral. H was amazing all the way through and she spoke during the interview perfectly! I am so looking forward to what they create and produce.

Now it is the school holidays and we enjoyed a taco dinner with our good friends and had a lovely celebration with some champagne. I still need to complete two assignments so I am stuck to my computer for a little while until I catch up with all my work! Nearly there…

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What can I say about the last month, except that it has flown by in a blur of madness, sadness, craziness and stress! I have made it through to the end of my final early childhood placement!! Congratulations to me for getting through it and thoroughly enjoying it! The children were amazing and so fun to work with. I have to say that I really loved planning the experiences for the program as it was spring and the children love the outdoors so I created many opportunities to learn about life in the garden and the importance of earthworms. The children really enjoyed their time planting, so I created an opportunity for guerilla gardening by making seed balls from clay! They really enjoyed the process of making a plate (of clay) and then putting the seeds on the plate covering it with soil and rolling it into a ball. I do hope some of these seeds sprout and bring great joy with lots of flowers for the families.

I am thankful for the amazing team of educators I worked with who captured pictures of me in action with the children, it shows me the many opportunities I had with the children to connect to their world ❤️ Teaching is a tough gig but it provides memories to children that they can take with them for the rest of their lives and is something that all educators remember daily as we interact with the young people of tomorrow.

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With the bullshit still present in my life from some arsehole causing hell in a good family, I had to carry on and get through this week. The trial was doomed and designed to be in favour of the prosecutor, so it made me so angry and upset I am still dealing with the 7 stages of grief. It is pathetic that the people who caused this injustice need to be the ones meant to suffer, not us! Again, this is not my fight – I just need to support my mum and family members through his shitshow of hell. Yes, I do believe in karmic justice and those who have shat on us shall receive their punishments 7x worse.

The patterns above are demonstration pieces for a spray painting pattern activity with 3 to 5-year-old children. I have been creating nature-themed lessons with the children in the lead-up to my final week with the garden and planting in the veggie patch in the yard. The children enjoy outside time and it is important for them to learn to care for their environment, so this week I have a chicken (puppet) accompanying me to teach the class about seeds and plants. Also, I have had to prepare for a week of name recognition activities.

Also, I have to say I am thankful for hypnosis with my float this weekend as I really needed something to calm my soul from this crazy world we inhabit. Not long to go until the holidays and the countdown is on to get back to my normal schedule with less work!!

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What a stressful week with my placement and jotting down how I can go about my planning for the last 2 weeks. In between full-time work I have had to be a witness against my uncle in a bullshit court case. I had to take one full day off and the idiots at the court did not need me then they said they needed me the next day and I said I was off to work, give me 30 mins to get home if you need me. Then they did and it was terrifying, I felt like a criminal being interviewed by a prosecutor for sending an email to my sister to notify her that my father was dying. The prosecutor was a bitch, I imagine you have to be if you take it upon yourself to be that role in society. The jury was not there when I was cross-examined, so they needed me again on Friday to do the same thing and get asked the same questions from an email I sent 3 years ago – how the hell can I remember the context of the email?? They were just wanting fuel for the massive bonfire they were roasting my uncle with. Plus, why would I want to incriminate my uncle who has been nothing but kind to me my whole life? We live in a fucked up world and all I can say is this is a bloody injustice. I seriously dislike the Queensland injustice system.

Lucky, I had organised to hang out with my friend over the weekend and see Bangarra Dance Theatre – which was amazing! Then we went out for a drink by the Yarra and organised when we would see each other again. I was happy then as I thought my uncle’s defence team had cast doubt in the mind of the jury, but no it was all a farce because if the Queen is after you – there is no chance, it is doomed from the beginning. Anyway, it is over now and I am relieved I don’t have that anxiety of thinking about what will happen anymore!

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This picture shares with you what my week has been like! It was a whirlwind with long days, working every day and I was so tired. On top of all the learning and observing at my placement, I managed to get a cold from the “germs on legs”. I think it was a mix of exposure to new germs, as well as being outside in the cold weather. I ended up staying home on Friday, so I could rest. I spent the whole weekend inside, staying warm as I have to stay well for the next 3 weeks!!

There has been so much to do plus gathering evidence for my portfolio, so this weekend I made sure that I am feeling organised and will gather only things necessary so I can take over the teaching role for the last 2 weeks. I need to tick a lot of boxes for all of the Australian Standards for Teachers for the assignment and the report. I have a 10-day interim report at the end of this week, so that is something to check in on and then go for it for the last two weeks. I have to say I am enjoying the change of environment and the children are just lovely. I forgot how fun it is to teach 4-year-olds – so full of wonder and excitement.

I have been on my computer most of the weekend, gathering my information to go through my planning with my mentor teacher this week. There is some fun stuff planned and I also found this incredible resource for engaging children in STEM, so I am hoping that I can give it a go for the placement. Better get some relaxation time, before this week sets in!

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I am writing this on the evening of the first day of my Early Childhood placement and I am so tired and looking forward to a cuppa very soon!

Last week in celebration of handing completing my 3000-word report we went on a family night out to the Heide Museum of Modern art to see the Bruce Munro exhibition. We saw his work in Saratoga just before we left California in 2018 and I was very excited to see it here in Australia and just a short drive away from our house! Hope my pictures share the fun we had out that evening with so many cockatoos and you can even see a couple of lorikeets nesting in their tree, by the Yarra River, for the evening. It was so good to see my art and be back in nature.

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A very quiet week, as I had to focus on preparing my draft for my Uni report of 2800 words. A solo report with that word count is quite a big job, so that was my goal for last week.

H is still on task with her weekly school work and keeping up with her physio and OT exercises. We hardly see her anymore as she spends most of her time in her room with her computer. Hey, she is 14 and a teenager after all!

Why I needed to be so organised with my Uni work is because I have my last early childhood placement coming up in two weeks. I made a visit to them on Monday and met the children, who are such a great bunch! I am looking forward to some learning both from the children, my mentor teacher and the educators I will be working with.

I also started my Transcendental Meditation (TM) training over the weekend and all I can say is thank goodness I have stumbled across it at this time in my life! I have only been practising meditation for the last 4 days and it has been an incredible experience with deep sleep and spending my time doing purposeful things. I am so looking forward to seeing what manifests from this life-changing practice ❤️ It is really something that I needed after such a life-altering start to the year!

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We started our week with a visit to the hospital and it was a good one as it was with our amazing OT who said everything is going well and to keep up what H is doing plus she got some new pressure gloves. The important this is to be patient, as healing of the skin takes time.

The rest of the week was a bit of fun with celebrating with a friend and seeing the Elvis film one evening on a cheap Tuesday at $12 for the cinema – what a bargain! During the day was planning my report assignment and Uni work. The weekend was a bit of fun with Woolapalooza and I got some awesome tips for making pom poms and found some wonderful local yarn producers and creators such as Knitato, Melbourne City Dye works, Autistic Professor – selling patterns and yarn, The Studio Workshops and Yarn Industries who sold embroidery kits and super cool teeny tiny embroidered pins for your winter coat (plus it would make great gifts!).

The artwork above is from the State Library with the houses hanging as a mural and the kangaroo skin is a map in the Handmade Universe exhibition which was wonderful as it spoke to me with all its crafting goodness!