Regret, Experience and Donuts.

Now that’s what I call an easy title! I can do all those words in one sentence.

Here it is:-donut

“I ate the donut, enjoyed the experience, but regretted it immediately!

The old saying came to mind as soon as the sweet cake was eaten. “Once on the lips, forever on the hips”.

But it isn’t as easy as that.

We have been brainwashed into believing the body should be slim, taut and terrific. Just eat only healthy, organic produce, keep your calorie intake low and exercise in the gym until you faint! Well, maybe not quite as extreme as that, but we are shown examples of models and gym junkies as the ‘perfect’ body, whether you are 12 or 85! modl

This line of thinking has caused more trouble than it’s worth. Of course you should eat sensibly, and not be taken in by fast food advertising. But on the other hand, a donut or some chocolate or a hamburger occasionally doesn’t really count.

If those were the only food you ate, day in day out – well that’s another story!

But to be honest, the picture of the perfect model body and the extremes that those people go to, just isn’t realistic!

Just exactly what is ‘healthy’ food? What a difficult question.

Give me your thoughts on the matter, please.

If you live in Alaska, or India, or Turkey, or France – in fact in any place on Earth, your answer would, no doubt, be different to my ideas.

Each country has its own cuisine – and some of those foods are fantastic. I adore chicken stir-fry with fried or steamed rice (Chinese)chick, I love spaghetti a la marinara with parmesan (Italy)spag

and I would go out of my way to find a beautiful lamb and apricot tagine (Turkey).


The common thread in all those dishes is there is a little protein (meat or fish), lovely fresh vegetables and great cooking.

and I guess one of the important matters is life is to ENJOY what you have, not always striving towards the impossible. I know it is important to dream of bigger and better things, but take one step, one day at a time. don’t reach for the unattainable – take little chunks towards your ideal and – and be gentle on yourself.

With Kindness


P.S. – don’t forget the children in your life – whether they be yours, your grandchildren, nephews or nieces, or just friends. How about you donate books to your local primary school, kindergarten or library. Here’s one you might like (available through Amazon or me – at

Candy Cow Front

Candy Cow nearly eats a caterpillar, but the caterpillar teaches the cow instead. What is his message?


Reminders, Emails and Doilies.

I really must go through my emails and clean out all the junk mail.garbage

Do you do that? How often have you thought that a particular site looked interesting, only to end up getting content that no longer interests you?

I have loved some blogs, but they are all in the northern hemisphere, and the reminders to plant seedlings, cook lovely warming stews and patterns for thick sweaters that come in your winter while I am sweltering in our summer here in Australia, can be somewhat of a  nuisance. When I want those articles, then winter is with us here, and you are all enjoying the lazy days of summer. Grrrr!!!!

In fact, how often do you read all your emails? Do you get annoyed as well?

What about the people who sell products – from expensive courses on how to make money (that’s a clever little idea if ever there was one!) to people selling every thing imaginable – from doilies to dogs, flowers to fairy gardens, toys to  tanning lotion and more. ‘I find ‘how to do’ articles often helpful. What about you?

But there remains a conundrum. How do you let people know what you have to sell? Can you let me know the secret? In order to let people know what I do, I’m advised to get an extensive email list! I can’t figure out how to win.

So this is my product -: the books I have written. And this is only a sample!


Exif_JPEG_PICTUREHaha – did you know I was leading to this?

I love writing! I continue to churn out books, whether they be picture books for children, chapter books for middle school kids, garden guides for my semi-tropical area or adult novels (under a pen-name so the children don’t decide to read it!).

I write because I want to keep my brain active.

I write because I love to educate.

I write because I just love it, and I love the challenge of publishing my own work. If it sells – Yay! But if it doesn’t, that’s not a problem either.

Giving away books is a trap I don’t want to fall into – that only demeans me and all the work I do writing, designing and publishing my books. If you want to read a great article on that very topic, I suggest going to Paul Whites blog :-

As a reader, though, I love the idea of getting free books – but surely that is what libraries are for? In my opinion, anlibrary-book-shelfy-one offering free books should first buy the book. But, it doesn’t seem to work that way. We, as authors, always dream of making a living from our writing, but it doesn’t happen often. Giving away books will not help in that regard. Even though others don’t realize it, authors  (as well as artists, and any creative person) put in a lot of work, sweat and their heart to create a book. To pay yourself for the time and effort is just not possible.I guess we have to be in the right place at the right time – more luck than management!

Anyway, while you are sitting at your computer, conjuring up the next ‘Harry Potter’ type franchise, divert yourself with a nice healthy snack. No – I’m not talking lettuce sandwiches on cucumber slices but these delicious little bites of bliss!

(with thanks to Coles Free magazine, January 2018) – these are mouth-watering!)img225a

And while you sit and dream of greatness, remember – the joy of writing has its own rewards – and tomorrow maybe the day you are ‘discovered’!

With kindness.

P.S. Even frogs dream!

‘Frank Frog Feels Foolish’ is one of the picture books for children in my ‘Alphabet Animals of Australia’ series. Feel free to email me ( ) for your copy.


R.eckless E.xercise and D.oh.

Strange title, you must admit. How an earth are those three words connected?

One of the problems I have with exercise is my age. I don’t want to go and do something as reckless as expecting to run a marathon, lift 60kgs of weight or pull tyres around on my back until I have a heart attack. I can hear everyone saying – of course you don’t – and you don’t have to. But if you check out all the u-tube work outs, the advertising on the TV (and the programs that drive overweight  people into exhausting  routines as if that is the only way to achieve their goals) and the trainers at the gym that push you to limits that they think you can achieve -( ‘go one – just one more, just one more’) you find that they are all young, healthy people who have been exercising since they were knee high to grasshoppers.


My gorgeous daughter and her husband.

My daughter is a case in point.

Well, OK – she didn’t start on the exercise treadmill until she was in her mid-twenties, but, hey, that is a baby in age compared to me. (She is now ten years further on, and still gorgeous!) But, at nearly seventy, I want gentle exercise, preferably to music, and not obviously exercise. In other words, movement to keep me healthy and active that I can still enjoy! As Homer Simpson would say – “Doh! So would everyone else!!!”

I’ve just come in to the computer from cleaning out the cow shed – I guess that could be classified as exercise, but not particularly enjoyable.

Shani the jersey cow

One of my previous milking cows.

As a music teacher, Doh represents the beginning of a scale, or base note of a particular key. If you’ve seen ‘The Sound of Music’ (and who hasn’t?) Julie Andrews sings the scale by using doh, re, me, fah, soh, la, te and that brings us back to doh! That is the main scale used in the formation of music – and it’s called the ‘major’ key.

I love music, and I guess one of the best type exercises for my age group would be to dance. Not ‘break-dancing’, not ‘belly-dancing’, not fast and furious stuff, just the gentle ballroom dancing that is perhaps now considered a little old-fashioned.

Hear the beat!

Those feet were made for dancin’!

It has several things in its favour.

  • You are keeping active but it’s not a reckless or dangerous activity.
  • You are getting out of the house, and maybe out of your comfort zone.
  • You are not sitting watching TV.
  • You are socializing and meeting new people.
  • And last but not least, you are challenging your body and mind – keeping you young at heart and fit at the same time.

Seems a win-win situation to me.

One of my children’s picture books that show music as a great hobby, past-time or career. I have several other books for sale – look here :-

link to book:-

BenfrontAnyone interested in trying out ballroom dancing and you are in my area, here is some information that you might like to follow up. You should be in the Greater Taree area of New South Wales, Australia.


John Tiley’s flyer for the Manning Area, N.S.W. Australia