Art, artists, Australia, Benchmarking, birds, Birdwatching, Books & Writing, business planning, Business Strategy, creativity, goal-setting, leadership, life balance, Photography, Strategic Planning, Victoria, Women, Women in Business, writer in transit, writing, writers, writers in residence, Writers

Change is good

Mono Negative

Keeping one’s blog up-to-date is important and the same is true with the associated website! I felt mine needed a good refresh so I’ve implemented an upgrade and reorganised my site. I’d love to hear your feedback. If you think it’s better than before let me know.

As I’m not so active on Facebook I’ve moved my bird photos onto this site and you’ll find them here  I like taking time to write about the things that interest me – and my interests are varied and on occasion, unrelated – but  I want to spend less time online … this is a challenge for all of us I’d say.  I find Facebook has become just a series of anonymous videos for the most part as many friends ‘follow’ but do not post or like so therefore communication has become a bit one way. So I’m putting my efforts into this site. Such as they are.

I have new projects I’m working on and hope to share them here soon. Less time on line (I’m hoping) means more time for real world projects to be completed.

If all of this makes sense to you, please let me know. We’re all friends here.

Art, artists, Craftsy, creativity, Fashion, Mothers Day, Women in Business

Feeling Crafty this Mothers’ Day?

 

Free weekend of craft videos

There is a great site I like to visit where I can see creative experts in action, Craftsy.com.  I dream of the day I will turn into a committed crafter instead of an art procrastinator. This Mothers’ Day Craftsy.com is doing a free Watchathon weekend where you can watch all their crafting videos for FREE! Love it.  I may not leave my computer long enough this weekend to put any of it into action (that’s not procrastination you see, I’m studying).  Want to join in? Here’s the link.

I’d love to be one of those people who can just get on with a great creative project and voila: days, weeks or months later they have a finished result. A great dress, a soufflé, a coastal water colour or a beautifully beaded bag… this is, unfortunately, not me.

I may not have time to knit that amazing scarf, jumper… you name it, I promised myself I’d make my mother in time for THIS Mothers’ Day but I’ll be ready for next year. Maybe even start a great quilting project to make in time for Xmas?  So what are you waiting for, get crafty here!  I’m right behind you 🙂

artists, creativity, goal-setting, life balance, Music, New Year Resolutions, New Years Eve, Uncategorized

Jan 2 Way to start the year with Amy, Pink and Ed Sheeran!

pink

Today was a gentle ‘at home’ day.  After the rigours of river kayaking on New Year’s Day, I tackled the garden: weeding, sweeping and generally cleaning up the mess left by my bird friends… mostly empty husks from the bird seed I give them.  (Why do the makers put grass seeds in the  wild bird mix? It makes such a mess and yes, makes unwanted grass grow in my flower beds.  Answers please!)

Addressing my goal of ‘do something good and new each day’ was a bit hard as I didn’t really leave the house (if you don’t count the garden). And you can’t count the things I’ve just been thinking about doing.  I’d been baking and cooking over Christmas so I wasn’t game to get the oven going again quite yet and anyway it’s too hot to bake so no new culinary delights would be attempted.

So as my Day 2 task, I decided today would be a day when,while I worked in the garden, I would only listen to artists I don’t usually listen to. So to keep me company I had, amongst others, the incomparable Amy Winehouse, Adele, Pink, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, Motorhead, ACDC and Michael Jackson, Maroon 5, Hozier, Ed Sheeran, Meghan Trainor, Pharrell Williams… Bon Jovi!

I didn’t edit, just listened to what came up in my YouTube mix… made me listen to and enjoy music by artists I would never have thought I’d be interested in and made me realise I’ve been listening to SO MUCH OF THE SAME OLD MUSIC/STUFF FOR YEARS! Don’t get me wrong, vintage music in all its forms is great… I can never get enough of Nina Simone or Edith Piaf but it’s particularly good to listen to some young women from different genres and eras.  And if I’m not listening to one of them, I would usually listen to a talking book or ABC Radio National! GAD!

Ok on the scale of ‘something new’ it’s a pretty small beginning, I admit. But you have to start somewhere with your resolutions! And maybe it helped me start to break a music habit. Tomorrow I fly to Sydney … that should be a surefire place for ‘new and good’. If you have any listening suggestions for women vocalists and musicians, I’d love to hear from you.

PS: This evening, while walking to the nature reserve near our house, I saw a 40+ yo man on a skateboard (looking both uncomfortable and decidedly embarrassed) and I can only assume he received said skateboard for Xmas. Also two young men were sitting outside on the deck at the (closed) school near the reserve, drinking beer and playing chess.  So perhaps others have taken up the ‘do something good and new each day’ challenge.  Otherwise, there’s been a shift in the universe of which I am only just becoming aware.

PPS: My garden is looking hip and tidy thanks to the accompanying beats! And that’s a good thing!

life balance, Suffrage, Uncategorized, Women

Does your favourite movie pass the Bechdel test?

(Bechdel_test_origin)(Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bechdel_test)

I heard about the Bechdel Test on ABC radio National the other day and I struggled to think of a single recent film that met the criteria: A film that has two women in it… who talk to each other… about something other than men.

Maybe Thelma & Louise and that was a few years ago and look what happened to them!? (and come to think about it, they talked rather a lot about men (Brad Pitt, rotten husbands…)

What would be on your list that meets the criteria and let’s face it, it’s quite a low benchmark!

Some Swedish movie theatres are basing their film choices on this test… what a great idea! These films might tell women’s stories. Even better idea!

Let me know!

Suffrage, Uncategorized, Women in Business

Oxymoron or just moronic?

Have you read the one about the ‘mass of unprepared women (who) will suddenly find themselves in senior jobs’ if the Male Champions of Change have their way? Apparently Mark Lawson in Friday’s Fin Review thinks that ‘while affirmative action always sounds like a good idea… it is doubtful whether women are interested in these senior jobs’. Generous people have suggested he is being ironic. I thought perhaps he was being moronic.

While it may seem very funny to suggest that women can’t hold down senior jobs because “A common corporate story is that of talented, capable, highly skilled women who will have one child and come back after six months off, then have a second child and only be interested in part-time work” (Mark Lawson, Financial Review) perhaps there should be some suggestions about taking the emphasis off of women so that child care is a family issue shared by parents rather than heaped on the shoulders of mothers.  And surprise surprise… there are working women who don’t have children! It’s amazing but true!

As to the ‘mass of unprepared women’ – I’m sorry but I can’t think of a single one.   All the women I know are prepared for just about anything. Except perhaps the constant onslaught of media misogyny – we can still be caught somewhat unprepared for that.

PS: Here is the link if you’re like to read it.

Uncategorized

Women’s agenda or cashing in?

Smart Magazine, an business ezine  has started a sister ezine rather pointedly named ‘Women’s Agenda’. Initially, I thought, good idea. An ezine targeting women in business. Then I wondered if it would be more likely targeted at that oft-cited group the yummy mummies, more concerned with where to buy the best light-weight pram so you can push it with one hand while texting on your iphone with the other than how to take over the corporate world. It remains to be seen which one this will turn out to be. Certainly an ezine for smart women should cover lots of territory. An ezine for smart business women is needed and welcomed. IF the zine itself is also smart and not just cashing in on ‘women’s business’, that would be very good indeed. Anyway, if you sign up to their mailing list you go in to the running for an ipad. See for yourself. http://comingsoon.womensagenda.com.au/win-an-ipad/

Business Strategy, Not for Profit Sector, Tigers, Women in Business

Trading Places

A few times I’ve been asked by people wanting to change career direction whether they should take a job in the not for profit sector. I thought you might be interested in a few (there are lots more) things you’ll encounter if you make that choice. Love to hear your comments.

  1. It will mean working with lots of inspirational women! What is it about the NFP sector that attracts women? Cynically I could argue that they’ll put up with the lower pay scales more readily than men! However, they also work very hard and put the cause right out in front as a beacon of hope and energy. I love the women working in our sector, they are so inspirational! Some of the women board directors I’ve met are absolutely driven and fantastic mentors.Image
  2. It won’t be easy! A few hopeful but misguided souls consider a move to a nonprofit organisation will mean that life won’t be as stressful or busy as working for a commercial business. (I recall the job candidates who when asked why they’re considering a job in the NFP world answer “I’m looking to slow down a bit!” Not likely!) It might actually be a bit more stressful! You may have fewer resources including staff and money and you may be working on issues that create emotional stresses – like considering the needs of children living in poverty or those dealing with cancer or depression.
  3. It will be more rewarding! Almost certainly if you choose an organisation that follows a cause not led by the balance sheet, you will find it rewarding. How much more rewarding depends on how much you put into it and how much the cause matters to you.Image
  4. It will mean coming face to face with your own values! What matters to you? What gets you up in the morning? What drives you and makes you angry/motivated and ready to take on the world? Find the organisation that meets your values and you’ll have found your cause.
  5. It will mean asking others for money! If you are unsure if you are ready to ask others to financially support your cause, you may not want to work in the sector. Government funding is always limited and donor funding is often fickle so no matter what your role from scientist to receptionist, you will one day be asked to help out with fundraising. It’s not hard but it can appear to be confrontational. You’ll learn that by encouraging others to give, it’s a great way of connecting them with their values. A worthy cause indeed.