This week

By Vita Forest

This week I have been


An unknown land…


  • The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
  • The Girl who circumnavigated Fairyland in a ship of her own making by Catherynne M. Valente




Galleons and sea creatures encountered on the voyage to the unknown land…

  • my galleons and sea monsters and antique-style map at school.  Our Year 4 classes made maps, ships, sea creatures, storm clouds etc and wrote short narratives about them.  Then they made common craft style videos of their voyagers adventures to the ‘unknown lands’ using their maps and paintings.  What a fantastic day of creativity!
  • my sketch from the Tramsheds at Harold Park (see Layers)

LISTENING to Melina Marchetta talking about Looking for Alibrandi as we were

DRIVING to Manly through heavy traffic on a Sunday afternoon.

GOING for our first swim of the season at Shelly Beach, Manly (it was mighty bracing to start with, but then merely refreshing).  We were not the only ones there…


On the non-peaceful side of the headland at Shelly Beach. Look at all those people on the sand!!

WATCHING a crazy plan doing aerobatics over the water at Manly as we floated about.


On the peaceful side of the headland at Shelly Beach, looking north.







This week

By Vita Forest


Picnic lunch atop Du Faurs Rocks at Mt Wilson, Blue Mountains

This week I have been

WRITING Mobile Tales 9: in which Christabel learns a disturbing fact about whales


  • Saving Francesca by Melina Marchetta
  • The Last Painting of Sara De Vos by Dominic Smith

WATCHING Big Little Lies

VISITING the Blue Mountains with Vastra and Saskia where we did some



Magical pool at the base of Minehaha Falls, Katoomba, Blue Mountains

  • Minnehaha Falls in Katoomba
  • around the clifftops of Leura
  • around the shops of Leura…


  • around Mt Wilson through shady ferns and by bright wattle blooming amongst blackened trees


Cathedral of Ferns, Mt Wilson, Blue Mountains


  • Whipbirds and
  • Bell birds and
  • Crimson Rosellas and
  • screeching cockatoos breaking the monumental stillness of the silence at Du Faurs Rocks, Mt Wilson


Oh and saw this currawong at Du Faurs Rocks, Mt Wilson


  • on a clifftop in Leura
  • on a clifftop at Du Faurs Rocks at Mt Wilson


RELAXING in the winter sunshine with a cuppa and our books



This week

By Vita Forest


This week I have been


  • When Rosie met Jim by Melina Marchetta
  • Ferragost by Melina Marchetta

ATTENDING a school art show (those Kindy artists are amazing)

CLIMBING down stone stairs and a metal ladder and rock scrambling to go

SKETCHING at the level of the harbour at Cremorne Point and

FEELING the worries of the week wash away in the sun and the wind and the sound of the waves


  • Rice by Michelle Lee at Griffin Theatre (intriguing theatre – go and see it!)
  • some great teaching at my school during Teacher Observation sessions

PICNICKING on a crunchy baguette and goats cheese in the local park with Lucy


This week

By Vita Forest

Wet weather walking scenery

This week I have been


Weslandia by Paul Fleischman (they loved it!)

On the Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta (some comfort reading).

WRITING Skubiszewski on the wireless 

GETTING ready for Bullying. No Way! day at school with lots of teamwork, meetings, collaborative artwork and a poetry competition

DRAWING a magical garden inside a pantry in the style of Shaun Tan in Eric (I think we might make a 3D sculpture garden too…)  The kids enjoyed using 4B lead pencils, many of them discovering them for the first time.

LISTENING to a lot of Adele at dinner with the kids.

MAKING Jules Clancy’s Fudgy 5 ingredient chocolate cake (so delicious)


CELEBRATING my sister Kara’s birthday with all the fam (eating the aforementioned cake)

WHIPPING out for a quick walk when the rain stopped with sister Briony and Lucy.  It’s been a relentlessly wet week here…

FEELING rather exhausted.

This week

By Vita Forest

Costume craziness

Costume craziness

This week I have been


  • Froi of the Exiles by Melina Marchetta (love spending time with those Skuldenorians)
  • Animal Farm by George Orwell (on Max’s recommendation)

WRITING Day tripping

MAKING costumes, costumes and more costumes!

WATCHING Borgen Series 1


  • Gerringong and Kiama with Saskia
  • Cockatoo Island


  • up with some lovely colleagues past and present
  • up with my old Mothers Group.  What an amazing bunch they are, what a lot we have gone through since we first met.

DOING some “extreme sketching” at Cockatoo Island in wild winds and with aggressive sea gulls dive bombing.  Who knew sketching could be such a daredevil activity?


This week

By Vita Forest


This week I have been



  • Greene on Capri by Shirley Hazzard
  • Tell the truth, Shame the devil by Melina Marchetta (well the last two days anyway – don’t normally buy “just released” books but it is MM).

RESTING due to being absolutely floored by the flu.

VISITING the doctor. Twice.

LOOKING after my sick children too.

WATCHING The Bridge (Swedish/Danish version) on DVD (not with the kids).

CUDDLING up with the kitty cat gals.

SOLVING puzzles in my Codewords book.


This week

By Vita Forest

Pelicans at Merimbula.

This week I have been

EXPERIENCING my own disaster – the flooding of my apartment while I was away in Merimbula (over 500km from Sydney….)

RUSHING back to Sydney to the aftermath (thanks Alessandro and Sui-Sui).

FEELING very touched and grateful  to the tribe of people who helped with mopping, moving furniture, cat-minding and offering accomodation and other support. A big shout out to Saskia – you are a champion! 

CAMPING out at my parents’ place.

READING small snatches of Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta (comfort reading late at night, Marchetta always makes me feel better).

WATCHING the DVD of As it is in Heaven after a lovely dinner made by Saskia. 

REMEMBERING it could have been worse…