May 30, 2016

Book Review - Creative Confidence : Unleashing the creative potential within us all By Tom and David Kelley

In  Creative Confidence we are encouraged to look at creativity as a mindset and a way to find new solutions to problems.

The book instills in us that we don't need to be an artist to be creative, we can adopt a creative mindset to solve problems and positively contribute to our workplaces and personal lives. The book contains a number of creative challenges to work through which are very interesting and beneficial. Anne

May 23, 2016

Book Review - Managing depression growing older : A guide for professionals and carers By Kerrie Eyers, Gordon Parker and Henry Brodaty

Managing depression growing older : A guide for professionals and carers offers a systematic guide to identify and combating depression in older people.

The book contains many examples and case notes from chapters on growing older to aging and coping with care. The book offers guidance on support in the home or aged care facility, the importance of exercise, diet and attitude in recovery.
This is definitely an informative book and essential reading for anyone who cares or works with the elderly. Anne

May 16, 2016

Book Review - Mini Cross Stitch - By Michael Powell

If your like me and enjoy having an embroidery project on the go, this book is for you. Mini Cross Stitch is filled with funky and distinctive designs ranging from cupcakes with love hearts to bright and colourful daisies.

The book contains 20 mini cross stitch designs which can be used for multiple occasions. The book includes stitching notes and a colour code for each work.
Great uncomplicated embroidery projects which you can complete at your own pace. Anne

May 09, 2016

Book Review - Home for Dinner -Mixing food, fun and conversation for a happier family and healthier kids - By Anne K. Fishel, PHD, forward by Michael Thompson

Anne Fishel encourages all families to prioritise their mealtime. Besides enjoying a good meal it's also a great opportunity for family bonding and is a time to all sit down together and share stories about each other's day. She provides strategies for this ritual such as-

  • meal ideas
  • getting everyone to help
  • creating gratitude
  • communicating with ease

This ritual shows a number of psychological benefits such as increased resilience, increased self-esteem, forming a healthy relationship with food and better family relationships.
Home for Dinner was an enjoyable read and helps you to realise that a few small changes at meal times can have a huge positive impact on your family. Anne

May 07, 2016

Movie Club—Unforgiven

This month the Movie Club will be screening Clint Eastwood's elegy to the western, Unforgiven. Directed by Eastwood, he also stars alongside Morgan Freeman, Gene Hackman and Richard Harrison. Made at a time when the popularity of the western had long since gone, Unforgiven nonetheless won Academy Awards for Best Film and Best Director for Eastwood. What's more, it has provided very striking commentary on the western tradition as a whole from one of its most recognisable faces.

A pair of cowboys disfigure a prostitute, Delilah Fitzgerald (Anna Levine), in Big Whiskey, Wyoming. The local sheriff, Little Bill Daggett (Hackman), is a former gunfighter and extracts harsh punishment on any transgressions in his town. But with the cowboys his concern is not for the disfigured prostitute, but for brothel owner Skinny Dubois (Anthony James) and the financial losses of having a "cut-up" prostitute. This leads the other prostitutes led by Strawberry Alice (Frances Fisher) to gather $1000 for a bounty on the two cowboys. This brings all manner of former and current gunslingers to town, including English Bob (Harris), the Schofield Kid (Jaimz Woolvett), and Ned Logan (Freeman) and William Munny (Eastwood), leading to violent confrontations with Little Bill as he tries to maintain the order of his town.

The film has all the hallmarks of a classic western, from the hardened gunfighters to the striking but harsh landscape that establishes the human toil. But all of these are questioned, from the nobility of violence to the increasing commercialisation of the west where the moral absolutes and the belief in violence as a solution are made entirely ambiguous.

The film will be screened on Wednesday 11 May at 6pm at Narellan Library, Corner of Queen and Elyard Street, Narellan. Tea, coffee, and biscuits provided, but BYO snacks are more than welcome. Stay after the screening to share your thoughts about the film and join in a discussion about the many intriguing commentaries the film makes. 

May 06, 2016

Book Review—The Elephant’s Journey by José Saramago

João III, the king of Portugal, has a dilemma: the wedding gift to his cousin, Maximillian of Austria, at the time of his nuptials seems insufficient. But a solution has been discovered in the form of Solomon the elephant. In the king’s possession for many years, it has hardly garnered the attention such a creature demands, and so sees it not only as an option to dispense with an overlooked royal asset but also to give a stunning gift. This means transporting the beast from Lisbon to Vienna. At each new location the elephant inspires the fascination of the locals, with all viewing the elephant as a different being of elation, concern, or utility.

The use of an elephant is no coincidence. Although an elephant did indeed cross Europe in 1551, the aptness of the creature is more intertwined with the narrative that is less about the historical than the anecdotal. Wherever Solomon is seen he becomes the proverbial elephant in the room, those thoughts that hitherto words were incapable of giving form. Thus Solomon becomes a contingent object, being added to a family cress, or being prayed on to remove a curse, or an umbrella stand. But equally he becomes an object that, although now a source of fascination, will one day simply become a memory, something shared in a reminiscent glance with a fellow witness, or a colourful yarn regaled to strangers. Like Queen Catherine of Portugal who, when asking “whatever happened to Solomon?”, will feign innocence and manufacture amusement at being given news of his whereabouts. It is all a testimony to the fact that “memory, which isn’t anyone’s strong point, is best not overburdened with too much detail.”

The Elephant’s Journey is a rich, whimsical tale filled with humour, solemnity, and the truth of the circumstantial.

May 02, 2016

Book Review - Get Commando Fit By Steve Willis

If you are looking for a no nonsense, no excuses guide to getting in shape,  Get Commando Fit is for you.

Featuring the Get Commando Fit exercise program with detailed colour pictures demonstrating each exercise and including a beginners, intermediate and advanced program. The book has plenty of delicious recipes and nutritional advice. All the tools you need to look and feel great are contained in this book, conveyed with Steve's straight to the point attitude. Anne