Fitter, faster, stronger

It’s the name of the first Bold Thinking Series lecture for 2019 at the State Library on 14 March and my former team and I had managed to nominally program most of this year’s content late last year including having some initial meetings regarding this event. People are living longer (and stronger) and in many ways, we need to prepare for the 100-year life as a new kind of normal. The Bold Thinking event will consider whether we’re overdoing sporting excellence but in a country where overweight and obesity have been on the rise, I tend to think it’s the opposite in many ways. I also read the news last night about Julie Bishop resigning from Parliament and am really glad I got the opportunity to work with her on one of her last public events as a working politician last November. It is a loss for Australian political life and I hope there may be someone like her who advances in the ranks sometime soon.

I’ve been in my new job in the Advancement Office (as it will soon be known) at La Trobe for a month now and I’ve been really enjoying it. My head has started to spin less as things become more familiar and I’ve started crafting a more strategic communications approach in terms of engaging Young Alumni (graduates Under 35 years) this year and beyond.

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Speaking of fitness – I’ve walked past the new Wellness Station on Burgundy Street in Heidelberg – it’s been beautifully kitted out and offers reformer, mat pilates and barre classes in terms of exercise physiology if you’re interested in giving it a go.

Healing Practices – a new exhibition which explores contemporary art’s relationship to the compensatory and copying mechanisms borne in response to trauma also opens at the Bundoora Homestead Art Centre on 7 March and runs until 5 May. Perhaps a good one for us all in terms of examining our attitudes towards mental health and self-care.

A couple of other local events to mention too today. If you’ve got a toddler in the house then the Banyule Kindergarten Open Day is on tomorrow. Mr Rosanna and I were never thinking that far ahead before we moved to the area but some people have already decided on high school and want their children to go to the feeder kinder to the feeder primary school that then feeds into their chosen secondary school. At any rate, it’s a good exercise in finding out what’s closest or most convenient for you and if you can walk there or avoid going down major roads, that’s always a bonus.

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At the other end of the spectrum if you have a classic car lover in your circle Springthorpe’s 6th Annual Classic Car Show is being held on Saturday 10 March at the Village Common in Macleod. I’ve always loved the look of vintage Volkswagen Karmann-Ghias although I think it would be handy to have the inner mechanic in you if you ever bought a vintage car.

 

 

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Lost in Yonkers

The stage play by Neil Simon about the story of two brothers in Brooklyn opens tonight at the Heidelberg Theatre Company in Turnham Street Rosanna. I’ve not yet made it to the theatre in all the time I’ve lived in Rosanna although I will be going to see Into the Woods which opens at Ivanhoe Grammar School next month. New York is still a dream destination of mine and I will be forever regretful I never made it there for work when I was in my mid-twenties working for beauty company Aveda whose headquarters were in Minneapolis but PR done out of New York. Different times and the world has changed since then to become a lot more globalised.

I’ve had to learn at least four different types of online platforms and databases since starting my new job which has involved zoom meetings (similar to Skype and FaceTime) and live webinars with people based in the US. Welcome to the new age of working. Mr Rosanna meanwhile is working on a large-scale IT project with Indian nationals based here and in Pune, India. I can’t quite keep up…

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While we’ve entered a new chapter in our lives and it’s been busy, we have continued to play house and bought a vintage Danish mid-century chair (above) for the TV room at Grandfather’s Axe in Northcote last weekend. If we ever renovate or move to a larger house I can see myself going back there for more living room furniture! It’s also been good to speak to builder friends about different ways to come at the same issue – instead of a skylight, we’ve been advised to add a new window instead (for more natural light) which makes more sense but sometimes gets lost in the detail. I did drive past a brand new Bunnings store about to open on Darebin Road in Fairfield and I seem to spend a lot of time at Bunnings. I’m sure that many of you in this area do too judging from all the activity I see on the street and in my neighbourhood. My fellow mid-century lover and local interior designer friend Renae Barrass was also commenting that she tends to get busier whenever there’s a downturn in the real estate market as more people decide to stay put and renovate.

I’m still celebrating Lunar New Year with my family and there are events on at Greensborough Town Square and the Bell Street Mall in Heidelberg West tonight and tomorrow if you’d like to welcome in the Year of the Pig. Have a good one.

The guilty feminist

It’s the hugely popular comedy podcast that a number of my friends and colleagues listen to and it’s being recorded live at The Thornbury Theatre on Saturday night if you’re interested in going. They’ve had some big names in the past and for a media and marketing person like me – it’s been interesting to witness the exponential rise of podcasts in Australia and globally over the past few years. In many ways, I think they’ve taken the place of live radio and are a more intimate channel for communication given it’s voices you are listening to.

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Speaking of women, tickets are on sale for the Banyule Women in Business lunch (above) with KeepCup co-founder Abigail Forsyth at the Rosanna Golf Club on Friday 22 March and they were down to their last 24 tickets when I booked yesterday! There are still tables of 10 available if you’re interested in hosting a group and it’s a great networking opportunity if you are a local business owner. Mr Rosanna and I both know Abigail’s brother and co-owner Jamie whom we last ran into, of all places, at the airport on our return flight home from Athens last year. I believe they are now looking into takeaway plastic containers with a similar eye and I applaud them for tackling the issue from an environmental perspective – single use plastic items are a scourge.

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If you are a home-based business, Banyule Council is actually running a business networking survey if you’ve got a spare 5 – 10 minutes to submit your response (and go into the draw to win a gift voucher or iPad mini). It can get lonely working on your own and as a past freelancer, I used to look forward to my client visits for that very reason as well as the opportunity to meet other like-minded people in small businesses who are often the lifeblood of local communities like ours.

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A few other things to mention today – Mr Rosanna and I are now on the hunt for a mid-century armchair and if you’ve got a piece you’re interested in re-upholstering, then Carlo’s Upholstery in Thornbury was recommended to us by Philip Syber from Contemporary Vintage. I’ve not bought any clothes for a while but I’ve been enjoying looking at some of Kloke’s new season arrivals (images pictured above and below from Kloke website) and they are having a studio sample sale tomorrow in Collingwood.

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Finally, This is not a drill sustainable furniture show featuring pieces from some of the Banyule Art Collection opened at Hatch Contemporary Art Space yesterday and would be a good one to visit if you’re in Ivanhoe. I did take my new team in for lunch at Pinkie on Tuesday but didn’t get a chance to pop my head in.

Oink oink!

The Lunar New Year of the Pig is about to trot in next Tuesday and if you’ve had a false start to the year – here’s your chance to start all over again. My trainer Nikki Ellis from Cinch Training in Heidelberg Heights has signed up for FebFast and laid down the gauntlet for all her clients to do the same – and not just for alcohol but sugar, screens and anything else you may be better off reducing in your life.

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It is the Year of the Pig and I’ve bought a set of commemorative gold coins (above) from the Australian Mint as a keepsake gift – the Asian in me couldn’t help myself. Unlike western astrology, pigs are a symbol of wealth in Chinese culture and pig people are known for their beautiful personalities and good fortune in life – lucky you if you were born in the Year of the Pig or know someone who will be born this year.

My past week has been a whirlwind with the return to school and extra-curricular activities on top of a new job although I suspect we’ll be feeling it more next week once we complete a whole 7 days – it sure is busy and one part of me is always a bit incredulous that kids start school at the hottest time of the year. I guess there’s no getting around the weather in Melbourne no matter what you do.

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One of the highlights has been taking delivery of our art deco cabinet (above in our somewhat dark room) from Contemporary Vintage in Alphington and it now taking pride of place in our formal living room. However – the thing with getting ‘new’ pieces for home sometimes has a knock on effect and you realise other things around it need to be replaced or upgraded. In our case, the painting which hung about our old cabinet is now too small so we’re now on the hunt for a new painting which will be more in scale. Speaking of which, one of the work highlights for me is finding out my new building houses some of the La Trobe Art Institute collection including a Sidney Nolan painting that I walk past every day. I did manage to have a quick chat yesterday with the acting LAI Director Sandra Bruce and hope to catch up with her at some stage soon.

Speaking of Heide artists, Heide Museum of Modern Art in Bulleen is holding a Showtime Night Market tonight, a Date Night x Midsumma on 10 February in the Heart Garden near Heide I as well as Art by Twilight on 16 February. It is very calming to spend time in galleries around art as well as in nature so enjoy if you make it there. Happy New Year!