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I have given myself the permission to do what I enjoy – and enjoy what I do. — Diana Fraser

2011, what a year!

It’s been a very long time since my last blog post. So much has happened that’s kept me away from my keyboard and blogging! Perhaps I’ll start with what is most distracting to me right now… a 9 week old kitten desperately trying to jump on the kitchen table as I type, excited at the thought that my fast typing fingers might be potential play things. She’s ready to pounce.

Rogue: the new little kitten in my partner’s and my life. She’s been a wondrous blessing and gain to our lives, even in her 5 short weeks since joining us. If you’re wondering, no, we did not plan on having a kitten. She was a baby stray found crossing a busy road, who’s mum was likely to have met an unpleasant end. She now has a lovely safe home with her two new mums.

Speaking of her two mums, we went to a political rally last Saturday to support marriage equality. It’s amazing that in this day and age we are still fighting for such basic civil rights as marriage equality (not to mention true recognition of Australia’s first peoples in our Constitution!) At least the result has been that Labor changed it’s platform at the recent party conference – though unfortunately including a “conscience vote” that is usually only implemented when politics decides on life and death issues. Hmmm, funny that conscience votes aren’t allowed when we consider whether we’ll go to war. Pretty sure that’s about life and death. Some chicks marry chicks, some dudes marry dudes. Get over it!

Now, back to other change, with my political rant over.

I’ve had the amazing experience of attending the Garma Festival in Gulkula (East Arnhem Land). I had the privilege of attending with Reconciliation Australia’s women’s group, and met a fantastic group of ladies. It was a truly special experience, both professionally and personally, and I highly recommend anyone who has the change head out!

I’ve also enjoyed two more amazing “ARMtour” trips with NASCA. ARMtour stands for Athletes as Role Models tour, and NASCA is the National Aboriginal Sporting Chance Academy (where I work). Both trips have been fantastic, with this latest trip to Papunya being a beautiful emotional journey of family connection. My uncle worked out there 30 years ago and played an instrumental role is setting up the medical service for the Pintabi people. It was beautiful to meet people who he had worked with in the past, and feel what high regard they still held him in. It was also fantastic and amazing to spend the week working with the kids in school, helping them with literacy and numeracy, and overall excitement to attend class. I highly recommend you check out the website (www.nasca.com.au). And if you’re in the Christmas giving spirit, share a few dollars to a fantastic cause.

On the whole it’s been a massive year of change, an exciting year of opportunity, and a beautiful year for love and family. I can’t say I’ll be sad to see the end of 2011, as it’s also been fairly exhausting, but I can safely say I’m a far better person for having lived fully this year.

Happy Christmas, happy New Year, and best wishes for a happy, successful and loving 2012.

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