Weekly Photo Challenge: Stanley The Emu

This week, photograph a stationary subject from three different angles.

Stanley the Emu is an 18 metre high sculpture which stands guard over the Castlereagh Highway, 10 kilometres south of Lightning Ridge. The inspiration for Stanley came to artist John Murray when he was at Birdsville. His thinking was a bird for Birdsville, however as Birdsville is in Outback Queensland 1337 kilometres from Lightning Ridge transporting the very large sculpture became impossible.

Instead due to the overwhelming support from the people of Lightning Ridge who gave their time to create him and help to source the recycled steel and VW’s from which he is made, the decision was made to place him on the ridge after which Lightning Ridge was named and looking west towards Birdsville.

The making of Stanley to me signifies the Australian spirit and can do attitude that I am proud of. Photographing him from several different perspectives helps to realise the love and thought that went into his design and creation.



What’s the biggest chance you ever took? Did it work out? Do tell!


I think for me the scariest chance I have taken was last year when I started Inspiring Max.  I had considered it for many years before finally plucking up the courage to find my online voice. It is a decision I don’t regret taking and I write about the lessons I have learnt from the experience in my first blogiversary post, which can be found at  http://www.inspiringmax.com/first-blogiversary/

When it comes to chances I agree with my childhood hero, Mary Tyler Moore that we grow from our mistakes. I love this quote and find it powerful when I need extra motivation to do something like the first time I pressed publish on a blog post. The next scary chance for me to take when I am ready is to send my book to the editor, hopefully sometime in the next few months. Thanks for joining me as I continue to change my life, take more chances and see where they take me.


Weekly Photo Challenge: Today Was A Good Day

In a Mesh gallery, show us what makes you happy. Share your ideal day, recount a memorable day in the past, or share your favorite things.

A few years ago I went for a walk with my father around the hidden places of Sydney Olympic Park.We made fascinating discoveries and really enjoyed the peace and serenity.



Anything Is Possible

Every city and town contains people of different classes: rich, poor, and somewhere in between. What’s it like where you live? If it’s difficult for you to discern and describe the different types of classes in your locale, describe what it was like where you grew up — was it swimming pools and movie stars, industrial and working class, somewhere in between or something completely different?

I live in Sydney, Australia and it is a great part of the world to live in. It is a multicultural society where anything is possible. I find myself constantly learning new things about different cultures, foods and religions making my world an interesting place. Whenever I want to go out for a meal the choice is huge and if I want to try my hand at cooking international food sourcing the ingredients can be as easy as a trip to the local shopping centre.

Some days the things that happen in Sydney never cease to amaze me. Last weekend within walking distance to each other, we had the World Netball Championships as well as the wedding of our deputy mayor,  given the title of Australia’s most expensive wedding including luxury cars, helicopters, Harley Davidson motorbikes and jet flyover. I knew my area was interesting but this now proves anything is possible.




Imagine that tomorrow, all of your duties and obligations evaporate for the day. You get the day all to yourself, to do anything you please. What types of fun activities would make your day?

I believe taking time out to recharge and celebrate ME Time is important for mental health. This week I have been lucky enough to have a week of ME Time without any duties or obligations doing whatever I feel like for the day. It is liberating and relaxing. I am spending the week in Port Macquarie New South Wales, an area I first visited as a 10-year-old child. So how do I plan to spend my days when I don’t have my usual  busy schedule to contend with. No problem. Below is a list of my options most of which I have already done:

  • Build a sand castle
  • Celebrate days off with a glass of champagne
  • Catch up on my blogging
  • Colour in
  • Do a crossword puzzle
  • Draw
  • Enjoy the winter sunshine
  • Explore new areas
  • Gather ideas for Inspiring Max
  • Listen to different bird calls
  • Play a board game
  • Play solitaire with cards
  • Read a romantic comedy
  • Reconnect with what it was like living in regional New South Wales
  • Relive childhood memories
  • Sleep in
  • Smell the ocean
  • Smell the flowers beginning to burst as Spring is around the corner
  • Swim
  • Visit regional art galleries
  • Walk on beach
  • Watch a girly movie
  • Work on my book

It has been  a great week staying in one place, catching up with myself and expand my experience of my amazing homeland, Australia.


Never Helpless

Helplessness: that dull, sick feeling of not being the one at the reins. When did you last feel like that –- and what did you do about it?

I don’t ever feel helpless. If I feel something needs to change in a situation I think outside the square to find an answer to the problem. Sometimes the leader may require help, I may need more explanation of what is really going on or life may have suddenly taken a tragic turn that needs managing. Whatever the reason feeling helpless just takes away my power. I hope you enjoy the following acrostic poem of how I turn HELPLESS into HOPE.

Hopeful an alternative could be found

Eager and encouraged to look for a solution

Liberated to have an idea

Pleased to put it forward

Liking the response I received

Empathetic to our leader

Safe in the knowing

Self-doubt didn’t stop me finding hope



Describe your personal style, however you’d like to interpret that — your clothing style, your communication style, your hair style, your eating style, anything.

Empowering others is the basis of my communication and managing styles. My theme is “I teach people to fish, I don’t feed them fish.”

By teaching people to do things for themselves, they develop an understanding that their choices change their outcomes. They learn to set goals and realise they can achieve them by breaking the goal down into doable pieces. They have the power.

Sometimes the type of fishing or skills someone needs to learn can be difficult or slow to learn. But I don’t give up. I empower them to persevere and reap their rewards, however long it takes. By believing the other person can learn the skill and spending time to guide them on their personal journey I see them blossom and achieve things they initially never thought possible.

I love the fact that often as their confidence increases people choose to teach the skills I have taught them to others—keeping the chain of empowerment moving forward.