Loving Local Travelogues Brooklyn

The tuck shop cafe in Brooklyn on the Hawkesbury. Crisp clear and delightful. Lucky kids at the local primary school have their lunches made by the cafe. They were even getting hand made chicken nuggets, nothing industrial for these kids.

Sensitively sourced coffee, can be made with almond milk. Now that was different and delicious.

Lots more to appreciate around here. Catch the train then ferry to dangar Is.

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5 native bee hotels that will capture your imagination

Hey Joey, you’re the man! Your carpentry mastery made it simple for us to do hands on native bee hotel making.

As part of Transition Parramatta’s urban ecology theme we aim to learn how to create habitat for local native species. Make the city a native species friendly place (as much as we can). Bee Hotels are meant to provide some nesting place for our native pollinators. That needs to be complemented by providing their favourite food species as well.

Since this is the third time Transition Parramatta has run native bee hotel making we’re getting the hang of it. Offcuts from Joey’s joinery shop are brought home, then pre-cut and given pre-drilled holes for the bees to make nests in. We then could finish five bee hotels in two hours, ready to take home.

Julia Finn our local Granville state MP came along and pitched in with some joinery work.


Native Bee Hotel Tips

Drilling the holes for the bees to use

6 mm hole with 100mm depth – most common
8 mm hole with 150 mm depth – most common
3 mm hole with 70mm depth
9.5 mm hole with 150 mm depth

Add some other sticks

In amongst the blocks of wood add some small bamboo or lantana stalk sticks. The bees may use these to nest in as well.

Different Bees different needs

Not all native bees will use these bee hotels. Some would use a mud wall as a nest block. check out how to make a nest block

Food and Habitat for Australian Native Bees

Plant species list can be found at http://backyardbuddies.net.au/bugs/fliers/native-bees

Other resources



Google images of bee hotels

Halcroft and Batley outstanding native bee and hotel guide



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Whale Watch Royal National Park NSW

You go to watch the whales but there is always a few bonus. Hanging out with your friends, sharing a meal next to the creek, soaking up the sights, smells and feelings of being in the bush…


Whale Watching

IMG_6703On a perfect sunny winter’s Saturday,
Humpback Whales on their Ancient Pilgrimage northwards,
swimming and breathing out,
gave us a free gift of great beauty and joy, spontaneously, naturally.
Next morning they returned to me in meditation,
as a memory of them in the vast deep ocean and subject to dangers from humankind.
They awoke a compassionate question – what can I give them,
how can I help so that their Great Way can continue on?
A humble answer followed clear and true.
Each of us can reflect, ask and will receive a true answer too…


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Ecotherapy at Merrylands community garden

Kerryn and crew tried out a new venue for Ecotherapy today at the Merrylands community garden in Orana Lane just opposite the library.

The theme for this session was Composting.

What is it in our minds that can be composted and thus provide fertiliser for beautiful flowers and nourishing vegetables in our lives?

What happened as this session unfolded, here’s some quotes

Learnings from today

Lots- will need time to process what we have done and how it influence in my life……onwards.
Love, peace, friendship, sun, water, connections, feelings…
More about composting and the autumn season
Making compost principals using weed water for healing soil.
More about the theory of composting

How did you connect more with your self?

Lead into myself with gentle, insightful guidance. Non- threatening but deep. Allowed to share as I wished.
-Spending time in the garden……..smelling, touching, feeling, listening
-Spending time in the garden, just watching, soaking up the sun…
-Spending time in the garden, running tai chi
Spending time in the garden……cooking
With Listening Breathing, welcoming nature letting go…
I felt that I was able to connect with the earth and nature more, and the natural cycles within nature and within myself.

What was your favorite thing?

The 1st walk to pick up something to symbolise our life.
The sun, the blue sky, the connection, the songs of nature…
Art works put me into a more creative way
Compost, sharing, being in the garden and receiving this energy.
Meeting new, interesting and friendly people and being outside in the sun, in nature.

Any suggestions for next time?

Space for more sharing.
Allowing time for the participants to talk, listen and share with one another…
A talk about nature plants, trees bushes and flowers.

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Ecotherapy – Senses

Not just five senses! You think about a whole bunch more… And that is what we explored and discovered during this session.

(Two more ecotherapy sessions. October Sunday 12th 10am, at Sorrell Lane. Then Sunday 9th November 10am at Lawson in the blue mountains.)

Art materials a plenty were on hand to give expression to that which we perceived. Here’s the works and maybe a note on what is expressed.


There are more senses. the sense of Being in flow, sense of uprootedness. Sense of flourishing, sense of conserving something precious, sense of the future and our legacy to them etc etc  make your own list of senses and  legitimise them ourselves. where is the sense of humour? Sense of humour our birthright…necessary to deal with these dire things, having a sense of humour bubbling up somewhere or our message will be lost in everything else. Sense of belonging is symbolised by a spiral for meIMG_6960


I saw my painting as I/we are part of this big universe and part of a big picture. I see where the world and where I am/we are  right now in our lives is where I/we are meant to be.

The infinity sign in the painting is about the universe and its endless boundaries. The two Ying/Yang symbols within the infinity sign are an important symbol to me as I feel that there is always an opposite to everything and the opposites are like close cousins that are linked together. An example is struggles and being in the flow, there is always a constant movement between negative and positive experiences and for me it is important to appreciate both sides of the coin. It gives me that ability to understand myself, other people and the world around me.

It’s nice to imagine how the wind moves amongst trees or objects in the world. It helps in understanding not to struggle against the why’s and how things should be and letting go of what is out of my/our control but to flow with what’s happening, making the most of life to do the best I/you can.  I constantly like to remember I am part of a bigger picture and everything is really okay.



My long time interest  in Community; making and connecting in many forms such as gardening and building friendships , the keeping of and losing friends
I have, since I can remember loved trees, and have planted a few here & there.  I saw there was a connectedness between all these factors.



I felt a sense of playfulness, deep knowing, inner connectedness, loving in the silence and serenity of the Sorrell lane community garden. I feel at home and at peace and “raw”….which show through my art work with clay, weaving through strings of clay and cut into circle once it is weaved and centred with a rose for a completion of my heart work.



Our stories, of our culture, of civilisation, of progress, of nature. These stories are part of our human operating system and I create these in my own life. With a smidgeon of reflection, I sense these stories in myself. And, then sensing with my heart I can see stories that produce a human life that is in harmony with the planet and is a fufilling life.


And… an abstract bee


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Bee Hotel

Kerryn has been busy and knocked up a bee hotel for sorrell lane.

We also got to have a look at a delightful book, ‘natures gifts, answers to questions about, honey pollen, and all things bees’. it was written by Athol Craig and Skaidra Craig.

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Ecotherapy with poetry

July 5 Ecotherapy was spent immersing ourselves in Nature Writing and planned the last november session in the blue mountains. Next session is Sunday 3rd August

Environmental Writing

Writing in response to the beauty of the earth and our relationship with it.

The focus was on welcoming winter, and we stared with a simple acrostic poem, where you write a one word theme down the side of your page and add words or phrases  that start with. Like the following:

Starting of with some Acrostic

Take a word and use each of the letters to start the lines of a poem

Worship Sun
Inner time
Turning In
Exploring Inner Terrains

Warm fire
Near the fresh playful wind
Treading on crunchy leaves
Eating hot soup
Running cool, running cold, loving freezing cold

Wisdom and
Inside in
To talk
Enter in the
River of life

Welcome spirit
Inner core
Next step
To eternity
Embrace life
Renew yourself

Then enjoying some Haiku

Then we moved on to the simplicity and beauty of Haiku.  Haiku  comes to us from the Japanese Zen tradition. Matsuo Basho 1644 1694 is known as the Father of Haiku.

Haiku are a wonderful way to write about nature, and the discipline of them is that they are so  minimalist.  Adhering to the structure of Haiku: which is

Line 1 – 5 syllables
Line 2  – 7 syllables
Line 3  – 5 Syllables

requires you to condense and distil what you are trying to say, to allow the silence and power of nature to speak through it.  It can surprise you what your concluding line comes up with sometimes, and can be insightful, meditative and reflective to both read and write Haiku.  The group wrote some really beautiful, funny and sometimes surprisingly profound poems, which we are happy to share!

Silky oak stands
life has its place to be
branches shelter me


Freezing winds of time
The wattle lies in slumber
waiting for spring

A chilly morning
Is telling me to start slowly
and warming up my heart

Wattle Haiku

Harbinger of Joy
Prepare us for new life burst
Hope springs in our heart

Look Deep

Green you may say WOW!
How Green when you look deeper!
Green still see you?

 And something a bit more about winter time

Whinging to the cold you may,
Inner wind building up you might,
Nesting resting why not you say,
Trusting that winter will soon away
Ease our soul, ease our mind may you,
Rush no more but resting your body, mind and soul.

Hungry for Food
Food of thought, food for my hungry tummy,
Food of love, food for my trouble soul,
Food of labour, food for my tireless physical body,
Food of war, food for my heart in pain,
Food of peace and harmony, food for you and me!
Food of hated and delusion, food that poison our body and soul.
Peace I feel in my mind space when I am in the garden
Peace indeed my heart sing when I am with the one Mother Earth
Peace deep in my mind silence when I am with the land
Peace truthfully when one melt onto one with the universe

Tom’s Straight Doggrel

Happy little human beings
Bright and Sparky
Yet living a winter of the soul
Entranced by the glitter of shiny things
Yet creating a chill wind of planetary shift
The promise of spring lies in our hearts
Will we gather together our human gifts?
Support a purpose that is just a choice
To keep the planet liveable for All.

 November in the blue mountains

On November 18 the last Ecotherapy session will be up the Blue Mountain at a lovely waterfall at Lawson.  We will spend time tuning into nature, picnic and doing some more nature writing and poetry.  We hope you can join us, and bring friends and family  for a lovey reflective celebration of spring.

July ecotherapy Sorrell Lane Community Gardens Lings pumpkin noodles Pachamama people Wattle Wow!

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