Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mamapalooza - The Festival is Over

Well, we did it. The Mamapalooza festival is over. The Wordsmiths session was lovely. We could have just talked about writing about the arts, or published books, or mothers in fiction, or poetry, or activists' writing, or the mothers movement, or any of a number of topics, but we talked about what the speakers (bluemilk, Joan Garvan, Debra Kellahan and I), who had been thinking and researching and writing about motherhood for many years wanted to say, and that was fine. We heard from some local writers too. To me the week seemed to go very quickly. Vee disagrees. I've already forgotten all the hard work that went into the preparation, and we're planning for next year, hopefully with funding and with more people helping. And we're organising a local Feminist Mums Discussion Group.

As for the rest of life, we awoke this morning to no bread, no milk, and not enough eggs. The car needs repairs and my tooth broke. Child was crying because her uniform wasn't clean and ready - she hadn't put it in the wash. I have a story to write, learn and perform, and two assignments due. I need to do some mending for Banjo and sew elastic and ribbons on Matilda's new point shoes. Yes, moving onto pointe. Exciting and a bit scary. I'd like to say the fitting was fun, but it wasn't, and we're looking for a new dance wear shop!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Mothers' Day and Mamapalooza

For Mothers Day my gift to myself was helping create the festival that is Mamapalooza Sydney. Hoopla have published my article here - they make me look good!

I'm having a lovely time with Mamapalooza, but Vee and I have been thinking that next time we'll run it over one day or one weekend, like an expo, so that the participants (artists, writers,musicians, stand-ups) can all meet each other, and so we can bring together groups that are raising money for charities and bringing awareness to causes.And so that we aren't going out every night for a week.

Last day today - my Wordsmiths session - and I'm excited. Lots of poems to read, and lots to talk about.

Sharing some other pieces about Mothers Day here. Clementine Ford on how naff Mothers Day is, according to the commercialised view , ie, mothers want gifts that help them do domestic work, then something to help them rest from domestic work, so they can get back to what they should be doing - domestic work.

The reason I don't have a mobile phone, iphone etc. (Well, the main reason; the others are cost and I wouldn't know where to keep them - books and shoes and cds - I know where they go.)

And about Hoopla - you can't tell older women to shut up

As for me, I visited my mother yesterday and kept thinking, I really could drop everything and just help my aging parents. I'll be dropping a few commitments soon. To pay more attention to people.

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Mums really do rock!

Last night at the Supper Club was a great night of mums making music. It was fascinating how each act used a different language, different style of music, and had different things to say in song. I loved it.

There were two mother/daughter acts, and it was a privilege to see how much they loved performing together.

The Supper Club was a good venue - they looked after us well and the food was fresh and delicious.

It would be wonderful if we could put together a complication cd!

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Mamapalooza is a wonderful thing

We opened the art show tonight, displaying 34 art works by mums about mothering. The artists wrote of the way their creative practices have changed since becoming mothers. Some said how much it means to them to be part of Mamapalooza.

My favourites are the works by Jasmine Symons,  Niki McDonald, and Emma Morris.

So happy. It's worth it.

Sunday, May 06, 2012

I feel like things are changing

There has been so much public discussion about feminism lately, I really feel like things are changing.

Yes, it really is me here. Me not being a tired pessimist.

The reasons for my optimism?

Feminist mother blogger bluemilk was approached by Fairfax to write for the Daily Life pages. About feminist mothering. That's big. She keeps up to date with the big and small conversations about feminism. I really don't know how she manages to read the amount she does. She's intelligent, thoughtful and insightful. She also has  a serious job, and two kids, and is involved in her community. She's some kind of wonder, and I'm so happy I'll get to meet her (again) when she joins us at the Mamapalooza Wordsmith forum at Tap Gallery on Mothers' Day. At Daily Life she joins Clem Bastow and Clementine Ford, who also write about feminism.

You can read bluemilk's piece here:

And there are more.

Musings of an Inappropriate Woman, the blog by Rachel Hills, also is a great place where feminism is discussed. And I love her picks for best of the rest of the net. 

The newsletter of the Women's Electoral Lobby also compiles feminist events and issues from around the world, and is worth subscribing to.

The Hoopla, News With Nipples, Feministe, Hoyden About Town. Reports of grassroots action in the UK and the US. Sydney Writer's Festival and other public forums. It's all going on.

Gives me hope, it does, and makes me think it is OK for me the settle back a tiny bit. Still speak out, yes. But it's OK to do some other things as well.

Saturday, May 05, 2012

Mamapaloza Sydney is Next Week!

For more info or if you would like to get involved
please contact Festival Organiser Vee Malnar 0402036082
or email

We are part of Mamapalooza International.
For more info please go

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