Saturday, June 30, 2012

Fundraiser Auction for Sands Manuakau

I had done lots of charities, the biggest two being raising funds for the deaf in Kenya and to separate a pair of Siamese/co-joint twins from Nepal. I am very happy to be associated with this new fund raiser.
Pinafore Princess, a retail/shopping store is doing an auction to raise funds for Manukau Sands. I donate 2 signed copies of my 3rd edition of my book, "Diary of a bereaved mother, goodbye my baby."
We are currently looking for Donations to go towards this amazing auction for this charity.

All proceeds will be for Sands Manukau.

If you would like to donate something please email me at for more info

... All donations will be much appreciated and Money made form this auction will be for such a wonderful cause.

This auction is run by Pinafore Princess and is no way associated with facebook.

Auction will start on Wednesday the 25th of july and will finish Monday the 30th of july.
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Information on Sands Manukau
Information on Sands Manukau

Sands Manukau is a registered charity supporting families who have experienced the death of a baby at any stage of pregnancy and up to a year following birth. We enable grieving parents to recognize their baby a member of the family offering practical advice and support materials that create the memories that last a life time. We offer bereaved parents the opportunity to share experiences, talk and listen, offering empathy and understanding for their situation through phone support, one on one contact and monthly meetings. We are not counsellors but we are all bereaved parents who volunteer our time to support other parents and their families.
Sands Manukau volunteers are available to support parents during their time in hospital or at home following the birth if required.
Parents can be supported throughout a pregnancy where the baby is terminally ill and will not live long after birth by someone who has been in a similar situation. Whether the choice is made to interrupt the pregnancy or continue with it, we are here to help.

What they Offer:
During your stay in hospital - We are available to assist with memory making and parenting ideas while you and your baby are in hospital. Would you like to talk to someone who has been through a similar experience and understands what you are going through? If so please ring us or ask your bereavement team member to ring us on your behalf and we will arrange this.
Free Hand/Foot Casting – We cover the cost of 2 hands and 2 feet mounted on a granite or wooden base with name plaque. Included in this service are photos (placed on CD) and inkless hand/foot prints.
Care Bags - for parents whose baby dies from 12 weeks gestation up to one year of age. These Care Bags contain various memory making opportunities including items such as a special memories book, candle, and 2 teddy bears (one for mum, one for baby).
Miscarriage Packs - For parents whose baby dies less than 12 weeks gestation.
Monthly Meetings – These adult only meetings allow for the expression grief in a safe and caring environment. Parents who share similar experiences can often listen, acknowledge and accept feelings that others may find hard to comprehend. The group meetings offer a non-judgmental space to share stories, concerns and feelings.
Coffee Mornings – These monthly mornings are a great way to get together
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Wednesday, June 27, 2012


Hi Dawn,

In New Zealand, I often use a picture and get my kids to tell a story. Do you like me to just post the photo and leave out the commentary?
I shall do just this, and perhaps post the commentary next week,

a clue, this is my most passionate photo for my Save the world theme, and taken in a hot tropical island.

June 30: A Photo that Tells a Story A picture speaks 1000 words. Take a photo that tells the story within itself. Topic was inspired by this photo by Dawn Treader
Friday My Town Shoot Out :

link to Mr Linky at the Friday shoot out link below.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

World Tue, outdoor wed, save our world, thursday song: Roses

Paper roses arenot the best, but some of them are of  a very good quality, and it saves the environment. Just recently, I taught my students to make recycled paper rosettes. They were so happy.

 I left Auckland International Airport on Saturday morning smelling of roses, no, it wasn't my perfume. But it was Mirna Petro. I saw this arch with the big globes of paper roses and took a photo. Then Mirna came over and asked if I wanted my photo taken. After wards, I asked if I could take hers. She happily obliged.

I told her that her employer should be very proud of her and I want him to know. As an  employee at the transit lounge of any International airport, she is the first ambassador of the country. This is why I include the meme, save the world. With friendly PR employees like Mirnia, she saves the country. Tourists will spread the message that we have very friendly people in New Zealand.

Paki Paki Mirnia. She worksat JR duty free.
For sponsoring our olympics team, I give you their link. Should you come to New Zealand, go and say Hi to Mirna. Better still, say Kia Ora and tell her, I taught you. JR/Duty Free offers world-class duty free and retail shopping, located in airports across Australia, New Zealand and Israel and in the city centre of the main capitals of Australia.
Experience the convenience of finding everything you’re looking for within one store; from luxury brands and designer fashion to an extensive range of beauty, fragrance, electronics, liquor products and wine.
Shopping within the modern and stylish surroundings of a JR/Duty Free store is a complete experience. Our friendly staff will provide expert advice and personal attention to assist with your selection.

People of my generation, who could forget Paper Roses? Marie Osmond sang this song when I was in my last year of high school. The next year, I went to teach in a secondary school, Kai Chung school in Binatang aka Bintangnor. The students are having a reunion, and this is the reason I am making this trip. It's 38 years since I had set foot on the school. It's going to be fun.

The students were also singing Paper Roses. At that time, we didn't have TV. When I went to Canada, the next year, there was the Marie and Donny Osmond show. There is no prize to guess who the boys were glueing their eyes to, and of course, the girls were on one person.

Not so long ago, on New Zealand TV, Donny was on British TV, and once Marie was there, and she sang, Paper Roses. It was nostalgic.  I realise that I have grown old. I told some of the kids , I hope they don't expect their Miss Chan to be 19 again.

 I realize the way your eyes deceived me
With tender looks that I mistook for love;
So take away the flowers that you gave me
And send the kind that you remind me of.
Your pretty lips look warm and so appealing
They seem to have the sweetness of a rose;
But when you give a kiss there is no feeling
It's just a stiff and artificial pose.

I thought that you would be a perfect lover
You seemed so full of sweetness at the start;
But like a big red rose that's made of paper
There isn't any sweetness in your heart.
Paper Rosespaper Roses
Oh how real those roses seem to be!
But they're only imitation
Like your imitation lover for me.

Copied from

Friday, June 22, 2012

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Auckland, city of sails.

Auckland is known as the city of sails. I like sails, they don't burn precious fossil. We are good, and once was the first country outside America to win the America;s cup.

Well, it's not far down to paradise
At least it's not for me
And if the wind is right
You can sail away and find tranquility
Oh, the canvas can do miracles
Just you wait and see
Believe me

It's not far to never-never land
No reason to pretend
And if the wind is right
You can find the joy of innocence again
Oh, the canvas can do miracles
Yust you wait and see
Believe me

Sailing takes me away
To where I've always heard it could be
Just a dream and the wind to carry me
And soon I will be free

Fantasy, it gets the best of me
When I'm sailing
All caught up in the reverie
Every word is a symphony
Won't you believe me

Sailing takes me away
To where I've always heard it could be
Just a dream and the wind to carry me
And soon I will be free

[Instrumental Interlude]

Well it's not far back to sanity
At least it's not for me
And if the wind is right
you can sail away and find serenity
Oh, the canvas can do miracles
Just you wait and see
Believe me

Sailing takes me away
To where I've always heard it could be
Just a dream and the wind to carry me
And soon I will be free

Saturday, June 16, 2012

photohunt: Cooking

This morning, in my Friday shootout meme, I wrote about a tour in my city and talked about a Hangi.

In New Zealand, our natives, the Maoris have adapted their version of volcano cooking called the Hangi.

I was teaching my ESOL adult students what a Hangi is.
I was pleasantly surprised that In South America, they also cook food in a similar way. In Peru, Felecites tells me they call it Pachamanca, and in Chile, Monica says they call it Curanto. My Samoa students call it Umu.
In my other blog,, I wrote about Hangis and my book, Mail order Bride., and short story, Nadine in various posts, but I didn't have a closeup photo. Here I am fortunate that Ngarimu's cousin invited me to take as many photos as I wanted.
Here are pix of the hot pit.

Cooking for a storm, chicken, pork, mutton, potato, kumara, pumpkin, cabbage, wholesome food cooked on site. Food wrapped in paper and alumnium foil placed in a basket and steamed in the ground for hours from hot stones.

The Maoris got this idea of a hangi from the hot thermal volcanic grounds where eggs can be boiled by lowering into thermal pools. In a Hangi, a big pit or more than one square yard is dug in the ground. Timber is burned, and stones are heated. The baskets of food are put into the pit and covered with jute sacks. Dirt is dug on top of the pit. The food takes a few hours to cook. It looks like a smoking volcano.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Friday My Town Shoot Out for 6/15: Town Tours

This is a special tour. The photos are a remix, I just work the commentary for a submission for a course I am doing. This is meant to be a teaching document for Primary school. That is why the language is simple.A tour like this will change your thinking.

Ngarimu, the leader of Zero-waste.
Celebrating Waitangi Day with a difference

On the day before Waitangi day, I go to the Ngati Whatua Marae at Bastion Point.
There are people from all over the world. They come from Japan, China, Vietnam, Germany, England, Sweden and many other countries. We are volunteers. Volunteers mean we do jobs without being paid.
We wait at the steps outside the Public Relations office. They tell us the customs of the Marae. To give respect, we must take our shoes off outside the Marae. We must not take photos inside, because there are spirits if their ancestors.Before we go into the Marae compound, they have a Powhiri to welcome us.

We sit on the mattress on the floor, and listen to the Maori elders tell us the Maori custom. Then we listen to Jo Knight of the Zero-Waste Trust. They tell us how important it is to recycle and not ruin our Mother Earth. After the talks, we walk in a row and we do the Hongi. To many foreigners, this is an interesting experience.
We move to the dining hall, and they fed us with big portions of vegetarian food. It was very tasty.
We go to sleep on the floor. All the mattresses are place next to each other. You sleep with strangers.
The men are asked to help in the Hangi. I have never seen a Hangi. I was interested to look. They dig a hole in the ground. They used burnt cider in the ground. They put pork, potatoes, kumara, and pumpkins.  It takes many hours. The food is not for us, they sell it at the Waitangi celebrations.

It is hard to sleep with 100 people inside. Some people talk. Some people snore.
We wake up at 6 am so we can use the bathroom first. I go for a walk. The sun rise is beautiful.
We have breakfast. We are given a cowboy hat and T-Shirts. The T-shirts tell the festival goers that we are the Zero-waste workers.
We take our big wheeling bins down the slope to the Orakei Park. That was hard.
We go to our station. We are to educate or tell people what is Zero-waste? We have one big bin for all recycle stuff like paper, plastic bottles; one medium bin for Kai. Kai means food, food for the worms. And a little plastic bag for the landfill.
We are supposed to be there only to tell the people which bin to drop their rubbish. But some people just drop their rubbish and walk away very quickly. We have to bend over to get the wrong things. “Not nice”

It’s hot. Standing there the whole day is very tiring. They give us lots of water, and yummy food. We hear the nice music.
One year, they had the boats to welcome the VIP. VIP means very important people. There was Powhiri. They do the Kapa Haka.
When most of the festival goers have gone, I go to the “back-end” to help out. I thought standing at my station was bad, this is awful. When people do not listen to instructions, they dump everything in the wrong bin, we have to sort them. When food is left out in the hot sun for many hours, it is not nice, the smell changes. Someone jokes that we should ban disposable nappies.
Why do we do it? At the end of the festival, the Orakei Park was very clean. It was free of rubbish. Instead of dumping to the landfill, we diverted 79% (4.9 tonnes) to worm farms and recycling. I am more conscious about recycling.
I go back every year. The Maori leader said, “You slept in our Marae, you ate our food, you are now a Maori, you belong to the Whanau of Ngati Whatua
 I am glad to be a friend of Ngarimu Blair.  He works very hard and I am glad he won a Sir Peter Blake award for his work on behalf of the Ngati Whatua o Orakei.

You learn about recycling and some Maori customs.
Vocabulary: New Zealand Theme words.
Marae, powhirei Kapa Haka, Hanhgi. Hongi, whanau, kai
Public relations, landfill, ancestors, festival, VIP, volunteers

Friday My Town Shoot Out for 6/15: Town Tours

link to Mr Linky at the Friday shoot out link below.