Inspiration, Inspiration, Wherefore Art Thou …

Inspiration; defined as something that makes someone want to do something or that gives someone an idea about what to do or create¹. Some days it just doesn’t want to be found and on others it can come from the most miniscule thought, word or deed. The middle of the night is always a productive time for inspirational thoughts but remembering them in the morning, or being game enough to action them, often makes you think the sleep would have been more beneficial.lightbulb

I’d been pondering the recent events in my life and whether I would choose just one for this blog or try to incorporate the elements from all of them that I wanted to write about, but an idea of how to connect them, remained elusive. As fate (or luck) would have it I happened to be involved in a conversation where others were verbalising their thoughts on frequently being plagued by a lack of inspiration and as is often the case, one comment lit the proverbial light-bulb. So here we go: a blog about things that I’ve found inspiring over the last week.

Bush ingenuity: Whether it’s manufacturing a machinery part from scrap or (most recently) repairing a “plugger” with toothpick and ring-pull, combining necessity and imagination to create an alternate solution for the problem at hand, is always inspiring. The ability to use the tools and equipment that may be available for even a temporary fix to the immediate problem is a skill fast disappearing in our “throw-away” world where almost anything is available for purchase 24/7. Living where we do (i.e. no shops close by, let alone 24/7 ones) I frequently see Jeff and the boys create something out of nothing and I’ve been so impressed over the years that it’s also inspired me to test my own bush skills occasionally.
Pictofigo_FriendshipThe bonds of friendship: I spent the weekend with four girlfriends, all of whom I have known for over thirty years. We shared all sorts of experiences in our early twenties when life was less complicated and the body more agile but over time we gradually drifted away to lead new and more complex lives in different places with husbands, children, work, study and a thousand other things that occupy the time of busy women and mothers. During those years we maintained some minimal contact but generally were not overly involved in each-other’s lives and rarely saw each other.

Several years ago we juggled diaries and eventually organised a get-together that was so fantastic we have duplicated it several times since. We are all still busy people but it is inspiring to realise that each time we meet our friendships are strengthened, not by the quantity of time we spend together, but the quality of the limited time we know we have and (as one of the girls messaged on Tuesday) validates why we became friends in the first place. It reinforces the notion that true friends do not have to physically share each-other’s lives to remain connected and comforting to know they will always be “there”.

Leading by example: I am in Hobart this week for a meeting between State and Territory Presidents and the Executive of CWA of Australia to help set the direction of the National body for the coming year. It is always inspiring to work with peers who are equally committed to not only furthering the objectives of The Country Women’s Association, but growing the organisation in ways that will enhance the impact of the work we do.

The CWA is evolving and has its sights set firmly on the future to ensure support and advocacy continues for women, their families and communities, particularly those in rural and remote areas of the country.

So there you have it; my different forms of inspiration and where I found them.


If you have trouble locating yours perhaps the response to my online query for inspirational quotes will help. It is from Eleanor Roosevelt, who apparently once said “Do one thing every day that scares you.”

Food for thought …


What If We Spared More Than a Thought?

Well, the festive season is here again and as usual most of us are pushing ourselves harder than normal to make sure everyone around us has a magical Christmas. We spend more than we should, eat more than we should and sometimes drink more than we should – guess that’s why it’s also referred to as the “silly season”!

The tree is decorated, the halls decked, some gifts wrapped and in position and the last minute hunting and gathering is about to commence where we will jostle with every other frazzled shopper for the best of the last fresh produce. Why do we do it to ourselves?

We went to friends the other night for Christmas drinks and to catch up with a few people we don’t see often enough and one of the conversations of the evening revolved around the madness of this time of year and sparing a thought for those who, for whatever reason, have to spend Christmas on their own. I know some people choose that option, but many don’t and when I contemplate that thought it makes me realise just how far, from the true meaning of Christmas, we have strayed.

Several of the participants in the discussion indicated their desire to support homeless shelters; community/soup kitchens etc. over the period and others gave examples of what they do to support services that provide some comfort to those not blessed with family and friends to share the time with or the resources to spend extra.

I don’t want to put a dampener on your celebrations, nor do I want you to stop fussing over or spoiling your families at Christmas. I could ask you to fruitlessly “spare a thought for those less fortunate”, but realistically who does that actually help? It just provides a salve for our own consciences.

My suggestion is; over the next twelve months, if you do not already, that you make a conscious effort to “gift” at least some of what might normally be spent (ensuring WE all enjoy OUR Christmas) to an organisation that actually does provide year-round assistance to those who need it most.

Your conscience, waistline and liver will appreciate the sacrifice.

What think ye?

From me to you, Merry Christmas! May it be all you want it to be 075-smiley-face-vector-art-free-download-l (2)


Dear Mr. Abbott

What guarantees will you put in place to ensure that those of us who choose to live in rural Australia will still have safe, accessible water sources and the productive land we currently enjoy?

What guarantees will you put in place to ensure that those of us who choose to live in rural Australia will still have safe, accessible water sources and the productive land we currently enjoy?

Firstly, congratulations on being elected Prime Minister of this great country. It is, as you say an honour, but also carries with it great responsibility.

The Country Women’s Association of NSW has, for 91 years championed the rights of and furthered causes for, women, their families and communities.

We do not possess unlimited financial or physical resources to be able to compete with other interest groups. What we do have is a proud history of frank, passionate, reasoned and informed contributions to many debates that bear striking resemblance to those we continue to be involved in today. It is for this reason I write to you now.

In your acceptance speech you said that Australia is once again open for new business. One of our main concerns is the protection of agricultural land, used in the production of food and fibre, and the precious ground and surface water that sustains it and us.

The resources boom has delivered a short term reprieve to governments struggling with debt, but at what long term cost. History shows us time and again that our march towards the 21st century has proven to be detrimental to our natural environment. What guarantees will you put in place to ensure that those of us who choose to live in rural Australia will still have safe, accessible water sources and the productive land we currently enjoy?

You also commented that the Coalition will not leave anyone behind. Members of CWA of NSW have continuously lobbied for improvements to health and other government services, telecommunications, road and rail infrastructure, law and order issues, equitable access to education, fair prices for commodities, the list goes on. It would be nice to think that, under your leadership, rural Australia will not be left behind, once again, on these issues. The vicious cycle of reduction and population drift from inland Australia will only continue whilst successive governments refuse to look further into the future than the next election.

We bring to the table a unique perspective on a wide range of issues, the ongoing concern and discussion around energy drinks is a case in point. We are now significant contributors in many of the debates that are taking place in the public arena and we are witnessing a growing trend to be included in the forums and discussions that lead to positive change. You will find a list of our current issues here.

You should know that alongside the fellowship, the charity and the tea and scones continues an unwavering commitment to improving the lives of Australian families by continuing to articulate the concerns of our members in the only way we know how; forthright, fair and from the heart.

So we ask you Mr. Abbott to look beyond the next 3 years and create for future generations, as well as yourself, a legacy like ours, to be proud of.

Yours Sincerely,

Tanya Cameron