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(n.) a homesickness for a home to which you cannot return, a home which maybe never was; the nostalgia, the yearning, the grief for the lost places of your past.

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So ends the winter of my discontent

I feel rather Shakespearean when I utter these words to no one in particular, an ageing actor pacing the stage connecting with their audience. Arms outstretched and with a deep baritone theatre voice I dramatically flail about my lounge room rueing the lost moments of the winter gone by. My winter of discontent. I took time away to re-evaluate my life, my purpose and try understand the madness of this world around me. To be honest I was rather fried by it all , mentally

From suitcase to backpack - unpacking life

There is an art to packing a suitcase for either a weekend getaway or overseas trip and I just never seem to get it right. It is such a balancing act between expectation, need , want and reality. I have been enjoying my self imposed exile for the last few weeks as the wild winds howl around me and the fire crackles away in the hearth , I'm somewhat amused to realise that I have finally managed the packing of this particular trips suitcase to be just right. There i

A fondness for words and letting them go

Thank goodness for long weekends and lazy days , the perfect time to write and re-write. I think I have let go of quite a few words in my manuscript draft, some I knew deserved to go others I was quite attached to. Trying to find that balance and retain what I think is the voice of the story is proving both challenging and yet inspiring. It is like I am able to write a whole new book. The biggest conundrum at the moment is the order of the story , breaking that emotional conn

Reflections in the sunshine

Whilst writing my memoir #TheSuitcase I was able to reflect on all the parts that make up the sum of me. Many years ago there was not the support or understanding of the effects domestic violence had on women and children. Even today I am not sure we have progressed very far. I often look back at this stage of my life with a certain fondness, as strange as it sounds it was a liberating time in my life . This is a small condensed extract from a chapter in my book where I r

Things we value

I have been going through a stage of self reflection lately. I think that's part of the process of writing memoir. I also wonder if it is part of the ageing process. Do we turn 60 and start to reassess what we value? Or does the wisdom of age and a life lived help us realise what's important. If I think now what I would need to pack in a suitcase I have come to realise that no suitcase or even a moving van would be required.The things I value are within me, in my heart, my me

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About the author

Jan Daniels was born in the late 50's in England , but has called Australia home for over five decades.

Jan has a deep love for the natural beauty of the country, especially of her spiritual homeland and muse, Anglesea. Raising her three children in the Surfcoast township as a sole parent gave her a solid foundation to rebuild her life and find the peace and stability she so craved.

Jan is fascinated by people, conversations, the human spirit, the seasons of life, artistic talent and reality TV. Her greatest joy comes from beauty and colour, family and belonging, the lure of clifftops and an angry sea, the will to win and her beloved Hawthorn Football Club - the longest relationship and love affair of her life.

After a lifetime working in community services Jan has now retired to live a more gentle life and spend her days full of sunshine and song.

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