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Royal Reflections

Written by Sarah Ryder - I’ve been reflecting on the royals, prompted no doubt by the much-hyped Oprah interview with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, the recent passing of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, and the upcoming Queen's Birthday weekend.  A life of public service, duty and always being in the spotlight can’t be easy, yet royals such as Queen Elizabeth II manage it with dignity and aplomb.  Many of the life story clients I work with mention brushes with royalty in their s...

May 12, 2021

Are we making progress?

Written by Samantha Cutler - I can smell autumn in the air and many Waikato dairy farmers will be heading towards the end of their milking year. All sounds as it has for years. So, what has changed within rural Waikato from sixty or seventy years ago? I’m lucky to have so many personal history memories to reflect upon. A florist remembered, “During the winter, florists based wreaths with heather and farmers sent 70lb bags to the flower market. The plant mostly grew by the roadside because fa...

April 15, 2021

Otago Central Rail Trail

Written by Leane Wheeler - With our New Zealand borders closed, now is the perfect time to get out and explore what’s in our own backyard.  Recently I was lucky enough to experience a five-day cycle trip of the Otago Rail Trail. The Otago Central Rail Trail was built over sixteen years and completed in 1907.  It was initially built to transport supplies to and from the gold fields, but by the late 1980’s it was used less and less as road transport increased, and finally, the D...

March 17, 2021

Volunteering

Written by Sharon McGaffin - According to one dictionary definition, a volunteer is “one who offers service”. Many organisations in New Zealand would be unable to carry out their work without the help of people who offer their services for free, e.g., the Fire Service, Citizens Advice Bureaus, Coastguard New Zealand, and opportunity shops. The work of volunteers contributes a lot of value to our country. NGOs, charities, social enterprises, environmental groups, sports teams, all rely o...

February 22, 2021

Every vote counts

Written by Elaine Mead - Voting and number of votes have occupied headlines recently in both New Zealand and the United States of America.  Both countries recorded increased voter participation from previous years, almost 83% in New Zealand and nearly 63% in the United States, their highest voter turnout in over a century. Whilst closely fought, the outcome in both countries was clear – to those who choose to see it – and highlights the importance of having and exercising a voice in a n...

January 6, 2021

Memories of a past grand era - New Zealand Railways

Written by Kate McCarthy - The following is an excerpt from Margaret McNaughton’s Life Story (in progress) reflecting on the grand era of New Zealand Railways.  "As I grew up in New Zealand during the Great Depression, between World War One and World War Two, most New Zealanders were of English, Scottish or Irish descent, or Maori.  All were poor by today's standards.  There was no extreme wealth, but we were rich and secure in our lifestyle.  As taxpayers we...

November 30, 2020

The Good Cemeterians

Written by Sarah Ryder - Brian McIntyre’s wife says he’ll be spending long enough in a cemetery without spending all his days above ground in one as well!  Despite this Brian and his team dubbed ‘the cemeterians’ have spent hundreds of hours in Nelson cemeteries, working quietly away to restore dignity and honour to neglected graves. When I catch up with Brian at Wakapuaka Cemetery, it’s a cold blustery spring day with a light drizzle falling.  Despite the inclement...

October 17, 2019

Marvellous Melodious Memories

Written by Yelshea de Jong - What would be on the playlist for the soundtrack of your life?  We each have one; with specific music enduring the test of time to continue rotating upon the turntable of our lives.  Each soundtrack remaining as unique to us and our memories, as our DNA itself. Can you remember the very first song or piece of music that grabbed your attention?  For me it was the theme tune to the 1970s hit show Happy Days.  I clearly remember pestering m...

August 19, 2019

The Last Epidemic?

Written by Elaine Mead - When I was six years old, my grandmother was rushed to Auckland Hospital emergency one evening and the family gathered, as the outcome was grim.  At that age, you don’t appreciate the gravity of such a situation, and sitting and waiting is boring.  So, my cousin and I explored the hospital corridors.  I discovered a large, dimly lit room where someone lay in a big box, with just their head sticking out.  The regular thump and suck of air p...

July 12, 2019

How Do we Watch Television in 2019?

Written by Leane Wheeler - One of the memories of most of my clients is when they first watched television.  Often only one family in the street would be lucky enough to have a television and many people remember gathering at the neighbours to watch the telly as they called it. TV broadcasts had begun in London 24 years before our government of the day introduced TV to New Zealand 1st June 1960 in Auckland, 1961 in Christchurch and Wellington and 1962 in Dunedin.  The first night...

June 20, 2019

Bright Sunlight, Dark Shadow and a Love of Life

Written by Samantha Cutler -  My inspiring client Judy Hale introduces her story, “Following a blessed rural life spent around Maramarua in North Waikato, enriched with family love, animals and the land, in 1977 our lives were plunged into disarray at the death of my dear husband Barry at the age of 38.  We missed his strength, his praise, his hands, his voice and his love.  Our children were aged 13, 11 and 8.  Tentatively I regained a reason to exist, motivated by lo...

March 8, 2019

Armistice Day

Written by Elaine Mead -  France, 6 June 1917 “Dear Auntie, a few lines to let you know I am in the best of health, and also I received your ever welcome parcel, also Weekly News.  Auntie the parcel was very much welcomed this time, as I am in the trenches and run out of fags.  Things are pretty lively here the last few days.  I tell you what you might do for me, write to mother and tell her I am well for it will be hard for me to get a letter away as often as I would like ...

October 10, 2018 Posts 1-12 of 12 | Page
 

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