Category Archives: Personal

Lest We Forget

On April 20, 1915, my great grandfather William Chappell embarked for Gallipoli as part of the 12th Infantry Battalion, 5th reinforcements. He was 32.

He was wounded in Gallipoli (At “Anzac”) in August, patched up, and by late 1916 was fighting in France.

He returned to Australia in 1917 and was discharged: “neurosis & over age”.

As far as we knew, he never spoke of the war. We discovered his medals some 15 years ago, and that was the first time we’d heard of him fighting at Gallipoli.

I’m forever grateful for what he did – and that he came home alive. (He didn’t marry until after the war). There were far too many who didn’t get that opportunity.

‪#‎LestWeForget‬ ‪#‎Anzac‬ ‪#‎AnzacDay‬ ‪#‎Anzac100‬

(L-R) my great grandfather's dog tag (W A Chappell, 1708, 12th A I) , Victory Medal, 1914-1915 Star, British War Medal

(L-R) my great grandfather’s dog tag (W A Chappell, 1708, 12th A I) , Victory Medal, 1914-1915 Star, British War Medal

My great grandfather, William Albert Chappell, on his wedding day.

My great grandfather, William Albert Chappell, on his wedding day.


#OneWord365 – 2015

With this Christmas wish is missed
The point I could convey
If only I could find the words to say to let you know
How much you’ve touched my life because
Here is where you’re finding me
In the exact same place as New Years Eve
And from the lack of my persistency
We’re less than half as close as I wanna be

(Relient K – I Celebrate the Day)

2015 has arrived – and with it, all of the resolutions that people make with the best of intentions.

As I’ve mentioned before, I don’t do resolutions. But what I do do, is join with the community over at #OneWord365 and choose a word that I will then allow to “flavour” my year.

(and as with my 2015 #OneWord365 post, I’m typing this sitting in a cafe in my hometown…..“in the exact same place….”)

Last year, that word was HOPE.

This year?  I’m going to cheat (if that’s even a thing here!) and choose HOPE again.


2014 was a really hard year for me, personally and professionally.  While intentionally choosing to live focused on Hope, I ended up being treated for depression, anxiety, and stress.  This impacted on both my personal life and my professional life.  I came extremely close to losing my job.  Things that I had hoped that were going to happen in my personal life simply didn’t happen – and to be honest, they seem further away than ever.


1) I truly believe that choosing to live with hope as my focus in 2014 was one of the major reasons I came out of 2014 as relatively unscathed as I did.
2) I am beginning to think that HOPE may become more than a #OneWord365″ word for me (I’m going to need a new word for 2016!)

So, my word for 2015 will again be HOPE – with an addendum: BE BRAVE (do more things that scare me).

Two of those things that scare me that I am planning on attacking early on in 2015: heading back to Uni, and starting to audition for those musicals that I keep getting told to audition for.

So here’s to a big, scary 2015 🙂


another year older…..

Last Wednesday was my birthday.  I celebrated in what is now the traditional way – a phone constantly buzzing with text messages and a facebook wall full of well-wishes.

I find birthday celebrations are strange now. Well they have been for years – since I moved away from family.  Birthdays were a HUGE deal when we lived at home – the day was yours and you even got to choose what was for dinner that evening!  But even better, was our birthday parties.  I’ve had some fantastic birthdays – my 16th, 18th and 21st birthdays were pretty epic.  My 22nd birthday was my first birthday away from my family (even though my parents flew over to see me).

Birthdays now are just….different.  Growing up in the country, EVERYONE came to your party, as everyone knew you, and well….there wasn’t much else to choose from.  In the “big city” everyone is seemingly double booked all the time (my diary is a scary place) and nailing down RSVP’s can be a headache – to the point that last year I didn’t even celebrate my birthday.  This year, HALF of my guests pulled out the day of my birthday party.  

As someone who’s primary love language is quality time, this honestly hurt.  I knew most of the reasons were legitimate.  August is a tricky month – there are far too many birthdays, and nearly everyone is somewhere along the spectrum of “sick”.  But (to steal a phrase from work) one I worked to “reframe” the situation, I was ready for a fun time out with my friends and my birthday party was a fantastic night.  I really do have a fantastic group of friends.

One thing I find myself struggling with though – and this seems to surface more around my birthday – is this feeling of disappointment that creeps up on me.  I realised this week that I’m still subconsciously holding myself to some kind of ideal “this is what ADULT looks like” – and I’m really nothing like what I thought I’d be by this age.  However, this is not necessarily a bad thing and I need to constantly remind myself of this.

While my life is not at all what I envisioned as a 16 year-old, I’ve seen so many of my dreams come to fruition, I’ve done and seen things that I never thought would come to pass.  And in all that, I’m still learning to trust God with the promises and dreams that He’s placed in my heart – and that’s where HOPE comes back into it.  I’m still learning to live each day CHOOSING to keep my hope in God. Not in my job. Not in my friends. Not in my church. Not in my abilities.  Choosing to be grateful, even when things get hard, even when things get dark.

Ps 25:4-5
4Show me the right path, O  lord;
point out the road for me to follow.
5Lead me by your truth and teach me,
for you are the God who saves me.
All day long I put my hope in you.