• Most Topular Stories

  • 'I wasn't texting at all, I wasn't speeding'

    The Sydney Morning Herald News Headlines
    23 Apr 2014 | 6:30 pm
    Buddy Franklin says he is "deeply sorry" for crashing into four cars, claiming it was just an accident.
  • The scary reality of life in 2050 | Top Stories
    23 Apr 2014 | 6:54 pm
    TEACHER, builder, transhumanist designer. Wait, what? If you wonder what you’ll be doing in 35 years, futurist Morris Miselowski has some scary insights.
  • Prince Charles's brother-in-law dies in US | Breaking News
    23 Apr 2014 | 6:46 pm
    MARK Shand, a conservationist and author, and the brother-in-law of Prince Charles, has died in the US after falling and hitting his head.
  • The scary reality of life in 2050 | Most Popular | Most Popular Stories
    23 Apr 2014 | 6:54 pm
    TEACHER, builder, transhumanist designer. Wait, what? If you wonder what you’ll be doing in 35 years, futurist Morris Miselowski has some scary insights.
  • Pension reform and the 'budget crisis': a less than mature debate

    The Conversation
    Veronica Sheen, Research Associate, School of Social Sciences at Monash University
    23 Apr 2014 | 6:53 pm
    Treasurer Joe Hockey last night stepped up his rhetoric on the the need for heavy government spending cuts, singling out the A$40 billion age pension cost as “much more than we spend on defence, or hospitals, or schools each year”. Some reports have suggested the pension eligibility age is to be lifted to 70 for everyone born after 1 January 1959, taking effect by 2029, in next month’s budget. Whatever the detail of the measure, it looks as if the rise in the pension eligibility age is a done deal. So what happened to the “mature debate” that the treasurer called for just a few…
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    The Conversation

  • Pension reform and the 'budget crisis': a less than mature debate

    Veronica Sheen, Research Associate, School of Social Sciences at Monash University
    23 Apr 2014 | 6:53 pm
    Treasurer Joe Hockey last night stepped up his rhetoric on the the need for heavy government spending cuts, singling out the A$40 billion age pension cost as “much more than we spend on defence, or hospitals, or schools each year”. Some reports have suggested the pension eligibility age is to be lifted to 70 for everyone born after 1 January 1959, taking effect by 2029, in next month’s budget. Whatever the detail of the measure, it looks as if the rise in the pension eligibility age is a done deal. So what happened to the “mature debate” that the treasurer called for just a few…
  • Remembering Neville Wran – arts aficionado or Balmain bruiser?

    Jo Caust, Associate Professor, Cultural Policy and Arts Leadership at University of Melbourne
    23 Apr 2014 | 6:38 pm
    In 1981, on a short trip back home to Australia from the UK, I saw a job advertised that I thought had been made for me. The Director, Women and Arts, according to the advertisement, was a special role created by the then Premier of New South Wales, Neville Wran, who died earlier this week. I applied and to my surprise was appointed. The job description envisaged a festival and research project on the subject of “women and the arts” throughout the State of New South Wales in 1982. While the job sounded impressive, the reality was there was no budget; just a salary to pay me for 18 months.
  • Inform, not notify: the birth of participatory, 'slow journalism'

    Benedetta Brevini, Lecturer in Communication and Media at University of Sydney
    23 Apr 2014 | 6:29 pm
    The digital era has led to increasing challenges for western and traditional news media business models. Media outlets are facing steady declines in revenue, while the migration of advertising online has brought limited success in “monetising” digital’s audiences. To make things worse, internet ads have progressively decreased in value in recent years. The issue of how to fund quality journalism that would hold the government to account is a pressing one. As newsrooms continue to cut back, there is a real reduction in reporting capacity with profound effects on quality, investigative…
  • The forgotten Anzacs: 'honoured guests' of the Sultan

    Mat Hardy, Lecturer in Middle East Studies at Deakin University
    23 Apr 2014 | 2:52 pm
    As we undertake our annual remembrance of Australians at war, some attention should be paid to those personnel who were taken captive by the enemy and then faced long years in brutal conditions. Enduring starvation, beatings, disease, death marches and forced labour in extreme climatic conditions, many of them died from casual neglect, deliberate abuse and untreated medical conditions. And I’m not talking about prisoners of the Japanese in World War Two, but Australians taken captive by Ottoman forces during The Great War. Australian Flying Corps personnel, Mesopotoamia AWM Just over two…
  • Modern life is rubbish – the stories abandoned objects tell

    Julie Shiels, Lecturer in Art in Public Space at RMIT University
    23 Apr 2014 | 1:07 pm
    It all began with a muselet – the wire cage that holds a champagne cork in place. Flattened on the footpath, its complex pattern caught my eye. I began noticing others, and realised that every squashed muselet was different, and that behind every one was a different story, a different event, a different celebration. This prompted me to explore how detritus, and other marks and traces left anonymously on the pavement tell us stories about urban spaces – diverse stories that are nevertheless specific to a particular place and time. I began collecting and photographing the minutiae of the…
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    Women's Network Australia Blog

  • Competitor Research: Tips to Help You Get Better Results

    Ingrid Cliff
    23 Apr 2014 | 2:52 pm
    Before you put pen to paper to write content for your website, you need to set some time aside to conduct in-depth research on your competitors and their website presence. You need to know what you are up against, so you can ensure you present your business as a credible alternative. Start by looking through […]
  • How to Create a Soul Goal for You and Your Business

    David Solomon
    22 Apr 2014 | 3:00 pm
    Human beings are strange creatures. As soon as we set a goal, the average human being will automatically start comparing where we are at now in contrast to how we perceive we should be travelling towards the goal. Whilst this can be very motivating for some, for others it can have the exact opposite effect […]
  • Protecting Your Most Valuable Asset – Your People (Part 2)

    Sarah Savvas
    21 Apr 2014 | 3:08 pm
    Second only to the difficulty of accessing capital, the biggest complaint I come across from business owners is about finding and keeping good employees. Good employees are, without a doubt, the most valuable asset any company can have. And when times are tough, it is more important than ever to get the most out of […]
  • Setting the Customer Service Benchmark

    Terri Mitchell AKA The Profit Frog
    16 Apr 2014 | 3:01 pm
    If customers had their way, they would define what customer service is. The thing is, you would also go out of business trying to keep all customers happy, because we all know there are some dodgy types out there. That said, it is not up to you alone to set the standard in customer service. […]
  • Online Content Writing 101 – Watch What You Say

    Elizabeth Campbell
    15 Apr 2014 | 3:00 pm
    Scrolling though masses of emails, blogs and news sources I subscribe to I am often amazed at how many people drop the f-bomb in their publicly-seen online content, whether it is on their website, emails, social status updates or blogs. It kind of blows my mind, but more and more people seem to be doing […]
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    Pearl Maple

  • I believe

    23 Apr 2014 | 1:51 am
    "Believe there is a greater power silently working all things for good, behave yourself and never mind the rest." Beatrix Potter Early morning walks along the beach are a source of constant entertainment and surprise, you never know what you will find.  Love the way the rays of light push past the clouds to announce the dawn of a new day.   Joining Linky Parties:Sky Watch FridayChrisy's
  • Reconnecting

    15 Apr 2014 | 3:36 am
    Love the theme of reconnecting with nature, with what is real in your life and the special people that make it all worth while.  Happy Easter Spring Equinox or what ever this weekend is on your calendar. Joining Linky Parties:Sky Watch FridayChrisy's Reconnecting With Nature party
  • Bog Hop With Catherine Scanlon Designs and Art Gone Wild

    10 Apr 2014 | 3:06 am
    Catherine Scanlon and friends are hosting a blog hop to celebrate her new line of stamps and stencils from Art Gone Wild.  Click the links at the bottom of this post to see how we have found our own creative style with the stamps and stencils.  Then loop back to Catherine’s blog  because she’s got some fun prizes on offer too. Two of my favs are the Grid Art Journal Stencil (CSSTL-006) and
  • Nature's magic

    1 Apr 2014 | 3:51 am
    "Every season brings us magic wonder in the light and shade nature gives us endless bounty memories that cannot fade." Iris Hesselden Sharing one of my memorable nature photos with a funny story.  Riding the commuter train I spotted the potential for a huge colorful sunset, waiting patiently stop after stop, crossing fingers for no delays, finally pulling into the station and
  • Cockatoos

    26 Mar 2014 | 3:29 am
    Swarms of sulphur crested cockatoos are becoming part of my daily routine.  They have been ground feeding in the early morning light, foraging for bugs and seeds in the grass or more often squawking hello from tree branches.    Joining Linky Parties:Sky Watch FridayChrisy's Reconnecting With Nature party
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    Bartlett's Blog

  • Time to restore an Upper House in Qld’s Parliament

    Andrew Bartlett
    4 Apr 2014 | 10:39 pm
    Calls to bring back the Upper House – or Legislative Council – in Queensland’s Parliament appear with fairly regular frequency. Like every other state Upper House at the time, when Queensland’s Legislative Council voted to abolish itself back in 1921, all its members were appointed rather than elected – something which certainly needed addressing. However, every other state (eventually) dealt with this through the obvious mechanism of requiring members of the Upper House to be directly elected. The absence of any form of check and balance over the Queensland…
  • Dead Blogs

    Andrew Bartlett
    20 Jan 2014 | 3:29 am
    As anyone passing by this site in recent months would know, this blg has basically been dead for some time. But perhaps it’s just been resting. When I saw a piece towards the end of last year by Jason Kottke called The Blog is Dead (long live the blog) – – it seemed apt. He, and others who responded, such as John Scalzi – – made the obvious point that blogging isn’t totally dead, but rather it – and many other things online –…
  • More on Senate Preferences

    Andrew Bartlett
    29 Aug 2013 | 2:44 am
    The possibility of people getting elected to the Senate with virtually no public support has been greater coverage, with a piece in today’s SMH and Antony Green letting fly about it on the ABC this morning. Given this is how the Senate voting system works, it’s probably idealistic to hope that people wouldn’t try to game it. And it’s certainly very common for parties of all sizes to look at doing preference deals to improve their chances. Of course I’ll be voting for the Greens, and given how difficult it is to be sure where your preferences might end up…
  • Senate preference mayhem: 0.2% of the vote could be enough to win

    Andrew Bartlett
    27 Aug 2013 | 5:14 am
    This election sees a record number of parties contesting the Senate and a record number of candidates. Even people like me who enjoy filling in all the squares below the line on the Senate ballot paper might balk at having to fill in 82 squares (if you’re in Queensland), 102 (if you’re in NSW) or 97 (if you’re in Victoria). I tend to start with my top few, then go to the bottom with the ones I loathe the most and after a few back and forths, ideally it all meets neatly in the middle – if I mess it up and have to start all over again it could end up taking quite a long time. All of…
  • Former Trade Minister highlights common cruelty to pigs

    Andrew Bartlett
    6 Jul 2013 | 6:48 am
    There was a great piece today by outgoing MP and former Cabinet Minister Craig Emerson on the enormous suffering experienced by many pigs in factory farm environments which is very common in Australia (and elsewhere). Even though I strongly agree with him, there is often a part of me when I read something like that that thinks “why didn’t you say that publicly when you were a Senior Minister rather than a retiring MP”? Sometimes I think that cynicism is justified…
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    Miscellaneous Mum - Trying to find the objective correlative, everyday

  • Living List – Running a Marathon

    Karen Andrews
    23 Apr 2014 | 1:00 pm
    I’ve entered the Melbourne Marathon. I think I’m ready, and I certainly think it’s time. No more procrastination or indecision. Even better, I’ve got a terrific sponsor behind me, believing I can do it too. Incredible. But more about that later. Let’s go back to motivation(s) first. Why a marathon? Why is it on my Living List? There are several reasons, the major one being the prestige of the event itself, steeped in honour and history. I first learned the story in my Ancient History class in high school and was reminded of it in the chapter in Murakami’s…
  • Happy 65th Wedding Anniversary

    Karen Andrews
    22 Apr 2014 | 1:14 pm
      On this day, 65 years ago, my grandfather and grandmother were married – in the same church Adam and I were also married in. Nan is recovering from her stroke in February, and was last week discharged from her rehab ward at the hospital to enter a care facility. It has been a stressful time for the family, but she was well enough to get a pass to leave on the weekend to go to mum’s house, to celebrate and have cake with those who were able to make the small party. We were not there, but they’ve not left our thoughts in months. 65 years. How wonderfully, utterly…
  • Easter 2014

    Karen Andrews
    20 Apr 2014 | 11:17 pm
    It was quiet. Very, very quiet. Thanks mostly to a combination of my not feeling particularly well, and a chilly change in the weather that, while expected and typical, always arrives with a adjustment period that can be hard. So we stayed close to home, watched lots of movies, and chipped away at that mountain that is Getting The House Ready For New Floorboard Installation (In The Areas Not Done Yet)(This part is already finished, if you’re interested). But the kids didn’t care about any of that. They were only interested in chocolate – and chocolate they got. A new thing…
  • My 2,000th post for my daughter on her 10th birthday

    Karen Andrews
    15 Apr 2014 | 2:25 pm
    Age 6 & 7 Age 8 & 9 Dear Keira, As I approached my tenth birthday, I remember mentioning my excitement about the milestone to a neighbour. She shook her head emphatically and said, “You don’t want to grow up”. You’re on the cusp of your own tenth birthday, but I’m not going to say the same to you. You do want to grow up – to live, love and embrace all the experiences the world will throw at you; those you choose to embrace, and others you will have no choice but to. But I’m not going to get ahead of myself. You’re still young, with a head full of delight and curiosity.
  • Cook, Swim, Library, Dance, Travel

    Karen Andrews
    14 Apr 2014 | 5:11 pm
    What follows is a brief update as to how our make-your-own school holiday challenge is going. Cook Mistake one: buying an American packet mix without properly figuring out the conversion differences. Mistake two: buying a red velvet cake with enough added red food colouring to stain whatever part of skin or clothing that comes into contact with it. Happy – weird, macabre – mistake three: it coming out of the pan looking like a brain or part of the intestinal tract. I joked on Instagram it looks like a set piece from Hannibal. It was funny because it was true. Swim “Mum,…
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    Karen Cheng's Fashion and Life

  • Why is the sky blue?

    22 Apr 2014 | 11:00 pm
    My 9 year old son and I were running through the park. I was helping him train towards running his first 5kms, and he was doing quite well so far. The weather was amazing. The air was crisp and cool. The sky was bright and blue. There was not a cloud in the sky. All was going fine until we took a 20 second break. Between puffs, my son asked me, “Mum, why is the sky BLUE? If the earth is in space, and space is black, shouldn’t the sky look BLACK?” I rolled my eyes. Is this kid for real? Deep, complicated questions while we are sweating? I rustled through a rolodex of “Quick Answers”…
  • Exploding Bread

    22 Apr 2014 | 6:31 am
    I’ve been trying to make bread. And by that I mean, nice, fancy bread. Good-looking proper bread, from scratch. I guess the whole idea started because I wanted fresh homemade bread to go with my homemade dips for my dinner parties. So I tried out a sour dough recipe. I mixed up the yeast. I kneaded it, threw it in a pan, and left it on the bench top to let it rise. I came back 30 minutes later and OOPS! A frozen, doughy, mushroom cloud of Karen’s stupidity! And to further prove my daftness, I have to admit that actually… this is the forth or fifth time this has happened! I…
  • My Total Girly Party in Singapore

    19 Apr 2014 | 8:00 am
    A few weeks ago, I went on a quick trip to Singapore. Yes, it was JUST ME – no kids and no husband. I was only there for a few days, but oh man, I crammed so much in. The most outstanding and toe-wiggling-exhilarating part of the whole trip was that I could go throughout my day and make decisions WITHOUT having to consider anyone else!! Forgive my lameness. But that was huge for me. HUGE! I could wake up at any time I wanted. I could eat anything I wanted. I could GO and DO any god damn thing I felt like doing, in my own freaking sweet time. So the first morning? I woke up at 6am. Because…
  • Liam Turns 5!

    14 Apr 2014 | 8:04 pm
    My little chicken turned 5 years old and we had a kind of mini festival for him – celebrating his birthday over a few weeks, with lots of different groups of family and friends. For all his best friends from school, we threw him a huge party in our backyard. We put up a bouncy castle, we had snacks and lots of play time. My older boys organised and lead some simple games for the kids, like relays, egg and spoon races, “What’s the Time Mr Wolf” chasey games. I was so proud of them, it was a fun party! I made a two tiered cake, which Liam requested to be in the theme of…
  • A Bit of Refurb Magic

    14 Apr 2014 | 5:27 am
    Last month, I realised that I had quite a few clothes that I didn’t wear anymore because they “didn’t quite fit right”. For example, I have a skirt with a waist that is a bit too loose. Or the legs of some pants are a bit too long. Or the neckline of a top is too low. And so on. So I spent a few hours going through my wardrobe and pulling out all these items… and to my embarrassment, I made a VERY BIG PILE. All these unworn clothes! Thus I began My Refurb Project, promising myself that I will spend a few hours here and there, sewing up a few of these unused clothes. I’m so…
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    Boomerang Books Blog

  • Groovy books for Girls – Chapter book reviews

    Dimity Powell
    22 Apr 2014 | 4:54 am
    Sugar and spice. Not a mix that causes every little girl to drool. In fact even in my day, the more mystery, adventure and intrigue they could dish up, the faster I devoured stories. They continue to do so; they being in this case, the savvy publishers of Scholastic Australia and Random House. Hot off the press are a selection of recent releases guaranteed to whet your little girl’s reading appetite. Most are suitable for reading ages between 5 – 8 years although older reluctant readers stand to gain much needed confidence and develop a deeper love of stories from some of these titles…
  • Player Profile: Jane Paech, author of Delicious Days in Paris

    Jon Page
    22 Apr 2014 | 12:17 am
    Jane Paech at Carette tea salon, Place des Vosges, Paris. (PHOTO Vincent Bourdon) Jane Paech, author of Delicious Days in Paris Tell us about your latest creation: Delicious Days in Paris. It’s a series of walking tours that explore the food and culture of Paris, with visits to both legendary and little-known cafés, restaurants and pâtisseries along with small museums, art galleries, gardens and markets – all at a civilised pace, with time to daydream. Where are you from / where do you call home?: Adelaide, South Australia When you were a kid, what did you want to become?  An…
  • The Poppy

    George Ivanoff
    14 Apr 2014 | 2:54 am
    The Poppy is a new book from author/illustrator Andrew Plant. It’s difficult to describe. It’s not a standard picture book, but it’s not quite a graphic novel either. It’s set in the present, but deals with the past. It recounts actual events, but is presented in a ‘storybook’ context. Having said all that, what it definitely is… is utterly BRILLIANT! Poppies bloom across northern France and a petal is blown up into the air. As we follow that petal, a dual story unfolds. There is the historical story of a Word War I battle fought by Australian troops on French soil. And there is…
  • Amazing books for ANZAC Day – Picturebook reviews

    Dimity Powell
    13 Apr 2014 | 4:12 pm
    Occasionally a thing that you witness, a song that you hear or a line that your read manifests itself indelibly within you, seemingly forever. Sometimes, not always, you remember the exact time and place and occasion that these erasable impressions mark your memory for the first time. Often this phenomenon occurs when you are still young in years and free in thinking. Memorable moments can be fortifying but also confronting and shocking, which is why books like these, Along the Road to Gundagai and Gallipoli, constitute essential reading for young people. Perhaps, had I been exposed to more…
  • Player Profile: Rjurik Davidson, author of Unwrapped Sky

    Jon Page
    10 Apr 2014 | 8:29 pm
    Rjurik Davidson, author of Unwrapped Sky Tell us about your latest creation:  Unwrapped Sky sits somewhere between fantasy and science fiction, in a little subgenre sometimes called the New Weird. It’s set in the fantastic city of Caeli-Amur, which is something like an industrial version of Ancient Rome. Steam trams chug along the streets. A ruined forum lies close to a huge arena. Three dictatorial Houses rule the city. It’s filled with strange wonders. Ancient Minotaurs arrive for the traditional Festival of the Sun and New-Men bring wondrous technology from their homeland. Hideously…
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    The Interpreter

  • The pivot: Obama committed, but Congress a big obstacle

    Aaron Connelly
    23 Apr 2014 | 6:36 pm
    President Obama with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Tokyo yesterday. (REUTERS/Larry Downing.) Among journalists and pundits, there is little agreement on the status or prospects of President Obama's signature foreign policy initiative, the Asia Pacific pivot, or as it is more thoughtfully but less memorably known, the rebalance: is it dead? Is it in need of revival? Is it doing just fine, thank you? Or in a particularly Slatelike pitch, was it ever even a thing to begin with? How to account for such different conclusions? First, most of those arguing the rebalance has fallen…
  • Pacific island links: Freedom of speech, illegal logging, elections, sorcery killings and more

    Mark Tamsitt
    23 Apr 2014 | 4:42 pm
    The Director of the PNG National Research Institute Thomas Webster speaks out for freedom of speech in PNG.  Sarah Logan looks at how increased mobile phone use will impact electoral integrity in the Solomon Islands and Fijian elections.  Why has there been no progress in stopping sorcery killings in PNG?  With Fiji's election coming up in September, the new commander of country's military discusses coups and the role of the military in politics.  The Solomon Islands Prime Minister has approached Fiji to deploy soldiers to provide security at the troubled Gold Ridge…
  • China's 'syngas': Bad economics, bad science and an environmental catastrophe

    Julian Snelder
    23 Apr 2014 | 3:29 pm
    The apparent shift in the global energy market from coal to natural gas has shaken fossil fuel markets. As Australian resource exporters are keenly aware, this tilt has pushed seaborne coal prices down and improved the prospects for ocean-shipped LNG. This change of fortunes for coal and gas has led to some unexpected and unwelcome arbitrage opportunities. Some gas-fired utilities in Europe have switched back to burning coal, some of it displaced from the US by even cheaper shale gas there. And while Europe will in the longer term pay up for renewables and Russian gas in order to steer away…
  • Danger Zone: China's Top Gun anthem, translated

    Sam Roggeveen
    22 Apr 2014 | 10:50 pm
    [youtube:-oVXMg7GEnM] Yesterday I featured a video clip from the Chinese aircraft-maker AVIC celebrating the 65th anniversary of the Chinese PLA Navy. It features an aircraft carrier and fighter jets, and is suffused with an '80s Top Gun aesthetic, right down to the beefcake shots of muscle-bound pilots (what, no volleyball game?). The whole thing was overlaid with a stirring anthem, and I asked readers if they could translate. One reader, who prefers not to be identified, offers the following translation, with the caveat that it is approximate and was put together quickly: Want to fly in the…
  • Labour mobility key to Pacific future

    Luke Craven
    22 Apr 2014 | 9:58 pm
    The issue of labour migration and seasonal work is back on the agenda of Pacific island governments and donor agencies. Pacific population is increasing by 177,100 each year and at the present rate the region's population will double in the next 36 years. Disaggregating those statistics makes the situation far more pressing. Population growth is much higher in Melanesia than elsewhere. The 'youth bulge' facing PNG and Solomon Islands in particular is projected to increase as fertility rates remain high. In lieu of substantial economic growth in the region (leaving aside notable exceptions…
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    Australia Visa Immigration Information

  • Common errors to avoid when lodging an Australian visa application

    John Bell
    22 Apr 2014 | 7:06 pm
    With over 10 years experience in the Australian migration industry, I have been approached by many people who have initially tried, without success, to lodge a visa application without using a Registered Migration Agent. In this article, I will address some of the most common errors people make when applying for a visa and highlight the advantages of using a Registered Migration Agent to ensure you lodge a quality application at the first attempt. Issue 1 – applying for the wrong visa Believe it or not, many people do not apply for the best visa for their situation, usually because they are…
  • Skill shortages in Australia open opportunities for skilled migrants

    National Visas
    20 Apr 2014 | 10:26 pm
    The Australian labour market has regained its momentum in 2013 and become more responsive to the needs of Australian employers, revealed 2013-released Department of Employment study about Australia’s skills shortage and labour market. Titled Skill Shortages Australia, the study used data from the Survey of Employers who have Recently Advertised (SERA)—over 5500 contact employers—as well as insights from key industry and occupational associations. Australia’s current labour market Anecdotal information based from the qualitative aspect of the study showed that employers were…
  • What is a Skills Assessment?

    Alfonso Varela
    15 Apr 2014 | 1:05 am
    This month I will write about one of the first major hurdles applicants face when starting their visa process: obtaining a positive skills assessment. Whether you wish to apply for a skilled permanent visa, a skilled temporary graduate visa or (some) employer sponsored visas, you will most definitely require a positive skills assessment for your visa application to be successful. What is a skills assessment? A skills assessment is a document issued by the relevant skills assessing authority in Australia in which the applicant’s education and/or work experience (skills) are assessed against…
  • Abbott recognises migrant contributions at the 2014 Migration and Settlement Awards

    National Visas
    13 Apr 2014 | 8:53 pm
    “Once received into our community, a new citizen is entitled to be treated in every way as a fellow Australian. The strength and history of our people have been founded upon this vital principle.” This quote from Sir Robert Menzies, the 12th Prime Minister of Australia, became Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s summation of the essence of the 2014 Migration and Settlement Awards held at the Parliament House in Canberra. In his address, Abbott touched briefly on the country’s migration history, the benefits of migration, and its role in shaping the huge Australian community. The…
  • New Zealand Family Relationship Visa – Key Eligibility Information

    Esther Taft
    9 Apr 2014 | 7:24 pm
    In my last few articles, I have covered the key requirements for the Prospective Marriage visa and the Partner visa for married and de facto applicants. The focus of this article is another visa in the Family category: the New Zealand Citizen Family Relationship Visa, the subclass 461. The New Zealand Citizen Family Relationship visa (for the rest of the article, I will refer to this as the “461 visa”) is a temporary visa that is available for applicants who are not New Zealand citizens and who are an eligible family member of a New Zealand citizen. To be an eligible family member, the…
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  • Handcrafted Family Tree artwork by MeWe

    23 Apr 2014 | 1:27 am
    Michelle Atzemis of MeWe creates beautiful handcrafted family trees that are gorgeous displayed in a nursery or child's bedroom. Actually, as these pics show, this heirloom piece would look great in any room. Here are some beautiful images styled and shot by Nicola of Concrete + Honey.Each family tree is individually cut from remnant papers, personalised with family names, and sewn by hand. Different colour combinations are available and no two are the same.To order your own bespoke family tree artwork, head to the MeWe online store.Images: MeWe
  • Happy Easter

    21 Apr 2014 | 10:10 pm
    Hope you've all had a very happy Easter! My friend Tanya made this lovely Easter cake that I thought you'd love.Today is also the last day of the giveaway to win $75 to spend on Etsy - head here for more details. Don't forget that KatyJane Designs is also clearing out all their stock of gorgeous stationery right here. Also, gorgeous Melbourne kids' online retailers Habitots have a pop-up shop in Albert Park for a limited time with lots of goodies and kids' workshops too. All the details right here.We've just a few days at Avoca Beach with friends and now off to the Sunshine Coast to enjoy…
  • Getting ready for the Easter Bunny visit

    16 Apr 2014 | 3:29 am
    I put together a guide to getting ready for Easter Sunday over on eBay's Mum's Business website, and included a couple of snapshots of my girls hunting for eggs and goodies from the Easter Bunny last year. Thought you would like them!Read more »
  • New kikki.K x T2 Soder Tea

    15 Apr 2014 | 4:37 am
    What a fantastic collaboration - much-loved Australian brands kikki.K and T2 have collaborated on a limited edition tea, inspired by the Swedish tea Soderblandning. I was lucky to try Soder Tea at a kikki.K event recently and it is lovely - a floral black tea which I took with a dash of milk. I've been dying for the in-store release!You can find Soder Tea in kikki.K stores only. Team with the beautiful gold heart mug, coming soon for Mother's Day (my pic from the event below).Read more about the kikki.K event here on Bondville.Image: kikki.K
  • Make: cute DIY bunny craft kit from Artstitch

    15 Apr 2014 | 2:25 am
    More cute Easter craft for you - this little bunny craft kit from Artstitch comes with everything you need to sew your own rabbit in the prettiest cotton Liberty outfit. Too sweet! Head to the Artstitch online store to check out the whole range. Make one for a little person, or buy as a gift for an older child. Suitable for beginner to intermediate sewers.Image: Artstitch 
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    Scarlet Words

  • Ameristraliano

    13 Apr 2014 | 7:24 pm
    Last week was a huuuuge one at our house.  With just 10 days notice Tim was invited to attend a ceremony to finalise his Australian citizenship, and so ended 6.5 years of his status as a Permanent Resident.  He’s been working towards this day for about 8 years! His ceremony was a small catch-up event which was designed to ease pressure on the city councils who had huge waiting lists.  This meant that he could only take 2 guests and there were no gifts handed out.  But it was still a beautiful venue to take the pledge and become an Australian. Tim’s family was too far away to…
  • #23 – Run a 5k fun run (Electric Run Melbourne)

    12 Apr 2014 | 11:21 pm
    Image: Task #23 of my 101 Things in 1001 Days project: Run a 5K fun run The last time I put on my running shoes was sometime in 2012.  I’ve been itching to get back into running for a while now, but whenever the urge strikes I’ve always managed to blame my asthma or my dodgy knee for putting it off until ‘next week’.  A couple of weeks ago I went to the physio about my knee and she laughed when I said I was signed up for last night’s fun run.  “Well, that’s not going to happen is it?”, she said. The thing is, I was…
  • 48 Things in 180 Days

    1 Apr 2014 | 1:28 am
    So… here’s the thing. If you’ve been reading here for a while you will know that my 101 Things in 1001 Days project is a big part of my life and this blog.  I created my list in the spirit of enhancing my life, so I was careful to never add tasks that made my project feel like a chore. The truth is, in 2013 I made very little progress because everything in my life felt like chore.  That wasn’t really the fault of my list, it was just the product of a really tough year spent keeping my head above water. I’ve been working on this current list for 2 years now and…
  • Drop whatever you’re doing and watch this girl sing.

    27 Mar 2014 | 4:18 pm
    I’m the latest fan of this kickass bedroom looper, Kawehi. She recently created a $3000 Kickstarter project to fund her Robot Heart series – a collection of songs created from a robot girl’s perspective – and exceeded her goal by a further $25,000.  People seem to be really, really into this artist and it’s not hard to understand why when you see her perform. Her cover of Nirvana’s Heart Shaped Box (above) is the first time I’ve seen another artist attempt this song and do it justice.  Yeah, I’m pretty protective of the original. Despite her…
  • #80 – Photograph a street scene in all 4 seasons (Honour Avenue, Macedon)

    23 Mar 2014 | 9:42 pm
    Task #80 of my 101 Things in 1001 Days project: photograph a street scene or landscape in all 4 seasons. I was really excited to finally finish this particular task. When I first added it to my 101 list I think I envisioned setting up a tripod in the Botanic Gardens, or even photographing my own pretty street throughout the seasons. But then I heard about Macedon and it’s beautiful Honour Avenue and decided that it would be the perfect scene for my 4 Seasons photo project (despite the long travel time!). The idea is simple: Each season take a photograph from the same position, for one…
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