On my mind ...

27 May 2011
This is a Friday photo feature that anyone with a blog can join. It opens the door to us sharing our lives through these photos and gives us all a new way to discover each other, and maybe form new friendships. Your photo should show something at home that you're thinking about TODAY. If you're in another country you should join in when you read this, even if it's still Thursday.

To take part, all you have to do is post a photo on your own blog, write a short caption explaining it, and link it back to here. Please write a new post, don't link to an older one. When your photo is published, come back and add a comment below, with a link to your blog photo so we can all find you. Please visit all the blogs that appeal to you and leave a comment. Slow down, take the time to cruise around and enjoy your cyber visits.


This morning I'm still thinking about yesterday - Sorry Day in Australia. I attended a very moving event and was fortunate enough to listen to the stories shared by some remarkable indigenous people.  Sorry Day is not about saying sorry. Of course it's implied that we are sorry for what these people and their families went through, but this is a day of reconciliation and coming together. It's about being quiet for a change and listening to the experiences of others, it's about being part of a solution instead of seeing only problems, it's about acceptance of one another and the past, and moving forward - together.

There were four flags flying at the entrance of the neighbourhood centre when I arrived. The first one - red, black and gold, is the Australian Indigenous flag, then the Torres Strait Islander flag, the Queensland flag and the Australian flag. Our neighbourhood centre sits on Kabi Kabi traditional land.

Wiruungga and Kerry conducted a smoking ceremony to cleanse everyone as they entered.

 The early crowd drinking tea, making headbands and talking. Between 150 and 200 people attended.

 The ceremonial table holding photos of Stolen Generations people and ancestors of Aunty Pam, as well as paintings and artefacts.

Some of the women singing in language. Aunty Beverly is on the end and she's totally blurred out. Sorry Bev!

 The Kabi Kabi dancers.

Terri-Ann, Bianca and Aunty Theresa (visiting from Cape York) - with their interpretation of the day, in dance.

At our Sorry Day, Aunty Pam and Aunty Beverly shared the stories of their families and country then, one by one, several indigenous folk came forth, shared their stories and how they and their families had been affected by our former government's policies. These are strong people. To have survived what they did and still be here, smiling and willing to share their rich culture with us, is something close to wonderful. We are one nation and together, helped along by events like that one yesterday, we'll move towards a better deal for us all. No one is saying sorry every year, what we are doing is becoming friends, getting to know each other and developing trust; we are learning about their culture and languages - they know a lot about ours.  There was a warm feeling of mutual acceptance yesterday. It's been a long time coming. 

This photo wasn't taken yesterday but it is of my good friend Beverly Hand and me. I am very proud of Aunty Beverly for many reasons but she was recently awarded a Senior Fellowship at the University of the Sunshine Coast, where she speaks as a guest lecturer and acts as an advisor on conservation and land management. 


  1. Love your blog, Rhonda! Here's what's on my mind today...our spring greens in our house. :) http://heartlandhomeroots.blogspot.com/2011/05/on-my-mind.html

  2. Hi Rhonda. Today I have my little Rico on my mind, whom we just got back from the veterinarian. http://oldredhoodie.blogspot.com/2011/05/on-my-mind_26.html

  3. What a great celebration Rhonda!

    Here is what's on my mind:


    Have a wonderful weekend :-)

  4. Bravo Rhonda! I love the diversity on your blog and the overall feeling of tolerance, healing and love I get from it.

    I have home on my mind today and my thoughts have centered around where I was born and raised.


  5. A friend of mine send me the link of your Blog and i was stunned! Great tips and another approach of the same idea; back to basic. We've left the Netherlands and moved 2.5 years ago to a very old small stone Vigneroble in the middle of nowhere in France. The crisis came and that's where the problems began. We'd planned a simple life, but that it all had to be this simple???
    Intergration is an important partof our move and we don't always feel good to talk french and follow their etiquette in everything. But there are days i'm obliged to go out and then you get to know things you would have missed if stayed at home. http://opennaarfrankrijk.blogspot.com/p/short-summary-in-english.html
    My mainBlog is in Dutch, but brittish friends have told me the translate-machines on the internet work fine on my texts. For all who can't deal with these programs, i'm writing in my Summary in English to keep all our friends from abroad posted.
    Thank you for this invite to post a comment with a link to show there are many other people taking big steps back and gain more.

  6. I had never heard of Sorry Day before, but I am deeply moved by the notion. Imagine what positive growth might come out of such a negative piece of human history! In the US we did something very similar to Native Americans. We removed children from families and put them in white boarding schools. We removed them from their homelands and put them on Reservations. We tried to westernize and Christianize them. I wonder if we've considered this sort of celebration here....healing and understanding is still needed.

    Thanks for posting as always.

    On my mind is camping season! http://bld-in-mt.blogspot.com/2011/05/on-my-mindcamping.html

  7. Cynthia PitmanMay 27, 2011 6:50 am

    That is a wonderful idea. I think we should have a yearly Sorry Day in the United States, that could be very freeing for everyone here.

  8. Good morning Rhonda Jean

    So great to read about your post on Sorry Day. To have these relationships is so meaningful.

    I love the photo with you and Aunty Beverley.

    I will be heading to Broken Hill soon to work with Maarima Health Service.

    on my mind today


    Hope it is a lovely and rewarding day for you

    x jill

  9. Hi Rhonda, I really enjoyed reading about your time at the neighbourhood centre, the healing taking place, and relationships being built.

    I'm thinking a lot about the chook cage I'm making...6 months of pocket money invested in a venture will do that to you! Grin. Amy

  10. What a truly amazing day you had. The artwork on the table was stunning. I love seeing heritage art pieces like that. I must praise your Center for opening their doors to such an uplifting event each year.

    On my mind is... http://lifeforus.blogspot.com/2011/05/on-my-mind-projects-waiting-completion.html

  11. thanks for sharing more about Sorry Day. It's very interesting to learn about another aspect of your country's history and what things you celebrate/remember!!! The photo of you and Beverly is lovely :) :) Love and hugs from Oregon, Heather :)

  12. Rhonda, loved reading todays post. Here's what's on my mind today...prepping for emergencies that take you outside your home...
    and WELCOME any and all feedback..


  13. Hi Rhonda I was thinking about your Sorry Day post this Morning and what my young daughter came home telling us she had learned about it at school earlier in the week.
    On my mind today is using up all of the fruit and Veg in this house with out wasting it http://www.girlswearbluetoo.com/2011/05/my-food-challenge.html

  14. Hi Rhonda,
    thanks for this great explanation, I posted yesterday that I thought we should not be continually saying sorry, but rather moving on, and I see this is what the annual celebration actually is! Maybe another name for the annual celebration would have been more helpful in clearing up the misunderstanding!

  15. Hi Rhonda. It's definitely soup weather here in Qld now so I'm thinking about soups all the time. Thought this one might be of interest to your readers.


    Anne @ Domesblissity

  16. What a wonderful blog you have and I, too, love the idea of Sorry Day. In the United States we are celebrating Memorial Day this coming weekend and I've got the sacrifice of our service men and women on my mind today.


  17. Great photos Rhonda- and I really like the way you talked about how the day is not about saying sorry every year but about looking to the future and ways we can improve and enrich our communities. I didn't hear of any celebrations down here- there may have been but it wasn't advertised. I would have loved to join you all at the nieghbourhood centre. I will plan to come next year. I think its a really important thing to do. Thats a beautiful photo of you and Aunty Bev.

  18. I'm hoping someone can help me with my current project - raw milk yoghurt. I haven't had much success so far, so any advice would be appreciated!


  19. I wish more communities would have such a display of respect on a day like Sorry Day, lovely photos Rhonda.

    On my mind today, lusting over art!


  20. Rhonda, I honestly wouldn't have known it was Sorry Day if it weren't for your posts. I haven't heard one single thing about it and it would have come and gone unnoticed. Perhaps because I don't read the news, or perhaps because saying Sorry is an uncomfortable and humbling thing to do and therefore not 'advertised'...

    I think we should rename Sorry Day to Reconciliation Day. Many Australians were not born here and it was not them or their ancestors who perpetrated the injustices upon the indigenous people. However, all generations of Australians can be involved with reconciliation, which is as much a modern issue as it is to do with things that happened in the past.

  21. Hi Rhonda Looks like you had a great day yesterday.
    Early Mornings are on my mind today

  22. I wish i knew some of the indigenous history of where I live (Red Hill, Vic). It feel as if its almost entirely forgotten that not so very long ago, there were others living here, who had been here for millenia, and back then it was an even more beautiful and magical place than it is now. I sometimes wonder what happened to them, i cant imagine anyone with such a bond with the land wanting to leave this place voluntarily.

  23. To Anne @ Domesblissity

    It is cold, windy and rainy...real soup weather here too.
    I just looked up your recipe, YUM! Will be making it tomorrow.

  24. Hi Rhonda! Looks as though you've had a busy, but fun day. Mine has been quiet and uneventful, with only food on my mind: http://sorcha-sidhe.blogspot.com/2011/05/on-my-mind-food-glorious-food.html

  25. That's beautiful.

    On my mind this week is up north:


  26. It's wonderful to hear of your Sorry Day and see that some Australians are taking advantage of the opportunities to mix and mingle with the Aborigines. I was fortunate to take in some of the culture when I visited the Tjabuki Theatre in Karunda, FNQ years ago. Wonderful memories.

  27. Hi Rhonda My vinegar is coming along ok too cheers affussa

  28. I didn't here much about sorry day here in Toowoomba - great concept but needs to be taken on board with all Australians - a day off to commemorate I think. What is on my mind:to get my sewing machine out and my knitting needles, which I haven't done for years - your blog gives me inspiration. Lorraine

  29. Here's what's on my mind today:


  30. No photos on my blog to demonstrate what is on my mind, but I had a fellow blogger featured on my blog today regarding raising babies naturally (versus the alternative.) This is most definitely on my mind since we are trying to conceive! :) ;)


  31. You have a lovely blog Rhonda! This is my first visit here. It's always nice to 'meet' like minded simple farming folk!



  32. Pam (Redcliffe)May 29, 2011 2:46 pm

    Beautiful. Thank you for sharing this story. I'm a teacher and we had a Sorry Day ceremony at our school this week. So important.



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