My family’s Anzac Story – Part 3

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Tomorrow’s Anzac Day is a special one for my family. Tomorrow we remember and say thank you to my great grand father.

His name was Alexander Menzies Kippen. He left Brisbane as part of the 9th infantry battalion in September 1914.

He landed as part of the first wave of soldiers at Gallipoli. He survived. He survived the boat trip, the landing, the run up the beach, the digging of trenches and the below ground life that followed. He lived through the fear, the sweat, the grief of loss and managed to return home to build a life.

For that service, I am thankful. For Australia, I am thankful. I am grateful to the Turkish people for welcoming Australians (descendants of the Anzacs amount them) to their beautiful country in peace.

My mother has been on the Gallipoli peninsula and surrounds the last week. Isn’t it fabulous that Australians can go and pay their respects to soldiers of both sides of the Gallipoli conflict by travelling in safety and peace.

Tomorrow, on Anzac Day, I’ll have miniature replicas of my great grandfather’s medals on my jacket. To say thank you. You are not forgotten.

“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.”

My family’s Anzac Story – Part 2

The women of WW2 were integral to many aspects of Australia’s success abroad and the subsequent recovery at home. They contributed to Australia’s war effort and picked up the pieces of shattered lives afterwards.

My nanna was one of those women. She commenced full time military service at age 18. She worked in Signals, transmitting messages across the globe wherever Australia had personnel. In the “previous experience” section of her enlistment, she included “home duties” and her high school certificate. Her military record is scanned and as I read the faded yellow pages with torn edges, it seems like she had a whole other life.

A life of service, mystery and a little cheekiness. She was 18 and in love with a man fighting on the front lines of Asia. There were secret messages sent to him via her Signals connections. My grandparents stayed in contact throughout their war service and married after they were discharged. They had four babies and stayed together their whole lives.

Katherine Kippen was promoted to Sargent in October of ’43. There are no records of her saving fellow officers lives under fire or any such thing. There are lists of promotions and locations of Signals bases she was stationed.

What her military record can’t ever show is what an incredible woman she was. She was complex, determined, strict, soft, traditional and forward thinking all at the same time. There are a few things she said to me over my life that I will never forget and i will share some of them with you today.

“Don’t give yourself too readily or they’ll never respect you”
I was a teenager crying over some boy at her kitchen table. I was a bit shocked that she said this, but we went on to discuss it for a while. She looked in my eyes and was always gave me her full attention. “You’re worth more than that” were some of the statements in that conversation.

“Katherine doesn’t need to get married. She’ll be right either way”
This comment was delivered with a flap of her hand as she laid in a hospital bed as I was being teased by an aunty for not getting married and going to university to study the environment. She was known for her traditional values, inherited from her predecessors, but with one remark she silenced the room. Gosh I adored her.

“Do what you love”
Pretty self explanatory.

AS she aged and her body refused to participate in her life as readily as she expected, I could see her suffering. My partner and i would visit. They would sit at her kitchen table and talk about sports for ages – tennis, cricket, football. She was a mad sports follower. They got on well. I did a bit of cleaning up during these talks and she always, always thanked me in a way that made everything feel good. She was never over the top but she readily opened her arms an held me close.

Yes, she was number Q142241, and more.

Kath Dyne photo page 3 of 9

My family’s Anzac story- Part 1

Poppa's jungle hammock

In the week leading up to this year’s Anzac Day commemorations, I am sharing some of my family’s story. I will be one person in a crowd at a service this Saturday, crying beneath their sunglasses, like many others. I grieve every Anzac Day and miss my grandparents, but I am grateful for the freedoms we are granted because of their sacrifice. Even if you are against Australia’s current campaigns, I ask you to look around at our beautiful country and be grateful.

This is my Poppa’s jungle hammock he carried throughout WW2. He was awarded the mIlitary Medal. The citation reads, ‘This NCO has given consistent proof of his gallantry and devotion to duty during the New Guinea Campaign. During the BUNA action Sgt Dyne was commanding a section when his Pl [platoon] Cmd [commander] and senior NCO’s became casualties; he took over command of the Pl and displayed great leadership in moving the Pl forward under heavy fire to a position from where he was able to bring fire to bear on the enemies’ flank; although the platoon suffered heavy casualties he refused to withdraw – his action played an important part in that phase of the battle. During the SOPUTA action Dyne again took over command of 13 Platoon when his Pl Comd was killed; in this action and again at SANANANDA he displayed great personal courage: his leadership, initiative and energy had a marked effect upon all those under his command.’. Suffering from malaria throughout his service, Sergeant Dyne continued to serve with the 2/12th Battalion in its campaigns in Papua New Guinea and Borneo. Sergeant Dyne received his discharge on 27 November 1945.

Super tasty lunchbox biscuits

I was sceptical the first time the children and I made these together, but once we’d tasted the batter, smelt them cooking in the oven, then ate them warm we were convinced. These are super tasty and belong in a lunchbox. This recipe is based on Dreena Burton’s troll biscuit recipe. I’ve just simplified the recipe.
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ingredients
1/4 cup wholemeal self raising flour
1 cup rolled or quick oats
3 tbsp coconut sugar
Pinch sea salt
2 tbsp dairy free chocolate chips
Handful sultanas
1/4 to 1/3 cup sunflower seed butter
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 1/2 tbsp chia seeds
1/4 cup mashed ripe banana
2 tbsp maple syrup

method
Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius
In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients
In a separate bowl combine wet ingredients , including mashing banana through mix
Add wet ingredients to dry and combine
Gently drop spoonfuls onto trays lined with baking paper
Bake until golden on top
Cool on tray for a few minutes then transfer to airing tray to cool completely.

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These are a great activity with children.

Have a lovely week xx

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A lunchbox for little people

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A lunchbox of pre made goodies. Super easy biscuits. Very easy to prepare and high in protein and fibre. We added vanilla bean paste and chia seeds.
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The salad box has a hidden pattie under the cucumber. It’s such a simple recipe I got from a vegan site on FB.
Vegetarian Patties
Ingredients
1 tin nutmeat (Sanitarium brand)
1 tin baked beans
Bread crumbs for coating
1/2 cup all purpose flour
Seasoning
Method
Drain beans
Grate/mash nutmeat
Combine & form patties
Add some liquid if needed
Fry to brown both sides in batches.
These freeze well.
Fresh fruit box.

Maple and coconut tapioca pudding (recipe coming).

Hope you have a lovely week
Xx

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Book review: Bollygum (Australian children’s chapter book)

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Vital Statistics
ISBN: 1 875875 08 5 (PBK)
First published: 1995
Weldon Kids Pty Ltd
Story & Paintings: Garry Fleming
Style: Children’s chapter book
Theme: Australian animal adventure

Oh my! This book is so beautiful, from the very first page. The paintings on each page opening are so detailed, magnificent, romantic that the readers are entranced while engaging with the story.
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Each page opening has a full page painting with a facing page of prose. The language is clear and flows easily, explaining character traits, feelings and the journey with obvious skill.

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The book is described on the back cover like this

Amongst our forests and woodlands there are untouched pockets where time stands still.
This is a story of one such place and the creatures that dwell in it’s valley.
This is the story of Bollygum…

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I describe this story as Australian animals adventuring together, with soft back lighting. A lovely read aloud book with young children and established readers. The first night we read three chapters. Even my active two year old was transfixed the whole time.

This will probably be given by my four year old to her friends as a gift. Beautiful.