Unexpected Genealogy

This is a bonus blog post today.  It’s a coincidental thing which happened so it definitely wasn’t on my editorial calendar but I’m very happy to ditch the blog schedule when this happens!!

I went to the Fleece and Fibre Fair in Mt Pleasant (South Australia)

today to buy more lovely yarn and wool roving for my textile art.  I already have photographs of ancestor’s graves from the nearby Mt Torrens cemetery so I wasn’t thinking genealogy when I left home.


Mt Pleasant Soldiers Memorial Hall

Fleece & Fibre Fair

The merchants selling their lovely wares.

In a little side room off the main hall I found these honour rolls and soldiers’ photos.

Frank Henry Hicks

Frank Henry Hicks my first cousin once removed, who died on 10 October 1918, Israel.

There is more information about Frank on my family tree website.

Has this sort of unexpected genealogy happened to anyone else?  Please share your stories in the comments as we’d all like to hear about them.

Mt Pleasant District Honour Roll

Mt Pleasant District Honour Roll

The Great War - In the front line trenches

 In The Front Line Trenches


Mt Pleasant District Honour Roll

Those who paid the supreme sacrifice.

Man in Viking costume

And I couldn’t help but include a picture of this chap at the Fair in his terrific Viking get up!!

For my next post I’ll try and get back on schedule!! 🙂

Midden by Deb Sleeman

This sculpture is at the corner of The Esplanade and Semaphore St, Semaphore, South Australia.  It represents many of the activities, attributes and history of this seaside suburb.  There are fish, ship’s mastheads, cars, the laughing clowns, carousel and ferris wheel from the foreshore amusements, the train, seagulls, fishing net, buildings, a whale and a stingray, and the symbol of the local football team ‘Port Power’ the hand holding the lightning bolt.


A quote from the website;

A midden is a repository of detritus from a culture accumulated over millennia and can show successive layers of occupation by aboriginal peoples. As well as comprising many activities (i.e. fishing and hunting) and events from different periods, they often include waste from flaking stone and lost or broken tools, thus providing keys to the cultural activities of the group using that particular midden.


I take my hat off to all volunteers everywhere!!  Growing up we were encouraged to be involved in our community, it wasn’t viewed as anything unusual or different, it seemed to me that everyone did it.  Mum was involved in the Country Women’s Association, our school things, table tennis club and the local Technical And Further Education College council and probably more that I can’t think of at the moment.  Dad was in the Country Fire Service and heavily involved in the local football and cricket clubs.  He played cricket for years, coached junior teams and then became an umpire.

Flaxley where I grew up

The tiny locality of Flaxley where I grew up

My sister and I played netball, table tennis and tennis and our brother played and umpired football and played tennis and table tennis.  I don’t remember if he played cricket or not, I’ll have to ask him.  In playing these sports we were involved in the helping out too.  It was just a natural thing, I don’t remember talk about voluntary jobs and paid jobs being different things.  My sister and I were in St John Cadets also.  As a result I’ve always been involved in ‘helping out’ and it’s grown to be a passion in my life.

Flaxley Methodist Church

Flaxley Methodist/Uniting Church, our youth group was often involved in helping out too.

I love working with an amazing bunch of people at Teen Challenge SA Inc, we’re all volunteers, with a great sense of purpose and calling to do the work we’re doing.  Teen Challenge provides residential drug and alcohol rehabilitation for young people as well as a range of other programs including – housing, community centres, youth programs, work programs, emergency financial assistance, counselling and more.

One day a week I run a community program through Teen Challenge which is open to people of all ages – I teach art classes and will be teaching computing again soon too and we have a shared lunch.

In genealogy I like to help people where I can.  In July I’ll be running a two day workshop, with my sister, about online genealogy and next school term I hope to be running some regular classes on online genealogy too.  I use the BillionGraves app on my Android phone and photograph headstones which are uploaded to the BillionGraves website for everyone to access.

I don’t tend to classify things in my mind as paid and unpaid.  If it’s something that I’m passionate about, such as helping people, and I can make a real contribution, then I’ll do it.

I didn’t want this to be an ‘I do this and I do that’ kind of post but just to highlight the great work done by volunteers everywhere and that we were raised to ‘do our bit’.

Norwood Community Markets

This Saturday I will be at the Norwood Community Markets with my crocheted, embellished hats, drink bottle covers, hand painted t-shirts and mobile phone pouches.

Clayton Wesley Church
280 Portrush Rd, Beulah Park, Adelaide, SA – Corner of Portrush Rd and The Parade.
10am to 4pm
Here are some of the hats I’ve been making lately.

Butterfly Wing – needle felting

Needle felted design

Using a variety of yarns

More needle felting

This is quite a funky hat, you can’t see it very well in this picture.

Needle felted leaves

My Work Room

my desk

My desk

This is fairly typical of my desk, I have a hat on a bust which I’m working on as well as my sewing machine and my computer.  The sewing machine is too heavy to lift up and down off my desk so at the moment it can stay where it is.  I like to swap between projects.  I might go from writing my blog, to sewing, to researching my family tree, to crochet, to designing my brother’s new website and more.  It helps keep me interested and motivated to keep going on these projects.

I’ve put the hat aside at the moment to look at the ephemera I’m adding to it and see which things work and which don’t.  It is a plain crocheted beret to which I’ve added needle felting, a piece of an old crocheted doily, a button and some coloured threads to represent stitching in those colours.

Crocheted hat with embellishment

Crocheted hat with embellishment

Singer Hand Sewing Machine

Singer Hand Sewing Machine

This is the machine I learnt to sew on when I was a little girl.  It was my Grandma’s and then my Mum’s.  It’s great to sew with, very reliable and easy to use!!  It takes a bit of getting used to using the hand crank again instead of a foot pedal.

Singer Hand Sewing Machine

Singer Hand Sewing Machine