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Freelance writer and copywriter. Heathy nature, healthy people advocate. Sustainable living is our future.

My writing in three sections, so you can find what interests you

When we measure wealth in monetary terms, we overlook the most precious wealth

Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay

Years ago when I was comfortably well off and in my 30s, I was waiting with friends in a queue for the cinema. We were three couples who met through our children at nursery school. One friend in our little group, recently self-employed, said he wished he was successful and well off like my husband and the other husband, a successful businessman in our town.

To be fair, it’s how society measures wealth — by the house you own, the car you drive, the salary you earn. I listened to him as I watched his four children running to and…

Nature is a safe place to find your voice

Image by Lenka Novotná from Pixabay

In the cloak of depression, silence feels safe. Say nothing and you can’t be misunderstood. You can’t be misjudged. But the more you hide, the more invisible you feel. Do they remember who you were? The person you are still, beneath it all.

Daughter, sister, partner, parent, homemaker, educator, friend — thriving then, now turned to stone. Try to explain why you feel faceless and another piece of you could crumble away. A statue of matrimony and motherhood, fallen into disrepair. Those who shaped you and who you helped shape are living their lives. …

Food menu discourse appeals to our desires but there is a dark side to satiety

Tui in Kowhai tree by Sy on Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Although native birds are no longer (legally) eaten in New Zealand, this menu appeals to the reader’s sense of taste while simultaneously creating awareness, and disgust even, for how wild birds are killed.

Native birds face threats from non-native predators, such as possums, rats, stoats, and feral cats, and from human behaviour, such as free-roaming cats and dogs, irresponsible beach and car use, hunting, longline fishing, overfishing, and oil spills.

The impact of our lifestyles on the natural world is a global one too. With the devastating impact of the novel coronavirus, now more than ever, we need to rethink…

Hearing the dawn chorus before bed is a bad writing habit

Image by Kaz on Pixabay

You might be the kind of writer I aspire to be, waking with the rising sun and moving through Camel, Plow and Upward Facing Dog with ease. The writer who starts their day when my head hits the pillow; the writer with two blog posts written before lunch and a feature fired off before tea.

Then again, you might be more like me. When you are busy with work, your course is set and your mind is clear. But other times, you find yourself at sea, tossed from port to starboard in a storm of creativity. With thoughts raining down…

Moving to New Zealand was meant to give us a better life. But we left behind more than we ever imagined

Daffodils by cocoparisienne from Pixabay

It was going to be the start of a new chapter for our family. You know how the story goes — you feel stuck, so you shake things up. Smiling faces on TV’s Wanted Down Under tell you it is going to be fine. A happier life beckons. What are you waiting for? Be brave. Just do it!

Things were so different twelve years ago when we emigrated. I was looking forward to the life we had glimpsed from a campervan a year before we moved. …

Keeping us in the dark in lockdown increases anxiety in this pandemic

Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

In his article challenging the call for tougher lockdown restrictions in the UK, Medium writer Akshay ‘Ax’ Sharma asks why the British are staying home without questioning this removal of freedom.

Fear is a key factor.

The lockdown came too late in the UK to prevent the soaring number of deaths that have exposed our government’s incompetence in managing this crisis. Watching the daily tally of deaths on the news is frightening. The growing gallery of people who have lost their lives is emotionally draining. And, as Akshay points out, some media sources feed our fear with this daily diet…

Loneliness is a hidden threat that needs urgent attention

Woman with head in her hands experiencing loneliness and depression
Woman with head in her hands experiencing loneliness and depression
Image by Ulrike Mai from Pixabay

Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced the UK Government is extending the lockdown, which has been in place for three weeks, by a further three weeks. Until we can see the COVID-19 death and infection rate falling, it would be too risky to relax isolation measures. We need to be patient and wait for the curve to flatten.

Over the last few weeks, the Government has “ramped up” funding, long overdue, so we get the best physical care from our health service. Taking care of people’s financial needs too are unprecedented steps for a Conservative government. …

This pandemic has opened our eyes to what matters

Image by Kranic from Pixabay

Life has been turned upside down. Everything we thought we had is now at risk as families struggle with isolation, insecurity, ill-health, and the constant fear of infection. Some families have been left devastated by this novel coronavirus that has swept through the world striking people of all ages, all nationalities and all religions. People with compromised immune systems, pregnant women, elderly people and people with chronic health conditions are more at risk. But we cannot be complacent. We are all in this together.

We are all responsible for the survival of the human race. We’ve ignored climate scientists and…

I want to scream in this crazy coronavirus lockdown

Image by Prettysleepy from Pixabay

We’re considerate when we sit, play or potter in our back gardens butted end to end in a patchwork between two rows of houses. Even the chap next door with his lawn trimmed to bowling standards keeps his Flymo fetish in check. It’s a market town. People are community-minded.

But there’s always one house with neighbours from hell. Their lack of self-awareness is staggering. Outside my open window, music blares into the spring sunshine as we try to stay sane in lockdown. I rush upstairs to look from the bedroom window. Who’s making this bloody din in our quiet neighbourhood…

Tracy Brighten

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