• Stephanie Hammond

Where I'm From - #1

Updated: Aug 30, 2017

I saw the template for this idea of how to share where I'm from and loved it. (from http://www.swva.net/fred1st/wif.htm). Here's my version. WHERE I’M FROM I am from a small stand of bush behind a racecourse, from fresh farm eggs, and cream smothered jam and bread.

I am from the cosy little house in a street where my father’s sisters and brothers live with their families and where the happy sounds of children playing from dawn to sunset fill the air.

I am from gum trees, strawberry plants, and beds of snapdragons and pansies.

I am from Hammonds and Dullahides, Digby and Doris, children of proud English and Irish families, quick to love and quick to anger, on one side forever forgiving, on the other bearing grudges almost to the end.

I am from the world, sent out too young, but quick to learn the joys of living a global life.

From longing for home, not the one across the fence but one so far away I can only find it in my own heart.

I am from the old family St Stephens Church, where we were all baptised. From the Sunday school in the park, spending part of our offerings at the local store, buying ice blocks before worship.

I’m from Toowoomba, the Garden City, gateway to the great wheat downs. From mushrooms gathered at dawn with my father and cooked on the wood fire, and from home made coconut ice beaten creamy by my dad.

From Great Grandparents of pioneering courage: John Dullahide, the sheep station manager who sang love songs to his lovely wife, Phoeby Ryan. One of these songs, Maggie, was my mother’s favourite song and I sang it for her at her funeral. In my mind I see this couple wandering the hills together in their youth. And Albert Hammond and Jane May, who settled at Nobby, where the only remaining evidence of the old homestead is a large Aloe Vera plant. Albert lived his latter years in Sydney, providing health services to his local community. He was a man before his time, extolling the hazards of cigarette smoking way before many others!

I am from long walks to school with my cousins and brother, from holidays at the beach, from long drives snuggled in the back of the family ute to visit other family, from a brother and sister whose love encircles me still. What more proof of a good heritage do I need?

(Top photo: Megan and I outside the old family hut where our mother was raised.

Bottom photo: Me, Digby and Megan at Magnetic Island off Townsville, 2003).

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Last Days in Atlantis. (Young Adult Novel)

Mari is thrust into a position of responsibility as the warrior leader of the Atlantean Hill People before she's ready. She strives to make choices that are best for her and her people against a backdrop of deception and intrigue. She becomes entangled in the power struggles between her people and the rulers of the City of the Golden Gates. 

Events test her trust in the traditions of her people and her confidence in those who are dear to her: the Elders, her mother, and the young man she is expected to share her life with.  Mari believes she has failed the task and struggles to overcome her feelings of grief, guilt, and betrayal as her very survival is threatened. 

I have written two children's stories about Beatrice, a young angel-in-training with one large wing. The first to be published, Beatrice Learns Compassion, was illustrated by my granddaughter, Bella, when she was 10-years-old. Bella is currently illustrating the secon book, Beatrice Spreads Joy. 

The Beatrice book is available on Kindle. It's suited to young children. Print copies are available to purchase through the contact page