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Lunch Lady Magazine

Lunch Lady Magazine Issue 17

Lunch Lady is a quarterly keepsake full of meaningful content, inspiring family stories, easy DIY, stacks of recipes plus funny relatable opinion pieces about the ups and downs of raising children. It's a magazine where parenting is not taken too seriously but a balanced approach to family life is.

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4 Issues

in this issue

6 min
by jessie tu

My mother and I were born in the same country, though we don’t speak the same language. We migrated to Australia from Taiwan when I was four years old, and though we only spoke Mandarin at home, my vocabulary never expanded beyond that of a four-year-old. Year by year, without frequent use or improvement, I’d lose words and turns of phrase, and my intonation grew coltish and distorted. My mother never learned English, passing by with the few necessary staples: ‘thank you’ and ‘please’. I played the reluctant child interpreter, unremarkable among the millions of migrant millennials just like me. I’m not sure why she didn’t learn English. It is not for me to judge the ways she has chosen to navigate her midlife migration and resettlement. She and I were separated…

4 min
carrying alpacas cakes!

When did you first think to make an alpaca? I believe it was back in 2013. I had been given some fluffy fabric that just whispered ‘alpaca’ to me. At the time, there was a small, high window between my studio and my friend’s studio next door. Once I’d finished the alpaca, I got up on a chair and did a little surprise alpaca puppet show for my friend through the window. Are the alpacas actual breeds or your own creation? They are a very loose interpretation of alpacas–a generous stranger gifted me their stash of vintage mohair and I let the different fluffs dictate the character. Do they have names? Just descriptive names! 'Fawn alpaca carrying Lemon Chiffon', for example! It made it easier to sort them out, as I think there were eighteen…

10 min
being the change

Is climate science a relatively new profession? Well, the first climate scientist was Svante Arrhenius. He was around in the 1890s in Sweden. He realised that if we kept burning coal it would start making the planet warmer. He even made a forecast of how warm it would get, and he was surprisingly accurate. Was this what you always wanted to be? I wasn’t originally planning to be a climate scientist. I got my PhD in physics and was doing astrophysics, but I started hearing from climate scientists and reading papers. A few years later, I just couldn’t focus on astrophysics anymore. I decided I needed to make a switch for my own sanity. Where are we at with climate change? Ignorance is bliss, especially when it comes to climate breakdown. But for climate scientist…

3 min
kite runner

high Getting . In Japan, they call people tako kichi, or ‘kite crazy’. In Holland, they’re vlieger gek. But in China, there’s no such thing as being too obsessed with flying kites, which were invented there 2,500 years ago. According to legend, a Chinese philosopher named Mozi spent years carving a wooden bird in the shape of an eagle, which he was eventually able to keep airborne for an entire day, tethered by some primitive rope. Then he passed on his skills to a pupil named Lu Ban, and the student came up with the clever idea of using bamboo instead, because it was so much lighter, and this 2.0 version flew for three whole days. Not to undermine Mozi, but there is another Chinese tale that claims the kite might have been…

2 min
be a kite maker!

diy WHAT YOU NEED: • dowel (we used 7mm diameter), cut into 60cm and 45cm lengths The dimensions can be changed–this is a smaller size suitable for smaller kids. • lightweight fabric, cut into a piece at least 75cm x 55cm (you can also use paper— newspaper weight is good!) • hand saw • scissors • embroidery thread • fishing wire or lightweight string on a reel • wood glue or hot glue gun, optional • glue for fabric • ribbon or bind for tail • felt for face • scraps of fabric for bows on tail STEPS: 1. Cut small notches in each end of the dowel pieces. Try and get the notches in the same position on each piece of dowel. 2. Place the smaller piece of dowel at a right angle one-third of the way down the bigger piece of dowel. Glue together…

3 min
by mandy nolan

I haven’t always loved my bum. I’ve always thought that it was ‘too big’. Whatever ‘too big’ actually means. It’s not like there is a regulation arse size that we’re all measured against. But once, when I was a teenager, a boyfriend said, “Wow, you have a really big bum.” That was it. From that point on I was convinced I was hauling an oversized load. In retrospect I should have said, “Probably just looks bigger next to your penis.” Was my butt really that big? I wondered whether I needed to have support vehicles to warn anyone on the approach to move over lest I ran them off the footpath: “Caution: Wide Lady Load Ahead”. When I was young, big bums weren’t ‘in’ like they are now. Everyone wanted a…