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Seasons Greetings from Local Representatives

Updated: Dec 15, 2021

Josh Frydenberg

Hon. Josh Frydenberg “Wishing Kooyong residents a wonderful and joyous Christmas and New Year. After a very challenging few years for families and businesses, our community has continued to show incredible and inspiring resilience, strength, and spirit. I hope the holiday break is restful and is spent with family and friends. I wish everyone the very best for 2022.”

What are some holiday traditions you and your family have? Since 2012, our local community has raised money and donated gifts through the Kooyong Giving Tree to give to Servants Community Housing. It’s always one of the highlights of my year to be able to visit Servants before Christmas and present them with the generosity of our community. My family and I often head down to Lorne over the Christmas and New Year break. It’s a great opportunity to spend some quality time with family and friends and unwind.

What hobbies or habits have you maintained during the last year? One of the most important habits I have tried to keep up with during the pandemic has been trying do some form of exercise every day. Usually, I hop on my stationary bike in the morning (including when in Parliament).

John Kennedy

John Kennedy MP “I would like to wish everyone a merry Christmas, a pleasant summer holiday, and all the best for 2022. As we move on from the pandemic rest assured that the Government will remain focused on recovery and supporting businesses to get back on their feet. Thank you to everyone who got vaccinated as soon as possible. Our best defence against the health and economic impacts of COVID is vaccination. Thanks to your hard work, Victoria is steadily but assuredly returning to “normal” as we enjoy time with friends and family over this festive season. Have a great break!”

What does a typical Christmas Day look like for you and your family? After Christmas Mass at our parish, Immaculate Conception Church in Hawthorn, me and my wife Bronwyn gather with our children Fionnuala and Patrick, son-in- law Dominic and, star of the show, two-year-old granddaughter Elsie.

Do you buy your gifts in advance or are you a last minute shopper? I rely on Bronwyn who always seems to know what is best for all recipients!

What is most enjoyable about being in Boroondara during the holiday season? Local restaurants and cafes, parks, catching up with fellow residents in our residential village, some reading.

Wes Gault

Glenferrie Ward’s Councillor Wes Gault “As we emerge from the challenges of the past two years and move into a new era, still challenging, of opening up and living with COVID, it is reassuring to know that Christmas can still be a time of PEACE and GOOD WILL. As we see new international alliances grow to balance aggressive and expansionary positions being adopted by a number of ‘ strong man’ leaders in the world, we have cause to believe that the natural disposition of human kind is towards PEACE. As we witness serious local, state and international commitments being made to decarbonise our way of life and, for instance, pledging to end the devastation of our forests, the lungs of the world, steps that will more directly benefit our children and grandchildren, we realise that GOOD WILL is still alive and well. Happy Christmas.”

Which parks or outdoor spaces in Boroondara have you visited the most during lockdowns? During lockdowns we have greatly enjoyed picking up a sandwich and coffee from Bartons (39 Barton Street, Hawthorn) then strolling down to the Yarra Bank Reserve and along the Yarra bank trail.

What are your go-to shops in Glenferrie Hawthorn for holiday preparation and gifts? For gifts (for others and ourselves) who could go past Readings, Haigh's Chocolates, and the many other stores in Glenferrie Road.

What has changed most for you over the past year? I have been delighted to witness, particularly over the past year, the strong growth in our community of climate change awareness and a real commitment to taking action.

Susan Biggar

Riversdale Ward’s Councillor Susan Biggar “As this long and winding year draws to a close, I find myself grateful. I feel gratitude that we’re putting a deeply challenging year behind us! But also that, despite the adversity, we have seen heartening kindness and generosity across our community. Memorable examples include ‘street libraries’ popping up, neighbours going out of their way to help one another, mini- Spoonvilles bursting out of the ground, and the faithful commitment to our local traders when that support has been vital. The kindness has made me grateful to be going through a pandemic with my community. May the holiday season be a time of celebration and renewal for you and those you love.”

Is there a traditional meal or dish that you have during Christmas/the holiday season? I was raised in San Francisco and one of the American recipes our Australian family has adopted is decadent, super-gooey, pecan cinnamon rolls on Christmas mornings. It’s not even a Christmas recipe in the US – and they’re more of a wintry treat, but it’s now a family tradition and I think there would be a barrage of complaints if they didn’t make the morning menu.

What have you learned over the past year? Patience. Taking life one day at a time—sometimes one hour at a time. Gratitude and appreciation for what is good in my life and our community. In terms of skills, I am now more knowledgeable about Boroondara’s trees and plants. We walk every morning and part of that daily routine has involved identifying trees (and, more recently, bushes and flowers). I started from a very low base but am proud of my improvement. I’m also much better at crosswords and homemade muesli. Also, earlier this year I bought a fully electric scooter (like a Vespa, but an Australian brand) and had to get a motorcycle licence to do it. So, I am now handy on a two-wheeler.


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