An ex-lawyer, formerly part-time now full time mummy of four young children, I have recently returned to Australia after 10 years in London.   We migrated back to the Land of Milk and Milo because I promised my parents I always would.  So here we are, faced with the logistical, cultural and spiritual challenges of re-establishing a new life in an old home.  We are unemployed and houseless,  living with my parents in Canberra in the place I grew up.  Our family circus is chaotic especially with a newborn (because really we did not have enough challenges) and this blog chronicles the day-to-day (or in the case of me who must feed the newborn, the night-to-night) of our return. To find out why I called it “duckformation”, read my first post, Duck Formation – the Etymology.

23 Responses to About

  1. Catherine says:

    looking forward to more of your blogs

  2. Prasanthi says:

    You continue to inspire me darling cousin!

  3. Shaun says:

    What a great blog. A real treat to read – and good to know that you’re writing!

    • duckformationfamily says:

      Thank you Shaun, I do miss Tuesday evenings writing with you at the BI. Move here and you can help me write some more.

  4. Davina says:

    Not on facebook, nor Twitter……. but I’ve found you. Reading this when I should be working – its the small things that keep us sane! Love the site. Send me your email lady.

  5. Shh_daisy says:

    Your hilarious and insightful post on mamamia lead me to your blog, which I consumed entirely this week. Thank you for sharing your wonderful world and for making me giggle loudly and obnoxiously while I read.

  6. Phillet says:

    Hi Shankri,
    I found your writing engaging and spirited!
    Loved reading your work, we should talk more about writing…


  7. Guest says:

    Hi Shankari
    I have enjoyed your posts on Mamma Mia. Keep writing. I can relate to much of what you talk about…I am a mother of 4 under 5 (twins+2) in Sydney. Baby 6 months. I have been working part-time as a doctor throughout this with the help of the whole extended family (thanks to mum and mum-in-law). Chaotic but happy.
    I guess I’ll get to my specialist training one day :). I can also relate to your mum supporting your dad’s career. My husband has recently finished his training and we are all so proud of him. Hope you are having a lovely day with your brood!

    • duckformationfamily says:

      Thank you so much for reading my blog and for writing to me. We had one of those days today that remind me whey we migrated. A day with cousins swimming in the pool until the skies opened and we got rained on. Australia smells beautiful in the rain. Good luck with your work, your training and your family. 4 under 5 and working is absolutely amazing! xxx

  8. JB says:

    Hi Shankari, I’m a friend of Phoebe C’s and have hopped across here a couple of times and read your great posts. Gosh, we have a similar perspective! And similar issues. I’ve just seen your regifting post, and it reminded me of the one I did on the subject in 2009 in my blog (which also uses Twenty Ten, making the similarity even greater!) I thought I’d share it with you so you can see you’re not alone 🙂 JB http://hegemonyheights.wordpress.com/2009/01/20/reviewing-re-gifting/

  9. Lashitha says:

    I just discovered your blog through Mamamia. Its fabulous!!!
    Such a great writer and I relate to it so much as I too am a child of Sri Lankan migrants – with four young kids (5, 3, 1 & 8wks!).
    Please keep on writing!!!

    • duckformationfamily says:

      Hey Lashitha, really nice to hear from you! I love meeting mums of four, makes me feel less crazy. I hope the first weeks are going well. Four is challenging but absolutely wonderful. I hope your relatives are cooking you the right curries for your post-birth recovery! xxx Shanks

      • Lashitha says:

        OMG those post-recovery curries!!!! Can you believe my mum showed up at the hospital with roasted garlic in alfoil to help my milk come in!! The whole ward could smell her coming down the corridors. Thankfully after #1, I have managed to convince her that I don’t really need those curries and she, to her credit, has abided my requests. I really couldn’t stand all that corriander!!!
        My folks left to go back to Melb (my home town) some weeks back, so we’ve been doing it on our own with the 4 – coping ok so far!!

  10. Rekha Sanghi says:

    Hi Shankari. Our company is working with the Australian Electoral Commission on campaigns with people from non english speaking backgrounds to remind them to enrol to vote (if eligible) and how to vote correctly in a federal election. Sri Lankans are one of our target audeinces and i’d like to talk to you about a blog about this-our democaritc right to vote-a right not afforded to all etc… is this something you could be interested in? What is the best way to contact you? many thanks. Rekha

  11. Dawn Marie G says:

    Hi from Canada,
    I found you by looking for information on my daughter being the only girl in her class left off a guest list for her fellow grade 2 classmate’s birthday party. There were 8 girls invited, there are 9 in her class. I was like you, dubious and needed evidence, and talked to to other parents for confirmation. It was confirmed and I was a variety of emotions as a result…sad, angry, vengeful and ultimately I explained to my daughter that you won’t be invited to everything. She seemed fine however HER birthday is coming up in June and I dont’ know how to handle it. I really don’t want this little girl at my house (besides the birthday party issue, she is a bully to her classmates ) but feel like I can’t NOT invite her. I wish that I had been more like you in that I never did contact the other mother. I don’ t know why.
    Do you have any advice? PLease email me at my below address (if you feel like you can contribute). I have received a wide variety of opinions on this topic.

    Thanks. Dawn in NS

    • duckformationfamily says:

      Hi Dawn Marie, thank you very much for your comment and I am really sorry to hear about your little girl in this situation. After this incident, when it came time for Prima’s birthday I really wanted to invite all the girls in her class and be done with it, but Prima was adamant. There were three girls she refused to invite because she said they were mean to her and others. I agonised over it and tried to persuade her because I felt I had to go with the “include every one” principle but in the end I deferred to her as she was sure that the girls were mean. I felt I had to trust that – and as there were three of them it was possible to make the exclusion less targeted or obvious.

      Any way I really hope things work out for you, parties are so stressful!

      best wishes


  12. Laura Page says:

    Hi, Shankari, what a great blog! London, eh? I always wondered. Love to hear from you. Laura Page (Ramage 1992)

  13. Nilopar says:

    Hi Shankari! Love your blog – such wit and such a way with words:) A far cry from the days of heading up pro-bono at A&O! Looking forward to reading your future entries.


    • duckformationfamily says:

      Nilo, so lovely to hear from you! I hope all is well in your world. Mine has changed dramatically but for the good! xx

  14. Nilopar says:

    🙂 So I have been reading! Mine too! a mum now too- second on the way! Are you ever in London for trips? Would be great to see you next time you’re in town x

  15. MamaMeg says:

    Just came across your ‘kids swearing’ article on FB via Mamamia Parents.
    I think we went to school together 🙂

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