Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Snow-less Christmas Week

So, I'm super jealous of all the snow blogs from my Northern Hemispherical friends! It's so weird to see photos of snow in real life... like streets of snow and backyards of snow and cars covered in snow. For me 'the snow' is a place you go. In July. It's an 8 hour drive south, then another 40 minutes up the mountain each day to actually find the snow you can play in (and some years there isn't enough snow so they have to make snow so there is enough to ski on on the main slopes).

Anyway, needless to say my Christmas wasn't white this year (one day I am going to have a white Christmas. It's on my list..) It was cold-ish for a summer's day, but not white.

I only took one photo on Christmas day... This is my back deck, ready for Christmas breakfast (well semi-ready). Christmas breakfast has been at my house for the last 5 years (except the year I was in snow there either). It's a pretty fun tradition, I love having people over!

 Here are some other photos of Christmas week to make up for the lack of Christmas day photos.

This is the fun Whale 'taggy' I made for Hayden. I also made Leonard a giraffe and Morgan a sad fish that was meant to be happy.

This is Leonard (his onesie even says Leonard...I got to choose what he wore that day). One of the best things about Christmas holidays is that I have seen my three boys heaps (I just didn't have my camera when I saw my other 2)!
I even got to hang out with Leonard for a whole day this week! Soooo much fun!

Our Morpeth adventure (pre-vomit).
This is me and my gorgeous friends at a cafe by the river. Look we're all eating breakfast for lunch!

These 3 are photos of where we stayed that night. Soooo beautiful!

Oh and look a wallaby!
You probably don't get those at Christmas in America...(don't mind me, still jealous about the snow)

This last photo summarises what I have been doing for the past 2 days of Christmas week... submitting an objection to Council (oh I feel like a proper grown-up writing things like that) against my neighbour's proposal to store junk like this on his property (as you can see he hasn't waited for approval before doing it). This is the lovely view I have from my back deck. My submission is eight pages long. good times!

So there you have it, an absolutely snow-less Christmas week!  But it has been heaps of fun! And I wouldn't trade spending time with my friends, family and baby boys with all the snow in the world!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Sooooooo Grateful

So. I have the best friends in the world.

Today, my friend Leah's husband Jason spent 4 hours getting my computer to work. It has been sick for ages and then died on Saturday. I use my laptop for everything and was willing to pay him to get it back in action, but he didn't want a bar of it. I think he even enjoyed the challenge of tricking into working. Thank you soooooo much Jason!
Ok, so another example from this week...
These are my gorgeous friends Anna & Lou (Well these photos aren't from this week, I nicked them off facebook, since I haven't loaded any photos onto my 'new' computer yet).

They are incredible people who I work with (remember how I have the best job in the world).
On Tuesday we had a Christmas Weekend Adventure Sleepover. We went to Morpeth (a beautiful little historic town with the cutest shops) and lunched by the river, shopped and chatted for hours. We then drove back to our gorgeous accommodation and cooked up a roast dinner (mmm), exchanged presents (so spoilt!) and watched Suddenly 30 (such a fun movie).
Well... then these 2 did the most amazing selfless thing...
So. It must be said that vomitting is my least favourite thing. I hate vomitting and I avoid it whenever possible. But it seemed that my hexannual (um... every 6 years) nemesis decided to visit on this particular evening. bleh! I don't remember ever feeling that gross before, but I quickly remembered why vomitting is my least favourite thing.
These beautiful friends, before I even had time to think, had thrown everything in the washing machine, found me clean clothes, scrubbed the room with eucalyptus & then tucked me back into bed with hugs & prayers. How blessed am I?! Who does that for people at four in the morning? Vomit is gross. In my mind, cleaning up someone else's vomit is probably the most selfless thing a person can do (you know, after like taking a bullet or giving an organ...). Soooooooo beyond words grateful!
I've learnt alot about grace this week. The selfless acts of friends are an amazing reminder of the ULTIMATE selfless act of God in sending his Son to clean up the mess we've made on this Earth. Ahh amazing timing!
Anyway, I really just wanted to boast a little bit that I have the best friends in the world.
Oh and also I got my very own (even autographed) copy of Annie Downs' book in the post today! Can't wait to read it.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

I went on a scary rollercoaster... twice

This week I spent 4 days on the Gold Coast! The Gold Coast is home to Australia's biggest theme parks. My friend, my sister and I did 3 theme parks in 3 days!!
We went to Seaworld, Movieworld & Wet 'n' Wild.

I have never been much of a scary rides person... I was petrified of speed (and also hills) when we went in the car when I was a kid & spent years saying I didn't like roller coasters. But I decided to redefine myself this week. I am now a scary-rides person ( some degree).

Look! This is me! I am on this rollercoaster! (4th row from the bottom... I think).
This is the Superman Escape at Movieworld. It is Australia's scariest rollercoaster, It accelerates from 0-100km/h in 2 seconds, straight up, 40 metres in the air, then comes straight down the other side! eeek! I have since found out that there are way scarier roller coasters out there in the world, but I am still super proud of my fear-conquering! Not only did I do this crazy coaster once, but twice!

So... while I'm on a roll, how else can I redefine myself these holidays? What other fears can I conquer? What parts of who I am can I leave behind and replace with new thinking? I have some ideas. So scary and exciting!

Best Quote of the week:
(Movieworld 4D Movie Theatre) "If you would like a child to sit in your lap, please find a seat in the back row of the theatre." We were soooooo tempted to sit in the back row to see what kind of child we could get.

Friday, December 10, 2010

My Dad

I love my dad.

I also like this photo of me and my dad (I only found it when I was making their anniversary book a few months ago).

Most people say I look more like my dad than my mum. I have also inherited a lot from him:
His love of reading
His dry humour (it seriously took me 18 years to realise that dad was joking, now I think he's hilarious)
His curiosity & hunger for knowledge
His love of travel
His short temper...

I love hanging out with my dad. Together we used to go on bush-walks, he'd take me to piano lessons, he taught me to ride a bike, he helped me buy my house (and move in, and mow it, and maintain it, and re-roof it), together we calculated how many jellybeans would fit in a smart car (and won the car), he introduced me to snow (one of my most favourite things in the world!), so many fun adventures!

Tonight I went to my parents' for dinner. I was just going to pop in then come home and put up my Christmas tree, but then dad and I got chatting... about everything. I love conversations with my dad. We discussed history, books we've been reading (thanks Mindy for the John Grisham conversation starter), work, pay, the sky, how clouds stay up (ok so mostly he just laughed at me when I said that...), world events, movies, church, sick leave, foster kids and pretty much everything else. Pretty quickly I had been there more than 5 hours. I love conversations that make time fly. (and maybe tomorrow I'll put up my tree)

Well that's all for today.
I love my daddy.
I want to be more like him when I grow up!

Oh and incase you're wondering, like I am, how clouds stay up when water is heavier than air (had some fun conversations with my kids when we imagined the reverse was true), I found some answers. I really like it when people have asked the same silly questions I ask.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

It Is Finished

Another year of school is officially over! It's crazy how fast these years are getting! I can't believe next year will be my 8th year of teaching (argh! I'm getting so old!)

We had the best "Party Day" yesterday. We started the day by getting the kids, in groups, to make 3 lists: "Places we've been," "Things We've Learnt," & "Funny things that have been said" as a bit of a reminiscing exercise. They came up with the best things! It was good to see them recognise that they had actually learnt some things this year & seeing them re-enact and re-laugh at some of the humorous (why do we drop the u in humour to make humorous? crazy language) moments we have been through together.

Katrina (the super aide, oh I'm going to miss her next year!) and I role-played a court-room scene & they had to present their lists as evidence to convince us that they had had an amazing year in our class. It was super fun! We gave them points for fabulous answers, bonus points if they had chosen the examples we had on our secret list & more bonus points if they sang, dance or used "high-modality words" in their presentation. oh I love my job!

We then had party food! Because we had the 2 wii's set up we told the kids "fill up your serviettes, then just find somewhere to sit and have a chat so you don't bump the wii's" and they did! They sat and chatted (and ate copious amounts of junk food)! They are such amazing kids! I'm going to miss them next year!

We played Raving Rabbids TV Party until lunch, then they all went home (yay for half days!).

Such a great year with such amazing kids! I am so grateful for my job.

Oh and I'm not boasting or anything (maybe just a little)... but look at the amazing presents I got from my kiddlies! mawww I am going to smell so sweet & be about 700kg heavier by the end of the holidays! haha

So anyway! Now I am on HOLIDAYS for 6 and a half weeks!!!!!! Ahhh, Freedom!

Friday, December 3, 2010

I Suddenly Forgot!

Today was Cleaning Up the Classroom, Practicing for Presentation Night & Rehearsing for Seussical Day. Arrrgh! My patience was worn so thin.

I think my whole class left their listening ears at home. Oh so many repetitions of instructions, even the simple ones..."Put this in your bag. Did you put that note in your bag? Why is it on my desk? Why can I see your note on the floor? Where should your note be? I told you to put that straight in your bag." etc.

My favourite, but at the same time most frustrating, point of the day was when some girls from the other Year 3 class came and said "we found these test tubes near the sink, are they yours?" I had sent 2 girls out to wash them 2 hours earlier...
"So M, when I sent you to wash those before recess, what happened?"
"Well, I was washing them. Then N was helping me. And then suddenly I forgot." (such a hilarious picture in my mind of her mid-scrubbing bing! "What was I doing again?")
That pretty much sums up the way most of my kids were thinking today. So exhausting.

But... I got to hold my boss' beautiful, sweet smelling, sleeping baby at our work party tonight, which made everything better!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

A Day of Garbage

Today was Year 4's graduation!
It was so much fun!

The service ran fairly smoothly (except the dodgy sound system), kids laughed, parents cried. It was great! My cute Student Leaders did a fabulous job of emceeing & one of my Year 3's prayed the sweetest prayers I have ever heard. She wrote it herself. ohhh I got goosebumps.

After the service we let the kids play for half an hour before recess... and one of my boys broke his wrist! Poor kid! Since last Friday 4 kids have fractured their arms at school! AND not one has been on the Spiderball. ha! Today's accident was a fall on our new "soft-fall" - he was running & tripped awkwardly. oh dear.

So... then it was time for our Garbage Bag Formal! This is our annual (since last year) graduation event where the kids create their own outfits using garbage bags (in a range of colours of course!) & we sit down for an exquisite meal of pizza and hot chips. This year, since I teach a composite class, my Year 3's served as waiters - they were soooooooo cute! The little boys had decided that they needed to dress up to be waiters, so they wore vests & ties and jackets. mawww!

It was heaps of fun & I took about 7 billion photos (or at least 70)... but they are all on the school server. Luckily my amazing aide uploaded some of hers onto facebook, so I can share them with you...

This is Katrina (the world's best aide), Pete who also teaches Year 4 & I in our formal wear.

You can't tell from these pictures, but I had a 3 tiered black & pink skirt & a black top with yellow sleeves and a pink bow (& do you like the ear-rings one of my girls bought me?). Katrina's was a one shoulder number with gorgeous flowers & a pink tie around the middle. Pete... well his was very creative!
I might add the full-length photos tomorrow - they were on the other camera.

I only have 3 more days with my kids :( I can't believe how fast this term has gone! Oh I'm going to miss this class! They are such a great bunch of kids!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

It's Raining, it's pouring...

I am so grateful for the rain today!

It meant our excursion was cut short - we still got to play laser tag and indoor sports (soooo fun!). But we spent the afternoon watching The Little Rascals (best movie ever) because the park was too wet.

This meant I had an extra hour to spend getting ready for our Graduation Service tomorrow - sooooo grateful for that time!

That's all, not all I'm grateful for, and not all of the fun of today... but I need sleep.

Oh, also my Christmas tree is not up yet. This tells me something is wrong, because I usually have it up in October, or November at the latest... I'll have to get on to that on the weekend.

Also I hung out with cute Hayden tonight - who is now 5 months! Mawwwww. I just wanted to keep him, he gives the best snuggles and kisses.

Arrgh, ok. that's all. Night