Wow - what happened to the last few months? We've had SO much going on (I know, who doesn't, right?) Well, I have some photos to upload from the camera cards which I will start on tomorrow, but here's the abbreviated blow-by-blow, minus the pictures of course... they can come later!
I finished off the month with a quick day trip to Oamaru with Ma. Rosie and I went down for one of Tania's Embellish It crop days. Got a few Chrissy cards made (although I never got a single one sent out this year, but that's another story), and we had a scrummy lunch at the Victorian Tea Rooms. VERY cool. Beautifully redecorated tea rooms, with lots of victorian era trinkets and paintings all around the place. All of the staff were dressed in period costume, and they even had the eftpos machine hidden under the counter below a victorian style till! There's a recent article about it from The Oamaru Mail here. Then Ma took me for a cruise past all of her old childhood haunts - where she used to live, where she went to school etc. Man we had a blast hanging out for the day.... talk about laugh!
Started the month off with my car getting covered in paint overspray, caused by painters painting a building on a windy day just down the road from where I park while I am at work. (Wow, did all that make sense? Talk about a long and complicated sentence!). I now have a red car with white spots. Fantastic. We're still waiting for the painter's insurers to sort it out. STILL.
Then our gorgeous nephew turned ONE. Unfortunately we couldn't make the trip up to Aucks to spend his birthday with him, but Ma and Pa went up.... armed with lots of pressies from those of us down here, and the birthday cake that I had made him :) Photos of that to follow.
Then I had a totally fab time teaching my first ever class for Tania at Embellish It, down in Waimate. Tbh I spent a bit of time leading up to the class stressing about whether it was going to go ok, but I think it went really well. (Although if I were to do it again I'd design simpler layouts! Sorry ladies - hope I didn't stress you guys out too much... better to be busy than bored in class, huh?). I'll post a more detailed post on that later.
Then I had an epiphany, and decided to have a serious talk with my good friend Dom about whether or not she'd be prepared to part time personal train me... and she said yes! She is very motivating, very energetic and such a lovely person. But by hell she has had me working hard. I have to confess to being more committed to the cause before Christmas, but I am getting back on the wagon now though... nose to the grindstone and all that. Daz and I are working our way through the Couch to 5K program. At the moment, we are into week 5 of the 9 week program. And I am by no means a natural runner. At the moment I am more of a huffing puffing plodder than a graceful striding runner. But I am doing it. Three times a week. I can now (just) run for 5 minutes without stopping. The theory of the Couch to 5K seems easy. Start out running for 1 minute, then walk for 1 minute, then repeat until you have been run/walking for 25 minutes. This week we ran for 5 minutes, walked for 3 minutes, ran for 5, walked for 3 then ran for 5 and staggered home again. Each session is started with a 5 minute warm-up walk. Sounds easy right? Yeah, um, maybe not EASY, but so far it's achievable. SO FAR. I don't plan to eat my words on that either. Onwards and upwards...
At the end of the month DH and I worked on Election Day, which was a busy day but went really well, and the counts etc at the end went very smoothly. I was Polling Place Manager, and counting Daz and myself, there were 8 of us at our site. Good bunch of staff, no difficult voters, home by 10pm. Not bad! (and we got paid quite nicely for it too, woohoo!)
Now December was a bit of an up and down month... In my new job (funny I still call it a new job, I've been there 6 months now!), I have some of the most amazing co-workers. They are an awesome bunch of people. Sadly one of those co-workers had to deal with the sudden and unexpected loss of her son at the beginning of December. Man it was tough. I mean, there is nothing you can say, and nothing you can do, but you really want to make things better, you know? I never even met the guy, but I was so upset for my her. A mother is not supposed to outlive her kids. Life deals some pretty shitty blows sometimes. I know you're only supposed to be dealt as much as you can handle, but really? You have to wonder... it's just not fair. Most of us at work attended the funeral, for moral support. That was a big day for me - work in the morning, root canal at lunchtime, funeral mid afternoon. Nice to finally get my mouth fixed up after the issues I had back in October, but not the best timing.
A lot of time in December was spent devoted to trying to stick to Dom's timetable for me... Zumba twice a week, at-home half hour workouts three times a week, Couch to 5K three times a week, and a family outdoor outing once a week (like a bush walk, or tennis, or teeball, etc). I have had a LOT of support from my boys, which is fantastic. D and J have been with me each and every time I have done a Couch to 5K run, and they have worked alongside me (when they have been at home) to do my at-home workouts. I tell you what, I have NEVER been so tired. Really REALLY tired. I even went to the Doc for a WOF, and other than my usual blood pressure issues, there was nothing else wrong. It was just my body telling me I was working damn hard.
We also had three work Christmas Do's to go to in December, my work social club do, D's work do, then the full Council work do. Haven't had a social calendar that full for years, ha ha ha! I also organised our annual Street Christmas Party for the Saturday night before Christmas, which was a BLAST. Street Party started at 4.30pm at the bottom of our street. All the houses in our cul-de-sac were invited. We rolled our barbecue down the street, and we all brought along our own meat for the BBQ, and chairs/drinks etc. Each house had to bring along either breads, salad or dessert, and it all worked fabulously! It was unfortunately a pretty cold evening, so we carted our gas patio heater down there too, and another neighbour brought out a brazier. The kids got some tree branches and toasted marshmallows over the brazier, old school style. Awesome! And the drift trikes made an appearance too... quite a few of the neighbours had a turn on them :) By about midnight it was too cold to stay out any longer, so some went home, and the rest came to our place to attempt a bit of a Delta Dawn/Midnight Special sing-a-long. Man we were awesome (as you can well imagine!). I got to bed at 3.45am, and that was only because I turned off the stereo and kicked the last of the stragglers out. D went to the loo at around 3am and sneakily snuck off to bed, leaving me to it. Nice one D. I'll remember that trick next time.
And some of the bestest news... my lil sis Gem and her partner DJ arrived back in NZ from Sydney just over a week before Christmas, to stay for a fortnight... and my other sis Sarah and her fiance Kelvin, and their wee manny (my gorgeous nephew) Tyler arrived on Christmas Eve for 4 nights.
And that brings us to Christmas Day... which I shall have to fill you in on tomorrow, cos I am done for tonight peeps. If you haven't fallen asleep yourself yet, I'll see you for part two (and hopefully some photos) tomorrow.