Home safe, practise makes perfect, no dishes.

1) We’re all home safe, snug and cosy. The house is still standing, and as far as we can tell, unscathed. I’m counting my blessings, but thinking of those without power, warmth and light on this cold and stormy evening.

2) M is frustrated that she’s not very good at some of the games on the Wii Fit. We try to explain that she needs to practise to get better, but she refuses to do so. Then it’s A’s turn to play – he tries and fails, but says in cheerfully determined tones “I’ll just need to try again…”.

3) Not having to do the dishes after dinner.

Communion, naughty, and bed,

From yesterday:

1) Communion, in a tent, shared with several hundred others – a special experience.

2) He stands in the middle of a muddy puddle, with a cheeky grin on his face – he knows he’s being naughty!

3) Home, clean, warm, snug in bed.

Home alone, daffodils, menu planning

1) A day at home – after a crazy weekend, it’s been lovely to be on my own, at home, with time to do the things I need to do.

2) I bought some daffodils today – Megan was so excited by this, she’s just found out that she’s performing at the Primary One Daffodil Tea in a couple of weeks time.

3) We’re going away for the weekend with a group of friends in a few weeks time… we’re cooking for 20 on the Friday night, so this evening we spent a happy ten minutes planning what to cook (and trying to work out what we could make that will be come close to being as good* as the chicken and chorizo paella we did last time).

* Everyone seemed to really enjoy it, so I’m assuming it worked out reasonably well!

Morning skies, snowy scenes, safely home

From yesterday:

1) A rosy pink glow lights up the morning sky.

2) Fairy lights twinkle on the fir tree in the park; with its light icing sugar dusting of snow, it looks just like a scene from a Christmas card.

3) Being home, safe and warm, after a scary (think icy roads, temps of -10, and fog!) drive back.

Two and a half weeks…

Gosh, is that really all it’s been? Time flies!

Wow – it’s good to be home. To be honest, I was secretly dreading the walking through the door of our house, suitcases in hand, in the knowledge that our long-planned Big Trip was over. I was scared of feeling let-down, a bit lost, not quite sure what to do with our days… now that I’ve got a few moments to reflect on it all, it hasn’t been like that at all. In some ways, it’s been as if we’d never been away.

Catching up with friends has been such fun, and putting our house and garden back in order has been good too. The garden particularly, didn’t receive the TLC we would have given it, and has required a fair bit of work (many many thanks to my wonderful parents for all their help!) to get it looking reasonable. It proved so inspirational that we actually finally put our herb garden in order, and have advanced our plans for a raised veggie plot down from the playhouse. A good blogger would have pics for you all – they will follow in due course!

Our bag did eventually make it back from Sydney – yay for Virgin Blue’s Lily, who actually picked up the phone and called us; then made sure the bag went on the next flight home 🙂 – only eight days after we did. Happy happy – and “all” I need to do now is block my lovely knitted top and then I can seam it and wear it!

(The “all” means we have to clear the guest room bed… no mean feat)

And I’ve got lots of other knitting to be getting on with, but more on that in due course too.

Aidan and Megan are loving being home in their own beds again, and out in their playhouse, and riding their bikes, and going scooting, and seeing their friends and… 🙂

Home again!

We made it! We’re home!

The dreaded 14.5 hour flight worked out just fine, and we made it back to sunny Scotland yesterday lunchtime…

Staying with my wonderful parents for a night or two, to allow us to unpack our attic, and restore our home to something approaching normality, and to allow K and I to get some much-needed sleep. Jet lag isn’t too bad – we all slept reasonably well last night, but the kids were up at 6am this morning.

However, all this is minus one bag, thanks to the check-in lady at Sydney Airport forgetting to put a tag on one of the bags. The bag hasn’t made it to Scotland yet, and we’re well past the 24 hour point. I suspect it’s sitting moldering away in a corner of Sydney Airport. Of course, they may also have blown it up by now 🙁 . It’s mostly the kid’s clothes (but A is very upset because his birthday top and trousers are in there), and the laptop (thankfully backed-up, but still…) and worst of all – my just-finished knitted top, which I hadn’t even had a chance to seam 🙁 🙁 .

We have our doubts about the tracking system – because the bag wasn’t tagged. The bag does have K’s address and telephone number on both the inside and outside – but the bag apparently went through under my name – and there’s no place on the missing bag report to put such details, so if they are looking at all, they are looking for a bag with my name on it, not K’s. So we’re going to try calling Sydney Airport ourselves and see if we can find out what happened. I have my doubts that we will ever see that bag again 🙁 .

Still, on the bright side, we have our house and our car back, and the sun is shining. It’s great to be home!


Welcome to my blog…

For some time now I’ve thought about starting a blog, but wasn’t quite sure what I wanted to write about. Now here’s the opportunity: a six-month visit to New Zealand – land of my husband’s birth, but approximately 20000km away from mine.

After a chaotic few weeks, during which K and I barely slept at all, we succeeded in renting out our home in Scotland, finding a friend to car-sit for us during our absence, and then rent a house in Auckland, and be lent a car for the duration of our stay!

We left Scotland on Tuesday, January 27th for what seemed to be a marathon flight – 7.5h to Dubai, 7.75h in Dubai airport, 7.2h to Singapore, 7.5h to Brisbane, then 3.2h to Auckland. In actual fact, helped greatly by Emirates giving us a suite of rooms in their hotel in Dubai (yay for showers and proper beds to sleep in for a couple of hours), we found the journey worked out very well. We all got pretty much a couple of hours sleep per leg of the journey; the kids coped with it all really well (apart from A’s constant questions); and I arrived feeling far more rested than I have on any of our previous visits.

We stayed two nights with my PIL (parents-in-law) and, with some wonderful help from BIL (I leave you to work out what that one means), we moved in to our new place last Saturday, complete with a basic household of stuff thanks to a lot of hard work on the part of both SIL and MIL! Thank you all!