New Year rolling in on a BBQ!

Phewie, the BBQ has been steaming over the past few day’s. Dan’s got the whole week off work and we are so blessed to feel like we’re having a holiday at home in our beautiful garden, with the sea just a short walk away. Kathy and Mark came round on Sunday, with their gorgeous boys. Kathy and I kept the children happy, whilst the men folk went for a round of golf at Miramar Links Golf Club, and even managed to get the BBQ primed and cooking by their return.

Sophie playing in Houghton Valley:

On Monday ‘avo we were delighted to have the company of our old friends Isle and Adam, along with their beautiful daughter Indi, who was born a couple of day’s before Charlotte. I met Isle, when I was pregnant with Charlotte, through the Home Birth Midwives (Isle managed a wonderful home birth, with Indi arriving three week’s early, whilst Charlotte made a later arrival of nearly two week’s past her due date). Isle and I spent many fond days walking our babes to sleep in their slings along Lyall Bay beach and our daughters formed a strong friendship as they grew.

Sadly (for us), they left New Zealand to the beautiful spot of Byron Bay, on the East Coast of Australia, half way through this year (they are both keen surfers and it’s such a unique spot for surf lovers). Dan and I have very fond memories of Byron Bay, having back-packed up the East Coast in 1998 and also spending two-week’s there when I was pregnant with Sophie. Anyway, they are in our thoughts often and it was such a treat to see them. Charlotte and Indi hit off their friendship again straight-away and are talking of becoming pen-friends.

On Monday morning we spent a delightful time at Lyall Bay Beach, lunching at the wonderful Maranui Cafe.

Dan and I took it in turns to swim in the sea – which was very brave as it was quite cold! Once our muscles had loosened up and adjusted to the temperature it was such an exhilerating experience. Charlotte and Sophie delighted in playing at the playground, digging in the sand, and paddling in the sea. Dan and I even managed a frisbee session – tossing it out further to sea and daring each other to get our shoulders under the water!

Yesterday was such a chilled day, with no visitors, so we went into town for a Yum Char lunch and play on the waterfront. We also had a hoot croc biking. Sophie had a late nap and didn’t wake till 6pm, so Dan took the girls swimming in the evening and they didn’t get back till close to 9pm! Sophie is swimming with a float now, kicking her legs like a real trooper and doing her best to keep up with her big sister.

Today is New Year’s Eve and we’re looking forward to spending the afternoon at Mark and Kathy’s to celebrate their oldest son’s third Birthday. We’ll probably see the New Year’s in at home, but are more than happy to be with each other and our thoughts. New Year’s holds so many emotions. In days gone by the celebrations were spent in a country pub in England with the sound of Big Ben chiming in the New Year and arms linked with friends and family singing Auld Lang Syne (my dear Grandfather, on my mother’s side, was from Scotland). For us it is such a time of reflection mixed with hopes and dreams for tomorrow. Though in reality it is simply another day, it holds so much more power and a perceived opportunity to actually put aspirations into action and make them a reality. Our hearts are with family and friends, near, far and dearly departed, and we pray that everyone has a happy and healthy New Year filled with special moments to treasure.