November 29, 2008

Summer, Summer, Summertime

It’s 7.50am as I write this now. Michael and Bethany have gone off to do their Saturday morning swim thing leaving me home alone. Normally I would take advantage of this and have a bit of a lie in but on a day like today that’s not going to happen!

The 1st of December is officially the start of Summer, yet for the last few weeks, despite the odd rainy day Summer has already started. To wake in the morning and see a cloudless blue sky and have temperatures already at 17 degrees, it really is bliss. If this Summer is going to be anything like last Summer then I know for a fact this will become way of life for us now for many months to come.

Still it is a strange one. Christmas is fast approaching – do I feel festive yet? Nah. I think it will take many years before I can get used to watching our Christmas tree decorations twinkle in the sunshine!

Bethany is as you can imagine so very excited. This year she turns 5 on December 22nd and so has a whole new understanding of what Christmas is about. We will be celebrating her birthday on the 14th December this year so we can try and break the two occasions up, the last few years have proved that trying to mix birthday and Christmas pressies together is just confusing and overwhelming! Funny though that for the rest of her life she will always associate her birthday with the sight of a Christmas tree.

Bethany prepared her list to Santa, it took us nearly an hour to sit down, sound out the words and for her to write them, but she got there in the end. Spelling mistakes and all – she was very proud. We popped it into the post to go to the North Pole and Santa should hopefully send her a letter back soon (thank you New Zealand Post!).

My week has been pretty busy, my social calendar has picked up and I have been getting together with my friends nearly every day, it’s been lovely. As you might know Bethany is heading off to a school that most of her Kindy friends are not. It’s difficult for Bethany to understand the reasons for this and so we have had a few long fuelled conversations on the reasons why.

I have been (selfishly) reluctant to buddy her up with children at her Kindy that are not going to her school as I can’t bare the thought of what happened last time, happening again. So I took on the mission to at least seek out two new friends for Bethany that would be going to her school and make a point of her getting together with them.

Luckily for me the two friends Bethany has bonded with (one a boy and one a girl) have amazing mothers too!! I have had such a wonderful time with them, it’s so lovely to meet new people and feel like you have known them forever. So here is Bethany and one of her new friends (who is just the most gorgeous girl with her long blond hair and blue eyes!) – all dressed up and ready for some festive fun.

Playing in the garden is foremost, we have had some of the best fun this week, the bubble machine being the most used and easily entertaining toy we have had in a while!

We have also been privileged to meet some of the most kind hearted, soul warming people. Our good friends Justin and Alina have been totally amazing. We did hit a rough patch recently with some neighbour issues (possibly another post on that another time!) but Justin and Alina have been so supportive. We did in fact feel very alone in our troubles yet they stood by us and gave us the strength to rise above it all. We cannot thank them enough.

We have so much to look forward to over the next month. All the festive parties, decorating our house for our first Christmas in our new home, our first Christmas with Denver, celebrating NZ style with a Christmas Day BBQ, our big New Year camping trip and then the arrival of Lynn (Michael’s mam) early January for her second trip here with us.

I am so very excited about it all, and to be honest I’m not too worried about feeling festive. Just being here in NZ, knowing we not only made it but are here enjoying our 3rd Christmas in the blazing sunshine is just crazily awesome enough!!

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  • Ruta M.

    November 29, 2008 at 8:39 am

    I’m so glad that Bethany, ( and you) , have made some new friends. This should make the school transition so much easier. I am so envious of your blue skies and sunshine, especially as I sit here with a rug over my knees. As I was reading your thoughts on a summer Christmas I had this wild thought. Why not have an outdoor decorated tree? It doesn’t have to be a fir tree, decorated with things that sparkle in the sunshine. You could make decorations using those little mirror tiles or sparkly pipe cleaners,or spinners and bells. The more I think about it the more I like the idea of a ‘Sunshine Christmas Tree’. Feel free to think I’m mad.

  • Prin

    November 29, 2008 at 8:49 am

    You know, when I was helping Santa reply to all the kids’ letters here, I was given a pack of 100 to read and out of 100, only ONE said “thank you”.

    Made me smile to see it on Bethany’s. I’m sure Santa would be proud. Smile

    For me, family gives me the Christmas spirit and this year the family’s small and we’ve got a lame $20 limit for the one (!!) gift we’re giving (gift exchange). It’s pathetic. Sigh.

  • Anonymous

    November 29, 2008 at 9:59 am

    Not jealous at all, since am sat here with the heating on with it -2 outside!! The sad thing is it doesnt get much better in summer ha ha
    Sarah Baldwin

  • Rachel

    November 29, 2008 at 11:06 am

    Aaahhh, amongst our chaos and fog (that’s in my head as well as outdoors!!!) it’s so wonderful to see that Christmas will be a hot one for us all!!! – wonderful to see Bethany making new friends and enjoying life sooo much – can’t wait to share in the magic with you guys – hugs Rach x

  • Domestic Executive

    November 29, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    It sure is hot and I just can't get into the Christmas spirit. Still with my in-laws arriving on Friday I'm sure that we'll start to get into the party mood.

    Tell Bethany I loved her Santa letter and give her a hug from me and F&M.

    JT X

  • Sarah

    November 29, 2008 at 7:48 pm

    Marrisa, you’ve out done yourself! The first photograph was so perfect in summing up this beautiful warmth and sunshine. I’m so delighted to hear you so happy and feeling settled in your new home with so much to look forward to. It was delightful to see Bethany this week and she is absolutely wonderful.

    Charli wrote a special card to Father Christmas too, which said something about, ‘I hope you have a good rest and sleep well after all the flying round the world!’. So cute!

    I LOVE Ruta’s idea of outdoor decorations. We’ve gone for more glitter balls this year so we can actually see some twinkle in the sunshine. I love crystals too. The tinsel up our stairs catches the sunlight at certain times of day and glows around the hallway.

    Can’t wait for Bethany’s Birthday – I think I’ll be doing a similar thing in future year’s what with Sophie’s Birthday falling on Boxing Day – you’re so right in that it’s very overwhelming and confusing for them.

    Best wishes and lots of love, Sarah xxxx

  • The Pescini Family

    November 29, 2008 at 9:32 pm

    Season’s Greetings (it’s true the more you say it and spread it the more festive you get!)… loving the time we’ve been spending together lately and getting to know you guys more, and thanks for a smashing bbq last night – we all had a great time. I have been thinking about your ‘birds’ on the trellis and love it… not quite the right greenery outside here – tinsel on the deck maybe?! lol. But…we did decorate inside today – our version of an alternative Christmas tree since we’ll be away this year… garlands of tinsel draped on the walls with our decorations hung off them! Helped by Ethan, supervised by Olivia, and spurred on by Christmas music in the background! hohoho!
    The Pescini Family
    PS – as for being there with the neighbourly issues (!), will always be, that’s what friends are for (and nice neighbours!)… x

  • Michael

    November 29, 2008 at 10:20 pm

    We actually beat you to the idea of the tree! Bethany has already spread/glued glitter all over the some pine cones and hung them on the conifer tree outside. Plus a trip to the Warehouse recently netted us some cool outdoor lights too.

    The only issue with the outdoor lights is it slightly obscures the awesome stars we see above us, as our house house has very little other light and on a clear night the stars are breathtaking.

  • mam Lee

    November 30, 2008 at 11:15 pm

    Had you had too many tuis when you wrote that Michael?

    Yes I was going to mention the tree out side as well great idea.x

  • Anonymous

    December 3, 2008 at 10:27 pm

    What a mass of lovely photos! That one of Bethany’s birthday invite is gorgeous!! Where did you get it from??

    Smasing post, enjoyed this one. xxJennaxx

  • Catherine

    December 8, 2008 at 10:26 am

    Hi you, all ready for the party on Saturday? Alexander is so excited. Thanks for the Santa Calls link! We did it and it was brilliant. We had a big discussion afterwards about how we now KNEW he was real. Had to laugh at Bethany taking so long over her list because I was wondering how long her Santa Call went on for! I can just imagine him stepping back in to say “don’t forget to press 1 when you’re finally finished…”