Chrissy was a very low key affair, with a few friends around for a nice lunch on a hot day. Unfortunately my sister didn't come with the baby for the day, as the baby was worn out by other gatherings and not feeding properly. My friend did come around with her two Labradoodle puppies, who played with my dog. Much tail-wagging, playful barking and hilarity ensued.
After hosting Christmas, we woke up early to prepare for my family and the Greek family (belonging to my brother's girlfriend) around. I had been stressing about this, as the Greeks like to throw grand events, and my events are modest at best. It was also pi55ing down with rain so we had to host all 12 adults and 3 kids in our small loungeroom.
I am happy to say that the food and company was enjoyed by all (or so they said, maybe they were just being nice). Greek Papa got into the chardy and therefore was quite happy, and that is 50% of the job done right there. My sis came with her bub and bub was enjoyed by all. The dog reluctantly allowed people a paw shake - she is very shy around hoomins but loves other dogs.
After these festivities, I was spent, and had a jolly good nap.
Soon after Xmas was my fella's birthday. I took him to see the Ai Weiwei/Andy Warhol exhibition, then to Entrecote in South RaRa. Entrecote is basically a steak frites place. I had high expectations as I went to a similar place, also called Entrecote, in Bordeaux. I was a little disappointed; the price was high, the meat was tough and the sauce (a salsa verde) wasn't as amazing as the one in Bordeaux. The views across the Tan were beautiful, and they do $2 oysters during happy hour.
The following day, we executed the second and main part of my pressie to my fella, that is, we went to his home town, Christchurch. As you will remember Chch suffered a massive earthquake in Feb of 2011, and has had scores of aftershocks. Much of the centre of town and suburbs along the coast were badly affected, with many of the buildings destroyed or subsequently condemned. The knock down and rebuild process has been slow. Having been back every year or so since 2012, we have seen the city evolve, and this is the first time we could actually traverse the centre of town; it had previously been cordoned off. Multi-storey buildings are starting to come up. There is a lot of empty space where multi-storey buildings had been, and it is quite confronting for people who have grown up in the city. We caught up with the fella's friends and family, ate and drank too much, "celebrated" NYE (by celebrate I mean drank some wine and fell asleep well before midnight and then woke up at 1 or 2 and couldn't get back to sleep). We visited the Banks peninsula, and saw where my fella camped with his family as a kiddie. Kiwis are keen campers and tolerate much fouler weather than we Aussies do. We stayed in a hotel, which was good as the weather was inclement.
Reluctantly I am thrust back into reality, into work, into exercise, into eating and drinking sensibly. The little break, and the turn of the year gave me some pause to reflect on the year gone by, and set the intentions for the new year. I don't really do new year's resolutions, I am past setting myself up to fail.
2015 had some hard times and had some excellent times too. My body demonstrated it could get pregnant. I finished my PhD. My relationship with my fella continues to flourish. I started the most excellent activity of crossfit. I have a lovely little niece. There is a lot to be thankful for, and, at least in the parts in my control, I am happy with how my life is going. I sometimes have the "things are going well something bad will happen" fear, but I let this go quickly when it comes.
I have a few goals for 2016. Some I am keeping to myself. Others I can share:
- to only drink excellent coffee.
- to be able to do a pull up unassisted by a band.
- To make things rather than buy things.
- To set aside a couple of hours each week to do art work