Friday, 31 December 2010

A year ends

It is two hours from the end of 2010. A year which sadly ended with having to put my cat Tigger to rest. R.I.P. Tiggy-tiggs.

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

The sun appears - hooray!

It's been a rainy, windy couple of days, but the sky is now blue and the sun shining, the wind little more than a light breeze. Perfect for backyard cricket. Oh and for getting No.3 haircuts:

Tyler was in a helpful mood this morning, and who was I to stand in his way?? Dave and Leona are staying with us for a couple of days, so I did a big cooked breakfast and when I was about to launch into the dishes, the wee dude offered to help.

I always find it interesting the varied positions which Tyler seems to find comfortable to watch tv.

Chris is off to Te Anau for the night, to catch up with a bunch of old school mates, one of whom he hasn't seen for 20 years. Naturally he wanted to look his best :) so I gave him a haircut and finally persuaded T to have one too.

Apart from that, we are just chilling out - playing Connect Four and cricket, eating more than is good for us and enjoying the company of family. And soon friends, as the Harwoods arrive on New Year's Eve for a couple of days. It's so good to have a house big enough to accommodate everyone! Although with two 6 year olds, a 4 year old and a 7 month old, I'm guessing the house will seem quite full ;)

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Boxing Day

The Campbell-McLeod family had a lovely Christmas full of family, love and laughter.

Our day started at 5:10am, when Tyler got into our bed and said a very loud "Merry Christmas! - I'm not going to check out my Santa sack yet". Excellent we thought, he'll go back to sleep, but noooooooo. 5 minutes later he pipes up "Do you want to know what time it is?". I mumble something and he leaps out of bed looks at the clock and announces brightly "5:15! When can we get up?" Negotiations ensued resulting in 5:45am. From 5:15 till 5:45, the time was announced approximately every 5 minutes. We then sent him off to check out Santa's presents which he did by dragging the sack back to our bed and announcing every item with squeals of "Awesome!" "Cool!" etc very loudly and with every light in our bedroom on. As I had most of my brain in gear by that stage it was really very nice watching his wee face light up with each discovery :)

We had coffee and croissants for breakfast then Chris got his chef game-face on and started doing rude things to a turkey, so Tyler and I headed over to Mum's, along with the Howards, to exchange gifts.

Back to our house where Chris had laid on a feast (with plum puddings from Mum and honey & ginger-glazed carrots and a salad from the Howards). We had turkey, ham, new potatoes from our garden, peas, carrots and several salads. Then a brief rest followed by plum pudding with custard and cream, brandy snaps, fruit salad and jelly. There were 11 of us altogether and it was so nice to have everyone here and still have lots of space.
Once we'd digested all that lot, the Howards and Parsons departed and Chris, Tyler, Bruce, Ali and I played backyard cricket accompanied by much kidding around and laughter.
Anton, his girlfriend and his flatmate came over for tea and departed with as many leftovers as they could carry.
I tucked T-man into bed about 9pm and asked my usual bed-time questions:
Me: Did you have a good day today?
Tyler: It was the best day ever!
Me: So what was the best part of the day?
Tyler: Everything.
I'll second that.

Friday, 24 December 2010

Christmas Eve

Yes, it's finally here and Tyler is beyond excited. We have ready a carrot for Rudolph and some milk for Santa. We had a great big chocolate-coated oat biscuit ready for Santa but as I finished making a hot drink for Chris and I this afternoon, I looked up to see him mid-munch on said biscuit. Oopsie Daddy! Substitute sorted. T-man snapped a few photos this afternoon for your viewing pleasure:
He made this at school for me and Chris
Santa's Little Helper
Prezzies under the tree

I am off to the Basilica to sing twice tonight - firstly at 7:30pm for Christmas Carols & Vigil Mass and then at 11:30pm for Midnight Mass. It will be great to sing some really traditional Christmas music.
I just realised I haven't blogged since before we had the Advent Verspers performance. It went well, and I was reasonably happy with my aria. I managed to do a number of the things I had been trying to technique-wise so that was a bonus. The whole service was lovely.

Monday, 13 December 2010

When is a naughty word not naughty?

Me: Oh bum, I forgot to go to the supermarket.
Tyler: Hey Mum, isn't bum a naughty word?!
Me: Ah, um, depends on the context really.....
Tyler: Oh! You mean like if I say 'BUMblebee' it's ok?

Monday, 6 December 2010

Feeling Christmassy

Saturday was Christmas-tree-putting-up day. Tyler was very excited about this and was thrilled that the new Christmas tree was put together using letters of the alphabet so he could work out which branches went where. The intial decorating resulted in a large cluster of ornaments right at the front, so there was a little surreptitious after-the-event redecorating to balance things out :)

New nativity scene

Another new ornament.

Living round the corner from 'The Christmas Shop' is dangerous to one's purse!

We also have the hanging Advent Calendar going - it has pockets in which I put a piece of paper with a picture of a place or thing for Tyler to go and find a wee treat. He bounces out of bed in the morning and the first thing he says is "Can I go and find my treat now?" He can always tell me how many sleeps till Christmas and we are also counting down the sleeps till school finishes.
Last Friday I sang and played my flute at the SGHS Old Girls Association Christmas function and it was great to catch up with a number of people I knew, including my first music teacher at Girls' High, Mrs Doris Scott. On Sunday was my singing teacher's end of year recital - she has mostly school-aged pupils but she asked me and another adult student (my singing buddy Ruth) to come and perform too, because she wanted the younger ones to see what they could aspire to. No pressure then! I had my first performance of In uomini, in soldati and it wasn't too bad (even making up two lines worth of words on the fly).
The next singing engagement is on the 19th at the Basilica where I will be performing the 'Echo Aria' (Flost mein Heiland) from Bach's Christmas Oratorio complete with continuo and oboe. Really looking forward to it.

Chris is busy finishing of the outside tidying up and flossying, which has included concrete curbing round the edge of the garden and has given it a really nice finish. He had a good day at softball on Saturday, making one huge hit which got 2 of his team home and him onto second base, and taking several really good catches. I asked him how much softball he'd played before last year when he joined the Wallacetown team and he said, "Well, none really". He looks like he's been doing it since childhood. Irritating for those of us without a co-ordinated bone in our bodies.