Friday, January 30, 2015


The house is bursting at the seams, there doesn't seem to be any space and it's noisy and busy. The girls are reacquainting in a noisy way. We had gotten used to the quiet.

Hayley has secured herself a full time job so will be moving closer to the city when she has some money behind her.

And the house will return to normal.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

A big event...

A big event has passed by quietly. It probably deserved a big celebration and some great photos. But neither happened.

We marked our 30th wedding anniversary in a bit of shock. Shock that this momentous day had arrived. Shock that we had made it. We spent a good part of the day saying to each other '30 years hey, can you believe it?' or 'did you imagine 30 years ago that this would happen?'

We're now up for another 30, we'll be in our 80's so with good health we could manage it.Strong possibility that we could still have our children living with us still...

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We had a funny conversation recently with our 'children' ..."but we are not children" they protested but what to call your offspring when they are adults??? I will always refer to them collectively as our children. Having Hayley living with us has been fun and we have had quite a few good laughs at different things. The house is bursting at the seams with 5 adults living here and when Erin goes back to school this week and Hayley starting her job the morning routine will have to be slick.

Monday, January 26, 2015

We had a holiday...

We set off in high spirits

and set up our camp site in with a bit of help.

The first day was sunny but cool for our after dinner beach walk
The next day was a bit warmer and when Liam arrived we headed to the beach. I put my bathers on but was not quite tempted to go into the water. It looked nice but when they ventured back out

 they were frozen.

The sunset that night was lovely as it sunk beyond the Moyne River.

 The next 2 days saw strong winds that battered the tent until it was laying sideways and rain storms saw us mopping up drips inside the tent. We retreated into the annex and did puzzles while keeping an eye out for flapping things.

After an exhausting 2 days of being bombarded the sun did come out again and we headed out to the Lighthouse to do some rock hopping. Some of us did better at that activity than others but refused to go for an Xray stating he had already seen the inside of the Port Fairy Hospital.

The fireworks at midnight topped off a quiet New Years Eve.

In the morning these little friends had appeared, seems someone had a pretty good NYE.

Some rain on New Years day did not stop us from visiting the market. The rain cleared so we could enjoy the duck races

the queue for the icecream shop was insane

One more hot day and then it was time to pack up and head home

and leave these guys waiting for the next campers...

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Running to the end...

When I look back at the year, one theme has dominated.


I've (mostly) enjoyed the training and the results. I've run in old places and new ones. I've run races I said I wouldn't do again and got talked into 2 half marathons so am counting that as having done a full. We've mastered running in the rain and learn something new with each race we enter.

There has been plenty of times when I wanted to give up or haven't enjoyed running but these marvellous girls have kept me going. And it looks like they aren't letting me off the hook next year. There is talk of an actual full marathon and talk of looking further afield for races. 

I've recorded 650kms on my Garmin but one of the best runs was one where I didn't turn it on properly and just paced myself on how I felt.

I can see new shoes in the near future. I've managed to be injury free but some little niggles are creeping in

Here's to running on in 2015.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

2014 is nearly done...

The year is drawing to an end.

There has been so much build up to Christmas and holidays. Lots of work had to be finished off before leave could commence.
Work Christmas party number 1

We entertained homesick English visitors and tried to make the season as Christmassy as possible. I pulled together a Christmas Eve dinner and we wore paper hats and had a great time. I think they appreciated the effort and perhaps it eased the pangs slightly. The hot weather has really thrown them off balance, it doesn't seem like Christmas to them at all and it has been interesting to hear how things are different and some are the same. A cruise around looking at the Christmas lights was a highlight as well.

We enjoyed our family Christmas celebration today after a less frenetic gift exchange than we are used to, having grown up children changes the dynamic somewhat. It was lovely to have Hayley back in the fold.

long time since there were 3 kids in the back seat
 Hayley withstood the barrage of questions about her time away and entertained us all with her witty ways.
Hayley is dismayed she is officially the shortest cousin

Everyone gathered for their family shot and the big group photo taken with the timer

Where's Callum?

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And behind the scenes...

It was lovely to spend time with these goof balls.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

First week home...

Hayley has been having a lovely time reconnecting with her Australian and English friends. Surprises for some, all pleased to see her back home. She has begun job hunting fervently and has managed to spread the contents of her giant pack around the house. We've had some meals and outings and it has been really nice to hear her say 'that meal was the best'. She has been rediscovering some old favourites that she had missed or just wasn't the same. She has relearned to drive and relayed tales from her time away. She is different now and has become a bigger personality than she was before. Meeting her new friends reveals a bit more of herself to me.
Erin has had some adjusting to do too. Her position in the family has shifted back and now that they are all older it's quite different. I'm seeing Erin in a new way as well. Even Chris has been different with Hayley in the house.

I know that Hayley won't stay permanently, that there are more travels and adventures and friends to come so I am enjoying this time.

And I haven't stopped smiling.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Race report no: 30...

Today was the worst conditions we have run in. Constant rain overnight set up the course for the Sussan's Women's Fun Run as full of puddles and a muddy finish. We lined up in the rain. We ran in the rain. We went home in the rain. During the race rain constantly dripped off my hat. Despite the rain the race went really well and I did a best time of 2:18:40 a whopping 5 mins off my first attempt and blasted October's time. Our preparation was not as focused as previously, we had done a few long runs but I wasn't as stressed as last time. Mentally I had a plan and it paid off.

The girls got to the finish line a couple of minutes before me and we were all pleased with our results.

It's still raining, we are wet through but happy to be finished

Mel's husband gets the saint award as he made the effort to get to the finish line in the rain. It was her goal when she started running at the start of this year to run a half marathon by the end. I am glad that this last race of the  year meant I finished on a high.

And now I have 30 bibs in my book and a few medals on the hook.

The rain meant that the tennis club championships would have been cancelled. I haven't  had confirmation of that but if they reschedule I might be able to play after all.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Surprises at tennis...

Thursday night mixed doubles tennis went off with a bang. We won 3 sets and that was enough to bag the trophy, the 5th set didn't go ahead, we were already celebrating!

the winning team, thanks guys for a great season

I lost the first set though but came through to win my second set and was lucky enough to pull off a blindingly good shot to win the game and the set. I headed up to the clubhouse on a high and optimistic that the 4th set that was being played out could be a winner. While I was chatting and cooling off I got the surprise of my life.

 Around the corner came Lucy then Erin and THEN HAYLEY!

I let out a little scream as I was so pleased and surprised. She had come home a week early to surprise me, set up with Abi and Robbo. I couldn't let her go. We were laughing and crying and I was like,
WHAT, HOW, WHY, HOW?????? Lucy had already been surprised the night before when she landed on WEDNESDAY. Hayley didn't want to surprise me then as I had to work Thursday and wanted to be able to spend the day with me Friday. She had been home and surprised Erin and Chris and Callum. Luckily she came when I had finished playing as I would have been way too distracted to finish any tennis.
My plans for today had already changed as Big Sister had meetings and Cardio had been cancelled and this unexpected happening has been wonderful.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

More tennis...

Since the last big race tennis has been the centre of my attention. We had the Annual Ladies High Tea Tournament for the local hospital. 140 women came along to support the fundraiser and play some (at times very competitive) tennis. The trophies were well worth winning but Rosie and I in our first pairing together couldn't take one home. The weather was perfect and the day successful.

The next tennis outing was the semi finals on Thursday night, which we scraped through into the grand final next week. The deciding 5th set was a nail biter but we came up trumps.

Today was a fund raiser for Relay for Life. We played 4 sets in hot temperatures and what at times felt like blazing sunshine. I wanted a bit more cloud cover and the forecast storm never took the sting from the sun. I am very thankful for well applied effective sunscreen, so I feel like I beat the 36 degree day. Couldn't win the afternoon but took out a raffle prize. It was a good hit up leading up to the grand final with fun people, just the sort of day I really enjoy.

Next focus is the Sussans Womens half marathon next weekend and have my fingers crossed for good weather and a good run.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

The race is done...

The City to Sea 15k is done. In the bag. All wrapped up. And I am pleased to say it was a ripper.

Not once did we grizzle when the rain did not let up.

No complaining about being cold while we waited.

And no whinging about distance, soreness or being wet.

Our throw away ponchos and op shop finds were discarded at the last minute and did a fabulous job of keeping us mostly dry. The rain decided to stop at 820am when the gun went off. The race was run under damp and overcast condition with about 9000 runners who were not put off by the weather.

For the first time in 30 races Running Buddy and I had to make a pit stop at the half way porta potties. There would be no holding on. So we paused our timers and 'used the facilities'.

The course was really nice and we all ran really well. I was very happy with the 1:34 time and feel much better about this years event. A coffee in Fitzroy St and a tram ride back to the city car park finished off a great morning. During the car ride home we analysed every km, the highlights and the amusing sights. These girls are such a boost to me and I love doing these events with them. I might even buckle and do the half marathon on 7th December. I will have to forego the tennis 'Club Championships' and the MRA Toy Run to do so. Even today's event clashed with the Eureka Stair Climb and a Color Run at Flemington. I would highly recommend doing a colour run once in your life. It's a great experience and you don't need to be physically fit to participate. The stair climb on the other hand seems very daunting and difficult.

I learned today that wet running pants are very hard to pull up in the confines of a porta loo when you are in a hurry...