Since I am now living on the other side of the world to my family and most of my friends this blog is about things I enjoy, things I notice, people I meet, people I miss, history, planning for the future, love and life in general! I guess it's about whatever pops into my head which I want to share with my friends and family... and who knows? I might make some more friends along the way!

26 December, 2005

Christmas makes it's own traditions!

Christmas was going to be so sad and lonely for me this year. You see my sister up in South Kemsie, New South Wales had invited my Mum & Dad up there for the festivities, and that's a long way from Melbourne! My other sister has three gorgeous children and I was planning to spend the day with them, but as they live well outside Melbourne (well, Lancefield/Kilmore) and I was having car trouble (and no air conditioning to boot!) I thought it too risky, especially as I am house-and-cat-sitting at present and would need to be 'home' in the evening to feed Lucky!

What was I going to do?

Leave it in God's hands! For the first time ever I was invited to not one, but two gatherings with good friends on the 25th and they were both warm, wonderful and fun! Not just because of the precious friendships they allowed me to share, but because they gave me a glimpse into their own family traditions.

The wonderful Austin family had gathered 3 'orphans' to their luncheon table and plied us with good food, such as an avocado based entree, and some delicious salads along with roast lamb, beef and pork with the best crackling ever!! (Also my favourite - roast pumpkin! Yum!!) There was this wonderful salad called a 'layer salad' and that, along with the entree were part of the 'must have' dishes on the day. You see they had been celebrating with friends for years, and Ginny always made these two items. Ginny was unable to be there for lunch this year, but her sons, daughter-in-law and traditional contribution were!!

The Sanders family also invited me for their traditional, simple evening meal. A BBQ of sausages, served with scallop potatoes and salads, followed by jelly and shortbread! With their parents (both sets) and our good friend Aveline, it was a terrific night! The kids were very impressed that the jelly was made in a big jelly mold, and there were also huge cold prawns served with the sausages! (Sorry anyone in the northern hemisphere... your loss!) I loved the kids who had been up since 4am!!!!!("Originally 4.08am", according to 10-yr-old Liam, but then "...made to wait 'til 5.30!!") Both of them had rosy cheeks and eyes just about hanging out of their sockets with exhaustion, but they were totally focused on using and assembling their gifts from the morning!

All in all one of the happiest days I've spent this year, though a little strange without Mum jumping up and down from the table and forgetting the stuffing for the turkey/chicken, or the hot pudding with hot custard (yes - even in the hottest weather!). But we spoke to each other and were thinking of one another, and that's what really matters, isn't it?

By the way - as my new friend Naomi (Nai) said, "isn't it funny how it's so much more enjoyable washing dishes at someone elses house??"

Happy Christmas everyone, and have a safe, peaceful and blessed year in 2006!