Monday, 31 December 2012

Farewell 2012. . . it was. . . interesting!

It's the end of December and the end of the year so I must recap on the months happenings.  December was quite a creative month for me.  Even though it is the busiest, craziest and most stressful month of the year, I managed to maintain a certain calm in my head and I think that was helped by lots of quiet time and creative quiet time in between the Christmas end of year activities.

Hugs for Ethan upon receiving his Prefects badge.  A very proud moment for the Walkers.

My boy is all grown up and responsible now.

My creativity kicked in with the design, baking and decorating of the Year 6 Farewell cake.  As Ethan was in year 5, the year 5 families were to organise the farewell for the year 6's.  I put my hand up for making the cake.  With a few ideas from Donald, I decided on a two layer cake, the top layer was a butter cake and the bottom a chocolate mud cake, and it was all covered in ganache and chocolate and gold dust.

The theme of the evening was a Masquerade, so I decorated a mask and the cake with the school colours of Royal Blue and Yellow (Gold).

It took me two days to bake and decorate.  It was two days of peace and quiet at home with my cake.  I really enjoyed making it.

Some of the kids at the farewell didn't think the cake was real, they thought it was just a fake decoration.  When it was time to cut the cake, it all disappeared within 20 minutes. Two days to make 20 minutes to eat!

Donald made the yellow mask below as his work Christmas party was also a Masquerade party, so Ethan used it as well for his party.  Ethan had the best time dancing, he is rather skilled at Gangnam style dancing.

A Friday afternoon saw the boys and I choosing our Apex Christmas tree before heading to the school Christmas Carols.  Christmas finally arrived with the smell of the fresh tree.

School Christmas Carols, cans of softdrink and crocheted elf hats!

We made snowflakes for our front window and hung lights around the tree.

Our neighbour decided it was time for some tree chopping.  My favourite Liquid Amber at our back fence was to deliver Autumn leaves no more.  I was very sad, worried for the possums and bird life who called this tree their home.  I was sad for the loss of luscious green and shade.

The Liquid Amber and the Cypress beside are no more.  There is a huge gap where they once were.

Maybe I might be able to grow some veggies beneath the clothes line now the sun shines there, and maybe the grass will start growing near the back fence.

Ethan and Toby danced in the school dance concert the week before the end of school.  It was colourful and fun.

Toby danced with a serious look on his face as he concentrated on his dance moves, I think Ethan just had fun.

After many school activities in the early weeks in December we were able to finally decorate the Christmas tree.

Christmas goodies were made enclosed in jam jars and delivered attached with Christmas crochet stars.  (Not sure why these photo's won't center properly for me)

Photo: Tim Tam balls and cookies packed up last night and delivered today at church to Sunday School teachers.

Photo: Learning to crochet stars, beneath the Christmas lights and listening to Bing Crosby, Johnny Cash and Michael Buble Christmas carols.  #stars #crochet #crochetstars

Christmas Eve was a very hot day, we spent most of it inside in the cool but we also had a little bubble time outside with Toby's big bubble maker he received from his church primary teacher.  Those big bubbles are fun.

Donald took charge of the Christmas Eve food and festivities, with the help of my mum.  With little lobster salads to start and lots of yummy nibblies. 

The most delicious celebratory drink was crystal glasses full of Fronti (sparkling non-alcoholic grape drink) and fresh pomegranates squeezed into them.

Our family tradition is to open some of our presents to each other on Christmas Eve, so Amelia got the ball rolling and ripped into the first present.

Christmas Eve concluded with a Walker tradition, trifle made by a combined effort from Sam and Donald.  

Christmas Day spent feasting with family.

My favourite food of the day was my turkey stuffing and gravy and Grandmas Christmas pudding with ice-cream.  My favourite weather for Christmas day (apart from snow) was a cold rainy day.  The temperature dropped from 35°C Christmas Eve to 18°C for a cool Christmas morning, it was so lovely, especially seeing as I spent my day cooking in the kitchen.

Boxing day Lego construction

Donald's Boxing Day project, cutting up and sewing his old denim jeans together to cover one of our single lounges.

Post Christmas family get togethers with the Queensland side of my family.

The last stitch in my crochet blanket on the last day of 2012.  I really love this blanket and the colours.  I started it 18 months ago when my mum was in hospital. I am so pleased I finished it this morning.

It is complete and I feel accomplished.  It has been a very creative month for me.  I'm ready to start on another blanket, maybe a new blanket for the New Year, or finish off some other unfinished projects.

Best Wishes to all for a most Happy and Healthy 2013.  
Thank you for following Earth Walker family and thank you for your comments, they always make me feel special and they make my day!

Love Lisha and the Earth Walker family

If you don't see me around much on the blog next year you can always find me as earthwalkerlisha on Instagram.

Sunday, 23 December 2012

This was my November

So much happened in it but it went by so quickly.

Toby had a day off from school and accompanied me on a trip into the city to meet Gabby and take her out for a birthday lunch.  Toby insisted we choose some flowers while we waited for Gabby to break for lunch.  So we decided on some lovely Hyacinths and then we went to our usual lunch stop Le Pain Quotidien.

Halloween's over and the pumpkin is getting funky.

Toby's creativity kicks in with lots of laterns.

November brings Jacaranda skies

and Jacaranda carpets.

Mango's are in season, they smell so good sitting in the fruit bowl ripening.

My good friend Christine comes to visit for the weekend, a lunch out, a movie and lots of laughs (we went and saw Mental and it agreed with us).

My favourite Cape Chestnut flowers beautiful spindly pink petals and the blue sky with wispy clouds.

Flame trees light up the morning skies with their red bell shaped flowers.

The beginning of a 4 day stay in hospital for Sam and I as Sam undergoes surgery to relieve an obstruction in his PUJ (Pelvic Ureter Junction) where the Kidney joins the ureter.  

We found a wonderful doctor who could perform Sam's surgery laparoscopically (key hole surgery).  Which was a less invasive option and has only left a few small scars on his belly and a double J stent to keep his kidney draining. The stent needs to be removed early in January.

We are so grateful to Dr Thomas for his skills in surgery and his gentle bedside manner (the nurses on the surgical ward just love him).  The photo below was taken the day after Sam's 5hr surgery and then after an 11hr transplant surgery that Dr Thomas performed later that night.  You are amazing Dr Thomas, thank you for squeezing us in for a consultation back in the beginning of November and saying that you could do Sam's surgery.

We are also grateful to friends and family who visited Sam in hospital and who helped out at home.

Westmead Children's Hospital has such beautiful grounds and the Jacaranda trees were in abundance.  They were planted all around the hospital and it was lovely to see them from Sam's room.

My time in hospital with Sam was spent crocheting a new elf hat for Toby's best friend, a nice easy project to keep my hands busy but my mind free to wander.

While Sam was in hospital Ethan was one of 16 candidates presenting a speech to the school vying for a position on the leadership team for 2013.  Sadly I missed seeing his speech, fortunately Donald and Gabby were able to watch and record it for me.  A few days later after Sam came home from hospital we could celebrate, for Ethan was elected on the leadership team.  4 boys and 4 girls were selected but weren't told what position they held, until presentation day.  So we went out for a pizza and pancake dinner.  Ethan was a bit baffled by the dessert menu, too much to choose from.

And the celebrations continued with Sam reaching his 13th Birthday!

I have a teenager in the house now!!

We made another quick trip to the hospital to pick up a doctor's certificate saying that Sam was able to fly in a plane after his surgery, while we were there we got to see the therapy dogs before they made their rounds.  The two dachshund's are Miss Primrose and Miss Dolly, regulars that visit Westmead Children's hospital.  I love that therapy dogs are allowed in the hospital, there is no better therapy than love from a dog.  Sam and I missed Amelia for the 4 days we were in hospital.

Early one morning late November Donald dropped Sam and I off at the airport to fly up to Queensland while Donald drove with Ethan, Toby and Amelia all the way to Laidley to his parents house.  It was only 5 days after Sam came out of hospital and so we didn't want him to be in pain 12 hrs in a car trip to Queensland.

We went to Laidley for Donald's Dad's 70th Birthday and a big family get together and lots and lots of food.

After our long weekend away Sam and I flew back late one night and were greeted by an exploded toilet in our bathroom.  It was an old toilet and the cistern had just fallen off the wall and water was wooshing out onto the bathroom floor and into the hallway carpet.  There were shards of ceramic cistern scattered across the floor.

So the next day I decided to clean up before the plumber came, I though I might pick up some of the broken shards.  As I was reaching into the corner where the cistern had fallen, as there were bits lying there, I scraped my arm on the cistern lid.

It only took a second and I realised that I might just have to go to the emergency room at the local hospital as the cut looked a little deep.  I got Sam to start the car for me, as I'd cut my right wrist, and we drove off to the hospital as the doctors surgeries were closed by now.  We spent a couple of hours there and my cut was glued up not stitched.  I think getting the glue put on was more painful than the cut.  If you're a bit squeamish don't scroll down to the next photo, keep scrolling on to the pretty flowers.  It's actually not that big and luckily I didn't cut any nerves or major blood vessels.

Sam's last week at home recuperating, we spent a little time starting to organise some Christmas things.  We went to Bunnings and bought some new Christmas lights.

November began with Jacaranda flowers and they still continued to flower into December, along with the Flame trees and Cape Chestnuts.  I think it's been the best year for Jacaranda's that I can remember.

This is my favourite photo that is my screen saver on my phone.  I love the mix of clover and Jacaranda flowers.

Here endeth November!