People leave Wellington en masse at the end of the school year. But I like it here, especially over the summer holidays. It's like this place gets a massive people enema just when it is at its most appealing. For a few days, there's no work to think about, little chance of rain and even less chance of running into someone you don't like very much. Even the wind has disappeared and that's something to celebrate. It has been calm four days running, so our windless day quota has been met for this decade but put a wine in my hand and let's call it summer. The quiet too is something to appreciate when you're a parent of children who like to yell at each other all the time. I try to be Calm Mum and the irony is not lost on me that it almost always ends up with me yelling the loudest of us all so I can be heard over their yelling just to tell them to stop yelling. We had no neighbours for a few days and I conducted a test to see if their arguing would eventually stop on its own if I didn't intervene. One child will eventually come into the house to find me to help sort out the problem/dry some tears. What I learned is that I need a better hiding place. After a period of thinking that I am getting redundant as my children grow up, it turns out I am still needed for some things. Paying school and activity fees, conflict resolution and being Santa.
Speaking of which, Christmas lists are not worth the paper they are written on, are they? Knowing my children as well as I thought I did, I got them to write their wish lists one week out from the big day because a) I hadn't had much time to think about Christmas before then and b) it would give them less time to change their minds. Ha. Ha. HA! It's most pleasing to spend hours scouring the internet, trawling through listings, ringing all the local sports shops and venturing into crowded malls to find a pair of elusive roller-skates that your child has been non-stop begging for ever since she went to a friend's roller-skating party six months ago, only to hear your beloved child say after a Christmas breakfast of a mouthful of a stodgy marshmallow snowman that she wanted rollerblades. The very ones that her sister got for Christmas. She loved this book though. Partial win.
We spent a couple of days over Christmas up at my husband's family's block of land, far enough away from Wellington to feel like you've gone somewhere but not so far that we are bereft of all conveniences like a hospital which, as it turned out, was required 30 minutes after we arrived. After a few decent attempts already, one child finally fulfilled her year-long ambition and broke her arm in spectacular fashion falling off the trampoline. So that's a fun way to start the summer holidays and to end the year, in a full arm cast, with not much for a one-armed bandit to do except to turn it into a game to keep her cast clean and dry. We stayed long enough to enjoy a lovely Christmas with family but not so long that we'd end up being the last to leave so we could avoid having to clean the toilet.
Here's a picture of my husband and children returning from hauling one very large and least Christmasy-looking tree up to the shed because it's not Christmas without a tree to decorate in plastic baubles and our children's handcrafts.
Happy New Year to you all wherever you may be and however you choose to see it in. Thanks so much for reading and leaving me comments or just reading then clicking out, whatever your style. I'm honoured you chose to spend that two minutes on me. Truly. See you again in 2016.
|The offending trampoline is in the naughty corner|