07 January 2013

The highs and lows - 2012

It sounds so cliche I know, but can someone tell me where did the last year go? Hopefully once I've finished this post, I'll have more of an idea!

January
We started the year quietly focusing on a concerted effort at toilet training Mylo, initially with mixed results but eventually he got the hang of it, thank goodness I was a bit over pooey undies by the end. Mark and I also embarked on a healthy eating regime, and I finally got around to posting the How To Make that famous Death Star Pinata from Noah's Star Wars birthday party which is now my most-viewed blog post!


I also had a few special mummy and son days, enjoying a train trip up the Coast and a walk around Otari-Wilton bush.

February
I shared a little on what a typical day for me looks like and relived some posts from our time in the land of sunflowers and wine (Italy). The boys and I enjoyed chasing seagulls at Lyall Bay and exploring the South Coast, and we enjoyed the hospitality of the Hawkes Bay with a weekend away at our friend Tracey & Dayne's place. I also discovered some pictures on my old digital camera and enjoyed seeing the world through the boys' eyes.


Then there was the shock of Noah burning himself on a hot cuppa tea which gave us all quite a fright, but thankfully he bounced back pretty quickly. We also celebrated 8 years of wedded bliss and explored the route to the Ataturk memorial on the south coast for the first time on one of the few warm and sunny days of what was a pretty terrible summer.

March
We embraced our Wellington heritage and headed up into the hills to check out the Makara wind farm which was awe inspiring. But nowhere near as awesome as the family holiday we had in Melbourne, which resulted in blog posts and photo overload, and finished with the fantastic wedding of my brother Nic to his soulmate Kim.


April
Back home again on NZ soil one of our favourite places, Otari Wiltons Bush drew us back again for more wonder and beauty in the Forest of Light, and we also ticked a couple more things off the Bucket List (mini golf at Pirates Cove and climbing to the top of Mt Kaukau) during the Easter break. Mark and I shared yet another birthday together and I completed a duathlon with my friend Tracey before celebrating with a sumptious dinner at Logan Brown.


The boys and I made our own fun at home with a flight on MNM's Air, and created a homemade lava lamp. I also wrote about the different Badges of Motherhood we mums wear.

May
We embraced the growing autumn with a trip to the Gardens, and I espoused my love for 'the snack box' that for me, defines motherhood. I had a scare with reflux and a trip to A&E early one morning which turned out to be the start of what has been a bit of challenging time with various unexplained digestive issues since. I'm hoping for some more definitive answers and a better success with my health in 2013! I took the opportunity when I was feeling a bit better to do my first ever family portraits for our friends Sally and Olly, and also took over the weekly Things I'm Loving weekly linky from its original host Paisley Jade.


We also went to the circus, tried our hand at bubble and marble painting, and caught 14 kaka in our garden one Saturday afternoon.

June 
On Queens Birthday weekend, we went to the Naki and enjoyed the antics of the cockatoo at the Pouakai Zoo. I also explored some of our family history connecting us to Taranaki, and we discovered our new favourite cafe Chocolate Fish when we took a trip to Westside Studios open day. I also hosted the Book Club linky and gave away a copy of my favourite book in the whole world, Cry the Beloved Country.


We held our traditional mid-winter Christmas, and the cold weather made for some good stair surfing for the boys.

July
This was a busy month for us but the quietest month for me on the blogging front. Work was horrendously busy, and I then got excruciating unexplained side pain which led to the decision to have a gastroscopy in August to try and figure out what was going on. I enjoyed the small snippets of time I could snatch with the boys despite feeling pretty rubbish in what felt like the 'eye of the storm' with work being so crazy. We also enjoyed time out at Zealandia on a still and clear winter's afternoon, a respite from everything else that was going on around us. Mark also painted the bathroom, and it was amazing how our spirits were lifted just by the change in colour in that one room.


August
Noah celebrated his 6th birthday with a simple (for me) but fun ten-pin bowling party with 3 friends. I had the gastroscopy but nothing conclusive was found, so I decided to try going gluten-free as a result to see if a change of diet would settle the reflux and constipation down. We celebrated Poppa's 60th birthday in style with a weekend away in Ohakune with some lovely mountain walks and a play in the snow which made Noah's weekend (Mylo: not so much!). There were plenty of opportunities to enjoy the mild winter with bike rides on the waterfront on several occasions, and I took a walk around our neighbourhood sharing a little of what living here looks like.


September  
I was blessed to be a part of The Sisterhood's first ever nationwide ninja cookie drop which blessed over 170 women around the country. Some girl friends and I enjoyed a special afternoon out with a fancy high tea at Sweet Pea. I took time out to photograph the beautiful spring tulips at the garden, and there was a general hive of activity around the place as we prepared for Mylo's 3rd birthday which turned out to be the Craziest Colour Party Ever!


October
We enjoyed visiting the new Asia precinct at Wellington Zoo even if the sun bears were too shy to come out to play. I finally got around to updating our photo board and shared all our favourite photos that made the cut as well as the instructions on how to put a canvas photoboard together. Then we spent a few eventful days in the Naki with Gee Gee, where a 3am trip to A&E was needed after Mylo fell out of bed and cut his forehead open on a set of drawers. Not an experience I'd care to repeat any time soon! But we bounced back pretty quickly. On Labour weekend we explored the tunnels inside of Wrights Hill which are only open on public holidays. The month rounded out with a fantastic day out at Ruth Pretty's Christmas cooking class where I shared a few of my favourite things.


November
This was a huge month of crafting for me as I created a number of homemade gifts for Christmas: cinnamon stick scented candles, fizzy bath bombs and chocolate lip gloss amongst other things. I had a great weekend away watching Coldplay (my favourite band ever!) perform an amazing show complete with glowing light sticks and fireworks in front of 47,000 people in Auckland. I also captured a funny shot of Prince Charles on my iPhone as he and Camilla walked the waterfront on their NZ tour. Getting into the swing of all things Christmas I also made a tinsel and bauble wreath and some NOEL wall art to make the place look more festive.


December
Always a busy month in every household, there were Christmas crafts to make with Noah's class,  football games to enjoy for our Littlest Dribbler, and a Santa Parade in town to marvel over among many other Christmas activities we planned and enjoyed. We waited and waited for Eddy the elf to arrive from the North Pole (aka Book Depository), and when he finally did, much Elf entertainment ensued. I exclaimed my undying devotion to NZ's Kiwi Christmas tree (the pohutukawa) and then it was time to head away on our summer holiday.


This year's holiday was full of fun, family moments in Hamilton, Taranaki and Wellington but tinged with some tougher times with 10 days of unexplained diarrhea for me and chickenpox descending on Mylo at the very end of the holiday.

In the midst of all our family goings on this year, there were many of our favourite recipes made and shared, and heaps of fun crafts tried out with the boys thanks to the creativity inspiration found on Pinterest!

I have no doubt that 2013 will be just as full of fun and adventures with our lovely mum and dad visiting from England for 2 months, and then it won't seem to long until our very exciting trip back to the UK for us a family rolls around in October. But more than anything, I pray we will continue to discover the beauty in the everyday moments that make this life we live such a precious gift.

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