It’s been a while…

So, it’s been almost 6 months since I last posted on here and it’s about the first time since then that I have actually felt like writing something! Going back to work this year has been more exhausting than I thought, and to be honest after the marking, planning, parenting and being, there just hasn’t been much room for anything else!

Let me update you a bit…I went back to work 3 days, Lachie has started pre-school (and, a part from the odd tear here and there, loves it!), Caleb has one semester to go on his Uni degree (Praise the Lord!) and Hamish is now 18 months and busy as ever! We have started – or become more committed to our community in Lalor Park, and are loving what Jesus is doing there.

So, as I (hopefully!) continue to be a bit more regular on this blog thing (because I do love writing!), I’ll share a bit more about the goings on in our household and our community.

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We made it…

It is now 7am and Lachie and I are up, and have been since 4am! The boys both woke, wide awake and so since they were up, Caleb and I were too! We all came out to the lounge room (a very messy lounge room – full of all the new toys from Christmas here, and the 2 bags worth brought back from Canada!) to watch some t.v and eat banana bread! After travelling for almost 30 hours, I really didn’t mind just the time to hang out with each other in our own home (I also loved being able to just get up, without worrying about waking anyone else – after a month of living in someone else’s house/s, it is nice just to potter again in mine!).

Our trip home was long, and exhausting, but I must say again how fabulous the boys were and what great little travellers they are! They slept when I needed them too, played in the 4 hour layover in Vancouver (which would have been 2am for their little body clocks), and charmed everyone on the planes! Lachie had a few melt downs, I’m sure from sheer tiredness, but was easily amused. About 10 hours into our flight from Vancouver, he wanted to “get out” of the plane – took a little convincing that that wasn’t possible!

His latest thing is to ask “why?’, to most things…and however exhausting this may be, it is also nice to know that when explained something, he is normally pretty good natured about accepting it! I have however, started to answer, “because mummy says so”, to a bit…and that too he seems to accept…for now! Let’s hope it can continue!

We arrived home  – with no hassles, to my lovely sister waiting for us at the airport…my lovely sister with her little baby bump! A very cute sight, and one that warms my heart! What a treasured, and longed for little boy this is! I can’t wait to meet him in May! While away, I bought more for him, than for anyone! He will be one well-dressed little honorary Canadian!

My mum and dad were waiting for us at home with lunch, food for the fridge and the weeds pulled from my garden! What wonderful parents…and again a reminder of the blessing of family and all that we can do for each other!

It is nice to be home. Nice to be amongst my things, and to think about getting back into some kind of routine (I am a routine girl!). However nice it is though, our big job now is to pack…we are moving house in a week! Next Monday! Ha! I am actually looking forward to this, and the thought of packing (although a little daunting), means a good clean out and a fresh start to the year! I have many thoughts and hopes for this year (another post to come about that!), and so it is nice to be able to get things sorted, be in the new place and to start getting things going!

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Christmas Eve

Lachie ready for the Skidoo ride!

Lachie and Jordan

In the sled, behind the skidoo


Hamish with his Secret Santa gift

Hamish and I playing our Secret Santa game!

Sarah, Jean and I with our winnings/gifts!

Trevor, Jordan and Sarah with their gifts!

The Tomlinson and Emoff families!

Christmas Day Grandpa and Lachie ice fishing!


The hole in the ice!


Jer and Grandma Jean


Jer, Jean and Lachie - I love Lachie's movement in this picture!

The view from the cottage

The Cousins and Grandpa, after the sleigh ride

The boys and I, having some hot chocolate and snacks!

Alyssa, Angie, Linda, Megan, Riley, Timm

Cathie, Sarah, Emma, Laura

Emma, Laura, Ginger, Sophia, Jamie, Frank, Grandpa, Lachie, Hamish and me!

The photos above are a quick snapshot of our Christmas here in Canada!

On Christmas Eve, the Tomlinson and Emoff families came over for dinner and celebrations. We had such a fun time together and it was really great to see them all again and just spend some more time hanging out. We had turns on their skidoo – I drove it too – very fun! Later on we did a gift game where we all had to bring a $10 gift and, using a deck of cards, you could pick a present, steal from someone else and so on! Was a tad confusing as I think we used too many cards – but fun anyway!

Christmas Day started out well with pressies and Lachie super excited! I woke that morning to him whispering, “Mum, I heard Santa on the roof, and he came down the chimney, but he forgot his list!” Oh dear! He loved his Santa stocking, and all the other goodies from us and his grandparents! After breakfast I felt a little ill, and it all went down hill from there for me! I spent the rest of the day in bed or near the toilet, surfacing only to hear about the ice fishing adventures, and to sit for a bit while we had dinner!

On Boxing day we went Bowling with the combined Lapointe family. We have done this each time we are in town, followed by dinner at someone’s house! Again, it was lovely. A great time of family and a great opportunity for the kids to see each other again!

On the 27th, after being up all night with Lachie sick, we headed to Brockville to see and say goodbye to Caleb’s friends there. Lachie seemed to improve before we left and so we were keen to go. In retrospect, we should have stayed home! Caleb was in bed all day on the 28th, missing all the big events we had gone to town for! I felt so badly for him. The one day, where he would be seeing tonnes of people together, and he was too sick to move off the bed! I had a lovely time, visiting with the Pybus’ and the Cosgroves, and the boys enjoyed playing with their lovely little ones too! It was sad to say goodbye. They are such dear friends, but we know we will see them again…and skype is a wonderful thing!

On the 29th, we headed back home to Westmeath and met the family again for a sleigh ride! It was such a lovely night – really mild, with some stars out! The sleigh ride was an adventure! All of us piled onto the sleigh…with one minor hiccup – around one bend, the sleigh seemed to turn a little too fast and tipped, with most of the family falling off! My memory of Frank’s leg flying into the air still brings a smile to my lips – although at first, it was a little scary! Once we knew everyone was ok, and all kids alive, it was a laughable experience!

So today is New Years. We fly out tomorrow! I can’t believe we have been here a month already and it is time to pack up! Caleb and I started last night, and with one extra bag (mainly for the toys!) we should be ok!

I am sad to leave, it has been wondeful – but am ready to come home too! I look forward to 2011 and all the possibilities it has!

So, Happy New Year to you all!

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year…

Christmas…I love it! The season, the songs, the food, the celebrations…all that it is and stands for. Unfortunatley, Christmas day this year was marred somewhat by some super bug I caught somewhere! So, Christmas Day was spent sleeping, vomiting and more sleeping! Luckily, it pretty much only lasted for 24 hours…sadly though, I then passed it on to everyone else, so we are day 3, and the third person down is Caleb. We are currently back in Brockville, and today is a huge curling event and euchre tournament – all his old friends are in town and it would be such a shame for him to miss them…not sure how he will go, but I have booked us into a hotel so he doesn’t infect anyone else, and am hoping he can sleep for a bit so he can at least make some!

I have plenty of pictures of what the boys did on Christmas Day, and of our Christmas Eve and Boxing Day parties, and will post them as soon as we return back to Westmeath!

Please pray for our health in these last few days here!

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Canadian Cousins

Last Wednesday, Cathie and I took the boys to a little Christmas party for all the ‘cousins’ on the Lapointe side of the family. When I say ‘cousins’, I mean all Caleb’s cousins’ little ones. Last time we were here they were all very young (most about 1, now 3ish, with the exception of Emma – now 5), so it was great this time to see them playing together and doing some little craft things. It was nice too for me to have some more time chatting and just being with the other women in the Lapointe family. Normally we might see them once and then at Christmas, but this visit we have tried to have a few more gatherings so the kids can get to know each other a bit too! They are all fabulous, and it was a lovely afternoon of food, coffee, fun and laughs. I am looking forward to the annual bowling event on Boxing day, and a sleigh ride on the 29th!

Riley, Emma, Lachie, Sophia and J.D ready for lunch!

Angie, Laura, Megan, Carol, Linda and Cathie

Lachie and Emma

Grandma and Hamish

Lachie and the little ones doing some Christmas craft

Lachie eating his marshmallow Snowman!

Funny kid!

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Lachie turns 3…

Today my little man is 3! 3! Where have those 3 years gone?

The birthday boy...

Lachie was my little Christmas miracle. He was born at 9pm on Christmas Eve, and I couldn’t have asked for a better present that year. Childbirth is an amazing gift – a true testament that there is a divine creator, far more amazing than we can ever imagine.

I loved being pregnant. I loved knowing that there was a little man growing inside me. I loved reading what was happening to him at what time, and reading the detail about how his body was growing, and how his little brain was developing. I remember reading one day, I think around the 25 week mark (don’t quote me on that), that at that very moment my baby’s eyelids had been slit open. At that very moment, so that nothing else was touched, but his eyes were now open. It astounds me the way the body is created, and the way that my body was created to hold and grow his. Being pregnant and having Lachie, made me more aware, and confirmed within me, the knowledge that there is a God – a God that is great, unique and extremely intelligent.

Psalm 139 says;

For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.

How true! God, the almighty creator, knitted me together and made my little man inside me. What a true miracle!

To my little boy…one day if you read this I want you to know that you are loved. You are a sweet little man, and I am so proud of you already. I love seeing you smile, and hearing you laugh. I love your hugs and kisses, and your curiosity for this world. I can’t wait to see the man you will become and I look forward to being there with you – God willing – every step of the way. I love you precious boy. You are a true gift to me and your daddy. Happy Birthday!

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Photo with Santa

This year, for the first time, I am more aware of Lachie’s understanding of ‘Santa’. At the shops the other day he saw a hockey mask, which he loved. We told him that he couldn’t get it (knowing that Uncle Jer had already got one for him for Christmas), but that maybe he would get it for Christmas. “Oh”, he said, “maybe from Santa!”. Today when asked by Santa, what he would like for Christmas, he asked for a hockey mask!

We don’t really talk much about Santa in our house, other than saying he is some guy who comes out once a year to help us celebrate the birth of Jesus. Mum and dad give the pressies at Christmas, and we haven’t really done any ‘Santa’ pressies yet. So, hearing Lachie say this, means that he has been listening to other sources – t.v, songs etc. At 3, it is amazing and a little scary what they pick up!

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This morning it is snowing outside..light, fluffy flakes that just seem to drift down so effortlessly. It is incredibly beautiful, and something so foreign to home that it never ceases to enchant me.

Every time we drive into Lachlan Lane (the main road into the house – yes, named after our Lachie), the snow takes my breath away. In fact, I am in awe of God’s creation – the way the snow sets on the trees, the trees hanging over the road with the weight of the snow, the white and soft looking surroundings. My inner child comes out, and I just want to lay down in it, to roll around in what looks like a smooth, soft blanket! I am reminded again and again of C.S Lewis’ description of Narnia when Lucy first enters through the wardrobe, and declares it is a ‘magical’ place. Exactly.

On the road into the house..

Snow covered trees

And yet, when the sun breaks through, and shines into the snow  – making it sparkle and glisten, the idea of the winter breaking in Narnia, and the spring coming – celebrating new life, and beauty, is created. These days of snow and sun are beautiful. Almost like God’s hand breaking through the grey sky, showing us yet again that He is here, marvelling in His own creation.

Sun through the trees

The blue sky on the way in...

Another one!

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A quick update!

I thought I’d give a quick update on what we have been up to, since my last post!

We spent the weekend in Brockville – for those of you who don’t know, this is where Caleb lived for 7 years. He worked at the church there, and his friends here are people who he regularly keeps in contact with. We spent two nights with our Cosgrove family – such a special time. They have 5 kids, the eldest McCaila turned 16, and we were delighted to be able to celebrate with them on Friday night. On Saturday night we went to the church for Christmas Lane – this is a production they do where you drive through a series of reenactments, and listen to a C.D playing the Christmas story on your way. Caleb has been invovled in this every year when on staff, but had never actually been through it as a member of the public, and I had never seen anything like it! It was actually pretty special! We then went and got a hay ride which took us through again – very cool on horses in the snow! Hot chocolate was the go for the way home! Kimberley and I, then left the men watching the UFC (and all the kids in bed), and went to the movies. We saw ‘Burlesque’ with Cher and Christina Ajuilera. I had no idea what it was about, and was pleasantly surprised. In fact, it was really good! If you love musicals, it is fabulous! We then spent a night with some other friends, Rick and Anita, and saw Sarah and Stu for dinner. Again, another great night. Caleb and I were both chatting on the way home about how good it is to be here, and picking up with people as if we hadn’t been away! Treasured friendships indeed for Caleb, and people who have embraced me with love and generosity since I came!

The Angels in the lane...

The Inn...

We got back to Westmeath on Monday and were suprised by how much snow they had had here! The rounds and trees were covered – incredibly beautiful! On Tuesday Cathie and I went into Cobden, a town about 30mins away, to attend her Quilters Guild’s, Christmas lunch. Although, I was the youngest there by far, it was nice to have lunch wth Cathie and her friends, as well as see some great projects from the ladies. I gathered many ideas thats for sure!

The house covered with snow...

On Wednesday, we took the kids up to Pembroke (the nearest major town  – bout 45mins too), to do some shopping and to get their picture with Santa. Unfortunately Santa was having a sleep in so didn’t arrive till later! Cathie and Doug met us and took the boys out to lunch and then home, while Caleb, Jer and I took Jean (Caleb’s Grandma) out for lunch. We took her to a little place in her town, owned by a lovely lady called Lilly. She is so friendly, knew we had arrived and was super excited to see us (I think more the boys, than us – we assured her we would go in again with them!). It is always lovely to come back here and have people remember you, and Lilly is one of these people. She knew our names, the kids, their ages – obviously talked about a lot in our absence!

My big boy...

The boys have been great. Lachie just loves the snow and is constantly wanting to play outside. He loves to get rugged up and go out! Hamish is going well – getting bigger! His top teeth are down and he is loving the attention at all places! He is not sleeping brilliantly (Lachie plays so hard in the day that he is out all night!), but better then last week! He is busy moving around, pulling himself up and cruising around furniture! They are being loved and spoilt by everyone!

We have been playing a lot of Settlers – the board game, and so after dinner, with the boys in bed, we usually play a game or two! Caleb has been on a bit of a winning streak (much to my dismay!) and continually seems to be the reigning ‘Lord of Catan’! It is a great game – and a fun thing to do together!

Thursday morning we went out for breakfast with Doug’s family – his two sisters, brother, their partners, as well as a few of their grandkids. We hadn’t seen them yet, and was great to catch up with them. The little girls (most are around Lachie’s age) had all grown up and it was fun to see them all interacting together. We will see them all again on boxing day, and hopefully again before we leave. They are all great people – and it is always nice to be with them. We then went and visited Art and Amy Maeves – (Caleb’s good friend Andrew’s parents!). We saw them last trip and really wanted to make sure we spent some time with them this time as well. They loved meeting Hamish, and seeing how big Lachie was! Caleb is going to take the boys up to them again on Saturday which will be good  – it was a blessing to see them.

Yesterday afternoon we all went for a walk to the cottage – it was cold, but so nice to get out! When rugged up, you really don’t feel the cold, and it is nice to breathe in the crisp air! Caleb got out the four wheeler and took Lachie for some rides, and we dragged Hamish around in the ‘baby’ sled! He fell off twice, face planting in the snow – he didn’t love this! Today I think he may have a touch of frost bite on his cheeks, as a couple of little red patches have shown themselves!

Hamish and I in the cottage

Everyone and Lola

Hamish all rugged up!

The Four-Wheeler!

Lachie and his ear muffs!

Today we are off into Ottawa to visit another friend of Caleb’s from bible college, and tomorrow Cathie and I are having a craft day with her friend Judy, and her daughter Sarah! Fun…fun…!

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#2 Lesson from Canada

In Winter, never assume you can go anywhere!

The weather channel in Canada, is probably the most watched station around. Why? you Aussie’s ask – well, because everything depends on it! On Saturday, Caleb was going to drive to Toronto for the night to watch the UFC, but due to the freezing rain, and snow storms forecast, he decided not too! On Sunday, we were meant to meet friends in Ottawa, and travel back with them to Caleb’s home…due to the weather, they didn’t go to Ottawa, which meant we stayed another night in Brockville (a great night!). Today it snowed and snowed, which is much nicer to drive in than freezing rain, so Cathie’s and my trip into a nearby town for a Quilters lunch still went ahead! I guess flexibility is the key!

My second thing I learnt about the weather, which would be so foreign at home, is the effects of freezing weather on your car! Not only have I brushed snow off the front window, I have scrapped a sheet of ice off, and plucked ice out of the windscreen wipers! On Monday, just before we left to return home, Caleb was loading our car and realised that the back passenger door locks had actually frozen! This meant once opened, he couldn’t shut the door again! With two little ones, all bundle up ready to be put in the car, it was mildly annoying, but with the help of a trusty hair dryer, taken out to the car, the problem was quickly fixed and we were on the way!

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