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A very merry Christmas dear hearts, and a happy twenty-eleven!

We've had a simply delightful Christmas celebration, with Mum, Dad, Rachel, David, Serendipity, Jonathan,  my lovely little family, Merry, Paddy, Bev, Andrew & Verity! (And skyping Sam and Becca was both wonderful, in having opportunity to interact with them, and very funny, trying to get it to work!!!!!!

Off we go, in the morning, with camping gear and car Dad and Mum have VERY kindly loaned  us - all we have to do before we go is pack the freezer food, the kayak, the bikes and watch Doctor Who's Christmas Carol!!!

Let me see if I can find a pic of the place we are camping, so you can envisage us there!

Eowyn and Coco are cracking me up, running around  with the mp3 players Bens  gave them  for Christmas, singing really loudly, not realising we can't hear the music, just them!!! Bens gave me a Kindle. And I gave him a fishing rod,  fishing knife  and a fishing licence!!

MUCH love,

Megs xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox…

Happy Holidays!

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These cute seasonal treats are from one of my workmates - it was our Christmas  party today (and I was by far the worst at pinning the tale on the donkey!) I'm feeling disappointed that this job  is a maternity leave  contract which is about to finish. I really like the people I have been working with, and the job. I have been busily applying for jobs and having interviews, but not with success as yet. We're in  a tight spot financially, as there needs to be money in the bank for all of January's rent, leaving minimal wriggle room. It feels so much easier when there is that wriggle room.

I am very thankful for the people in my life ... these three here photographed, and you, my delightful and much cherished blogging community.

Happy happy holidays, and love,

Megs

Peter Pan!

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Today,  Eowyn and Coco met Melbs' Peter Pan!  Eowyn met London's Peter Pan when she was 18 months old,  and Coco shall, God willing, meet London's Peter Pan (and Martha, Reuben and Stella!!!) in 3 months!!!!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DEAR CAROLINE!!!

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We love you VEEEERY much!

I am so looking forward to seeing you in 2011!!!!

Love, Meg
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That's the 'Spirit of Tasmania' setting sail in the background... ah,to be at sea!!

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This is about 2 minutes from our front door ... you are welcome at ours!

I have a job interview tomorrow,  and another one on Thursday, at 'Stephen's Hospital', the Children's Hospital, Centre for Adolesescent Health, Chronic Illness Peer Support. I'm feeling exhausted by all  this anticipated transition.

Bens and I are going  to Leonard Cohen on Saturday night.  Early in our marriage, we went on holiday and drove across the Cascades on  Highway 20 - the mountains are jaggedy and snow-capped and utterly beautiful - into Eastern Washington,  which is very dry,  where we stayed  at Methow  Valley Ranch. On the drive, we listened to Leonard Cohen, and let the magic of his lyrics  soak into our imaginations. His music is part of our story together. I'm excited for Saturday night! As is Bens!  As  are the girls, who are  staying the night at  Grandma and Gumps!!!
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Aussie Hallowe'en was pretty good...

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I have entered a phase of avidly reading 'The New Yorker'.

I get so involved in each article I'm reading, and have just been poking around on the internet after finishing a thrilling read. I thought I would share with you the comment I wrote on this blog in response to Tom Robbins:

I loved Janet Malcolm's 'Iphigenia' article. (I also love Tom Robbins' novels!!) I like the way she includes herself in the story - it really is rather brilliant. As a journalist myself, I found her commentary about our profession fun, thought provoking and particularly interesting in painting the picture of journalists in court, and the community created around a long case like this one. I also very much appreciated her delving into the spaces between "fact" and the stories we create. And she really IS much harder on lawyers than she is on journalists: "We go through life mishearing and misunderstanding so that the stories we tell ourselves will add up. Trial lawyers push this human tendency to a higher level. They are playing fo…
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NO NO NO Bens, it's CRICKET, not  baseball!!!

Off to school!

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Ours is the back  apartment, lowest level, you can see our balcony with the lovely bay tree Seren gave me for my 40th! We have broccoli, and a tomato from Mum, and orange flowers from Bens growing inside!


 The 112 tram goes right along our street! This is just in front of our home...
...and this is our neighbours across the road.

Like in  Seattle, almost all our friends here are very financially wealthy, more so than us. This was really hard for me in the first months here, but in the last month, with the help of my good friend Martina, I have been focusing on contentment and thankfulness, and it is working!!!!!!!!!!!!

Taught my American family how to play cricket! Hang on, these pics are today, at Brighton, our picnic-in-the-freezing-rain!

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Sydney Luna Park - aka heaven, when I was a child! Coco and I went there with Naomi, and 2 days later, spent the day at Melbourne's Luna Park, as Eowyn decorated and wrapped up the Luna Park pass she won, and gave it to Coco!!!! Coco loooooooved it, and would be happily laughing away on the terrifying up-side-down rides, whilst I hyperventilated, sang hymns, clutched her close so she wouldn't fall out, and laughed hysterically with her. It's a treat, having all this lovely Coco and Mummy time!

Best of Friends!

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I love Coco's company!

I'm home...

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THIS is the Australia I missed so much whilst living overseas!

Wicked was soooooooooooooooooooo sensationally brilliant! Coco was mesmerised...

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Thank you Naomi dear!

We even had a cousins' photo!

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The cousins' photo is on Judy's camera...
Here are Abigail and Cosette at Taronga zoo.
It was such a lovely visit to Sydney - summery weather, so we could swim at my favourite beach in all the world, Palm Beach, LOVELY time with brilliant people, Coco loved almost every moment, Wicked was sensational, Naomi a marvelous hostess, and we are utterly exhausted now, having just arrived home!

Coco and Megs had a ball in Sydney!!!!!

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Eowyn and Aliya at Seatac Airport!!!! Woooo hoooooot!

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EOWYN AND BENJAMIN ARE IN THE USofA!!

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...and Coco is playing with her dinosaurs and mumbling piratey phrases! She woke me up very early this morning, wanting to play... I'm tired...
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Eowyn and Benjamin are safely away. I feel so happy and relieved, in that sense where something which has been 'future' for so long, becomes 'present', delighting many, and especially the very excited Benjamin and Eowyn! Please keep them in your prayers for safety and wonder and Eowyn's solo flight... Thanks! Coco and I are having a fun time at home, leaving cupboard doors open and chewing gum!!!!!!!!!!

Just between you and me...

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...I am feeling really sorrowful that our family will be spread across the globe for two weeks. I like to think of myself as a strong, feminist, unfazed wonderwoman, but alas alack, in reality I am ratherly dependent on my little family, and feel anxious, sad and scared about Bens and Eowyn being away. I am very thankful Coco and I shall be together. And I see how very excited and happy B and E are about their adventures, so in that sense, I am very glad they are going. But in my heart sense, I feel ever so daunted. Every day I am spending some time organising Eowyn's time. Our friends in Seattle are amazing, and so wonderful and kind, especially Karen, who is playing Mommy to Eowyn  whilst she is in Seattle. I wanted to say this somewhere, and my blog, with you lovely band of people in our bloggy community, seemed the perfect place. The girls and I are home sick today, which is cosy and lovely except for the sick part! We are going to our lovely Jewish Dr this afternoon, who perh…
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Coco creating chocolate souffle for Auntie Seren!
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Happy birthday darling Serendipity Rose!!!
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Eowyn is an exceedingly kind person. We are realising that Coco has difficulty distinguishing between auditory ground and figure (background noise and what somebody is saying to her), and that Eowyn often 'interprets' what Coco has missed, so that Coco understands. We have booked Coco to see a very good Audiologist named Lesley Tan, who is in high demand, so the appointment is not until October. Coco has had a difficult time adapting to the routines of her new classroom. It was a conversation with Seren, celebrating Solstice, which helped me realise what has been happening for Coco.
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Coco has so much energy! Walking down the street is an exciting battle, an African savanna, a medieval castle, a complexly choreographed adventure. And she is always so delightfully sure that I'll want to play her game!
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29! Samwise!

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I'm fondly remembering Sam-birthdays across the years - the day you were born, hugging you for the first time and feeling your soft, warm baby skin, your 2nd birthday in Ky, when you were the cutest little waddling dumpling! Your 6th birthday when we'd just moved to Sydney, just after Stephen died, our camping trip to the Jenolan Caves, where you and I and laughed uproariously the whole way, mooning the moon on the roof in Perth, celebrating your 21st in LA and Seattle, Patricia's fabulous 'Samwise' cake, doing ad lib spontaneous public drama together in Fremont by Lake  Union, seeing you last May in London, your wonderful appellations for people... !!!!
Love you, love being your sister, happy 29th birthday Samwise!
Love Meepsterooni!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DEAR REUBEN! We love you! Now you are TWO!

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HAPPY 4TH OF JULY!

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We had a delightful 4th of July celebration today at Mum and Dad's. Rachel gave us this fabulous flag. Mum's cooking was divine, as ever, and I baked a delicious apple pie! (Actually, I bought it at a store, and my honest Coco foiled my otherwise successful masquerade!) My nephew David Nicholas was very charming. On the way home, with Dad, we basked under the winter sun. And I just finished 'The Girls from Ames', in the bath, a wonderful tome celebrating women's friendships.
Last 4th of July, with much pomp and ceremony, I became a US citizen at the Seattle Center (created for the World Fair in 1960. Bens and my first married 4th was a BBQ at Ady Acres, when I'd just found out
I was pregnant with Eowyn. Their whole church came every year. Makes
me a little sad to think of Sue being alive then and not now.
Our 2nd 4th, Samwise was there with us, and some friends, and we
climbed onto the roof - the boys carefully passing baby Eowyn up - and
watched the first 4th f…

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DEAREST ANITA!

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We love you,  wonderful Anita Bosma Jones!!

Les artistes...

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I have just talked with a piano teacher in our neighbourhood, and am taking the girls to meet her this afternoon, with the idea being to perhaps start piano lessons! They are expensive, but now that I am working, 'tis a gift I would like to give them. I wanted to learn as a teenager, and didn't have that opportunity - parenting is a lot about pendulums, isn't it, which is one reason we so enjoy having grandparents around - the girls are swinging back to them! I have an enormous grocery shop to unpack. Bens has been amazing, keeping the home fires burning whilst I am off at my new job, which is going very well. My mentor, a lovely woman named Jenny, said "I think you have the personality and "know how "to be an excellent Secondary School Nurse," which encouraged me immensely. Because the hospital job in Australia went so dreadfully, I have been rather anxious about this position - it seems it's a really good fit for me!