Friday, December 30, 2011

New Year Ahead

The week after Christmas is always slow in our house.  After two of the Little Reasons Christmas birthday's, plus Christmas madness... there is a sense of calm and peace.  We have come down from our high and are quietly getting ready for what the new year is to bring.  While we have been pottering around the house, packing away old clothes and replacing them with the new ones, sorting and donating the toys that have been replaced, I have been reflecting on the year that was.

It has been a good year.

I don't do New Years Resolutions.  More so, I think about some short term goals and a few bucket list things I would like to do - some personal, some family and some blogging ones.

  • Have 12 "Date Nights" with Brett.  I am excited to show you how we are going about this.  Stay Tuned!

  • Take the Five Little Reasons on a road trip to Sydney.  I have mentioned before that we are home-bodies.  We bloom at home.  However, a couple of the Reasons have told us that they are keen on seeing Sydney.  I think 2012 is a great year to pack up the Reasons and see a side of our world that we haven't seen.

  • Learn how to Kite Surf.  You heard me right.  I am going to step out of my comfort zone and learn an extreme sport.  Ok, so I won't be as extreme in the flesh as I will be in my head... but hey, I am sure you will get a laugh.

  • Take a romantic getaway with Brett.  We need it.  We will celebrate 12 years of marriage in 2012.  The last time we had a weekend away was in 2004.  I want to sit and have an uninterrupted breakfast date with my hubby.  I want to sit and watch the world go buy like we used to do when we were dating.  I want to walk along a beach without the worries of Five Little Reasons running amok.  I already have a little hideaway place in mind.

  • Go to my first Bloggers Conference.  Now, I am kind of cheating with this one, as I already have my ticket for the Digital Parents Conference in March.  I am so excited and will be staying in a room with Gemma from My Big Nutshell, Daisy from Daisy, Roo & Two, and Jess from Diary of a SAHM.  3 crazy (but gorgeous) girls and me.  What have I gotten myself into?!  Actually, I think their craziness is just what I need.  Going to be

  • I am going to sort through the 5000 pre digital photos/negatives I have siting in a giant box in our walk-in-robe and get them onto my harddrive using the awesome Photo Scanner that my dad bought me for Christmas.  I am also going to sort through the 50,000 photos on my 2 harddrives and cut them down by half.  Why on earth do I need 25 photos of Oliver blowing out his 3rd birthday candles?  2-3 is enough.  This one might take me all year...

  • I want to spend less and save more.  Most of our money goes to Woolies and Coles.  I am going to try and budget better with everyday living.  I look forward to sharing with you some ways to cut the grocery bill down!  Stay tuned.

  • Attend a photography course.  I want to take more photos.  I LOVE taking photos, but it has really taken a backseat this year.  I need to get the Five Little Reasons out to locations more often for photos.   One thing my readers keep telling me is that they love my photos.  I look forward to bringing you more photos of our life.  

  • Take the Five Little Reasons on more adventures.  Discover more of where we bloom.  More bush walks, more picnics, more getting dirty, more breaking rules.  

  • In 2012, I want to discover more about myself.  I have learnt a LOT about who I am, and who I want to be this year.  I am looking forward to continuing on the journey of self-discovering.  I am going to open up more about this with you as well.  I hope you enjoy the ride.

I want to thank you all for reading our story this year.  I have learnt a lot in my first year of blogging.   I appreciate every single one of you, your comments, your emails and your words of encouragement.  I hope you have enjoyed Five Little Reasons and I look forward to sharing more of our story with you in 2012.


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Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas.

I want to take the time today to wish every single one of you a very Merry Christmas.  May your day be filled with peace, love and joy.  Enjoy the time with the people around you... as that is what today is all about.

Thank you all so very much for following, reading and supporting me throughout 2011.  I am very lucky to have a bunch of special Reason Readers.

Merry Christmas, from myself, Brett and the Five Little Reasons.

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Monday, December 19, 2011

Santa, Two Elves, Mary & Baby Jesus and a Plum Pudding.

We went for a drive around to see the Christmas lights tonight.  It brings back really fond memories of when I was a little girl.  You see, my parents used to deck our house out with tonnes of lights and fantastic decorations.

They entered the 4KQ Christmas Lights competition and won 5 YEARS running.  

We had bus loads of people coming to our house every night.  The whole front of the house, the lawn and the gardens were covered in lights.  The roof of the house had a giant hand-made Sleigh, Santa and the Reindeer.  One year, my parents covered the whole front of the house in a giant white sheet.  2 stories high, our house was transformed into a winter wonderland.  A neon ladder helped Santa reach the top and all the Disney characters popped out of the lawn to wave at everyone.

It was magical.

My kids, like all kids, love Christmas lights. 

The Five Little Reasons dressed up in their Christmas costumes and we galavanted around the neighbourhood, spotting the brightest houses.

A little house that these dolls called home.

These angels creeped me out a little.  

How cute is this knitted BBQ feast!  Note the raw and cooked items!  :)

A Christmas Fair!

Oliver checking out a singing mounted Reindeer and dancing Snowmen.

Lucy was so excited when this house had a gorgeous Nativity Scene  
complete with two REAL LIVE Goats!

The boys watching Douglas, the singing fir tree.

The best table AROUND!  
Beats our small collection of singing & dancing Christmas toys, hands down.  
So.  Much.  Fun.  

Camille bashing Santa.  

Everywhere you turned, there was more magical hiding spots.

Camille LOVED the singing polar bear and his two penguin sidekicks.  

Merry Christmas to all... and to all... a goodnight!

And just for fun... Mum wanted a picture with her Five Little Reasons... all dressed up in their Christmas Costumes.

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Saturday, December 17, 2011

A Five Little Reasons Christmas Tradition Adventure. Part TWO.

Continuing on from PART ONE.

We left the Pancake Manor with full bellies and started walking through the city.  We marvelled at the people, the sights, the sounds and the smell of the busy city.  It was bustling.  I came to the conclusion that it was a "normal" amount of busy.  Normal for the city.  Even though to us... it was packed.

We headed back down to the Mamavan {who has been affectionatly renamed "Rudolf" at the moment because, yes, I am one of those idiots driving around in a Reindeer car.  Again, there are Five Little Reasons I did it!} and we used the boot as our dressing room.

Off came the syrup stained t-shirts and on went their Christmas outfits.  If you are a follower on my facebook page, you would have seen me stressing about finding red dresses for the girls.  I have to take a moment to mention my horror that someone has suddenly decided that my innocent SEVEN year old daughter is in the same league as a teenager.

You see... my petite little girl has finally grown into size 7 clothes, which means, that she is no longer in the "little girls" section of the department store.  She has graduated to the not-so-innocent clothing range for 7-14 year olds.  I burst into tears when I couldn't find a gorgeous little girls baby doll dress for my little girl.  Instead the backs are lower, the hems higher and the sweet fabrics have been replaced with glitter skulls and horrible prints.   Not only that... but I can no longer find co-ordinating outfits for my girls.

Let me get this straight.  I don't often put my kids in matching clothes.  Ever.  But I do regularly like them to be in co-ordinating colours and styles.

Christmas is exempt from my rule... so I searched and searched... for WEEKS!

I finally found two matching dresses, in the right sizes at Country Road.  And after all my tears, I didn't care that I was paying $60 for each dress.   ::sigh::

They are gorgeous though.  And a little big, so I will get my moneys worth!  ::wink wink::

So, after we had finished out wardrobe change, wiped the sticky faces clean and brushed their hair, we headed back up the elevator.

We walked through the departement store, admiring all the decorations.  The hanging silver sparkly birdsnest wreaths, and the shinny stars that hung everywhere.

We headed up to the top floor and met my Sister and her family.

Oliver & Sean ~ Best Friends.

We finally arrived on the top floor of the Myer Centre.    As we stepped out of the elevator, we saw the magic kingdom in the horizon.  This is when we told the Five Little Reasons where we were going.  As if, they didn't already know!  :)


As we waited in line, the kids watched the Polar Express take children around the tracks.  The driver was loud and fun, and was giving them high fives as he passed.

The track when right around the back and through a tunnel.  The elves kept watch.

Camille and daddy having fun!

We then crossed the tracks into the middle island.  Santaland.  We were met by an "Elf" who showed us the way to Santa's Den.  We spent some time chatting to Santa and patting his Reindeer called "Cookie". I sighed with happiness at my children whose eyes lit up when Cookie started breathing as he slept.

The creepiest rubbish bin around!

After we said our goodbyes to Santa {who is the REAL Santa by the way}, and last cuddles to Cookie, we made our way back over the train tracks.  While I was waiting for our Photo prints {see at the end}, Brett jumped in the queue for the train.  Thankfully it wasn't very long.  

As the Five Little Reasons grow older, I hold onto the magic even tighter.  Hayden is still in the midst of the magic, and I am treasuring it.  This was the first year that he was too tall for the train, but when I turned around to find him writing a letter to Santa, my heart skipped a beat.  

We packed up our treasures and headed out of Santaland.  We went for a quick wander through the Trimmings section, looking at the perfectly decorated Christmas tree's that the department stores proudly display.

Onto stop 3.

As we entered the Mall, we found ourselves stumble upon the Salvation Army Wind Band playing Christmas songs.  We stopped to watch for a moment, when something magical happened.

One by one, the Five Little Reasons climbed up onto the stage that was behind the band.  They danced their little hearts out while passes by smiled with joy.

The crowd grew, and my Five Little Reasons were having a ball.

As more and more people stopped, more and more children joined in.  And then the trumpet player jumped up onto the stage with the children.  They danced around for a couple of songs and the crowd went wild.

So. Much. Fun.

A quick pit-stop for a well needed coffee and we walked through the busy crowds up to our next destination.

King George Square is the home of our City Hall.  And at Christmas time, the home of the Lord Mayors Christmas tree.  It is totally solar powered, making it even more special.

As we danced around the tree, stepping on the sidewalk lights that kept changing from red to green, we took time to soak it all in.

We left King George Square ready to visit our final destination.  As a child, I remember visiting the Myer Christmas windows.  A new theme every year. A new magical memory for my children.

Lucy singing along.

Joshua figured out that it is louder when you put your ear to the glass.

It was a long night, and as I paid the $45 in parking, I made peace with the fact that it is all worth it.  My exhaustion is all worth it.

There are Five Little Reasons who have a little more magic in their memory banks.

Merry Christmas.  Love the Five Little Reasons.

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