We are finally back on US soil after 2.5 weeks in Oz. We had a fantastic time in Australia and had a great time catching up with everyone.
The kids were fantastic on the flights back and traveling with kids that are older is definitely a bonus.
Now we just have to get over Jet Lag and get back into the swing of things at work. I’m sure I will have about a million emails waiting for me that I need to sift through.
Thanks to my parents and Penni’s parents for putting us up for two weeks. We will chat on Skype in the near future.
June 7th was my Dad’s birthday. It was nice that we could finally celebrate it with him after 10 years of being in a different country.
We got him the “Band of Brothers” series on DVD, hopefully he enjoys it. The kids loved celebrating with Pop and going out for dinner at a Pub.
Yesterday Pen and I went to Melbourne. We spent the day wandering around th CBD checking out how things have changed before catching up with my brother for dinner at a cafe.
After dinner we went and saw a Musical, Dr. Zhivago. It was pretty cool and the seats we had were fantastic. Due to the late finish of the show we stayed at a hotel over night. It was a nice relaxing time. Many thanks to Nanny and Pop who looked after the kids for us while we had a date day.
Since the last post we have been to my 20 year school reunion, where it was great to see everyone and find out what they had been doing.
The next day we caught up with my mates from university and their families. It’s always good catching up with these guys as it’s easy. They are the type of friends where it doesn’t matter how long you haven’t seen them for, you just pick up from where you left off.
Today we caught up with my auntie Lorraine so she could see the kids and find out what we have been doing. The kids loved it because
1 they got to have McDonalds for lunch
2 they then got to paint some plates, mugs and a piggy bank
3 they were then given presents for birthdays that have just been (Stephanie) and are almost here (Dan)
Here’s hoping that tonight is the night the kids finally get over their jet lag.
Well I can tell you that in two years the flights haven’t got any quicker when traveling from Atlanta to Melbourne Australia. What has got better is the kids.
Yes they got grumpy and tired at time but that is to be expected. They even put up with the Delta flight being delayed 1.5 hours.
So after 24 hours of travel we made it to Australia where both our parents were waiting for us. We piled into cars and headed off to Penni’s Auntie Maz’s house for a brunch/snack. There we were presented with a huge Australian spread of foods. Due to the kids being so good on the flight they were told they could east what ever they liked. Of course they focused on the chocolate food
We then piled into a van Dad got for the day and headed off to my parents house. The kids were immediately asleep. Even when we stopped to see my brother they didn’t wake up.
By 6 pm we were in bed. The 12 hours of sleep we got last night was really nice.
Just a quick post to say that no I haven’t stopped blogging, I’ve just been rather busy lately.
Hopefully the next entries will be about our trip to Australia.
Go to church for Good Friday – check
Stay up late making goodybags for stephy’s party – check
Up early for easter egg hunt at church – check
Set up for Stephy’s birthday party (including kicking out 2 fully established parties who were not smart enough to book the pavillion) – check
Have awesome 4th Birthday party for Stephy – check
Clean up party – check
Come home, open and play with presents – check
Pizza for dinner – check
Kids to bed, snuggle hubby and crash – check
Up at 5:30am to see if Easter bunny needed help – check
Back in bed and more cuddles with hubby – check
6:00 am kids come in, open stephy’s birthday presents including her DS (!) – check
Easter Egg Hunt in front garden – check
Skype Nanny & Pop and open present – check
Dress for Church – Check
Cuddle bunnies, worship Jesus, Hug everyone – check
Toast for lunch – check
Kids play under sprinkler – check
Lamb roast Easter Dinner with special guests Whitney & Jenny – check
Talk to uncle Matt for Stephy’s Birthday – check
Text my brother for HIS birthday – check
Skype Mum, Dad, Sis & her fam and exchange birthday/easter/anzac-day wishes – check
Update facebook with crazy weekend – Check
Crawl into bed exhausted but happy – Ch……..ZZZZZZZZZZ
Spring Break 2011 is the first time since Daniel was born that Spring Break has really affected us.
In previous years Daniel has been at Oxford Falls Academy, which even though he was doing Pre-K or Kindergarten, allowed you to keep your kids there over the spring break period. (other daycares do not)
This year I spent the week working at home while Daniel stayed home with me.
Overall Daniel was fantastic. He occupied himself by playing Lego Star Wars on the Wii, or computer games or art work. After two days home with just the two of us we organised for the next three days for Daniel to visit his mate Jase who lives over the road for a couple of hours a day. This made a huge difference as both Daniel and Jase really looked forward to their time together. A big thank you to Jase’s mum Julie who watched the kids each day for those hours.
Today the weather was perfect, here in Atlanta. We took the opportunity to take the kids to the park and I started Daniel on the road to riding without training wheels. Previously the training wheels had been touching the ground all of the time. Today I moved them up so the bike now wobbles from side to side. It gives Daniel the chance to learn to balance on a bike without throwing him in the deep end. He did pretty good for his first try. I can see very soon that the training wheels will be coming off and then we will never be able to keep up with him.
One final thing of note is that Daniel is starting back with swimming lessons this week. One of his good friends Gracie will also be doing swimming lessons with him.
Hopefully by the end of the summer season he is swimming like a fish.
I started doing it because everyone else was, even people Iooked up to. I had no idea what I was in for.
The first time I did it I recall looking at those tiny crystals with amazement thinking “What’s the big deal?” After I had done it I knew why so many people go back for more. I came out of that place a different person and I found myself suddenly consumed by my new habit. One of my strongest memories was when I would try to read my bible and my eyes would continually drift off the page, all I could do was stare in amazement at my hands!
Sure enough, sooner than I expected I had to return for my next fix and that was when I knew I was hooked. I would sneak out from work for a long lunch break and sneak back in hoping I was not missed. I always seemed to manage to find enough cash to support my habit, it was finding the time that I found the hardest. While there, I would I see the others, trapped like me. We would try not to make eye contact and when we did, we would laugh uncomfortably trying to pretend that we were there because we wanted to be, not because we NEEDED to be.
What no-one warned me about was that while you are holding it all together on the outside, the damage where no one can see was eating away. After a couple of months I realized that my body should no longer be subjected to this ‘luxury’ I tried to ween myself off, but things just got worse so eventually I decided to get help. I decided to go cold turkey. It was like Chineese bamboo torture! I wont forget that lady with the vacant look in her eyes who was ‘helping’ me. She seemed uncaring as I stifled my yelps of pain. The lady next to me looked at me in pity as she got her fix. She shared with me how she only lasted a few days clean before she had to return. She said she doesn’t think she will ever be clean again, but she is OK with that, then her look of pity for me returned as I grimaced once more.
As I write this, I have been 24 hours clean and I can tell you that not one minute passes that I don’t think about returning. Typing this, every keystroke echoes up my fingers and scratches on my brain like nails down a chalkboard, as a constant reminder of what I am missing. I feel ashamed of how I look, now, and that adds to the pain. I just want it to go away. Everyone can see me for who I really am and I cannot hide the effects of what was done to me. I know that the only respite is a very long healing process or a quick trip back to that bad, bad place. I have been told that if I can get through the first month, I will probably make it. I honestly don’t know if I can! I do know that if I do return, I may never be able to break the habit again and I think that is what will keep my will-power strong.
I write this to warn you with every part of my being…. Say NO to acrylic nails! (Happy April 1st!)
You know sometimes we get so busy with our lives that we forget to just chill.
Normally our weekends are busy. The kids get us up at 6 or 6:30am and by 7:00am we are having pancakes for breakfast. Soon after that Pen and I are going over the shopping list working out dinner for the week and then getting everyone dressed. By 9:30 or 10:00am I am out the door with the kids to do the grocery shopping. Pen then takes this opportunity to clean the house. The kids and I return from shopping an hour or so later and we then put away the groceries and start preparing and having lunch.
Wow! When you look at that it is just go, go, go.
This past weekend we took the time to ignore what we would usually do and just chill in the morning. Sure that meant things got done later, or the next day, but it was worth it.
Our kids thrive on structure and with the busy lives we lead we need the structure too (Penni and I would be lost without our Google Calendars synced together), still we need to remember that while structure is good and we do need to get things done, it is also good once in a while to:
Stop, Chill and enjoy just hanging out.
“Slow down and enjoy life. It’s not only the scenery you miss by going to fast-you also miss the sense of where you are going and why.”
It’s been a while since I last posted, but here we are again.
On the weekend I flew out to San Diego, CA to help out with the C3 Church San Diego’s Men’s Conference.
Myself and two other guys (Jim and Kevin) from Atlanta flew over to impart some of the kingdom principles that are learnt through the C3 Journey program.
The conference was held in the mountains about an hour and a half from San Diego. When we arrived the fog was coming down and the forecast was for snow that night that forecast was set to be true (more on that later).
The main guest speaker for the conference was Paul De Jong. Paul spoke on the fact that it is ok to fail at something. In fact it is sometimes a good thing to fail at something before succeeding. The only problem with failure is if you keep making the same mistake over and over again. Paul’s message can really be summed up into “Failure = valuable lessons learned by champions.”
Friday night the forecast for snow was true. So true that overnight 14 inches of snow fell. We woke up to a winter wonderland.
Even with the snow Jim was able to teach and we were still able to run the guys through some exercises (the snow just made it that much more interesting ).
While I was away Pen got to spend a wonderful couple of days with the kids. When I got back she said she really enjoyed hanging out with them.