One of the first posts on my Facebook timeline for 2012 is a comment from Keegan getting upset at Christmas decorations on 2nd of Jan "Why do they STILL have their decorations up, Xmas is gone already!". But mostly, the early days of January were spent waiting. Waiting for Monique to arrive. Due on 22 December, she didn't grace us with her presence until 7 January!
Brennan had 5 weeks off work over the Xmas period, and most of that was spent renovating our unit on Frederick St (and waiting, waiting, waiting!).
We put our unit on the market in February and it sold quickly to the first people who looked at it, and for a price that we were reasonably happy with. Keegan started school. Monique smiled for the first time. A hunt for a new house commenced with vigour, but nothing could be found, so we moved into a rental in March for the next six months. The photo of me and the kids in front of the Sold sign was taken by our agent, and it sat in his window for MONTHS!! All the kids at school thought we were so famous :)
March also meant a new car, one that we all could fit into - a Peugeot 308 with 7 seats (a spare for a friend). Brennan was promoted in March from Manager, Delivery and Excellence (aka doing stuff and awesomeness) to Manager, Strategic Projects (aka doing interesting stuff). We took the new car for a weekend away to a campground in Forster (photo below).
April's highlight was that Fergus started daycare meaning that I could concentrate on working without him delivering rubbish from the recycling bin to my desk! After Easter, Vincent proved (philosophically) that Mums are better than God. The summarised version is:
V: How was the first person made?
Me: There are several different theories...
V: I think God made them.
V: But, who made God?
(long discussion about the options)
Keegan: God made himself
V: Nah, God's Mum made him, cos everyone is made by their mum.
The highlight of a boring month - May 14's status update: "My kids gave me the best Mum's Day present possible. Sitting with perfect manners while out for breakfast yesterday and garnering compliments for our fabulous parenting ability!!"
In June, the school had their athletics carnival and Keegan won the 5YO 100m dash by approximately 50m. Using typical kid logic, Keegan decided the night before that he needed to shave his head, so that he would be faster. But according to a teacher, the thing that made the difference was that he was paying attention at the start. He dashed off at the starters gun while his classmates were still figuring out what to do! Vincent also won his heat, but due to a clerical error he didn't run in the final for his age-group and was a bit confused when the ribbons were given out and the boy who he beat in the heat got the first place ribbon. It was a tough lesson for him, but also good to understand that no system is perfect!
A big decision was made in August when we (finally) found a house to buy. A tiny 2 bedroom Federation villa, it came with a huge back yard. Built before the post office used street numbers, it has its own nameplate (Verona), but Fergus refers to the house as "back yard". Eg, "We go to back yard now". The vendor is our neighbour, so we negotiated to have access to the property before settlement to allow us to do some work on it before we moved our furniture in. So we had several weeks to fix the rotten floors, put in a new hot water system, fix the fire-place and do a few other minor things without having to work around our things. And most importantly, we could put up the trampoline, much to the delight of the children. We officially moved in during the start of September - our third address in 2012!
September started poorly with Vincent breaking his ankle on the trampoline. And to all the people who said "perhaps you should only let one kid jump at a time?", where is the fun in that? Technically the ankle was a torn ligament and an undisplaced fracture of the tip of the ankle bone, so nothing that required a cast, just rest. Well, resting proved difficult and there were a couple of visits to the hospital when it was re-injured, as well as the dual problems of having crutches at school and the litigious, safety, issues of being in an upstairs classrooms; and the biggest issue (for Vincent) of going on holiday with crutches. It puts a real dampener on things when you have only one leg and can't run wild at the Gold Coast! A few days at the Gold Coast was a fun holiday, we went to Sea World and Vincent rode the crazy fast jet ski ride. The kids went to the top of the tallest tower with Brennan, and we did some swimming and digging holes on the beach.
October brought the start of cricket. Both older boys were upgraded into the Under9s team, and play half day games on Saturdays. All in whites, so cute! Our local ground had its 100 year anniversary and the Australian cricket captain, Michael Clarke, came to play for his old club (ours!!), so we went along to watch.
Time marches on so quickly. In November Monique started to stand without holding on. Nearly 11 months, and she's about to start running wild with her brothers.
December brings a trip to NZ for Christmas and a big party that we've organised in a house we've rented but haven't seen. I hope it has enough space for the extended family!! Also, Brennan is having laser eye surgery, so no more glasses for him. I've heard that it's a life changing event, and I hope that it all works out (am a little nervous, but the paperwork includes enough risk mitigation in the process that I feel comfortable enough). School is nearly finished and the boys have done well this year. Brennan's work has been busy as usual, with several trips around the country, mostly to Brisbane and Perth. There are some interesting things on the horizon for next year. My work has been rewarding without anything too new and exciting. The project with Rob is trucking along well, and my other clients seem happy with my output. I picked up a new client too, which is always nice.
2013 is likely to include more moving, as we are planning to build an extension on this property, and we will have to move out for the construction phase. Onwards and upwards!