We had a lovely Sunday afternoon spent in Yarra Glen with my mother's family - aunts, uncles, cousins, children, brothers...
It was such a great opportunity to catch up with everyone, and to celebrate two 40ths, a 60th and a 70th birthday. There was lots of eating, drinking, laughing, talking and playing.
Yarra Glen was a lovely setting, too.
At our last gathering, I had asked everyone to contribute to a family recipe book that I wanted to put together. This time, I was able to give everyone a copy of the result. I think it looks great and is full of delightful heirloom and modern recipes. I'm going to attach it here.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
I'm pretty proud of myself - I completed the Melbourne Marathon this morning. It was very hard going as we had an unusually hot day for October (28 degress C by 11:30 am) and strong winds. These conditions made the run very hard going coming back up Beach Road and the St Kilda Esplanande. I had to make deals with myself - "just run to the next km marker then you can walk for a bit"; "if you start running again, then we won't have to be out here all day". Notice the split personality that drifted into my thinking - there was a split between my mind and my body. And I suspect my feet were on a different being altogether! I now have a hideous blood blister on the ball of my left foot, and blisters on my little toes. I can hardly walk, although I am making myself move around, and sitting is very uncomfortable. My lovely husband and mother were waiting at the finish line, and I vowed to them that I would never run another one! I've achieved this goal - I don't need to do it again!
We have had a lovely few weeks since I last posted. We met Greg in Noosa, after his camp on Fraser Island. In the end, he had a great time, and did so many new things while he was there - camping, hiking, four-wheel drives. For the three of us, Noosa was as beautiful as ever. We love the beach, the National Park, the shops, the pool at our accommodation. Unfortunately, I had a cold for the first five days, and then an allergic reaction to the anti-biotics I had to take, so there was not a great deal of surf or sun for me, but Greg and Zoe would swim at the beach every morning, then hang out by the pool for the rest of the day. Zoe made a lovely friend, Georgia from Geelong. I bumped into lots of students from my school, and an old friend from Balckburn Baptist days.
Now, we are all back at school. Greg has been given a permanent position at Melbourne Grammar, so that is really good news. I have been offered the role of assistant level coordinator for Years 9 and 10 for next year - which should be exciting.
Zoe and I had the great pleasure of reading the "Dragon Moon" trilogy, by Carole Wilkinson. It is a beautiful series set in ancient China. The main character, Ping, is a wonderfully rounded character, showing determination and thoughtfulness, developing strength and self-belief, and remaining loyal to her role as the last (and only female) Dragonkeeper. We were very sad when we completed the last novel! Zoe continues to work her way through the Cherub series by Muchamore. I wonder about its appropriateness but she enjoys them, and they keep her reading.
I read several good books during the holidays. One was "A Long Way Down" by Nick Hornby, which had me pondering life and laughing out loud in turns. I also read the haunting "The Road" by Cormac McCarthy. This was a challenging book set in a post apocalyptic world. Beautiful, frightening and tragic, it reflects on human nature ultimately taking a positive view of the effect of relationships between people and the depth of love. There is film that is due to be released soon that I look forward to seeing.
An old Canadian friend arrived in Melbourne on October 1. The last time I saw Linda was in 1991, and she has barely changed since then. It has been wonderful spending time with her and showing her around Melbourne. She spent last week in Darwin and will spend the next two weeks in Tasmania, then after that she returns to my mum and dad's place to spend more time with all of us.
The next couple of weeks will be very busy. As well as my Yr 12 class finishing on October 22, that day is also my brother Rob's 40th birthday, the Sunday before is my older brother John's 45th birthday, then we have a big Smith family gathering in Yarra Glen the following Sunday. There will be Valedictory Dinners and Staff Dinners too. Zoe's production "Aladdin" is on Tuesday and she and I are now training for a triathlon on November 2. Never a dull moment!