Sunday, October 23, 2011

NANAS TOO (8 down)

(Here we are sharing (and counting UP through) Forty Days and Forty Nights of our lives, our last on the inner-west side of town and, eventually, some of our first on the other (far) side of town, where we envisage some big changes coming our way. Thanks for joining us as we remember, celebrate and experience gratitude for our time here, and sometimes feel completely overwhelmed and exhausted by the changes underway!)

I often think of family on Sunday so today, being a Sunday, seems a good time to share some photos of our recent trip to Sydney, where the vast majority of my nine siblings and their families live.  When at Mum's, we always find ourselves immersed in family and I truly mean immersed. This last visit occured at the end of Autumn and early days of Spring and there were plenty of opportunities for shared family time in the garden. I found it difficult to chose from the my photos of the trip so, my apologies, this post is laden with snapshots.

Off to see the horse with Nana
I'd rather not say how often we devoured chocolate oatmeal cake!

Down the garden and through this gate lies a range of bushwalking tracks where I spent a chunk of my childhood walking, collecting, riding my bike, hiding and generally playing! (and in my teenage years, smoking with friends!). It was wonderful to be able to share these tracks with my kids and to watch them experience the freedom of taking off for a stroll all 'alone' in the bush. Rafa was the bravest of all wandering away  happily oblivious to his Mama's prescence, seemingly in his own little bush wonderland.

These pants get around!
Nana's much-enjoyed fire pit; one night we sat around a bonfire here until late into the night enjoying the quiet chatter and laughing children until the children gradually found laps to cuddle into and, in many cases, fell asleep, all to the light of the fire and the sounds of their parents, aunts and uncles. I recall many a night spent this way in my childhood and was so happy to be able to share this fire-pit with my kids.

Some of my littlest nephews/nieces (cousins to my kids!) enjoyed playing at a local pool following a ceremony to rename the aquatic centre in my dad's honour. It was a moving day and a lovely chance for the kids to remember and celebrate their Poppa. Here are six of his youngest grandchildren. Sadly, Rafa is the only one of his 28 grandchildren who never met their Poppa but, we'll make sure he knows much of him.

The fact that we live in another city far away (relatively speaking!) from my Mum and the majority of my siblings (and their families) is no indication of the value we place on family. For me, looking back on these photos is a good reminder of some of the most significant motivators behind our upcoming move.  You see, we will be living oh so close to one of my sisters and her family and I'm looking forward to seeing them all more regularly. Elsa is very, very excited about this aspect of the move, among others!

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