2011 has been a busy but awesome year for us. Don’t really want to bore you but a quick recap-

We renovated and survived. Took longer than planned, did more than planned and obviously spent more than planned but we are beyond pleased with the results and it has made a massive differenece to our home and lifestyle. We have spent the summer holiday here in PE this year and it couldn’t have been better. Our pool is warm, we live 200m from the sea so have swum in the sea lots and at home even more, the kids have had a blast (we’ve done McArthur baths and ice skating and hours and hours and hours of swimming and playing with friends), Zoe is a brilliant boogie-boarder and just loves catching waves, we’ve had superb weather and lots of friends over for braais as well as a lot that have come to stay for 1 night or 3. Catching up with old friends has made us realise just how lucky we are to live the life we do. We are very blessed.

My older brother and his family were out in SA on holiday and we got to spend lots of time with them and my younger brother is now a Paediatric surgeon and he comes up to PE to do op’s about once a month/fortnight so we get to see lots of him as well. Having my folks around the corner continues to be a massive bonus, the girls are crazy about them and love spending time with them (and sleeping over at nana and grandpa’s) which is great for us and all our running.

Running has gone incredibly well – we both did the Two Oceans and the Knysna Marathon, Chris did Rhodes and Baviaans and we survived and got our medal for the Otter Run. I’ve realised I’m not a natural trail runner but we’ve both bettered every single one of our PB’s over all distances from 5km to 42km and beyond. Chris also bought a road bike and there’s a possibility he might be doing the Half Iron Man in 3 weeks!!! Cycling and running should be okay but a 1,9km sea swim when he last swam the Midmar mile in 2000 might be the tricky one. He is still off this week so I think there might be lots of swimming in the sea being done this week. Thank goodness the forecast is great. He has been swimming a bit in our pool with an elastic system that he made but sea swimming is completely different to swimming in a pool.

We bought a new car after much deliberation and are 100% thrilled with the Discovery. It is awesome and has definitely exceeded our expectations.

Chris’s work has been really busy which isn’t always great for us as a family but I guess when so many aren’t doing so well financially it is a huge blessing not to have to worry about money at all. By saying he is busy I must add that he doesn’t work weekends except a quick pop-in on a Saturday morning sometimes and the very occasional call-out at night. He is home before 5pm 4 days out of 5, 50 weeks a year and by medical specialist standards that’s pretty good going. He is flat-out all the hours he is at work and often works on admin stuff in the evenings but we really can’t complain. There are big changes on the horizon which scare me but ultimately it should make Chris even happier at work and that’s what is most important after all.

We have had some great holidays and weekends away. Our ski trip in January was incredible and I can’t believe it’s almost a year since we went. I would go again tomorrow if we could so we’ll definitely have to plan one for next year and hopefully the girls can join us. We also went to Zuurberg for a weekend, Cape Town for 2 weeks, Knysna a few times, Katberg with friends, a freezing cold trip to Rhodes near Lesotho, with other friends to their farm and a great 2 week family (Chris’s family) holiday to Sabie River bungalows and Tshukudu private game reserve (just the 4 of us). Wow, we have been very lucky indeed and it’s just getting better and better now that the girls are bigger and can have so much fun as well.

Zoe and Ava continue to bring us so much joy. I am really enjoying them more and more and finding motherhood easier and easier. They really do play beautifully together for hours on end and are the best of friends. They very rarely fight and argue and for that I am extremely grateful – they get that from their dad, not me but I’m not complaining. Ava started play school with Zoe 2 mornings a week in the 3rd term and didn’t blink an eye. She absolutely loves going and has done really well and her report is very complimentary as she is managing to do all she should and more which is great. A 2nd child definitely has huge advantages in terms of learning – what they lose out on individual attention they definitely score in all other areas. She has everyone (mostly me) wrapped around her finger but never ceases to amaze me. She is 100% out of nappies since July (day and night) and she only turned 2 in June so I think that is brilliant and just like her sister she is never, ever sick. They both get colds occasionally but neither has ever had anything more than a cold, ever.

Zoe continues to be our angel. She talks non-stop and asks millions of questions which do drive me to drink on occasions but she really is the sweetest, most well-behaved child I know and is the kindest big sister ever. Again, I have to say she gets that from her dad becasue I’m nowhere near as kind and forgiving and gentle as she is. She has also excelled at school and loved learning letterland and is desperately trying to read and write everything she can. I am rather apprehansive about her starting in Grade 0 and going to a new school but she is old (born at the end of Feb), quite mature for her age and very brave and eager to try new things so sure she’ll be just fine. This year she has learnt to ride a bike without training wheels, rides her scooter well, swims all strokes beautifully and has started to swim confidently in the sea and boogie board. There’s probably loads more but she never ceases to amaze me with what she is willing to attempt and usually master. This week it was ice skating. Chris is definitely the most daring out of the two of us and he and Zoe are starting to get closer and closer which is great to see. Both girls have always been more attached to me but he is such a wonderful, hands-on dad and they are becoming such a special little team and love doing little projects together (building/making stuff, doing the veggie garden, playing lego,etc.)

I can’t say for sure (and I’m biased of course) but I do think the fact that both our girls are so easy and adaptable and so happy and healthy is because they have such a happy home and 2 parents around a lot. I know not everyone can afford it or even want it but for us it works well. Me being at home allows Chris to concentrate on work and when he’s home there’s never stuff/jobs that must be done and so we can enjoy our time together. I will be busier with his practice next year but Ava will be at school 3 mornings a week so it still shouldn’t impact our life too much as I should still have the time to get all the mundane admin and boring shopping done (as well as any new extra work) while the rest are at work/school. Zoe starting at Collegiate will mean more driving around but thankfully we stay in PE so 15/20 minutes at the absolute most and Chris can do the morning shift. Her starting earlier might also impact my training time a bit as now I get back at 7am but they’ll have to leave at 7.15am so I’ll have to get back at about 6.30pm. Chris and I will have to figure out our training schedules a bit as the triathlon bug has definitely bitten him and so he will need more time to train but I don’t want to train less. We will both have to start going to bed earlier, no more 11-12pm lights out but rather 9.30pm.

I’ve joined a new bookclub which I love and we continue to make lots of lovely new friends in PE as a family through church, running, schools and other friends. We had a great New Years Eve party with both old and new friends last night and it was such a lot of fun. There is no place I’d rather be.

I can’t even think of any negatives for this year except all the drama with my old car but now that I have the new one that is all forgotten.

They must have jumped a hundred times.

Goals for 2012:

House: Extend garage, bigger diningroom table and chairs and a million and one other things as usual.

Running: Do Two Oceans in under 4h50. Run 5km in under 20 minutes.

Holidays: Not sure but definitely a few trips with the Disco, visit my cousin’s farm. We have a holiday booked to Nature’s Valley with friends from CT in February and then Cape Town is already organised for March/April but as many weekends away as possible in the second half of the year when there are less running events. Start planning ski/overseas holiday for 2013 to celebrate our 10 year anniversary.

Work: Keep physio on hold till girls a bit bigger so definitely help Chris more so his evenings are free to go to bed earlier.


3 Responses to “2011”

  1. darylfaure Says:

    What a great summary of the year that was! May you reach all your goals in 2012 and may the girls continue to prosper. I couldn’t agree more about being a stay at home mom. I certainly see the bonus it is for Dylan. Hope to see you on one of your trips to Cape Town.

  2. adesolaf Says:

    ☀ ː̗̀☀̤̣̈̇ː̖́Nː̗̀☀̤̣̈̇ː̖́Eː̗̀☀̤̣̈̇ː̖́Wː̗̀☀̤̣̈̇ː̖́ ☀
    \ | | /
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    \ | | /
    Wish you all the best in 2012 and beyond

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