Thursday, September 24, 2015

Hatches & Matches

It's been wayyyy too long since my last update.  So much has happened! Most importantly is the addition of not one, but TWO new babies.
Claire gave birth to Cullen Jack Bryan Lethaby on 21st January.  What a gorgeous wee tot he is!  Now he's 8 months old he always has lots of smiles for his adoring Aunty.  He loves being around his people and is quite content just sitting and watching his CRAZY big brother Quinn. 

The newest addition is Lara Therese Bartlett, born September 12th to Catkin and Gavin at home in Queenstown.  Another gorgeous daughter to add to their beautiful collection.  Gavin has sent through a picture and Aunty Apes and Aunty D are planning a trip down to Queenstown for Labour Weekend (end of October) to meet her.  Nana (Mum) is presently down there on Nana duty.

Welcome to the family, Cullen and Lara!  We're so lucky to have you.

I too have a new baby, a four legged kind.  Nine year old Baxta has come to live with me for his retirement.  He's been here for nearly 3 weeks now and it's working out beautifully!  Way better than I expected.  He sleeps in his bed in my room all night and doesn't get up until I get up.  He LOVES visitors - although he barks initially to let me know, and to let them know just how fierce he is (yeah, right).  He snores slightly which I think is cute and my favourite thing about him is when I come home he is by the door, hunched down, shaking with excitement, little tail wagging.  Currently looking for a guy who gets THIS excited to see me. 


It's been an eventful year so far.  Mum, Dad and I purchased a house together which is brilliant.  A place for them to base themselves when they are down here, and a home for me.  They have PROMISED me it is a win/win situation for all parties.  I moved in on the last weekend of March which just happened to coincide with a visit from the Clouston's (Kathryn and Alan) as luck would have it!  And much to their delight, I am sure.  I had the A Team helping me move and we were done by 10.30am.  Result!

It's a unit - one of two - with single garages in between.  Two double bedrooms (real doubles too!) and a single room/office off the back of the garage.  A small outdoor area with a patch of grass.  Lounge, dining room, kitchen, laundry, bathroom, and separate toilet. Perfect!  Very warm and has two heat pumps for extra warmth when needed.  I know I'll be very happy here.
I had a friend renting the spare room during the week, while working in Chch, and heading back to her home in Ashburton on the weekends.  It was the perfect set up.  But her tennents moved out and she has 3 small dogs so had to move back home and commute.  Leaving me flatmate-less. I love living by myself but the extra money is handy.  So my ol' mate Eru talked me in to Airbnb.  If you haven't heard of it before, have a look here
The perfect solution to be able to rent out the room but also have it available for when anyone comes to stay.  So far I have had two couples come to stay, both for a week.  The couple currently here are from Perth, Scotland so of course I can fluently converse with them in Scottish.  Ha!  AND they are keen to stay on a bit longer after they return from their trip up North.   So far it's working out brilliantly.
Mum and Dad have both been down for visits this year.  Mum was down in July for about 10 days.  Always so nice to have her close.  And Dad came down at the end of August for 6 days so help me (and when I say 'help me' I mean 'do it all himself') fix up the yard.  I am VERY impressed with the outcome.  So much better than expected AND we added things to the list as we went. 
So I now have a shed, vertical herb garden, clothesline, small and large raised garden beds.  VERY happy.  Dad did a brilliant job.  And managed to have quality Grandad time with his grandsons too.


I'm totally in love with having a washing line!  Sad, but true.
Had a lovely visit from the Southern Barts for Queens Birthday weekend in June.  So lovely to have them here and they got to meet Cullen.  Annabelle wasn't very well unfortunately, but we had a great time even though the weather was pretty miserable.  The weather cleared up on the Monday, the day that the Southern Barts were leaving.  Typical!  It was a great weekend full of gorgeousness.
A big shout out to Averil/Aunty Apes/Mrs Metcalfe who is Team Leader of her syndicate this year and is doing an amazing job!  Woop Woop!

My marriage celebrant work has been going really well and I love it!  I have my 7th wedding next weekend and 8 booked between now and March next year.  Yay! I've been doing a course this year to learn how to write ceremonies.  I have done two modules and have one more to do in November and then will receive a certificate in Celebrancy. 
I have a visit to a crematorium on Sunday as part of my personal development.  I am not currently doing funerals (because I cry like a baby, even if I don't know the person, and that's not a good look for a celebrant) but I am interested to know the procedures.
And that mostly sums up our year so far..... I think.... Hopefully I haven't missed out anything.
Tune in next time.... which hopefully won't be so long next time.