2012 Christmas Image

Happy New Year!!!  This was intended to be a Christmas letter, however, things are always so crazy around here at the end of the year, that it has become a New Year letter! We hope you have enjoyed a wonderful Festive Season with your loved ones and brought in the new year in a special way.

What a fabulous and exciting year 2012 has been, even though it has flown by so fast. We don’t communicate with you all often enough, so we wanted to share with you what we have all been up to this year.

We are still living in Mount Hawthorn, WA which is a great location with a very friendly community. We have been here now for 3 1/2 years. The work-life balance has been really enjoyable but quite challenging at times, often being a juggling act with three children of 5, 3 and 1. We continued to keep busy with some more travelling throughout 2012. We all went to Melbourne in March for Clare’s friend Lois’s wedding at the MCG. We also ventured overseas to Bali in June for a family holiday, spending a month exploring around the cultural centre of Ubud. This was a fabulous break from our busy lives, as we indulged with housemaids to do all our cleaning and cooking. Oh, the small pleasures! The kids acquired a real education and understanding about other cultures, seeing what the local kids get up to on a daily basis. Rob did some charity travel in October, volunteering to help build a house in Nepal for a local community. This was another awesome experience in cultural immersion and a feel-good thing to do. We have also just arrived back from Melbourne after spending two weeks with Rob’s family for Christmas. It was great for the cousins to all catch-up – they all bond so well together even with such a large age range from 22 down to 1.

Rob is still working from home publishing and selling online, which has been progressing well. He relishes the time at home with the kids even though work is not always productive. Clare’s hours at WAIS have been extended gradually over time, and with a current restructure may extend even more in 2013. With a trickle of other work, this is around a day and a half of work time. Working with some of Australia’s London Olympians was definitely a highlight. Unfortunately, there was no opportunity for professional development this year, but hoping there will be next year.

Olive has finished her first full-time year at school in pre-primary class. She has coped really well with the increased demands of school, only being tired and worn out or sick on a few occasions throughout the year. She is a little trooper. She loves school and has a best friend in Meg, who lives in the next street – which is handy for playdates. She loves to dance. After a term of gymnastics, she joined a jazz dance class and will be returning to ballet this year. At the end of the year, Olive was involved in the dance recital, which was a joy to watch. She exudes confidence and was a fabulous dancer on the big stage. Olive is getting to be such a big and beautiful girl, with such determination, and amazing climbing abilities.

Jetson is also growing up to be a tall and happy kid. He enjoys one day a week at daycare, which has been great for his social skills. He can be very cheeky at times, and is often the joker of the household! He will enjoy another year at home playing with Casper, before going to kindy in 2014. He is progressing really well physically, he loves to run and climb (or try to). He is learning to scooter and ride a bike, which makes us extremely proud. He is usually very independent and wants to do everything himself. With continued monitoring from the many fabulous doctors at PMH, an operation to give him more arm movement has been rescheduled to this June.

Casper is now 16 months old. He started walking at 10 months, and now he doesn’t walk he just runs everywhere! He is starting to take after Olive in the climbing department and gets into and onto everything. He is starting to say quite a few words and certainly lets us know when he wants our attention. He is bossy and boisterous, but the two boys play very well together.

We are all looking forward to an exciting 2013 – some of the things we are looking forward to including are Clare’s 40th celebrations and camping with the Reilly’s at Augusta in January, Rob boys’ weekend away in Darwin, and hopefully we will squeeze in another overseas holiday in the first half of the year.

We wish you good luck in the New Year, may it be filled with excitement and happiness! We hope we can see many of you or at least keep in contact.

Love to all, Clare, Rob, Olive, Jetson and Casper.

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