2013 Christmas Letter

woods 2013

Well another year has come to an end… Thanks 2013 it’s been great. What an amazing, exciting, heartbreaking, and uplifting year it has been.

It would be remiss of me to not start by telling you all our big news… we have decided to move overseas and live in the hills of Bali, Ubud, Indonesia for a while. We have wanted to live abroad for some time, while the kids are still young, and with Rob’s work being so flexible, it seems the perfect time to go. We have delayed this decision for a while waiting for a break in Jetson’s treatment. Now the time has come. We are absolutely so lucky to have the opportunity to do this. We will be leaving Perth on 2nd February 2014, and staying for 2 months initially, and possibly up to a year depending on how it all goes over there. As with most of our plans, we are keeping it flexible, to see how it goes. Olive is enrolled in an international school, Pelangi school, and Jetson will be going there part time as well to start his kindy year. We welcome all visitors, any time, please come and see us if you can!!

Casper has had a fabulous year, turning two in August. He has grown into a gorgeous, helpful and fun little boy. He is reciting his numbers already and will be so ready for school being an early baby. Another advantage being that he just copies his big brother, which will mostly keep him in good stead, but may get him into trouble given the dubious instructions Jetson gives him at times! “You climb on the table Casper…!!!” His favourite colour is yellow, and apparently anything that is yellow belongs to him! He is always such a happy early riser, making our mornings always enjoyable!

Casper and Jetson 2013

Jetson is storming along in all areas. He just turned four in November, and is a real big boy now. Jetson has still been attending day care one day a week, and  is ready to step into Kindy next year, and is a smart kid. He is also a bit of a character making the rest of us laugh at all his silly antics! His planned muscle transfer surgery earlier in the year was unsuccessful, quite an unexpected result. In September they cut his leg open to remove a muscle so they could implant it into his bicep muscle position in his arm. The leg muscle could not be removed as it was fused with another important muscle in the leg, so they stitched him back up again. It is a complicated situation with a few other options to look at, but the surgeons want to wait until he is a bit older before trying anything else. Otherwise he is moving around really well, and loves to run and ride his scooter.

Olive Rainbow fish 2013

Olive has excelled at school this year, completing year 1 with great enjoyment, making some really great friends. She loves to read, and is reading chapter books until her eyes are almost popping out of her head! She has continued to do ballet classes which she loves, really enjoying the recital concert in term 3. Olive was selected to be the lead part (as the Rainbow Fish) in her class assembly item, and played the part brilliantly, with the poise of an experienced actress. Absolutely no nerves for the show which was held in front of the whole school along with parents. We were very proud of her efforts. She is growing so tall, and beautiful, along with developing some traits of passion and determination…. I know these will be advantageous for her as she gets older, but not always ideal in a six year old!!

Clare turned 40 this year, and organised a casual party at a Jazz club in Perth. As a continued celebration she spent a week traipsing around Australia, 2 days in Melbourne visiting Rob’s family and The Wises’, moving up to Qld for 2 nights with cousin Catherine and family, and the Longhursts, then finally to Darwin for some friend catch-ups (you know who you are!!). What an amazing experience and great way to bring in 40 years. Another quick trip to Melbourne for a sports nutrition conference in October, then a girls weekend to Adelaide in November rounded out the travelling year. Working at WAIS has been going extremely well, with the appointment to a lead position only a month ago. (Having to leave this job is probably one of the hardest decisions to make). Clare won’t be working in Bali next year, but will hopefully stay up to date as she has enrolled in an advanced sports nutrition course online. It has certainly been busy juggling everything and getting ready for next year’s big adventure!

Fathers Day 2013

Rob has continued working from home on his websites, which continue to build in size and required workload. There is never enough time to do what he wants to do, but his flexible hours means the family / work balance is just right. He went on a mid-year boy’s weekend away to Darwin, which was hatched out of occasional Paddo drinking sessions with some local lads. He is looking forward to making the most of his ability to work from anywhere, as long as the Balinese internet system holds up.

Our international holiday destination this year was a two week trip to China. We visited the iconic major attractions in Beijing; the Great Wall and the Forbidden City, and then experienced a smaller rural town in the south called Yangshuo surrounded by an amazing karst mountain landscape. It was an excellent experience that the kids really enjoyed.

We went camping early in the year to Augusta, then a farm visit on the Anzac day weekend to the Kilminsters’ amazing and welcoming home, plus a long awaited ferry over to Rotto for the term 3 school break in October. It had been a long time since we had been there, the kids loved it, and still talk about it as being their favourite holiday ever!

Great Wall 2013

We wish everyone a magical Christmas with family and friends, and all the best for the year ahead, may it be filled with adventures and most importantly happy times.

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