December 30, 2011

Happy new year!

It's new years eve in New Zealand so I thought I'd get in now to wish you all a happy one! Hoping it's full of bubbly celebrations and good wishes. Looking back on 2011 I have summed up my year as adventurous, and I hope I've grown wiser and stronger.

I'm definitely braver! From the Franz Josef Glacier via my first helicopter, Happy New Year!

December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas (well, it's Boxing Day here!)

Wishing you all a lovely holiday. We had a beautiful day, probably the nicest day we've had in New Zealand, what a great Christmas surprise!

Hope Santa was good to you. Happy holidays!

December 20, 2011

Chocolately pepperminty goodness

Even though we have Starbucks here, it's not the same. And with the coffee culture in Wellington, Starbucks is looked down upon. It took me awhile to appreciate the delicious espresso in town, but I still order a USA. In fact, I order a medium in a large cup, so I can water down the espresso (it's strong!) and add in cold milk.

In a tangent... this caused a serious issue yesterday at the counter, when the cashier was thoroughly confused at my order. And annoyed. About my "complicated order that makes no sense". She even shook her head, rolled her eyes, and kept getting annoyed about it. (Note: I only ordered it once and the guy working the machine said, "got it" but she took issue with it for a few minutes, and then was getting frustrated over how to ring it up and complained about how the guy could "possibly get" why I wanted a larger cup... oh life.) Back to Starbucks.

While I miss pumpkin spice latte, my true love is a peppermint mocha. Sadly, no dice here. But the internets? The internets delivered. I forget where but I learned that you can steep a peppermint tea bag in a coffee, and the result? Amazing! To me. It's the small things no?

Mmm yummy chocolatey and pepperminty, just the way I like it.

December 19, 2011

I hear those sleighbells ringing...

We have two rules in the house... no Christmas music until after Kev's birthday. And no wrapping his present in Christmas paper. This year he milked two timezones and proclaimed I had to wait an extra day since technically it was still his birthday.

So happy birthday handsome guy, my best friend:

And Merry Christmas!!! Bring on the Christmas music. My all-time favourite songs:

1. All I Want For Christmas - Mariah Carey
Does this surprise you? In real life, this tidbit would be known from the moment we met. Of course this is my favourite song. And I even listen to it year round because Mariah Carey takes up a whole lotta space in itunes, and I like it on shuffle. Even with the Christmas songs.

2. Where are you Christmas? - Faith Hill
Just love her voice, and reminds me of Christmas at my moms. She's a country gal, and would blast this song, probably to drown out my horrible singing.

3. Feliz Navidad - Boney M
Because memories that include a cassette player will always rank high.

4. I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas - Gayla Peevy

5. Jingle Bell Rock - any artist
What a bright time, it's the right time, To rock the night away...

... in reality I have way more than five all-time Christmas songs, but I'll stop here before you judge me. (Even more).

December 12, 2011

Oh by golly have a holly jolly Christmas... this year!

I love Christmas!

It's like memory making in action the entire time. Such a wonderful time of year where you can just see the traditions unfolding. Cooking clove, orange and cinnamon all day on Christmas letting it fill up the house with a 'reminds me of home' scent. The green and red decorations sprinkled around town and home, the glow of Christmas lights, the promise of hand written mail (not bills) arriving in the mailbox, the chimes of Mariah Carey's 'All I Want for Christmas' jingle, and sweet dreams of old St. Nick visiting for cookies and milk.

Even though I'm grown, and often am celebrating far from family, I still like to make a big-do over Christmas. This year, we're going Kiwi. Having a BBQ and enjoying a pavlova for dessert.

Things have been busy on this side, with our move, a promotion at work (yay!) and of course Christmas tree cheer in full effect. Except it means I'm slow on my cards and thinking of going the (gasp!) ecard route for overseas. I haven't started my shopping, no stockings in sight, and my new fake tree is looking a little bare. But somehow it works. It's like magic, it comes to life all on its own, and sadly in January disappears.

Last year, we were unemployed, living in San Francisco with packed bags, no furniture, save for the two camping chairs and a vase with decorative sticks. It barely looked joyful, but we had each other, with many thanks for our blessings. Our health, and the promise of moving overseas. Even if it sounds a bit sad, it was far from it. We were unemployed since we were waiting to move, while we had some delays, we rolled with it, and went without gifts. Even though we sold our tree and decorations for the big move, I sent Kev on a Walgreens mission for anything "festive" so we could decorate our window sill and celebrate. We treated ourselves to a wonderful Champagne Christmas brunch at the Fairmont, and toasted the evening with movies. Turns out, even though we didn't think it would be "much", looking back it was pretty special.

Christmas 2010, San Francisco

So far my favourite part has been unpacking all the small trinkets I saved and hauled across the world. The same ones that decorated our window sill, now apart of our tradition.

Christmas 2011, New Zealand

December 6, 2011

I haz cute cats

My peace offering for being MIA.
Cute Sven and Turkey.

The whole "moving is stressful" is underrated!

Thankfully things are coming along. Still no Internet. It's normal here to say "we'll be there in two weeks!" it's just the way things are done. And we're rolling with it, renting heaps of movies and enjoying early episodes of friends and curb your enthusiasm. But I do miss the internets. (And hot water. Unrelated to the Internet but very related to moving is stressful.)

Surely it will be sorted soon. Until then, more cuddles with the cats.