Well, after 16 weeks and bang on deadline (but rather over budget) our builders cleaned up, packed up and left!
They left at 3pm as Sam and his friends started to arrive for the weekend’s celebration of his 30th birthday. We weren’t completely finished, the paving guys were only 2/3 through, the aircon is still to be installed and the painter will be here for another few weeks but we were finished enough for 25 guests and that is what counts!! Of course after 2 weeks of the most beautiful spring like weather with temps in the mid 20’s it turned windy and chilly an hour after they arrived and my dream of holding a beautiful outdoor long lunch disappeared with every increasing cloud. Luckily the newly completed extension could hold us all comfortably and soon there was a pleasing sound of tinkling cutlery and clinking glasses and plenty of lively conversation as the day progressed.
We were lucky enough to have been gifted a beautiful little piglet from our friends at Claydon Park in Milton together with a spit roast bbq and 5.5 hours after it started turning we had this little beauty…..
Needless to say the Birthday Boy was delighted and there was much “tasting” of the crackling by all and sundry before we tucked into the pig itself. It was so lovely that so many friends made an effort to travel from Sydney to help him celebrate the big 3-0. There were times we weren’t sure our first born son would make it, he has definitely contributed to a few grey hairs over the years, but I wouldn’t have him any other way and it’s lovely to see him all grown up and happy.
Some lovely wines and lots of animated conversation later we adjourned to the front veranda for the obligatory cricket game with Cammo trimming the pitch on his ride-on much to the delight of the audience!
Back inside for dessert in front of the fire as things were getting decidedly chilly and then outside again to finish the day around a bonfire overlooking the paddocks.
Such a great way to end the day. I never get tired of sitting out there with a glass of red staring into the glowing embers, contemplating life and all its wonderful complexities!!
Back to their rented houses which were both lovely with gorgeous views of the surrounding countryside and perfect for large groups – we shall definitely keep them in mind for a certain wedding that’s coming up…..
The whole crowd are rugby nuts so they donned their green and gold gear and trundled off to their party house to watch the Bledisloe Cup full of optimism, however every picture tells a story and I think you can see what this one’s telling us…..
As they said their goodbyes we started the cleanup and I was pretty chuffed with the way the new kitchen and extension scrubbed up. Once I’ve sorted a few more cupboards out I will have it all working like a well oiled machine and it’s SO nice to have a clean and functional oven after all this time. My bathroom has my longed for deep bath and my new laundry is a pleasure to work in. The outside space will come into it’s own in the summer months and down the track a pizza oven will complete the outdoor entertaining area.
Of course the evening was not without it’s little dramas. As I was about to fall into bed Bailey started crying and after a few trips to the garden to no avail I was trying to get her back into her bed when she vomited all over my persian rug – just great! Way too many porky treats from everyone during the day and it was all too much for her system. I had just about cleaned it all up and finally got to sleep when I got a 2am text from the house rental company saying that the alarm was going off at one of the kid’s houses and they were going to send a patrol car out to check it out. As it turned out the guests were apparently ‘playing a prank’ on someone, a party trick that cost me $100 in call out fees from the security company. I’m still trying to find out who the culprit was….
Still causing me grief at 30!!!
So now we get our life back. It is going to be fun to cosy up the new room – rugs, artwork, plants and mirrors will all make it feel much more like home and then we can just get on with living! My poor garden has suffered over the past few months, a poor neglected second cousin to the new renovation as I have had very little time to devote to it. Now that our rainwater tank is connected up to the chicken house we can get back to watering it, once it rains of course, and before long we will be planting summer crops again.Tomatoes anyone??
Before that however………..we have a trip to go on!
My beautiful Mum turns 80 in a couple of weeks and we are heading back to celebrate in the UK for a knees up at the rather salubrious Thornbury Castle followed by some time with the Birthday Girl in Lake Como. We fly to Paris on Wednesday for a week – half in Paris and half in the South of France near Narbonne and finish up in Bordeaux for a few days with my sister and brother-in-law staying in a vineyard. All in all I can’t wait and at this stage I think I shall probably sleep most of the way to France as I’m totally knackered!!! It’s been 3 years since I have been in Europe with my family and I can’t wait!
A little montage of where we’ll be over the next few weeks – BRING IT ON!!!!