When I was younger, I always loved this time of year because it was the start of summer and everyone was thinking about the holidays. Back then, I lived near the beach so after work and often before work, I went swimming at Bondi. It was invigorating and had the ability to focus my mind like a razor. I always worked well when I swam before work. Now I don't like summer but I still like this time of year. Now it represents the end of another chapter when I check to see I've done what I was obliged to do, along with all I wanted to do, and I start thinking about the coming year. Now it's a time of reckoning and preparation.
Although we haven't spoken about it yet, we'll probably have Christmas lunch here at home. I'm sure Kerry and Sunny won't have the time or energy to prepare a large lunch so I'm guessing they'll be here, and possibly Jens and Cathy. Shane, Sarndra and Alex will be staying at home in Gladstone because the house they're renting is being sold and they have to move. They're hoping to come down during January. I'm trying to get some gifts up to Alex, in two medium sized boxes, and I'm hoping that someone who will be driving through Landsborough can take them to Gladstone for me. If you're driving that route sometime in the next three weeks can you please email me on firstname.lastname@example.org Thank you.
Usually at this time I'd be wanting Thursday to arrive because it would be the first day of the Cricket Test Match at the Gabba. That, for me, was always the real start to summer. I'd have my knitting reading to go, plenty of ice cubes in the freezer and some books close to my lounge chair so I could watch cricket and read at the same time. But this year there has been the tragic death of a young cricketer, Phillip Hughes, who probably would have played in the upcoming match. He was killed during a game when struck on the neck with a cricket ball; such an unimaginable sadness, killing a fine young man, only 25. His funeral will be held today. So the matches have been changed around and the first match will now be held in Adelaide, a week late, to give his family, his fellow players and the nation, a chance to mourn his loss. RIP Phillip.
Yesterday, Sandi (Blinky) came over for morning tea. We had a lovely chat, talked about and showed our current yarn projects and looked at the garden. So the front verandah has been cleaned up in preparation for Sandi's visit and I took the same opportunity to move the plants around to their summer configuration. It's one of the tasks that marks the end of year and change of seasons. The garden usually gets a lot of attention now too. It needs to be able to withstand the heat of the coming months so new mulch is applied and all those plants that we know are passed their prime are removed and the garden beds tidied up. We don't do a lot of gardening over the hot months so the work is put in now so the beds look tidy and all we have to do when it's really hot and it doesn't rain, is to water the plants. The two garden beds we wanted to be removed have gone and now the grass is growing over the bare patches. Soon there will a beautiful place for us to sit in the shade there, either in the afternoon shade of trees or with an umbrella proving much appreciated morning shade.
We have two international visitors at the moment. Peter, our brother-in-law from Germany (staying with us) and Sunja, Sunny's mum (staying with Kerry and Sunny) from Korea. They're both going home again in about two weeks. Then I'll think more seriously about our Christmas lunch and I'll start making notes about some workshops I'll be giving next year. I'd like to give some writing and blogging workshops to, hopefully, inspire and motivate local writers who are serious about blogging and writing.
So that's me, what is the end of the year looking like in your home?