Sunday, December 6, 2015

Week Ending 6 December 2015

I've felt all off-kilter this week since all the kids have had changes to their schedules. Miss 15 has been training on different days while her coach is at the World Trampoline Championship in Denmark,  Miss 20 has just had a promotion to checkout supervisor at work which means a change to her shifts plus she is picking up extra shifts in the lead-up to Christmas, and Mr 18 has been filling in for one of the bakers who is on leave and working more than full-time hours as a result. Obviously I'm used to knowing what day of the week it is by what the kids are doing since I haven't really known what day it is all week!

Despite my not being totally with-it all week we've made a start on Christmas preparations. Miss 15 and Miss 20 spent a morning making our Christmas cards. 

We are sponsoring a family this Christmas through a local charity group. We've been given some non-identifying details and we'll buy gifts for the family plus a hamper of Christmas food for them. This week we bought most of the gifts. I really enjoyed buying things for people who need it. While we are very modest in our Christmas celebrations I hate the feeling of having to buy gifts for people who don't really need or want anything and having no idea what to give them as a result. I would love to prune the list of people we give presents to, but have yet to get others on board. Speaking of gifts we  bought an early Christmas gift  for Basil - a replacement for his much loved blue frisbee that he destroyed a while ago.

We also started to decorate the house. After buying a few new decorations  the girls decorated the small trees (they've each got one in their room plus one in the living room). We'll get the large live tree up after Miss 20's party this coming weekend. She turns 21 just before Christmas but is having a party early before everyone leaves town for the holidays. There won't be enough room in the living room for all the guests if we put the tree up now!

I love these handcrafted decorations. And our purchase helped support fair trade in developing countries.

Miss 15 and I have had a couple of late nights staying up to watch the live stream from the World Trampoline Champs. supporting her clubmates and the rest of the national tea.

University exam results were released and both Miss 20 and Mr 18 were really pleased with their results. I'm delighted for them both.

My mum has been released from hospital again. Doctors have now concluded that her two"strokes" were not strokes at all. But they don't know exactly what the problem is so she's awaiting further appointments. She has a history of being difficult to diagnose so I doubt we'll get a definitive answer anytime soon.

Miss 15 and I made a couple of birding trips hunting for specific species. One trip to the estuary to spot a Chestnut - breasted Shelduck (a vagrant that has just shown up in the area) was successful. 

Chestnut-breasted Shelducks.

A Spotted Shag on top and a family of Canada Geese below were also at the estuary.

The other trip, an early morning visit to a park in the hills to search of an uncommon introduced parrot that is sometimes seen in this area, was not.

Miss 15 has just got involved in a recently established national network for young birders. They're aiming to promote birdwatching to 8-18 year olds. She's not sure yet if the group is a good fit for her yet  but she's giving it a try.

Linking up with the Weekly Wrap-Up at Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers.

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