Thursday, December 29, 2016

Goodbye 2016

2016 has had some spectacular highs and some deeply saddening lows but all in all it’s been a good year with some big lessons. Here’s my review of the year plus some photo memories in no particular order. Enjoy and may your 2017 be filled with blessings and peace.

What was the best part of 2016?
First thing that comes to mind is our overseas holiday. In January we took a leap of faith and booked return flight to London to visit Laree and Jason. Never in my life did I imagine we would actually ever go on an overseas holiday but we did it! We spent the beginning of the year planning and booking everything and in the June/July school holidays, we flew over to London. (28 hours in transit) and for the first time we were standing in another country and were ready to explore. We also travelled to Paris, Rome, Santorini (Greece) and flew back to London for a few more days before flying home. It was by far, one of the most life changing experiences I’ve ever had. I saw and explored so many different places, stood in places that I had seen on TV many times, faced challenges like flying and different languages and fell in love with the city of London! I’m incredibly grateful that Jeff and I got to experience this holiday together and I think we have a better appreciation for this beautiful country that we live in.

On my blog you will find a journal of our travels which I’m currently attempting to make into a photobook.

Before our overseas trip we had another holiday where we flew to Melbourne with the Gadenne’s for a family reunion in Mulwala. It was a great holiday where Jeff learnt a lot about his family history and it was Gracie’s first plane flight. Jeff and I travelled back to Melbourne and stayed a couple of extra days. We explore China Town, went up the big Skydeck and hired a car to drive to the 12 Apostles. We also saw the Around the Twist lighthouse and Ramsay St but it was closed for night time filming.

I was blessed to teach the most wonderful year 4 class this year. I began the year teaching them 1 day a week and doing lots of supply teaching. Half way through the year (just before our overseas trip) I was asked to take over full time during term 3 and term 4. It was my pleasure to teach this class as we had very few behaviour issues and I just thoroughly enjoyed being a teacher and working with my class. As usual I learnt a lot from my class and about being a teacher. I also had a student teacher which was a new experience and I enjoyed her help and new ideas in the classroom very much!

I am incredibly blessed to have a loving, kind hearted husband beside me each day. He was my strength through the difficult times, made me smile and laugh and never let me dwell on the bad things. He is my sunshine on a cloudy day and is always there for me. My husband Jeffrey was such a blessing in 2016 and I can only hope that I’ve been a blessing to him.
What was the worst part of 2016?
In June 2016 we sadly said goodbye to our Poppy who passed away. It was (and still is) incredibly sad to know that he is gone forever but I also feel he’s at peace now. The funeral was a beautiful celebration of his incredible life and I both spoke and sang during the service. It most definitely wasn’t easy but I felt I needed to do this for Poppy. Even though it was such a sad occasion, it was really nice to see how family comes together to support one another in such a difficult time. Rest in peace Poppy, you will always be missed but you will also be loved by all of us.

We also sadly lost Georgie this year. About a week or two after our overseas holiday, she went missing from her cage. We think she either escaped or someone opened the cage and let her out. We hoped she might come back but it’s now been almost 6 months and we haven’t seen her. We miss you Georgie!
What was the biggest surprise of 2016?
Hands down, going overseas was the biggest surprise. In fact, I still cannot believe that we did it! If you’d asked me in December 2015 if we would travel overseas in 2016 I would most definitely have said not a chance. What a surprise?

Also Rachel and Aaron having beautiful baby Ada was a wonderful surprise! I am absolutely thrilled for their little family and Ada is such a gift from God for them.

What are you most looking forward in 2017?
I’m looking forward to getting to know my new class for the year and getting to setup my own classroom the way I want it. I normally take over from someone who has setup their own room. It will be nice to be in control for once.
In general, I’m looking forward to all the things that God has in store for us as the year progresses.
Is there anything you are not looking forward to in 2017?
Whilst I’m looking forward to getting to know my class for 2017, I’m not looking forward to my holidays ending. I still have 3 weeks left but I’m already thinking about how much I’ll miss the freedom and sleep ins.

Which new years resolutions did you keep in 2016?
No resolution although one of my goals was to get an air conditioner and we most definitely achieved that in 2016. I’m already at the point where I cannot believe we lived without it for so long. Bit worried about the electricity bill though!
What will be your new years resolutions in 2017?
No resolutions however maybe some goals for 2017. I’d like to spent more time with God, in particular having a better prayer life. I have a beautiful journal from Rachel which I’m hoping to put to good use with this particular goal.

I’d also like to see Jeff’s business move forward in leaps and bounds in 2017. I’m sure this means more time and effort from both of us but I’ve got no doubt God has everything planned out for us. We just need to listen to Him.
What will you be doing on new years eve?
This year we actually do have New years eve plans. We are travelling to Brisbane with my Mum, Dad and brother to see Matilda the Musical at QPAC. It’s a day time performance but we will decided if we want to stay in Brisbane for fireworks or head back home, on the day.
Who will you be with at new years eve?
Jeff, Mum, Dad and Chris.

Who do you want to kiss to see the new year in?
My brilliant husband please!
What was the best song of 2016?
I feel like this year has really lacked in the music department for me. Maybe it’s because I’ve been busy working? I’ve enjoyed Owl City, Kenny Holland, Madilyn Bailey (two singers I found on youtube) and Tiffany Alvord. I also listened to a lot of Disney songs as I was teaching my class about songs I enjoyed as a child.
What was the best TV show of 2016?
I finished watching the series Royal Pains which has now completely ended. I watched all of Call the Midwife and continued my love of The Big Bang Theory each week. We got a one off Sherlock Christmas special right at the beginning of the year which was really good. (Bring on the next 3 new episodes in 5 days time) and I tried to get into Offspring but that didn’t really happen.

What was the best book you read in 2016?
My curriculum bible? (Ha ha ha, not!) I didn’t have a lot of reading time but I read a little bit of online fanfiction. I also read my bible but will endeavour to read more in 2017.
What was the best film of 2016?
I recently watched The Intern on Netflix with Anne Hathaway and it was one of the nicest movies I’ve seen in a long time. Bridget Jone’s Baby was incredibly funny and I saw Dr Strange for Jeff’s sake but that just made me feel very dizzy from the special effects. I really didn’t see many movies during 2016.
What change would you like to make to your life in 2017?
I’d like to live in the moment a little bit more and worry less about silly things like keeping the house clean and the grass mown – though I know those things still need to happen. Having a good work/life balance would be good as well. I tend to get very wrapped up in work and can’t see outside of that during the school terms.
What change would you like to see in the world in 2017?
Understanding and forgiveness. It’s not always easy but if we could be more understanding to people and forgive past mistakes, our world would be a better and more peaceful place.

Monet's Garden in France


The London Eye just before sunset

Dream evening in Paris


The Colosseum


Dinner at the Sunset Café in Santorini - everybody clapped as the sunset

Dropping by Baker St - very surreal seeing it in person. We were a few week late to see filming which happened at the start of June.

Promoting Data and Computer Resurrection at the Twilight Markets

Christmas at the Marriot - love, love, love this picture of us!

Gracie's 2nd birthday - Gracie is dressed as Elsa and I'm Sleeping Beauty

I grew all of this in my garden

60 Second Slam fare at school

We rescued this little magpie

End of year present from one of my year 4 girls.

House lit up for Christmas

At last I watched Frozen

Mini holiday at the Marriot with my family

Salt water lagoon

Just before we jumped in the pool to snorkel with the fish

Welcoming in 2016 watching the fireworks from the lounge room

Dinner at the new Indian near our place

Special treat for Jeff's advent present

Christmas Eve - I made this picture with an app called Caught Santa

Riding the Wheel of Brisbane in January

Puppy play date

2016 Christmas Day - Jeff's shirt actually says iShirt but yeah.... unfortunate

We said goodbye to Pandi who went off to a new home. She's doing really well!

Cousins Christmas photo 2016 - Nana photobombed us!

Wheel of Brisbane

Riding the Wheel of Brisbane in January

Filling out our passport application

Trip out on the boat December 2016

Beautiful day on the boat

Dad, Chris and Jeff went cable skiing in January - Mum and I watched

Trying out Jeanette's new toy

Puss loves cuddles

Passport photos taken

Gracie having fun during the year

Georgie girl

Mrs Gadenne

It was a year of boating

James and Dana had a little fire incident in the early hours of the morning. Everybody was fine!

Passports arrived!

Valentine's Day

One morning at church

Jeff fell in love with fishing

We had a night time fishing trip with John - we caught nothing but the moon on the water was spectacular.

Church lunch

Old steam boat we went on in Mulwala for the family reunion. It was fun but VERY hot!

Gadenne family reunion

Lake Mulwala was beautiful - this was just outside our door step

Gracie's first flight - a very long day because we missed our morning flight due to an accident on the highway.

Gracie all packed and ready to fly to Melbourne

Visiting family history

More family history and the littlest Gadenne looking at it.

So hot, so so HOT!

China Town - really good Chinese museum

Skydeck! Melbourne at night

The 12 Apostles

Easter in 4C

Our letter box didn't survive 2016


Werribee Open Range Zoo 

Ramsay St!!!

Around the Twist Lighthouse - Have you ever, ever felt like this!

Visiting Chris in Canberra - Nature Reserve

Tree Farm

We spent most of the weekend watching The IT Crowd in the hotel.... best holiday EVER!

Bestie coffee dates!

A little Easter bunny

Noosa Chocolate trips

Dana taught me how to make dumplings

Jeff in his clean room

Art and craft with Gracie

Carmy's cupcakes!!!

This little cutie bear

Jeff caught lots of fishies

Flowers from my class

Chris came to visit

My last photo of Poppy.

Outdoors Puss

Cuddles with grandma/Mum for Mother's Day (unfortunately in the hospital)

Seeing Josh Groban live

First night in London - London Eye and red buses

First night in London - Big Ben

First night in London - red phone box

First international flight - Brisbane to Singapore

Visiting Nana.O

Ice skating in front of Brisbane Town Hall - Winter Festival

Ice Skating

Breakfast date with Dad

Flying home from our overseas holiday

Trafalgar Square - London

Paddle boats in Hyde Park

Rio Olympics

A night at the Ekka

Aunty Pam came to visit and took some family photos

Mrs G was the Very Blue Thingamjig for Book Week

Spring Art

Spring Art 4C Canvas - a parent purchased this for $120

Welcoming Laree home from London

Morgan and Gary's engagement party at Twin Waters

Rachel's baby shower

Attempting to keep my garden alive

New skirt from Camden Markets

Jeff slept at the hospital while his Mum was in ICU.

Family photo at Twin Waters

Amici dessert time!

Farewelling Dana and Gracie for their China trip

Meeting beautiful baby Ada Leigh West

Uni girls

Ice blocks with my year 4 class on a stinking hot day

2016 Christmas tree

Seeing the King George Christmas tree and Town Hall being lit up

Birthday treat - Noosa Chocolate afternoon tea

Celebrating many birthdays

Lots of yummy birthday cakes at school