Scott and I took leave from the 23 December so we had a couple of extra days off before Xmas day.
The Xmas day plan: The McGuicken family coming up late morning from the Gold Coast. Seafood lunch. Hang out in the pool. Then late afternoon/early evening Doug & family arrive for an extended party, some more swimming. Everyone stays over and heads back on Boxing Day.
I'd ordered a our seafood from Gambaro's Seafood Market several weeks before and just had to collect. Remember the Caxton Street Seafood & Wine Festival? Same people who organise that are the owners of this market. Oysters, prawns, lobster, Morton Bay bugs.... Yummy! I'd organised some dry ice too keep everything cold - actually ended up freezing some of the oysters but they turned out just fine in the end.
Growing up, we spent many years going down to my gran's house in Onrust for Xmas. One of the things which always reminds me of those days is a good trifle. My gran used to make a ripper of a trifle with what must've been a whole bottle of OBS! I'd managed, through my mom, to get my gran's trifle recipe - unfortunately no OBS in Oz, but I found a good enough substitute!
We pitched our tent outside for the kids to sleep in, which left the 2 spare rooms for the adults.
All set for a great day!
Our neighbours have this enormous variagated fig tree at the top of their garden. It's a useless, good-for-nothing tree! The only creature which will actually eat the hard green figs are the giant fruit bats (flying foxes). But even they don't like them much - I actually suspect they use them to sharpen their teeth on 'cos they just seem to gnaw a bit and then drop the damn things into our pool. And Kreepy is really not partial to the leftovers. In fact, CPR has been needed on several occasions! And as for the bloody leaves that fall off.... *sigh* So if you think I don't like this damn tree, you must hear how Scott feels..... So while I was shopping, he started chopping!!!
With his ultra long chopping, cutting, sawing cool new tree trimming toy!
Another big branch falls! Love his floppy gardening hat!
Now go back up and compare this to the first pic - what a difference! And now no branches overhang the pool. Yippee!
Seafood, wine & beer fridge!
Garlic chilli butter & garlic herb butter
The patio - everything we need in reaching distance. Table all decorated, esky full of ice & beer, Weber and children's palace in the background.
Laptop set up with Xmas fire screensaver. We set this up for us all to call family in South Africa from Skype.
Us on Xmas morning next to the Xmas tree
The patio again
2 dozen oysters for starters. On the left with sour cream, salmon roe & vodka. On the right with avocado, red capsicum & lemon.
L-R: Scott, Megs, Shaun, Mac, Robyn (Meg's friend from Cape Town now livining in NZ) and Kerry-Lea
Time for a dip!
Mac & Scott. Scott wearing his "wife basher" shirt which he got from Mac.
Me talking to my folks on Skype
Mac cooking up some food for the kids - all kids should be taught that seafood is bad for them - means more for us! *grin*
Doug, Mons, Chris & Jazzie arrived and the kids immediately joined us in the pool.
Mons having a laugh with Teepee investigating a new garden.
Me with Princess Jazzie
Jazzie with Uncle Gotts - wearing her pirate poncho from Granny
Shaun & Chris getting on like a house on fire! These two must've had such pruney fingers and toes - they spent the whole day & most of the next morning in the pool.
Doug enjoying a poolside beer
This was such an amazing day! Laughter, family, friends, more laughter. The only thing stopping this from being a perfect Xmas Day was that the rest of our families were so far away.
Dinner of champions! Potato bake, backed beans & sausage. Glad I'm not sleeping in that tent!
See that potato bake? It was delicious! Made by Mons - it has to be the best I've ever tasted. Yummy!
Very cheesy grin there Gotts! Could it be possible that you guys were over the legal limit.....?
Jazzie wearing all her Xmas pressies at once! Granny's pirate poncho, shades & head band from us.
And opening her last present
365 Fairy tales and poems - one for each day until next Xmas
Jazzie & Teepee in bed in the tent - it didn't last long, I think she was a little too scared to sleep out there away from mom and dad. :-)
The teenagers! Hanging out in front of the TV, doin' what teenagers do...
The boys with someone's Xmas present - a portable DVD player
We hardly made a dent in that trifle! I can't believe how big it was!
Chris with a sparkler
Not to be outdone, Scott had to have a sparkler too!
Chris outside the tent - notice the rain on the tent. Yip, it rained a fair bit. But it was still hot 'n muggy.
The girls slept on the couch. The giant remote controlled tarantula didn't do much scaring unfortunately - much to Chris & Shaun's disappointment.
Coffee on Boxing Day morning
And the boys are back in the pool - in the rain!
Chillin' with more coffee.
Thanks to the McGuickens and the other Oz Wellssss for an amazing Xmas!