About three months ago we stopped at this beautiful swimming pool. There are conveniences close by that have beautifully decorated outside walls
We always love to buy an ice-cream wafer in the shop opposite the pool area.
When we stopped there last Sunday with Sylvia, Peter took a photo of me after I had finished my chocolate ice-cream. On closer inspection of that photo I noticed that some chocolate stains are visible on my fingers. I remember I went to the washrooms near the pool soon after the photo was taken! It was a rather warm, sunny day even though it was very windy. The ice-cream melted faster than I could lick it!
There is something else I noticed in this photo. First of all it shows that I can curl my fingers now into a kind of fist which I could not do before the carpal tunnel release operation. And I think it also shows the left over scar on my hand a little bit. Now, that Peter photographed my hand like this is of course totally coincidental.
“Making Connections. Make special times for family this week. Contemplate the richness of family life.”
I read this in the church bulletin yesterday after having gone to the early Mass.
In the second reading of the day, what does St Paul say in his letter to the Colossians?
Here a few exammples:
Wives, give way to your husbands . . . .
Husbands, love your wives and treat them with gentleness.
Children, be obedient to your parents always . . . .
Parents, never drive your children to resentment or you will make them feel frustrated.
OUR DAY WITH SYLVIA AND MONIKA
Our friend Sylvia had agreed to go with us to a picnic by the sea . We picked her up at 11 am. Our trip went southwards towards Shellharbour. The place we had in mind for our picnic seemed to be full of cars even though it turned out to be a day with very strong wind.
We decided to travel on a bit further south. Soon we found a spot where parking was still available. We were even able to occupy a beautiful picnic table. Sitting down and unpacking all our picnic supplies we came to realise why this table had not been taken yet by anyone. The reason was quite simply that the wind at this spot very close by the sea had become extraordinarily strong.
Somehow we managed to cope with the wind, enjoying our picnic lunch as well as possible. As soon as lunch was finished we packed everything back into the back of the car and drove back to where we could buy some delicious ice-cream wafers as a desert. I did not want my ice-cream to melt too fast in the brilliant sunshine. This is why I sought some shade near a palm tree plant. When I had only a bit of wafer left, Peter thought of taking this picture of me:
Our daughter Monika had invited us for coffee and cake at her place, She was expecting us at 3 pm. That meant we had a bit of time left to go somewhere else away from the gusty wind by the sea. Blackbutt Forest was not far away. This place turned out to be the right spot for us for a lovely walk.
We arrived at Monika’s place right on time at three o’clock. Monika and two of her daughters greeted us. Monika and Sylvia were happy to see each other after a long time of not having been able to see each other. Sylvia had brought a lovely home baked cake along. Monika’s daughter Krystal and Monika also had baked a cake. Soon we were served cake and plunger coffee.
We have known Sylvia since she was about two and Monika wasn’t even one year old yet. Now they are both in their fifties! We had a good day with Sylvia and Monika and her family. We spent about three hours at Monika’s, having a lot to talk about. Mark joined the conversation too a bit later.
To drive Sylvia back to Wollongong along the freeway didn’t take long. I think just before seven Peter and I were back home in Dapto. We were pretty tired by then but happy to have had a very enjoyable day.
The fourth Sunday of Advent this year was on the 22nd of December. As I mentioned before, Martin and S were with us on that day as well as on the 21st of December, our Wedding Anniversary. On Monday, the 23rd, Martin and Peter took S to the airport in Sydney in our rental car because S had booked a return flight to Melbourne for that day.
Then it was Caroline’s and Matthew’s turn to be picked up in Waverly, an Eastern Sydney suburb of Sydney, where they live.
Soon Martin and Peter arrived with Caroline and Matthew at our place in Dapto where we spent the next few days together. The busiest day for us was of course the 24th. A lot of preparations were made for Christmas Eve. We were in the end fifteen people (including little Lucas, who was asleep on his mum’s lap by the time a group picture was made).
Here now is a picture of all fifteen of us.
This is one of the pictures that Caroline took. So she is not in this one.
After the Sunday Mass I took these pictures of the nativity.
Martin drove me to the 7.30 morning Mass. After Mass I was picked up by Martin, S and Peter and we did go straight away to Wollongong Beach.
We stayed for about an hour on the beach. Then we drove on to the swimming pool a bit further North. We all went for a swim. I love to have a swim in this salt water pool. All in all we had an excellent Sunday morning.
We were early for lunch in this Thai restaurant on Saturday, 21st of December. We invited Martin and S to celebrate with us our 57th Wedding Anniversary. The food was excellent. I had rice and plenty vegetables with a hot coconut sauce. I just loved this sauce. We had some red wine with the meal and plenty of cool water. The temperature outside had soared to over Thirty Degrees Celsius!
In the evening we had a look at this festively decorated place in a neighbouring street.
On the eve of our anniversary we were staying with Caroline and Matthew. It was the 20th of December and turned out to be a balmy summer’s night. It was the perfect evening to go by bus into the city and watch some Pre-Christmas celebrations near St. Mary’s Cathedral.
The bus dropped us off near Hyde Park. From there it was only a short walk through the park towards the cathedral. On the way through the park I could already hear some carol singing. Once we were in the vicinity of the cathedral we noticed a choir had been placed right in front of the cathedral. With great joy we listened to the choir singing Christmas carols. A great many lights all around us gave a festive atmosphere. I was amazed how many people had gathered already to enjoy the singing.
After a while we discussed where we could have our supper. We soon agreed to go to a Pizza Restaurant in Darlinghurst Road. A short taxi trip took us there. We very much enjoyed our pizzas with a glass of red wine. After our meal we went across the road to the Messina Icecream Shop where we had our fill of delicious ice-cream. Very happy with the proceedings of our evening we caught a bus back to Waverly. By the time we could settle down to sleep it was already midnight. We had to get up early the following morning to pick up Martin and S from the airport.