December is such an exciting time of the year, busy, but exciting. Edging closer to the holidays, summer in full swing, work Christmas parties and events, and Christmas lights sprinkled across shopping centres, it’s a time like no other. Close to a deep breath after yet another huge year.
It’s crazy to think that I started 2022 by popping champagne in a van in a sleepy seaside Tasmanian town with John celebrating one year together, followed shortly by getting COVID-19 and isolating in a windowless hotel room for a week (iconic).
This year I also had the privilege of working at the Crawford School of Public Policy as their communications and engagement officer, getting to work with world-leading researchers and experts, producing podcasts and editing articles from researchers from across Asia and the Pacific. I must say that working with my colleague Angus on Democracy Sausage and Policy Forum Pod and with such intelligent, generous and caring experts like Sharon Bessell, Arnagretta Hunter, Mark Kenny and Marija Taflaga is sure to be a career highlight I won’t forget.
Of course, in true Adelaide style, the time was right to shake things up where I started with a communications consulting agency – Akin Agency. After only a few weeks with the team, and rather boldly taking a month off for holidays, I can honestly say I’ve never been more excited to return to work after my time off.
2022 to me, was a year I felt settled, safe, and secure. I never would have thought these words would be something I would prioritise. A few years ago, I think it would have looked a bit more like adventurous, pushing the limits, take chances, and while I still treasure these traits, 2022 was the year of building strong foundations for myself across all aspects of my life.
In 2023, I think it’s time to sprinkle a little bold, confidence, sparkle on these foundations. I want to back myself the way that others back me, I want to take risks, be bold and take some chances, and continue to focus on my relationships, health and wellbeing.
I hope you and your loved ones got to enjoy some no doubt much needed down time over the holiday period. 2023 is already shaping up to be another big year
So my not so little brother graduated from RMC! Lieutenant Haynes is off to Townsville in the Signals Corp. And far out we could not be more proud of him. I’m so proud of the strong, confident, respectful and brave man he is today and I can’t wait to see where his career takes him. Celebrating his graduation with a few fainting episodes, a parade and a ball to remember, was the perfect send-off for him.
This was a definite highlight but also a personal lowlight. It’s been so great living in Canberra only minutes away from Isaac for the past two years. So it’s bittersweet that he’s leaving for Townsville because simply who will I go to the pub with and get a schnitty?!
Gals night out at Moulin Rouge
For Christmas, Elly and I bought Mum tickets to Mouline Rouge the musical in Sydney. So we decided to make a night of it and stay in the city. We arrived for a late lunch, followed by a walk down along Rushcutters Bay. We had one of the most delicious meals I’ve ever had at Pasta Emilia in Surry Hills (seriously, you have to try it) and then headed to the theatre. It was a warm evening with the perfect amount of can-can, sparkle and heart-felt tunes. The following morning, we picked up some brekky, enjoyed a coffee and went to the Sydney Jewish Museum (which was truly amazing).
It was so great to spend a night out in the city with Elly and Mum, to see a show and eat some delicious food – just how a girl’s night out should be.
Time with family
Obviously being home at Christmas time is special, but getting to spend that much time with family, and to see extended family is just the best. Whether it was going for a walk up Mount Tomaree, hanging out with friends at the Country Club, going snorkelling, jumping off rocks, to Murray’s, or just sitting around the dinner table talking for hours. There’s just something so special about being home that is so special.
Equally, spending time with John’s family over Christmas is always great, particularly this year. Both of his beautiful sisters welcomed sons at the end of November, Harry and Archie. So not only did I get to run around with Jack, but I also got to soak up some newborn cuddles.
I’m so excited for 2023 and creating many more special memories with the fam across Australia.
Camping at South West Rocks
Over New Years, John and I packed up the car and headed north to stunning South West Rocks. We camped at Smoky Cape National Park, where there was no power, no water, no reception and absolutely no problems. Well, actually the only problem we encountered was some unforeseen torrential rain that made it feel like we were sleeping on a water bed.
Not only is South West Rocks such a beautiful spot, but I haven’t been camping in so long and it is just so much fun! Falling asleep to the sound of the ocean, birds and insects, playing card games, and cooking quickly – racing against sunset. Another priority for 2023 will certainly be cracking out the camping gear more often.
The Long Answer, by Anna Hogeland
This was a gripping read that detailed various women’s experiences of pregnancy, motherhood and sisterhood. It’s beautifully written and I found all of the characters and their stories unique and gripping.
Avatar: The Way of the Water
John and I went to the cinema to watch the new Avatar movie. And how else do you watch it than in 3D with the coolest 3D glasses out there! Like everyone else, I could barely recall the first movie, but the absolute cinematic spectacle of the film was just gorgeous. The colours and music were extraordinary and it made three hours absolutely fly by. Absolutely loved it.
I know the faves are a little light on this month but as you can see, I’ve been a little busy. I’ve already started on my January faves so stay tuned.