We were all delighted when Naomi told us she would be home for a week's holiday around her/their 20th birthday. Last year Naomi had only recently moved to Sydney and we were planning for a birthday apart - until Naomi unexpectedly turned up on our doorstep late one night!
Soon everyone was counting down the days until Naomi flew home and thinking of things to do while she was here. Being together was the primary focus and the younger girls set themselves goals to complete most of their homeschool studies by the time Naomi arrived.
Our married son and his wife came 'home' for the birthday and my mother-in-love joined us also. Grace surprised Naomi with a beautiful ukulele as a birthday gift - although I'm sure she would have loved to keep it for herself.
The two things Naomi really wanted to do while home were to have a day trip to Iluka and to set up the Christmas tree. Both of these events are family traditions rich in memories. Our day in Iluka was beautiful, complete with pelicans, seeing the Iluka-Yamba ferry, water play off the pontoon in Iluka Bay and a visit to the bakery.
It was decided that the 1st of December was the day for setting up the Christmas tree. As we unpacked our big box smaller decoration boxes, amongst them I discovered a new Australia Post box with my missing Etsy quilt carefully tucked inside! Back in May I had looked for hours for this smallest quilt (when it sold) but it seemed to have vanished! This dismayed me and sent me scampering to quickly made an identical replacement. Well at last this mystery was solved!
Most of our family photo scrapbooks (my creative outlet for several years before quilting) are stored in the top of the cupboard beside the big Christmas decorations box. Before the empty smaller boxes are returned we usually linger over these special scrapbooks for a while, being amazed at how much everyone has changed and how cute they once were. I'm so grateful to have at least a few years of memories in physical form.
Before we knew it we were farewelling Naomi as she left for Sydney. It was great to be able to say 'see you in three weeks' instead of sad goodbyes. We are all looking forward to having everyone (including our eldest Miss E) home for Christmas. :)
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