the best of times, the worst of times

Each year Christmas for me is a mix of emotions.

Growing up my Christmases were hit & miss depending on the state of my father. My Mum would always remain cheerful to make Christmas Day the best she could but it usually ended up with alcohol-fueled family drama ending in tears.

Although I am now an adult with a happy home-life, I still find Christmas time hard to bare. It brings up old emotional wounds and I do try my very hardest to focus on the joys about the holidays; the sun, the break from work, the good food, catching up with family and friends, buying gifts for loved ones and the sales that come afterwards (!) but I generally spend the time focusing on keeping the knot in my stomach at bay.

In my family at least, the holiday brings together family members who live near and far and the expectation of good times put added pressure on everyone to enjoy themselves which usually brings to the surface drama & year-long tension that erupts in fighting. I guess you could say that it brings out the worst and the best in people. My family in particular.

This Christmas wasn’t any different. Actually, that isn’t exactly true; Jay, Harley & I spent Christmas day at home where we started the morning with a long run, then had a light lunch and spent the evening with his cousins and some ‘Christmas-orphans’ for a big Christmas dinner. That was fun. It was a good day.

Boxing Day we traveled a couple of hours north up to Mum’s where everything went to hell in a handbag. My stepbrother and brother were drunken idiots for 3 days. Not being one to bite my tongue easily, I fought with both of them over their behavior and then my stepdad over the confrontation. My poor Mum was stuck in the middle of a fighting family and my poor husband did his best at playing mediator. We came home late last night emotional drained.

Although it was emotionally messy it wasn’t all bad. I guess it’s like the calm after the storm; there is a lot of clean-up but you feel a sense of relief that it’s over and that you survived.

Here are a few pics of the good times over the last few days:

the NYC Ruben sandwich in Sydney

Jay & I did some shopping the day before Christmas Eve in Westfield. The Ruben sandwich has come to Sydney! Unfortunately I wasn’t impressed. Boo. Hiss.

Christmas Eve dinner

Jay & I went to the local pub The AB in Glebe for Christmas Eve dinner. Mmmmm burger.

Jay & me - Christmas evening
my Christmas cocktail

At Christmas dinner, there were two Mixologists who blended up some fine festive cocktails! Since I was driving home, I only had one but it was a good one!

cousin Rosie
cousins Lani (L) & Helen (R)
Rosie & Jay
the pav-off

Ricky’s pavlova was homemade. Mine was store bought. The general consensus was that Ricky’s pav was better but my topping was better (peach-liqueur cream & berries)! I agree.

Rosie, Erin & Jay

I put Erin’s overly-friendly goodbye kiss on my lips down to her having a few too many, but I later found out she thought I was hot!!! She’s the Bar Manager of the Kings Cross Hotel.

Our Keno ticket

It was raining on the 27th Dec, so we spent some time down at the Nelson Bay Diggers club. Mum & I giggled like school girls while we were playing Keno.

Redback spider

One of Australia’s most deadly spiders….the Redback. Needless to say, I squished it.

Stockton beach

We went 4WD-ing on the beach. The weather finally turned sunny & hot and it was great fun!

Jay & Harley on the dunes
Stockton dunes
Mum & I
the dune lakes
a sandy little Harley

And then we went home and got back to our exercise routine…

today's calorie expenditure

smashed it at the gym today!


So there it is…my no-holds-barred, bleeding heart account of the past few days.

After baring my soul I feel so much better!

Happy holidays!

2 thoughts on “the best of times, the worst of times

  1. Oh honey, I’m sorry to hear that there was drama with your bro & step bro. That truly sucks. Your Mum and Jay must have felt stressed too 😦

    It’s good that you’re focussing on the good stuff from lately. And go you – 700 calories at the gym today is awesome. I’ve become a lazy couch potato these last few days. Determined to get up early and go for a big walk tomorrow!

    See you soon.

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