Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Wedding stories: The day before

Our wedding venue doubled as our holiday house for the week of the wedding. This was perfect as it was in such a beautiful serene setting we couldn’t help be relaxed. The day before the wedding we had yet more girly indulging planned. Two fabulous manicurists came to the house and we lounged around having toenails and fingernails painted. My bridesmaids made sure I was spoilt rotten and ensured I was supplied with a steady stream of fruit, champers and chocolate. For me getting married was all about the treatments.

Lewis still managed to steal the show and no-one wanted to have the nails done as that meant giving up cuddling rights. Eventually both he and Zannah succumbed to the strain of it all.

I was feeling pretty chilled until our wedding planner (love saying that even still) mentioned that all FIVE weather sites were predicting afternoon storms the next day. There are five weather sites?!! As my eyes bulged on stalks and bridezilla started to make her first murmurs, she calmly said “Now you don’t have to decide right now, but we need to know soon if you want a marquee?”. My guts sank to my feet as my vision of tables with glowing candles under the stars was dashed by a potential tropical downpour.

Eventually I caved in and let them put one up – but just to the side out of the way as I was convinced it wouldn’t happen. After all, every day for the past week had been completely cloudless.

Steve had also organised a lunch with his extended family who had flown in from all corners of the globe, NZ, London and Shanghai. I know his Sis and Mum pretty well but there was an element of stranger danger as I met his Dad and wife, and brother and girlfriend for the first time. After the initial awkwardness – “Hi I’m Helen, I’m crashing your family ... tomorrow”, all was fine. We went to the Spirit House at Yandina. Set around a lake full of waterdragons and turtles, it’s a lush exotic restaurant and cooking school for Thai food. Luckily everyone was too busy eating the divine food for there to be any uncomfortable silences.

That evening we had drinks at a Noosa pub for a reunion with the Singapore gang, mates from NZ and some Brissie locals. It was shaping up to be quite a party but our “minders” aka best man and chief bridesmaid made sure we didn’t turn into pumpkins. As it was I think I might have been a bit enthusiastic with the mojitos. Steve went to stay with his brother while I went back to the house and pottered around aimlessly, amusing myself trying on my Nubra - possibly the sexiest underwear ever (if chicken breast fillets are your thing) and panicking about my lack of coherent speech and the predicted cyclones. Yeah I know, it was just a storm before…but still!

Sunday, November 19, 2006

autumn colours

autumn tree

We had lovely weather this weekend although the temperature is now dropping after being mild so far. I think the winter coat will be out this week.

It was a quiet weekend with little to do. A lovely dinner with friends on Saturday night at our favourite local curry house and a visit to a friend and her new bebe on Sunday.

A completed project and a lazy afternoon nap. A perfect weekend.

Some wedding pics from the photographer came through too so more on that later.

Thursday, November 16, 2006


Have almost survived first week in the new job. It is a huge company compared to my last job but has a really nice, friendly vibe. In fact everyone is so nice I can't quite work it out. It is a law firm after all. Maybe they're putting something in the water.

The routine is not any different from before as I'm only around the corner. The only difference is that it is now dark when going to and coming home from work and the trains seem to be a lot more packed. Possibly due to cyclists putting away their wheels for winter?

We reconvened at Wednesday night knitting this week with great enthusiasm. It has been a small but select group for awhile but two lapsed members (who were regulars, but before my time) arrived this week so it was great to meet them and we celebrated with a couple of vinos (bottles that is).

PS: I have been harrasing begging our photographer to email me a couple of wedding shots to no avail (probably most of those who were there have plenty but we don't have any!) but no joy yet. But have posted a some pics from Robbo which slightly embarrasingly, is really a tribute to Bebe Robbo. But he's so cute - go check them out ;)

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Wedding Lead-up

I haven't posted about the wedding yet - I'm not deliberately withholding, but we are still waiting, v. impatiently, for the (professional) photos to arrive. I can't wait to see them, as predicted by those who have been there, the day did go in a bit of a blur. I want to see what actually happened!

We had a fantastic time in the lead up to the wedding as well as the day itself. It was Mum's 60th birthday while we were back which was a wonderful event to be home to celebrate in itself. On the day we went to Eve's on the River at Teneriffe for brunch. Being a school day morning, we were the only ones there for quite a while so were able to have a neighbouring table for flowers and presents. We reverted to typical family gatherings with general silly behaviour of us three girls.

Following breakfast Dad left "the girls" to go off to an incredibly indulgent spa day. I had a couple of half day passes as part of wedding makeup stuff so Mum, Kirsty, Suze and bridesmaid Robbo all luxuriated in the spas, saunas and each had a treatment. Afterwards we lounged around having sushi, fruit and a chatfest.

On Saturday, Dad and Kirsty had organised a party for Mum. I was impressed by the guests being from all stages of Mum's life from primary school, high school, uni, about three locations around the state where we had lived and work. Dad had secretly organised for someone from each 'era' to make a short speech and it turned out to be a major highlight with photos and a LOT of teasing especially from school and uni friends. I had a tear in my eye several times at the lovely comments people made and it was pretty funny to hear the old stories we'd heard over the years but now coming from the alternative viewpoints, and not from Mum's carefully censored versions :)

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Back in London (home)

We arrived back in London from our wedding and honeymoon extravaganza on Monday night. With all the suitcases and various handbags and plastic bags of bits and pieces to get inside, we were both too distracted for any of the carrying over the threshold stuff.

Steve walked in first. “I thought we had tidied up before we left?” he said sounding very confused. I followed him in and had to admit it was a bit like the scene from the yellow pages add (in Aus) where the girl thinks her neighbour’s flat has been broken into and ransacked when in fact it is in its normal state.

Most floor areas were covered with clothes, papers and in my study all the books, papers and other items (rubbish) I couldn’t bear to throw out from my desk at work which I had cleared in a huge hurry the day before we left. At least we had thought to chuck out any perishable food before we left. (Unlike the time we went away for four days to return to the rotting chicken carcass Smithy had been making "stock" out of, still waiting on top of the stove!! iyeee)

Spending the first day back from such an amazing trip cleaning the house was not very romantic but surprisingly effective in keeping the post holiday blues at bay. The blues are bad but its really the insipid watery winter light here that gets to me. See photo above taken at 2pm today (although it could have been anytime all day). Ooops - whinging already!! Noooo!

But I admit, part of me is glad to be back (home). It has felt a lot more like home here since we took the plunge and bought the house earlier this year. There has been more of a sense of at least semi-permanency (sorry Mum!) and I think we will feel even more settled now.

When we flew off, me armed with my master wedding spreadsheet and Smithy with his list of people he wanted to go drinking with, we were full of excitement. Not just about the wedding but having over three weeks of holidays all in one go. It worked out perfectly having two weeks beforehand to recover from jetlag and recent work stress and enjoy the lead up to the wedding then a week afterwards for a bit of a romantic getaway.

While Steve continued on from Brisbane to NZ to catch up with family and mates for a few days, I stayed in Bris to get going on preparations. Important stuff like hair and make up trial, a final dress fitting and of course the second Not-Hen's.

We put on our best frocks and joined the cool young things at the Cru Bar. It was a bit tamer than the London girls night as we didn't end up at a heaving nightclub. But we were still kicked out of the place in the wee hours with champane cocktails fueling about 5 conversations cutting across the table at once. We had a lot to catch up on! Here are some of the gorgeous girls...

Some more pics over at flickr here.