Sunday, December 23, 2007

Merry Christmas to all :)

Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas, I hope everyone has friends and family to celebrate with and enjoy this holiday period.

It has been a long time since my last blog but so much has been happening in the last days, weeks and months. The days have been flying by and there has seemed to be no time to put some thoughts on paper (actually on screen). The weeks have been a blur of training rides, time at the beach, time with family and meeting up with friends as much as possible. I have been getting some German tutoring which has been fun, my teacher is a lovely, patient lady and I feel like I am learning more (I’ve just been a little slack with the homework!).

The other big news of the Bates family is the engagement of little Katie to Richie which happened last Wednesday. Very exciting! So there is a wedding in the pipeline..picking a date has proven to be quite a task considering how little Kate is ever in one place at one time. Perhaps her blog will provide more news on this front (if she ever does update it).

So now it is Christmas. Gunnar is finding it quite strange to be in the sunshine rather than being surrounded by snow, Christmas markets, carols and yummy food. He is enjoying the time here so far, including the Bates antics at Christmas lunch which was held yesterday. Its always a good afternoon when someone ends up with musk sticks up their nose (thanks to Robbie Bates for that interesting sight). We attempted to make a gingerbread house for the first time, and after figuring out that we needed toothpicks for some structural reinforcement, our building turned out quite well. Considering how unartistic at least half of the family is, it wasn’t too bad an effort (however none of us were game to eat it!).

Christmas Day for us will be quite different than for all our friends in the northern hemisphere. We start with a bike ride, Robbie has a favourite loop especially for Christmas Day…its only 50km but is a good way to start the day, and riding on such empty roads is always a plus for us. Breakfast and presents will follow and then the plan is to head down to the beach for the afternoon with Gunnar, Mum and Dad. I received an early present from Mum, a bright red boogie board and have been giving that a workout. I had forgotten how much fun it can be and it will definitely be out tomorrow. Dinner at a friends place will finish the day off. What a great day…yummy food, family, friends, presents (for having done nothing at all) and the beach :) Again, wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas, I am hoping for peace on Earth and goodwill to all men :)