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Hello dear stranger! How are you? These joyful Christmas photographs were taken about 18 months ago. Wait. No, they were taken only three weeks ago. How is that even possible?

How was your Christmas (if Christmas is your thing)? Ours was really lovely, full of friends dropping by and delicious food and very excited children and at least one new tradition.

How was your New Year (if you mark your days by the Gregorian Calendar)? Ours was… actually, we were all in bed before the New Year clicked over. I heard the fireworks, though. And they sounded pretty impressive.

A month ago I took a little break from this blog to catch up on some writing and painting and other life tasks that were building up in the spare-room cupboard of my mind (turns out there’s a fine line between clutter and hoarding, even when it comes to internal to-do lists).

Somewhat predictably, I failed to complete everything on the list. But here’s what I have managed to do since we were all last here:

1 Christmas done and dusted, in a most enjoyable fashion
1/2 a turkey roasted to perfection
28 mail-art letters sent to blog readers
34 replies made to recent mail
5 fruit mince tarts consumed
1 truly adorable letter sent to Father Christmas
3 days spent in Bendigo, pretending be tourists
7 (min) walks of the dog per week (that is a record, post-kids)
15 letters posted regarding a super-secret project for my father’s upcoming birthday (I’d love to say more but he reads this blog. Hi Dad!)
27 hours spent on other elements of said super-secret birthday project
8 times Mr B's favourite Elvis record ("Elvis sings Flaming Star”) was played
3 mojitos on a 43-degree day
43 dumplings drizzled with soy sauce
2 visits to the gym
11 hours spent playing tea parties and constructing toy train-sets
11,400 words of my “new motherhood” e-book written
2 illustrations completed for the e-book
136 pages into the book I’m kind-of reading. I’ve really lost steam on this one
1 dear friend giving birth to a beautiful baby girl
90 cups of tea and 30 coffees, down the hatch

How are YOU? How is your summer going? Or your winter, depending on where you are right now? What do you have planned to 2015? Is it too late to talk about plans and resolutions and fresh starts? Does the year feel tired and middle-aged to you already? I hope not.

I haven’t made a New Year’s resolution since I was about 12, but I have made some exciting plans for the year, and I can’t wait to share them with you as we go along. See you tomorrow. It’s good to be back!

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