Ella and I welcomed the festive season by assembling our Christmas tree on Friday afternoon. Ella took charge of the design brief and, by the end, had piled on enough layers of gold tinsel and ribbon until it met her desired level of glitz.
Friday night's dinner was Italian inspired, followed by Thomas's favourite orange cake to celebrate his 19th birthday. Rob and Thomas had done some very successful man shopping together the day before, as is their custom now for Thomas's birthday.
It was lovely to meet Phoebe for the first time this year although she's heading back home to Auckland this weekend for the 2 month summer Uni break.
Saturday's afternoon tea presented us with TWO cakes.....an iced Hummingbird cake and Maxie's famous Ottolenghi macadamia and white chocolate brownies (served with the customary bubbles of course).
We had all the family over in honour of John, Erin and Liliana's visit from Melbourne. Liliana and Abi are almost identical in age (born three days apart) and it was very entertaining to watch them interact.
We call this sequence of pics "the cousins face-off!!"
Tongues and teeth were well to the fore in this encounter.
Although Abi made an early play to make a grab at Liliana in the end it was Liliana who was successful in landing her catch...although Abi really didn't seem to mind.
While the baby girls focussed on socialising inside the house the big kids played outside for AGES - on the swing set, climbing frame and making Rupert planes with Joshy and Rob (interspersed with CAKE breaks).
Liliana has proved to be a great traveller and was full of smiles today (like her gorgeous Mummy) even after that marathon drive from Melbourne yesterday!
Today there was more cake: Ottolenghi's yummy apple and olive oil cake with maple icing and chocolate and cherry friands, served with a glass or two of more Taltarni bubbles - to celebrate our first visit to 7 week old baby Cyrus. He is such a quiet and serene and contented baby, Damien and Sanaz have done well.
Big sister Yasmin is as bright and lively as ever and is coping so well with the new addition to the family.
Yasmin seemed to enjoy playing with Rob for a good part of the afternoon. But you can tell that her Daddy is definitely the number one man in her life.
We're feeling like we'll need to make the next week cake free and salad rich - and no more bubbles until the next round of cake and parties next weekend!