Well, I haven’t been around much these past 12 months have I? And even less so in the last six where I have managed one blog… and that’ll be six months ago in a couple of weeks!
So, here’s what I’ve been up to and why I’ve been a bit preoccupied. I’m summarising in six – one for each month!
1. I’m a Tough Mudder!!
OK so technically this was more than six months ago but it was one of the major things that has happened in my life since my blog-posting has been slack. I’ve been trying to do Mudder for a couple of years and in 2014 I made it there, made it round the 19km course (in a tutu, I might add) and back home in one (albeit dishevelled) piece.
For those who are thinking of doing it my words of advice are – this event is totally about teammateship and camaraderie. Your focus shouldn’t really be about individual achievement although you will achieve a great deal just by making it around the course.
Secondly, work on your abs and your arms. I am not naturally strong in my upper body – my legs can go for days but ask me to jump over water and grab a rope net is a near impossibility for me. And climbing high walls and fences? HARD. Many I couldn’t have done without my teammates pushing and pulling my body (and probably cursing me) until I damn well made it over that fence/wall/log/slippery mud hill.
Also, keep moving. Especially, if like me, you get cold quickly. You are in and out of water a lot and if you don’t keep moving you cool down FAST! This is most true when you jump into a skip of iced water. Your body literally starts to freeze. Move your butt before it can.
And finally, enjoy it – have fun, get muddy, wear clothes you’re going to throw away and just immerse yourself in the pure craziness the best you can. It’s an amazing experience. I was really bruised and battered by the end as I chose to wear shorts because I hate getting too hot (ha! and ended up cold!), plus I pulled my abs REALLY badly trying to get over a huge fence, but I healed and I was fine.
2. Planning, plotting, crafting and creating.
There is so much to tell you all about the invitations, order of services, readings, table names, itineraries, accommodation guide, flowers, decorations and so much more. Without sounding like I’m blowing my own trumpet I worked my butt off for this wedding and had some amazing help from some very good friends and my family to pull it off. When people say it could be a full time job planning your wedding they’re not kidding. And it was my desire to create a wedding unique to us and with lots of personal touches that hinted towards who we are as a couple. I hope to blog about some of the DIY wedding planning I did as hopefully they’ll be useful to other people too- or maybe even inspirational. I have many hints and tips and even some templates that could be put to use!
3. New home bliss!
Just before Christmas we finalised on our new home and moved in. To follow we had our first “just us” Christmas – cooked a traditional Christmas dinner with all the trimmings and didn’t have to go anywhere except just lazing around looking around at this new apartment that was all ours. It was great. We were going to head down to the beach in the afternoon but being that it was the first Christmas dinner we’ve cooked together we overshot the timing a little and by the time we had cleared up a storm had blown in! Typical. But it was my favourite Christmas in many years – minimal expectations and just good old-fashioned quality time at home.
4. My first ever broken bone!
OK, so if we’re being picky it was actually just fractured, but still… It was just nine weeks out from the wedding when I decided to smash my little pinky toe… and the one next to it. I was training a lot (obviously – for OWD – Operation Wedding Dress) and all of a sudden I couldn’t run, barely walk (for week or two), couldn’t lunge or jump, couldn’t do sand sprints, couldn’t do burpees… argh! But I kept going to training and did a lot of push-ups, squats, wall sits and boxing! At the end of the day at least I knew I was increasing my upper-body strength finally.
It wasn’t even like I had a good story of how I came to break it. I just stubbed my toe on the dining table. FML. Still it healed, and I felt special having my first broken bone… and it still twinges when it’s cold just to remind me my toe is there, and that it definitely happened. Check out the bruising…
5. Lots of family time
Two major things have happened in Mr OC’s family in this time period. One very happy and one extremely sad. The sad event was that just six weeks before the wedding Mr OC’s dad passed away very suddenly. Mr OC is still reeling from this as one might imagine, and so are his mum, siblings, and the rest of the whanau. It’s been a very emotional time and nothing can alter the fact that he wasn’t able to be with us on his son’s wedding day. But on the day we certainly felt his spirit. Mr OC Senior was a family man above all – every thing he did was for family. He worked crazy hours and put his family first at all times. He loved his multitude of grandchildren and he lived for his children. In many things (my) Mr OC does in his life he tries to be like his dad and while we remembered Mr OC Senior thoughout the whole special day, it was a joyous day, and it was all about that thing that he loved so much…. family. All we wanted for our day was to feel the love bouncing around the room, and between us and our wedding guests there was a buzz that is indescribable. Such love, such unity, such happiness. He was indeed with us that day… in our hearts.
Then, the happy event occurred after the wedding, when Mr OC’s daughter (who was one of my beautiful bridesmaids) decided to stay on with us and not return to NZ after the wedding. So we now have a little family! And whilst I think there might be some blogs coming on the challenges of teens and trying to understand the mindset of a 15 year old, we are so overjoyed that she is with us… of course. And what a brave thing to do – all credit to her for leaving a place and friends she has known all her life, let alone parting from her mum and other siblings. Not easy. Very brave. I hope we all do our best and make it 100% worth it.
In the weeks surrounding the wedding we had all our immediate family as well as very best friends with us. My maid of honour is my virtual sister, my soul mate, my twin, my polar opposite, my friend of 20+ years and she flew from the UK to be with us. It can only be described as amazing, Truly amazing. For the first time since I moved to Australia, everyone I hold dear was by my side, just round the corner, coming over for a cuppa, meeting up for picnics and breakfast… or just in the same time zone to have a chat with. It was incredible and so, so brilliant. And to top it off, my beloved 19-year-old nephew was so taken with Oz that he has already booked his flights back out here for later this year! I couldn’t be more excited to have family here. We’ve gone from just us, to us three, and now we’ll have more additional family around too.
6. Gettin’ hitched!
And yes, of course, if you hadn’t gathered by now, two plus years in the planning and Mr OC and I finally tied the knot in what can only be described as the most wondrous, most amazing, most love-filled and happy day of my existence. And I hope his. So, yes, I am no officially MRS OC – how funny!
So I’ll be back very soon with some wedding diy hints and tips and insights, and also with some other interesting delving into the depths of my mind! Catch you back here then.