20.12.13

Year of the Dog (and Bunnies)

Today is the last day of school -- the last morning, anyway, because they finish up at lunchtime. All week the girls have been lugging home the cargo of the year's achievements: exercise books, model cars, banners, posters, random maths sheets, pencil cases, empty folders, folders stuffed with worksheets, plasticine figures of obscure origin and purpose.

It's Alice's last day of primary school. This week has felt like the Festival of Graduation. The Grade 6 graduation night was on Tuesday, and (*parental boastage warning*) completely unexpectedly, Al won  the Bell Spirit award. On Wednesday, they all went off to Luna Park. Yesterday was the class party, which went more or less all day, and last night there was a disco party organised by a couple of parents. If she makes it through the final assembly today without collapsing, I'll be amazed… There was never all this fuss about finishing primary school when I was young! And next year, high school beckons. It's a whole new world… But she'll have the bunnies, Meyer and Momo, to see her through.

The big event of Evie's year was, of course, her long cherished dream coming true, and finally getting a puppy. Willow has quickly become an adored member of our family, and it's already hard to remember what life was like without her. Evie regularly asks, 'Aren't you glad I pestered you into getting a dog? Do you remember the first day she came, and she was so little and sweet?' She's already nostalgic for Willow's babyhood, clinging to a past that isn't even quite over yet.

I picked up one of those long-range horoscope books for an idle browse in a bookshop earlier this year, and checked out what the stars held for Michael and me this year and last. It was weirdly accurate, foretelling a wildly successful year for me last year, and a wildly successful year for Michael this year (we are both Virgos, born a year apart). Michael was a star at his work this year, going from strength to strength and loving it.

For me, this year has felt a bit like treading water, which is an odd thing to say when I had a book come out (New Guinea Moon, for those not paying attention!) But that was way back in March, and since then I've spent most of the year feeling loose-endy and unfocused. Maybe it was just time for a rest, after producing nearly a book a year for the past twelve years. And now I'm engrossed in a new Tremaris book -- it felt like the right time to circle back to where it all began, and finish the story of Calwyn and her loved ones.

This will probably be my last blog post of 2013, so I'll wish you all a very happy and peaceful Christmas, and a marvellous summer. See you next year.

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