Memories are the best gifts of all

The funny thing about packing up is that everyone around you is so excited about the adventure you’re about to embark on…and me…well I’m going marshmallow I’m afraid. I keep being flooded with memories, beautiful, wonderful memories of almost 12 incredible years in this city of gold.

Tonight I got given a birthday present which my dear friend made for us – pictured below and it sums up a little bit of our history together and her dreams for us as we move on and it suddenly made me excited to find a home to hang it up in.

It really is that time of year for gifts – I get birthday gifts, end of year business gifts and soon it will be christmas and it can really all be overwhelmingly materialistic. But the thing is my love language is gifts so gifts really mean a lot to me and I put an inordinate amount of time and effort into gifts for the people I love and care about. Only I am not a maker, so I was not given the talent of being able to create with my hands like Bron did with my gift featured above. I am more a hunter and a buyer : ) Murray would describe it as a spender, I see it as investing in relationships.

My very favourite present from an agency this week was not the overwhelmingly amazing Jo Malone gift box which of course I will also treasure and enjoy but rather it was the totally creative gift focused on ensuring that Murray and I spend time together as a couple after a hard years work. So this is the wording in the card together with some pics of the gift:

Movie & Adventure golf tickets together with the Woolies voucher for the cheese & biscuits

Champagne for 2

So this gift will create more memories. Right now we haven’t exactly secured a removal company for Tuesday but let’s not dwell on that detail. Let’s imagine that by Wed night we are sitting in an empty house on the floor with a bottle of champagne, cheese and biscuits and toasting all the adventures we’ve had in the home we built together as couple.

This is the same little home Mia was welcomed into when we nervously carried her 2.9kg body back from the hospital. This is where we’ve had everything from normal braais to stunning sushi evenings – we’ve done hectic sing star parties and chilled dvd fridays. Most of all this has been our refuge and our sanctuary and our home and now it is time for new memories. A new couple who are due to give birth in February will move in on the 1st of January and bring their world of adventures and new life into this special space.

So we will take our memories of movies, adventure golf, cheese and champagne and as we sit one night unpacking into a new home in Dubai we will only be able to dream of the world of experiences and joy that will unfold in the new spaces and opportunities that await us there. We will not remember so much the things we thought we loved but more the people we love. Isn’t life all about the experiences and not the things? I really am forced to realise this as I choose what to keep, what to sell, what to give to others. The things that are important are safe in my heart always, and that is the end of the marshmallow for tonight.

Hello Hurricane

So one of the most important areas of my life is my relationships, my family and friends have always been and continue to be a priority. People are my energy, they renew me, restore me, I think by talking (not always a good thing), and my life is weaved in various ways by and through these relationships and how they challenge, grow, nurture and inspire me.

So one has to understand how tough the last few weeks have been for me, when one of the most significant things ever has happened/ is happening and its all happening so fast that I have not had a chance to even process it – never mind tell you guys, the people who are close to me.

All I can say is that in a completely out of the blue move, my company as offered me a role in a diff location and that we signed a contract in the 3rd week of November to move to Dubai starting 1 Jan 2012. We then immediately applied for visas to go look for a school for Mia and left the very next Mon and got back Sat 26th.

The visit to Dubai happened so fast that we didn’t have a chance to let our families know we were going. They knew we planned to go – none of us knew when. When we sent the application forms in on the Friday, we were told they would only be sumitted in Dubai on the Sunday and required 3 working days to process. We knew we had a wedding here on the 26th, and so depending on when the visa came back we thought we may only fly out on the 27th.

Well the visa arrived promptly at 9am on Mon morning after less than a day of processing and Murray and I both had jam packed Mondays planned which were too late to cancel. So we just booked the flights for that evening, ran around doing the meetings etc, got back to the house and packed, grabbed our monkey and rushed off to the Gautrain. We got through customs etc, and into the international departures duty free terminal area about 55 minutes before our flight was due to leave.

And so began the hecticness, which will be the next few weeks. So all I can say is that we are on a rollercoaster and it is crazy, but somehow it will work out. We got back yesterday morning, landing at 11am. Hopped onto the train, dropped the monkey off at a friends and dashed past our house to freshen up and get dressed for the wedding.

The day after we got back, Sun 27th was a day of admin and lists, and Monday kicked off our last 3 weeks in Joburg before we go down to KZN for time with our 2 families. We have this coming week-end in Joburg (3/4 Dec), and the following week-end (10/11 Dec) we travel to a friends wedding which is perfectly timed to add to the craziness but also help with very important goodbyes, and then we plan to leave Joburg on the 16th.

We still need to get movers to come give us a quote, but the target would be that they pack up the house on the 14/15th probably. Before then we don’t think we even know or understand all the admin we need to get done, so if anyone who has moved country before has an excel spreadsheet or tips for us – we are move than open!

So in the reality check that will be the hurricane of my life I think I should probably look to go to bed around about now, but I know that some friends at church have started organising a church farewell for anyone who has been a part of that book in our lives for this coming Sat and as a result comments are popping out on FB etc, and I am just feeling dreadful that I have not yet had the chance to phone/call/sms.

Please understand, and hopefully we can chat soon

lots of love

S + M + mini M

The story so far…

I find that over the last few years I have become less and less of a communicator in general, just running from one thing to another, pushing out little tweety bird updates as and when I can but struggling to participate in conversations or respond timeously.

So now begins my next experiment in the world of reaching out to the world around me.   We all know the truth. I am sometimes chatty, sometimes quiet. I have my phases, but hopefully what this will do, is capture it all in one place, so that no matter where I am or where you are, you can track the story so far as it hopefully builds and develops.

They say you should have a theme blog – so I thought that was really funny, since when did I ever restrict my chatter to one theme? So I am going to slowly try and build up the little pieces of framework which I think will make my blog work and then we will take it from there.

All I ask is that you be patient and give me feedback and I’ll make sure that I keep going with

sarahjustsaying

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