End of year wrap up

Happy New Year!  Hurrah, 2008 is over and done with, lets move quickly on!

Didn’t get round to blogging for the last month, got tied up in preparation for Christmas – which suddenly loomed large!  Think I’m prepared now though, what?  Its over?  Oh well, guess its too late now then!

Benson has been keeping me occupied and away from blogging or organising myself for Christmas.  Poor wee guy actually spent whole of Christmas in the vetinary hospital.  It’s now confirmed he has chronic cystitis which means he will be ill for the rest of his life.  His bladder has now blocked twice – both times meaning several days in the hospital with a catheter and lots of drugs.  He’s now on a special diet and we’re looking for other ways to help him so we’re now growing trays of grass for him to eat, we bought a covered litter tray to give him privacy, his Aunty Nicole has given him a water fountain so he has fresh moving water which he is more likely to drink.  Might have to let him out but will see how he’s getting on at his next check up.  Obviously changing food and stuff affects George too but he’s being quite good about it all, just gets jealous when Benson gets his “special hugs” three times a day.  He doesn’t quite understand that we are just giving Benson drugs and that its not something he should be jealous of so we have to wrap him in a blanket and turn him upside down too!  Anyway if you have pets learn from our mistakes – if you take out cheap pet insurance it is only likely to cover the first year of any condition – this is bad if your cat then gets a chronic condition.  Luckily he’s covered so far but we’re well on the way to the maximum payout – yikes!

So what else did I do in December?  Well I took part in a criminal justice experiment that Robert Gordon University was running.  Obviously if I told you what it involved I would have to kill you but it was quite interesting to be part of!

I had a night out with Donna and Lydia who I went to France with in the summer.  It was to be a girly Christmas night out but for various reasons we ended up with just four of us.  That was actually lovely as there was only one new person who’s name I needed to remember and we could all hear each other talk over the table!  We had a nice dinner in Saigon’s and then went to a couple of bars before calling it a night.  I treated myself to a new dress for it – now that I’m down to a size 12 I was looking for an excuse for a new frock and a night out – and a 30% off voucher for Monsoon – seemed to suit!

Donna’s Christmas night outMarianne, Donna, me and Lydia        New size 12 Monsoon dress!New dress!

I was lucky enough to get asked to review this year’s Panto so I was able to take Donna and the two of us returned to our youth screaming “he’s behind you” etc!  It was a fab show with fireworks and Peter flying over our head, I really enjoyed it.

Still trying to get in the mood for Christmas preparation I went to see Four Christmasses, again with Donna and Lydia.  It was really good – but I still wasn’t kicked into Christmas mood!  Next it was down to Edinburgh for the Scottish Law Librarians Group Christmas Networking Meeting with Jenny.  We got the train down and back in the same afternoon, managing to fit in time for a go on the carousel and dinner at TGI Fridays whilst we were down there.

Maria on the carouselGeorge the carousel horse!     Dinner with the Law Librarians in Edinburgh!Librarians can party too!

I was supposed to go to an enchanted forest thing with lights and music in Aboyne but that day Benson took ill again and I went to the vets instead of the forest.  We did make it to Ray and Nicole’s for Sunday lunch, possibly the last time I’d see them before the baby arrives – so exciting!  I spent the evening of the boy’s work night out with Nicole as well – and felt an elbow or knee moving in her belly – most surreal and amazing!  Still waiting for the baby to arrive, I’m at the stage of jumping whenever the phone goes – but then it is due TODAY!!  Exciting!

Ooh after the Sunday lunch at R&N’s we popped into Bryan’s Dad for a wee visit.  As it turned out brother Lee was also there with his family so we got to see them all which was lovely.  Bryan took some lovely photos of them as well so that was cool, we don’t see our nieces and nephews a lot so it was really great to spend some time with them.

One more night out before Christmas was with Gill and her friends James and Corrie.  We had dinner in our local pub and then a few other folk (including Gill’s poorly hubby) joined us for a drink.  We all had a good natter and a laugh.

Gill and Stuart Gill and Stuart – the couple we bought our house from – who’d have thought we’d end up as buddies?!

My work closes at 1pm on Christmas Eve and is shut until Monday 5th January so I’m having a lovely break.  We managed to see a few friends and family on 24th, Stephen and Lee popped by and then we went down to Reg’s.  Was nice to spend some time with him and Sasina, we chatted through Santa Clause 3 and ate chocs. 

Christmas Day was spent, just the two of us, as is our tradition.  It was a bit sad knowing that Benson was stuck in the hospital whilst we were all at home, George enjoyed all the attention though and loved being spoilt.  We put the tree up for the day so we could open our presents underneath it and George was quite bewitched by it.

George loves the pretty treeGeorge   

We got some lovely pressies between us as well – thanks to all contibutors!  This year’s lunch was to be goose, Bryan loves to do something different – and he did it very well!  There was lots of food and it was all gorgeous. 

Table laid readyTable laid out ready            Roast Goose and all the bits!Food all set out, roast goose

Boxing Day we left poor George all on his own and went to visit my parents for another lovely lunch – the traditional turkey this time!  It was lovely to see my parents – and to get more pressies obviously!

Dad, me on my rocking horse, and Mum  Spending Christmas with my parents and hubby  Dad, me on Firefly and Bryan

The next day we were able to collect Benson from the hospital and bring him home.  We’d had a problem after the first day because he smelt funny to his brother George and there was a lot of hissing and ignoring so this time we were careful to cuddle him lots in another room first so as to rub some of the hospital smell off.  It did take them a while to accept each other but it wasn’t as upsetting as last time.  We’d kept the wrapping paper for them to play with as they’d loved that last year but I think they are too old for such frolics now so they didn’t seem to enjoy it in the same way.

Benson comes home

The last day of the year was spent: at work (Bryan), out for lunch with Gill and the kids (me)!  I also got my last competition win of the year in the post – a Carling t-shirt.  I expect I entered to win a fridge full of beer or something exciting but still, Bryan can never have too many tops! 

As for Hogmanay, well we just enjoyed having our family back together.  Benson is on a lot of medication so he sleeps a lot at the moment but we had a game with Bryan’s new remote control General Lee and all had lots of cuddles.  Bryan cooked haggis with mash potato and roast butternut squash for our dinner and we watched some tv and nattered the night away. 

I’ve been trying out Twitter an online communication tool, and was messing about on that during the evening.  I ended up getting involved in a Tweeplay which was quite fun and has been recorded on my Twitter friend’s blog.  Different but entertaining none the less!  I also took the following piccie for infobunny but I won’t bother explaining why as you really needed to be there to get it!

George with some whisky

After midnight I went outside with a sparkler, inbetween trying to persuade the cats that the fireworks outside and on the tv wouldn’t hurt them.  We watched the fireworks and listened to the bells and bagpipes in Edinburgh.  Midnight on Hogmanay is the one time I miss our flat in Edinburgh – we used to be able to stand on our balcony and watch the fireworks whilst being able to see and hear the same fireworks close up on the tv – best way to do it – no crowds, no being jostled by foreigners, clean toilets, warmth and whatever food or drink you desire!

And so we’ve seen the back of 2008 – hurrah.  Here’s hoping that 2009 brings happy times for one and all.  Have a good ‘un!

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