Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

Gigi’s Concert

Posted: 07/07/2014 by Sharole in Events, Gigi, News, Pictures
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Gigi did her first larger concert this weekend at the Conservatorium of Music in the City with the Sydney Children’s Choir. Quite swarve and the first in my family to ever perform there. Granddad and I were her cheer squad, since Toby had to get TJ to his last swim lesson for this term. Toby was glad to see the improvement in TJ’s swimming so it was good for him to go there for a change, to see TJ.

We had to drop Gigi off at 8.20am and then go back to watch the performance at 11am. It was cold, being Winter, I guess that makes sense. Dad and I meandered about in the city it was nice to be there nice and early when it’s lovely and quiet, and enjoy the serenity of it. We enjoyed looking at the architecture and shop designs. At one stage it was nice to sit down and just appreciate the country we live in and how lucky we are.

We warmed up with a mid morning hot chocolate and then the shops started to open and I decided to check out Gap since their was a sale on which doesn’t happen often! I found a shirt for Toby that I liked which hardly ever happens, I even had to ask them to take the last one off the mannequin for me. Then before I knew it I lost it from under my arm, we searched high and low and realizing that we would be late if we didn’t hightail it to the concert, I was determined we’d come back after and see if we could find it, not without asking the staff to look and call my if they found it. No such luck from the staff.

We made it to the concert just in time and enjoyed seeing Gigi strut her stuff. We were given strict instructions as to their clothes and what was acceptable and what wasn’t. One of those rules were no white socks. Well there was one girl who had white socks on, she stuck out like a sore thumb, I wonder if that was the parent or child’s fault? It turns out there are only 3 red-heads in the younger choirs, so it’s quite easy to see Gigi.

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Her face lit up when she finally saw us in the crowd, one of those proud moments. She did a fantastic job and we really enjoyed seeing kids enjoy one of the pleasures of life, being able to sing. Some of the kids faces were so animated, it made me smile from the inside out. I might even admit to a tear or two.

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After we collected Gigi, and headed back to the Gap store and I thought well I’ll check the pile of shirts where I couldn’t find it previously (hence having to get it off the mannequin and bam there it was sitting right on top. I was so happy and went and purchased it. We went and grabbed some lunch then went to head home.

Gigi caught sight of the St Mary’s Cathedral and wanted to go in and check it out, she was fascinated at how big it was and wondered if that was the biggest church in Australia, so we went in, she asked questions like why is there water in bowls about and why are people lighting candles and how do they make those lovely pictures in the windows. She thought it was a beautiful building and huge! I love that she appreciates such things and asks such good questions.

We then headed home for some family time, we all went as a family, bowling. William won a free bowling ticket for being man of the match in his Soccer game last week and being the only one to get a goal for his team. So he wanted Granddad to come with us. We had a nice time and just quietly I won, closely followed by Rocky, Granddad and Toby. William wasn’t too happy about that as he won last time when just he and his siblings played. I said well we are all taking turns at winning ok, he said ok!

Citizenship for Toby

Posted: 11/06/2014 by Toby in Events, Family, News, Pictures
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Hey everyone, I’m no longer the odd man out in our family. I’m still an odd man sometimes of course.. I’m the last one to become a dual citizen of the US and Australia! For those who don’t know, a bit of history.

Sharole joined me in the US and we got married, and after much paperwork, she was a permanent resident. We had 3 kids while we were there, and for each kid, as soon as he or she popped out, we went down to the Aussie Embassy in DC to get them naturalised and get their passports (so easy compared to the US process btw). Then, barely in time, before we emigrated to Australia, We figured just save ourselves hassle next time and get Sharole made into a citizen. So that was all of them as dual citizens except for me. Then when we had Rocky here in Oz, we likewise went to the US embassy and made him a naturalised American.

In order to become an Australian, I had to wait 4 years before I could apply. We sometimes hear stories of people getting their citizenship faster than that, but we sure didn’t know how that happened, or what loopholes they were able to use, so we just went the usual route.

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Everyone at my work were quite happy for me, I would imagine it’s a pretty rare thing for a non-Aussie to be working for a Council. I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have gotten this job if I couldn’t at least say I was approved to be a citizen (just had to wait for the ceremony).

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Here’s a bit of trivia for you: the status of Australian Citizen is only 66 years old. That’s right up until 1948 Australians were classified as British subjects, and held UK passports. I did a bit of research and it turns out Canada was a similar story. The status of Canadian citizen was only in effect since 1947, so the year prior. I won’t say it, but some might think Aussies were copying the Canadians.

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This year I really wanted to do something fun with the kids and so, I decided to make it green day. We invited a couple from Church to come for dinner Josie and Lachie Mackie, Josie being a fellow American, so she grasped doing something fun. They came all dressed up in green, nice job I thought I didn’t even have enough green to cover my whole self with green, my top was even mint green, sad really.

In the morning I started off by getting up early and making everyone green pancakes and green milk for Breakfast. Toby gladly ate the pancakes obviously not the milk :)

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I packed their lunches with all green food. Green apples, green cucumber, green pikelets and so forth. I even had Leprechaun juice for them, for when I picked them up from school.

Then for dinner we had green mashed potatoes, zucchini, green salad and pesto chicken. It came up quite delicious, if I do say so myself (ok I was pleasantly surprised). It wasn’t that easy finding something green for dinner to keep it all green, and something the kids would eat.

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The lemon/lime drink wasn’t that green, so we even added food colouring to fix that problem. Some weren’t as willing as others. Gigi and I were in!

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After dinner we played games. First was an easy one where you have to roll the dice for gold coins. Once you filled the clover then you won. I didn’t win. I can’t remember who won now, one of the kids.

Then it was search for shamrocks in the back yard. I stuck shamrocks on clothing pegs for that game so we could put them cool places. First we had the adults hiding them for the kids, then the one who found the most got Lepricorn gold (gold chocolate covered coins) and then the kids hide them for us adults. Lachie won that game for the adults.

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Then I made up a bowl of lime shaving cream, and put gold coins in it, the kids each had a turn in pulling them out when they thought they’d found all the coins, they’d guess how many coins were in it. No one got it right. Gigi especially loved the goey sensation of that game. Rocky didn’t like it at all.

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You’ll also notice that there are pictures up on the wall, that was from the afternoon, I had the kids do a colouring in of a Leprechaun and then Josie and Lachie said who won, for another gold coin.

I had a man game, called Glob Shots. The boys had 5 shot cups of green jelly. The one that got them all down first only using there mouth and tongue got a No 1. trophy. Lachie finished first but he also broke one of the cups and so didn’t eat that one as it shattered. Toby got all 5 down. We were all suitably impressed.

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Then after we all sat down yapping with dessert and making pots of gold, when they were finished we put them all up on the frangipani tree outside.

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I tried out a recipe called Leprechaun Bark. It was quite tasty, rich though so you don’t eat lots of it. I also did an adjustment to a treat with pretzels. I dipped 1/2 the pretzel in white chocolate, then I had a crushed up pepermint crisp bar, and then dipped it in there. It came out a real treat and was Josie’s favourite. Below is a shot of my version of Leprechaun Bark. We also had mint covered chocolate balls and spearmint leaves, both green also.

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My Leprechaun bark was milk chocolate melted on the bottom and refridgerated, then I melted white chocolate  and added green flavouring to turn it green and poured it on top. Then I had picked out green m&m’s (smashed them up) and the rest of the crushed up peppermint crisp and sprinkled it over it, and refridgerated, once all hard you break it up to serve.

So it was a totally Green Day for us O’Hara’s.

 

 

Toby’s cake

Posted: 12/04/2014 by Toby in Events, Pictures
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Hey everyone, Sharole did a great job on my birthday cake this year, and double points, she did it all by herself! We have usually done cakes as a team, but she went ahead and got it all decorated while I was at work. It really came up good! Take a look.

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And in case you’re wondering, YES these pictures were taken with my new 600D.

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James and Courtney our friends both have birthdays in Feburary, so they decided to throw a party at their house to celebrate those events through a Velentine”s Party for couples only.

They themed it: Famous Couples Through Time.

Since I had a costume for Maid Marian we decided to just work on a costume for Toby and pulled together a Robin Hood Costume. I wanted to try Popeye and Olive Oyl, but Toby said I wasn’t tall enough to pull that one off, nothing about his muscles, wink! Actually he does have nice muscles. I realised you are stuck somewhat into couples that your figures work with.  So Batman and Catwoman were out :(

When we arrived we were great by:

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Sumo Wrestler, sadly he was all air and there wasn’t another suit for some serious fun ;)

Next we were to arrive.

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Robin Hood and Maid Marian. I was a tad nervious that noone else was going to make effort, that always bothers me about dress ups when people show up not having made a decent effort. And I will say Aussies can be quite good at doing it bad. But alas we can always rely on The Tuckers always making a fantastic effort, as they were next of the people we knew anyway to show up in:

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Wow! It took Jared weeks to make all the armour/fighting equipment and it took 2.5hours to dress themselves, yep even down to the colour of their eyes! Totally impressed.

Then came:

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Danny Zuko and Sandra Dee (aka Sandy)

The hosts were:

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Sumo and Geisha

So pretty much our gang were the ones that made the most effort. It was a good night and later there was a game where one spouse answered a bunch of questions and then the other spouse in front on the group had to guess the correct answers. Toby and I won that. Toby had to guess my answers. We were accused of cheating since he got them all right.

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Another game that was played was a dating scenario from our past, with our spouse, was to be written down and then the other couples had to narrow it down, as to who was who’s until all were accounted for. Ours was guessed last. Tobes write that one up.

All in all a nice time.