Saturday, December 09, 2006

Ilan Life

Today was a lovely day. We were all together all day, and it feels like a while since we've done that. This morning we walked into town to do some Christmas shopping. (For those of you in England, imagine Christmas shopping in shorts and T-shirts and sweating. For those of you in Australia, imagine wishing you too could don the furry red and white hat, big thick coat and enormous beard just to keep warm.)

We walked down the sea front, and stopped first of all at a new shop called Ilan Life. Now I've been pronouncing it "Eelan Life" which makes no sense. Then I realised (or probably was told by someone less stupid than me - Jo perhaps) that it's "I-lan Life" as in "Island Life." Of course. Seems sort of obvious now. It's the most imaginative shop I've ever seen as it's a cafe that is also a dressmakers! If any of you have ever been to a cafe-dressmaker before, I would love to hear about it.

Their coffee and muffins are good, their dresses are the typical Islander bright floral patterns with a frill around the shoulders and plenty of room in the dress. "I'd only wear it for dress-ups" said Jo! (There was an alternative style called Fiji which was even bigger.)

We then continued with some Christmas shopping in the newsagent. Except that it's not just a newsagent. It's a newsagent, cum clothes shop, cum toy shop cum kitchen shop. (I suppose that means it's a department store! But a small one.)

This afternoon we built a Christmas tree out of some dowelling sticks, and decorated it with tinsel and bells we made out of egg cartons. "Does it look like a Christmas tree?" Imogen asked. "Er, well, it's representative of a Christmas tree" I answered.

"What does that mean?" asked Imogen, quite correctly detecting rubbish when she hears it.

"It means that if you ask someone what it is, they'll know it's a Christmas tree. But if you ask them if they've ever seen a Christmas tree like that one before, they'll have to say no."

It does look a bit wonky! But it's a fabulous tree. Here's a photo - slightly premature, as it's not fully decorated yet, but I can't resist.

This evening we went for a picnic by the beach. We chose the wrong beach, though, and nearly got blown away by the wind. We had a table cloth held down with big rocks. We nearly had to hold Emily down with big rocks too. Ziggy, Innes, baby Felix and their mum, Jess joined us too. Nathan, their dad, was on call and joined us later at the less gale-force Bach Beach (pronounced Back Beach) where there's a play ground. We ate food with too much salt, fat and colouring in. There were no tantrums at all!

No comments: