This time four years ago we were preparing to fly to Austria. We were living in the UK at the time and looking forward to the prospect of a White Christmas. Clearly we weren’t thinking though when we booked our flights to arrive in Salzburg at 8pm Christmas Eve, to discover that anywhere that sold food, prepared or in grocery form, had closed down and wouldn’t re-open until after Christmas day. We had almost resigned ourselves to accepting our Christmas dinner would be baby food, stolen from the stash of jars we’d at least thought to pack for Jaedon, when we discovered an open petrol station with a limited supply of groceries. So we dined that Christmas on frozen pizza, a tub of Pringles, and a very dusty looking tetra pac of Kinderpunsch. Our one consolation was a plate of home-made lebkuchen left for us by the owner of the apartment we were staying in.
But for the lack of ‘proper’ festive fare I look back at that christmas as one of my favourites so far. It was our first official White Christmas, even if it was one of Austria’s warmest winters in history and our yard was the only area in Salzburg that actually saw snow for the whole of December (let alone Christmas Day). And it was our first Christmas as a family – Jaedon was 11 months old at the time and I was 3 months pregnant with Alicia-Rae. There were many new things for us to experience that year, and it was a different kind of Christmas for many reasons, and the start of several new traditions for us as a family. One of them being me baking home-made lebkuchen every year, to remind us of the simple Christmas dinner we shared and the wonderful memories it gave us.
All that was to lead in to the fact that this year will be a different kind of Christmas for Paul and Sharyn as well. They recently welcomed their beautiful little daughter into the world, and they too will be celebrating this Christmas for the first time as a family. There will be moments that were neither planned or expected, and wonderful memories that will be shared and treasured through the years – perhaps for no other reason than they were together and they were happy. And they felt very blessed.
Thank you guys for allowing me to capture a few hours in the life of your new little family – it was wonderful to see how joyfully you have taken to your new life. If some of these images provide you with memories to be shared and treasured through the years I will feel very blessed myself.