On Saturday Simon suggested we go to the fireworks at Royal Park for the Australia Day celebrations. It was the day before the two year anniversary of Aaron's death. Straightaway I thought that it was just like the sort of thing Aaron would want to do with his family if he was still here.
Then when Simon suggested we also go the Sliders Tube Park at Mowbray, I decided to call it Aaron Day. Aaron's priority was always his family and doing things with them and it was this day-to day attitude of putting his family first that always sticks in my mind.
I knew that the actual Australia Day date being on Sunday, would be filled up with going to church and fulfilling my Primary calling so I knew that on Saturday, we could really make it a great Aaron Day, especially finishing the day with the Australia Day fireworks.
The tube park was heaps of fun for the kids. It is only $40 for 16 rides or you can buy less. There is a short 15 metre slide that little kids can go down for free, then there is the two bigger ones that go for 100 metres each.
Jonty went on once by himself but then said it was too scary so he sat inside a tube with Simon after that.
Simon told me to come down with Jonty and even though I knew it was something Aaron would have done, I was more than happy to be a wuss and keep sitting holding Flynn, who was asleep in my arms. It was my excuse not to go down anyway! ;)
After the tube park, we went to the City Park to see the monkeys but they had all gone to bed. We had a great hour watching the ducks and baby ducklings and playing hide and seek and chasings and I felt a bit emotional because we were doing something else on Aaron Day that Aaron would have loved doing with his family if he was here, and I also felt happy because I knew Aaron would be pleased we were doing something he loved, in memory of him.
Flynn is so cute putting his hands over his eyes and trying to count while we all hide.
We went and had tea at Morty's and then met up with the Lisa and the boys at the fireworks. Lisa and I had been texting that morning and she said she was going and I said Simon had had the same idea, so we decided to meet up about 8pm.
These three boys are such good boys for their Mum. They are really considerate and caring and funny. I know that they are going to grow up and be such wonderful young men, such a credit to Lisa and Aaron and Noah who have taught them so much, especially the example and selfless love Lisa has shown them these past two years.
Waiting for the fireworks, I kept thinking it was New Year's Eve as we had come here, at the end of 2012 with the Kings and Woodwards, nearly one year after Aaron passed away. NYE 2013, I was unable to go to the fireworks as I was working, so it was nice to be able to go on Saturday.
Terrible photo I know, but here we are all snug waiting for the fireworks to start.
Smiling to myself because while having her own grief these past two and a bit years and planning the next day, to go back to Binalong Bay for the first time since Aaron died, she was thinking of another family at the start of their own grief and loss and wanting to take just a little of their pain away that she knows so well.
But what I laughed about the most was going to the cemetery at 5.37pm when it closed at 5.00pm and freaking out that we would be locked in. For some reason I thought it closed at 6pm but on weekends its 5pm and weekdays, 7pm.
Jonty did this hilarious drawing of Aaron and Lisa getting married. He often talks about Aaron to me as I always refer to him as "Kobe's Daddy" and he can really relate and understand that Kobe doesn't have a Daddy here, but that he is waiting in heaven.
What was the funniest of all though, was knowing that Aaron would think it was a great laugh and joke, a perfect way to end Aaron Day if we were locked in the cemetery and could not get out, all on account of him.
Well we stayed for quite a bit, visited Noah too and didn't get locked in, thank goodness!!
I love that we did lots of "Aaron" things and were able to spend a part of the day with Lisa and Jay, Harri and Kobe. It is still hard to see one of my closest friends and her boys living without their Dad and best friend but at the same time, I love knowing he is so so proud of the amazing family he has and how they continue each day to inspire, uplift and strengthen others, just by being themselves.
A part of Aaron lives on in each of them.