Well, how great was it to see top-notch former Coota girl Casey Beath home for Christmas - catch up time with her mum and dad Bob and Jenny Beath, brother Peter Beath and family.
Casey and her husband now call the Caribbean home, Trinidad and Tobago, where Casey, who works for the Australian Foreign Affairs Department, is deputy high commissioner to the Caribbean. Casey spent some years living in Vanuatu working for Foreign Affairs and just loved that experience. Now she calls Port of Spain home. It delights me to write of the success of former Cootamundra youngsters.
Budding young chef Isaac Levy, youngest son of former Cootamundra's David and Michelle Levy, has had an exciting time in London recently where he has been part of Michelin Star-winning team working for the restaurant BRAT. Soon after this, BRAT won Square Meal Restaurant of the Year and is now recognised as one of the best restaurants in London.
Isaac began his chef's apprenticeship working for his uncle Mark Stapleton at Restaurant Botanica in the Hunter Valley. Eighteen months later, he was successful in gaining a position at Neil Perry's Rockpool Bar and Grill and then went on to work for flagship restaurant, Rockpool. Both were hatted at the time. An opportunity to be sous chef at the multi award-winning, hatted Italian restaurant Uccello's saw Isaac leave the Rockpool Group.
Isaac decided 2019 was the year to go overseas, a decision that has reaped him a great reward. Issac is proof that with a little hard work, dedication and a dream, anything can happen.
Issac attended Cootamundra Sacred Heart School and proud grandparents are Ken and June Stapleton, of Hovell Street.
It was with tremendous sadness on New Year's Eve that Cootamundra friends learned of the passing of Helen Ekin on the Sunshine Coast.
Many memories flooded back of the happy times spent with this splendid, fun-loving lady, and of course her late husband Hugh Ekin, when they were at the helm of Ekins Newsagency.
Sympathy is extended to her daughters Alison, Judi and Elizabeth at this sad time.
Celebrating her 90th birthday last week, Joan de Belin did so enjoy an outing to Planted to mark this milestone birthday with family and friends. Happy birthday Joan.
There were a number of other locals who celebrated a milestone birthday over the Christmas period - to them happy birthday/happy days ahead.
It was so nice to hear the story of former Cootamundra residents, from the city, praising our Cootamundra Hospital. They presented to the hospital with a sick baby and were so heartened to receive just the best treatment/comforting advice from doctor and staff there.
The Arts Centre Cootamundra have a top two days of holiday fun for youngsters.
There's movies for the younger set to enjoy during January and craft days.
On Wednesday, January 16 Dabbler Day will take place from 10am-noon for five to 10-year-olds. Then 1.30-3.30pm for 12 to 14-year-olds. Working with paper printing, cutting, folding.
The following week, January 23 it will be a day of fun with fabric, again taking place in the visual arts studio.
The Cootamundra Library also has much happening including Summer Sounds taking place each Thursday in January.
This includes group guitar lessons, group singing lessons, mums/bubs music therapy in the Stephen Ward rooms. All in air-conditioned comfort.
On Wednesday next January 16 at 10am, pamper your hands and turn every nail into a work of art at the nail art class, ages over 8 years and bookings essential (6940 2200).
Then let the music begin at the Harry Potter Party, Tuesday, January 21 from 10am to noon.