Sunday, January 31, 2010


I never did get around to posting Will's 9:38am photo from January. So here for posterity...

2009: The Good Stuff

Or: 130 Reasons Why We Are Incredibly Fortunate.

I'll most likely do a scrapbook page about this or something and it is also one of the last of 3 posts to finish up for 'Holidays in Hand". Here are the great, cool, good and simply awesome parts of 2009 (Each colour change represents a month change and the pink is a general category)

  1. Catching up with Caitlin J.
  2. Going out to Oratia with Ma and Kieley
  3. Shakespeare Beach with the Brinkmans/Casbolts.
  4. Valentines Lunch with Les at Waimauku.
  5. BBQ with Tara and Family
  6. Having a Day up at Scrapcamp.
  7. Finding out some Shannon and Lisa were expecting
  8. Getting flowers from the Nielson Girls
  9. Attending Logan and Trudy's wedding together.
  10. Nana Coming to stay and going up to Waiwera with her.
  11. School Camp at MERC
  12. Les completing the Mud Run
  13. Hearing the news that Miss Wendy and Ashley were expecting.
  14. Easter with the Raes
  15. Kieran started playing Rugby
  16. Will stared walking
  17. Les went to Blenheim for Flt Sgt's Qual
  18. I read Artemis Fowl 1-3
  19. Discovered the blog 'Living Oprah'
  20. Merenia got Player of the Day for Netball
  21. Converted my scrap organisation to colour based
  22. Kieran won a PS2 and appeared on Sticky TV
  23. Our neighbours moved out.
  24. The Cheifs made the finals and we watched the Semi at Dave L's with good food and good friends
  25. We visited with Miss Lily and Miss Mannington
  26. Machi and Camo came up and stopped by for a visit
  27. Starbucks brought out Cinnamon Dolce Frappucinos
  28. We got new vinyl in the kitchen
  29. Friday night scrapbooking
  30. Official St Johns Induction
  31. Pyjama Party at home
  32. Les got glasses (who knew he could be even hotter!)
  33. I read all the lemony snicket books
  34. The kids had Stage Challenge
  35. Merenia played Rippa
  36. We watched AB's Vs. France with the Raes.
  37. Had Morning tea with Caitlin H, Natalia and Glenys
  38. Merenia scored her first (two) goals in a match at netball
  39. Les painted a Sea Sprite on the hangar doors
  40. Les and Merenia went to the Thermal Thaw
  41. Granny and Kieley took Merenia and Alyssa to the Mystics
  42. Merenia started Mind Labs
  43. Kieran started Correspondence Maths
  44. Kieran represented the school at the Sci quiz and Hockey Interzones
  45. Merenia and Alyssa saved our house from fire
  46. We got all our stored stuff organised in plastic boxes
  47. Got an A1 mat for my craft table
  48. Watched a Mystics training with my netball girls
  49. Kieran went to the transformers movie
  50. Celebrated Les' birthday
  51. Merenia went to the Hannah Montana movie
  52. Watched Waikato play for free at Massey RFC
  53. Kieran went to the All Blacks Road show
  54. Les got his long-service medal
  55. Three people we care for announced they were expecting babies in Feb 2010
  56. Les went flying in Matamata and got 2nd place
  57. Got an email from an old friend
  58. Scored some cool stuff via trade me, the sally army store and scrapbook outlet
  59. Scrapped 26 pages in a weekend
  60. Miss Wendy brought us cupcakes
  61. Had a great day out with Aneil at Mt Vic and Devonport
  62. Granny and Kieley took Merenia to see the Silver Fern's Vs. The World
  63. Kieran represented the school for Cross-country
  64. Friday night scrapbooking
  65. Grey's Anatomy Quiz Night with Lyn and Daniella
  66. Had a neat Starbucks trip with Daniella
  67. Celebrated Merenia's Birthday
  68. Celebrated 11 years married to the loves of our life
  69. Got a lovely bunch of flowers from my netball girls
  70. Read all the Harry Potter books
  71. The kids went to Christchurch for the holidays
  72. K and M got great Maths reports
  73. Merenia improved her Cross-country placing by 3
  74. Kieran's rugby team got the Club Sportsmanship award
  75. Kieran got ideal player for his team
  76. Merenia got third in her first St Johns Comp
  77. The Clematis flowered for the first time
  78. Kieran invented YUMMY baked potatoes
  79. Made a cool book for Les for fathers day
  80. Finished collecting the years Power Play cards
  81. I completed our 2009 Week In The Life Album pages
  82. We got a new DVD recorder
  83. Aneil brought us steak for dinner
  84. I celebrated my birthday
  85. Les cooked me a yummy meal
  86. Put in a new raised garden bed
  87. Brunch with the Corsans
  88. Trip to the Takapuna Markets
  89. Went to Ambury Park Farm Day
  90. Kieran went to an AB's Training session
  91. Enjoyed some cool movies on DVD
  92. Tiny (Vienna) arrived
  93. Ehren arrived
  94. Got some cool stuff on Ebay thanks to an opportunity from Jan and Joe
  95. Scored some cool stuff at Hasbro, Sally Army and Spotlight
  96. Celebrated Kieran's Birthday
  97. Kieran had a patrols trip to Rainbows End
  98. Spent three cool weekends with the Dawson kids
  99. Les went to Cambridge for Armistice and was then winched out of a Seasprite at Waitakere Stadium
  100. Had dinner with the Carringtons
  101. Kieran went to a couple of movies
  102. Les had a weekend of glider flying
  103. Merenia spent a week at Timatanga
  104. Will got a prize in a colouring competition
  105. Merenia got a basket of goodies in another colouring competition
  106. I got some starbucks Christmas decos from two super ladies and some vouchers from one of them as well
  107. We set up our paddling pool for the summer
  108. Met Baby Jake
  109. Celebrated Will's Birthday
  110. Got a great big sandpit to enjoy
  111. Got a new photo printer and a set of tiny deer
  112. Had yummy summer food; ice creams, gucamole and fruit salad
  113. Watched Elliot read his speech at Graduation
  114. Celebrated Sally and Kevin's wedding
  115. AucklandSoar BBQ
  116. BBQ at Aneils place with friends
  117. Trip to Kiwi Valley for Merenia
  118. Merenia participated in the Kumeu Christmas Parade
  119. Heaps of cool stuff in the lead up to Christmas
  120. Merenia had what will hopefully be her last day of primary school
  121. Celebrated Christmas
  122. And enjoyed the school holidays
  123. Completed a 365 album
  124. Enjoyed the companionship of some great family, friends and neighbours
  125. Enjoyed a truly abundant life
  126. Got to raise, enjoy and love 3 of the most incredible children who ever lived
  127. Spent countless hours in the company of each other
  128. Ate well
  129. Laughed often
  130. Loved much

Vegetable Garden Progress

Some neighbours over the back moved out toward the end of last year leaving behind a raised garden bed. I rang housing and asked if we could have it on the proviso we left their lawn looking as good as new and they said yes.

The garden bed was 2 tiers high and with a plan in mind we split it into two.

We wheel barrowed the soil over from next door as well.

And the kids sorted it out (clothing is optional for gardening at our place).

Will spent some time sorting out the soil.

And then we planted....

A variety of seedlings in late November (too late really)....

And later in December some seed tape.... how cool is this stuff??

You can just see the seeds in there- perfectly spaced.

This was the day Merenia planted the seed tape. Our swan plants are under that white net curtain cover. We were trying to let them grow large before the Monarch delivered the 'motherload'.

We also intended to put the cover back on once the eggs had been laid so we didn't get over run by caterpillars like we did last year.

But we had a little BIG problem with our plants and pests....

And despite some natural predators we have yet to have a caterpillar grow to any great size.

We have been reaping the rewards of gardening though. Lettuce, Rocket, Basil, Radishes and strawberries. The tomatoes went in so late they are only just starting to get big let alone ripen. And the capsicum got so over run by the lettuce they got lost and so are still very small. The Spring onions and carrots from the seed tapes are just starting to happen now.

Will especially loves popping out to grab a red ripe strawberry every so often though.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

So much to say....

I have 101 stories to tell and so many photos to share 2010 has started out on a real high, we've really been flying and I've got the video to prove it! (Make sure you check out the rotors- freaky huh??)

Do you like my new header? I took the photo myself. :-)

More soon I promise!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Good Food

Been meaning to post these pics for a while now. Holidays and summer make for great meals....

Bagels with cream cheese, Bacon and Poached Eggs with Hollandaise Sauce.

Steak with Chunky Kumara and Potato Chips, Fresh Asparagus and onions and mushrooms cooked on the BBQ.

More Steak BBQ's with Garlic and Mushrooms, the same chunky chips and a GREAT 'Les'Green Salad with Cashews, Blue Cheese, Avocado drizzled with balsamic vinegarette and Puhoi Cheese Factory curry dressing.

Um..... YUM!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Sunday, January 24, 2010


It's sleeping + eating.

Dinner can be hard work.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Friday, January 22, 2010

You Need To Know!

Pie's are BIG in our house.

At one time Pies were so big that I thought I might explode if I heard; "I like Pie" (a la flight of the conchords) one more time. So I banned the word Pie and for a long time after Pie's were known as 'Tasty Pastry Dishes'.

Kieran likes to sing "I'm too full for broccoli, but I still have room for some Pie"

Today may be Friday but tomorrow (according to my little brothers Simpsons calendar) is Pie Day.

We are ready.

We have 28 pies in our house. 6 different brands and something like 13 different flavours.

It's going to be a pie-rific pie-o-rama.

Fruit Salad Yummy, Yummy!

The best thing about summer......
Fresh Fruit!

Kiwifruit, Strawberries, Blueberries,

Nectarines, Peaches, Apricots

Mangoes, Oranges, Plums, Grapes

Cherries, Pineapple and a sprinkling of Raspberries when served.

Douse it in fruit juice and enjoy.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

This years Roses

It's a little known fact that I take too many photos of the roses in our garden. But why the heck wouldn't I when they look so good??!!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Some things are harder and easier than you may expect.

For the first time in two years and one month on Monday Les and I slept together, alone. When I say alone I mean it was just the two of us in the bedroom.

Will has shared a room with one or both of us since his very beginning. I thought that he would find it quite hard to make the transition to sharing with Merenia. I expected there to be, as they say, tears before bedtime, and in fact tears after bedtime as well. But in fact there were none at all. He went down calmly and happily as his sister watched on from her top bunk perch. The next morning, as is his custom, he woke too early and Merenia did as instructed; “It’s still sleeping time Will go back to sleep buddy.” And he did. There were no tears or drama when he eventually awoke again. He did not miss his morning drink and all was well in his 25 month old world. I’m not sure if I should feel elated or in fact offended.

I had thought that for us it would be nothing but sweet relief, but it wasn’t nearly as easy as that. Having Will next to us has never really had much of a downside- he sleeps through most of our noises and if we wanted to we probably could have turned on lights and telly while he slept with no hassles. The upside was that we had a bunch of routines that we will now miss dearly. The quiet moments when we kissed him good night, put on his music (“Pop goes the Eagle”), wished him a good sleep and reminded him that we’d be there in the morning for a cuddle, a booby and then a death roll. (When Will is done with his first of the morning snack he’ll turn his attention to Les getting his head as close as physically possible to Les’ face and then roll, crocodile-with-prey-like, 3 or so times till he is sufficiently comfortable). This routine has on many occasions provided us with the luxury of one sometimes two or more hours extra sleep past Will’s personal 6:30am alarm.

Sharing with Will has also meant that many a time I have heard him talk in his sleep about all sorts of things from playing outside to Daddy and Kieran and on one particularly fraught occasions some issue with the Playstation. He has also laughed, giggled, snuffled and even clapped in his sleep.

He is not at all a tidy or quiet sleeper. Never staying for long under his blankets and forgoing the convention of sleeping with his head at any particular end of the bed around the time he was strong enough to wriggle his cute little body to all points in the cot. He often kicks, thumps and crashes around like a pro-wrestler in the ring and the absence of this noise is practically audible above the din from the other side of the bed. But perhaps the thing I miss most is the fact his head was often right beside mine and on coming to bed I would reach through the bars of the cot stoke his invariably sweaty head and hold his little warm and clammy hand until I nodded off or he rolled over.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Monday, January 18, 2010


Kieran's best friend Jake lives on a nice country property and they have 2 dogs Tess and Diesel. Will in particular, but Merenia also, won't pass up a chance to go and catch up with their favourite K9 pal. Every time we drive even in the vague direction of Jakes Will always says "See Diesel, see Diesel??"

This is Diesel, Tess must have been a little camera shy this day. But she isn't shy about jumping in our car to come for a ride and she can be quite the unmovable object when she does!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Big Burger, Small Boy

We all had takeaways recently and I as totally blown away by the fact that Les brought Will his own biggish burger. He practically had to hug it to himself to hold on to it! But her certainly made a decent effort and nearly finished it before it disintegrated in his grip. Definitely only a sometimes food.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Weeds and Wildflowers

I went out and took some photos of the motorway building site when it was all quiet over the holidays while the site and the earth works were awesome but there was some other stuff on the periphery perhaps even cooler....