29 December 2009

Christmas Wreath Mark II

Christmas wreath Mark I had to go, it was dried up and looking very sad. While gardening I spotted some flowers on the fejoa tree. Perfect. I don't know how long they will last, but they look really good.

Christmas Part 4 - The Pressie

I am officially an old lady. Peter bought me a shopping trolley for my christmas, it is exactly what I wanted. It means I can buy even more goodies at the Farmers Market on Sunday mornings. We tried it out it out it last Sunday at the market, maybe not the right weekend, it was packed. And so was my shopping trolley.

25 December 2009

Christmas Part 3 - The Table

Peter bought me a lovely new stripey red table cloth yesterday. He noticed it was half price and immediately thought I would like it. Strangely enough I had bought the exact same table cloth the previous day. To top it off I added my red spotty table runner. But it still looked a bit plain. Then I remembered the beautiful red and white bunting Keriann had shown me the previous day. So after half an hour with a pair of scissors, some red and white fabric and a lot of safety pins, I had some bunting. The kids thought I was mad, I think it looks brilliant. I think I will leave it up for the rest of the year. Some red roses in red spotty plastic mugs finished it all off. Well I was really pleased with the result.
And here it is all ready for us to sit down and eat. Picture courtesy of Peter.
It looks a bit slumped by the end of the afternoon. Don't we all.

Oh and by the way Merry Christmas.

Christmas Part 2 - Christmas Eve

Christmas shopping on Christmas Eve, almost to late and never again, but the sun is shining and the Jacaranda trees are in bloom.
The hall has been decked with Holly, well really ivy and herbs again, I thought the fennel flowers were particularly inspired.

More ivy and herbs over the dining table.
And the same on the mantelpiece.
The pressies are under the tree.
And the stockings are ready and waiting in front of the fire. Notice only four stockings, none for me, aww.

Christmas Part 1

The Amaryllis is flowering right on cue. Christmas has started to emerge all over the house.
My youngest and I put up the Christmas tree. Unfortunately Santa had to be relegated to the bottom of the tree as he made the top bend over.
The cards are hung under the mantelpiece.
And the holly........ sorry herb wreath has been hung on the door........... well not exactly on the door but beside it. The door is always open in the summer, so it would never be seen otherwise.

Taranaki Weekend - The Journey Home

The view from the multi storey in Palmerston.
We stopped to strech our legs by the windmills, and take a snap of the view of Hawkes Bay. When you stand under the windwill and look up it seems as if the windmill is bending toward you.

21 December 2009

Taranaki Weekend - The Concert

Here it is the concert. Fleetwood Mac at last. We stood there in the rain and drizzle singing our hearts out. By us I mean the whole audience, not just Peter and I, all 18000 of them. One of the songs sung by Stevie Nicks, Landslide, came over very poignantly. As I sang along quietly, I could hear thousands of women of my age, singing along quietly and wistfully too. Usually this kind of emotional claptrap leaves me cold, but just this one time it felt so right. It was a great concert, something I never ever thought I would see. I enjoyed it, Peter enjoyed it, my 19 year old eldest enjoyed it and even my 9 year old youngest loved it too, he sang all the way home, and he had no idea who Fleetwood Mac were before the concert. The setting was amazing among trees in the park. Thanks to my eldest for the pictures.

Also a very big thanks to New Plymouth District Council for organising the parking etc. We were let in to the venue early and had time to sit around and take in our surroundings. We were able to leave after the concert with ease and drive away with no problems.

Taranaki Weekend - the City, New Plymouth

Our visit to New Plymouth was more of a stomp about the town looking for somewhere to eat. On the way I managed to get in a few snaps. The building above appealed to me don't know why.

Above is the Women's Rest Rooms, looking very cool in black and white.
The Real Tart Gallery, I never did find out what was happening there. Did it have anything to do with Apple Pies, I wonder?
A view up the street.
The wind wand, a Len Lye sculture.

Taranaki Weekend - The Sunset

Mountain view at one side of the house. Sunset over the ocean view at the other side. Who could ask for more.

Taranaki Weekend - the Beach

After a 5hr drive getting to walk on a deserted beach was luxury.
The first time my feet had been in the Tasman sea on a black volcanic sand beach.
There were rockpools to paddle in.
Amazing patterns in the sand.

And a very happy locals.
And a few not quite so friendly locals. If you look closely you can see his/her eyes peeking out.

Taranaki Weekend - the Mirrors

All accommodation in New Plymouth was booked up. We had to stay in a batch in Opunake. I was concerned about what we would find, there were not a lot of photos on the booking site. This time we were in luck the batch was the best we have stayed in so far. It had such a great atmosphere. Lots of light, comfy beds, brilliant shower and lots of really interesting mirrors.
Nearly every room had one. I liked the one above best I think.
And loved the one above in the lounge.

20 December 2009

Taranaki Weekend - Getting there

This weekend Fleetwood Mac were playing in New Plymouth. We were some of the very lucky people that got tickets. Peter, my eldest, my youngest and I set off to make a weekend of it. It is a 5hr drive over to Taranaki, with a slight delay at road works, to admire the wind turbines. We also stopped in Palmerston North for a bit of Christmas shopping, some lunch and a very needed toilet break. Unfortunatly not much Christmas shopping was done when I found a clothes shop I like had a half price sale.

As soon as we left Palmerston Peter started asking. Can you see Taranaki yet (Taranaki is a volcano set in very flat land). No we said. Can you see it yet. No we said. Can you see it yet (Peter was quite keen to get a view of the mountain). Oh is that it over there. Hmm maybe. Oh no that is Ruapeho and Tongario over in the opposite direction. Can you see it yet. For goodness sake, I said, its probably behind the clouds. So we all looked up, the clouds moved and we could see it peaking at us, like a view from a Japanese picture. This was the last glimpse we got, it was shrouded in clouds the rest of the journey.
Later on after a really brilliant walk on the beach, we came around the corner, the clouds were gone and there it was again in its full splendour.

It is difficult from the photo to get the full scale of mountain. If you look closely you can see the cloud layer. Below is the view from the deck of the house we were staying in, with the sunset changing the snow to pale pink. I think we were very lucky to see this view, usually the mountain is shrouded in cloud and hidden.

Now this is more like it ..........

My brother sent me a lovely box of Christmas goodies, which included mince pies and brandy butter. Now this is much better than boxes of leftover groceries. The best bit is this huge peice of goats cheese. I love goats cheese. And so far I have not found any really good goats cheese here in NZ. There must be some around somewhere. So again thank you Bryan, your gifts are really appreciated.

Not once but twice

My youngests class went to camp this year, it was his first school camping trip. To raise more money they raffled off the left over groceries when they came back. I was persuaded to buy 3 tickets. I was very shocked when we won second and third prize. We now have two boxes of leftover grocieries. Which includes the largest tin of spaghetti you have ever seen. My youngest wants us to sit down for tea and all eat the large tin of spaghetti, hmm I think I will save it for when he has a dozen or so friends over for tea.

Now if you have any ideas of what we should do with all these lovely groceries please leave a comment.

12 December 2009

Where my wild things are........

In the heat of the afternoon its nice to go to the air conditioned movie theatre. Today we went to see "Where the Wild things are". Not what I expected, and not a movie for little kids. It was strange and slow and beautiful. I did not really understand the film until my youngest explained it to me, he got the story straight away, and made the pieces just fall together for me.

Would you believe my two wild things fought too get there picture taken first. The wild thing below looks just a little bit odd.

Summer is here and Christmas is on the way

1st of December and Summer is here. While I was cooking tea it started to get very,very dark. I figured it would be a good idea to feed the guinea pigs now, before the rain started. It was very, very still and very, very hot. The clouds seemed a little confused and were rushing around in circles, I know the feeling. I was caught in a dilemma feed the guinea pigs while it was still dry, or rush in and get my camera to take a picture. You don't get any prizes for guessing what I choose. I got the picture, then the giant drops of rain started to hit the ground. I dumped the camera with one of the kids, and ran to feed the guinea pigs and get the washing in. By the time I got back to the house I was soaked and the thunder had started. Next the wind hit, it seemed to be coming from all sides at once. My youngest ran about in the wind and rain having a great time. I was very tempted to join him, but the tea needed to be finished off.

After the rain the cold air rolled in and stayed for a few days. Summer had arrived and it was freezing, well actually it was 16c, but if felt really cold. Thankfully the cold only lasted a couple of days and then the heat came back (it was 37c in the super market car park yesterday). The Pohutukawa
is in bloom and Christmas is on the way.


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