New Years Eve

I was woken at 5:30am after only 3 hours sleep.
I was not in good shape

Tim was taking most of the crew out mustering so they wanted to get away early to beat the heat.
Rolf hopped on his bike and headed off to Nelson.
I had dropped his pack at the back packers so he only had a light load and was hoping to do the trek in about 6 hours and beat the rain.

I got the 3 or 4 loads of washing underway and on the line.
Kept on trying to get back to bed as I was totally shot.
The musterers all got back.
Nuana offered to clean and make beds at The Croft which I was most appreciative of.

I went to bed and tried to sleep.
Wasn’t terribly successful and I got up feeling even grottier than before.
I decided I needed to take some Panadol but it did nothing

Azzan & Shanni walked around to Bush Inn to visit Arabella and baby Matilda who had arrived on Monday with their Mum and Dad – Charlotte & Mark.

Bri got the troops organised to begin the concreting of the aviary.
First they had to go gather rocks.

Then wheel barrow them around to the aviary.

Then fill the floor area with them.


Bri had already boxed in the outside.


Cranking up the concrete mixer was a team effort.

 

Grace smoothing the cement.
They built bird baths in as they went.
Great job girls

I left Brooke to cook dinner and I went back to bed.
Told Azzan on his 2nd visit to ask me for food that I would deal to him severely if he came near my bedroom again.
Shanni also got the same message – I am sure telling me all about the daily events of her birds is totally imperative, but not today darling!!

I have been told that I haven’t had any photos of Christian so here’s a lovely one of him and Azzan.
It’s hard to catch a photographer in front of a camera!!

It began raining in the early evening.
Not terribly conducive to bonfires and fireworks.
But it was short lived and when I looked out here was Azzan with his toys all set up on the deck.

Serving dinner to the masses is a bit like camp so Brooke handled it all very efficiently.

I was feeling incredibly nauseated by the smells coming from the kitchen so I stayed well clear and took more Panadol.

By the time I made it out to the living room dinner was finished and the party had begun.
Brooke had found the $2 shop and was dishing out funny hats and Azzan got these wonderful glasses that he just thought were the best thing.
He was so giggly with delight when he came to show me.
When you look through them everything sparkles in rainbows.

In amongst all of this I got Cat to try on the clothes I had brought home for her.
The dress was a success – I was so pleased.
So was she – her comment – ‘Now I don’t have to go shopping.’!!
I might get a pic of her at the wedding to show you – doubt very much if I will get one before.

When I got Tim to come look he said she looked stunning.
First time he has seen his daughter in a dress.

I told her she owed me a massage so she immediately rebargained with Phoebe and I ended up with Phoebe giving me the massage.
My neck and shoulder were so sore that the Panadol were just not doing anything.

Phoebe got stuck in and gave me a great working over – it felt so much better afterwards.
This is not the best shot of me but you can see I was not looking good!!

Meanwhile the noisy party was continuing around us.


Spoons was the go and soon everyone was playing a rousing game with great hilarity.
They played it a bit like musical chairs.
Each time someone lost the round they were out and swapped places with the one who was out before.

Around 10pm the bigger ones decided to move the party up the hill.
Tim popped the wee ones to bed and then we hopped into the spa.
I was trying to update this blog before midnight but when the power failed at 11:45pm I called it quits and decided to see the New Year in listening the midnight news.
I woke at the end of it!!

Tuesday at home.

The bay is always changing.
I love these two photos that Shanni took on Tuesday showing the cloud changes.

Tim took Rolf, Christian & Nathan up the hill to dig posts in during the morning.
Cat worked on her yacht – trying to get the water pump functioning.
Bri and the girls carried on building Anson’s deck.

When Mum’s away the cat’s get to play and do all the things I will not allow!!

It was a hot day here – okay Jesika, maybe not as hot as Melbourne, but it was hot for us and I came home to a  lot of sun burned bodies.

Bri and her team dealing with the washing.

Nathan trying to shock us all.

Brooke and Max made it back – yippee!
They have had a week of being total tourists in Chch with Max’s mother.

19 of us here now

Tuesday in town

I took Mahalia & Nicky to Nelson on Tuesday.
We left at 5:45am.

It was a glorious morning to drive out.
The dawn was just breaking as we left.

We were able to drop off tyres to be repaired and dive bottles to be filled before dropping Nick at the bus.
Then we met my cousin Bev & Johnny from Invercargill for breakfast at the Oasis Cafe.

From there we went to Mahalia’s dental appointment.
The technical term for her injury is an Intrusive Luxation.
The prognosis is not looking great.
The tooth has not moved at all.
So we now have to see an orthodontist for treatment.
It looks like it could be on-going and extensive.
From what our dentist has told me and what I have read on the net it is one of the most severe types of dental trauma.

So here begins our New Year with many trips to town.
Oh the joy!!

From that we went and did our other shopping.
Got curtains for Anson’s hut.
Then cuz Hali was so hungry we cruised past the Sushi shop and got her lunch.
She then sat in the back of the fitting room of Max and ate while I tried on heaps of clothes in the hope I could find something for Cat to wear to the weddings.
She had told me absolutely emphatically that there was NO WAY on this planet that she would be taking a special trip out to town JUST to shop for clothes!!
So I figured I would take the mountain to Mohammed!
I finally found two things which I felt may be acceptable.
Mahalia was very pleased to be released from the fitting room.

We then went out to visit Don & Kathy.
Don has just had his 3rd chemo treatment and was not looking at all well.
Good to catch up with them both though.

Then back into Nelson to get groceries etc.
The day was too hot to be leaving too early.
So we went to visit the Winnington family.
Hali wanted to play with Sophie and I got to meet Amy and her man Terence who have just gotten back from Canada.

We then called into see Anson at Gary’s.
Caleb had called on on his way home too so was able to catch up with him which was good.

We finally left at 9pm and headed over the hills with Hali making chicken sandwiches for us to eat as we traveled.

All went well until about 40mins from home I began hearing a strange noise.
Then I stopped and realised I had yet another puncture.
That was all I needed.
I was tired, Mahalia had been sleeping.
We had no cell phone coverage and there was no moon.
I had no torch and the wheel is way too heavy for me to change anyway.
What to do?

I knew I had seen some lights on at one of the baches but didn’t really know in the dark how far it was.
Mahalia didn’t want to stay int he Safari on her own.
So we decided to walk.
The road was light coloured and with the wee bit of light from the cell phone we managed to find our way around the road with out too many stumbles.
Then we could see the lights but couldn’t work out how to get down to them.
We found a letter box so followed the track below that and found ourselves at a shed.
So back up to the road some talk about which way to go.
Back we walked and Mahalia spotted where a track went down so we stumbled along, climbed over a gate and skidded down a track to the house which at 11:30pm was still thankfully well lit up.

We had to bang on the door and call out a few times before we got a response.
I asked if they had a phone and explained my predicament.
Soon I had 2 young strong guys taking control of the situation.
They loaded us into their truck, took all the gear they might need and took us back to the Safari.
They had the tyre changed in no time.

That is the 3rd flat tyre on the Safari in a year.
Plus in the past 2 months we have had 1 in the Terrano and 1 in Anson’s truck and I had 2 tyres on board that I had gotten fixed for others.
Whatever they are surfacing our road with at the moment is not impressing me!

We finally got home just before 1am.
Mahalia was in bed very quickly, but I was so hot and sticky I hopped into the spa to unwind.
Got quite a fright when Tim all of a sudden appeared.
So we wallowed in the warmth and caught up on the days happenings before crashing into bed about 1:30am.

Last fishing/camping trip of 2008

I was trying to get my 2008 blog all finished last night and at quarter to midnight the power went off – just for a second, but long enough to shut down the computer.
I took that as a sign that I should go to bed

So here are my last entries for the old year.

This is a photographic story from Shanni’s camera telling about their last camping trip for 2008.

They left home on a lovely sunny Sunday afternoon.
Stopped for fish in Stephen’s passage.
Tim’s comment was that it was great fishing – everyone on board caught a decent fish.
The cod were coming up two at a time.


Leeann with a smile

Leeann with Azzan.


Fishing at The Sisters.
Quite a decent chop on the water.

They camped up in Port Hardy.
4 slept on board ’88 South’ the remaining 12 slept under the trees, under the stars.
No tents for this hardy bunch.


Azzan exploring in his pjs and gumboots!

This is the reason I packed his oldest rattliest pair pf pjs!

There were bodies strewn all around the camp fire.

Unfortunately the mosquitoes found them.
We don’t normally have any problem with mossies so they were not prepared at all.
Not much sleep was had by the onshore campers that night.
They were all very ready for dawn and rescue from the nasty blighters!

 
Bri pondering the morning.


The ones sleeping on the boat had no problems sleeping at all so didn’t hurry ashore.
 


Captain’s finally come ashore for breakfast.

Looks like the cook has quite a gourmet affair going on here.


The weary morning campers after a sleepless night.


Then it was time to load ALL the gear back onto the boat again.


A baby barracuda – pity they don’t stay cute – nasty horrid fish they are.


I am sure Leeann was not the only person fishing – just looks like she got in the way of Shanni’s camera the most.
Or is it that she was the most photogenic of them all?


An interesting place to sit Anson.


Two at a time again – this time Maori Chiefs.


Back to The Sisters.
This time to drop off the rock climbers.


Cat, Bri & Leeann.
This is a favourite place to scale the heights while the rest of the crew wallow around in the boat waiting…and waiting…and hopefully fishing.


Oops!

And then it is time to go home.
The lack of sleep is telling on everyone now and there are bodies strewn all around the boat.

I think Christian got the most uncomfortable spot despite it being quiet and out of everyone’s way.


Home at 6ish and time to unload all the gear and unpack and transport it all back to the correct places.

I had dinner all ready for them.
For some reason not many were terribly keen on eating fish – again!

I had gotten word during the afternoon that one of our neighbours had just died from a heart attack.
Len was just a year older than me so it was a real shock to us all.
It was also only 2 months since the death of his own father.

His son shears for Anson’s boss so Anson was asked to come out and help for a couple of days to give Caleb some time to deal with the loss of his Dad.

So Anson was flat out helping to unpack camping stuff and then packing up to head out to town for two days work.

For me, the day hurridly changed from one of peace, quiet and tranquility to one of noise, hustle and bustle.

Thank you Lord for giving me 24 hours respite I needed amongst it all.

A fantastically warmishly hot type of day.

Today was hot.
In fact it got hot very early.

Tim and I woke as the sun was dawning over the hills so hopped into the spa to enjoy the early morning solitude and chat while we had peace and quiet and no interruptions.

Then He & Seb left at 6:30am to go get a load of fuel from Elaine Bay.
Christian & Alan went oyster harvesting for the morning.
Cat & Anson were up at 7am cuz Rolf wanted to get work started at 7:30am.
He’s a keen man.
Eare & Nuana also left for Nelson at 8am.

The children and Nick and Nate appeared at a normal hour and the girls all emptied out of their tent and trailed in slowly for breakfast.
Azzan was the last to surface – he needs time in the mornings to wake and get into the day.

By the time Azzan woke the day was already rather warm.
He wandered about in a bit of a daze and I had quite a job to get him to have breakfast.
I talked to him about how important it is to keep drinking water on these hot days.
He came inside and commented rather sagely about the fickle weather.
‘Yesterday it was Antarctica here and to day it is Africa.’!!!

Bri instigated an early morning swim.
It was already very warm so it wasn’t too hard to find eager beavers to accompany her.

This rather large boat/gin palace came in last night and moored up across the bay.
It was way too hot for the swimmers to want a spa this morning.
Only Hali wallowed in there.
The rest decorated the deck in lazy repose.

While just below Rolf was slogging away digging post holes so Cat could build some stock blocking fences.

When the sheep won’t stay out of the garden Tim finds various gates and cages to block their access routes.
Cat decided they look awful and she has now built some much nicer wooded fences.

I did a bit of baking after breakfast.
Made some gluten free brownie and banana loaf for Rolf, Cat, Leeann & Tim and some flapjack slice for the rest of the crew.

Up the hill there was a hive of activity.

Cat and Anson were building the decking for his hut.
Anson is no builder so it was funny watching him getting frustrated with the nails that would not go in straight!!
But he was persevering so that was the main thing.

You get a fantastic view from up there.

Many workers and many sightseers.

Azzan went for a swing in the cool of the gum tree.

There is a wonderful rose growing on the way back down to the house.
It has become very big and bushy and the scent is just wonderful.
 

The bees were very busy working in it this morning.

Tim got home just on midday.
Seb took off to town with Matt to pick up his ‘new’ car.
He has bought a 1984 Mitsubishi Tredia this time.

Then the big decision was made to go to D’Urville Island camping.
So the next 3 hours were occupied with lunch and packing food and sleeping bags for everyone.

Nuana arrived back at 3pm so they all boarded and were away soon after.
They should have a glorious couple of days – all 16 of them!

I was left literally to fed the baby.
Shanni wasn’t going to go but we managed to talk her into it cuz I promised to take good care of her baby and the rest of her birds.

I was rather weary and had a snooze on the sofa before they left.
As soon as they were gone I put my feet up and watched a stupid movie while I had a late lunch.
Won’t even bother talking about that one!

Jenna, Sam and baby Anika arrived at 6pm with brother Shae.
So I got them all organised up in Graham’s abode.
Then I got stuck in and finally cleaned up my bedroom.
I needed to actually sort out clothes and hang some, fold a lot and wash a lot more of Tim’s that I found in the pile!
I am now feeling inspired to get into my art corner – now that I can find it

I popped down to the wharf to rescue a pair of oars I saw floating in the tide – some folk are not terribly reliable when borrowing things.

Then it was feeding time for the baby and my dinner.
I have just watched ‘My Brilliant Career.’
It was really good.
Certainly portrayed the lives and times of early Australia well.

Time for a quick spa and off to bed with my book.

Ah! The bliss of being able to do what I want when I want

The Rest of Today :-)

It has been a busy day here.
People everywhere.

Rolf spent the morning cleaning out the yards.
They had filled up during the last rains and were quite yucky.
With more shearing happening and tourists in the Cottage it was essential to get it all cleaned out.
 
Thanks for helping him Bri.

He then helped Christian who is repairing and strengthening a picnic table which Tim has had on the to-do list for about 3 years!!

There has been lots of swimming today.
Shanni kindly reused wet togs exclaiming how yucky it was to put wet togs back on but doing it to save washing – sweet thoughtful child.

The young ones just love having their big sisters home.
Bri is a water baby so they get to swim with her a lot.


Tim & Anson in the boat shed contemplating the launch.


Mahalia having her first ride on Alibi.


Azzan in his own wee world.


Seb & Nick doing a bit more to the aviary.
It is making progress – just slow!
Skate boarding is so much more interesting and fun
It is nearly ready for the concreting which Bri will hopefully get time to do.


The Shanarazzi!!


Pohutukawa – NZ’s Christmas tree.
Who needs one inside when we have such glory outside our front door?

Alan asked Tim to baptise him this week.
So after quite a long chat with him and a few others we headed down to the beach.


Shanni & Alan pondering things while we waited on Tim who had gotten side-tracked with another visitor!!


Bri and Tim did the deed together.
It was very appropriate as Bri was the first one to give Alan a bible several years ago.

Alan with his 3 children.
Nuana, Michael and Matthew.


I like this shot that Shanni took.


Bri, Nuana, me, Phoebe & Alan just before we headed up to find dry and warm clothes.

Willie, Grace & Emma arrived mid afternoon.
So we are now 18 here.

They are putting the tent up as I speak.
Willie and I thought it would be a bit nicer than dossing in the woolshed like Bri was proposing.

I have made a humungous pot of sausage and tomato goulash to have for dinner with brown rice and salad.
Should keep the masses tummy’s full.

Tim & Anson are out mustering.
The Cottage guests arrived this arvo too.
The Croft and Lodge folk arrived yesterday.
So all our accommodation units are full at the moment.

I am off to serve dinner to whoever I can find that is hungry.
An early morning coming up so better try and get some of them off to bed sooner than later.

Alibi is launched – without champange!


Leeann and Cat levering it out of the shed.
Cat waited for Tim to be with her just in case.
But it all went very smoothly

Seb and Phoebe – doing the paparazzi thing for me.

Inching it’s way carefully down the rails.


The royal crew!

Giving her a few helping shoves to get her off the trolley.


Just a few more pushes Cat, just one more……


Cat woman! 

Bring her in fellas!

Captain Cat.

Ship’s cat.

The crew is still aboard.

She’s under way – at long last.

 
Nuana coming to watch the proceedings.

Oops! A slight problem.
Mechanical breakdown.

Just as well Ans & Bri were handy to tow her in again.

Alibi is sitting nicely on the mooring tonight.
Looks like a bit more work to do but she was travelling in the water under her own steam for the first time in years!!

  Well done Cat