Tuesday 30th October

 

 

 

I had a schedule to keep to throughout the day so I was up and in the shower at 7am.

The children were good, they were all fed and ready to leave the house by 8:30 – earlier than I had requested.

We went into the city and got our early morning starters – while I got frappaccinos at Starbucks for Mahalia & myself, Shanni walked around to Colombos Coffee and picked up a Chai Chiller & Azzan’s Lemon & Lime Chiller.

Interesting taste differences eh?

 

Then we headed to Stoke.

Stopped in at Mr Music’s to pick up one of the guitars he had mended.

Then dropped Mahalia & Azzan off at Sasha’s work.

They were doing some volunteer work with her for the morning.

She is the day care manager for the elderly folk who come in from the community to have a few hours out of their homes and enjoy community interaction.

Shanni & I had half an hour up our sleeves before her guitar lesson so we popped in to find the Jellico outlet factory at the Wakatu Estate that I had just heard about the night before.

It was a superb place to loose a few hours in.

I had to leave to take Shanni to her guitar lesson.

It was her first lesson with Phil at Phil’s Guitar Studio so I went in and met him and made sure all was well.

He was highly recommend by our friend Neville aka Mr Music.

When I picked her up later she was very happy with her lesson and is looking forward to her next one so that is great.

 

I zipped back to Jellicoe to carry on trying clothes and sussing fabrics.

Had to drop everything again to go get Shanni only to find she had walked the wrong way and was at the Richmond Mall.

So went there to get her and pick up my sandals that I had left with Mr Minit as he was trying to stretch them some more.

He was away from his kiosk for 10mins and Shanni couldn’t find me so it took a wee while to get back to Jellicoe.

Shoes couldn’t be stretched enough so he didn’t charge me – lovely man happy

 

I had found several lengths of fabric and organised for the lady at Jellicoe to make them up into a couple of tunics.

Bought one tunic which I loved.

We headed back towards town as the morning was disappearing.

Called it to see Anat briefly at Crusoe’s and pick up some of her natural product which I am trialing.

I was really hungry by then so grabbed a deliciously fresh ‘melt in your mouth’ bacon and vege muffin to munch on as I drove.

Then as it was close to midday and Sasha had a meeting at 12 we picked up the kids.

They had really enjoyed their morning and Mahalia especially wants to go back so Sasha and I are going to try and make it work for her to volunteer on a regular basis.

We went into the city centre and the children got hot potatoes for lunch.

I left Shanni & Azzan with Katherine to go op shopping.

They love finding bargains for just a few dollars.

Azzan was excited as hadn’t been op shopping before and he wanted to get some shorts, he is growing so much his clothes are getting smaller by the day!

I dropped Mahalia up to spend the arvo with Sophie then I headed over to meet Denise for lunch in a wee lunch bar in Vanguard st.

She only gets half and hour for lunch so we needed to be close to her work.

It was great to have a catch up with her as it has been several years since we touched base.

 

I then parked up in the city centre and met Phoebe.

She had come in to help me decide on a ‘mother-of-the-bride’ dress I had found the previous day.

It was gorgeous but very expensive and the sales lady was quite pushy so I wanted some back up help!!

We had a try on and Phoebe took photos and then we left to think about it.

Headed across the road and upstairs to Leeanne Anderson’s workroom at 128 Hardy St.

She does alterations and dressmaking.

I am so pleased to have discovered her and thoroughly recommend her.

She is lovely and has a great eye and is very relaxed in her approach and talented .

I tried on my dress that she is altering and between her, me and Phoebe we got it sorted to where it actually looks great happy

Then I showed her the photos of the dress I was deliberating about and got her view on it.

Phoebe needed to have some sustenance to we headed to Starbucks and sat in the cool and had a drink and a chat.

Mahalia & Sophie called in.

I had okayed them to have an hour of shopping after Sophie’s music lessons so they were happy girls.

Then Shanni popped in to say hi, she had taken Azzan back to the house and he was entertaining Margaret, Amy & Terence!

Katherine had half an hours work to do so Shanni did a tad more shopping.

By this time it was close to 4pm so Phoebe headed home to rest and I zipped up to see Hitomi and have a fringe trim.

I so hate getting ‘wool-blind’ bummed

I showed her the photos of the dress and was glad to get her perspective, decided not to go back and layby it and to look around some more.

I called into Farmers and found some tops and leggings on sale.

Zipped into the public bathrooms, changed and freshened up for the evening.

Got to Nelson Beauty Therapy just after 5pm to spend the next couple of hours celebrating Bedelia and staff’s 1 year with Dermalogica.

It was a lovely evening.

The room was jam packed with a real assortment of ladies from all walks and stations of life.

We enjoyed drinks and delicious nibbles.

Some of us wandered through to have free neck massages.

Others had face mapping done, and others availed themselves of the wonderful special deals on for the night.

Lots of talking, a couple of short talks from the Dermalogica ladies who had flown down from Auckland.

I think I finally left sometime after 7pm.

It was still warm and balmy outside.

I found the children enjoying each others company.

Before I packed them into the Safari they were doing their rendition of Gangnam Style outside in the glow of the later evening setting sun.

I had to capture the essence of the evening – their crazy wild free spirits – so cool – hope they never loose them laughing

 

Their older sisters were far too grown up and mature to be seen to be so crazy out there

 

We called in to the supermarket on the way to the house.

Despite having had dinner they were now hungry again!!

By the time they had unpacked the car, eaten food, got themselves sorted, I finally managed to get them into bed sometime before 10pm.

I couldn’t get the tv working properly so watched the news through snow!

Then headed off to bed.

I was going to blog last night but xanga would not work.

Only discovered this morning that it is based in New York and the storms there had probably knocked out their ability to function!

 

 

 

 

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Monday 29th October

 

 

 

Don’t know why I bother to set my alarm clock.

I was awake at 4:37am!

Nearly half an hour before I needed to get up.

So I had plenty of time to get ready before waking the children at 5:30am.

Azzan didn’t need to be woken either, he was up not too long after me.

Tim still had a few things to gather to send out so it did take till 6am to get the Safari packed up.

We stopped off to pick up Graham.

Then we trundled off to town.

I haven’t driven the ‘tank’ for quite some time, months in fact so it took a wee while to feel comfortable.

We arrived at Seb’s at 8:30am – made good time even though we weren’t rushing it.

We unloaded all the tools.

Shanni headed to the shower and Graham & Seb were straight into work.

Graham was there purely in an advisory role, helping Seb get the job underway.

I left Azzan there too and Mahalia came with me.

We had time to get ourselves frappaccinos  I zipped to the bank to get a proof of account for Shanni.

Fueled up with diesel as we were pretty close to empty.

It’s always a shock filling up the Safari as it’s tank is so big!

Then we headed over to Tahaunanui and chilled out at Muratai Motordrome while they did the WoF on the Safari.

Half an hour later we were chugging back over the hill to town – all was good so passed with no hassles.

We took a bit of a tiki tour, I thought if I turned right at the roundabout at the top of Moana Drive that we could get down into Toi Toi St.

But we found ourselves at a dead end in a new subdivision called Tasman Heights.

It was pretty cool up there so we enjoyed the views and dreamed about living up there as we drove back.

On checking out the real estate for the area tonight the prices for houses up there are in the vicinity of half a mill so I will continue dreaming  bummed

 

We found our way back down the hill to Toi Toi St via Abraham Heights and this time found the right route.

I left Mahalia to have her harp lesson while I headed into the city centre to do the running around jobs.

Posted mail, then took Shanni’s wage forms to ACC for the home help work she is doing for Graham.

The info the bank had given me was not acceptable so I had to go back there and get a different form.

Then I had to go to the IRD to ascertain what tax rate Shanni should be on.

Picked Mahalia up from music.

Then we got hot potatoes for everyone and drove back to Seb & Phoebe’s.

Leon had arrived and it was full on activity as the guys got the beams into place.

Seb had removed the wall between the kitchen and living room a few months ago and Graham had milled up these lovely solid beams to frame the gap with.

Graham was finding it very hard to stick to his ‘advisory’ role!

We were constantly telling him to back off, to stop doing this and that!!

His walking stick came in handy as he directed the proceedings laughing

The side beams just finished it all off nicely.

 

We ate our lunch, loaded apples and kiwifruit onboard that Leon had brought over, unloaded the boxes of carrots Phoebe had brought up from Chch for me and then I took the kids and left.

Leon took Graham over to Motueka for a couple fo nights so he can visit his chiropractor.

I dropped the children at the library for an hour while I went back to ACC with all the right info.

Then I had a wee wander and sussed out some dresses before going to pick up the kids.

We went back to Annemieke’s to drop off some fruit.

Drove out to Richmond.

Left the kids at Andrea & Ross’ for their piano lessons while I went to the mall.

Met up with Johanna and unloaded some more fruit.

Went to Mr Minit to get my sandals I had left there to be stretched.

Becky & Abe were shopping so I arranged to go back and have a cuppa once I was finished.

The shoes needed a tad more stretching so left them till tomorrow.

It was lovely to have a relaxing catch up chat with Becky and Bronwyn.

I hadn’t managed to catch up with Bronwyn since Doug died last year so it was extra good to have some time with her.

At 5pm I whizzed back to pick up the kids.

Andrea & Ross loaded a very large bag of agapanthus bulbs into the truck so I guess we will be planting when we get home!

Azzan was giving hugs before we left.

Ross reciprocated with a big squeezy-tight bear hug.

So when we did actually leave he went to give Andrea a hug and told her he could’nt hug Ross cuz he squeezed the breath out of him.
She said ‘he does that to me too’.

Azzan said he shouldn’t cuz she was too delicate pleased

 

We headed to David & Sasha’s for a visit.

Bought fish & chips and burgers and had our dinner with them.

It was lovely to sit outside and relax in the cool of the evening after such a warm day.

The temps had gotten to at least 22’C – which is warm for us at this time of year.

Just pleasant actually.

But by 8:30pm it had cooled down heaps so I was glad of a blanket to wrap around me to ward off the evening cool.

We headed away around 9pm as we were all getting rather weary.

Nathan was here to great us as we trailed in the door with our bags and sleeping gear.

The kids were in bed fairly quickly and I watched TV with Natey for a wee while.

It was a busy day but not stressful at all which was great.

 

 

 

 

Sunday 28th October

 

 

 

I got up around 6am and made some cards

I am enjoying doing more artwork these days.

I don’t feel nearly as stressed as I have been which is really good.

PTSD is nasty, but it is great to be getting therapy for it and learning how to cope and overcome.

 

When I had finished making my cards I taught Ellie how to do them as she wanted to make some for her parents.

She had lots of fun and spent ages creating a couple of lovely cards.

Mahalia also made a special card for a special person.

 

It was raining this morning so Tim went around to get Graham.

It took quite a while for them to come back – men talk apparently!

I made roast pumpkin, feta & spinach gluten free muffins.

We sat around the table and had fellowship while we devoured them for lunch.

It was a good time.

Lots of questions from Ellie so a really good discussion all round.

 

After lunch Graham walked home.

Tim went to cut down the mutton he had killed the other day.

Then he got the Safari ready for me to take to town for a WoF.

He and Graham got power tools etc ready for us to take out to Sebastian as well.

 

I made a large dish of aubergine stack for dinner.

Instead of making individual ones I just layered them in a large casserole dish.

Then I sat and enjoyed Azzan’s foot massage.

While my feet were soaking in the foot spa he proceeded to get his spray bottle out and gave my legs a good wash and massage and then massaged all sorts of creams into them.

It was lovely.

But then he decided he was going to get a large bowl of water and wash my hair!

The first bowl he spilt across the carpet.

The 2nd he had to tip out cuz by then I realised what he was planning and as I had just washed my hair this morning I didn’t really want it done again!

He wasn’t too happy about that so he packed up everything and let me paint my own nails clueless

 

Tim was really weary today but he had a lot to do so never got the arvo nap he wanted.

He is still going.

He went out to get some mussels for us to take to town and Mahalia popped around with Skip to see Olly.

We are off to town early tomorrow so I was really hoping for an early dinner and night but that is not happening.

 

When I went out to the kitchen to get dinner turned back on again I found the crew on the floor doing pilates.

They are really getting into it now they have found the dvds laughing

 

 

 

The aubergine stack was absolutely delicious and everyone enjoyed it.

I have quickly tucked kids into bed.

Tim has just finished getting everything ready and now I am off to pack some clothes.

Weather forecast looks warm so I guess I should dig out some spring clothing.

The weather is just so fickle at the moment I never know what to take!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Saturday 27th October

 

 

 

Lovely dawn clouds this morning as I went out to the spa.

Tim took the 3 girls mustering.

The mustered Charlie’s into Zed Block.

That took them all morning.

 

Azzan got stuck in and did a heap of Maths.

Then he spent ages on the computer putting together his projects for his GO school work.

 He also did a good amount of piano practise while I made a few cards.

 

Shanni is learning how to use the weedeater.

It is interesting watching her after the boys years of doing this job.

Cat does the job really well so it has been quite noticeable that the boys do it in a very rip tear and bust way which leaves the lawns very ho hum!

Shanni is being very careful to do it right.

Is it a girl thing??

 

Shanni went around to cook Graham’s dinner.

He was up the hill with a friend helping to get some timber sorted.

He reckoned it was the most frustrating thing not to be able to do anything.

He just had to point with his walking stick and direct the guy as to what to take.

 

Dinner was roast mutton chops.

Very delicious – nothing like bones to turn my crew into a pack of carnivores!!

 

Azzan came to me in in the evening and asked if ‘I have been better today?’

He had consciously been trying which I hadn’t been aware of, so I was very proud of him when I realised that we had had no dramas all day.

I went to bed around 8:30pm and watched a movie.

The Vow.

It was really lovely.

Based on a true story.

 

 

 

 

Friday 26th October

 

Another chilly-ish breezy blue sky day.

Tim took Shanni & Ellie out mustering straight after breakfast.

Apparently it all went well.

Shoshannah took all these photos below.

Shoshannah mustering with Bear.

Firebug Timmy at it again!!

Burning off fern.

Look who found a sookie happy

 

 

 

I got baking after I had my spa.

I didn’t intend to bake but when I went out to get a banana for my breakfast I found several that needed using so I proceeded to make a very large banana cake.

I had to triple the recipe to fit the baking dish.

It turned out really good.

Then Mahalia decided to sort out all the bottles of flavourings and colours and candles.

They were in a right pickle.

She chose raspberry flavouring for the icing.

Then we scattered pretty prissy pink sprinkles all over it.

Everyone thought it was a birthday cake!!

While it was baking I made a bacon & egg pie.

I haven’t made on in years so skipped onto the net to suss out a recipe.

After looking at a couple I decided it was easy peasy and I would just do it myself.

I put bacon, eggs, onion, cold potato, parsley, peas in it.

It was pronounced delicious by Tim and the girls at lunch time.

I had enough pastry left over to make another small pie so I filled it with veges and feta.

It was delicious.

 

After lunch Tim took Azzan & Mahalia up the hill when he went to open gates.

It was great to get some quiet in the house.

I lay down in the sun on the floor of my art corner and stretched out flat to unwind all the aching muscles.

Shannie had a rest too.

Ellie spent her day in the garden, tidying up the bank behind the house.

I decided it was time I got back on the treadmill so after my rest I rolled off the floor and got walking.

Had only done about a third of my workout when the phone went.

It was Sebastian so I ended up having a long chat with him which was really good.

Never got back onto the treadmill as it was time to get dinner cooked.

Tim took Hali around to see Olly and replenish his water supply while I was getting onto it.

I had a chicken in the slow cooker and veges were done fast so we had an early dinner for once.

I think we ate at 6pm – miraculous!

Then after dinner he went around to put Alan’s boat back in the water.

Azzan & Mahalia took a wad of newspaper & matches and a good supply of marshmallows so they could light up a bonfire around at the slip and do some marshmallow toasting for dessert.

 

I was planning an early night but have gotten tied up with messages and phone calls.

 

 

Thursday 25th October

 

 

 

 

Azzan was on the computer early so he could get his school project done and be ready for his 9am Skype session.

I left him to it and spent time talking with Tim in the study.

Because of that I didn’t get to the shower quick enough this morning and for the second time in a week I had a tepid shower bummed

Azzan did is own photos and prose for his Nature & Design paper.

He did it on Buttercups and Mint.

It was very imaginative and as his teacher said – definitely smacked of 10 year old boy stuff!

 

Later, while I ate my breakfast I got Azzan & Mahalia onto some maths.

That proved to be rather tedious.

She wasn’t really in a maths mood so ended up disappearing off to do music practice.

He really wasn’t of the mind to be concentrating.

In fact most of today proved to be rather challenging where he was concerned.

 

I placated Azzan a little and spent time playing hangman with him to make the math lesson not so tedious.

Then I read another chapter of Mathematicians are People too.

It was about Hypatia.

It is a great book – a brilliant buy.

The kids really enjoy it.

We side tracked a tad and sussed out the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World as Hypatia lived near the Lighthouse of Alexandria.

Shanni had a wee melt down at the same time.

So with 10 year olds and 15 year olds I was over kids by midday!

Azzan and Ellie helped me make pizza for lunch.

I made Shanni and Tim some rice & bacon stirfry for lunch as they don’t eat wheat.

I managed to get my lunch around mid afternoon!

 

Mahalia is also sorting out her room and has decided to move into her high bunk above the door.

That means her bed is superfluous and she wants it out to give her more room for other stuff.

So now I have to figure out where to stash it.

She disappeared off up the hill with Tim & Ellie this arvo to muster stock.

Shanni went around to cook Graham’s dinner and brought his washing home.

She then spent time relaxing in bed watching a movie.

 

I am trying a new managing/coping strategy with Azzan – non reactionary!

He doesn’t like it winky

He wants me to make decisions for him but no answers I give are ever what he wants to hear so I just tell him to go sort himself out and ignore him until the behaviour is positive and pleasant.

 Finally tonight it worked.

He actually got his room cleaned up, did some piano practice and then came and apologised and gave me a hug.

 

I had enough of Azzan by 4pm so refused to listen to another word from him and disappeared into my art corner and buried myself in my book.

Finished ‘Flywheel‘.

It was an easy read and really good message.

Tim didn’t get back from mustering until quite late and then had to go down to the woolshed to sort out some health issues with a sheep so dinner was not until around 8pm.

Then just as I was serving the food he was called to the phone.

But the news was good – in fact the news was great, so he was let off being late to eat with us pleased

Then after dinner he had to make several other calls so it is now 10pm and he is only just snuggling the kids into bed.

No evening left for us – so love daylight saving hours – not!

 

I have had a few spare moments to get some cards done.

Here are a few baby cards I made over the past couple of days.

There seems to be a rush on boys at the moment and I had run out of boy cards.

And one I made tonight – obviously not a baby card winky

 

 

 

 

Wednesday 24th October

 

 

 

Despite the late night Tim & I were awake early.

We had a quiet half hour to talk a few things over.

It is about the only uninterrupted time of the day we ever get whatevah

 

I did some maths with Azzan and then read him and Mahalia a story about Archimedes.

They are really enjoying the stories of Mathematicians.

Phillipa called me back just as I was beginning to read the 2nd story so I got a reprieve.

We chatted for a while and then I got some lunch happening.

Tim beat me to it and had his all cooking before I got out there.

He’s just far too slick!

 

Mahalia & Azzan both are in the midst of yet another room sort and move around of furniture.

I sometimes wish that all the furniture was nailed to the floor.

 

Tim was fixing one of the trailers which took quite a while this morning.

While he did that Shanni was doing her birds and other jobs.

 

After lunch Tim took the girls up the hill to kill a sheep.

They delivered all Graham’s groceries to him.

Then Shanni cooked dinner for him on the way back.

 

I cleaned out the living room fire.

It was really full and choked up with ash.

Then I managed to get that fire going quite successfully.

But I just couldn’t get the kitchen stove going.

Gave up on that and had a chat on the phone with Chrissy after Asher & Azzan had finished talking.

Ellie gave the shelves in the washhouse a really good tidy up.

It all looks so perfect now I am afraid to touch anything!

The children were in a fairly rambunctious boisterous mood at dinner.

While I was making smoothies for dessert Shanni & Azzan had a ‘fight’.

I had to laugh when I saw the wall hanging they were fighting under laughing

Resorting to hair pulling

and nose twisting – the play is getting dirty now!!

Thankfully they both stayed pretty much unharmed and were able to enjoy their smoothies.

And Shanni wasn’t injured so she was able to wash the dishes.

Time for bed now methinks.

Am slightly tired.