Monday 30th March

I woke at 2:30am and didn’t fall back asleep until nearly 4am.
So when Mahalia knocked on my door at 7am to see if she could go for a walk down to Founders I wasn’t awake.
I was so groggy I would’ve agreed to anything!
She went for a walk and Shanni sorted Caspian and made breakfast.
I staggered out and was still in my dressing gown when Anson called by.
He only stopped for a few minutes so we talked over the fence.
I had a shower was feeling slightly better but my elbow is now really painful.
Seems the whole left side of me is affected and aching :-/
I had promised Jesika that I would go see a Dr but when I finally managed to phone I discovered our Dr was full today and tomorrow they were shut all day for the transitioning to a new combined medical centre.
Marah phoned for a chat.
She bought this cute onsie for Eden’s 2nd b’day but had to give it to her now cuz it is so cuddly – cannot believe she will be 2years old in just two months time!
Marah agreed with Jesika that I should be seeing someone so I finally called The Doctors and got an appointment at 11:45pm.
That gave me half an hour to suss kids, eat breakfast and get down there.
I left Mahalia cutting up a box of blackbody peaches that Marah had given us last week.
The Dr I saw was really lovely and I immediately burst into tears when she asked me what happened.
She gave me a thorough check over.
She seems to think I have severely strained or torn my pectoral, axilla and thoracic muscles, sprained my elbow and done some damage to my neck, hip and foot.
This is the bruising under & slightly behind my left armpit.
She gave me a referral to a physic and some anti inflammatories.
Before I went into the Dr I got a text from Mahalia asking if she could go to the movies with Sophie.
I asked if Azzan could go to and she said that was all fine.
Then after I left the surgery I discovered that things had turned to custard and Azzan had returned home and was really upset.
I was so torn as to what to do as I had 2 more appointments and several things to fit in amongst all of this and couldn’t get back home.
So I text Charlotte and she popped down to see him.
He was okay, she took him chocolate and spent some time with him and he eventually text me apologising for over reacting and that the chocolate was good 🙂
I had time to go to the pharmacy and get my script filled.
While I waited I talked to the naturopath and she suggested some arnica and natural anti inflammatories to take so I got them as well.
I headed to SASH to sign my contract and pick up my pager, ID and bag.
Officially I am on call on Friday and Saturday but if something happens before then I could get called in.
I went to the Sports Physiotherapists to to see if they wanted to see me immediately or after the bruising has settled, I made an appointment for tomorrow.
I was a couple of minutes late for my counselling session because I had a heap of paperwork to fill in.
It was good to talk about what had happened and why I haven’t been able to stop crying.
I’ve been feeling like such a baby, but she explained that I was in shock still and how much trauma my body has been through, and also that the effects accumulate each time.
Plus this was a major whammy for me because it involved a vehicle, a family member and it happened at home.
Three extremely vulnerable points for me historically.
Seems like I spent most of my day in tears 😦

As I was leaving Shanni text to say she was on her way into Nelson so I swung by and picked her up.
She wanted to show my the jeans she had found so we sidetracked to Amazon and then to Jeans West.
She finally found a pair she liked and while she was doing that I saw a couple of tops which I fell in love with and they looked good so I go them too.
From there we zipped over to pick up a poster I was having framed and then home.
Unfortunately I got her to reply to a text from Azzan and she didn’t realise he was not in a good place and she went a bit overboard with her joshing’ and he got really upset with her.
So when we arrived home he was not in a good place.
I sat outside and hugged him and had a long talk.
He was happy that Charlotte wants to go to the movies with him sometime and that she is available if he ever needs her.
Such a wonderful backstop for me, I hate leaving him alone.
He then went off to the park for a while.
He likes to go there and listen to his podcasts and swing when he needs the space.
Mahalia was back and reclining on her bed doing maths with Caspian curled up beside her 🙂
I left Shoshannah making dinner and went to drop off some things to Milo for Phillipa.
He had just returned home from overseas so it was lovely to chat with him and meet Kimberly.
We talked longer than I planned so when I got back Azzan was home and doing maths.
And he was starving, and so was I!
We all sat round the table tonight and had a good talk.
It was very timely and very necessary.
Sometimes we get so busy just existing we forget to live and share and care.
After dinner Shanni went off to finish packing for camp and I went outside to show Mahalia and Azzan what I need help with.
Because I have hurt myself I have been feeling really frustrated at not being able to do all the outside jobs I want to get done.
I can see the days shortening, feel the air temps lowering, and the need to get the plants dug in.
Mahalia is keen to help plant the hydrangeas and work with me to get the rest of the garden planted.
Now she knows what needs to be done she said she will carry on with the job.
Azzan really got into the zone tonight and picked and pruned the bottom of the fig tree.
While I was out today he had pulled off several lots of brush from the side fence and he is going to continue with that job, plus he wants to weed & sweep the driveway and tidy round the woodpile and mow the lawns.
The ants have to be sprayed as well, just hoping I can mange that job.
When the kids are on deck with me things go really well.
Mahalia made a semolina custard and we ate it with black boy peaches she had cooked up this morning.
While Shanni and I talked at the table the two kids were having an immense amount of fun out on the lawn in the dark.
I finally had to suggest around 9pm that we had neighbours and they might like to quieten down a tad so they figured it was time to come inside.
When Azzan went to bed he wanted me to tuck him in.
He was in such a giggly mood, telling me he was so happy 🙂
He couldn’t tell me why.
Such a change from this afternoon.
I told him there was no way he could ever complain again about living in a house full of hormonally challenged females because he was worse  than us all put together!!!



Sunday 29th March

We had a very quiet day today.

I stayed in bed until late.
Shanni made smoothies for breakfast.
Mahalia was up and being very industrious.
She has done so much today.
Cleaned out the kitchen cupboards & fridge and tidied the whole kitchen and linen cupboard.
All the kids have cleaned up their rooms.
The girls are doing a big clothing dejunk which is great.
Shanni has cottoned on to selling her things online 🙂
She went off for a bike ride into town, searching for the perfect fitting jeans but returned empty handed.
That type of jeans are rather elusive 😦
She has been packing for Easter Camp throughout the day and Azzan is getting his bag packed for CEF camp in a couple of weeks.
I did some puppy training this arvo, he is responding well.
Mahalia made lunch.
We watched ‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower‘ while eating.
Nathan popped in to drop off some bedding.
He is full scale dejunking too cuz he can’t take much with him to Germany.
Finished watching the movie.
It was really good – have to agree with Azzan, it deserves a high rating.
It had the potential just before the end to be a tragedy but it was turned around.
Loved it.
Excellent movie – well worth a watch.
Mahalia cooked Pad Thai for dinner.
It was good.
It began showering while the dinner was being prepared.
Nek minit there were two darlings out rain bathing on the lawn.

Got a text this evening from Jesika to say they had arrived safely back in the Land of Oz so thats all good 🙂
And now I am in bed with a hottie on my shoulder and it is not even 8pm!
Am so incredibly weary today/tonight.
Been good to go nowhere and see no-one for a day.

Saturday 28th March

We had a v-e-r-y slow start to the day.
No one was keen to get up or out of their pjs.
Mid morning I heard a males voice, but I never heard any response so I wandered out to see what was going on.
Martin was at the door with stuff for Shoshannah!
He’d had a late night too but that doesn’t keep a good man down!!
I found the girls all in Mahalia’s bed going through the photos of yesterday 🙂
I took Caspian for a walk about in his new harness and lead which we have just received from Laura at Dogs of Desire.
I chose the fabric and gave her the measurements and she made it to fit.
It is so cute.
The fabric is the coloured dots from The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
Only he wouldn’t sit still long enough to get a decent photo!
Nathan & Mira arrived as they had been told to come early.
So the pj party increased in size 🙂

Somewhere in amongst of all this I had a long hot shower.
Then Phoebe & Seb arrived with Sapphie.
Seb had brought a roast out for Nathan and it had been sitting in the wash tub since yesterday, so as I have no room in the freezers the girls put it in the oven.
Andrea & Ross came in for an hour or two to catch up with Jesika and hand out with the cool crowd for a while 😉
Nathan & Mira went off for another sleep and unfortunately for Mira she left the wedge of cake behind so it got demolished by all the visitors.
David & Sasha arrived soon after.

We decided to cut Phoebe’s cake that she had made for yesterday.
The red cake was enough then so this one was kept back.
It was a delicious lemon cake with marscapone icing.

Merv & Kim arrived in the midst of all the comings and goings.
It was really good to see them both – its been far too long guys.
Please come again soon – next time it shouldn’t be so manic – maybe!

Anson, Marah & Eden arrived with Evan.
Evan had stayed on there for a few days and enjoyed lots of bro time with Anson while Jesika spent time with us in town.
He was pretty stoked to go hunting this morning and get two pigs!
Seb took off to cut some trees at their rental property and pick up Phoebe’s car.
I took some photos of Anson with the two wee cuties 🙂
Strong likenesses but its not hard to tell who their Dad’s are!
Nathan & Mira arrived back with pizza.
I think Mira was getting a bit dazed meeting new faces every time she turned around!
After saying goodbye to Merv & Kim I went indoors and found the gannets devouring the roast.
The cake had almost gone and everyone was sick of sweet stuff.
Jesika was right into the roast mutton cuz she wasn’t going to be getting another for a very long time.

I left for the airport at 5pm with Jesika & Evan with Shanni.
They got all checked in and then we had a short time to say goodbye.
Gonna miss you Jesika 😦
Evan & Jesika left on the 6pm flight, the beginning of their journey back to Perth.
We came home to find most folk had gone already.
Sasha & David were still here so we got to say goodbye to them at least.
I was really hungry so walked up the street and got some fish & chips for dinner.
Picked up pizza for Phoebe & Seb.
Phoebe arrived back from her shopping with Sapphie.
She had been dancing and jiggling so much it took Phoebe way longer to get things done.
She’s such a happy wee trick 🙂
Once Seb returned we parked the small cars up my drive out of the way, they finished their dinner, packed up and headed off home.
Then I ran a bath with epson salts and soaked my aching body for a while.
My whole left side seems to have been affected :-/
Didn’t take long to fall into bed and get to sleep tonight.


Friday 27th March

Friday was going to be busy so I decided to carry on with my planned morning tea at Melrose House.
Caspian was needing some socialising and I needed some time out from everything and anything that was demanding of me because I just didn’t have anything to give.
I was physically so sore and emotionally fragile.
So when Sasha arrived I was only to glad to allow her & Jesika to take Azzan off shopping for shoes and groceries.
I took the 4wd as it is automatic and was easier to handle.
My whole left side was just incredibly painful when I made certain movements.
It was actually a really nice morning as there were only 6 of us turned up.
Caspian enjoyed cuddling with one of the ladies and smoodging up with Fudge.
Jesika drove out to the airport to pick up Mahalia at midday.
Her plane was 45 mins late in, but while waiting Jesika spotted a huge cloud of black smoke and meted me about it.
It was a horrendous house fire.
I so feel for the couple, but am thankful that in spite of losing absolutely everything they escaped unharmed.
When I arrived back home everyone was back there.
It was lovely to see Mahalia after her week away in Auckland.
Jesika & Sasha finally got to head off and do their girlie shopping.
It was then all go here getting ready for the evening celebrations.
Shanni & Azzan were doing a brilliant job of cleaning up the living room.
After 4pm Nathan & Mira arrived and soon after Jesika began doing their photos.
She was making use of the light and delightful windows in my house so wherever I turned they were there in my way!!
I retreated to my room to do some planning.
A gorgeous floral arrangement arrived for the happy couple from Sandra & Phil, who were sadly unable to join us all.
Thanks so much Aunty Sandra & Uncle Phil – they loved the flowers 🙂

Thomas & Caroline arrived around 6pm with a magnificent cake!!
It was the most glorious colour – a lemon & strawberry cake beautifully created by Chocolate Velvet.
So on with the celebrations.
We were just waiting for the stragglers to arrive so it was after 6:30pm when we finally mustered everyone out onto the deck.
We had all joined together to witness and celebrate Nathan & Mira’s commitment ceremony.
They had decided they wanted to go beyond the normal engagement party and publicly state their commitment to each other while they are still in NZ.
It was a simple but meaningful ceremony.
I talked about what commitment means and then read a few verses/poems.

Hosea 2:19-20
I will betroth you to me forever;

    I will betroth you in righteousness and justice,
    in love and compassion.
20 I will betroth you in faithfulness,
    and you will acknowledge the Lord.

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back– Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth that ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.” William Hutchison Murray

Commitment – either you do or you don’t, there is no in-between!

Thomas made a delightful speech.
Then the two of them shared their vows to each other.
Nathan then presented Mira with a lovely ring.
Tommy prayed over them and then they cut the cake before Jesika hustled them off to the Miyazu Gardens for some photos.
We enjoyed cake and nibbles for half an hour.

Then just before 8pm we all hopped in our vehicles and headed off to Cafe Affair for a late dinner.
We had the upstairs pretty much to ourselves which was great.
It was a really lovely evening.
Thanks so much to all those that came.
It was a precious time.
It was great to have Tommy & Kate join us too.
Not that long since their wedding 🙂
Mira realised there had been no photos of me and my young man so she zapped this before we headed off home.
photo 2
I didn’t take many photos because Jesika was the ‘pro’ today with her fancy new camera.
So I guess we will get to see them later once she has had time to edit them all.

The last of us stayed outside on the pavement and chatted for a while.
Hard to end a good evening.
Nathan took Azzan for a quick walk up the cathedral steps, he’d been asking all night to go up.
He was happy & said the view was beautiful.

It was really chilly evening out so we didn’t dally getting back home.
Jesika had Mahalia to snuggle up with so she didn’t need a hottie tonight.

I was also given this beautiful bunch of flowers from Jesika & Evan this afternoon.
The orange was specifically chosen for me 🙂
Thank you both – I really do love them xxxx


Thursday 26th March

I was up and showered att 6:45am so I could take Shanni to the bus.
She needs to catch the 7:30am to get to her Gateway course on time.
I sent her out to warm up the car while I got sorted.
I could hear she was having problems getting it started so I leaned in the passengers side door to see if she had the choke out properly.
From thence there was a very fast series of unfortunate events which involved having the car in gear, not having the foot on the clutch, restarting and the car lurching forward several metres and me getting caught and dragged along.
I was rather battered but quickly got in drivers seat and delivered her to the bus stop.
Came back home to lick my wounds.

Azzan was up and bouncing this morning.
He didn’t want porridge.
He made a special eggs on toast breakfast because ‘today is the best day of my life!’
I was so sore that I couldn’t concentrate on much.
Sandra called me and I started crying and then Jesika realised what had happened.
Then the dam truly burst and I just sobbed on her shoulder.
I think the shock had just set in.
I haven’t had a ‘fall’ for a long while and I think as we get older the physical & emotional consequences of something like this hit a hell of a lot harder.

Cynthia & Graeme arrived soon after with a boot full of hydrangeas for me.
So I have more to add to the project.
Am hoping to have a great display of colour next season.
Just have to either recover from my injuries fast or recruit some extra muscle to help get them planted.

Jesika, Azzan & I had to be out the door around 11am to head to Azzan’s interview.
He was so incredibly excited.
He contained it well 😉
We arrived 10mins early so sat and chilled in the college office until two boys came to get us.
They were two prefects from Nelson Prep who had been assigned to give us the grand tour of the school.
We were so impressed by their manners and courteous behaviour.
In fact afterwards Jesika commented that she was blown away by the behaviour of all the boys we saw.
After our tour we were introduced to the headmaster and had a very pleasant interview with him.
He was very accommodating and understanding.
Now we just have to wait and see if there will be a space made available by someone leaving.
Azzan is being very positive that he will get in.
Watch this space 🙂

He had been busting to take Jesika to Chilandos so we went straight there for a celebratory lunch.
Then on to say gidday to Jane.
She and Jesika hadn’t seen each other in probably 20-25 years and she recognised Jesika straight off!!
They chatted for a few minutes and then we headed off to do a couple more things.
Shanni arrived off the bus in time to catch up with us at Briscoes, then we zipped around to Resene.
On the way back home we dropped Azzan off at Kip McGrath, it was half an hour early but he was happy to go and make a start.
Then home to see Caspian.
I’d given him a large bone before we left to keep him occupied and he had made mincemeat of it!
Just had an hour at home before I needed to leave again.
Jesika took Shoshannah for a driving lesson and to pick up Azzan before she went to visit her BFF.
I drove to Richmond and found my way into the Waimea College hall for the parent teacher interviews.
It was all a bit daunting really but I quickly figured out who was where and what time I was to see each one.
It all went very well.
Shanni is well liked, although she is very quiet in class and doesn’t put herself forward to ask questions.
Her careers teacher was very helpful and walked through what she can help her to move on to next year.
I headed straight back home arriving around 7pm.
We had a fairly quiet evening.
Went to bed early but didn’t sleep till late.
I was really sore and no matter how I tried to lie in bed it wasn’t comfortable.
I had hotties on all my bruised areas but then got too hot so had to strip off all the blankets.
Then Jesika arrived in so we chatted for a few mins and eventually I drifted off to sleep.

Wednesday 25th March

Azzan was quite warm and snuggly in his bed so I left him to get up when he was ready.
I had to be at the Police Station by 9am so I warmed up the car and zipped up the street.
Met up with the other trainee, and we chatted for 10mins before our co-ordinator arrived.
We then spent the next hour being shown around the ASA unit and given the run down on what to expect etc.
Then it was across the road to another building and up to Children’s unit.
It was all very informative and we learnt a lot.
I then zipped home to check on Azzan before going to the SASH office for our induction.
So much information for the morning.
My head was almost exploding by the end of the morning.
I arrived back to the house and found it all locked up and Azzan was nowhere to be found.
None of his chores had been done so I was rather cross.
Turned out that Jesika had arrived and taken him to the beach with Eden.
They had a lovely time there while Marah was at her midwifes appointment.
She even had time to have a child free coffee with a friend 🙂
I made some lunch, was feeling in need of sustenance and quiet.
But it was short-lived.
Shoshannah arrived back from school.
She was really weary so headed straight to bed.
The beach runners soon arrived back.
It was all a bit busy for a while from then.
Marah, Jesika, Eden, Azzan – lots of talking, nail painting, noise, fun,…..
This is what happens when a naughty aunty gets hold of Nonna’s phone and teaches a wee nice to make funny face selfies 🙂
Martin & Sylvia arrived through the gate followed soon after by Sue who had come to spend an hour with us and Caspian.
In amongst all of this Marah took Eden off home.
He is 18weeks old now and coming to the end of his crucial learning time.
She is most anxious that he gets stimulated and socialised – both very difficult when he is restricted to pen rest.
But she spent the time teaching him and us some basics which made his wee brain work overtime.
He is a really bright wee pup so picked up the signals really quickly.
I was really happy to learn alongside of him.
Now we just have to continue with the training, easier said than done when everyone is so busy.
After she left we all sat and chatted outside.
Laptops graced the table so we could show Sylvia and Martin the various shapes and sizes and models.
It was getting cooler and later so Martin & Sylvie headed off home and Jesika went biking with Shanni & Azzan.
I was really hungry so made myself some tea and toast and was about to mellow out in the wonderful silent solitude when another bike was pushed through the gate!
Nathan was calling in after work to chat about a few things.
He was still here when the bikers arrived back.
We talked outside until it was far too cold and I sent Nathan off home so we could migrate inside and search out some food.
Between us we constructed wraps which were rather delicious.
Shanni was very tired so went off to bed before this as she had already eaten.
We had a quiet evening in.

Tuesday 24th March

I had nothing at all on my calendar to day so was planning to spend it having another binge attack in the garden.
But as with most plans of mice and men, something will go array.
And it did.
Azzan and I spent the morning at home.
I cleaned up the kitchen and had a late breakfast after waiting for the bathroom and seeing Shanni off to school.
She was in a dither as to how to organise her social life and transportation.
I let her figure it out herself pretty much, and after a shower and some food her brain kicked into gear and she got it sorted 🙂
Azzan did a mountain of maths and began a story for Kip McGrath.
He brought in yesterdays washing and hung out todays load.
Nathan & Mira arrived around 10:30am to discuss some stuff.
Then Neville arrived to check out the Clavinova.
I was heading out around 11:30am so didn’t have time to make the promised cuppa – next time Nev 🙂
Azzan & I loaded Caspian into the car.
We zipped out to Crusoes to have a Nelson VanAid meeting with Liz and Rotem.
It was good to nut out a few things and get a bit more of a sense of direction.
We are just working out the focus of the collective.
As there is a lot of initial emergency aid going into the islands of Vanuatu right now we are fundraising for, and focusing on raising awareness of, the need for medical and educational supplies.
If anyone wants to donate towards this please go to our Facebook page – Nelson VanAid, you will find all the account details etc on it.
Azzan & I had lunch while we chatted.
Then just as Liz was leaving I spotted Brian & Betty across the courtyard, so I went and continued my days socialising.
Lovely to see them both, its been far too long, and extra special today because it was Betty’s birthday.
Happy Birthday Betty 🙂

We headed back home.
Both of us were really weary.
Azzan hopped straight into bed for a nap.
I left Caspian to rest too and I headed back into town to do some research on paints and picture frames.
That took me the rest of the arvo, including a quick visit with Bedelia.
Home to chill for a bit and a chat on the phone with Sandra.
Then it was 7pm and time to go pick up Chilandos for dinner.
It was the last night that one of our friends would be there as she is leaving to go back to India tomorrow.
Azzan exchanged Facebook names and then we came back to eat.
We were planning to watch movie but it was too late.
Just watched an episode of Bad Education instead.
Then off toned.
Ended up staying awake a long time later than I wanted to because I had a bizarre mail problem.
My outgoing mail hasn’t been sending all day.
So Ross ended up speaking to Google help desk to try and sort the problem.
Turns out there is a set up issue that remains unknown unless you actually get a problem and have to call them – duh!
Anyway, it is all sorted now, hopefully!! –  so I can now go to sleep.

So much for a day in the garden.
Didn’t happen and it is not looking good for the next couple of days due to a busy calendar and then there is rain coming over the weekend.
Bother it!

Monday 23rd March

Woke at 7am to a cool bleak day.
Shanni was getting ready for school.
I quickly got dressed, took Caspian outside, gave him some breakfast and then drove Shanni to the bus station.
Had a fairly industrious morning.
Put a corned beef on to cook.
It is rubbish day so I cut up sheets of old fencebrush to make it fit in the bin and then pruned the grape vine, weeded the drive and squeezed as much waste in as I could into the bin.
Azzan was late waking and very apologetic about it.
But he has been a very positive busy beaver lately so I didn’t mind.
We both had a late breakfast and then he did Maths in his room and decided he needed to uncluttered his bedroom to make life easier.
He already has the most uncluttered room in the house!!
I decided it was time to give Caspian a bath.
Mahalia has done it before, first time for me.
He was good and most obliging about being in the tub of water.
I managed to get him all soaped up and rinsed off without getting soaked myself.
He only shake sprayed me once and I managed to catch most of it with the towel so all was good.
I towel dried him and then used the hair dryer before giving him a good comb and brush.
His coat is getting really thick and long.
He will be very happy to get to the groomers in a week or so.
All clean, dry and brushed 🙂
IMG_4377 IMG_4381

I lunch and then raced off to my 2:15pm counselling appointment.
Then afterwards met up with Shoshannah in town.
She got her broken sandals sorted and then drove me home.
It was a bit daunting as she had to back out of an angle park and a 4wd was blocking her sight so we had a bit of backing and forthing as she dodged oncoming cars, and hitting the curb when the brakes weren’t applied in time, but thats all she hit so all was good 😉

She had been complaining about Caspian smelling so she wouldn’t hold him.
When she got back she discovered I had bathed him so she was happy to cuddle him, but then asked me if I had any puppy shampoo.
I said I had and I did use it.
‘But he still smells like a dog’, she complained.
‘Well, thats because he is a dog!’ I retorted 🙂

She cooked up a big pot of potatoes and added grated zucchini and a few other things.
They were really yummy.
Had that with carrots and the corned beef and mustard sauce
Shanni & I watched X Factor NZ – Joe made it through to the next round 🙂
You can hear/buy his performance here on iTunes.
Shanni want off to bed and Azzan helped clean up all the dishes.



Sunday 22nd March

I actually slept in until 8am today.
I saw a beautiful photo on my Facebook wall posted by Claire of the a glorious red sunrise over Mapua.
I instantly got up, got dressed and headed straight out into the garden.
I spent the next 4 hours out there.
Initially I was clad in jeans, long sleeved t-shirt and my downie.
Now I have some shorter 8mm staples I can carry on with lining the fence with the shade cloth.
The longer 12mm staples were buckling as I tried to punch them into the hardwood.
As I move along each section I have to pull off the old brush which is attached with fine wire and fencing staples which have to be jimmied off.
I was also digging up tree roots, pulling out what I could and cutting low into the ground the ones I couldn’t.
It was jolly hard yacka and I was getting fairly warm.
So the downie was dumped and then not too long later my t-shirt was off!
Shanni appeared and decided it was better to stay int he kitchen and produce green smoothies to sustain me rather than come and help – the smoothie was delicious.
Her best on thus far – she told me that many times, that’s how I know 😉
I’m a bit of a perfectionist so I wasn’t just stapling up the cloth.
First I had to completely clean off the old brush, pull out all nails and staples, sweep down the concrete bases and brush off the section.
Then I had to pull up any roots, which were often entangled in more buried weed mat that had not been pulled up yet.
Once I had as many root masses out as I could manage I raked each area to level the ground.
It is actually starting to look much tidier and I am feeling a real sense of accomplishment now.
The big pile on the concrete is all the root masses, wires & brush and old weed mat.
I loaded a heap into the wheelie bin last night and this lot will be stashed in the bin over the next few weeks.
Slowly decreasing the rubbish 🙂
Each section of fence is a completely different width so I am having to measure each section and cut one at a time which is somewhat slower than I would’ve liked.
The sails along the top of the fence were once white, they are now turning green and the fabric is beginning to break down so I will have to look at getting them replaced at some stage.
Shoshannah came out for a short time and helped pull staples.
She was complaining about a sore back etc.
She didn’t get any change out of me!!
I had been swinging on a shovel, rake and staple gun for near on 4 hours and she had been pottering in the kitchen making smoothies.
No comparison girl!!
Azzan also helped for an even shorter time, and then his breakfast called him back inside.
So I just carried on alone.
Actually was a very therapeutic Sunday morning.
I could’ve been at church, I should’ve been at Puppy Preschool.
But the garden was where I stayed.
This song says it all really 🙂

I got the four largest hydrangeas and measured up where to plant them.
I had already worked out a plan on paper so didn’t have to deliberate, just measure.
That part was easy.
The digging was not.
I managed to dig the first hole but I had to trench down through tree roots, cutting them as I went.
Finally got the hole large enough, followed the planting instructions I had googled.
Got that one in, watered and covered.
Then the second hole was begun.
But that job was halted very quickly because –
1. there were too many roots
2. the ground was too hard and dry
3. it was already midday
4. every muscle in my body was screaming for cessation of physical activity
5. my hands were incredibly sore from handling the shad cloth and all the digging.
So I left the other three bushes for tomorrow.
I cleaned up the tools and headed to the shower with a feeling of great accomplishment 🙂
Meanwhile indoors Shanni was making a zucchini pie to take with us so I showered and changed.
Then we loaded into the car and with Shanni behind the wheel we navigated our way through the city and southwards.
I was so bone achingly weary I wasn’t too sure if I could cope in the passengers seat.
It is not terribly relaxing being there with a learner driver in control of the vehicle :-/
She drove well, just needs heaps more practise.
It began to rain which added another factor into her already full concentration levels.
She wanted me to control the wipers!!
She drove for about half an hour but wanted hand over to me in Brightwater.
Across the road was a bakery so we decided to go investigate.
It was a fantastic bakery, not terribly obvious from the road but full of people.
So on that note I figured it must be good.
We each chose what we wanted.
Azzan was a bit gutted when the girl dropped the last chocolate eclair that he had ordered.
He had to settle for a very luscious looking steak pie 🙂
Shanni and I shared a berry danish and a lemon slice thingee – both were delicious.
I bought a mocha which was made in a machine so I wasn’t hangout much hope of it being any good.
I was happily proved wrong – it was wonderful 🙂
We ate as we traveled, filling the the gaps in our bellies.
Drove over the hill, giving Shanni tips on what to do and how and when.
Arrived to find Anson was just leaving to go get firewood and Liz who was visiting with Marah was also leaving.
So we entertained Eden while they said their goodbyes.
She loves hooning around with Uncle Zani.
Lots of jump and catch games
Then crawling races around the kitchen floor.
But the best things to play with are Azzan’s juggling sticks.
He had a bit of a battle getting them back off her!
They have a new kitten called Basil.
He is very cute and hose trained already.
Playing jumping games with Auntie Shanni.
Caspian went mental over the kitten and in spite of catching a paw of sharp pins in his face he still anted to play.
He has never seen a cat before, it was so funny but I had to keep him contained so stop him running about on his leg too much.
We went for a wander around the garden.
Marah has done heaps in the short time they have been here.
The two woofers I found for her this past week have helped a lot too.
Eden loved see sawing with Aunty Shanni 🙂
The rain came in again, pelted down really heavily.
Anson arrived back, we chatted for a while.
Ate Shanni’s pie which was a hit – very very deliciously tasty 🙂
We gathered up some tools to help make my fence job a bit easier.
Then sorted my freezer and got a few things to bring back here.
It was 6pm before we left!
I had not realised how late it was.
It was still bucketing down, it rained the whole way back.
We detoured past Chilandos and got takeout dinners.
Our friends there are leaving this week, we will miss them 😦
Then back home to eat and watch X Factor.
This time we streamed it live and watched until Joe sang.
He totally blew my socks off – I have really enjoyed his singing every time, but this time he really got under my skin.
I thought he was fantastic.

Azzan & I shot down to the supermarket and did a shop.
Got back and Shanni was already in bed.
We unpacked everything and headed off to bed too.
Caspian was enjoying the meat bone Anson had sent home for him 🙂

Azzan was so happy tonight.
He kept giving me big warm hugs and saying how is happy we are becoming a normal family.
I asked him what he meant by being a normal family – (as I am aware that normal is relative and no family is ever ‘normal’!!)
His denotation of normal is that we grocery shop together, we have a town home, we can pop over and visit his brother easily and that he is going to go to school  🙂

I spent some time tonight setting up the Facebook page for the Nelson VanAid collective.
Check it out – we will be posting fund raising events and donation places etc
I was so happy to get this news from vanuatutraveller that Esso & Rachel are alright.

Saturday 21st March

I was up early and was about to leave the house just before 8am.
Shoshannah came out just as I was leaving.
She shouldn’t have!
She wasn’t awake so my morning busyness and chat was too much for her.
I left her to go back to bed, or wake up slowly 😉

I headed into city centre and called into the market.
I have not been there this early before.
Must try it again when I have more time.
It is a completely different vibe.
The stall owners are still setting up  and chatting between themselves.
It is very relaxed and friendly and casual.
Later in the morning it all becomes a bit more business like and very busy.
I found Claire at The Breadman stall.
It was great to meet a fellow artist – we had only met via an international online art course we are both signed up to.
I then moved on and found Belinda at her Las Kokonas stall selling products of Vanuatu.
We chatted for a few minutes and then I headed back to the car.
Drove down to The Women’s Room and made myself a cuppa whilst waiting for the others to arrive.
The morning was very crisp but as it was forecasted to come out quite hot I had not put on too many warm clothes.
I was a bit cool so enjoyed a variation of a mocha to warm me up.
The other trainees arrived and we spent the rest of the day undergoing another training day as SASH Crisis Response support workers.
It was long and intense and I was exhausted by the end of the day.
But I stuck around to take part in the business meeting and get to know some of the other members of the collective.
They are all so lovely and supportive and encouraging.
I am looking forward to being a part of this group.
I was accepted as a team member and have a contract so it is all go!!
Excitingly daunting.
We had a shared pot luck dinner.
Shoshannah had made a beetroot & feta salad for me which Nathan had dropped off on his way to work.
It was well received.
The table was covered with delicious foods, most home baked, so we all ate well.
Finally headed home around 7pm.
Shoshannah & Azzan had been busy as beavers.
The place was looking so incredibly tidy.
I almost didn’t recognise it!!
Azzan had mowed the lawns.
Nathan came down and taught him how to use the weedeater.
The kitchen, the bathroom, everywhere was so tidy and clean.
Thank you so much kids.
I really appreciate it and you both.
And yes Shanni – you are amazing xxxxxx
Azzan had vomited later in the arvo so he had retreated to his bed.
He was happy to just rest up.
He was feeling perkier later though and he and Shanni had a sibling wrestle.
I put on some washing and while hanging it out Shoshannah did some reversing practise in the yard and driveway.
She managed to knock over my wheelbarrow!
But my house is still standing so all is well 😉
Caspian is wanting to get out and run about so I put him on a short leash while I did the washing.
Poor wee man, its no fun being cooped up.