Today started with a 9am meeting with my business consultant.
Seb drove out to join us which was great.
He was able to educate Steve in the ways of the mussel industry.
When you have grown up with a fledgling industry like we have you forget how involved it is until you sit back and listen to someone trying to explain to a newbie how it all works.
It is actually quite complex.
Being a primary farming operation there are many foibles to constantly be dealing with which make forecasting quite tricky.
Anyway, it was a good meeting and we all had homework to head off with.
Seb went off to do his town jobs and I popped into talk to my Vodafone man.
He has been investigating our account and sorting out some updates for me.
With so many changes happening it was a good time to get it all sorted.
I had intended to pop back home but while Austin and I were talking Tracy spotted me and came in to say hullo.
So I ended up going to Colombus Cafe with her for a coffee.
It was lovely to stop and catch up.
Realised my parking meter was way over so I shot back to the car and was very thankful to find no tickets gracing my windscreen.
Move the car and had a few minutes up my sleeve to poppy up to find Leita at her new place of employment.
By the time we had played tag between the lift and stairs I only had a short time to visit.
Nice to see where her new daytime home is now.
I was running late for my physio appointment so tore off with only a couple of minutes to get there.
Of course the traffic was mental so I was getting a tad anxious but Susie was running behind time so I still managed to have a minute or two to catch my breath.
My shoulder has been feeling way better these past couple of days.
It still has the ouch factor when I twist or move it the wrong way but the aching has died down thankfully.
She did some massage and acupuncture and I left feeling really good.
Came back home and rested with a late lunch.
Azzan had a tennis lesson at 4:15-5 pm so he stayed at school and hung out with friends till then.
Mahalia had rowing at 4pm so walked straight from school.
I had organised that Azzan would bike to Countdown and leave his bike there.
I would pick Mahalia up from rowing at 5pm, swing by and collect him and then drove to the beach so he could join his 5:30pm kick boxing class while Mahalia & I took Caspian to the back beach.
So I dutifully arrived at the rowing club just before 5pm.
Had to park back bit by the Boat Club as the closer parks were all full.
Saw some parents chatting by the boat trailer so thought I’d go join them.
They didn’t stay for long so I walked back towards the car with one of them.
As I went to walk past her car which was parked at the entrance I spotted the rowing manager and decided to change tack to go over and talk with her.
The car was on a slightly downhill slope and the towbar was also an a lower angle than if it were normal parked.
I never saw it!
I caught my right foot on it and went flying.
I desperately tried to save myself from falling but went flailing around, fell over the puppy and landed on the pavement in a heap.
My foot was screaming with pain.
I was so embarrassed, all I wanted to do was get outa there.
Sharon helped me up and I hobbled back to my car, ripped off my shoe as my foot had begun swelling already.
It was SO painful I just sat and cried.
Mahalia was late getting out so I was sitting there for probably 15 minutes sobbing with the pain.
Azzan was calling because we were running late.
I managed to drive to get him but the pain was intense.
I had to use my left foot on the brake pedal whenever I was sitting in a traffic queue as I couldn’t handle the pressure on my foot.
I cried the whole way over to the beach, dropped Azzan off and then Mahalia made the call to drove up to Leita & Yuri’s to get some ice on it.
Logan & Yuri were home and got an ice pack sorted for me.
I was glad of my sunnies so they couldn’t see the remains of my tears 😦
Leita was home soon after and found some Arnica cream.
I sat with my foot elevated and iced for about an hour which was really good.
There was a bruise the size of a small egg on the top of my foot by this time.
Mahalia & Logan took Caspian for a walk to the beach to get up Azzan so I didn’t have to drive back down there.
The drive home was really painful, so glad to get back.
I was feeling so bad because I had told Marion I would help her prepare dinner on my return but I was not able to stand for long.
So she and Florian carried on with their preparations and I roped the kids in to help while I kept my foot up.
It was quite late by the time we ate.
I was feeling really miserable & weary but just didn’t want to go to bed yet.
So I sat in the lounge and watched some Gossip Girl with some comfort food and then had a late phone chat with Jesika.
Finally staggered off to bed around midnight.
I had a 9am training session with Ross today so headed out to Richmond for a couple of hours.
Got back home around midday.
It was another really hot day.
Marion & Florian were working on visa and job application stuff.
Glinda arrived to spray the ants around 2pm.
Marion walked to the supermarket and dropped Caspian off at Mary-Anne’s for a few hours to keep him away during the spraying.
It is really good to have someone do the job who actually knows what she is doing.
The poison is very expensive so best to use it the right way than be guessing and wasting it.
She had a good talk with my neighbour and found some ant nests under our big tree, it’s good to have us all on deck as the little critters just move next door to find unsprayed areas.
She was able to definitely identify that we do have the Argentine ants here.
They are the most invasive of the ant species and are rapidly infesting the country.
Not a lot of major interest today even though it was really busy with a lot of coming and going.
Random picture for nothing else except it’s loveliness 🙂
I really delight in my front entrance way – the light on the glass is beautiful.
Can’t wait till I have time to empty it of all the boxes and can use it as my front door.
As soon as the kids were gone to school this morning I headed out to Richmond to spend the morning with Ross re-learning the ropes.
I have done the accounts for our businesses ever since Tim & I took over the farm about 30 years ago.
I have been part of the evolvement from handwritten ledgers to iCloud and everything in between.
Seems incredible to sit back and think of the speed of the journey spanning the past 25-30 years.
My first account book was a large green specifically lined ledger.
Every detail recorded by hand and painstakingly added and balanced.
Our paperwork for the accountant barely filled one ring binder each year.
We farmed only sheep & cattle – meat & wool.
GST was introduced to us by the NZ government in 1986.
We were all so incredibly thrilled – not!
I dutifully went off to training sessions with our accountant and learnt the new ropes.
During this time we added mussel farming.
Our paperwork increased.
I remember getting our very first computer.
It arrived on Tim’s 40th birthday – 17 September 1989.
It was a very large cumbersome creature which ran the DOS system – a monster to be conquered with some difficulty.
I got it specifically to do our farm accounts.
Michael Cambridge was a local farmer who was quite go ahead for the times and was more of a business man than a farmer.
He wrote the accounting programme and even came down and give me tuition.
What a dinosaur of a mission that proved to be.
But it was a start.
The kids at the time thought it was really cool because we had a game on it called Operation Neptune – even Tim loved to be part of that fun.
It was about the only good thing about that computer although mastering DOS was quite an achievement so a great training ground for the future 😉
Thankfully I was eventually able to upgrade around the time Nathan was born – Nov 1995.
Cant believe I battled with DOS for 6 years!
I did a lot of research and decided to jump from the dark side over to Apple and bought my very first Mac desktop computer.
From that day on I never looked back 🙂
I have never ever doubted the decision to run with Apple.
Even those early models were 100% easier to use than the other sort!
A year later we got connected to the internet.
I remember it distinctly.
Jesika at age 16 had gone traveling in South America with Jan & Talbot the year before and our only communication had been by very slow unreliable snail mail or the occasional fax.
I was so excited to be able to use this new fangled email system to contact her more easily – and then a month later she returned home!
We were connected via dial up over the phone line so could only use one or the other – not both so the time online was very slow and very limited.
Somewhere amongst all of this we changed accountants and began using Banklink.
It was supposed to make my life easier!
It was okay but not the greatest system to use.
I had to save and manually email the gst reports each two monthly period and to do that I had to use a different interface to work in and then convert that over to the Mac side to email out because Backlink was not compatible with Macs at that point.
Down the track bit and I was eventually doing the books for for two Trusts and three companies!
The paper war had magnified immensely and the gst was a nightmare.
The yearly delivery to the accountant had grown from the one small folder to a banana box of folders.
We changed accountants again and were introduced to Xero.
Wow! What a life saver and a life changer.
Still loads to do but it was now all online.
What I did at home could be checked by the accountants wherever they were.
All the while this was developing I was still running our home, producing a total of ten kids and home educating them all, and feeding an army of family, friends and wwoofers.
Plus I always made time for my hobbies – sewing, art, reading, etc
No wonder around 5 years ago I was at breaking point.
I didn’t realise that I was also suffering from PTSD which had resulted from my childhood abuse and had intensified over the years every time I suffered more traumas.
Taking each one individually they don’t seem too major, but I now realise that each one built on the next until I broke – interestingly just a month before Christchurch broke during the February earthquake.
I then had to take a huge step back and reduce my pressure.
I had to make some major changes in my life.
One thing I did that was to hand over the bookkeeping side of life to someone else.
Ross has done this very capably ever since.
But now I am somewhat stronger and also in a position where I need to take back the job and manage the companies myself.
Things have progressed a lot in this time though so I have a lot to learn.
We are now operating most of our business via iCloud being as paperless as possible.
So I have to get my head around a whole new system.
Slightly daunting but I know I can do it.
Just have to jump!
Man!! I’m beginning to sound like my grandmother.
In her years she lived from sailing ships to space ships.
And I haven’t lived anywhere near as long as she did – yet!!
After a couple of hours my brain wouldn’t take in any more so I called it quits and headed back towards home.
After that long spiel of reminiscence I don’t think I need to recount much more of my day.
Actually, I can’t really remember a great deal more anyway 😉
Enjoyed a slightly later dinner with Marion & Florian & the kids outside as it was a lovely evening.
Took Caspian for a walk down to Mary-Anne’s to return some plates and pick up some grapefruit.
Was really tired but it was good to have an evening walk.
Came home and fell into bed.
Had a long phone call with Leita before going to sleep.
Now she’s gone and got herself a job we don’t get to catch up as often as before.
Bummer how work interfere with our social life 😉
A wet day.
Really good to get some rain.
It is still really warm so great for the plants.
It is just a shame we can’t have it spread more evenly through the months!
I had a 9am counselling session so took the kids to school, picking up Luka on the way.
Afterwards I wiped up to see Hitomi and had my hair washed.
Because my arm is all strapped up it was really difficult to shower let alone extend my arms to do the job myself.
She gave me a scalp massage too which was soon good.
I almost went off to sleep 🙂
I filled in some time and then drove round to see Roni.
Just had a scant hour and a cuppa with her before zipping back to the info centre to pick up Hanne and Karsten.
She is a cousin of a wwoofer we had here over 10 years ago and I was hoping them find a place to go.
I brought them home and they chilled here until Phillipa called by to take them home with her.
So glad I could marry up them up – they enjoyed a great week together.
Marion took Caspian walking and got caught in the rain so gave him a bath.
Sounded like that was an interesting exercise 😉
I picked Mahalia up from school and dropped her off at rowing.
Came back for a rest.
Ali came to visit just before 4pm – we had been playing tag most of the day.
We retreated to my bedroom and relaxed over a cuppa on my chaise.
Rather lovely to have all the different living spaces in this house.
Sharon dropped Mahalia off after rowing.
Azzan insisted on doing his own thing and got a lift home with a friend.
Caspian sure has his way with Marion.
After dinner he gets lap time very easily 🙂
We braced ourselves for a very stormy night.
Torrential rain and thunder storms forecast.
I went to sleep late but then slept through the worst of it apparently.