Wednesday 30th March

I made the mistake of being in the kitchen at the same time as my rower this morning.
It wasn’t a good morning to do that so I retreated until she had gone 😉
I think the tiredness factor is pretty strong!
Thank goodness it is nearly the end of the season.
I got Azzan’s lunch done and we had breakfast together.
He appears to have lost his school jersey – again.
Mumma ain’t happy.
I had to go out so he asked to be dropped off at school.
Did that and then had time to zip into New World and pick up some buns.
I then went to my 9am appointment at Nelson Beauty for some much needed maintenance.
I must have needed it and more, because when I had finished my attendant commented that I obviously needed the rest.
I’d gone to sleep – well, after so many 3 and 4am starts to my days I have been getting rather tired.
I had a little time spare so went for a wander around the Farmers Market.
Bought myself a chocolate/cherry pastry – yum!
Then off to Renaissance to see Hitomi.
She cut my fringe so I can see again.
Hate getting wool blind!
Home again.
Sue had collected Caspian earlier and taken him walking so I was home alone for a while.
Made a coffee and enjoyed my pastry with it.
Then got stuck into doing some last minute office stuff.
Anson & Dave arrived just after 2pm.
Got some paperwork signed and then they left and I zoomed out the gate straight after them.
Drove to Nelson College to Azzan’s parent/teacher interviews.
The place was crowded so I had to park down on the street and walk up.
It was all very well laid out but as I don’t have a clue which block is which yet I was feeling rather overwhelmed trying to find my way around all the teachers as they were scattered through the school.
Anyway, all went well.
My darling boy alternates between being the quietest in the class to being a distraction and a talker!
Guess it depends on which teacher he has and how he relates and gels with the subject.
It was close on 5pm when I left so I waited for Azzan to finish tennis.
Managed to locate him and we drove straight back home.
Made a drink and we sat and talked through everything.
Then I went out to water the garden and after some discussion he biked off to youth group.
Mahalia arrived back and got herself all packed up for Maadi.
I made dinner.
Fresh fish delivered by Anson.
It was SO incredibly wonderfully good.
I haven’t had any for so long.
Azzan arrived back around 9:30pm, ate his dinner and went off to bed.
I wasn’t too long from bed then either.
Put a roast of mutton in the slow cooker and left it cooking away over night.
Figured we all might just enjoy a roast meal tomorrow 🙂

Tuesday 29th March

So today Mahalia had rowing at 6:30am.
But I was the one awake somewhere around 3:30am and then soon after I heard crashing around next door so figured Azzan was either awake or doing some serious sleepwalking!
And Mahalia was the one who slept late and I had to wake her.
She wasn’t impressed to find that there had been a pizza thief in the kitchen over night.
Seems like Azzan has inherited his father’s tendencies for making sure that ‘leftovers’ don’t go to waste!
Problem is that like his dad he eats the wrong ‘leftovers’ :-/
She had it cut already and semi wrapped in tinfoil ready to take for her post training snack.
I whizzed around doing all I need to get done and then gave Azzan some last minute instructions – he was still in bed when I left just before 9am.
I whizzed down to the BNZ to meet my business consultant at one of the conference rooms.
Steve & I had a good couple of hours going over the businesses and sussing out some forward planning.
Then it was time to zip back home.
Azzan had escaped off to town to meet his friends and Mahalia was resting up after training and derigging boats.
I left her to it and drove back into town.
Took a while to find a park.
Keep forgetting it is a long weekend and the kids are all off school today so town was pretty busy.
I went and bought my movie ticket before hoping over to see one of my accountants for a few minutes.
Then back to get a chocolate coated ice-cream in a cone before finding my seat.
I have been wanting to watch ‘Spotlight’ for ages so decided that cheap Tuesday was a good  time to escape from the responsibilities of life for a couple of hours.
It was an excellent film, with a brilliant cast whose likeness to their real characters is uncanny, about the true story of based on The Boston Globe’s research into child abuse within the Catholic Church.
That was one incredible movie to watch.
Trigger alert!!

I got back home around 4pm.
Kids were all out so I carried on with making dinner.
Made a vege casserole with noodles.
Azzan finally made it back around 5pm and then took Caspian walking.
He spotted some feijoas up the road for sale so called me.
I sent Mahalia up to get some but they’d gone.
Will have to try again tomorrow.
Fantastic the season is beginning – happy dance 🙂
I connected up AppleTV so Mahalia & I could watch The Batchelor and then I introduced her to ‘Don’t Tell the Bride’.
Then it was off to bed for us all.
Well, I thought it was….
until I saw the kitchen.
So I spent an hour cleaning up and getting ready for tomorrow after the two darlings had retired :-/





Monday 28th March

I cannot believe March is so close to closing shop.
We are still getting enough hot sunny days to make us feel February isn’t that far behind but then just enough cold snaps and shortening days to let us know that April is approaching fast.
My pile of firewood is getting bigger each time Graham comes to visit and the idea of lighting fires is gaining momentum.
Thankfully it is not that cold yet as I don’t feel I’ve had a decent crack at summer just yet.
Today was a holiday which all of us in our household were able to enjoy.
Nobody had to be anywhere today.
It was lovely.
Except of course that Mahalia’s body clock is set for early so she was up way sooner than she wanted to be.
I took the opportunity to not get out of bed until I was jolly well ready to.
I languished back in my pillows and watched a few of the Missing Pieces episodes while drinking a breakfast smoothie Mahalia delivered to me.
It was a gorgeous day that greeted me once I found my way outdoors later in the proceedings.

Azzan went off into town to meet a friend over midday but returned in time to do his chores.
When we did start work some serious stuff happened.
Muchos logros = happy Mumma 🙂

Mahalia gave the pantry a huge overdue spring clean.
We can now see and locate everything more easily.
I hate a messy pantry so I am very happy now 🙂
Azzan cleaned out the freezer.
It has a tendency to ice up very quickly even when on low so it was seriously in need of defrosting.
He did a great job and I helped get the food sorted so we now have a better idea of what is hiding in there.
While the kids were doing those jobs I started cooking.
Azzan had already peeled a mountain of apples so I stewed them up.
I cut up the figs and got a large pot of fig chutney bubbling away on the stove.
I sussed out a few recipes but the batteries in my scales were flat so in the end I just winged it.
Then I made a huge dish of birdseed bar, improvising to use up some left overs from the panty.
Substituted cornflakes for rolled oats and coconut oil for butter.
Added pumpkin seeds and some spices and it all looks pretty darned good.
Good energy snack food for Mahalia to take with her.
Azzan was asking for apple pie so I made a quick one but as he had already devoured the ice cream we left it for another meal.
He’s learning today that if you eat all the treats when Mum is not looking then there are no treats left when you really want a treat!!
Mahalia took Caspian for a long walk up the Bluffs and along to the Centre of NZ.
She returned enamoured with all the dogs she had met especially one called a Dulux dog.
It is now sitting at the top of her ’The dog I really really want to have when I am old enough to have my own’ list!!
Personally after reading all about them I think it would be a full time job just maintaining them!!

Azzan went off to meet some other friends which left me home alone.
I finished my cooking and then went to lie down for a while.
Was feeling rather on the weary side.
Watched a funny TV reality series called ‘Don’t Tell the Bride.
Dozed off in the middle of it.
Invited Tracey over for drinks.
She arrived while I was cutting up some roast vege cubes.
I left them to cook and we went down to my art space to hang out, munched on chips and enjoyed Baileys on ice.
It was lovely to catch up, it’s been a while.
Talk arty stuff and adult talk – nice for a change.

Azzan returned home so I got him to zip up the street and barter some Nashi for some lemons.
Mahalia got salad greens from next door earlier.
Love this neighbourhood – lots of caring and sharing  🙂

Mahalia arrived back and began constructing pizza.
She had been planning all day to make fig and blue cheese pizza for dinner.
She piled the roast veggies on top.
They were absolutely delicious & nutritious 🙂
Tracey toodled off home.
I took some time out to do the wages and then we had dinner and headed off to bed.
Its been a pretty good day.

Sunday 27th March

Mahalia had intense Maadi training again today so was gone soon after 6am.
The rest of us had a fairly chilled out morning.
I enjoyed chatting over breakfast with Lenore.
Ross packed up the car and went to pick up their two nieces and got side tracked garage sale-ing.
Shoulda known!
Ross & Tim were great friends and bargain hunting was one of their commonalities 🙂
During some joshing’ around time we shared a memory with Azzan that Tim had endearingly nicknamed Ross ‘Uncle Famine’ due to his inability to put on weight.
That name stuck for years 🙂
Ross fixed the weedeater for Azzan so he could finish off the lawns.
One day I will figure out the technicalities of refilling the cord, but until then I really appreciate the men who come into my life just at the right times 😉
Azzan discovered the hard way that long pants and shoes are probably quite helpful when doing this type of work.
He is now sporting a cord burn on his leg :-/
Lenore & I sat out in the front garden and enjoyed the sunshine for while.

Finally it was time to say our farewells.
We have have really treasured Ross & Lenore’s friendship over the past 20 years.
But this weekend I have been so loved and incredibly blessed by them both.
Thank you so much for your support.
It means so much to me xxxxx

After they left I held the ladder and Azzan climbed high and picked figs for me.
He got a good bucket full.
There are still many more coming on so looks like I will have to start making some more pickles.

Mahalia arrived back.
Tired and covered in salt spray.
She had a shower, ate food, filled me in on todays training,  and went to bed.

I woke her before 3pm and we piled into the car and drove out to Cable Bay to meet Bri & Abby and David & Sasha  who were already out there.
It was a gorgeous afternoon.
The place was quite busy but as we arrived late-ish a lot of cars began leaving and we enjoyed a quieter time there.
Azzan went off for a walk up the hill.
We all lazed on the beach.
It was lovely to spend time with family.
I treasure each moment of these special times.
There was a king tide today and it had receded way way out.
Sasha & Mahalia went in for a swim.
Bri took Caspian in swimming and had fun chasing sticks and playing games with him.
He had a great time chasing seagulls but then was playing elusive for so long that I wasn’t sure if I was going to get him into the car.
Thankfully he finally cooperated and Mahalia bundled him up into a towel and popped him onto his cushion.

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We said our goodbyes and headed homewards.
On the way back my fuel light began flashing.
Forgot to fuel up earlier.
Held my breath and drove straight to the Bishopdale fuel station.
Shouted the kids an ice cream and came home to collapse.
The late afternoon sun had gotten so hot that it had exhausted us all.
I put some potatoes in the oven to bake and then dozed on the kitchen seat.
Mahalia found me and began covering me up with blankets 🙂
I managed to stagger around the kitchen and make a salad and cold chicken to have with the potatoes.
Dinner actually turned out way better than I thought it would be.
We were all in bed quite early.
I watched a couple of episodes of Missing Pieces and then was out to the count!


Saturday 26th March

Okay – so waking early I can do.
But waking at 3am is just not funny.
Especially when the brain switches on immediately and going back to sleep is an impossibility.
I waited until 4am and then got up and filled in an hour doing some mail.
Then when I heard Mahalia get up I zipped through my shower.
She was getting fuelled up for her mornings training.
She had 2 bowls of food in front of her.
While we had our early morning catch up time she was devouring her Malai Kofta and her porridge.
Nice breakfast mix!
She took the remaining Malai Kofta and Paneer Kulcha with her for lunch.
She was a happy girl.
Loves her Indian food.
I came back home and got stuck into the gst again.

Mid morning I decided to can the accounts and go to the market with Ross & Lenore.
I needed to clear my head.
Left Azzan to his morning chores.
Town was incredibly busy.
Parking was crazy.
The market was busier than I’d seen it in a long time.
Ah! That’s right!
It’s a long weekend.
The last one before winter so everyone was out enjoying the beautiful day.
Ross dropped us off and then went looking for a park.
We did a few laps of the market, found some fruit, chatted with Belinda, met up with Ross briefly, wandered some more and ended up over in Whitcoulls.
Ross called to say he’d found Pat & Phillipa so they walked over and we stopped at Starbucks for a short coffee together.
Nice to catch up ever so briefly.
Never enough time though.

Then it was time to zoom!
They dropped me off back home and went back to the supermarket.
Sharon had been doing breakfast for the rowers and came to collapse hang out with me while they finished their second round of training for the day.
We are both very tired mothers of even more exhausted rowers who are pushing their absolute limits in preparation for Maadi.
Things are getting pretty fraught with tired & emotional young folk.
It’s tough, but they are tough and they push themselves hard.
It is pretty darned intense to see their zeal and passion.
One more week of training and then they are off to win medals!!

I helped Lenore get the fruit platters ready.
They got changed into wedding clothes.
Sharon went back and picked up the girls, dropped Mahalia off and she pretty much climbed straight into the backseat of Ross & Lenore’s car and headed off to Rabbit Island to celebrate Rachel & Shane’s wedding.
I finally got out to hang washing on the line.
I was enjoying the sunshine when Wendy & Jae arrived.
Lovely to see them.
They were all loaded up with exciting stuff – exciting for Wendy that is 😉
A great big weaving loom to enjoy plus heaps of extras.
It was nice to finally welcome them to my new home.
They didn’t stay long because they still had a long drive back home and of course, the loom to unpack and construct 🙂

Once they’d all gone I started breathing 😉
Azzan asked if we could have some Mum/son time so we took Caspian and wandered to the Sprig.
Sat out on the deck and enjoyed some cool drinks and curly fries and googled up random quiz questions to answer.
Fun 🙂
Then he pleaded an ice cream out of me before taking Caspian back home.
He had lawns to mow and the rest of his chores to do.

I walked on up to visit Bede at The Wood Retirement Village.
He was really pleased to see me 🙂
We sat and chatted for ages.
I did some more colouring in his books, admire his sketches of his dream boats.
They’re really good!
Bedelia arrived before I left so I had a nice catch up with her too.
Back home to Azzan who had enjoyed an nana nap while I was gone so was chasing his tail to get through his chores.
One was to get them done is to throw away the list that your mother has written up and subsequently has forgotten everything that was on it 😉
He went off for a run before dinner.
Ross, Lenore and Mahalia arrived back so I threw some food together for dinner.
Leftover Indian for Mahalia & Ross and fresh corn with cheese & tomatoes for the rest of us.
I was really weary so in between the comings and goings I had been nabbing myself a few minutes rest stops.
While Ross & Lenore zipped to the supermarket I did some cooking.
Made up a pasta dish for Mahalia’s tomorrow food.
Need to keep nourishing filling foods prepared for her to grab as she is on the run with training and is getting incredibly tired.
I tucked her into bed, and then after R&L came back we had a cuppa and some delicious fresh bread and butter for supper before we all fell into bed ourselves.
Such a long day, but good to leave the paperwork in the office and try to forget all the stresses.
Enough time to deal with them when the new business week begins………….

Friday 25th March

I was up around 4am – was quite pleased to see Azzan was asleep.
Who knows how many hours he actually got!
Mahalia has rowing training throughout Easter weekend starting at 6:30am each morning  so she was up and gone early today.
The storm was blowing itself out.
The rain was well and truly over, just some wind gusts playing with us for a while throughout the morning.
The sun shone and the day turned into another really lovely hot Indian summer day.
I was committed to spending the day at my desk.
Have to make some serious inroads into the gst as I only have a few days left to get it all filed.
I wrote a list of chores for Azzan to do and left it on the bench.
He was all snuggled up under his blanket watching a movie so I left him to rise in his own time.
Graham called by with some friends for me to meet.
They were on their way down to the bay to have a working bee on the wharf.
He has been working on it for past months and is trying really hard to get it finished for me this weekend which I really appreciate.
I would be lost without him helping me on this project.
We began the job of demolishing the old wharf back in January 2010 and then the rebuild was begun within the month following.

Azzan cruised into his day.
He had a list to work through before I would even consider any socialising so I left him to do it.
I had some fairly intense work time with no distractions which was good.
Made some good headway although at one point I did succumb to tears of frustration over not knowing how to do some things.
Managed to get it figured eventually.
I stopped for a stretch and some sustenance and sat in the sun for a few minutes at lunch time and then carried on.
Mahalia arrived back in the early afternoon.
They had done some very intense training and she was covered in did salt and was really tired.
She made some food and crashed out on the couch with a movie and did some much needed resting/sleeping.

Azzan wanted to go hang out with his friends later in the day so I did a quality check on his jobs.
Pulled him back to finish them properly and then he was released.
He was on his bike and out the gate in a flash!
He visited some friends nearby and then biked round to the beach to go swimming with some others.

I carried on with my work until just after 6pm when Jesika called.
Whilst talking to her I weeded the front garden.
The rains have given the weeds plenty of nourishment and they are growing like crazy.
Ross & Lenore finally arrived around 8pm.
They had left home earlyish for them but had done some tiki touring along the way.
They had planned to take us out for dinner but it was too late for Mahalia so we headed off without her.
Went to Little India and decided to get takeouts so we could go home and eat with Mahalia.
But by the time we returned it was too late for her to eat so she stashed it in the fridge to have tomorrow.
We enjoyed our dinner together and then headed off to bed soon afterwards.

Sharon messaged me with some photos that had been posted by Rowing Celebration of Mahalia at SISS regatta.
I had seen them earlier.
All credits go to Steve McArthur of Rowing Celebration who is a major supporter of these events and takes 100’s of wonderful photos of all the rowing regattas throughout NZ.
The first photo really shows the effort and their exhaustion at the end of their race.
Mahalia is 2nd from right in front boat.
And the joy of crossing the finish line in good time 🙂
And Sophie and Mahalia’s jubilation at gaining the silver medal in their doubles race 🙂12472289_1008780142508625_8553981043809478428_n
I went off to sleep after reading this write up about the Nelson Colleges successful participation in the SISS regatta last weekend.



Thursday 24th March

Woke to heavy rain this morning.
Florian had cleaned out the front gutters but the rain was so heavy they still weren’t coping.
It made a very pretty picture in the early 6am darkness.
There was flooding in the front yard and at the back door.
And in my washhouse!
I broke my broom handle trying to clean the drain to let the water escape.

Mahalia was up early because she didn’t get the message that from now until Maadi they don’t have to be at school until 10am so they can now row an hour later.
I guess with it being so dark and a few collisions happening it is a good decision.
Very thankful to the colleges for agreeing to support the rowers like this.
They are a true dedicated team and need 100% support from parents, schools and community to be able to compete in the regatta which is the largest school sports event in  the southern hemisphere .
There will be around 155 schools and 2500 athletes competing at Lake Ruataniwha during the first week of April.
Very exciting for Mahalia to be a part of this.

News was coming through of the storm and flooding all around the country.
Riwaka copped it really badly this time.
The rain was pretty intense over night and incredibly heavy when we woke.
I drove Mahalia to rowing, it was forecasted to clear before she had to walk to school.
Azzan had a cruisey start to his day as he doesn’t have to be in school until 9:05am on Thursdays.
I had his lunch packed and ate breakfast with him before he biked off at 8:30am.
The rain was pretty much finished by now.
Then it was back to the desk for me – sigh :-/
I worked through the morning.
Then Andrea arrived around 12:30pm so I stopped to make a cuppa and lunch.
Marah arrived with the girls soon after.
Eden & Aaliyah stayed here while Marah went off to sort out vehicles.
It was a bit busy but nice to catch up with Andrea as we hadn’t connected in the physical for quite a long time.
She had to take off around 2pm.
Marah got herself all sorted and left soon after.
It was lovely to see them all even if Eden was in a ‘No Nonna’ mood – don’t ya just love rambunctious nearly 3 year olds? 😉
By now the sun was out, the trucks were back working in the street.
It was very hot and very noisy.
When they all left I crashed out and had a rest for a wee while.
Azzan arrived home very hot and weary.
I went back to tackle the accounts again.
It is all very tedious.
Not my favourite job 😦

Azzan asked if we could go to the beach so once Mahalia got home we all piled into the car and drove round.
It was a wonderful post storm evening.
Driftwood strewn all along the tide lines.
The sea was still boisterous and the wind surfers were skimming the waves.
It was very energising.

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Azzan eventually asked to go back to the car so I gave him my keys and Mahalia & I kept on walking.
It was a good D&M time together while Caspian raced around meeting the other canine creatures.
I saw this diagram the other day, it perfectly pictures my experience too.
I have shared it with a few folk since then as it really resonated with me.
It seems that others who haven’t walked in my/our shoes have no idea nor should have any judgement on how we grieve or for how long we grieve.
In fact there are no rules on this.
Each of us walk our own journey.
It’s a lonely path, even with friends to encourage and support and love us through it.
The hardest thing ever is when someone says something like – ‘3 years, oh you should be over it by now.’
That is like a knife stabbing you in the heart.
My normal reaction is to pull back from that person and not share myself or my heart any longer.
You learn who the safest ones are that you can share your vulnerable self with.
It’s a painful enough journey without being made to feel guilty for grieving.

It was 7:45pm by the time we arrived back in the city.
There was an amazing cloud bank billowing over the Grampians.
I had to pull over to capture the gorgeousness of it.
Back home to make pizza for dinner.
Mahalia & I loaded it up with all sorts of vege goodness – lots of fresh silver beet, basil and tomatoes from our garden.
They were delicious.
Even the carnivore who decreed he wasn’t hungry (mainly because there was no meat on them) snuck inside in the midnight hours and devoured a major portion of the leftovers!

Azzan decided he wanted to sleep outside tonight so I checked the forecast.
No rain in the offing so I said he could sleep on the front deck.
I felt more secure with him there for me to be happy about him being outside.
It is so crazy that I have to think like this.
All my kids have slept outdoors at home.
Never batted an eyelid about it.
Perfectly safe out in the country wildness, but in the city………….. 😦
He was happy, all wired up with his iPad, phone and iPod to entertain him.
What more could a young lad desire?
I suggested around 10pm he should think about sleeping.
I was told to stop spying on him and that it was a holiday night!
So I left him to his fun and went to bed.
I woke up at 4:30am and thankfully he was sound asleep.
Have no idea how many hours – daresay I will find out today when we connect 😉IMG_5567