Monday, November 29, 2010

The First Week in NZ

I've been here a week and two days now. The first or second day, we hit the thrift store and got two old wooden tables. Shannon is sanding them down and going to paint them dark blue. She has projects going all the time, gardening, sewing, decorating.

I can't remember what day we did what, but here we are at Mission Beach, where we had Mexican food for lunch.

On Friday afternoon, we drove up North to Grant's family bach (vacation house). It's on a peninsula in Doubtless Bay, a four hour drive from Auckland. This is the sandy beach in front of the bach. The tide was out and left interesting wave patterns in the sand. Cars drive on the beach like at Pismo.

They were having a "suck your stomach in" contest. Also shell gathering.

This is the view from the front porch. We saw dolphins jumping out of the water on Sunday morning.

This is the bach, it has one bedroom, kitchen, bathroom, garage with a boat inside. The couch folds out to a bed. I got the bedroom.

Sunday morning before we drove home.

We stopped at a Maori memorial hill with a 360 degree view. I forgot the name of it.

We stopped on the way back to Auckland at Russell. Took the car ferry from Pahia to Russell.

I'm standing in front of the Bay of Islands Swordfish Club, where Carl and I had a great time last year. We love Russell.

We had lunch at a cafe with our table on the edge of the beach. This is the view from our table, the Russell pier.

This was the best. A little girl and her older brother were playing on the sand. She wanted to roll a huge rock to the water from the top of the boardwalk. She tried once, then got out her long stick and instructed her brother to move the rock. This little guy tried to lift it and shove it, and finally figured out that he could flop it end over end to move down the sand. All the while, the sister had her stick pointing and swinging just like a conductor. He did finally get the rock to the water. We all laughed and now it's a joke between Shannon and Grant, she had the wand and he moves the rock. You should click 2 times on the picture to see up close.

We decided to take the long and winding road home, instead of the straight 2 lane highway. We traveled the coastal road, hardly passing other cars. We stopped at a beach for Grant to do some surfing. The beach was shared with a cow pasture.

Grant got in a couple of rides, the waves weren't big enough.

Pulled over to look out at the coast. It's completely empty with beautiful beaches. We got home around 8:30 after a full day of driving and stopping to see the sights.

Today is Monday. Grant went to work. Shannon and I went to One Tree Hill and had lunch at the cafe there. We walked around, I wanted to see some sheep, but couldn't find any.

We did a short hike.

Tonight we made taco's for dinner. Delicious! I made salsa, chopped all by hand. Shannon made guacamole. We had Bananarama's (we made that up) OJ, Bananas, Tequila, Ice - like a smoothie.
It's 11:30 PM here and I'm off to bed. I'll post again in a couple of days.
I'm enjoying my time with the young-un's.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A Tour of Shannon's House (Grant's Too)

I made a short video of the house.

That's it for the day.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Wednesday Here--November 24th

On Sunday we visited Peter and Sybilla. We passed this cute house with two cats sleeping on the porch.

Sybilla was so happy to see Shannon, they went upstairs and both put on Fairy outfits.
Shannon got a magic wand in the face!
Monday we went grocery shopping and to the vege market.
Today we shopped at a thrift store and found 2 cute little nesting tables for the house. We came home and worked in the yard, planting flowers.
This is Takapuna with Rangatoto island in the background. Had a nice salad for lunch at Sumosalad.

Tomorrow is Thursday here, so we're going to have Thanksgiving. We'll have a large chicken (turkey is way too expensive here) stuffing, gravy and pumpkin pie.
I'm starting to recover from my cold. Thank goodness.
Adios for now.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

I"m Here in NZ

I made it. Have a cold. Now I lost my voice.
Grant and Shannon in their new Christmas clothes. We celebrated early.

Shannon made delicious spaghetti dinner, wearing her new apron.

It's now Sunday here and we are off to Devonport to have lunch.
See ya.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A day with Ryder

Ryder stayed over Saturday night. He helped my put away the utensils from the dishwasher.

He's a happy little helper.

On Sunday morning, after breakfast, we visited the local airport, Brackett Field. He loves watching the airplanes take off and land. They've made a little park for us to sit and watch, with two ride on airplanes for the kids.

It was a perfect day.

Ryder borrowed my extra sunglasses.

This was a neat plane. I know nothing about planes.

Then we headed to the train depot to watch the Metrolink trains.

Because it was Sunday, we had to wait for 40 minutes for the next train. We headed to McDonald's, grabbed lunch, then back to the depot to watch the trains. We got to see two, one in each direction.

I'm all packed and ready for New Zealand on Thursday. I took a picture of my luggage, just in case it gets lost. It has before and I went for two days in the same clothes.

I'm so excited to be spending 3 weeks with Shannon and Grant. I hope they're ready for me.
I'll try and post to my blog during my vacation.
Adios, Kathy