Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Koala's brother 2

I'm very proud of Kien for writing this all by himself without my help at all...and I didn't need to sit there and nag him. When he finished he wanted me to do the corrections for him, and then he took my phone and took the photos. Such a change from last year when it was like extracting teeth.

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Koala and his brother

First blog post for Kien this year. He's been back at school for a week and a bit. His school started late - 7th February was their first day.

Day one at school. He's now senior school - upstairs in the new building.

Day two at school.

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Onetangi on Waitangi Day

We took the ferry early on Waitangi Day to beat the crowds, but that wasn't to be. Boy oh boy were there loads of people doing exactly what we did.

One of Kien's best friend had invited us to spend the day with them, and since they hardly saw each other over the school holidays (outside of School Holiday Programme) they were both keen to hang out.

We took the bus to Onetangi beach and found a nice spot under a pohutukawa tree. It was such a beautiful day. The water was a lovely temperature for swimming and we all (except Jef) went in multiple times throughout the day.

When Kien has someone to play with its just so easy. They entertain each other and we can relax and not worry about them.

Kien, being Kien, loves to climb trees and leap off.

Bee School

The first Sunday of every month there is a free natural bee keeping school. We attended the February session a couple weeks ago and it was informative and inspirational. Now that we have the ngahere at Mangawhai we need to learn as much as we can before we embark on this new adventure of having our own hives. Jef and I have been wanting hives for years, but due to so many other priorities in our lives we've not managed it. The more knowledge we gain in this area though will drive us to realise this goal sooner.

Kien was bored in the first half of the session when we were inside the classroom learning theory, but as soon as we stepped outside to open up the hives he was into it.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Snippet of our summer holidays

Straight after Christmas we went and stayed at our ngahere for just under a week. It's the longest stretch we've managed to achieve up there so far, and it was fun.

Jef put together our composting area using pellets. This then gives us the ability to use a composting toilet system.

I made this little video for a holidays snaps competition so it makes sense to put it up here as well.

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Our quiet Christmas day

It has been go-go-go, and I've basically hit the wall today. This morning I was up at 4am wrapping the remainder of the presents - Jef had done the majority of the wrapping last night when Kien and I had crashed out. I went back to bed to get a little bit more shut-eye but the kid decided that 6am was wake up time on Christmas day. We stretched out his patience until 7am before heading downstairs.

He got a letter telling him how good it is that he has been kind and considerate this year, and to keep up with his learning.

On his list this year he had asked for a whole bunch of beyblades, most of them rare. I had managed to find one of them at the last minute on Mighty Ape, and a launcher that he really wanted. The rest of his presents this year were practical ones that we can take up to Mangawhai, like board games and a magnetic backing torch. He didn't seem to mind that Santa gave him a jar of vitamins and a packet of Oreos - hey, they does like both of those things a lot!

Then Jef and I took turns at catching up on sleep. We sure know how to party around here. As the weather was so miserable all our planning of driving up to the property today was shot, so it was a good opportunity to be still for a day. Kien didn't mind. He had plenty of beyblade battles today!

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Kien's birthday party

Last weekend we had Kien's birthday party to celebrate him turning 9 at the end of the year. It's always difficult to juggle a late December birthday (as far as I'm concerned), and everything gets frantic leading up to Christmas. We were very lucky for amazing weather.

Jef took Kien to his cricket match in the morning while I finished off decorating the cake. When they came home Kien was very happy with his cake.

Kien decided once again that he wanted to share his birthday party with one of his best buddies, Naotaka, which is great because then I didn't have to do all the work. This year the piñata was hand crafted by Ayako, and we shared the responsibility with food.

We played classic party games like pass the parcel and treasure hunt. They had water balloon fights and jumped into the spa to warm up again.

Candles stabbed onto cake by children, then lit by anyone who was keen.

I let Kien do the first cut of the cake since he was really keen for it. He's had lots of experience up at our ngahere in the glades chopping woody weeds down with the machete, so I can trust him with a giant knife...

After everyone devoured the cake (I didn't even get a slice - it must have been good!) Jef strung up the piñata and supervised as they all took turns bashing the thing.

Such a fun afternoon. I feel very fortunate that we are able to provide these experiences for Kien. This will contribute to his childhood memories, and adds to my fulfilment as a parent.


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