Sunday, October 27, 2013

Last minute run to the beach

We were home all day today trying to catch up on tasks that we've both put off. But unfortunately the 3 3/4 year old boy doesn't do too well being inside while mum and dad try to do their own thing. He broke a few things, knocked over a few others, and cried a number of times over trivial stuff. Jef did most of the parenting today - I was in a bit of a funk and stayed in bed. So when a friend got in contact at around 5pm saying they were camping out at Muriwai Beach and suggested we join them for dinner, well it was an invitation too good to pass. I gave Jef a break, persuaded Kien to come out with me, and 35 minutes later we were at the playground out at the beach.

I had a really pleasant time catching up with my chum and her son, and after Kien stopped being clingy he too had a good time. We ordered fish and chips from the Sand Dunes Beach Cafe and took it back to the campground. After dinner we left them to their "camping", and Kien and I headed over the sand dunes to the beach.

This was exactly what I needed tonight to pull me out of my gloom; fresh air, running around on a long stretch of beach with the wind in our hair, Kien and I chasing each other and having sand fights.

Of course the beautiful sunset topped it all off.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Glorious Sunday

On a beautiful sunny Sunday we looked for somewhere new we could head out to. Tahuna Torea Nature Reserve was a perfect destination for us. This was a coastal bush walk that took us meandering through trees, on the board walk, and along paths lined with tall grass.

We stopped to look at Purple Swamphens (known locally as the PÅ«keko) and heard the beautiful trill of a Tui.

We wandered through the mangroves and made our way onto the sand/cockle shells as we headed out to the spit.

Kien was throwing shells up in the air and would celebrate a successful throw with a groovy victory dance.

As you can see it was way low, low tide.

That's the marina in the background we moved out yacht from back in January.

We walked around and back to a clearing on the beach to shelter us from the wind that whipped through the channel. There we stopped for refreshments.

Kien got a haircut. A hairdresser comes around to daycare and if we want to pay her $15 she will cut our child's hair to any specification. I explained to one of the teachers what I wanted. This wasn't it.

We had a fantastic outing and felt so refreshed after such a hectic week. My work life right now is just mad. I'm working ridiculous hours because I end up taking stuff home. Our vendors are based in another time zone so I've been doing a full day at work and then come home and sometimes will do another half day after Kien is in bed. I just need to get over this hurdle and then put a stop to this, pronto. I remember making the decision to work part-time for a reason! Anyway, I can't complain, really. I am lucky to have my very flexible job with flexible hours and a flexible team. So the whinge was just to get it off my chest, but also to let you know why I haven't been updating regularly or replying to you when you've been in contact. Things will lighten up soon (1 December, actually). Yay! Roll on summer!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

The day we patted a Kiwi

I've never been that close to a real live Kiwi before let alone have the privilege of patting this endangered species, so we were pretty lucky when the environmental team at my work organised for Sparky to come to the building last Thursday.

12 years ago Sparky was caught in a gin trap, and he lost a leg as a result of that. But luckily he was rescued, and he's been living at the Whangerei Native Bird Recovery Centre every since. He does the odd tour now and again up and down the country.

I invited Kien's daycare to bring along a few kids and share in the experience too.

Then we all got to pat Sparky.

They were not due back until the afternoon, so everyone sat in the courtyard and ate their packed lunch.

Kien was so glad to see Jef and I, and he didn't want to go back with the rest of the children. He cried and asked to stay - and this was one of those awful moments when I wished I could just bail from my job and spend the afternoon in the sun with my son. But alas, no, I went back upstairs and attended a project meeting instead. When I went to pick up Kien that evening he recounted the fact that he had to come back to daycare, but that was quickly followed by a story about the day we patted a Kiwi.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

An outing to the Auckland City Fire Station

It's the busiest fire station in the country, and I'm pretty sure houses the friendliest bunch of firemen in the world!

Yesterday morning Kien and I were invited to join a small walking group from daycare - destination => Pitt Street Fire Station (the address is officially 2 Poynton Terrace, but it's actually right on Pitt St). We walked up Wellington St, the most strenuous part of entire walk. Good thing it was at the beginning of our journey.

We got to the station and the kids were ecstatic. Ok, they may look a bit subdued, but believe me, they were really excited.

So we didn't actually have an appointment. Rachel did call them, but she couldn't get through, or something happened, but anyway, we weren't even sure we would be able to get in.

But then, hooray! The kind firemen opened the door and let us in, and all the kids were able to hop into the fire engine. Happiness all around.

It was really nice of the firemen to show such enthusiasm toward a bunch of kids gate crashing their morning tea break.

High fives all around, and a goodie bag of stickers and frisbees - what more could we ask for from our heroes in the fire service?

We stopped to give the kids a quick snack before heading back to the centre.

Kien and I got home and had lunch. He wanted to watch some Peppa Pig on the iPhone, and next minute...

Yes, the sign of a satisfying outing!


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