Archive for October, 2014

Sorry for the delay in posting.  The boys and I caught a cold at the beginning of this week.

This labor weekend Jeff went down south with a group to hike the Routeburn Track as part of his father’s day gift (which is celebrated in September here in NZ).  Expect a post coming very soon about that.

The boys and I just stayed around Christchurch and went to numerous playgrounds.  We also went to Willowbank, which is sort of like a petting farm, but with kiwis, monkeys, lemurs, peacocks, golden pheasants, etc.  Willowbank was celebrating 40 years over Labor Weekend so admittance was 40% off.  I definitely wouldn’t pay full price to go at all, but it was fun regardless.  The kiwi enclosure was really good and the best part of Willowbank.  The enclosure wasn’t glassed in like Jeff and I have seen at other places, but you actually walk through the kiwi enclosure on  a path with kiwis running around on both sides of you.  It’s not very ideal with a toddler because it’s dark and you have to be quiet.


E got a kick out of the pukeko forcefully, splashing his feet around in the water.


There was lots of old farm equipment sitting around Willowbank ready to be explored.


Some leisure time at the playground next to our house.  The boys love playing with this screwdriver.


E sliding down the slide.


I just HAD to share this photo.  I love it so much!



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A Labor Day Photo Dump

In honor of New Zealand’s labor day, here are some photos of the boys.


Biking around the apartment.


C likes having a turn on the bike as well.




Every night Jeff reads the Bible to the boys.


E is getting into puzzles.  After a couple of days, he could do this digger puzzle completely on his own.


This is currently C’s favorite book.  Also, whenever I read this book to E, he likes to give the caterpillar a kiss on every page. 


Rolling cars outside on the deck.


E “vacuuming” the living room.


Why water paint with just one brush, when you can paint with two?


This Thomas the Train set from the Toy Library was a blow-out success!  E was even sad to see it go after the rental two week period.


My three favorite people in the world!


This is what happens when E is asked to smile.  It’s really hilarious!


Nom, nom, nom…feet.


This is what happens every time I prepare any meal.


Those are some big shoes to fill.


C LOVES bath time.


E decided to put these undies on one day.  I asked him many times if he wanted them off and he said no.  We even went out in public.  It didn’t bother me one bit.  Maybe he is becoming a super hero???


C looks so proud of his achievements.


The counting train is E’s newest puzzle.  No, he can’t do it by himself.


One day, I randomly took the boys to Bunnings Warehouse (similar to Lowes or Home Depot in the States).  I’m not really sure why I took them there.  But, I did discover a play ground for children in the store.  Plus, Bunnings had little shopping carts, which E enjoyed walking around the store.


Splash!  Splash!  Splash!


C can now pull up on the couch.

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Taking down damaged buildings in the city still exists.

But, more and more NEW buildings are appearing throughout the city.  It’s very exciting.

There are a lot of road works still taking place.

There are cranes every where.  I counted 31 cranes last week throughout Christchurch!

Here are some current photos:


A new building on Durham Street almost complete.


The back side of High Street.


I’m not sure what’s going to happen to this theater on Manchester Street.


Some art on Tuam Street.


Shipping containers holding up the walls of remaining buildings.


The restoration of this building looks amazing.  Can’t wait till it’s finished.


Two new buildings going up on both sides of New Regent Street.


Here’s another angle of the same buildings.  Plus, you can see the old Central City library in the distant being demolished.


A new building going up on Salisbury Street next to Briscoes.


Manchester Street is littered with road cones and construction.


One new building finished and another one going up!


E watching all the road works.


While walking around, we were able to watch this slab of concrete being lowered by the crane.


Feeding ducks and watching the bridge being repaired on Kilmore Street.  And to think I’ve been driving on that bridge for over two years now…




E loves watching the diggers dig.


I thought this was really random.


More road works on Manchester Street.



These diggers were digging out dirt from the Avon River. 

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This week C can now pull up on the couch.  He can also walk himself around in the walker.

C can open and shut his hands on command and when I sing “Open, Shut Them.”  He can also blow kisses.  C is very coordinated with his hands.  I only show him how to clap, etc once and then he can do it.

Corbyn 45 Weeks Old (31)

Here is E’s 45 Week Old Photo.

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Sunday marked the beginning of Christchurch Heritage Week.  The day was full of free events all the way from New Regent Street to Hagley Park.  Two of the free events included a tram ride in the city and a ride on the caterpillar in Hagley Park.  E is going through a huge train stage.  As a parent, Jeff and I feel that it’s important to expand on his interests as much as possible.  That morning, Jeff and I told E that we were going to ride the tram (train to E).  E’s face light up and stayed that way all day.   E was super excited and he still talks about it after the fact.  It was a great way to spend a wet and cold spring day.  Although, more history would have been nice.  After all, it is heritage week.  In fact, I had to look up all the history online.


C and I enjoying a ride on the city’s historic tram.


E was amazed.  He couldn’t stop smiling.  We are passing the ruins of the Christchurch Cathedral in the photo above.


We watched some ducks hiding in the flowers while we waited for the caterpillar to arrive.


Family shot on the caterpillar.



“Train come”  (aka “the train is coming”) says E.


 E posing with the tram.

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This weekend, we really wanted to go tramping, but it was scheduled to rain just about everywhere that afternoon except in the Port Hills.  So we decided to go camping at the Packhorse Hut.  We left early in the morning on Saturday to drive to the Kaituna Valley Scenic Reserve to start our climb to the Packhorse Hut.  We wanted to leave early to ensure we had enough beds for all of us in the hut since the hut only has 9 bunks.  As we were driving towards Kaituna Valley we passed a field of sheep (as you do when driving throughout New Zealand) and we instantly remembered that it was still lambing season, making the majority of the tracks in the Port Hills closed.  We still decided to keep going.  Thank goodness too!  The track to the Packhorse Hut reopened on October 15, just 3 days before!!  It was a bit cold and the wind was very strong and fresh (that’s kiwi for cold), which E didn’t like.  E walked the majority of the way to the hut.  There is a really steep part on the track that really discouraged E.  So at the end of the steep hill E went into the backpack.  Man, that boy is getting heavy!!  I’m not sure how much longer I will be able to carry him.

We arrived at the hut in time to enjoy our lunch and relax a bit.  While hanging out, a group of 4 arrived with the intent to spend the night.  After a couple hours, Jeff and I were talking and we both had a strong feeling that we shouldn’t stay the night.  We were both very surprised by this because this has never happened to us before.  We’ve always wanted to stay.  As we were walking back to the car, we passed two other families who intended to stay overnight in the hut.  We were very pleased that we decided to leave and head back to the car.  The last family we ran into was right at the beginning of the track and it was already 4:00pm and the rain was schedule to start anytime.

Here is some history and the first time we hiked to the Sign of the Packhorse.


Our one-eyed-pirate all ready for the hike.


We were very pleased to see that the track was actually opened!


Ready to go at the beginning of the hike.  The plan was for me to carry C in the backpack with a little bit of stuff until E couldn’t walk anymore.


Jeff carried 99% of the stuff.


Sheep hung out all over the track.  E didn’t like that they ran away from him.


C is very easy to please. 


See, look at that smile. 


E’s turn in the backpack.


So C went into the front carrier.  Jeff is a trooper!



A family shot in the Packhorse hut.  We are packed and ready to head back to the car.


Flying to get out of the wind.


“Hello sheep” says E.


E didn’t want to look at the photo because he was too busy picking up sticks.


You can’t tell from the photo, but E is screaming his head off.  He wanted in the backpack and hated the strong winds.


Trying to find the next orange-pole helped keep E distracted.


E (and C too) flew across the creeks.  Arms out and blow raspberries – a quick and easy idea to do.  It’s so easy, every time C heard “lets fly across…” he even started blowing raspberries!

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Corbyn 44 Weeks Old (1)

44 Weeks Old on October 18, 2014

Here is E’s 44 Week Old Photo.

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