Archive for February, 2017

We recently celebrated Waitangi Weekend here in New Zealand.  We decided for the three-day weekend to go camping.  It was actually more like glamping – the cheating and luxurious way to camp.  After the two hour drive, most of which was on a gravel road, we made ourselves at home at a campsite next to Lake Taylor nestled in Lake Forest Sumner Park.  Upon arrival the wind was blowing a gale and when you have children who hate the wind, they end up spending most of their time in the car.  Luckily, not too long after our arrival the wind died down a bit and the tent was erected.  The boys had an absolute blast!  After much debate, we decided to only spend one night camping as it took us ages to get the tent set up and we knew bad weather was due sometime on Monday morning.  We didn’t want to risk it with two pre-schoolers and a baby.  Keeping life simple generates less stress!

Since we decided to end our camping journey early, we took the boys blueberry picking here in Christchurch.  They recently have enjoyed picking fruit in the “red zone” in Christchurch and thought they would also like blueberry picking.  And, as predicted, they had a blast.


You can tell how windy it was by looking at E and C’s hair.  It was also so windy that the lake had waves.


Our home for the weekend.  We borrowed Wendy and Peter’s tent.  It was massive!


Nap time success!


While M napped, Jeff took the boys for a little walk up the mountain behind our tent (which you can see in the bottom right of the photo).


Keep life simple and enjoy nature.


C really got into camping.  He sat by Jeff and “helped” cook tea.


All three boys had a blast in the tent.  They giggled and chatted to each other until 9pm.  Then the next morning, I was woken up by all three giggling! I love how C fell asleep off his mat and outside of his sleeping bag.


After bedtime, Jeff decided to hike to the top of the mountain behind the tent.  Great views!


E has a great imagination.  Here is he pretending to fish with a bent piece of flax. 


E wanted to sail on a boat.  He found a piece of drift wood and asked me and M to join him sailing on the lake.


Family photo at Lake Taylor.  Can you tell who the cheeky one in the family is?


On our way out, Jeff insisted we drive to Culverden to eat fish and chips.  Man, it was worth it!  These fish and chips were hands down the best fish and chips I’ve had in New Zealand.


We treated the boys with ice cream afterwards.  They did a great job sharing their cone.


M didn’t want to be left out either! (No, he didn’t get any.)


The weather was prefect on Monday in Christchurch so we found a blueberry farm and took the boys pickin’.


The boys kept showing me how many berries they had picked.  They were extremely proud.


The boys hard at work.


Mommy and M in the blueberry field.


A yummy bounty of blueberries!


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M started rolling this week.


27 Weeks Old on January 31, 2017

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A couple of weekends ago we decided we needed some fresh mountain air.  Our original plans were to hike to Manuka Hut with the kids, but while Jeff and I were packing up everything needed for an overnighter the realizations of making it became unattainable.  Once C can walk further it will become do-able, but until then we are confined to day hikes.  Instead, we decided to go to the mountains just for the day without a plan.  We found ourselves at the Cave Stream Track.  Without a doubt, we knew that the boys would not want to walk into the cave due to the darkness.  So we just walked down to the cave and the boys played in the water for a bit.


E and C enjoyed the wide open space available around the carpark to run off some bottled up energy.


Here are the jaw-dropping views from the track heading down to the river below.  I find hiking in New Zealand to be a very humbling activity as it constantly reminds me of how small I am in comparison to God.


I’m fairly positive the white areas in the river are limestone.  The white bits reminded me of the gemothermal areas on the North Island of New Zealand.


The cave is tucked in the mountain with the river running through it.  You can cave through the entire thing and come out on the other side of the mountain. 


E and C enjoyed running around in the shallow river at the entrance to the cave.


Hiking as a family of 5!  I’m really looking forward to all our future overnight tramping trips with this group of men.  It’s going to be so much fun. 


This is the view looking away from the cave.


Hiking back up to the car.  I was very impressed with C on this trip.  He walked the entire time.  He even carried his bookbag containing his and E’s PAW Patrol pups.


Looking down at the cave entrance from the top of the mountain we just climbed.

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M is now 6 months old!

M definitely has Jeff’s eye color just like E.  M’s hair is still the longest at the top in the back.  So it looks like he is doing an older man’s comb over.  The color of his hair is a very light blonde and sometimes a hint of red catches your eyes.

So far I would describe M’s personality as extroverted.  He smiles a lot, both at strangers and friends.

Unfortunately, M’s body eczema puts him into a bad mood and he just cries and scratches himself.  As a result of his itchy skin, he does this really cute back scratch wiggle on the floor.

M is currently wearing 3-6 month clothes and 6 month clothes.  The summer has been a bit odd weather-wise, but on the few hot days I feel bad for M because I have no choice but to put him in long sleeves and pants.  Otherwise he will destroy his skin and make himself bleed.

M is taking 3-4 naps a day.  Sometimes he will surprise me and take 2.5 hour nap!!!!!

M is still breastfeeding and has it about every 2 hours.  We introduced solids this week.  Jeff and I decided to do the same method of Baby Led Weaning to introduce food to M that we used with our other boys.  His first food he tried was carrots.  M is very interested in food, but he doesn’t seem to like fruit or veggies.  Although, he really enjoys beef.


6 Months old on January 26, 2017



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Sorry I’m a bit behind on the blog.


January 24, 2017

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Holidays in Town

We didn’t get up to much while Doug, Jeff’s dad, was here.  But, we did manage to do a few things in the area.


The majority of our property is a gravel driveway.  The kiwis keep reminding me that it isn’t a gravel driveway, but a shingle driveway.  Everyone pitched in to get rid of our rocks as we decided we aren’t going to use the majority of it and to extend the yard giving the boys more outdoor area.


We visited the New Brighton pier and the boys played in the cold ocean water for a bit.


We took Doug and our friend, Sarah, who was visiting us at the same time up the Christchurch gondola to see some amazing views of the Banks Peninsula.


We also day-tripped it to the Alps.


Doug cuddled his newest grandchild M.


On the few hot days, we visited the paddling pools.


Doug did some shopping in the CBD.  So much happiness in one photo.  I really like this photo.


Jeff and Doug visited the Ruapuna Speedway to watch racecars race around a track.

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