31 May 2011

In Denial

When this, the last weekend in autumn brings a crispness to the early morning air, you could be forgiven for wondering if winter might be just around the corner.

Was it cool enough to try out the new gloves? I think so!

With one child otherwise occupied on an outing with a friend, we relished the two-on-one time for the sacred gift that it was.

Which involved feeding not quite thawed bread crusts to hungry ducks, well as much bread as made it past the equally hungry mouth of a child anyway.

Then we let little feet run independently and confidently ahead.

Eyes taking in everything. Not missing a thing.

Little feet that took us as far as the rose gardens and begonia house. I was only expecting to see dead heads on bare rose bushes. So was simply wowed by a perfectly formed beauty soaking up the morning dew, while the fountain's spray shrouded other equally elegantly formed works of art in the distance.

We ventured indoors, where the warmth of the begonia house took our breath away. It was like leaving the crisp slopes of an alpine ski field and arriving in a beach resort in Thailand in just two small steps. A welcome relief from the crisp outdoors, but only for a moment, since dressed in several layers the humid, warm air became immediately overpowering.

Little fish crept out from underneath their lily pads to greet our inquisitive gaze.

While the lily stood out as purest white against it's own reflection in inky black waters.

And on the climb back upward through the gardens, a cheeky fantail treated us to a rare glimpse of his daily bath routine. Flicking water here and there, droplets flying through the air like sprinkles shaken to decorate a chocolate cake.

The day so warm now, we had shed several layers on the climb. And we caught our breath in silence, watching the city go about its Sunday business. Languidly, unhurriedly, its face turned to greet the sunshine.

This day allowing us to live a little longer in denial that winter will ever reach us here.

So for now, we'll indulge in this fantasy....for as long as the fantasy shall last.

30 May 2011

Wordless Sunday & Summer Photo Challenge

Joining up with a new linky hosted by Dee over at Books and Bits and Pieces and super excited to be joining in with Alicia's 1st week of Crazy Days of Summer Photo Challenge over at Project Alicia.

Being forced to choose just one picture is tough. So I didn't cheat...well not really.

What I can show you is a fab technique to show the before and after of any pic (thanks to Alicia's tutorial over at Project Alicia). You simply hover your mouse over the pic (you'll need to read this on the blog itself though rather than on Google Reader to see the magic at work).

So without further do, my favourite pic of the weekend......


29 May 2011

{Au Revoir} Autumn

As winter draws ever closer, it's icy fingers are gripping the corners of each day a little tighter still. So let me indulge while I still may, in the memories of warmth and colour when those bright and hazy summer days slipped slowly into autumn's russet tones. 

While I still can bear to before the real pain of winter sets in, let me relive the beauty of fleeting autumn moments (captured at Tupare in New Plymouth over Easter).

And let me not dwell in the depths of winter's despair, but instead dream of Summer Again.
Lyrics by The Afters

I'm watching the green give into gold
As summer becomes winter's cold
Gravity begs for one final kiss
She drops it to him, as she gives in

Traces of light, linger around
As laces of white fall to the ground
The softest of sounds for the heaviest things
And the pain that it brings

As she falls I try to catch her
For one last touch of warmth from summer
As one thing leaves to becomes another again
I remember when

Don't remember the day, she started to fade
The ground felt a chill as she gave it away
A whisper - a sigh, for the time that she passed
But this winter won't last

As she falls I try to catch her
For one last touch of warmth from summer
As one thing leaves to becomes another again
I remember when
Oh to be with summer again

The days were warm and we wore them like skin
Now I feel the effects of autumn again

As she falls I try to catch her
For one last touch of warmth from summer
As one thing leaves to becomes another again
I remember when
Oh to be with summer again

I'm watching the green give in to gold
As summer becomes winters cold 

27 May 2011

Things I'm Loving 27.5.11

♥ Superhaka 
Last Thursday Super Shuttle organised a simultaneous Super Haka in support of the Christchurch earthquake. This is what they said about the event:

Super Shuttle is a 100% New Zealand company that have witnessed first-hand the devastation and turmoil the earthquake had on our Christchurch team and their community. Like many people we wanted to do something significant to express our support for Cantabrians and let them know they are not alone in their time of need.

Check out this dude who was snapped in a haka pose standing by his Super Shuttle van outside Hamilton Airport doing his bit to support the day. He look at all familiar to you?!

Good work Poppa!

♥ Photography gone wrong 
K...so you might only appreciate this if you are a pro photographer or a wannabe like me, but I thought this was kinda clever!

Shared by Dee over at Books and Bits and Pieces.

♥ The Finished Product 
Well that was $10 well spent! I picked up my Enchanted Wood blog post turned photobook today and I just LOVE how it turned out. Can't wait for the next Snapfish special to roll around so I have an excuse to find and commit another special memory to paper.

♥ Flip-Top Gloves 
How KEE-UTE are these?! I went into Equip looking for a cheap set of beads to replace a set that Mylo pulled apart but walked out with these as well. Oh and just quietly, a pair of sunglasses to replace the ones that fell off my head and smashed a couple of weeks ago might have also snuck into the shopping bag as well.

I figured that it'd be great to have something fingerless to keep my hands warm whilst iPhone surfing and snapping photos in the middle of winter since my fingers nearly lost all feeling snapping away on the camera shutter during our excursion to Days Bay last weekend - and it wasn't even THAT cold! And then when my little fingies have done their job, they can get cozy inside their little teddy bear mitten tops!

♥ The Great Wellywood Debate 
*inserts sarcasm here*
So I'm not really loving this. But I can't help but blog about this because it's been such a hot topic of debate this week. If I'm honest, I actually sway on the side of supporting the sign just because I think it's a bit of fun poking at ourselves, and a little tongue in cheek. But I don't really care that much. Have it, don't have it. Who cares?! But lordy, to hear it told anyone would think it's a matter of national security. I got so peeved I had to post this status on Facebook the other day...
OK so...my 2 cents worth! If people out there cared as much about making a difference in another's life as they do about arguing over a few planks of a wood on a hill, I think most of the problems in this country would have been solved already. 

Enough said!

Linking up to Paisley Jade's weekly linky of Loving:


24 May 2011

Recipe: Homemade Crunchie Icecream

Homemade frozen goodness doesn't come much easier or tastier than this.

1 tin of condensed milk
500ml bottle of cream (whipped)
3 x normal size Crunchie bars (smashed up whilst inside their packets)
1 tsp vanilla essence

1. Whip cream
2. Gently, gently fold in vanilla essence and condensed milk, trying not to lose any volume in the mixture
3. Freeze immediately, should be frozen overnight (or 10-12 hours)

The original recipe we tried was a Mars version, but I'm a Crunchie gal through and through so this is our official version now!!

22 May 2011

The Butterfly Effect

The Butterfly Effect. 

This is the best way I can describe people who come into our lives for a short while during their most beautiful stage in life. What makes it all the more bittersweet is that though they are only with us for a short time, our life is far enriched by the experience.

It is a privilege being part of their journey as they spread their wings and fly. To where their real adventures await.

I don't believe its been a coincidence that three butterflies have hatched at our house this week, and that Nikki was there with us to see one doing it's thing...in all its glory. You know...I think they knew there was a believer in their midst, one who appreciates the miracle and awe of nature they are.

Not so long ago, Nikki was just Noah's teacher, he was just one of the children, and we were just another two parents at the daycare centre. When that metamorphosis took place, when Noah began counting Nikki among his dearest friends and 'Nikki cuddles' became one of the things he looked forward to most in his day, and when the teacher/parent line blurred into friend/friend, well who can say exactly when that happened.

But it did.

And we will always be grateful for that change, the transformation to so much more. Now not just a teacher, but a friend. Not just to one of us, but to all of us.

As well as coming to dinner during her last week of work, Nikki made Noah's day coming to spend the afternoon with us yesterday, just 3 days before she heads out on her big overseas experience.

Seeing the two of them running round the house intent on their lightsaber fight was enough to make this mumma smile.

But not as much as I smiled viewing these out-takes during the challenge of trying to get one nice photo of 'Noah and his Nikki'.

Dear girl, we are watching you spread your wings and fly farther and higher than you ever have before. As you head off to London on the biggest adventure of your life, I close my eyes and all I see is a butterfly. Who flitted into our lives for the briefest of moments, but left a lasting impression.

 And whenever we see a butterfly from now on Nikki, we will be thinking of you. Only in our life for a short while, but forever touched by your positivity, your energy and your friendship. Spread those wings and fly,  the world awaits!

Noah and his Nikki

Be sure to go and visit Nikki over at Life's Wonderful Happenings. Our friend and fellow butterfly lover.

21 May 2011

Days Bay for the Day

I know. This doesn't usually happen. It's not often I'm caught completely lacking in the word department. I am somewhat frustrated because today's outing is worth the telling. But no matter how hard I try, I keep coming up empty. I just hope the photos will tell our story.

A Day Trip to Days Bay

As always, I am thankful for the beautiful harbour city we live in. I may not always be thankful for the wind or the biting southerly when it blows through, but it is still a beautiful city.

I love that we can experience the thrill of being on the water, the wind in our faces, and the salt spay tousling our hair. The hum of the ferry engines vibrating through our being as we hit the throttle into open water. Watching the white wake trailing off into the distance behind us.

But the biggest thrill of this moment, or any given moment, is just doing it with you. Doing life with you, my precious family. Joy and wonder, or apprehension and fear, it's about experiencing these moments with you. Laughing when you laugh, and kissing away your tears. All the while, thanking God for you.

Each of you, a God-given gift.

He knew you three were meant for me.

He has known it from the Beginning.

You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. Psalm 139:13-17


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