Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Project Life – Week 12

Hi everyone :)

I was so organised during the weekend getting my photos organised and then we got invited to Krystal’s for dinner and updating my blog went completely out of my head!  It was really nice to catch up with everyone on Sunday night though, so it’s not all bad :)

Here’s an overview of my week:FULL_1

On Monday morning I woke up feeling really awful… body aches, head ache, couldn’t get warm… was the worst feeling, so I stayed at home.  I spent most of the morning lying down with absolutely no energy at all. Mike must have been feeling awful too because he came home early from work.  We decided that ‘comfort food’ was what we needed so we made a big batch of waffle mixture and set everything up on the coffee table.  We spent the rest of the day eating waffles, watching Game of Thrones and dozing.

On Tuesday I wasn’t feeling much better so it was another day at home for me.  I spent most of the day sleeping and trying hard to get well but, to be honest, nothing much was helping.  Maybe I should have tried some Guinness since it was St Patrick’s Day!

On Wednesday I felt a little more human so I headed in to school.  My team leader came into my classroom to see how I was feeling… took one look at me and… sent me home!  She was right to do that because to be honest I slept most of the morning and by about 2pm I was feeling a LOT better.  I even felt well enough to finish mounting some of the kids reading work for our wall display!

Here’s a look at the start of the week:LEFT_1

On Wednesday night I made us a beef casserole but I cooked it in the tagine pot.  It definitely had loads of vegetables and flavour packed into it!

Thursday ended up being a really tiring day and then I had to come home and spend a couple of hours on the phone calling parents about camp money.  HEAPS of parents only have cell phones now and it’s expensive to ring everyone! 

Mikayla and I caught up on the phone on Thursday as well and she’s so happy in Invercargill!  Everything is going really well for her and her whole life has turned around.  She’d put a lovely photo up on Facebook so of course I had to get her to send it to me for my album!

Meanwhile, Mike was feeling pretty awful… similar symptoms to me but he had the body sweats too…. ewww!  Toby wasn’t put off though… he climbed up on the sofa with Mike and kept him company!

Fortunately, by the weekend we were both feeling a lot better and we got to get out on the motorbike and enjoy ourselves!  We did a road trip to Whakatane via Te Puke… BIG detour really!  Two of my nieces had just had birthdays so Mike and I had to drop off some gifts and cards.

Here’s a close up of the weekend:RIGHT_1

The girls were both happy to receive some Lego to add to their growing collection and the funniest part was that my sister and BIL were super keen to build it all for the kids!  Maybe they need their own Lego!

Then we headed down to Whakatane and found a café to have ‘breakfast’.  This time I tried the French toast with bacon and banana.  Although it looks great in the photo I’d have to say that Mike and I were a bit disappointed with our food so we won’t be going back to that particular café again.  However, one cool thing they did have was, two trees outside that were ‘dressed up’ in their winter woolies!  Extremely cool and fab!!!

On the way home we stopped at Lake Rotoma to stretch our legs and take some photos.  The lake looked extremely blue and the lighting was perfect!  We also stopped at a sculpture gallery that I’ve always wanted to go to and we had a great time browsing around all the exhibits.

When we got back to Rotorua, Carey rang me to ask if I wanted to join her for dinner so I quickly got myself organised and went to pick her up… and we both went and coerced Chris into joining us… not that she needed much encouragement really! :)

We had a fab night out catching up… great food and plenty of laughs!!!  As we left the restaurant, Carey spotted the ‘bike tree’ and we went along for a closer look.  There are 150 bikes on the display and the lighting is absolutely stunning!

On Sunday, Mike decided it was time for the privet to go!!!  The privet had really taken off and it was super thick… it was also LADEN with bees!!!  If you walked down to the garage during the day time you couldn’t hear anything because of the buzzing!

It’s now looking very straggly out there and we’ll have to spray some more weed killer because we’ve had rain over the past couple of days but it’s looking a LOT better!

So that was our week.  I hope life is treating you all well and that you’re keeping safe xx

Monday, March 16, 2015

Project Life – Week 11

Hello again! 

I’m at home from work today with a head ache, body ache and sore throat so I thought I’d organise the photos I took during the week.

Here’s an overview of the week:FULL_1

On Monday all the teaching staff received brand new school jackets.  We were all pretty pleased with them and they do look really smart!  We’ve all got class trips coming up so we’ll be proudly wearing our jackets for those!

I got a text from Mikayla this week saying her name badge for her course had arrived… then I got another text telling me her uniform had arrived.  She was really onto it and sent me through some photos,  So nice to see her looking really happy and she looks great in her uniform!

There’s so much going on at work and there really just doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day sometimes.  I brought home all my kids self-portraits so that I could get them all mounted for the wall display and Mike offered to give me a hand… it certainly made a long job a LOT quicker!

Here’s a close up of the start of the week:LEFT_1

Unfortunately for Mike he got a speeding ticket on the Harley on Wednesday!  He was so sure that the area he was in was a 70km zone so he was surprised when a cop pulled him over for being 2km over the limit… turns out it was a 50km zone and he was 22km over the limit!

Speaking of the bike, Toby can hear Mike coming home from several streets away.  I got home just before Mike the other day and I’d let Toby inside.  We were having a little chat when he heard Mike’s bike and his ears pricked up instantly.  Then he heard the bike slow down to go around the corner and he jumped up on his bed.  Next thing I know he’s standing full stretch and looking out the window waiting for Mike!  Luckily I had my phone close by or else I would have missed the moment completely!

For the past five weeks I’ve been reading my class Charlotte’s Web and we finished the book on Thursday.  On Thursday night I got busy making cupcakes for the kids.  I’ve just discovered a new vanilla cupcake recipe and it’s awesome!  I made three dozen cupcakes and then I let them cool off while we were watching Game of Thrones.

After dinner I whipped up some pink icing and got busy making the cupcakes look pretty.  I added some pretty blue and pink sprinkles along with some lovely little blue sugar flowers.  I’m really pleased with how they turned out and the kids LOVED them!  We had our video between morning tea and lunch time and the kids had their milk and cupcakes while they watched the movie which was great.

Here’s a look at our weekend:RIGHT_1

On Saturday morning, Mike and I went looking around the car dealers.  Mike’s job is over in Tauranga and for the past few weeks the guy he usually travels with has been on a different job so Mike’s been riding the Harley to work.  Now that winter and all the wet weather is coming it was time to start thinking about a car.  We found exactly what we were looking for at the third car dealers and now we have two Holdens in the family (although the new car won’t be ready to be picked up until later today).  It’s going to be a case of taking which ever car is in the driveway now!

After we’d done all the paper work we decided to go for a ride out of town.  We headed out to Whakamaru and the weather was fabulous.  I love being able to just sit on the back of the bike and watch the scenery go by.  Mike is really good about stopping for photo opportunities for me too!

We stopped at the Whakamaru café for ‘breakfast’ even though it was lunchtime.  We decided to sit outside and eat and it gave me a good opportunity to play around with the camera.  I’m loving some of the photos I’ve been getting lately!

On Saturday night we went out for dinner to celebrate Nina’s birthday at Chapman’s Restaurant.  It was so nice to see Nina looking so happy and her granddaughter was really happy to share her birthday ‘cake’ with her!

In other Toby news… Toby LOVES the weekend!  He knows that he can have a cuddle with Mike in the mornings and he sits and waits for Mike to wake up.  On the weekend poor Toby had to wait… and wait… and wait some more because Mike was having a sleep in and when I went up to the bathroom he seized his opportunity and snuck into the bedroom to wake him up!  Luckily Mike was actually awake when Toby jumped on top of him!

During the week, Mike has continued to work on the ‘day room’ for Toby.  It has now been stained and waterproofed.  Then Mike decided it needed a little bed in there for Toby so he went down and bought a brand new one from The Warehouse along with some foam for a mattress.  He’s even put some ‘carpet’ aka astro turf down to make it more homely for Toby!


We spent most of Sunday tidying up the garage, organising boxes, sorting out stuff and then photographing and listing excess stuff on Rotorua Buy and Sell.  It was a busy day!

Before I go I want to share my two favourite photos from this week.  I’m really enjoying ‘playing’ with my new camera and every now and then I get a shot that make me smile.

This one was taken at our breakfast on Saturday.  It made it into the photo pages for this week but I wanted to share it again.  Loving our breakfasts being in focus but still having the bike in the background. 

Fav photo 2

The other photo was taken at Ohakuri Dam.  We’d stopped there to have a look around and I decided to try and get a couple of photos.  Really pleased with how this one turned out:

Fav photo

Maybe I should start a little mini album of my favourite photos??

Take care and I hope you have a great week xx

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Project Life – Week 10

I’m back with another Project Life update… and all the photos have actually been printed and put into the album!

Here’s an overview of Week 10:FULL_1

When I got home on Monday, Mike was busy washing the Harley.  I went down to the backyard to see what he was up to and there was water and soap suds galore.  He also had the old camera down there and proudly told me that he’d got me a few good shots… the car wash on the bike seat was taken by Mike!

A couple of weeks ago I mentioned to him that I was lacking ‘during the week’ photos even though we seem to be doing lots of stuff so I showed him how to work my old camera and now I quite often come home to find that he’s taken photos of what he’s been up to after work LOL

On Tuesday I got home to discover ALL the lights in the house were working again.  The lounge light had ‘blown’ last year and Krystal said she couldn’t get it to work again.  It turns out that the whole fitting had to be replaced and it was on my list of things to get done.  Mike went down to Bunnings and bought a new fitting and now we have lights again!  He also fixed the dining room light and the outdoor light so I’m pretty stoked!

Here’s a closer look at the beginning of the week:LEFT_1

In A1 (my classroom) the kids have been learning about volcanoes and several of them have made models and brought them in to school.  There have even been a few of them that have ‘erupted’ their volcanoes with baking soda and vinegar.  Thankfully all the erupting has taken place outside and we’ve got some good video footage of what we’ve been doing.

On Wednesday, Dad and Jan came to stay for the night on their way through to Napier.  Dad and I catch up fairly regularly on the phone but it’s always nice to catch up in person.  Dad has visited me once a year for the past few years when he and Jan have been ‘gallivanting’ around the countryside… retirement really suits him!  For the past few years Krystal has been living in Hamilton so she hadn’t seen her Granddad but this time she brought Chris with her and they joined us for dinner.  I made a lamb tagine with all the side dishes and then Krystal provided us with a pavlova roll for dessert… delicious!

We had three generations here for dinner and it was a good opportunity for Dad to meet Mike and Chris.  Thankfully everyone got on well and we had a good night :)

On Thursday afternoon the senior school teachers all went out to Tui Ridge to have a pre-visit before we head off to camp next term.  They have some really good facilities and the kids are going to have a great time.

Here’s a closer look at the second half of the week:RIGHT_1

Then on Saturday Mike decided it was time to organise some outdoor shelter for Toby.  As many of you know Toby will NOT go into a kennel… no matter how wet he gets he’d still rather sit in the rain on the back door step. While we were living in Gisborne it was okay because there was a very covered part of the deck where Toby could get out of the rain… but now that we’re back in Rotorua it’s a different story.

After looking at several options, Mike came up with a plan!  First of all he removed the three horribly overgrown trees down the side of the house.  Toby was extremely interested in what Mike was up to and was very keen to ‘help’ him with the trees.  He even showed Mike where to put the cut branches so that they could carry on with their ‘man stuff’.

Then Mike moved the fence back so that it lined up with the gate.  Toby thought that was pretty good and he quickly got up on the dirt to have a look around. Next came the building side of things… Mike was in ‘man tool’ heaven and Toby was in there having a look at everything going on.  He didn’t seem to mind the noise either!

Once Mike had the basic structure up we took Toby’s bed outside to see if it would fit and he wasn’t having a bar of it!  He tried barking at us to put his bed back inside, he growled, he whined, and then he barked some more.  When we did put the bed back inside Toby promptly hopped onto it and didn’t move off it for the rest of the afternoon!

On Saturday night we went to Tauranga for dinner with Mike’s best friend Mark and his wife.  We went to the Harbourside Restaurant and had an amazing time.  The food was fabulous and we laughed lots during the night.  Mike and Mark are really hilarious when they get going and after a couple of Coronas they were in their element!  Rattaya and I spent most of the time either laughing ourselves silly or rolling our eyes at our silly (but lovely) men!

On Sunday, Mike and I did a ride on the Harley.  We went over the Mamakus and headed for Matamata for coffees.  Then we visited Mike’s stepdad in Te Aroha.  Next we went via Paeroa and Waihi on our way to Waihi Beach for lunch.  We stopped at the Flippin Bear for pancakes and we definitely weren’t disappointed with our lunch!

Then we went via Katikati to visit Sheree and Mark.  It was so nice to see them again after being away in Gisborne.  Sheree took a couple of photos of us as we were leaving and emailed them to me… thanks heaps Sheree xx

Then we were off to Tauranga and finally back to Rotorua.  It was a great day and we managed to miss pretty much all of the rain.  So that was our week.

I hope you’re all having a great weekend xx

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Project Life – Week 9

I’ve finally caught up!  Here’s a overview of the final week of February 2015:


To be honest… this weeks photo spread could almost be called ‘What we did on the weekend’ because during the week we were so busy with work that we hardly took any photos but come the weekend we took HEAPS!

This was also a BIG week for me and Mike because he ‘officially’ moved in on Saturday morning.  In reality he’s been living here since the end of January but I just couldn’t get my brain to compute how quickly everything was happening so we called it a ‘sleepover’ until my brain had a chance to catch up with what was going on!

Here’s a close up of the left side of my pages:LEFT_1

This week I brought home the ipads from school several times.  One night, Mike and I sat at the dining room table with packets of screen protectors, cloths and card scrapers and CAREFULLY attached new protectors to all 10 of the ipads.  It was a bit tedious but we got them all done and charged overnight

On another night I brought home the new App Store cards for both my ipad Air and the classroom ipads and I started to get the programmes we need for learning installed and ready for classroom use.

I also discovered a lovely red chili in my garden! The garden is actually growing really well and I’ve started harvesting some of the herbs for my cooking.

On Monday, Mike and I had been down at Harvey Norman’s picking out our new bedroom furniture (exciting!) and on Thursday we had to go back in to get the delivery organised.  I was due at the hairdressers for their late night so we managed to catch up for a quick hot chocolate in town beforehand.

On Saturday morning it was all go here… Mike decided to change a washer on one of the taps and he went outside to turn off the water toby… and it wouldn’t turn off… it just kept going around and around… so he called the Council.  The Council sent out ONE worker to have a look at it and he quickly called in a SECOND guy to help him cut the concrete on our driveway!

Meanwhile… the furniture truck arrived with our bedroom furniture so we got that all moved in and sorted out. 

The guys from the Council then had water flowing EVERYWHERE so they decided to turn off the MAINS water for the whole street… and the mains tap BROKE!  So then the whole street had NO WATER on a sunshiny Saturday when everyone wants to get their washing done… OOPS!  So what did we do???  We went for a bike ride to Taupo and Mike took me out for lunch!


Dixie Browns in Taupo is awesome!  After looking over the menu we both decided on seafood chowder and it was an excellent choice!  It was packed with fresh seafood and the garlic bread on the side was divine.

Then Mike ordered the most ENORMOUS banana split!  I ordered the bread and butter pudding made with croissants and topped with a caramel sauce and it was super delicious!  Next time I think I might just have dessert!  LOL

After lunch we went back to the lookout and I took some photos and then we headed for home again.  Part way back Mike took a detour… that’s one thing about being on the back of the bike… I have no choice about where we end up!  We ended up going to the Aratiatia Dam and we got there in time to see the dam open and all the water come flowing through.  It was pretty spectacular and I managed to click away 157 photos!  Thank goodness for digital cameras!

That night we had our first ‘official’ living together dinner… hot chicken, salads, bread and chips… not terribly upmarket but it was exactly what we both felt like after our exciting day!

On Sunday we spent quite a bit of the day getting the guest room organised.  We exchanged the single beds for a Queen size bed, changed furniture around and went shopping for new bed linen and by late afternoon it was all done and looking welcoming.

I also got a chance to catch up with Nina on Sunday morning which was great.  We checked out her Cricut to make sure it was all working before she had to send it off to its new owner.  Life has certainly become a lot busier these days but at least I can say I’m finally up to date with Project Life!

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend xx

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Project Life – Week 8

Well I’m definitely catching up now!  Here’s an overview of Week 8:


It was during Week 8 that I finally started catching up on my Project Life album.  Photos were starting to get printed and the blog got a little bit of attention.  Thankfully we’ve got a calendar where we put all the daily events and it did make it MUCH easier to catch up!

At school we’ve been learning about multivariate data for statistics.  It’s a lot less complicated than it sounds but the kids love learning all the cool words that go with statistics and it certainly is different from the kind of maths I did when I was at school.

Here’s a close up of the start of the week:LEFT_1

Once the varnish was dry in the laundry, Mike moved the washing machine back into the laundry and then much to my surprise I came home the next day and the fridge had been moved into the laundry as well.  I’ve decided that I REALLY like it where it is and the door now opens the ‘right’ way for me!

We were in town during the week (actually it might have been for the night market) and we found some really cool ceramic scrabble magnets.  They had both our initials and I was going to get an ampersand to put between them until I realised what that would stand for… maybe it was a ‘you had to be there moment’ but it definitely struck us as funny LOL

Week 8 also saw Brent being named as the winner of Masterchef.  I was really excited to see the final and I’d been cheering for Brent for quite a few weeks.  There was something intensely likeable about Brent and he certainly came across as humble to me.

Here’s a close up of the rest of the week:RIGHT_1

On Friday night, Mum, Krystal and I all went out for dinner for Italian food and we left ‘the boys’ at home to look after themselves.  On Saturday I was looking for the pistachio nuts and Mike said he’d eaten them… keep in mind there was about $10 worth of pistachio’s in the bag!  It turns out he’d also ‘tried’ the smoked chicken followed by eating an ENTIRE tub of sorbet!  His excuse… Toby said he could have it all!  Mike said he’s now too ‘scared’ to eat anything while I’m out LOL

Meanwhile, we were all having a wonderful time trying an antipasto platter followed by pasta… really delicious.  Then we went for a bit of a stroll through town before going to the production of Mamma Mia… and it was FABULOUS!!!  What an excellent experience… we laughed… I cried… and we sang and danced in our seats.  It was a really wonderful production and totally satisfied all three of us!

On Saturday we did all the chores including finally getting a frame for the kiwi print we bought in Wellington.  It now sits proudly on the lounge wall.

On the Sunday we went to Tauranga and on the way back we called in to see my niece with some more Marmite supplies.  She was really happy to have her photo taken and of course her sisters didn’t want to miss out on the fun either!

The last little bit of news is that Mike and I bought ourselves ‘Commitment’ rings.  We’d talked about ‘maybe one day’ getting rings and then Mike surprised me by taking me to the jewelers on Sunday. 


So that’s all our news for now.  I hope you’re having a good week!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Project Life – Week 7

Hi again :)

This time I’ve got Week 7 – 9th to 15th February.  Here’s an overview of the week:FULL_1

We didn’t get all our Wellington unpacking done until Monday so I wanted to include the lavender products we bought.  We haven’t tried the lavender furniture polish yet but the rest of it is all pretty fantastic. 

We also brought back some lovely chocolates from Butlers Chocolate Café.  They did get a little bit melted in the car but they were totally delicious!  Unfortunately due to the fact we’ve been eating so healthy we both ended up feeling a little bit unwell afterwards.

Here’s a closer look at the start of the week:LEFT_1

At school we’ve been working on our self portraits.  Sadly, a lot of kids believe that they aren’t good at art so it usually takes a bit of encouragement to get them sketching.  Thankfully my class seem quite keen to learn new skills and their sketches are looking awesome.

We have a heated pool at school.  The kids enjoy their swimming lessons and I’ve noticed how much they have improved their skills already. 

Sometimes Toby ‘sneaks’ up onto the bed with Mike and then he looks at me as if to say ‘It’s ok Mumma… Mike said I could be here’… in his dreams!  I couldn’t resist taking a photo of them together though LOL

While we were in Wellington, Mike carried my camera bag for me and it was quite a pain in the neck!  We had a look for a different bag while we were away but couldn’t find exactly what we were looking for… then we came back home and found exactly the right thing!

Here’s a close up of the second part of the week:RIGHT_1

This week we had to do a MAJOR D.I.Y. project… and luckily for me Mike is just as much into D.I.Y. as I am!  The hot water cylinder first started leaking quite a while ago and then I had it fixed just as I was moving to Gisborne.  Little did I know that it still had a small but persistent leak which lead to the entire laundry floor rotting away!

Mike and the plumber pulled out the old hot water cylinder and then replaced it with a new one.  Next the floor came out which totally confused Toby… he just couldn’t understand where the floor had gone!

Over the weekend Mike replaced the floor and then started the job of varnishing it which meant that I couldn’t use my washing machine for several days.  It was proving quite difficult to keep Toby and his nose out of the varnish so we decided to use our ‘Toby gate’ to keep him out of trouble.

On Saturday morning we went into town and picked up a few supplies and then Mike saw a shoe sale.  He’d been wanting some new walking shoes and they had a great deal on so I ended up with a cool pair of walking shoes too!

Saturday was also Valentine’s Day so after lunch Mike took me for a mini road trip on his motorbike to visit my sister in Te Puke.  It was a brilliant ride and a gorgeous day.  I asked Katey to take a couple of photos for us and she got one that I really liked!  Then we headed into Tauranga to visit Mum for the rest of the afternoon.  She was definitely surprised to see us and we had a really nice visit.

On Sunday, Mike got busy with the floor again and I mowed the lawns.  Krystal came for a visit and Mike’s niece (Ayva) also arrived for the afternoon so while Mike and I were busy doing jobs Krystal gave Ayva a manicure.  She thought she was very grown up!

So that was Week 7.  I hope you’re all having a happy weekend xx