Thursday, November 29, 2007

The Bottle of Wine

For all of us who are married, were married, wish you were married, or wish you weren't married, this is something to think about the next time you see a bottle of wine:
Sally was driving home from one of her business trips in Northern Arizona when she saw an elderly Navajo woman walking on the side of the road.

As the trip was a long and quiet one, she stopped the car and asked the Navajo woman if she would like a ride.
With a silent nod of thanks, the woman got into the car.

Resuming the journey, Sally tried in vain to make a bit of small talk with the Navajo woman. The old woman just sat silently, looking intently at everything she saw, studying every little detail, until she noticed a brown bag on the seat next to Sally. 'What in bag?' asked the old woman.

Sally looked down at the brown bag and said, 'It's a bottle of wine. I got it for my husband.'

The Navajo woman was silent for another moment or two.

Then speaking with the quiet wisdom of an elder, she said:

'Good trade.....'

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Laundry Fun

One of the blogs I regularly read is Rocks in my Dryer. She had a really great post the other day about laundry.
Go check it out, because with the 2 boys in my house I can see this sort of thing happening to me sometime in the future.
Ok we don't actually have any of that in New Zealand but I can so totally relate to where she is coming from!


The love story of Ralph and Edna.

Just because someone doesn't love you the way you want them to, doesn't mean they don't love you with all they have.
Ralph and Edna were both patients in a mental hospital.
One day while they were walking past the hospital swimming pool. Ralph suddenly jumped into the deep end. He sank to the bottom of the pool and stayed there.
Edna promptly jumped in to save him. She swam to the bottom and pulled him out.
When the Head Nurse Director became aware of Edna's heroic act she immediately ordered her to be discharged from the hospital, as she now considered her to be mentally stable.
When she went to tell Edna the news she said, "Edna, I have good news and bad news.
The good news is you're being discharged, since you were able to rationally respond to a crisis by jumping in and saving the life of the person you love. I have concluded that your act displays sound mindedness.
The bad news is, Ralph hung himself in the bathroom with his bathrobe belt right after you saved him. I am so sorry, but he's dead."
Edna replied, "He didn't hang himself, I put him there to dry. How soon can I go home?"

Sunday, November 25, 2007

A & P Show

We have taken to this country living with no problem at all.
Cambridge is a small town about 15 minutes drive from us. Very famous within New Zealand for being the horse capital and where all well known horse breeders live and train.
So you can imagine that if they hold an A & P Show it would be good.
Well it was small and cosy and we spent several great hours there.
The boys got to ride on tractors, or at least sit on them whilst I took their pictures.
We got to see lots of demonstrations from animals and lots of horse shows.

We got to sit and watch some wonderful show jumping, which the boys thought was great, even more fun when they kept knocking the poles down!
And we also saw some displays of ClydesDale horses which were magnificent.
All in all a good day out for free.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

The Wedding

As promised previously pictures of my cousin's wedding from last weekend.
Ben and Alex were ring bearers for them, although they sat with us until they were needed and then I helped them carry the rings up in a little bag.
The weather was wonderful, just what you want on your wedding day. The bride looked radiant and the groom looked hansome.
All in all a lovely day.

A very simple and basic service that was lovely.

The happy couple, Kerry & Daniel

The Bridal Party

Our 2 gorgeous boys

The boys and I

One of the only decent pictures of the boys with Kerry and Daniel

Kerry and her sister Lucy (chief bridesmaid)

Very dashing young men

Kerry and Daniel

Beautiful Bride

Friday, November 23, 2007

New Bikes

We had already realised about a week ago that Ben was going to require a new bike this Christmas. Not that we were bothered by it, just another thing for us to get done for Christmas.
We have had Grandma staying with us this week and on one of the days she was here we let Ben ride his bike to Kindy, whilst doing this it became apparent that Ben really needed that bike now.
So wonderful Grandma stepped in and said they would buy him one for Christmas, only thing was what to get Alex, but the more we looked at Ben's old bike the more we realised it wasn't suitable for Alex, so the solution was both have new bikes.
So today Grandma took them both shopping for new bikes for Birthday/Christmas and because she will not be here after Christmas as she will be back in Dubai, she decided they could have them straight away because then she got to enjoy them with them. Plus they are still small enough to not know too much about Christmas yet. (my how that will all change sooner than we think!)
Alex on his new bike, which is a little big at present but give him a month or two and there will be no problem. This bike even has a push pole at the back that allows you to push the bike with him on it, wonderful thing about it is that the pole also controls the handle bars, so you can steer when pushing him!

Ben on his smart 2nd bike, his leg muscles will be strong in no time. He is having a ball on this bike.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Awesome Show

As a birthday treat and because we really wanted to see it, we drove to Auckland on Tuesday and experienced the stage show 'We Will Rock You'
It was fabulous and so worth seeing.
We had no idea about the story line before we got there, all we knew was that it contained loads of Queen's songs and it was written by Ben Elton.

I have never laughed so much for a long time.
It you ever get the chance to see this show, I highly recommend it.

Monday, November 19, 2007

By the Way

Yesterday was my birthday and it was so nice of all of my family to congregate in one town to celebrate the day with me, shame they were all there for the wedding and my day just happened to occur!
Still I got lots of birthday wishes all day and some wonderful presents.
An MP3 player from my boys (all 3 of them) a quilt from my mum and dad, I was expecting the kit to make it up myself but my mum had actually made it up. So cool. Will post a picture when I take one.
Some chocolates from my brother and family and lots of hugs and kisses from all my extended family.
A girl couldn't have asked for a better day.

Monday Meme

Check out Manic Monday Meme for more

What is your least favorite day of the week and why?
Thursday because the week seems to be taking for ever to get to the weekend. The boys are getting restless from being at home with me so much.

What's the best way to end the day?
Snuggled reading a book

Which animal would you have left out of the ark?
Can't actually remember all the animals that went onto the ark so very difficult to say who I would have left off. Did they take one of everything? If so probably spiders, only because I don't like them!

Playing Together

I know it seems like a few days since I posted anything, 5 to be exact.
But there has been a lot going on and somethings got very stressful. Unfortunately something has to go by the wayside and getting on the computer to blog is one of those things.

But when you have your bank convincing you that you never had the $4000 there in the first place you do start to question things. It got sorted 24 hours later, but it was a very long 24 hours.
Also my lovely cousin Kerry got married this weekend to her lovely man Daniel.
So when I have the pictures sorted I will put some on so you can see my lovely 2 monkeys as the ring bearers.
Instead for now here is a picture of my 2 playing together so nicely.
With the way the days have been lately it is so nice to see them discover each other as play mates.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


I am a part time quilter, I would love to be more, but I have a young family so this is something I am looking forward to doing more of when my boys are bigger and no longer need me all of the time.
This horoscope came through from my mum, and it sums me up perfectly:

Scorpio - October 24 to November 22
Being passionate Scorpios can be excellent quilters. When they rely on their natural intuition, they excel at choosing colour and pattern combinations. Sometimes their compulsive nature can cause problems, as they leave projects unfinished in their quest to have the latest and greatest. When they stick with a project they produce supreme work. They always must have the most up-to-minute supplies or tools and tend to be jealous of others who may possess anything more recent. They have been known to sulk if they get frustrated in their aim to be unsurpassed. Nevertheless, their desire to have the best is what drives them to produce exceptional quality work. As they possess abundant energy they can do a large amount of quilting without even needing a break for a cuppa coffee.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Monday Meme

The fun of getting back on line is remembering all the regular things you did on your blog before you had 2 weeks out.
So even though it is not Monday, but as I explained previously, with the time difference it can make it difficult to do this on a Monday here, here is the meme for this week from Manic Monday.

What family traditions or customs would you most like to see preserved?
Not sure we actually have any, but really want to start some with my family.
Like Choosing your favorite meal on your birthday.

What do you feel is the least sexy part of the body?
My feet

What keeps you awake at night? Why? (This could be worries, recurring thoughts, pain or any other distraction. Read into this any way you wish.)
Nothing seems to keep me awake, although I do know I wake up several times a night since having kids, but not because I am worried about them, just because they keep coming into me and waking me up!


I received the biggest compliment any mother can ask for today.
I got told I was very patient with my children and that the man was amazed that I stood my ground.
I told him it was either that or I killed them!

What happened you ask......

We; Ben, Alex and myself, went to Pak n Save (supermarket) to get some essentials. I had to move a trolley out of the way to get to the trolley I needed that would sit both the boys in, makes life easier that way, anyway Ben decided that in fact we needed the trolley I had moved.
So I started heading into the shop and he was still standing outside with his trolley.
This is where the first stand off between mother and son occured, and eventually he moved into the shop but still with the trolley.
I patiently explain that I only need 1 trolley, the one I had, and that he can put his trolley over to the side so someone else can use it.
"But mum" is the reply I get
So I stand my ground, off to the side so as not to block the door in totally, and again explain to Ben that I have the trolley I want and could he please come with me.
He still stands his ground saying he wants this trolley. So eventually I help him to sit in his trolley but still stand by my trolley.
So there you have a 4 yr old sat in his trolley crying and me stood off to the side watching him. Several people did comment about the boy crying in the trolley and where was the mum? But were happy when I pointed out that he was with me, I got lots of smiles then.
Eventually, after about 10 minutes, I wasn't going anywhere and I had all the time in the world, I managed to get Ben to agree to get out of his trolley and into mine.

This done we headed into the shop and finished our shopping.

As we are leaving so the man that watched all this from the stand out the front where he is promoting "Save the Children" commented that I was so very patient and he was amazed that I stood my ground for so long.
I just told him that I had to be and that sorry I couldn't support his cause but that I had 2 kids he could have if he wanted more to save!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Darling Alex

This is a picture of our darling little 2 1/2 yr old.
Butter wouldn't melt in his mouth with that beautiful blonde hair and blue eyes picture, but let me tell you a little story that will change all of that...!
Imagine 8am on a Sunday morning if you will, just got up wandering around in your pyjamas sorting out breakfast, planning the day ahead, actually going out at 9am.
Suddenly there is a voice from the lounge, Ben is telling Alex to open the door, constantly saying "I can't get it open"

On investigation I find Ben trying to open our bedroom door, and when I give it a try I realise that the door is locked!

Now small problem here is that there is a push button on the door handle on the bed side of the door and a key slot on the lounge side of the door.

Alex has pushed the button, come out of the bedroom and closed the door behind him!!!!!

So there you have it, Steve and I are stood in pyjamas and nothing else, all our clothes are in the bedroom that is now unaccessable, all the windows into the bedroom are closed and have safety locks and catches on anyway.

Steve makes the wonderful comment on the fact that for once I have put all the laundry away in it's correct place so not a laundry basket in sight with any of our clothes in it.

Well we had guests for a BBQ last night, so I cleared up.

And there you have it, 8.15 on Sunday morning and we have to start thinking about how to open a locked door in our rental house, without doing too much damage to the door or Alex.

So we call the landlady, who, if she had answered the phone at that time of the morning, would have loved us and leave a rather urgent message for her to get back to us asap?

Then we sit and think for a while, I suggest a locksmith and we ponder the amount of money this is going to cost us!
But we would be ok for a little while, I mean ok we aren't going out at this point but eventually Steve will require his insulin, although there is plenty in the fridge and I think there is a syringe on the unit in the dining room, so not totally stuck.

Anyway, eventually Steve says call a locksmith because at this time on a Sunday morning it could take a while, so I wave my finger over the page and see where it lands and call that one.

I got a lovely guy called Nick on the phonefrom Piako Mobile Locksmith, who guessed he was having a better morning than we were. He proceeded to explain that he could come and visit but it would cost us basic of $130 to start or he could talk us through how to break the lock with an electric drill and a screwdriver and then we could all stay in our houses and it would only cost us $35 from the local hardware store later in the week to get a new lock.
So I passed him over to Steve and he had the quick 101 on how to break the lock on the door, nicely, without too much damage.

Breakfast complete, out came the drill and in went Steve, who succeeded in nicely and cleanly breaking the lock and with a screwdriver gained access to the bedroom.

Nice thing about it all is that it has been broken in such a way that we can still lock the door from the bedroom side but gain access with the screwdriver from the lounge side if it ever happens again.
You can just see the drill hole in the 2 O'clock position on the lock, so nicely done.
So we have told the landlady that yes we will replace the lock before we leave, but for now for safety sake with Alex we will leave as is, because at least we know we can get to our stuff next time.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Hamilton Gardens

When we first came to visit Hamilton back in June I took the boys, as recommended by Grandma, to the Hamilton Gardens. Now I was just so taken with this place, it was surreal. I think I floated around the place, there was just something about it that got me.On Sunday we decided to take the boys there for our daily outing, see what the flowers were like in a different time of year.
It was still as beautiful as before and I am still very taken with the place. I haven't been to all the gardens there just one little section of 6. They consist of the following....
  1. Japanese Garden
  2. English Garden
  3. Chinese Garden
  4. American Garden
  5. Indian Garden
  6. Italian Garden
So I am posting a photo post of the place to give you a taster of these gardens. The fact it is now just down the road from us means that during the next year we will get to visit as often as we want and also get to see the gardens in all the 4 seasons throughout the year. I look forward to that part. I am not showing you everything that is available just enough to wet your appertite, so drop on by sometime and we will take you there it is free!

American, Indian and Italian Gardens

This is my most favorite of all the gardens. I think it is because of the symetry, just like quilting.Alex, well he just liked all the water!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Food and more Food

I am not sure if it is because my 4 yr old has learnt the understanding of the words 'hungry' and 'thirsty' but all he wants to do is eat!
Are they meant to eat you out off house and home at 4?!
He has breakfast, morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner and anything he can get to eat inbetween.
Now I am trying to make sure what I give them is healthy and lasting so that they will make it to the next meal, but he is still wanting more.
Anyone got any healthy tips on food? I think he is getting sick of fruit, toast, cereal and meat?

Mayoral Update 2

I received an email from Tom this morning informing me of how things have been going in Wapak.

Well, this election was as close as the primary election I won in May. I am down by 24 votes, but there are 83 provisional ballots that won't be counted until the Board of Elections meets on the 27th of November.
I busted my butt working at this, but it's still easy to second guess myself. I wish I had gone door to door two more weeks, etc. Still, not bad to take out the President of City Council in the primary election, who had been President of Council for 10 years and on Council for two years before that. And my opponent this time has been on Council for 18 years and I'm within 24 votes of him. Nothing like a close race.
It's not over yet, I might still have a shot, but statistically I don't think it's likely 54 of those 83 provisional ballots are for me.

So it could be a long shot, but I am still very proud of him for getting this far. When I know the final result I will let you know.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Backwards WFMW

By checking out other peoples WFMW ideas and questions this is how I manage to stumble across some wonderful blogs to check out on a more regular basis.

Todays WFMW is 'backwards day' meaning that we ask the questions and hopefully someone will give us an answer that might just work and solve our problem.

My question for today is blog related as so many seem to be, anyway I have managed to subscribe to a few sites so I can see when they have posted again, but how do I set up my site so people can subscribe to me?
If anyone has a simple way of explaining or a useful site that makes it easy then I would love to know.....
By the way, don't forget to check in with Rocks in My Dryer to find out what others are asking about today.

Mayor Update

As I write this it is 8pm on Nov 7 in New Zealand which makes it 2am on Nov 7 in Ohio.
I have searched the web and come across this site which has given me the best results I can find for the Auglaize County Elections in Ohio.
Unfortunately it does not look good for my dear friend, but oh it is so close.
8 out of 8 precincts have been counted for Mayor of Wapakoneta and the results are as follows:
Thomas S Finkelmeier (rep) 1279 votes - 49.54%
Rodney C Metz (dem) 1303 votes - 50.46%

So few votes in it, I am sure he would have lead the race at some stage through the evening.
I feel so gutted for him, ok I didn't know much about his race, what he stood for or anything but he had the guts to stand up and do something for something he felt strongly about.

Well done Tom, you are a star. You have probably accomplished more this year than some people do in their whole life. I am proud to say I know you. I am sorry it looks like you were unsuccessful, but please do not loose the fight to continue.
I hope to hear that you are running in the next Mayoral Election when ever that comes up.

Well done.

Mayor of Wapakoneta

Many years ago, like 20, I had the ultimate privilage of living in Wapakoneta, Ohio on and off for 2 years. My parents lived there and I was at boarding school in England, so visited during the holidays.
To this day I would still love to go back and live, but it is not a happening thing.
Anyway several of the friends I made there when I was 16 I still keep in touch with now and the unbelievable thing about it is that one of them, Thomas S Finkelmeier, Jr, is so devoted to Wapak that he is actually running for Mayor.
Now ok Wapak is only a small town of about 9000 people, but when you know the person running for Mayor, then it is huge.
I happen to notice on my calander that yesterday, Nov 6, was election day and this suddenly reminded me that maybe that was the day for the next round of elections for Tom, so I got in touch and would you believe he is nervously waiting as the polls are just closing now as I write this and then he has maybe 3 hours before the results will be known.
So to a very dear friend, who ok I don't honestly know that well now because we weren't the greatest at keeping in touch, but at least we make an effort every so many years, I wish him all the very best.
Go Tom, go win Wapakoneta, Ohio and have a ball along the way.
Yea to you for getting up and giving it a go.


Turns out that after I had downloaded all the pictures from the camera that had been sat there whilst we had no computer, I noticed that they are all slightly blurry on the left hand side.
After further investigation we discovered a lovely grubby fingerprint, about Alex size, on the lense of the camera.
So sorry that all the pictures seem to have a nice hazzy left side look to them.
It is quite obvious in the pictures of the firworks and also in some pictures I am about to post about Hamilton Gardens.
Joys of children, all I can say.


At the beginning of November there is always so much going on, well there seems to be this year.

I know Halloween doesn't come in November, but my 2 had their first taste of it this year. They didn't dress up or anything like that, mainly because they went trick or treating around the small neighbourhood in Ngongotaha, Rotorua with their cousins, and seeing as mummy had just driven (1 hour) over there feeling like death warmed up I had total good reason for not getting in with the programme, plus they are only 2 and 4.
Steve says that Ben was a little hesitant at the first door, but once he realised that people gave you stuff then apparently he was in the front at the next house!

Of course after Halloween comes fireworks, New Zealand are very wary of fireworks, so much so that the government has put a threat out that all fireworks will be banned if people seriously don't start behaving with them. This year you could only buy them from the shop during a 4 day period.

We decided to go to a public display anyway.
After checking out the web I could find nothing actually happening in Hamilton so we drove the 20 minutes (27kms) to a small town called Morrinsville, right out in the the good old farming land country. Steve and I both actually like Morrinsville.

Anyway, we did the usual routine at home, dinner, bath & pyjamas and then we added socks and shoes and jumpers and climbed in the car.

This meant that we weren't at the display for hours on end with restless children.
The boys loved the entertainment and Alex spent a lot of time dancing away. If there is dancing at the wedding next week he will be just so cute in his tuxedo dancing.
Anyway, Ben spend most of the 2 hours we were there constantly asking me if it was dark yet?

Finally they did light the bonfire and the firework display went ahead.
Now do remember that we are in the southern hemisphere, so we are in our spring time with our clocks having gone forward for summer time, so sunset is usually about 8pm, thus the reason for it being a late night for the boys and the reason we had them in their pyjamas ready for bed when we got home late.
They both had glow stick bracelets to play with when it got dark and they had such fun with these. Waving them about watching them glow.

They sat with us during the display and were so cute oohing and aahing in all the right places.

As we left to go to the car you had to walk past the bonfire, "Hot" is what Alex said, and man it was too.

Ben was more fascinated by the fireman standing by with their truck just in case something went wrong. So we stood and had a little conversation about why they were there, what the water truck was for and why there was a huge pile of sand next to the bonfire.

All in all it was a fun night. The boys really loved it and Ben asked the next day if we could go again that day!