Thursday, 31 December 2015

Goodbye 2015 and bring on 2016!!

Holy Moly another year is about to bite the dust!!  I for one have had a great year and I am intending of having another one next year.  I say bring it on!!  Keep life in perspective, be positive, be kind, and most of all be happy.  I want to say thanks to all you lovelies around the world and in my own country that have helped me keep things real.  You are the best bunch of buggers ever, and long may we all continue to blog and share little snippets of our lives with each other.

Snippets like...

...finally getting around to catching up with my beautiful nephew and his wee pooch!!  I need to do this more often.  He like me has a love of photography and life in general.  He encouraged me to get chickens and I encouraged him to get a small dog!!  He is a gorgeous young man!!
He gave me a quick lesson on getting of my auto settings on my camera and exploring life at night without my flash!!  Between him and my book I think I am going to enjoy this.  Of course there is still some lessons with Mrs W next year that we are looking into.

 Garden lights at night.

 Just having a play.

As I waited for an old friend to arrive the other day, I set up camp outside in the sunshine.  My Bali brolly had to come down as the wind picked up and it ain't good in the wind!  When she arrived we had a jolly good catch up on the garden swing.  May many more people enjoy swinging on the garden swing next year with me.

Joan got so comfy on my lap that she ended up nodding off, she is so funny.  I just know her and the other girls will continue to bring me daily joy in 2016.

I have been watching the transformation of a water tower not far from here.  Now I will have to wait until next year to see the final result.
So how did I spend the last day of 2015? You may well ask and I shall certainly tell you.  But tell you in pictures, the best way to tell a story.  TOF and I visited our local Zoo today.  Our Hamilton Zoo had humble beginnings years ago as the Hilldale Game Park.  My how it has grown, and it is still a fabulous place. Acres of lovely rolling ground with board walks and lovely open spaces for animals to live in.  Here are some of my favourites from todays visit.

Exotic animals, endangered beasts and native animals to our Country live side by side.  Well worth the entrance cost to visit.

You wander through native plantings on winding pathways, and you can even walk through a huge free flight bird enclosure.  Today it was great to see so many other people were doing the same as us.

One of my favourites today was this Sumatran tiger, only a young lad.  He was having the best time in a pool of water.  The day was hot and he was just like a child jumping in and out of the pool to cool off.

He drew quite the crowd of thrilled on lookers.  Just seeing the excitement on small kids faces was so nice, even the adults seemed to be having a good time.

How often do we as adults go and do something that we forget isn't just for the children?

Time to go visit local attractions and enjoy what is locally on offer.

TOF hasn't been here for years and was pretty impressed.  Loved the Giraffes.  They roam around with Zebras, Antelope, Ostriches and other beautiful animals.

Hello Beautiful!!

My other firm favourite of the day, the Chimps!

Such an entertaining bunch of laid back primates. 

All just chilling out while waiting to be fed. 

They have a great enclosure with a bridge that us humans can walk across and watch them climb, swing or just lean against a tree.
Where's our food man!!??  So I'll have a drink while we all wait! 
Just like an old man chillin' out in the sunshine.

 Colourful birds that make me want an Avery in the garden.

Yes indeedy, it was a lovely way to spend the day.

Our last thing to see was the Rhinos.  Big beautiful totally endangered all around the world beasts.  I would prefer to know animals could survive in the wild, in their natural environment, but with how unkind mankind has been over the years maybe Zoos like ours are the answer to their survival.

Speaking of SURVIVAL, I do wish you all a fantastic New Years Eve where ever you are. Stay safe and happy!!  We are less than an hour away from greeting in the New Year, and we are doing it very low key here at home as we are going on a day trip tomorrow.  

So grab your Tiara
and go and enjoy yourself and I will see you all... year!!

Sunday, 27 December 2015

Enjoying Summer and being on holiday

Christmas Day came and went and again it was a lovely low keyed affair with just me, TOF and the lads.  Oh and the pets, lets not forget them.

In a few days time the decorations will come down and be packed away for another year, but the summer holiday will continue.

We did the gift giving thing then devoured a mighty fine late breakfast of scrambled eggs, bacon, sausages, hash browns and potato breads which were a no go, nothing like they were supposed to be. But at least I gave it a crack!!

 Oscar scored a new toy!

Sheba got a new ball and was so funny to watch as she ripped the paper off to get to it.  Needless to say she is stoked!!

As for old Tex, well he got some Cat Nip treats and tripped balls all afternoon.  No not really but he loooooooooved them!!

The heir decided to head home, so the rest of us, including two surfboards and the dogs piled into TOFs truck and headed out to Raglan.

Sheba basically just runs and dives into the water, running in and out having an absolute blast.

Oscar on the other hand gets to the edge and when a wave comes runs back to the dry sand.

He did get get in and got bowled by a small wave so was covered in black sand and sea weed!
We went to Manu Bay and while the spare had a play in the small surf on h is surfboard, me and TOF buggered about down at the boat ramp.  

I paddled in the warm water wishing I could dunk right in.


TOF tried to find a stick to throw for Sheba but couldn't find one at all, so ended up  throwing stones all skimmer styles into the ocean for her to chase.  Such a good work out for a pooch, and both dogs slept all the way home.

By the time we had walked back to the truck the spare was walking back over the rocks from his surf.

This gorgeous set of triplets was having a grand time with water in the pink bucket.  All I could think was how much work 3 wee boys would be for the mum.  So adorable and so happy.

It was just me and TOF for dinner which we decided to have late as we weren't that hungry.  While the lamb cooked and the spuds roasted I threw together a salad.  When I gathered the lettuce from the garden I got sided tracked.

 The garden at night is lovely.

I think the full moon  helped with the lighting, it hovered in the sky like a big ball of cheese!

Look what the spares lovely girlfriend gave me for Christmas!  I am still deciding where I want to hang it, isn't it just lovely. 
We ate this, not all of it, at about 10pm, not the ideal time but bugger me it was nice.

Boxing day is like recovery day really, after a day of pigging out feasting on festive food.  Also we kicked back and watched the Cricket on TV.  Nice and relaxing.  Normal eating will resume when the scraps have all been devoured.

This morning we were up at 5am, yes you read correctly, 5am as TOF was going fishing out at Raglan with a friend of ours.  I wolfed down a bit of toast, sculled a cup of tea, threw on some clothes and went to.  Not fishing but to our friends place.  We were on the road by 6am.
The drive out was beautiful so early in the morning as there was a mist hanging about and the sun was trying to arrive.


From their deck we watched the mist slowly but surely lift and Raglan woke up.  The lads left to go hunting and gathering while us girls had a cuppa on the deck.  We could see the Gypsy Fair that was in town.

Remnants of a hard nights work covered in dew.

By 9am the day was perfect so we wandered down the hill to the Gypsy Fair.  It was good to see plenty of gorgeous House Trucks rather than buses/mobile homes.  I remember a time when these fairs were all about locally hand crafted goods.  Now it is mostly imported stuff.

We both bought Argan Oil and I got some Nga Champa to hang in my car to make it smell divine.  The clothes were lovely but either far too small for me or over priced.  I fell in love with this elderly Staffy that was having a nod in a changing room, and why wouldn't you!

From the Gypsy Fair Diane and I  took a short cut on a bush track which turned out to be all up hill to another friends house.

The view from Sharons Deck are stunning and it was so nice sitting in the cool of this space, chatting and letting the world slowly carry on around us.  I could move to Raglan tomorrow and be so happy.

Everywhere you look in Raglan there is a flowering Pohutukawa tree.  The ones down by the water were so vibrant and red.  What a glorious day to be out at the coast.  The lads arrived home with a nice amount of fish which we have dined on tonight.  You cannot beat fresh fish!!

Before I go I want to show you just a smidgen of the decorations my friend Ann does in her gorgeous old home.  She has a talent for decorating both Christmas and Interior, and don't get me started on her garden.

I do hope you are all enjoying
your Christmas Holidays.