Tuesday, 1 January 2019

Week 52/52 - We Made It!!!!

Another year gone, well nearly it is the very last day of 2018 and me and TOF are heading out to Raglan to celebrate with friends so here is the last week of what happened in my world.


Christmas Day was brunch with Jak and Alex and her family.


Followed by Dinner at ours later that evening with Max and Toni joining us.  We had a fabulous time together, nice and relaxing, just how it should be.


On Boxing Day I went out to Raglan and went with my friend Diane to a Gypsy Fair.  Not how I remember them but that is how things are these days.  Always nice to be out at Raglan tho.


 Mind you, I did rather like Frank the 14 week old Kuni Kuni pig!


Thursday TOF and I armed with the above map/guide took off on a day trip to another beautiful part of our little country.  We could have joined the hordes of tourists lined up to go to the Waitomo Caves.  But neither are us are huge on crowds so we went to...............


A short walk took us into our beautiful Native Bush and the most amazing Limestone Bridge called Mangapohue Natural Bridge.

Another short walk had lead us into Piripiri caves.
 
Then a 10 minute walk in the bush resulted in the spectacular Marokopa Falls.  Each time we were only with about half a dozen or so other people, and all of this was FREE!!


Marokopa was our next stop, beautiful but so isolated.  No shops and couldn't even find a public loo!!

Then to Kiritehere, where rock fossils lay on the beach and interesting driftwood. And thankfully a public toilet, well a long drop actually!! 

The drive to our next stop was often on gravel winding roads but so worth while.

At the very end of a gravel road that was only one land width and slightly crazy at times is the Waikawau Tunnel. Back in 1911 three men using pick axes and shovels dug this tunnel through the hill to the beach, for easier access of their stock to their farm lands. High enough for a man on a horse and wide enough for the stock.

This was amazing and the view at the beach end was magnificent.  Another lovely West Coast beach and we only had 4 other people to share it with, and 1 dog!!

Our drive home took us through the tunnel in the Awakino Gorge and past numerous rock formations and Native Bush.



We had a couple of days just mooching around home before we set of on another adventure. Oh and I added some colours to my hair, some pretty unicorn/my little pony-esk ones!!


As we drove out of Hamilton on Sunday morning at 7am we had low mist.  But it wasn't long before it lifted and a beautiful day unfolded.  We were heading to Mangaweka just under 4 hours away.  TOF decided to take some back roads that took us past Lake Arapuni and another Fancy long drop toilet that again I needed.  Its an age thing!!


Crossing the Desert Road in the middle of the North Island I was happy to see Mt Ruapehu still had Snow on it.  The scenery was for ever changing, no wonder tourists love NZ so much.  I had not been this way for quite some years so it was good to be back.


Finally we arrived at Mangaweka Camp on the bank of the Rangitiki River.  Max and Toni and the dogs were camping there, hence the road trip.


A very relaxing spot indeed and dog friendly.


Homeward bound back through the Desert Road with better views of Ruapehu.  Then into Taupo, well around Lake Taupo first before finding a cafe for a coffee stop.



And on our way out of Taupo we stopped off at the Huka Falls, a bit of a tourist attraction.  OMG so many people!!!  A very fast moving river where you can have a jet boat or helicopter experience but for a pretty penny I would say.

So the last week of 2018 was an adventurous one. 

Farewell 2018
it has been great.

Another 12 months of ups and downs.  We lost some people and welcomed some new babies.  There were health scares, but mostly we all enjoyed a year of happiness and that is a good thing.

As we all welcome in a new year, this is my last post.  I am debating whether or not I will continue to blog in 2019.  I may just blog once a month, who knows, but I know it won't be weekly anymore. So if I go missing you will know why.  But you can find me on Instagram or Facebook.  Just message me if you want to know how.

All the very best to you all for a very happy and healthy year ahead of you.

It's been a blast!!!

 
 

Monday, 24 December 2018

Week 51/52 - We are almost DONE!!!

OMG last week was sooooooo busy.  The last week at work for the year is always like that, it is the big push to get work finished and invoiced, holidays pays sorted, accounts paid, etc.  I went in every morning to focus on one thing each day so by Friday we had it all in the bag!!!

There was still time for other things like:

Taking advantage of some free tickets to go to the Trees at the Meteor.  I have been going to this each December now for I would say about 5 years.  This year Alex came with me.  We both voted for the tree on the right, a Dali inspired one.


I quite like this large one covered in Pop Corn!!  Had cute little ceramic bird houses and crocheted doilies on it, and inside were some Elves.

A sneaky little Op Shop visit, which resulted in this small but fabulous finds.  The chair is ADORABLE!!!  The table cloth is too cute, and the egg cup, well, fun!


Of course time got spent in the Garden.  

Even at night when all things RED look fantastic!!


Day or night my sidekick is always on hand or is that paw?

On Friday I got a text at work from the ladies at my favourite Op Shop, Orphans Aid in Frankton to tell me I had WON there raffle, so this is my being SURPRISED!!  Huge haul of goodies.

Friday night TOF and I went to check out the decorated houses in a suburb called Harrowfield.  We parked and walked around the streets checking out the houses covered in festive lights.

As well as lights there are inflatable things, I think Santa on the right looks a little flat.

How lovely do white twinkling lights in trees look.

Saturday I picked up my friend Pam and we went out to Woodlands, in Gordonton. First we had a coffee and some very delicious cake @ the lovely cafe outside.  So many baby sparrows were hanging around waiting for crumbs.  We then wandered over to Woodlands Homestead as it was decorated for Christmas.



Pam had never been so that made it really good.


I am inspired by the shelf made from an old wrought iron headboard in the childrens room.  There was complimentary sparkling Cranberry and shortbread down stairs which we tried.

Then it was off outside to wander the gorgeous garden.



 The Hydrangeas were spectacular!!!

Well the entire garden is!

On our way back to Hamilton we stopped off at The Manderine Tree a Gallery in Gordonton.  I purchased the Christmas star for our tree.

Also the small pottery Chicken which is now Gnomes, and he has claimed the little chair.

Of course no trip out that way is complete without calling in to Wairere Nursery!! My lovely boss gave me a cash Christmas bonus so I had a wee spend on some gorgeous plants for my garden.

Not a bad selection of colourful things to join the garden.

And then with a wander around the private gardens.

It was TOFs 60th Birthday yesterday so our little family plus his sister, brother in law and his mother met up at our local for lunch.  Then friends joined us for the afternoon for a few beers and games of pool, and plenty of good banter!!


The presents are under the tree.


Even Reindeer Sheba is ready.

 Christmas advice!

So how ever you celebrate this time of the year, be safe, be happy and stay well.  Happy Festive Season to you all!!!