It’s been a long time since we hiked with our friends to Rod Donald Hut. What happened to June?
It rained. It was cold. My back turned bad again, suddenly and for no reason. We prepared for our month-long trip to the states.
This is what Zealandia Horticulture looks like on a foggy winter’s morning. I puzzled my boss by quoting the old nursery rhyme that seemed appropriate to the day: “One misty moisty morning, when cloudy was the weather, I chanced to meet and old man, all dressed in leather. All dressed in leather, with hair upon his chin. “How do you do?” “How do you do?” “How do you do again?”
The grow lights for the hydroponic plants look cozy, which is not an empty promise. The biomass boiler keeps that part of the greenhouse at a comfy 18 C.
Other parts of the greenhouse are unheated, and the frost decorates the glass. A frosty morning promises that a good sunny day will follow, far better than a slightly warmer but grey day.
Winter is a good time for fire-building. One of the hunting brotherhood set this competition up–because what is a gathering of guys without a competition? They had identical lathe-smoothed logs to start with, which they reduced to piles of kindling with axes. Fires were to be started with flint, and the winner was the first one to burn through their string. Jeremiah won. It’s good to be married to a pyromaniac.
The last of the leaves fell from our Japanese maple trees. I procrastinated raking them, and in the end the wind blew them off the grass and into the nooks and crannies of the porch.
Milo had rugby practice at 4:00 every Wednesday. Look at that, there WERE a few sunny days in the mix, as documented by photography.
Luckily for little siblings, there is a playground near the rugby field. Naomi is fearless in her climbing. Fortunately, she’s also quite capable.
Luckily for little siblings, there is a playground near the rugby field. This picture was taken on the winter solstice. I guess winter is not so bad after all.
This is the classic Kiwi way to spend the winter, in full puffy attire sucking on hot drinks INDOORS. We’ve been shopping hard for a house that we can buy and make warm, but haven’t succeeded yet.
Speaking of Naomi, we celebrated a major accomplishment with a flower-topped cafe treat–the end of night time diapers. Hurray! No nostalgia over the diaper phase.
Naomi has started the birthday party circuit–this one was princess themed. Parents were encouraged to dress the part as well, but I didn’t see any other dresses among the adults. My garb wasn’t queenly enough to be blatantly a dress up, so I spent the party feeling awkwardly unfashionable for either group.
Even Milo got into the dress-up mode. This will be a good picture to pull out on his 21st birthday.
Here’s Milo in his normal clothes, proudly bringing his school classroom’s tuatara on a trip to the grocery store.
A week before our flight to the USA my back got all tight, and I spent a couple days laying on the couch hoping it would resolve itself peacefully. It didn’t, and instead developed into the same squashed-nerve pain as last year. Jenny cat appreciated the quiet day I had at home, the first time I’ve ever sent the kids to school and stayed home myself.
It was an interesting experience, staying home without the kids. Milo walked home himself at 3:00, and Naomi even got the preschool bus home at 4:15. I’ve craved alone time without the kids home for ages, but when it actually came down to it, I didn’t like it. Not that laying-on-the-couch time is that desirable…but it was a good reminder that I do like the kids and their company after all, and I should cherish the last year+ that I have Naomi home before she starts school.