Sunday, February 8, 2009

Waitangi weekend

It's official - I'm no longer GPS-dependant!
While I still need our trusty sat-nav system to tell me how to get to anywhere new, I am proud to report that I can now find my way to the post office, shops, airport, and our favourite shopping centre without using the GPS.
And on Friday, a public holiday for Waitangi Day here in New Zealand, I took the kids over the bridge to Takapuna for lunch and the beach ... again without needing to be told how to get there.
How awesome is that? (Hey, it's only taken 5 1/2 months!)
Waitangi Day marks the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi, New Zealand's founding document, and like Australia's national day, is often celebrated on the beach.
When in Rome (or Auckland), and all that, so we decided to do the same. Thankfully, it was cooller on the beach than at home, thanks to sea breezes and massive trees along the seafront.
Yes, it's been hot here in Auckland - okay not by Queensland standards, but pretty stifling, particularly as our townhouse has no ceiling fans, let alone an air-conditioner.
To escape the heat, on Saturday we went to our favourite shopping centre, St Luke's, to see Hotel For Dogs. Didn't the kids laugh?! And I confess - I'm obviously still a bit Tired and Emotional because I ended up crying in the movie - twice. The kids laughed even harder at that, and C. gleefully annouced to the whole cinema "Hey everyone, my Mum's crying!"
Later we joined some friends at One Tree Hill for a late afternoon picnic.
One Tree Hill is one of Auckland's 48 volcanic peaks, and offers a huge expanse of green parkland and shady trees to picnic under.
The kids loved seeing the cows and sheep grazing nearby, and spent a couple of happy hours climbing trees, throwing balls around, and climbing the hill before rolling back down again.
It was a gorgeous way to spend an afternoon and I can't wait to take K. there.
With Husband away, I didn't attempt the famous Sunday Roast on the weekend, however the kids have been unusually complementary about my cooking this time ... mainly simple meals like bangers and mash, chicken kiev and vegies, and macaroni cheese (meals that even I can't mess up - much!)
Parenting is still tough when K. is away, but maybe there is hope for me yet!

H. on Takapuna Beach, with Rangitoto Island (another volcano) in the background.

My little monkey man

A "fairy home" in the tree

The kids thought this looked like an elephant. Hmm, any other thoughts?


Jayne said...

Love that tree!
D'ya think your could smuggle it through customs to bring it to Melbourne? :P

Bella@That damn expat said...

Great pictures!
The beach looks very inviting.

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