Sunday, September 30, 2012

The T-Ks, Ps and Cs to T

Nick was off duty this morning with John preaching - he doesn't often get to sit in a pew during the sermon. After the evening service, Part II on Worship, we shared a scrumptious meal of roast lamb, roast chicken, potatoes, pumpkin and several more veggies (yum) at the T-K's house along with the Phillipses. We were a big crowd to entertain and Chrissy, Jeremiah and Isaac did it with aplomb!
Daylight Savings started today (technically we had to get up an hour earlier, but no one missed church which was an hour earlier too) - so it was day time until about 7.45 pm! Our long summer days always seem to start so quickly - from now until about March next year the sun will set between 7.45 and 9.45 pm. Yippeeeeeee!!!!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Botha x2

Guess who's back?
Okay, since the photo doesn't look ANYTHING like him, really, I'll give you a clue...Danielle is happy again!  Yip, great to have Andreas back with us after a month in South Africa.  Really guys, plan your trips so they coincide next time ;)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

He shoots, he scores....oh, the crowd goes wild

Caleb asked me to video him if he came near the hoop and it looked like he was going to shoot - he did and I did; here is a combination of our efforts ;)  Well done, #12! 

Monday, September 24, 2012

Sing me a song

South Canterbury had a holiday today - only our province, as each one gets their own at some point in the year. I was thrilled to have a day at home. First thing was to do some highlight touch-ups (of course I'm a natural blonde, I just dye my roots dark); got a stew going in the slow cooker, made a batch of chocolate oats cookies, did half the ironing, cleaned the house, and can't even remember what other productive stuff happened. The boys did a spot of weeding, although it amounted to little more than pulling the tops off the plants.
At lunch time we collected Nick from the church where his work day had gone on as usual, and headed to the Camerons for lunch. It's been absolutely far too long since we've hung out together, and we always say this - we're all too busy! Had a superb midday meal together. We left the boys at their house, I dropped Nick back off at the church, and went home alone to an empty house - bliss!!
Justus came to share our stew for tea (which would have been a chore for a non-vegetable eater to pick out those pesky legumes and carrots) and discuss the forthcoming Holiday Bible Club which will be at our church during the second week of the holidays. The meeting was a little rushed as we wanted to get to a concert at the Basilica in town - a high school orchestra from Christchurch was giving a free performance and just needed an audience. When we arrived at the church there was just a handful of people, mostly older ladies, and none of what one would expect to be happening pre-concert - tuning of instruments, some sort of buzz of nerves, whispered anticipation of a show to watch...just hushed silence and not a single string or whistle to be seen. We wondered if we'd accidentally stumbled into an evening mass service which would have been very awkward indeed. As it happened the school group had been delayed over pudding and arrived too late to set up their orchestra. Thus, we were treated to a choral performance and a single flute solo (both of which were very good, but disappointing not to have the rest - perhaps some lessons in professionalism would not be wasted!)

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Easter Sunday, sort of

After a fabulous morning service on the resurrection of Christ and its relevance to our salvation, we announced a Picnic in the Park to anyone interested - a clear blue sky was the motivation! We gathered a good-sized group for lunch, soccer, duck-feeding, slingshotting, chatting, music and singing. We often thank the Lord for the fellowship within our church and community - what a blessing to have like-minded brothers and sisters in Christ with whom to share the day!
(And Caleb's arm is better - out of the sling and back in full use!)

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Ping pong ping pong ping pong ping pong ping pong ping pong ping pong ball

Where is the boy with the Ping Pong ball?  We never did find him...

Marchwiel's got TALENT!

If we were unsure before, after tonight's 'talent show' we are convinced! The evening was two-fold -  a display of craft and artworks in the downstairs room, and the performing arts section upstairs.
Joan brainstormed and organized this entire downstairs section, with paintings and drawings from herself, Anton, Royce, Liz, Victoria, Petru, Caleb and Dinnay adorning the walls and some benches, and around the rest of the room contributions of cross-stitch, scrapbooking, photography, beadwork, sewing and heaps of clever goodies from Cynthia, Justus, Shirley, Chrissy, Olive and me (hope I'm not forgetting anyone).  
The 'live' section was kicked off with a swing group (namely, Kelsi, Justus, Liz and me) performing the Shim-Sham, followed by Liz's hilarious ping-pong song, and then a good 50 minutes more of several songs and items and readings from a fabulous group of very nervous people - it was really a show not to be missed and hopefully will be an annual event - apparently MRBC used to do this sort of thing more regularly, but this was our first one in the 2 1/2 years we've been here.  Well done, all!!

Friday, September 21, 2012

17th to 21st

Monday: Back to work and school (feeling a little worse for wear after a midnight bedtime), violin with Jemima.
Tuesday: No basketball this week, so a relaxed afternoon after school.
Wednesday: Rushed the boys to the Warehouse for Caleb to buy a rip-stick on special with his pocketmoney.  Music lesson for Caleb; home for a quick tea, time to play on brand new rip-stick before bible study.  Caleb fell off and hurt his arm badly.
Thursday: Caleb's arm still hurting - had Grant assess it at school in his official capacity as a volunteer ambulance driver; felt it could be a hairline fracture.  Administered panadol and put it in a sling, and informed his teacher that he was please to be excused from any useful activity!  Caleb still managed to do some maths and other work on the computer using his left hand.  First evening of our Level 1 swing class - we've graduated from 'Beginner' status.
Friday: Nick and I had a lunch date at Subway; family pizza and movie night.  Thought the Witches of Oz looked like a good option but it was nearly three hours (170 minutes) of absolute drivvel, shocking acting, useless directing, dreadful CG effects, and ridiculous scripting.  I kept drifting off (tired after that week) only to wake up to the same witch shouting "Give me the key" to the same people.  I kid you not - I slept through a good third of the movie but kept waking up to the very same repeated line.  NOT recommended!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Who's a Pretty Pat then?

Excellent church services again today (s always)...Nick is teaching on the topic of worship in the evening - this will be a mini-series for the next few weeks. Very interesting and challenging. After the pm service we had another practice for the upcoming Talent Show, then brought home with us Liz, Graham, Justus, a rabbit, and fish and chips, the rabbit being an escaped lost pet which the Gregorys nearly over, for which no home could be found after knocking on several doors. During tea we had a phonecall from the owners who had tracked us down as people from the church - we were so glad to return the bunny and meet his owners, who happen to live next door to our church and who attend church elsewhere in Timaru!  Rene and Bron joined us at 8 for a game of Balderdash (but first a swing dance demo from the Gregorys and Clevelys over a tiny lounge dance-floor).  The boys stayed up for the game, with Caleb coming out as the winner - beating seven educated adults!  Good on you, First Born.  At 10 pm they were sent to bed, bleary eyed but victorious; no one else exited the lounge so we brought out a few snacks to go with some deep and lively conversation.  At 11.30 pm we were getting tired with accompanying giggling, which was when we opened up Photo Booth...we all had a go before showing Pretty Pat (Mom, I know you'll be thanking me) which was received with more hilarity and, I think, large amounts of incredulity at my otherwise prim and proper mother who unleashed her inner comedienne for the camera in January when they were visiting!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Keeping out of trouble

Today we had a day off - rather, Nick had a day off with no meetings with anyone arranged.  There was a work party scheduled at the church but it was cancelled rather last-minute due to unforeseen circumstances.  We enjoyed a cup of tea at the church with other would-be workers before collecting Jaydon for a day with us.  The weather wasn't great but it didn't stop the three boys from spending a lot of time outside, cycling to Jaydon's house to raid the freezer for some ice-cream being a worthwhile excursion, also trying out Jaydon's rip-stick; passage cricket was a popular indoor alternative. 

Friday, September 14, 2012

In the Country with Willem and Nadine

A Friday night affair at the Rawlins' was fun finding their house on Landsborough Road, right out in the country (and about five minutes out of Timaru urban). We appreciated again the privilege of living in such a beautiful country with rolling green hills, wide open spaces, fresh air...and today, sunshine. After gasping at their spacious section and gorgeous home, we sat down to a meal of deliciousness in the form of lasagne and an amazing salad, just the way I like it :) The six kids disappeared to finish watching a movie together, leaving the adults to have a sensible conversation about NZ, SA, God and the Bible, friends and family. Thanks again, Rawlinzizz, for a fabulous evening!
Willem talking to Nick about the land...
Annika and Megan, and Peter and William (with Megan doing a photo-bomb!)

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Nothing small about them

A few months ago Bethany told me that TCS was invited to a New Zealand Symphony Orchestra in Miniature concert...I asked if I could go along as a parent helper, or as part of my office job, or to help with transport, or child mind, or wipe noses - really, it didn't matter to me what role I fulfilled so long as I could get to watch the orchestra!  And thus it was that today I was one of three adults walking a group of 25 children (Caleb's class) from TCS to Timaru Girls' High - a fine morning for a brisk walk, indeed.  We weren't sure exactly what the miniature part meant - the thought of a junior concert was less appealing but still exciting; we discovered that it meant a smaller ensemble, ie 19 members instead of their usual 90 making up the NZSO - one instrument from each section represented.  They took us on an hour-long tour around the musical world and it was absolutely thrilling.  Caleb particularly enjoyed Brahms' Hungarian Dance #5, as did I - performed by the string quintet (first and second violins, viola, cello and double bass).  We are inspired afresh!   
After the concert ended I wondered aloud to Bethany whether I would be able to get a photo with the violinists - she said go for it, but I had to get her to come along to be the photographer!  So here I am with Gregory Squire, one of the First Violinists.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Breaking out

I stood in as the basketball coach for yesterday afternoon's TCS game at the SBS Stadium as the regular coach had parent/teacher interviews happening at the same time.  I was apprehensive about getting the subbing in and out and boy/girl balance right, what with my extremely limited basketball experiences!  It all worked out pretty well though and the team did great, achieving their first win of the season (no credit to this week's coach!!).  Well done TCS Soldiers.  There was more basketball activity for the team today when they were invited to watch the NZ Breakers play a 'demonstration' game at the stadium for the benefit of local schools.  Caleb unwittingly got himself into the newspaper getting a signature (can you spot him?) - his teacher told me afterwards that actually he had been told to sit down and not approach the players!!  Caleb admits that he had taken up a dare from a friend :)
(Photo grabbed from the Timaru Herald website)

Monday, September 10, 2012

Music in your mouth?

One of the highlights of my week is Monday night when Jemima comes around for violin (either a lesson or just to play) - I usually stoke her up on coffee before we play, and tonight we let her at Cadbury's marvellous popping candy chocolate which is wickedly fun and a worthwhile experience!

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Go play on your own

Sunday...we had Justus around to a quick nachos lunch. It's not often that we invite people around and then send them off to go and play by themselves in another room - but Nick thought Justus would enjoy mucking about with the guitar and pedal!
Found a coke for Nick this time...

Friday, September 07, 2012

Phew, Phriday

Another week rushed to a conclusion with our Family Friday Fun evening - it's been a busy and somewhat challenging week in many ways! The usual activities are: violin lesson for me on a Monday (although often Jemima and I skip the lesson part and just play for an hour or two!); Caleb's basketball game on Tuesday; the boys' music lessons on Wednesday followed by bible study; swing dance class on Thursday.  Add to this the regular school/work hours and on top of that throw in a few extra visits and arrangements and a few emotional bits and pieces, and you have a very drained family!  We were glad to have an evening spent quietly at home with pizza and a movie and a bottle of Coke which had Caleb's name on it (literally!) - we looked hard for an Aaron but couldn't find one. 

Saturday, September 01, 2012

1st of September

First day of spring - we survived another NZ winter :)  Spring Day is typically cold and grey and today was no exception - coats and scarves and things are not ready to be packed away yet.  Danielle shouted me to a latte at Shearer's Quarters this morning; we found a cosy spot right next to the fire!  After a good yakkety yak we wandered into the shop side and ooohed and aaahed over all the pretty little things.  I was totally inspired to craft something and it didn't take long to put this button ring together.  I sometimes wish I had more time for crafty pursuits but I guess if it were a priority I'd make time!
Had a thoroughly lovely staff do in the evening - Mrs Thompson bravely opened her home for a potluck dinner and all except one or two of the TCS staff were able to make it, along with partners.  The food contributions were fabulous and after dessert and coffee we gathered in the lounge for a game of "Signs" - good one, Mrs Ross, which we'll introduce to many others!