Friday, October 21, 2016

catching koura

It was the morning after friends had slept over at ours. I had promised to make the boys a 'training course' so despite the post-flood sogginess I created a series of activities to do around the property. It ended with a team effort of making a bridge to cross the stream. The flood had kindly deposited lots of material but after a few minutes the kids got distracted by the thought of a swim. Their action flushed out a few koura. I had never seen one in NZ before. We have massive eels in our stream and find most of the little freshwater life is in little pools some distance from the main stream and quiet eddies. Those big eels must have quite the appetite after all. We saw two different types of fish, an eel we hadn't seen before and two koura. There was great excitement as Jed managed to catch one and we got a good look at it. Freshwater ecology is big around here. It's logged in Jed's nature diary now and much research was done. Did you know they are mostly nocturnal and if you shine a torch on one their eyes will reflect back red! That I have to see. As soon as there's a night without rain I'll be out there. Honestly, that rain is getting a bit tiresome. Hard to believe I'll ever have to water the garden.

Saturday, October 15, 2016


Jed has wanted to foster ducklings to help out the local bird rescue centre for years. Our new house has a stream running past the front door, a big garden and a fenced off area (for when they get a bit bigger) so it seemed like the ideal time. That makes six happy ducklings and one very happy boy. They all have various rescue stories, all orphaned. There are two wild, two muscovy (like our old girls) and two indian runner ducklings. Friends are just moving into their new house with a pond and happened to be looking for indian runner ducks so we are excited to have found them a good home. They'll stay with us until they're ready to leave the duckling nursery. The two wild ones we are careful not to handle too much so they can be released to do their wild duck thing.
Hours of fun. Spring is here!

Sunday, October 2, 2016


How fabulous are these jocks?! 
There are three pairs, but one pair went on straight away and you know, it didn't seem right to take 'em off to take a photo. Ahem.
This colourful lot arrived in my mailbox last week. I saw Munro underwear in a store window at Christchurch airport when I was waiting for my flight home after a meeting. Turns out it's my nephew's dad and his partner's business. Small world here in little ole NZ. 

Munro jocks are made using scraps from other clothing manufacturers. They use fabric bits and bobs that would otherwise be in the bin. I love any upcycling. They're super duper comfy. Perfect for wearing with high waisted clothing and dresses. They sort of hug the tum. And they're sort of a wonder woman meets Marimekko look. These folks make men's and women's underwear and socks. I got tired of buying the store bought ones - they don't last well. Thunderpants and Munro underwear are the best I have tried so far. I have Heidi Klum and other deliciousness for when I feel like ramping it up in the underwear department but I love the fun of the Munro's. You can check them out HERE.

Plus, the lovelies added a pair of their merino god socks to my package. Dreamy. Love the design and colours and they're perfect with the gumboots or clogs. But let's face it, the gumboots get more wear these days. Working from the home office, the term 'office wear' becomes a wholly flexible thing. 
(And no, not a cent changed hands for this post. I ordered the unders...I just like to support good stuff and let you know about it. x)

Sunday, September 25, 2016

rainday cape

It's rained all weekend. Hasn't stopped. The stream next to the house has broken its banks and the constant rain has turned into a downpour. I am not sure what the garden is going to look like come morning. I suspect we might be in for another power cut. And it's never certain if the road will be open after consistently heavy rain like this. The roads were resembling waterfalls already this morning. 
There's been lots of board game playing, reading and baking. The fire's been on all afternoon. Ever since we got back from our mini adventure. 
We headed out for a beach walk with friends in one of the lighter periods of weather this morning.The kids played in the river mouth which was wild with water coming down from the hills with great cliffs cut in the sand. It was possibly slightly dangerous and definitely exhilarating. We slogged back through a very waterlogged beachfront. Phoenix the dog had to swim most of the way. I had ventured out in my jeans and gumboots and half way around the rivermouth, trying to get past without getting wet, a huge wave came rolling down the stream and that was it, water streaming into the gumboots. I was a good lesson on how perilous rivers and streams can be in weather like this. 
I would have been better off in my togs today. Except I had my trusty rain cape on. I love that thing. I was out in the rain (it was pouring down for the last half hour of our walk) for hours and I was totally dry under my rain cape. 
I can bike it in, fit a bag or a backpack underneath it and it rolls up pretty small for storage. I keep getting asked where I got it. I bought it on Trademe. Best thing ever. A lovely woman named Jo designed them. She has 10 or so left so if you want one pop on over HERE. You won't regret it. x

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Proof of spring

Duckduck is at it again. She's not the most devoted wanna-be mama, preferring to potter around the garden and bask in the sun showers on our deck with her friend Patches for most of the day.
But look what she made! She's worn a trail up into the bush and is using the same nest as last season. I use the word nest loosely. She's sort of dug out a hole under a fallen log precariously perched a ways up the hill.

The younger of us marked the four eggs so we could tell which were the fresher ones.
We've had one a day ever since! The younger was hoping she'd found a mate on one of her recent flights but even if she did, I think her intermittent sitting on the nest isn't enough to hatch anything. We're thinking of slipping one or two under a friend's broody chicken though...