Thursday, December 29, 2016


Doug's youngest Grandson got his pilot's licence last month and today Doug was his very proud first passenger.  We drove up to Kerikeri.

Doug  and his grandson walk out to the plane

Grandson does his pre-flight checks

Doug gets into the plane

and gets belted in

Ready for take off

and they are up and away

and here they come - I see from the clock on the camera that the flight lasted 25 minutes.  They had a wonderful view of the Bay of Islands.

Saturday, December 24, 2016


Every Saturday morning Doug picks me up at about 7.30 a.m. to go to the market, walk Sophie, then go to the supermarket.

I suggested we go a bit earlier this morning and leave Sophie's walk until after we got back to Doug's.  He picked me up just after 7 a.m., several stalls at the market had already sold out when we got there at about 7.15.  Anyway, I completed my list and we got to the Supermarket just after 7.30 and had to drive around to find a park.  

We went in and the place was packed.  We use one trolley but each get our own groceries and had almost finished when Doug left the trolley while we got our cream, milk etc.  When we went back to the trolley it had vanished.  We both searched through the supermarket in vain and finally had to start all over again/.  Needless to say the second time around I wasn't quite so careful in my selection.  As I had crossed out my list as I went it was also a bit harder the second time.  I wonder if the person who "stole" our trolley really wanted cat food, cherries, grapes, strawberries, bananas etc.  

Anyone would think the supermarkets were closing for a month not a day.  

Monday, December 19, 2016


Almost all Christmas songs are about snow and winter but I have just heard this lovely New Zealand (Aotearoa) Christmas song.  Enjoy!!!.

                             Merry Christmas and Happy and Healthy 2017 to everyone.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Pataua South - Final Parkinson Walk for the year.

On Monday we met at Onerahi and car-pooled to Pataua South.  There were only 7 of us.  The forecast had been for rain but it was fine although there was a strong wind.  

We walked across the footbridge to Pataua North and had a pleasant walk before returning to our cars and having a picnic lunch.  

Our next walk is not until the last Monday in January.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Whangarei Quarry Gardens

This morning we had an enjoyable walk in the Whangarei Quarry Gardens with the people with Parkinsons Disease group.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Doug's Spring Garden

The red roses all came from a cutting obtained about seven years ago.  The foxgloves are self sown from some planted last year.  The bed as one drives into Doug's property is looking great.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Little Red Van

Doug and I had just been to sort out our wills etc. when we had a phone call from his daughter, Christine.  She was doing her Rural Delivery mail run and was on the main road with her flashing light going (not installed in the above photo) and was indicating to turn right when she was rear-ended.

She was pushed to the opposite side with a logging truck approaching.  Luckily there was an experienced driver and he slammed on his brakes and managed to stop.  The young girl in the car behind (early 20's) said she wasn't on her cell phone but had been distracted and didn't see Christine in front of her until it was too late.  Both of them are all right if a bit bruised and shocked but it could easily have been very different.

The girl's car is a write-off and we are waiting to hear about the van.  A moment's inattention has left the girl without a vehicle and Christine in the position of having to rent a van. She has taken on an extra early morning run and was in the process of looking for a back-up van.  The van she will rent will be fine for that run but too large to do her main run so she will have to use her station wagon.

Of course, we are relieved that she is not hurt but the whole episode has been very traumatic.

Friday, November 4, 2016


We are trying to get back to having weekly walks up Parihaka.  Yesterday we walked up our favourite track - it is what I call the goat track as opposed to the others that are well formed and have numerous steps.  We had a walk along the river to start with and all up it was an hour's walk not to the top but still good exercise.  There are a few hazards in the form of fallen trees along the way.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016


When Doug was in the Air force he was asked by a lady to make a small loom for her grandmother to to make tapestries.  Later on she gave him this as a very nice 'thank you'.  I admired it and Doug loaned it to me for my bedroom wall.  

On the back is written "for my Good Samaritan who made me my frames with many thanks Grace Rushton".  It also says that it has been exhibited in the Academy of Fine Arts in Wellington and that it pairs with Coromandel Dusk.

Sunday, October 30, 2016


The two photos above are of my neighbour's wisteria.  The first was past its best and has now finished flowering.  The white one is not quite at its best yet but is still specatular.

The reason I am showing my neighbour's wisteria is that I only had flowers near the ground on mine. The sparrows ate all the buds.  It will serve its purpose of providing shade but I would have liked some flowers as well.

They have been flowering all over town so it appears as though the sparrows only targeted mine.

Saturday, October 22, 2016


The new Hundertwasser style folly called Te Kokana was opened yesterday.  This is a precursor to the actual Hundertwasser Art Centre that is (hopefully) to be built here.  It will house the largest collection of Hundertwasser art outside Europe and also a  contemporary Maori art collection.

Apparently before a Hundertwasser building gets underway a folly must be built for the local tradespeople to practice building in this style.

After going to the Growers Market we went down to the Town Basin as usual but walked in the other direction to see Te Kokana.  I did a bit more shopping than usual at the market and see it was about 7.50 when we got to the Town Basin.