Friday, February 26, 2016


A while back we ventured to Murawai. A local beach that Mae and I had not yet been too. Woken early with kisses and "hellos" from an eager little one we had a head start to the day. A cool Sunday morning with the promise of sunshine. With all the beach paraphernalia packed and full tummies we set off.

Mr Fox tends to do the driving on the weekends which means I get to knit. With bubs entertained in the back and no chores to tend too, it is the perfect way to pass the time. I finished another little hat, this time a bright red hat with leaves. Large enough for my girl to wear on chilly winter days. As we drove we passed through little towns and beautiful rolling hills, we spoke of ambitions to move out this way.

Though the day was still new when we arrived quite a few people already there. The waves rolled in and excited people enjoyed them. We settled on a spot near the base of the dunes. Mae was keen to go for a dip and so was I. The water was warm but the was a strong undertow. The lifeguards had a small flagged area that was moved as we frolicked and swam. Miss cublet strained against the safety of my arms, throwing herself towards the surf. A salty water baby. She splashed and kicked until we were both chilled.

Refreshed and ready for a warm towel we rejoined Toby on the sands. Sitting together as Mae watched the sea. The crowds started arriving by mid morning. Worn out; a cranky little cublet fussed. Sandy and sticky from sunscreen we packed up to go home. But not before a quick explore of the playground. It was a wonderful way to spend a morning. I'm always invigorated by time at the beach. Filled up with fresh air and recharged with creativity. More so when accompanied by those I love the most. My favourite times are simple outings like this.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

The unexpected

It's not always posies and fresh vegetables round here. The last wee while we have had a few unexpected events occur. Mr. Fox's car was broken into and the ignition busted off/broken. It is rather amazing that car was not taken. The police suspect that culprit was disturbed.

Despite the cost and annoyance we mostly felt relief. Thank goodness the car was not actually stolen; for now we can repair instead of replace it.  We feel cross that we left it on the street as we normally park it up the driveway; this particular evening we were both shattered from a busy day and just forgot.  It has been a timely reminder to be vigilant with security.

This wee incident has made me ponder a great deal about how we react to situations. Mae watches our every move and has been mimicking our behaviour with brilliant accuracy. When we found the car had been broken into I was rather shocked that I didn't want launch into a hissy fit. Instead after the initial jolt I felt relief ... no-one was hurt, we still had the car and it was the least valuable of our two cars.

Hunting for tomatoes
Parenthood and the loss of my mother has changed me. Stuff that would have seemed world shaking before is put in perspective. For this I am so grateful. Our example to Mae that day could have been so different; Mr. Fox could have come inside angry and spiteful, I too could have been swept up in the unfairness of it all.  But gee life has taught us that things like cars/money aren't the important things. So instead I hope we were an example of resilience and somewhat flustered adaptability (most of the time anyway!).

We have sourced some parts for the car and it is being fixed up. It has cost us less than we imagined to be repaired. Unlike fixing the roof which seemed to swallow money! But in the end it balances out and we manage. Unexpected can be good too. Mr. Fox was offered a job opportunity to go to Israel. He had a couple of days to decide and about a week to get organised. It was with much excitement he said yes. Yes to an incredible adventure.

Handyman at work
It was rather a long ten days for us girls at home. We missed Toby very much. Parenting alone is manageable but infinitely more tiring and a whole lot harder. I take my hat off to all those Mums and Dads who are doing it solo. We were lucky to fill our days with friends and activities. A sweet pal from Dunedin stayed the night and it was fantastic to reconnect. We spent time with friends who are off on their own exciting travels. A warm afternoon at the viaduct with an old friend and her wee boy filled in an afternoon too. Mae suddenly started sleeping through the night and has continued to do so. Now that is a very welcome change....unexpected but wonderful. 

Exploring Silo Park

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Snorts, kisses and tippy toe walking

Without a doubt my baby is growing quickly into a toddler. What a wild, loving and delight she is. Every day there are new words and skills. I feel like a fumbling behind her as I try and keep up with all the progress. I love that her personality is full of sass and confidence. She is oh so affectionate but equally independent.

Recent trip to Eden Gardens
When awake she is full of energy; running, climbing, twirling and chatting. She has begun to play Mummy and tucks her soft toys into bed. She reads out loud and giggles at her cleverness. She can snort very loudly thanks to Peppa pig! Her other animal noises are coming along too. Her favourite is "reoow" like a kitty  and "raah" like a lion. Her chicken impression is the complete mimic of our screechy bantums and not at all like the usual "cluck cluck".

Yesterday she started walking on her tip toes and has been constantly tippy toeing her way around the place since. The cuteness just overwhelms me. She bends her knees, wiggles her bottom and twirls to music. Recently she has been singing with such earnest concentration to music.....a.d.o.r.a.b.le. Of course we are ridiculously proud of her achievements.

Those pesky teeth are still cutting through without a break. She has so many now and it must be so miserable to be in pain so much. I'm not sure we would have enjoyed the past few months without trusty pamol and bonjela.

The bond between our darling puss Lily and cublet is unfolding. Mae is learning to stroke her gently and as a result Lily seeks her out. It is just so cute when Mae lays her head on Lily and snuggles her soft fur. Mae couldn't be happier that Lily stays and rewards kitty with kisses. In fact she is very generous with kisses at the moment. Mwah for Mummy, Mwah for Daddy....mwah for each soft toys as she plays. Oh my heart.

Noah and Mae
Her little mate Noah is just the coolest wee dude. It has been fun to see them recognise each other and play together. Like chalk and cheese but a friendship forming nevertheless. Watching them interacting is a blessing. Us parent's are looking forward to the adventures they will have together.

She misses her Daddy (and oh my goodness so do I ). He comes home tomorrow and how happy she will be. Ten days must feel like forever and I have noticed a change in her during Mr. Fox's absence. More clingy, a little more mischievous and harder to settle in the evenings. She has been calling for him as she wakes every morning.

Daddy and Mae in Eden Gardens
At the end of this month cublet will be 16 months! Being One and Half seems to be rapidly approaching. My mind is already starting to dream up fun for her September birthday. We are soaking up the moments and days. These really are the golden years with our golden girl.

It seems to be knitting

Late last year I started hankering for knitting again. Wrapping yarn through and around two sticks; magically making little garments. I had reached a bit of a stalemate with my progress and had been delaying the next big push to properly learn to read patterns. I needed to take the time to learn new techniques if I wanted to make more than hats and other basic patterns. To be honest I had procrastinated as I knew there would be frustrations and lots of frogging.

Pea pod cardigan progress
With a bit more time and light in the summer evenings I pulled out the pattern I had been wishing to try for yonks. A sweet little cardigan with pea pods on the side panels and hoods. Many times I had read through the instructions and been intimidated. It seem liked to much money to spend on yarn if I mucked it up or couldn't complete it. The picot edge to begin with seemed impossibly hard (of course it's not once you make a start!).

I know that I can do hard things if I put my mind to it. So I did. There has been more rows frogged than knitted I am sure. The nice thing is that despite this it's turning out OK. Sure I can see some mistakes but that's alright. They are not terribly obvious and I'm certain Mae won't mind at all.

I'm giving it go.....done is better than perfect! This quote has been popping up everywhere lately and it's such a freeing sentiment. The little cardigan will take a long time and will have mistakes. It is taking lots of concentration so right now is not a social project but I can read a knitting chart now. And I am gaining so much satisfaction from tackling what seemed like a crazy hard pattern.

For easy quick knits I have been making baby hats for gifts. Perfect for stash busting and the thrill of a finished project. They are stacking up in the gift pile and two have been sent off to new little babes. Made from simple patterns and the softest wool. Warm and comfy for the little ones.

Baby hats waiting for darning up and pom poms.
Two of my cousins are starting out on their knitting journeys. Both are learning the basics quickly and it has been such a joy messaging back and forth with updates of progress. My sister is becoming quite the knitter too. Oh what fun it is to see others find their crafting groove. I have a feeling that knitting might just take center stage in 2016.