Saturday, 22 December 2012

We Made It!

So once again I have been completely MIA this past month due to busy-ness, sickness, and a lack of photo-worthy occasions. But I wanted to be sure to sneak in a final post for 2012 as the year comes to an end. I hate to break it to all you North Americans... the world has not ended. Down in the southern hemisphere we made it all the way through 21 December 2012 without so much as a blip. We've also made it through a year of a lot of changes, adventures, and newly established memories. 

As many of you may have heard, Wellington has recently been transformed into the Middle of Middle Earth for the world premiere of the Hobbit. There were markets and sculptures and celebrities littering the city. We missed out on the actual premiere event because of a good surf evening, but I was able to check out the Hobbit Artisan Market. The Market consisted of a number of stalls selling Hobbit-themed goods and a big stage featuring Weta Workshop who worked on costume and make-up for all the JRR Tolkien movies. I'm definitely not a fan of LOTR or the Hobbit, but it was fun to get involved in a bit of the hype around the city.

At the beginning of December, Kevin and I were blessed with a visit from our old flatmate Chris who we lived with in Kelowna. He is spending a full month with us exploring beautiful New Zealand before he jets back off to SE Asia for another few months. We all congregated at the Hataitai Bowling Club for Aurecon's Christmas party (Kevin's work). We enjoyed an afternoon of lawn bowling, food, drinks, and good company. I discovered that I am terrible at lawn bowling; however, this is a fact that I have come to accept. I think I will survive lacking this skill in my repertoire.

Yesterday marked the longest day of the year and we have had some beautifully sunny and warm days the last few weeks. Last weekend we took a visit to Red Rocks Reserve, a coastal walk on the south side of Wellington. It was an incredible day, but it. was. WINDY! The photos are very deceiving. If you look close enough in a few of the photos you can actually see the mountains over on the South Island across the Cook Strait.

We are all off tomorrow for a two-week roadtrip from Wellington to Taupo to Waitomo to Rotorua to Coromandel to Gisborne. We'll stay in Gissy for Rhythm & Vines music festival over New Year's and then track our way back to Wellington at the beginning of January. Many photos and stories to come shortly after.

2013 has a lot in store for us. Moving into a new flat in January with a lovely couple from Michigan, vacationing to the Cook Islands late-January with both our parents, showing said parents around New Zealand pre- and post-Aitutaki, a trip back to Canada in August, and plenty more adventures to come. 

Merry Christmas to everyone and best wishes for the New Year. Sending lots of Kiwi love to you all.

xoxo Sam and Kevin

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Happy Birthday, Harry Potter, & Yogi-ing

Having moved away from home almost 7.5 years ago now, I have missed out on a lot of family affairs. And what I love more than anything is to celebrate birthdays with those I love. So it's killing me to be an absentee sister today for my baby sis turning the big TWO-ONE. Skype dates sure help, but it doesn't make up for the warm hugs and uncontrollable giggles that are evoked when the two of us get to spend time together. So here's to Emily, aka Amanda Bynes: HAPPY BIRTHDAY! I hope you get spoiled rotten like you deserve and that you have a lovely, fun-filled year.

Remember when it was my birthday? Well Kevin had bought me tickets to go to Potted Potter,  a two-man show that plays out all seven Harry Potter books in 70 minutes. And although the show completely geared towards children (like really young ones), it was entirely adorable and amusing. Nothing gets me going like a few patronus charms and teenaged wizard angst.

In preparation for my teacher training in early 2013, I signed up for my yoga studio's 40 day yoga challenge. I am at the end of my fourth week feeling refreshed, strong, and a genuine dedication to my practice. 6:30 a.m. classes have dominated most of my weekday mornings--a great way to start the workday! Below are a few promotional photos taken in week two. Two more weeks to go!!

Saturday, 27 October 2012


For the first time in almost five months, we were blessed with a long weekend. And while winter came and went quite quickly, an extra day off was long overdue. To ensure we fully reaped the benefits of the time off, Kevin, his workmate Nathan, and I spent Labour Day camping in Tora. Tora is a small surf spot located on the Wairarapa coast approximately 120 km from Wellington. Never having been there before, we set out on an optimistic adventure for our first Kiwi camping trip.

The roads winded through farm land, providing me with endless entertainment of cows, sheeps, and even wild turkeys. And upon arrival, the first thing we noticed was the wind. Now I thought Wellington was a windy city, but HOLY CROW Tora was windy. 120km per hour winds do not an enjoyable camp set up make.

Below are pictures of our trip. LOTS of pictures. And they are a conglomerate of both mine and Nathan's cameras. Enjoy!

I couldn't help myself...

Can I please take one home?

Trying to set up camp in very windy conditions.

All set up, for now. Until the wind tore everything down shortly after.

We decided to screw the wind and take up an afternoon surf.

I didn't last long in the windy and rocky conditions, so resorted to resident photographer for the day.

We had to move camp because of the wind. But we made sure to take our fire-making supplies with us.

The local residents decided to pay our campsite a visit.

Nathan was this close to being blown away.

There's something about boys throwing rocks...

I may or may not have been very hungry.

Yes, I realize I look like a homeless person. I'm comfortable with that.

Stunning view into the valley from the beach.

Nathan constructed a raft to sail out to sea.

Off it goes!

The raft didn't quite make a long journey the first day. So we had to try again.

See you!

And lots of photos of waves and beach...