Monday, February 28, 2011

Whangarei Bloggers Unite .... Again!!!

Had another fabulous time this morning with a few of the Whangarei bloggers I met up with a few weeks ago. What a bunch of amazing women (and kiddos) We Laughed, hugged, chatted, crocheted! and ate. The children played beautifully together and the babies were perfectly behaved!

So here are a few pics, since I DID take my camera this time!!!

Thanks for a great time ladies!
The South African Kiwi
Kiwi At Heart
Bassett Blurbs and Banter
Paisley Jade

Friday, February 25, 2011

Flashback Friday

I truly believe I was born in the wrong era ... I really should have been this age back when having everything orange was COOL ....

My Mum's Bridesmaid Dress was orange - my mum has style! This is my Mum and Aunt Brenda in 1971

Other cool orange stuff from the 70's ....

Orange Tupperware

This stuff is FANTASTIC and I LOVE it!! If anyone has any in their cupboard I will seriously buy it from you because I am trying to house my entire pantry contents in it .. I have a small collection so far but not nearly enough! Trade Me ROCKS for finding this stuff!

Kitchen Appliances

OK so I know these aren't old, they are new BUT they are old school style and that I like!! What I DON"T like is how expensive all the 'new retro' stuff costs!


I have always been in love with the VW Beetle & Combi Van I want one of each ... there is an orange combi around town here that I've seen ... sigh

Orange just rocks it really does!!
Oh and if you ever wondered where all this orange obsession started ....

The apple never falls far from the tree - my Mum & Dad in ADORABLE matching ORANGE outfits

Enough said!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Orange is O for ORSOME

I have just found the BEST blog EVER!! Someone who I can relate to, someone who is of a kindred spirit to me, although somewhat more styley, so far anyway!! Her blog is called ...

and I have been finding some AMAZING orange goodies on her blog ... sigh I am in orange heaven!
Check it out HERE

And check out MY orange obsession HERE I really must do an update post one day, although this other blog shames me with her style, man I can't wait until I get my own house to decorate!!!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Softies for The Children of Christchurch

Lets join our hands and our hearts and make a special softie (handmade soft toy) to be loved by a child who has been affected by the devastating earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Leave a comment at Kiwi At Heart with your email address and She'll coordinate getting these special toys to their new owners.

Anyone in NZ or around the world is welcome to contribute, maybe you'd like to include a little note of encouragement and love with your softie.

Please pass this button on and pop it on your side bar so we can share the love.

Edited to add ...

For other ways to help the people of Christchurch see below.

Phone 0900 33 200 to make an automatic $20 donation
FreeTXT 'QUAKE' to 555 to donate $5 or FreeTXT 'QUAKE' to 333 to donate $3 from any Vodafone mobile
Donate online at
Donate in person at any branch of NZ Post, Kiwibank, ANZ, National Bank, ASB, TSB and BNZ across New Zealand.
Mail a cheque (made payable to New Zealand Red Cross) to: Canterbury Earthquake Appeal, Freepost 232690, PO Box 12-140, Thorndon, Wellington 6144

Love to Christchurch

Yesterday another devastating earthquake hit the city of Christchurch.

This quake measured a smaller 6.3 on the Richter scale - as opposed to the 7.1 of the September quake, the damage caused was worse because the September quake occurred 33 km below the earth's surface and this one occurred a mere 5 km below the surface.. I'm assuming the earth absorbed some of the shock of the September quake and Chch experienced more of the force of it this time and already we have 65 confirmed deaths with many more people trapped in rubble and buildings.

I have very good friends in Christchurch and thankfully they are all safe and out of the city now.

more photos HERE

I sat all night glued to the TV and was dumbstruck at the devastation and ruin.
Prayers, thoughts and best wishes to all in Christchurch.

Monday, February 21, 2011

I got me a Blog Award - again!!!

A little while ago I discovered this blog 'Kiwi at Heart'. It was around the time of the Brisbane floods and I was moved by Leonie's posts. Then I read all about how her and her family were packing up and coming back to NZ and then I actually got to meet her! And she is one awesome lady! So thanks for the award Leonie!

As always with blog awards there are rules so here's what you have to do:

1. Thank and link back to the blogger who passed this award onto you.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Award other recently discovered great bloggers.
4. Contact these bloggers and tell them about the award...

Seven things about me:
1. I can not ride a bike. I never learnt as a kid and I have never been able to get up the nerve to try as an adult. So when everyone says "it's just like riding a bike", I have no idea what they mean!!!
2. I met my beloved husband online! It was incredibly strange and I wasn't on a dating service or anything just a regular chat room, but destiny wanted us together I guess! And the weird thing is that we were together for 4years before we even owned a computer!!
3. I am an insomniac. Sleep is rare for me, a good sleep even rarer, this has only been since losing Jase, it's all combined with weirdness without him in the bed and nightmares. I wish it was possible to survive on no sleep but sadly it really isn't!
4. I am OBSESSED with the colour Orange. See HERE ... Orange has been my favourite for a long time but since I no longer have a husband reining me in I am going orange CRAZY!!!
5. I have a HUGE extended family. My Mum is one of 7 and so is my Dad. Mum has 5 sisters and 1 brother, my dad 5 brothers and 1 sister! My parents are both the 3rd child in their families! When I was alot younger I always thought my Mum & Dad's family could all marry each other ... hmmm the weird thoughts of kids aye! But having so many Aunts and Uncles means LOTS of cousins, and I have some AMAZING ones!!
6. My First time in an aeroplane (apart from a scenic flight around lake Taupo when I was 10) was a 12 hour flight to LA! I really don't like flying! After no planes after our trip to the states I'd been on 7!
7. I have a little bit of a Vampire thing. I LOVE Vampire, movies, books, TV Series. It all started way back when I saw Interview With the Vampire at the movies and has grown from there. My favourite Vampire books are Anne Rices 'Vampire Chronicles' and my favourite on screen is 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' I am not ashamed to say I own all 7 seasons on DVD and could probably tell you most episodes word for word!

Well that was harder than expected! For a blogger who blogs about her life coming up with 7 things was somewhat more difficult that I thought!

And now who shall I award this time???

Mandy - one of the sweetest ladies I have yet to meet!
Hilary - who is living my dream!! And of course is super talented to boot!

and that will do for now!!

Another Happy Blog Award Day!!

The New Weight losing/ getting healthy ME

I am getting fat. I figure in the 9mths since Jason has been gone I have put on at least 10kg. It's a shame that comfort food isn't carrot sticks and celery! It would also be great if I was one of those people who lost weight due to stress & trauma, but I'm definitely a comfort eating person so sadly while needing much comfort I have eaten too much.
So I have decided that enough is enough, I don't want to have a 2nd chin in all my photos and I want to feel happy about wearing shorts and short skirts in the summer and go swimming without feeling like everyone is looking at me!
I have been inspired by Danielle, Nic and Nicole who are all striving to become fit and slim and I am joining their bandwagon!
For me it will begin not by counting calories or joining weight watchers, but just simply to get off my butt and exercise and eat properly. When I say eat properly I mean eat a breakfast lunch and dinner with morning & afternoon tea in between. Right now my eating habits are sporadic and when I do eat it's not good stuff. So before getting into actually counting calories or points or anything I want to start out simple and get into a healthy pattern of eating regular meals, and better ones.
In regards to exercise I don't need to do it more often I just need to do some! I sit on my butt 95% of the time! I am incredibly lazy. So I am going to try and have activity in my day EVERYDAY. I am going to do all different kinds of things but I do not want to join a Gym, I need my money for more important things, like a house and I want to spend little to no money doing exercise, I'll let you know how that all goes!
Someone said to me that to form a new habit you must do something for 30 days. Well I think I can do this!! I am going to document everything!! That way I am accountable for what I do. But I also don't want to blog everything cause you guys might get bored so what I am going to do is open up another little page up there in the tabs called 'My Weight Loss Journey' and every day I will write up what and how I did. I have weighed myself and I will also measure all my fat bits and we'll work it from there!

EEEkkkk now I've written it down it must happen!!!

Wish me luck!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

I got me a Blog Award

Awww shucks thanks so much to Jamey for awarding me this little blog award

These are the rules of me accepting this award ...

1) You have been tagged, do you want to accept? YES! then create a post on your blog and post the love blog photo.

2) Link back to the person who gave you the award and say if you accept.

3) Choose 3-5 of your favourite blogs to tag, link these in your post too and tell the lucky people they have been tagged.

As the aim of this award is to bring unknown good blogs to light, please don't tag somebody with 3000 followers.

The people I would like to pass this award onto are


Happy Blog Award Day!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

I {Heart} Whangarei

I grew up here so it's always been special to me in the way it's home. But since I've been back I have been re-discovering some amazing places to visit and take the kids for a great Morning/Day out.
Here are some of the awesome places we have visited ....

Whangarei Falls

This place is gorgeous! You can swim, picnic, walk, play pooh sticks and just admire the amazing waterfall. I can't wait to get the photos from when we released the Birthday Balloons for Jase here. Also need to go again with both kids so I can get some pics of Riley too!!

The Quarry Gardens

Every time I go here something is different! It is beautiful and so many awesome things to see. Definitely going back here and again with Riley so I can get some pics with him too!

Mair Park

Do you know how many bush tracks there are off Mair Park? Not me!!! But I know there are LOADS. Some short, like this one we went on, some long. We are slowly trying to work our way through them a weekend at a time. It's gonna take a fair few weekends before we have explored them all!!

Reed Park

Reed Park is so cool! There is a boardwalk that goes up high in the trees, wish my kids were more co-operative that day so I could have got more photos of the board walk. This track also makes it way back to Mair Park somehow!! I think they all do!

Tutukaka Breakwater

I pretty much grew up at Tutukaka! We had a boat and spent pretty much EVERY weekend out there on the boat which was moored at Tutukaka. Northland has some amazing beaches, we haven't even begun to explore them all!

Serendipity Farm Park

This place is really cool. You buy a bag of food and get to wander around feeding all the Farm Animals. Horses, Sheep, Pigs, Rats, Donkeys, Chickens and even Emus!! The kids thought it was awesome. We will definitely go back there, next time with a picnic lunch!

Rose Gardens ... Fernery ... Cafler Park

This is where we went today. The Rose Gardens have a fantastic wishing well. Cafler Park has some really cool art works around as well as amazing grounds to run and picnic in, plus a major bonus is we found the trees are all pretty climbable! The Fernery/Conservatory is really cool too! The kids really enjoyed themselves, and so did I.

So I have decided I need to explore and show my kids around our Home Town more.I was really inspired by Mandy who is Discovering her home town Wellington, she wrote a home town list. So I am going to Discover my Home Town Whangarei. I am going to start a list of where I want to take the kids and it will be my goal to cross all the things off my list by 2012. So here is the start of my list ... I will definitely add to it as I go along!

* Mount Parihaka - we have been here a few times but I haven't got many photos, gotta get the photos!!
* Abbey Caves
* Ocean Beach
* Sandy Bay
* Whale Bay
* The Quarry
* Ruakaka Beach
* The Whau Valley Damn
* The Whangarei Falls (with Riley for photos!)
* The Quarry Gardens (same as above!)
* Town Basin (again been but want more photos)
* Heritage Park

That is all I can think of off the top of my head, will keep adding and if any of you Whangarei bloggers know of anywhere awesome for me to check out please let me know so I can put it on my list!!

So how many places have you explored in YOUR home town??

Friday, February 18, 2011

Things I'm Loving


Finally thought I'd join in Over at PaisleyJade because it's true what she says ...

I wholeheartedly believe that no matter what is happening in your life, there is always something that you can be thankful for... no matter how simple it is.

So the things I am loving are .....

Miss Abbey and Bear playing Board Games with me

Eating dinner outside .. and Mr Fussy Pants actually eating dinner!

Dinner that has been re-hashed to another dinner the next night and the 2nd nights dinner is soooo much yummier than the firsts!

And of course meeting an AWESOME bunch of new friends!
(thanks for the pic PaisleyJade!)

So what are you guys loving? Come join in the fun!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Blue Butterflies for Elliot

My Oldest brother Tony lives in Australia. He married this great lady called Natalie, she has been sharing a story through FaceBook about a friend of hers called Emily. Emily has three sons and one of her sons Elliot has been battling with Cancer. Sadly, at just 4yrs old, Elliot lost his battle and a family is grieving the loss of their son. Today there was a shout out to change your profile pic to a blue Butterfly for Elliot and I am also changing my blog background too.

I have been asked to pass on this request and I hope that you will find it in you to change your profile pic to a BLUE BUTTERFLY just for today & tomorrow.
It is to show support to the family and friends of ELLIOT PARISH who @ 4 years old grew his wings last week and left his family and friends. This little Perth boy has stolen the hearts of so many people and the way in which his family have raised funds for PMH will help so many children. His funeral is tomorrow so lets show our support.
Please show support for Elliot and his butterfly effect.

You can read about Elliot and his family HERE HERE and HERE

Rest in Peace without pain Elliot ... fly free with your new wings xxxx

More Elliot Links

91 Odd Socks
Pirate King for a Day
WA Today
Nine News Perth
The Mont Blanc Project

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

We Learn New Things Everyday

Today I have learnt A LOT of new things on a couple different topics, let me share what I have learnt about ....


Bloggers are really cool!! And fun and funny and really friendly, well the ones I met today were anyway! Since I was the BAD BLOGGER and the only one who didn't have their camera (eta that I wasn't the ONLY one without camera but in all honesty Renette did have her hands full with her ADORABLE brand new baby so she has a more valid excuse!!) I can't share pics but I can share some links to the most awesome morning we had with 8 Whangarei Bloggers!!
Paisley Jade wrote about it HERE
Neetz wrote about it HERE
Jacksta-B wrote about it HERE
Kiwi at Heart wrote about it HERE
The South African Kiwi wrote about it HERE
I really can't wait to do it again!!

I also learnt (although it was really a re-confirmation) that kids are so adaptable to making friends with new kids! Gotta love that all the blogger kids had a great time! Abbey was talking about Keke ALL afternoon!!


Now my whole life I have had a Dad, then two Big Brothers, then Male Flatmates, then a Husband who mowed the lawns for me. I had never in my whole life mown a lawn until yesterday. My Mum & I went halves in buying a mower and I tested the new mower on my overgrown lawns yesterday, I only did the front lawn last night and tonight I finished out the back. I have learnt A LOT about lawn mowing.
*Lawn mowing is rather satisfying
*When your grass is long you have to empty the catcher A LOT
*You can take the catcher off without turning the mower right off
*When you accidentally turn the mower right off when taking off the catcher remember to turn it back on BEFORE trying to restart it
*When you have had allergy tests saying that you are 'Violently Allergic' to grass you get hives and wheezing while mowing the lawn
*When you are as unfit and flabby as me lawn mowing is sweaty exercise! (this could have also contributed to the wheezing)
*Standing back and looking at a freshly mown lawn that you have done yourself is right up there with one of the most satisfying things ever along with a whole clothes line full of white cloth nappies, your child's first poo in the toilet/potty and looking at your brand new baby straight after it comes out of you.
*After mowing the lawn in the Summer a cold shower is HEAVENLY

I am actually looking forward to mowing my lawns again ... Jase I hope you are darn proud of me cause I am pretty proud of myself!

So what new thing did you learn today??

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentines Day

I hope you have all had a lovely day. My Valentine's Day was a bit bitter sweet. Thinking about how Jase isn't here is a daily thing for me, but on days like today it is especially hard.

But ..
Today I got my First Scrap Pack from Better Scrapbooking!!! Check out the awesome goodness in there that I get to create with!

In the February Scrap pack is ...
*2 sheets Bazzill Sour Apple cardstock
*2 sheets Bazzill Creamsicle cardstock
*2 sheets Bazzill Lagoon cardstock
*1 sheet Bazzill Scallop Medium Circle Cream Puff cardstock
*1 sheet Bazzill Tag Kraft cardstock
*2 sheets Making Memories Just Chillin' Boys Varnish Guitar
*2 sheets Making Memories Just Chillin' Boys Stars pattern paper
*2 sheets Making Memories Just Chillin' Boys Crown Brocade pattern paper
*2 sheets Making Memories Just Chillin' Boys Doodle pattern paper
*1 Olive Ink Pad
*3 Die-cut Brackets
*2 Ribbons
*10 Brad eyelets
*2 cards with envelopes
*1 sheet Foam Alpha stickers

WOW!!! I can't show you what I'm doing with it for a bit but keep an eye out for the February Better Scrapbooking newsletter!

And speaking of Better Scrapbooking .. here is my February Project challenge submission - A Valentine's Gift

I found these candles at The Warehouse and prettied them up just a bit!

Materials Used:
*Votive Candles
*Making Memories 'Love Note' Paper
*Lace & Twine

Hope you all had a Happy Valentine's Day .. until next time

Friday, February 11, 2011

Flashback Friday

On Jason's Birthday we went to Cobb & Co for dinner and with the kids meals come what they call 'Cobb Crunchies' which are Tatties. It got me thinking all about when we were kids and Mum would make us big bowls of Tatties ALL the time. I don't remember having potato chips so much as I remember Tatties! Makes me want to go buy some! Any one know where to get them?? Sadly I can't find a picture of any Tatties to show you what I'm talking about but I do have a photo of Riley eating his Cobb Crunchies ...

Thinking about Tatties got me thinking about other food we had as kids.
Things like:
K Bars
Tangy Fruits
Milk Biscuits
Buzz Bars
Toffee Milks
Bubble O Bill Ice Creams

Sooo many more I'm sure! What do you guys remember???
Oh and while we are on the subject of food remember this???

NB Thanks to all those lovey message boarders on TMMB for helping me remember lots of the above things!!!

Slack Blogger Alert!!

Sorry Alisa!! I'm failing at the Blogging everyday in February thing and kicking your butt to motivate at the same time!

I has been one of those weeks where I have not had the motivation, energy or inspiration to do very much crafting at all. I've done a little bit but not much.

First I'm gonna share a couple of Valentine LOs ....

This photo I took for Valentines last year. It took AGES and several tries to get the heart in the shadow right, but it was worth the effort!! I entered this LO in the Scrappin' Patch February Sketch Challenge

Materials Used:
*Making Memories 'Love Note' paper
*Chipboard Alphas
*American Crafts Alpha Rubons
*Alpha Stamps
*RicRac & Ribbon
*Heart Punch
*Zig Journalling Pen

Way back in 1996 I took my first overseas trip to America. Jase & his family were awesome tour guides and I had the best holiday EVER! I took some pretty amazing photos of some great stuff but one of my favourites has always been the photo I used for this LO. It was taken on the Ferry on the way to Liberty Island on the most phenomenally beautiful (but cold) day! This is the face I remember when I think about my sweet, adorable, handsome hubby!

Materials used:
*My Minds Eye 'State of the Heart' paper
*Making Memories 'Love Note' metal charm
*My Minds Eye 'State of the heart' die cuts
*heart brads
*Zig Journalling Pen
*Quote & heart stamps
*Metal Bookplate
*Basic Grey chipboard Alphas

I've been enjoying myself entering in lots of challenges lately. I have found that it helps me focus my motivation and it's easier to have a specific thing to do sometimes rather than sitting going hmmm what shall I do!
This next LO was another Scrappin' Patch challenge, this time it was a recipe challenge the recipe was ....

*use pastel shades
*twill or sewing
*one photo
*making your own embellishment

*use pastel shades - Little Yellow Bicycle 'Fresh Print Clothesline' papers
*hearts - Fiskars Scallop Heart Punch, punched from 'Fresh Print Clothesline' sticker flowers with buttons
*twill or sewing - Twill around the butterfly
*one photo
*making your own embellishment - made the butterfly, I used the outline of the outside of a butterfly sticker (with me?? clear as mud??) stuck it on some paper & cut it out. I then wound the twill around the butterfly and tied it in a knot with the ends looking like antenna.

Did I do ok???

Here's to a more motivating and inspired weekend!!!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Happy Birthday Jason

Today is the day that my sweet hubby Jason should be turning 34. Technically tomorrow is his birthday because of the time zone difference between NZ & USA, but we always celebrate on our 7Th!

Don't ask me which one is Jase and which one is Josh cause I have NO clue!!!

Sadly Jason will forever be 33 because that is how old he was when he was cruelly taken away from us
Last year we had such an amazing day on Jase's Birthday, I'm glad his last one was so good.

This afternoon the kids and I are heading to Whangarei Falls to release 8 balloons up to Heaven where he is. 8 balloons for the 8 years he graced my life. Riley said to me the other day
"Mummy how will the balloons get to the right star that Heaven is on"
I told him even if they don't get to the right star Daddy will see them. Nic suggested I tell him that if he kisses the balloons then they will know how to find Daddy. He really liked that idea so I am anticipating some balloon kissing today!

This is the last photo we ever took of Jase

So Happy Birthday my love. We will celebrate your life even though you are no longer with us, because so long as we keep your Memory alive you will ALWAYS be alive in our hearts xxxx

Friday, February 4, 2011

Flashback Friday

As most of you know I am obsessed with the colour orange. Every now and again I search the Internet for orange things. I'm not feeling the best tonight so thought I'd see what new things I could find. And I found this ....

I totally want one!! I showed Nic & Danice who I happened to be chatting with on MSN (as per usual) and Nic mentioned it reminded her of Mork & Mindy ... and OMGoodness it so does!! And I LOVED that show when I was a kid!! So who remembers Mork & Mindy? Here's a little reminder for you

Robin Williams gotta love the guy he is just too funny!
So what TV shows did you watch as a kid?

Another one of my favourites from when I was younger was a show called Tour Of Duty

My dear sweet hubby bought me the season one DVD of Tour Of Duty when he was in USA in 2009. I LOVED it, brought back so many great memories. My very first Vinyl record I bought was the Tour Of Duty Soundtrack, I can't remember what year it was but I know I was at Intermediate so 1989-90ish

I still have this and because my hubby was freaken awesome and also bought me a record player I do get to listen to it frequently, in fact it has been the music for Art Night with Ruth & Janine the last couple weeks!!

Do you remember the first album you bought? Would love to hear all about it!

February Challenges at Better Scrapbooking

The January ones were OUTSTANDING!! Some awesome stuff in the Gallery for sure!! Each category has a winner and they each receive some goodies from Better Scrapbooking! YAY!
Here are the winners ...

Layout Challenge - Your Summer Holidays
Congratulations to Nic

Project Challenge - Alter Something
Congratulations to Deb G.

Card Challenge - Using markers
Congratulations to Sharon.

Photo Challenge - Fun in the Sun
Congratulations to Tracy P. "This is such a great photo. I always found it hard to get photos of my girls blowing bubbles, but this is so adorable."

oh! that's me!!! Thanks Megan!

So here are February's Challenges

Layout challenge - Back to School
All our children are starting or started back at school this week. What a fantastic excuse for a layout. Take a photo of your child/ren in their school uniforms and school bags outside of their school (how embarrassing, but it's for scrapbooking so it's ok) and create a layout. If you children really object what about a layout of you back in your school days. Have fun with this.

Photo Challenge - Natural Frames
Take a photo with the subjects framed by something, like a child in a field framed by the long grass. Here a chance to get creative with your camera.

Project Challenge - Valentines Day Gift
Yes Valentine's Day is coming up, why not make something for someone you care about. Take a photo and upload it for this challenge.

Card Challenge - A card to cheer someone up.
Make a card that you think would cheer up someone. Then take a photo and upload it. Then give it to someone you think needs cheering up (pick me, pick me, just kidding)

Hope to see lots of entries over there!!