Monthly Archives: December 2010

I see you.

Marlee’s Life Lessons # 15,297

Marlee came up to me today and looked me right in the eye, her face barely two inches away, and she said ‘I see you.’

I have NO idea where she learnt it from, or for what reason she did it. And I don’t really care. It was humbling.

She is teaching me new things every day. Yesterday’s lesson was about simple gratitude. I re-learnt how much fun stairs can be to run up and down, and how awesome a simple rope-and-plank swing in a tree is.

Yesterday, while walking up Mount Albert with her, I had this flashback to the missions Dad used to take us on. Hamilton Gardens, Parana Park, the Waikato River, Te Aroha Geysers, the list goes on.

My favorite of these memories this… Randomly (well to us children anyways) we would just up and go for ‘Random Day Trips’. The van would be loaded with anything we might need, kids, togs, towels, lunch, drinks, warm clothing, dogs etc, and we would follow our noses. Some days we would stop at the old yellow building that housed the gem museum in Thames. We could browse forever, looking at the different gems and reading about rocks that split to reveal exquisite purple crystals. Other days we would look for quartz¬† on a cold, windy¬† beach next to a long deserted goldmine. This quartz seemed like diamonds at my age and though I was told to be picky with what I took home, it all seemed to good to leave behind. Most often we would end up at the Te Aroha pools, finishing with a greatly anticipated feast of fish and chips at the playground in Gordington.

Mum and Dad, I don’t know if I ever thanked you for those trips but I would like to express my gratitude now. I truly hope Marlee gets to experience similar things and that she lets me help her to create her own special memories.


Marlee’s Kiwi lunch.

Yay, Marlee is staying with me until Christmas (about which I must confess, I have reverted to my super-duper excited childhood self. Poor grinchy Alex.) and she is loving the good old Watties Baked Beans. She ate nearly half a can by herself today and wasn’t impressed when I tried to include some leftover roast pumpkin with her lunch. Pumpkin is officially not on the list of favorite foods, she must take after her Daddy. Apparently (according to a 22-month-old anyways), baked beans are all that is needed in a healthy diet as long as water is on offer as well. Ahh the wisdom.


Monteiths Original, sun, sand, and a giant puddle in the middle of nowhere.

Bethalls lake is beautiful. Although I am doing a fair imitation of a lobster today, after spending some time in the sun and heat I am feeling good.

Glow sticks, carols, gazillions of people, Dave Dobbyn, Burger King and trains.

Carols by Glow Stick was very, very cool. Marlee had so much fun waving her glow stick around and dancing to the carols. Dave Dobbyn was the highlight of the night and the arena looked stunning…

Where was my camera? Sitting at home. Sigh, I will learn one day…

“Use this summer to think about where you are wanting to go. Not just where you are not wanting to be. I am here to toss it around with you.” – Dad


What has inspired me in this past week.

  • Geoff Blackwell, founder of the M.I.L.K project and owner of PQ Blackwell Publishing. He is a New Zealander. His photo books are beautiful. Some books I have admired aver the last little while have been published by his company.
  • Food. Jamie’s Food Escapes on TV1, Tuesdays at 9.30pm. I would love to do that.
  • Book, Dolce e Salata by Marlena de Blasi. Travel and food and people all rolled into one book.
  • Giving. I loved Christmas shopping, choosing presents, anticipating reactions, everything.
  • The forgotten photos discovered on my external hard drive. My family is so damn photogenic!
  • I stumbled across this blog by accident about a month ago. I love it.


Thanks Dad.

Please, let’s go to Tuscany!?

“They all know the truth, that there are only three subjects worth talking about. At least here in these parts. The weather, which, as they’re farmers affects everything else. Dying and birthing, of both people and animals. And what we eat – this last item comprising what we ate the day before and what we’re planning to eat tomorrow. And all three of these major subjects encompass, in one way or another, philosophy, psychology, sociology, anthropology, the physical sciences, history, art, literature, and religion. We get around to sparring about all that counts in life but we usually do it while we’re talking about food, it being a subject inseparable from every other subject. It’s the table and the bed that count in life. And everything we do, we do so we can get back to the table, back to the bed.” – Barlozzo

From the book, Dolce e Salata (Sweet and Salty) by Marlena De Blasi.

‘Why should I listen to you?’

“Because I have a voice!’

Dialogue from The King’s Speech 2010.

I love this comment. So many times we hear but we do not listen. Marlee gets so wound up if I ‘mm-hmm’ her when she is trying to tell me something. ‘Mum’ she says, ‘Mummy!’ and the frustration in her tone is clearly audible. She is a constant reminder for me to listen when someone is speaking to me. She is nearly two years old and already she knows that her voice deserves to be heard. I wish I still had the same confidence in my voice sometimes..