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Sunday, January 15, 2012


That's how many kilometers we travelled from Saturday 7th to Saturday 14th.

Day 1 - 07th January
We set off at 9am; somewhere in the Lewis Pass Ian lost his breakfast in spectacular style.   The car smelt pretty nasty for the rest of the trip though luckily I had a damp facecloth which I used to clean up the worst of it.   It was our first long trip and we suspect the windy road combined with a slightly stuffy car just was too much for the poor wee man.  Over the next few days we cleaned with vinegar, water, baking soda and also got some Fabreeze; the car is now not smelly.
Despite that wee issue the trip wasn't too bad; we stopped at Maruia Falls which was beautiful, a lot of wood in the water from the storms in the last few weeks.
You can see the falls above, also the unit we stayed in at Tahunanui in Nelson.

Day 2 was Sunday.  We trotted into town, had a look at the outside of the cathedral, services were being held so we couldn't go in, but it was nice to see a stone church that was still in one piece.  We also had a gelato at Penguino's; very nice!   We met my brother and his wife in town after a little texting; went back to the unit before heading to the wee zoo near the beach.  It was rather a cool wee zoo; even had a Morepork and a Porcupine.
After the zoo David and Karen went back to her parents place and we took the boys to the hydroslide.  Ian tried it once and was scared by it, after a few minutes recovery though he tried again and didn't want to leave!
We went back to this on our final full day; Thomas and the boys had a blast; I found it completely terrifying so only had the one go.  They actually refunded my money, despite it not being their fault!.

Day 3 we went to Rabbit Island first, we forgot our togs so had a wander around and then had to go back to change, wash the clothes, get our swim stuff and then went back.   Rabbit Island had been affected by the floods in the previous couple of weeks, the whole picnic area was still under water and the route out had quite a big wet dip that the car wasn't keen on.   We all enjoyed the place though; beautiful beach whether low or high tide.   After RI we went to Mapua which was also a pretty wee seaside township.   Thomas bought me a new bag; not sure if it's leather or not, but it's gorgeous and it's red instead of my usual black.  I love it!   Also picked up a new sunhat as my leather one is a bit too hot; there was only one that fit me; perils of a large head unfortunately.   I got a periwinkle blue crocheted cotton one; George spent his pocket money on a nice black one with a skull and flames.  Both were a good price as the shop is closing down.

Day 4 we went to Founders Park which is a heritage park very much like Ferrymead in Christchurch.  Personally I think Ferrymead is better though.  Many of the buildings in Founders Park have businesses working out of them, most are using modern equipment though which doesn't seem quite right somehow.  George managed to get a free ride on the tram, he asked the driver if he could get on, and he said yes!   He was just going to the gate to open it for the train to run.  Lunch there was very expensive; mine ended up being free though, I found the lettuce in my BLT was off, so they refunded the money.
After the park we went down the road a wee bit to visit a Japanese garden, which I have to say was absolutely gorgeous!  The boys enjoyed that more than the Park.
You can see Ian on top of a rock in the gardens and George and I are wearing our new hats.  Top right is a water weed in the garden, it was a really nice looking surface floater.

Day 5 we went to town after spending the morning at Tahunanui Beach.  I got some wool/mohair fibre from Fibre Spectrum and some beads from the bead shop there.   George and Ian got a skull bead each too.  We also checked out some toy shops and had to drag Ian out of the Lego section.
After that we went on a long walk to the Centre of NZ which was up a big hill.   It was hard work, but well worth it at the top.   Ian was stuffed though, so Thomas had to carry him out on his shoulders.  On the way back to the unit we stopped at Haven Fish and Chips and got Fish of the Day (Skate) and chips for dinner; way better than the stuff we get here in Christchurch.  Middle top photo in the collage below is the Centre of NZ.  Top left is one of many stained glass windows inside the Cathedral.

Day 6 is mostly what's in the above photo.  We went to World of Wearable Arts; well, I did.  The boys and Thomas headed into Richmond for a short space.  WOW wasn't so wow IMO; I preferred the stuff in the Canterbury Museum.  I wasn't allowed to take photo's in there, but could in the classic car bit so you can see a classic motorcycle of some sort and the Jaguar painted like the one for Austin Powers.   After that we went to Isel House.  Much better than WOW, though like WOW no photo's allowed.  They've done earthquake strengthening in there and restoration; some of the original wallpaper on sackcloth walls can be seen.  There was another lady wanting to look around when we came in, but she'd left her wallet behind so I paid her gold coin donation so she could see the place too.
After we'd finished there we visited Pestells to get some bacon (love their dry-cured bacon) and we got dinner supplies too; the boys got pink cocktail sausages, Thomas and I got a pork kebab wrapped in bacon; very nice indeed.  We dropped all that back at the unit before heading back to town as I'd found out where Cruella's was for some yarn shopping.  
If you're ever in Nelson and like knitting you must go there; they sell their own patterns which to be honest look awful in the books; however you can try on the outfits they have there to sell in various patterns and sizes.   They look a whole lot nicer on.   I fell for one in real life that I hated in the book and Thomas let me buy the yarn and pattern!  I now have 14 balls of a lovely boucle yarn in a peacock/black marle; I had planned on trying a diffferent colour, but for whatever reason the peacock always gets me and nothing else looked quite as good.  The pattern is a wrap cardigan with a lace trim that is optional; I'll be doing the lace.  It's a bulky yarn, but looked gorgeous on.

Day 7 we started out packing for the trip back before going back to the hydroslide (this is where I tried it and was too scared to do it again).  We had a bit of a rest at the unit after that; George made friends with a 14 year old and they went back to his unit to watch the Simpsons movie.  We went out after a while after prying George away from his new friend to get some real fruit icecream at Berryfields.  It was yummy, and while Ian refused his George ate most of his.   We then decided to drive a bit further and check out a note on the map for "Gardens of the World"; George really wanted to take a look at it and he managed to persuade us (I was balking at the entry fee); it was an honesty system, but if we didn't pay as far as I was concerned we weren't going in.   I had to admit to George that his wanting to go was the right thing as it was a wonderful garden and well worth the price.
After we'd finished we went and got fish and chips again from Haven for dinner and we ran into Joanne my knitting and spinning friend from Christchurch who was also up with her children for a break.

Day 8 was hometime.  We packed up and left before 8am to visit the Saturday market before we left town.  We got George and Ian a Puffin Billy Steamboat which is a wee tin boat that you light a candle and it then steams its way around on the water; very cool.  We also picked up a jar of bush honey to give to our wonderful neighbours as a thank-you for looking after our kitties.   The trip back home was quicker than the trip to Nelson, no upchucks, though I didn't feel well for some of it so Thomas got to drive a lot more than he normally does.   I did the first hour to Murchison and the last bit from Culverden to Christchurch; the rest I wasn't feeling too good.  The cats were both pleased to see us which was nice.  Some of the mail I was expecting had arrived including Ian's Melatonin as well as a couple of books.

Today was pretty quiet, I did get to Knitworld and spend my voucher from my brother; I now have 5 balls of Gedifra Shetland de-lux (which I'm pretty sure has no Shetland wool in it, but is very nice all the same); I'm going to use it for something in the colourwork field.   I also got 2 skeins of Knitsch yarn in my favourite turquoise as it's never in stock on her website when I check.


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