Wednesday, January 1, 2014

ladders & eye contact

She goes up the ladder. Turns around. Makes eye contact. Gets to the top, turns, makes eye contact. Gives a big grin.

If my eyes do not meet her's I hear, "mum, watch me!". Eye contact, of course, must be made at all times. I give her a thumbs up. She smiles. Comes down the slide. Runs to me.

I take her in my arms. She tells me that she did it!

On other occasions she runs to my arms to say that she couldn't. Currently, her most common sentence (to me) is "I can try." And certainly she can. I think she is learning independence, but mostly I'm learning to trust and that she can do an awful lot.

Regardless of age most of us feel this. Just at some point we don't have the courage to command "watch me!" or to ask someone to have our back or to give a smile or a thumbs-up every once in awhile. And we tend to resist running to supportive arms to say "I did it!" or "I couldn't". But we all need it.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas {2013}

It is boxing day here, 26th of December. I sit in a quiet living room, surrounded by a few unfinished projects from Christmas toys and a book I will get to sit and read and probably finish today (!!!). Clint is out running a couple quick errands with the girls. He's getting ready to watch the cricket game (all afternoon). We've had a simple breakfast. We've said good bye (Tschüss) to German tourist who stayed the night. And I'm sipping some coffee.

It's been a good Christmas. Our first Christmas eve service as a new church, a celebration of Emmanuel. An amazing story.

We started off Christmas day with our special breakfast - coffee, eggs, pancakes, bacon. Skyped with family, went through the Christmas story, shared day 25 of our "musing garland", opened up gifts and stockings.

We gathered with friends for lunch. Hosted by sweet friends of ours - with lots of people we hadn't met, others that we'd invited. All in all, there were about 6 different nationalities represented. We feasted, talked, played, and headed home.

Friends came to our house for a simple dinner together, kids played. A relaxed evening. We finished off the day in our living room, chatting with new friends from Germany who had come to church last Sunday. Other friends from church had invited them on their Christmas day, they came to ours in the evening, and ended up sleeping on our futon instead of in their van. 

Today we look forward to relaxing, reading, playing, being together, and more skyping with family. It will be a good day.

I'm thinking of many of you - thankful for family and friends across the world. Thankful to journey together, whether near or far. Whether Christmas day is completed or you're in the middle of it, Merry Christmas from our family to yours. We hope for peace, joy and love in the year ahead. 

Much love to you!!!

Saturday, December 7, 2013

The Weekend

It doesn't feel like these pictures should go together. 
In one part of my mind it's summer.
In another part, it is Christmas.
They do not go together.
But they do, here (and everywhere else in the southern hemisphere). 

The other day I walked into a store. On one side of the aisle were Christmas trees and decorations. On the other side were bathing suits. It may take me another year or 2 to get used to this.

And so this weekend we had a bit of both.
Summer - kiddie pools, the beach, fish and chips (may I add terrible allergies/hay fever!).
Christmas - tree, lights, presents, stockings.
Definitely lots of excitement all around, for both summer and Christmas.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013


A birthday treat (I know, what an an amazing birthday!!!)
cheap airfares
a few airpoints
a sweet friend who quickly said yes to watching the girls...

A plane ride, just as adults
a favourite cafe
a sunny 24 hours
feet in water
lots of walking
lots of eating
a bit of reading
being together
and being away.

 2 weeks ago feels so far away now ;)

Monday, November 25, 2013


My dad surprised me and brought my sister with him to NZ (from the States!). Best surprise ever!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Today Iris and I stopped at a newer-to-us playground before meeting a friend for coffee.

She was almost to the top of the ladder when she called out for help. Slightly afraid, two steps from the top.

I put my hand gently on her back. She didn't actually need help. She really just needed a bit of courage. She didn't need me to help her, she needed to know that I believed she could do it.

Today this hit me in a few different ways. The power of having a hand, gently on your back; a person who believes that you can accomplish the task at hand, who gives you that confidence just at the time when you are so close but also slightly afraid that you might not make it.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


Last night Evee made and wrote a card for me. She was worried she wouldn't have time today with school and all. She followed up by writing a message on her hand. She did not want to forget.

This morning I heard her tell Clint that she did not want to wake me since it was my birthday. I love her.

On this day, my birthday...

// I awoke to a sweet overseas text
// Continued to get sweet messages throughout the day
// Am amazed by all the truly beautiful people in my life and those I get to call friends
// Am thankful for birthday gatherings that have gone and that will come
// Am still amazed that my sister could join in on some of the festivity (!!!)
// Was greeted with flowers and chocolate on my desk at work and encouragement from co-workers
// Sat and did whatever I wanted while dinner was made and cleared without any help from me
// Shared cupcakes with 2 very excited girls
// Finished off watching a dancing show - one fairly serious dancer and one very silly dancer
// Sit quietly tonight - a bit of crochet, a bit of reading, a bit of relaxing
// Anticipate more birthday excitement - a one night getaway with Clint (!!!!!)

Some years seem to sound too old or feel young, but this year 32 seems just right.