Friday, April 26, 2013

April 2013

To Lion:

Lion is my favourite toy in the world and I love him.

That's enough for my first blog!

From Emily

Sunday, September 13, 2009


Yep, I turn 40.
This Tuesday.
I know it's been a long time between posts about the family.
We'll try and do better.
Anyways, we had a wee do yesterday (saturday), Keighley looked after our kids and a few more.... 9 of the lads went out for a mountainbike round the Sticky Forest.
Ha! We even had an impromptu timed downhill in the middle of our ride.
Leighton was disqualified as he did not partake in any vodka jellies nor feijoa vodka infused jelly snakes !
That would put me in first place ! Unofficially of course, but I'll take it.

Then it was beer, food, presents and repeat all afternoon and then a dinner for 30+ adults and about 25 nippers.

It was pretty mammoth, but a oncer so what a great day.

Keighley pulled it off without a hitch.

Marc and Hannah arrived after dinner - they'd been doing the Mountain to Mountain multisport race.

Hannah won the girls, Marc got a gold star for supporting her all day.

Sunday after a leisurely breakfast and fluff around in the garage, we headed out on the bikes again.

Weather was warm for a welcome change ! Looks like spring is here this time.

Sparked up the bbq again and knocked up a loaf of ham cheese and onion toasted sandwiches, washed down with Emmersons Hop2Porter limited release beer (thx Marc).

Lovely end to the day and a great weekend.

And here's to this Tuesday the actual day !

More pictures here

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

my new hobby

I can't believe I've not discovered it before....

Scrap booking is so passe

details here

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Our November Holidays + Janine & David's wedding

So we took off from Wanaka, Central Otago on Labour day (Monday 27th of October) headed for Christchurch to stay with the Ritchie Family - Keighley used to work with Sandra when she was at Montana Wines. 6.5 hours driving; kids handled it pretty well.
Stayed two nights then off to Blenheim, stopped 4 lunch in Kaikoura and made it to Rossmore (a big 100 year old farm station belonging to the Westernras - yes the Westernra family (we're distantly related in a roundabout way don't you know, if only my brother would actually marry Jill then we would be family) down the Molesworth Valley. Got there about 4pm. Kids were crap that night.
Next day went and saw some sheep up close with the kids and checked out some genuine Merino wool. Then off to the Ferry (Bluebridge; our preferred Cook Strait travel supplier) and made it to mum and dads for dinner.

Stayed there a few nights.
Janine and David got married up at the Botanical Gardens - weather was crap, the nibbles were plentiful and I outdid Warren on the profiterol wedding cake. Delicious.
Oh, the bride looked fab darling. Great BBQ the next day too. Cheers guys.

We caught up on family stuff, abandoned the kids a few times and finally went on the Silverstream Railway just up the road from the folks - only lived there for 30 odd years, so can't rush these things you know.

Then off to Palmerston North to stay with Lynda & Allen & Morgan & now Riley, on Melbourne Cup Day. We met thru the anti natel group in Auckland when Emily was born. Great to catch up and the kidsm well they behaved like nearly 3 and 1 year olds do.
Next day was off to Kinloch 20 kms from Taupo to see Marty, Rachel and now Adam.
The kids were horrible that night, I think Charlie was cold and we ended up with Emily in our bed. Oh joy.
Rachel and Keighley went for a spin on the new mtb trails the next day only to find they were logging and closed 45 mins into it. Never mind.
The final push was upon us - Waihi Beach here we come.
You can see our journey thus far here

Ah, the beach. A Cafe within an easy stroll and another 20 yards to the white sand.
Went there every day we did. What a contrast to living in the middle of the South Island where it's the best part of 2-3 hours to dip your toe in the salty water - hang on that could be Penrose to Piha on a snarled up day !
Fish & Chips from the local chippie;
"how much is the fish"
"fresh or frozen?"
(groan from Keighley) "um, what's the difference in price please?"
"$2.60 for frozen and $3.00 for fresh"
"we'll take the fresh please"

Mate, we pay about 5 bucks a piece for something that might have been near a fish at our local in the 443.

We had F & C's several times let me tell you.

The hot pools at Athenree were the business. Hardly tourist prices !

We gathered the gang for a bbq on Saturday night (Warren and Lisa; don't forget Milo the Lab, Kimmy and Jimmy and Steve. Helen was hanging with her girly mates.
I did an Al. and got distracted after unsucessfully getting the expired gas bottle filled - Del Woodford was mowing lawns so I bid Keighley farewell and headed inside with Del for a beer.
Keighley came and dragged me off when I was looking for beer # 4 and had rather rosey cheeks....
Sunday was a mtb in the K gorge; from Dickies Flat, along the riverm thru a tunnel, along more river through the old Tallisman workings, up the hill, down Dubbo and back to Dickies flat. Sensational ride. 10/10 and the newish 29er was well behaved and didn't spit me over the bars.

For 6 nights we nodded off to the sounds of the sea rolling up to the high tide mark.
Bliss I tell you.

With the meter running it was time to saddle up and head back home.
Left Waihi about 3pm and just kept going (Thelma) and got to my folks place in the Hutt Valley at 12.45am.
Phew. Marathon. Kids handled it exceptionally well.

A couple more days hanging in Wellington, more bike riding with Trevor and Jill, an early family Xmas dinner with the folks.
Oh and Emily glued to the dvd of Wallace & Grommit.................

8am sailing on the ferry and off to..............well Christchurch looks ok if we can get hold of Kelvin & Sandra, but they seem to have gone we'll just keep going inland.
Tea in Oxford - unfortunately Jo Seagers cafe was closed and Keighley had great delight pointing out that Teriaki was a Japanese sauce, not battered fish at the local takeaway !
The gas light came on not far from Methven, so that was us for the night.
Found a nice little cottage (5 doors down from the Fire Station so we found out later on).
Sunday was a pretty good run down to home.
Emily lost it completely when we stopped in Geraldine for morning tea, but thank god they pretty much snoozed the rest of the way.

Pulled in the drive and Wayne our neighbour from the North side of Frye Cres comes up and says "Good you're home, is the coffee machine on yet ?"
The McElrays had us over for dinner, so it was just like we hadn't left.

Just like a good novel, it was full good times and bad, tragedy and triumph. And I got the girl ;-)

Pictures of our adventures are here

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

C'mon Dad, a little more info please....

So for those of you who need a bit more information.....

Charlie-boy is growing up fast. He's got 4 teeth and more on the way. The kid is eating us out of house and home. 5 HUGE bottles and 3 HUGE meals a day... he's gonna be a big boy. He is wriggling backwards and rolling over, so I guess you could say he's mobile now. Loves music and dancing, and has recently graduated from the bassinet to the big-kids cot. No problems with the transfer and I think he's going to be as addicted to his 'blankie' as Big Sister Emily is. Good grief. Imagine them both sitting under the washing line waiting for them to dry.

Emily has turned into a little girl seemingly overnight. She is speaking so well (too well in fact. Today she told us all to 'zip it!'. Gotta talk to Rick about that sort of thing....) and has a few favourite songs which she sings over and over. We have dropped her to two Kindy days so we can all go to Mainly Music again on Wednesday. Her and Charlie are both enjoying it, and I love the morning tea!! Still waiting for her four big molars to come through and they are causing some grief. And she is getting really tall now. No naps at all any more, and all her pants fall off her ass - she's got nothing to hold them up!

Rick is enjoying work and hasn't been doing much riding which is nice for the rest of us. On weekends he takes the kids to Mini Muscles and out for lunch (I am grudgingly allowed to come too) then off for some adventure. We've been spending a lot of time with the neighbours which is really nice. We have even been allowed out of the house ALONE to go to the Kindy Quiz nights, and managed to clean up at the last one. Go Redwoods!

I have been really busy looking after the sproglets, promoting the cloth nappies, Kindy Committee and joining the Rural Women's Institute. Getting more organised by the day, but I'd kill for 24 hours of uninterrupted sleep....

Monday, June 23, 2008

May 2008

- adventure pinecones with the neighbours.
- it's getting cold in the mornings..
- baby chuckles and big sister
- 1st night ride for the author this year
- 1st snowman of the winter. Crown Range

Sunday, May 25, 2008

April 2008

Still lovely and warm in Wanaka - which is what this brief post is about.

1st foggy morning this year Emily and I went for a wander through the old part of Albert Town. Chuckles was hanging at home with mumma.
The changing season brings out amazing colour changes around and about - that's our driveway.

March 2008

A very busy month for us:

We flew in to Auckland then headed down to Waihi for Lisa and Warrens wedding.

Then my brother and Jill were here for some riding and boozing over Easter and so were Warren and Lisa - on their honeymoon !

February 2008

My mum and dad came to visit to inspect their new grandson.
Emily had poppa hard at work putting in a support pole for a shade sail.
Emily was handling the arrival of Charlie pretty well - her and some mates took off for a spin in the country....
And yours truely did a 6 hour mountainbike team race in Queenstown with Al and Nancy. We took home first place.

january 2008...

So, top to bottom: the nana's came down to visit for a few days - hoping our baby would turn up while they were here. Nope.
Emily enjoyed the last few days of being numero uno..
Then baby Charlie Mitchell Redwood turned up at 2.20 am 16th Jan.
Lastly, but not in chronological order I got to go out moto riding with Al, Multi and co in Alexandra - actually happened New Years Day and I spent the next month pining for a moto bike....

December 2007...

Emily is growing up a storm in the garden, another day we're enjoying a bike ride down the side of the lake in Queenstown and then - bam, it's xmas morning !
Keighley is very pregnant....1 month to go.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

November is big on cycling down here

Huge in fact.

Tour of Southland - I think 5 days of hard slog. Many people to look out for: Emily was right up there.....

Oceania time trials as well, but they were miles away in Invercargill where tom Parrish should consider retiring - there is a tractor dealership across the road from the KFC ! WOW I know.

The track racing was on all week too, but I didn't have my camera on me. And who could care less about the weather as the track is indoors with food and beer for sale - I am considering retiring there !

I got to hang with Alex, Clinton and Mike who rode the tour, the time trial and road race. Clinton got a 1st, 2nd and 2nd respectively. I'd say sexual favours will come his way from his girl Rebecca for stella performances like that.

Alex got 2nd in a stage in the tour -rolled on the line by Glen Rewi, who last won a stage some 10 years ago I believe....oh that smarts. And he got 3rd in the road race helping his Auckland team mate to victory on the day.

Mike got to assist Clinton in driving from Invercargill to Blenheim all in one day. Stuff that.

And my news is: Emily has a new bike for transportation to the park and other nearby spots.

Presenting the Gary Fisher Tasajara: bought the frame for 2 bucks on an undisclosed internet site.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Dad and Emily heading back to town along the lakefront dual purpose trail. Dad sporting is borrowed KHS 29er single speed and Emily taking it easy letting me do all the work.

Mum was there too: trucking along on the Santa Cruz Blur.

When we got back, our friend Cathy had just arrived from Queenstown for weeks work down this way and stayed with us for the weekend. She's in the wine business so we had a couple of bottles that were very nice.

Sunday we went out to the Cardrona Pub for a beer in the garden before dropping Cathy off at Cromwell (another town that proclaims itself to be the "fruitbowl of NZ). Emily picked herself up a Ferrari toy car from the gas station, but realistically is only getting the hang of her new trike.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Mid October - Spring you say ?

Top of the Crown Range this morning.....3 degrees mate. Brrrr.......

Raining when we got up this morning so we went to Queenstown.

Our first time eating at Ferg Burgers. Kind of like Burger Wisconsin but cooler because they've stood the test of time. They started up with a small deep fryer for the chips and two Warehouse BBQ's for the burgers in a small alley that only the locals could find......must have been a winner as the the big guys did not last : Burger King - gone. Hardrock Cafe - gone. Nice chow and you can get a beer if you wish. Good splash of fries for $4 -lucky Emily was there to help.

Some mandatory shopping because Wanaka has 4 bike shops, but you can't buy mens undies...go figure. Not that I needed undies I'm just making the comparison between shopping precincts. They have shops that you'd want on a day to day basis and we don't, mind you got two gas stations, but can't say how much longer we'll need them. $1.24 per litre for diesel down here BTW.

Here's Emily hanging out on a street corner after lunch:
After norrowly avoiding the wrath of the parking nazi we hit the Warehouse out at the airport. Hard to believe that place is a necessary evil down our way. Yes they sell men's undies. Not that I needed any.
Emily slept on the way there and the way back which was great as she has a sound command of the word "no" these days. Monkey girl !
I went for my first road bike ride since we moved here and Keighley finished off mowing the lawns - I know what you're all saying "Christ Richard she's 6 months pregnant !" Well one has to keep up the exercise I say and biking is pretty much out of the picture......
So all in all a nice day out for the Redwoods.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Mid August in Wanaka

Lots of news - no excuses for lack of updates except it's all go.

Emily is full of beans and is now in her own bed - fell out of it for the first time last night - blankie was still on the bed and that was the biggest problem at 4 in the morning....not that she fell out.

Lots of new words - "bum" thanks to Callum.

She can even fetch you a fresh roll of loo paper should you run out. Working on the beer in the fridge...

Dad has a bike seat for Emily and we regulary take a spin after work.

We've been to the Kingston Flyer for a spin on the train - Thomas the Tank Engine was the days theme...

And last but not least madam likes to dress up too:

And for those who we haven't rung already - we had our second scan at the hospital and we know what we're having.....

Saturday, July 07, 2007

First month in Wanaka

So, been here 4 weeks.
No chance of wondering out the door in short sleeves anymore, with the snow on the hills it is chilly.
Went for our 13 week baby scan at the local hospital in Clyde on Wednesday - everything progressing as it should. As a special treat we went to Alexandra and had KFC. Normally not very exciting, but it's an hours drive away.....

This afternoon our own personal mtb tourguides (Trish & Callum ) showed me around. It was harrowing compared to attempting going for a bike ride back in Auckland. NOT.
First I rode to their place, took 4 mins. Then we rode to the local reserve from their place-another 4 mins. And that was that, we were off road and loving it.
Made our way over to the Sticky Forest, rode like screaming idiots down a great trail called Ballantis which left us on the downside of the trees so we headed on back to where we started along the Outlet river trail which follows the Clutha River.
Next it was Keighley's turn. She and Trish saddled up and went along the sidle track towards the Forest and back along the River trail. Nice and gentle for our expecting mum. (14 weeks)
To celebrate our 8th year together (today) Keighley, Emily and I popped down to our local chippy in town - the Blue Penguin Takeaways. The temperature guage said zero degrees on the way there and -2 on the way home, that was at 6.30pm.

And we picked up a hitchhiker to keep our kharma levels topped up. Guess we won't have to go to church tomorrow now.
No pics of today's adventure sorry. just imagine you can't feel your hands and feet on a beautiful blue sky day.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

1st snow in the 443

So, just another day at the office for us here in the deep south.

Thought we'd celebrate by going for the beer and goggles.

Started snowing about 10ish I guess and didn't stop all day.

Al. was mighty excited and rolled out his 2008 Commencal for some mid winter appraisal:
More than likely it'll 4wd all the way home !
Over and out from sunny Wanaka.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Lots happening in May

Where does one start - lets go back to Anzac day. A lovely sunny day, so we took Emily for a spin in the trailer down the local walkway to Ambury Park in Mangere.

When we got home we had decided to move to Wanaka.

A mere 4 days drive with a small child. Rick has a job with Blueshark Enterprises, who import a whole raft of mountainbike parts and accessories.

So we've been packing boxes, cleaning and re-cleaning again after the tradesmen have gone from the house.

New paint in the kitchen -ceiling and walls. New light fittings in the lounge and hall.

Tiling guy is due tomorrow and waterblasting man too.

Stuff been thrown out out left right and centre - Emily's collection of re-cycled kids bikes has been put back into the organic rubbish collection where it originally came from.

Real Estate agent to wrangle with. Nearly fainted when we found out the cost of moving our house and garage load of wordly goods to Wanaka. Phew!

Emily of course doesn't know what the hell is going on, but took some time out in the garden this afternoon to blow off some steam while the Real Estate agent took photos and generally embibed us with his enthusiam for upgrading to a new Audi. He didn't say that of course but actions speak louder than words.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Emily can't get lost now

Not that we have "misplaced" her yet, but she was off like a robbers dog down at Sylvia Park yesterday. Refusing to go back in the buggy she wanted to walk like everyone else.....into the shops, along the walkways and up to total stangers to see what was going on.

So with her new t-shirt, she stand out like a sore thumb - which she can't be far off getting from a kitchen drawer.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

madam now has new shoes

Actually she has three pairs - Bobux (slipper kind of things), Pink gumboots that dad bought 4 the trip to the farm last weekend and these numbers from the Warehouse Te Awamutu........

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

And then Dad said "get off your bum and get a haircut"

So Emily did !

Only a few self propelled steps, but the real deal they were. More-many more to follow............

And Mum took Emily down for a haircut this morning at Sylvia Park. Cost more than Dad's and all. ($13) but hey what price can you put on not looking like a shaggy dog?

Lunch was a little late-Cornwall park by the play ground. Lisa, Simon and Conner + Sally and Jacob were the only other families and kiddly widdlies in attendance.

The rest of you missed out on the swings and the food and all the other really cool stuff. So there.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

What a Waitangi Weekend

Like kids waiting for Xmas morning to arrive we loaded up the Hilux to the roof with all those important (family) essentials.....
Nappy bucket, high chair, spare nappies, clean baby clothes, porta cot, this weeks' fav. toys, baby buggy/trailer etc etc.
Oh the heady days less than two years ago when it was just a loaded Visa card and a few bottles of wine.
After Steve had whipped up a delicious Pizza Hut meal we were off down the Southern Motorway onwards to Lake Rotoiti - a Lockwood mansion greeted us with a huge lawn from the equally huge deck right to the water.
Saturday was low key - the boys watched Terminator 3 on dvd, we all had scones for lunch, Steve and Helen had a snooze and we took munchie for a spin in the trailer to the local playground.
Homemade Pizza for tea with Terminator 3 again then Clockwork Orange for a chaser.....
Sunday dawned with a cooked breakfast then off to the forest for an easy spin with Emily in the trailer on the gravel roads + her first extreme off road experience down Mad If You Want Too.....slow and easy with Mum tucked in behind.....
Back to the house for a clean up then off to Lisa's mum's place in KatiKati to catch up with Lisa and Warren.
Next day dawned with the girls going shopping and the boys back to Rotorua with the bikes for a couple of hours riding in the forest.
Special mention goes out to Warren's "privates." Keighley's seat apoligises and we wish you a speedy recovery.
Less haste and more speed next time geezer.
Monday we went to Waihi beach for a boogie board on the way home - professional wave observers were noted in saying the waves were choppy or messy or something like that.
We just had a ball.
No pictures this time - the camera has definitely spat the dummy.

Monday, January 22, 2007

A big birthday party for a little girl

Sunday was busy to say the least. 10.30am the first guests arrived, 12 hours later the last guests departed. Phew.

Pictures to follow as they come to hand.....

Here's one from our (now) completely underpixelated camera of us stuffing our faces with a BBQ dinner and another of Emily looking just a wee bit cute having lunch today after a morning of rushing around with dad.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

the kid rides again

With the rain pitter pattering on the deck, Emily was most disappointed we couldn't go out and play regular dad/daughter games like kick the ball, throw the ball etc. So we went for a quick spin on her new trike instead. Much more sensible.