Our short "tiki tour" holiday included stops in Wanganui, Palmy North and Taupo. It was nice to catch up with friends and family around the country and do some swimming and picnic-ing... We saw the New Year in with some fireworks (stashed from Guy Fawks) and champagne - Josh caught the cork, when daddy popped the bottle and has brought it home to put in his memory box.
We stayed with friends, Tarf and Tan and their 3 kiddies in Wanganui; Tarf has made his boys the MOST AMAZING tree house (3 stories high); and the kids had a great time playing in it.
One windy day we went out to the local beach, where Tan had made a scavenger hunt for the kids to do; got some great pics of the wild surf (way too rough to swim).
Another day we visited some other friends (Pat and Bron) who had moved from Auckland to live on a lifestyle block 5 minutes out of town. Talk about the best of both worlds! They have chickens calves and a pig, and live right across the road from the country school, where they have a key to the swimming pool and have rigged up a makeshift tennis court. The parents played tennis while the kids swam, and Dash found some soccer pals (what else??) A great day in the sun.
Our next stop was Nan and Grandad's (my parents) in Palmerston North. By now the weather had turned pretty rubbish, but we still spent some great bonding time with the grandparents...
Princess had a great time helping my Mum cook tea and lay the table; then they spent hours going through Nan's treasures (her memory boxes), and she ended up coming away with a mosquito net to fluffy-up her bedroom.
Meanwhile "the boys (both young and old) played PS2 Soccer. Always a great rainy day favourite, Jungle Buzz, and Buzz Hollywood went down well.
We also got to take mum and dad out for a meal for their 40th Wedding Anniversary - as it turned out we were there right on the Day.
On our way back to Auckland we stopped off at Lake Taupo, where our friends Phil and Nic have just moved. Our kids and theirs have been pals since Dash started kindy years ago. Their new place has a real holiday feel and is 2 mins walk to the Lake. The weather had finally remembered it was meant to summer, so of course, it was an outdoor lunch and a swim in the Lake. What a great place to live!
Part Two of our holiday starts next week with a camping trip to Martins Bay....