Friday, March 20, 2015

Heart to Heart

What can I say? There are some mixed emotions at our house in these last months in the USA! It will be soooo nice to be in the same time zone as family! To catch up and get to know some of the new arrivals to our family while we where in the USA. Since I've had a quite a few people asking how I feel about returning, what I will miss etc, I thought that I would put it out here on the blog so that I can tell you all! (note lists are in no particular order)

Will Miss
  • The cheap cheap living. I wonder whether I could put Aldi, Costco, CVS and Target in my pocket and take them with me? 
  • Couponing - free things, the shops paying me to take stuff home, YES please!
  • Munster High School Swimming Pool - WOW I have never seen anything like it. I suppose that would be hard to put in my suitcase, all those gallons and gallons of water! (Munster High School Pool is a state of the art 50m indoor pool!)
  • Change of seasons - I really enjoy the change, makes you appreciate each season so much more!
  • SNOW - if you have been reading my blog for a while now or following me on FB, no explanations are needed!
  • City Living - I actually enjoy the busyness
  • Friends made, makes me VERY sad just to think about that!
Won't Miss
  • Traffic lights - I wonder how much time I have spent waiting for traffic lights?
  • Time difference with NZ - It's a nuisance!
  • The concrete jungle
  • The very hot temperatures, not a huge heat lover
  • Banking system
  • Lack of Credit rating
  • VERY expensive health costs
Looking forward to
  • Seeing family!
  • SCHOOL Again no words necessary!
  • Mountains - I LOVE mountains, always have even before we moved to NZ. We made lots of visits to Germany in my younger years!
  • Being reunited with all my stuff in our container.
  • Being a dog owner in the future.
  • The future.
Grateful for:
  • Being given the opportunity to experience another culture.
  • Travel - I LOVE travelling, I know we did most of things very cheap or free but what an experience!
  • Being humbled by people's generosity all across the globe and many different forms! (Not just money but also time resources etc)
  • Experiencing God's faithfulness, no words necessary! 
  • Seeing God work through the people we have met, I feel very privileged!
  • Seminary - I actually really enjoyed our time there but realize it is a season of life and so it's nice to 'move' on in a positive way. 
  • Sonlight - Our homeschool curriculum, not sure what I would have done without it! I did learn a lot. 
  • My GPS! One thing that I can take with me :)
So in light of my post today, what are you grateful for?

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Random February 2015

I didn't realize that I took so many photos in February that two random posts were need for this month. I'm sure you won't mind. We took advantage of the cold temperature and managed to skate on the Seminary pond one afternoon. Some photos are also of our homeschooling group which was cancelled because of snow and so instead those that came out played some hilarious games. 

First skate for at least a year!

Albert and his girls!

One of the games was using your face to make the oreo go from your forehead to your mouth! My excuse for not participating was that someone had to take photos :)!

Listening to instructions to draw on the paper plate on your head!
Very funny!
Kate's drawing!
Girls doing craft with clay
(Good Mum Reward that day!)

Sledding at yet another hill with friends

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The one where we touch a real live snake......

All Saturdays in February were free visits to the Brookfield Zoo. We took advantage of this for Zara's birthday. Since Aaron was out of town preaching, we took Caedmon for the day as well. I think he enjoyed being with us despite all the girls! One highlight of this Zoo trip was touching a real life snake. The Zoo has a family play zoo which was also free that day (there is normally a charge). We spent quite a bit of time at the family zoo, it's all indoors (the weather was cold, that's probably why the Zoo was free!). Quite a few of the summer attractions were not available but when it's free we are not picky. We still saw plenty in all the indoor exhibits. Some of the animals were outside, seeing the polar bear was pretty cool! The dolphin show was not running but we still watched the dolphins in the underwater viewing window. I continue to be amazed at the variety of animals that God created. We saw so many animals that were not familiar to us or we had never seen before. A cold but great day! 

A new animal to us

I took about 10 photo's before I got one of the lion standing still.
He was pacing up and down the window!
See how close that is, pretty cool!
A very playful bear


I'm glad NZ doesn't have any snakes!

Playing with the puppets at the Family Play Zoo
(Albert scared Zara! I didn't manage to catch that on film!)
Kate and Zara 

There they are hiding behind their puppets!
A REAL snake!
The volunteer was so helpful explaining a bit about the snake
The girls were very keen for me to take photo's of them touching the snake. Grace took one of me also but you can't see my face in the photo, I did touch it, all of us did! The snake felt very smooth. 

I did touch it! Caedmon next to me
They also had an indoor garden which the children could mist. Even my teenager enjoyed this task :). 


As part of the Family Zoo they also had an animal hospital. I was very impressed it was kitted out just like a real animal hospital even the stuffed animals (phew!) had 'real' organs. There were x-rays, examination tables, doctor coats, animal crates etc. 

Kate examining an animal
Zara and Caedmon 'treating' an animal
(notice the insides of the animal that came out!)
I recognize the fish in this aquarium, oh hang on,
it's a snail and Michaela

Jelly Fish

For you Mama!
Some hot chips with lunch just what we needed on a cold day!
Polar Bear
It took a while for all of them to get up onto the ice and pose.
(OK I gave up on the pose and took the photo anyway)
Please Mum take a photo of me
Selfie with Grace (left) and Kate
Albert posing
Three monkeys?
Very cute baby