Saturday 31 March 2012

Henry in the Garden

My Mum & Dad live on eight used to be a 25 acre block of land, but they sold 17 of it to my sister a few years ago.  When young we had horses and it was great for keeping those and lots of country rides to go on.  Over the years my Dad has gradually established a wonderful garden in the land surrounding the house and all the trees and shrubs are well established.  Between the house and the paddock is a 'grove' which is where Henry was walking the other day...(two blog posts ago)  It is wonderful to see how this has really thickened and become an oasis for wildlife and birds.  

Dad also has a small orchard where the ducks live and they provide lovely big fresh eggs on a regular basis...nothing quite like duck eggs.  They first got ducks just over 20 years ago when my eldest son was a baby as he was allergic to hens eggs, but not duck eggs, so these made a good alternative for cooking with.
There are many fruit trees in the rest of the garden as well and Henry and I enjoyed daily oranges, some grapefruit for breakfast (although only the last few of the season), apples, pears and the first fejoias.   

A wonderful Chestnut tree was dropping its fruit and in the mornings sometimes you could see the prickly cases popping open.  

Henry discovered these prickly cases while out playing in the garden.

Oh look I've found a prickly thing...I wonder what it is?

He bends down to pick it up, ever so carefully.

Look Mum!  

Henry, Pop has some already out of these shells ready to roast...if you ask nicely he might let you try one.

What's the next thing that all boys must do when trees are in sight?

Climb them of course!

Friday 30 March 2012

Spring Sewing Started

I am trying to get back into the swing of sewing, but finding my motivation wandering a bit at the moment...I will blame the jet lag for now...

I have managed one little dress this week.

Simple traditional style that suits the Sasha dolls so well.

Modelled here by my pretty early 70s Trendon Sasha with the wayward fringe.

After seeing her dressed, two of the other girls thought they would put on a spring dress as well.  They have made a start.

Thursday 29 March 2012

Henry just enjoying...

Sometimes all that needed to be done was to sit, or as here in Henry's case, just stand and enjoy just being...

Watching the shadows of the cabbage tree on the pond.

Hoping to see the frog...

Watching the water lily bloom...


Other times a walk through the glade was called for...

Shadows and light reflecting through the trees...

A wander through the quiet of the trees...

Stepping over dead bracken...

Hang on a minute...weren't you wearing your hat a minute ago Henry?

Oh I remember now a big black beast came bounding through the trees and sent you flying in his enthusiasm for a walk in the paddock...thinking he might be missing out on something.

I must say you recovered your composure very well Henry.

And the big black beast?

None other that Bobby, the resident Bouvier des Flandres

Wednesday 28 March 2012

Henry discovers the Cicadas.

One of the first things that you notice when arriving at my parents is the noise of the cicadas.  They are very loud late February time.

Henry was quite taken with them and would spend hours watching them...patiently creeping up to them.

Look at this he cried in amazement.

I can get so close to this one...

I think the reason for that Henry, is this one looks like it may have died...It hasn't moved for days.

This is the cicada shell they hatch out of.  The grubs climb the trees and then hatch out into the winged insects that chirrup all day long.

It is actually surprising how many varieties there are, although only the one is photographed in these photos.

Tuesday 27 March 2012

Henry helping out his Nan & Pop

One Saturday I was supposed to be meeting with a friend, but unfortunately we had to postpone for another day, so we mooched around the garden instead...Henry 'helping' his Nan and Pop in a way only small boys can do! ;-)

Henry!  What do you think you are doing up that ladder?

I'm going to help Pop clear the gutters on the roof of the utility rooms.

Whoa there young man, you need to be careful up here...

Look at me, I'm the King of the Castle

Little & Large

Come on down now young man, I think you are more of a hindrance than a help.

That's it, carefully does it.

Now where has the little rascal gone?

Found you Henry, what are you doing there with Nan?

I'm helping her sand this cabinet of course!

Looks like you are doing a good job Henry, I'm sure Jane will be thrilled with it when you and Nan have finished it.

Monday 26 March 2012

Long Bay Regional Park & Coastal Walk as seen by Henry

New Zealand has some absolutely amazing scenery and some really lovely regional parks.  Many of these are protected conservation areas now and one of the ones we visited was the Long Bay-Okura Marine Reserve which protects a stretch of coastline on the east coast just north of Auckland city.  I went to school at Long Bay College (a secondary school) for three years and we also spent many days at Long Bay Regional Park in my childhood and early teens.  It is a lovely beach and very popular for picnics, swimming and playing on the beach or just simply walking.


Dad and I, along with Henry did the coastal walk, which was formally established in November 1995.  The reserve includes a variety of coastal habitats - sandy beaches, rocky reefs, estuarine mudflats and mangroves. The walk we did took us up and around the coast line and on to a couple of lovely beaches as well.  It was a glorious day and we had a lovely picnic on the beach.  

Henry was delighted when we arrived onto the beach to find trees to climb.

Such a good little walker with his back pack from Ronny, shorts & t shirt from Judith and Kendal teamed with socks  from Gill and boots I had fortunately bought from Jean Jensen.  Henry was sent a lovely pair of boots from Susan but unfortunately they didn't arrive in time, but I am sure Henry will still get a lot of use out of them and he is very pleased with them.  (I think he will be showing them off soon.)

Henry deep in thought as he surveys the beach and horizon.

He couldn't wait to get his swimming trunks on.

Henry, where is your sun hat?


That's better, while playing on the rocks you really need it on.

Look Mum

What's that you've got Henry?

Oh it's seaweed.  I remember 'popping' that when I was a careful though as water spurts out when you pop the little bubbles.

Henry enjoyed playing ball (which Dee kindly gave him).  He found two young men to have a game with... 

I can hardly keep up with you Henry, what are you doing now?

Look, I've made a sandcastle

I'm going to make another one, this is such good fun.

Hey Mum, can I go for a swim now?  

Watch me Pop! 

Wrapped up in his lovely towel sent to him by Julie... Henry just sits and enjoys the view.

A very tired Henry walking back along the board walk...I think he will sleep well tonight!