So I realize it has been quite some time since I wrote a blog entry. Now that it's almost 2013 I'm trying to get everything wound up and ready for a new year, so here's an update on the last 4 months.
Firstly, Lauren and Julia came to visit me! They spent time in and around Auckland, and a bit of a day trip to Northland, then I took them to Waitomo for Black Water Rafting, to the geothermal parks in Rotorua, Zorbing, Hot Water Beach in the Coromandel… all the great tourist-y attractions that we could fit in 1 week. :P I had a great time and it was really nice to have visitors! (Hint hint…)
After Lauren and Julia returned home, I finally got a job!!! I am now I Kayak Shop Assistant for Canoe & Kayak Auckland. My bosses (Russell and Larraine) are absolutely wonderful and Joya (co-worker) and I get along really really well! Plus it's a fantastic place to work. Not only am I getting hooked on kayaking, but I get to either talk to amazing friendly people all day, or be working with my hands doing modifications to kayaks or installing roof rack systems onto vehicles! I'm learning sea kayaking from some of the best instructors in the industry, and having so much fun too!
Early September Joel, Isabelle and I went for a picnic in the park with Courtney, TJ, and TJ's two boys. Joel and I spent a day walking up (another) volcano (Mount Eden and through the domain to the free photography exhibit at the Auckland Museum. Also, ice creams in the city and Courtney's amazing alien cupcakes!!! :P
Courtney's birthday was in October, and TJ, Joel and I surprised her by kidnapping her from home and taking her into the city to meet TJ for lunch at Eliott Stables. Then she was treated to an evening in a hotel in the "big city" by her man. Her birthday party was the following weekend and was angels and devils themed! Hehe.
In November, I discovered the wonders of reclaimed pallet construction. My first major project was my pallet desk!! The finished product is 12ft long and 3ft deep! I love it! Also, I've created a vertical garden out of a pallet!
Also in November was my first day kayaking trip for our company/club Christmas party! That's right, we kayaked over to a secluded cottage that you can only get to by tramping or paddling. It was great! Joel and Isabelle walked over and met me there for our Christmas BBQ.
Mid-November Joel and I visited an art exhibit that took place at night, in a park. It was called "Art in the Park" or "Art in the Dark" or something like that. SO COOL! It was all lights and sounds and really really neat. There was this board that you could use your cellphone to go to a website where you could draw on the board! (LEDs lit up where you drew) Also, a very very cool tree COVERED in little LED lanterns. There were wind chimes on coloured ribbons that you could pull, and a cool 3D box tunnel thing that lit up in time with music. And people riding bicycles synchronized with lights on their wheel spokes and lit up letters on their backs! And a white sheet wall that was backlit so you could dance behind it as shadows! Lol. None of my pictures do it justice.
ALSO during November, both Isabelle's (Joel's daughter) and Ros's (Joel's mom) birthdays. And ice cream.
In December I did my first 2-day kayaking trip to Kawhia Harbour. OMG! We did 22ish km the first day and I was sooooo sore! But it was definitely worth it! We paddled out to some little-known pancake rock formations and paddled amongst them for two hours before having lunch and heading back across the habour into the wind.
Then it was CHRISTMAS! Woohoo! I had an amazing Christmas! Joel and I spent "Christmas in the Park" with Courtney, TJ, and Scott. Then later in the month we took Isabelle up to Orewa beach for a "Christmas on the Beach". Joel and I spent Christmas Eve together and I brought him to midnight mass, and spent Christmas day with Isabelle and at Joel's parents' place in the beautiful Waitakere Ranges.
And that's all folks! I'm hoping to actually update this blog more often in the New Year. I just got my new roof racks for Christmas from Mom, which means I can borrow kayaks from work whenever I want. Plus, summer is here in this part of the world, so lots more kayak adventures to be shared! :D