Archives for category: Christmas

Yup, so I am REALLY behind on my blog posts, but I am catching up…

As mentioned in an earlier blog post, we had no plans for Christmas Day initially, but lots of kind folk invited us over. In the end, we had breakfast with Ruth and James Jit, and lunch with the Benecke family (and thank you Heather and John for your warm invite). It was a truly lovely day. The weather was grim (actually it wasn’t, it’s just the sun was not shining. It was still lovely and warm, and folk were swimming in the sea).

We had breakfast with Ruth and James and we were full at that point (thank you Ruth and James). Afterwards, we went to the Benecke’s where we had a feast (The Spaniel too). We also played Monopoly, I was winning (for the first time ever), but Douglas caught me out with a smart move (I’m not surprised he is going to study Psychology at university – he’s a smart cookie  REALLY smart cookie).

Today we met Ruth’s daughter and son-in-law (lovely folk), and Ruth’s daughter mentioned that people who move to New Zealand often get adopted by Kiwi families. From our experience, this is true. We have been adopted by the Jit’s and the Benecke’s, and we are truly thankful.  We are moving to the South Island soon, and although I was a big driver in this, I will be sad to leave our lovely adopted families. On the plus side, we’re not going that far, and we will be doing everything we can to entice them to “‘The Mainland”.

The Benecke’s and the Jit’s – THANK YOU SO MUCH.

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To you and yours, wishing you a Merry Christmas!

Family and friends from home: we love you, we hope you have a fabulous Christmas and look forward to FaceTiming, calling, Skyping you over the next few days. You are ALWAYS in our thoughts. Some of you have had an awful year, our thoughts prayers and hugs go out to you. Do drop us messages or try and call us, we are here until the day after Boxing Day.

Readers of this blog: hey, you’re our friends too, wishing you a fabulous Christmas for you and yours!

And now, a few rambling thoughts…

Christmas didn’t feel like Christmas until we went to church yesterday when we sang lots of carols and the Christmas message was given. It was a lovely service. There was a hilarious moment in the service when the congregation was blasting an adaption of Cappeau de Roquemaure’s O Holy Night, when Mrs. E nudged me and pointed to my left where I saw a little boy sat looking miserable
with his hands over his ears. Oh how we laughed. In my head I am very tuneful, but the reality may be somewhat different, and although I’m pretty sure the little boy was reacting to the congregation as a whole, I chose to turn my volume down a little… We also sang a beautiful Kiwi Christmas carol, called Te Harinui. The carol commemorates the first New Zealand Christmas in the Bay of Islands in 1814, and the coming together of Maori and Pakeha (Europeans) at that time, when the Revered Samuel Marsden preached from Luke Chapter 2, versus 10. “Behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.” The congregation sang this with great emotion, you could feel their sense of pride to be kiwis. And we felt proud of our adopted nation too.

We had planned to have a quiet Christmas on the beach, and we were very happy at the thought of having a quiet day, but yesterday we received lots of kind offers to come round for Christmas Day (thank you everyone). So we are now going to friends for breakfast (thank you James and Ruth), and then we are off to the lovely Bendecke’s (thanks guys) for a South African style Christmas lunch (The Spaniel has a personal invitation too). How lovely is that? I love the openness of Kiwi homes. We will be taking a pavlova, because thats what kiwi’s eat at Christmas, right? We are probably going to be indoors, as the remnants of cyclone Evan are due to hit on Christmas Day. Fortuitously we had not psyched ourselves up for Christmas on the beach! Although I reckon if the surf is good, I may end up at the beach boogy boarding at some point! More of our surfing antics will follow in another post…

We have family coming to visit on Boxing Day, Fi and James. We can’t wait. We are off to the Coromandel and Bay of Islands for a week – whoop! Hopefully, once the storm passes we will be able to hit the beaches and relax. I will take lots of photos and blog about it in due course. So don’t feel left out! 🙂

OK, that’s it for now, and apologies as this is a bit of a rambling post. It is my last day of work today, so I need to crack on. If I don’t blog before, have a lovely Christmas one and all!

Twohoomans and The Spaniel

Xxx

p.s. the lady who took our Christmas pic, was a complete stranger at the time, but we have bumped into her a few times since. In true kiwi style (I don’t know you, but…) she came round yesterday with these homemade Christmas chocs for us. We were touched. Does anyone know what they are, and more importantly, do you have a recipe? They are delicious!

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Wow, The Spaniel certainly has a bit of a strop on (see pic below).

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We wrapped her up in a bit of tinsel to get her in the Christmas spirit, but boy she really wasn’t having any of it at all, look at that face. As a Northerner would say in the UK, she had a reet face on! At first, I was a little bemused by The Spaniel’s reaction, but the more I thought about it, the more I understand why she isn’t in the Christmas spirit. You see, in the UK this time of year, the shops start to get all Christmassy, adverts on the TV become Christmas orientated, and there is talk of Christmas everywhere. Check out the latest John Lewis advert To be honest, it can all get a bit much. After all, is that what Christmas is all about? No…well, not for me and Mrs. E.

Anyhow, I digress, living in New Zealand, one doesn’t get caught up in all the materialistic hype of Christmas. So far I have seen one Christmas-related advert and that’s about it. Also, in the UK it’s probably getting cold and frosty and the fire is on and hopefullly at some point we might get a little snow, which all adds to that Christmassy feel. In contrast, in New Zealand it’s starting to get hot and sunny! See the pics below. So, all things considered, I now understand why The Spaniel isn’t in much of the Christmas spirit.

We don’t have any plans for Christmas Day, yet, other than a visit to church, which is always the focus of our day anyhow. Our first antipodean Christmas may feel a little strange, but fortunately we have family coming over on Boxing Day, which will help. I’d be interested to know of how the natives celebrate Christmas? Answers on a postcard please…

LATER note: it seems the backdrop for the John Lewis ad mentioned above is from New Zealand (see the story here). How ironic.

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