May 31, 2013

1000 days since the September earthquake

Great article in today's paper to reflect on the last 1000 days... and where we might be in the next 1000.

Smoother roads, new parks, no more demolition, lots of construction work, homes repaired, pockets of normality, but plenty of empty land in the city centre.
Welcome to Christchurch in February 2016.
Today marks the passing of 1000 days since the September 2010 earthquake.
But what will the next 1000 days hold and how will our city look at the end of it?

In the picture above, there is a drop down menu on the top right... select a category and you can see the progress made.
Still so much to do.  The inner city seems desolate, but good to see so many buildings underway and so many great bars and restaurants opening. 

We have had a few more aftershocks recently, so we are still aware of the risks.  It is so easy to get complacent. but they certainly remind you.  I visited a friend in the red zone by the Avon River recently; another hard hitting reminder of the state of the houses that people are still living in as they wait for insurance settlements, or new houses to be built.  I commented on the pipe running along in front of the houses, assuming ( always a mistake) that it was to drain the ground water. No. It is their source of water.  1000 days later.

Poppy has never known life without earthquakes. She was born in September 2010 not long after the first after the big one.

She doesn't seem bothered about approaching her 1000th day.

May 29, 2013

Snow, shakes, cold......

New Zealand has swung round from a balmy 20C on Sunday, to freezing yesterday. Rain, gales, snow, sleet, hail. I think the whole country has had it.

I always get mixed feelings when I look at the snow on the hills.... next month is the third anniversary of Arch's death on Mt Hutt.  When I think of all the events here since that time, it is hard to believe he missed ALL the earthquakes.

These and more pictures are at

The news also reports:

A small earthquake woke some residents this morning as snow blankets homes and streets across the city and Port Hills.
The magnitude-3.5 quake struck shortly before 7am, at 8km deep, and was centred just east of the central city, according to early Geonet reports.
Last night blizzard-like conditions in Christchurch left several Banks Peninsula roads closed and others restricted to 4WD.
Motorists are being warned of treacherous driving conditions as yesterday's snow turns to ice in parts of the region and further heavy flurries are expected.
Christchurch Airport is open this morning.
Snow showers at sea level in Christchurch has seen snow accumulate in sheltered pockets and on the Port Hills.
Last night the Christchurch City Council said deteriorating weather had forced it to close the Akaroa Summit Road from Little Akaloa to Okains Bay, Okains Bay Rd from Duvauchelle to Okains Bay and Little Akaloa Rd.
Other Banks Peninsula roads were restricted to four-wheel-drive vehicles with chains. These are listed below.
This morning is clear but cold with motorists warned to take care on roads still covered in snow and ice.
Such fun!
The dogs out with me on Sunday.... basking in the sun

Poppy is coping fine.... as long as she can snuggle on someone, or something.

May 23, 2013

Thankful Thursday

I haven't posted in a while because nothing has really motivated me to share anything on here. Life was extra busy last week and there have been some fun nights with people here for dinner, or I have been out for dinner, or just out I guess. Much wine and laughter - always good for the soul.  I loved the new Star Trek movie!

Work is busy, but going well.

Students at work....
We currently have four classes of students and I am really appreciating their attitudes, and the hard work being done by the wonderful people I teach with. When I see the negativity and bitching some people deal with at work, this is not something I take for granted either. One of our team Tina, had her baby last month and we got a special visit this week - one gorrrgeous wee boy Lincoln.

Choir at lunchtime today was fun, as usual. I often arrive feeling a bit stressed, but I get to float back to teach or write, singing as I go and feeling great. I also start a new choir in the evening next week... really looking forward to it after going to their recent concert.

In other news, I found my birth father in the UK. He has been looking at this blog and seen the pictures of us all. He wrote to say he wishes us all well, but he doesn't want to make contact... and he seems to have a good reason for it so yes it is sad, but I undertand and respect his wishes and at least another part of the story is solved.  I am sorry I wont get to know him, or his son though.  Perhaps I might see some pictures eventually so that I too can satisfy my curiosity! It is strange to live in a world where the only genetic relatives I have met are my own children.  I have no one I can blame for my nose.... but at least I can face my inner ginger after confirmation that my father had red hair.  I guess that's where all our auburn glow comes from.... and freckles.

It is however, totally lovely to chat regularly with my first mother, who is currently holidaying - well move living, in France for the summer after her recent return from visiting one of  her other daughters in Greece. Hope you had a safe trip over :)

Poppy has been busy at work too. Here she is making friends with a bag of sawdust...

Poppy waking up for a morning tummy rub
So although it is not a life shatteringly exciting post tonight, I am thankful for a temporary sense of tranquility, the sound of gentle rain on the roof (despite the leak)  and the chance to practice. I have been singing The Peace Song by Dorothy Buchanan because I just loved working on it earlier today and it fitted the mood this evening:)

Here are the lyrics... there is a video of it being sung by children afterwards if you want to hear it.

'Peace Song' by New Zealand composer Dorothy Buchanan, composed in 1972.
For you my friend I have one wish,
I wish that you will find
The way to know and love your friend,
Which comes from peace of mind.
No more of warring hate or doubt,
No talk or thought of gain,
Time now for sowing seeds of joy:
La paix, la joie, l'amour.
Peace, shalom,
Pax, aroha,
La paix, la joie, l'amour
Peace to all who search for truth,
Peace and joy and love.
If we would buy with effort peace,
The cost to us would be
Our search for fortune, petty needs,
We'd find tranquility.
To find your true self seek for peace
With head and hand and mind,
With friends and lovers unite for peace,
Peace and joy and love.
Peace, shalom,
Pax, aroha,
La paix, la joie, l'amour.
Peace to all who search for truth,
Peace and joy and love

May 11, 2013

Sleepy Saturday

It has been a beautiful day.... been airing the house, got all the washing done, had a girly shopping day  and now off to town...
Poppy thought sleeping was the best place between trips. Probably still recovering from her help teaching the students how to bandage paws in the classroom yesterday...

Thanks for doing such a beautiful bandage Elizabeth.

May 5, 2013

More Autumn in Christchurch

Autumn is definitely here and the South Island is full of glorious rich colours... and leaves, that need sweeping up, but I do love kicking my way through huge piles of rusty coloured leaves, and rolling in the dry ones. Of course they are never completely dry!  I was driving through some falling leaves the other day and had a strong urge to race out and start catching them as we did as children. One leaf meant good luck for a month so we always wanted 12.  It is harder than you think... try it :)

Pretty sure these are both from Ross and Moira Becker, who have been cataloguing photos of the changes to Christchurch since the earthquakes.  Sometimes they just out up great pictures of the changing seasons, and I love them as desktop backgrounds....

If you have facebook, they are here:


Been busy this week... seem to have done heaps but sorry, this also means I have taken very few photos.

We had a working bee at the house yesterday and James and Jess, Jaz and Mark and the girls came to help. My friend Libby dropped in with afternoon tea for the troops and it was nice that they finally got to meet up, in person.  Love it when two worlds collide.

I also had some men round to finish trimming the top of the hedge after Alex did the sides for me.  All so efficient and it looks great! I can definitely recommend them.

Sounds like the holidays are going to end with bad weather tonight, but it has been a great two weeks, cold nights but mostly sunny, warm days so I am not complaining at all. Term 2 starts tomorrow- looking forward to seeing all the students and workmates :)


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