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Archive for August, 2012

Taupo Winter Visit

As I mentioned in my previous post, Taupo gets proper winter weather.  Being central to the North Island it is a few hours south of Auckland and that bit of extra latitude makes all the difference.

Our weekend started as most do – in Auckland traffic, crawling south through stop-start commuters trying to get home after the end of a busy week.  After a little over an hour we emerged from the bottom of the city into bizarrely empty roads.  It’s very strange the way you are in a traffic jam one minute then within a few km there’s no-one around.

We stopped in Hamilton around 7pm to feed ourselves as we still had a couple of hours on the road.  We found a nice little Thai restaurant and ordered one course to try and eat as quickly as we could.  Although tired, the girls were pretty well behaved.  Lucy enchanted the waiter with her cheeky ways and Emily was brave enough to try some of my red curry.

Back on the road and the k’s clicked over until we were skirting the edge of Taupo and trying to remember how to get to the house.  I tried to use my new phone to navigate but the voice recognition didn’t work.  It just refused to understand what I was saying.

Saturday morning was foggy and cold.  We all bundled up though to head out to watch little Jamie playing football.  Emily played with Abbie, who’s a few years older than Em so she really enjoys being a big girl!

The winter festival in Taupo was not quite of the scale that we thought it would be.  We saw some dogs used for sled racing.  And there were piles of snow trucked in from the mountains for sledging and snowball fights.  The kids loved it, but there was an air of ‘is that all?’ from the grown-ups.  Far more important for us was the opportunity to chat and laugh with our friends that we hadn’t seen for a long time.

A quick bite for lunch and back out to find an ice sculpture.  We found it, it was a fish.  

We also found a free bouncy castle, so that was it for the kids.  After the bounce we checked in at the Honey Hive (a bee centre) because it was ‘bee weekend’.  We ended up spending ages there getting faces painted, indulging in some arts and crafts, and learning all about bees.  We saw a video of a man covered in bees (he didn’t shout “I’m covered in bees!” he was very calm) tasted honey, got balloon animals etc.

Saturday was rounded off by watching the All Blacks deliver a rather harsh lesson to the Australians in the Bledisloe cup.

Sunday was swimming day and we spent the morning at the AC Baths, which are warm and outdoors in places.  An excellent combination! The AC Baths are a little tired in places, but still excellent fun.  There is a rope swing(Emily was a fearless genius swing meister) and Lucy was impressing us with her under water swimming.

The trouble with weekends is that they are over too soon and this was no exception.  We grabbed a bite to eat before packing up and shipping out.  It was an excellent journey home and we got back and got unpacked and were into bed super early.

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Winter Festival

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It’s fair to say that Taupo has proper winter weather. It’s cold and there’s fog.Once the fog lifts over the lake it’s a lovely view from here. Off to the Winter Festival now. Snow without traveling to the mountain! Genius.

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Queen or king?

What an interesting day. We’ve been trying to figure out what to do about our bed . The mattress is about 10 years old now and there are very obvious dents in it from where the springs have deformed.

But here’s the tricky bit. It’s an Ikea  mattress and bed,which means its a non-standard size over here in Nz.  And the nearest ikea is in Australia. 

So It looked like the only option was to buy a new bed if we wanted to replace the mattress . Until Josie discovered that there is a place nearby that will cut down a standard mattress to fit odd  sized frames. So after a morning taking the girls swimming we headed out to check out these custom mattress people.
Well the prices ended up being a bit more than we thought, although they were very comfortable.

On our way home I remembered that a discount bed shop had popped up recently so we ducked in there on the way home.  From this point the list of options just grew and the choices got harder each time we laid on a new bed.

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I think we’ve now figured out we would like a queen sized bed of medium firmness. There is one clear option from our hunt today, so we’ll probably go with that one.  Or should we do more research? Sometimes we are our own worst enemies and we should just make a decision!
It’s fair to say that we are quite excited about getting more and better quality sleep!

If we ever make a decision we’ll post a pic of our new purchase. 🙂

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