Sweat and tears

The second day of autumn.  There’s duvets being pulled up at night, darkness closing in earlier, and yellow rimmed leaves, signposts of our transition from summer to winter (look at that, not a GOT reference in sight!).  And I’m celebrating.

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Te Mata Peak, our favourite place to adventure with Jinn

The last couple of months have been a hard graft.  I resigned from my workplace in February and have just set out on the hunt again.  In recent days I’ve managed to shed the heavy weight belts and found my way to the surface, again.  How good it feels to breathe that air.  I’m certain I’m stronger for the fight, and I’m overwhelmed by the support.  Our smiling safety net of linked arms of friends and family.  We simply wouldn’t be anywhere without you.  I am so grateful for you all.  Thank you for your love and care.  I am blessed by your nurturing.  Love wins.

We are settling into our community.  Reconnecting with old friends, meeting new ones.  Every day embarking on new adventures.  There’s something wonderful in discovery, learning through your experiences.

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Shapies over Christmas (Karls and Josh, plus Maia’s rowing mates.  Such good sorts).

Maia continues to be up with the birds, remaining at his laptop until the late hours of the night.  He is passionate about his role, and doing a fine job.

I’ve started volunteering at Leg-Up Trust, an incredible organisation rescuing horses and providing wonderful opportunities for children who are enduring difficult times.  My role?  Pooper scooper!  At the rate of six plops per horse per day, you can imagine the compost stack.  There’s a lot of laughter and fun had as we make our way clearing the paddocks.  I feel really in my element amongst the crisp farm air and animals.  I get up smiling whenever it’s Leg-Up morning and am thrilled that our small work goes some of the way towards freeing up the key team to do what they need to – healing horses and children.  I’m constantly inspired by the selflessness of the team at Leg-Up, led so incredibly by the indefatigable Ros Rowe, AKA Wonder Woman.  I’m also hoping the workout will prevent mass flabbage at the armpit in years to come.

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At Leg-Up with Deb (Maia’s mum), Linda, and Keith (good bugger!)

I’ve also taken up Ashtanga Yoga under the tutelage of an excellent studio, uncoiling my rigid limbs one triangle at a time.  I could talk all day about how much I’m enjoying yoga, but I’ll spare you.  Just know it’s like the beautiful heady feeling you get two viogniers down.  I’m addicted.

It wouldn’t be an entry from me without something food related.  My latest go-to’s are Drunken Prunes by Telegraph Hill and Damson Plum Chocolates by The Damson Collection.  Hubba hubba.  I met the Telegraph Hill people over the Christmas break, they are friendly, warm and absolutely lovely.  He’s Mr Olive and she’s a child psychologist.  Maia called me out for having a mad woman crush on her.  I’ll admit to that.  She’s a mum, a business woman, hostess with the mostess, and one well put-together, amazing lady!  And their table olives are epic.  I encourage you to support this family owned business, they so deserve all their success.  The choccies I came across when mum was in town.  She’s a total sucker for sweets, so when these were at the counter of Bellatino’s, just begging to jump into some customer’s mouth, she bought some and we were done for.  We revisited everyday for the remainder of her visit, our total increasing exponentially each time.

Oh.  And my final recommendation – a movie!  I saw Hidden Figures last night and it was awesome.  Part stick-it-to-the-man, part race equality, mixed in with some sass and LOLs.  And NASA.  Check it, my friends.  A feel good film.  MUCH better than La La Land.  I should have left at the opening scene!

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Hawke’s Bay summer fruit delights.  We’re now on to peacharines.

So, tears of pain, tears of joy, I guess you’re wondering where the sweat comes in?  We’ve been getting busy in the garden.  Chief Landscaper has been Jude Corlett, and we’ve been her little minions.  The progress is encouraging!  Next blog will be a property update, so I think a good time to take a spell and be in touch soon.  I’ll also post pictures of the painting.  Because it looks WOW.

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Maia’s aunt and uncle, Marilyn and John’s, garden feat. lemon verbena tea which is truly delicious.
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Spinach and ricotta pie – got this beauty recipe off Vivianna on our Amalfi Coast trip

All my love and thanks for reading,

D xxx

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