Friday, July 25, 2014

Liam is 8!

We have an 8 year old boy!
We celebrated his birthday by going to one of his favourite shows, the CRC Speedshow. It is held mid July each year so conveniently coincides with his birthday, and this time it happened to fall on the exact day.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Un-fantastic plastic

We decided to go for a walk on one of our beaches yesterday, it was one of those beautiful fresh sunny wintery days.
We have had some really stormy weather on and off over the last month so the beach was covered in seaweed, we have been going often to collect it for our garden.
But today we were so amazed and saddened to see how much plastic rubbish was in amongst the seaweed! We had only bought one bag with us and very quickly filled it to bursting.
We are going to go back down with some big rubbish sacks, I reckon that if we spent a few hours there we would easily fill 10 big rubbish sacks full of all the little bits of plastic :(
This beach is normally very pristine, but I suppose all the storms and flooding have just washed extra rubbish out into the oceans and up onto the beach. This beach is actually in a protected wildlife sanctuary, so it is just so sad to see all this rubbish washed up here.
There is too much plastic in the world.
Once plastic is produced, it is here forever.
I can't remember where I heard this quote, but it has always stuck with me - "You can't just throw it away, because there is no away".
We found a lot of:
bottle tops
plastic food wrappers
lolly pop sticks

This just popped up on my pinterest page this morning - have a look - Plastics: made to last forever, designed to throw away

And watch this video.
And stop buying plastic, as much as you can.

Friday, July 11, 2014

The last of the holiday snaps

Wow, I've really dragged this out haven't I! These are the last of the holiday photos, so moving right along...

Spending some time in Picton. Making driftwood boats to sail.

The boats came back with us to the real boat, and then all the way back up the country with us. They reside in their bedrooms now, and have been used in the bath a couple of times :)

Liam working on his holiday journal.

Pingu doing some driving.

Isla having a nap.

Paddling around in the row boat at dusk.

Heading back home. Our rather stormy trip back on the ferry.

And then heading back up the country....

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

More adventures and amazing sights

We spent the next day visiting Nelson looking in all the amazing antique shops there. Aaron flew into Nelson in the afternoon joining us for the rest of our holiday. There wasn't enough room for all of us to sleep on the boat so we left Dada in peace and quiet for the night and camped out in the Combi van in a beautiful little spot by the shore.

The next morning Dada arrived bright and early to pick us up from our camping spot. We could hear him off in the distance while we lay wrapped up in our sleeping bags, so Liam ran down to meet him on the beach.

Our mission for the day was to head out into the deeper ocean to seek out some infamous Blue Cod.

We stopped in at Picton on our way up the Sounds to fill up our fuel tank, meeting one of the Cook Strait ferries on our way in.

On our way out of Picton we passed HUGE swarms of jellyfish, the photo doesn't do it justice, the water was just thick with them! And we kept passing group after group of them, it was amazing!

Our first Blue Cod caught! Very exciting! There are very strict rules around catching Blue Cod, you can only fish for them for a limited time of the year, and only catch two per person and they must be between 30 and 35cm long.

Liam's Blue Cod he caught...

And this whopper! wow! Almost 50cm long! He was lovingly returned to the sea and happily swam off into the depths.

Liam patting a shark :)

We had a beautiful afternoon sitting in the sun fishing. As they reeled them in Dada filleted them and then passed them through the window to me so I could cook them up. Now that's what I call fresh! The Blue Cod was so delicious!

With our tummys full and the sun getting lower in the sky, it was time to head back in. Both the kids had a turn steering the boat (with help from Dada on the inside).

But it was pretty cold so we huddled down inside the boat most of the way back until....

...these joined us!!!!! What an amazing way to end the day!

We could see huge schools of them up ahead of us, they were everywhere, all around us, I think they were herding schools of fish. So we slowed down to carefully make our way through and past them. Then about 6 or so of them decided to join us and travelled along with us for ages and ages. The kids and I sat up the front of the boat, it was freezing cold but we huddled together and the kids shrieked with laughter as they sped along beside us, jumping out of the water and scooting along in front of the boat, it was so amazing, you could see them eyeing us up, they looked like they were having such a fun time.

And the most hilarious thing, that had the kids in hysterics was that one seal was travelling with them. I don't know if this is normal, but it was just so funny seeing it pop out of the water, it didn't seem to be able to hold its breath as long as the dolphins so we saw quite a lot of it, each time it jumped out more hysterical laughter would erupt.

It seemed like they would travel with us the whole way back, they didn't seem to be tiring, but the kids finally became too cold so I lifted them back down inside the boat, and interestingly as soon as the kids were out of site the dolphins and our seal friend disappeared.