Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Lovin NZ

The Pratt family had one of those magical holiday weekends. Early Saturday morning we set out for a long weekend to one of Adrian's "picks of the week." He settled on a beautiful lake about 5 hours north of us. My mommy brain started calculating right away. Five hours means 2 pit stops, 3 bags of chips, 4 candy bars, 5 "are we there yets" and at least 2 " I wish we didn't have to comes" from the kids.

OK, maybe that's a bit harsh. Morgan is always up for a good adventure, but Ewan is forever whining whenever we stray more than 5 miles from home. Unless, of course, it involves his friends or soccer. Funny how he has already forgotten the time we drove 3 hours and stayed overnight in a campground with his soccer team to watch him in a tournament. Morgan even gave up his birthday to come with us- not that he had a choice.

So, off we headed to our stopping off point in Napier. I chose Napier because it had a nice beach that we could visit before heading on to the lake to hike for hours. Well, one look and we were hooked. We loved Napier. Our first stop was actually in Cape Kidnappers to hike the legendary Ta Mata Peak. It was brutal.

We all felt very superior in our fitness level when we made it to the top!  After the hike we headed to Napier and decided that we had enough of hiking and this looked like a nice place to spend the night. The stars seemed to be aligned for us. We stopped at the first hotel that we thought looked nice and Adrian booked it without consulting me while I sat in the car awaiting a full report. Does he know me? It was fabulous.  It was right across the street from the beach, a playground, mini golf course, and Marineland. Bliss.

We didn't want to waste any time resting, so we immediately set out to go kayaking. I have been wanting to kayak forever but never had the opportunity. We had so much fun. Morgan and I shared a 2-seater and Adrian and Ewan shared another. We spent a thoroughly enjoyable hour paddling around the inlet. Later that night we found a spectacular Texas style restaurant. While expensive (they all are in NZ) the food was excellent. The night was unfortunately cut short since Adrian had accidentally left Morgan's shorts drying on a hot radiator and we feared we'd burn the hotel down. So the boys jogged back to the hotel to turn off the radiator and I was able to have a few blissful moments alone to enjoy a well deserved glass of wine.

After a very competitive round of mini golf the next day, we headed home. Suddenly my pink house seemed charming and my fashionably challenged curtains were "quirky" instead of hideous. I have thoroughly enjoyed my new home this week and I hope my new optimism can be sustained as new challenges present themselves, like the fact that our vacuum caught fire today or that Morgan broke my favorite vase.

 Somehow, it's just not important.


  1. sounds fabulous! I recently saw more pics of NZ and have fallen in love. You are lucky indeed to live in such a beautiful place. Glad you are enjoying.

  2. Amy, I've read your livelines posts for a while but only recently found your blog. I spent a glorious month traipsing around NZ a few years ago and fell in love with the country, and it's so great to read about your family settling in and exploring. Thanks for your pictures and stories!