Archive for March, 2008

a charming gentleman

(By Mama)

How can a Mama refuse such a polite request?

L7: Please may I go and keep my castle company Mama?

You really thought I’d say no seeing as you’ve been doing Lego nearly all day, didn’t you?
You really thought I might be more inclined to say yes if you were cute, didn’t you?

I’m coming downstairs now to keep YOU company too! I’ll be the horse, OK.


Resurrection Sunday

Luke 24

Jesus Has Risen

1 On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. 2 They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3 but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. 4 While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. 5 In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? 6 He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 7 ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’ ” 8 Then they remembered his words.

9 When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others. 10 It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles. 11 But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense. 12 Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb. Bending over, he saw the strips of linen lying by themselves, and he went away, wondering to himself what had happened.

On the Road to Emmaus

13 Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. 14 They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. 15 As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; 16 but they were kept from recognizing him.

17 He asked them, “What are you discussing together as you walk along?”

They stood still, their faces downcast. 18 One of them, named Cleopas, asked him, “Are you only a visitor to Jerusalem and do not know the things that have happened there in these days?”

19 “What things?” he asked.

“About Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied. “He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people. 20 The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; 21 but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place. 22 In addition, some of our women amazed us. They went to the tomb early this morning 23 but didn’t find his body. They came and told us that they had seen a vision of angels, who said he was alive. 24 Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but him they did not see.”

25 He said to them, “How foolish you are, and how slow to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Did not the Messiah have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.

28 As they approached the village to which they were going, Jesus continued on as if he were going farther. 29 But they urged him strongly, “Stay with us, for it is nearly evening; the day is almost over.” So he went in to stay with them.

30 When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. 31 Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight. 32 They asked each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?”

33 They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem. There they found the Eleven and those with them, assembled together 34 and saying, “It is true! The Lord has risen and has appeared to Simon.” 35 Then the two told what had happened on the way, and how Jesus was recognized by them when he broke the bread.

Jesus Appears to the Disciples

36 While they were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.”

37 They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost. 38 He said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds? 39 Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.”

40 When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet. 41 And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, “Do you have anything here to eat?” 42 They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43 and he took it and ate it in their presence.

44 He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.”

45 Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. 46 He told them, “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things. 49 I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”

The Ascension of Jesus

50 When he had led them out to the vicinity of Bethany, he lifted up his hands and blessed them. 51And they stayed continually at the temple, praising God. 52 Then they worshiped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy.

53 While he was blessing them, he left them and was taken up into heaven.

Dear Children,

Wasn’t it great to do our first Real Walk with Fully Loaded Packs this morning! I was so proud of you all. ER, you managed to walk the entire 2km all by yourself (I really didn’t mind stopping to give you a cuddle when you needed it to give you a final burst of energy towards the end). We had hoped you would be walking 2km by the time you were two years old, but you’re doing it already and you’ve still got another two months to go. You’re a trooper!

T3, you did so well too. Eventually. When I put your pack on I was despairing….I’m not sure what has got into your head about these packs, but whenever we put one on you, it draws out the grizzles and today was no exception. You can wear your sleeping bag pack forever, but not these good packs! You grizzled up the hill, you grizzled along the road. I told you no more grizzles, but you didn’t listen. Then a moment later you were singing. And bouncing along. Without looking back. Isn’t it so much easier to walk without grizzles – and weren’t you so happy to be able to tell Dadda you walked all the way back without even one grizzle. You can do it! We know you can!

M5. WOW. What a strong man! We though Dadda was going to have to carry your clothing for you, but you took it all yourself, and you didn’t complain once, although your pack was a bit heavy at the end. Dadda will only need to carry your sleeping bag for you….we can hardly believe how strong you have grown!

L7-the-boy-who-wouldn’t-say-it’s-too-heavy-even-if-it-was. We sure are lucky to have a young man who can carry his heavy pack without so much as a murmur. But it is fine to tell us if it has gone past the *I hardly notice it’s on my back* stage and to the *it’s getting a bit uncomfortable stage*. Do tell us, OK!

K9, Trudge, trudge, bounce, skip. In your own happy quiet way you tripped along, willing to admit you’d reached the *it’s starting to get uncomfortable* stage, but oh so excited that it was nowhere near the *I can hardly bear this any longer* stage. Skip, bounce, all the way home, including the extra kilometre with all the big kids, plus the detour up to the dam.

K10, you really want to take the pack you were wearing today, don’t you? Of course you were going to say it was comfortable and so much lighter than the other one;-) It wasn’t lighter, but I will concede it might be more comfy (which may well make it seem lighter). When we’ve got all the clothes made, we’ll pack the packs up properly and if everything fits in that pack, you can take that one. Deal?

J12, the muscle man. You had a very heavy pack and you were entirely realistic in your surmising… wonder it felt heavy. It WAS heavy – 9.5kg heavy, in fact. Your generous help-others-out nature will always ensure you’re prepared to go the extra mile for us, but if it gets too much, yell out, OK!?!

J13, you just got yourself another job! You coped admirably with taking two people’s worth of gear, so you’ll be packhorse for ER, if you don’t mind (which, having spoken to you about it already, I know you don’t). I’ll take her sleeping bag – you’ll take her clothing. (I’ll appreciate so much not having to carry two children’s clothes as well as my own!) I’ll give you a big kiss at the end of every walk. Just remind me! 😉

Lotsa love,
Mama xxx


thanks for letting us help you Dadda

we love working with you


j12 here 

The other day I made out of a baby’s  formula tin a small boat frame. Then after I glued the sail in, I put a few layers of tin foil to make it bigger and better. It sails well.

“Adventures of an IMP” Part XVIII: He Who Laughs Last Laughs Best

Sunday 17 February 2008
6:30 pm was then that we planned revenge…


As the the time indicates up the top it is very early. We had come up with a plan last night. We are preparing everything while they are still asleep so they won’t hear us. Here is the plan:

  1. We take the rope that was the boys washing line and all the guy ropes that we can untie quietly.
  2. Then we tie these ropes together really tight.
  3. We then take one end of the rope and tie it very quietly to the little loops that hold the corner of the tent down.
  4. Next E10 holds the rope so that it doesn’t pull and make a big noise waking the boys up while First Mate takes the other end and climbs up the very tall oak tree to the top.
  5. This is the tricky part, pulling the rope tight enough so that it does not hang slack but not so tight that it pulls the corner of the tent up, yet!
  6. Once the rope is tight enough First Mate ties the rope to the top of the tree and and then passes the rope around the tree a few times, finishing off with a lot of stiff knots.
  7. The rope is then thrown down to Able Seaman who coils it while First Mate climbs up the tree next to the oak.
  8. First Mate then winds the rope around this tree and ties the rope up in a high branch.
  9. E10 then comes to help First Mate thread the boys shoes onto the end of the rope and tie a secure knot, leaving the shoes hanging just out of the reach of anyone standing on the ground.
  10. When the boys have just woken up we will pull the rope making the corner of the tent come up with a big noise, and let in the cold air.

All this has taken about 16 minutes and we are tidying up our tent and waiting for the boys to start talking so we can pull the rope and give them a surprise!

“It sounds like they are waking up now,” E10 alerted us.
“Best get over there and start pulling, but not a sound or a giggle for that matter!” First Mate cautioned.

We had decided that First Mate would do any of the talking because E10 and Able Seaman would just burst out giggling, but that we would all pull the rope at some stage.

The boys must be reading or something, because they are very quiet, First Mate thought to herself, but we had heard some one say, “Move over” so they must be awake. First Mate tugged the rope.

“Be quiet!” That was Second Mate.

Hearing this First Mate pulled even harder making a big shaking noise.

“Stop touching our tent, you’ll wake Captain and J12.”
“Are they asleep?” asked First Mate “and I’m not touching your tent.”
“We were asleep, but you woke us up and…” said J12 and Captain together. They sounded kind of grumpy and not quite awake. This time E10 tugged the rope.
“Would you please stop touching the tent.” Captain asked.
“I’m not,” answered E10 truthfully.
“She is telling you the truth,” Able Seaman countered.
“Well then how is our tent moving?” Second Mate queried.
“You might as well see for yourselves, but remember, it was you who started playing tricks!” First Mate reminded.

The boys opened the tent and because their tent was facing away from the scene they went to put their shoes on and have a look, but because their shoes were out in the tree they had to stand on the wet grass without shoes.
“Oh…you girls.” said Captain with a sigh and shaking his head he climbed up the oak tree to untie the rope. It was then that he discovered that the rope went back down the oak tree and up the next tree. He climbed up the other tree to retrieve his, J12’s and Second Mate’s shoes and then back up the oak tree to untie the million-and-one knots we had tied, all the time giving us dirty looks.

All this time Us Girls had been watching the proceedings gleefully. We were not the only ones who had been watching; J12, Second Mate, S7, Ship’s Boy and The Crew were also watching. Mum and Dad came over to see what was going on, we explained to them our trick and they went back to their tent. They weren’t going to help if we were playing a trick back on Those Boys.

J12 and Second Mate weren’t grumpy anymore and they now saw the funny side of the joke (probably because they didn’t have to climb a tree while they were still half asleep), but Captain did not see the funny side yet and he said to us
Why did you have to do that girls?”
“Because of the trick you played on us which, by the way, we thought was a very clever trick and we didn’t suspect that you were behind it until the last moment. And because we wanted to play a trick on you!” answered E10.
“Hmpf,” was all we heard from Captain.
“Doesn’t matter anymore,” said Second Mate.
“Doesn’t matter,” exploded Captain, “It doesn’t matter, because I climbed the tree and got your shoes for you and to untie the rope while…”
“Thanks!” said J12.
“Yeah, thanks,” echoed Second Mate.

Captain was starting to see the funny side, but didn’t really want to admit it so he started frowning as he does when coming out of a bad mood.

“So do you think that the joke is funny now?” asked First Mate nervously.
“In no way do I think that being woken up is funny, but the trick…not funny, but…clever!” said Captain with a smile.
“I think the same thing about being woken up and about the joke being clever, but I also think it is funny now. And you really were telling the truth when you said you weren’t touching the tent!” said J12.
“Me too,” added Second Mate, who didn’t like to be left out.
“Remember that saying He Who Laughs Last Laughs Best,” put in Able Seaman.
“And we got the last laugh!” added E10.


10:25 am

We have just finished breakfast, a fry up of bacon, eggs, hash-browns, sausages, baked beans and toast. YUM!
We are going down to the lake for one last swim, kayak, jetty jumping/wrestling. We are also taking a row boat named “WAIMANU” and a tractor tyre tube and some rope.
We had been in the water for about an hour having a naval-sea-battle with the kayaks and WAIMANU when Mr Edmond went back to the bach and returned with the Sunburst.
Now, every time we (the Bears) had been to the lake we had admired the Sunburst, but we had never actually sailed in her so this was to be a real treat. Just imagine to be taken out on the lake in her!
Going in the Sunburst lived up to, and I (First Mate) think that it, even exceeded my expectations.


I wanted to write this down, although I will never forget it. It was one of those once-in-a-life-time feelings.
Dad and I were sailing in the Sunburst. We had been tacking back and forth. The wind was blowing quite hard. You could hear the water rushing underneath the boat. We were on the homeward leg when a big gust of wind came along and we had to hang right out over the side so that the boat would not capsize. You were able to sense the speed at which we were rushing along. It was just wonderful!!!

In this photo is the Sunburst.

In this photo there is the Sunburst and WAIMANU with Second Mate who is Cream doughnutting/Chocolate chip biscuiting
Cream Doughnutting or Chocolate Chip Biscuiting. You choose what you like best, then you jump on the tyre tube and hold on to the rope. Then someone in WAIMANU will row while someone else holds the rope. Because rowing is sort of slow when you are not an athlete you don’t make much of a wake, but that doesn’t matter.
If Cream Doughnutting or Chocolate Chip Biscuiting doesn’t take your fancy or if you are one of the adventurous type then Wake-Boarding is the thing to try, but because the rowers can’t row that fast, you don’t get a much of a wake.
If you want to go faster you simply call out, “Where’s the wake?” or you can pull yourself faster by pulling yourself in by the rope. Lots of fun!!!!!
We stayed in the water for about 3 and a half hours!!
After that we started to pack up and have lunch. More packing up, packing down of tents and giving the bach a thorough scrub down. Then into we got into our family’s car/van and dove back to Auckland. We had a walkie-talkie in each car, so we used them till the bateries died. On the way home most of us fell asleep, we were that tired!
All in all we had a wonderful weekend.


“Adventures of an IMP” Part XVII: Possums?? No!!

Saturday 16 February 2008
7:00 am
The morning has started at an early 6:45 the kids all being awake by this time; though the adults are still sleeping. Captain has called a meeting (mainly to keep the noisy ones quiet).
“What would you guys do today if you could choose,” he enquired.
“Go swimming.”
“Play cricket.”
“Build a camp-fire.”
“Go to the glow-worms.”
Came answers from First Mate, E10, Able Seaman, S7, Ship’s Boy and The Crew.
“You see, we (J12, Second Mate and I) were thinking about doing a triathlon. Of course we would have to ask parents, but if we are allowed would you like to do it with us?”
There was a moment of silence as everyone thought about the suggestion.

After asking each other if they would do it (because if everyone else was doing it you wouldn’t want to be the only one not doing it) they agreed to give it a go.

Breakfast over, home-made-muesli again, Captain and J12 put the idea of doing a triathlon before Mr Hunt and Mr Edmond. Dad, who had just got a new watch, said to Mr Edmond, “Well I can be the time keeper and a race marshal, but you can take the honors of being Event Organiser, besides you know the area better than I do!”
Dad and Mr Edmond had no objection to the idea, but hearing that nine people wanted to compete Mr Edmond suggested splitting into teams: “For one reason in particular, you only have four bikes.”
Once the teams had been decided Mr Edmond planed the course out and said to us, “Announcements will be made in ten minutes and the race will start in 32 minutes at 10:00.”

Just so we don’t forget here are the teams with the name they choose. p.s. R=run S=swim B=bike

Speedy JEM___Whizzz’n Wonder___Quick As A Flash

The Crew_______S7_____________Able Seaman_________(R)
E10___________First Mate________J12________________(S)
Captain________Second Mate______Ship’s Boy____________(B)

10 minutes was up so the three teams headed back to the bach to hear the announcements.

“Welcome competitors to the all new

Lake Rotoiti Home-Made-Muesli Triathlon.

As you already know the order in which the race is going will be Run, Swim, Bike. However there is a slight age advantage to the Whizzz’n Wonder and Quick As A Flash team so I am going to introduce a fourth activity to give all teams a fair chance. This new activity will be star jumps, 10 for Whizzz’n Wonder, 8 for Quick As A Flash and 6 for Speedy JEM. Each team must do the number of star jumps at the end of the race on the finish line. Oh, and you have to do them in time with your team. Because this is a relay race the runners have to tag the swimmers before the swimmers can swim and the swimmers have to tag the bikers before the bikers can bike. One last thing, your team will be disqualified if
a) the swimmers go out from in between the kayak and the jetties
b) the bikers ride on the right hand side of the road
c) anybody starts before being tagged or before the starting pistol 🙂
Do you all understand these rule?”
We all did so Mr Edmond and Dad walked us around the course, after which Mr Edmond commented, “Feel free to warm up, but remember, the triathlon starts in 15 min; 10:00am.”

Photo taken two minutes before the triathlon:



“On your marks, get set, GO!” And the runners were off, Able Seaman in the lead until she got the stitch and S7 took the lead and kept it, The Crew was barely keeping up! They were running really fast and would be, without a doubt, tagging the swimmers very soon!


As our team mates rounded the last corner and came into sight we started cheering and adjusting goggles and urging our team mates on. First to be tagged was First Mate then E10 and then J12. We had to walk/run out into the water a fair way because round Gisborne Point there is a LOT of water weed growing and that makes swimming rather difficult. First Mate kept the lead all the way with E10 and J12 changing positions from time to time.


“Go on, keep swimming, almost there,” we shouted to the swimmers who had slowed down a bit. Upon hearing us and seeing us they sped up for the last bit and ran up to us bikers. First on the road was Second Mate then Ship’s Boy and lastly Captain.


Flying up to the finish line was Second Mate with Captain close behind him and Ship’s Boy who was pedaling for all he was worth.
Now for the star jumps, 1 2 3 go, jump..jump..jump.. we chanted to keep in time.

“Yippee! we’ve won!” called out Whizzz’n Wonder, happily.
“We’ve come second!” That was Quick As A Flash.
“And We’ll take third place,” said Speedy JEM.

“Well done!!” Everyone congratulated each other.
“That was so fun,” S7 said “Even if we didn’t win.”
“Whew, I’m hot,” said Second Mate.
“So am I.”

All of us being quite hot, we went down to the lake for a quick dip before lunch. This quick dip turned into a 2 hour swim!!!


2:30 pm
“Listen,” said Mum “I think there is a rugby game being played, judging by what I can hear.”
So the Dads took Captain, First Mate, J12, E10, Second Mate, Able Seaman, S7, Ship’s Boy and The Crew over to the rugby field where, as Mum had said, there *was* a rugby game being played. Actually there were two games; Auckland Maoris vs. Bay of Plenty Maoris Women and Auckland Maoris vs. Bay of Plenty Maori Men. We only saw the last 15 minutes of these games but as the four teams left another Auckland Maoris vs. Bay of Plenty Maoris Men started.
Able Seaman, who is only truly interested in watching sport if it means staying up late, went back to the bach with E10 to mix up some bread dough for “camp-fire bread” that we would be cooking over a camp-fire tonight.
Usually we roast marshmallows, but last year after roasting marshmallows the Edmonds were sick and since then they have not enjoyed eating roasted marshmallows!
Having watched a very tight game, Auckland Maoris won in the last minute, literally. We walked back to the bach where Mr Edmond took S7, Second Mate, Ship’s Boy, The Crew and A3 to collect fire-wood in the nearby forest.
After cleaning up the mess they had made E10 and Able Seaman joined Captain, First Mate and J12 who were wrestling on the jetty.
When Mr Edmond and the others returned with the fire-wood the bread dough was waiting. The camp-fire bread was a success. All we did was wrap some dough around a hot, green stick and cook over a fire. The hole that was left in the bread (where the stick had been) was then used to stick a sausage in. Yum!
While we were eating dinner Second Mate started to laugh.
“What’s so funny?” queried First Mate, puzzled.
“Gisborne’s fighting Allan-A-Gale,” came the reply.
Now, in case it has not been mentioned, we are camping at Gisborne Point and it is very windy!
Dinner is over and two games are being played; Chinese Checkers and The Amazing Moa Hunt.
“Dad,” said E10 “do you think we could go to the Glow-worms tonight?”
“Well,” said Mr Edmond, who had already been asked this question a few times before, “I guess so but ask the Bears if they would like to come with us.”
It is really dark and we are walking to where the glow-worms live. Up the hill and along the road. Across the road and up a hill where blackberries tend to grow. Slowly we were descending into a “valley” if you could call it that, no, it is more of a chasm than anything else. As we walked along we pointed out the few glow-worms we saw.
“I seem to recall there being more glow-worms last time,” Mum said.
Suddenly there were heaps of glow-worms on the sides of the chasm.
“Look,” said Ship’s Boy, pointing “a smiley face.”
E10 walked over to investigate. As she was standing there, torch on, she saw something move.
“Ohh,” she said “there is a lovely big spider over there.”
“Don’t worry,” said Mum, “I’m not afraid of big spiders.”
“But,” said Captain, with a grin that was too big, “Did you know that the big bush wetas like to come out at night?”
“Maybe we shouldn’t talk about that or you might just find a weta jumping down your shirt,” replied Mum.
As we were walking back to the bach there was a noise that sounded like falling acorns, but there would have been too many acorns falling so we stopped to listen. I can’t remember who said that it was a possum, I think it was J12, but suddenly all our torches were on and we were searching the trees for possums. Out of us all only S7 and First Mate saw the possum. Walking back, the big boys kept mentioning the possum.


We had been lying in our tent for about 15 minutes, whispering quietly, when the tarpaulin above our tent began to shake. Us Girls had been extra careful not to make a lot of noise (we had last night and had been teased greatly, mainly by Captain) and listening to Captain, J12 and Second Mate who were talking.
The tarpaulin shook again, this time for about 10 seconds.
“Strange,” whispered Able Seaman, “the tarpaulin is noisy tonight.”
“It’ll just be the wind,” First Mate reassured.
“So are the boys,” said E10.
It was true the same boys who had teased us for being noisy were now singing
Amazing Grace!
The tarpaulin shook again, stop shake stop shake stop shake stop…
“Is that you Dad?” called out First Mate. No answer. We started to wonder what was making the tarpaulin shake about. First Mate poked her head out of the tent and looked around. There was no one about except for J12 who came over to our tent and said,
“Would you girls please be quiet.”
“I rather think that it is you who is singing Amazing Grace, not us!” First Mate answered.
J12 went back trying not to laugh and as result a series of snorts could be heard.
“They are up to something,” said E10 as we listened to the boys laughing and then we heard Captain say, “Shhh!” and the tarpaulin moved again. First Mate looked out of the tent at the rope that was tied to the tarpaulin and coincidentally was the big boys’ washing line. Suddenly the rope was tugged and the tarpaulin made a noise. The end that had been tugged was leading into the boys’ tent, very clever!!!
After explaining this to E10 and Able Seaman we had a great big laugh!!!! It was really fuuny and the boys had got us fair and square.
This time Captain came over and said to us, “We asked you three to be quiet, we are trying to go to sleep.”
“Well you can go to sleep now because we now know it was you pulling the “washing line”.”
“No,” was the answer and then, “What did you think was making the noise, a possum?”
“No actually we thought it was the wind at first and then we thought it was the Dads.”
“Hmm, goodnight.”

It was then that we planned revenge.



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