Friday, 31 July 2009

Life is becoming more and more enjoyable

The following referendum has been a long time coming and I will be interested to find out what happens. As much as public opinion warrants being counted, I'm quite sure there will be many in our population who will either flag participating (even though you don't need to queue at voting polls!!! you simply tick, fold up and return in prepaid envelope ... all from the comfort of your own home!!! ... how much simpler do people need things to be?!); or they may even be afraid to show their opinion for fear of being counted one way or t'other! As for me, I have already ticked my chosen box and have popped it in the mail box ready to have it counted.
Should it be a criminal offence to smack a child?
You decide, New Zealand!

Okay, the following photo will seem dull to many, but for me, it marks a turning point in our lives. I'm not aiming for an artistic shot; I'm simply excited to share we have fruit on our table. After a week's grocery shop, I still have fruit on our table. Not only that but our fridge is still amply suffice and my cupboards are actually ... well .... stocked!?!

As a family, we have had to sacrifice a lot more than most. I do not say that with spite or as a need to justify our humble methods of living for the past number of years. Those who know me, know that I have taken the knocks on the chin and lived by my motto: "just get on with things", but one area I have looked forward to rectifying is our food stock - or lack thereof to be specific.

Now, funnily enough, reality would tell you that we're actually not all that further ahead financially. However, sticking to a budget and managing all of our needs -v- our wants, has finally made a difference. For the past three weeks I have been able to (a) drive to the supermarket without relying on whaiāipo stopping on the way home on a daily basis ... because I have a warranted and registered vehicle!!!; (b) I have been able to extend the amount to spend by at least $50 per week .... which is huge!!!!!; and (c) I can re-introduce the children to foods and flavours they have forgotten.

To have reached this point in our lives, I am eternally grateful to whaiāipo. He has not only put in hideous hours working day-in and day-out providing for his family, but he would always ring on his way home (whether it be 6, 7 or 8 pm) to ask what we needed. So yes, our meals were held at flexible hours and over the course of time, (due to monetary constraints) our meals became more and more dull (to me at least). So much so, that I am saddened to think the older children do not remember many of the meals we used to enjoy. However, it simply provides a challenge to rekindle their tastebuds, nē rā?

My eldest brother has been back in New Zealand for the past three weeks and I have caught up with him and his family at least once a week during that time. Yvonne's family reside in Auckland, so it's always tricky for them to get around everybody as well as fit in some of the things they want to do while they're home. So although I only manage to see them for a matter of hours all-up, I am always delighted to see them.

Actually, although I haven't physically seen my brother for two and a half years, when we get together it's like he's still living in Auckland. And that's the beauty of Skype. We stay in contact so much and when I'm online talking with all my brothers at once, it's like they're all home and we laugh and carry on for hours on end ... for nowt!!!! Isn't that just the most wickedest thing?! Blimey, I can remember living in a period when we would watch for the cheapest deals to ring nationally and overseas ... and even then, of course, you could only speak one person at a time because the likes of a speaker phone didn't exist. Yowza! You'd be lucky if you got a good line half the time and of course, you had to be sure they'd be home at the other end eh?! Wow, it just goes to show how things change quickly in anyone's lifetime.

So like I say, I've enjoyed catching up with my big brother. I miss him immensely and envy his life. I've always been proud of him and always look to him for advice. He has a pragmatic way of looking at things. Clear cut, logical, precise. I never doubt what he says ... ever! That's one of the great things I love about him. You can rely on him being right. As frustrating as that can be, it's also a blessing for me. I wish we could live closer than we do, but with Skype, the distance is made just that little bit less eh?!

I think I'll leave this post at this point and try to compose an update about school shortly.

Thanks for dropping by
ka kite ano

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