Tuesday, May 14, 2013



I've had this post in my drafts for a week. There's another one I must finish off too.

Before I talk about the last few days including our lovely day visiting a friend and my sister I want to draw your attention to this post by the Gluten Free Goddess. It is an excellent insight into the needs of those who are gluten sensitive and those who choose to go grain free for the sake of their health.

One day in early May we got ourselves organised for visiting a special friend.

One of the things that drives me nuts is that it takes so much mental energy to get into mode to leave the house. Shopping in Whitianga isn't so bad. We now find we can pop into town, a 30 minute drive, and pick up stuff we need, browse a little if we feel like it and be home again within 2 - 4 hours. Not a big deal anymore. Since Mum died our lifestyle patterns have been gradually changing and a pattern emerging. Considering Mum died 15 months ago I wouldn't call our adjustment speedy.

Alongside this adjustment has come a kind of laziness around 'going out.' It is an effort to get in the car to go visiting. I love to see my friends, I love going for drives but it is so much easier to stay home and look at the garden, weeds and all. Usually a visit to friends involves either a very long day or a night away. That's the price we pay for living in this delightfully quiet village.

We have a very dear friend who is now close to 90 years old and lives in a rest home in Thames. Thames is at least 1 hour 20 minutes drive and all of it twisty, turny, up and down. Since we were already going over the hills and down the coast we decided to visit my sister, a mere one hour drive further on from Thames. It makes for a wonderful day but we were tired when we got home just as it became dark.

We left home just after 9 am after several times getting in the car and then out again as we remembered forgotten things we needed. It was a lovely drive over the hills and along the coast with very little traffic. We were able to spend an hour and a half with our friend which was wonderful. Her husband died while we were away and we did get to see them before we left for Hawaii, thank goodness. I have missed them more than any body over the past few years. We were, 'down the street' neighbours when we lived in Tairua, then we moved north to Whitianga and later Matarangi, thus we became separated us by those awful but beautiful hills. They moved to Thames to be closer to medical facilities and family. Our lives changed as Mum became our main focus and energy for trips to Thames became business only with little energy or time left for visiting.  I feel sad that we saw so little of our special friends over the past 3 or 4 years but like all good friendships it's easy to pick up again. I'm thinking that we will make this trip a couple of times a month now. Our friend needs good company and we need her.

It was mid-day when we left Enid and set off for Morrinsville where my sister had lunch ready. We had a delicious pumpkin soup, I need her recipe, and she had laid out little dishes of carrot sticks, aoli dip with added chopped brazil nuts, cashews and preserved ginger, honey roasted peanuts. Lynn is a vegetarian who has recently stopped eating wheat and most grains.

We had a good catch-up and I brought out the gifts I had for her and her grand children. Lynn called her daughter who was free, it being school holidays so I was able to give the children their gifts. A lovely flower hair clip for the girl which immediately went on her pony tail and a shell arm band for the boy. He was so proud of his warrior band and tried it on his ankle too. My sister and her daughter chose their sarongs. The choice is limited now, for the remaining women and I wish I'd bought two or three more.

I thought it might be a good idea to buy a few sarongs and a couple of other small things from Hilo Hattie's, on line if the price was right. Problem! Postage was going to cost me around $50. More than I was spending on the goods. Ridiculous! Another purchase  tried to organise on line was coffee beans from Pau Hana Estate, the plantation we stayed on. Carol emailed me to say she was shocked to discover postage was going to be $84 so she has refunded us. Lesson learned. Make sure you buy all the gifts etc you want while in the country. The best part is we have multiple reasons to go back to Hawaii. I wonder how long before we can go. Maybe less than 12 months. It all depends on when Mum's house sells now.

So far everyone seems delighted with having a taste of Hawaii. Funnily enough while we were away they had a Hawaiian theme family evening. Perhaps we can extend it now and have a wider family do.

We had planned to stop for dinner at Castle Rock Restaurant which is about 10 minutes from home but we were tired and wanted the comfort of our own chairs. I walked in the door, grabbed the pans and we had bacon and eggs with tomato on the side in next to no time. I was surprised by how tired I was. By 7.30 pm I was struggling to stay awake. I was in bed asleep before 8.30 pm and here I am typing this at 4 am. I'm almost ready to go back to bed now and get a little more sleep.

Today will take care of itself and tomorrow I plan to go to church. It is also Mum's birthday and that of our son David's partner. I live so much one day at a time I never seem to get birthday cards in the mail early enough, I'll phone her and we'll see her in 6 weeks when we are in Christchurch.

Now I am mentally preparing myself to begin a blitz on weeds. Our garden looks sadly neglected and after months of being dry the recent rain, more to come, has all the stuff I don't want growing and smothering the precious things.

I am trying not to be concerned about what I'm eating. BUT! I do not want to lose the gains progress toward goal weight I have made. I notice there are many people who think weight is irrelevant if you are eating in a healthy way. Well I have news for them. If you are 74, or any age for that matter, and have lost a bunch of weight but still weigh 20 kg/45 lbs above a modestly assessed optimum weight, then you should be concerned about keeping off what you've already lost and taking the right steps to keep up the fat burning.

Enough! Time to go back to bed.



  1. Yes nuts, and awesome that you may be able to go back sooner rather than later :)

  2. Sounds like you are back to your pre-Hawaii busy life!
    How nice that you are going to get to visit with your special friend... I am sure it will be a blessing to her. I remember after my Dad had died, and my Mom was sick and moved next door to us so we could care for her. She had few visitors, almost like her old friends had drifted away and forgotten her. It was nice when someone would stop by for a short visit. So bless you for the love you are giving to your friend in Thames. :-)

  3. How neat to enjoy visiting your friends and family ... You must be having fun giving all the gifts to everyone.
    Wow, off to Hawaii again! Lucky you!
    Have a lovely day.