Going gently into 2019…

This is my favourite photo from this holiday season. Sometimes its not the perfectly framed in-focus photos that top my list.  Bodicea has had so much fun with the tree. Jed insists on a cut pine from our traditional source … Read More

Kitten therapy

Kittens have invaded our music room. It’s the very best of invasions. A friend found the little tortoiseshell kittie in their garden three weeks ago, all scrawny and hungry. Then the tabby one all hissing and spitting just a week … Read More

a dogs life

Phoenix is the best dog. Or, he usually is. Not this week.  This week he’s found something disgusting to eat on the farm next door and it’s made him sick every night. You’d think he’d learn after the first few … Read More


The last two and a half years have been a trip. Through hard times as we transitioned to being a family of two, Jed would talk about going to Fiji together. It was landmark thing for him. A sign that … Read More

A day in the life of Boudicea

Introducing Boudicea. She was an orphan and has been with us since she was teeny. It’s kind of like having a toddler in the house again. She is everywhere, really fast. Specialises in ambushes from her hideyspot under the bed, … Read More

the unexpected guests

We often have extra animals in various stages of rehabilitation. Both of us have a tendency to stumble across animals in need, or they hear us coming and throw themselves in our path. We raised an orphan duckling who even grew … Read More

Lamb duties

Nothing says spring like lambs. We are on lamb duty while friends were away. We first met Pia when she was a day old. Her mum had abandoned her and she spent her first month living in a house and … Read More

Something I found on my dining room table

I have been thinking about starting a feature called ‘Things mama’s find in strange places’. Seems to me there’s a book or an art exhibition in the odd things we find in strange places.  Yup, this is what I found … Read More

when cute turns brute

Remember these cute little critters? Yeah, well they’re not cute anymore. The rest of the ducklings we fostered for Bird Rescue grew up, found homes or swam down the stream into the wilds but not these two. Nope. Tiny and … Read More

catching koura

It was the morning after friends had slept over at ours. I had promised to make the boys a ‘training course’ so despite the post-flood sogginess I created a series of activities to do around the property. It ended with … Read More


Jed has wanted to foster ducklings to help out the local bird rescue centre for years. Our new house has a stream running past the front door, a big garden and a fenced off area (for when they get a … Read More

Proof of spring

Duckduck is at it again. She’s not the most devoted wanna-be mama, preferring to potter around the garden and bask in the sun showers on our deck with her friend Patches for most of the day. But look what she … Read More

Wintry goodness

 Phoenix went from sleeping in a patch of sun to tearing out the door in a split second. His enthusiasm was infectious, I found myself running after him. Both times we’ve gone for a walk on the beach we got … Read More

tardigrades and moss

It started with an article in a magazine I picked up at the library. It was about tardigrades, micro-critters who live in lichen or moss worldwide. They are cute, at 1 mm fully grown they are visible under a microscope … Read More

new members of the family

Meet the new girls. Actually, we took them on when we moved into our new home. The muscovy ducks have lived here much longer than us. They’re free range, love porridge and roost at night on a tree overhanging the … Read More


I love our library services. We had just moved into our new home so were a bit out of the loop about any holiday goings on. Friends told us about a frankentoys session they’d been to at our local library. … Read More

the importance of laughter

I was folding the washing when the phone rang. When I returned I found this. A small dog placed on a pile of clean washing. So funny. Things are a bit challenging around here at the moment and I really … Read More

a bumper crop

Jed has a pet sitting business. He may be eight, but I can already tell you I am not concerned about his financial future. One day while across the road feeding Ms Puss, we discovered their abandoned garden housed a … Read More

these guys

These guys. Honestly. So funny. Phoenix turned one today. One year ago, his mama went for a pee and looked very surprised at what landed on the lawn. True story. Admittedly not the most auspicious of starts but we can’t … Read More


We visited friends today. They have four new chicks to raise and integrate into their flock. It was stinking hot. It’s gone from freezing winds to baking summer weather in a day here. We hung out with the babies in … Read More

dog happy

There is no happy like dog happy. Give the dude off leash time on the beach and life is good. Throw a ball into the mix, or a stick or a piece of kelp and sheesh, he has it made. … Read More

a different pace

Every now and then I get a glimpse of the young man Jed will be. The baby/toddler/and young child days are long gone. He is doing more activities than ever before, taking on more responsibilities, is more focussed and needing … Read More


I learn a lot from the sea and it’s shores.  It is constantly changing. The colours, the waves and tides and what the high tide brings to lay upon the sand. I can never predict what the sea will do. … Read More

flora and fauna in Fiji

A big part of any journey is investigating the land and it’s inhabitants. Fiji was no exception. When we first arrived there were these huge amazing birds just sitting hovering, completely still, on a thermal. They were there for so … Read More

uncooperative bugs

The sun shone! That alone is worthy news for a blog post at the moment. It’s been so rainy and grim lately. Normal spring weather for New Zealand I’m afraid. But…that subtle shift in temperature and growth of green things … Read More

Found a baby seal?

About this time of the year you sometimes come across baby seals. The mama’s are starving and have found them a safe place for the day while they go out and hunt. We just found a bunch of people surrounding … Read More

these two, oh my

It’s like Phoenix has always been here. It has only been months, but the little guy is totally part of the family. Paradoxically he’s suddenly chilled out a bit but has started wilfully breaking the rules, like if I have … Read More

just delightful

This delightful little creature sneaked upstairs, pulled my bag down off the chair and pilfered a bar of fair trade chocolate we’d bought as a treat today. Needless to say he has eaten it all. He’d even stashed the wrapper … Read More

Phoenix landing

I think it’s fair to say assimilating a puppy into the whanau is an adjustment all round. Let’s just say I feel for my cat, who I hardly see during the day anymore. Hoping that passes. Training and walks on … Read More

phoenix has landed

Meet the newest member of the clan. Phoenix. He’s the result of much family process. Fun and games over here! It’s been awhile since I have done the puppy thing. Like 15 years ago. I had forgotten how they chew … Read More

meeting brutus

We met Brutus. Resident stingray at a marina on the Whangaparoa Peninsula north of Auckland. He’s lived at the marina for years, cruising for free handouts and is quite the local celebrity. Jed spotted him first. He comes right up … Read More

the butterfly house of life

A spontaneous stop at the Butterfly House and Gardens elicited some deep observations about life, transformation and death from the little guy. It is truly miraculous watching the emergence of a butterfly and to picture it’s journey from egg to … Read More

an unexpected guest

We sat down for a picnic at Stony Batter on Waiheke Island and look who popped in!  Weka used to be common all throughout the North Island of New Zealand but due to loss of habitat and predators are now … Read More

dolphins and bellbirds

This past week saw us camping in a beautiful national park marine protected area a few hours north of Auckland. It was kind of an end of year homeschooling camp. Jed and I had the idea and threw it open … Read More

the catnip patch

This is Slinky. He appeared one day years ago, starving for food and loving, and set up house under our deck. He’d ambush us with plaintive cries and smoochs every time we left the house. I tried to take him … Read More


On one of our mini-adventures along the beach this week we picked up a bunch of shells. For lack of anywhere else to safely stow them away, they got put in my hat.  We are big on the natural world … Read More

Cicada boy/s

 A friend had a Bugs and Blooms themed Spring party in the weekend. Jed and I had fun coming up with some costume ideas. Jed decided to go as a cicada. It’s definitely not cicada season here yet so we … Read More

The Zoo books – a review

We are so lucky to live within an hour of Auckland Zoo. I mean, we have fresh air and quiet and within reach of the city. I am grateful for the balance. An animal loving crew, one of our regular … Read More

The Booms

We have the honour of looking after our dear neighbours chickens and the fish in their pond while they are away for ten whole days. It has made a wonderful mini adventure break in our morning sessions to walk over … Read More

tiny snails and the secret life of leaves

These two little reprobates hitched a ride home with us in a bunch of dandelions for Chester the rabbit. Touch wood, so far, we haven’t had much in the way of snails. I think the slugs must have crowded them … Read More

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