Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

Mo’vember update

OK, so I get this really cheeky comment saying how I have been so good because I have been “updating the blog” from a guy who hasn’t posted in who knows how many months (hey da feesh :p) and I get kinda riled up about this, so here I am posting in mock spite. Which may well have been the intent. “I don’t care why you post, just post gosh darned it”

So most of you should have heard by now that we are coming back to old Blighty in December and should be spending a good part of that time desperately trying to get to see everyone. If you have not yet been contacted, please send me a mail or leave a comment. We will try to fit you in. Being a blog post rather than a personalised email, I realise that complete strangers can of course comment or mail, but I cannot guarantee we will try so hard to fit you in.

What many of you may not know is that I have been goatee bearded for much of the year and started this month clean shaven with the intent of growing a ridiculous mo (moustache) to help raise money for men’s health issues. More info can be found at http://nz.movember.com/ and if you feel a need to donate try here. Pictures will be posted with the results of the months facial fuzz and normal services will re-commence on December 1st.

What else has been happening? hmmmm. Well the mother in law is visiting at the moment. All sorts of bad Les Dawson jokes start to spring to mind but in fairness it has been quite good to see her, and I am so busy working at the moment that it doesn’t really impact on me in any real way and I have not been able to spend much time with her.

Jordan has just finished her latest round of exams. No fails so far :D. She put in a rather large amount of work revising prior to the exams and it looks like it paid off. Go girl. She is also still busy with gymnastics and is able to do front splits and was this week awarded her bronze award. OH YEAH!!!!! and has just been headhunted for a wee gym display team. It just doesn’t stop. International success is in your grasp….. She is still trampolining and accompanying me to an assortment of martial arts classes with various degrees of acceptance / enthusiasm depenpending on the degree of pain she is in from the build up of classes she has been doing, but the number of people that are saying “hey you are good” may finally be causing it to sink in \o/.  What else, what else? There is probably something really important I am forgetting. Ah well – the beauty of editable blogs 🙂

Jen is loving the fact her mum is here for a while. The two have definitely been filling the spaces with conversation. She is also getting more prolific with her writing and some of it is wonderful, but I guess that will stay hers until she is ready to send to publishers. Softly softly… She is taking part in NaNoWriMo this month but that has been put on hold while her mum is here. Oh and thanks for the baked cheesecake. Mmmmmmm 🙂 

Me, I am still pretty much the same. Apart from the facial fur fluctuations I am still working too long, still trying to keep up to date with the latest technologies, still doing the martial arts, and teaching the trampolining. I recently did a Tex Mex cooking course which was absolutely fabulous and we took dinner round to a friend of ours who also happens to be from Mexico. And she didn’t gag. In fact she actually looked like she really enjoyed it 🙂 Wahey! Bit of a bugger that my family don’t appreciate meaty and spicy food but hey. I know how now. What else? Ah yes, Scuba. I recently restarted scuba diving. Did I say that last time? I am still doing the bloody course! Due to weather conditions beyond our control the dives keep getting cancelled. Ah well, any time soon I keep hearing. It is soooo nice when we actually get to do the dives. We’ll get there. Still singing too, and in fact have been asked to sing in a trio (what do you mean just three of us? Do you know how difficult is is to hide physically and vocally when there are only three of you!) for a particular song, so it can’t be all bad.

Anyway, I will post photos of the facial progress next time when I have the mo in all it’s glory. Until then I wish you all well and look forward to seeing you soon 😀

Loads of love to all from all.

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Gordon’s alive!

OK, so it has been, like, forevah since posting and really I should be hard at work, but the bug just bit and I simply had to get something down to update everyone.

It has been waaaaaay to long since posting anything here and for that I earnestly apologise. I am crap with phone calls and personal emails, especially with the time differences but that does not really excuse me from not posting here. So I shall endeavour to post more regularly.

Updates; we are still busy wee beans. Jordan is now involved in a bunch of gymnastics classes (about 3 classes a week), kung-fu and trampolining, as well as still singing, drama and even after all that still getting homework done, learning PhotoShop(TM) and managing to squeeze in a social life too. Phew. She is thriving and blossoming on it all. Go girl.

Jen is still writing and the stories are simply delightful. I am sure she will get snatched up fairly soon, we just need to get a few more out there. The momentum is a building. She has just finished another writing course (not sure if she is signing up for another) and is currently spending most of her time sorting out the stuff that has come across from the UK. I guess it must be official now. We are staying.  Oh and thanks Jen for getting through the headache that are the company accounts. Love you loads. Mwa Mwa. She is even restarting Tai-Chi and would like to work with children and see world peace. 

And Me? I am doing pretty well too. Have now been contracting for 6 months, and just got a renewal on my contract from my current place of employment (\o/), where I am thoroughly enjoying the new environment, dynamic and team here. Great place to work. I am also doing the kung-fu thang again which is great, if not a little more painful for being more demanding on a slightly more out of shape and older body 😦 Curse you time lord. Still singing with the Wellington Community Choir and a male voice choir too, and maybe even the National Male Voice Choir of New Zealand! But will have to see how that last one goes. I have rekindled my passion for Scuba diving again and am diving a couple of times a month. It really is seriously different to diving on the South coast of England. And still coaching trampolining. The kids are going great and developing very nicely. It may be time to get them into a couple of minor competitions 🙂 See how we get on this term I think.

Right, that should be enough to keep you lot going for another year or so 😉 :p Hope you are all well, and it won’t be so long till the next one, promise.

Sing for your life

Friday night was the annual concert for the Wellington Community Choir. What a night. We sang to a packed out Citadel audience (about 400 capacity) to a lovely and enthusiastic audience who at one point were even singing without us! 🙂

With a range of songs in Native American Indian, Zimbabwean,  South African, Macedonian, Georgian, Mauri, Welsh and a number of other places in the world it really was an evening of global song. It was wonderful. We had audience participation, with people coming up on stage to join us for certain numbers (some Zimbabweans who knew one of the songs we were about to sing), We had spotlights on particular groups including the Wellington Community Childrens Choir (including a great performance by Jordan), the Djansa Djembe drummers and of course the Male and Female voice choirs did a spot as well.

I must confess my legs turned to jelly at the turn of the Mal voice choirs spot. No one to hide behind and all and we were right out in front. We also had quite a few South Africans in the both the audience and the choir and we were singing the Zulu part of their national anthem Nkosi Sikelel I’Afrika. Pressure much 🙂 This jelly legged syndrome was somewhat eased with the rapturous applause and cheering it received. Somewhat. Enough so the next Georgian song (Mgzavruli) was pleasureable to sing.

A really heartwarming evening which also helped raise a fair amount for the Refugee Family Reunification Trust. Nice one all!  Can’t wait till the next one.

You know you’re getting older when…..

Slippers!

I mean really… slippers.

This stalwart item of indoor footwear for aging aunties and uncles everywhere. Can there be any better sign of aging (to put it politely) than not only the purchase of, but also the enjoyment of, said item.

Still, I suppose I did become an Uncle earlier this year. (Hey Declan, hows tricks?)

Heh – still love that. “Yu Mo Gui Gwai Fie Di Jow! You want a piece of Uncle?”

And yes, I do have a great pair of black (not All Blacks) fur-lined slippers and yes they are lovely to put on when I get home ;).

Bouncy Bouncy Bouncy Bouncy Fun Fun Fun Fun Fun!

Last night I finally managed to meet face to face with a lovely lady by the name of Tania, who runs and owns the Big Air Gym in Tawa. This place is a gymnastics centre which also happens to do a bit of trampolining. It sounds like they have had a bit of on and off sucess with it, as they have had issues with continuity of coaches. This is where I come in.

Through a bizarre set of circumstances we have been unable to contact each other for about 6 weeks but finally managed to do so this Tuesday. After meeting last night at the gym we have settled on starting 2 recreational classes a week with a third to come for competition development with yours truly as the coach :D. I am sooooo excited.

Will update next week with how it went, but for now, WAHEY!!!!!!!

Community Choir Annual Concert

Well we are now really gearing up to the Wellington Community Choir Annual Concert to be held on Friday September 14th to a packed 400 seater theatre. (Eeek, nearly spelt that the american way).

We will be singing a global collection of songs for about 2 hours (:0) and a great evening should be had by all.

Full details can be found at the Wellington Community Choir website and of course if you happen to find yourself in Wellington on the night in question, let me know as tickets are currently still available.

Anyway, back to the exercises.

Mi Ma Mo, Mi Ma Mo
Do rey me fah so lah tee doh!…….

One more landmark acheived

Today I felt was another of those landmarks. I sit all day at my machine typing away and I am no longer able to get to the martial arts classes that I would like to for a variety of reasons (including being half a world away). As a result, the simple equation of energy in vs energy out is remarkably unbalanced in one particular direction meaning my tan tien region is growing ever stouter. Not the strength of my tan tien, just the region. So I have joined the gym!

I went through my induction today and Glenn, the personal trainer who walked me through today’s introduction to torture, has put me on a mostly cardio workout, to get in the “Fat burning zone”, heh and eek at the same time. My intention is to get to the gym 4 times a week, twice to workout, twice to swim. We will see what happens.

That time of schooling year

Jordan got her school report last week, and after an extremely hectic weekend, we finally got a chance to read it. On the whole her report was excellent with mostly “Acheived with Merit” and a number of “Acheived with Excellence” gradings which was well received. There were a couple of areas which may need attention including programming in ICT 😮 but otherwise, good job Jordan.

Oh and the overriding tone of the report seemed to be, Jordan is a lively and enthusiastic class participant but needs to focus more on the task at hand. Don’t know where she gets it from at all. 😉

Bornefield Labradors now online

Some close friends up in Auckland kindly asked me to do a website for their breeding and competition labradors. They are all gorgeous and friendly dogs, and becoming incredibly successful too 🙂 and I was thrilled at the prospect. I am not a designer of sites but thought I would have a go, and also it would give me a chance to flex some (very) underused design muscles.

Anyway, as my first paying website clients (:0) I figured I should tell the world. The site is available at www.bornefieldlabradors.co.nz and is continually evolving so worth checking back periodically.

Currently on the 2nd page in the world and the 1st page for NZ only “labradors” searches in google and trying to get up the ranks in MSN. We will have to see how that develops.

Official Kiwi Drivers

We, Jen and I, are now the proud holders of NZ Land Transport Temporary Drivers licences having just sat down and taken the written conversion test.

Jen reminded me last night that the day we were no longer officially allowed to drive in NZ was today! 😮 So one evening of hectic cramming later (ahem 1:15AM finish) and a frought lunch hour and we have it. And to top it all off, it was all done in about 10 minutes, although I was still paniced until Jen finished hers.

So panic over – heh.

Oh yeah, favourite bit from the road code has to be from http://www.landtransport.govt.nz/roadcode/about-driving/tips-for-handling-driving-emergencies.html:

Earthquake

In a severe earthquake driving can be very difficult because the road may be shaking or moving up and down beneath you.

If you think that an earthquake is happening while you’re driving, you should:

  • pull over and stop
  • stay inside your vehicle until the shaking stops. Your vehicle will provide you with some protection against falling objects.

After the earthquake:

  • if power lines have fallen onto your vehicle, stay inside it until help arrives
  • if you continue driving straight after the earthquake, be on the lookout for slips or other road damage and obstacles
  • turn on your radio and listen for news about possible road closures and other information.

Submerged vehicle

New Zealand has a high number of coastal and riverside roads and sometimes vehicles can end up underwater.

Knowing what to do if you’re ever in this situation can mean the difference between life and death.

  • If possible, get out of the vehicle while it’s still afloat. It will normally sink within a matter of minutes.
  • Escape by winding down the window. The weight of water against doors will usually make them too hard to open.
  • Once submerged, water will gradually seep into the vehicle. Escape through the windows. If this isn’t possible, wait until the vehicle is filled almost to head height with water. The doors will be easier to open then as the pressure inside the vehicle will be almost the same as it is outside.
  • Before leaving the vehicle, turn the lights on so rescuers can find it more easily.
  • Form a human chain with any other passengers as you leave the vehicle. This will make sure you all stay together.