It was my son-in-law's 40th birthday party that took us all south to Taranaki. As he's Canadian, he decided to have a Canadian theme party. The team from the north decided to dress up as an ice hockey team (how do you like that fearsome hockey stick?) with our own cheerleaders. It was a team effort by Heather and me to get those uniforms ready, lots of hours sewing, painting on lines and drawing logos. Heather finding the helmets in the $2 shop was a real stroke of luck.
Let me declare that I have now worn shorts for the last time in this lifetime!
I stayed on when the rest of the visitors returned home. Bill and his brother, who was visiting from Canada, took off for a tiki tour, so I kept Justine company. She was selling her cupcakes at a local garden in the Powerco Taranaki Garden Spectacular so I got to visit some really impressive gardens. Shame the mountain was hidden by cloud most of the days I was there.
Stanleigh garden where Justine set up shop
I would have been happy to camp in the little cottage in the garden. Cute, huh? The cottagbe, not me, silly!
The first part of the garden we saw didn't promise much excitement for a boy.
But luckily I am always attracted to the sound of running water and we discovered a little stream with steps leading down to it, bridges across it , then more steps up the other side. By the time we came to about the third bridge Aiden was striding across the bridges with great confidence.
I used to love to take the twins and Georgia on Bear Hunts. Do you know that book, "We're going on a bear hunt, we're not scared"? They may have grown up a lot since then but I don't think I have. Aiden and I had an exciting bear hunt. He was a fearless bear hunter, brushing aside the undergrowth and encouraging me to "Come on, Granny, come on!"
Running on ahead to make sure there were no bears.
We didn't see a single soul in this wild part of the garden. Just as well, we were a bit noisy. We ended up coming to the very back of the garden and a sign declaring the garden beyond had been abandoned and would be redeveloped in the future. Two year olds can't read but know a good bear garden when they see one, we ventured in.
I think it was later that day that the mountain almost came out of hiding.