Since pictures say it best, every now and then we sum up our day-to-day life during a given season in five pictures and five pictures only. Right now, it looks something like this. You can see our previous picture summaries here, here, here,here.
A visit to Duck Island Ice Cream was one of the last remaining items on our summer bucket list. We finally made it a couple of weeks ago. Nothing could contain this boy’s excitement! Can you tell?! While we didn’t check off a couple of the items on our list, we made a really good go of it! There’s always the autumn or the winter or the spring! So much to enjoy, so little time!
My sister, brother-in-law, and the world’s cutest nephew came to visit us! We had such a good time showing us little snapshots of our world, though we didn’t venture very far from home. Traveling with kids, even internationally, is worth it! We treasured our time together!
The very first signs of of autumn are tingeing the tips of our leaves, although many days have remained unseasonably warm. The trees are whispering of the inevitable change of seasons and the coming winter.
This is for real. We had similar signs last year too. Entire shelves where one would normally find greens are completely (or nearly) empty. We’ve had a kumara (sweet potato) shortage too. The fields were too wet in the winter and spring to harvest, so one of NZ’s biggest crops rotted in the mud.
Q gets to swim every single day at school during the warm months. He also takes swimming lessons once a week. It’s lots of pool time (and lots of laundry), and our little fish couldn’t be happier.
Sometimes pictures say it best. If we had to sum up our day-to-day life during this season in five pictures and five pictures only, they would look something like this:
1. Fall leaves. The weather is definitely getting cooler. Leaves are starting to change colors. This morning it was about 15 degrees Celsius (59 F) in the house. Chilly. But the days are still warm, the sun is shining, and our lemon tree and grapefruit tree are loaded with newly ripening fruit.
Kind of makes me think of Moses and the burning bush…
2. Who doesn’t love a little fixer upper project?! This was our best yet… way more attainable that an entire house! 😉 (Been there. Done that. A couple of times.) We bought this gem of a play house off of the infamous kiwi Trade Me, though it was looking a little worse for wear at the time. For a mere $26.00… plus gas to and from Auckland, McDonalds dinner for the bunch of Samoan teenagers it took to get it out of the original backyard, Bengay for some 30-year-old guys’ backs, wood for the deck, paint, elbow grease, and some flowers, it has become the pride of the backyard, the attraction of the neighborhood, and Q’s happy place. But “We got that for $26.00” sounds so much more dramatic.
3. Hey neighbor! We have a lot of neighborhood kids. And I do mean a lot. Maybe 30, give or take a few? We love that the little ones and big ones alike stop by to play (and quiz us on American stuff). We’ve had many games of tag and hide and seek around the house and through the yard lately. On Good Friday, we had barely pulled into the driveway from a service in Auckland when these guys rode up on their scooters. They noticed the Resurrection Eggs we put together at Kids’ Club the previous Sunday. Easter eggs are such a novelty that they immediately began opening them, and thus began an impromptu conversation about Jesus, death, and resurrection. Only one of our four visitors that day had heard the Hope of Easter before.
4. Speaking of Kids’ Club… We have a small but growing number of families that join us twice a month for wild games, engaging Bible stories, songs, prayer and evening tea. It’s the church. With tons of energy.
5.So you want to be a pilot? Q’s kindy (preschool) took a field trip to the tiny Hamilton airport this week. Jaron tagged along. They needed a bunch of parents and I was committed to leading Mainly Music at the time. Jaron and Q gladly used the opportunity to fantasize about their shared dreams of becoming pilots <insert terrified mom face emoji here>. In fact, Jaron was in a three hour seminar on how NZ health and safety regulations affect churches following the field trip, when he sent me this text message: “By the way… just googled the cost of getting a pilot’s license in NZ. Gonna start saving my blow money.” Oh brother.
We attended a tenebrae service with friends of varied denominations on Thursday and then had the privilege of participating in the Auckland Telugu service on Good Friday.
The Graham Family
We are the Graham family–Jaron, Elizabeth, the little guy Q. The three of us are on an adventure in faithfulness, currently serving in Hamilton, New Zealand. Being faithful requires much sacrifice and brings great joy. Adventure Graham is the place we chronicle our journey.