Home Sweet Home!

Trip Start Aug 20, 2009
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of New Zealand  , Auckland,
Monday, November 23, 2009

Well the last week has been very busy with one thing and another.  The few days leading up to settling on the house seemed to take ages, even though we were really busy sorting out insurance of one type or another and visiting schools.  We were just so excited about having our own place again - very ironic when you think about how desperate to sell our house we were in the UK!  I still miss Pine View such a lot, far more than I ever expected to.

I expected Thursday to be a day of waiting around, so to keep everyone amused we went to see James and the children had a swim in the pool.  A great activity to do to stop them asking when we were going to have a new house and also to cool them down, as the sun was definately shining.  The house was ready way before we expected, so after the swim, it was a quick lunch at the motel before heading off to the house to drop off the first load.  I was hoping to do a sale shop at Briscoes and a food shop before picking Jeff up at three.  Just a tad ambitious I think - I managed the Briscoes shop and was still late to pick Jeff up!  We then loaded up the car for a second time - it's amazing how much stuff you can accumulate in four weeks of living in a motel!  Then it was back over to the house for a take away supper on our new bargain rug, then we waited for Jeff's new bike to arrive.  It had been shipped from Otago - perfect timing, just a shame that Jeff didn't have any bike gear and was going to have to wait for the container stuff to arrive - just a little frustrating to say the least!  It was a little bit like Christmas at this point, a new house and a new bike all in one day :-)  After the bike arrived we drove back to the motel for our final night - the children exhausted and me keen to watch Outrageous Fortunes - the NZ version of Shameless!!!

We had no trouble at all getting up and out of the house on Friday morning - we were on the road to the house by 7.15am.  We already had breakfast stuff at the house so everyone had food there while I popped out to the shop in Titirangi to get supplies for the day and evening. By the time I arrived back the two trucks containing all of our stuff had arrived - they were dead on time.  I don't know which of us were more excited, the children for their toys, Jeff for his motorbike gear or me for my variety of clothes and shoes!

In order to ensure that all the boxes/parcels arrived, I had to check off the boxes as the numbers were called by 4 removal men and let them know which room each box needed to go in.  This would have worked quite well if the boxes actually contained exactly what it said on the box.  However, boxes ended up being quite random!  I got to the point when I just didn't know where boxes needed to go and just said anywhere!  Jeff was running around checking the contents of the boxes and keeping the children supplied with boxes of toys. Lucy got to the point where the poor removal chaps couldn't get any more stuff in her room because she was frantically opening each box as it arrived!  It was really quite overwelming for them both, they had been looking forward to having their toys for so long, now they had them, they didn't know what to play with first. 

The whole event was quite stressful, so we were glad when the removal men had finished 3 and a half hours later and we had the house to ourselves. Most of our stuff seemed to have made the journey safely, however, the odd thing was broken or cracked - a picture frame, glass in a cabinet and the kids painting easel was smashed - but nothing particularly important.  That was apart from the sack barrow, which was very strange! It had been used until the last minute to load the container at Pine View and we saw it put in the container and the container sealed.  We even have photos with it in the background complete with 2 wheels! When it arrived in New Zealand it was unloaded in the company's bonded warehouse, then when the barrow arrived at our house someone had undone the 4 bolts on one of the wheels!!!!  Mysteriously the wheel turned up in the van but no bolts. I have contacted the company to find out who had decided to take the bolts but am still awaiting an answer a week later!

Once the men had gone and we had gathered our breath we began trying to get the beds together - Jeff constructed while I located bedding and made beds.  It was fairly easy in our room and Dan's.  Lucy's, however, was a little more difficult trying to locate some floor space!  By the time that Larissa, Brent, Maureen, Emily and Issy arrived with pizza we were at least ready for sleeping later.

Lucy and Dan had a great time showing Emily and Issy around their new house and showing them their toys.  They had been so desperate to do that all day.  We have to say a big thank to the Parks and Maureen for saving us.  We are pretty sure we would have gone hungry and would have just worked on through if they hadn't arrive to toast us in :-)  We really enjoyed their company, their food, their wine/beer and their pressies - thank you :-)

Biggest disappointment today: finding a package which looked like a bottle of champagne - I really thought that someone had slipped a bottle in for us to drink as a surprise - unfortunately it ended up being a toilet brush and it's holder.  I was GUTTED but had a giggle to myself!

We were all exhausted when it came to going to bed.  Lucy slept really well, however, Dan ended up setting up camp in our room  from about three.  No surprise there really.  We let it go for the first night - it just meant we didn't have the best night's sleep!

The next few days were spent opening up box after box after box after box!  I set myself a target to have everything unpacked by Sunday - why do I set myself up to fail????  We have made really good progress but still have piles of stuff to find homes for and of course all the pictures/paintings to go on the walls.  However, we can cook, sleep and sit down in comfort now so we are happy :-) 

It took a while to get sorted with Sky - we landed the worst installer possible who was meant to arrive in the morning and finally arrived at 7pm with the wrong box.  He promised to be back with the right box by 8pm but never arrived!  As you can imagine, Jeff had steam coming out of his ears by this point.  However, we finally had it fitted by a reliable engineer the following day, who told us that the chap who had let us down the previous day had had 7 complaints that day!!  Not sure what had happened there!  Anyway, it's in now and the children are happy :-)

Jeff went back to work after having the Friday and the Monday off and I kept on unpacking, much to the disgust of the children!  'We're getting there!' has become the slogan of the day!  As each day has come and gone, the boxes have become fewer and fewer and the piles have reduced in size.  We have even had time to go out and have some fun time down at Mill Bay, walking along the beach at low tide collecting shells and stones.  The kids really enjoyed this welcome break.  They also made good use of the boxes, sometimes they were houses, kennels for their toys and one afternoon we were taken over by aliens - with face paint!!  Lucy stayed in character for most of the afternoon!  She even had teaspoons for ears!

The weekend just gone was spent at Mitre 10 sorting out outdoor furniture and trying to get to grips with BBQs.  We also had a great time at Issy's birthday party which is why Lucy was dressed up as a fairy and Dan as a pirate.  They loved having their dressing up bags to sort out proper costumes and Dan loved his moustache!  Tinkerbell visited the party and gave each of the children some fairy dust to put under their pillows.  She has since visited our new house and played on the swing Daniel has made for her.  We haven't seen her, but we have heard her bell, found fairy dust on the swing and in the house and Lucy has received a special thankyou heart for a letter she left for Tink last night.  Lucy is now busy making a door mat for Tink'sh house and a love heart to leave out tonight!

We are all happy in our new house and feel very settled already.  We have now decided to send the children to school so they start on Monday, which they are really excited about.  They are now definately ready to return to school after their adventure.  They only problem is that they only go for 2 weeks before the school shuts for the 7 week summer holidays!  I am sure they will cope!

Watch this space............................

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