Monday, 11 November 2013


WARNING: This post contains lamb on a spit, which I find pretty damn impressive (not to mention mouthwatering) but some people mightn't like it.

APOLOGIES: some of the comments from the last post ended up in my spam queue, hopefully I've now rectified the situation.


I call this procrastiblogging - I have a shitload of stuff to do, but I would rather be doing this. Plenty of time to be working hard.

I have just gotten back from Christchurch, New Zealand. It was a flying visit for my Fella's parents 50th Wedding anniversary.

I had done the whole "meeting the family" thing before so that was no biggie.

The bigger deal was trying to fit it all in among moving preparations etc. But not to worry, we can only do what we can do.

So we got into ChCh at about 0200 on Friday morning. The flights etc were uneventful, made that way by some nice wine taken in the lounge (my fella has Qantas club membership). Flights are best taken a little bit drunk. But not too drunk.

The next day was a sleep in, touching base with the family, helping them with last minute shopping, and some wandering around. As everyone knows ChCh was affected badly by an earthquake in 2011 ( and a less destructive one in 2010). Things are slowly but surely being rebuilt. It is still worth a visit if you are going to NZ.

Here are some photos.
The Cathedral

The Fella, Surveying the Damage

I remember this from my visit 10 years ago - it survived unscathed.

Condemned buildings and Chain Link everywhere, but some pretty on the chain link
That night we went to our favourite ChCh haunt, DuxDine - if you are in ChCh you should go there.

Here is a rose from their garden

Saturday was the big 'do - the family, plus the golden couple's 40 closest friends, mostly over the age of 70.

We assumed that these people wouldn't eat much - they did.
We assumed that they wouldn't get into the wine too much - they hit it hard.

I busied myself collecting plates and keeping on top of the mess. Tidying (most unlike me) kept me out of the wine trough and kept me from having to talk to a whole bunch of people I didn't know. The family was very grateful. Win, win and win.

The main food item was lamb on a spit. Here is the beastie (you have been warned)


My fella carving the delicious beast

And here is my fella's mums wedding dress.  Teeny tiny waist.

On Sunday there was a family get together in Hurunui, up in the Waipara region about 90 minutes outside ChCh. More food (mostly Pavlova) was eaten. Pictures are not shown to protect the privacy of the other folks.

We then went down to the river- the Fella's nieces and nephew had a frolic in there, and an all-out mud flinging brawl ensued, with my Fella's brother in law starting it. It was hilarious. The 5 year old neice showed impressive guerrilla tactics.

Monday was a catch up with the fam and then home, via the plane. And the frequent flyer lounge, where much soothing and restorative wine/gin and tonics were drunk.

I am spent.

But this week will be busy.

Speaking of family gatherings, I am thinking of making a baked leg of ham for Xmas - have never done it before. My sister's boyfriend doesn't eat pork. Oh well, we don't like him very much and he will have to make do with other less festive meats.

And how are youse?

Have Xmas preps started in your neck of the woods?


  1. Sounds like a good but busy trip - shame you couldn't have spent a few more days in NZ on your own!

    1. Indeed!
      Would've loved to go to hamner springs

  2. Christmas hasn't started but I did do my Christmas baking gift list the other day and am excited to get started on them! :D

  3. xmas preps? i will bah hambug not decorate this year as i don't have a house to decorate...but i have done xmas shopping already. i hate shopping last minute for pressies with other procrastinators and everyone who seems to come to london to do so and have learned my lessons the hard way.

    yes i also use that tactic at parties where i dont know people - they all think i am so neat and tidy but it is just because i might bore them and get a bit shy at times. but it is win win glad you had a lovely trip x

  4. I love baked ham. Have done one every year for ages - being a farmer's wife means baking large amounts of meat! The lamb looks yummy by the way.

    Glad you enjoyed Christchurch and survived the family gathering (or rellie bash as my brother calls them!) - hope you have a quieter week.

    Take care.