Sunday, February 4, 2018

Venice Simplon Orient Express

I am very fortunate to have a kind husband who last year, spoilt me with a wonderful trip away  to celebrate my birthday.
Looking back through my photos, have never got around to sharing them, so here goes, come aboard and I will show you around.
 We departed from Victoria Station in London and crisscrossed Europe, through Switzerland and ending up in the wonderful City of Venice.
A journey unlike any other  when you step aboard the train and instantly you feel like you have stepped back in time, to amazing elegance and was certainly a wonderful and romantic experience.
 Considered one of the most luxurious trains in the world, the Orient Express hearkens back to the Golden age of luxury travel in the 1920's.

I loved all the Art Deco touches, from the marquetry inlayed wood, plush sofa and chairs to the French Lalique glass in the dinning car.

In our room was a little sink, in an enclosed cabinet and you are provided with robe, slippers, towels and toiletries. 

The friendly and helpful staff were dressed in regal uniforms, and the food was outstanding and there is something special about train journeys, where you can relax and enjoy the spectacular scenery from your room.

Everyone dressed up in their finest clothes and was certainly a very memorable trip
After dinner the waiter kindly brought out a birthday cake, a very sweet handbag that we were able to share with another couple that were sitting at our table.
 So all to soon, our journey came to an end and we arrived in Venice. We can now look back with many happy memories of our trip, and meeting many new friends on our way.  One couple we talked to actually had a brother and sister who live on our Island, so it is a small world after all.
Breakfast was served in our room 

Do hope you are having a great weekend.
We have a long weekend here, with it been Waitangi day on Tuesday, many people take the Monday off and make it a four day holiday.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

January days

Hello dear friends,

How is your January going so far?
The summer  days here have been really hot, so I have not been spending much time  sitting down at the computer.
I am trying hard to get back into the swing of blogging again and I look forward to coming over the say hello and see how you are.

I have a small favour to ask please and if you would be kind enough to take a look at what daughter has written below. 
Her Channel is :
She would be so grateful for your help. After making videos for 2 years the rules have changed much to the annoyance of her and many other people.
It seems to be only the ones with millions of followers that do well and the others who are trying to make a go of their Channels are not given any help.
Thank you for your help and we would be so very grateful

Kindness is the number one attribute in a human being
~  Roald Dahl

Happy weekend and hope you have a wonderful time

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Hello New Year

Celebrated a big significant birthday

Happy New Year my friends and hope that your new year is off to a great start and that it will be a wonderful year for us all. 
Will share a few photos and memories that made 2017 special for me. My dear husband took me on the Orient Express and we ended up in the amazing City of Venice. Will have to share some more of my photos soon

We have enjoyed having family and friends around and it is always a lovely time of the year, when you can relax and enjoy some summertime weather. Barbecues and walks along the beach are always a wonderful way to spend the holidays.
My new year got off to a great start, as yesterday my dear daughter helped me with a job that needed attention, sorting out my overstocked wardrobe and we now have a big pile of clothes to go to the Red Cross Thrift shop.

Last Wednesday though, I had to visit the Medical center after a little accident.
I was sitting at my desk looking at the computer when for some unknown reason, the LED light bulb above me malfunctioned and the burning hot plastic dripped down on my arm. At first I thought maybe a wasp or bee had stung me, as it hurt a lot. My family wondered what on earth was wrong with me as I raced down the stairs screaming and pulling the plastic off that had melted onto my arm and causing third degree burns.  Thankfully it is coming right and have had to get the dressings changed everyday. We will be getting the electrician in to have a look at the wiring to the light, as I am sure it should not have done something like that.
A little Sailor bear I made
Will leave you with some pretty pink peonies 
Thanks very much for your continued friendship and support.
May 2018 bring you everything you hope for, love, peace, good health, happiness and prosperity for you and your loved ones also
Best wishes for luck in everyone's New Year 
Lots of love and hugs

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Merry Christmas

The presents are all wrapped and under the tree, house all spruced up and daughter has kindly baked delicious Christmas cookies. This morning I glazed a ham ( such a wonderful smell wafting from the kitchen)  and have made a pavlova.
Family are home, so it is always lovely to be able to spend time together, at the end of the year.

The weather has been hot here and we are in need of some rain. Wednesday we have a delivery of water coming so that will be great. Reading in the newspaper the wait for a water delivery is 14 weeks, which will be in about March sometime, so really hope we have a good drop of rain to fill up the watertanks soon.

Thank you for your kindness here throughout the year and I am very grateful for your friendship.
A very Merry Christmas and wishing you the warmest of holidays with everything that you hold dear to your heart.

Seasons Greetings and have a peaceful and joyous holiday
Much love and hugs
Carolyn xo

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Busy time of the year

The lead up to the end of year is always hectic and that is why I have not been around here much.
Sorry I have not been to visit you but looking forward to coming over to say hello soon.

The end is in sight for the building work around our place and this week saw some outside steps and raised garden beds in which I planted some herbs, tomatoes and a passionfruit vine in it, so hopefully we will have some rainfall to keep everything healthy.
We have enjoyed having our daughter home for a few days and she left yesterday to go back to her apartment in the City.


Last night we went to Cat Stevens (Yusuf Islam's ) concert and it was wonderful.
It was one of my dreams to see him and when he turned his back on the music industry and gave it all up and stopped performing, did not think that would happen.
The show started off with a background set of a stylised London train station which set the scene well for his early days growing up in London.
Then he invited us up to a mock up of the attic in the family home, where we saw some of his treasures and he shared stories of his life.

All the old favourites, Father and Son, Wild World, Peace Train, Moonshadow and Remember the days in the old school yards, were some of the wonderful songs he played - his soulful voice sounded remarkable and unchanged from all those years ago.
The great part about it, the crowd sang along with him  as we knew all the old tunes and if you closed your eyes it transported you back to 1971.
The final song 'Morning has broken' and one I have always loved and played on the piano, was a wonderful end to the evening.
Have you ever been lucky to attend one of Cat Stevens concerts?

Hope all is well with you and the lead up to the end of the year is relaxed and calm.

Will leave you will some pretty peonies and hope your week is going well and wishing you a happy weekend

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Escaping to paradise

Last week we visited Aitutaki, which is in the Cook Islands. 
I was excited when my DH took me away for a week to this tropical Island.
Here are a few snapshots from our time away and had to pinch myself that how beautiful the Island was. We had perfect weather with blue skies and only one morning over breakfast, we had a rain shower and had to retreat  under cover.
We flew 3 1/2 hours to Rarotonga and then caught a smaller plane over to the Island.
On arrival we were greeted by Kirsty with a gorgeous lei of sweet smelling gardenia, and frangapani and a coconut drink with Hibiscus flower
Etu Moana was the place where we stayed in Villa 1, with its thatched roof and located right on the beach.
 This is the view from off our deck and was enjoyable having a drink and watching the sun go down.
Listening to breaking waves crashing on the reef and looking out from our villa, to the clear blue ocean,  and white sand really was paradise. The only negative was a pesky old rooster which was a little ambitious and one night started crowing at 3 am!
my husband reading a book on the sunlounger

 The Lagoon made for safe swimming, snorkelling around the coral and seeing all the tropical brightly coloured fish, and to me that was the highlight of the trip. I even saw Nemo.

We explored the Island on push bikes, kayaked, ate too much food, read some books and generally just had a relaxing time.
At Koru restaurant where we dined outdoors for lunch one day, we were amused to read this sign, as chickens were happily walking around everywhere
One day we went out on a boat, with Bishops Tours who showed us around some of the other Islands. and saw a large turtle swimming around and our tour guide swam in after it, but luckily the turtle was too fast for him. 
The turtle sculpture was in the airport

They dropped us off to go snorkelling around some giant Trevalli fish (protected) It was scary and they seemed like sharks swimming around with us.
We had to take our rings and watches off as we could be mistaken for a small shiny fish that they would be attracted to. My wedding band would not come off, so they put a band-aid over it.
They told us that a lady a few weeks back, had to have 6 stitches as the fish had tried to bite her finger with ring on, so was actually glad to get back on the boat with my fingers all intact.
One Foot Island was where we stopped for a Barbecue lunch of fish, sausages, salads and fresh fruit, and that was a lovely way to finish our day out on the water.

All good things must come to an end and our week went so quickly and before we knew it, was time to get back on the plane and head for home.

Do hope all is well with you and that you have a wonderful week

Monday, October 30, 2017

A few favourites for October

 Hello dear friends,
A little hydrangea love

Where do the days go? Nearly at the end of October and how can that  be!
As you may have noticed there has not been a lot of blogging going on in my life lately.
A lot has been going on here and it's all good. I felt like I needed to take a little break and have missed you all and look forward to coming over to say hello and see what you are up to.
Work continues around our house and today the scaffolding finally was taken away. After the house and the roof were painted it is pleasant to be able to walk out onto the deck again as the doors were only able to be opened a little and to not have the unsightly iron bars everywhere. Will share some photos soon.
Don't know how the scaffolders could listen to their hip hop, rap music and every second word seemed to be a profanity, which made me have to shut the window to block it out.  It was all too much and went out for a little walk, to get away from it all.
A sweet little family of white ducks, so cute

Will share a few photos from around my little part of the world. This sweet family of white ducks have taken up residence at Matiatia Wharf and I love to see them waddling about

It was wonderful sailing home on the car ferry last week. Far away in the distance you can see the Sky Tower and the City of Auckland. The sky and sea was the most amazing blue
Violas, such sweet little flowers

My Cecil Brunner rose is blooming again

Do hope all is well with you all and many thanks for reading my blog and all the lovely comments you leave.

 Another evening and the same little family of five ducks
Sending hugs and wishing you a wonderful new week