My blog has moved! Redirecting...

You should be automatically redirected. If not, visit and update your bookmarks.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

New Zealand Photos

In the land of New Zealand there are three kinds of kiwi: the kiwi fruit, the kiwi bird, and kiwi people. All three have certain things in common: they are 1) furry 2) sweet 3) and green. Just kidding! Let me post some pictures to clear up these horrendous over-generalizations.;-)


Music Point and Mission Bay

Right off the plane, Annie took us to Music Point. You can see in the background the Volcanoe named "Rangitoto" (Rang-e-toe-toe).

We also got to visit my Aunt Beth, Uncle Jeff, and cousin Emily in Auckland. It was great!

We got to spend a lot of time with the people of the Wesleyan Church in Auckland. Here is a picture of several of them. That first night, Annie took us to Mission Bay where we met up with everyone for ice cream. On the left are Amy and Drew Donavan, who attended Bethany Bible College with Dwayne. Beside my sister is Derene Els, whose family is originally from South Africa. Her brother, Graemme, is at the other end of the table next to my Unlce Jeff. To the right of my cousin Emily is David, a true Kiwi and Graemme's best friend. They do alot of fellowshipping over there. Some of our most treasured memories are of sitting around eating together, talking, and playing games.

After ice cream at Movenpick's we walked across the street to the beach and hung out and talked some more.

Downtown Auckland

The next day, we caught a ferry to downtown Auckland.

One of the key tourists spots in downtown is the Sky Tower.

At the top of the sky tower you get a fabulous view of Auckland. Again, you can see Rangitoto in the background.


On Friday, my sister took us to Piha, a black-sand beach on the West Side of the North Island. As you can see, it was beautiful. Apparantly, Piha is a popular surfing spot. Hardly any one was out while we were there. This is part of what I treasured about our vacation -- the un-crowdedness. Sometimes, I forget how the constant buzz of people in LA affects my mood.

NZ, Annie's Birthday

My sister has a post and a video all about this over on her blog. So I won't add much more, just show you a couple of our pics.

Posted by Picasa


One of the highlights of our trip was visiting our friends, the Crawfords, in Wellington. Before leaving for Wellington, we asked people in Auckland what to expect. Invariably, they all said it was "cold" and "windy." While it was indeed windy, they neglected to mention just how beautiful it was.

Phil and Michele Crawford, with their son Ben. Eventhough this was our first time to meet the Crawfords, they treated us like family. We will not soon forget their hospitality and generosity. We left Wellington truly enriched by our time with them!

Across the street from their house.

At a cafe in downtown Wellington.

Rock Climbing

After visiting Wellington, we returned to Auckland for four days. Before it was all over, Annie's friends took us rock climbing. What pain, but what fun! Dwayne and I have decided to continue the trend here in LA.

My very buff sister working an overhang. How did she do that?!
Posted by Picasa

New Zealand Conclusion

So in conclusion, Dwayne and I had a wonderful time in the land down under. We brought home teas, and chocolates, and other treats that we would love to share with anyone who stops by! And I mean this as an invitation.;-)

Posted by Picasa

Thursday, January 11, 2007

A Trip to the Moon (aka Auckland)

So we're going to New Zealand next Monday. Nothing like a six thousand mile trip to shake up the well worn sense of security that hinges on your mundane routine.

Dwayne and I have been planning a trip to NZ for a while, except I thought we were going in June. On Monday Dwayne bopped into the study and said, "I think we need to go to NZ this month." I start teaching again on Jan 30th. We did the math and that meant that we needed to leave this Monday the 15th!

Sounds crazy, yes? Well it felt crazy! Luckily, Annie wasn't busy, so she could keep us. Also, we were able to find reasonably priced tix at a local travel agent. So far so good, but the plans kinked when we couldn't get a hold of a pastor in Wellington who's been talking to Dwayne and I.

We called him, e-mailed him, skyped him, but best we could tell he was on vacation and totally unreachable. We weren't sure, but we thought he'd be back in town by the time we left for New Zealand. The uncertainty was killing us! What if we bought the plane tix only to find out that he was out of town? Or what if he said, "Sorry, I've planned a conference this week/ a national festival this week/ a trip to the moon this week"?

The suspense was killing us. We didn't know whether or not to get the tix.

Yesterday, I was grumbling over the fact that we hadn't planned this trip far enough in advance, when, like a tap on the shoulder, this thought occured to me. "Can't plan everything, Christin. In fact, you're not supposed to. Sometimes, you just gotta be flexible and go with it."

And so, after a chat with my friend Gia, a chat with my mom, and a chat with my dad, I told Dwayne we should by the tix anyway. To my amazement, not two hours after purchasing the tix, I was able to get said pastor's cell phone number from his daughter-in-law (this is also a bit of a story, but let's just say my stint as a journalist taught me persistence), who said he was out camping.

By five o'clock Dwayne and I were able to talk to him and everything fell neatly into place.

So, we'll be in NZ from the 15th to the 27th. I promise - I'll tell you all about it.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

New Year, New Paint

After much talk, hype, and deliberation, we finally got our butts in gear and painted our living room and kitchen. It's been a long time in coming. My friend, Melissa, has been helping me redecorate, but the process has been a slow one. Here are some before and after shots of project, "Living Room Beautification."