Peas and Carrots: Pre-Marital Prep

Pre-cana? Nah. FOCCUS test? Nah. Any sort of marriage preparation reading material? Nah. Although, now being almost six months into marriage, I can see that any of those would be very, very, helpful.

This is marriage prep Veggie-style.
On Friday, amid decorating, welcoming guests, eating some scrumptious food, swimming, and boating, we took some time out for playing on the ropes course. Everyone got pretty into it.

Most surprising entries?
72 year old FFIL Veggie. Re-discovering youthful zest on the zip line and flying squirrel.

6 year old Veggie Sprout Ringbearer. Not scared at all of the 40+ foot multi-stage zip line.

Not to be outdone, Momma Veggie and the Veggie siblings got in on the act.

And this is definitely one of my favorite series of photos from the entire weekend.

Now that’s teamwork. What’s your favorite dish? (Any Tenacious D fans out there? Anyone?)

Your family might not be as crazy as ours, but I seriously recommend finding some way of having a relaxing fun time with both sides all together at some point before the wedding. Because we live so far away, and our families live far from each other, it isn’t often that we are all in the same place. Doing the ropes course all together is one of the first memories we created with our new family…all 20+ siblings, parents, and nieces and nephews. Here’s hoping there will be many many more.

Beach Logging

I have been splitting quite a bit of wood for our two wood stoves over the past year and figured that leaving the rural lifestyle behind me and stepping into the suburbs for a few months might offer a change of pace. This dream came to an abrupt end with the three day rainstorm we had last weekend. The Whaganui river swelled into a churning brown monster laden with debris that were belched into the ocean. I thought twice before I took a swim in New Zealand’s agricultural run-off, but figured it was all part of the experience and plunged in. Over the next twenty-four hours the beach was transformed from a smooth black sand ribbon, laced with footprints and ATV tracks, to the remnants of a clear cut gone wrong.

Whole trees were washed up and stacked randomly amongst one another, leaving little room for my daily swim routine. So began my new career as a beach logger.

Nelson and I fire up our skidder and rumble down to the parking lot. Selecting only the finest wood for burning, we proceed to load the roof rack with logs of various sizes and up to eight meters long. Roping it all down, we headed for home.

The poor Subaru was riding low as we lumbered down the street, branches trailing close to the pavement. The four police cars we passed along the way seemed more concerned with catching hard criminals and drunks than busting us for doing a little beach clearing. Safely home, we unloaded without a scratch to the paint job. The wood now sits in a pile in the yard, awaiting the arrival of the multi-fuel stove and outdoor pizza oven.

-John the Intern

Editor’s Note: John the Intern arrived to us, straight off a lobster boat in Maine, last Friday. He has been disappointed in the rainy New Zealand summer he’s experienced thus far. But it beats the wintery thundersnows back home. He’ll be in New Zealand until May, working with us and traveling to other sites. We’ve coerced him into writing some blog posts as part of his interning duties, so you can look forward to hearing more from him in the future.