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It’s been raining a lot lately. Which is good because I love the rain. Last Friday we dropped the cats off in Greenhithe and drove up to Whangarei where we bought food for eight. Then off we headed to the far reaches of Sandy Bay.

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Upon arrival I walked along the empty beach to the bach, in the wind and rain, and alerted the others to our arrival.

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We enjoyed a long weekend of walks along the white sandy beach, playing boisterous scrabble, collecting driftwood, eating proper sausages from Westmere butcher, eating gorgeously delicious burgers made by me, and eating pumpkin and lemon risotto also made by me – which incidentally took me about two hours to make because I didn’t make enough to begin with. I actually really enjoyed that it took that long and it was perfect and delicious even at ten o’clock.

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On Sunday afternoon after most of the others left we lay in our room all snuggled up on the duvet, the doors open, watching the sea, the rain, the pohutukawa and the surfers.

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Simply doing nothing. I’d found a book of New Zealand short stories. Kevin was reading a Reginald Perrin book they’d unearthed in the bookshelf and Astrid was quite happy to just hang out. And of course we went for another walk or two. Up and down the beach. Daddy didn’t love the rain much, but mummy did. She took lots of photos of wet shells. And wet families.

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I finished the wool bunny which needs photographing. We did have one sunny-ish day too. Astrid even had to wear her hat. It didn’t stay on for long. She managed to break daddy’s glasses again too.

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On the way home we stopped off at The Cream of Matakana and handed over a box of two hundred cards and a pile of halter neck tops. This morning has been spent ordering more ingredients from around the world for moisturisers, ready for the day very soon when I make the full range of six.

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Some of you may have noticed price increases at Little Orchard. That’s because my skincare products, cards and baby clothes are now available at Ruby & Sol and The Cream of Matakana. And me being the complete shop novice had priced everything at wholesale – it never occurring to me I’d one day have my things in shops. This paragraph is going to self destruct in a month or so, but blog friends, if you wanted to order something just email me telling me what you would like and I’ll give you wholesale prices.

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In other news I have my fingers crossed that we have found the perfect nanny for Astrid to come here two to three days a week. I won’t say anything though until it’s all final. Now Astrid’s crawling – and especially interested in power cables, electric sockets and sewing machine and overlocker pedals – life here is very interesting. Here she is at the bach eating the stool.

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Michael Park School fair’s on this Saturday from ten in the morning until I’m not sure. It’s at 55 Amy Street, Ellerslie – and I can’t wait to go – it’s been at least twenty years since I was there. My word. And we’ll be there again next week, Astrid starts baby group there on Tuesdays and one day soon I’ll join the craft group. Maybe next year for that.