An exciting weekend and now we are five...

It was my birthday on Friday 21 September, thank you so much to all the nice wishes I received. Also thank you very much to Catherine for the beautiful flowers, Amanda for the really nice book on creating your own artwork and to Riki for the book and the crosstitch kit, I really appreciate it.

Terence surprised me and booked a flight to Auckland for me. He booked me into the Stamford Plaza and he also booked a ticket to see a theatre production called "Murder by Chocolate". I was completely surprised, but very excited. I can't remember when last I had a break with just "me" time.

So in the morning I had to quickly pack, then we dropped Caitlyn off at daycare and then Bianca, Terence and I went to visit Bianca's friend Georgia and her mom Catherine for a play date. Bianca had a really nice time and the two girls enjoyed playing outside.

The flight to Auckland only takes an hour and then a further 45 minutes or so with the Airport bus to the city. Lucky I could still pretty much remember Auckland from when we lived there back in 2004 / 2005. It really brought back some memories.

On Friday afternoon I checked in and then decided to go and visit the staff at PFL (a shipping company in Auckland where I worked as a temp for approx. 6 months when I just arrived in Auckland). It was good to see them and to see many familiar faces still there. Of course there were also a couple of new faces.

I went to the theatre production in the evening and it was quite weird, but had a number of funny bits in it. I quite enjoyed it and it was a very interesting layout with the stage at the bottom almost like at a stadium.

On Saturday morning I quickly did some shopping (I promised to bring back some little gifts for Terence and the girls) and then I took the ferry across to Devonport (just 15 minutes or so). Once again, all familiar because we often went to Devonport when we lived there. Afterwards I visited the Sky Tower - a really high tower that people often "jump" from - well not really jump, because they are attached with ropes and then they come down in a very controlled manner. I did not go all the way to the top and certainly did not try the whole "jumping" thing.

Here is a photo of the Ferry Building.

Here is a photo of the Sky Tower. The ring at the top of the photo is where people "jump" from. See the ropes to the left of the photo.

Here is a photo of Auckland CBD taken from the Ferry on the way to Devonport. See the brown building on the right of this photo just behind a small white building - that is the ferry building. Now look at the tall tower, that is the Sky Tower (just to give you an idea of how tall it is).

The rest of the time was spent sightseeing in the CBD, relaxing in the Spa Pool at the hotel and otherwise just doing nothing much but take time out.

The hotel was really nice and much more than I expected. I especially enjoyed the breakfast buffet - it had so many options to choose from.

On Sunday morning at 10:00 I flew back to Wellington. When I arrived just after 11:00, I finally met the new addition to our family...

Meet Sanna.

Sanna is our Au Pair. We decided to find a solution so that we could take Caitlyn out of daycare. This way we are hopefully able to avoid Caitlyn picking up bugs and passing them on to Bianca. And hopefully then we are able to minimise our hospital stays. So we were looking at a couple of options. We initially considered getting an Au Pair but it turned out to be quite an expensive option so told the agency that we would rather consider one of the other options. So then last week we got another message from the agency and she offered us a discounted price because the Au Pair she wanted to introduce was already in the country. Well, we had a telephonic interview and we decided it would be a good match and of course would now fit in with our budget. So on Friday night she arrived by bus from Hamilton. I wasn't there to meet her and so Terence and the girls spent the weekend showing her around a bit and making her feel at home. So far Bianca has taken so well to her, so we are quite pleased about that. For the next week or so, Caitlyn will still be in daycare as we need to give notice of our intention to take her out of daycare and during this time Sanna will be able to really get to know Bianca and her situation.

Sanna is from Sweden and she is now 20 years old.