Thursday, 22 December 2011

Well Christmas has rocked its way back around again, and boy…on reflection “What a year!”.  Ours has been so jam-packed with things to attend/do that the time surely has flown. 
But again, we reflect and we are very thankful for what has been, thankful for a family full of love, and laughter.  We are thankful for those that we had in our lives even though this year they have been taken from us.  We are thankful that we live in a country that’s not living in a constant and REAL war.  We are thankful that we have a roof over our heads…it may not be the flashest pad in the world, but its OURS… I am thankful for a husband who is supportive, loving and caring, who works hard for our family and who puts us first!  I am thankful for a caring and loving son who loves so very fully that it makes my eyes tear up just thinking about it.  I am thankful for a little firecracker of a daughter who knows how to push all of my buttons…and then with one cheeky smile can erase all the grumpiness she’s just caused!  I’m thankful for the most wonderful Mum and Dad I could ever have wished for. And I’m thankful for all the lessons (good and bad) that I have learnt this year. Most of all I’m thankful that unto us…a saviour was born..and that when we celebrate Christmas, that for our family it’s not all about Santa….yes, we do have a “santa” pressie, and visit etc (I know some Christians just would NOT ever entertain that idea…but hey we do)… The main reason for Christmas is to celebrate CHRIST. J

I apologise for those of you who have put up with my very sporadic blogging this year…. I will definitely try a lot harder next year!  (I think I say that every single year don’t I?).  It has been wonderful meeting a lot of you fellow-bloggers in person this year… roll on next year, lets do some more meet-ups and gatherings! 
I want to wish you all a very Happy, lovely and safe Christmas and New Years.  Gods richest blessings to each and every one of you xxxx

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Christmassy times

Our view from the stage

Before I start...I wanna say thanks to Nadia, Rach and Kyle for the photos I've pinched for this blog!... ((heehee)).

Well. We (Kurfew)  had the pleasure of playing a gig at the Whangarei Christmas Festival this year.  Opening for Hello Sailor, and generally just having some fun doing what we enjoy doing.  We got to rock around the Christmas tree with Mr Claus, and it was fun!.

The crowd was a little timid at first, but we had to remember this wasn't our usual pub gig where the crowd are already "fuelled" with a nip or two, and raring to go from the start.... this was a family affair, and needed a little time to crank up!  But crank up it finally did!  Woohoo. 

The crowd
Was great to see some friendly and familiar faces there among the crowd.  Maungatapere locals up and dancing (yeah Maungatapere).. even some friends/family from Kaitaia!! 

Merry Christmas y'all  ... xxx

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

I LUV online (grocery) shopping!

Oh man.  Have I told you how much happier of a Mum I am since doing all of my grocery shopping online?  I haven’t??  Well I certainly am!
Gone are the days of  “can I have this” “Can I have that” whinge, whine, moan, sulk…. Gone are the days of grumpy lil’ 2 year olds saying… “I want to go home…” or “Cuddle me Mummy” because I have been taking too long in the aisles.  Gone are the days of trying to just “rush in and rush out” and then bumping into at least 4 people each trip who I actually have to stop and have a talk to…(can’t just bump them off). 

Online shopping … How much I adore thee… How I have longed for you, long before I discovered you… and how I cannot live without thee any more!!  (a bit over the top and dramatic I know, but so so true!).

I don’t get my groceries delivered as it costs an extra $25 odd dollars, so for an extra $3, I just pick up between a specified time…(or hubby picks them up after work).  I like to write our personal shopper a little note when ordering online like “Thanks for being my hands today and picking all my goodies out” and every single time I get a really nice handwritten note on my receipt like “you’re so welcome…have a great week/weekend” etc … It’s a really nice personal touch!

If you don’t already do it, I would totally recommend it… particularly good when you have visitors coming and the cupboards are empty, but you have other engagements the next day and can’t go shopping (like in person).  You can go to your appointment/engagement, and then just pick up your groceries…shoot home and unpack!! PERFECT!!  Also perfect when you have kids who cringe when they see you pull in to the supermarket carpark (both of mine do this!!).

I love too, that you can save certain lists… I have a “big shop” list and a “in between shops standard list with all our regularly required items on it and other little lists like “school luch top up”  “birthdays/celebrations” list with lots of goodies and fattening sugary cavity making food!!! Lol.

Anyway!!… That’s me, a little less stressed these days and happier, and definitely with happier kids because of it!! ;)

Happy shopping everyone!

Sunday, 4 December 2011

How would YOU react?

With all the media attention lately on the Mum (Mellissa Anderson) who was arrested after slapping her daughters bullies, I have been thinking about it a lot, and how I would react were it one of my children who were on the receiving end of first the bullying and then the slapping.

I am a very over-protective Mum, which in some circumstances can be a good thing, and other times not so good.  But the fierce protective nature overcomes me when it comes to things being unfairly done to my kids.  I can honestly say, were I in the same situation as Mellissa, I too would have had a fair whack at those bullies. 

Now I’ve mulled this whole topic over a fair bit with friends/family members, and of course there have been the (very few) who come out with the “well, we should be adult enough to work through the situation in an adult manner, and without resorting to violence”  Um. While that might be nice in theory, please show me some caring parent who would be able to sit on their hands after seeing their childs face bruised, bloodied and battered??!!  Seriously, I would LOVE to be able to say… “Oh yes, come on now..that was uncalled for”… but in actual fact, I KNOW my reaction would be to want to throttle the little beggas who laid their hands on my kids! All reason and niceties would go out the window!  Another friend said, “Oh I would understand it if a parent reacted to some REAL bullying, but not that”… Not that??? NOT THAT?  Please tell me what is REAL bullying?  This kids face was bruised, swollen, bleeding and violated! What part of that is not REAL bullying.  Since that comment, my “friend” has realized what she said was just ridiculous and has retracted it super fast.  (of course my reactional outburst at it probably gave her a push in that direction) haha.

So… that’s how I would react were it to happen to one of my kids.  What then, would I do, if it were one of my children who had beaten up another child, and in return their parent had had a crack at my kids?  To be very honest with you……. I would probably want to give them a good slapping myself! 

I certainly would make them accountable for their actions and make them face the repercussions of what they’d done.  I would do my best to make them see how awful it had been for that person they’d picked on, and how it has affected them…….hoping that that in itself would make them remorseful. 

Anyway it really annoyed me that this Mum had to be arrested.  The police were right there when she slapped the girl, she wasn’t in any danger with them right there.. but the mother just wanted to get her point across!  

So…I’m really interested now… how would YOU react?  I’m sure there are many of you out there who are way more “controlled” than I ever would be …. I’d love to hear it!!  J

Friday, 11 November 2011

RIP Izzy

Whangarei lost someone really special this week.  Many in Whangarei will not know this special woman, but her loss is being felt very strongly in the Whangarei music scene right now.

"Izzy" or Ihapeta Teru Epiha-Wellington was a true "Legend".
She was the "head honcho" of local band "Pumanawa".  This is not just "any" band, it's a band that takes on fresh new "kids" and musos, and nurtures them, lets them start to play in a safe environment with a very motherly support from Izzy. She had a knack of drawing out the potential within these young musos, and encouraging them, supporting them, giving them some belief in themselves, so that they can then step up confident in themselves and their talents.  Izzy never held them back either.  Once she'd got them to that point, she'd give them a nudge out of the nest!  She loved to see her "kids" go on to set up their own bands, or join other well-known bands, both locally and nationally.  When she spoke of these past and present members, it was always with a real twinkle and spark in her eye!  She just thrived on that!  
Izzy in a wig!! :)

When I first started with Kurfew, and we were gigging regularly around Whangarei, Izzy phoned and introduced herself to me.  She wanted to know who I was, where I was from, and what I was doing!! hehe.. Not at all in a bad way.  She was just interested in whatever was happening in the music scene.

She would call and talk for nothing under an hour, in fact I cannot recall a conversation that was less than an hour and a half with Izz.  (I would always look at my handset after hanging up to see what the length of the call had been!!).  Her conversations would always start "hellooooo Darlinnngg.... I hope this isn't a bad time to talk...." hahaha and regardless of if it was or was not, I would always talk!!

After the rather rapid departure of one of our drummers, our guitarist introduced us to Damien from Pumanawa, who was keen to get involved with us, as he wanted to do some "heavier" and "more up to date" stuff than what Pumanawa were currently doing.  So into the band came Damien, and this meant regular "check-ins" with Izzy....who knew all about D, and how to "handle him" hahaha.

It was around here that we really began to connect.  The calls becoming more regular, and the odd visit even!  In fact the first time I went to see her play, there was this amazing older bald headed woman, rocking away in leather pants, and a shiny head!!  She really had the crowd eating out of her hand!!  
The real "relationship" and bond with Izzy came when we were blessed with her "golden boy" Matt who came into our band.  She was so proud of Matt, and I never EVER heard her say a bad or negative word about him.  (at this stage I had worked with several of her "kids", and she had given me "heads up" about all of them in one way or the other), however with Matty, it was totally different.  
When Matt came into Kurfew, and initially was "filling in" for our guitarist, he said he'd guarantee he'd be available for ANY gigs..........................SO LONG AS IZZY DIDNT NEED HIM!!! hahaha.

So, that was the understanding... He was there for us, but he was there for Izzy first!  
And that's what we agreed to!  
When I discussed this loyalty Matt had to Izzy herself, she snickered away and laughed, and said "oh that blimmen boy" hahaha.. but secretly I think she was chuffed!! She loved and trusted Matt, and knew he was always there for her.........anytime.........anywhere!  He was "HER boy".
I feel so glad that she almost "gave her blessing" for Matt to be in our band.  She told me after watching us several times, that she loved the way Matt was in our band.  She loved that he was singing more, and she loved that we all got on so well and appeard to be having a ball!  So, when Matt agreed to come into Kurfew full-time, we were all super-stoked! 

I really REALLY got to know Izzy in this time of having Matt on board, and saw how genuine she was.  She was reliable. She was so very trustworthy, and she was such a "Nana"!!  (good thing!).  
She reminded me so much of my own very very loved and very missed Nana! She was so nurturing, and so very loving, and I guess she filled that void for me.  She was my Nana!  She would chuckle when I said that,  and said she was honoured, but to tell you the truth, I was honoured!  Honoured to have her in my life. 

 The pics above are taken in Ruakaka on a very windy day very early hours of the morning, when we were shooting the music video (shown below).... Izzy was our "support" woman.  She was there (with her own video camera ...... which she took EVERYWHERE with her).  She gave the encouragement, and kept us smiling even through a huge project, a long really tiring day!!  Just her presence was awesome!

I'm going to miss her larger than life personality.  Im going to miss her beautiful cuddles.  I am going to miss her hour plus phone calls.  I'm going to miss just knowing she's there.  I'm sad about the years that I wish I'd taken hold of and gotten to know her earlier.  I'm sad that we were due to have a "get together" next month and have an awesome time together, and now that will never be!  

I am so happy remembering her performing, having a great time entertaining.  She was flamboyant... loved taking off her hat and shocking people with her bald head!.... or shocking them with an outrageous hat or wig!! haha.

 I am happy remembering the special times that we did have.  I am so very happy that she really got to know my husband, and really loved him too!!  She was always going on to me about what a gem he was!! In fact she would ring HIM up and have hour and a half convos with him too.....and try to get him to manage this one and that one (little prospects that she had on the horizon!).

Im so very happy that the last time I saw her, she was performing her heart out in front of an awesome crowd, and she was truly glowing!! Pumanawa were playing at the Fireworks display here in Whangarei, and she was just so vibrant, so happy and just pumped!  They sounded great too!  And...all the while up on stage, she had that blimmen video camera attached to her eye!  haha.

I took the kids, and we went behind the stage, and when she saw me, she tried to lure me onto the stage for a song, I shrugged it off and pretended not to see her!  She even yelled..."here's Kurfew" over the microphone!!! hahaha she was awesome!  We had a quick catch up.........a big cuddle, and that was the last I spoke to , and got a cuddle from the wonderful Izzy..   The next time I saw her was in her lounge, in her coffin, looking very "girly" in her wedding dress (pictured below).  An orange lacey number!

Matt and I reckon she was smirking... she had a little "grin" on her face!

Tomorrow she will be buried.  In her orange lacey number...with her smirk on her face, and we will say goodbye.  She will however, still live on in our hearts, in MANY hearts that she's touched.

Thank you Lord, for Izzy.  For her life.  For her love.  We have been so blessed by her and by being loved by her, and this world is so much more blessed by having had such an awesome woman in it!

Haere e whaea, Haere, Haere Haere

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Bad Blogger!!

Yes, say it... say it loud!  Juanita is a bad blogger!
I know I am, but it hasn't made me pull up my proverbial socks and get writing/blogging!!

So here I sit, again with a million things and "possible" posts in my head, yet "stuck!".

I will write about my new dog until I can find the "MOJO"!

Here he is:
He's a one year old.
A rottweiler (gasp).
He's cheeky
He'sover-the-top-"lovey"....wants loves constantly.  He would be attached to you 24hrs a day if he could be.  He's such a sook!
My Asher and his new buddy "Th' Sarge" .. well just Sarge, but "Th' Sarge" sounds more "scary!"
Hanging out together
Whatcha looking at Mum?

His olfactory organ

Eyes and nose
Paws (holding hands)

Such a sop....loves to kiss anyone and everyone!
Yuck puppy breath!

His lips

Me interrupting his sleep

Hey...go away

Sleeping ??beauty?

Up close and personal
Lounging around


big ol Puppy dog eyes...

So.. that was my burnt offering for the time being.  I will get sorted and present you with something much better soon.... I PROMISE!! ;)

Thursday, 13 October 2011

This coming weekend :)

I'm getting all geared up and excited about the coming weekend.  It's going to be full of family, friends and fun. (and WORK...but only band work, so that's more fun really!).

((My Mummy and Dadddy)).

My Mum and Dad are coming down for the weekend, and are going to look after the kids so that hubby can come with my band and I to our gig at Mangawhai Tavern on Friday night.

I love it when Warren gets to come with us.  Not JUST because he helps set up beforehand/pack down afterwards, not JUST because it means we get a good lighting and sound-guy for free, not only because he's a great Manager, but because it's really nice having him there in the crowd.  It's nice hanging out with him in the set breaks!

Warren's parents are also coming up from Cambridge for the weekend, they're coming up with our awesome family friends Murray and Jean (who are like an extra set of parents too!).  It's a bit unfortunate that we've got gigs on both Friday and Saturday nights, but we can still catch up properly throughout the day.  We are hoping that if it's lovely weather to get out and do a bit of beaching, or just hanging out/fishing somewhere.
Mum n Dad Bassett

Murray and Jean
Saturday night we have a gig at Tikipunga Tavern, and I've made Warren stay home with his oldies that night, and told my Mum and Dad to come on out and have a boogie with us.  They're going to try and get a few cuzzies and friends to come along too, so it should be a great time.

Sunday and Mum and Dad will head back to Kaitaia, taking my big boy with them.  He just hangs out for the holidays when he can disappear with Nana and Papa ..... off to Kaitaia he goes and then he comes back after the holdidays trying to negotiate ways he can move to Kaitaia to live with Nana and Papa!!  He loves going up there and seeing his cousins (my brothers kids).  He usually goes and spends a few nights at my brothers place and loves the family time with them.

Kendyl and I will head up later in the week so that we can spend a few nights with my parents and catch up with some Far Northy friends, and do some op-shopping. Warren will get a few nights home by himself to just hang and chill in a quiet house!! haha.

So....this is the start of our weekend/upcoming week.  Oh, and even Im getting a brand spanking new stereo/cd in my van!! yeaaaah... :)

Have a great weekend...what are some of you up to?

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Being thankful

So thankful for a "larger than life" bubba girl, who pushes me to the edge of my sanity at times, but who can be so darn cute that she can melt your lil' ratbag!

So thankful for my sensible (sometimes OVERLY sensible), and deeply sensitive big boy.  He can make you feel so loved and needed, and so very special with one of his big cuddles.

So thankful for my beautiful blessings.

And their special smiles.

So Thankful for my awesome baby brother, who I love and adore, and really miss sometimes even though he's only in Kaitaia and Im just down in Whangarei.  Love the man that he's become, and how he lets God steer him and his family in their journey through life. 

So thankful for My awesome Dad, who although he is a paraplegic - amputee, seizes life and makes the most of his days, he's an awesome Dad, Husband, Papa.  And so thankful for my lovely little white crazy Mum... who's a real go-getter!  She's a little firecracker and is so much fun to be around. I love her no nonsense approach to life, and how she "just gets on with things".

So thankful for awesome friends like Mikey too (in the Hurley Tshirt).  He is our friend/Pastor/like family, been through us all through thick and thin, in good times and not so good! so very Thankful for this man... my lovely husband. 
Quiet (unlike his wife)

Never has he used an awful derogatory word against me, when he's had lots of reasons to, that's for sure!  He's sooooo the right guy for me. He never yells at me (I yell at him), He loves me unconditionally, He provides for us so well!  When I see some husbands/men around the place, like last week at Countdown, I come home so very thankful for my guy.  Sometimes you forget how great you have it, until you step back and take a look around you!  Thanks Warren, I love you xxx  And Thanks God, for giving me Warren xxx