Tuesday, January 7, 2014
I am sitting outside on the deck of the Caretaker's cottage this afternoon. Looking out over the beautiful Hauraki Gulf and thinking about how blessed I was to be born a New Zealander. What a fortunate birth indeed.

We are about halfway through our summer holiday at the family bach (beach house), and already I have grown accustomed to falling asleep to the sound of the waves on the beach, of having lunch at 3 o'clock and dinner just before sundown.

Just before Dawn this morning from my bedroom window.
One of the greatest gifts that my husband has given me is the gift of his family. When we come out here to the bach, we are surrounded by cousins, second cousins, cousins once removed, nephews and nieces and more cousins. There are several baches on the property, so we're all spread out and have our own spaces, but the beach is the common meeting ground, where we park ourselves under our favourite Pohutukawa tree with our books and our thermoses and our snacks and our beach chairs. Sometimes we sit there in silence, just taking in all the beauty of the day, and sometimes we sit there and chat and have lovely conversations about life.

I love that every year my children get to have fun with their extended family.

Boating, fishing, swimming, sand-castle building, water-skiing, sea-biscuiting, sailing, games of cards, shrimping, climbing over the rocks, walking through the bush - it's always the same every year, and every year we grow more and more attached to this place.

And it's not that it's because it's such a beautiful beach and an amazing place to stay - but because it is our Turangawaewae.

It's the family relationships that we are building upon every year, since these kids were babies and since their parents were babies. They all grow up together. They all play together and know each other so well. They are friendships they will have for life.
That's what I especially love about coming here.
It's giving our children this treasure of each other.

Here are just a few of my favourite photos from the last week or so.


Nicky said...

So jealous. I desperately want this for my kids... the family together-ness. But alas the cousins are scattered all over the world and we are lucky if we get together once a year. Sigh. It looks beautiful there.

Rachel said...

I know how hard that is too Nicky - my family are the same. Sister and cousins in Canada and Aussie. We just got lucky with my husband's family. They have all pretty much stuck around - go off for a few years but seem to come back eventually. And it's such a large family too which helps - always kids and teenagers hanging around somewhere.

vegemitevix said...

Gorgeous place. Turangawaewae indeed. Vix x

Jenny said...

What a blissful looking spot, Rachel. How blessed you are to be able to share it with so many relatives - your kids will always cherish these summer holidays!

Heather L. said...

you are so right that this time, place, and family are precious gifts for you and your children for the future! so happy you have this!

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