Kia Ora All! This is being written on the first day of the New Year as we look back on our first month of living in New Zealand. The transition has been relatively smooth with everything falling into place at the moment. The larger issues of finding on-going work, housing, and what comes next are going raise their heads as we move forward. We have spent the last month easing into New Zealand living, with the errands of starting a life taking center stage: things like getting cell phones, buying a car, and finding good coffee. (We were stoked to find a local coffee roaster that makes a GREAT cup of coffee; so if you’re ever in the Mount Maunganui area, stop by Fusion Coffee! Having a good coffee “dealer” in the area has made the transition much easier for Ann!
I have set up a studio space in my dad’s old shearing shed using a mixture of tools that I brought with me along with gear borrowed from my brother. The studio is working well although it is a little slower as the tools are less familiar to me; but I have sheep, pigs and chickens as my neighbors so the extra time isn’t a burden. I am excited to be producing some new work that has been sparked by the sights and sounds of being home! These designs will be displayed on the site shortly and will be from beef bone as we are still waiting for the rest of our material to arrive.
It has been a surreal experience to be a full-time resident of Aotearoa (“Land of the Long White Cloud”) again. The country has changed, as have I, and I am going through a process of re-learning the in and outs of life here again. The day-to-day attitude has shifted from rushing madly around in “holiday” mode to realizing that everything will still be here tomorrow and we have to enjoy the process. This has been the hardest shift for me, as all my trips in the last 20 years have been quick visits, only to head out again and embark on the next part of the adventure. Now it’s time to take a deep breath and start sinking roots into the ground. A part of this process has been planting new trees, shrubs, and assorted herbs here on the farm to flesh out all the other plants that are already thriving. We are watching and waiting until we are able to harvest our own pomegranates, blue berries, guava and limes, along with all the other fruits and vege that are growing. Look for the new designs shortly!
Ka Kite, Whare