Some weather observations

This is the first year that we have had a 'real' summer since I've been in NZ. Of course, it's been pretty much a drought all over the country, but I have thoroughly enjoyed the warm weather. It's the first summer I have not worn sweats track pants to bed every night; in fact, I've barely worn them to sleep at all.

Having spent a few days away from this mountain makes me realized that Mt Taranaki has so much to do with our weather, even though those that have been here all their lives disagree. I'm not sure how they explain that the countryside is brown everywhere except here, behind the mountain,  but the internet (and other dependable sources) simply explain how mountains take any sort of moisture and dump it on the other side as rain.

The tibouchina in the back yard garden is still blooming this year, as opposed to just blooming in the spring and summer last year and my begonias are still blooming at full speed. The dahlias are bigger than ever right now with such lovely pink blooms.

We had a little cold snap and I was sure that winter was on the way, but I'm still enjoying the warm as long as it will last. I know the farmers aren't enjoying it, but I sure am.


How to make photos larger on blogger

For those of you that would like to make your photos larger than the sizes offered by Blogger, here's a quick tutorial on how I enlarge the photos on each post.

Note: I don't change the template to make all photos larger because I don't always want them all larger. These directions must be repeated for each photo on each post.

Be brave! If you mess up, you can always remove the pictures and reload them onto your blog.

Here we go....

1. Load the photo as you usually do. This is what you get.

2. Click on the photo and you will get a row of options at the bottom in a blue box. Click 'X-Large' to get the size below.

3.Now click 'HTML' in the top left corner next to the 'Compose' button. You will see something like this. It will NOT look exactly like this.
It looks scary, but don't panic! You are only looking for two specific areas.

<a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-lAtLucvh2Ug/USwN_dGgPvI/AAAAAAAAi-Q/CxJ4-Y2VYLs/s1600/IMG_1101.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" height="480" src="http://lAtLucvh2Ug/USwN_dGgPvI/AAAAAAAAi-Q/CxJ4-Y2VYLs/s640/IMG_1101.jpg" width="640" /></a></div>
4.Now, ignore everything else and look for the part that says 'height="480" and 'width="640", [highlighted in red above].

Change the numbers "480" to "640" and change the numbers "640" to "860". The photo will be correctly sized even if you have cropped the photo and the height is not exactly 480 and the width is not exactly 640.

5.Click 'Compose' in the upper left corner to return to the page where you are writing your post and your photo should be this big.

You did it!!


I'm a celebrity!

Well, maybe not a celebrity, but I was interviewed over at 

Blog Expat :)

You can click here  or the

Expat Interview medallion on the right to read it!


They are living our dream!

Hubby and I have both been fascinated by the old, abandoned dairy factories that are spread across the Taranaki region. We have photos of most of them that have any parts still standing, with one picture of just a generator part next to a plaque that is all that's left of one factory .

If we were to win the lottery, I wanted to restore a few of them and then give them to the various communities as function venues like weddings and such.

If we wanted to stay in the Taranaki region, I'm sure we might have looked into buying one and living there with some sort of side business at the premises. Alas, we don't want to stay here, but we found a young couple that are living our dream. They bought the old Okato Cheese Factory and have opened an art gallery along with several other services they provide.
They call themselves KM Sculpture and Photography and you can click here for their website. Here are a few photos of their recycle art they have for sale.

Their property has a river on two sides which makes for a wonderfully serene setting for their 'sculpture walk' of larger art pieces. I'm  sure they will do well.