Sunday, December 25, 2016

2016 Christmas Greetings

        Christmas Greetings

Our year is drawing to a close, the garden is burgeoning, our house is nearly completely revamped and ready for sale. It’s been an extremely unusual year, we have been out of our home while the government EQC has been very, very slowly fixing our earthquake damage and then they handed us back a completely empty house that has taken us six months to restore. It now has a new paint, new kitchen, new bathrooms and floorings as well as new gardens, lawns, concreted areas and an asphalted driveway. The next step will be to sell it. Whew and after that we don’t know.

Peter has continued his work as a relief teacher as well as his regular preaching in the city square and at several old folks’ residential care homes. Concurrently he has spent a great deal of time working in the house and garden to achieve the excellent results we are now enjoying.

Michele has worked at Lincoln High School for a stint and as a document editor at another time for her uncle’s engineering company. Meanwhile she has assisted in the works at the house and has arranged scores of quotes and visits from contractors.

We lived most of our year boarding with a kind friend near our house, so that we could focus on the project. So hospitality has been almost nil; so strange for us, and a constant feeling that something precious is missing.

Trips away this year began with a road trip from Auckland via Tauranga, where we alway manage several soaks in the delightful natural hot springs. Hamilton to my aunt, Taihape to a very dear and now departed old friend, and Palmerston North where our South Island farming friends have moved onto a pretty new farm, thence to Blenheim, and another elderly aunt, and Nelson, where we caught up with Simon and Cora just before their first child arrived. She is Aria Isabel, and is very bonny and sweet. Lydia & Alex & Francesca were in Nelson too and also Nathan so it was a good time to catch up and a first to travel about the fascinating district and visit lots of special places. Simon and Cora are both involved in running the Organic Grocers near central Nelson and Simon’s retail expertise has been put to very good use in transforming and making this business successful.

Michele made a few trips to Timaru with the arrival of Lydia and Alex's second daughter, Adelaide Rose, on Waitangi Day (New Zealand Day). Peter was able to get down too. Alex has bought a yacht and likes to sail on the harbour whenever he can find a second crew member. They have a continual stream of happy house guests so Lydia keeps really busy. However that have just accepted a job offer in the North of Wales and so are making all the preparations to go; including sadly handing on their ducks and hens.

We have house-sat in various places for variety and sanity! For friends nearby and also in Pegasus Town, North of Christchurch. And while house-sitting in Tauranga in October we lost a very dear friend at this time in tragic circumstances that has left us to re-evaluate the brevity of life. We are currently house-sitting again over the summer, after two months of living in our garage. We’ll certainly be glad when we can be settled once more.

Andrew and Daena and the boys were here in June for three weeks and made a road trip from Auckland to Christchurch via Taranga, Taupo and Nelson so Daena could see more of New Zealand. We met them at Picton, having driven two cars up to meet the ferry and then all spent a few days with Simon and Cora. Andrew drove to Christchurch along the coast road through Kaikoura, which has subsequently sustained a huge earthquake, cutting it off from the rest of New Zealand by road, as that road wound around the cliffs above the rocks, at the foot of the Kaikoura Mountains, overlooking the wide Pacific Ocean. The sea floor has been lifted a few metres by the earthquake. It was along here that they stopped to watch the baby seal pups playing in a deep rock pool, which has now been lost. We all had fun together in Christchurch and then they popped down to Timaru to stay with Lydia for a few days. Andrew has been exceedingly busy working on the election campaign in the US; they are very pleased and rather shocked at the surprising result - who knows what it will mean? Hopefully fewer dead babies. They are now expecting their third child in April next year.

Nathan has moved back from Nelson and is now flatting in St. Albans; so we see him quite a bit more often. He works in sales training for a nationwide telecommunications company. He has just to travelled to Chicago, where he met Andrew in Daena’s hometown, for Christmas. He and Andrew plan to road-trip back to Washington DC via New York City, which sounds like fun; although a rather cold time of year to attempt it.

We have learnt a lot this year about the current commercial world and the long-term effects of catastrophes. We are thankful for surviving this strange season in our lives and can still smile; we look forward to a more settled future – well maybe.

It would be great to hear your news when you have a moment.

With our love,

Peter & Michele


  1. Never a dull moment! I'm glad your house is finally finished, it sounds like, but then to sell so soon? Can't you at least wait until you can enjoy the fruit of those feijoas in the picture? So lovely to hear what you and all your children, and now grandchildren, are up to. Lydia's off to Wales - I remember she was the one who liked travel least of all. Well, once she gets there, she won't be travelling anymore. All the best to you and yours in 2017!

  2. So wonderful to hear your news, see your faces and to be included in the ups and and downs of life. Such a rich, realistic portrayal of life, love and family. So fortunate to know you and be included in your sharing. Lydia is going to Wales! How exciting! I love Wales. So many babies, such excitement of travel. You have had quite an exciting time since the earthquake. How devastating, but God has been so gracious. Thank you precious Moore family for sharing from across the world. Blessings to you all from West Virginia, USA. Rebecca