December 23: Lily

An interesting day today! Working around the home this morning and thought that we were off to a bad start when the digger took out the water supply to our house but then it got a little more interesting in the afternoon with a magnitude 5.8 earthquake, followed by a 6.0 a bit later. Merry Christmas Canterbury! More annoying than anything else but frustrating because it means that our odds of getting contents insurance any time soon quickly disappeared this afternoon! Oh well, just have to be careful… This is a lily that was lying on my parents deck tonight so though it would make a good photo for day 355 🙂 Hoping for an uninterrupted sleep tonight followed by a successful day of playing plumber man tomorrow!

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December 21: Big boys toys

I got the chance to head out this morning and take the end-of-year photo for Worthington Contracting. Have a look at the website for an older version of this photo featuring a grand total of 9 vehicles but this updated photo shows the huge amount of growth that has taken place in the last few years. Anyway, they had hired a cherry-picker for me that got up to about 14 meters which was pretty awesome for be able to choose the best vantage point for the photo. This was just one of the many photos I took but I wanted to try it in HDR so saved the original RAW image as 5 TIFF images bracketed by one stop from -2 to 2, then combined in Photomatix for the tone mapping before finishing off back in Photoshop. I like the final image with the clouds in the background and even though they probably wont want an HDR version, it was fun to play around with on day 353 🙂

December 20: Ātaahua

For Brylee’s baby shower we brought a bunch of small canvas’, paint, stickers and all that kinda stuff and let our guests design a canvas for Brylee. We now have 9 of them hanging on the wall in her room and it’s pretty cool because they were made for her by our friends and family even before they had met her. This canvas was made by her Aunty and is extra cool because Ātaahua is Brylee’s middle name. Her full name is Brylee Asaiah Ātaahua McQuarrie and we chose her first name just because we like it but Asaiah means God has made and Ātaahua means beautiful so Asaiah Ātaahua = God has made beautiful which we like 🙂 And that’s a wee story with a photo attached for day 352!

December 19: Outdoor sink

We’ve finally started our somewhat large project consisting of the outside of our house and garden this summer! We are replacing the gardens, ripping off the deck to replace with a patio, scraping a new turning bay, sanding, replacing and painting the weatherboards among other things. Something tells me that this wont be a relaxing summer… But it will hopefully be worth it! 🙂 This is part of the wall by our back door with the little outside sink for washing up after the beach and it used to be covered in ivy which looked pretty cool but we had to rip it down to start sanding. Anyway, enough about our summer but enjoy the photo for day 351 🙂

December 18: Walk in the park

It was a nice afternoon and we were bored so decided to go for a walk down to the park. Naturally, I took my camera and got some photos of Brylee playing around on the playground and in a big tree stump. Brylee had an awesome time and even went down the big tube-slide by herself for the first time with Mel sliding her down and me catching her at the bottom. She didn’t quite know what to think when she first started sliding but then absolutely loved it and couldn’t get enough until we eventually decided to move on. Great to discover something new that she enjoys doing though 🙂 Another awesome day with the whanau on day 350!

December 17: Kisses for Dadda

Whenever I’m working outside, Brylee always comes to the window to watch and it was the same today when she came to watch me taking photos outside. She’s just learnt to give kisses in the last few months (even tried to kiss and old lady in the mall this week) and when I came over to see her, she closed her eyes and leant forward to give Dadda a kiss. I’m loving being on holiday and being able to watch this stage as she is starting to walk heaps, loves snuggles and giving kisses to us all the time – and which I’m fine with! 🙂 An extremely proud Dad on day 349!

HDR with very minimal processing – just for better lighting – taken from a single RAW image, using Photomatix and Photoshop.