Friday, April 16, 2010

Hodge podge

My blog seems to be mostly about books these days - sorry.

Just for a change, here is a shout out for the MAGS Roarbotix Team who won the New Zealand Vex Robotics National Championship 3 weeks ago.  They are now off to Dallas, Texas in the US to represent New Zealand tomorrow!  You can track the progress of the team via their blog.  Mitchell, the driver of the robot in the nationals is the son of one of our friends.  Please pop over and give them some comment love - I am sure they would love some support from back home while they are over there.  It's really exciting to see these young guys pursuing robotics, and being a household of geeks we think stuff like this is cool. Tim is a keen robot fan.

January Blogosphere Book Circle Review
The bolter : Idina Sackville-- the woman who scandalised 1920s society and became White mischief's infamous seductress / Frances Osborne. London : Virago, 2008.
ISBN: 9781844084814

On Friday 25th May, 1934, a forty-one-year-old woman walked into the lobby of Claridge's Hotel to meet the nineteen-year-old son whose face she did not know. Fifteen years earlier, as the First World War ended, Idina Sackville shocked high society by leaving his multimillionaire father to run off to Africa with a near penniless man. An inspiration for Nancy Mitford's character The Bolter, painted by William Orpen, and photographed by Cecil Beaton, Sackville went on to divorce a total of five times, yet died with a picture of her first love by her bed. Her struggle to reinvent her life with each new marriage left one husband murdered and branded her the 'high priestess' of White Mischief's bed-hopping Happy Valley in Kenya. Sackville's life was so scandalous that it was kept a secret from her great-granddaughter Frances Osborne. Now, Osborne tells the moving tale of betrayal and heartbreak behind Sackville's road to scandal and return, painting a dazzling portrait of high society in the early twentieth century. ~from the blurb

I did enjoy this book.  I know some of the book circle group found it boring, but I found it easy to read; the historical side of things always appeals to me.  I really couldn't relate to the lifestyle portrayed in the book though!  Wow is all I can say! :-P
I did feel sorry for Idina - she obviously was born in the wrong era and her upbringing must have heavily influenced her attitudes towards a whole bunch of things.  These days she would have been some sort of politician I'm sure!  She appears to have been a feisty number on the outside but with a terrible need to be loved/worshipped. It's clear she was looking for "something" that would be fulfilling and never really found it.  As a mum I found it so hard to understand how she could abandon her sons and have so little to do with bringing up her daughter but as other book circle members have pointed out, the connection between parents and kids in those days in that class was very distant.
I probably wouldn't recommend it to anyone who didn't like to read about historical time periods or biographies.  There is a lot of detail about various family members and important people of the day which I found reasonably interesting but others found less than diverting!  But that's ok. :) 

Easter Camping
We spent the Easter weekend camping at Otamure Bay.  Friends on Facebook will have already seen these photos.

The weather was great, some cloud and a shower or two but mostly sunny and warm.  The kids had a grand time playing in the sand and sea and generally pottering around.  The photographic options weren't so good for Rod but he did take some photos.  We went with some friends of ours who have children a similar age and this turned out to be a good thing for the mothers since they mostly entertained themselves together. :-)

The campsite was very busy with fishermen, people attending a motorbike rally next door and of course, the likes of us on a family holiday.  Unfortunately this meant queues for the toilets and the single shower (cold) and that wasn't especially fun.  It's a lovely spot, but perhaps not one we'll be going back to.

I've had a few days off work this week and today I'm *gasp* even going to do some scrapbooking!


  1. Mr R has been busy emailing everyone about his son's blog hehee :-)
    Go you for scrapping ... look forward to seeing what you create. Have a happy day.
    Luv R

  2. Nice to see your scrapping efforts in the posts above ... and the Easter camping trip looks like fun ... not sure about the shower/loo experiences though.