Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Lots of sheep and a hamster ball

We went to the Sheep Show! Yes, we went to a show at the Agrodome in Rotorua that was all about the different kinds of sheep and how to herd them. It was a rainy day, so this type of indoor activity was just great. Ha ha I actually kind of enjoyed it. The whole experience was just kind of funny. But oh! The best part was when I got to milk a cow! I don't know why (guess I'm just weird), but I've always wanted to learn how to milk a cow. It's been on my Bucket List. It's kind of ridiculous, but I cannot tell you how happy and excited I was to get called up to the stage to milk good old Bessie. It was pretty cool to get into the rhythm of it. Well, that's just one more thing to check off the list!

Sheep shearing demonstration

Don't we make great sheep? I was a Border Licester. Here are the real stars of the show.

Warming our hands up before the milking.I am now a professional milkmaid.
We even got a 'Certificate of Udderance'!
We bonded.

After the Sheep Show, the group and I all went zorbing. Zorbing, basically, is a fun filled activity where you are put in a giant hamster ball full of water and then sent rolling down a giant hill. So random, but so fun! You even get to color your water! You can put up to 3 people in one ball, so I went with Emily and Nancy. We colored our water blue. Neeley, Nicole, and Becca went in the ball next to us and colored their water blue. We raced. It was epic. My team won.

Diving into the water-filled ball.
Can you see the green water a bit?

And there goes the green team, creaming the blue team down the hill!Coming out of the ball.

We love zorbing!

Rotorua Adventures

Hello from Rotorua! Monday, we went to Te Puia, a Maori cultural center near the thermal hotsprings and geysers. We went to a welcome at the marae (special meetinghouse). Dr. Jacobs was appointed our tour group's chief. He had to walk out and meet one of the Maori warriors and prove that we came in peace. Since the girls and I were with "Chief Jim" we got to go into the marae first. But there were a bunch of Asian tourists behind us and they kept pushing and elbowing to get in ahead of us. The woman leading us in kept telling everyone to wait and that only our group was to come forward first. But they wouldn't listen! The marae and these types of ceremonial performances are very sacred parts of the Maori culture. Tradition and as part of respect, you are supposed to be silent going in to the marae and men only sit in the front row. Some of these Asians refused to respect these rules/traditions. All they cared about was getting a good seat so they could get good pictures taken. It's so disrespectful and annoying when people completely disregard other people's cultures. When we got inside the marae we got to see a few Maori dances. Chief Jim went up and took part in a hongi with the performers.
Performing the traditional hongi.
Standing in front of the geysers.
Me, Janet, Whitney, and Heidi

Me and Katie in a traditional Maori hut.

Me and Nicole
I proposed to Diana at the Blue Lake. :)
Having too much fun in the van. :)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Last day at Colwill

I can't believe I am done with my second practicum. Last Tuesday we had an assembly and all the Colwill student teachers got certificates from our teachers. Here, one of the deputy principals is talking to the kids, explaining that we would be leaving soon. She told us that Colwill has loved having us and that we would be missed.

Thursday, our last day, was so fun! My class, along with the rest of the Harakeke team, took a field trip to Moire Park down the road. We walked to the park and did a big service clean-up project. My kids did a really good job working together to find rubbish and taking turns holding the rubbish bags.
Miss Chase giving instructions to all the students
Ha ha I love this picture more than anything!
Sai Hmo does such a good job following instructions.
Room 19 clean-up crew
Me and Elisa (Miss Patterson) in our matching vests. :)

After everyone finished cleaning up the park we had morning tea and took some time to play at the park. I had fun watching some of the boys play rugby on the field.
Cute Hatham climbing the rugby pole.
He shimmied up this thing just like a little monkey!
Joseph and Jethro
These boys are the best of friends

Later that day when we were back from the park, Miss Patterson had each of the kids take turns taking pictures outside with me. I got individual pictures with every single kid in the class. It was funny because all the girls loved taking a picture with me; they would put their arms around me and lay their heads against me as Elisa took the picture. But the boys... ha ha they were too cool to hug Miss Wirthlin. They would take a picture with me, but they would stand a few inches away from me. I had to bring them in close for a good picture. I wasn't offended because I know deep down they're really going to miss me too. :) I had kids, both boys and girls, asking me all day if this was really the last time I was going to be at the school and/or telling me they were going to miss me. I had some students even come to school with presents and cards for me (even kids that I didn't have in my class!). It was so sweet! At the end of the day I gathered the kids in a circle on the mat. I brought lollies for the kids to have, and Miss Patterson had them all go around and say OGT (one good thing) that they had to say about having me in their classroom the last 6 weeks. Then, Elisa brought a present she'd prepared from her and the kids. It was a beautiful picture of a koru made out of paua shells. Elisa is so sweet! I was touched. There were lots of high fives and hugs given as the kids ran home after the bell rang to let school let out. It kills me that I won't get to see these kids grow up. I won't be there to see who they become and which roads they take in life. I love each one of them, and I will never forget the experiences I had at Colwill with them.
I miss these kids so much already!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Auckland Skytower

Yesterday our group had brunch at the top of the Skytower. Before we ate we went to the observatory, which is right below the restaurant, and had a look at the beautiful city. We were so high! There were parts of the floor that were glass so that you could look at the sidewalk straight below you. It made me feel kind of sick and dizzy to look down for too long, and walking over that glass made me so nervie! There's a Skytower Drop that you can do there. It's not like bungy jumping, it's more of a sustained drop that they do. Well, we could look out the observatory windows and watch people fall 629 feet. Craaaaazzzzy!
The restaurant at the top is so cool. It slowly revolves 360 degrees within the space of an hour so you can get a complete view of the city from all directions. It took us a little over 2 1/2 hours to finish eating! Ha ha 1. there were 19 of us in the group (Bro. Jacobs' sister was with us) and 2. we had a full on 3 course meal with dessert and everything. It was so fancy! For an appetizer I chose their handmade ciabatta bread. I had no idea they were going to bring me a mini loaf! So much bread! My table all ordered different desserts so we could all share and taste the different choices. The peanut and cherry parfait and the pavlova were the best.Reflection of the Skytower in one of the buildings across the street. Cool, eh?Displayed feet: Jess, me, Janet

...It's a looong way down!
Heidi, me, and Jess

(Harbor Bridge in background)
Jess, me, Heidi, Nicole, EmilyView from the top. You can see Rangitoto Island in the distance.
Eating lunch with Nancy and Neeley

I ordered this ciabatta bread for my appetizer...
and ended up with this WHOLE loaf!

Yummy yummy desserts!

Here's a little video I took while we were in the observatory
to give you more of an idea of what it was like up there: