What Does Matter Most?

koru hand painted rocks

So we’re back in Rotorua with whānau and we’ve just come from Te Puke after spending the last few days with whānau and what a wonderful time it has been!
koru hand painted rocks
I’ve said this before recently – there is something about this time, something in the air, so much aroha in the air, everywhere there is change, people are more accommodating and accepting of one another realising more and more, what matters most. And what matters most?

The relationships we have – the meaning we give to our lives through our relationships and love.

I feel like I’ve grown over the past three days, grown in the sense that I have healed through many years, spending time with whānau has made me realise that some things just don’t matter like they used to and what matters is that we have each other, we love one another, we can have a good laugh, we can have a good cry, we share a meal together or a few BIG meals together and in those moments, we know what matters most.

What matters most to me right now, is that I am here with whānau, enjoying the experience and sharing the love. A very special time.

Arohanui,
Jo x

Our Rock

koru hand painted rocks

I decided that I would write the story for this rock with my three nieces. And these are the thoughts that came to mind from all of us.
koru hand painted rocks
It has been a great day – all the family getting together for a yummy hangi! We haven’t seen each other for ages and all the mokos have grown! No one knows anyone’s age or birthdays anymore!

Teiarere says the rock looks like a mushroom and then Rexina says she doesn’t like mushrooms and Teiarere says me either!

Rexina says, “they remind me of curls and Robyn said, “xmas snow”…

Nana was so happy today and she’s been in a really good mood around family and the ham was great with pineapple and cherries and mint sauce…

One thing we will remember:

Robyn – everyone sitting in a row all together.
Rexina – the food.
Teirere – the games.
Aunty Jo – Xmas in the orchard with the whanau all gathered together united in the kitchen putting the kai on together like it was a marae… and our sister Char was not here but oh well we hope to see her at the end of January!

Last words from all of us – colour in the snow – colour at xmas – family – sunny day – eyebrows – sneezing at eyebrows being plucked lol (that was Rexina!), joyful…

Arohanui,
from US! Jo, Rexina, Robyn and Teiarere xxxx

PS – from the nieces AND Tai the nephew – DOITTZZZZZ!!

Response To Touch

koru hand painted rocks

I was putting healing cream on my niece’s excema this morning and she just sat there, fluttered her butterfly eyelashes and was enjoying the touch and attention to her skin.
koru hand painted rocks
Today I picked up my Mum from the resthome and she loved to have kisses on her face, me touching her soft skin with my two hands, she responded with a smile and glow in her eyes. Just beautiful.

All it takes is time, attention and love to give a child, touch can be the most special gift one can give to a child.

All it takes is time, attention and love to give… when we grow up and have given all the love, we then require love and care in return to replenish that love. It can be the most warming and life giving thing for an adult, to feel loved and to be touched with love.

It’s been a beautiful day today with whānau! We are all together – have prepared kai for the hangi tomorrow (well actually today as it is 1am in the morning!) but it has been such a special day. Pō mārie.

Arohanui,
Jo x

Into the Daylight

koru hand painted rocks

Out of space into the daylight a brand new day, fresh, alive…
brightness… I come alive again…
koru hand painted rocks
Yay! So I’m here with whānau and looking forward to the next few days ahead. It was so lovely to come to Rotorua and to the sun!

I love the rain and the coolness but my body was wanting to feel warm, my bones wanting to loosen up with the warmth of sun. Longing for summer!

I took a series of photos for this rock and asked my niece Robyn which photo she liked. She says this one and called it – Into the Daylight. I like that and it reminds me of our drive through the gorge – from the cool, damp, rainy Gisborne to a brighter day.

Yes, the future is bright.

Arohanui,
Jo x

Ahi Kaa

Ahi Kaa – the hot embers glowing remind me of my ancestors crouched around a fire watching… sharing a story or two…
koru hand painted rocks
Ahi Kaa – keeping the fires burning at home. Keeping the fire alive for whānau to come home to. Maintaining your intrinsic connection to the land and the environment and remembering that this is where I belong.
Ahi Kaa – can be carried within. I carry my ahi kaa within as a reminder of where I come from, who I am and I know one day if the desire arises to return to my tūrangawaewae – my place to stand, the fire is still burning for me…
Ahi Kaa – identity, warmth, nurture, comfort, belong, security, stability.
Ahi Kaa – keeping the fires burning…
Arohanui,
Jo x

First Light

Painting this rock was the first thing I did today. I had a million and one other things to do, packing, packing and more packing oh and of course I had to go and see Ron and see what fantabulous kākahu he had magic-ed up for me! And lunch with Todd before heading off into the sunset….on another journey.
koru hand painted rocks
But it was SO great painting this rock first thing, not sure why its taken me 144 days to figure out its actually the best time to paint my rocks – hullo! Just like doing yoga, first thing in the morning, always sets the tone for the day. And this rock has certainly done that.
It’s like my guiding tohu (symbol) for my journey over the next few weeks, balance, male and female, connection…and commitment to bringing about change within and change in the world…and I’m going to Floating Land…where the theme is water…so helping water to flow again…
And driving through the Waioeka gorge today was so beautiful – the river was flowing, the trees were lush and green and the sunset was amazing. So I’m here for a night in Rotorua with my whānau, getting grounded and then on the road again tomorrow. The journey has begun! Officially!
Arohanui,
Jo x
PS – This rock is very special to me. Todd brought it back for me from the Wanganui river last year and it has a really beautiful energy…Ngā mihi aroha ki a koe e taku tiiki! xx