Anyway, we have officially been in NZ for one month now... and what a busy month it has been! We are still unpacking, and really realizing how much stuff we have!! It has become clear that I have WAY too many clothes and shoes, and Mark has WAY too many t-shirts. Lucky for us we have lots of young NZ relatives and friends who would be so happy to get some hand me downs!
As for renovation projects, the floor is finally done!! It is all cleaned and sealed, so we can finally put our furniture on it and we do not have to move it again! And we have mostly finished painting, just a little bit left to go! Aside from a few paint splatters here and there, there have been no major mishaps so far, which is impressive I must say. And, the best part... not one thing broke in the journey over from the US!! I will try and upload some pictures soon so you can see our new place, fully furnished and painted... or maybe I will try out my new little video camera and give you all a tour, I know my mom would LOVE that!
As for Mark... he has been working for two weeks now, and is liking it so far... it's a little different than what he was used to in the US for lots of reasons, but he's happy! He always has such a good attitude no matter what challenges he is presented with, and although right now the lab is a little different than what he was used to at Stanford and Roche, he's perfectly content and determined to have "the bomb pHD" as he so eloquently put it. Oh smarty pants.
I have also found a way to occupy my time AND make money at the same time... New Zealand has a website called "trademe" and it's similar to ebay, pretty much. So because we have an abundance of a lot of things, and because some of our furniture won't actually fit into our house, I am selling it! Yesterday I sold the ugly curtains that came with the house for $350!! Woohoo! Today I sold some useless doors we took out of our house for $100. Love it.
Now we can use that money to buy all the converters and transformers so our US appliances and electronics work here in NZ. For example, our big, wonderful, HDTV... works if you buy the $120 transformer... but only if you only turn on in short periods of time, and ONLY have the TV plugged in (so no playstation, wii, xbox, etc...) because then the transformer overheats. We found this out last night as we sat on the couch watching TV, which just randomly shuts off every hour or so... Great. So we're working on finding a solution to this problem. Then there is the problem of how our $100 toaster requires its own $120 transformer... as does the blender, the sandwich grill, etc. etc. etc. My "brilliant idea" to bring all our appliances is not turning out to be so brilliant after all!!
Anyway, sorry for the long post with absolutely no pictures, I promise the next one will have PLENTY to make up for it. Guess I better go do something picture-worthy then... :)