I’m Dreaming of a NZ Christmas

Merry Christmas!!! By the time any of you read this, Christmas will have passed here in New Zealand but you will just be starting the merriment in the U.S.!

  Going into this trip, we had no idea where we would be on Christmas, but that was what made it fun! For being such a planner, I have rolled with the punches on this one and enjoyed every second.

We woke up to a beautiful day and Mike even shaved! It’s the first time his face has seen a razor since this adventure started, so I was thrilled! We packed up and went to visit the animals that lived on the property: 3 Emus, a wallaby, a large pig, ducks, chickens and a large deer. Mike was entranced with the wallaby, he was so cute!

 On the road again to get to Nelson, it was only about an hour drive so nothing Dora couldn’t handle. We arrived to Nelson and immediately liked the vibe. We finally were able to check into a camp ground early and our site is steps away from the most beautiful beach!

 With the weather in the 70’s we decided to walk the beach and celebrate the holiday. What surprised Mike and I was that there were a ton of dogs off leash. With this being peak season, apparently dogs are still allowed to frolic and swim during the day unlike the beaches in the US. We were also impressed with how well the dogs got along with each other, something Mike and I are quite envious of considering Rugby can be such a jerk. Sigh.

We could have walked the beach for another hour as its huge, but we had plans to meet up with Simon, Dizzy and the kids at the house they have rented up on the cliffs.

Today was somewhat bittersweet as its the first time Mike and I are not with family on a holiday… Considering we are in our mid-thirties, that is quite a record to have broken. However, we were lucky to have met the Blacks as it was nice being with a good family for the holiday – even if it couldn’t be our own.

Let me first describe the house. You drive along the beautiful coastline and then take a sharp right up a steep hill that enables you to see miles and miles, including Able Tasman National Park. We arrived to the house and it was stunning. It was almost like being in a lighthouse and the builder took every opportunity to showcase the view. Picture windows, wrap around outdoor terraces, we were thrilled to be having our Christmas dinner in such a beautiful location.

 Simon was the grill master as we shared our recent journeys and the kids showed us what Santa brought. The Black family opened their “home” to us and we couldn’t be more thankful… Six hours later after endless food, four bottles of wine and amazing storytelling, we said goodbye knowing that we will see each other again. One moment that made me slightly teary eyed is that Dizzy asked Kristina to play her flute. All of a sudden, I heard the melody from The Snowman. The Snowman is one of my favorite holiday movies, it’s beautiful, yet sad. How fitting that on the other side of the world, I am reminded of my childhood holidays as I used to watch the video over and over.

To think that we spend Christmas with a family that we met only a week ago on a cruise in the fiords. This is what this trip is all about, meeting interesting people and seeing a different part of the world. We are so unbelievably fortunate and thankful.

Mike and I wish everyone the merriest Christmas and the happiest of holidays. While we’re sad to not be with our loved ones in person, thanks for tagging along on our journey and know that we send our love to each and everyone of you. img_9867

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