Hamilton Travel Blog› entry 25 of 33 › view all entries
December 29th, 2009 – by: lukeandsarah
It has been absolutely wonderful to be home for Christmas with my family. Having the little nephews and niece running around does add some noise, chaos and a whole lot of fun. Having not been home for Christmas in the last 4 years I had kinda forgotten what to expect, but as the sun heated up, the Dio school swimming pool utilised and a few bbqs I soon remembered what I love most about NZ Christmas's: days relaxing with family and friends generally outdoors with good food.
Our friend, Nigel, from England arrived on Christmas eve and was very good at fitting in with the hustle and bustle of life in the Carey household. The afternoon was spent helping to prepare for some of Mum and Dad's friends popping in to share the Christmas joy and then we headed off to a midnight service at Mums church.
Christmas morning we (luke, me, Nigel, Mum, Dad, Anna, Marcus, Lucy and Ollie) woke to a beautifully hot cloudless day. The kids had already opened their stockings by 6am, and the rest of us weren't far behind. When we were all up, dressed and breakfasted we went again to Mums church for a Christmas day service, it was lovely seeing the kids play in the aisles and trying to stop Lucy from blowing out the advent candles.
Back at home it was bbq sausages for Christmas lunch before the kids went for their afternoon nap and us adults went to the pool. Late afternoon presents opening was also a treat and Lucy was so cute as she 'helped' all of us unwrap each present, although she wasn't very interested in the contents afterwards, just the next present! A Christmas ham picnic was prepared for the evening and very much enjoyed sitting in Hamilton Gardens catching the last of the sun and playing croquet on the lawns.
On boxing day, Luke, Nigel and I set off to show Nigel some good New Zealand bush and beach at Waiwera Falls, Tauranga and the Mount. It was another beautifully hot day and the beach was busy by NZ standards which surprised Nigel who could still see lots of sand available. After a quick dip and a sunbathe, some smoothies from SideTrack cafe and it was back on the road again, saying goodbye to Nigel who was heading to Rotorua, and Luke and I back to Hamilton to meet up with the rest of the family, Kathy, Campbel, Caleb, Max and bump. More presents were exchanged followed by a wonderful roast turkey dinner once the kids were asleep and lots of laughs and story-telling using Mum's new gift of 'table talkers' cards around the table.
Sunday, we lead the family service at Mum's church with each of us taking a part. In the afternoon we were joined by aunts, uncles and some cousins arriving from Mums side of the family to share lunch with us. The kids loved running through the sprinkler in the back garden while us adults enjoyed even more Christmas ham and salads in the garage. I appreciated an opportunity to catch up with everyone.
The last couple of days have have been great to have my sisters and their families stay on, movie watching in the evenings, walks and swims, pamper pregnant Kathy day and a family photo, as its not very often we are all in the same place at the same time! :o)
I feel blessed and not yet ready to leave NZ shores but I know that they will always be home, and always be here waiting for me until next time.
Thank you New Zealand for a 'choice' stay.
Lots of love
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