adult years

Our Recent Trip To New Zealand

In 2011, Rob and I spent five months in New Zealand. 
It sounds fun, but it actually wasn’t.
It was right before I came out about being sexually abused as a child.
It was a heavy time in my life where my past had an uncomfortable death grip on my happiness.

To this day, I remember New Zealand being so dark and depressing.
Leaving the country, I remember thinking, “I hate New Zealand. I’ll never go back to that miserable grey country.”

But, after our recent visit back to celebrate our eighth wedding anniversary, I found New Zealand to be nothing like I remember it.
It’s green and beautiful with gorgeous scenery.
It’s like stepping into a Disney movie. Far from grey or miserable.

So, why do I remember New Zealand being so miserable?
Well, because I was completely miserable back then so my perception of everything was… miserable.
My emotions and pain played into how I perceived my reality.
New Zealand wasn’t dark and grey. I was dark and grey emotionally.

Looking back, I now see I never hated New Zealand, I hated where I was at emotionally when I was there.
I just took it out on New Zealand because it was easier than dealing with the root cause of my pain.
I wasn’t open to healing yet.

Now that I’ve progressed emotionally, I love New Zealand.
It has been one of my favorite trips and I would like to share it with you.

So get ready for a lot of pictures because here’s what we did…

August in NZ is cold. It’s their wintertime.
It was weird being surrounded by snow in mid-August but it was also nice.
It gave us a break from the intense Texas heat.

We spent our first two days in Queenstown, a beautiful mountain ski town.
We didn’t ski, but we did take a plane ride overlooking the snowy mountains.

Then we took a boat ride through Marlborough Sound.

We cheersed to eight years of marriage on the boat with a bottle of cheap champagne and
potato chips...we’re fancy.

After the boat ride, we flew back to Queenstown so here’s a picture of another plane.

After we got hot drinks at a cute little place on Queenstown lake.

Then we got the best soup ever!
The soup was so good, it deserved a selfie as well as a mentionable spot here on the blog.

The next day we took another plane and landed on a glacier.

It was literally the prettiest place I ‘d ever been to.
It was very quiet which gave me time to think and appreciate life.

This is me appreciating life in the pic below while freezing and acquiring frostbite.
I’m a multi-tasker.

And I always wear the right shoes.

After the glacier, we hit the road for a mini road trip.

One of my favorite things to do on a road trip is stopping for breakfast sandwiches,
so we stopped at…

I have to say, all the Mc Donalds in New Zealand are a lot nicer and cleaner
than the ones in the US.
They’re almost classy looking and I felt almost classy for eating there.

After our classy breakfast, we got back on the road.
Here’s a road trip selfie of Rob and I.
Can you spot him?

While driving we passed the prettiest water I had ever seen.
It’s was a creamy turquoise color.
Here’s what it looked like.
The picture below is not filtered!

Here’s a heavily filtered pic…

Just kidding 😛
This is Rob,
probably daydreaming about pickleball.
He’s obsessed with Pickleball!

We spent the next few days in Rotorua. The town is cute but it stinks!
Smelled like rotten eggs. The smell is caused by the sulfur thermal springs.
There was steam coming up from the ground all throughout the town.

Aside from the smell, I liked Rotorua.
It was very steamy and jungly.
Here’s how steamy it was…

So cool!
I felt like I had taken a step back in time when the dinosaurs lived.

Here’s some more steam and a mini volcano.

And here we are taking a mud bath.

After the mud bath, we did some art.

Meanwhile, back in Austin…

Lucy’s enjoying life.
Oh ya, did I mention we moved to Austin six months ago?
We didn’t last long in Salt Lake.
Still trying to forget we ever lived there…soooo much snow.

That night we had dinner with a local Mauri tribe.

They performed their traditional Haka dance.

Now, this next part was my favorite part of our trip.
We visited…

The whole movie set was beautiful.
I love little details and Hobbiton is full of them!

Look at this cute blue door with the pumpkins…

I love the big tree on the right in the next photo.
It looks magical.

Here’s Rob walking into the Green Dragon Pub for a cider.
Yes, the pub is real and you can drink and eat there!

While visiting Hobbiton, we heard fun stories about what happened on set as well as the history of the land.
Best tour ever!

Our final day was spent on a little Island near Auckland.
The Island is full of vineyards and we did a hop-on/hop-off wine bus tour which was really fun.
New Zealand has some of the best wine I’ve ever tasted

That was our New Zealand trip.
You probably want to watch The Hobbit now.
I know I do!

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