Monday, September 23, 2013

seals at Kaikoura

For my birthday weekend Kevin and I along with some friends went on a weekend trip to a town a few hours north of us called Kaikoura. It is known for it's gorgeous views of the southern alps right on the pacific ocean, and it's wildlife!

I've made it my goal since arriving in NZ to get up close and personal with as many baby animals as possible. Forget the full grown ones, I want the cute, little, furry baby versions of everything! Lambs, ducklings, penguins, even boring old cows, which we have by the thousands back home. So when our friends suggested we visit a seal pup colony I was all for it. And it turns out, adult seals are just as adorable as the little ones!

I took way too many pictures, but how could you not?
It was definitely worth the drive, and made my birthday one for the books. And if I had come up with a way to take one home with me it would've been perfect. :)

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

23 & far from home

Last weekend was my birthday.
My first birthday in New Zealand, and only my 2nd birthday ever away from home.

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little sad leading up to it. We still don't know too many people here, and a part of me wished for a celebration with friends and family and a Mom-baked birthday cake.
But Kevin along with the few friends we do have here made last weekend so great. We took a road trip to a town a few hours north of us, right on the coast. The weather was perfect and the views were gorgeous. The snow capped mountains of the southern alps against pebbly beaches look like something right out of a nature magazine.We even took a short trail to see a seal colony, complete with a waterfall and adorable swimming seal pups. (yes, I took a million pictures)

So, yeah, I had a store bought birthday cake and 4 friends to celebrate with. But it was still pretty wonderful. And I think it's sort of symbolic of our new life here-simple is beautiful.
Here's to hoping this new year brings more simple, beautiful, & happy things :)

Monday, September 9, 2013

september spring

Moving to the southern hemisphere in August has allowed Kevin and I to experience spring for a 2nd time this year! We celebrated the first day of spring on September 1st. Which seems odd, since we're usually seeing the leaves turn to brown and orange and busting out the scarves & sweaters around this time. But the temps have been slowly climbing higher and higher, and last weekend on our way out of town for a hike we came across these beautiful blooming trees!

Even though fall is my favorite time of the year, and I'm sad to be missing it, I'm definitely looking forward to seeing this beautiful countryside turn even more green than it already is.
Happy spring!