A beautiful sight, we’re happy tonight, probably ’cause we’re all so full of gin

December 24 – 26, 2011

My very first Christmas away from home.

Santa cruising on by Immigration hahaha…haha…?

Of course I knew that being away from family and friends for my most favorite time of year was not going to be easy by any means. But I think the sadness of it was alleviated by two things:

1) It didn’t feel like Christmas. At all. It was warm and sunny out and there was absolutely no snow (or chance of snow, for that matter).
2) My sister and I were surrounded by wonderful people that went out of their way to make sure  we had the best time possible without being with our Canadian loved ones.

On Christmas Eve, we ventured over to Mary’s parents’ place for an afternoon of suntanning, swimming, great company and delicious food (Mary and her father were part of the Tongariro Crossing expedition). Marjo and I brought citronfrommage – a Danish dessert that is part of our Christmas family tradition. We hid an almond in it and the person to find it wins a prize.

What is going on here? Marjo is photo-bombing without ANY enthusiasm and I’m not sure what’s going on with my Mr. Burns’ hand…?

Mary’s dad won the prize – which was a gargantuan, novelty-sized gift bag (you could seriously house a family of possums in it), filled with the most random stuff. Glowsticks. A light bulb. Truffles. Baby food. A ruler. Which could have been used to measure the french baguette – hilariously enough, it had gone limp in transit.

Mary and her parents spoiled us. I could not have imagined this Christmas without our surrogate Kiwi family.

On Christmas morning, Marjo and I drank mimosas, Skyped with our family, exchanged presents, made crepes (served with the pure maple syrup my Frenchman had sent over with me from Montreal, which I had been hoarding for that “special occasion”), then suntanned in our backyard before heading over to Mary’s for the orphan’s Christmas bbq. I got sunburnt and smashed on Christmas Day. Believe it or not, both were firsts for me!

From the Skype cam

Left to Right: Germany, New Zealand and Canada x 2

I still have yet to experience the chaos of Boxing Day shopping (in any country). We decided to forgo it again this year in exchange for some downtime on the beach.

Takapuna beach looking towards Mount Rangitoto – the red pohutukawa trees  bloom in December (aka Christmas trees!)

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