After Rarotonga Jude and I still had one more week in New Zealand with family. We were reunited with Luke, but only for a few days as he had to get back to Taipei for work. One of our first stops was over to Abby and Brad’s for lunch. They had an interesting assortment of toys for Jude to play with including a severed arm and pirate sword.
Jude loved the toys but was more excited to play with their very sweet dog, Willy.
While Jude played, Abby and Brad worked away on lunch – fresh pasta. What a treat!
After lunch we took Jude out to meet their cows – a huge benefit of having farmers in the family is Jude gets to up close and personal with these amazing animals when we visit.
His favorite book, ‘Moo’ came to life.
And more playtime with Willy.
We took a photo capture the occasion.
We said bye to Luke on Monday and Jude and I had a few days hanging out in Thames before all of Luke’s sisters arrived for the long Easter weekend. It was raining on and off so we took advantage of when the weather was fine and hung out at the park.
Jude chased and chased the seagulls in circles.
I kept throwing them bits of bread so they would flock around Jude – he loved it.
And then everyone arrived! It was a very special weekend as on Saturday we were having a baby shower for Renee. Her and Ash are expecting their first baby (a boy!) in June.
We all pitched in and made food for the shower.
And of course there were gifts.
It was a great afternoon.
We even got to do another group shot – Jude, Grandma, and Aunties.
I jumped in for a Polaroid photo of us.
The rest of our time there Jude got to spend a lot of quality time with his Aunts – lots of ball throwing and vacuuming,
Kisses and cuddles,
A trip to the park,
And yummy treats.
On Easter we went to Elizabeth and Dean’s for an Easter egg hunt.
Jude was clearly on the winning team – Pearl and Faith found those eggs fast.
Jude wasn’t a big help with the search but he was fun to cuddle in between finds.
And finally, back inside he figured out what all the fuss was about – chocolate goodness. Mind-blowing…
And then it was our last day in Thames. That night Pearl and Faith helped out with Jude’s bedtime routine.
In the morning we said goodbye.
Grandma drove us to the airport, and after a hot drink, we said goodbye for now.
The flight back was rough. Jude was not keen to sleep – he just wanted to bounce around – exploring, throwing things at our neighbors, and eating whatever he could get his little fingers on.
Moments like the one below (where he was still for a few moments) were rare.
But the light at the end of the tunnel was coming home to Daddy.