(Following a friend's example, in honor of my 30th birthday I have decided to post 30 things I have accomplished in my life in 30 years. So for the remaining 7 days leading up to my birthday watch for a new post each day celebrating these 30 things.)
In my 30 years I have celebrated my birthday in many places and come to think of it, I've actually celebrated my birthday in at least 3 different countries. Exactly 10 years ago I was celebrating my 20th birthday in New Zealand complete with fairy bread.
I lived and studied in New Zealand February - July 2002 - during which time I got to do some amazing amazing things. Along with a few others, I took an awesome Maori Studies class at Victoria University and learned about the indigenous people of NZ, I sailed on a sailboat, went sea kayaking, jumped off a bridge and out of a plane. I traveled by myself around the North Island for one week and then joined my brother and my NZ brother on a tour of the South Island. I lived with an amazing family that IS truly my family. I vacationed on a winery and a ranch where I helped make wine and rode four wheelers. I went horse back riding, spelunking and swimming in natural hot springs. I saw plays, ballets and symphonies, visited Te Papa, Government House, Parliament and a marae.
While I would love to continue to share every tiny detail of my time in New Zealand, I can't begin to name all the amazing people that made my time in New Zealand what it was, or all the ways that they influenced who I was to be the person I am today. So instead I will leave you with pictures of my 20th birthday tea party - something every NZ little girl has - because even though I wasn't a little girl, I was sure to get in as many experiences as possible! :D