And so here we are, friends … we’ve arrived at our final two days in Australia. Le sigh.
Our last two days were filled with all the classic Australian activities, including checking out Circular Quay and the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge, then heading out on the Manly Ferry to check out Manly Beach with some family and old friends. Lotte had the best time splashing around in the water with our friends’ son, who is one year older, and we’ve discovered G’s love of fish and chips, as was demonstrated by her eating all of Chris’ aunt’s fish after she woke from a delightful nap by the beach.
The waves at Manly were pretty insane the day we were there, but we headed over to a calm area of water on the other side of the beach before taking on the actual beach itself, so Lotte was able to get all her water adventures in in quieter waters.
^^ This was the first time the girls were on a ferry, and as you can tell from G’s face, she thoroughly enjoyed it. Lotte had the best time too, and insisted on walking all around the ferry, checking out all the corners and exploring every last inch.
^^ This photo of Lotte and our friends’ son, Ben, is just the sweetest.
^^ That. Water!
^^ Beach babe!
^^ Sonja and her husband went to college with Chris in Australia, and we always catch up with them when we’re back in town. They even got to visit us here in Denver when they were traveling last year. Old friends are the absolute best.
^^ Fish and chips on the beach in Manly. Does not get better.
The day after Manly Beach we decided to check out Coogee with the girls. A whole bunch of family and Sonja and Paz and Ben joined us again, and we had the best day, splashing in the water, eating lunch, making sand castles and just generally enjoying the sunshine.
^^ Is this not the happiest face?!
^^ Auntie Sarah and Lotte really bonded this day, and they had the best time playing together in the sand and the water.
^^ Chris’ grandma came, as well, which made the day extra special <3
^^ After the beach we had a little farewell pizza party back at Chris’s aunt’s and uncle’s place where we were staying. There were nine kids there, which was pretty much Lotte’s dream come true … especially when Chris took both she and G on the trampoline with the big kids 😉
^^ Oh man, this family of ours.
And that brings us to the end of our first Australian journey with the girls. It was so beyond what we could have hoped for. Besides Lotte getting sick — which honestly could have been much worse — there were so many amazing moments and memories that we’ll cherish from this time. I know that the girls are probably too young to remember most (all?) of it, but it’s always my hope that the photos I take and these blog posts can help jog whatever part of their memory exists from these journeys. Traveling with kids is hard and stressful and, honestly, usually very expensive. But it’s also amazing and wonderful and eye opening … and I never want to stop. Ever since we got back, Chris and I have been marveling over how much the girls seem to have grown over our time in Australia. Lotte is basically talking in paragraphs, and G is standing and taking steps with her walker. I really and truly believe that travel changes people — even little people — for the better.
And that’s really what it’s all about.
I hope you all had amazing holidays as well, and that you’re off to a great start in the new year.
Bis bald, friends! Cheers to new adventures in 2019!