‘Twas the Night Before Christmas | Christmas in New Zealand


I know, I know, Christmas was AGES ago.  But these NZ/Aus vacation posts are taking awhile to get through, therefore we’ve finally hit Christmas Eve, and I love Christmas, so I’m more than happy to write about it one month after the event!

It’s probably a given, being that I love Christmas, that I’m also one of those people that absolutely adores Christmas lights and over-the-top decorations.  So, a few nights before the big day, I dragged (willingly) my mum, my niece and my nephew to a neighbourhood next to the city centre, Ponsonby, to visit the very popular holiday lights on Franklin Road.

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This street is nothing short of specatular, with almost every house lit up with some grand theme of sparkling, flashing lights.  It’s so much fun to visit, there are people EVERYWHERE and you’ll come across choir singers, orchestra’s, cheeky ‘trouser dropping’ Santa’s and even one house that has ‘snow’ falling out on top of you.


Having taken in the sights of every house, we walked back to the car with extra Christmas spirit and lots of chat over our favourites displays.


Christmas was drawing closer, and my family always spends this holiday at our beach house on the east coast of New Zealand, in a beautiful little beach town called Pauanui.

We arrived on December 23rd, unpacked all the food and bags and shortly after one of my brothers turned up with two very excited children. ‘Let’s put up the Christmas tree!!!’ we were immediately told.




Jemma and Drew spent the next hour helping assemble the tree (yes ours is a fake!), and adding decorations until they lost interest like any 3 and 6 year old soon does and found face pulling, running around the sofa and trying on Santa hat’s more suitable entertainment.



The kids were so excited about Santa visiting, they were in the craziest of moods.

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The tree decorating was finally complete, the various decorations were placed around the house, the twinkly outdoor lights were turned on and it was time for a sit down and a snack!

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On the morning of Christmas Eve, all four cousins were reunited, when my eldest brother turned up with his two.

I was baking up a storm in the kitchen, in preparation for our Christmas Day dinner.  I’d been told by Jemma the day I arrived in NZ, that her and I would be making the desserts together. Yes ma’am!  And once one kid helps and gets to stir the bowl, they all want a turn.  Mixing, stirring, and taste testing was all part of the process.

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And in my family, when you’re growing up, licking the baking spoon is a must!  Three year old Drew was a willing participant, and my photography assistant Josh did a wonderful job smearing chocolate all over his cousins face, much to the laughter of everyone.


This little baker was on a sugar high!


And the perks of helping me were tasting good too!


He was the best chocolate covered baking assistant/model I could ask to work with!

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The day flew by, and as evening closed in, Jemma went around the family placing hats and antlers on everyone, including Seth the dog.  This called for some family selfie action!


It was time to pour a glass of milk and place a delicious selection of cookies on a plate for Santa.  But we couldn’t forget the reindeer…


Magic reindeer food is one of Rudolph’s favourites.



Carrots, food and water were left out for the reindeer’s arrival and the littlest amongst the family went to bed with magic in their eyes and huge smiles.  Just one more sleep!


Sometime during the night, Santa snuck in and left a generous spread of goodies for us all whilst we slept.  Christmas morning chaos was about to begin…. To Be Continued.

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  1. Pingback: Eat | Brunch at Dizengoff, Auckland - donuts + detoursdonuts + detours

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