7 of New Zealand’s Hidden Gems: Off the Beaten Track

The saying “it’s about the journey, not just the destination” is so true for New Zealand. In New Zealand, there is so much diversity in the landscapes, and it doesn’t take long to get from “somewhere” to the “middle of no-where”. If you know anything about New Zealand, you’ve probably heard of the major cities and attractions like Auckland and Queenstown, or Milford Sound. New Zealand is also known for adventure activities like bungy-jumping, “zorbing”, and amazing surfing on the picturesque beaches. But today we’re sharing seven of our favorite gems in New Zealand that are a just a bit off the beaten track.

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Cross Country Skiing: Buying Secondhand Gear to Get Started

We LOVE winter. I mean, really love it. Come September-time, we start day dreaming of snow covered pines, cold temperatures and winter adventures. We met and fell in love and got married in the snow, so that may have something to do with our warm-feelings towards the colder months. But today we want to share one of our new winter activities: cross country skiing!

We got into cross country skiing last winter, as James was looking for something a little different than skiing Michigan slopes (fun, but not quite the mountains he was used to). We also got River, and were looking for a way to exercise him more. Enter cross country skiing! You guys, cross country skiing is such a great workout and a great way to get out and escape cabin fever during the long winter months.

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8 Reasons to Consider a Cruise for Your Next Vacation

It’s the beginning of the year, and it’s time to start thinking about the upcoming adventures and holidays to be had! A cruise is definitely one of our favorite ways to really relax and unwind. I have been on about 6 cruises and James 3 cruises. We’ve sailed to the East and West Caribbean, Bahamas, and from Vancouver to Alaska. I’m here to tell you why we love cruises with 8 reasons why you should consider planning a cruise for your next vacation.

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DIY Christmas Stockings: For Beginners

Nothing gets me in the Christmas spirit like decorating the house. Typically my rule is the day after Thanksgiving but James talked me into decorating a week earlier this year. Since we were married, I have been wanting Christmas stockings. Inspired by the beautiful plaid stockings I have been seeing this year, I decided to try my hand (and my novice sewing machine skills) at making Christmas stockings!

James bought me a sewing machine for my birthday a few months ago, so trust me I’m no expert. I may or may not have sewed the stocking shut several times while creating my pattern (okay, I totally did). But don’t worry, I did the hard part for you. Once I got the pattern sorted out, I whipped out the second stocking in less than 30 minutes.

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Frequently Asked Questions About New Zealand

I figured it was time to address some “basics” about New Zealand! James and I get a lot of questions about New Zealand. I’m from Michigan, which makes New Zealand quite literally on the other side of the world. So, listen up, I’m answering your questions about our south pacific home, and I’ll let the pictures do the rest.

View from Mt Ruapehu, North Island

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Gift Guide: For Lovers of Adventure & DIY

Christmas is right around the corner! I really love Christmas… the decorations, the lights, the snow… not to mention the presents. The gifts are good too. I love giving as much if not more than I love receiving.  And finding that perfect gift is everything! I’ve rounded up a few of my favorite fun and practical gifts this season for the adventure lover or DIY-er on your list! I’ve also included several of my favorite gifts that I just couldn’t leave out in the snow.

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Removing Wallpaper: Using Items You Probably Have in Your Pantry

`Many of you know we bought a beautiful home on some land in the spring.  Built in the 1980s, but hasn’t been updated since then. We spent a few weeks painting until I thought my hand may just permanently attach to the paintbrush. I’ve been putting off the master bathroom because it’s covered in wallpaper. *sigh*. Removing wallpaper can be super intimidating and time consuming!

I’ve removed my fair share of pastel-floral and fruit covered wallpaper over the past two years with our two fixer uppers. I’m here to share my favorite removing wallpaper method, with items you probably already have in your pantry!

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A Girl and a Kiwi Has Been Nominated for the Liebster Award

I wanted to take minute to share a bit of a different post… I’m really excited to share that this little blog was nominated for the Liebster Award!

The what? Yeah, that’s what I said. I had heard of this award a few times since I started this blogging adventure a few months ago, but didn’t really take the time to look into it… until we were nominated!

So what is it?

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What to Do and See in Grand Rapids, Michigan: A Local’s Guide

I just got back from a weekend in Grand Rapids with my sisters and my mom. It was so refreshing, we shopped for hours, made our fall wreaths, shared gourmet appetizers, and saw the play Wicked (hiiiiighly recommend), which was every bit as good as I’ve heard.

My sister Mandy, is studying at Grand Valley State University and was our unofficial tour guide for the weekend. She knew exactly where to take us, how long it was going to take to get there, and nailed our dinner and brunch reservations! I asked her about what’s what in Grand Rapids: what to do, what to see, and what’s worth the drive. Check out her recommendations for your next trip to Grand Rapids!

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