We wanted to go some place that was easy to get to, toddler friendly, but also had that I'm on a tropical vacation and we are going to live it up before this other baby gets here vibe (6 weeks to go now!). Voila Fiji.
It is literally the closest place you can fly to outside of New Zealand, even closer than Australia. It's an easy, direct 3 hour flight from Auckland to Nadi.
Adam and I had been once before when I was pregnant with Hazel and stayed on one of the smaller islands which was great, but this time since we had miss thing with us we decided to go the resort route and stay on the main island. Breakfast buffet and crab races anyone?
It was actually a lot of fun. I should have know it was going to be a good trip when as we were boarding they upgraded us to first class (sittin' next to Vanna White). No Vanna wasn't there, but I know all of the middle aged men who actually paid for their first class tickets were very happy to see a family with a toddler sharing their cabin space. Clearly we were psyched. Hazel even had her own seat, that turned into a bed of course.
But alas we couldn't stay in first class forever and had to get on with our Fijian holiday. It was sum sum summertime and we spent a lot of time in the pool.
People had told us before we went that Fijians loved kids, but nothing could have prepared me for what we experienced. Everywhere we went all the Fijian people treated Hazel like they had never been happier to see a child before, I'm talking grown men picking her up and kissing her and just overall joy oozing from every Fijian when they came in contact with a baby or young child.
In any other situation it would have weirded me out, but in this case it was remarkable and made our vacation that much more relaxed and fun.
One of Hazel's favorite things to do was to take the Bula Bus around town.
She referred to this woman who took the tickets all week as, "my friend," and would look for her every time a bus passed.
Mostly we just went to the pool, hung out, and read a lot. Naps were taken and relaxation was made a top priority.
There was that one day I did water aerobics and the time on Christmas day when I decided to participate in an egg race, where I balanced an egg on a spoon while racing against mostly 6-12-year-olds. I don't know about anybody else, but I find a certain sense of freedom being massively pregnant. I mean not this free, but pretty free.
One day we did venture away from our place and take a boat to one of the smaller islands. We went to the South Seas Island which, although only 30 minutes away, really gave us a taste of that Castaway meets the Bachelor kind of location feeling. Our greeting committee when we got off the boat:
It was great because they provided a free kids club so we got to drop Hazel off while we did some snorkeling.
Otherwise it was business as usual.
I wasn't sure what to expect doing an island Christmas, but if you can't be home with your actual family this certainly was a fun way to do it.
They had carolers each night and a big Christmas tree in the lobby. We packed a few presents for Hazel to open Christmas morning, it was easy and completely stress free.
We had a couple great meals at the Flying Fish and got some serious R & R in, overall a super way to end 2014.