We are home now from our fabulous trip to New Zealand! What a great experience! The countryside is incredible and the people were very nice. This was the scene at the end of Lake Taupo next to our hotel. I opened up my curtain everyday to see this view! This is what I guess was called Middle Earth in the Lord of the Rings. It was winter there but not really winter according to we from Michigan. I loved the weather, about 50 to 65 in the day and colder at night of course. Great fall weather so we didn't die in 95 degree weather like back here in Michigan.
The classes were great and my students were brilliant as usual! There were 35 teachers at the Taupo Symposium in all. A great lineup of teachers like Gloria Loughman, Michele Hill, Phillipa Naylor, Susan Brubaker Knapp, and so many more. I would love to go back to another New Zealand quilt festival one day! I guess in 2017 it will be in Christchurch which would be great because it's on the south island that we didn't get a chance to see.
Mud pots are basically boiling mud in this volcanic area. The patterns are beautiful. Above that are dormant volcanos that erupted in 1886 and killed 200 people including the Maori that lived there. This is Lake Tarawera outside of the Rotorua area. While we were there, an earthquake occurred in Wellington which was about 4.5 hrs south of Taupo. In our classrooms every morning we went through the evacuation procedures and what to do in case of earthquake. Seemed a little unnerving! But they are used to it (like in California). Now I have to go through all of my photos to get inspired for a New Zealand wallhanging. My husband and I took lots!!!! We also visited Hobbiton, the location for the filming of the Hobbit village scenes in the Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit. It was very fun. Movies sets are really well done. Sort of reminds you of Disneyworld!! More later after I go through the rest of our pictures.