Time in the Sun (and rain)

The Whitsundays would have to be amongst the most breathtakingly beautiful places in the world. Lush green islands peppered along the crystal blue coast, near white sand, copious sunshine and of course the unparalleled Great Barrier Reef. Last week we were there when our friends Emma and Michael married in the Whitsundays, on Hamilton Island. We also managed to squeeze in some family holiday time in the sun (and rain!).

We filled our island days with lunches by the pool, swimming, sand castle making, zoo visiting, island exploring, and of course a beautifully loved-up wedding. The island’s wildlife zoo saved us on the overcast days when the beach and pool were unappealing. The Monster’s animal obsession reached a new high when faced with only some thin glass separating his face from the imposing jaws of a 500 kilo saltwater croc he attempted to ‘open’ the glass to ‘tickle’ it. Steve Irwin would have been proud. I was just thankful the croc looked well fed.

A trip to Whitehaven beach and the endless miles of pristine white sand proved a great day despite realising five minutes after leaving shore that I had left our backpack full of towels, nappies and food on the back of the golf buggy. Thankfully the tropical north Queensland sun makes towels unnecessary and the Monster obliging enjoyed some nappy-less beach time. We I may have also subjected him to a bright pink ‘stinger-suit’ and much to Troy’s disapproval taken photos to prove it (see below). Hey real men wear pink, right?

Pink stinger-suits aside, the Monster seemed to make friends at every turn. From saying hi to the sweet little blonde girl at Brisbane airport, to playing ‘boo!’ with the French boys on the boat trip, Lachie embraced his lack of social anxieties and engaged with anyone who looked like they might be fun. No-one quite took his eye like the shy little girl at the pool restaurant, literally. As he chased her around the restaurant tables, adults looking on, collectively ‘awwwww-ing’ in their heads, his face met the corner of a table in a rather abrupt manner. The collective ‘awwww-ing’ instantly turned into audible ‘ohhhhh’s’ as I rushed to the Monster, scooping him up in my best mumma-cuddle. I suppressed my natural urge to panic while Troy assessed the damage. Thankfully the table had just missed Lachie’s eye, instead giving him a decent graze which Troy assures me ‘looks tough’.

Tough face scabs and all we arrived at the wedding ceremony. And what a spot to get married! The sweetest little chapel perched innocently on the hill overlooking an endless expanse of deep blue ocean. Storm clouds loomed over the bumpy silhouettes of distant islands but the air was still warm and full of excitement. Inside the chapel, we waited. And when Em finally arrived I watched her from my back-row viewpoint and my eyes filled with tears. In that moment before she started the walk down the aisle, to her best friend and future husband, there was so much honesty. She looked divine of course but it was even more than that, the unbridled emotions that were evident on her face: nervousness; happiness, excitement and most of all love.

Em and Michael were married on Hamilton Island on Thursday April 26, 2012. And we feel fortunate to have been there to share it with them. The day was incredibly joyful. From the serene ceremony to the all-in dancing reception. What I loved most was Em and Michael’s approach to their relationship and now, their marriage, “my friend, my love, my life”. A gorgeous married life lies ahead of them, of that I have no doubt.

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