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We haven’t stayed in many hotels on our journey and the kids loved not cleaning up anything and indulging in the continental breakfast which was actually far inferior to our usual breakfast fare (at least health wise!!). Over the pass to Lake Wanaka we sped, once we bid farewell to Queenstown. 

One of the perks of a hotel–an actual little gym with a few to die for-

Wanaka was beautiful, but our stop there at the Puzzling World was fraught with mental frustration!  I had heard that the boys would love the puzzling world and they did, yet the life size maze and the hundreds of various puzzles left us all puzzling!  It was like trying to figure out the rubix cube over and over and over!  

Once we had puzzled til our puzzler was sore we turned to Haast pass. Taylor, who was waiting to hear back from BYU as to admission status was ready to throw the puzzle he was working on across the room. His brain simply could not focus!

Our goal was not to just get through the pass, but to enjoy the journey. With that in mind we hiked to the Blue Pools, ran to Fantail Falls, stopped for photos at Thunder Creek Falls, found the secret path to Depot Creek Falls and passed dozens of others that weren’t even considered significant enough for signage. We laughed as we passed two large falls that were simply marked as “Trickle #1” and “Trickle #2”. Love this country and love that Mike is willing to drive on the opposite side of the road through all kinds of adventures. 

Tay had a rough day knowing that at some point during the day BYU would be sending their admission decision and we were out of all cell reception for the majority of the day. No cell towers. No signal. No stores. No fuel stations. Tay was turning gray. Finally when we were driving away from the Fox Glacier Mike received a signal and we pulled over at the base of the glacier and sat with baited breath as we waited for Taylor to login to his email.

Nothing –yet we knew the decisions were out. Take 2- he logged into his application site and ……………ACCEPTED!!!!!  We all got out and danced and celebrated!!  Woohoo!!!!!  The homeschool experiment worked!!!!  SOOOO HAPPY!!!!!  We were supposed to go see the Franz Jospeh Glacier, but it was 8p, the clouds were heavy and everyone wanted to go out and celebrate Taylor!  

We found the best restaurant in Franz Joseph, Alice May, and went out and celebrated–With dessert first!  Perfect dinner. Stoked Taylor. So Blessed.