I still kind of can’t believe I braved the flight to Africa all alone with baby.
It was not easy, but so worth it for the sweet time spent with my parents
getting to know her at this stage before they finish their time as mission
presidents this summer. She would have changed so much during her
first year, so it was priceless to get to introduce her to her grand-
parents earlier. I can’t believe it was my third visit to South Africa,
and in total I’ve now spent a few months in Johannesburg so I
feel very connected to the place + people. Aside from my parents
living there, I love this place so much just on its own. It’s a
hidden gem full of warm people, so much beauty, diversity, wildlife,
some of the best food I’ve had anywhere, and also some of the best style.
You would never know it, but it’s true! We took so many pictures
during the two week stay, and I don’t feel like splitting them into
different posts because it really was just one big sweet time together
and I want to be able to look back at all the pics here! So that is to
say, sorry for the many photos to anyone clicking into this post.
We took plenty so that even though Reagan might not remember
this visit so well, the pictures & videos will help her feel all of the
love she was showered with in South Africa. There’s so much of it here.
Reagan + my parents at the Johannesburg temple ^^
^^ I loved seeing her surrounded by so much goodness with the
missionaries around her. I hope their spirit & power rubbed off on her!
^^ The cutest trio. It made my heart happy to see my
baby in my parents arms. All felt right in the world!
^^ My dad insisted on always carrying her everywhere, and I didn’t mind!
These two also somehow were always matching…as though they
were planning it ;) ^^ Just look at that green and pink coordination!
Also — those African flowers? So unique and lovely.
^^ We came across this perfect driveway
entry for our RR girl while on a walk!
Brunch date with dad to Salvation Cafe, yummiest ^^Halloumi cheese breakfast burrito for the win.
Those eggs were so dang creamy!
Stopping to smell the agapanthus flowers with grandma Linny ^^
^^ Lots of shopping was done (especially for baby!)
Cutest Africa ring for my mom, + her favorite Protea flowers ^^
Rhubarb cherry pies were just one of many things my mom and I cooked
together. That was the best part! During pasts visits our itinerary was
packed with safaris, sightseeing, visiting Durban, Cape Town, and all
over the country … this third visit with baby was the best time to relax,
spend time at their house, and just enjoy Johannesburg together.
(PS I easily ate at least one of these pies by myself … FAVORITE :)
Linny’s chocolate cake + waiting for the tub to fill up= baby’s fave!
^^ So glad we pulled off a surprise on this cute grandpa this visit!!
Also, how cute is it that he made little cards for his grandkids just like
the ones he has for all of the missionaries. Reagan’s is being made! ^^
She definitely wasn’t starving for attention in SA ^^
…And I wasn’t starving for food! My parents make the BEST and
healthiest meals, I crave their cooking constantly! (And if you follow
me on snap you saw all of the amazingness :) Most mornings they
either wanted to eat breakfast outside, or by baby in her swing- ha!
My dad’s famous fresh pressed orange-carrot-ginger juice.
Nothing better! Also, I love the tropical view from his office ^^
I was debating whether to pack this little swing from our house, and
wow am I glad we did! She was in it daily (with this hilarious cheetah
animal) and bounced/jigged in the funniest way. We laughed so hard!
This scene made me so happy every day ^^
Back tickle kisses from Papa = baby’s FAVORITE.
Girl talk with Linny ^^
Little love bug, being loved on by her mom & grandma ^^
President Dunn and the cutest AP’s! ^^
^^ Darling wooden African safari ornaments my mom bought,
and then she decorated the mission home tree with baby girl in
the wee hours of the morning when she would wake jet lagged!
Just look at her face in both pictures…
do you think she loves her Papa Bear?
More pie making! (Seriously, we made this pie a few times
because cherry + rhubarb is my favorite thing in the world.)
Baths happened pretty much daily because it is too cute
watching Reagan kick around the big tub in her little
Otteroo floatie. (If you don’t have this, it’s a MUST.)
We got to be part of lots of mission events and activities with missionaries.
I have such a soft spot in my heart for these amazing young men who
are giving 2 years of their life to serve alongside my parents. (There
are no sister missionaries in this mission so just all Elders!)
If you know my dad, you won’t be surprised that he bought baby
a little SA rugby outfit…haha! (Among many other gifts for her)
This guy has the busiest and most exhausting schedule as mission
president, but could be found like this any spare second ^^
Even after driving 4 hours for interviews and getting home late!
Walks in their pretty neighborhood in the height of summer, plus
Papa teaching Rea about everything possible, including African flowers ^^
I am so glad I packed the little jumper/swing because she LOVED
having it and did the funniest little jigs for us ever y morning!
Also, our first week was SO hot so she went pants-less one day :) ^^
So amazing bringing her to such special places to our family.
Little distraction during the mission tour, but President Dunn didn’t
seem to mind :) These two truly became best friends as you can see! ^^
So much color here in the food, the sights, & everywhere you look!
Temple ground walks + best pressed juice at a lunch date ^^
Olives & Plates! Tied for my favorite place to eat here along with Tasha’s.
Soaked up every girls outing with my mom and Rea, since we don’t
get to have them often. We fit in shopping, Christmas markets, ice cream,
mission errands, lunch dates with friends…all of the good stuff! Love her.
Agreed with this cute sign at Irene Market ^^
Some amazing Paul’s ice cream balancing out
one of the best and healthiest salads from Marble!
I still can’t believe we got this babe down to Johannesburg.
I love the happiness represented in these pictures! ^^
It’s not a visit to my parents unless they get you on a bike! ;)
My mom watched Reagan since she’s recovering from a broken
ankle, and I hit the trails with my dad for a fun Big Red Barn ride.
We introduced baby (and her toys) to a giraffe on a little
mini “baby safari” day that we planned out at a reserve.
It was SO hot and bright out so it’s hard to tell in pictures, but
she was definitely taken (and a little confused) by Mr. Giraffe! :)Cuddles with papa and homemade pie with yaya…couldn’t be better!
Nope, still not over the food. Every. Single. Meal. Perfect.
(Last year when I was here I was barely pregnant and so sick,
so I couldn’t enjoy it all as much. I made up for it this time!)
Baby R had lots of new experiences this trip…from ping pong to piano ;)
Her new friends Elder Z and Elder Campbell!Kamers Market with our most darling friend Lynne ^^
Love her and feel so lucky to have met her through my mom!
We’ve spent lots of time together during all my visits and she’s
one of my favorite people. Loved our fun shopping and lunch date!
Also love Michele who now lives in Zurich but was visiting Joburg while
I was there. We also met in Zurich on my layover and she saved the day
with some paperwork I needed to bring baby into SA…but more on that later!
More South African friends ^^ The De Kocks! Love them.
And, the darling Klintworth family ^^
I love the amazing friends my parents have made in SA
and it was especially fun to introduce them to baby!
^^ Pool and braai day with some favorite friends.
We love Tyler girl and I hope one day she’ll come stay with us in California!
We got to attend a wedding for our friend Jenny while I was there ^^
Reagan bonded with Irene, the cute mission home maid.
They became fast friends!!
I feel lucky that through my visits I’ve met all of my parents
amazing friends they’ve made in SA. They’ll be sad to leave!
Love tagging along to all the mission events/conferences/meetings
and especially getting to hear both of my parents speak & share goodness!
Everything on the mission is so uplifting and positive,
it’s the best thing to be around..especially before Christmas!
I taught my Dad snapchat and loved getting sooo
many from him of Reagan when they’d be playing :)
I promise SA has the BEST food…and my parents know
all of the best places! We went to some old favorites
and some new ones they’ve found since my last visit,
like Marble ^^ so so so so good. I already miss the food!
Another favorite every time I’ve visited ^^ Olives & Plates
Beautiful temple grounds ^^
Sweetest scene ever! ^^
We will miss these missionaries! ^^
Spoiled girl with a handmade elephant quilt from Linny, and
a fancy mosquito net crib bought by Papa & Linny for her. ^^
African skies, I already miss you. Thanks for having
some beautiful big thunderstorms while I was there!
We loved our time, but missed Chase so much by the end!
Reagan was always reaching for his face when we
passed this picture on the fridge …so sweet.
Love them more than words can say ^^
I’m lucky to have parents who are also my best friends!
Last day lunch at Tasha’s, the best ^^
^^ A little teary at the airport :(
Saying goodbye to my parents was SO much harder with a baby :(
It’s tender to think of how much she’ll change by the time they
see her next…but also reminded us how lucky we were to get
this bonding time together! So very worth all of it.
Tender “g’byes” !!
Luckily as I squeezed my parents goodbye I could
say, “See you in Salt Lake City!” That reunion
when they come home in July will be a good one.
And off we go…I love that little hand holding her passport with me ^^
Thanks mom & dad for having me a third time in South Africa.
I have loved being part of this adventure, and I brought someone
new each time I came…first visit solo, then with Chase, then with
baby Reagan :) Thanks for putting up with my very jet-lagged, crazy,
tired mom self and taking the baby at 3 and 4 and 5 AM in the
morning. We will be forever connected to this place because of you!