Albom Adventures 2015 Photos: A Year In Review

Looking back through our 2015 photos, I can see this was the year we fell deeper in love with New Zealand, our adopted country.

Our overseas travel was limited as I was unwell for much of the year (I am cleared now). Plus both of the girls had good reason to stay around. Melissa focused on her final year of secondary school education, and although we continued to home educate, Sarah participated in a photography class at the school.

I would have called it a transition year, but I think that will be theme of 2016. Melissa starts university at the end February (this is the normal start time in New Zealand). Sarah (age 15) will spend the year in Argentina as an AFS exchange student (she has promised to blog about it here). Hubby and I have some interesting travel ideas.

For today, here are our 2015 photos – the highlights (featured in no particular order):

Royal Botanic Gardens of Sydney Australia

Close up of a flower in the Royal Botanic Gardens in Sydney Australia.

Mama sheep and baby lamb in Shakespear Park, Auckland New Zealand (2015 photos)

Mama sheep and baby lamb in Shakespear Park, Auckland New Zealand (2015 photos)

Auckland Sky Tower at night, Auckland New Zealand

Sky Tower lit up in blue against the night sky – looks a bit like an alien ship.

Kowhai Flowers in Shakespear Park, Auckland New Zealand (2015 photos)

Kowhai Flowers in Shakespear Park, Auckland New Zealand. (2015 photos)

Red fence along the coastline at the Port of Auckland in New Zealand

Red fence along the coastline at the Port of Auckland in New Zealand

Golden hour on Okoromai Bay Auckland, New Zealand

Golden hour on Okoromai Bay.

Jumping dolpin in Auckland New Zealand

I took this shot while on a whale and dolphin safari in Auckland New Zealand.

Pacific Island influence of the nave of Holy Trinity Cathedral in Parnell, Auckland New Zealand

Pacific Island influence on the stained glass in Holy Trinity Cathedral in Parnell, Auckland New Zealand.

The Beehive - one of the parliament buildings in Wellington New Zealand

The Beehive – one of the parliament buildings in Wellington New Zealand.

Ferry leaving the Riverhead restaurant, New Zealand's oldest riverside tavern

Ferry leaving the Riverhead restaurant, New Zealand’s oldest riverside tavern.

Sunken ship at the entrance to Okoromai Bay, seen here at low tide. This shot on my iPhone. (2015 photos)

Sunken ship at the entrance to Okoromai Bay, seen here at low tide. This was shot on my iPhone. (2015 photos)

View of the crater and city at the top of Mt. Eden Auckland New Zealand

View of the crater and city from the summit of Mt. Eden, an extinct volcano and the highest natural point in Auckland.

colorful Fly Argaic, a toadstool found in Auckland New Zealand

I saw this interesting and colorful mushroom in an Auckland park. It turns out to be Fly Agaric, a toadstool.

Cow in Shakespear Park, Auckland New Zealand 2015 photos by Rhonda Albom

I don’t know why, but I am still intimidated by cows. This one stared at me as I passed through the paddock in Shakespear Park, New Zealand.

Bird cage artwork in Sydney Australia

There is interesting artwork all over Sydney Australia

Waipu Cave New Zealand

Waipu Caves New Zealand.

Auckland Skyline as seen from the ferry coming into the city.

Auckland skyline as seen from the ferry coming into the city.

Endangered Kākā seen at feeding station in Zealandia, Wellington New Zealand

Endangered Kākā seen at Zealandia in Wellington, New Zealand.

Hunua Falls, Hunua Ranges, Auckland, New Zealand

Hunua Falls in the Hunua Ranges in Auckland, New Zealand.

Dog on the Takapuna to Milford Trail in Auckland New Zealand

This dog was really enjoying the shallow water along Takapuna coastline in Auckland’s North Shore, New Zealand.

Choosing my top 20 2015 photos was much more challenging than I thought it would be. This post is part of a series that also includes 2015 Auckland Festival and Event Highlights and the best of Sarah’s Saturday Snapshots.

Did I include your favorite of my photos? Did you share your top 2015 photos? Are you ready for 2016?

PS: Thanks to all my readers in 2015.

Wishing everyone a wonderful new year!

This post is shared for:
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This post also linked throughout the week at:
Screen Shot 2015-10-13 at 8.30.17 pmBeThere2Day for Wordless Wednesday on Tuesday, Our World Tuesdays, Wednesdays Around the World at Photographing New Zealand, and Outdoor Wednesday at A Southern Daydreamer, Photo Friday at Pierced Wanderings,  The Weekly Postcard at Travel Notes and Beyond, Weekend Wanderlust at Justin plus Lauren, and Sunday’s in My City at the Unknown Mami.

2015 Auckland Festival and Event Highlights: A Photo Review
Sarah's Sunday Snapshots #38 - 2015 Photo Highlights


  1. says

    Hi Rhonda and family … you’ve had an interesting year and most importantly I’m so glad you’re cleared for take off in the year ahead. Brilliant about Melissa and Sarah – they’ll have lots to tell us directly via blog posts, or indirectly via your photos … good luck as you look ahead to a better year – cheers and we’ll see more of your glorious photos – cheers Hilary

  2. says

    These are all such wonderful pictures and bring back great NZ memories for me. I particularly like the one shot from Mt Eden – great panoramic view of Auckland.

    Wow, I can’t believe one of your girls is about to start uni – which one is she going to go to?

  3. says

    I love your and Sarah’s photography. Today I love the last shot the best. Why? Because we lost our Little Bit this year and we miss her so. She would have been romping in that shallow water too.

    Have a fabulous day Rhonda. Big hugs. ♥♥♥

  4. says

    It’s hard to choose what my favorite photo is. I love the artwork hanging down that looks like bird cages. How Cool! The red fence with lanterns is sweet as well!

  5. says

    Looks like you had a wonderful year in photos, even if you couldn’t travel as much. Having one child in college and one as a foreign exchange student will change a lot around your house. I hope your travels include Memphis.

  6. Tony McGurk says

    Some wonderful photos Rhonda & hard to pick a favourite. I think for me it’s a tie between the Toadstool & the Kaka Bird. The colours in the Toadstool photo are fantastic & the Kaka is such a beautiful bird. I’ve just bought a Nikon DSLR this week but I think it’ll be a long time & a lot of trial & error before I get up to your standard.

  7. says

    Those photos are glorious. It was an amazing year. I’m glad you’re feeling better and got to spend time with your family. I’m looking forward to more in 2016.

  8. says

    Awesome, incredible photos, Rhonda! Your compositions are so interesting, but my favorite is all the color you capture in the world. I’m planning to really dive into photography this year, and your photos have been an inspiration to me since I discovered your blog a few months ago. Happy New Year!

  9. says

    Thank you Rhonda for giving us some tremendous photos that will remain in our mind & hearts. I’m so happy that I was able to find your blog and I will remain a blogger friend for ever or until I forget you which I doubt will take place. ha,ha,ha. Have a Happy New Year and 2016 will be healthy one for you. See ya.

    Cruisin Paul

  10. says

    Hi Rhonda! Happy New Year! Not long to go in our neck of the woods! I enjoyed reading the highlights of your year and loved the roll call of photos. They are certainly beautiful. Some I’ve previously seen, some not. I’ve not been to the top of Mt Eden. That is a wonderful photo!

    Denise 🙂

  11. says

    It’s so hard to pick a favorite of mine from your 2015 collection! There’s some wonderful photos of New Zealand and Australia, and I would say one of my favorites is the first one from the Royal Botanic Gardens. Sounds like you’ve got lots of great changes ahead of you, and I’ll be thinking of you in 2016!

  12. says

    Beautiful photos Rhonda. We’re hoping to get to NZ this year now that we’ve set up our base in Australia. My parents just returned from a week long trip with the most amazing photos and video footage. I’ve loved following your blog in 2015 and being inspired by your amazing photography. Here’s to an epic 2016! Maybe I’ll catch you in NZ at some point!

  13. says

    New Zealand is such a beautiful country and your photographs really do it justice. Thank you for sharing and I hope to get back to NZ soon!

  14. says

    What a great set of photos! I particularly like the red fence – it is so striking! Thank you for sharing with us at Photo Friday – I appreciate your participation and support! Happy New Year!

  15. says

    All your pics are wonderful — how could I choose? Although I have to admit the dolphin one really made me smile. I’m not much of a traveler (despite the fact I live in Egypt), so I’m really grateful for all the pictures you post throughout the year. It allows me to see things I’ll probably never get to experience in person. Thank you & Happy 2016 to you and your family!!!

  16. says

    I love the idea of reviewing your year in pictures. After all, it’s the images that remain stuck in our brains when we travel. I love the first one.

  17. says

    I am so impressed by your weightloss and the impact it made on your health. 2015 was indeed a great year for you. I loved your shot of the birdcage arts against red wall in Sydney. I think it’s time I visited again!

  18. says

    Happy New Year! First of all, I am so relieved and happy for you that the health issues have cleared up. Our 2015 was a year of a lot of false alarms healthwise (and money spent confirming that nothing was actually wrong), so I feel like I’m especially aware of how precious good health is. Will your daughter be living with you while she attends university? What a change it would be to go from 2 kids at home to none. That toadstool reminds me of the one in the Nintendo Mario Bros games my boys are always playing, and that Red Fence is especially striking.

    • says

      Thanks Michele, I am relieved too 🙂 and glad to hear your medical issues were false alarms.
      My daughter will be living at school. We will be empty nesters far earlier than expected.

  19. says

    As much as we have been wanting to travel through New Zealand, we haven’t had the opportunity yet. I’m so glad that most of your photos are from there because you are giving me the opportunity to experience it through your eyes. I’m glad it is so high on our bucket list because everything I’ve seen looks incredible.

    In answer to your question, we shared our 15 top Instagram photos from 2015. It was too hard to choose so we took the easy route by selecting the winners based on total likes.

    • says

      Thanks Linda. I will be taking you on our recent excursion to the top of the North Island over the next few weeks. There is quite a bit of natural, untouched beauty coming soon.

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