My December last year was definitely the most different month I had, since I´ve been here. Why? Christmas, New Year and all the different traditions around those two really important days made this month really special for me. Before I came to New Zealand I thought that December would probably be the hardest month for me. I would be homesick, because I would miss my family, the German Christmas traditions and the cold weather. Instead, this time was just the most amazing and interesting time with the biggest cultural exchange in my whole first six months.
The start of December was the End of the fantastic South Island trip. I said goodbye to everyone and have definitely set the holiday destinations for the next 10 years, to visit all of my new friends. 
My first strange experience was the purchasing of the Christmas tree. It was not the purchasing itself which was strange, probably more the fact, that Rachel and me went for a swim at the beach right before. While we were decorating the Christmas tree, I had the first time the feeling of Christmas.
Not only the Christmas tree was it, what gave me the Christmas feeling, also the amazing Christmas lights at all the houses in Tauranga, Rachel and Paul watched with me, put me in a bit of a Christmas mood. 
While we kept preparing for the Christmas celebration, I practiced with the Christmas Carol choir at Gate Pa and had my presentation with it on the 22nd of December. It was quite a nice experience for me, to be a part of the New Zealand way of celebrating Christmas. I´m really great full that I was allowed to take part in choir, also when I missed the most practices because of the South Island trip.
Christmas Eve is the time, when I normally celebrate Christmas with my family in Germany. Paul took me to a nice Carol service at the church at Gate pa and I think this service probably felt the most like Christmas. We heard the typical Christmas story and it was a really enjoyable night to Christmas day.
The pile of presents under the tree got bigger as closer we came to Christmas day.  
Rachel and me spent a long time cooking and preparing food for all the guests in the kitchen. And I was surprised, that we still had meat and potato for lunch, also when it was quite hot outside.  I got some amazing presents from Rachel and Paul, for example an amazing trip to Whitianga in the Coromandel with one friend, the new Ziplining activity at Coromandel town
, some T-shirts and many sweets. Christmas day, was because of all the yummy food like pavlova, many salads, meat and a lot more and because of all the family a really exciting and fantastic day.
Rachel and Paul gave me the best Kiwi Christmas I could imagine and because of that, I wasn’t homesick at all. I just felt like a part of the family and really enjoyed this day. I can’t say thank you often enough to Rachel and Paul! Thank you for giving me that awesome experience!
I spent the last days of December with Tijen, a Dutch boy and Rachel and Paul in a wonderful holiday house in Whitianga. We did the Ziplining at Coromandel township and went to New chump’s beach, Cathedral Cove and hot water beach where we did a lot of buggy boarding. Those trips where so scenic, and typical New Zealand, that the End of 2019 went over with many amazing experiences and trips.
It is nearly halftime of my stay here in Tauranga! 2019 was the most exciting year of my live, host parents, new school, new country and new language. All those things happened in 2019 and the time went over far to fast! I´m really happy, that I can look back on all the amazing experiences and all the new friends I got in this time and I´m looking forward to have a good start and many more exciting moments in 2020.