Tag Archive | camping

Home again Home again…

Jiggety jig.. Isn’t that how the childrens nursery rhyme goes? Well I’m not “jiggerty jigging” to be back home, I wish we were able to stay away or go further away for longer. Especially now we have Ursula Ultimate and the pack up is so easy, it makes my feet itch to travel more. The trouble is Australia is so big and lets face it we will probably never get to see it all… So each day at home is a day I wish I was travelling.

So lets have a look at the negatives..

The weather- its gotta be said it was miserable. God, or Jehovah or Yewah or Wankan Tankan whatever you chose to call our Creator, HE is the only one who can control the weather, so its no use whining about it, yes! I am a whiner, I try not to, but I really don’t do cold very well. Spring in Australia is typically our rainiest season, so we should probably have expected it, but my rose coloured glasses were firmly in place and denial had set in. 

The first 48 hours of Ursula’s exsistence were drenched, but like a professional she is, she kept us dry and while in NSW warm… Coming into Victoria on the final stretch home however was a different thing. It rained all the way to Lakes Entrance, and it continued to rain while we set up, miserable, I was almost tempted to tell The Bloke to keep driving 400 kilometers to home. Except, my Bestie was setting up with her family and they were already there and already wet, so we had to do it.

It was cold that first night, we all retired early just to keep warm. The next day was still fairly rainy, so we took a day trip to Buchan and went on the cave tours.

This is my bestie! Deanne and I have been friends for almost 28 years. We always have the best fun when we are camping!


Luckily for Deanne and I, our Blokes, Steve and Rob, get on well too, makes life so much easier! Photography credit to Star Son for this ripper pic! 

Saturday we had some nicer kind of weather so we spent the day exploring the streets of Lakes Entrance and then back at camp we did our usual things Deanne and I crocheted and the boys all went fishing! Jordan caught a salmon which was bbq’ed later! Oh and Deanne and I ventured to the beach briefly but in time to see a seal surfing the waves near the shore.

Then Sunday it was pack up time, we just made the pack up before the rain started and then it rained on and off most of the way home.

So the weather was a negative but for sure hands down, the positive of this trip was spending quality time with my bestie and her family. 

Now it’s only approximately 81 days until our Christmas break and we’re off for a month into outback New South Wales up to Queensland and then across to Cameron’s corner which is where NSW and QLD meet SA. Being that it will be early summer hopefully we will travel minus the rain! 

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We have arrived!

Last night we drove to Albury New South Wales, about 4 hours from home, its just over the Victorian border. We stayed in a motel for the night, by the time we had unpacked and had dinner, showers and unwound it was bedtime, I’d totally forgotten to write my blog. Yesterday was a long day I was awake at 4:00am, trying to mentally pack everything. Needless to say there are things I’ve forgotten but things that I can buy locally so no dramas.

This morning was another early morning… Up at 7:15am, car packed, dressed and down for breakfast at 7:35am and then back on the road by 8:00am.. On a Sunday morning too!!

Today’s first stop was at the Iconic “Dog on the tuckerbox” its been made famous through a song, we didn’t see the Dog today because it was really crowded with tourists at 9:15am.. Crazy!  We stopped to stretch the legs, use the bathroom and catch a snack, boys are ALWAYS hungry. 


So here is the dog, this is NOT MY PHOTO this I borrowed from Google. 

“Tucker box” is an Aussie thing, “Tucker” meaning food and the box was usually a metal type box, which kept the drovers food safe from weather and insects. There have even been songs written about the dog, Dog sits on the tuckerbox.

After leaving the dog wet and soggy, we drove on, watching as the rain swept across the landscape, there were moments when the sun tried really hard to come through and there were long stretches where it stopped raining, but, like we always say “You can’t control the weather and you can’t wait for the weather to be perfect or you’d never get anything done”  Next stop for us was Braidwood.


**AGAIN NOT MY PHOTO** taken from Google.

Braidwood had a sign which tempted us “World Famous pies” now we’ve been to lots of places in Australia and everytime we see that claim we stop and put it to the test. There was one pie shop in South Australia that claimed it and in my humble opinion they owned it.. Their lamb and rosemary pie was sooo good! Today we decided to put NSW to the test. StarSon had chunky chicken, he didnt really want a pie, but he went along with us. The Bloke had a curried pie and I had Chicken Satay, it was delish! The flaky pastry and the chunks of real chicken, yum! 

Onwards- about 2 hours to go, we were running ahead of schedule. On the way to Bateman’s Bay we went over Clyde Mountain, it was beautiful scenery and a very steep descent, at one point on a hair pin bend, we and all the long line of cars following a truck were down to 10 kilometers an hour, l thought about taking photos but I was crocheting so… Its all about priorities!

All that lovely forest!

Steep descent 


Hair pin bends!

Bateman’s Bay, where we turned from inland to costal, and for me it was love at first sight, I have ear marked that to come back and explore at a later date! 


We were supposed to turn back inland at a specific point, but decided to stay on the coastal route and enjoy the scenery.


Like this tributary that runs from the sea along the road, it was so pretty! No waves,just peaceful and calm. 

At last- 2.00pm we arrived in Moruya and found the caravan park where we are spending the next two nights in a spa cabin, its really beautiful and the best bit is its river front! So I can sit on the verandah and watch the river flow by. Of course fairly soon after we arrived so too did the rain, but at least its not cold.

Look at my view! And the a little while later, these two cruised into sight…


Some of the locals dropped by to say hello.I love pelicans! We had gone for a drive to see the factory that is building our camper trailer, just so we knew where to go on Tuesday, and Star son has seen a stork or Heron, I’ll need to see it to confirm that. 


Somewhere within this building is our new “baby” Ursula, and we are scheduled to meet her 10:30am on Tuesday. We are all excited and can’t wait! 

On Tuesday after we pick up Ursula, we are coming back here to Riverbreeze Caravan Park and we will stay in Ursula for another two nights. We are doing that to make sure we have the “hang” on setting up and dismatling before we leave the area! This is only a short trip for us, but a very important one and we are squeezing in as much as we can!

We went for a quick drive around the afternoon and did some basic grocery shopping, but on a Sunday afternoon most of the shops were closed, so tomorrow, weather allowing, we will walk across the bridge into town to do some shopping and get the important things, like stamps and postcards and presents for the Grand babies!  

Now its evening, and we have cooked a couple of frozen pizzas in the oven and cleaned up and will have a nice relaxing night, I’ve got Amber’s crochet blanket to finish! 

I’ll be back tomorrow with more photos and news!

Hump Day..

Yes its Wednesday, which means we are in the downward slope of the week tomorrow!

One step closer to the weekend.. We have Football presentation on Saturday for Star Son, and then after that we are leaving! Yes another “Road trip”! 

This time we are off to New South Wales to a small coastal town called Moruya. I had never heard if it until recently when we ordered our camper trailer from a company called “Ultimate Campers” we have been stalking this company for almost three years, wishing and hoping, buying lottery tickets to try and fund our camper, anyways finally the time has come, we ordered it and its being made as I write this, pick up date is Tuesday 20th September.

As you might know from reading any of my past posts, my Bloke names our things! Our tent is Tamara, our trailer which carried our camping gear is Matilda “We go waltzing around Australia with Matilda” things that we spend a lot of money on we name, the camp fridge is “Goldie” and the camp kitchen is “Donna Drifta” people think we’re wacky! Our Volkswagen Passat Highline was called “Heidi Highline” and she has now been replaced with a Toyota Prado 4 Wheel drive, we want to start going off road, she’s called “Priscilla” as in the movie “Priscilla Queen of the desert” trouble is so far she hasn’t been to the desert ( Thats our Christmas holiday this year!) so for now she’s just “Princess Priscilla” so naming our camper trailer was super easy, immediately her name came to me as I stepped out of the X-Plore GT display model I told the sales man “We’ll be back to buy this one her name is Ursula” he laughed and I said “Don’t laugh, you know the rule don’t you? If you name something you have to keep it” all the way along she’s been “Ursula Ultimate” and soon we will go to collect her.

So on Saturday afternoon, we will leave, drive about 4 hours to the border of Victoria and New South Wales, stay over night in a Motel and then on Sunday drive the other five or so hours to the little town Moruya. Sunday night and Monday night we are staying in a cabin. We are spending a few extra days there because Priscilla also has to visit the Auto Electrician to have some final wiring done, which will allow us to have a duel battery kit installed, that will allow us to use the solar panels to supply power when we are “off the grid” to charge, phones, lap tops, camera batteries etc. 

On Tuesday the 20th September, we have an appointment with the Ultimate company at 10 am, where we will spend a great deal of the day learning every little intimate detail about our new “baby” We will learn to set up, pack up and stock up our camper and then we will spend two more nights in Moruya in a caravan park where we will set up and dismantle our camp site on our own to make sure we have no dramas, while we are in reach of the company in case we need help, I’m sure we won’t need help, but better safe than sorry! 

Thursday we will be on the road again, this time headed South and towards home, we will spend that night in Lakes entrance back on the Victorian side of the border where we are meeting up with my Bestie Deanne and her husband and one son. I get to spend a few days catching up on our girly chats and crochet andjust spending some quality time with my bestie.

Tuesday we have an appountment to register Ursula for use on Victorian roads, we will have a special permit to bring her home, but its only good for five days.

I love me a good road trip, espcially when its to places that we havent been. I think the Bloke has planned the route to go on new roads, so I’ll have plenty of time to take photos and blog about our trip! For me thats all part of the joy of Road trips! In the scheme of things this is a “short” trip but I will manage to pack as much in as I can!

Tomorrow I’ll share with you some interesting history I learnt about Moruya, because whenever I am going somewhere new I like to research! 

Happy New Year!!

Here we are at the start of another year.

I have been taking a break from blogging and journaling since I got back from our Big Lap.

So many things have been happening, I just didn’t have time or energy to blog and even my poor journal has fallen by the way side.

So here is a quick update….

We got back in November and hit the ground running…

November 21st Sweetpea turned two and we had an afternoon tea, in the meantime we started cleaning the back deck which needed cleaning and finished the garden boxes which have been nick named “garden coffins” they are that shape.. we planted them with Daphne, a tomato plant, a gardenia and an Australian native I am still to get a rose for the other Grand daughter.

We had Wedding rehearsal on the Wednesday which was the 25th and had a final look at the space where we would be setting up the reception etc. I also got my eye brows waxed and tinted and my nails done, a little bit of spoiling after roughing it in tents for two months.

Sunday 29th November 2015.

Still cant quiet believe I haven’t written about this yet, I am guessing after my Grand babies births this was so far the greatest highlight of my life. My first born got married. We still don’t have the wedding photos back yet but I’ll share a few of the ones I do have.

bridal party

The Bridal party,

Left to right… Stewie, Bride-Jasmin, Groom- Brett and Ella.

bride and groom

My new Son-in-law Brett and my beautiful girl.

 

flower girl

“Aunty Jazzy” and flower girl “Sweetpea”

funny Jasmin

I’m not sure what she was doing here but I love that face!!

 

mother and son dance

Mother and Son dance.

 

paige boy

Page Boy, and Son of the happy couple
“Squishy”

 photo bomb

This is my cousin and her family and my first ever photo bomb, taken by the photographer!!

walking down the aisle 

Escorting my girl down the aisle.

wall shot

This is going to be a wall shot!! taken by our photographer Gabbie Hine.

I escorted her down the aisle and I don’t know how many people I had telling me what a blubbering mess I would be.. I shocked them all and even myself when I didn’t cry, not even during my speech which actually made a few people laugh! I made it through, my goal for the night was to do my speech without A- crying and B- inserting umm or errr in too many places In fact I didn’t stumble at all! I was so proud of myself and then my Brother Bill made me cry before the night was out but that wasn’t about the wedding so it’s not counting!!

After the Wedding we had Squishy’s 2nd birthday party and then fast came upon us Christmas.

Christmas…. hmm, if you were reading my posts in 2014 you might have read that I do not like Chrtistmas, I don’t like the commercialism of it all.. you stress and worry and within minutes it’s all over and the day goes on. But this year I decided to embrace the festive season and even suggested we have lunch at home… *sigh* sometimes I’m such a fool and this highlights it all.. Next year (or this one anyways!) I’m not having Christmas in fact plans are being made to go away for a month to Tasmania camping.

We decided to have lunch at our house, so the Bloke cooked a turkey our first ever and roast pork. My cousin and her family came and brought chickens and potato salads. We also had hot vegetables and roasted potatoes and pumpkin and gravy, and then the weather heated up to 39C and we all baked along with the food!! There was a wild fire about 1.5 kilometres away and e sat on the back deck, fighting away flies and fanning away the smoke.

The turkey and roast Pork were a huge success and we were happy with how they turned out, but the rest of it I didn’t enjoy! I find that you rush around waiting on everyone and making sure the house is clean and the presents are wrapped and then the whole day is over and you rush around doing the dishes and the floors and getting rid of a mountain of wrapping paper. I “tried” to embrace it and failed I don’t enjoy it, I’m not doing it again!!

As soon as all that was over we took off to Bel Far Niente for a few days to unwind from all that madness… which lead us to New Year EVE!

This year we went camping with some good friends to Ballarat. We have been to Ballarat a gazillion times and so I wasn’t terribly excited to go camping there, but it just goes to show be careful of judging, because we had a great time. The caravan park we stayed in “Goldmine” had a great solar heated pool which we gladly spent a lot of time in and out of. The bathrooms were clean and well cared for, there was a camp kitchen and  plenty for the kids to do, so My Bestie and I were able to sit and crochet and chatter or read our books or just lounge around, it was HOT!! We stayed there until Sunday 3rd January.

So that brings us up to now and New Years Resolutions.. I make them each year I kind of look at them as “goals” and I check back on them often. So this year I made three.. easy ones…

  1. Gain my diploma in Biblical studies. (I need to do 144 units, so far I’ve finished 3)
  2. Become a vegetarian ( we had raw roast lamb on 1st Jan 2016- normally I don’t mind it a little bit rare but this was too much blood and it made me feel quite ill, and then I got this thought it my head a snippet of some bible verse about God being the lamb and the blood of the lamb.. and that was enough for me.. I quit meat on the spot!)
  3. Read 50 books for the year.

In 2015- I did a challenge with Reannon and Pip Lincoln  to “Read Australian Authors” and I did and I loved it I only read three non Aussie books all year, but I found I have a huge pile left still of Australian authors so I am continuing that on again this year. So I’ve made a Good reads Goal to read 50 books… here is what last year looked like.. 2015 in books

Anyways so that brings us up to date and hopefully I’ll be back into regular blogging to keep you up to date with whats new for 2016…

 

Big Lap WA 2015- Days 49- 53- Halls Gap Victoria. It’s almost over!!

Days 49- 53- Halls Gap Victoria, with the Grampians as our back drop… what more could you ask for?

Day 49- Friday 30th October 23015 –

Shall I rant or just calmly tell you about this place? I wanna rant so badly and yet, I can’t really because I loved it with my bestie and two of her three boys, we had a great weekend, we made the most of a stupid situation.

We arrived first and so we checked in and were told we had site 109 and Bestie and her family had 110.. Cool we would be neighbours.. so off we go and already I am thinking “sardines in a tin” it was already quite packed at 2.30pm. We found our site and almost could not believe our eyes at the size of it.. it was T-I-N-Y!!

It was about 5 meters wide ( 16 feet) by 8 meters long (about 25 feet long) we are camping in tents and so we are fairly flexible but Bestie and Mr Bestie were trialling their new camper van which was out for its first run.. tentatively named “Rhonda Runaway” now camper trailers have to be set up just so, you cannot just back it into a LONG thin site and hope it’ll work. We don’t have one but even we knew there would be trouble here.. so we didn’t do a full set up in case we needed to move things as they arrived. We have given this particular site the “Worst rating ever”

Bestie and her squad” arrived at about 8.00pm and since it was going to be dark soon we had to quickly work out how to make these sites work for us.. so we moved Star Son’s tent to the back of the second site and “Besties squad” took up the front of both sites.. it was tricky, but for the first night we made it work.

Saturday Morning…Day 50 (we’ve been travelling 50 days OMG!!) Halloween!

We decided to complain. when I saw “we” I meant Mr Bestie and the Bloke because I don’t complain I whine on my blog. Apparently there were suddenly a few spare spaces and we could move if we wanted to but then again, what if they were worse? Plus I don’t know about “Bestie” but I didn’t want to have to pack everything up just to move to a new site, so we said “Stuff it, let’s stay here” instead we moved our tent and Star Son’s tents over a bit more, which meant we were sideways on the site and we could have our awning up, which thankfully didn’t flap and blow around everywhere. “Besties Squad” set up across the front of the site and we set up their annex for some more shade… and the weather people said “thunder storms and torrential rain”ha!!

We made it work! we had a nice little square in the middle where we put our tables and chairs and then much later when the next door neighbours left we could spread out onto their site, we moved te fire pit into the central square!

Saturday was a nice casual day, sitting around chatting catching up on all the gossip. We walked over the shops and did the sight seeing things, and when the sun dropped a bit and it cooled down a little we did the first hike up the hill to “Venus Baths”

On the way back to camp we checked out the Botanical Garden and wandered around the camp ground, appreciating the wild roos that wandered through the park as though they owned the place. At 2.30am, we had a close encounter with one when I hear rustle rustle in the kitchen area of our camp, immediately I’m awake listening, then I hear a thump of something hitting the ground, so I quickly got up and rushed out.. I didn’t see the Roo but I saw my loaf of bread on the ground and where it had been rummaging through the chiller bag, so I brought them all into our tent. Next morning as I went to make toast I see the teeth marks in the opposite end of the bread bag!

Sunday 1st November 2015 – Day 51!

So today there is a local market which we girls wanted to visit (it was a disappointment) we also decided to drive up the Hill and visit some of the hiking trails and do some touristy sight-seeing. After struggling to find a park, because 64,000 other people had the same idea.. copy cats! We parked illegally and off we went. First stop was supposed to be “The Grand Canyon” well the path was closed one way so we went another way and it was blocked off there too… and by then Bestie and I were huffing and puffing like old steam trains ( I’ve really challenged my idea of my fitness levels this trip) so we decided to sit out the rest of the hike to “The Pinnacles” which was another 2.1 kilometres up and then the same back… we sat uncomfortably on the rocks and directed other people what track to take and wished them all good luck!! Mr Bestie with his eldest son and his youngest son and Star Son made the trek to the top, apparently the views were amazing, I was happy to sit and gossip with my Bestie.

After the hike we went into Stawell to find a supermarket, thinking this is Victoria surely something will be open!

Only Woolworths was open and so we went there and got supplies for some dinners before heading back to camp. On the way to camp we stopped at the local pub to peruse the menu and decided if we wanted to eat there, luckily none of us were fussy eaters and so we booked a table, but we couldn’t get in until 7.30pm… so afternoon tea was called for.. and a few drinks as well.

Dinner was so worth the wait I had chicken parma and every vegetable or salad thing I could find, I am so craving vegetables!

We got back to camp by 9.00pm and decided it was cool enough for a fire, so we sat around the camp fire chatting and playing the name game.. have you played it? The first person names a famous person, the next person must use the first letter of the first persons surname… for example I’ll say Marilyn Monroe, the Bloke will then have to think of an “M” name so he’ll say Maurice Gibb, so the next person has to pick someone with the name “G” the only rules are some one else HAS to know of that person! if we were playing with adults we would play it that you have 10 seconds to answer and if you can’t answer or you repeat a name already said you have to skull your drink… yes people it’s a drinking game! We use any famous person, and that could include authors, or singers, or sports or characters. On the Big Lap the Star Son and the Bloke and I used to play it with different things like “Fruit” if Star Son said banana, then The Bloke would have to think of an “A” fruit.. it gets you thinking and it’s a bit of fun.

Monday 2nd November 2015- Day 52

This morning we had a minor drama. The Bloke and Mr Bestie were talking about the coupling that holders the camper trailer to the car tow bar and the pin that slips into it to lock it into place and Mr Bestie went to get the pin to show the Bloke something.. and suddenly no one is quite sure where the pin is… so we all do a search which is hard because I didn’t take any notice of what it looked like on the set up night.. so I’m not really sure what I’m looking for… but it means that the camper trailer will NOT be locked onto the tow bar tomorrow if they don’t find it or get a replacement, so Mr Bestie starts making some calls and find a store in Stawell that sells them and so as a group we decide we’re off to Stawell. it’s about a 30 minutes drive, but at least we know today the shops will be open. So the men all head off one way and us Sheilas head off to see the shops. I brought myself a bamboo crochet hook and 5 balls of wool, just quietly I am going slightly mad not doing anything arty or crafty!!

After the shop saying “they had some” it turns out the guy on the phone didn’t even know what Mr Bestie was talking about so sells him two other options, and in the middle of the road we discuss “Will these fit?” right away one is too small and the other one while it might “just fit” what if it slipped off or worse? so Mr Bestie took them back to get his money back and we decided to go to the next town which was Horsham and have a look there.. more shops, more sightseeing and definitely camping stores and caravan stores. Anyways the guy comes out with a bigger locking pin and decides this one will fit for sure so that saved us another trip…. back at camp we lit the fire earlier to get some coals so we could make baked potatoes and the boys the young ones not the Blokes wanted to roast marshmallows. Then the weather turned cold.. and miserable and we even had a few spots  of rain BUT not the thunderstorms and torrential rain that was first predicted. We packed it in early we were all in our beds by 10 pm and I read my book until much later.

Tuesday 3rd November 2015- Melbourne Cup Day.

Ok, so if you are from overseas you may not know what “Melbourne Cup Day” is and why it’s a public holiday. Melbourne cup is the greatest horse racing event of Australia and it is literally the “Race that stops the nation” people in all states of Australia have either a BBQ or a party or take the day off work, people fly into Melbourne to attend the Cup, it’s world-famous, this year it had horses from Ireland and America and Japan racing in it. It’s a really good excuse to spend a lot of money on clothing and you MUST wear a hat ladies, so people spend stupid amounts of money to go there and dress up and get rip-roaring drunk, some might make some money but most lose their money, and their shoes and various other items of clothing and most definitely their dignity. I went once! Each year we watch the race on TV if we are not camping and we have guesses who will win.

So this morning was pack up day for us happy campers both families agreeing “We Will NEVER come back here again!” we might go back to Halls Gap but a different caravan park! We were all packed up in the cars ready to go by 9.45am which is some kind of record but I think we all had the same thing, people will be heading home the roads will be chaos. Well, we are still trying to add black lines to the map of Victoria, so we were taking every kind of back road we could find and we were back at St. Leonards by 1.00pm. In time to unpack, settle in and watch the Big Race at 3.10pm.

I’m funny about picking horses.. If I like the name or the colour or the pattern on the jockey’s riding top I’ll pick it. Unless we are in a group situation as in a BBQ or something we never bet money on the race, the Bloke and I both agree, we work too hard to get money to throw it away… BUT this year I so wish I’d put money down.. I picked three horses, to come first, second and third,  I picked “Gust of wind” because A- it was a girl horse, B- it was owned by a lady and C- she was the only girl horse! Then I chose “The United States” because I have a passion for anything American! funny the horse wasn’t from America or owned by Americans or anything. Next on the spur of the moment, I went for “Prince of Penzance” remember that movie from the 80’s with Christopher Atkins as the sexy Pirate.. I think it was a musical back then, but the thing about this horse that got me was it was ridden by the first female Jockey to ride in this particular race, “The Melbourne Cup” plus I’d heard of her before when she was younger she was thrown from a horse and cracked her vertebrae and they thought she might never walk again.. or something like that, anyways her name was familiar so I threw her in. And because we don’t bet for money, I didn’t look at the odds..

Michelle Payne became the first women in the world to ride the winning horse for the Melbourne cup and it was a 100/1 odds… OH MY GOSH, if I had put the rare $5.00 that I have previously I’d be rich!! I cried, because she made such a great speech about how it’s a male chauvinist sport and how other Blokes had tried to stop her from racing but the owners had stuck by her and now she said “they can get stuffed, coz we won!” Yay Michelle… Girl power!!

It was a great way to end a great weekend. Now we are planning more camping trips to take. But for now, a few days at Bel Far Niente before heading home to “the real world”

In my real bed that night, after having a shower and being all clean I thought back over the trip and the post I would write when it was all finished a final wrap up so to speak! The Best, the worst, the never to be repeated and the must go back and do again things.. coming soon to a page near you!!

 

Big Lap WA 2015- Day 40, 41, 42, 43- Mildura Victoria

Day 40- Wednesday – We packed up a very wet camp. I was awake at 6.00am and checked my online bits and pieces, we had free internet connection at Hahndorf so it was nice to be able to check up on the family on FB and my mail etc. It was cold and raining, so I took my breakfast ingredients and my bible study things and went to the massive camp kitchen and spent an hour over there with my coffee, vegemite toast and God’s word. When I got back to camp The Bloke was packing up and we had to wake up the kid to get him moving. By 9.35am we were “On the road again” and headed for warmer climes. Originally we had planned to go “straight” and spend a few days in Robe on the coast but when we checked out the weather websites it looked dismal and we are “fair weather” campers.. not really but why go into a thunderstorm when you can avoid it? so we changed plans and headed for the Victoria Border and across to Mildura which is usually always warmer. Good choice!

Although it was a grey overcast looking day it wasn’t raining or cold we can cope we that! We chose “Golden River” caravan park for a few reasons he main being it was a Big 4 caravan park and we know they always have good facilities and also because it’s on the banks of the Murray River and that means fishing. When we booked in they said we could only stay till Friday because they had a “Rod Run” coming in and they’d booked most of the van park out and were going to be loud and take over, we agreed that would be ok. So once we set up we decided to find out more info about “Goanna’s Run” and we liked the sound of it and so we decided to see if we could stay a few extra days. The “Kid”found the pool and reported it was heated and insisted that I get in since I went out in Albury WA and brought a new swim suit and had yet to wear it, I said “Maybe tomorrow” I finished my book and so that leaves me with two choices, the Bible or a book I borrowed from my bestie a Nicholas Sparks book, which I am trying to hold on to until I can give it back to her, I’ll read it in a few days. In the mean time I needed some more “Australian Author” books so we planned to hit the charity shops the next day and pick up a few, I’ve been so good at reading them and then leaving them behind. It’s a thing travellers do they leave their books in the laundry and pick up a new one, I could have done that but there are no Australian authors so I passed.

Since 25th September, just under a month I have read 8 books totalling 2,422 pages, so I am pretty happy with that!

The Bloke has been craving Fish ‘n’ Chips and so tonight we found a little fish shop and the smell of the oil as we walked in the door did me in, I got a “Plain Hamburger” which ended up being anything BUT plain, lettuce, tomato, cheese, beetroot and a slice of pineapple and I must confess though, it was the best burger I’ve eaten in ages. The Kid opted for McDonalds and the Bloke was disappointed in his fish ‘n’ chips. It’s usually the way when you want something so much you end up being disappointed, a little bit like parts of this trip really..

Day 41- Mildura.

I got bored last night and picked up a book I’ve been trying to read for 12 months called “Testament a Bible Odyssey” Maybe I’ve needed the 12 months in between starting it and picking it up again, because it seemed to flow a lot better than 12 months ago when I started reading it. I got about 100 pages read, yay me! ALAS it’s not an Australian Author and so I will put it aside as soon as I can.

Later that day….

I managed to walk into one of the charity shops I think it was “St. Vincent DePaul’s” and I picked up 6 Australian author books for only $6.50, winning!! We also went to the supermarket to stock up on some supplies. While the boys were using the bathroom, I wandered over the road to a fashion shop, the sales lady was so helpful I explained that I am going to be MOB and that I wont have much time when I get home to go shopping and so what could she help me with? nothing too over the top though. I tried on two dresses, two different styles and two different colours, I liked them both in their own way although the one I felt most comfortable in, my husband later tells me “it looked kinda like a sack” eep.. I liked that one and the colours were exactly  my type two colours. Anyways the sales lady said “Here try on these shoes“, and “try this little jacket” and “Ohhh you look lovely!” to which the blokes stood off to the side sniggering “Ohhh you look lovely” they mimicked. Just as this poor woman thought she was making a sale, my husband steps in and says “Let me take a photo and send it to Jasmin and see what she thinks?” the poor sales lady said “OH, yes of course” in a much less chirpy fashion and snatched the dress away and put it back on the hanger.

As we left the shop The Bloke reassured her “WE are here for another three days I’m sure we’ll be back” I wasn’t too happy to be honest, all trip I have been trying to find an out fit, and there I was with two I liked.. OK it was more money than I wanted to pay one was $289.00 and the other was $260.oo but I figured I’ll only be MOB this one time.. once! and there I was again with NO DRESS! As we drove off we discussed his reasoning and he came up with the “kinda like a sack” theory. They both liked the red dress but I knew that RED was not in my type 2 colour chart so it didn’t feel right to me, I even asked the sales lady “Doesn’t this make my boobs look bigger? “to which she replied “Love when you’ve got them make the most of them” which is almost the same as “If you’ve got them flaunt them” and I’ve never been comfortable with that saying either. Anyways.. I did send the photo to Jasmin and she replied that “she loved the dress, and no red wasn’t too over powering and that it looked good” I ignored it all and never went back!

Day 42- Mildura Friday.

By early morning the Hot Rods started arriving, the revving engines, or the throbbing of them driving in was loud all day, we are now comfortably surrounded on all sides by all shapes and sizes and colours and makes of Rods.. big, small, old and older, all colours, we are the only “normals” in the place but we were here first so we don’t feel too bad in our little corner where we can see them all arrive.

More shopping, I decided that I needed some singlet tops with thin straps if I am going to tan (which I have been doing without trying) I don’t want extra lines of tan marks, so off we went plus I wanted a little hand towel and some face cloths. I ended up with new shorts as well. We went down to the “Mall” to see what was happening with the Hot rod parade we heard there was going to be a band and we wanted to see f it was a band we were familiar with, there was one guy with a guitar singing, so Star Son and I went off to look at the clothes shops to try to find a MOB dress. He says “I don’t get why you can’t wear a dress from home, what’s the big deal?” he’s a 13 yr old boy, who can be bothered explaining? but I did because I want him to be patient and let me just get the flipping dress! I tried on one fitted style dress, he insisted that he see it when I get it on.. well I didn’t get it on, the biggest size did not fit, it was the right colours for my type two, but the wrong fitted style… next shop.. The next shop we went into the sales lady came right up and asked “Can I help you with anything?” So I explained “When I get home I have 20 days to become transformed from this ( I was wearing hiking sandals, leggings and a singlet top, not very glam!) to MOB, I need a dress BUT I don’t want it to be too fancy, I want to look fancy but still look like me” she sighed because they didn’t have anything “too fancy” So right away Star Son points to a dress he likes and says “try that one Mum” she agreed “Let’s start with that one” I liked that one, tried it on and right away regretted the fitted choice and pointed out to the sales lady who being about the same size as me agreed and rushed out to find something else.. the second one was a much better choice and all four of us agreed, it’s Cobalt Blue with silver accent. That shade of Blue and Silver are both type two colours, the dress is a little bit more fitted that I’d like BUT she showed me that with the right little jacket we can disguise that fact! So then the hunt for the perfect little jacket began.. she wanted one, I wanted a different and the Blokes each wanted theirs.. so I got none, I did however buy the cobalt blue dress with the silver accents, and I asked the lady since she’s already been so helpful “What accessories would you add with this?” she told me exactly what I wanted to hear what I’d already though of to add… yay! Apparently I’m learning this “fashion thing” I’ve never been the fashionable one, I like things that are comfortable and until I did the Dressing your type course I was hiding in dark dreary colours… NOW I know better so I can do better. I did not ask the Blokes to do any more “fashion” stuff because they’ve done two days worth, now I’ll wait till I get home and take one of my daughters with me for support. However she did point out that “Blue is a great choice for the MOB because Blue is lucky for Brides and you’ll be standing by her side some of the day! and especially in photos” I didn’t mention that Jasmin doesn’t want to do “those” photos but I like the dress anyways!

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Sneak peek of my dress…

While we were out and about we also found the “Mildura Chocolate co.” because in their advertisement they said “Life is too short not to eat great Chocolate” and I agree a thousand % So I brought us a block of Chili Chocolate and Star Son got a chocolate bar for helping me with my dress.

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Chocolate!

Back at camp, we decided to go fishing, so we packed up the requirements and went down to the river to catch fish, we lasted maybe an hour before we all gave up on the idea.  We spent the afternoon messing around in the pool and hanging around camp just relaxing and reading I finished another book, called “Reflections on Marriage” by Hazel Hawke and started a book by Tasma Walton called “Heartless” I’ve been accused of that a time or two.

 

Day 43- Mildura and New South Wales.

Today the Bloke decided that we should go and revisit an old friend. The Perry Sand hills in the outback of Wentworth New South Wales, so we made another border crossing into New South Wales. Last year we spent a week in Wentworth almost exactly a year ago and discovered these red desert sand hills and fell in love. In the middle of the sand hills is a huge old tree been there forever and it’s fondly named the “God tree” so we went back to say hello.. that makes it four states of Australia we have visited in this trip!

So that brings us up to date and now it’s time to start thinking about the great pack up because in the morning we move onto destination unknown, all we know is we are heading South.. on the 30th of October we meet our friends at the Grampians just near Horsham but between now and then we are free agents, and so tomorrow we head South and look at maybe the little sandy Desert or the Pink Lakes or somewhere like that. Which means we may not have internet access for a few days, but I WILL be back and catch up when I can.

 

 

 

Big Lap WA 2015- Day 38- Hahndorf- South Australia

Pack up was easy because we stayed in a cabin over night, with a fan to keep us cool. This morning we got up to a HOT morning, I was kind of glad we didn’t have a whole camp to dismantle. We left Port Augusta at 9.45 am and by 11.00 am we had turned off the roads we were familiar with and drove on “New Roads” It was already 34c

We stopped at Port Wakefield for lunch a little town along the way we went to the only open shop which was a bakery, and I decided to be brave and try something new, I was so glad I did, it was delicious.. I had a Lamb rosemary pie. It was just like eating a roast lamb meal including thick gravy and mint sauce, sooooo good! The Bloke had a pastie and said that it was really good too.

As we drove along we left the fields and the desert behind and started passing wheat and salt lakes.

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Salt Lakes

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Salt Lakes

The temperature started to drop about then too, the sky was grey and over cast and frankly we got a bit nervous about the weather turning nasty. which is why we were heading to the Adelaide Hills anyways to avoid the bad weather.

We arrived in the little German town of Hahndorf.

Hahndorf is a small town in the Adelaide Hills region of South Australia. Currently an important tourism spot, it has previously been a centre for farming and services. It is accessible from Adelaide, the South Australian capital, via the South Eastern Freeway. The town was settled by Lutheran migrants largely from in and around a small village then named Kay in Prussia and now known as Kije, Lubusz Voivodeship in Poland. Many of the settlers arrived aboard the Zebra on 28 December 1838. The town is named after the Danish Dirk Meinhertz Hahn, captain of the Zebra. It is Australia’s oldest surviving German settlement (taken from Wiki)

I’ve been here before but the boys have not. I love this little town it’s the oldest German settlement in Australia. So we decided that while we were here we would try as many German experiences as we could.

We stayed at the Adelaide Hill’s Big 4 Caravan park called Hahndorf Resort. and it was stunning, the most amazing camp kitchen you could imagine, three microwaves, stoves, bb’q’s, fridges, all cutlery, crockery and cooking utensils you could think of, it was amazing and so HUGE, with three huge tables and bench seats, so on cold rainy days you could hang out In there.

The bathroom block had just been refreshed and it was amazing. There was only one day that I actually shared the space with anyone at all. Niiice!

After we set up camp and got our dinners sorted for the night we went for a walk around the camp, the boys had a quick game of Volleyball and we had a super quick jump on the jumping pillow before it started to rain and we headed back to camp.

I had just started another book  so I spent some time getting into that, bedtime 11;00pm, late for us!

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The entrance at the caravan park.. I wanna live there!

 

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Camp Hahndorf South Australia