Thursday, May 29, 2008

Camping...Friday night and Saturday...

Oh man I am so behind on the blog! I've been really tired lately trying to adjust to my new hours at work, which involve very early mornings and evenings with a commute. However, this is my attempt at trying to catch up. Last Friday, we left work a bit early and headed to Girraween National Park for our first ever Australian camping trip. It's also been the first time that we've been camping in a long time so we were pretty excited! It took us about 4 hours to drive there, as we got caught in some weekend traffic leaving the city and we stopped for a bite to eat. We set up camp in some chillier than we're used to weather. Stanthorpe, the town closest to the park, is supposed to be the coldest town in Queensland (the state where we live) and seeing as it's winter, it was forecast to dip down to a nippy 3 degrees, with a high of only 16 degrees!! I bundled up (hat, gloves, scarf, 3 sweaters, fleece pants and wool socks) and didn't mind it at all! It was actually a bit fun to feel some cold on my cheeks again! Having said that, I still wonder if I will ever be able to do a -40 degree day ever again!!! We took a lot of pictures, so I've attempted to post a few of the main events...
There were a lot of birds everywhere! They really were not shy about snatching food either! A kookaburra (seen in the picture above...sounds just like a monkey when he sings!) stole a piece of Steve's toast right off the grill when he turned his back and then later another one (or perhaps the same brave bird) landed right on the grill and didn't want to move, even with Rej and Steve trying to shoo him away!! The birds were very pretty though, however they were also very loud!! It made sleeping in past 7 very difficult! The verdict...I am still not a bird fan!
There weren't too many campers when we were there, which was cool because we had a whole section to ourselves... It's been my goal, since I moved here to see a wild kangaroo. Well, that was an easy goal to achieve at this park! I woke up to kangaroos hopping by our campsite (a whole family of was amazing!) and there were a few of them just having out on the grass by the bathrooms. I was shocked at how tame they were! They didn't even move when we got close to them and took pictures! Mind you we didn't get too close...they are still a wild animal! These were taken on our walk to the bathroom for our morning pee.

On Saturday, we went hiking. The hike was really cool...massive boulders all over the place, many on top of each other. I'm not sure how they came to be like that, but it looked really cool!
Steve's the King of the Castle...
Everyone hiking...we went camping with the Purdys, Rej and Clo and Dan and Amy. One great thing about camping in the winter is no bugs and no snakes!
Lunch break at "Sphinx rock", before heading onto Turtle rock (a rock that resembled a turtle) and Castle rock (you guessed it, a rock that resembled a castle!)
A very tall rock wall...

Group shot...

Shamus has been eating his spinach!
Darryl has too apparently...

My homeless lady gloves...they worked great! Best $4.99 I've spent in awhile!
Hmmmm...what's in here...? Nosy roo!
A very fat possum who went in our garbage when it was sitting right beside us!!! Whatever happened to wildlife being more afraid of you then you are of them?!?
A Mommy feeding her Joey...
...and a wee little Joey in the Mommy's cute is that?!
We slept surprisingly well both nights. I was just a little cold on the second night, but nothing too bad. We ate lots of yummy food and drank some wine. All the trimmings for a great camping weekend!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Sunday...Heading home

On Sunday morning, we woke to enjoy warm tea and hot chocolate and a yummy French toast breakfast. We packed up the camping gear and headed into the nearest town of Stanthorpe. They have a market that boasts being the "Warmest welcome in Queensland's coldest town." It was only small but I managed to find a few things and prices were so cheap!
The kiddies relaxing while the grown ups packed up...
When they weren't relaxing they were held under tight security...just kidding!:)

We stopped and had a little picnic lunch in Stanthorpe before heading home. It reminded us so much of Canada! There were ducks and and even a tree changing color! You don't see that very often here!

And that was our trip to Girraween National Park. It was actually kind of nice to feel a little chilly and have rosy red cheeks! Lots of fun! Can't wait to do some more camping soon!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Million Paws Walk

Yesterday, Steve, Jesse and I took part in the RSPCA Million Paws Walk. I was shocked at how many people were there! Jesse was so excited! I don't think he knew what to make of so many dogs in one area. There were dogs of all kinds, many of whom were dressed in costumes and there were even 2 Duck Tollers! That's our first Toller sighting since we moved here. They both belonged to the same family and they were adorable! Apparently, there are only about 400 Duck Tollers in all of Australia. I guess Jesse makes 401:)

We did a 3 km walk and then enjoyed the booths. There were people selling dog/pet stuff (all proceeds going to the RSPCA), food, info about the RSPCA and articles and pictures that could make even the biggest meat eater consider becoming a vegetarian.

There was also fly ball and agility stuff going on and places where you could get your dog bathed. We didn't want to ruin Jesse's day by putting him through that, although he could have used it!

All and all we had a great time and it felt good to help such a wonderful cause. Thanks again to those of you who sponsored us! I would love to get a team together next year and do the walk with a group. So, if you have a dog and like to walk, keep it in mind for next year!:)

Still kickin'!

Yes, we are still here, although I know it's been ages since we've posted anything! I have a few things to catch you up on but haven't had the chance to do it. I'll post some pictures and a little update tonight! :)

Friday, May 09, 2008


Awhile back, I posted that I have become obsessed with sewing bags. I just love it! Well, that and the fact that I ran out of windows to sew curtains for;) I had a few people mention to me that I should post some of what I have been working on and here they are...I'm basically teaching myself as I go, so I'm also learning a lot of what I want to change or do differently if I make each of these bags again. Basically, these are my trial run bags that I'll keep for myself and hopefully, if I make some more as gifts or something, they'll all be perfected by then! I get a lot of ideas from this website... and lately, seeing as I am a bit obsessive, I check out bags that I like in stores, and then go home and try to make them myself. It saves SO much money! A lot of the bags I like are very simple to make and buying fabric is way cheaper than buying the bag! So here they are...

I made the above bag as a birthday gift for my sister (I hope you got it by now! Otherwise, surprise!) and then I liked it so much that I made one for myself. I think it's very summery and fun! I also like the design of this bag and think it would be fun in so many fabrics! I got the pattern and super easy to follow instructions here...
I didn't really love this bag but I think it will go cute with the right outfit. I made it using a placemat and got the idea off the Crafty Daisies website. Super cheap to make!
I saw a bag similar to this at the market and decided to try making one myself. I made it for about 1o bucks and they were selling the one at the market for $30. I love that it fits a sheet of paper, so it's great if you need to carry documents in it. I took it to my interview and got the job, so maybe it's good luck!

Then, because I hate to waste material, I've been trying to find ways to use up some of my left over fabric. One little project idea that I came up with was to make journal covers. Here's one that I have finished. I actually gave this to one of the girls I work with as a gift.
And voila! What I do in my spare time. I also made a little make up bag but forgot to photograph it before giving it away. I want to make a few more though, so I'll post one soon. I'm also just about to start another bag. I saw one that I liked in a surf shop in Byron and want to try to make one of my own. I have to start it soon though, before I forget what it looked like!
Finally, I'll leave you with my new favorite quote...I saw it in Byron Bay on a card and thought it was very cool...
"Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself." Unknown.
Cool, eh? Perhaps that's why doing creative and new things makes you feel so good! Each little thing you do/create is helping to create a little piece of you!:)

Wednesday, May 07, 2008


A few things to say...

1. Steve's Mom left this morning. Hopefully, she has a relaxing flight home and we both really hope that she enjoyed her visit! It was so nice to be able to share some of what we see and do here in the land down under with family. I really, really hope we'll get some more company! Jesse is already missing Grandma for sure!

2. My Nanny Henley recently celebrated her 95th birthday! My Aunt Gen sent me these pictures, which I just LOVE! The one of Nanny laughing makes me smile because I can imagine her wonderful laugh! She has such a great sense of humour!

3. I still flippin' love rockclimbing! Last night, I finished my 3rd class. We learned abseiling, which is basically repelling yourself down a cliff. Steve and his Mom came to watch for the last bit of class and Steve took pictures like an embarrassing Dad at a kid's soccer game! But, it was all good! I'm glad they got to see a little of what I do for 3 hours every Tuesday. Once I finish the course, I can go to all their social nights, which they do every Thursday. You just have to turn up at the cliffs and climb. They provide all the equipment and it's free because I took the course with them, so that's pretty cool! It'll make it an easy and cheap way to stick with it after the classes finish!

4. I start my new job very soon. Only 2 more days at this job, and a couple days at a first aid and CPR course away! Bummer that I have to spend a whole weekend taking a course, but who knows, maybe it'll be fun! Plus, they do some stuff differently here than Canada, so it'll be good to have a refresher course and be prepared in case of an emergency at my new the child who put his teeth through another's child face during a game of footie on the same day I had my staff meeting...yikes!

5. I had to rescue a dog today! Ok, well not rescue but there was a lost dog wandering around our street and he stuck pretty close to our driveway. I called the Brisbane City Council and gave them his registration number (dogs here wear it on their collar) and his owner came to pick him up. It took a few treats to lure him into our yard, where I locked him in to wait. Apparently, not all dogs like cucumber and carrot, but the frozen hotdog finally did the trick! He did later puke that all over Jesse's bed, but that's beside the point...His owner was very grateful and very Aussie! He pulled up in his Ute, with his Aussie accent and offered me $10 to get myself a beer! It was pretty funny! I just love that simple way that Queenslanders have! I told him no thanks and just said that hopefully, if it's ever necessary, someone will do the same for Jesse if he ever gets lost. Turns out that Bob (the dog) is 13 yrs old and is deaf and has very bad legs, so the owner was really glad that he was okay! It's the weirdest thing...every time I go to work in the afternoon, I have a dog issue! If it's not something to do with Jesse, then it's a stranger's dog! Not sure what that must mean....
And that's it for now!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Keeping busy as always!

We had a super busy weekend...again! Steve and I both took Friday off and then Monday was a holiday here (Labor Day), so we had a nice long weekend. Steve even had today off, so he's had quite the little mini vacation! Debbie leaves to go back tomorrow morning, so we wanted to make the most of the last weekend that she was here. We spent Friday day shopping at one of the larger shopping centres in the suburbs (Debbie and I got some great deals but Steve didn't find much...guy shopping in Brisbane isn't that great!) and Friday night, I went to a staff meeting at my new was a great way to meet everyone before my first day and I think it'll help make my first day not so overwhelming! Saturday, we headed off to Byron Bay for snorkling, more shopping (this time Steve was the one who found some great stuff!) and dinner. As previously posted by the hubby, we all really liked the snorkling! Sunday, we took a walk all along the water in Redcliffe, ate take away fish and chips and got biten by mean ants! I had 2 major welts on my hurt!!! Note: do not sit directly on Australian grass without assessing the surroundings first! This is twice I have been biten by those crazy ants while sitting on the grass in a park! You'd think I would learn! We made our way to a picnic table quite quickly after that experience! Then...Sunday night we went on the Kookaburra boat cruise. It's a boat that goes up and down the Brisbane river and serves a buffet dinner. We all really enjoyed was good and the view from the water was beautiful! Below are some photos of the evening. Monday, we took Jes to Bribie Island, just basically relaxed in the sun, before heading back to shower and go to Darryl and Stacey's for a delicious dinner!!! Thanks guys! Phewf! Busy, busy!

Doesn't it look pretty with the lights?

Steve took this picture of me and his Mom through the window from outside the boat.
The city skyline is so pretty here.