Alyssa finally figured out how to ride her bike. I know she is a bit late, but we were concerened she would never work it out. It just seemed all too much for her, pedalling, balancing, braking and looking where you are going. And then something clicked woo hoo.
As most would know I don’t drive and ride everywhere. Lynsey learnt when she was about 4 or 5.
Well CONGRATS ALYSSA. There is no stopping you now.
Over the break we had two quick trips away, both involving water. The first was spent with friends for two days down at Currarong (near Nowra on Beecroft Peninsula surrounded by Navy land and National Parks), 1 block away from the beach. The time was spent in the water, drinking beer and eating seafood.
Lynsey basically spent time with her friends and Lee-Ann and I took Alyssa to the beach and for walks on the rocks.
Some of the wildlife - feathered variety
Some of the wildlife - crab (hidden in the rocks)
A week later we decided to venture down to Wee Jasper near Yass for an overnite camp. Wee Jasper is a small town approx 55kms from Yass. You have Carey Caves and Goodradigbee River. We camped right on the river at the Swing Bridge Reserve (one of approx 4 reserves).
I hope that Christmas for all was good and spent with family and friends. We visited the grandparents for our Christmas and for the past few days had friends (and their kids) staying with us. The food and converstaion has been great and we all drunk far too much.
And now onto the New Years I hope that 2010 is a good year for all.
To let people know, I have been given my marching orders, redundancy from work. My last day is the 30th of Oct which now means a very busy last few weeks. The good news is of course no more part time dad and partner and we can really start getting things moving in Yass, expect lots of things over the next few months (that is before the cash runs out).
Yesterday (Wed 2nd Sept) we had our first sitting of a snake. Last summer we were told there was a snake seen out the front of our property but we never saw it. Two days ago my neighbour came up to me while gardening to tell me that they have seen a snake out front, she had run over it but it slithered off.
The snake probably disturbed as we had our ‘slasher’ guy over and he does the front as well. It didn’t worry me too much, but yesterday afternoon the girls got off the bus and were walking down the lane towards our house and I heard my eldest shriek, so I went out and she said snake. The snake looked at them so they weren’t moving. I told them to step back and I got in the car and drove over the snake, the girls quickly getting into the car. Even thou the snake had been run over twice (I assume it is the same one out neighbour had told me about) it slithered away.
The snake was approx one metre in length. The funny part about this being the girls had no problem touching a snake last Saturday when we were shopping and a wildlife handler had a snake in the Gungahlin shopping centre. In the flesh without a handler it is quite scary, especially since everyone here has been telling us about the King Browns and Tiger snakes, and how these snakes are not afraid of people. So I am forever telling the girls to wear shoes not only for snakes but also because of the many red backs we have around the place – maybe now they will take more notice.
If I can get a picture I will try, although I am not keen to get out there searching for a snake. Anyway despite the grass slashing causing the snake to appear, the place does look quite nice – like having a haircut it feels all fresh and light.
It has taken a while, but a month ago (or two) Lee-Ann and I went on our first kid free holiday in years. The flight details were Canberra to Adelaide and return. We were gone from Wed 24 June returning Mon 29.
The flight itself was booked a good 10 months earlier, soon after Tigar Airways said they were flying to Canberra and just one of the days when they had cheap flights. The other part is being a Sydney Swans fan, when ever I can book cheap intersate flights I try to make it around a Swans game. This week it was to be Swans vs Adelaide Crows.
Anyway the flight was good and the plane OK . We took off 5-10 minutes late and arrived in Adelaide 5-10 minutes late. After finding our hotel (Rockford http://www.rockfordhotels.com.au) in Hindley St we headed out for a beer and a feed. With both of us being big fans of the Cook and the Chef, we headed off to the Hilton to Simon’s Brasserie (web link). Food and wine did not disapoint and recommend it to anyone, came back to the hotel stuffed.
The next day it was hire a car and off to the Barossa for a few days where we stayed in Tanunda, in a small self contained cottage (http://www.merlotcottage.com.au/). The cottage is on the main road of Tanunda but up an embankment so very little noise. On the other side is the caravan park, but that is down in the gully so again very little noise from it. The cottage was perfect, but I would not recommend for anyone over 170 cm – I am 168 and on one doorway smacked my head. The cottage itself is a 1 bedroom with kitchen, bathroom, longe and dining nook, Great for that romantic getaway.
Once there we only visited a few wineries, one which was really a shop front (Taste Eden Valley). This is a cooperative cellar door and wine bar in Angaston, the person in charge was Sarah Lehman (Daughter inlaw of Peter Lehman).
An hour and so later and a case ordered to be sent home we left.
That night we ate at another great little restaurant 1918 (http://www.1918.com.au/) who have local wines and a seasonal menu. Now I must say at this point I think I was going thru a pork belly moment as I ordered Pork belly that nite and also the nite before, two lots done completly different ways but both fantastic. Onve again we walked out stuffed.
The Friday visit was to Bethany Wines (http://www.bethany.com.au) had some of their stickes and bought a few bottles for the rest of out stay in SA. Also had to go out and check the Whispering Wall (http://www.southaustralia.com/9001624.aspx), slghtly overcast and the damn was full. A bit freaky for those vertically challenged. On the water side only a metre to where the water is, on the flip side a 40 meter (guess only) drop. But you can hear people from one side to the other by just talkling at a normal level. The last place we visited was Maggie Beer’s shop (remember I mentioned Cook and Chef earlier). We saw Maggie and Simon, filming their last episode. We also picked up goodies and took photos.
Saturday was time to head to Adelaide for the footy. I stuffed up with the game times as I thought the game was at 7.00pm, no it was a 2pm game.
Getting to AAMI Stadium was way easy, bus right outside the hotel we were staying in. Also I have to say that AAMI stadium is one of the best in Australia, easy to get a beer, lots of leg room and generally a good mood by all.
Sydney Swan Barry Hall, last Sydney game 2009
Sydney did loose that day and it will be remembered as Barry Halls last game for Sydney. Oh well.
That nite back in Adelaide we made a bee line for one of the cities eating precincts – Gouger St. It seems to cover all the eating styles and we settled on Indian (seeing in Yass we do miss Indian food) (Gouger St is also where the Central food market is open durinng the day).
Sunday we headed off to Glenelg via the ‘ol tram’ A nice beachside suburb, we had a few beers and a bit of lunch.
Andrew and Lee-Ann visiting Glenelg SA
Now this is where things got interesting on the way back to the hotel, walking down Hindley, which is a bit like a busy pub street/come never sleep 24 hour street (the other end is the Arundle Mall). We pass a quiet street and a cop van. We cross against the red light and two cops spring out and book us for walking against the red. Can you believe this. This is Sunday at 6.30pm and the only people out are tourists. This is nothing more than revenue raising. The street we crossed is a one way very narrow street. I questioned them why were they not doing this Sat nite when all the intoxicated people would have been out, the response being “oh no we are far too busy on Saturday nite” Of course that they are only fining tourists at this time and not educating the locals seemed beyond this police woman. Oh well up until that point I would recommend SA/Adelaide, but to everyone avoid it, the cops are dicks (or maybe just avoid Adelaide). The following morning back to the airport and home.
My mum had been looking after the kids but I think by that time she had, had enough, we got home (Once again Tiger Air were fine), her bags packed and varoom, straight out the door.
Flying out on Tiger from Canberra to Adelaide this arvo (24th) and will be in SA to Monday when we fly back. While down there a few days in the Barossa, Swan v Adelaide on Sat nite, drive around Sunday. My mun is looking after the tin lids, good luck
For the past few months Alyssa has been attending Yass Cubs. Anyway this weekend was supposed to be her first camping trip. Now we were a bit nervous but as she had some friends with her we thought it would be all OK.
At approx 12.36 in the morning we got a phone call that Alyssa was crying, cold and wanted to come home. So we threw the clothes on, woke Lynsey and headed off (via the 24hr BP on the highway for petrol) so finally left yass town at 1am. Now to get to Wee Jasper you pass over two rivers and a few bridges. It goes up and down some hills, windy (quite a few hairpins) and steep drop offs. It is tight during the day, but during the night it is a completely different experience, and of course there are the wildlife to watch out for (for the record three wombats, one we had to stop for [suddenly]).
Now Yass is approx 55kms away and once you reach town the camping grounds are another 7 kms. So after getting there are 2am we collected Alyssa from the cubs camp site. Another hour drive home (a bit slower this time) and Lee Ann and I, feeling real tired, are home. Kids in bed and we fall into ours.
Now I wish the cub leaders had called earlier since she did wake up at 9.o0pm. Sure the drive would not have been any easier but at least we would have been more awake. Anyway all ended OK we got home safely. Alyssa while there had a good time. I just think next time we need to attend the cub camp with her. Apparenlty after we left another kid woke up and had trouble getting back to sleep so the camp leaders didn’t end up in their tents until 4am, they were exceptionally tired the next day when we went to pick up alyssa’s stuff.