Monday, 30 September 2013

37/52 The 52 Project, a portrait once a week.

Birthday boy was pretty happy about his birthday celebrations

Hey, you're cheating daddy!

Wow, that water looks pretty temping to jump into.

iPad frenzie!

Sunday, 29 September 2013

Camping at Top Moffatt, Mount Moffatt Section- Carnarvon National Park

Our first week of school holidays has just finished and we spent it camping at Mount Moffatt at the Top Moffatt Camping area.  Our adventure started last Sunday leaving in morning we felt pretty good about our trip with friends lending us a travel fridge and 4x4 camping trailer.  Luxury sleeping on a proper queen sized mattress!  There will always be a few bumps in the road though, things forgotten...  Something is always left behind no matter how good the camping check list is.  It wasn't until we stopped in Toowoomba and through our chatting in the car as we settled into the 476km drive to Roma it was revealed the spag bog, sausages and slow cooker meals prepared and put in the freezer were forgotten at home.  No problem, easily fixed.

Onward and upward we picked up a nail in the back rear tire but luckily we were overnighting in Roma and after a quick visit to the tire shop across the street from the hotel we were good to go!

A few Road Trains along the way too.
The road just before the Carnarvon National Park.

Monday we drove the 170km's from Roma to Top Moffatt Camp ground in the Carnarvon National Park.  The temperatures got warmer and we came across my first ever encounter with an Echidna wandering on the side of the road.

He had his nose buried in the dirt and rolled himself up into a spiky ball.  The boys were a bit wary but thought he was pretty amazing.  We were very quiet and eventually he did poke his pointy nose out.

We were the only campers at the camp site at first and got our to pick our spot.  The boys got straight into hunting for sticks for the camp fire.

And helping set up the tent trailer.  Then it was time to enjoy the space and play some footie.


After a bit of a play and relax we started dinner.  The light we brought didn't work so we had to cook before it got too dark. 

We also had a look at the creek.  It must get very full in the wet season because the bank was so steep with the prickly pear cactus perched so high on the edge.


Another group arrived with a two couples and two boys.  The boys were thrilled to have some friends to play with.  The kids played chasies and ran around the camp ground making up games as they went.

We played games of Durak and Monopoly Jr as well as the iPads.  We spent the first full day relaxing.

The next day was Lochy's birthday!! We thought we'd have look around the place.  We saw more wildlife...

We also stopped at the Old Stockyards built originally built in 1902.

Old Stockyard
Then we took the 4WD track to the Top Shelter Shed to look at the views and explore the old surface of the Buckland Volcano.



A bit further up the track was another amazing view point.
Then we came through the Mahogany Forest with the tall stringybarks on the Consuelo Tableland.  So totally different from what we'd been driving through.  It looked so green! 

We reached the end of the 4WD track shortly after that so headed back down again having lunch at the second view point.  Lochy even took a pretty good photo of Ben and I at the view.
We also stopped in at the Top Shelter Shed again.  The boys wanted to take a sample of their own volcanic rock home.  Gavin is convinced there will be precious gems in his rock.
We then came back to the crossroads and took a look at the sites in the other direction.
We stopped at the Marlong Plain, Kookaburra Cave, Lots Wife, and Marlong Arch.  Then the kids ran out of steam and we headed back to the camp site. 
Lots Wife
Marlong Plain

Kookaburra Cave- named after the Aboriginal hand stencil that resembles a kookaburra

Kookaburra Cave boardwalk
Marlong Ark
After all that driving around the boys had a big run around the camp site and needed a bit of a wash down.  An outdoor shower was just the thing!  Ben and I had one too, very refreshing and we didn't mind a bit that we got our clothes wet.  It was so hot during the day.
After getting most of the dirt off and having a yummy pizza cooked on the fire pit (daddy's so clever) it was time for birthday candles and cake!

The next day was our last.  We took another drive and saw the Cathedral Rock and The Looking Glass before thunder and threatening showers drove us back to our camp site again.
Cathedral Rock
The Looking Glass was a 950m one way walk and just a bit too hard for young Loch but he did try.

The Looking Glass

Another hot day and another outside shower back at the camp site.  This time everyone had left and we had the camp site all to ourselves.  The kids played in their undies to keep cool and looked like little woodland elves.  So cute.
elves in the woods

After dinner we had the biggest marshmallow's I'd ever seen.  They were the size of apples!

Ben built a massive fire with the last of our fire wood and we enjoyed our last night under the stars, 17km's from anyone.
I'd like to say then we had a great drive home but it did turn out to be a bit of an epic journey home.  It all started with the blown tire before we even left the National Park.
Then continued with nearly losing the spare tire as we were 50km outside of Roma on our way home.  The nuts came loose and we lost 3 along the way.  Luckily Ben noticed the car moving oddly and pulled over.  We'd nearly lost the tire!  After some phone calls and some creative thinking we got on the road again at 7pm finally making it home at 1am! 
One of our more adventurous camping trips we wont forget in a hurry and neither will the kids.

Sunday, 22 September 2013

36/52 The 52 Project, a portrait once a week.

Gav:  Dressed up as slime from Minecraft with the added "diamond plant" t-shirt left over from his school concert/play from last weekend.  I am so glad I kept it!  To be honest I wasn't quite sure what to do with it but I didn't want to get rid of it since he'd gone to so much effort to tape on leaves and make "diamonds" that were taped on as well at school.  He had put so much effort into that shirt, how sensational he was able to wear it again!  Oh, the dress up was a school Pebble Party reward for his class.   And I did make those eye holes bigger by the way.  Poor kid could hardly see out of it when he wore it to the last Pebble Party dress up!

Lochy:  Doing his Fun Run for school.  He was so keen to do the run but I think the main motivation was the ice block at the end of it.  He did an awesome run and was somewhere in the middle of the pack of boys.

Sunday, 15 September 2013

35/52 The 52 Project, a portrait once a week.

Loch:  Building his little garden box with daddy.  Now with just a little dirt he can start planting.  I love his enthusiasm!  I've got a number of seeds for him to choose from since Aldi had a sensational sale on seeds.  Loch is so keen were are having a "garden growing" birthday party for him in a couple of weeks.  Still have to sort out the details....
Gav:  Doing some craft at the "day with Dahl" in the library.  First they read one of his books (so funny) and then this is the Fantastic Mr. Fox mask they were making.  All the kids were so well behaved.  They even had party food, popcorn, cupcakes and juice boxes.  Amazing what they do in the libraries!

Sunday, 8 September 2013

34/52 The 52 Project, a portrait once a week.

Loch:  Lost his first tooth!  This morning as we were getting ready for school he came running out of his room holding his very first tooth to come out!  Loch was most excited at the idea of the Tooth Fairy coming to our house for his tooth and the money that would be left under his pillow.

Gav:  We were invited for a weekend with Grandma and Grandpa at Noosa and Gav, with a few tips from Grandma, found the biggest sand crab on the beach I'd ever seen.  I've only seen the ones the size of my pinky nail but nothing that big!  Gav was pretty quick to catch this one.  He did set it free so don't be alarmed.  He's very caring our Gav.

Sunday, 1 September 2013

33/52 The 52 Project, a portrait once a week.

There was some magic happening at my house on this day.  I baked my first loaf of bread mixed in my new Thermomix and it disappeared!

Loch:  After the loaf of bread came out of the oven all warm and smelling heavenly it was begging for butter and honey.  Loch doesn't even eat Gluten free and he loved this fresh hot bread.

Gav:  Even though the loaf wasn't perfect (not rising as much as it should have) by how quickly the bread disappeared and the willingness to butter his own slice instead of waiting for me, it was definitely a winner!

The boys loved this bread so much they asked to have it for dessert too!  It reminded me of when my mum made bread and we ate it while it was still warm with butter melting on it with honey.  Yumm!!  Gluten Free bread is much quicker to make without the kneading needed and just about 30 minutes to rise.  This one rose for only 15 min but I did some adjusting of ingredients and now have it rising on the stove while the oven is heating up and have made many loaves since.  I tried it at first with buckwheat flour as one of the ingredients but it makes it a bit sticky so now its arrowroot, brown rice flour and some besan among other ingredients and it seems to be just about right.  I have a hard time keeping up with the bread demand now!