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Sexy Easter Bunnies

Did anyone else get naked and put on just their aprons and bunny ears this Easter?

Lincraft Easter Display Window

I think the window display artist had way too many adults-only chocolate eggs while he/she was dressing these craft shop mannequins! Who knew that crafting could be so sexy!

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Fitzroy Falls

After we left the camp site on Tuesday morning, we drove to Fitzroy Falls in Morton National Park. This mountainous countryside is located in the beautiful Southern Highlands of New South Wales and the scenery was breathtaking.

Fitzroy Falls

Morton National Park

I’ve made a short video in an attempt to capture the expanse of this stunning natural bushland.


If you don’t see the video above, click here to watch directly from YouTube.

I was also impressed by how well maintained Morton National Park was. The main scenic tracks were designed for visitors of all ages and only required average fitness levels. There are guard rails to help you along the steeper climbs and descents, rest areas and well-fenced lookouts for safety. Signs offered clear directions and also interesting information about native flora and fauna.

Morton National Park is a short 2 hour drive from Sydney CBD and for a small park fee of $3 per car, I think I’ll be back here regularly. That was the best $3 I’ve spent in a long time.

In the end, I had a great time those short two days away and I will go camping again. I need the break away from the computer and TV. I need to sit around doing nothing, not a craft project in sight. I need time to reflect and I need to laugh and chat for hours on end with my darling husband, my best friend.

Malay Wedding

This trip was to celebrate our 5th wedding anniversary. Five of the best years of my life. We didn’t promise each other “forever” when we got married. We promised to stay together for as long as we’re both happy. And we are. 🙂 Still very much in love like the first time we met.

Related Posts:
5 lessons I’ve learned from my first camping trip [Part 1]   [Part 2]

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Part 2: 5 lessons I’ve learned from my first camping trip

This is the second part of ‘5 lessons I’ve learned from my first camping trip’. Click here to read from the beginning.

Photo from Torpedo7.com.au

Photo from Torpedo7.com.au



Our tent was erected quickly, along with the foldable table and chairs. Richard made us tea from the hot water in our shiny new Thermos flask. We sunk into our chairs, listening to the birds chattering away as they returned to roost.

This peaceful moment did not last long. A loud, heated argument had erupted from The Tent – the one we avoided like the plague! The angry man started pulling The Tent down as one of the girls flung herself on him, begging desperately for him to stop.

“I’ve had enough! We’re leaving right now!” he bellowed. The woman chased the girls away from him and they cried hysterically behind some trees. The argument grew in intensity and there was nothing anyone could or woud do but watch, completely gobsmacked, like a herd of deer in headlights.

The bedlam finally ended when the man suddenly stormed off with one of the girls in tow. And then there was silence. The woman and the other two girls retreated into The Tent for several hours, probably asleep or in shock.

As we cooked over our little camp stove, we theorised about this extraordinary turn of events. The main question was what was the story behind this family. It made for an interesting dinner conversation but I could not help but feel for those poor, traumatised children. There is no doubt in my mind that they would be scarred.

4. Summer ≠ warm nights

We had our fleece jackets and long pants on over dinner. The temperature had dropped quickly and the wind was chilly. Some of the other campers were not as prepared and they had to take shelter in their tents (and car!) to get away from the elements. The sun had not even gone down yet.

I’m so glad we used this camping checklist when packing. It paid off being prepared with the right equipment. We sat outside chatting and playing chess until bed time, which brings me to the last lesson.

5. Air beds in a small tent is not a good idea

As it was our first camping trip, we did not want to spend a lot of money on equipment in case we hated it. So we brought along a couple of air mattresses we owned, instead of buying sleeping bags. We had a doona to share and pillows too. We thought we’ll sleep pretty well…

Until we placed the inflated air matresses inside our small tent. The air matresses took up the entire tent floor! It was like stepping in and out of a cramped jumping castle!

Richard in tent

And if that wasn’t bad enough, both the matresses had a slow leak and we gradually deflated through the night! LOL… 😀

On the up side, we slept better than those in The Tent as another explosive argument ensued when the man returned near midnight. It was weird and scary at the same time as the man started bawling like a two year old!

“No, no, no, no! I don’t want to go!” he pleaded endlessly.

We remained shut up in our tent, only peeking out when it was all quiet again. Thankfully that was the last we heard of them until we left bright and early in the morning.

Do you think I will go camping again?

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5 lessons I’ve learned from my first camping trip

We went on a short 2 day trip to Canberra. It’s a 5 hour drive there with a couple of mandatory breaks in small towns along the way. The scenery was mostly golden – rolling hills of dry, parched grassland in desperate need of rain. A reminder that we are indeed still deep in drought.

Road trip to Canberra

Car cricket amused us for hours as we made the rules up as we went along. Utes and trucks were 1 point, SUVs 2 points, hotted up cars were 4, emergency vehicles and luxury cars scored 6 points, and creeks and red or yellow cars got us out. It made the monotonous driving rather exciting for Richard as he strategically sped up and slowed down to get the best score. 🙂

The reason why we drove to Canberra brings me to my first lesson.

1. Grab the chance of a lifetime

Photo from National Gallery of Australia

Photo from National Gallery of Australia

‘Masterpieces from Paris’ is an extraordinary and rare exhibition as it is the first time that these impressive artworks have ever been displayed outside of Paris’ Musee d’Orsay. There are 112 of some of the best-known works of modern art, including those from Van Gogh, Cézanne, Gauguin, Picasso and Monet. You can view all the works on display here [link].

And it certainly did not disappoint. There were so many moments where we stood there in silence, hand-in-hand, in absolute awe of the beauty that greeted us. “I can’t believe I’m looking at this in person,” we whispered, nodding in agreement.

We have decided to make a return trip to the exhibition in a couple of month’s time before these masterpieces leave for Tokyo and San Francisco. Just one more time to soak it all in again.

Well, after having our minds fully nourished and feeling a little bit more cultured, we head off to our campsite and to my second lesson.

2. Motor village ≠ Holiday park

No, it really does not. They might have the same things like cabins, camp site, swimming pool, tennis court, bbqs and shower amenities. On the surface, it sounds like Canberra Motor Village could be a holiday park but I think we were just naive and too much of an optimist.

Maybe it was because we were in Canberra. The grass isn’t thick and lush due to poor rainfall, and our camp site looks more like a fenced in dirt patch. Whoever wrote the awesome reviews for this place on Google were probably in cahoots with the owners!

On the upside, the amenities were clean, modern and everything looked rather new. Not too bad, if you don’t mind setting up camp on dirt, by the fence, with the endless drone of traffic in the background. Not too bad… I guess.

3. Don’t ignore the warning signs

The reason why we chose a site near the fence was we both listened to our instincts. We were actually designated a powered camp site next to something that looked like this:

family tent
Photo from ontheroad.buy.co.uk


The music emitting from within the tent was rather loud and unfriendly. There was a dirt bike parked in front of the tent too. Our two sites were seperated by towels and clothes hanging from a make-shift clothesline between a pair of skinny trees.

There was no way I wanted to spend an entire night next to that. I’m glad we didn’t ignore the signs and moved as far away as possible from them. The events that unfolded through the night will surprise you.

But I will tell you more about that tomorrow and I will share my last 2 lessons from the trip with you too. See you then!

Update: Click here to read Part 2

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More Home Renos

We are charging ahead with our home renovations at the moment and it has been equally tiring and rewarding. We’ve set a deadline for the end of the year where the most essential improvements must be done. So here are some of the things we got up to over the last fortnight.

Richard has put in all the downlights in the living space now. There are 8 in the living room, 2 in the dining area and 4 in the kitchen. The house sparkles when the lights are on. I, on the other hand, have been painting the windows and doors.

Before (in 2008)
Living Room
Dining Room & Kitchen

After
New Downlights & Painted Door & Window
Painted door &Window

And I am also loving our new 3-in-1 bathroom light, heater and exhaust fan.
New 3-in-1 Bathroom Light

We also got a free cat door from friends so even the cats have moved up in life!
New Cat Door

Our second bedroom had been used as an office but when we moved that downstairs, we used it as a store room for all the painting and renovation gear. Now it’s being used again as an office while the office downstairs gets renovated. Clear about that? 😛 But we love this little desk setup at the moment that we’ve decided to keep the desktop in this room and use the laptop in the office downstairs (when the renovation is done).
Temp Office?

I’d like to draw your attention to the printer stand made by yours truly. It’s made out of recycled timber, a very old print painting, Araldite glue (thanks James) and a few small nails.
Printers
Homemade Printer Stand
It might not look fantastic but it works. I’ll pretty it up when I have time.

So in the other corner of the room, I have a desk which I want to use for product photography. I still need a few more things to accomplish this but it’ll be so good when it’s all set up.
My Future Photography Desk
(Hope, you’ll be happy to know that I used your spinning wheel a few days ago. 🙂 )

So this is the office downstairs that’s awaiting our attention. It’s a room just off our garage which needs to be painted, concrete floor polished, downlights put in and a new door (where the curtains are hanging). Then we need to build a large desk and shelving. Easy peasy! 😛
Office Awaiting Renos

Ok one more last thing. It’s really minor but my mother-in-law thought I should share it on my blog anyway. My Hills Hoist clothesline used to have 5 lines going around but as our trees in the garden grew bigger, the clothesline couldn’t rotate anymore as it got caught in the branches.
Clothesline Shortened
Thanks to Mr Angle Grinder, we said sayonara to the last line. Four rubber ends later, the clothesline is at a better suited size for our little backyard and it can now rotate freely with the wind.
Clotheslines in Action

Wow! We’ve been busy and this has been one looonnggg post. Should really blog more regularly. 😛

Related Posts
When a House Becomes a Home

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