Thunderegg mining and visiting

22/7 – part two of our day

Azzan was still wanting to go Thunderegg mining so we walked over to the office.
But it was 4pm and too late to go down the mine.
So the man suggested Azzan could do the lucky dip from the pile of cast off rocks from outside of the office.
He was very happy to do that so he took his bucket and went out to search.


He had it all sussed so didn’t take too long to choose his rocks.
When he came in the guy sorted them out and showed him which ones he could cut and Azzan chose the one he wanted opened.

He was very happy with the pretty quartz colours inside his egg.

We finally had to leave so we had time to pop in and visit Tim’s sister Jenny.
She was staying at Logan Village with her husband Ivor at his daughter’s place while they fix up their mobile home.
They live in it and travel around Australia.


We hadn’t seen Jenny for around 25 years so it was great to catch up again.

Then it was 5pm and time to head off back to the city to find cousin Mary.
We followed the googlemap instructions on ly to get stuck again when the motorway entrance was closed – darn it!
So I pulled over and got out Bethel’s map book and found another route and finally found Mary, her daughter Jeanie & g’daughter Brittany at home waiting dinner for us.
We had a very enjoyable evening together.

It is so cool to be catching up and meeting all these cousins after so many years.
It has really made our trip worth so much more.

It was all too soon time to take the children back to Bethel and Ron’s so we wound our way back around the streets. This time with no misadventures.

Adventure Parc on Mt Tamborine

22/7
We left Bethania about 9am and headed south to Mt Tamborine.
It was so cool to realise we were so close to the countryside.
After the past days in the concrete jungle we all breathed deep sighs of relief.
It was a lovely drive out through Beenleigh and up the mountian.
We eventually found our way to Thunderbird Parc and had a wee cruise around looking to see what was there.
A lovely camping area and Thunderegg mining.
Also a horse trekking place which unfortunately was totally booked out so Mahalia didn’t get to go.

We made our way to Adventure Parc and signed in and got measured up to see who could do what course.
Azzan was just tall enough but was pretty keen to do the mining instead so he and Tim went over to suss it out.
They got back just as we were watching the safety movie.
When he saw what we were about to do he decided he really would love to do it too.
He had thought that we were just going to be climbing some mountain!!
The lady quickly got him into his overalls.
We all had two safety carabinas and a pulley to attach to the ropes and also gloves and a water bottle.
Then we were all ready to go

I thought that I would have to go slowly around the course to help Azzan.
Shanni offered to stay back and help him along too.
Nathan & Mahalia took off and we never saw them for a couple of hours.

Azzan was right into it and really did well.
He struggled with the carabinas but perseverence was the name of the game and he was so determined.


We each had 2 carabinas of which one had to be connected to the wire ropes at all times.
They were quite tricky as they had a safety twist to them and I really struggled with it so give major credit to Azzan as he managed them with his little hands.
There was also a pulley attached to each of us for when we used certain flying foxes.
We also had to use gloves at those times too.
Each activity was signed with simple but explicit instructions and we had a guide watching us at all times.

The ropes and ladders etc got higher and more complicated as we went along.

Tim spent the day on the ground being the papparazzi.

Azzan on the flying fox.

This was Azzan’s last ladded down – I found it tricky so was very impressed that he did it all by himself.


We all finished the red and green courses and met up at the bottom.
Mahalia & Nathan had already done the black course.
Azzan was annoyed as he wasn’t big enough to do the black course so as far as he was concerned his day was finished
The other three were literally flying around the course many times while I pottered along at my own pace.

 


I was doing well until I got to this one below.
 
I had to grab a rope and leap out over an abyss and swing to the net and grab it and then climb across to the platform.
 
I just could not take that leap
Tim reckoned the camera battery was going flat while he waited for me to jump.
I finally did and it was so scarey.


But then I had to do the next thing and it was the worst one of all.
  
I managed to finish it and then looked ahead to where Shanni was swinging across hanging stirrups and decided that I had had enough.
So I took the next flying fox to the ground.

After we had all finished we passed in our harnesses and then we were allowed out on the Sensations part of the course.
It was just as challenging but a heap of fun.

We were entertained by kookaburras while we ate our lunch.

I was talking to the French woman who owns the Parc along with her Australian husband and commented to her that I hadn’t managed to finish the black course – I still had 3 things left to do.
She said I had done really well as most folk do not get even as far as I did.
So I was feeling pretty chuffed with myself 

Mind you for the next few days after my arms were covered in bruises and my stomach muscles were so sore!!
But it was fun
AND
I would do it again tomorrow

part 2 of our day coming next…..

Lazy day in Brisbane

21/7

We spent an enjoyable lazy morning at Bethel’s doing not a lot.
Then cousin Mary called up and offered to take us shopping in her wee car in the arvo.
Shanni & Mahalia didn’t want to go so they stayed back on the promise of being good for Bethel.
When Mary arrived we were just finishing lunch so we chatted a while and then Tim, Nathan & Azzan squeezed into the back of her ‘bubble’ 

and I hopped into the front seat and we zoomed off to find Ikea. We wandered around looking and getting ideas for kitchens etc. Didn’t intend to buy anything but somehow came out through the checkout with a large bag of interesting goodies.
We had time to quickly look for shoes for Azzan. So Mary took us to KMart. Azzan had been wanting to get shoes with buckles but so far had been none to be found. He quickly eliminated the lace up sneakers and velcro shoes. They had spider man on them and ‘Idon’t like Spider man’!
So we moved on to another aisle and he found a pair of black lace up leather shoes which he immediately fell for. He tried them on and made an instant decision that they were just what he wanted – cuz they are what the people wore in the old days and I like old times things.’
Mary was chuckling over this as her g’daughter has to wear this type of shoe for school and is totally unimpressed about it!!
We found some sale shirts which I bought for my big boys and then had time to 
rip through the supermarket to stock up on supplies. Then just before we left Mary introduced me to a wonderful coffee shop called Zarraffa’s. They make frappacinos to die for.
By this time it was dark and past time to be home. So we zipped back to Bethel’s and unloaded our plunder. We quickly made Banana Caramel for dessert. It was delicious.
The girls had been having a great time with Bethel’s jewellery collection. ‘She has MILLIONS of earrings!!’
So they were quite happy they hadn’t come shopping with us.

A day at Southbank

 

 

 

Bethel navigated us into the city on Monday morning.

That made life so much less stressful and Tim commented that she was a brilliant co-pilot.

We got to Southbank in good time so went shopping at the tourist shops.

One was having a big sale so we had fun there.

Tim finally got his hat so he was happy – esp as it was discounted.

Then Annette arrived so we went to a nearby cafe for a drink.

But Shanni & Nathan decided they wanted food.

So they ended up having another breakfast.

morning tea at southbank

Bethel & Annette and I stayed at the cafe and chatted a while after Tim took the children down to the museum.

bethel & annette

Therre were some ibis hanging about and as soon as the patrons at a nearby table left they swooped on their plates and were soon scrapping over the scraps!!

ibis attack

nicking bacon

We wandered along to the boardwalk after a whiole.

By this time I was hungry as I never ate earlier.

So I got lunch there.

Then it was soon 1pm and Annette had to leave.

Tim’s nephew Calum arrived to spend the rest of the day with us so we sat and talked while the 3 children played in the fountain area & went swimming.

calum

guy talk

fountain play

fountain play2

southbank pool

The sand oasis was perfect as the water was quite cool and the sun was very warm over in that corner so Azzan & Hali spent a long time there with a wee girl they met from Scotland.

pool oasis

We watched them from the deck of another cafe and had lunch together.

Then it was getting later in the day so we got them dressed and fed and started walking down tothe modern art gallery.

On the way we walked through the rain forest walk – it was so lovely in amongst the trees.

Then past the Peace Pagoda.

peace pagoda

Tim & Calum just ambled along chatting about who knows what.

calum & tim ambling

We were conscious of the time and wanted to get there to see this exhibit.

It was very impressive.

art exhibit

oops! don't touch!

I thought this painting was also rather provocative.

kangaroo warriors

It was all to soon 5pm and we had to leave so we walked back along the street this time.

Shanni was very very tired and had a sore tail bone from an earlier fall so she was not coping too well with all the walking.

We found this cicada/cricket in the garden by the museum – it was very beautiful in the late afternoon light.

insect

giant insect

We saw Calum across the road to the train station and then headed back ot the car park.

calum & Tim

 

weary walkers

We walked past the Brisnbane Wheel.

brisbane wheel

And back along the bouganviullia walkways.

They are so beautiful.

bouganvillia walkway

southbank walkway

We stopped to get a NZ smoothies each as we were all rather famished.

Southbank was just becoming to come alive for the evening so it was very tempting to stay awhile.

But we had weary wee folk so loaded them in to our trusty steed and headed back home.

Ron had the dinner cooking and the washing done so it was very pleasant to come back to.

It was a very pleasant day.

Despite being in the centre of the city it was all very relaed and laid back and most enjoyable.

 

A weekend at Scarborough

Golda & Albert greeted us at Scarborough.

Tim & Golda chatted on the front balcvony while Albert & Nathan taxied Suzie from one girlfriends place to another.

Then we had dinner.

tim & golda

Rosina, George & Hosea arrived just as we were finishing.

After dinner Rosina took their 2 wee dogs and our 3 youngest for a night walk along the beach.

They found the play ground and loved having it all to themselves in tyhe dark.

The rest of us watched the All Blacks thrash the Wallabies in the Tri Nations rugby – 22-16.

Of cvourse when the walkers arrived back they were all starving so we toasted up the crumpets we had bought for breakfast whilst enjoying a riotous evening togeether.

 

Nest morning George bought the girls back a papaya to try.

Shanni wasn’t too sure about it!

papaya

After breakfast Rosina & I took the kids and dogs gfor a walk along the beach.

The children found the huge cottonwood tree they had enjoyed the night before.

It was still pretty cool.

huge cottonwood tree

Azzan found a very comfy limb to recline in.

comfy branch

Then they spent ages building sand castles while we chatted.

sand play

Mahalia loved the wee dogs but found two on a lead quite a challenge.

walking dogs

This is the wonderful 1830’s house that Rosina & George have found to rent.

I certainly hope that when they buy they are able to find something in just as great a situation.

george & rosina's house

George & Shanni

 

Nathan & Hosea got to know each other a bit over the computer.

Nathan & Hosea

After we returned the children wanted to go kayaking so the guys got the kayaks etc out and toted them down to the beach.

Tim and the two boys went walking and talking to the boulder bank whilst waiting for the kids to get sorted.

 

Nate, Tim & Hosea

It was a great day out.

Some people and quite a few boats but it still felt like we had the beach to ourselves.

scarborough beach

Azzan found the waves a bit of a challenge to paddle in so Shanni helped him.

men talk  

kayaking

kids in kayaks

kayaks

kayaking2

Shanni & Azzan

Azzan loved the warm sand

sandboy

Time to take everything back up again.

return kayak journey

Then they had to be hosed off as the sand had infiltrated everything.

washing off sand

That caused a lot of fun and laughter as the squirting water tickled them!

washing off

We had to leave in the afternoon to head south.

Azzan had Rosina firmly wrapped round his wee finger by this time so they had to have big cuddles before we left.

rosina & azzan

Tim with his cousins – Rosina, Golda and Albert.

rosina golda albert & tim

And all of us.

By this time George’s sister Gabrielle and her husband had arrived enroute to the airport.

extended family

We left soon after 4pm.

Stocked up with a bit of foodas we went through Redcliffs.

Just as well we did cuz we got stuck in traffic on the new Gateway Highway.

It took us an hour to get from Redcliffs to the north side of the Brisbane River.

So much for the new and super efficient motorway!

I was so glad we had the dvd player cuz Azzan & Mahalia werte able to watch The Wizard of Oz while we crawled along.

We finally arrived at Bethel & Ron’s in Bethania, south Brisbane about 6:30pm.

It was so good to get here and Bethel had a big pot of delicious soup on to feed us.

 

 

My day with the Paper Princesses and our farewell to Toowoomba

17/7

Judy & I were up early and left the house at 7am.

We had a 2.5hour drive to get to Marilena’s house in Samford Valley where the 7 Paper Princesses were having their 3-monthly get-together.

We all arrived around 9:30-10am.

Enjoyed morning tea together whiles chatting and sharing treasure each had bought for the others.

Then it was lunch time.

What a spread.

Each lady contributes their speciality so it was a very tasty and filling lunch.

lunchtime

Then we gathered in the lounge and Marlene & Kasha were given their birthday art pieces that each of the other ladies had made for them.

opening b'day pressies

These are Kasha’s wonderful blocks of wood which have been transformed by mixed media artists into these fantastic works of art.

Kasha & her b'day blocks

Then the ladies had to blow out their candles.

b'day girls

Kasha & Marlene

 

candles

We left about 3pm and made our way through the building city traffic to Calligraphic Arts and found Renate there.

She has a wonderful shop with all sorts of treasures tucked away in little rooms of the house/shop.

By the time we left it was after 5pm so we called ahead to let Nathan know we would be late.

Tim & Kurt were still down the hill cutting privit.

 

We walked in the door and found this wonderful baboushka town that the children had created.

Azzan just loves these dolls and spent hours playing with all of Judy’s.

She has so many that he and the girls had enough to share!

russian doll village

Nathan had made a delicious dinner.

We had a great time – it was our last supper together.

Then Murray arrived – he is a friend fromback home, who I had only just found out the night before, had moved with his family to Toowoomba. I managed to locate him but  his wife and family had left that day for a holiday on the Gold Coast so missed catching up with them.

It was great to see him and exchange all the family news.

Tim & Kurt usually spent time together in and over the kitchen sink.

tim & kurt in sink

 

18/7

I was up and getting the packing begun early on Saturday morning.

Kurt had to leave at 8am as he had an all day art class.

Kurt Judy & kids

I was through the washing and into packing when Judy offered to take Nate and I into town to do some last minute shopping.

So we zipped away for an hour and came back 3 hours later.

Tim had begun loading the car so everything basically got thrown in will nilly.

We had a quick lunch and then loaded all the children in.

Nathan wandered out the front door just as I took this photo..

kurt & Judy's house

but there was no Tim to be seen.

So I went looking and found him and Judy leaning over the balcony deep in conversation admiring all the work the guys had down the day before.

Tim & Judy

 

We managed to pry time away and into the car and headed off to Brisbane.

Judy had printed out google instructions for me.

But, an hour or two down the track we realised we had missed a turn off on the motorway and were actually heading into the mid city.

So we stopped at a Moorooka service station and bought a map and asked directions.

Once I could see where we had to go it all became so much clearer.

We finally got to Scarborough in the late afternoon – only half an hour later than planned.

 

Toowoomba

Our days at Toowoomba were spent chilling out and generally recovering from a few busy weeks.

15/7

I took the kids shopping – had to find Mahalia an outfit for Jesika’s b’day party. Finally found everythiung at Pumpkin Patch – crazy to come to Australia to shop at a Kiwi shop! But everything was on sale at half price so we did very well and Hali was especially happy cuz she found some black boots – she had been hankering for some since Shanni got hers!

We also got some clothes for all at Rivers sale. Got Boost juice and came back home.

Azzan loved to set the table for Judy. He was so careful to put the salt and pepper on without spilling and then would arrange every candle he could find on the table.Azzan setting table

He also spent a lot of time building with the magnets.

Azzan with magnets

We took the children to Picnic Park in the evening before dinner.

It was beautiful there but jolly cold.

Tim & I were glad of our coats but the kids were running around so much they hardly felt it.

There is a waterfall area there on the top of the hill – man made of course.

But because of the drought they have turned it off.

It still made a delightful place to play and imaginations ran wild.

Elephant Ears

Azzan was sure he would find dinosaurs in there!!

dinosaur territory

wheres the waterfall gone

 can't get down Mum!

The trees were brilliant to climb – Azzan found it a bit tricky getting out of this one though! 

fantastic trees

Climbing tree

up a tree

Where’s the waterfall gone?

waterfall wall  

This wonderful creation is called a Pedal Power.
The kids LOVED it.

pedal power

The view from Picnic Point was amazing.

This is looking eastwards.

The traffic from Brisbane flows along down in the valleys below and then climbs a very steep hill up the side of the mountain.

Picnic Park lookout

Sunset through the park trees.

Picnic Point sunset

I spent the afternoon making phone calls and organising the coming week.

 

16/7

I caught up on washing.

Spent a fairly cruisy morning with Judy.

Got Nate some clothes at Rivers sale – jeans actually were way cheaper than marked when we went through checkout – $20 a pair – good buy.

Tim & Kurt did some planning and talking and made a start on pruning privit and lantana down their hillside.

They have quite a wonderful wilderness down there – parts of which they have never seen as it is so overgrown.

They are just plodding away pruning and pathing as they can.

But Kurt has a majorly painful back so it is rather agonising for him.

So Tim wanted to do what he could to help.

It was bitterly cold though so they weren’t down there too long.

I took Tim to town in the late arvo to get him some jeans.

I actually had several other things I wanted to do but by the time he had tried on a few pairs and some shirts and boots the day was gone.

Dropped the girls colouring in competitions to the National Geographic shop, got Boost juice for everyone and headed back home.

The children were happy just to stay back and blob.

They painted, played with play dough, watched a movie.