Sun, Run and Fun!

weather

This is almost unheard of around these parts.  Six days of clear weather.  70’s -in May.  Normally we wait until the middle of June / July to get our sunny weather, but I’m not complaining.  The past week has been sun, sun and more sun!

These two have been enjoying it:

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The doors to the office have been open, and the dogs have enjoyed wandering in and out.  Yoshi sticks around but Siren and her long legs take off and she disappears in seconds flat.  She usually runs off to find water to play in.

Tonight I was doing some burning and didn’t want the fire to get out of control so had the hose running.  Since it has been dry for so long there aren’t any puddles around.  Miss Siren loves her some puddles.  She spotted to hose and went wild.  I picked it up and this happened…

Wait for it…

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I love Yoshi in the background -she really doesn’t understand why Siren likes to stick her head in the water.  Just for the record I wasn’t spraying her, I was holding the hose -she was sticking her head in the water.

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She enjoys the weather in different ways.

Such as when I looked out the window to see two blonde flashes go by on the back hill.  Siren (who is skilled in running, climbing and dancing dangerously close to cliff edges) had somehow convinced Yoshi (who is not skilled in these areas) to go with her!  It took her a bit longer to get down but I was happy to see she had went out and was playing.

Regardless…Here is to summer!

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{that was my fault – I made her look directly in the sun.  Woopsie!}

Time Travel

I have been thinking a lot about traveling lately. In my spare time, or five minute breaks I google out random destinations, small coastal towns in the middle of nowhere. I search for hotels, hostels, cars and other random tidbits. I have ‘planned’ multiple imaginary trips to said destinations -because let’s face it, traveling is the name of the game. While we don’t have any trips planned for the immediate future, I still like to dream about it.

Then, in a random moment -I realized that it has been five years since our first big trip across the seas.

…and my travel destination changed. I don’t want to go to Turkey, Greece, Italy, or France. I don’t want to see the Bahamas, couldn’t care less about New Zealand (although I wouldn’t say no because hello, travel!) where I would go if I could go anywhere would be back in time. I know it’s impossible. But so are certain destinations. Today, if I could go anywhere, I would go back in time to the first ever trip we took.

The older I get the more fond I grow of that time spent overseas in 2010.

Sure, we could revisit those great locations again, and we plan to some day. We could visit other amazing places (such as New Zealand!), and we plan too. Sure we have been to some AMAZING places -such as Australia, and I am sure that one day in the near future looking back my heart will be captivated with some other trip…but today, for a brief moment in time -I want to go back and relive some of those moments.

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Like seeing the Mediterranean for the first time. I have seen it many times since, and while it probably never will get old -there is something about seeing it for the very first time. It is something you can’t ever redo. Like traveling to a foreign land for the very first time and having absolutely no idea what to expect. That fear and excitement mingled with happiness. Sure, I get those feelings just taking off in an airplane, but there is something absolutely thrilling about landing in a foreign land for the very first time. You can’t repeat that.

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The memories made, the people we met, the foods we ate, the roads we wandered. The things we saw, the way we saw them, how we perceived them. Everything that was rolled together to make it an amazing trip…

Sure, looking back you only tend to remember the good. The bad memories are even tainted good. The frustrating moments are funny.

There are just some things that cannot be relived. No matter how many more times I travel, no matter how many more amazing places I see, no matter how many new countries I step foot into -I will never be able to relive those moments of the first time. We can revisit these wonderful locations, and stay in the same places, and retrace our steps to the dot. But it wouldn’t be the same. I would be amazing, and wonderful. It would be exciting, thrilling, and probably frustrating at times. Much of it would be the same…except for the fact that it wouldn’t be the first time.

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I want to relive those moments. The first time we flew 10 hours to a foreign country. The first time we went through the boarder alone. The first time we heard someone speaking with an accent. The first time we tried new foods. The first time we heard a foreign language being spoken all around us. The first time we navigated a foreign land. The first time.

Yes, today, if I could go anywhere -it would be back in time…to tell my much younger, much less impressed self to lighten up. Enjoy it. Soak it all in. Because one day, a much older you will be very much jealous of you.

If I could go back in time, I think I might just give France a big hug.

“Somehow the tiny containers of lemon flavored yogurt tasted good in France.

The cheese.  The bread.  The fried potatoes.  The microwave pizza.  The apple tart.  The nutty ice cream.  Gummy worms.  Coke bottles.  And little note books.

The tiny shower, the gas smell scare, the bikes, the stormy nights, and wet clothes.  The dryers that wouldn’t work, shoes that almost got stole, horse back riding, fig picking experiences.  The towns that were discovered along the way.  The smells.” -France 2010

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More Spring

I’m seriously starting to consider changing my favorite season to spring.  I’m not entirely sure why, but spring this year has been really…great!  It’s not like we even had a particularly hard winter -I mean weather wise?  It was pretty great (in my opinion).  We had maybe one or two snow storms, got to freezing maybe once, and then battled the long dark days.  But other than that -it was pretty mild.  Of course, I spent a month of it in Australia, but still!  Lets talk spring, shall we?

I have been calling spring since the weekend before the official day of spring.  It just FELT like a good day to call spring -and I never looked back.

These pictures make me think, feel and smell happy thoughts.  Yes, I said smell.  Don’t they just SMELL like happy thoughts?

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Spring!

It’s spring today!  Finally!  I’ve been waiting for spring for a very long time now.  Take last weekend for example when I got the brilliant idea that spring had come early, and took mom for a walk around the lake.  It snowed.  It was cold.  But I was desperate for spring -and so we walked, snow and all.  I have been looking forward to spring all year long, and today -it is finally, officially here!

Although I would have to say that if I were to pick a day that spring officially started it would have been yesterday -when it was sunny.  Today it is raining.  Which is typical really, for spring here.  But spring is here.  Flowers are out.  Sun is not.  But spring, my friends -has sprung!

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Hooroo, Australia

It’s always hard to find the right words when a trip comes to an end.  It’s something that I struggle with every time.  I don’t like saying good-bye, no matter how much awesomeness might lay ahead…saying goodbye is always hard.

I can’t speak for everyone, but I for one -have had an amazing trip.  We drove at least 1200 miles -not including the detours, trips, backtracking, or day trips.  1200 miles on the wrong side of the road, on the wrong side of the car -just two months after I got my license.  I think I have put more miles on this side of the road than I have on the normal side!

We have seen some amazing places, some breathtaking views, made memories for a lifetime, and really had an amazing time.  Honestly?  I don’t think this trip could have gone any better if we tried.  We packed everyday to the brim with new and exciting things.  In once sense, it was good -doing as much as possible in as little time as possible.  But in another way -it wasn’t.  Because the time went SO fast.

We stopped at every point possible -and spent the night in 12 different locations along the way.  It took a lot of planning, but I managed to reserve 12 different houses/motels along the way for our trip.  We stayed in everything from old motels with holes in the wall to brick mansions with servants rooms.

We have seen dessert and ocean, farms and forests.

While we have really only covered a relatively small area (when you consider just how big Australia is!) it was amazing.

It’s hard to sum the trip up, hard to say what was the best part, hard to say where it started and where it ended and hard to say good-bye when it feels like it just started.  But like every other time, it’s not good-bye -it’s see you later, because while Australia has been put on the “Done” list -it is definitely on the return list as well.

Until next time….

I hope you guys had as much fun as I did!

I hope you guys had as much fun as I did!

Day 20: Adelaide Zoo

When we went to the zoo yesterday, they were running a special that if you bought the tickets that day -you could get tickets to the Adelaide Zoo 1/2 price.  Being suckers for good deals -we jumped on it and bought tickets to go to the zoo.  The temperatures today were over 100 (in the shade!) but we went for it anyway and had a great time.  There was enough shade that we didn’t completely pass out!

This little guy was busy watching the airplane flying overhead…

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He was so cute.

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If you couldn’t tell, the meerkat’s are my favorites.  :)

We saw some birds…

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Some wild looking animal that I can’t remember the name of!

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Some sheep, deer, panda and penguins and monkeys:

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And of course, no trip is complete without flowers:

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Day 19: Victor Harbor – Adelaide

We drove from Victor Harbor to our final destination today.  Just outside of Adelaide.

Since we had a few hours to kill before showing up (David’s aunt and uncle who we are staying with were out until late) we decided to check out a local zoo (Monarto Zoo).  It was an African Safari styled zoo, and since the weather was so hot (around 100!) they closed the walking trails and only allowed a bus to take us around.   The animals weren’t in cages, and instead were free ranged in a park like area built for them.  To see them the bus drove down roads through their fenced areas to give us a chance to see them.  Some walked right up to the bus while others stayed off in the shade.

It was really neat -seeing the animals that close.

Buffalo:

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Meerkat (my favorites!)

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And finally, the cheetah.  This one was hand raised and trained by the zoo.  They were able to hand feed her.

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Day 18: Robe – Victor Harbor

We spent a majority of the day driving today.  Not too many amazing stops along the way, although we were in a bit of a hurry and didn’t feel like stopping too much since it was seriously hot!  Once we got to Victor Harbor -we went to check out Penguin Island (Granite Island) to see if we could see any penguins.  Three years ago when David and Amanda were down here, they referred to the island as Penguin Island -they never saw any penguins and we were determined to have better results this time.

We spent a good 5 minutes debating over whether this was a penguin or not:

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We were really close to calling it a penguin (we were desperate!)…

I am NOT a penguin!

I am NOT a penguin!

But then he flew off.  And even for our imaginations -a flying penguin just seemed a bit much.

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We circled the rest of the Island in hopes of finding a penguin…to no avail.

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At least the views were nice.

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Aside from the wildlife, we spotted a few wild nuts…

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Day 17: Mount Gambier – Robe

Our stops at night this trip have been a combination of motels and houses from airbnb.  Our preference has quickly become staying in an airbnb, since not only do you get a bigger place to stay, you get personal recommendations from the people who you stay with, and the wi-fi works much better!

Last night we stayed in a motel after doing a stretch of airbnb’s.  I guess you can say we had been spoiled, because our motel last night while clean, wasn’t up to date at all and had a lot wrong with it.  We were pretty happy to leave it behind…

This morning we had cut it close for check out, I was talking with mom while we were loading the car up so wasn’t paying any attention to anything going on around me (which is probably good!!).  After we were mostly loaded up, I jumped in and started the car.  David was putting Judah in his seat when he started casually mentioning that there was a “Pider.”  I thought he was just messing with us, stalling for more time until David jumped back yelling.

This is what he saw:

Picture thanks to David.  Amanda and I were not about to get that close, not even for a photo!

Picture thanks to David. Amanda and I were not about to get that close, not even for a photo!

Amanda and I very much dislike spiders, so seeing a spider that was about 5 inches around THAT close was too much.  Having no idea how long he had been there, where he came from and KNOWING that I was JUST leaning over him?  Well…lets just say it was a scary moment for us all.

While Amanda and I went to check out, David planned how to rid the car of the spider.  Some well meaning by standard came over to help out by tossing a towel at the spider -making it scurry under the wheelbase of the car.  We didn’t want to drive the car with a spider that big, that close so went to the car wash to try and spray him out -to no avail.

Having no other options, we convinced ourselves that he was most likely, probably gone.  And took off down the road.

“Now if you see him, just scream, ok?” Amanda warned.

“No.  We will not scream.  If I see the spider I will tell you to pull over so we don’t get killed.” David wisely cautioned.

About 20 minutes later, driving down the main road I saw hairy legs wiggling down the driver side window.  Thankfully there was a parking spot right next to where we were, and I was able to pull over and didn’t have to crash the car.  David then put an end to all the spidery nonsense.

The rest of the day was fairly uneventful as far as spiders go!!!

We visited a few things in Mount Gambier, like the Blue Lake (Which was amazingly blue!), another smaller lake -and then made the drive to Robe where we spent the afternoon on the beach.

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It’s no mystery where it got it’s name!

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We have spent a lot of our trip asking this question, a very fitting shirt!

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The beach.  It reminded me of Italy.

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Day 16: Warrnambool – Mount Gambier

We backtracked today to see the 12 apostles.  The first stop (that we saw yesterday) wasn’t that impressive.  It was neat -but we could only see one of the apostles.  So today we went a bit further -there was a parking lot we parked in, then took a path under the road, to a lookout where we could see all of them lined up.  Was well worth going back for!

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Up a bit further was a pull off for the London Bridge.

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And London Bridge’s little cousin:

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The rest of the trip was not very coastal.  Just trees, fields, cows and sheep.