How cute is that!?
Our holiday began with an early flight to Tassie. We drove straight to Port Arthur. On the way we stopped off at Eaglehawk Neck. Pictured here is Georgia commenting on the dry, white sand. You can see what a gorgeous day it was. This beach was particularly wonderful, with cliffs on either side. Let me tell you a story. Port Arthur's boundaries are natural. The only entrance on land to the area is through Eaglehawk Neck. Guards used to patrol this area. Once a convict was trying to escape, hopping along, dressed in a kangaroo skin. His plan didn't work that well, because the guards were hungry. When the prisoner noticed he was about to be shot, he made is name known, and was returned to prison, where he received 100 lashes with the catonine tails.
The cabin we stayed in at Port Arthur was idyllic. We looked out to this bay. Here, Georgia and Monte are investigating the creatures in the rock pools. I wish I could be bothered including all the artsy photos we have of anemones and the cliffs, and dead, white wood contrasted to the glorious blue sea and sky. Monte took a lovely photo of the scene and the sunlight peters through...no doubt it will feature on our walls soon. I loved watching these two explore together. They are so in-tune with each other, so loving and so close. They were chatting away and I was clicking away as I watched my husband and daughter.
A very lucky little girl got to sit in this helicopter, which had landed outside the hotel we ate at on our first night. All I did was take a photo (how uncharacteristic of me), and the pilot beckoned us to him. Georgia grinned and that little excursion made her day!
Here is the view at Port Arthur, showing the mill which later became the quarters for prisoners. On the third floor there was a library, containing 13000 books so the prisoners could be educated. There is a little girl in red in the foreground; you can see how imposing the ruins are. What a wonderful place! We took a guided tour, which was very informative.
We also took a boat tour around the port, looking at places like the Dead Isle, where thousands of bodies are buried, only one of whom is a woman. We also saw Point Puer - the prison for young boys. It was eerie and beautiful at the same time.
We had a picnic at Port Arthur because we were there all day. Here's mum with kids.
We met Ben and Jill at the Salamanca Markets. The markets were fun. My favourite parts were the fairy shop, where little girls and little girls at heart become awestruck by all the little nick nacks. "I'll have some fairy hairclips for Georgia and some for me... and a glittery bangle for Georgia and one for me." Georgia bought a pink glittery, fluffy wand (I restrained myself). Amelia and Georgia even got to meet SnowPea the Fairy, who told them stories, showed them her treasures, gave them fairy dust and let them make fairy wishes! The girls were thrilled, as were their onlooking mothers. My other favourite part was the scallop pies. The most delicious pie ever. Here is Georgia and Milly at Salamanca Place, where adults had a coffee and blissfully normal catch up, whilst the girls splashed around a bit too much (Uncle Ben to the rescue).
It was wonderful that Harry and I are still so close after all our times apart. Here is Harry pictured with "Jacky" (Becky too hard to say thank you very much). Isn't his smile gold? So bright and charming. Harry is a beautiful boy; so cuddly and sweet. He is so happy too. He loves his keys, and to show how much he adores our Matthew, he even gave Matty his keys!
We went to Hastings Springs and swam in the warm water. Here I am with Georgia and Matty. It was fun swimming with my babies. The last time I donned my bathers was when I was pregnant with Matthew. In the water then he would kick and turn; he loves the water still! Unfortunately our pleasant picnic was made rather hectic due to a swarm of approximately 1001 wasps. Jill, Milly and Georgia ate their lunch in the toilets because it really was so bad. But I'm glad we went.
We stayed at Southport for a night. We stayed in a cosy house and drank lots by the fire (the drinking was normal; the fire a luxury). Pictured below is the kids and dads trekking along the beach (which we could enter from the steps in our backyard), on the hunt for shells. There were lots of shells, including abalone. We even found a half-alive abalone, and it was so gross I took a photo of it before I chucked it back into the water.
On our way back to Hobart, we stopped at Geeveston, where we had lunch and a look around. There were carved people all about the place, which I thought was a bit disconcerting. Here are the children with a carved couple, which the girls named Georgia and Milly, but I thought they were George and Mildred. Apparently they are having "a typical cup of tea." We also stopped of at the miniature village in Glen Huon. I took a photo of Mr T waiting for a train. We explored the village and rang the bells of the cathedrals. Harry kept pressing the button which made the church choir sing. The kids played in the Old Shoe with the Old women and all her naughty children. We explored the back of the little old man's property, where we found some elves and fairies, as well as a partridge in a huon pine tree! I can't fit all those Kooky pictures in my blog, so I thought I'd share this photo of my boys. I think they are so handsome. I love Matty's cheeky grin and Monte's peaceful smirk.
Whilst in Tassie Matthew acquired a dummy. He was so impressed with Harry's dummies that he kept stealing them for himself. I bought him some of his own and am relieved, because settling and soothing him now, especially during teething (which is not fun at present), is much easier.
We had a day trip in Richmond. Here Georgia is standing in front of the oldest bridge in the country. We had a great day. We picnicked in the village green; looked in a cosy little teddy bear shop; strolled down to the Richmond Gaol; played with autumn leaves; had a coffee at the world class bakery; bought lollies in the old lolly shop and Georgia and I bought new sunnies. Overall a wonderful day.
On Friday we visited Gordon's cousin, Bernadette. We had lunch there with Bernadette, her daughter Judy, granddaughter Chloe (2) and cousin Marjorie, from Swan Hill, who was also holidaying there. It was very special to be welcomed by them. We had a really lovely time and we all got along very nicely. I talked at length with Marjorie about travelling to Bali, as she is about to go there again. Georgia and Chloe played beautifully. Bernadette, Judy and Marjorie could not contain their admiration of our Matthew! They thought he was the most happy and beautiful baby ever, and his presence inspired Bernadette to show me as many photos of her 12 grandchildren that she could mustre!
After Bernadette's, we went up to Mount Wellington. The view were obviously awesome; my little camera could hardly do them justice! The drive up there was scary; I kept fearing the heights, and once I got to the top I was tingling all over. But it was worth the trip because we saw so much of the surrounds. Georgia had a bit of a hissy fit up there; she was tired because she had been woken up to see the views. Here's Matty and me on top of the world!
On Saturday Jill and I went into town for a shopping excursion. I bought the kids some clothes and a new jacket for myself. Of course I could have waited to go shopping back home but Jill is in Hobart, not Adelaide. We had a great lunch together too. Later that day, we minded the kids and the boys got together to make this contraption which is otherwise known as the half-assed 101 (Khasakstan's finest). The actual creation gives off good heat and is perfect for drinking beer in the rain.On Sunday we went to the Botanic Gardens, despite the rain! Monte was in his domain when exploring Pete's vege patch (the dude from Gardening Australia). The gardens were very beautiful. Here is a picture of the children watching the autumn leaves falling from the beautiful golden trees.
When it rained we stopped in the Conservatory, which was very beauitful, with a lovely fountain and flowers of almost every colour. The girls found the door to the secret garden (see below). This is my favourite photo from my whole holiday.
What, home so soon? We flew home on Tuesday evening. As you can see here, the children were exhausted, and flying from Melbourne to Adelaide was actually very relaxing, as they both slept on me!