Trees: 6 ways – Black Spur Drive, VIC

A good few weeks ago (when am I on time posting pictures?) Oliver and I took a drive in a friend’s borrowed car to the Yarra Valley, east of Melbourne. Before we even left Fitzroy, picnic and camera packed, we had to contend with a smashed wing mirror on the loaned car. Actually the wing mirror was on the floor by the time we found it. 2 hours, $85 and a little panic later we left Melbourne and took the hour drive out of the city.

Actually, even though it was an unnecessary stress, we dealt with that situation as calmly and quickly as possible. And the wing mirror wasn’t exactly the same colour as the car but Liz didn’t mind. At least she didn’t show that she minded.

We didn’t visit any vineyards that day, but we found a tiny dairy farm, Coldstream Dairy, and ate a bargain $15 cheese plate before we did any sightseeing. It was really good, interesting cheese with a little pot of delicious creamy feta and spicy home made chilli sauce and that made up for the morning’s delay. A variety of cheeses make up for most of the bumps in your day I’ve found. We drove to Healesville and began on the Black Spur Road that Oliver wanted to visit. It was a pretty spectacular 30 minute drive through a national park, the tallest trees and winding roads. Every time an oncoming car came into view I thought I was in a car commercial. If you’re a fan of pictures of trees you’re in luck, just scroll down.

We did take a visit to the White Rabbit Brewery on our way home, but Oliver as the driver had to watch as I enjoyed a really good glass of beer and he drank ginger ale. We plan to return, with somebody else driving, for beer and wine and more cheese.

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How we spent Christmas…

Merry Christmas! This was our first in Australia and we spent it in the only way I could have hoped – on the beach! I know, what a cliché. Well, clichés exist for a reason, and this one exists because it’s a delight. It’s kind of life affirming. That abyss between Christmas and New Year (those few days of not knowing what day it is, feeling over indulged during 5 hours of sunlight) are my least favourite. The festive feeling dies off, January is approaching, it’s cold, it’s dark…. ugh. Well, this time around.. none of that. It’s summer here! Christmas is the beginning of summer. So Boxing Day and today, usually my least favourite, I’m quite enjoying them this year.

We spent Christmas Day on the beach with our friends (total bucket list event), had a backyard BBQ, ate prawns and interspersed that with some traditional things like early evening Home Alone, Baileys, Pictionary, Cadburys (are all my traditions reliant on familiar brands?). Then we slept on a blow up mattress, certainly not traditional, and travelled back to our house yesterday, Boxing Day, morning. We showered, napped and wandered to Richmond for a really good bowl of pho in the afternoon. We ambled back and watched a DVD and ate ice cream. It was so different from the usual.

And the main difference is the sunshine. I get it from my Dad, this dislike for winter. I love December and the Christmas build up but I really could lose January and February. I get up before the sun does, the sun leaves before I leave work. It does something to me. I am an SAD believer!

In January my parents are visiting us for 3 weeks, unbelievable! I could not be more excited. I know they’re excited to see Oliver and I but I suspect that my Dad will gain more than our company. He gets to escape 3 weeks of that awful British post Christmas winter that makes him miserable. The sunshine here should be enough to see him through to the spring when he gets home. Some pictures of the festive season around here…

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Hello!

I’m so sorry for the break….

Oliver and I just returned from a holiday in Port Douglas. I have lots to catch up on. For now, the pictures from our Christmas party were shared with us today. Here is my personal favourite!

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