Tuesday, October 09, 2007

She's Back (for now !!!) ...

Well, hello there ...

It's been awhile (again) since I last posted, but I have a pretty big post for you all today.

As you may (or may not) know, my family and I spent the past 2 weeks on holidays, at 2 seperate locations. For the first week, we took along one of Chicky's best friends, Chooky. The 2 girls had an absolute ball, as did we.

Our first week was spent at Lakeside Country Club, in Numurkah, in North/Central Victoria. It is a gorgeous place, with heaps to do ... an indoor heated pool, spa, sauna, an outdoor pool, tennis courts, beach volley ball court, mini golf, BMX park, a huge lake for canoeing and paddle boat riding, and many, many other things.

Lakeside Country Club is essentially a resort for Timeshare patrons. We have had Timeshare for quite some years now, but don't use it as regularly as we wish we could. The format of our timeshare is that we don't have to go to our nominated resort ... we can go anywhere we like, within the group of eligible resorts.

Anyway, we arrived at Lakeside on Friday evening, settled into our unit (which was great ... 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, living room, huge kitchen with eating area within, and a laundry - washing machine, dryer, trough - off the kitchen behind a bifold door). We then decided to have a bit of an explore throughout the resort, with the girls deciding to go for a swim !!

Next day, we decided to have a lazy day, staying around the resort. I took the opportunity to take numerous photos (this one, below, is of the extraordinary gardens around the resort ... cactii, how interesting !!)

Hubby had a bit of down-time, as he had hurt his foot on Friday evening ... not really sure how, but it was very painful ... we almost had to make a trip to hospital (he thought it might be broken). He struggled through, though ... he was brave, and didn't want to spoil the holiday for the girls !!

On Sunday, we made a trip into Echuca, which is a town on the Murray River (which borders Victoria and New South Wales). Echuca used to be a thriving port, in the days when paddle steamers did all the fetching and carrying ... before trains and semi-trailers. These days, it is a historical town, with many interesting things to look at.

We took a paddle steamer cruise along the Murray River, on board the PS Pevensey, which was built in 1911. The Pevensey is quite famous, it was used in the filming of "All The Rivers Run", a wonderful movie/mini series from a number of years ago, starring many famous Aussies.

It was a wonderful cruise, with many interesting sights along the river. The old paddle steamers are just fascinating, and are still operated in just the same manner as they were almost 100 years ago. The following photo is the 3 of us ... Hubby, Chicky and myself (I wasn't sure if Chooky's family wanted me to include a photo of her on this blog). We were sitting at the back of the boat, and the view down the Murray is just magical.

This next photo is of a portion of the Old Echuca Wharf, and a couple of old paddle steamers. The river is quite down, around a couple of metres lower than normal ... but still a beautiful place.

The next day (Monday) we had another lazy day at the resort ... more swimming and playing for the kids, more relaxing and reading for me, and hubby watched some TV and played Playstation ... resting his foot !!

Tuesday we took a trip up to Cobram, and checked out a lovely beach (again on the Murray), where we have camped. Once again, we were quite shocked at how low the water was. We then travelled closer to Yarrawonga, to another beach (Dead River Beach) where we spent many wonderful holidays in years past. We also stayed there back in 2005, prior to going to Cape York ... it was sort of a test weekend for all our camping equipment !!

We were horrified at the number of trees exposed by the low water levels, and realising that this was where we always boated and water skiied ... gosh were we lucky that there were never any accidents.

Dead River Beach is a gorgeous place, and it got taste for camping going again ... we can't wait to pack our tent (or our new TVan - when we get it!!), and spend some quality time just sitting on the banks of this mighty river.

Afterward, we headed up the highway to Yarrawonga, briefly, to see how the town looked these days. We hadn't been there for quite some years, and were pleasantly surprised with how it had progressed ... it always was a beautiful town, and still is.

Wednesday was another lazy day at the resort.

Now, Thursday was a special day ....

We went into Shepparton, had a brief shop, and I wandered around the parks taking photos of the cows, which are part of the Shepparton Mooving Art display. Each cow was painted very differently, and were just amazing. I had seen them on Merle's blog some time ago, and knew I just had to see them for myself. The following two photos are my favorites ...

So, after my photographic expedition, Hubby and the girls dropped me off at Merle's house in Shepparton, where I was joining Merle, Gwen and Jeanette for lunch ... a sort of Bloggers convention. (Hubby and the girls headed back into Shepparton, where Hubby supervised the girls getting a bit of retail therapy) !! Jeanette's sister, Pauline, was also there. It was a lovely afternoon, spent with some amazing women ... thank you, ladies, for the great time. I had a ball. Thank you, also, Merle, for your hospitality. Merle put on a wonderful spread for lunch ... I didn't really need to have any dinner that evening ... I was still quite full !! The 5 of us had quite a few laughs, and despite the fact that we hadn't ever physically met, we got along like a house on fire. I hope we get the chance to get together again sometime. Thank you again

Here's a photo of the four of us (sorry, Pauline ... I didn't get one with all 5 of us). Gwen is on the right, Jeanette is beside her, then Merle, and moi !!

Friday morning, we packed up, and headed over to good old faithfull Bonnie Doon, for another week of R & R. Did much of the same old - same old whilst there, but had a lovely time. A few of our friends were there just for the weekend, and we headed off on the Sunday to the Strathbogie Ranges, for a bit of 4WDing ... had a wonderful time, despite it being a bit damp earlier in the day. Half the drive was just basic dirt roads, then we stopped for a picnic lunch, then on to the "real" 4WDing ... quite challenging in places. Didn't get a lot of good photos, due to the strange light from the overcast, bright sky. This photo is just looking down a hill at our "beast". Hubby is just rapt with the truck at the moment, he had spent some money on getting the suspension fixed and many other things underneath the car, as well as new tyres and rims. It's like being in a new car again (despite it's old body !!).

After a week at Bonnie Doon, we headed home. The weekend was spent doing washing, housework and all the same old stuff that needs to be done when returning home after an extended time away. I haven't spent much time on the computer, which is why it has taken me till now to post this. I worked on Monday, today is Tuesday (I spent the day at my parent's, then pricing new notebook computers ... hopefully by next week I'll have a new one ... yippee !!). Tomorrow I work again, then hopefully will have more time to visit.

I hope you have all been well, and look forward to catching up on what you all have been up to.

Till we catch up ... big hugs to you all.

Take care,


Greeneyes said...

Yipehhhhh! your Home !!!!!!!!!!!, I really missed you , I am glad to hear you had a great time and WhAT WONDERFUL PICS you have on your post ,love the one of you Hubby and CHICKY ,my SHE IS SO BEAUTIFUL ISNT SHE , WELL LOOK AT HER MOMMY .
WELCOME HOME AND back to blogging ,it is always sweeter when you are here , hugs dear friend xoxox


~*SilverNeurotic*~ said...

Glad to see you back. Looks like a wonderful vacation!

Merle said...

Hi Connie ~~ Great post ~ quality as well as quantity!! I am so glad you and the family had a great holiday at both locations. It was really great
to meet you and have you visit. Thank you for your kind words, and you are welcome any time. So now it's back to work and school, but nice memories and photos to remind you.
Take care, dear Connie, Love, Merle.

Meow (aka Connie) said...

Greeneyes ... yes, I am back, and hope to stay back online regularly, too. Thank you for your warm welcome home, and thank you for continuing to visit. xxx

Silverneurotic ... thank you, it was wonderful.

Merle ... thank you. It was wonderful to meet you, too, dear Merle. I've been back at work Monday and Wednesday this week, so reality has certainly hit LOL.

Take care, all ... hugs, Meow xx

Heidi said...

Welcome home Connie! You were missed. Sounds like a fab time was had by all. Hugs~

Luv the photos :)

Jean-Luc Picard said...

Good to see you, Connie. Thanks for keeping us up to date.

Merle said...

Hi again Connie ~~ Thanks for your messages. I just remembered to ring my doctor's receptionist and she said
it was ganglion and was satisfactory.
The girl who did the ultasound said she used to have one, but bumped it and it went away. Guess I have the cure if I need it !! Schnitzels for your next viit !! Take care, Love, Merle.

Anonymous said...

Oh how I missed you while you were gone, but so happy to hear that everything went so weel and that fun was shared by all.


LZ Blogger said...

Meow ~ Looks like some great holiday memories were made here! ~ jb///

Dr. Deb said...

WOW, what a great set of photos. Sure looks like you all had SUCH a wonderful time!

So happy to see ya back blogging!

Chloe said...

it's wonderful in your part of the world! welcome back. xx

Dick said...

Good to know you are back but it does sound like a wonderful vacation. It also sounds like you are close to being ready to buy an RV. I'll look forward to seeing photos & hearing about it.

Margaret said...

Great Pics, and how lucky were you to be able to meet up with Merle, Jan and Gwen.
Thanks for the comments, I think I am all sorted at long last.
Cheers Margaret

Lucy Stern said...

Wow, it sounds like a fantastic vacation...I'm glad you and the girls had a great time.

Gattina said...

Wow, Meow ! Or you write nothing or you give us a whole reportage, lol ! What an interesting trip ! And suddenly seeing Merle and Jeanette with you what a surprise to me. I just have been in Pevensey last August at the english coast and suppose that the boat was named after the city. I also noticed that Chicky becomes a young pretty girl !

Lynn said...

Spunds and looks like you had a wonderful trip. I am definitely taking notes so that if DH and I ever make it to Australia, we'll know of some beautiful places to visit.

Gwen said...

Hi Meow.
Glad you all arrived home safely,
it was nice to meet up with you,hubby,chicky & her friend.
We will certainly have to do it again.
What a banquet Merle provided for lunch,and I would say we all enjoyed our selves it would have been hard not too.Love Gwen xx
P.S.I have posted the discs as promised hope they are O.K.

Anonymous said...

So very happy to see your back. Looks like you had a wonderful time. I really enjoyed your photos.
Take care and have a good weekend.


Sometimes Saintly Nick said...

Loverly post. Worth waitin’ for. Welcome back!

Susie said...

Looks like you had a wonderful couple weeks of vacation. I enjoyed seeing all your photos :)
Thanks for the birthday wishes!

T*mmy said...

Sounds like you had a lovely time...even finding time to visit your blog buddies!

Glad to have you back!

Love & Hugs!

Anonymous said...

wow, what a lot of fun. And how lucky are you, getting to hang with bloggers!

Lee said...

A great post, Connie with wonderful pics. A very good friend of mine loves the Murray and the riverboats. He actually put together a model riverboat last year. He always says if his wife passes before he does, he will sell up, buy a houseboat and live on the Murray. I'll have to show him this post. :)

Gina E. said...

Hi Connie,
That was a lovely post with great pictures - I thoroughly enjoyed reading it all. Ken and I have long talked about retiring somewhere up on the Murray, and seeing your photos made us think about it all over again!
Looking forward to catching up on Tuesday...another bloggers' meet!

LittleJen said...

wow, what a long post, what a great holiday you have been on, I noticed you met my mother which you had a lovely time.
Hopefully one day we may be able to catch up.
Have a great weekend

smilnsigh said...

Oh you lucky people, to have a lovely vacation!

And there are my blogging friends Merle and Jeanette!


dragonflyfilly said...

hi miss meow,
WOW what fabulous photos, your holiday looks and sounds wonderful!!!...- sure makes me want to leave the comfort of my office and fly over to join the adventure.

and thanks for the photos of you and your family...great to match a face with the "voice" (heh heh)

well, i have to dash...I am off to my "study group".

more later,
CONGRATULATIONS! -- check my Blog!


Devil Mood said...

Aaah :)
Lovely two weeks it seems to me. That's a great method of timesharing, I agree, that way you can get to see different places..and I'm sure there's a lot of fantastic places to see in Australia!

And great to meet blogfriends :)

wazza said...

Gidday Connie,

I've got quite a bit of catching up to do, what with the two weeks Peter and I were away in Sydney. I've always wanted to go on a cruise down the Murray and one day I will do it. Great post and photos. We have such a super country don't we!!