Monday, January 28, 2008

Australia Day Celebration

We had a fantabulous Australia Day celebration. We were invited to our friends' house in the hills for a swim and BBQ. The couple who invited us are close to us and they also had other couples who are our mutual friends there. So it was a real enjoyable time getting together.
After dinner, we watched the Skyshow (fireworks) from their house, it was beautiful, well-planned and special with music (radio tuned in to the right station) co-ordinated to the fireworks. Traditionally people would go down to the shores of the Swan River and Kings Park and the surrounding areas(which many still do) for a BBQ picnic and outdoors relaxation and then when night falls, they'd watch the Skyshow and then go home.Our climax for the day however didn't finish with the Skyshow coming to an end, we saw a powerpoint presentation prepared by hubby. He used old photos we've collected over the years of our friends who were there that night and made a special presentation with captions, wordings and music, we all enjoyed reminiscing about old times and all that we did together, the precious memories we shared and it reminded us that the friendship we have is truly priceless, not to mention how much everybody(including all offsprings present) got excited looking at the old photos, talking and commenting on them while remembering more details. It was such a good laugh as well. All in all, we had such a fantastic time and believe it or not, I didn't take any photos that day at all, I just wanted to relax and soak in all the good memories with my eyes and other senses........... and hope I'll remember this day many years later...............

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Our Holiday

Well, first of all, sorry for the long wait. As I promised in the last post, I will share with you the story of our holiday my family and I had down south. There was actually a bit of drama with the photos I took with my new camera as I deleted most of the pictures by mistake on the last day of our holiday. I continued to take more photos that day totally oblivious of this fact, only found out when we got home when I was trying to load the photos onto the computer. Boy, did I get a shock! Only photos of that last day of our holiday were there! Fortunately I talked to my techno-savvy sister on the phone the next day, she told me about this Card Recovery software which I could use to restore those photos. I knew nothing is truly ever deleted on the computer, but I was doubtful about the camera's memory card having the same ability. But yes, I was able to recover all photos I deleted, much to my delight and relief! Hubby had to pay $47 AusD to get the software, but what is $47 compared to all these photos with our precious memories written all over them. The loss of them would've been much harder to come to terms with. Here I can only share some of the highlights.
This is where the Indian Ocean meets the Southern Ocean! We visited quite a few places in the south-west of Western Australia in the duration of 4 days and I think we covered over 1000kms on the road. We saw forests and walked trails, did the tree-top walk, we visited gardens and farms, we saw rivers and streams, we visited Jewel Cave and the coast, not to mention the towns we'd been to - Harvey, Pemberton, Quinninup, Walpole, Denmark(Yes, there's a Denmark in WA), Augusta, Margaret River, Busselton (the one-mile jetty)and numerous towns whose names end with the Aboriginal word "up" which were almost too hard to pronounce. There was this place we named "Downandup"(Down and up) because it was really steep going downhill and then uphill. We even saw the spot where Indian Ocean meets the Southern Ocean and the Lighthouse there.

Heartbreak Trail - It's so named for its sud
den and many twists and turns in the trail and it makes your heart "break". Photos don't do it justice. One of our many walks in the Karri forestsA natural arch in the forest

The first day was spent driving down there, it was supposed to be a 4-hour drive, but we took a longer route and saw many many little towns on the way. We took it really easy on the first day, basically getting to the hide-away self-contained house we were going to stay at, checking in and relaxing. The house was situated amongst huge Karri, Marri, Jarrah and Pine trees (in some areas) and it was so peaceful and quiet except for the rustling of tree leaves in the wind, so it really had that hide-away feel to it. Many bright coloured birds came to feed regularly on the birdfeeder.There was also a large lake within 50m walk of the house. I made bread using the bread machine(provided) everyday and so we had fresh bread every morning for breakfast. The weather down south is much cooler than in Perth, the house was more geared for cold weather than for hot. We understood why after being there for a day. It was cold especially in the morning and at night. My son even had his electric blanket on some of the nights. We all needed quilts, remember it's in the middle of summer here.

Outside from the deck of the house we stayed at
The lake nearby
The first thing that stood out as we drove south was the skyscraping trees soaring into the heavens on both sides of the road. The roads were so shaded and cool as a result. Some of these trees grow up to a height of 80m. Some trees were pegged for tourists to climb, I tried but couldn't quite make it to the top, as I felt this sudden panic attack that made me feel dizzy (probably because I was looking down) and my limbs went all jelly, and....... you can guess the rest of my story. I really enjoyed taking photos of others going up to the top though.

This is only half way up the top
Now there's the top! (Bicentennial Tree) Tree Top Walk- Even though we were safe, I still felt dizzy walking up these structures swinging and swaying in the wind Jewel Cave is the biggest cave in WA, a man named Cliff (can't remember his last name) stumbled across it while walking in the bush, he was already experienced working with caves though. Imagine his excitement! It's a one-hour tour, quite a story in there.
Stalactite or Stalagmite? I'm sure at school we all thought of a trick to help us remember which is which!Our kids really wanted to see animals and feed them if possible. So we decided to take them to some private farms where they could do that. However, one pleasant surprise we had was when we visited the Gloucester Tree we saw many birds come to feed in the park. They were Western Rosellas and Twenty Eights. I took ten thousand photos of the birds from all different angles. (Lol) Apart from these birds, we also saw the Splendid(bright blue) Fairywrens and the Red-winged Fairy Wrens, Kookaburras, Black Swans, Emus and Kangaroos. I couldn't get a good picture of the Fairywrens as they were too fast moving. Besides all sorts of animals, all the farms we visited had very pictureque gardens over which I drooled. We saw a maple tree with autumn colours and Jacaranda still in bloom right in the middle of summer due to the cooler climate down there. Many gardens are a riot of colours with cottagy flowers blooming happily. (Foxgloves being my favourite!) One Lavender-Berry farm also specialised in Lavender, Berries and Honey ice creams. I chose the Berries one, it tasted divine. But my son's Honey one was especially good. A male(left) and a female (right) Western Rosella

Black Swans Can you see the laughing Kookaburras sitting on the tree branch?
I hope you've enjoyed looking at all these photos. There are of course many more, I can't possibly show them all. Have a great weekend, everyone. And for all of you Aussie girls, have a great Australia Day.(26 Jan)

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Hiya! I'm back!

Just a quick note to let you know we've been away from last Monday to Thursday, we had a family holiday down the south-west part of Western Australia. Sorry I didn't get time to leave a message before we left. I took more than a thousand photos during this trip, and now I'm in the process of sorting them out, with the kids being home I often don't get time to do everything I'd like to do on the PC. So please bear with me and I'll show some photos in the next post. Thanks.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008


As you probably already know, I love taking rose pictures. I think I'm hooked and they are totally irresistable. Tell me what it is about roses that has got us ladies all smitten?!