Australian Antarctic Festival

Australian Antarctic Festival

On Sunday, we went along to the Australian Antarctic Festival:

Hobart, Tasmania is located at 42 degrees south latitude, just 2692 kilometres from the nearest Antarctic continental base.  This location makes the city of Hobart Australia’s Antarctic port and a thriving centre for science, logistics, shipping and crew transport servicing the Southern Ocean, Sub-Antarctic Islands and Antarctica itself.

With a series of exhibitions, open days, school excursions, entertainments and lectures, we want to bring the Antarctic to you over four days.  Join us for a fascinating look at the work we do in the coldest, highest, driest and windiest place on earth.

We had a great time wandering through the exhibitions, climbing into the Hägglunds and the igloos, getting up close to the Aurora Australis, chasing balloons, seeing the Huskies and the pretty painted penguins from little local artists.

One day I might even get to experience the Antarctic in reality.  x

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Matilda ♥

Last Thursday, Poppy and I went to Melbourne for three days with her cousin Maggie and my sister-in-law, Tup.  It was such fun travelling with two little girls, who were so excited about all the little things you tend to take for granted … such as checking in our bags, holding their boarding passes and the ultimate … taking off!

We had some city time before going to Matilda The Musical at the Princess Theatre on Thursday night.  The girls were beside themselves in their pretty dresses, marvelling at the beauty of the theatre, their Dress Circle seats, the amazing set, but mostly their Choc Tops!

The show was absolutely amazing – I recommend anyone to go and see it before it finishes in November.  I even shed a little tear at the end!  The girls were exhausted as they climbed into their beds at their big cousin’s home in Hawthorn.

I really valued spending time with Poppy just on her own – chatting away with her as we wandered through Chadstone on a mission to find her a new pair of Runners (that weren’t too pink)!

The three little cousins had a movie and a ‘midnight feast’ on Friday night, whilst the big sister-in-laws shared a beautiful home cooked meal and a bottle of red!

We had an amazing time away, but we missed our boys at home and it was lovely to see them on our return on Saturday night.  Xx

Hobart Airport Hobart Airport Sky Bus Sky Bus Higher Ground Higher Ground Higher Ground Higher Ground Higher Ground Higher Ground Melbourne Melbourne Matilda Matilda Matilda Matilda Princess Theatre Princess Theatre Cousins Poppy's new shoes Bassike Pops Poppy & Ruby Poppy and Ruby Melbourne Melbourne Melbourne Melbourne Melbourne Melbourne Melbourne Melbourne Melbourne Melbourne Melbourne Melbourne Melbourne


A New Season


Well hello there Spring – aren’t you delightful?

It has been such a busy time over the past several weeks, but it is fantastic to have the longer days, the slightly warmer temperatures and a different light.

I had an exciting night last Friday where my colleague, Nate Welch won the VET Teacher/Trainer of the Year at the Tasmanian Training Awards.

Poppy, James and I have been out and about at new local cafes, on bikes, scooters, climbing walls, swings, flying foxes and rocking horses!

We are also in the midst of potty training James, who is doing exceptionally well, despite a few accidents (and a few more loads of washing)!  Xx

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Farm ♥


Having grown up on a farm, I am conscious of providing Poppy and James all the fantastic elements of farm life.

Growing up, we were no strangers to hard work – demanding days far beyond our young years.  It was not uncommon for us to be shifting irrigators, carting hay, tailing lambs, feeding calves, riding with Dad on the Harvester or coming home from school and heading out to cultivate a paddock on our own until well after dark!  In hindsight, it was the best form of homework … hard work and independence.

When I was 17, I worked for Dad for the summer as he had paid to get the engine of my 1970 orange VW Beetle reconditioned and so we had a deal.  As a Harvesting Contractor, he required someone to escort him from job-to-job which entailed driving his truck and header front from one farm to another as he drove in the Header (maximum speed 40 K’s)!  Never displaying my ‘P’ plates for obvious reasons, as I was at the helm of an old International truck with no power steering, complete with grain bin on the back whilst towing a 25 foot header front!  I was often required to reverse this rig through narrow gates as the Farmer was standing there watching me!  Dad is still proud that all of his daughters can reverse a trailer.

These jobs certainly gave us the practical skills that I have drawn upon in many aspects of my adult life.

My sister and her husband live on a beautiful property at Bracknell with the Great Western Tiers forming a comforting, yet familiar backdrop.  I took James and Poppy up to stay this weekend, as Nick was busy working on the boat.  We fell into a comfortable rhythm that is so easily done when staying with family.  On Saturday night Janelley cooked up a Pork Roast, complete with crackling and then all the cousins bunkered down for a movie and a sleepover, after some Loom Band action!

Farm Stay

The next morning was a glorious day and after French Toast for breakfast, we went to collect the eggs, feed the pigs and cruised around the sheds.

My nieces took James and Poppy for a ride in their ‘Gator’, a 4WD buggy, and as they drove away my neurotic ‘Helicopter Parent’/’Adventure Tour Guide Teacher’ brain flashed random Risk Management Plans before my eyes!  I then realised that these girls are country girls, practical lasses that have learnt to drive tractors before their 10th birthday’s.  Girls that are like my sisters and I – a generation before.

Farm Stay

Poppy and James were ecstatic – our little city slickers had dirt under their nails, mud on their boots and smiles a mile wide … with requests to come back to stay with their cousins during the harvesting season next summer!

Cousins Cousins Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm StayFarm Stay

Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Farm Stay Dad & James


Busy : Busy


Our weeks are so full at the moment, with yet another one skipping by in what seemed like a heartbeat!

With a hint of Spring in the air I have enjoyed the slightly longer days and the ‘blossoming blossoms’.  We have had dinner with our extended family; gallery visits; Cup Cake Fundraising for Kinder; play dates at parks; a morning tea at a cute little country bakery and more Pilates.

I try to get to a class between three and four times a week and Saturday mornings have become a sacred ritual.  After sweating it out in class, my friend Melissa and I then wander around to Smolt where we banter about our past week, whilst enjoying a cuppa or two (and maybe a sneaky pastry)!  Xx

The Studio SalmancaSmoltPoppy & MaggieMy little pantryToastJames' clothesThe Walk HomeBattery PointBlossomCup Cake FundraisingBibimbap Summer Kitchen BakerySummer Kitchen BakerySummer Kitchen Bakery Summer Kitchen Bakery Summer Kitchen BakerySummer Kitchen BakeryJasmineHandmark Gallery


Take Me to Rio


On Wednesday night, I took Poppy along to the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra’s Family Concert series – Take Me to Rio:

Take Me To Rio is a celebration of all things Latin American.

What are you waiting for?  Wear your samba shoes, take your place in the conga line and join the party in 2016.

You don’t need to go to Rio.  Simply book your ticket and be comfy in your seat at the Federation Concert Hall.

It was a very entertaining show, complete with fantastic classical music, humour and even a conga line at the end of the concert, where Pops joined in and ended up on stage!  I love how the Orchestra don’t take themselves too seriously at these fabulous ‘family friendly’ concerts!

Poppy Take Me to Rio Take Me to Rio Conga Poppy on stage


Tasmanian Guide Agency

TGASometimes in life opportunities present themselves that you have to embrace … and recently I took a leap of faith and launched the Tasmanian Guide Agency with two of my industry colleagues.

During my role with Tourism Tasmania, it became evident that many Inbound Tour Operators struggled to find and secure professional Tour Guides for their guests whilst in Tasmania.  I was also offered additional guiding jobs but due to my existing demands, I was never able to assist.

I pondered the idea for 6 months or so and in May I casually mentioned it to my trusted colleague Alex, where we work in the Adventure Tour Guiding team at TasTAFE.  We share an office and have many conversations about the industry, tour guiding and of course our hopes and dreams.  This was an idea that I didn’t want to go alone and Alex expressed interest.

Unbeknownst to me, his best buddy – Rob Knight, rang Alex two days later with excitement in his voice!  Rob had a business idea that he wanted to chat with Alex about and arranged a catch up on the weekend.  It turns out that Rob also came to Alex with exactly the same idea – as he too works for Tourism Tasmania and had also heard of the challenges of securing professional guides on a freelance basis in the State.  The worlds had aligned!

Early the next week we all met up and talked about the concept further.  It has been a flurry of business meetings, development of a website, Facebook page, interviews and applying for all our necessary licenses, before we truly ‘go to market’.  We are holding on for the ride!

Today is a momentous day as we had our first ‘official trip’ with a mother and daughter travelling from New York and San Francisco in search of our unique fauna in Tasmania.  They are in good hands with our experienced guide who has a passion for nature, wildlife and most importantly … sharing that with visitors from far off shores.

We look forward to evolving and learning on this new found journey!



Collecting Treasure

We enjoyed a night away on Bruny Island on the boat this weekend and the weather was delightful.

Even though we were only away for a little more than 24 hours, I felt as though we had been away for much longer.  We enjoyed a shared curry night with friends and family, a cruisey morning with pancakes and cups of tea, followed by a sunny BBQ at Sykes Cove.  The kids played for hours in the shallows, building little dams, diverting water, getting muddy … and collecting treasure.  Xx

Sunny Jamesy Jamesy Little and Big Boys Foxy Foxy Bubbles The Other Mummy Nick Jacinta and Nick Boating Friends Poppy and Indy Braids galore Sykes Cove Sykes Cove Sykes Cove Sykes Cove Sykes Cove Yum BBQ Sykes Cove Sykes Cove Sykes Cove Spellbound and MercurySpellbound and Mercury Maggie and Poppy Spellbound Sunset


Snow ♥

Anne & Larni

Woo Hoo – what a fab weekend in Hobart, especially if you love snow!

The temperature gauge plummeted on Friday night and we woke up to a freezing Saturday morning.  Seeing the golden glow on Salamanca Place on my way to Pilates, I knew we had an exciting day ahead as there was a chill in the air.  When I got home, it was snowing at sea level!

After dragging out our snow gear we drove up to our friend’s place in Fern Tree.  Permission was granted from the Council fella for us to pass through the closed roads … we had friends to visit and Glühwein to drink!

Arriving at Anne and Pete’s ‘mountain home’ always feels as though you are in the depths of the wilderness, but are really only 20 minutes away from the State’s capital city.  It was even more special arriving to a ‘Winter Wonderland’ on Saturday – complete with a roaring fire, ‘Anton’ the deer, Glühwein bubbling away on the stove and a gaggle of little people pulling on their snow suits and boots ready for some backyard snow action.

We retreated inside as another storm passed through and I was kind of hoping we would get snowed in!  It wasn’t meant to be but it was such a special day spent with special friends.

Salamanca Snowing at home Snowing at home Huon RoadAnne & Pete's Anne & Pete's Anne & Pete's Anne & Pete'sAnne & Pete's Anne & Pete's Anne IMG_2183 Anne & Pete's Anne & Pete's Stormy Anne & Pete's IMG_2198 Anne & Pete's Anton Anne & Pete's Anne & Pete'sAnne & Pete's Anne & Pete's

On Sunday, the sun was shining but it was still freezing.  We rugged up again and ventured our for lunch with friends who were visiting from Launceston. xx




Three Year Old James

Our little man turned three on Wednesday and it has brought a range of mixed emotions for me.  I’m so happy that he is a healthy and happy boy after his wobbly start in life.  He was born only weighing 2.030 kg’s and was a tiny little dot.  Luckily he loves his food and has prospered in those three years.

However, I feel a little emotional that our ‘baby’ is growing up so fast.  He will be finishing school and sneaking out with his buddies in no time.  The cliché really does ring true – you have to savour each and very moment! x

Ps: In case you are wondering the cake is supposed to be a motor cruiser boat.  It is definitely open to interpretation however! 

James' 2nd BirthdayJamesCath, James & LarniJames - 2 days oldJames - 2 days oldMaiden voyage for JamesJames Poppy & James Cheezle Fingers Bear Entertaining the clan Boat Birthday Cake James' birthday cake James' Birthday Maisy & her other MummyCocol FlipCoco Flip Pendant