Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Whale watching at Warrnambool

Sunday after lunch we decided to take a 4 hour drive down to Warrnambool to do a little whale watching. So we quickly booked a motel online...Motel Warrnambool
 http://www.motelwarrnambool.com.au/...we highly recommend this establishment. Threw some clothes in a bag not forgetting our winter woollies and rain gear. Oh and all the cameras, the tablet, phone and electronic equipment required for run these things! We also put our push bikes in thinking we could ride from the motel round to Logan's Beach to see the whales.
We hit a few rain patches on the way down, booked into our motel where the proprietor was most helpful and told us she had lived in Warrnambool all her life but had NEVER seen any whales. Her sons regularly surfed and saw them up close though! A walk to local bistro for dinner then I settled into watch the tennis at Wimbledon and La Tour de France...Mike found the bed very comfortable and the inside of his eyelids even more interesting:)
Next morning as we were unpacking the bikes ready to go round to see the whales it started to rain:(
We put the bikes back in the car and drove around to Logan's Beach. Luckily the rain stopped so we
ventured onto the viewing platform where people were madly pointing to what looked a log in the water approx 100 metres off shore. These logs not only moved but spouted water...woohoo a mother whale and her calf so close in and visible. We madly took lots of photos and just hoped they showed what we could see. The sun came out then the rain came back. We left and visited the Robert Ullmann Art Studio. http://visitwarrnambool.com.au/ant/profile/robert-ulmann-studio#.UdObeNiJl8E
Where the late Robert's wife showed us her husband and daughters art works.
We went for a walk along the beach at Bluehole a spot just round the coast from Logan's Beach.
For lunch we had a nice toasted ham and cheese sandwich at Dariwill Farm Cafe after a wander around the centre of Warrnambool. In the afternoon we drove to Allansford to visit the cheese factory. Where we tasted and bought some lovely blue cheese made by Apostle's Whey. We also bought some dark chocolate covered liquorice made by G.O.R.G.E. Chocolate company. Yummo. http://www.gorgechocolates.com.au/about-us/
 Dinner was enjoyed at Proudfoots on the River. http://www.proudfootsontheriver.com.au/
More tennis and cycling...Woohoo Aussie Simon Gerrans won the 3rd stage of La Tour de France.
Tuesday morning we stopped at Logan's Beach again and there was mother and baby floating about further down the beach so not was easy to see but delightful to watch.
We headed toward Port Campbell on the Great Ocean Road where we encountered a line of foxes hanging on a fence..not sure of their significance but they sure as hell stunk! We stopped for some photos at the Bay of Islands where the wind comes straight in from Antarctica! The coastline is constantly being changed as the waves crash onto the rocks of the shoreline. Before we got to Port Campbell we turned off toward Timboon on the hope of trying some cheese at L'Artisan. only to find it closed:( We continued on to Timboon where we parked and wandered around the little town stopping at the Pharmacy in the hope of saying hello to Danielle and Stephanie only to find they were not working today. Bummer, ah well we crossed the road and indulged in a yummy lunch at The Fat Cow Cafe. http://www.tripadvisor.com.au/Restaurant_Review-g609147-d2318000-Reviews-THE_FAT_COW-Timboon_Victoria.html
Then we called into the Timboon Railway Shed Distillery http://www.timboondistillery.com.au/
thinking to try some Timboon ice cream but the flavours on offer did not entice us so we saved a few calories. We did buy some Istra local ham...which we have since tried and thoroughly enjoyed.
Next stop on our gourmand tour was Apostle's Whey Cheese Factory  http://www.apostlewheycheese.com.au/contact/ where a cheerful young girl gave us a guided taste tour through the cheeses available. We bought some Brie (to complement the Bolte Blue we already had.) and a jar of locally made apricot jam....WOW this was outstanding, made by The Pickle Gallery of Colac. We will certainly be looking for more of this in the future. The views from the balcony of the cheese factory were great and there were some amazing sculptures in the gardens.
Time to head for home via Camperdown and the A1.
Tuesday night saw us at home and I settled in to watch La Tour again to be rewarded for my late night viewing by the first Australian Professional International Team to win a stage at the Tour de France.Go Orica Green Edge. Getting hard to decide who to barrack for now what with Cadel Evans riding well and the Orica green edge team doing so well. I am sure I can share the love around...LOL





















Sunday, April 28, 2013

Lynette's Easter Lindt Prize

On the 15th March 3 of us went to the Langham for High Tea to celebrate Val's birthday. On our way in we noticed a tall perspex cube full of Lindt Chocolate rabbits and eggs! Then we noticed you could win a portion of them if you guessed the correct number of objects in the perspex cube! Well we just had to be in it. I chose a random number out of the air, not sure how Val chose her number but Lynette put some thought into it and after I counter roughly 40 chocolates along one side of the cube she set to work figuring out how many were actually in it. She wrote down her guess and put it in the box. We left not dreaming we would hear any more.
Well a few weeks later (after Easter) Lynette got a phone call to say she had won equal 4th prize and would she care to come and collect her box of Lindt chocolate. It will be too heavy for you to carry home on the tram Lynette was told. I volunteered to drive her in to collect her prize. Such excitement needs sharing after all. Lynette was rather sceptical about the size of her prize until we saw the box!!
A nice strong young man carried it out and put it in the car...wishing us happy eating with a big grin on his face.
We got it home to Lynette's and put the box on the bathroom scales...very tricky trying to see what the scales actually said but we figured about 15kgs! That is one hell of a lot of very fine Lindt Chocolate! Upon opening the box we were greeted with the sight of hundreds of rabbits and eggs in different sizes as well as carrots. Lynette got the pleasure of sorting through them all and very generously divided them up among her family and friends. I believe on weighing them out she discovered there was more like 13.5 kgs of actual chocolate...still a LOT of chocolate.
The generous selection that was given to me has been shared with anyone who walks in our door:) I keep encouraging my husband to eat them so I am not tempted...much as I love chocolate it is not good for the waistline LOL.
By the way there were over 7250 pieces of chocolate in the cube!




The Rabbits' Wedding

Back at the end of March I posted pictures of rabbits I had been knitting for Easter. Well it occurred to me that I could make a couple of rabbits to go with a childhood favourite book "The Rabbits' Wedding" by Garth Williams. Then the penny dropped as I realised my friend Jan is not only a mad for rabbits person but was celebrating her 60th birthday:) She hand carves rubber stamps and her online monica is Rubber Rabbit! I knit the rabbits and posted them off to her asking that she not open the parcel until another arrived in the mail as they needed to be viewed together. I had found a copy of "The Rabbits Wedding" and was getting it posted directly to her.
I am pleased to report the rabbits and the book arrived safely and are being appreciated by their owner:)
Here are a some pictures I took before sending them from Australia to Oklahoma, USA. And one of them upon arrival in their new home.

The first picture is the white rabbit with her wedding bouquet of dandelions.

 Then black rabbit with dandelions in his ears.

 Here are the happy couple together.

  Posing beside my original copy of the book.

 Here they are at Jan's house with the new book.





Sunday, April 07, 2013

Formal mittens

While I was looking at the forum of photos on Knitting Paradise recently I saw a cute little cardigan a lady had knitted for her grandson it looked like a tuxedo. I was inspired to make these mittens by it.
They can be worn by a man or a woman. My husband thinks I am a little mad but I think they are fun. Next time I would knit the rib at the top all in white like a collar so the bow tie would show up better.



Fingerless mittens

With all the yarn leftover from the baby blanket I thought a pair of fingerless mittens would be an easy knit. So they were I managed 2 pairs one set with an actual thumb the other a tube with a hole left at the appropriate place for the thumb to stick out. The instructions suggested doing the last few rows in a different colour so the top is easily identified from the bottom. Could not get to my wool stash when knitting so added the flower later to make the top and bottom obvious.

 The second pair have an actual thumb.

Square baby rug

I acquired this yarn cheaply and thought 4 x 100gm balls would make a reasonable baby blanket. So I started with 3 stitches and kept increasing every second row until I had used 2 of the 4 balls then decreased every second row to complete the square. Shame that I got to within about 4 " from the corner to complete the blanket only to run out of wool!! Woe is me I rang around numerous Lincraft (where I had purchased the original balls) stores to try and find another ball. No luck so I rang my go to place for all other yarns and help Wondoflex in Malvern and yes they did have some but it is now called something else. Hey who cares what it is called. I hot footed it down there to checkout the colour match though I really was not fussed at this stage. I challenge anyone to see where the new yarn starts and the old stops. Being a variegated yarn made blending easy.

This picture shows the pattern but the colour is more realistic in the second photo.


Monday, April 01, 2013

Jam making day

What better way to spend a day that making yummy jam from fresh peaches.
We made 3 lots. A Peach Chutney first then Peach and Lime Conserve followed by Passionfruit, Peach and Orange Jam.
Mike made us some guilt free salad for lunch which we followed up with a slice of fresh bread with a generous serve of Peach and Lime conserve on it. Mmmmmmmm delicious.