Tuesday, December 08, 2009

It's good to be home - but Bright was beautiful!

The holiday is over.... and although all good things come to an end this weekend wasn't about me or Noel is was about the kids and family time. I cannot honestly remember the last time the four of us were just the four of us. Sounds silly I know as everyday it is normally just the four of us but when you are away it's so very different.

We left on Saturday afternoon, with Noel and the kids picking me up from work. A long drive ahead, but we all survived it I think out of the pure excitement of actually going away. Stopping once in Kalkalo for Hungry Jacks as everyone was starving and then again in Wangaratta for petrol and to put tattslotto on (hoping that the change of lottery outlet would prove lucky but to now avail!!).

The drive up the Great Alpine Road was beautiful, surrounding landscape of lush green covered mountains. Lots of pine trees and rolling pastures of crops sadly still marred with the after effects of the bush fires last summer.

We arrived at the Bright Chalet around 5.30ish and we were all glad to see the hotel that's for sure. I honestly didn't think Bright was really that far away. I guess it's more the fact that you drive so far and then need to double back on yourselves to get to where this nice town is nestled in the valley of two mountains.

Needless to say after all the travel, we were looking forward to going to our room. Not overly impressed but it's not the worst place we have stayed. The hotel was accomodating, but not exactly as pictured on it's website.

The kids had a quick swim in the pool. We showered and went down to have dinner. The package deal I purchased for our trip away entitled us to dinner and breakfast while we were there. Saturday night was an all you can eat buffet dinner which was quite nice. Hot foods such as soups, lasagne, sheperd's pie, roast, pototoes etc along with salads and desserts. We definitely had our fill and then returned to our room where we all actually went to sleep early.

Sunday we were determined to make the most of the day and explore the surrounding area. Up early we went for a kid drive around Bright, then went back for breakfast. After breakfast, we went for a drive to Beechworth, which is a very historical old town and yes we had a pie from the famous Beechworth Bakery. On the way back to Bright we took the kids to Wandiligong Maze. The maze is a huge hedge maze and was quite complex. Lots of shortcuts, wooden doors and emergency exits were available but Alex and I decided that we were not going to cheat and find the two towers and two rose bushes and the exit but pure determination. Noel on the other hand, decided he was using the doors from the beginning. Oliver was the last out of the maze, and while we laughed at the fact of seeing his feet continuously circling the same part of the maze he was very frustrated by the time I had re-entered the maze to help him to the exit gate. But many laughs were had by all, which was the main thing.

Monday came around quickly and it was Monday we were due to return to home. But we had much to do before we saw our house. First stop was the Bright Berry Farm, where we tasted and bought lots of jams as well as a huge bunnet of freshly picked mixed berries. Next stop was the Red Stag Deer and Emu farm. The kids were looking forward to seeing the deers but I only had one thing in mind... buying some deer meat... yummo... venison. Now I must say the kids weren't overly happy with my motive but said that they would try the meat. Unfortunately they didn't have any venison for sale. However, I did not leave empty handed. I purchased 1kg of Ostrich meat...... now this should be interesting!!

Glenrowan was the next stop. We had a look around, read up on Australian history and Ned Kelly. Went to the official Ned Kelly museum and brought this fantastic print of Ned Kelly's suit of armour. Noel and I found this visit to Glenrowan more interesting. It's strange, really, we both took time to take in the history and the information, maybe we have grown up!

Winton Motor Raceway had to be visited, let's face it we couldn't just drive past, and when we got there we were surprised to see some cars doing laps. It wasn't a race meet, probably just a car club. But the boys thought it was great.

We stopped in Seymour for some lunch and to give Noel a break from driving. After lunch I decided I would drive for awhile and ended up driving all the way home. That to me was a highlight of the weekend as normally Noel drives EVERYWHERE. After being together for 20 years I have come to the conclusion that he doesn't like (trust) my driving and normally I don't drive with him. LOL!!

We got home late, but it was a great day. Infact overall, it was a great weekend.

Today Oliver had his orientation day up at high school. He is going to McClelland College next year. He came home really excited and is so looking forward to starting next year. He knows who is in his class and spent the day doing a "mock" school day, changing rooms for subjects and getting to know the school. Jai, our neighbour's grandson is in Oliver's class as is another child from the football club, so thankfully although Oliver is the only one from Kananook going to McClelland he knows quite a few other kids.

Alex and Noel had a look at another primary school, Ballam Park Primary School as we are thinking of changing her school for next year. It's next to the college and we are hoping that both Oliver and Alex can walk home together which will not only give them responsibility now they are getting older but get Alex to know other kids in the area, and kids that she would no doubt be going to high school with. Also it's local to where we live. Kananook is a great school but a little out of the way especially with having only one child going there next year. It's a huge decision for us with changing schools but honestly I don't think she will suffer with the decision. Infact she wants to change schools.

Enough for me today.... all of us will be in bed early again... we had a great weekend and the rest/relaxation just the four of us was just what we needed. It was great to spend quality time together.

Bring on the silly season...


Ally said...

your trip sounds great... Bright really is a lovely place, especially in Autumn.. I've never been there in Summer. Exciting when your kids move up to high school, good luck with it. (my brother teaches at McClelland College!)

Jo said...

WOW Ally.... can I ask your brothers name he may just end up being one of Oliver's teachers.... lol!!!

We hadn't been to Bright before so it was really nice.

Thanks for popping by.


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