Monday, August 31, 2015

Australian Dinners

Over the past week we've been taking photos of all of the dinners we've been eating. I wonder if any of these meals are unusual to you in America?

Chicken Pot Pie

 Spaghetti and Meatballs

Friday night is movie night here and we always have a finger food type picnic in the lounge room. Here we have a fruit platter, kabana, cheese, crackers and grain-wave chips.  

 Sausages on bread with salad. The sausages have tomato sauce and grated cheese on top.

Cereal - our 'we've all had an exhausting day' meal.

Chicken burgers with beetroot, pineapple, tomato and lettuce.  

 Pancakes. Dad had to stay back at school to do some marking and whenever he's away for dinner we have pancakes (he doesn't like pancakes so we take advantage of his absence). These ones have choc chips in them. The girls don't have black eyes - they got into my makeup and had fun with the eyeliner!

Meat pies, mashed potato, vegetables and gravy. This is Dad's favourite meal and we had it for his birthday on Sunday.

 Dad sure does love pies, he requested apple pie for his cake. He loves to drown it in vanilla custard too.

We would like to challenge you to try burgers with beetroot and see how you like it. They can be beef or chicken burgers - the beetroot has to be of the canned and sliced variety. I personally think it tastes really good when the beetroot is cold. Let me know if you can't find canned beetroot and I'll think of a different challenge. Happy tasting!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Meandering Through Maymont

On Friday we were supposed to meet up with our cousins to play, but my sister-in-law was sick so we did a quick change of plans and headed to Maymont instead! (You can see our visit last year with Charmin here- check the end of it for a really neat fairy house!)

This time around we parked over by the Nature Center and so we took a back way to the Children's Farm and passed by the bison on the way in. Tyson liked that his name rhymes with bison. :-) Tyson the bison!

Check it out! Another LOVE sign!

Here the kids check out the kids- goats, that is!

Taking a break before heading down the hill toward Raptor Valley.

Do you have bobcats in Australia? We had a lot of them when I used to live on the mountain- I had a neighbor who trapped and killed them.

Gray fox!

The Red-Tailed hawks were kind enough to pose in front of their sign.

The bald eagle looking as regal as ever.

Koko stops to find out more about our national bird.

Richmond is located on the James River, and this sign tells a little bit more about bald eagles' habitat here.

Next we checked out the black bears- they were too far away for us to see them very well, but we got a pic of the sign so you can learn more about them.

After we passed the black bears we got closer to the Japanese Garden, which meant that Tyson and Audrey disappeared into the extensive bamboo forest. Charlotte explored with them for a little while, then she came back out to be with Teeny and Koko and me. Here they are in front of the waterfall in the Japanese Garden.

And here they are on the newly remodeled bridge!

Koko and the cascade (we took this photo near the top).

Here he is meditating, feeling very zen...

This is on the outside of the Italian Garden, which is at the top of the hill above the Japanese Garden (you can check out last year's post to see the stairs we had to climb to get up there)! Audrey was hot, so she's pouring water on her head.

4 kids on a bough- can you spot Koko? (Hint: he's hiding!)

From the Italian Garden we made our way to the old mansion. From there we could see across the park to the Nature Center (that building on the hill through the trees) where we had parked. 

Time for a HIKE! 

Back at the Nature Center Koko checked out this neat model/map of the park. He is sitting on top of the Nature Center there in the back corner, and the red roofed-building on the left is the Children's Farm. The pond on the lower right is at the black bears' habitat, then if you follow the river up to the right corner that's where the Japanese Garden is. That cluster of buildings just to the left of that (just under Tyson's right arm) is the area where the Italian Garden and the mansion is. We basically made a counterclockwise loop around the park. Whew!

We hope you've enjoyed seeing some of our native animal species in this post. :-)

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Our little Branch

We thought we'd share our little Branch with you. It is located in Dalby and we live in Chinchilla, which is an hour's drive away. We're getting used to the long drive now (it was a big change from our old 5 minute drive to church back on the Gold Coast). Today I counted about 25 people here but we do get visitors quite often and can have double that number sometimes. We start at 10am and have Sacrament Meeting till 11:10 and then split off for Primary, Youth and Adult classes until 12:00. It can be tricky to fit in all of the things we need to teach in Primary into 50 minutes but with most of the kids having to drive a long way to get there, it's a pretty long day for them already to have 2 hours of church. 

Here's our Primary room. Today there were 5 children. Amita is telling me, "This is the place where we learn about Jesus."

 Here are the girls and Tag outside the Chapel. There are 4 rows of pews inside the Chapel. Lizzie goes to Nursery in the foyer.

 Tag loves hanging out in the Gum trees outside the Chapel.

 I found this Rainbow Lorikeet high up in another tree. They are very noisy birds but so beautiful.

Dalby Delicious and Delightful Festival

 A good thing about living out in the bush and away from major cities is that all of the towns around us have festivals and shows quite often. It helps to bring tourists to the area and promote community spirit. This weekend was Dalby's Delicious and Delightful Festival. There was crafts, food, music and lanterns!

The girls and Tag had a bit of a play before we went in.

 Lizzie helped Tag on the playground.

 Amita and Dad played a game where Dad would hide Tag somewhere and Amita had to find him and rescue him. Can you see where he is hiding here?

 She rescued him!

 I went to have a look in the creek and got really excited because I could see something long and brown diving in and out of the water. I thought it might have been a platypus. I've never seen one in the wild and they are very shy and hard to get a glimpse of. But as the creature got closer I saw it had a long skinny tail and realised it was just a water rat picking up it's friend and then swimming off. They are very fast!

 The festival celebrated multi-culturalism and we liked trying to guess where all of the flags came from.

 Lizzie made a feather crown ...

 and Amita got her face painted as a butterfly.

 All of the food stalls had cuisine from different countries. We decided we just had to try the American chicken wings. We had New York BBQ flavour in honour of Tag's shirt and they were delicious!

 For dessert we had some Hungarian Langos, which is like a fried bread with lots of yummy sweet toppings. Our friends tried some dutch Poffertjes.

 When night-time arrived we sat down by the bank of the creek to watch the lantern parade. Anyone can make a lantern and walk in the parade. Amita would like to make one for next year. She just had to make do with her glow sticks for this year though.

 My photography wasn't that great. Here are the best of them. 
A rainbow lorikeet...



 and magpie.