Sunday, May 29, 2011

Pitstop and Heartstrings

It's a pitstop, a pitstop partway through our travelling by the seat of our gypsy-pants journey sort of pitstop.  

There are no photos, and so there will be no travel stories until we get home.  You see we have this 'unlimited' mobile internet thingy, which apparently really is unlimited, however when it reaches a certain number, then the whole operation s l o w s    d o w n . . . . . 

*ahem* and so putting photos up on here takes rather a very long time.  

I have so much to share, so much to record, so much inside my head, but it will have to wait.

While we are waiting, I do just want to share this lovely blog.  Jodie has a shop in Cobar and I found her shop and I went into her shop and I sighed with bliss, and I bought some yarn, after lunch I went back and I bought some more yarn.  Although still unable to knit and crochet, that doesn't mean I can't buy yarn.  Jelly Wares  is the name of her little shop, and is also the name of her blog as I discovered when I popped in the address that was on her business card.  You can also purchase yarn from her shop too.  She sells Noro, Malabrigo and a heap of others, that I cannot remember right now, but go and check her out. . . . . now, . . . . quickly. . . . . you must!

She is also on Ravelry, so please make sure you pop over and check out her lovely creations.

I have also tried visiting alot of my fave blogs, however, the photos are not loading, and so I am unable to see what you are all making, buying, falling in love with until we return home.  (insert sad face here.)

This trip of ours is so much more than I thought it would be.  This time with my family so very special, the time my boys have with their Dad is irreplaceable, and I know they will remember this 6 weeks in years to come and treasure these 40 odd days and nights in our caravan, tripping around this beautiful country we live in.

I have to be honest, there has been a few occasions where I have longed for home.  Just for a brief pitstop.  

My family and friends.  I want to talk to my Mum and Dad, to hear their voices over the phone, (we do not live in 'visiting' distance), and although times get busy, just to hear their voice sounds so wonderful to me.  The people that pull at my heart stings and I so long to hear their voice again, I so long to see their beautiful faces with my own eyes. The words 'I miss you' are so very simple, but pull so much on me.  We have been in contact through email and text messages and to hear them said, and the way they are said, these people make me feel so loved, so honoured, so blessed, to be part of their life, and to know that they feel as I feel toward them, only makes me miss them more.  They take me as I am, they ask nothing of me than I have to offer to them, they laugh at me and they laugh with me, they see the whole package, and still they tell me they miss me.  I am so very blessed.

My Oven.  Home made, straight from the oven, my oven, chocolate cake and that top bit of cake that I slice off to make it flat for icing, that is still fresh and just a little bit warm, but mouthwateringly soft inside with that little bit of crusty outer that we all love to nibble on and a sure sign that the cake we are about to ice, is going to taste rather delish.  

All good things must come to an end, but wait, it only opens the door to more good things ahead of me.  Catching up with family and friends, getting back into the groove of our lives, planning the next adventure.  Always there is an adventure waiting, just around the corner.

Thanks so much for stopping by my place today, thanks for being part of the journey, thanks for being my friend.

Take care of you, and bear hug those that love you with no conditions, no questions, no expectations just cause they can and just cause they do.

See you on the other side of my travelling gypsy-pants seat flying fling, where I will complete the rest of our adventure with photos and journalling.

Posted by Gypsy Joyce.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Silverton, NSW.

'visit me, visit me'!  All these wonderful places to see keep calling out to us, the more we see, the more we want to travel around this beautiful country.  I cannot get over the rich colours that no camera can ever do justice to.  To breathe the air out here is just so energising, to walk over this rich land, and to meet the people that live here and to hear the stories of how these towns started out is such a privilege.

Here is just a small snapshot of the lovely Silverton.  Please click above for information, I am being lazy, however still one handed typing as my left hand continues to be out of action.  Besides, I cannot tell it as correctly as these sites can, I can only babble of my own experiences.

This is a creek bed just the other side of Silverton.  We parked the car and spent quite a while down here.  The boys were rock collecting.  I told them they can only take what they can carry in their two hands, as it is only fair to share.  Yes, my boys have become avid collectors of pretty rocks and semi-precious stones (I think that is the correct term), since just before we went away.  We are not crappy junk souvenir collectors on our travels, but much prefer to buy things like my boots in Melbourne, crochet hooks in Fitzroy, books from secondhand book shops in Mildura, clothing in Adelaide, orange peelers in Mildura, precious stones from little markets and gem shops.   

Hubbie took alot of these photos, I love his angle.

There is a little cafe here with items for purchase.  Most of them have been dug up from the Silverton/Broken Hill area.  

There is also a doll collection.  I remember playing with a pram just like this.  It's still at Mum and Dad's. 

Those teddies are just a little bit cute.

Mini things.

What a beauty.

These are for purchase too.

Lovely old churches.

A view with a minnie.  We had so much fun with these old buildings.

Only the tough plants last out here on the flat harsh land.

Joyce playing around.


More colour and texture.

The sky out here is so wild and free, you can smell the rain coming, you can feel it underfoot.

Back to the caravan the sound of the birds is amazing as they fly above our heads.  They would do this through the night also, it was so lovely to hear.  I love each night is different, each place we stay has it's own routine of nature, ticking to its own rythm, governed by nothing but instinct. 

Thanks so much for stopping by my place.  

Posted by Joyce.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Mildura, and surrounds.

We farewelled beautiful Adelaide and buckled the seatbelts up once again.

Banrock Station wines, one of my 'old' favourite moscato wines.  I say old simply because since being on our trip, well I have sampled some of the most beautiful Aussie owned moscatos and now have some new flavours to tingle the tastebuds.  These include Grant Burge Wines,  and Trentham Estate Wines.
Banrock Station is lovely, majority American owned.  Big on local wetlands conservation, which I like very much, and the grapes are Aussie, and Aussies work here.  So a little Banrock now and then is nice.

The road before us.

The land we pass.

We arrive in Mildura, and meet Gayle and Angie, who checked us in.
The moment I walked in the door I could smell Indian, a beautiful, mouthwatering butter chicken dish.  I mention the delish smell to Gayle, she tells me she has boiled over their dinner.  The moment I met Gayle, I felt like hugging her, I felt like I wanted to stay in that office and just talk.  Angie come in recommending a site for us, and I learnt they are hubbie and wife.  We had a chat about where to eat.  They told us of a few places to get a good meal from, one of them was Curry and Tandoor, which was absolutely delish.  Angie directed hubbie into our site.  I asked Gayle if we could have 2 nights with the possibility of a third, and she said we could.  

I am in love with Mildura, at first I thought it was Gayle and Angie, they were part of it, we were then to discover that everyone we met here were the same.  I love how people are so proud of where they live, I love how they love to share the stories of their lives, the stories of their town.  

I am not going to share the small story I know of these two amazing people, it isn't mine to share, what I will share is that I feel very blessed to have met them both, and look forward to keeping in touch with them.

We ended up staying a total of four nights here, I did not want to leave.
 Here is some of the love.

Cloud watching. . . .

wow, this was fun.  
The boys are getting quite a collection of gems, stones and other treasures from the ground.  There were so many that I had never heard the names of before, and Woodsie told us it's because the real name does not sell.  How ridiculous is that!!  I know!!  How commercial and boring!!  

We just did not want to leave here.

Another park, so many parks.

This park was awesome, access for wheelchairs - oh I have some little friends at home that would just love this park.  Yay to Mildura Council!

A paddleboat experience.  Thanks Lance for taking us out on the 
Murray.  Lance was another of those wonderful people that we met in Mildura.

Can you see the muddy line up the tree trunks?  This is the flood line from 3 months ago.

Joyce with her little Minnie man, enjoying the bliss of the Murray.
Because we are travelling 'out of season', we are getting to be tourists minus the crowds.  We are getting more one on one with the people that work and live in these places, we are getting rather spoilt, having this all to ourselves.

The Rothbury, going home.
Thank you Lance and Rebecca for a wonderful experience.

A visit to the Mildura Brewery Pub to sample their very own beers and relax back.  This is where I learnt from another friendly local who served us, that the fellow who owns this, first worked at the Grand Hotel next door as a busboy (dishcleaner), ended up buying the place.  At the time the current brewery was the Astor theatre.  You can still see the artdeco on the walls.  I did take photos, however they are too dark.

Yup, that's Joyce.
That's Joyce on roller skates.
Not a great photo, but make the most of it because about half an hour later Joyce ends up meeting the floor.  At first I was fine, got up and kept skating, then my left hand (I am a leftie) began to hurt, and then it hurt some more. . . . I bunged it.  Ended up at Mildura hospital the next afternoon for x-rays, just to be sure.  It's not broken, but the dr said there could be a fracture, which he could not see from the swelling still there.  He wrapped it up and said, no lifting, no carrying, no stress on the hand for 3 weeks.  I have to keep bandage on strapped tight.  sssshhhhhhhhhh, don't tell him we are travelling in a caravan.  oops!

oh and he also told me, no more rollerskating for a while!  

Thank you to the awesome staff at Mildura Base Hospital.  Mildura is blessed to have you.

Orangeworld.  Again we were given a private tour.  The boys then got to squeeze their own fresh juice along with Max, who is Mario's grandson.  So welcoming and we feasted on oranges and mandarines the whole tour.  Such sweetness in an imperial manderin plucked straight from the tree.  I am not sure my tastebuds will ever be the same again after such wonderful foods.  These farmers struggle here, each time we meet someone we hear of their neighbours who have just had to get up and walk away from their homes, vineyards, orchards, and lives.  It really is heartbreaking to hear, and I wonder what sort of future my children will have, the changes they will experience in their own lives, if this is to continue.  We need to support our farmers, we need to ensure our kids have such fresh, affordable, available Aussie grown produce for their children.
Thank you Mario and all our dedicated farmers.

This is lock 10, where the Darling River meets the Murray River.  You can see the Murray river as the water is 'cleaner' as it meets the Darling.

This is what the ground looks like, still recovering after the floods.

We left a little of our hearts in 
Mildura, and it seems Mildura did not want us to leave either.  We had heavy rain through the night and woke to gusty winds and storms.  We were thinking to stop over another night as the weather was set in all around us on the weather check and did not look pretty.  I am not a fan of being on the roads in dangerous weather out to Broken Hill.  Then the calm, the skies cleared and the wind dropped, the rain subsided.  We decided to get on our way.  I ended up giving Gayle that big hug after all and it felt just as good as I knew it would.  

As we headed out of town, hubbie was setting up our gps for Broken Hill and pulled into what he thought was a carpark. . . . . . hmmmm, it was a vacant house block.  With the heavy rain overnight and morning, this block of land was now a swamplike mush in which our frontwheel drive sedan and caravan become bogged, bigtime bogged type bogged.  We were stuck good!

I had my no good gummy hand, we tried and tried and could not get out.  Hubbie was covered in mud.  About 40 mins later, a guardian angel come in his 4wd to help us.  He dropped his daughter home from her swimming lesson and come back to tow first our car out, and then our caravan out of the mud.  I wish now I had thought to take photos, however, my hand was quite sore and we were rather drained.  There was lots of mud.  This absolute legend of a human being had me close to tears, we gave him our beer and a bottle of moscato, cause thank goodness his wife has good taste and she loves the stuff as much as I do.  

We were back on the road.

Bless you Mildura and bless those that live there.  

Thanks for stopping by my place tonight.

I hope you are well at your place.

Posted by Gypsy Gummy handed Joyce. x x 

Monday, May 23, 2011

Adelaide CBD

The journey continues, the journalling. . . . well it's coming. . . .

We loved Adelaide, we initially asked for 3 nights, then the second night we asked for another night, the night after that we asked for one more night.  Like I said, we love Adelaide.  The head over heels type love for me.

Walking the streets, even our feet love Adelaide.

Beautiful buildings.

Minnie loves this building with the 'flying leaves'.

Did I mention that I love Adelaide?

Steps with character

Beautiful open spaces in the middle of town.

Back at the caravan park, one of the many stunning views while cooking dinner.

We visited the Art Gallery and there was an exhibit on at the time of Patricia Piccinini, we paid up and went in.  It was certainly an experience.  The boys loved it too, much to my surprise.

Thanks so much for stopping by my place today, thank you for your lovely comments as our journey continues.  

Take care of you.

Posted by Joyce. x x

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

7 things about Joyce

Taking a break in the Gypsy-pants Joyce travelling posts to partake in a little blog lovin'.

*blush* and thank you to the very lovely Penelope from L is for Love for her nomination.  You must pop over to her blog for a look-see.  She has recently made socks on two sticks !! yes, that is not a typo, on two that is 2 sticks.  I know, I am going to make some when I get home.  You bet!

Anyways onto the award, I need to tell you 7 things about me. . . . . . . . then I need to tag 7 people for them to share 7 things about them, and then they tag 7 people. . . . . . . and you know it keeps going. . . . sharing of the love.  

1.  The smell of the backs of my boys necks after their shower when we cuddle just melts me.

2.  I cannot go a day without chocolate.  The only time I can't is when I get the flu/sinus and the congestion is just too much for me.  My taste buds go on strike and just the thought of chocolate makes me gag.  But only then.  

3.  I would shave my head again in a flash.  It doesn't make me any less of a woman than I am right now.  It's really no big deal especially if it helps someone else.  Seriously it's hair.  

4.  Swimming in the ocean in my birthday suit with only the moonlight shining on the water.  I have only ever done this the once, but don't want it to be the last time.  Very liberating.

5.  I finished school in year 10, won a scholarship for 'ladies college' and although the certificate says I passed, I very much doubt that points 3 and 4 are considered acceptable 'ladylike' behaviour.  

6.  I love cloud watching.

7.  I want to travel around Australia with my family.  

Ok, now I have to tag 7 blogs.  Please do not feel obliged to partake in this if you prefer not to.  

oh I almost snuck a few more in there, naughty Joyce!.  Please pop over and check out these lovely blogs.  

Thanks so much for stopping by my place today.  I hope you have a wonderful week at your place.

Posted by Joyce. xx

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Mt. Barker and Victor Harbour

We have met some lovely people along the way and one of the most lovely would have to be Cheryl.  
Cheryl lives between Adelaide Shores and Victor Harbour and holidays here at this caravan park where we are currently staying.  We have bumped into each other a few times since pulling in here and we have a bit of a chat.  She is a mad crochet-er, so of course, that in itself is open conversation.  

She recommended to us to check out Mt. Barker Jazz Festival, Strathalbyn, Lobethal, Victor Harbour and I can't remember the name of the little town that has old buildings, tractors, machinery and other old stuff, she said the boys would love it.  

We hopped in the car and headed off.

We had lunch at Millies Bakery in Mt. Barker and enjoyed the jazz that was live there.

We went for a wander down the street, it looked a bit like this.  These trees are just so pretty.

Onto Victor Harbour and said hello to the beautiful Clydesdale horses that pull the horse-drawn tram over the jetty.  We did not actually have a ride on the tram as the times did not match with us.

So we walked over the jetty with our own two legs cause it was such a lovely afternoon and found ourselves on Granite Island.  

We walked the island and here above is a photo of my two big boys checking out the view before them.
Love this photo.  Love how they love each other so.

This is the sun setting and showcasing seal rocks.  There are, from memory, 5 islands in this area and the little penguins along with seals, and terns use these for their homes.  

Here is me on Granite Island.  

We also visited  Alexandrina Cheese and of course bought some.  We then went down the road to Mt Jagged Winery for some tasting and more purchasing.  I have to admit my tastes in wines is not a fancy one, nor are my tastebuds all that mature/educated in the way of wines.  I know what I like and I like what I like.  It's just that simple.  Generally I prefer the Moscato.  It's just how it is for me.  Some people like other stuff, I like Moscato.  However I was honest when sampling and straight out said that I like Moscato, I also then said, oh that's the face my friends make when I say Moscato.  (She pulled a screwed up face look, just like my friends do when I say Moscato)  It gave me the giggles and I hadn't even started on the tastings yet. 

We ended up getting a Sparkling Red that both hubbie and I liked.

For dinner tonight we feasted on local cheeses, salami's, stuffed olives, not local dried apricots, and Vale Ale.  It was a fabulous feast of food.  

Thanks so much for stopping by my place today.  

Posted by Joyce. xx

Adelaide Central Market

We are in Adelaide, city of churches, beautiful, beautiful Adelaide.
I think I am in love, totally blissfully and unashamedly in love, I want to shout it out to the world,
Adelaide, I love you.
Yes, I know, we have only just arrived here, but here is why Adelaide has stolen my heart.

We are staying at West Beach which is about 9kms from the city.  There is a bus stop right across the road into the city, but Hubbie thought he would drive and we could park out of the city and enjoy the walk in.  Ummmm, we parked two blocks, yup, two blocks from Gouger Street, the address for the Adelaide Central Market.

My love has been confirmed.  We got into the markets and what a sight before my eyes, here below is some of what we saw.

Nuts of all kinds. . . . 

Cheese and more cheese. . . . . . 

Sweets. . . . . . .

fresh produce. . . . .

coffee. . . . 

olives, stuffed and not stuffed, with dips and spreads and cheeses,. . . . . . 

tinkle the ivories anyone?  

seedlings for your garden. . . . . . 

bouquets to fill your home . . . . . . . 

free city connector bus. . . . . yes, totally free. . . . . .

We did a lap up and down the aisles at the markets, then we bought ourselves a little trolley with wheels cause that's how everyone was getting around.  Some trolleys had a child in them, but most of the trolleys had food in them.

We then did another lap and filled that little trolley to the brim.  We have enough fruit and vege to last 3/4 days, we have meats, cheese, olives, salami's, sweeties, dutch licorice - yes!! double salted dutch licorice.  

The wonderful thing about it all is that you can taste before you purchase the items, there are samples everywhere, and the boys were given so many treats by the stall holders, they just kept eating their way around the markets.  It was packed, it was just crowded with people wearing beanies, boots, scarves, dresses, jeans, jackets, skirts, beards, bald, young, old, newborn and we even met George the rabbit who loves coming to the markets every weekend.  I could not get enough here.  It was fresh, it was local, it was Aussie, it was organic, it was chemical crap free, you could see it, smell it and taste it.  
The fruit and vege stalls had men with very strong voices calling out their deals and the boys loved hearing them talk their sales up.  Some of them were funny too.  Then about 1.30pm come and all of a sudden there was a shift in the air, little tables were being brought out to the middle of the aisles and the discounting begun.  oh what!!  We had a trolley full of goodness and now they were discounting their produce, oh well we got a few bargains.  It was so much fun.

The markets are closed on Sunday and Monday.  Tuesday is known as Nanna Tuesday, Wednesday is usually the quietest day with not all the stalls open as alot of them are restocking from the farms that day, Friday and Saturday are the busiest days.  This was told to me by one of the lovely stall holders.  

On the menu for dinner was locally made sausages, with corn on the cob, baby carrots, zucchini, beans and sno peas.  Kinda did make me a little homesick for our little local markets.  Such a basic meal, but so full of flavour.  We cooked it in the huge camp kitchen and the others that come in while we were eating, where vocally envious of our feast.  We pointed them straight to the markets.

I am double posting again tonight, there is just too much for a single post, besides they all deserve their own space.  Perhaps I should just talk less. . . . . . . 

Thanks so much for stopping by my place today.
I hope you had a lovely day at your place and going by my computer, today is Sunday, so I wish you all a wonderful week.

Posted by Joyce. xx