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24 Warm on the Inside

As part of Becky’s April Bright Square Photo Challenge over at The Life of B, I’ve opened the archives to January 2020 to share our 19 day trip to USA. Join me on a pictorial travelogue of the best and brightest of our pre-pandemic adventures in California and Nevada! The rules of the challenge are simple: most photos must be square and fit the theme word bright. Look for #brightsquare.

Postcards from America

After a chilly day at Alcatraz, the twinkling lights and illuminated sign at the Ghirardelli Chocolate Company drew us in like moths to a flame. 

We needed to warm up fast. Perhaps a couple of hot fudge sundaes would do the job.  

Did they fulfil our expectations?

Oh yes, they did!

14 Super Sweet

As part of Becky’s April Bright Square Photo Challenge over at The Life of B, I’ve opened the archives to January 2020 to share our 19 day trip to USA. Join me on a pictorial travelogue of the best and brightest of our pre-pandemic adventures in California and Nevada! The rules of the challenge are simple: most photos must be square and fit the theme word bright. Look for #brightsquare.

Postcards from America

The vibrant display of candy at Las Vegas M&M’s World was astounding. With 16 different colours, a myriad of flavours and a range of products spread over four floors, making a purchase took time and careful consideration. It was almost too hard to choose.

The struggle was real, but we managed!

Close Up

SquareUp Photo Challenge: Camping at Carnarvon Gorge, October 2020 #27

The hairy fruit of a sandpaper fig may not look tempting but once the skin is removed, the flesh inside is very sweet.

In January I’m joining in with Becky’s Square Photo Challenge over at The Life of B. The rules are simple: most photos must be square and fit the theme word up. Look for #SquareUp

A Nut By Another Name

Kind Squares Photo Challenge #5 ~ Queensland: One of a Kind

Destination: Bauple

Have you ever eaten a bauple nut? You’re probably shaking your head, but chances are you have and you didn’t even know it!

The trees on which the nuts grow are native to northern New South Wales and south eastern Queensland and were named by the local indigenous people who once lived in the region. Enterprising farmers began growing grafted trees as early as the 1860s and in the 1880s they were introduced to Hawaii, where they became one of the state’s most important crops. Today the nutritious nuts are grown commercially in 13 countries, in a global industry valued at more than one billion US dollars. The bauple nut is Australia’s only native food source grown in other countries.

Have you guessed which nut I’m talking about? The bauple nut, also called the Queensland nut, is most commonly known as the macadamia.

Original ungrafted bauple trees still grow on the slopes of Mt Bauple in the Fraser Coast region of Queensland, in a national park reserved for scientific study.

Three original trees also grow in the grounds of the Mt Bauple Museum in the nearby town of Bauple, which celebrates the famous nut in a festival each November.

Next time you pop a macadamia in your mouth, take a moment to remember all those trees growing wild on the slopes of Mt Bauple and the indigenous people who prized the nuts as a delicacy.

This month I’m joining in every day with Becky’s October Kind Square Photo Challenge over at The Life of B. The rules are simple: most photos must be square and fit the theme word “kind”. Look for #kindasquare.

Everything You Could Want

Square Perspectives Photo Challenge ~ Australian Landscapes #4

Destination: Murray’s Craft Brewing Co, Bobs Farm Port Stephens, New South Wales

When you’re hungry and thirsty, Murray’s Craft Brewing Co on Nelson Bay Road is the place to be.

There’s plenty of beer on tap, along with local wines created by Port Stephens Winery. The restaurant has an extensive menu and the servings are generous and delicious.

After your cravings have been satisfied there’s room out on the grass for a friendly game,

which is sure to leave you feeling thirsty again.

 

While our travel plans are on hold I’m joining in every day with Becky’s July Square Perspectives Photo Challenge over at The Life of B. The rules are simple: photos must be square and fit the theme of perspective. My posts represent the definition of perspective as a vista – seeing something over distance or time.

Chocolate Heaven

Exploring Australia
Have you ever been able to enter a chocolate shop and walk out empty handed? No?
Me neither.
And when the shop is attached to a chocolate factory the temptation is even greater. Even those with the strongest willpower will find a purchase impossible to resist if they visit The Factory in the New South Wales coastal city of West Gosford.
In the large factory shop packets and boxes of chocolate, nougat and marshmallows are artfully stacked in tantalising displays.
Handmade confections named after iconic Australian places fill large glass cabinets.
Through the porthole windows between the shop and the factory floor visitors can see all these treats being made. I have to confess I’m too busy tasting free samples to take photos of the production line.
Luckily I remember to use my camera in the café, where the menu boasts five special hot chocolate creations.
A morsel of cake accompanies each drink, just enough to complement its rich flavours and decadent toppings. With such mouthwatering descriptions, it takes much longer to decide which to choose than it does to devour our treats when they arrive.
When afternoon tea is finished and we return to the shop, it’s even harder to select just a few favourites to take away.
I think I might need one of everything!

Another Top Drop

Western Queensland Road Trip Square Tops Challenge #29

It might have been quiet at Nindigully Pub, but it was the opposite the day we went to Riversands Wines.

The car park was packed, marquees filled the garden and a band was warming up on stage. We’d obviously gatecrashed a party!

It was the St George winery’s annual Easter in the Vines celebration and by the time we arrived it was completely booked out. That didn’t stop winemaker David welcoming us with a warm smile and a few samples of his award winning wines. A bottle of his delicious Stirling’s Reserve Red Liqueur Muscat was soon in my bag.

We were too late to join in the “cook your own” barbecue lunch, but David found us a table under a shady tree.

Anyway, who needs steak when there’s coffee and freshly baked scones with homemade grape jam and cream on the side?

While our travels are on hold, I’m joining in every day with Becky’s April Square Tops Challenge over at The Life of B. The rules are simple: photos must be square and fit the theme word “top”.

Top Rated

Western Queensland Road Trip Square Tops Challenge #14

According to the tourist brochures, Deb’s Cafe is the best in Bollon. It’s also the only cafe in Bollon.

The cafe’s top rating is no surprise. You can get a tip top tasty lunch and your live bait for fishing, both at the same time!

While our travels are on hold, I’m joining in every day with Becky’s April Square Tops Challenge over at The Life of B. The rules are simple: photos must be square and fit the theme word “top”.

Top Choice

Western Queensland Road Trip Square Tops Challenge #8

Scones in Wyandra and cake in Cunnamulla – we’re not likely to pass by a café without stopping for a treat. But there’s not always a café or coffee shop out in the bush.

We always carry sweet supplies just in case and when the home-baked goods are gone, Mr ET has a special favourite. There’s sure to be a box stashed away in the caravan for emergencies.

Mr ET’s top choice of camping treat is:

While our travels are on hold, I’m joining in every day with Becky’s April Square Tops Challenge over at The Life of B. The rules are simple: photos must be square and fit the theme word “top”.

What’s Up Top?

Western Queensland Road Trip Square Tops Challenge #7

It’s not the delicious cakes in the cabinet which first attract our attention when we enter the Gidgee Bean Café in Cunnamulla.

The old building is enjoying a new lease of life but the interior gives clues to its age. The pressed metal ceiling and broad high skylight immediately draw our gaze upwards. And right at the top is a tiny door, mysteriously leading nowhere.

Down at floor level, an eclectic collection of china sits in mismatched cupboards and old black and white photos of Cunnamulla’s past decorate the walls.

We’re distracted by the arrival of our almond and orange cake and we forget about the oddly placed door for a while.

It’s only as we’re leaving that I remember to ask about the building and that door. It turns out to be not so peculiar after all. The building used to be a haberdashery with a second floor, long since removed, used for storage.

The Up the Top Mystery is solved!

While our travels are on hold, I’m joining in every day with Becky’s April Square Tops Challenge over at The Life of B. The rules are simple: photos must be square and fit the theme word “top”.