Yesterday was a public holiday in Australia thanks to the Queen's birthday. I think it's funny that her birthday is not even in June (it's the 21st of April) but every second Monday in June we have the day off work to celebrate. Any excuse for a party, even if it's for someone living in the mother land. ;)
What was a real treat for us is that Simon had a rostered day off that happened to fall on the long weekend and so we decided to make a real day of it. He often works on holiday days, including Christmas and New Year's etc so we were happy to plan something fun to do altogether.
We decided to do the Notley Gorge hike as it is only a 1 hour round trip. Our first choice was Quamby but that is about a 4-5 hr trip up Quamby Bluff and even though Simon would have done it easily, I think the rest of us might still have been coming back down the mountain.
There are no views like at Alum Cliffs, but a beautiful walk down through a gorge through amazing plants and fernery.
Some of the trees were so tall and majestic.
And we loved discovering all the little plants and flowers growing on the bed of the gorge.
We even found this leaf that looked exactly like a map of Tasmania.
Some of us didn't like discovering there were also leeches around. Sarra didn't get any on her but the very thought of them attaching themselves to her, put her in a spin that lasted the WHOLE hour's walk. I think she may have scared any wildlife away!!
Hallie ended up with six leeches on her, but some were only little ones like this one on her shoe. Ollie got a bigger one, that attached itself to his leg and had a little feed.
After we got back to the car and everyone was satisfied that no leeches were free loading it back to Westbury, we decided to stop at the Exeter Bakery which was only another few kms away.
It was one of the best bakeries in northern Tasmania and because it is 25kms out of Launceston, we don't get to go there very often but when we do, it is always very yummy and the boys can never miss a little ride on the space rocket.
We finished off the day with a swim at the aquatic centre. It was 4pm and so it was a perfect time to come because the pool was practically empty and we all had such a great time in the water, swimming around.
Jonty is loving swimming with his head under the water and its nice with the older kids because they can swim and are more confident in the water, so we had a great time playing piggy in the middle with a few balls. The lifeguards were happy for us to just muck around and be a bit silly because there were so few people there and everyone was still being sensible but just having heaps of fun.
Cameras of course are banned at the pool, but after we had finished I got a quick pic of the kids altogether.