July - September 2001

Lydia's first trip to Australia!

Last month we flew to Brisbane for an 11 day holiday in sunny Queensland. We spent the first night in a hotel in central Brisbane before setting off to Toowoomba (a town which is roughly 2 hours drive inland from Brisbane) where Sonia's grandfather Laurie lives.We visited Lydia's great-grandad that afternoon and stayed there through to that evening.We had a great time catching up, and Laurie really seemed to enjoy meeting Lydia. She was in fine form, giving him lots of coos and smiles and generally showing off!


We spent that night in Toowoomba, and headed off early the next day for Coolum. The 3-hour drive was quite stunning in places, and very picturesque. The drive did leave us wondering about the driving skills of the Queenslanders (!) - on this quiet drive we passed 3 more quite major car accidents (we'd already passed one the day before) each of which seemed to be quite bazaar as to how they came about, particularly on such a sunny clear day!!!

Lydia proved to be a model traveller, sleeping for 2 hour stretches or more in the car.

We arrived at The Hyatt Regency Coolum that afternoon and checked in to our very flash hotel room which was more like an apartment! It had a very large kitchen, dining and lounge area which led out onto a balcony, two bedrooms and bathrooms, and a small laundry!

The Hyatt Regency Coolum was really well laid out - it had lots of facilities for families and children (arts workshops, kids clubs, bikes for hire, lots of pools and game facilities etc) but the accommodation and dining areas were secluded and quiet, so we were often unaware that there were other children about.

Lydia enjoys her very first swim with Daddy
We took Lydia for her first swim in a small toddlers pool, then the next day we took her out to paddle in the ocean waves - which she really seemed to enjoy!

We popped down to Maroochydore a couple of times (we were quite impressed with the place - a very pretty holiday town - with a big nicely-designed shopping mall which crossed right over the river! We also drove up to Noosa one day for lunch and a little look around, but didn't find much of interest. We spent the rest of the time relaxing in Coolum, Brent played golf several times (while I looked after Lydia) and I enjoyed a couple of fabulous massages! We enjoyed lovely sunny days virtually the entire time we were there - it felt really great to be in summery clothes again!

Relaxing by the pool after Lydia's first paddle in the ocean!
Sadly our holiday came to an end, we spent the last night in Brisbane again before flying back to Auckland.
Our latest family photos

Here are our most recent photos of the three of us, which were taken by Pixifoto shortly before our trip to Australia.

Lydia is progressing well - she is now sitting really well unsupported, but is getting increasingly frustrated that she can't crawl - she rolls onto her front, assumes the skydivers stance with only her belly touching the ground, kicking and groaning until help (Mum!) arrives. She is very active and conversational and we get lots of squeals and laughs now. Her sleeping through the night (which she has been doing perfectly for months) suddenly stopped while we were away in Aussie, and has not yet returned! She is now on a sleep program - as we try to get her back "on track" - there has been some improvement, but it looks like we still have a few interrupted nights ahead of us!
Our new front garden!

The front garden of our house underwent a terrific transformation at the end of July (we can't claim the glory for ourselves - a garden designer, Suzanne Craven, did it all for us!).

The front is basically split into 5 smaller gardens, and previously these areas were weed-infested with a rambling assortment of rather scrappy plants, many of them unsuited to their situation. While a couple of trees were saved the rest were completely ripped out, and a whole new assortment of plants were laid out.

We also arranged for the large trees overhead to be tidied up and thinned out a little to allow some more light and rain into the new garden. We are thrilled with the final result - the pictures speak for themselves! It will continue to look even better, as the plants becomes more established.

The Plans

(Suzanne Craven ph 575 5501)
The garden before
The garden after!


Click here to return to my homepage!