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We went away this week, to a place called Augusta. I used to go there every year since I was a baby until I was 18. I probably came along and stayed a couple of nights sometimes later than that. Our last visit was 5 years ago (we had a run of coming with Mr Tween – I’m still not sold on this nickname! Help! – for a while when he was a toddler).
I often fantasise about the memory of driving down alone and spending time alone in my tent reading true crime books from the library, whenever I felt like it. Sleeping in. The freedom! I had no idea how good I had it haha.
It was exciting to bring the Little Miss along for the first time.
15 January – Friday
Today was Mr Unprepared’s first official day of leave. It was our last day at home before going away, so it was going to need to be all hands on deck to get everything done for our camping trip. I had quite the mental load!
My first tasks were to head into town and get some supplies. I had to go and collect the Little Miss’ birthday present (her birthday was a week or so away and we were going to celebrate it on our trip) and grab a click and collect from the supermarket that contained food and other stuff we’d need. I also had a little time to look for some denim shorts that would fit me (I’d put on weight and was feeling a bit squishy in the shorts I already had) but I have to say it was very depressing. The sizing in several stores was all over the place and the styles were unflattering on me. So many stores are not size inclusive either. I didn’t feel bad about myself for long. Just annoyed that women of all sizes don’t have easy access to…all sizes. I didn’t buy any (obviously) but I was OK with that. People would just have to look at my muffin top if an occasion called for shorts – too bad.
*spoiler alert – I rarely had to wear shorts*
We dropped off the dog at the kennels and she was SO excited to see her best buddy (my parents’ dog). My parents were already there chatting with the lovely owner, who showed my kids some puppies they had there.
I was so relieved tonight when most of the packing was done. We didn’t have much left to do and we could do it in the morning. Phew!
We set up the Little Miss’ present and watched Superstore (it’s a funny show and an easy watch). Perfect.
16 January – Saturday
Today was road trip day! We met my parents (10 minutes late because SOMEONE I am married to HAD to go and buy a coffee first), but we got going pretty well.
We stopped at our usual servo for an early lunch and I got a preview of the kids’ moods when they ran amok a bit. They were just so excited. I was really impressed when the Little Miss wanted to go to the toilet there and it’s always so encouraging when she shows curiosity and willingness with her toilet training (she’s mostly been practicing at home).
The Little Miss nagged me a lot of the way, wanting to play with every single thing I’d packed in her little Very Busy Bag. It wasn’t even a long trip! So funny and annoying haha. Gave me flashbacks to the road trips we took when we went to Exmouth last year, having to reach behind me constantly to pick up stuff she dropped (from the passenger seat of course – safety first)!
We got to camp and set up. It felt like it took forever, but it was exciting once we had everything looking all homey and ready to live in. It felt so rewarding to sit down afterwards with nibbles and a drink!
We had fish and chips for dinner. It was a great start to the holiday.
17 January – Sunday
This morning, Mum and Dad had the kids for a little while so Mr Unprepared and I could go for a walk together. I felt like I really needed to move (I had not been getting the exercise I needed before our trip) and it was nice for us to have time alone together.
We went to see the lighthouse and sat in the cafe for ages waiting for some snacks and drinks. The kids were so restless! We had scones and the kids had cookies and then we went to look at some interactive exhibits in the old cottage (they were pretty cool actually). After that it was a walk up to the lighthouse. We weren’t going to take a tour up to the top – just walk around it.
After that, the Little Miss was VERY grumpy. We decided to take a drive to help her sleep and my parents kindly took Mr Tween (9) with them so it would be peaceful without distractions in the back of the car! She fell asleep almost immediately on the drive out from the lighthouse car park, but Mr Unprepared got a bit too excited about trying different places with different road surfaces and speeds and the variations woke her really quickly. I’d warned him!!!
In the afternoon we took the kids down to the waterfront and let them paddle about, as it was getting a bit warm to sit at our campsite. I thought they’d just make sandcastles and dip their toes in but they were ALL in with the body boards (the water is so shallow and clear – perfect for young ones). I was really impressed with the Little Miss (who had never been on a bodyboard in her life) just jumping on like she’d done it a million times before and showing great paddling instincts.
Mr Unprepared went and sat on a rock for ages in some sort of meditative state. I was like OK. You do you. Haha.
18 January – Monday
This morning we decided to go back down to the waterfront and chill because it was going to be a warm day. We had to pack so much stuff, it was like moving campsites! We ended up packing our cars and driving down, despite it being a short walk normally.
We got a pretty good spot in the shade and I felt so calm, cool and lazy that I barely got in the water. The kids splashed about with their dad and Poppy a lot which was so nice to see.
Afterwards, we went looking for our next swimming/beach spot for tomorrow. We settled on a gorgeous little place, noted it and then Mr Unprepared and I took the Little Miss for another nap drive! This time Mr Unprepared didn’t get any crazy ideas haha. She slept well. This was becoming a good routine and I loved that she would listen when I told her it was her chance to have a sleep and just close her eyes. Amazing!
When she woke up we stopped in town to buy ice creams for everyone.
Mr Unprepared set up his telescope at camp and we spied on some sea eagles in a tree a distance away. One was eating a fish. It was very exciting stuff haha.
The only downside of the night was that the weather had brought the mozzies. There was less of a breeze, it was warm and they were biting. Unfortunately they plagued us the rest of the trip. We became obsessed with repellents, sprays, covering ourselves up in blankets and ways to make the bites itch less. Luckily we never had mozzies in our vans at night, but it made it hard when most of our camp living was outside! We couldn’t remember it ever being so bad in all the previous years we’d been. I hope it’s better next time.
19 January – Tuesday
We went to the beach we’d discovered yesterday and it was STUNNING. It was the clearest water, surrounded by rocks that sheltered you from the surf. We’d found a spot that basically gave us a little beach to ourselves for most of the time we were there.
The kids jumped into the water immediately and I found myself running out there with my shirt dress I was wearing over my bathers because the Little Miss (who wasn’t even 3 yet) was on a bodyboard just paddling out to sea behind her brother haha. I was honestly in awe of her love of the ocean and her ability to hold her own (as well as a 2/3 year old can when they can’t swim yet). It was on this trip that I realised this is more than just a little kid liking the water and the beach. This may be one of her THINGS. It’s always amazing discovering who your little ones will be.
Once the kids settled down I was able to strip down to my bathers properly. I was excited about these because I’d just bought them online and they fit well and made me feel good. I got compliments from my mum and Mr Unprepared so that was nice! I’d felt so frumpy in my Kmart bathers on our last holiday so I felt like I’d redeemed myself.
A highlight of the holiday (besides that amazing beach) was our evening walk. The kids had their bikes and we made our way down along the waterfront. The scenery was unreal (a photographer’s dream I am sure) and we saw so many sting rays (they are a popular fixture). Then dolphins popped up further away. There was just magic in the air. And mozzies. And we got rained on. But it was so worth it. The kids had an awesome time. The Little Mister wanted to repeat the experience over and over but no other night compared to tonight.
20 January – Wednesday
Today we went to Margaret River to shop and wander about town. The kids definitely brought a chaotic energy to the experience! I was getting pretty frazzled!
The Little Miss was FULL ON. She didn’t want her stroller but she didn’t want to walk. She decided to play hide and seek in a surf shop the ONE second I turned to look at a shirt for her brother. I honestly thought we’d lost her somehow. OMG.
Another time I was trying on a dress (which I bought and I love) and she crawled under the change room dress and spilt a juice on the floor (and then when I told her off tried to escape the change room by opening the door while I was undressed, which meant I had to firmly keep it shut which upset her greatly. GAH. I profusely apologised to the shop assistant and she was very nice to me and grateful I told her. I was ready to crawl into a hole and disappear! I did not love being THOSE customers!
Luckily, we all somehow survived. I had my new dress and my dudes had new button up shirts that looked very nice on. We decided to wear our new clothes to a nice brewery, because why not. We had a lovely lunch outside under the shade and it wasn’t too painful with the kids haha.
I got to drive us back to camp (designated driver haha) and it was nice because usually Mr Unprepared hogs the driving on holidays!
21 January – Thursday
Today we planned to celebrate the Little Miss’ 3rd birthday a couple of days early. We grabbed some lunch from the bakery and drove out to the beautiful Boranup forest. It’s honestly one of my favourite places ever. The Karri trees are stunning. FYI I totally think fairies live there. You can’t change my mind.
Then we headed to the Sunflowers Animal Farm. The Little Miss LOVES animals so it was perfect. The kids had an awesome time (as did the grown ups). Watching the Little Miss cuddling a guinea pig brought me so much joy. Her curiosity and affinity with animals melts me.
When we got back to our campsite, I got out the IGA cake I’d purchased on the way back, sprinkled it with unicorn sprinkles, and put some unicorn candles on top. I’d given the camping gazebo a dodgy happy birthday unicorn banner and Bob’s your uncle!
The Little Miss got her presents and blew out the candles. It was lovely.
We ordered Chinese take-away that night and stuffed ourselves full. It truly was a great day.