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Monday, March 23, 2015

Sweet Baby Hatchlings

I was telling my friends about our Brisbane bucket list when they asked me what I wanted to do before we left Brisbane. Up until that point, it hadn't occurred to me that our list was filled with things the boys wanted to do. I have been so focused on making this move easier for the boys and helping them get some kind of closure that I forgot about me.

My "Australia Bucket List" could be at least a hundred items long but I had to be realistic and narrow it down to things we could actually do over the next 100 days (a.k.a. while I'm very pregnant or caring for a newborn and recovering, and while the boys are still in school during the week). 

One of the things I wanted to do was to visit the Mon Repos Turtle Centre again. A couple years ago, we drove up and we got to see a mother loggerhead turtle lay her eggs. This time, I wanted to see turtle hatchlings come out of the nest. 


So after church on Sunday, we packed the boys into the car and made the 5 hour drive up to Bargara. It wasn't the most comfortable thing to be doing while 36-weeks pregnant but it had to be done. When we got there, we found out that we had signed up for the very last tour of this season. How incredibly lucky we didn't wait any later!

We didn't have to wait very long before they called us out to the beach. And because it was a Sunday night, our group was very small, probably not much more than 30 people, so we managed to get an excellent viewing spot. The boys sat right in front of the nest and watched as the baby turtles dug their way out of the sand.


Once all the little turtles had emerged from the nest, they lined us all up along a path between the nest and the ocean. The rangers came around with a couple hatchlings. We held out our hands and felt those tiny little claws scratching our palms as they frantically paddled their little flippers.


After everyone had their turn, the rangers asked for volunteers who had their own torches to make a tunnel of light. Luckily we brought one so Nathan got to be part of that. Unfortunately, it was a hand-crank one that we had left sitting around for the past year so he ended up having to crank it while he stood there in the tunnel. He did so well trying to keep the light where the turtles needed it. Nathan later told me he felt sorry for us (Andrew, Caleb and me) because we didn't get to be part of the tunnel but I'm glad he got the chance to do it.


Once the last of the little turtles made it into the ocean, we went back to the nest for the nest dig, which is when they dig up the nest to count how many successful hatchlings there were. As our ranger dug, he found a bunch more turtles who had yet to make their way out so he had to actually fill the nest back in to let the turtles do their thing (dig themselves out).


Most of our group wasn't interested in sticking around for the nest dig anyway so the ranger brought us all back to the centre. Nathan was interested in watching the nest dig so we decided to stick around. We waited awhile for them to find another nest for us to see but eventually, they called us back. By this time, our group had dwindled down to 8 people.



As we made our way back across the beach, I heard Caleb tell Andrew, "Daddy, I'm going to sleep soon. Can you carry me?" but he ended up walking all the way to the nest anyway. We found one more little turtle who was still making his way out of the nest and then it was time to dig into the hole.


Caleb worked industriously alongside the ranger, digging up his own hole. At first I thought he was just playing around, then I realized he was doing exactly what the ranger was doing. It was adorable to see him mimicking the ranger's actions - the scooping, the piling of sand. "I'm doing what he's doing," Caleb explained.


As the ranger was finishing up his count, the skies burst open and it started to pour. We made our way back to the centre as quickly as we could and the boys stayed pretty dry with their raincoats on but Andrew and I were drenched. It's a good thing we packed a set of clothes and towels for everyone - we changed, tucked the boys into their seats and drove another 5 hours home. It was a bit of a whirlwind trip but it was worth it.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

100 Day Countdown

Today marks 100 days until we board a plane with a one-way ticket to Toronto.

It's hard to think about our time here coming to an end. I know we always have the option to come back and visit, and I haven't gone past the idea of re-evaluating our situation in 2-3 years time but the reality is that even if we visit or move back, it won't be exactly the same as it is right now.

So in the meantime, we'll be making the most of the time we have left here. The boys and I have come up with a Bucket List and we'll work through as much of it as we can. I have to admit I'm probably the one holding us all back, being 36 weeks pregnant now and moving slower than ever. And once Baby comes... well, we'll just keep pressing on.


This is our list so far but chances are, we'll keep adding to this list as the days count down.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Into The Cold


The boys spent Sunday afternoon ice-skating at a friend's birthday party, in preparation for our migration back to the True North.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Breathing Space


I've been riding roller coasters and running marathons since last Thursday. I am physically, mentally and emotionally spent. It's time to take a break and have some breathing space.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

December Daily 2014 | Day 26 - 31


Once Christmas had passed, things quieted down quite significantly. Okay, wait, that's not entirely true. We did manage to squeeze 7 hours of Boxing Day shopping out of the boys this year. Afterwards, we went home so they could open their Christmas gifts before we went to watch Big Hero 6 with our friends. I kept our popcorn box and cut it down to be the insert for that day. On the back, I covered it with some leftover wrapping paper from a gift we had received. It's a little wrinkled but I think it kind of goes with the chaos of this photo of the boys opening their gifts. 


There wasn't a whole lot to document on the twenty-seventh except for Caleb and his beloved Baymax cup so I included the recipe for our mango avocado salad which made quite a few appearances throughout December.


We spent the twenty-eighth chilling out at home, mostly watching the Night at the Museum movies. On the twenty-ninth, we decided to get some fresh air. We also went to try out this new ice cream place, Nitrogenie. It didn't live up to the hype in my opinion but I thought I'd include the little flyer anyway.


On the 30th, we spent the day at the beach and then had KBBQ for dinner. I didn't really take too many pictures at the beach so I focused on our dinner and how Caleb refused to let anyone eat that baby octopus. Our New Year's Eve was spent half at home and half at our friends' place. Again, it was pretty low-key so I just included a photo of the boys standing there, watching the fireworks on TV. I originally planned to hide some journaling behind the photo about the boys wishing each other a Happy New Year but it would be too hard to access so I just sprinkled on some confetti and called it done.


To finish off the album, I used the other side of that wrapping paper I used to cover the popcorn box as a background and adhered a bauble coaster from Starbucks that I had been hanging on to.


See more of my December Daily 2014 here.

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