#amonthinthelife- Day 16

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Laundry #ballarat #amonthinthelife #autumn

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Today I could have posted of our morning in Daylesford, with coffee, Dutch pancakes, market-bought honey and eggs. However Miss BG decided to place her apple juice in my bag for safekeeping and neglected to secure the top properly. My time at the market was then spent emptying out my bag of apple juice rather than taking photos of people and their dogs, and their caravans…a lot of caravans on the road today!

So instead it’s a photo of a very familiar place to me- the laundromat, with 3 loads of washing which will not get dry on a weekend with intermittent showers. Winter is coming…

Day Trip to Daylesford

There are a million and one things to do around the house, but we decided to hit the road and go to Daylesford for the day- actually, just for the morning. We’re not that far from Daylesford- around 40 km, so we will usually go up and back for a couple of hours.

The main reason was the Lark garage sale. Combined with the Crafty Squirrel, it was a mix of seconds from the shops, and a clearance of vintage tea towels, aprons, fabric, linen and bric a brac. It was huuuge!

It was also kinda funny to see who was in there- heaps of ladies rummaging around, with the odd man here or there- Mr BG braved the crowds and entered the fray of females in a shopping frenzy. Most of the blokes stood outside, arms crossed, patiently waiting for their girlfriends or wives to emerge triumphant with a bargain.

Miss BG scored a little stamp set, Master BG got some marbles (one thing I find about ‘cute’ shops is their tendency to cater for little girls over little boys) and I got some fabric to add to my stash.

We then went for a wander up and down the main street, with its bumper to bumper traffic of SUVs and farm utes. The footpaths were packed with Easter holiday makers and weekender traffic, and the cafes were doing a roaring trade. So too was a sausage sizzle stall in support of Hepburn Primary! I often wonder how the locals feel with the hordes of tourists which descend upon the town on holidays and the weekends…

A quick coffee break at the Pastry King (some seriously yummy pastries and cakes abound there), and then we found the bookshop. It was fun browsing the kid’s sections (there are a couple of rooms of kid’s books) and Master BG picked up a Horrible Histories book and Miss BG brought home her very first Enid Blyton- it’s a bit old for her to read, but she’ll grow into it. I ended up with a book about Granny Squares with some really pretty designs in there :).

On our way back to the car, we stopped for icecream and then had a quick fossick at the MS Shop, whereupon I came out with 2 dresses (Veronika Maine and Country Road) a ball of red yarn and 2 soft bunnies which were being given away as an Easter gift. A day full of eats, treats and bargains!

Birthday cake- by Master BG

Birthday cake by bookgrrl99
Birthday cake, a photo by bookgrrl99 on Flickr.

I asked Master BG to take this photo as I was a little pressed for time.
Today is Mr BG’s birthday. We went to Daylesford, went on a train ride, visited the market and had coffee and chocolates at Sweet Decadence. It was a day much suited for staying indoors, as the normally bustling market was deserted, but still an enjoyable day out.
Dinner tonight will be roast lamb and the birthday cake will be chocolate buttermilk.
for more information on Mr BG, you can check out the post I did here, this day 2 years ago on his birthday. Strangely enough, his birthday dinner is exactly the same…

Thriller Night

I love to be scared. I love suspense and horror stories and movies, ones that make you forget to breathe, make your heart pound and generally make your senses tingle. The superstitious Irish pagan in me is fascinated with the unexplained and ghoulies and ghosties*.

With that in mind, Mr BG gave me as a Christmas present an overnight trip to Daylesford, which included a ghost tour of the Convent Gallery. Being very familiar with the Gallery and its atmosphere, I was keen to find out more about its past inhabitants and see if any of them were still present.

The tour was conducted by a medium and researcher from Paranormal.com.au and gallery staff. During the tour, stories are told of the medium’s experiences in the Gallery with past inhabitants, such as the nuns and students who lived there in its incarnation as a Convent and boarding school, which are then substantiated by research into the building’s history.

The tour was made even more interesting by the presence of Daibh O’Nhiall, a paranormal investigator, who brought some equipment which measured temperature and electro-magnetic fields, which were designed to measure the presence of a spirit. Many of the 15-strong tour group were able to carry a device, which allowed some of us to feel like ghostbusters :).

Caveat-I am a bit of a fan of these tours, and have gone on similar tours in Ballarat, Port Arthur and in Edinburgh**, all of which were undertaken by storytellers, most of whom were very talented at creating an atmosphere with their words. The presence of mediums and other members of the tour group who were quite sensitive to this phenomena served to add another layer on top of what was already a very spooky building, even during the day.

In all, it was a very interesting evening, with chills and unexplained draughts and EMF spikes. It made for an unsettled night’s sleep, which was remedied by a yummy breakfast at Cliffy’s and poke around the Sunday Market and the Mill Markets.

Did I have a good time? Of course! It capped off an interesting week, more of which will be explained anon.



*I also have a librarian side, who looks up everything, a logical side, and a hedonistic side who loves chocolate…

**I’ve also gone on tours to chocolate factories, whiskey distilleries, and wineries 🙂

I get misty, just holding your hand

Daylesford is a place I keep on coming back to over and again. It was a favourite weekender for Mr BG and myself when we lived in Melbourne and we head there a few times a year to go to the Sunday market. Today I was by myself and it felt a bit…weird.

You see, I wasn’t part of a couple, which is the predominant combination in Daylesford. Whether it be boy/girl,  girl/girl or boy/boy, Daylesford is the Couple’s country capital. “Is it just you?” asked the waiter at the Convent Gallery. “Yep!” I replied, somewhat gleefully.

Being by myself meant I could poke around in as many places without worrying about the other people- were they bored? were they touching stuff they shouldn’t? If I wanted to do a U-turn in the main street of Creswick just to pop into their Salvos op shop (open Thursday and Friday 9-3), I could. And did!

China Doll

China Doll found in Creswick $5

Nonetheless, thoughts of other people weren’t far away. Quite a few of my finds were for the BG family, and there was a brief moment when visiting the Convent Gallery that I wished for someone to be there holding my hand.

It was eerie. With the entire town shrouded in a thick mist, my over-active imagination and tendency to over-think things, I felt uneasy being by myself in some of the spaces. It may also have something to do with the Ghost Tours which they have just started to run as well…

Convent Gallery

Convent Gallery in the Mist

Convent Gallery

Convent Gallery in the Mist

The moment passed, though and I continued on my merry way to the Mill Markets, which is like the Greville Street Bazaar on steroids. I picked up a couple of Agatha Christie short mysteries, and poked around their vintage clothing. There were some lovely furry hats which would have done well on a day like today, but I had places to go and little people to pick up from daycare.

Agatha Christie books

Bought Books, all Bargains!

Other highlights of the day included Purl’s Palace and Threadneedle, which were great to visit for crafty things, and the people were lovely!

My whistlestop tour of Creswick. I ended up down a side street and felt I had ended up on a movie set, which in fact I had! Creswick was where the miniseries Salem’s Lot was filmed, starring the fallen Brat Pack idol Rob Lowe (*sigh*).

Coming home to a red wine and beef casserole that had been cooking in the slow cooker- smelt incredible and tasted wonderful with a glass of Chalk Hill Barbera.

There were a couple of places I would have liked to visit, if only they hadn’t been closed due to unforseen circumstances. But they can wait for another day :).

(My) Sunny Afternoon

My Easter treat was to brave the crowds at Daylesford and go to the Maker’s Market today. It was one of those things on my mental to-do list (which also includes a night on the town with the lovely Ms S, learning how to crochet, finish my Masters and have a day off from life to do whatever I want).

The Town Hall was buzzing, and the stalls were chock a block full of beautiful crafty goodies.
I picked up the latest Thaw magazine, made in Ballarat, which is the perfect size for a handbag, a silver pendant that I plan to pop on a ribbon, or silver necklace, and a mini cosmetic bag from Missy Mao Mao that will stay in my handbag and carry essentials such as lipstick, compact and $5 for that emergency coffee.

I could have bought much more, but the natives were getting restless, and we adjourned for a picnic lunch and play down at the Lake. We sat on our usual seat, and fed the ducks. Unfortunately Master and Miss BG’s aims were not that good, so the ducks came closer and closer…to the point they were eating their sandwiches woth the legs firmly tucked up!

After our lunch we headed to Trentham for a look at their Art and Craft Show. I was also hoping to grab a coffee at the Red Beard Bakery and some yummy bread, but the place was packed :(. We meandered back home through the beautiful forest and once again braved the traffic snarl that is Daylesford on the weekend!

Running up that hill

There are several suburbs in Ballarat which have the word Mount or Hill in their name- Soldier’s Hill, Black Hill, Brown Hill, Mount Pleasant, Mount Clear. This makes for fun and games when I do bootcamp.

I did my first bootcamp in April last year and enjoyed the chance to exercise outside. It usually involves a lot of running, pushups, lunges and then more running. Ballarat is blessed with parks and running tracks and hills :).

Saturday’s session involved running up Brown Hill- twice. The reward was getting up to the top of the hill and checking out the view of bushland, the freeway and feeling the fresh air fill your lungs. I may have tweeted I kicked ass, but this morning, it feels like it was my own ass that was kicked. I feel sore, but in a good way.

The soreness was alleviated by an amble around the Daylesford market  today and a latte, followed by a picnic lunch down by Lake Daylesford, which, unlike my local lake, is full of water. But that is another story…