Here are a few pics from last week when we went on the Bush Foods excursion with Indiah – and then constructed those damn plywood cars. God that was hard work... next time, when something looks too difficult, remind me to just say NO, no matter how hard that girl pleads. By the way I'm noticing my writing's really going to pot – sorry. Probably a hopeless cause at the moment so I'm not even going to try to rectify. Holidays finish in a week – if I'm still alive by then.
The Bush Foods one wasn't as good as some of them, though potentially very interesting, because being in a National Park you're not meant to pick anything or try anything. So they TOLD them about the plants, like you make bread from these berries and you can eat these raw (interestingly, the ones you can eat raw are the really poisonous-looking ones in bright purple-blue), but none were tried. Besides, it's winter so not much is in flower or berry. I noted down the place where they pointed out the native sarsaparilla, for example, and later surreptitiously tore off a leaf and tried it (meant to be medicinal and to taste 'like liquorice'). Not entirely sure what it tasted like, and though it wasn't entirely unpleasant it was certainly jolly stringy and not the sort of thing you'd want to be chewing much of. However, since then, despite trying my hardest to remember EXACTLY what the leaf looks like I've been unable to identify and further plants of it. I know this for a fact because I keep nibbling bits of random vines that look similar but taste distinctly... spit-outable.
What they did to make up for this was bring along loads of 'organic' tea and herbs for the kids to sniff, which are traditionally used in aboriginal food. Mostly the kids went YUK (like for the bush tomato, and the wattle-seed... good lord what the hell one would want to use THAT for I really can't imagine, unless it's an emetic) but they quite like the strawberry gum and some the lemon myrtle. Then they stuffed them full of macadamia nut biscuits and crackers with guacamole with herbs mixed in it, which kept them pretty busy and satisfied. However, it was a bit cold to be sitting around sniffing herbs, too, which didn't help. Ah, now this was the day when (as on many other days) I had pleaded with the Littles to wear warm fluffy trousers and she'd refused, point blank, and wore knee-length leggings instead. She got SO cold that since that day she's changed her mind, and now I probably have to go back to K mart to get more of the very-fluffy trousers because now she won't take them off. Getting yer shins frozen off is one way to convert to sensible clothing, I guess.
We came home, had some mini-burgers, and spent a whole load of time on those damn cars. Mind you, they did seem pretty satisfied with them once they were finished, and they did really enjoy the painting bit and did that completely on their own. Plus they did read the 'instructions' (finding matching numbers on a very confusing diagram) and they did pop out quite a few of the balsa-wood pieces. But then there were all those bits that really need to be jiggled out, and some bits just splintered so I had to apply superglue with a generosity hitherto unseen in the Southern Hemisphere, and then lots of bits either didn't fit together properly so had to be glued, or had to be really RAMMED in with considerable force so there I was helping out with that, too. Honestly, makes putting an Ikea bed together seem like child's play. The one I've got planned for today is MUCH easier... some plywood pieces that they just paint and make a mobile out of. Dolphins and fish n'stuff. Nice and easy.
They did some other stuff of course but I can't remember at this distance. Story-reading time is surprisingly popular. Indiah is into Titchy-Witch at the moment, yesterday we finished up all of the books. Anyway, all in all they kept busy from about 8:30 to 5:30. I think this was one of those days when I passed out on the sofa at about 7 o'clock. God, aren't schools wonderful.
Painting cars in the afternoon
At Flaggy Creek again at the Bush Foods excursion