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Words can not express how excited we were on Friday just before 10am when the bright orange Allied moving truck pulled up in front of our house! It was honestly almost surreal. Having been without belongings in our Stoney Creek house for 2 weeks, then in an Airbnb for 7 weeks, and then in our Taranganba house with next to no furniture for 7 weeks – it was hard to imagine having our stuff again.

Hugh and I were chatting about what we missed most. Having a couch was the #1 most missed item on both of our lists. Hugh also missed having his bikes and kitchen stuff. I missed having my desk and having our art work around the house.

The movers (called “removalists” here – interesting emphasis on the leaving part rather than the arriving part) were great and while we had paid for them to unpack everything for us, we had them focus on moving and assembling the furniture while Hugh and I madly unpacked all the boxes so they could take all the packing materials with them. This photo shows only SOME of the empty boxes:

As of the time of writing this blog on Sunday evening, there are only about 3-4 boxes we haven’t unpacked and only 2 mirrors and 2 pictures that haven’t been hung on the walls. Our house is starting to look like a home! Will post photos next weekend.

Next most important this week was the amazing World Cup quarter final win by the Matildas (what a great team name!) over France on Sat night! We met our friend Leigh down at the Yeppoon foreshore where they set up a screen to watch the game:

Leigh made fabulous pom-poms to help us cheer the Matildas on and they worked! It was 0-0 after the regular 90 minutes of play and still 0-0 after two 15-minute extra time periods so off to a shoot-out it went. After the first 5 rounds it was still tied so then came the sudden death rounds and it took until the 5th one of those for the Matildas to finally win! It was such an awesome atmosphere to watch the game in – especially when the 3 of us really didn’t know much about the game :). The only downside was that the first half of the game was at dusk and I think I’ve mentioned that that’s when the Lorikeets swoop down to the trees at the foreshore en masse and create a deafening racket. I happened to have my handy sound level meter app on my phone and this is what we were having to endure (I think my app was estimating quite low):

The semi-finals against England are on Wed night and we’ll be joining Leigh and Darren at the Strand to watch the game there. Go Matildas!

Speaking of the deafening Rainbow Lorikeets, here they are at our bird bath this week:


WARNING: This next video may be confronting to some viewers. “Confronting” means something like disturbing+jarring and it seems to be used very frequently on the media, even for things that don’t seem disturbing+jarring, but such is the way of the media these days. Way back I posted an audio clip of the laughing Kookaburras. They’re very cute birds and they sound like monkeys. We didn’t see any in our yard for the first month or so after we moved to our house but they’ve been starting to appear a bit more lately. Well on Friday morning, moments before the movers arrived, one landed on our fence with a good-sized gecko in its beak. So Hugh and I got to learn how those cute little Kookaburras kill their prey:


He wacked him against the fence with massive force about 8 times – and then swallowed him whole in less than 5 seconds. Here he is looking pretty proud of himself moments afterward:

There’s a whole gecko as long as the Kookaburra’s head and torso inside!!!

OK, let’s move along to less confronting bird images. A magpie having a bath:


We try to be extra nice to magpies as rumour has it that they remember humans who are mean to them and pass that knowledge around to their friends and their descendants and they will seek you out to swoop at you. We’re not willing to take the risk of trying to disprove this theory.

Last week I posted a photo of the Little Friarbird in the Bottlebrush Tree (sounds like a song you’d learn in Kindergarten :)). This week a bunch of them appeared at the bird bath:

In other front yard news, Hugh took down the Frangipani tree to make room for our future G&T and Lemonade trees (credit to our friend Rob for the name G&T tree – that would be a lime tree, of course). The Frangipani trees are odd – they have beautiful leaves and flowers for a short while and then drop them and make an absolute mess and then just sit there like sticks for months. No more Frangipani for us:


While Hugh had the chainsaw for rent, he also took down a shelter along the east side of our house. I forgot to take a before photo, but here is an aerial one from the house listing page:

You can see a section covered in green on the far left and then a section covered in black next to the house. The green section covers a bunch of shade-loving plants and we think the previous owners added the black section to provide additional shade for the plants or more privacy from the street. But that whole section really blocks our view of the mountains when sitting on the side patio, so we decided to take it down:

Hopefully the shade plants survive because there are some funky ones in there, but if they don’t, so be it – I have my pretty view :).

When not operating a chainsaw, Hugh has been perfecting making avo toast for breakfast:

He mashes the avocado with a bit of olive oil and either feta cheese or sour cream (and maybe something else, not sure, I just arrive at the table and it’s put in front of me :)) and tops it with a fried egg with some diced bacon (that miracle food sold in grocery stores here that I can’t believe we don’t have in Canada!). DELICIOUS! Hugh continues to be blown away that it’s become one of his favourite breakfasts too.

I think I may have told you about Lady Finger Bananas way back in May. Finally remembered to take a photo to show you how tiny they are:

They are so delicious! Our other favourite breakfast is muesli and plain Greek yogurt with fresh pineapple and lady finger bananas. YUM!

While we’re still in the kitchen, here’s another one of those funny differences:

Awhile back I posted about A4 paper compared to Letter size paper in North America – the A4 paper is a bit narrower and then longer than Letter size. Well I know where they got the extra length from – they take it from paper towel rolls! Hugh will now need to make us a new, shorter paper towel holder.

OK let’s move from the kitchen to the closet. It’s winter here right now, so not nearly as humid as it will get in the summer, but still generally humid, maybe like our June back home. It seems that Aussies don’t use dehumidifiers (maybe because the motors would burn out every few days in the summer :)). We did notice that they use a different type of drywall in bathrooms (you can’t hammer a nail into it, I discovered this weekend while hanging pictures, you have to drill into it and even that’s not easy) and they don’t put wooden baseboards in bathrooms, only tile. In addition, to prevent damage to clothing from the humidity, you put these things into your closets:

They start off full of white crystals in the top half. As they draw the water out of the air, the water fills up the bottom half and the crystals disappear. This is after 6 weeks in the not-very-humid winter here:

Moving from the closet to the garage. I saw someone at home post about the increasing gas prices. They’ve been going up here in the last few weeks too:

This is one of the more expensive stations in town (usually 5 cents higher), but hopefully this will make you feel a bit better next time you head to the pumps. I certainly miss my Tesla!!

And speaking of cars, a funny thing happened a couple weeks ago – I got an email from McMaster that I finally made it to the top of the waiting list to get on-campus parking :). I’m actually surprised – I’d been on the wait list since January 2017 and about a year ago, there were still more than 700 people ahead of me. Mass retirements maybe? Well, whoever was the next person behind me on the list will be very happy that I declined my spot :).

Happy Sunday, everyone!

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