I know, I know, I have taken an extended break (again!), but like most people at the beginning of a new year, I've got good intentions for keeping this ol' blog bang up-to-date from now on. I do have a few excuses for being out of commission for a while, the most recent and most interesting being a month-long trip to the southern hemisphere (yes, you should be jealous).
We set off for Melbourne via Singapore and made our way up to Port Douglas and through Country Victoria during our trip. It was blissful summer, but don't let that fool you into thinking I neglected all things knit-related while we were there. This was one of our first stops:
Needless to say, I bought some yarn. Okay, I bought loads. In case you haven't heard of it, Bendigo Woollen Mills is one of Australia's biggest hand knitting yarn producers. At the mill, there is a great shop where you can buy their current yarns off the shelf, but what I would recommend is delving into their back room, where discontinued yarns and colours hide out. It's all great quality stuff for a bargain.
Lucky for my husband, the mill also makes a good stop on a road trip of the Victorian countryside. Bendigo itself is a former gold mining town with a whiff of the wild west about it and we used it as a stop on our drive up to Echuca, where paddle steamer boats chug up and down the Murray, Australia's longest river. (The fact that my husband's name happens to also be Murray made for many a hilarious joke on this trip, let me tell you.) We took a lovely little ride down the river on one of these babies:
From Echuca we moseyed over to Wangaratta (Australian town names just get better and better), where we checked out Australian Country Spinners, with a mill shop similar to Bendigo's, but with a less exciting range. Driving back down to Melbourne, I kept my eyes peeled for famous Australian wildlife (I am but an excited school kid at heart) but the only kangaroos I saw were sadly dead at the side of the road. Not cool. Eventually I decided it best to keep my eyes on the socks I was knitting.
We did lots of other fun, non-knitting things too, of course. Like head up to Port Douglas in Queensland, where the rainforest meets the Great Barrier Reef. As you can imagine, it was amazing. We snorkeled with the sea turtles, we swam in the rainforest, we ate A LOT of amazing food.
Back down in Victoria, we wandered about wine country and spa towns and came across this lovely lavender farm:
And this adorably retro pitstop. (And yes, that is a mural of the infamous Ned Kelly with a sausage roll.)
On the way to and from Oz, we stopped in Singapore and it was much more exciting that I had imagined: cheap delicious food, interesting neighbourhoods, amazing architecture, and one hell of a zoo.
So now we're back in London, putting our knitwear to good use, but for once it really feels like I've been on vacation. Until next time I can reminisce, right? My new favourite thing to keep me feeling the vibe is the truly fabulous Frankie Magazine, which I highly recommend you check out. That and, well, Vegemite. No, really!