Western Australia: Part Two

Tuesday started with a delicious breakfast from Margaret River Bakery. Taylor’s dad picked up some great tasting pastries. Unfortunately, I was to busy stuffing my face with them that I forgot to take pictures! Sorry about that! We need the sugar and the calories to power us through our busy day.

Our first stop was at a silk store where we learned how silk was made and they had some beautiful silk products.

Then we headed to Bootleg Brewery. Taylor and his parents shared a tasting and we sat outside and relaxed. The brewery had a beautiful setting with a pond with swans swimming and a place to play bags and other yard games. photo (6)

Our next stop was a Cheeky Monkey Brewery and Cidery. They shared a tasting and we ordered lunch and ate outside. After lunch, there was a winery also located on the property and Taylor and his Dad did a tasting at Killerby Wines. WAust-15 WAust-17 WAust-20 WAust-22 WAust-25 WAust-28photo (7)

For the remainder of the day we went shopping in Margaret River and picked up some tasty kabobs from the meat market to cook dinner at home.

Wednesday was our beach day and we visited Redgate Beach first. We stayed for a short time only because the wind was blowing pretty darn hard and it was a tad bit chilly and uncomfortable. We headed to Rivermouth Beach next and found a place that we were protected from the wind and spent the afternoon there. photo (9) photo (8)

Thursday was another busy day with many wine stops and shopping stops. Our first winery visit for the day was at Brookland Valley Vineyard for a tasting. We then headed to Margaret River Valley Chocolate Company. I was in heaven. I could fully participate in this stop and loved it. I may have purchased a few things to bring home from here! Our next wine stop was at Hay Shed Hill Wines.

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For lunch, we stopped at Vasse Felix Winery. This was a fancy meal! We all had unique dishes! Taylor did a tasting here.

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The next wine stop was a Juniper Estate nearby. At that ended the wine drinking for the day!

Heading back to the house we stopped at Ollio Bello organic olive oil with olive trees Ollio Bello Olive Oil and did an olive oil tasting. I enjoyed this because I could participate and I made a few purchases!

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Our last stop before we headed back was at Cowaramup Bay. WAust-74 WAust-80 WAust-87

Friday was our last full day before we headed back to Singapore. Our day started with a stop at Credaro Family Estates. This winery was a small, family owned winery with a beautiful hilly setting.

We stopped next at Canal Rocks along the ocean. Our pictures do not show the grandness of these ocean rocks. It was really cool to see.

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For a mid-morning snack, we headed to Gabriel Chocolates. The chocolate shop was phenomenal! The chocolate beans were roasted on premises and it smelled heavenly. The chocolate was to die for also! Don’t worry, I brought some home with me!

We headed to Arimia Estate Winery next in hopes of some wood-fired pizza that we were told was delicious, but unfortunately they only did that on Saturday and Sunday. Taylor and his parents had to settle for a wine tasting instead, darn.

For lunch we headed back to Bootleg Brewery and we sat outside for lunch.

We rounded out our day with some relaxation at home. Taylor and I headed Gnarbar on the beach for our dinner and watched a little sunset with some surfing. WAust-163 WAust-161

Saturday we packed up our things and headed back north to Perth to fly home. We stopped first at the Margaret River Valley Farmers Market. I was in heaven. I wish I could have brought back all of the fresh produce and grass-fed meat that was there back to Singapore. I had to settle instead for some chocolate, pastries and a tasty breakfast sandwich. We continued driving north along the coast stopping at some beaches along the way. We happened upon another open air market in Dunsborogh, I found some cool jewelry at this market. Our last stop before the airport was at One-Forty Cafe in Mandura. This was a cute cafe and we had nice sandwiches. The town was really cute and I wish we would have had time for more exploring.

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That rounds out our trip!

 

Western Australia: Part One

A few weeks ago we headed back to Australia with Taylor’s parents. We flew Saturday morning from Singapore to Perth(a 5 hour flight) and then drove about 3 hours south to Margaret River Valley in South Western Australia. In total, we stayed for a week.  The area is best known for its wineries and beaches. While I personally had to sit out from the wine drinking fun, there was plenty to keep us all occupied and I was a great designated driver. We had a fabulous time and I would highly recommend it for a getaway!

We rented a house situated half way between the town of Margaret River and the Ocean. The house was called Selador (get it? “cellar door” ), which Taylor found and booked online. It was a great 2 bedroom, 2.5 bath house with a great kitchen and living room. We had some kangaroo appearances outside too!

The Kitchen

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Sunday, we headed off to visit some of our first wineries. We headed to Leeuwin Estate for the first stop of the day. This vineyard also had a nice art gallery attached to it.

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The next stop was a Voyager Estate Winery. This winery had beautiful grounds. We strolled around the rose garden. untitled-42untitled-35 untitled-38

Up next, we headed to Xanadu winery.

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Our last wine stop of the day was at Cape Mentelle Vineyards. Taylor decided to have a little childhood fun here. untitled-51

We rounded out the day with a nice lunch in Margaret River at the Settlers Tavern. I had a great BBQ sandwhich(which they were proud that they had just got a smoker/grill from the USA.) It was delicious!

The rest of the day was spent picking up some groceries and relaxing at the house!

On Monday, we headed south towards Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse which is the most Southwest point in Australia. Along the way we stopped at Gnarabup Beach and Surfers Point Beach. Surfers Point is a very famous surfing beach on the west coast. The week after we left a big competetion was gearing up. untitled-52 untitled-55 untitled-56 untitled-58 untitled-59 untitled-60

On our adventure we also saw this giant lizard!

untitled-62On our way to the lighthouse we had a lunch break in a small town of Augusta and stopped at a cute resturant called Deckchair Gourmet. We all had tasty sandwhiches and then got back on the road to head to the lighthouse. We had beautiful weather this day and a great blue sky. It was great for taking pictures!

Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse

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Our day ended with dinner out near the beach at Sea Garden Restaurant. We had some wood fired pizzas and seafood. We had great meals both of these days all from recommendations from the Lonely Plant books! I wish I would have taken pictures of all the wonderful food we ate, but I forgot!

I can’t wait to share more from our trip next week!

A Singapore ‘Friends-giving’

A few weeks ago we had a super fun-filled Thursday evening with our family and friends. We celebrated had a Thanksgiving Feast in March! Growing up, Taylor and his family celebrated Thanksgiving with the same family friends over the years. These friends,  go back to when Taylor’s parents were attending grad school together and all of the children are very near in age. The group is known as the ‘eight-sum’. I experienced my first  ‘eight-sum’ Thanksgiving a few years back, it was a super fun time filled with great food, games of spoons and other card games and lots of great stories. Along with Taylor and myself in Singapore, there another family friend here that is part of the ‘eight-sum’, it worked out that his parents and Taylor’s parents could all travel to Singapore at the same time. We decided, that it would be the perfect time to re-create the glorious turkey feast!

Finding all the fixings for this masterpiece of a dinner was a very interesting task! I definitely hunt and gathered from many different stores across the city! I started around the Christmas holidays planning buy purchasing cranberries and freezing them(there would be no chance to find them this time of year!) along with buying an extra bag of stuffing cubes. The next task was to find a turkey, which was also a challenge. Turkey is not a very common meat that is consumed in Asia and I don’t have a freezer space large enough to even think about keeping a turkey in. For weeks, I was keeping my eyes peeled and looking in different grocery stores to see if I could find one. It just so happened two weeks before our feast I spotted a few in a local store. They were on the small side, but would work. Now, I just needed to keep my fingers cross that they would be in stock when I returned in a week! They were and my turkey was able to start defrosting in our fridge. Our meal consisted of turkey cooked on the grill, mashed potatoes and gravy, roasted broccoli, stuffing, cranberries, apple sauce, wine and of course, apple and pumpkin pie. I even got out our fall table wear to get in the Thanksgiving mood. We stuffed ourselves. It was so fun to have this giant feast in the spring time with family and friends!

The FoodSGThanksgiving-18 Our Group EatingSGThanksgiving-22Passing the DessertSGThanksgiving-26Eating Dessert
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Up next week, our trip to Western Australia! Now that we have our picture storage situation under control I hope to start editing the hundreds of pictures we have taken!

We’ve Been Keeping a Secret…

IMG_7649-1-2Yup, you read that right!  Taylor and I are thrilled to be on the adventure of becoming parents. We are so excited for the arrival of a little one in September as it will be the best memories that we will have from our time living in Singapore. My due date is September 26th. So far everything is looking good with the little one and I have doctors appointments here in Singapore every 3 to 4 weeks. Visiting the doctor is very exciting because at each visit I get to see the little one with an Ultrasound. It is common practice here to have a Ultrasound at each visit unlike the US. At our next visit we will find out of our little one is a boy or girl, we are very excited!

Telling family and friends has been really exciting too! Taylor’s parents were here visiting and we were able to tell them in person and with technology, we were able to Facetime and surprise my parents and others with little presents. We told Taylor’s parents at 2am after they landed by giving them wine glasses as a gift, part of their trip here was a visit to a wine region in Australia. The glasses said Grandma and Grandpa’s Sippy Cups. For my parents, I had sent them Purdue Grandma and Grandpa shirts along with a wine glass Grandma’s Sippy Cup and a Grandpa’s Sippy Cup beer stein. Needless to say, both sets of grandparents are thrilled! We also sent some shirts to other family members to surprise them, I even managed to get an Indiana University Grad to willingly wear a Purdue shirt. She must really love this baby already! 🙂

Proud Grandparents IMG_2419“Sippy Cups”IMG_4466Visiting Grandparents!photo (5)

Rockin’ the Purdue Wear!
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We are so excited for our new adventure and can’t wait to share our excitement with you. If you want to follow along with updates on how things are going with the pregnancy or when the baby arrives please follow along on the blog. I will not be posting many things on Facebook. You can follow the blog by inputting your email address into the “Follow” box in the right corner. You will then receive an email update each time a new post goes up.

Lots of Love from Singapore!