Leaving the Blue Mountains…

I really have to share these photos of the last bits from the Katoomba area:

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We’ve seen at least two Goldsmith streets – this one I got a photo of. It’s fun to find your name on a street!

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This van with the dots/spots is seriously fun. I asked Steve if he would be OK with me painting dots on my car (a 2007 Ford Fusion). He said no. I guess I can go along with that – it is in excellent condition. But when my car is 10-15 years old it is very likely to get some spots.

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This tiny wren came right up to us when we hiked at Wentworth Falls. I was tiny – smaller than my fist. Aren’t the browns and grays pretty?

Bushwalk to Wentworth Falls

We went on an adventure! This 4 hour bushwalk (hike) at Wentworth Falls that included waterfalls and lots of stairs. It was beautiful! The air was crisp and we were out of the wind most of the day.

I found out before we set out that there was a strange storm at home with 80 mph winds that bent the pole that holds the shade over our pool. Thankfully it bent the pole and didn't pull the roof off. (Thank you Christopher for taking the shade down before more damage was done.) It's odd when this sort of thing happens when you are so far away that you can't do anything about it.

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See, we don't look worried at all, do we? We ran into 2 other hikers and managed to get some photos of the two of us together. Nice.

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Lots of falls.

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Amazing scenery.

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Stairs. Up and down. Up is harder. I spent a lot of time focused on where my feet went. The stairs were actually good to look at. Carved out of the rock, they were lovely. In many places we stepped on blocks of stone – that was the path. Way cool.

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We took this shot after walking up these stairs. It was good place to catch our breath. Great photo!

I posed on the rock below at the waterfall. I didn't get all the way on the rock because I kept wondering who would rescue me if I fell and broke my leg. It's hell getting old enough to worry about that sort of thing! I worried about my 'hat hair' and I'm happy to see that it's not so bad!

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I’m behind!

Well, I was in the lead for a long time so I shouldn't complain – but I'm competitive so I can't say nothing! I got an email from Ami Simms about the current World Series Quilt Challenge. I've written about it here before. I'll put an image of my quilt below to jog your memory. You can 'vote' with your dollars for the quilt you like the best… I do hope it's mine! If it is, please do take a moment to move me out of the cellar! Click here to go to the page to vote.

Remember that all funds raised from these votes and from the auction of the eight quilts go to fund Alzheimer's research.

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Hiking around Katoomba…

We got up this morning to clear skies, cold air and wind – which is better that cold, wet wind. There are a variety of hikes around the cliffs. We bought trolley passes which allowed us to get on and off in different places.

On the walk up through town I spotted some lovely flowers outside a flower shop. Do orchids really come in this shade of blue?

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And these were pretty. I'd have gotten a bunch but we're moving around too much.

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We're in the Blue Mountains. Do they look a little blue there behind me?

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There are cliffs that look a little bit like the Grand Canyon. The Three Sisters are a famous rock formation…

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We went over to Scenic World and road the (sort of scary) cable car across the canyon. We also rode down into rain forest at the bottom of the canyon and the railway back up. In all cases I was busy enough holding firmly onto the rails that I did not take photos.

And one last photo to share is of the crosswalk sign. I do love the signs in Australia. I don't know if it's just that they are different, but I think the graphics are better. This says 'crosswalk' better than the signs at home do.

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Driving to Katoomba…

We left Canberra and headed to Katoomba in the Blue Mountains. We drove through lots of sheep stations (ranches). In fact, we saw the Big Merino in Goulburn. I didn't go in the shop and now wish I had.

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The backside of the Big Merino cracked me up…

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The countryside was really lovely…

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We've seen kangaroos, wallabies, and wombats on the drive. These are all big enough that you really don't want to hit them with a car but it's obvious from the roadkill that cars are hitting a fair number of these animals. We saw this wallaby on the drive…

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On all of our drives we've seen these fire danger signs. Australia is a dry continent and they have been in drought for many years. This year they have gotten more rain so the arrows on the signs we've seen point to low-moderate. Notice the highest danger – catastrophic.

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I bought some pretty candy. Steve got the lemon drops which are pretty tasty. The flavor I bought is sort of unusual, but it's a good color.

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Addicted to Fabric…

…is a great shop in Canberra. I had the pleasure of teaching a 2-day class at Addicted to Fabric. The women in my class were wonderful and everyone made excellent progress on their own quilt based on The Ground from our book, Applique Outside the Lines. It was fun to be in the room and share in the creative energy. Did I take pictures? Well, no. I was way too busy teaching. Did I find time to buy fabric? Yes, of course!

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Addicted to Fabric has some of the most wonderful Australian and Japanese fabric.

(I'm teaching in Melbourne September 3-5 and I hear there is still room in the workshops. If you are interested, give the folks at Amitie a call.)

Steve got out and about. He went back to Booroomba Rocks and got the actual rocks.

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And he went to the Australian National Botanic Gardens – with the camera… This looks like holly with golden flowers.

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Don't know what this is, but I like it…

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Visited the coast…

We drove from Canberra to the coast – about 2
hours away. We crossed some mountains and the roads were as winding and steep
as many I’ve been on in Colorado. At Murramarang we found a friendly group of
what I think are kangaroos (as opposed to wallabies which.

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I saw what looked like a dandelion on steroids.
On closer inspection I realized that it had spikes on the leaves – lots of
them! I dubbed it the scary plant.

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There were lovely sandy beaches and outcroppings of sandstone that have been carved by the sea.
 

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The clouds in the sky were especially nice…

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On the drive out I saw what looked like some
sort of animal in the trees. They didn’t look particularly good, in fact they
sort of looked like scruffy stuffed bears. One resembled a gorilla. I asked
about them in Bateman’s Bay and found that there are, in fact, hundreds of
stuffed animals in the trees on highway 52 between Canberra and Bateman’s Bay.
On the way home I took photos…

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Can you spot the bear?

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On close inspection you can tell that these have
been out there a while.

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