Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Picnic @ Tim Neville Arboretum

Our small group (cell group in Malaysia context) has family gathering about once a month (or maybe once in 2 months). Most of us have young children, and I love my small group leader as she's so detail in choosing a safe park for children to go.

A few things that she took into consideration including number of exits in the park (in case kids run out while parents are busy chit chatting?), the park landscape (any obstacle where kids can hide and we might miss them? like behind the tree? can we all watch the kids at a distance at a glance?), safety (river? stream? pond?), etc. I feel so "safe" for her to choose the place because I know all that I worry will surely be taken into her consideration - So I can relax. :)

The previous gathering we had it at Greythorn Park @ Bawlyn. I love that park (hope I can blog about it next time). And this round, for a difference, we decided to go Tim Neville Arboretum @ Ferntree Gully, Knox.

The park is quite a distance from where we live - about 30 minutes drive. Kids were very very excited (oh, they love parks!) and were behaving well in the car. I told them to take a rest or a short nap if they want, and they did sit down quietly in their car seats to take a rest throughout the short journey.

It's a nice park, with big trees with shade everywhere. My small group members and friends put the picnic mats on the grass under a big tree for shelter. The weather is good, sunny and windy. Park is amazing - so many things for children to play. Needless to say, my kids (*again*), hardly ate anything, they just snacked on crackers, potato chips (argh!), and fruits while they kept playing.

I didn't take much picture this round comparing to the first outing as the play area in this park is a distance away from where we sat - so I couldn't really stand or sit around eating while watching my kids (like the last round). I needed to bring them into the play area and watched and played with them.

We did have a great time. Thanks to friend's children who actually helped to watch over them. It was a public holiday yesterday in Melbourne hence the park was crowded. My kids didn't play with other children, but only with the familiar faces - my another migrant friends' children who were also invited for the outing.

Overall, it's a good outing. Girls were happy. And parents had a good time catching up and chit chatting with other parents. I just love going outdoor activity like this in Melbourne. Very relaxing with the good weather here!

It's supposed to be a bring-your-own-lunch event (quite common here apparently! :P).. But as Asians, it turned out to be a pot luck session! But some of the Caucasian friends really  just bring their own lunch for their own family. I actually love this idea - food is not the most important thing during the gathering, but it's more for the catch up.

Anyway, took some pics of the yummy food.

Gado gado by my Indonesian friend

Putting the nice crispy crackers yum yum!

Curry beef with hard boil eggs

Nasi lemak - Very very authentic!

Homemade Sambal! Been craving for this big time :D

And now, some pics of the children - Like I said, I didn't take much. And I actually let Eunice went around freely with another Eunice (friend's daughter) and she really likes her. So, she told me what she did later on while I was busying chit chatting with my friends with Natalie around me.

This swing is really cool! Like a car seat on a swing!

Don't be deceived by her sad face - She actually quite liked it!

All kids love swing!

Daniel bringing Natalie for flying fox!


Eunice's turn!

She's actually quite terrified - hence the tension face :D

My fearless baby going for her 2nd ride!

Another side of the park - my kids haven't explored this yet!

Families around, with their children. Mostly fathers yea?

Enjoying the hammock..

I didn't know that there's a pond with ducks at the other side of the park.
Eunice actually took some bread from our picnic table and fed those ducks. She told us there's a mother duck, and some little ducklings around. Must be big Eunice che che told her this. :)

A small stream for the kids to play. My girls didn't play here (I quickly walked away) and I was too lazy to clean up wet children!

Location of the park:

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