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Sunday, July 10, 2011

Jen & Jode's Big Adventures: The Mini Road Trip

In our latest BIG adventure, Jen and I get all Thelma & Louise and take a road trip - albeit a short one. Minus the guns, convertible and - unfortunately - Brad Pitt.

I was one lucky duck recently to be given a brand new Toyota Kluger to play with for two weeks! My pal Jen (friend and official Mummy Mayhem photographer) and I decided that during that two week period, we'd head up to Palm Beach, aka Home & Away territory, on my 'day off' (all kids in school and daycare) for a bit of fun and lunch. Natch.

It turned out to be a pretty cold and slightly wet day, so the first thing we did when we got in the car was turn on the seat warmers. Niiiiice. You just can't underestimate a good seat warmer. When your arse is warm...so is the rest of you. (Just sayin'.) (Of course, as I mentioned to Jen, if you owned a car with a seat warmer and you were trying for a baby, your husband couldn't use it. Can't go heating up 'the boys' when conception is on the cards, huh?)

After waving the kids hurriedly goodbye to school, we dropped the 4yr old to daycare, then headed straight up the coast. Ah, yes...where the 'other half' live.

On our way, we stopped off in Mona Vale to visit a gorgeous stationery store that Jen had heard about. As regular readers here know: I LOVE stationery. We spent a good amount of time just perusing all the cute and lovely stationery items. I was tempted to buy half the store, but just managed to restrain myself. Just.

Image from Little Paper Plane

We wandered around looking for a cafe to curb our coffee cravings. On our wander, we stumbled across a fab book store - Berkelouw Books. It offered not only books, but a bunch of gorgeous stationery (yippee!) and nick knacks galore. Jen and I could have spent aaaaages there, but coffee - as well as lunch in Palm Beach - awaited. 

We ended up in a small, busy and cosy cafe called 2kf Espresso. We had a feeling it served good coffee and we were right. It was a weak cappuccino for me, and piccalo latte for Jen. Yum. 

Look at me - stirring my coffee before Jen got a shot of my fab milk froth pattern.
I'm impatient like that when it comes to food & beverages. ;)

 Then we were on our way to Palm Beach. Shortly after our arrival we found the perfect house for sale, including a pool with magnificent water views (at least, that's what the For Sale sign pics alluded to). We imagined going halvies and heading up to Palmy on weekends and drinking margaritas poolside. (I can't recall where we figured our husbands and children would be during this scenario - probably back in Sydney doing the weekend sports etc. Perfect.) 

Of course, this was complete fantasy stuff, but hey - I was also imagining I was the owner of brand new Toyota Kluger, so why not have the beach house to go with it?

Speaking of the Kluger, we took it off-road at the beach (well, by 'off-road' I mean the dirt verge I drove on when I took a U-turn near the beach) and it fared well. ;) I couldn't resist stopping off for a bit of Home & Away-like acting - looking wistfully out to sea - just near the surf kiosk. Classic stuff. 

Oh, Alf....where are yoooooou?

We decided - seeing that we had the cool car - we had to dine at a cool restaurant, and ended up at Barrenjoey House for an absolutely delicious lunch. 

The Kluger is parked. We had to buy a ticket for 4hr parking - which Jen so graciously did.
At least we were secure in the knowledge that we could take our sweet time. 

We actually dined in the section on the LHS of this photo.

The interior was so beautifully designed. It was enjoyable sitting there. 


 We had a couple of different menus to choose from, including this one...


I had an amazing goats cheese tartlet (my mouth is watering just thinking about it again), and Jen had a fab steak sandwich. Nom.  

Our lunch was SO delicious!

Then we couldn't help but go for dessert. I had a delicious apple & rhubarb crumble, and Jen went for a chocolate sensation ('The Chocolate Nemesis') - which tasted like a cross between chocolate cake, chocolate ice cream and cheesecake. (Yes, of course I tried it!) Delightful!

Once again...I've tucked in to mine before the photo has been taken. Geez. 

Completely stuffed, we managed to drag ourselves back in to the Kluger and bid Palmy farewell. 

We had one more stop before heading home: a gift shop in Avalon - the name of which has absolutely escaped me. It was tucked away in a small arcade. They had some great stuff there, but very expensive. There was a cool yellow typewriter there which reminded me of my old typewriter days in high school. The yellow one was actually far more interesting than the old grey one I used to have, but good memories nonetheless. ;) 

On our way home, Jen decided to take an action shot of me driving the Kluger. It almost became a shot of me demonstrating the Kluger's airbag, because just moments after this was taken, I suddenly realised, 'Oi! I better watch the road!' and managed to stop in time before driving in to another car. (Wouldn't Toyota have been pleased?)

Ha ha ha....there's no way I'm gonna crash this car.....oh WAIT!

Our trip was more than comfy in the old Kluger. Before we knew it, school pick-up was upon us, and we had no option other than to head home...

The wet weather didn't bother us...we were cosy & comfy in the Kluger!

Thanks Toyota for the Kluger. Thanks Jen for the company...and for your great pics. Looking forward to more BIG adventures with you. ;)

Hubby and I will be giving our little review on the Kluger next week, so keep an eye out for that. If you're looking for your next family car, you might find that interesting. ;)

Until then....happy travels all...


Megan Blandford said...

Looks like a fun trip!

Ms Styling You said...

That Home and Away shot? Classic! And no puffer vest?

Maxabella said...

The Kluge takes on those Kidspot Terrors? x

Christie said...

We got ourselves a Kluger when we went "up" one child and needed more than a five seater. Ours is second hand and unfortunately did not come with the bum warmers!!
What a great day out, I read that menu, I would have ordered the bugs. YUM!

Being Me said...

That all looks like so much FUN! How gorgeous was that restaurant? x Lucky girl.

Gemma @ My Big Nutshell said...

what a great day out. You girls looked like you really enjoyed your day release.

That car looks snappy too!

Thea said...

What a fabulous day out!! I almost felt like I was there.

Great photos, Jen! :)

MultipleMum said...

A beautiful part of the world thoroughly enjoyed by a pair of nuts in a Kluger! x