Oct 16, 2010

Tassie! (Tazzy)

Last Saturday Nicci the girlies and I took a trip down to Tasmania to visit Nicci's family and help her parents sell their house. Most of the time I just hung out with the girls, but we did do some pretty amazing things! On Wednesday we went out to Bonorong Wildlife Park to see the animals. We saw tasmanian devils!! Along with wombats, quolls, koalas, and KANGAROOS! At Bonorong they had a whole "Kanga Country" with over 100 kangaroos. It was fantastic. We got to go inside Kanga Country and feed the kangaroos. We got swarmed. So good. We then went to the Cadbury chocolate factory, but only saw the outside because they charged just to go inside the gift shop. Laaaammeee. Cadbury is a pretty big chocolate producer here.

So then the next day, Nicci sent me off on a day trip to see Port Arthur and by golly, it was UH-MAZE-ZING! It had such a creepy feel to it, but at the same time it was gorgeous. It's supposedly extremely haunted, but I had no ghostly encounters thankfully. It's good too because we got there pretty early, and instead of being wiht like 30 people and a guide, I split from the group and went off on my own. I loved exploring by myself! And that way people wouldn't think I was a freak for taking so many pictures, or posing funny in front of things.

Man... I don't even know where to start to tell you about Port Arthur... I'll give you small details, and then add some things in here and there when I put up the pictures. From what I understood of it all, Port Arthur was a place they would send convicts who were "trouble". The convicts that went to port arthur either actually caused trouble after being convicted, were shady characters, or there was "no place" for them anywhere else. What's ridiculous is people would be convicted for SO LONG for the tiniest crimes. Like 7 years for stealing a watch. I don't know much about prison sentences, but I think these days people would get like maybe... maybe a week for stealing a watch... if they're being harsh. So anywho, they were really harsh on the convicts... they had strict working schedules and weren't allowed to talk to anyone. A lot of people died, mostly convixts, out there which is why it's supposedly so haunted. There's an island "Isle of the Dead" that they burried over 1000 dead convicts and guards and reverends and whatnot. The place was up and running for a little over 40 years in the mid 1800's and then closed down (I think 1897 possibly). Then there was a bush fire or something of the sort that wiped out quite a bit of the area. A lot of the houses and things that used to be there are gone. But there are a few buildings still standing strong and beautiful. As creepy as the place was, it was absolutely stunning. Take a look at my pictures!!

 This, my friends, is the cute and not-so-cuddly TASMANIAN DEVIL! Ta da!! To be honest I think they're rather ugly... They're pretty short, fat and stubby little things. But still awesome none-the-less. I think the Tassie devils were bridie's favorite animal! Check out this video of her. I call it her "tasmanian devil cry" so fetching adorable. I love her to pieces.

So Bonorong had a place they called "Kanga Country" where there were literally hundreds of kangaroos just lounging around. Hundreds of FRIENDLY kangaroos! You can see quite a few in the background. We were allowed to go in and feed them too. At first Nicci held Olivia and I held Bridie and we fed them and were swarmed. Then I got to be with the kangaroos by myself which was really awesome. If you want to see more pictures of the kangaroos check facebook. I loaded heaps up there.

Hedgehog! So cute!

 So this is where we stopped on the way to Port Arthur. This one on the left is Tasman Arch, the next one is just a lookout of Pirate's Bay, and the second picture up at the top is of Devil's Kitchen. Pretty beautiful :)

I thought this flower was pretty. When I started taking pictures of it I realized there was a bee there.So then I started taking pictures of the bee :)
This is the church in Port Arthur. This is the church in Port Arthur. Port Arthur was a catholic facility, so they made all of the convicts worship on Sundays. As you can sort of tell, it has no roof anymore, and it's all grass on the inside. It is probably the prettiest building in Port Arthur.

So that quote in red I guess was one of the mottos of Port Arthur. I think it's good that they wanted these convicts to believe in God, but I found it interesting that they forced it upon them. They wanted to "grind" these convicts into honest men. Anyway, all very fascinating.

                   So this one is the Penitentiary (which Tori had to teach me how to say haha). The convicts were housed in here. extending on the inside of each of those little windows was a little bed. The men had no personal space, it was just bed and window. Hundreds of them slept in there, and were employed during the day.

This was on the wall leading into the "Separate Prison" which I think is where they kept the more "troublesome" convicts. Below are listed some of the rules. I found that bit very interesting too. They weren't allowed to make any noise whatsoever unless it was during Sunday service.

This one is the chapel inside the Separate Prison. While I was there they were playing a tape of men (supposed to be the prisoners) singing a church hymn in a different language. It gave me the CREEPS because it was a church hymn that we sing all the time. I couldn't figure out which one it was because it wasn't in english, but I don't really want to. It would probably ruin that hymn for me.
Me acting very pensive in front of one of the buildings. Sadly I don't remember which one that was. I think it was just one of the reverend's houses.

One of the windows of the Penitentiary.

Me pretending to be locked in in the Penitentiary, haha.

A great view of all of Port Arthur. On the left is the Church. That's really the only one you can make out with me in the way of the rest.

There's the Guard Tower, Commandant's house, part of the Penitentiary, and another house from up at my looking rock :)

Guard Tower

Some of the really pretty scenery of Port Arthur.

PS: Sorry about the uber long posts. I'll try to make them shorter from now on :)

Oct 15, 2010

Torture Tickling Tori

This is a video of me (Tori) being attacked and tickled.  It's kinda of embarrassing but it's too funny not to show. Hopefully it's clear enough to see. Also there's a part that my Mom and I realized sounds bad, but I promise I'm saying "My Abs!" Because I was laughing so hard I couldn't breathe and it was quite the work out. Haha!

Oct 5, 2010


Christine here!!
Here's a mindless video that Tori sent to me that makes me quite happy because it's just so funny...

So last Friday I got to go down to Sydney for a YSA cruise in the Harbour. It was AMAZING! We were on a boat with almost 700 other YSA's and the whole bottom floor was a dance floor. We could also go along the side, or up on top. It was PACKED! The theme was crazy hair if you see any strange hair-do's. This first picture is of me on the boat (docked) in front of the Harbour bridge :) That's my "crazy" hair... all I did was make it like crimped and frizzy and wore a sparkly headband. You can't tell in the picture at all though.

Ashleigh and I and some other YSA's (I forget their names... oopsie) and the harbour bridge behind us! This was taken on the top level of the boat.

And THIS is the best part. The one in the white shirt, his name is Vitalii (from the Ukraine). He introduced himself, then stayed by my side for the rest of the cruise. I got to know him a bit, he seemed pretty nice but he was really touchy!! Weird for not knowing him. So I was supposed to go on a date with him last night, but I made an excuse not to go because he's not a member and was already super touchy so I didn't want him to try and put any moves on me haha. So I asked if we could go some other time (hopefully do something else in the daytime). I could be just paranoid but hey, better safe than sorry. Anyway, this is him... he's quite muscly...

On Saturday Ashleigh, Vanessa, Emily and I headed over to the Blue Mountains! The weather was not-so-great, but the mountains were beautiful! This picture here is of the Three Sisters. Funny, because we have Three Sisters in Oregon as well... they're a bit different though.

This one is called Orphan Rock. You used to be able to walk around it and stuff, but then they declared it to be unsafe in the 1970s or something. Bummer, it looks heaps cool! You can't tell from this angle, but there's also a hole right in the middle of the rock.

This is the waterfall Vanessa and I climbed up. We are excellent waterfall climbers!

Aparently this Indian man posed on this rock all contemplative, so we copied him. It does seem like a very good place to do some big thinking.

Ashleigh and I... epic poses again.


We rode the "railway" down to another part of the mountains. It was like as steep as a roller coaster, it was so awesome! This picture was before... I just took it from above the gate that kept us from falling out.

This was another waterfall we climbed that turned out to not be a real waterfall. They just had water running down from a pipe! Lame sauce!! posers.

I'm on a horse... HYA!!!

Ashleigh's very serene...

I'm riding this horse backwards... HYA!!

These tree branch things are like the ones Tarzan would swing from. They're really thick but very bendy like giant ropes. Pretty awesome!

You can't tell but it's pouring rain in this picture. Kinda like we're dancing in the rain with statues! haha. Also, my statue had a naked butt, that's why I'm posing like that... I accidentally covered it up! Dang it!

The face paint that I got when I went to Hunter Valley Gardens a week before the cruise. Pretty legit, I think.

The snake I got to hold at the Gardens! This is the first snake I've ever held!!

Here's just a taste of what the gardens were like. Pretty amazing :)

So also, for more recent news... Sister Julie B. Beck is coming to speak in Sydney October 17th and I'm going to see her!! As far as I know, there will be a YSA Fireside with her and Elder Callister at 5:30 and then a Relief Society Fireside at 7. So I think I'll get to listen to her twice in one night! That's almost as good as general conference! Speaking of Gen. Conference... I haven't watched any of it yet because we're 17 hours ahead of Provo, so we would have had to watch Conference on Sunday and Monday instead of Sat and Sun... so we all just gather at the stake center and will watch it next weekend. I could watch it online, but I figure I'll get more out of it if I actually go to watch. I am very excited about it... I heard lots of good things about it. Also... I got asked to give a talk in Sacrament on the 31st! I don't know my topic yet, but will soon I hope. I'm actually excited about it. It'll be good.
So my time here is almost halfway over! There's so much that I still want to do, but the weekends don't give me enough time to do it all!  It's crazy how fast it's going by! I do really really want to go home and see everybody, but I'm going to miss it here a lot. I'll mostly miss "my family"... that's what I call them at least... I'll miss the family I'm working for, and most of all the girls. Once I go, they're going to grow up so fast and I'm going to miss every single moment! So sad!
Um, another Aussie update: The Commonwealth games are going on right now, and it's something that I've never heard of before... I'm not really sure what the deal with it is... it seems like the olympics, but not all of the countries compete (like the US doesn't for example). Anyway, I'm not quite sure what all that is about, but I like the Olympics! So I'm okay with it.
Well I think that's everything. I love and miss all of you who may be reading!