Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Our Ballarat Mini Break Adventure :: Day 3

This is our last post about our Ballarat Adventure. Over the last few weeks I've been sharing with you my recent trip to Ballarat with the Bambini family. We were invited by Ballarat Tourism to experience the region’s most popular attractions and to sample some of the locally produced food that Ballarat has to offer families.

It was raining cats and dogs on our last day in Ballarat. This city sure knows how to turn on the weather. “Rain, rain go away” Mr 4 sung all morning as we tucked into our breakfast. The only spot left to visit today was Kryal Castle. I was excited and a little unsure what our experience would be like. The last time l set foot into Kyral Castle was about 12 years ago. Unfortunately l wasn’t there on a medieval adventure, instead l was touching the lasers and having a grand time at a dance party! Back in those days Kryal was more known as a fabulous party venue, not as a “ye olde” theme park. Also the park had become quite run down and really wasn’t a tourist destination.

Having heard on the grape vine that Kryal had recently undergone a mini makeover l was excited to experience the park through new eyes. The kids were excited as we drove up the cobble stone driveway and looked in amazement, at the large castle, complete with mini bridge and moat. 

Throwing on all the wet weather gear we could possibly manage we entered the park. The kids had fun exploring the Dragon's Labyrinth, sitting at the Knights Round Table, spending pocket money at the Tooth Fairy Lolly Shop and checking out the Fairies and Goblins Wonderland.

It was just too wet to explore the Magical Maze and the Ancient Cemetery. We were also disappointed we couldn’t watch one of the daily medieval jousting shows. It was simply too wet.

Instead we had our face painted, snacked on lollies and briefly ran around the park dodging the heavy rain. On a sunny day l would image Kryal Castle to be a wonderful place to explore. They have an onsite playground for active kids and daily outdoor combat shows.

I was pleasantly surprised how much work had gone into the renovations and l’m sure they are only going to make more improvements as more people come through the doors. The park was clean, and the kids had a brief encounter of medieval life which has left them curious to experience more. I promised them we would return in the summer school holidays. Fingers crossed the rain will stay away!

**Kryal Castle has so much to offer families and l would highly recommend it as a day trip - pack a picnic for extra fun. We struck out with the weather on the day we visited so make sure you plan ahead as there is not much shelter when the weather turns. Check your local weather guide before planning your day! Have fun.**

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Playtime Review :: Bounce Inc

If your kids are anything like mine, then sometimes you need a place for them to use up a bit of energy and have some fun. In winter when the park isn’t the greatest idea, indoor play centres can seem like the only option. But they’re not!

We recently stumbled across Bounce Inc in Glen Iris. This massive warehouse space is filled with trampolines and is a little jumper’s paradise.

With an entire floor and walls of trampolines, a foam pit to jump in to and dodge ball for the older kids, it’s fun for everyone.

Little Miss booked in for the Mini Bounce session, which is an hour-long skills session for 3-5 year olds. The instructor took them through safety instructions, stretches and then a whole lot of fun jumping activities. Bouncing like a kangaroo, a star, a motorbike and a rocket were met with squeals of delight!

Next, jumping along the trampoline into the foam pit and then free jumping and sliding on the walls. Little Miss had a ball!

For bigger kids, but still under 110cm, there is Junior Jumpers, which is really just free jumping in a separate area. Great, so that the big kids can’t scare the little ones.

While all the action is going on, Mums and Dads can sit upstairs and watch from the raised café area or stand around the edge of the trampolines on the ‘grass’ to take photos. The café fare is basic, but the coffee is decent and babycinos come with a marshmallow. Always a hit with Little Miss and the Little Man.

Bounce Inc also do kids parties, with different food and jumping options available.

A new Bounce Inc is due to be opened in Blackburn soon, so Eastern suburbs kids can join in the fun.

We’ve been twice now, and while it’s a little out of the way, it’s a fun way to spend a morning when you need something different to do.

General admission - $16.50 per hour, $10 subsequent (including jumping socks)
Mini Bounce (3 to 5 years) - $16 per hour
Junior Jumpers (under 110cm) - $11.50 per hour (including socks)
Bookings to be made online or via phone

Mini Bounce – Mon to Fri 10am to 12pm
Junior Jumpers – Mon to Fri 10am to 4pm (school term), 10am to 12pm (school holidays)

Bounce Inc was reviewed by the lovely Mel, all thoughts and words are her own and she was not invited to visit by the folk from Bounce Inc. She just loved the experience and had to share!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Interview :: Suzy From JOCO Cups

Well it’s time again to spark up that interview light. This week we’re chuffed to have the talented Suzy from JOCO Reusable Cups. Not only does Suzy juggle a busy work load selling her reusable cups to trendy Melbourne cafes, she's also the proud mumma to 3 gorgeous kids who love to dine out in some of Torquay's finest cafes.

Day Job/Occupation :: I am Sales Manager for JOCO Glass Reusable Travel Cups, selling nationally and also around the globe.  I also wear a Real Estate agent hat selling luxury beach homes in and around Torquay.

Kids :: Otis 6, Sunni 3 and Frankie 9 months old

Tea or Coffee? :: Coffee – flat white, no sugar if it’s a good brew.  Also partial to a spicy Chai, with a dash of honey and soy.

Sweet or Savoury for Breakfast :: Breakfast – what’s that?! I usually have a berry smoothie on the run if I’m lucky!

How often do you dine out with your little people? ::  Every few weeks if we’re lucky.

Keeping it local! Where do your family hangout out the most when dining out? :: Café Moby – which is located in the heart of town across the road from the beach.  It was originally a weatherboard beach home, it's now been converted into a café which boasts a huge backyard complete with a fantastic fully enclosed playground. It's a mum’s heaven!

What is the ultimate family friendly feature you love in a kid friendly café? ::  An enclosed yard where I can sit back, read the paper, read emails and enjoy a hot coffee knowing the kids are safe.

What do your kids love to eat when they go out? ::  We’re lucky enough to have kids with a varied palette, depends on what’s on offer from but anything on the kids menu usually floats their boat.

Best thing about eating out with kids :: Having someone else do the cleaning up!

Worst thing about eating out with kids :: The emotional breakdown if they’re tired

Your BEST eating out tips for new parents  :: Always ask for kids drinks in a cup with a lid and a straw to avoid those embarrassing milkshake and babycino spills. A JOCO Reusable cup with lid is a perfect solution for this situation!

Describe eating out with kids in three words :: Fun  Messy  Bribery

Thanks for sharing a slice of family life Suzy, we’re most jealous your 'local' is opposite the beach! For more info on JOCO Cups and Stockist click HERE. x


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