Having comfortably set up our Queensland base camp, now we have a place where we can show hospitality to others! Our first guests are the Mason family whom we met in New Zealand when they opened their holiday home to us at Snells Beach.

Yesterday we collected Guy, Ruth and their four children at the Brisbane airport as we headed home from our short visit to the Sunshine Coast. At home, it didn’t take long for the older kids to click with Heidi and Ivy who live in the main house, and Tseorah and Maschal disappeared up into the house to play until late at night.

Masons unpacking in the shed, September 2011
The Masons brought thirteen bags with them from New Zealand and they easily fit into the shed's open spaces.

Ruth reading to the kids, September 2011
Whenever Ruth picks up a book to read to one of the children, she's soon surrounded by almost half a dozen!

Today was a great time as the family became more settled on the premises. Again, the kids from the three resident families played together — mostly outside. The weather is warm and sunny — a perfect Queensland welcome for the Masons.

Girls playing with trampoline and hose, September 2011
Heidi and Ivy love joining in the fun. When the hose is added to the trampoline, it cools everyone down.

Guy playing the guitar, September 2011
Guy enjoys taking his guitar outside to sing and play while he watches the children at play.

Maschal with a skink, September 2011
Maschal found a friendly skink and brought it inside to show us.

Delaney with Tseorah, September 2011
The older kids dote on Delaney who laps up the extra attention.

Qashar on the gyrocar, September 2011
Qashar in particular has been enjoying the freedom of riding the gyrocars into the shed.

Tseorah sewing, September 2011
Tseorah has been working on some sewing projects, including mending some of our girls' dress-ups.

Anav, September 2011
Our girls are delighted to have Anav's company again.

Maschal reading with Brioni and Aisha, September 2011
Brioni and Aisha love looking at books with older kids who can also read to them!

Qashar playing with lego, September 2011
The kids have loved playing with a small collection of Lego — keeping it up on a higher shelf so Delaney doesn't pull their creations apart.

This evening, David prepared vegetarian burritos for everyone, and the adults used the opportunity to sit down and chat as a group. The kids hardly stopped playing — even to eat!

Hanging in the shed with the Jimenezes and Masons, September 2011
Tonight all three families came together for dinner in the shed. It was lovely to spend time with Karina and Aslam and to meet and talk with Aslam's brother Richard who is also living up in the house.

Playing with dress-ups, September 2011
The kids soon started going through the dress-ups box and discovering interesting things to wear and accessorise with.

Riding gyrocars, September 2011
Tonight the kids held races down the driveway and into the shed — even while still in their outrageous dress-up outfits!

The Masons aren’t certain of their plans — as neither are we — but while we have this time together, we’re enjoying the company and the stimulation of the children’s creative play.