Aisha loves our friends the Rattenburys. K is horse-crazy, and Aisha likes to style herself as a future “horse-lady”, so they get along well. And the Rattenburys’ son Z loves Aisha; they play so well together (leaving Brioni to find her own amusement). Calista clicks with 3yo A, and Brioni, well, she just ends up left out but happy enough (I think).

So our unplanned connection this weekend was a blessing to us all. I phoned Mel at the last minute to ask if they she and her family was interested in looking through the Queensland Air Museum with us, since it’s located pretty close to their home. They were, and they met us on site.

After we finished looking at all the exhibits, we decided to go to a local park to give the kids a play and warm up in the sun.

Calista, 2yo, July 2010
We breed 'em tough. Calista fell on some steps and busted her lip (see the red around her mouth — that's blood), but the first that I heard about it was when I approached her to take some photos.

K + Calista, July 2010
The playground featured corrugated sheets and lots of stainless steel bars.

Brioni, 3yo, July 2010
Brioni lost her usual playmate and instead played with Calista and K.

Z + Aisha, 5yo, July 2010
Aisha and Z chased each other all around the playground. They have such good fun together.

Delaney, 6 months old, July 2010
Dell tried out the sand.

Brioni, 3yo, July 2010
K (in the background) buried Brioni in the sand. (Brioni loved the attention — it didn't matter what was being done to her!)

Calista + A, July 2010
Cali loves the sensation of being "updown-side", as she calls it.

As the day drew to a close, we decided to go back to the Rattenburys’ house for dinner — and ended up staying the night (although their house was already full-up with a paying English-student occupying the spare room).

David, Calista, 2yo, + Nigel, July 2010
In testing out the treadmill, David ended up walking and running seven kilometres — without shoes on!

Melinda, David, Lauren + Nigel, July 2010
And of course we played lots of games, and playing with the Rattenburys is never boring. It took me a while to realise that Nigel (next to me) was cheating by reading my hand of cards in the reflection of the sliding glass door next to me.

Calista, 2yo, + A, 3yo, July 2010
In the morning, both Calista and A joined me for a cuddle under the warmth of the blankets.

Raffi, Z, Brioni, 3yo, + Aisha, 5yo, July 2010
Z brought out some photo albums to show Aisha pictures of when he was a baby. Swiss guest R enjoyed looking through the Rattenburys' photos too.

As we drove home again, we finally got to cross the bridge we first walked over two months ago.

Second Gateway Bridge, July 2010
On the way home, we drove over the second Gateway bridge for the first time.