Over the school hols I decided to take the teens on a mini winter escape to the Mornington Peninsula. Hubby still had to work, so we needed somewhere not too far away but still somewhere we could relax away from home, so Shoreline at Tootgarook was the place! A battle soon ensued between screens and nature. Grab a cuppa, sit back, relax and come away with us to see what we got up to...
Yes, you read it correctly… on our way to "the Pen", we visited the dentist. The kids weren’t too keen about that part but imagine our excitement when from the dentist’s chair, we heard the magical sound of our SMS message telling us that Shoreline was ready - and it was nowhere near 2pm! With clean and sparkling teeth, we headed for Tootgarook and the adventure that awaited.
A toasty warm house with relaxing music greeted us and after unloading bags, the kids chose their rooms and headed straight for the spa. I wasn’t too keen to whip through the freezing air in my bathers, but the warm, steaming water made up for it, the water jets massaging away the tension of the daily grind.
Next on the agenda was a bit more down time, spent in the upstairs lounge. Such a great space to relax and unwind. Miss K and Miss J loved hanging out by the gas fire and it kept the room so warm and snug. Speaking of snug, the carpet at Shoreline is soooo soft. Combine that with the warm fire, super comfy couch and that view… sigh…. it’s like being given a great big bear hug!
I really had to drag myself away from chillaxing to cook our dinner, just as hubby arrived “home”. As much as I didn’t really want to cook on my holiday, I did want to try out the kitchen. Miss J was more than happy to help, so the two of us whipped up a storm with a few ingredients and a recipe from RecipeTin Eats (it's a favourite of ours to find yummy & easy recipes) while hubby took his turn to relax with a bit of screen time and free wifi.
The five of us gathered around the dining table, enjoying our Creamy Chicken and Bacon Pasta & salad and planning our next day’s activities, all while indulging in a bottle of local San Peitro Sparkling Cuvee courtesy of Ocean Blue.
By the way, check out the sunset... sigh... oh that view!
We awoke late like all good teenagers and tired parents do (except poor hubby who left for work at the crack of dawn). The house is right on the main road, but I’d have to say that it was super quiet later at night and it certainly didn’t wake me, given the time I woke! I opened the blinds and with the sun streaming in, lay in bed soaking up the view. I don’t think you could ever get sick of that view could you? If only someone would bring me coffee in bed! The house warmed up so quickly with the gas fires upstairs and down. Breaky for the teens was our holiday only special of Coco Pops served with a side of screen time, of course.
Once we finally got moving, we took a short stroll down the road a couple of blocks away to The Kitchen Tootgarook to grab a takeaway coffee. There was quite a crowd there and the mouth watering smell of breakfast & coffee was wafting around. While we waited for our order, we sat out and enjoyed the sunshine. Well, I enjoyed the sunshine. Not sure the teens noticed since they were still glued to their phones! The big question... how do I get them off their screens?
With coffee & hot chocolate in hand, we took a slow meander back along the beach, stopping to admire the talents of an anonymous sculptor, who created an impressive octopus sand castle.
As we walked and the girls started collecting shells, I remembered that I once wanted to collect sea glass. Within a minute, I found my first piece… though not quite smoothed enough yet so I threw it back in for “a bit longer”. “But Mum, you’ll never, ever get that piece back again!” exclaimed Miss J. She’s right, but someone else can enjoy that one in a few years when it washes back up on another shore. Needless to say, we all got hooked on searching for sea glass and collecting shells. And the best part? No screens!!!
We headed back to Shoreline for Master M's girlfriend (Miss L) to join us. She arrived later than expected, so we had a chance to play some games while we waited. There was a good choice, so we started with Jenga while Miss K lazed on the front balcony soaking up the winter rays. Games soon moved onto Twister and even I got roped in to play! Miss L soon arrived and was swiftly hustled in to a few rounds of Twister and then onto some UNO.
When games were done, we jumped in the car. In less than 20 mins, we were here, Cape Schanck, with it's breathtaking views and wild waves. Can you believe the winter's day we had? Not a cloud in sight! We had a short walk from the carpark to the boardwalk and lots of steps down to the rocky shore. We did spy a strange species on the way down, nestled into the scrub, camoflaged well except for a large brimmed hat and a long, black telescopic eye!
So a funny thing happened... we had decided to clamber over the rocks and walk around to the point. We couldn't get around to the rockpools because it wasn't low tide. Miss K, our budding photographer soon began getting closer and closer to the crashing waves, followed by the others. There was much squealing, giggling and clambering as they dodged the waves. I thought for sure they'd get wet but it didn't happen. After the excitement, we soon settled down for some quiet contemplation in the fresh ocean air, Miss K, J & I high up on a ledge and Master M & Miss L lower down. After a bit, some large waves rolled in which lead us girls to worry about our feet getting splashed. We were fine, but when we looked over at Miss L & Master M, we were just in time to see their laps get completely covered with a big wave blanket! So we had a giggly walk back up the steps, a few "wet bum" jokes and a rather soggy ride back to Shoreline for a change of clothes.
With Miss L dressed in dry, borrowed clothes and our L Plates at the ready, we went for a scenic drive down to Sorrento with Master M at the wheel. We headed straight for the middle of the shops to Mubble for some hand crafted ice-cream. Ice-cream in winter I hear you say... absolutely! I have to admit, I am an ice-cream lover and this was no disappointment. They even had many gluten free & dairy free options. We all gave Mubble the big thumbs up and I tried to convince the teens that we should walk it off along Millionaire's walk. However, the use of the word "walk" turned them back into lazy teens and they begged to go back to Shoreline for a spa and a rest. Tomorrow Mum, we can go there tomorrow.
After Miss L went home and hubby got home from work, we got glammed up (some of us taking far longer than others) and headed out for dinner. We chose Zero 95 Pizza Bar in Dromana after seeing an article in a local mag. I can tell you that we were definitely not disappointed - their woodfired pizzas were absolutely delicious. We were glad we had booked though, because there was quite a crowd. Full of pizza, with left overs in take away boxes we found ourselves agreeing to have dessert. We're on holidays afterall! I really didn't think I could do dessert until I spied... the mini tasting cones. Yes, more ice cream! Yum!
After an easy check out and the lure of brunch, we drove back down to Sorrento. It's a relaxing drive in winter with the sun shining with lovely views of the bay all the way down. We could have gone into Rye for brunch, but the teens had promised to go for that walk. Buckley was our chosen cafe, at the far end of the Sorrento main street. Miss J, our resident connoisseur of pancakes, told me that the buttermilk pancakes were delicious. We managed to sneak into a couple of gorgeous homewares stores before Master M realised we were "shopping" (said with a groan) and we soon moved on.
Have you done Millionaire's Walk before? It feels a little naughty which is what makes it fun! We parked near Lentell Ave and walked to the end of the avenue. On the left is a tall gate - it used to be unmarked but now has council sign on it. It looks like someone's back gate. "What are you doing Mum?", questioned Miss J. "I don't think we should go in" said Miss K & Master M. I opened the gate and explained that it was public land and we then proceeded to walk along the path, seemingly through the back yards of the houses with million dollar views, opening and closing little gates along the way.
The gates often match the house they belong to and so do the private jetties and boat houses. Eventually we came to the beach at Point King Road where the beach meets the backyards of the rich. I once saw a helicopter parked there with doors open, beckoning me in... noone in sight... but since I can't fly, I thought I better not!
With our walk done and tummies still full, we hopped in the car and headed for home. So long Sorrento, ta-ta Tootgarook and see ya next time Shoreline! Perhaps you'll join us next time?