Our stay at Lyrebird Ridge Organic Winery and Retreat: PART 1

It’s Monday, but I’m still on a post holiday high after such a relaxing weekend! 

For Jared’s birthday present this year, I booked a couple of nights at Lyrebird Ridge, an organic winery and B&B down the South Coast. I stumbled across it while searching for budget friendly (under $200 a night) accommodation that was also pet friendly and in a nice location on Stayz. Most of the places that popped up fell outside my budget, were located too far for us to travel with our kitty or were “pet friendly” but didn’t allow animals inside (Severus is an inside kitty).

When I finally came across Lyrebird Ridge, it sounded too good to be true. It hit all the criteria, plus it looked really beautiful. I have always wanted to stay in a farm style B&B, and Jared loves wine as much as I do, so for it be to a winery as well was a giant bonus! So I paid the deposit and told Jared about it on his birthday. It was a winner, he was really excited and happy about it all!

I was also approved to leave work early (YAY!) so Friday lunch time, Jared came to pick me up from work with Severus. He was a big hit in the office. The girls loved him and didn’t want him to leave!

After saying bye to everyone, we took off! It was about a 2.5 hour drive, so we wanted to get on the road as soon as we could!

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We had Severus in his carrier for most of the trip. It was his longest trip to date (before that his longest was 1.5 hours) and he did really well. He was content for most of the time, I opened the door every now and then to comfort him too when he got a bit restless.

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We snacked on the way down because I didn’t get to have lunch. Rice crackers and half a tub of guac (not pictured). Please ignore how dirty our car is!

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The place was really easy to get to. We just followed Jared’s GPS on his phone for most of the way, then followed the directions on Lyrebird’s website (these ones here) for the rest of the way as we got onto the country roads and had less phone reception.

It was here that Severus was unwell. We were only about 10-15 minutes away from the property, but the roads were very windy and bumpy and he got sick in his carrier, the poor baby! We got him out, cleaned out the carrier (and my dress) and took it really easy the rest of the way. I decided then and there to not use the carrier on the way home and just sit in the back with him instead. 

When we finally got there, I fell in love instantly with the place! We pulled in and Greg (the owner) came out of his house to greet us right away. He showed us into our cottage (there were two there) and introduced us to the place.

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The property is owned by him and his wife Anne (who was unfortunately up in Sydney for the weekend and we didn’t get to meet her until Sunday). He let us know that there was fresh butter, bread, cereal and milk waiting for us in our cottage and that he’d be back with some eggs from their chooks in a little while. He also let us know that we were more than welcome to explore the property, pick their herbs/veggies and make ourselves at home. It was enough to make anyone feel welcome! 

This was our little cottage! It was a studio style, with the bed, couch and kitchen all in the one space, with an enclosed bathroom across from the living area. We had a little fire place and kindling, logs and fire starters provided for us and plenty of cosy quilts and throws to keep us warm if it got too cold at night. 

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And the best part? NO PHONE RECEPTION AND NO INTERNET. This was a big thing for me. I am either working on my computer at work or laptop at home and I’m always on my phone, so it was SO good to switch off. Greg told us that if we needed to make any emergency phone calls or anything, we were welcome to come into their home and use their landline, but otherwise we were disconnected from the rest of the world really. It was odd at first, because I’d go to check my phone, but then remember I couldn’t and after a few times of doing this, I just forgot about my phone altogether and it was incredibly freeing!

We got settled in, Jared raided the DVD drawer for our evening viewing, Severus had fun exploring the cottage and looking out the glass door at all the birds in the trees, and I got stuck into the food (of course). I had myself a slice of bread with butter and vegemite. I am such a sucker for soft bread and real butter. And I hadn’t had vegemite in a while, so it was a winning combination for me!

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We left Severus to settle in, and we went to explore some of the property before it got too dark.

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Greg told us that even though the sheep have over 40 acres to explore, they still love to roam around in the small vineyard! Which works out well because they provide natural fertiliser for the vineyard! 

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Amongst the sheep, calves, chooks and ducks, they also have 2 beautiful and incredibly friendly dogs!

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We walked up to the dam at the top of their property and it looked so beautiful from up there.

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Panoramic shot I took with Jared’s phone at the top!

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Their veggie patch was really cute and still in progress, and they had tomatoes and herbs growing in old bathtubs and lemon trees too! It was honestly beautiful. It was such a big reminder of the life I want to live one day, something I had lost sight of recently. To have our own little farm one day is our biggest dream and one I can’t wait to achieve!

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After our walk around the property, we came back to our cottage and got comfortable for the night. We sipped on port and had cheese, dip and crackers (all brought from home) in bed and started our Jim Carey movie marathon. 

For dinner, Jared cooked up some steaks we also brought from home, and had them on open sandwiches using the bread and butter provided, and lettuce and jalapenos that we packed. 

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For dessert, I had brought dark chocolate digestive biscuits and I enjoyed those with a cuppa from their tea collection, and Jared had the hot chocolate they also provided.

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Severus curled up with us for the movies too. Don’t be fooled by that sweet looking face. These shots were taken mere seconds before he pounced on Jared!

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I was so relaxed. Without my phone to distract me, without my laptop to tempt me and without any uni work or anything else in my mind, I was fast asleep by 9pm!

(More of our trip will be posted tomorrow!).

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