Saturday, June 30, 2012

Astro Turf, Art and more of 40

Astro turf, is it wrong? Our children love it, partly because they don't encounter it too often. This is at Fed Square, real grass would struggle to grow here due to the high level of pedestrian traffic, so its probably astro-turf, or concrete.


Took myself off on a tangent googling astro turf - check out

After visiting these sites I think there are probably more astro turf negatives than positives. The advice to wash your hands after using it because of the chemical residues and bacteria sounds pretty ewww, but then washing your hands is pretty good advice in general. More plastic in the world is probably never a good thing. At our rental, we are gradually removing more and more lawn and replacing it with garden, we never water the lawn, and we mow with an electric mower.

Real turf, complete with duck poo splodges to dodge, definitely wash your hands after visiting here. I love this steep hill in Birrarung Marr, so many children gleefully tumbling down it, and then giddily returning to the top. Give them a hill and they will roll.

The little Bowerbird took a while to get the knack of it and then when she finally did she bumped her head.

Totally unrelated, but to end the 40th Birthday visit to the city, weekend story. 
Drawing on art created by Vincent Fantauzzo in the Art Gallery. Some really cool textas were placed next to this huge pastiche of photos and visitors were invited to embellish them.

  This little one had no qualms about drawing on walls.
 Looks like he's doing something he shouldn't.


 NGV Kids Corner, playing with leaves.

 One of my favourite Melbourne buildings viewed from inside the NGV Kids Corner.

Inspired by the circus, the middle Bowerbird attempts juggling.
 Another Birthday Cake to celebrate the big four O.

I love all the art in the city, not so much to enjoy around us. We do good trees, but the Big Bowerbird even found a lovely one of these to climb amongst all the concrete and bustle.

The Big Bowerbird wore my Nannas old hat (a treasured possession) to keep warm, and to disguise the fact that we forgot the brush - she attempted using the apartment's fork with limited success.

Melbourne, mid winter, is really the bomb, especially when your'e spoiling yourselves for a birthday treat. Not quite the overseas adventure we like to talk about (hello Tattslotto quick pick), but a great substitute on a budget. Was one of those weekends that felt like a week had past in just two short days.


  1. Hair is best left unbrushed under the age of sixteen anyway! Where are the pics of mum rolling down the hill or jumping on the astroturf cubes? These are good ways of remaining youthful when over forty.

    Can you give Beth a nudge for me? I'd love to hear from her!

    1. Consider her nudged, I'm always holding the camera so rarely pics of me. I have to confess to not rolling or jumping though. Was at the playground this week with the littlest though, and did plenty of kids crazy things - played followed the leader and she had me doing quite a workout.

  2. Looks like a great birthday celebration! It's funny, I walk past fed square so often but rarely venture inside. Re. the astro turf, maybe I need to rethink using it on my nature strip??

    1. I love fed square in the winter, a bit bright and hot in the summer,it's quite the labyrinth to explore. Yes the more I read about astro turf, the less I like it. Would be cool if we can turn it into a very low maintenance garden bed.

  3. happy Birthday!! Love all the action shots of your happy tribe, and more cake sounds like a great weekend was had by all!!

  4. A lovely way to celebrate. You all look so happy. Xx

    1. it was beautiful mum, and we get to do it all again kidless!

  5. I love the NGV kids spaces - a lot of hours have been whiled away in there. Regarding the astro turf whilst I wouldn't use it in a home garden I do like it as a feature in fed square, like anything the occasion bit in small quantities can't be too bad...or can it?

    1. there are some small quantities of things that are still bad - DDT, asbestos....It's really early days for this stuff, and it is being put everywhere, perhaps it will be the treated pine of the future. How cool is Kids Corner, it's often quiet, like a little secret funland hiding behind ACMI.

  6. I love the Drawing on art, I took my children to plenty of art museums and shows but never found anything like that. What a wonderful way to share art with children. As for the astro turf, I hate it. We live in an area which has plenty of rain for grass, yet it's torn up for astro turf for mainly football fields. It must be laid on a hard surface, usually concrete around here, so it's hard and causes more injuries than grass does. As for the plastic, I'm on a mission to use none.

    1. There is some serious propaganda being used in astro turfs promotion - eco, green, one site was claiming it was the solution to childhood obesity, so much safer and cleaner the kids will want to go outside, who are they kidding? I didn't realise it was laid on concrete, I thought it would at least have the advantage of being permeable.

      We're so lucky to have some great kids art spaces in Melbourne.

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In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt.
Margaret Atwood

“She turned to the sunlight
And shook her yellow head,
And whispered to her neighbour:
"Winter is dead.”
― A.A. Milne, When We Were Very Young