Some of our breaks are planned well in advance - and others aren't! Although Nick requested annual leave for the school holidays, it wasn't approved.
We didn't expect to go anywhere so when partial leave confirmation later came through, we needed to come up with a quick plan.
Of course, available funds influence destination choice and once pay-day rolled around we had a better idea of how far we could go.
After a few phone calls, we booked accommodation on Wednesday morning for our Sunday evening arrival - and I started prepping our provisions.
Sapphire is 860km from home. We were in for a huge drive, so as well as my usual meal preparations I planned to make sandwiches for a quick lunch stop along the way.
We did a few things differently this trip. Juice boxes and water were packed into insulated lunch boxes (with mini ice-bricks). These were stashed inside the car for easy access. Bandit used the coolers as pillows!
Departure was 4:57am and we had already traveled for three hours before stopping for brekkie in a park at Chinchilla. Cereal, fruit and yoghurt were offered. Vaughan opted to eat passionfruit in a tree while Nick accessed a roof-top suitcase. (I hadn't expected Vaughan to finish his book en route, so packed several into his bag rather than keeping the next one of the series handy).
I'd cooked corned beef at home and used it to make bread rolls on Saturday night. We pulled into a stopping bay for lunch and ate standing at the end of the tailgate because there weren't any facilities along that stretch of road. Of course, we hadn't gone much further when we found a pretty lookout with a picnic table - but lunch was gone by then, so we stretched a bit while admiring the view.
We made a few short stops during the day and had several driver changes as well. Even so, we were pleased to roll up to our accommodation at 4:45pm and unpack gear into a neat "billy boulder" cabin (named "Lizard Lodge", which seemed rather fitting for a family of lizard lovers)! I was definitely appreciative of my pre-cooked bolognese sauce later that night, too - and my bed not all that long afterward!