One of our favorite things to do together is explore new places. Sometimes we head into the city and just wonder around or go up to the Blue Mountains not knowing what awaits us. Our friends Grant and Jaz have that same adventurous heart. They called us up and asked if we wanted to join them for a little countryside adventure and of course we were keen.
Currently living in suburbia but being Kansas kids at heart, we cannot even begin to tell you how happy it makes us to see open fields and cows. Never take those wide open spaces for granted. So just driving out to Grant and Jaz's house made my heart skip a beat.
First we were off to explore a small little vineyard near the Hawkesbury River name the Tizzana Winery. When we first arrived we were a bit bummed, the sign said it was open weekends and by appointment only. The thought was, why not give them a call and see if someone happened to be around. Sure enough, the owner himself was there and told us to come on in. He gave us a bit of a tour and the backstory of the winery.
Thomas Fiaschi was the original owner and first planted the 5 acres vineyard with imported French and Italian vine cuttings in 1882 simply as an experiment. The experiment obviously went well because he expanded that to 55 acres in 1889. The family continued producing wine up until 1949.
Then in 1955, Tizzana was broken into and set on fire which only left a stone shell to testify to its existence.
In 1969 Peter and Carolyn Auld begin the restoration process of the crumbling ruins and replanted five acres in 1980 and are still producing wine today. Peter told us that he quit his job and went back to school to get his degree in Viticulture and Winemaking. It was so inspiring to talk to someone who gave up their day job to pursue something they are truly passionate about.
We had so much fun learning the history of the establishment and could have spent hours here, but the sun was setting and we still had a spot to explore. Australia's Oldest Church, Ebenezer Church, established in 1809.
Did you know that Ebenezer means "the Lord helped us all the way." We truly feel like that has been such a testament to our lives, especially the past year and a half.
It may be tiny, but they still have church on Sunday mornings. It is cool to think about the generations who have passed through the door. We truly serve a God for all generations.
The evening ended with a magnificent sunset, dinner at Grant and Jaz's adorable flat, and a fire pit under the stars.
We have made such wonderful friends here. We are so thankful for each and every one of you.
Love Always, The Kids Down Under