A Beginner’s Guide To Planning A Perfect Murray River Picnic

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Known as the world’s longest navigable river, the Murray River is home to diverse flora and fauna. Visiting a river has benefits for our mental health. Considering Murray River for your picnic plans will do more than enough for your relaxation and stress-recovery period. Here is a beginner’s guide for your picnic plans.

Decide On What Food To Bring

Ask everybody if they want to cook on the spot or bring ready-made food instead. You can bring sandwiches, finger food, and other non-messy stuff to eat while you are marveling at the scenery. You can also bring fruits and vegetable salad, so the benefits of this trip will target both your physical and mental aspects.

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Avoid bringing food that needs cutting. If you want to experience cooking outside, make sure that you have every ingredient that you need. Remember that this is a place where supermarkets and grocery stores are not easily accessible. Bring everything that you think you will need.

Bring a variety of drinks both for kids and adults. Check the policies of the Murray River picnic area to see if there are certain drinks that they prohibit in the premises. Do not forget to bring water, healthy juices, and ice enough for all of you.

Do Not Forget The Tableware

Do not be so engrossed with the food itself that you already forget about utensils. Opt for eco-friendly disposable utensils instead of plastic ones. If you can also put your food in reusable containers, the better. Do not forget to put cups, plates, serving utensils, and paper napkins on your next grocery list for this picnic. Bottle openers are also a must. Cloth napkins will also come extra handy at the venue.

List Down All The Essentials

Prepare your mats, tents, and picnic chairs ahead of the picnic schedule. Common picnic materials also include foldable beds, coolers, baskets, binoculars, and even trekking gears. Include emergency kits and other hygiene stuff in your to-bring list. Water facilities are not readily accessible in the picnic spots, so bring sanitizers and moist towelettes with you always.

Pack Your Hobby Kit

Going to a river picnic does not mean that you have to stick with fishing, boating, sleeping, and other typical river activities. You can also do your other hobbies such as painting, drawing, reading, and photography, among other things.

Moreover, be ready to try new activities that the picnic area has to offer. As early as now, check if your planned activities are allowed in the Murray River. Ask everybody to pack enough power sources and gear to try new activities you have never done before.

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Remind Everybody Of Your Responsibility To Nature 

Pack up paper bags and disposable trash bags for the picnic. Never leave any trace of trash on any picnic spot around the Murray River. You will arrive there without any litter, so be sure to take everything with you as you leave. Be considerate to nature and for the next picnic-goers in the area.

You can get the most out of the therapeutic benefits of the Murray River by following these tips. What are you waiting for? Plan that trip and head outside as soon as the skies give that picnic-season vibes!

Reasons Why You Should Take Up Fishing As A Hobby

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Modern life demands work and no play, which can cause damage to your physical health and well-being. Your motivation fades away, and everything becomes too repetitive. In this dreaded situation, the best thing to do is give yourself space and engage in a relaxing hobby. One of the best examples of such a hobby is fishing.

Fishing is one of the most well-known hobbies in the world. It is no surprise that even until now, the tradition of recreational fishing is still alive. However, the idea of fishing can be daunting and unfamiliar to some people. Little do they know that this simple recreational activity can provide a lot of benefits to your health and life.

Here’s why you should take up fishing as a hobby.

Fishing Can Reduce Stress Levels

Fishing consists of paying attention to one task only. You have to focus on catching a fish. Moreover, nature is surrounding you and you alone. When you are fishing, your senses are not overwhelmed. All you can hear are the calming sounds of water and wind.

“Living in constant stress mode will make you sick indeed.” Allan R. Cohen, PsyD said. Because of this, fishing is similar to meditation. It can give you some benefits as well, such as stress relief and decreased anxiety. Fishing can also lower your blood pressure and provide therapeutic counseling help to those who have PTSD.

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Fishing Is A Form Of Physical Exercise

This aquatic activity is not just about sitting and waiting. Walking around the body of water to find the right fishing spot works your heart and lungs. Casting a line accurately and reeling the fish in requires you to move both your upper and lower body. Besides, “The more you are active, the more you decrease your risk for chronic diseases, including cancer.” Whittney Thoman, Senior Exercise Physiologist explained. 

For those who fish while riding a canoe, learning how to balance yourself and using your core strength is essential. Before long, you have already done a full workout outside of the gym. An hour of fishing can burn around 130–175 calories.

Moreover, the motions of fishing are quite similar to physical therapy. People recovering from breast cancer are often recommended to try fishing as a way of exercise and recovery.

Fishing also requires you to be outdoors, which allows you to absorb vitamin D from the sun. Vitamin D keeps your bones healthy, regulates insulin levels, boosts your immune system, and helps in fighting depression.

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Fishing Teaches You How To Become Better

Modern living has trained us to be dependent on our gadgets and the Internet for almost everything. However, fishing encourages you to learn and develop skills by yourself. Benefits of going outside and exploring nature teaches you how to rely on yourself. 

Grasping the skill of self-reliance also improves your self-esteem. Fishing is not just about relaxation. For some people, it is also about attaining goals, such as catching your first fish. There is nothing more satisfying than to see that your effort has paid off. Of course, “The best progress happens when you apply what you’ve learned outside that setting, in your real life.” says Alicia H. Clark, Psy.D.

Fishing improves your physical and mental health and teaches you about patience. To catch a fish after a long wait is a moment of pure delight that you can never forget. It shows you that in a world where everything is instant, good things come to those who wait.

Navigating Waters: Safety Precautions for Canoeing

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Canoeing is an outdoor activity for people who want to feel the rush and beauty of nature. However, it is a top priority for paddlers to know the necessary safety precautions before getting in the water.

Whether or not you’re an expert in navigating rivers or just a starter in the sport, you must be aware of the dangers out there. Keep in mind these guidelines for when you make your next canoeing trip and be sure to share them with your group. After all, the adventure is more fun if there won’t be injuries involved.

Gearing Up

It can be tricky once you’re out there in the water. That’s why you should have the equipment that will help you stay safe and afloat. Here are the things you need:

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  • Personal floatation device or lifejackets. This device is an absolute necessity for every canoeist to remain safe and uninjured during the activity.
  • Appropriate footwear. Boots, water shoes, and sneakers are usually are the top picks for when you go out for water paddling. They protect your feet from rocks, glass, and sea creatures.
  • Head covering. Helmets, skull caps, and hats with a brim can protect you from the harsh sunlight or the cold weather.
  • Dry bags. Your dry bag will keep necessities such as your phone, radio, first aid kit, food, towel, knife, and identification.
  • Rope throw bag. This item is a rescue device just in case a person gets thrown in the water. With this equipment, you can pull the swimmer to safety.

Before Canoeing

While canoeing is generally a safe outdoor activity, you still have to look out for the worst. Before going out, check the forecast to be sure that you won’t get caught in harmful waves and strong winds. You should opt for calm areas rather than open waters. When you’re packing, make sure you have your safety equipment with you. Don’t forget to bring a spare paddle with you just in case you break the one you have.

Before stepping in your canoe, make sure to stretch to prepare your body for the physical activity. Put on some sunscreen and your protective gear. When loading, the first person getting in sits on the front; when getting out, the one at the rear goes first. If you’re alone, stay as low as possible and centered when getting in your canoe. This position will give you the most control of your boat and will help you remain stabilized.

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While In The Water

Expect a lot of obstacles in the water. When you’re on a river, be sure to look ahead of you and consider the flow of the water. By being aware of what’s in front of you, you can calculate the path and objects on your way.

Note that when you approach a bend, the area inside the curve has shallow waters. If you’re on a lake, stay close to the shore. You don’t want to paddle somewhere that puts you in danger during unexpected thunderstorms.

Avoid touching objects in the water because it might tip off the balance of your canoe. When you come in contact with an obstacle, you might accidentally shift your weight and fall of your boat. If you get in the water, be calm as possible and distance yourself away from the canoe. Doing this will prevent you from getting trapped underneath. Be conscious of possible cracks and depressions that can catch your foot.

Ready to add canoeing to your life experiences? Happy paddling!

Staying Near Bodies Of Water Can Make You Calm – Ask A Psychologist

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Do you feel that inner peace when you are near the beach while looking at how the waves crash to the shore? Have you ever felt rejuvenated by the sound and the sight of waterfalls? Do you feel relaxed when you see a magnificent view of a lake as you stroll by it? It can be a wonderful feeling to be near a body of water because your whole body and mind are at rest. Ask a psychologist of how true this is, and he will agree.

Continue reading “Staying Near Bodies Of Water Can Make You Calm – Ask A Psychologist”

Canoeing Instead Of Seeing A Therapist? Here’s A Quick Review About Ultralight Canoes From Hornbeck Boats

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Talking to a helpful therapeutic counseling expert when you have a psychological issue to deal with is much different from meeting someone more concerned about the money you are willing to pay than your mental health. After all, the latter tends to practically say, “There is no other treatment that will work for you than what I can offer.” With that in mind, you may genuinely keep on showing up to sessions and paying for therapy, hoping that it will give you some light. Worse, if the treatment reaches the end, and the ill-meaning professional prescribes you with another month of counseling or so, you might bite the bullet and do as he or she asks.

This scenario is not what you will find yourself in once you come across a therapist whose primary goal is to help you heal psychologically by all means necessary. What that entails is that this individual will not use alibis as to why the treatment may not be working or try dirty tactics so that you will continue paying them. In truth, such a mental health professional may even encourage you to look for other activities that can jumpstart your healing process.

That is where canoeing comes in.

What Makes Canoeing Passable As A Complementary Treatment?

You ought to realize from the get-go that no study per se recommends canoeing to a troubled person so that you can feel better. Despite that, the essential characteristics of treatments for depression, anxiety, and other disorders include being able to distract you from your negative thoughts and feelings and giving you a sense of peace. So, in that respect, you may try busting out your canoe and paddling down the river to somehow deal with your issues, albeit unconventionally.

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Using Ultralight Canoes

Based on experience, I can say that canoeing has not always been my first choice after hearing my therapist’s suggestion to look for another hobby to complement my treatment sessions. Color me lazy, but I am scared of tipping the heavy boat over and finding myself under the water, just like what I have seen in the movies. It is only recently that I have realized that there are ultralight canoes from Hornbeck Boats. Hence, I wonder: “Would I have been still afraid if I came across Hornbeck canoe before?” Maybe not.

Before Striking A Deal With Hornbeck

You have to set your main concerns straight. Double-paddle placid canoes are great when you want to exercise your arms and abdomen as you enjoy nature at its finest. They are effortless to maneuver and quite easy to get in and out of the water. This is what you should get if you would like to induct yourself in the world of paddle sports without the typical worries regarding the traditional boats.

It is your kind of canoe in case you wish to glide through rivers, ponds, and lakes leisurely. The upper portion of your body still gets a proper workout, but your mind is set more on closing more considerable distances than losing the flab. However, if you dream of bagging gold medals from canoeing competitions, you are better off with the ones designed for whitewater, racing, and sprint, among others.

To gain more ideas, try to ask yourself the following questions.

1. What is my weight?

It is crucial for you to tell your actual weight since the seller will need to know this before they can recommend canoes. Practically, you should not be in a boat that has a load capacity that is lower than your weight.

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2. What will I use it for?

Placid canoes can be for cruising, river and wilderness tripping, and explorations. Lighter and more slender boats are suitable with minor rapids. The larger kayaks are for recreational activities with the family or pets.

3. How fast do I want my canoe to be?

On the whole, ultralight canoes are faster because they are made from flexible but stronger materials.

Blackjack New Tricks 12 Hornbeck Canoe Review

Blackjack New Tricks 12 is the newer version of New Tricks 12 of Hornbeck Boats. This is part of the Blackjack series, which are the only ones made solely from carbon fiber. Due to the material used, it is said to be one of the fastest and lightest canoes that the company creates.

When you are going from pond to pond or river to river, it is excellent to know that you can change your speed and move smoothly on the water. If you want a boat that can get maneuvered effortlessly, then you should get a different Hornbeck canoe that has a moderate rocker.


• An ultralight canoe at 13 pounds. You can carry it and not drag it when necessary.
• High-quality carbon fiber is utilized to build the whole boat.
• Great tracking capability
• Backrest and foot braces are available for ease of use


• The carbon fiber is not resistant to scratches. You have to be wary of going through the low water with lots of stones below.
• It does not have much space for fishing equipment.
• It is pricier than all the other placid canoes from Hornbeck.

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Final Thoughts

Don’t you love it when you realize that your healing might come from staying in nature? If you live close to Murray River or any calm body of water, you should look into getting Hornbeck Boats’ ultralight canoes. Cheers!

11 Secrets To Taking Great Photos While Visiting Murray River

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When you go to the west side of Australia and visit Murray River with your family, you cannot possibly allow the day to pass without taking pictures. Those images will ensure that you won’t forget the trip; you may even print them and place every piece in an album. You can also upload the photos on your social media accounts and get likes and shares from your friends.

The thing is, if you happen to be a photography enthusiast as well, you know that a grainy or pixelated picture is never acceptable. The people’s faces are almost unidentifiable even for the folks who are acquainted with them. The image of a bird, for instance, may even seem like a shuttlecock or a piece of trash in the air. Worse, you won’t be able to do justice to the beautiful scenery in Murray River.

Considering you want to take photos that you may not want to delete after some time, therefore, you should learn a few photographic tips now.

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1. Think Of What You Want To Share

In case you like to travel or show off your new clothes, you need to focus on those items that you want to stand out. Being precise about what you wish the audience – and yourself – to see is vital since it allows you to hone your skills in that area.

If it hasn’t occurred to you yet, every photographer has a specialty. Say, someone who takes still pictures may not be efficient in the wild or even in the runway where the subjects are moving.

2. Remember That Natural Lighting Works Best

You may have noticed that when you turn the Flash feature of a camera on,  there is a glare of light that appears on the image. Hence, only make use of natural lighting whenever possible to obtain more beautiful pictures.

3. Analyze The Subject With Your Eyes

Looking at the person or the object as if your naked eyes are the lens of the camera lets you capture a great image without needing to click several times. Once you have imagined how your subject should look like, that’s when you can pick up the device and start shooting.

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4. Take Advantage Of The Grid Feature

Regardless if you own a smartphone or a DSLR, it is practical to switch on the Grid feature so that you know when the camera is oblique or not. It ensures that you can give justice to the beauty of the subject. Editing will be less stress-free too, considering you won’t need to turn the photo upright.

5. Tell A Story

People show higher curiosity in pictures that can genuinely say more than one thousand words. Having one point of interest is safe, but adding other elements to create a beautiful story can make folks stare at it for hours and still ask for more.

6. Capture Candid Moments

There are times when catching individuals or animals in natural positions gain more appreciation than merely putting them in schooled stances. It is a story on its own, you see. It will not be necessary to include other accouterments if you do so.

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7. Seek Defined Colors And Shapes

Even folks who don’t know much about photography often get mesmerized by how sharp the lines, shapes, and colors come out in the photos. To avoid being required to perform heavy editing, therefore, you should consider searching for subjects that already possess these characteristics.

8. Embrace The Differences In Lighting Color

Mobile devices change the lighting color around the point of interest when you look at it in diverse angles. Instead of being wary about it, you should open your mind about these differences and think of how they can emphasize your subject further.

9. Appreciate The Beauty Of White Background

In case you are tired of using colorful spaces as a backdrop for another pigmented matter, you can cash in on white spaces. These can enhance the magnificence of your subject and make it a notch more elegant than the rest.

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10. Try Different Lens Attachments

Assuming you will utilize your smartphone to take photos, you may get external accessories to magnify the size of the point of interest without making the image blurry or pixelated. They are affordable; that’s why buying them won’t break the bank.

11. Practice A Lot

Even professional photographers had taken unappealing pictures when they were starting to learn. If you can’t find a technique that’s easy for you at first, it is okay. Capture as many shots as you like to get a feel of where your strengths lie.

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How do you feel about going back to Murray River – or any place that you love, for that matter – and take a lot of pictures that you will honestly want to cherish?

Keep on clicking; keep on following your dreams.

Good luck!

Cruising Along The World’s Third Longest River


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The Proud Mary

Come aboard Proud Mary’s five-night indulgence cruise, cozily cruising to explore nature at its best.

This five-night stay at the luxurious cruise ship includes a taste of delicious cuisine for all three meals. Chefs cook the best Australian and European food, and your choice is far from sufficient.

If you’re looking for a picturesque view and an abundance of wildlife, you chose the perfect boat. Birds of different species abound the willows and river gums that line the banks of Murray River, and as you cruise further, a different scenery of tall cliffs and beautiful beaches. In the evening, Proud Mary lets you witness the nocturnal wildlife – the herons and the owls – as if they are waiting for the floodlights to turn on.

You’ll get to walk along the banks of Murray too. You begin with a lagoon cruise and then a walking tour, where you can join and dance to the music of a live band playing while the barbecue is cooking for dinner. What a wonderful way to get to know Australia.


Let us elaborate more on highlights of this romantic and very interesting 5-night indulgence cruise.


  • Lagoon Cruise. Discover the River’s isolated lagoons and coves, home to 320 different species of birds. You will be aboard a small ferry so you can easily maneuver through the inlets and secluded areas of the lagoon.


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  • Ancient Archaeological Sight Seeing. Get a grasp of ancient Australia by touring with a local Aboriginal guide that provides you with interesting details about aboriginal rock art, their significance, and the meanings of their rituals. You will come to understand the hows and whys of their food preparation. Also, the view from the hilltops is amazing, with landscapes that fill the area in either direction.


  • Eco Walks. The walks are a must-try. Learning about the Aboriginal tribe by witnessing the last pieces of evidence that is proof of their civilization is quite interesting. You’ll see the tree that was cut so that they can make a canoe. The guide will explain this as you walk further, speaking about the Moorundie Creek and the explorer, John Eyre, who built a village to study the tribe and their way of life. He eventually named the village Sturt, after the renowned explorer navigator.


  • Australian Barbecue At The Riverbank. After much learning and exploring, enjoy the taste of Australian barbecue at dusk. Socialize with your fellow tourists around a campfire and try barbecue that’s prepared using local products. Delicious meat, salad, and their very own billy tea and damper are waiting for you at the riverbank. Plus, you’ll get a chance to sing along with their live entertainment while enjoying your barbecue.


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  • Captain’s Dinner. A grand closing of the cruise is the Captain’s dinner, a five-course dining experience with a menu of the top tourists’ favorite choices. Participants have raved about the garlic prawns, Moroccan chicken, and lamb medallions that are delicately flavored to match with wine and a vibrant atmosphere. Get ready with your little black dress and the opportunity to sit with the Captain of the ship. What a way to end the night.


The Murray River Cruise is among Australia’s favorite experiences that you don’t want to miss if you’re in the country to visit. If you haven’t had the chance to visit, then be ready to be inspired and delighted. Australia is the land down under, but the cruises are definitely at the top of the line.



My Last Memory Of My Mom

It was summer.  The sun shines brightly but does not feel that hot on my skin.  I think it was just about a fine 23 degrees Celsius.   Just enough for us to enjoy our trip to Ballarat.  We were going to attend a family friend’s wedding.  But maybe because of the bright and inviting weather, my mom suddenly decided that we make a stop along Murray River before we go on our way.

It was supposed to be just a shortstop, but then we ended up staying for a day.  My mom fell in love with the place.  Since it was her birthday also, we just go as she wished.  We rented a cottage, and my dad arranged for a boat ride.

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Continue reading “My Last Memory Of My Mom”

How To Have A Stress-Free Vacation With Kids

Your child is anxiously awaiting the arrival of the holiday break. They can’t wait to be home from school, have freedom in their schedule, and are super excited about the upcoming holidays. —  

Children are a joy to be around, but having them tag along when going on a trip is a bit stressful.  No matter how excited they are, they can still be annoying when they get bored.   The solution to having bothersome kids when on vacation is to keep them happy and busy.

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