April 2018 Expat Update


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With our time left in Australia ticking down, I am all-too-aware that this will be the 3rd last Expat Update post I write.  We have less than 2 months left in Melbourne (we fly out the end of June), but I think the whole family is trying our hardest to not focus on that too much.  We just want to enjoy the last couple of months here.

Melbourne by night

Beautiful Melbourne at night

April brought our last 2-week school holidays and our last big trip in Australia.  If you followed us on Instagram or Facebook, you know that we had an awesome trip to the Outback, even with the “bumps” we dealt with.  More about that below.

With the arrival of May, we have also had to start thinking about the transition back to Canada.  We have a wall full of sticky notes of to-do items.  Things like shipping our stuff home, registering for school in Canada, and sorting our insurance and immunizations for our travels this summer.

In the past couple of months we have had some people we know pass away too soon.  These passings are incredibly sad, but they do re-affirm to us the mantra that there are no guarantees in life; you cannot put off living the life you want for a future that may not come.  Sometimes I feel guilty and selfish that we push the boundaries with our jobs and lifestyle.  But, when we hear about lives ending too soon, we know we are doing the right thing for our family.

Did  you read our March Update?

April Highlights

Celebrating Easter

It definitely feels weird to celebrate Easter in autumn, but I don’t think the kids noticed at all.  The Easter bunny found his way here and the kids enjoyed too much chocolate and sweets.

Our Outback Road Trip

We drove the 2,500 km from Melbourne to Uluru in our rented Landcruiser from Britz and it was an epic road trip.  We dealt with the “bumps”: loosing part of our tent off the roof on our first day, Gavin getting 8 stitches at Uluru and battling gastro running through the family (we were camping!).

I am so glad we didn’t leave Australia without visiting the Red Centre.  Seeing Uluru in person was incredible, the desert scenery is stunningly beautiful and we felt so fortunate to learn more about Aboriginal culture.

I am just starting to work on writing all about our experience, so stay tuned in May for lots of Outback posts.  You can read about the first part of the drive from Melbourne to Uluru here.

Family Photo Shoot in Melbourne

There is no question we are sad about leaving Melbourne.  When I was bemoaning this to a friend that has lived overseas, she suggested getting family photos done as a great souvenir of our time here.  When Gavin and I were in Singapore last year we got great photos taken by Wanderloud, destination photographers.  So we got in touch and did a 2-hour shoot in downtown Melbourne.

You may have already seen some of the photos I have shared on Facebook and Instagram.  They turned out absolutely amazing; far surpassing my expectations.  There are so many good ones that it is hard to choose which to share.  When we are back in Canada, it will be so nice to have these photos on our walls to remind us of our time here.  A full post will be coming in May, but here are a few. Click to enlarge them.

New Skill: Making Family Travel Videos

When we purchased our drone last month, the deal was that we would use that footage to start producing travel vlogs.  The Outback was a pretty awesome place to fly the drone with all the wide-open spaces.  Once we got home, Paul worked hard to teach himself video editing and get acquainted with travel vlogs.  He did a super job and I am so excited to share our first video with you.  We would love for you to subscribe to our Youtube channel.

Planning for our Life in Canada

We have loved our time living in Melbourne and in preparing for our move back to Canada, we knew we didn’t want to stop traveling.  But we all yearned for more time with family and friends and the stability of a community.  We think we have found a plan and good compromise between travel, wanderlust and community.

We have both negotiated alternative work arrangements with our employers which will allow us to travel for 3-4 months of the year.  We will be home in Canada for 5 months (Sept-Jan) and then just as the winter chill is starting to set in, we will be back to Asia for 3 months in 2019.  Any travel-loving person will know that managing wanderlust can be a difficult balance, but we are really hoping this gives us the best of both worlds.

Visit from an old Friend

My university room mate and her family came for a visit from Perth and we had a great few days catching up and enjoying their two little ones.

Top Instagram Posts

Posts Published this Month

Including our March Expat Update, I got 7 posts out this month all while traveling for half of the month!  That was in large part to the awesome interviews that I have done for our Travel More Case Study Series – there are 3 below, go check them out and be inspired by these families.

What’s Next?

We don’t have any major plans for the next couple of months.  It is mostly the regular life routine of school, work, and activities.  We are always trying to maximize our time here by eating all the delicious food, seeing new places and spending time with new friends.

We are definitely excited about our summer travels in July and August although we are not wishing the weeks away.

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