Tag Archives: expat

Recently…

Some of you are probably thinking I have dropped off the face of the earth! My posts have been few and far between these last few months and I did promise you I had a good reason.

From September to early November, I couldn’t even push myself to login to WordPress to read some of the fantastic blogs I follow. With the majority being food related, all the delicious sounding recipes and gorgeous pictures of food were a nausea inducing disaster zone to be avoided at all costs! Meals for me consisted mainly of sandwiches or cheese on toast, with dangerous consequences on the horizon if I had ever found we were low on bananas. The only things I really wanted to eat were those that my mum made for me during my childhood. It’s not so easy to pop round for tea when you are over 10,000 miles apart.

Three days after our arrival in Brisbane, Australia, my Husband and I were thrilled to find out that we were expecting our first baby! Having got married over the Easter weekend earlier this year and edging on ten years together I don’t think it was much of a surprise for our close friends and family who we were super excited to share the news with.

I’ve also been keeping myself busy volunteering with the RSPCA at the sorting centre for their Brisbane Op Shops – that’s charity shops to us non Aussies! It’s great to be doing something to help out and I have met some really friendly locals there too.

I’ll have some posts coming up for some cute DIY decorations I have been making for the nursery as well as some free printables I’ve been busy creating to frame and place up in our new home.

Until then, I hope you are all enjoying the festive season! It’s certainly strange experiencing a Queensland December!

Mrs D Signature

Beating the chain fairies

I’m currently sat on the only free space on my bed, which is covered in suitcases that contain our essentials for the next 5-6 weeks whilst the remainder of our worldly possessions take their first trip south of the equator for our next big move. I’m becoming a dab hand at this moving malarky now. The first couple of times,  I would have been frantically sorting through my fridge throwing away the last drabs of food and the like which we can’t ship. I am pleased to say that this task was accomplished two days prior to the packing teams arrival today.

I want to share this quick tip with you for when you head off on your next holiday or house move. It is a huge time saver once I come to unpacking my necklaces keeping those chain fairies at bay!

Simply take a straw, I like to use the big wide ones you can get for a few bucks in Ikea, measure it against the length of the chain and cut to size before threading the necklace through the straw and closing the catch. I then gently wrap it in a piece of kitchen paper, making sure it’s completely covered, before placing into a sandwich bag to keep it all together.

 

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Feeling Orientated

Apologies for the Radio Silence. The last few weeks have been busy with the in laws visiting and then last week we were in Brisbane for our orientation trip. Having returned, we are feeling very excited about moving to our new host city. We’ve done a lot of research in the last few months so it came as somewhat of a surprise that Brisbane is made up of eleven hills. Yes. Eleven! Thankful for comfy footwear and the fantastic cafés dotted around in the Brisbane suburbs, free city hopper ferry service and the reasonably priced city cat to zip us around the serpentinesque Brisbane river. With this being our third international move in yet another new continent, we have found that initially living fairly central is key for us to get our bearings and, should we ever stay long enough somewhere to feel fully settled then we should by then have a favourable area to make our home.

I’m not a city girl, I mean, I can handle the city and I absolutely love spending time amongst the buzz one provides but my heart belongs in the quiet leafy suburbs of which Brisbane has many. Quite a contrast to the densely populated island state of Singapore. It’s amazing how much I could imagine my bestie and I settling into this town which is literally the opposite side of the world from our home.

Like most cities, Brisbane has it’s own sights and smells. From the Eucalyptus trees wafting their scent in the breeze to the warming aroma of coffee beans, freshly roasting in the local cafés. Our senses were wide awake, assessing every experience.

I will certainly have some more pictures for you after we arrive at the end of next month, but for now, here are a few shots I took last week.

Mrs D xoxo

View of the CBD from the Brisbane Wheel

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Some old wool stores in the riverside suburb of Teneriffe20140722-103250-37970252.jpg

The Treasury Casino

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View of the South Bank from the Brisbane Wheel

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The South Bank from Victoria Bridge

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The Lion City Bucket List: Walking the Bukit Timah Railway Line

Having been raised in the beautiful Forest of Dean, spending time in the great outdoors was something I was raised to appreciate. I find it frustrating here in Singapore that each outdoor adventure is a sweaty affair. Living in Geneva, a walk along the lake with Bryan, my pug, was a daily event. Occasionally we would head up into the surrounding hills together or, of a summer weekend, the three of us would head to see some of the almost deserted ski resorts for a hike around the mountains.

 

Click the images for a closer look

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An abandoned building opposite the old Bukit Timah Station
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More of that same abandoned building
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Some sleepers remaining outside the Bukit Timah Station
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The Bukit Timah Railway Station
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The old station sign, you can imagine this will be unreadable in a few more years

 

 

 

 

 

 

We learned a little of the Bukit Timah Railways history during our orientation weekend back in March 2013 when we were sent to Singapore for  5 days to decide whether we would like to live here. We were told how the railway used to be owned by Malaysia making the entire line, which runs through the centre of Singapore, Malaysian land until 2011 when it was completely shut down. The only thing stopping us from exploring the Bukit Timah Railway before now is the Singapore heat but with a newfound sense of purpose, we finally got around to it a couple of weeks ago.

After a bit of a google, I found the best guide for the walk on the Green Corridor  website. With taxi’s being fairly cheap here in Singapore we decided to hail one down and ask to be dropped off at King Albert Park so we could join the railway by the steel truss bridge over Bukit Timah Road. Joining the old tracks after a short incline, we were soon at the old train station. It looks like this place closed down much more than 3 years ago, it’s so over grown and if we were the only people there then I think it would have quite a eerie feel to it. I had read since our walk that it has been closed to passengers since 1940 so that explains a lot!

It took us much less than the suggested one hour to reach the Holland Road exit point so we decided to stick to the railway for the next section from Holland Road to Buona Vista thankful for smart phones and the 1.5 litre bottle of Evian I had thrown in a ruck sack. It was again, much less than the recommended 90 minutes before we reached the exit near the Buona Vista MRT station but the ease of getting home from there was our cue to head back. I think had we been more prepared, we could have easily started at the section before or continued on the next section to Queensway. With Only 7 weekends left until we move and only 4 of those weekends being in Singapore, I’m not sure we will get the chance to visit the other railway sections but I am thankful that we at finally made the time to explore this peaceful green area of Singapore.

The railway is a popular place for cyclists and dog walkers alike. Possibly one of the friendliest places we have visited  in Singapore, almost everyone we passed gave a friendly greeting.

If you are planning on walking the Bukit Timah Railway, I would advise that you head out early with plenty of water and a smart phone or one of the handy maps from the green corridors website to guide you and don’t forget your camera to snap some of the old buildings and the beautiful green flora!

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Mrs D xoxo

 

 

 

 

 

The Lion City Bucket List: Leaving the Lion City

In 2011 we moved to Geneva from London as expats. We were never the type of people with feet itching to live overseas. We didn’t have a hankering to travel the world and we had no idea what the next few years would have to offer. After two years in Switzerland, we had visited many places but there were always those ones that we kept saying we will get around to visiting. Between signing the new contract for Singapore and actually leaving Switzerland we had just 6 weeks and with half of that time spent travelling back to Blighty for wedding dress shopping and other family commitments, we just had to leave behind those unexplored sights.

Moving to Singapore we didn’t want this to happen again and made extra effort to see as much as possible but having spent just 13 months here and with only 7 weeks between our up coming move to Brisbane being confirmed and my Husbands start date there, it’s inevitable that some places will go unvisited. Over the next few weeks I’ll be posting about the places we get the chance to knock off our list. I hope you enjoy reading about our adventures!

 

Mrs D xoxo

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View from the north bank of Thunersee, Switzerland
Bryan enjoying Tanjong Beach, Sentosa
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Singapore’s CBD from Orchard Central’s roof
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Grand Saint Bernard, Switzerland
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Bryan on top of Le Saleve
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The view from the end of our old street in Eaux Vives, Geneva

We’re off to see the wizard!

Ok, we’re not off to see the wizard at all but we had news last week that our Australian visa’s have been approved and in less than two months time, we will be British expats in Brisbane!

This has been my life now for a few years. We move somewhere, we settle, make friends get into a routine and before we know it along come the company by bestie (hubby!) works for and they decide he is needed elsewhere, normally another continent. We aren’t as experienced as some expats, so far, our international addresses have been Geneva and Singapore but I’m only just in my late twenties so who knows what can happen. I’m just lucky it’s with my bestie!

I hope you follow to keep updated on my future posts. Not only will I be writing about how our move progresses, but I have some other topics in the pipeline including my Singapore bucket list and some easy, how to’s on how I have been making my own Thank You notes for our wedding guests.

For now, from my poolside sunbed in Phuket (I am one lucky lady!) I bid you adieu!!

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