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Selah last won the day on August 1 2011

Selah had the most liked content!

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About Selah

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  1. Yes you do need to link your visa to your new passport (and THEN it will be electronic )
  2. According to the immigration office in Adelaide, yes paper applications take longer. I recently applied on separate applications for my 17 year old and then for myself and other 3 children online. I received email with interview date within a week and the interview/test was approx. 3 weeks later. Selah
  3. Selah

    mattress sizes

    Funny you should bring this up. We came 4 years ago (yes 4) and brought the kids bunk beds from Argos (I think...) After 4 years of complaining how uncomfortable they were I finally (when we just moved) realised that the mattresses we purchased here are just a fraction bigger and as such don't fit inside the bed frame. My children have been tilted for 4 years. Yes I AM a good mother.... Liz
  4. Selah

    Citizenship Done

    That's great! We're eligible on 25th November and I have 16 year old who is starting Uni in Feb so REALLY helpful if hers could go through!
  5. Selah

    Age old dilemma

    My heart goes out to you as not everyone understands the joys, blessings and challenges of being in a cross-cultural marriage! The reality is that one of you will always be 10,000 miles away from family or friends. At some time both of you will face the challenge of a death, illness or other family tragedy and quite probably that person will be in the "wrong" country. Have you ever noticed that being a parent breeds guilt (you're working, not working. too much time with kids or not enough) and ironically being the child also breeds guilt (spending too little time or too much...) There is a strong possibility that whichever you choose - you will still feel a certain amount of guilt - that you left or perhaps resentment that you stayed. Ultimately the choice is yours and I know my parents have always urged me to do what I thought was best for my nuclear family. I should explain that I'm a US citizen married to a Brit who has now emigrated to Australia so my parents have faced me being 3000 miles away for 13 years while we were in England prior to the past 4 being 11,000 away here in Australia. Last January we had the opportunity to go to US for a few years and we went for a reccie. The greatest gift my mother gave to me was saying she didn't think it was right for us and we already decided it wasn't. It wasn't easy for her and she cried. Will I look back and wish we had gone? Perhaps. Do I wish we were closer so that my 3 children have the same relationship with them that my nieces and nephew have had? Yes, quite possibly. However, do I regret the lifestyle we had in the UK w/o them or here? No, I do not. I echo what someone else said. What will you say to your children? Because one of the gifts you are giving them is dual citizenship and therefore they will face the same issue. I am raising children with US, Australian and British Passports. I can GUARANTEE that I will be the parent left behind at some point. BUT I have promised them that I will encourage them to live where THEY want to because I want them to have the opportunities that we had to choose our own adventure. There will also be friends and family who don't agree. However, the only thing you can control is how YOU react - not how they do. Best of luck!
  6. Selah

    Times up, now what did we forget??????

    I'm the one the movers talk about. The one who woke up with a sinking feeling the Friday before a Monday departure and 3 days AFTER the container left to realise they had asked my for a picture of my husband's passport and I put it in the printer, closed the top, took the copy and walked out of the room as they packed the printer. Yes. 3 days prior to departure - On a weekend - WHILE we were in Cornwall no where near London - AND scheduled to arrive the last possible day we could to validate the visa - I realise one passport is on its way with out us. stay neurotic. You might have forgotten something LOL!
  7. Selah

    Best car for family of 6

    I'm not reading the entire thread but I'll be non-ozzie to say please don't buy a kia carnival. We loved it for the size. Bought a 2005 in 2009 for 14,000 put 5K in within the first year (after we find out head gaskets go notoriously in Kia's.) Ended up selling for scap in 2011 for $1500 so a hefty $17K mistake. Kia said the head gasket problem stopped in 2003's but you will find loads of people like us who had the problem in 2004 and above. I was horrified with customer service and the response from their head office and dealers. They wanted to sell us a new one but wouldn't take part exchange of their own brand. Liz
  8. Selah

    Money and what to do with it?

    We wished we had brought it all over and put it in a 6.5% savings account as it would have made the difference between the house we wanted and the one we got. We waited in November 2009 as exchange rate had recently dropped under two and by the time we exchanged to buy our house in June 2010 it was 1.70. The reality is the economy doesn't seem to be improving that rapidly over there and it's staying the same or improving here. My inlaws who have ping ponged have always said better to take the plunge and move forward not looking back than try and wait out the storm. Liz
  9. Selah

    Pool - Pros and Cons

    Personally, we said we always wanted one and it was a priority but then chose a house that didn't have one after living with my in-laws for 6 months who did have one. Now after just 10 months we want to move just because we want a pool. We find that without it - our kids would be TV addicts and on the ps3 all summer because of heat. It's great exercise and they spend HOURS in it. It may not be for all seasons but for 3 kids (14, 12 & 6) I can't I won't be without it. Liz
  10. With immigration, you really have to make a decision about why you want to make the move. If it's for financial reasons it's not a great decision but overall lifestyle - it may be. We were one of those unfortunates who applied in 2007 when property was low and exchange was high - due to a series of unfortunate events we arrived in 2009 when the exchange rate had plummeted and our property value in UK plummeted as well. We would have been mortgage free - now we are sitting here with a mortgage triple the size with a smaller house. Food and clothing is much more expensive. We also pay $440 month on medical insurance and we are on a permanent visa. And the real challenge is because a non-working spouse is counted as a dependent and therefore number of kids and non-working spouse decreases amount you can borrow - it was immediately clear we both had to work. I have to say as well this is in Adelaide which is considered better than other places. Would we move back? Not at the moment. We are both working harder and longer but it's right for us for now. My OH is actually in UK at the moment for an emergency funeral and he is commenting on how much cheaper everything is but still not reason for moving back. We're here and its right for now. I would take EVERYTHING. I bought cheap toasters and kettles from ASDA and just changed the plugs when we got here. That type of stuff is expensive. TV's from here because of signal stuff but really glad I stocked up on t-shirts, underwear, etc for the next couple of sizes for all the kids because clothes are expensive. Good luck and sometimes you just have to do it! Liz
  11. Greetings Zo! You need to log onto pomsinadelaide.com and we're all pretty vocal! Can't talk about building work but lots on there can! Good Luck! Liz
  12. Selah

    Private Health Care Question

    That's a very personal question but an important one. Dental is not covered under medicare and is more American in practice and price. As such it is highly recommended to get "Extras" Cover. With 3 children we chose the highest extras cover with the most orthodontic for just that reason. W/O that insurance fillings and exams can be well into the hundreds of dollars. This also covers us for podiatrists, chiropractors and lots of other incidentals. We also have medical cover but its predominantly for hospitalisation. Basically for most general Doctors appointments/illnesses there is a set amount the doctor will get reimbursed by the government. It is then up to them if they want to charge more and you will have to pay the gap. My husband saw a specialist recently and was charged $100 up front but got $70 back. For most Doctor's appts generally - we don't seem to pay much at all. However, an Xray cost me $50. It is however imperative regardless of what you decide to purchase ambulance cover. This is often covered under private policies but if you don't go private get this through a company separately. An ambulance journey can cost you up to $1000. You will sign forms saying you will pay for your kids if they have an accident on a school trip and if you are in a car accident and the police are called - it is generally mandated that the ambulance is called as well. I don't want to scare you but we pay close to $400/month for medial insurance/extras cover for a family of 5. We did this also because one you reach the age of 30 in Australia they start age loading the policies (more expensive the older you get) unless you have taken out private cover before you turn 30. As immigrants you have one year to sign up from your date of entry to sign up and get 0% age loading regardless of your age. Since we knew we would probably need insurance when we got older we signed up to get this discount. We also waited until one of us had a good job before paying all this and we really shopped around. It's confusing and I have to say even a lot of locals are confused! Good luck! Liz
  13. Selah

    New Passport

    Can do but they may charge. We just travel with both passports (expired with visa and new) Liz
  14. Things I'm glad I brought in November (especially as we don't get ou container ntil next week - don't ask...) All birth certificates Marriage Certificate References from past employers copies of CV Academic records including transcripts (your assessment doesn't mean anything once you are here in many cases) Any UK bills or account numbers that may come back to haunt you especially child benefit numbers, familytax credit reference numbers. This includes insurance policy numbers, etc. Even when y think everything is cancelled and sorted something happens. We are being "taken to court" for £40 for house insurance which they say we never cancelled when we did. Phone numbers for banks, etc that can be used from overseas. It's really difficult to contact anyone when all you can find is an 0845 number! One school report per child Copies of house sale in UK (I can't tell you the number of places like TV license refund and house insurance that made me send a copy...) Travel Insurance Copies of insurance for your shipping I have needed all of this! I was shocked to find I needed my marriage certificate for my mortgage application! Good luck! I brought a binder with poly pockets and all these documents inside and it has been invaluable.
  15. Selah

    Transferring money

    ANy of the major broker firms HIFX, FOREX, MONEYCORP are best BUT choose one (unlike us) where you can book your rate online. We moved in November when the rate was 1.80 and decided to wait and leave our money in the UK. Now we need to transfer within the next week and our money is in Moneycorp where we have to contact them during office hours. Sometimes the rate rises when they are closed which is a drag.