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fossda

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About fossda

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  1. fossda

    AUSTRALIAN CITIZENSHIP TIMELINES 2018-2019

    Timeline for anyone interested Application November 2018 Test today (27/03/19) 100% Ceremony (they said 3-6 months) I live in Qld yet test done in NSW 4 of us there together today taking test - Me (UK) and another man applied Nov 18, another lady applied Jan 19 and another man applied Dec 17
  2. fossda

    Advice required

    Hi - just to add re AHPRA. This happened to me. I used my holiday accommodation address as a point of contact and I took all my nursing and ID stuff with me to Australia on our reccie trip and signed up with an agency. AHPRA accepted this as a job offer. All well now as I've been in Australia and working as a nurse for nearly 3 years now. Don't give up and good luck Rachel
  3. fossda

    Renewing Child Passport (British)

    Thank you all :notworthy:
  4. This is probably a really stupid question (but am on night shift so maybe a bit meh !) :SLEEP: Just trying to renew my sons UK passport from Aus - all good but as I have to send a photo of him, someone needs to countersign the photo which is fine but as I am signing the actual form as he's a child - does the other professional person just sign his photo with " I declare this is a true likeness ... etc" Do they have to mention me on the photo anywhere ?? Argh - I just can't get my head round it, probably after a nights sleep I could but I need to get this done ASAP. Really appreciate someone to clarify (I cant even seem to make out what the passport office page says)
  5. fossda

    Midwife wages - confused

    The table you've quoted above is correct. It depends whether she gets a Registered Midwife job or a Clincal Midwife job. Grade 5 is like Band 5 in UK and Grade 6 like Band 6 in the UK. She can of course apply for Grade 6 jobs but may end up with Grade 5 to start out and then apply for Grade 6 jobs as and when available. They should count the 2 years post reg experience though but you will have to provide evidence for this. I was a band 6 for many years in the UK but have been band 5 RN here since I arrived 2 years ago. Personal choice as I changed specialty - would have applied for band 6 Clinical Nurse if stayed in similar role. So as I have lots of post reg years of experience I am on the point 7 of the band 5 RN part. Hope that makes sense. New award just been passed so a pay rise in the near future. Also get a few hundred $ twice a year for courses or put towards training / development. To be honest we are paid v v well here. As an RN with shift work my earnings are way above the UK. Can't comment on private tho sorry ?
  6. fossda

    Rough idea of utility bills etc in Gold Coast

    Hi Costs we paid in GC 2014/2015 for a 4 bed new build without pool - We own now in Scenic Rim area so not so relevant No council rates while renting - now paying 1600$ per year Electricity $300 ish per quarter - no pool but A/C as needed. Some people seem to have huge electric bills though so don't know if we were just lucky, but we are now in an older 'character house' and still have same amount to pay Gas - we just had a large cylinder at the back of the house - hot water and hob. Cant remember how much but I think maybe 60$ ish for a cylinder and that lasted 6 months Water - depends on your landlord I think, but we had no water bills when renting. Some will charge for usage only Insurance - just contents if renting will be dependent on circumstances but comparable to UK TV packages will vary depending on what you want but as in UK you can get broadband and tv and landline packages - can't remember the cost sorry
  7. fossda

    Genesis Estate, Coomera, QLD

    Hi We rented here for our first year after moving (2014). It was a great base for us at the time. Quick zip up the highway to work ( not in peak times) down south to the coast, next door to theme parks etc. The rent was good - the facilities were used very regularly which was nice and it was a brand new house which was a treat for us have lived in 'do er uppers' for years. Since we left - friends took over our rental - there has been more and more building there. By the end of our tenancy the pool used to get very crowded as there are now so many houses on the estate. It depends what you're looking for but its a bit of a concrete jungle now. House upon house etc. few green areas, but there are nice paved walkways round the estate to cycle on. Several public BBQ's around plus some in the pool area. Lovely lake area too. The houses are built close together and all look very similar although not as much as further up the road in some of the other new estates in Coomera / Pimpama. There is 24 hrs security - you see the cars regularly patrolling around. We never had any issues at all of crime or antisocial behaviour there at all. Most annoying were the builders when trying to sleep I between night shifts Having said that there was a post on one of the FB pages this week of a break in on our old road but thTs the only time I've heard of a problem. Join a couple of the FB pages and it will give you an idea of the area. Coomera community or Northern GC community etc etc. There is a small shopping area within walking distance which has an IGA, GP, dentist, fish n chips, bottle shop etc. If you have children, we and the children were very happy with the primary school there. Big but great staff and the kids were v happy. The surrounding area is developing fast - practically unrecognisable even from 2014 - estate after estate and huge areas of forest cleared for the new Westfield site. If if I had my time again I would still base myself in that area to start with but would have rented in Coomera Waters estate ( not in the mossie bit) as the houses are further apart, nicer houses and more rec facilities inc a marina, pub, coffee shop, beach. Much prettier there. Plus koalas abound there. So much personal choice though. We live on Tamborine Mountain now which was always our goal and it's about as far removed from Coomera as you can get lol. But we as a family are the happiest ever up here. Every day I am so grateful to live in the most beautiful place in the world. Hope that helps. Ask away if I can help further
  8. fossda

    Midwife pay?

    Hi Dont know how to put a link in but if you google Qld nursing pay rates it will come up with the current (2015) pay rates that will cover Cairns. It depends if she secured a Clinical Midwife position or a Registered Midwife position. Clinical is like band 6 in the UK. I was band 6 in the Uk but had change of direction here and now a Registered Nurse but still well paid. Qld health also counted my years post qualification from the UK in adjusting which part of the scale they paid me. Good Luck
  9. fossda

    Researching a place to live-dog friendly beaches

    Palm Beach on the southern end of Gold Coast and The Spit near SeaWorld are popular. We've found better ones also at Northern NSW around Kingscliff that are vast and empty
  10. fossda

    Making an offer on a house

    Hi We bought in Qld last year. I remember the estate agent saying 10% deposit but our conveyancers told us $1000 is all that is needed. We just put the $1000 down and it was fine. We engaged the conveyancers early on and they were great 'hand holders' through the whole thing. We got the survey done very quick. There were some issues picked up that were fixed very quickly by the owner. She had arranged the work to be done all in that 10 day period. Good Luck
  11. fossda

    how long did your container take?

    We were very naughty/silly and in the stress of it all we forgot to get any insurance !! We really tracked that ship as it went over the ocean that's for sure. Luckily everything all went ok. One breakage only which was a clock that was broken, but it was cheap and old so we weren't bothered by it. They were so thorough when they packed. Did an amazing job
  12. fossda

    how long did your container take?

    Ha ha - yes it probably is pretty quick. They collected on 9th Aug and we had it by the end of September. That included destroying several things, when I thought I had been so careful :arghh: John Mason were great (and the cheapest)
  13. fossda

    how long did your container take?

    Just checked - ours took 7 weeks from door to door with John Mason in 2014. Essex to Brisbane. Well timed as we sent it 10 days prior to leaving, 4 weeks in the furnished rental and just a few days in the long term rental til our bits came. It was at the port in Brisbane for some time though I remember - at least a week before we got it.
  14. Hi all I don't post on here like I used to years ago when going through the visa process but still read things very regularly. Hoping that a bit of an update may be helpful for some. So, we moved from a small village in Essex to Gold Coast in August 2014 after many many years going through the visa process (since 2005 !!). My struggles with AHPRA are well documented in my previous posts from years back so I wont bore you with that. Suffice to say it was never a decision to come here that we took lightly lol Hubby and I (nurse), 2 boys aged 11 and 8 when we moved and a dog. I was lucky in that I applied for a job with Qld Health before we arrived, interviewed by phone and actually got 2 job offers. Major stresses with selling the house and all the usual emotional pressure before we left - (my car blew up on the motorway 5 hours into taking the dog to quarantine a couple of days before we flew !!!) stress much !! We stayed in a lovely dog friendly house in Brisbane for the first month while we decided where to live. I started work within a few days and we did all the initial banks / Medicare stuff easily. Hubby had been so busy at work for years before we came out - long commutes and long days. Leaving home at 5am and returning 9pm every day, so we decided that I would work and he would do childcare / looking after house and spending some well earned time with the kids. That was by far such a fantastic choice and we appreciate we were lucky to have that choice. He has done so much with the boys and has really had a ball. I'm so glad and grateful he has been able to do that. The job offer I took up is on the southern fringes of Brisbane, so we settled for our first year in Coomera. Coomera has a bit of a rep locally and agreed there are some not very pleasant pockets, but where we were was a body corp estate with roving security patrols and a swimming pool complex / gym etc. It suited us very well for the first year as reasonably close to work, a good school nearby and close to theme parks and the hinterland, northern NSW etc etc - too much to list. Hubby stayed at home for 9 months and then found work - it is casual but that is our choice for now as he always gets regular work and we plan it around my shifts and all the boys social engagements !! We are now settled and he will start looking for something permanent soon. I/m still in the same job from when I started in 2014. I don't love it - but its a good job and I know I'm very lucky to have a full time and permanent contract. I get to go to work in jeans, lovely air con, nice colleagues and good pay. I was top of band 6 nursing scale back in the UK. I'm now just on the RN scale (choice as I've had opportunity for promotion) and take home over the 100k mark which is just amazing. In addition to that, I love that I get accrued study leave - it was always difficult to get study leave in th UK due to funding. I also get a lump sum paid in my wages twice a year to go towards training or study. I'm also very much looking forward to long service leave when ive been here long enough ! The children have settled really well now and have plenty of mates and are heavily into soccer. The youngest did take longer and only now is saying that he loves Australia very much - many times I found him cradling a photo of his old soccer team and sobbing. It broke my heart at the time and I thought OMG what have I done to my poor children. The eldest barely had a backward glance and has raved about it ever since we landed. At the beginning of 2015 we started looking at buying a house. We only had a small deposit as we lost money on the UK house when we sold and also all the setting up costs etc etc over here took a big dent. We knew we didn't want to buy in Coomera, the area is developing so fast and the new Westfield development here as well as the "new Southbank" will be great. However for us buying a house that although is lovely, new spacious etc is great, we wanted something a bit different than rows and rows of houses on tiny blocks all the same. We worried so much about whether we woud be accepted for a mortgage with only me working and a small deposit plus we'd been turned down for credit when trying to get a laptop 3 months after arriving. We bought one car outright when we first arrived but needed a 2nd car for when both of us were working so applied and were successful in gaining car finance - not a new car, just something reliable. We mistakenly though if we had car finance and showed that we are good payers that this would go for us when applying for a mortgae - durrr it did the opposite as it cut down the amount we could borrow for a home loan. We approached 2 mortgage brokers in June last year - one laughed us out the office and said with our deposit and just me working not a chance !!! I went home and cried for hours and drank too much wine before i picked myself up and we went to another broker. Totally different and we got mortgage pre approval within a few days. We didnt have a huge budget obviously but thats fine - we are not McMansion people plus we liked the idea of having a small mortgage - more money for enjoying life !! We fell in love with Tamborine Mountain from a tv programme that (the gorgeous) Phil Spencer did years ago. We made sure we visited on our reccie in 2012 and since we moved, just found ourselves gravitating towards there all the time - so thats where we bought - our beautiful little quirky cottage with a wraparound veranda (my must have). We back onto the rainforest, have half acre with a creek far below, peaceful and quiet oh and a huge renovation to do lol, but its perfectly liveable for now. We are doing bits and pieces as we go along and loving every minute. I know its really soppy buu I love the mountain so much and the beauty up here makes me so emotional every day. i consider myself the luckiest girl in thw world to live somewhere so amazing. The boys settled well into their new schools - at the start of the soccer season last year we enrolled them into teams up here so they would make friends locally and therefore be happier to leave the Coomera schools - it worked a treat. The youngest goes to one of the 2 primary schools up here. Its much like his UK village school - very community minded and small, only 200 ish pupils. The one in Coomera had 1000!!!. My eldest is a bit brainy and won a scholarship to the local private school which he loves. They both have an amazing social life! Hubby and I have just started taking steps to give a bit back to the community - he has joined the SES and I have just done some basic training with Wildcare Commuting to work - we worried about this re the distance, but have both been doing it every day since August. We both work shifts so never stuck in traffic. It takes me 50 mins door to door which is on a par with my 5k trip to work in the UK in rush hour ! We both use it as a chill out time, listening to loud music etc. For us the commute is the trade off but its so worth it to travel a bit extra but to get to live where we do. Fauna - We expect a lot for where we are - lots of huntsman but no redbacks. Several pythons - one wrapped around the veranda post for a few day at Xmas - we left him be until he started eating the lorikeets which upset the kids - I know it happens and that's life, I just don't want to see the drama played out in front of my eyes !!. Hubby sprayed him with a little water and he slithered off into the forest. We had a brown coloured snake laying at our front door - hubby screamed like a girl and we called the snake catcher as we were'nt sure if he was a brown - turns out he was just a brown tree snake but better safe than sorry. Lots of beautiful birds, bush turkeys, possums, goannas and a couple of wallabies. We've had so many trips out, time away, lunches and picnics, we just seem to have the time to do it here. There are so many amazing places within reach - we could never be bored. My parents have just been over from the UK. We took them up to Fraser Island, Tangalooma, a few days in Maleny, Noosa, Springbrook, Surfers, theme parks, boating on the Tweed River and so many other amazing places. The weather - Can be the best and worst! Lovely to have blue skies nearly all the time and feel warmth on your skin, lovely to be cold enough on winter evenings at least up here to have the log burner going and to go to a pub with a real fire. The most fantastic storms with crazy lighting shows. On the flip side the weather can be scary. Those storms are amazing to watch from your home but can be terrifying if out in it with super heavy rain and the hail wow that's something else. There's been a few days where I've though phew its a bit too hot, but to be honest its nowhere near as bad as i thought. Yes it can be a bit relentless at times but everywhere's set up for it. I don't feel its stopped us from anything apart from doing some hiking in the National Parks which we will do now the cooler weather is arriving. Financially we are better off here even with hubby working part time and all the trips out etc. We lived month to month in the Uk but thankfully don't do that now which is lovely. The only down side for me is family. None of us have been homesick at any point. I remember at the 3 month mark waiting for it to happen and it never did, I know we are very lucky with that. Since weve been over here I've missed the birth of my nephew and obviously other family get togethers. I still say that my only thing against emigration is the awful guilt I feel. My whole working life as a nurse has been about looking after other people and making people feel better. So when my mum and day cry because we and their grandchildren are here and they are there its the worst feeling in the world. By us being here I have broken their hearts and made them cry, they have never tried to stop us but I know how heartbroken they are and for that, the guilt I feel is terrible and will alway haunt me i think. I try not to think about it as if I did I just dont know. We all miss our friends and other family members of course but nowhere near as much as I though we would. We feel maybe a trip to the UK will be on the cards this year or next but although I would love to see everyone, I don't really feel I want or need to go back for a holiday at the moment. It will take all of our leave, cost 10k$ for flights and there are so many places I want to visit here, so we will see. Wow sorry that's a bit of an essay - I reckon people have fallen asleep by now. To sum up, yes we are Oz lovers, we put too much time and money and effort into this for it to be something not to stick at and it never has been. I know we are lucky in that my small family and I all love it and are happy here. We have thrown ourselves into living and experiencing life here and right now wouldnt want to be anywhere else. I love love love it here. Who knows what's round the corner though ?? We were never unhappy in the UK either though and certainly werent running away from life there, we just wanted to experience life in Australia. We had previously travelled extensively through the UK and Europe so we don't miss that aspect. Anyway i will sign off there and am going to try and contribute a bit more to the forum. If I can help anyone with anything else pls let me know Rachel :wubclub:
  15. fossda

    Soccer season

    Hi If it helps, Ihave 2 sons who play U13 and U10 but for Gold Coast. Season started in March and just finished in September. Youngest son now in the Futsal season which runs until at least Christmas Rachel
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