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About mrspotatohead

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  1. mrspotatohead

    10 months on the Sunshine Coast

    I hope your all settled in now. I does feel like ages ago doesn't it? All worth it in the end! lol. x
  2. mrspotatohead

    10 months on the Sunshine Coast

    Shell15, I'll PM you.
  3. mrspotatohead

    10 months on the Sunshine Coast

    Hi all, I haven't been on here for a while (since posting after we first arrived and I was miserable). I can happily say that we will definitely not be returning to the UK. We are happy, healthy and financially stable and we really can't complain about anything. Ok, so the Chinese food here leaves a little to be desired, but I'll survive! When we first arrived, OH really struggled to find work, looking back it only took just over 3 months but it felt like an eternity as we had brought hard earned pounds with us, but were spending the dollar so everything seemed extortionate. We were also staying with family and had no car for the first 6 weeks which was a mistake as it made job interviews a struggle. The hardest part is getting used to how different things are here. I grew up in Australia yet found it sooo unbelievably difficult to settle in after living in the UK for 5 years. OH settle in fairly quickly, but was quite happy to save up and return after 3 months too. Thank god we didnt! Once you get used to the shops, the people, the more relaxed pace of life and accept that it is not the UK, it gets much easier. We live on QLD's Sunshine Coast. The sun is pretty much always shining, we walk on the beach everyday and we are within driving distance of some great national parks. We are both working full-time (making double what we did in the UK), the little one is happy at daycare and has really come on leaps and bounds. We certainly spend a lot more time outdoors than we used to. We are now also saving to buy our first home here which will be much more affordable than we first thought and we are both so relieved we didn't jump on the plane when I had the 3 month jitters. We've also had a family holiday this year and were able to stay in a 5 star hotel and splash out for a week, something that would have been very definitely a 'once in a while' in the UK for us. I miss tesco, chinese, chippies, decent cable tv and the bitter cold dark nights (oddly enough).... but I love the fresh seafood, great thai food, the beach, the lifestyle and the sunshine here. As for the cold, we can jump on the plane every other year and visit the relatives for Christmas, so its no big deal! If I could change anything about the journey we had to get here...it would definitely be to come better prepared. If I had to do it again, I'd have brought both our cars even though they were both 9 years old, all of our furniture and belongings and a stack more cash than we came with. I think having enough to realistically live on for 4 months is the minimum, not including the cost of setting up house etc. I'd also have checked the australian immunisation schedule and implemented the catchup on arrival as our son had to start a catchup schedule and we had to pay full daycare fees for a while. I'd also have setup our bank accounts online from overseas before arriving as getting the necessary 'address' paperwork was a total nightmare. I'm so glad we came back, and also glad we didn't go back to Sydney. The lifestyle up here is amazing, and we are so happy and settled now. We had reasons for leaving the UK, and they still stand. One thing I will say is if you are currently considering a move to Australia but are financially comfortable, have a network of family around you and lead a happy life in the UK but you crave the sunshine...get on a plane and spend the week in Spain....don't turn your whole world upside down! I'm sure there are people reading this for the sake of gathering information about the cost of living, so here goes... Rent $400 a week for an apartment with 2 beds, 2 baths, pool. Groceries $200 a week (including cleaning stuff...but I check specials, meal plan and cook from scratch) Electricity $77 a fortnight automatic direct debit Daycare $150 a week after rebates etc Petrol $80 a fortnight (driving 15 minutes to work and back each day) Car Insurance $80 a month Shampoo, Cut n Colour at the local hairdresser $150 Boys cut $8 Fish n Chips at the beach $12 Large pizza from dominoes or Eagle Boys $8 Scrambled eggs and mushrooms on toast at beachside cafe $15 Cup of coffee at hinterland coffee shop $4 Medium fruit salad at local shopping centre $6 Movie ticket $15 Theme park passes $99 each for annual passes to 3 parks See...its not too bad when you compare it to hourly salaries....it just looks scary when your converting it into pounds!! Anyway, I've written a novel, so I'll leave it there. Thanks for reading!
  4. mrspotatohead

    partner visa help

    Hi Krissy, I think you may have trouble proving your relationship status. Do you have joint bank accounts or anything dated 12 months (or more) ago? We were in a relationship for 5 years and had a child when we applied for our partner visa and we still had to gather a huge amount of information to prove our relationship. I think if the level of commitment is there, I would personally apply for the Prospective Marriage Visa. Of course, its your choice what you do, but it's a lot of money to spend if there is a big risk it won't be approved. However, in saying that, if you can gather enough evidence, you may have a good case. Emails to each other, joint invitations to parties, joint bills, joint bank accounts, photographs of you with him, itineraries from any trips together and stat decs from family and friends all help to build a case. Good luck!
  5. mrspotatohead

    Expensive Australia

    We got our electricity bill through last night. We have a 2 bed apartment...$208 for the month. Yikes...better turn the air con off! :wacko:
  6. Just remember cockroaches are attracted to oranges. So keep your oranges in the fridge! We've yet to see one in our house... but I dont keep any food out and I vacuum the entire house every day as we have a crumb machine (toddler).

    <p> </p>

    <p><p>Hi, we have been in Buderim 15 months now and its great. 4 kids - 13, 9,7 & 4</p></p>

    <p><p>Involved with Mooloolaba surf club.</p></p>

    <p><p>Working as an osteopath in Buderim.</p></p>

    <p><p>How about you?</p></p>

    <p><p> </p></p>


    <p> </p>


  8. mrspotatohead

    Who lives on the Sunshine Coast? (Maroochydore)

    We're also in the area. The Sunshine Coast sure gets a lot of rain! lol Roger2shirts and byidlehands...how long have you been in Buderim? That view when you drive down the hill is stunning, we are thinking about there long term if I ever get over the 3 month jitters!
  9. mrspotatohead

    Getting a bit wobbly

    Thanks everyone. Petal, what is it that changed that made you happy here? Or did it just happen gradually? I'm impatient at the best of times! Connie & Quoll, your both very brave to go back...a lot of what stops me from going is the thought of 'returning' with my tail between my legs after going on about how wonderful Australia was. I seem to have good days and bad days. Today was a good day. We got home from work by 5...the sun was splitting the skies and managed to get half an hour in the pool with the little one before dinner. We've started planning a family holiday for the end of the year. Looking at somewhere like Fiji. I figure having something to look forward to will give me a chance to get my mind off scotland for a while and start enjoying life here!
  10. mrspotatohead

    Getting a bit wobbly

    Thanks RockDr. You are absolutely right about the mortgage thing. Thats a lot of what pulls us back. We know we could get a home for one third of my wage in the UK...but it would be my entire wage here. Work... I've asked...I think they think I'm nuts asking for more work...they even gave me more and I'm still not busy enough. The Sunshine Coast is so layed back though, I have a feeling its like this in all workplaces up here. As for sitting it out for a while, I think thats good advice. Can't help but start planning a move back to the UK in my head though. I really need to give life a chance here, but its so difficult when I feel like such a fish out of water. Making friends here is also difficult given I was originally from Sydney. We've had a girl from my work over with her husband and kids and she spent the day immitating my OH's accent...so that went down well! :rolleyes:
  11. mrspotatohead

    Getting a bit wobbly

    Well we've been here on the Sunshine Coast for 3 months exactly now. I'm working fulltime, as is OH (finally), both getting decent wages. Little one is happy at daycare and also plays soccer now, we're renting a lovely home with a pool etc. We've bought a car, started gathering belongings again and the sun is shining. However, I don't know what is bothering me...I just feel a little hollow and we find ourselves saving up to return to the UK. We want to buy a house, but buying a house here is so much more expensive than scotland and we just don't want to be dedicating 1 of our entire salaries to a mortgage payment given we already have to watch the pennies. I never thought it would be me that was 'homesick', given I was raised in Australia and whilst living in the UK for the past 5 years, did nothing but go on about how wonderful it was. However, I miss quite a lot...fresh air being one of them. I really miss the affordability of the UK...we lived comfortably and still had money to play with. Here we get paid more, but our budget is a lot tighter. I also miss my OH's huge family and the support network they gave us. My family is here, so I can't imagine how they'd feel if we said we were going back. My mum knows how I feel but finds it hard to talk about it cause she's never felt 'at home' here (came out in 1989). My parents have been great since we arrived, but I find a lot has changed and my sister and her family seem almost uninterested in us. I also quite sadly miss package holidays with entertainment, tesco, m&s meals for a tenner on a friday night with a bottle of wine!!, chinese food, curries, online shopping, brisk walks in the cold, the snow (never thought I'd say that), the proximity to europe, the beauty of the countryside in scotland, cold christmas with an atmosphere, my old job...cause when they said busy, they meant busy. My job here is apparently a very busy role...yet here I am with yet another 2 hours to spare in the middle of the day. It took OH a long time to find work and that made it a real struggle for the first 2 months. We got by though- just. Is it just 3 month jitters...am I ungrateful? Are the things I miss just ridiculous? Have other people felt like this, returned to the UK and lived 'happily ever after'...help...
  12. mrspotatohead

    Looking for friends on the Sunshine Coast

    Lolaferrari and Stu Mac, I've PM'd you.
  13. mrspotatohead

    Looking for friends on the Sunshine Coast

    Sounds like your bringing quite a bit with you then Judy! lol. Would love to meet up with you when you arrive, so do get in touch, especially seeing you have a 2 year old too! Millie, don't lose hope, you'll get there. Good things come to those who wait! Thanks Simon & deb, I will do that!
  14. mrspotatohead

    Looking for friends on the Sunshine Coast

    We are about 10 minutes from Maroochydore. It is very quiet, but in a good way. The traffic is pretty much non existent compared to sydney! Good luck with the big move. Are you bringing your things with you or travelling light (ha...5 bags and a toddler so sort of light) like us?
  15. We are 27 & 24 (OH Scottish, I was raised in Aus but born in Scotland). We have a 2 year old son, who is very energetic! After living in Scotland for 5 years, we have finally moved back (100 Partner Visa). Given that I'm originally from Sydney, the only people we know up here are family, so we desperately need a new circle of friends! Happy to organise a group bbq or simply a meet up for coffee.