Sunday, January 13, 2013


     Why do we keep going back?  The obvious answer is because Chris is there and we all want to spend time together.  It's a really long trip from the East Coast.  The jet lag upon return is crippling.  However, it's summer in Sydney and there's this too.

    So, we went back for the holidays and spent two really lovely weeks in our favorite place with our favorite missing family member.  Instead of heading off to explore a new part of Australia, we hunkered down at Balmoral and didn't leave Sydney.  It was a great choice and Sydney didn't disappoint.  There were days on the sailboat,

days spent at the beach catching up with friends,

tranquil mornings,

busy afternoons,

Christmas celebrations,

visits with the feathered locals,

and one especially amazing night.

     We'll all be living in the same hemisphere soon which is a great thing.  It means that this adventure is really over though and we are regretful about that.  Deciding to leave was never easy and we second guess it every day.  Living in Sydney taught us so many things about ourselves and what we value.  We'll take the lessons home with us along with sweet memories and long distance friendships.  Living in Sydney may have ruined (Chris would insist I say "'roo-ned") us for living elsewhere but we love it anyway.  The door is closed for now but not locked.

Friday, December 14, 2012


      We left thinking we might not return to Sydney for a long time, might not see our friends there for years, or more.  Happily, it turns out we were wrong.    Significant developments at work meant that Chris needed to stay longer than expected. With school about to start and Chris unable to leave for a trip home, we headed back to Sydney for a visit in August.
       Although it was winter, we had amazing weather nearly every day of our two weeks.  We visited loads of friends and favorite places.  It felt so easy to slide back into our life there.

 More gorgeous sunrises, courtesy of jet lag.

 Cool water temps did not deter this dedicated surfer.

 Paddle boarding was on Mia's must-do list.

 Sam got to join his rugby team for one of their last games.

 Brekkie spot.

 Winter beach

 Although it's a large city, it is amazingly easy to find quiet, gorgeous views like this.  

 Balmoral Rotunda

Balmoral Reserve

   As luck would have it, our neighbors from across the street at home were also in Sydney, after visiting family in Melbourne.  We spent a stunning day sailing on the Harbour with them.  So fun to have our two worlds come together.

 The coffee (and hot chocolate) boat was a hit.

     All too soon we were back home preparing for school to start, battling unreal jet lag, tending to multiple arm fractures (Sam) and contemplating another tour of duty in Sydney.

First day of school 2012


Thursday, December 13, 2012


    After months of debate, weeks of planning,  and days full of goodbyes, we tore ourselves away from beautiful Sydney and sweet friends.  The removalists (movers) packed up most of our stuff and we had two days to hit some favorites one last time.

The neighbors got a bit closer than expected on our last day.  Really not a flattering photo but the look of utter discomfort on Chris's face makes me laugh every time.

 One last rugby game.  Sam with his coach after the game.

 One last visit from the gorgeous neighbors.

Last glances around the 'hood

One last day at school. 

One last Opera House shot. 

 One last Harbour Bridge shot.

 One last ferry shot.

One last afternoon at Balmoral.

 One last sunrise.

 One last brekkie.

 One last look... and then off to the airport. :-(

   We headed to the airport with one child yammering incessantly from complete exhilaration due to going home and the other consumed with sadness and unable to speak.  They are frequently so different it confounds us.  No exception at this moment either.

    A day or so later and we were back.  Home!  Exciting and bewildering at the same time.

    We were met in our cul-de-sac by neighbors and friends at 10PM.  The kids' reunions with their friends were joyous.  Our home was festooned with welcome posters, flowers, baked goods and the pantry and fridge were stocked.  Amazing friends we have!


 He made it home too!

Just like that, we were back in the swing of normal summer activities.

 Back to visiting family.

Back to swimming with friends.

 Back to the NC coast with friends.

   This post has sat unfinished for months.  Too busy? Too unable to fully process this adventure?  Too sad to keep looking at all the last photos?  All of the above.  We miss Sydney and think about it most days.

   The adventure didn't completely end in June though...