Getting settled, still steps to be done while enjoying the environment.

After now being 4 months in Australia we get settled a bit. Although we have made many steps and are quite far, it needs to be said that it takes a lot of time to arrange everything from scratch when you start without any local social network. Nearly all our boxes are unpacked and the house is slowly becoming our home. The furniture and most of our stuff is in place now. Nevertheless we are still looking for a 2- and 3-seater because we left ours in the Netherlands. We also needed some new kitchenware, power transformers, local DVBT receivers and many other stuff. Living acreage (so they call it here) also gives another challenge to understand, operate and maintain everything with your own water supply, on-site sewer facility, water heating sun panels,TV antenna infrastructure, garden watering installations, lightning, local animals, insects and terrain maintenance to be done. It’s also part of the fun.

In the garden we made an open place and have installed a swing and now we are transforming a pool in a sandpit and a trampoline will soon be delivered as well. This helps the children to entertain themselves in the garden with some physical activities in their own environment.

Regularly we also visit public playgrounds here in the neighborhood and on Friday afternoon some parents from school with their children meet in Nature Parks with a playground. It is fun to join these activities as well.

Nicole started to use her scooter (so they call a Dutch “step”) and fell down on the street with serious wounds in her face but now after three weeks it is largely recovered without scarces. At school things are going well.

Thursday the 10th of July Jorick has his last day at Living Faith Early learning center. Although Jorick had a very good time there experiencing very warm love and care he will continue his Kindy at Nicole’s School (Genesis). There a new pre-school building will be opened next week. This move brings Jorick to the same school as Nicole (his desire already in NL)and it saves us 1 hour driving each day. Also some class mates will make the same move. The teachers of Living Faith (Inspired by “Love is the greatest of all …!”) wrote in Jorick’s booklet: “Dear Jorick, It has been a true pleasure introducing you to Australia and teaching you. You are a happy, cheeky, loveable little boy and know the future will be an adventure for you. Keep safe and look after your family. X
Miss A and Miss B.

At Genesis Jorick will need to wear a uniform so we bought already one as you can see on the picture. He is very proud of it and looking forward to wear it. We had a meeting with Nicole’s very kind and caring teachers. They were very positive about the strong progress Nicole has made. This really was far beyond their first expectations. Their first thought was that Nicole should start in a lower year (preparatory year). Since we knew Nicole’s eagerness to learn we tried to get her in grade 1 of primary school by letting her do a test which was positive. Nicole is the youngest of her class, she entered two months after the start of the school year and started without knowledge of English. Nevertheless she managed to catch up with the program. The teachers already give her several certificates for her reading and learning English. So we are happy that things are going so well. Three weeks ago she had an athletics day which she enjoyed. (photo)

At the moment it is deep winter and yesterday the day temperature didn’t exceed 17 degrees and at night it was nearly 7 degrees. We started to use our wood-fire and/or the reversed air-conditioning (warmtepomp) to warm up in the evening. Today it’s better again. This keep us a little bit more in home although we regularly jump into our garden. For the first time we saw a snake in our garden and of course we had to take a picture. We think it’s a Yellow-faced Whip Snake. Although venomous, not considered to be dangerous. Another animal that frequently shows up is the Australian Brush Turkey. It can really make a mess of your garden by removing all leafs on the ground looking for food. Just to be sure we got it on camera we already made a picture, just in case it will not survive Christmas.

Last month we have been a long day to Seaworld at the Gold Coast. There are water animals, shows, play grounds, scary trips through dark buildings and other fun.


Last week we walked a long track in the State Forest which we can enter from our garden. The Forest here is beautiful and the Flora and Fauna is very different compared to NL/Europe. It’s also very quiet over here giving the opportunity to hear and see many beautiful birds. Jorick was our guide. A sad thing however was that a Wallaby was killed by a car a few hundred meters from our home. It is a quiet street and perhaps that’s increasing the risk. However our lawn in front of the house is still being eaten by wallabies so we didn’t have to mow it since we started living here. After having a busy time we (all 4 of us) will take a week off now to relax and enjoy several nice things here around. We are looking forward to it.

During the migration process we have met Dutch friends who were starting to live in Coffs Harbor (500 km below Brisbane). We have visited them during our both holidays and they have visited us two months ago. They are now moving back to The Netherlands. They have been living in Coffs for nearly 2 years and we wish them a good return to NL. We, the children included, will miss them here. We still enjoy our stay here and at home it seems like living in a small nature paradise. It’s fun to meet new people and to see how things can be done differently than they are done in NL. We also learn about ourselves in this process and experience the cultural differences as huge, although you don’t see that so well at first sight. We have got the idea to list some of these differences and to keep the list updated so now and then. This will be added to the website.

As you probably have seen at the top of this page,Nicole and Jorick have started their own webpage in Dutch. So be sure you don’t miss it.

Wish you all the best.

Kind regards,

Jan, Anita, Nicole and Jorick

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