Australia!

Screen Shot 2017-04-10 at 10.59.02 amScreen Shot 2017-04-10 at 10.58.14 amScreen Shot 2017-04-10 at 10.57.47 amIf you’d have asked me a year ago if we’d be in Australia again in 1.5 years time – I would have shaken my head firmly and reassured you that we were going to be in New Zealand forever.  We both thought that was what we were committing to upon arrival.  We were here to stay.

Now a year on, our little boy is growing and we’ve settled in but are more flexible with where we need to be.  Mike was offered a position back in Western Australia that honestly was too good to turn down.  He’ll be flying over next month and in 4 months time Wesley and I will follow over to join him.  Just like that everything changes.

This is a conflicting decisions as we’re not too happy to be parting with family; however it does open up an opportunity for us to buy land now in New Zealand and eventually be able to set up our own little business.  I’m just in the process of submitting paperwork for another 5 year visa to stay and work within Australia, and when that’s all secured we’ll be ready to go.

I’m sure many of the readers here are shaking their heads.  How many times have we moved over the past 7 and a bit years?

We have moved from 6 locations: Banff, Melbourne, Eneabba, Coorow, Perth, Palmerston North…  I think we probably travel more than military families at this point.

Some more family is waiting in Australia for us in Adelaide and Melbourne so we shall be flying more often to see them as well, along with our network of friends which will be nice to see them more often (a few of them have had babies too) but it’s truly with heavy hearts that we made the call to leave New Zealand for now.  The only solace is that it’s not permanent.

I’ll be applying for permanent residency by this Christmas and hopefully that will make transitioning to and from a bit easier.

After we buy land, there will be developments that we will need to tend to, so you shall be seeing more of us again int the near future.  Wesley has his own little New Zealand passport and I know we’ll be back often for family visits as he continues to grow and turn into a little independent person.

Side note:  Wesley stood all on his own yesterday for nearly 30 seconds.  It was pretty incredible to watch.  We’ve also just planted a small winter crop of veggies that should hopefully be ready in a few months.

So I guess, if you’ve not had the chance to see us in New Zealand, you’ll have to come and check out Australia!

With love,

Holly, Mike & Wesley

Ps: The photo of Mike was taken during a very special time when we were camping in the South West of WA.  We were whale watching and embracing the somewhat unconfirmed news that we were very likely travelling with the beginnings of life in my belly.  I’m really hoping we can show Wesley the area…it’s magical!

Fern Walk, Pohangina Valley

screen-shot-2016-09-26-at-9-01-26-amscreen-shot-2016-09-26-at-9-05-04-amscreen-shot-2016-09-26-at-9-03-46-amscreen-shot-2016-09-26-at-9-00-47-amscreen-shot-2016-09-26-at-9-02-09-amscreen-shot-2016-09-26-at-9-04-00-am

Yesterday, I spent two and a quarter hours hiking in the Pohangina Valley, on the search for some local native orchids.  While my flower search was fruitless, the hiking was quite stunning and peaceful.  The air was so refreshing, with no one else around it felt like I’d stepped back in time… I found myself imagining what it must have felt like for the original settlers of New Zealand to inhabit and clear this bush for settlement and farm land.

The emerald coloured fern, covered the forest floor and ancient Rimu and Totara trees towered above creating a dark dense walk.  If you’re in the area I highly recommend you check out this wonderful track.

Fitzgerald River National Park, Western Australia

Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.01.55 PMScreen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.02.27 PMScreen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.01.16 PMScreen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.02.20 PMScreen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.03.53 PM Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.02.13 PMScreen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.01.09 PM Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.01.02 PM Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.00.56 PM Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.00.42 PM Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.00.36 PM Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.00.12 PM Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 6.00.04 PM

We spent the last leg of our trip in Fitzgerald River National Park, which is a further 2 hours drive South from The Stirling Ranges National Park here in Western Australia.  It was here that we spent one night in a room Quaalup Homestead (which was really cool, and if you do get a chance you should definitely consider staying there).  This park is immense.  It covers 330000 hectares of protected wilderness.

Although our stay was relatively short, we did count it amongst the highlight of our trip for one reason…and one reason alone.

An energetic baby Southern Right Whale and a pod of 20 bottle nose dolphins were frolicking together in the shallow waves, whilst mum hung out further in deep water to keep an eye over her little playful calf.  This was at 7.00am with little to no wind…and absolutely no other tourists.  We had the beach all to ourselves and felt so privileged to be able to see this activity in the wild, unspoilt.

We also managed to spot a wallaby here, as well as crested tern, grand hakea and “red beaks” orchids.  The flora in this park is highly concentrated and boast some of the most diverse on the planet.

Have you been to Fitzgerald River National Park?  What was a highlight for you when you came?