Thursday, December 10, 2015

Australian Anniversary

This week marks the anniversary of my arrival to live in Australia.  Seven years.  In some ways, it seems just like yesterday that I embarked on this new adventure.  In other ways, it seems that I've been here a looooong time.  I thought I'd take us on a pictorial journey of some of my many highlights in Australia....warning: "heaps" of pictures coming atcha!...all were taken by me and my iphone (or my phone was given to someone else to take) with the exception of a couple of paid touristy shots that I've designated with a *.......
What have I been doing the last seven years?

I've seen some spectacular views:

I've stared at blue water and contemplated my life:

I've attended the Vivid Light Festival:

I've made friends with some wildlife:

And ran scared from others:

I've explored caves:

I've hung out with these handsome boys under blue, cloudless skies:

I've watched the World Cup on massive screens at Darling Harbour:

I've watched the Sydney fireworks for NYE from my bedroom window three years consecutively (this is no longer the view from my bedroom):

I've had picnics in the grass:

I've gone to music festivals with friends:

I've seen this view from an airplane window:

I've got in a tank with one of my bestest Texas friends...and some aquatic life*:

I've worn a "stinger suit" in the Whitsundays (not knowing if that was to protect me from stingrays or jelly fish stings):

I've slid down the Stockton Sand Dunes:

I've hugged a giant koala:

I've celebrated the 4th of July with other Sydney Americans:

I've displayed the Stars & Stripes on September 11th:

I've attended an Australian (rules) Football game:

I've met up with other graduates of Texas A&M University:

I've celebrated Australia Day:

I've put my toes in the sand of several Australian beaches:

I've hiked to lighthouses:

I've seen fog over the Blue Mountains:

I've stood in the Pacific Ocean with my mom and stepmom:

I've stopped and admired unique architecture with beautiful scenery:

I've been a bridesmaid:

I've climbed the Sydney Harbour Bridge*:

I've wandered through the most beautiful cemetery I've ever seen:

I've been stopped by tourists from Beijing asking to take their photo with me:

I've sipped cocktails under Palm trees and blue skies:

I've watched giraffes at sunset in Taronga Zoo:

I've experienced shock and horror by inflated Sydney prices:
I've been to Luna Park:
I've learned that winter can look like this:

I've met Jay, the koala, with my mama*:

I've been to the Great Barrier Reef:

I've eaten dinner with my dad and stepmom while overlooking the Sydney Opera House:

I've been on a Dolphin Cruise in Nelson Bay:

I've enjoyed ferry rides and water taxis:

I've seen kangaroo in the bush:

I've met Australian rock royalty, Kirk Pengilly of INXS:
I've become a public train commuter:

I've read a book while soaking my feet in Sydney Harbour:

I've been on a harbour boat cruise for a friend's birthday celebration:

I've danced the night(s) away with a great group of girlfriends:

 I've been to a rugby match:

I've adopted three kitties:
I've become a mama to two mutts:
I've become a stepparent:

I've found the man that challenges me, loves me, completes me...and I married him:
All of this and so much more. I've lived an enriching life since December 2008. I've learned, laughed, and loved
All the while, I've missed my family & friends, Tex-Mex, college football, and more.  I feel extremely fortunate to know I have loved ones and a place to call "home" in more than one place in this great big beautiful world. 


  1. I love the one with the Beijing tourists!
    It's a very beautiful country we call our adopted home. Happy expat anniversary!

  2. This is so cool! I loved seeing all of the things you got to do and am amazed at the size of A&M grads. I mean it's not a huge group but it's more than I was expecting, lol.

  3. WOW! Such an awesome experience! It takes guts to do what you're doing and a lot of courage!

  4. Seriously those coast lines are just beautiful! You've gotten to do so much while you've been in Australia and I know that you miss Texas so much, but it's so awesome that you have people that love you all over the world!

  5. I can't believe that you've only been here 7 years. It feels like so much longer. Texas' loss is definitely our gain. I'm so glad you're here in Sydney with us. And I love that photo of us at the rugby 🏈

  6. ahhh this post is all the feels! i just love it! i just marked ten years in florida (which is a big deal for this pennsylvania girl ha) and a similar post could be fun. so much love you're surrounded by - not to mention beautiful scenery! love

    xoxo cheshire kat

  7. When you line it up you see how truly amazing your life is. Happy day!

  8. Happy Australia-versary!!! I love all these pictures and all that you've done in the last 7 years. It's all very impressive and maybe making me a little jealous. EXCEPT. WHAT THE HELL IS THAT THING YOU RAN AWAY FROM BECAUSE IT LOOKS SCARY AS HELL??!!!

  9. I love all these photos! What a special way to look back on your life in Australia! I think those three kitties, two puppies, children and one man are very happy you settled in Australia 7 years ago!

  10. So you basically have done WAY more in life then we have :) That's awesome!
    ... so I gotta know - why did those people want a picture with you? Not used to a blond? :)

  11. So many great memories, and pictures! Love the one with the koala and kangaroo! And you are most certainly braver than me, swimming with those sharks! Love this whole post!

  12. I loved looking through all your Australian moments!!! The Great Barrier Reef looks so amazing!!! And the architecture!!! I want to visit Australia one day and meet a kangaroo, dolphin and koala bear!! But not that lizard looking thing. Nope nope nope.

  13. Looks like an amazing seven years! :)

  14. Man, the view from your former bedroom was fantastic! Thanks for sharing your photos. It was fun looking at them.

  15. Happy seven years!!! You've packed a ton of awesome memories into them, that's for sure! :D

  16. Wow, those are some gorgeous shots there. Happy anniversary! Cool to see your journey over the last 7 years. Here's to more amazing memories and moments to come!

  17. After I saw the bridesmaid one I kept asking where is the got married event? I should've known you were saving the best for last! It's funny how time goes by so quick and when you start to look you've really done so many amazing and memorable things. Happy Australia-versary! Here's to hoping the next seven years are just as wonderful!

  18. Beautiful light show. What the F is that below the kangaroo??
    That is a beautiful cemetery, you're right. I've seen pictures of some really beautiful ones in New Orleans, too.
    Have you been to Pere Lachaise Cemetiere in Paris? That's another huge and breath taking cemetery.

    TGIF darling. xoxo

  19. You have seen and done so much in the time you have been there!! That is a lot for a pumpkin!!

  20. I'm so impressed and jealous at the same time! Why did those tourists want a picture with you? Because you're American or white? You swam with sharks???

  21. Looks absolutely amazing! What a wonderful seven years it has been for you! I am super jealous!

  22. Beautiful! I did so many of those same things in Sydney and I miss it so much!!

  23. Wow! What amazing memories! Absolutely beautiful!

  24. Happy anniversary! I'm jealous of that view you had, what a cracker. What did you think of bridgeclimb? Worth it? Aside from that, congratulations on all the huge achievements you've made over the years. You've really made them work for you!

    P.S. I've have tried to make friends with the lizard. He looks cool!

  25. I love the great pictures and memories you shared in this post! Happy Australia-versary!

    This really makes me want to visit Australia even more than I already did (and trust me, that was a lot!) ... And hang out with you, of course! Judging from these pictures, you obviously know how to have fun! :-)

    One of the things I most want to do is climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge. What did you think of the experience?

    One last thing ... I was smiling as I was reading this post and looking at the pictures until I got to the inflated prices one and saw pumpkins for $30. At that point my mouth dropped wide open. I knew it was really expensive there, but I cannot wrap my head around that!

  26. heaps! i miss that word.

    i'm not crying. jeepers. what a lovely post.

    can we have a picnic in the grass when i come home? along with all the other amazing things we are going to do, like pub trivia.

    you've done lots of amazing things! my favourite part is the end, because it's such a lovely beautiful way to look at it. I might steal this for my next expat-iversary.

  27. I'm over here patting myself on the back because I know where you took some of those photos from because I've been there! I'm ridiculous by yay 7 years!


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