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Lizzi goes to Brissie


Dora
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OK, so I actually never thought that I will do my own journal here, but since this morning I expect that it's going to be a necessity in order for me to keep my own sanity over the next few months.  It's just easier to to address a group of like minded people, than to speak to family who don't want you to leave or to the other half who don't share our sentiments about leaving.  So here we go.  Off to Brisbane part two.

 

So, just for background purposes, we did move to Australia in 2010 on a PR visa which was granted in Jul 2008 and we did our initial LSD trip in December 2008.  Back in 2008 we weren't really pressed to go and thought we will wait until the end of the 5 year period before we enter Aus.  The plan was to have kids and let them get to know their grandparents and then go over.  But in 2010, my husband got a job opportunity and we decided to go for it, still not sure that it will be a permanent move.  And so we left with 2.5 yo and 5 mo baby.  We went through all the initial  ups and downs to, after 3,5 years, that happy place where we said, that yeah, we could say here...But for some reason, both my husband and I had this constant yearning to go back to the family in SA.  At that stage we've put high priority on that and decided that we would wait to get our citizenship and then see if we could go back to SA.  (For some reason, because we did our first entry in 2008, we scored some days and we qualified for citizenship after only 3.5 years).  So we decided that we will not go back to SA without a job in the pocket - for obvious reasons. So by the favor of God, my husband got the first and only job that he applied for in SA, (at the same company he worked for here in SA).

 

That was a clear indication for us to come back to SA, thinking that we have our citizenship and the kids could always go back to Aus to study after school. So early 2014 we ventured back to SA, full of hope and positiveness, embracing SA like never before.  Until about May last year when I had one of that moments when the one moment you still sing the praises of SA and literally the next moment its like you have this awakening and you say to yourself, what are we thinking?  I was literally busy telling a friend why she should stay in SA, when I realised that no, if you have an opportunity to go to Aus, you should grab onto it with both your hands.  Since that day, I started pondering about our time in Aus and that I miss the lifestyle...and the church.... and our friends...and the uncomplicated life we had there....etc, etc, etc.  So only in July last year, on our way to the South Coast my husband and I got into this conversation and and somewhere between Mooirivier and Margate we went from missing the life in Aus to having a high level exit strategy.

 

Skipping a few months... so a few months ago we decided to inform the family about our plans to go back.  We initially decided that we would go back at the end of 2017 but should we get a job before then we would consider going sooner....in the mean time I got our daughter into extra reading lessons and I enrolled for a Teacher Aid course, all in preparation of our future plans....A few months back, before we told the family, my husband applied for a job at a bank in Brisbane, but at that stage they informed him that all their jobs have been frozen until further notice.  We've put that at the back of our minds and decided that it's actually for the better as we weren't ready to make the move back yet.  But about a month ago, they contacted him and asked him if he was still interested....of course he was and 2 skype interviews later our sooner arrived this morning in the form of a job offer.  Feelings that goes through my system at the moment is excitement, fear, excitement, anxiety, excitement....so we will open a bottle of wine tonight and have a good talk about this diversion in our plans...

 

I know this is probably a little bit too soon to talk about on a public forum, no final decisions made yet, but I just had to download some of this excitement.

 

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Congrats with the job offer Dora! Hoping this makes things easier for your exit strategy, and not more complicated. :) Yes wine!

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Wow that is great news! Congrats on the job offer. 

 

We are planning on landing in Brisbane end of August this year.

 

Just curious, which church did you guys go to when you were there? We will be looking for a local church there as soon as possible.

 

Good luck with all the arrangements and informing your family.

 

 

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@ riaandaddy, 

 

We stayed in the Bayside area and went to Citipointe church.  They are quite big with a separate Afrikaans service should you be interested.  Don't know if you have kids but Citipointe also have a school with a big South African representation.  

 

Gateway Baptist Church is also a good church. Our kids just had a better experience at Citipointe at that stage and were happy to be dropped of at the kids service so we could also get a proper church experience.

 

Let me know if you need any further info Brisbane that I might help with.

 

August is around the corner, good luck.

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Ok, so the past two days have been draining on so many levels. First we had to sit down and decide, is this it? Is this the job? Is this our time? And I know for most people this is an irrelevant question but it is so soon...So we decided to accept the offer and we've informed the family, which went surprisingly well, and we have our initial to do list drafted.  This is so hectic because the job offer came in the day before yesterday and and when we worked backwards from the day that my husband needs to start there, we realised that he had to resign his job today! So just to put this in perspective. Monday morning this week, we did not expect the job to come through, instead, a team of builders arrived at our house to start with the renovations we planned for now, and today he resigned his job. This is taking eventful to a whole new level.

 

I have this constant foggyness in my head, and my stummac turns and turns, but the heart is at peace. So the plan is that husband leaves 24th of June to settle in before he starts his new job mid July. Luckily his sister lives in Brisbane so the landing part is sorted.  That leaves me to oversee renovations, sell house pack up and tie the last ends. The plan is that me and the kids fly over just before their September holidayk starts so that we can enroll the kids in a school before the holiday and then they can start school in the 4th quarter, giving them time to assess the kids, kids can start making friends and then come January, its not a new school and a new year level, but hopefully just the new year level. Does that make sense? Well it will have to I'm afraid.

 

I must say, just looking at the to do list is quite overwelming but we'll eat this elephant one bite at a time. One of the only things that keeps me sane, is that we know Brisbane, been there, got the t-shirt and I am confident that we will be happy there.

Edited by Dora
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Good luck with all planning Dora but seems all is in hand! Exciting times and glad the family took it better than expected!

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Goodness Dora - that has moved quickly. The last I read, I think you were still planning on end of '17. 

All the best with your plans - I hope you have some smooth sailing head. 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Time for an update.  So the stummac turns calmed down, the foggyness in the head cleared up and excitement are starting to build up.

 

This week was all about seeing various removal companies that I have lined up. I've decided that I've got time so I got a nice spread in: Elliots, Pickfords, Stuttafords, Biddulphs, Bayleys and Crown.  I first saw the agent from Elliotts and after we had our walk through the house, me pointing out all the stuff that I want to put in a 20ft container, he sat me down and gently explained to me that I'm going to have to make a major mind shift in terms of my expectation on a 20ft ?. So last weekend we again decided to throw out more stuff, and started throwing stuff out that we can't sell ( man we collect all sorts of crap during the years). So when I saw the second agent on Monday morning, (feeling quite chuffed about the stuff we decided should stay), she sat me down again, and again I had to rethink stuff that I wanted to take...I do seem to get better at this because yesterday, another agent told me that she thinks we will fit eveything in ?????????????

 

I must admit that I am not too sorry for the the stuff that we now have to get rid of here and look forward to a lite start in Aus.

 

Now it is just waiting for all the quotes to come through and making the decision on the agent ( will do a proper post about that next week once I've got all the quotes in)...and putting more stuff on Gumtree.  Sometimes I wish our whole family could go over now in June because I'm really excited about finding a rental and getting the kids in school over there. But there's still loads of stuff to do on this side. I really have to stop myself from going onto rental agency websites to check out whats available, and I know that it is a major waist of time because we will only rent from September....BUT I want it now!!! 

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I don't think it's a waste of time going onto rental websites. It will give you an idea of what's out there and what the going rates are, and then when you are ready to rent you will be better prepared for the whole thing. Just don't get attached to anything that is going to be available long before you need it.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Right, so it turns out that I have a hidden talent for selling household contents on Gumtree and to the domestic worker community in our area.  It actually got to a point that I had to get the estate agents out to our house to take some pictures with the house with furniture in, because the furniture went so fast that we were affraid that we might not have anything left by the time that the house is ready to go in the market.  Last weekend was crazy because we identified 3 agents that we wanted to work on our house and had appointments with them on Friday and Saturday to take some pictures of the house.  We staged the house with whatever we had left, and (unfortunately went to buy a few things to help stage the house) - got some tips from the Home channel...and had to tie the kids down so they won't trash the place.  So right after the agents went through, our first garage sale started Saturday afternoon.  I think that went better than expected, but I'm still of the opinion that garage sales are a bit frouned upon here in SA.  At least we had a chance to meet some of our neighbors that we haven't met in the last 2 years.  The rest I'm slowly but surely selling on Gumtree, and I think that we'll get Cash converters in after we've packed the container to come and pick the rest of the stuff up. 

 

So ealier this week after the great build up to the garage sale, I hit a serious low down in energy levels.  We have been working tirelessly since the beginning of May to get stuff done before my husband needs to leave and this week was just Uuuhhhhh.  Didn't feel like doing a lot and got to a point where I just wished that our whole family could leave together now in June. But it can't happen that way.

 

I have also appointed Bayleys to do our relocation and I trust everything will go well. They are packing us in the last week of July.  Our last month will be spent at my parents house before the kids and I leave first week of September.  Whoop-whoop!

 

My husband is working his last day today and his days are now sort of counted as he's leaving on the 21st of June.  This week he told me that he is now in that "oulaas" mode.  Dropping the kids off at school - vir oulaas...going to a certain shop - vir oulaas...getting his favourite take away - vir oulaas...drinking his favourite wine - vir oulaas...because, even though I am a firm believer of never say never...this is our final trip ex SA. This time it is for good (accept for holiday visits).

 

So after a chat with my good friend in Brisbane, she motivated me to stay healthy now by eating well and excersising.  I must admit that we have fallen into a trap of not exercising bacause "we do run around like crazy all day long" and not eating well because "take-aways are so convenient when you are so busy".  So I've decided that this is the end of it.  I'm going to enter my last 10km race on SA soil for the weekend before we leave, and that will get me on the road and on the road to fittness again.  It will give me something else to look forward to and work towards because, lets face it, this whole relocation thing can become a little bit too consuming.

 

Deep breathe in.........and out.  Have a good one everyone :rolleyes:

 

 

 

 

Edited by Dora
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  • 2 weeks later...

Today was the start of a new cycle...eversince we started with this emmigration process we progressed through cycles and each cycle comes with its own challenges.  I can feel a definite built up...to what?....the day we fly out of OR Thambo....the day when our container arrives....?!...what will happen when this whole process is done...will I find a new purpose?  That's just me getting a little bit philosophical about what it is that we all go through at this stage, that occupies so much of our time...

 

What started me on these thoughts was when I said to my husband last night, that I can really sense that all that we do and feel in this process is getting more and more tense everytime we move into a new cycle.  

 

The first cycle for us was the initial talks about moving back to Australia. The part where it was really hush-hush just between the two of us. The time when we fantasised about going back. When we shared all our good memories of Aus but also remembered what it was that made us return to SA. The excitement!

 

But that airy-fairy cycle had to move on and for us the next step moving onto the next cycle, was to inform the family and our kids.  Thats the part where what seems easy, obvious and logic for us, had to be justified (really!) to our parents. Trying to explain to an 8 year old, who loves South Africa, in a easy, understanable way, why it is better to go and live in Aus now.  Lets call it the Big Elephant cycle.  This is also the cycle where doubt steps in, throwing various nasty thoughts at you every now and again.

 

Well, in our case, everyone was still busy digesting The Elephant, when our next cycle appeared in the form of a job offer.   All of a sudden all of the day dreaming about moving back to Australia were replaced with huge to do lists and hectic timelines.  This is the time when you mostly forget about The Elephant, because there is just so many other things that you have to do now. I don't know why I am comparing it to riding a super tube. The standing in the line part, is all the cycles up until you have a definate exit date. That's the part where you are a little scared, a little excited, a little hesitant, but still looking forward to sliding down that tube and falling into the deep pool (Australia). The moment you decide on that exit date and all the things get into motion, is the part where you jump into the tube....most of the time you don't know what is going on, you don't know what's around the next corner, you're going at a crazy speed and the next moment, you hit  that pool, and you are either going to sink or swim...the thing about the super tube, is that there's always that one person that jumps just before you and you realise that you have to go next, you have to meet your friend on the other side.

 

My husband jumped into the pool today. This is it! Today we've put the next cycle in motion. I can feel the stress levels increasing, I can feel the excitement increasing, I can feel the sadness increasing, the preasure is on. While my husband is approaching the pool we still have to turn a few unknown corners....but we're in the tube, there's no turn around now.

 

Coming back to my initial thoughts, I guess I'm just wondering, when it will be the last cycle of the whole process and when will it just be normal again?

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When you can look out of a window without looking through burglar bars, when you can walk the dog down the street, or the kids to school, without worrying about your safety, when you can go to a government office to do something, and there are no lines, and you get it done in 30 mins, when you take a sigh of relief, after a year or two, and just know "we have done the right thing".

 

I love your way of placing it in cycles, just look forward to the new one!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Today was T-21 days before the moving company starts to pack.  I still get an anxiety attack every second day when I'm trying to imagine what the 20ft container will look like that will be parked here and whether all our stuff will fit in.  I know I should not worry because whatever doesn't fit I'll sell and not worth getting any more grey hairs about, it's just that I've sort of already wrapped my head around what we think we want to take AND I'm a bit over throwing stuff out by now...

 

But we will press on. I've compiled my "the great Assie move" play list and are now seriously spending time to put smaller stuff inside bigger stuff, throwing more clothes out, throwing more kitchen stuff out, trying to get taxidermy certificates for some of our African artifacts ?, fixing stuff around the house, washing the webers, getting the kids immunisations updated, painting, checking shoes for grass, remembering to send water readings to Tshwane, remembering to check if the kreepy is still running, oh yes, and trying to keep things as normal as possible for the kids during the holidays thus going to see Dory as well ?. Gosh, I'm tired from just typing it...

 

News from Aussie shores are that my husband bought us some wheels, got his bike licence, bought himself a bike for his daily train station trips, got us linked again on Centrelink and catch up with friends before he starts at his new job on Monday. (Why do I get the feeling that this list seems a bit shorter than mine ?) Note to self: book a proper day at the spa before I leave in September - and forward the bill to Australia ?.

 

Referring to my previous post, adding another cycle, the cycle where you actually don't care a hoot about what friends and family think about this move...you are so over everything about this move, and you just want to get there and get on with your new life in Aus.

 

Till next time

 

Hope will lead us on!

Edited by Dora
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  • 2 weeks later...

My goodness, time flies when you're in the eye of the storm :unsure:. Today in 2 weeks they will probably be finished packing the container by this time.

 

So, good news is that we received an offer on our house this morning...a little bit lower than we wanted though...now, to negotiate so that we get a little bit more in our pocket, but not to put them totally off -_-...thing is, that if we had time on our side, we could get more, but we don't have time on our side and getting the offer signed will get rid of a huge burden at the moment.  At least then I can focus on just organising stuff for packing instead of keeping the house presentable all the time.

 

At the moment the to do list goes like this, tick off one item, add two items as I remember stuff...its crazy but I am almost at the point where I can go into each room and get it pack ready and close the door.  It's just difficult with what we are going to pack in our onboard luggage, because I basically have to pack and weigh the things that we will fly over now to make sure that whats left goes in the container...even though we'll only fly out in September. I also have to pack a winter and a summer wardrobe because we pack up in winter but fly out in (almost) summer.  As previously stated, it is an awesome feeling to throw all these things out. I literally feel lighter in my soul, but at the same time it drives me crazy to think the amount of money that I've either thrown in the trash or gave away. I don't mind giving things away to charities that can use it, but in future I will think 10x before I buy anything....and to top it all, I still think that we're not going to fit everything in that container.

 

Anyway, happy weekend everyone.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Seems like you are doing well! I can never throw anything out. Must have been a hamster in a previous life.

Good luck.

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Can't believe it's been 2 weeks since my last update...but the container is gone! Yay!!!!  I must admit that this was arguably THE bussiest 2 weeks of my whole life. Keeping up with the kids' normal schedules while trying to make the house pack ready and then having the packers in last week was hectic. 

 

I must give a shout out to Bayleys. I was most impressed with their packing team who packed like crazy for 3 days and especially the stacker who literally packed the container from corner to corner with no space to spare. Only 4 x non-essential items did not fit. Now it's just for the waiting to see how everything will arrive on the other side.

 

After I've put myself on compulsory rest for this weekend, my week will kick off with the rest of the list of things to do before we go.  I must admit that this whole throwing out stuff, prepping stuff for packing and eventually packing episode really took a bit of the excitement out of the move for me and I'm generally over it at the moment.

 

A bit of retail therapy over the weekend helped a bit but I still look and feel like death warmed up.  That said, I think that I've generated strenght from within in the last few weeks that I did not know I posessed and that thought alone makes the whole process worth it, let alone the prize at the end i.e life in Aus.

 

So the valuator from the bank who inspected the house last week, decided to write that we have an Asbestos roof...NOT! Now the bank does not want to approve the buyer's bond.  As if we need that kind of drama :(

 

So, whats left:

- pray that the offer on our house goes through

- clean house

- obtain electrical certificate for house

- sell remainder of furniture items

- send other loose items to charities

- go to doctors and dentists

- pay accounts and cancel debit orders

- have various african artifacts taxidermy certificated in an effort to take these items in our onboard luggage :unsure:

- last shopping, haircuts, sell car, farewell parties etc, etc, etc uuhhhhhhhh

- wait for the excitement of this whole move to return.

 

At least I can now officially start to look at rentals (online). Chances are looking good for us to get a rental in the same estate as where we previously stayed, which I think will be good for the kids if we can go back to very familiar surroundings.

 

All the best with everyone doing project Australia :D

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  • 3 weeks later...

The good, the bad and the ugly...(downloading stress alert)

 

Initially when we drafted our exit process, the last two weeks before we leave was somehow planned very differently in my mind....I expected to do last minute shopping, have farewells with friends, go to a spa you know...its everything but ?...where do I start...

 

So we signed an offer on our house and started packing like crazy and the last week in July our container left. Until that stage everything just went better than expected. It was just ad they loaded the last things into the container when I got a call from our estate agent...finance for our buyer was rejected due to our roof being an asbestos roof.  WHAT!?!?  That's where our nightmare started.  Since then I had valuator after valuator coming to my house to inspect the roof.  A sample was given to a bio hazard company who had it lab tested to find out if it was fibre cement or asbestos...yes, my roof was officially tested in a lab :angry:. The outcome: we do live in a house that's old i.e built in late 70's i.e the era where those roofs were quite popular and did contain traces of asbestos. This should not be a health hazzard if the roof is properly maintained, which ours is BUT this certain bank, (read the one with the green logo), is in bed with the green party and therefore have a policy to decline all bond applications for houses with a roof like ours ?. By this time, the buyers were so scared of the roof that they decided that they will not persue other banks. So as of a week ago, our house is back in the market.

 

This whole circus was (still is) just so stressful. And having the knowledge of this roof now becomes a whole moral issue for me. Do you tell prospective buyers or do you keep quite? I have done some internet research and I do believe that in all these older houses, even the ceilings and other building materials have these traces of asbestos, then all the houses pre 1999 should have this problem...

 

So because we don't have any further offers on the table yet, and I fly in less than 3 weeks, we are now seriously concidering renting the house out even though I am sort off against it. Fact is, if we sign an offer today, chances are that the new owners will only occupy in Dec/Jan. So I'm sitting with an empty house for 4+ months. I think that a house can become weathered when it stands empty for some time. If you rent out, you stand the chance of non-payment and trashing. I'm thinking of going with an agency that is part of Attorneys so that they can pull out the big guns as soon as the tennants don't perform...now also, instead of selling thd house voetstoots, I now have to get electricians, handymans etc out to fix some areas. I mean Really??? And all I wanted to do was to go for a run and a massage.

 

I firmly believe that everything will work out for the good but :unsure:

 

Ofcourse, none if this is easier with my husband not here...it actually sucks.

 

There is a silver lining though...we signed for a rental from 3rd of September. It is actually amazing how this whole thing worked out...our son, who was a bit negative about this move in the beginning, came to me one day, very excited, saying that imagine we could live in the same house as the last time and in the next breath he says: or mom, imagine we could live in a house that's even closer to the park (we lived about 200m from our neighbourhood park)...well, we started searching for houses in that area and guess what...a rental became available...in the same street that we used to live in, 4 houses closer to the park...built on the same plan as the house that we use to rent...now if that is not Devine Intervention?

 

We'll just keep the faith with everything else...

 

Liz

Edited by Dora
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It is almost invariable that some things WILL go wrong.

And with stress as it is, it feels insurmountable!

Just keep telling yourself: One day we will look back and laugh about all this...

Good luck.

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You lose some, you win some....

Just keep swimming! :D (and good luck)

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Hey @Dora! We just sold our house and it was a terrible experience due to unscrupulous behaviour from the estate agents. Our house was not on the market long but things happen really quickly and there is a lot of pressure from a number of parties that you have to take into account. We almost had to pay double commission and we were CAREFUL!!

 

I would tell the people about the roof (it can come back to bite you if you dont) but even though it might be more money out of pocket, can you not get a report from someone stating that it is safe for human residence? I really don't think this selling house business is easy so you have our sympathy, it is indeed a stressful experience. All the best, hope it works out well for you!

 

 

 

 

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Thanx CyberJoe - I will certainly try and get a report like that.

 

And you are so right about agents. I feel like I can not trust anyone of them. They will try everything just to get that sale through at your expense.

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T-14 :D! Sometimes I feel like I've been part of my own reality show for the past 3+ months. Like I'm one of the last survivors in a show that's about to end one of these days. Having a few challenges left but mostly waiting for it all to end.

 

Today we baked cup cakes for the kids' last day at school on Friday. The kids have been missing their dad too much in the 2.5 months apart - promise to self to never do that to the kids again.

 

I can actually visualise the arrivals hall at Brisbane airport. Anticipating the excitement when we come down the escalator to unite the family again :). (Hope my husband decides to come an fetch us :blink:)

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