There’s always one! (But why is it always mine?!) πŸ˜‚πŸ™ˆ

There’s always one. But why is it always mine?! πŸ˜‚πŸ™ˆ)

As parents, we’ve all had that thought, haven’t we?!!

Picture the scene… beautiful weather, calm waves lapping at your tanned toes.. Pilot Bay is a gorgeous family sandy beach: shallow blue water, kids playing happily with spades and sandcastles, tinkling children’s laughter in the air while the adults relax in the summer sun…

Then your second child thinks it’s funny to yell, “SHARKKKKKK” πŸ˜†πŸ™ˆπŸ¦ˆ as he splash-runs his way out of the water.


I can look back and laugh now, but FFS in that moment, your stomach still drops and the Jaws music still plays in your head πŸ™ˆ πŸ˜‚ and a split second later you need to track down your joker of a son to give him a slap for being embarrassing πŸ˜†

So this week, we’ve explored a bit more, in our efforts to find a place to live. We’ve been up to Katikati and Waihi Beach, and driven through many suburbs of Tauranga, it’s all beautiful and we’re still kinda homeless. The good news is that we have got the beachfront property to rent for 3 weeks, so Santa has somewhere to visit. The bad news is that we still need to find somewhere from mid January. Other good news is that our surfboards arrived! Other bad news is that the courier dropped them in transit and they’re broken 😭 Even more good news is that I’ve ordered some beds to sleep on when we move into the new place next week. And the bad news is that as they are oversized items, they may not arrive until after christmas πŸ™ˆ

As you can tell, this has been a week of ups and downs. We’ve laughed, we’ve cried, we’ve seen photos of the UK snow and we’ve felt a bit homesick. It feels a very long way away right now and I’m so thankful for the awesomeness of FaceTime to keep us in touch.

On Friday, the older boys all had a family surf lesson with Marc the Spanish Surf Instructor.


One by one, they all caught some waves, and Joe and Tom are getting pretty good at standing up, the jammy natural dudes.


I kind of loitered around at the side of them with my board during the lesson, in case Fred needed any help, catching a few waves and feeling pretty smug as I surfed my way in. Marc waved me over at one point, and I thought maybe he was going to compliment me on my immense technique.

Nah. But I’ll take his constructive comments ‘on board’ (get it? πŸ˜‚) as he told me that I need to bend my legs more and lift my arms, because I look a bit like a surfing gorilla. Thanks dude, thanks. I guess I’ll try to take my knuckles out the water and shift my bum closer to the board.


When travelling to Australia, make sure you have the right visa πŸ™ˆ

You’d think I’d know better, I’ve been around a bit, but did I make sure I had the right visa requirements to enter Australia? Did I bollocks.

The first clue we had was when we rushed through the departure at Dubai, the chap made me promise that I had done my ETA subclass 601. Of course I agreed, we had 13 minutes to board the plane πŸ˜‚

So when we arrived in Bangkok I thought I’d Google it and see what I needed. Well the hotel didn’t have Wi-Fi and it was midnight and we had to have room service and get some sleep… so I left it til the morning.

Went to the Wi-Fi hotspot in the hotel lobby, and found out that we need the ETA in order to be accepted on our flight in 9 hours. Wtf. I quickly put the 6 applications in and was told it takes 24 hours to be approved 🀀😱

My head (and Mark) was telling me that we’re screwed but what could we do? So we wandered in to downtown Bangkok for some street food. Why not? 😁 (while growing a fair few grey hairs and worry lines).

We had a ball. We crammed all of us in to a Tuk-Tuk (“yeah, no problem Leicester!” Was the response all day to my 7 year old Tombo, who was sporting his Leicester city top 😍) and it sure was an experience.

We had bbq pork on a stick and visited a local loo (😨) and had a boat tour and walked thru Chinatown and it was definitely an experience. Whistle stop Bangkok.

Got to the airport with my heart in my mouth.. checked in… And of the 6 of us, Fred and Joe’s visa had not yet been approved πŸ™ˆπŸ™Š and we were asked to wait to one side while they contacted Sydney visa office 🀀

Literally in the same couple of minutes, I got an email (thank God for free airport wifi) to tell me all 6 visas had been approved. I have earned this wine πŸ₯‚

The moral of this tale is to ALWAYS CHECK WHAT VISAS YOU NEED! Don’t fly by the seat of your pants cos the chances are you’ll leave skiddies πŸ˜‚πŸ˜

Sydney, I’m not sure you’re ready for us πŸ˜‚ xx

Reality hits

This weekend was a tough one. I’ve been so stressed and I don’t think I realised how much the planning of a 9 month holiday would play on my mind.

Thursday and Friday night were taken up with waking up and not being able to get back to sleep, interspersed with dreams about all the things we need to arrange; work out house rental, cancel subscriptions, what to pack, how to transport things there, hire a motor home, figure out where we’ll spend Christmas, how to get Wi-Fi on the go, jeeeez so much to think about! Β And on top of that, my amazing mum’s birthday on Saturday, surprise party for one of my bessies all afternoon, and my 9 year olds party on Sunday.

It all got a bit much to be honest and I’ve been a walking zombie.

Now that the weekend is over, I can relax and get back to the weekly food shop, laundry and cleaning πŸ˜’

We did however have lots of cake this weekend which is always a bonus 😁

179 days to Go!