Welcome to Sydney!

Welcome to Sydney!

Saturday, 27 August 2011


Another of our favorite things is food. We had a wonderful day at our friend M's house yesterday making pierogis. Now, I know she has a very detailed blog coming out that has some great detailed pictures and instructions, so I won't steal any of her thunder, but wanted to share a little bit of our experience from my perspective.

First, a pierogi is a Polish pasta (at least that's what I'll call it) that is kind of like a ravioli. Ours was stuffed with potato, cheese, garlic, and carmelized onions (YUM!). So, the brialliant idea behind M's party was to have some friends over, most of us who are also ex pats, and teach us the original Pierogi making process. So, thanks to her for such a brilliant idea! The other outcome was to make sure each of us had quite a few of these delish treats to take home. And finally, at the end of our hard work day, we all got to sit down together and eat these treats with brown butter and carmelized onions over them and baked with real Polish kielbasa (YUM YUM!). Yes, the husbands participated in the eating part. They seemed to enjoy that part very much!

This was such a fun day. We started at about 11 am and were there until after 10 pm. Much of it was spent (by the women, at least) putting together these tasty delights. I learned that I really enjoyed using the hand pasta machine. I see one in my near future! I was really not good at getting the filling in the dough. We kind of worked an assembly-line type process for the final two batches and got pretty efficient.

It was a very fun day, and we have truly made some great friendships with these folks in a very short time. For the women, it felt very old fashioned to be working together so closely on a mutual task, while still chatting it up and learning more about each other. It felt as if we could have been a group of sisters making a big holiday meal or something together all day. So, we have already committed to a similar engagement for Christmas cookies, although do we really want to do that in December, ladies? I guess I can volunteer since we will have air conditioning. We look forward to having you all over and reciprocating such a generous gesture.

And, for those of you out of town, we will have 2 guest rooms (and a study) starting next Saturday! You may want to wait until later September for when we get our crate, though, so you will also have a bed to go with the room! Doggies fly over next Wednesday. And, we're going to sign the papers for the car today. We are getting settled in.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011


Those of you who know us know that we love our TV, movies, and music. I thought I'd share a little about what we are enjoying here. If you are expecting some highbrow activites, please discontinue reading this post : )

We are really enjoying the TV here. It makes US reality TV look very minor. Our new favorite is called,  The Farmer Wants a Wife . The premise is kind of like the Bachelor (which I never watched before). There are several eligible farmers, even one older good looking man, and they choose 5 or 6 girls and the girls somehow pick them and then they go on dates. This week, the girls all go on the farm! Anyway, we are really enjoying this one. Another one we haven't seen yet is "Are you Fitter Than a Pensioner?" I think this may be British, but we haven't seen it. Presumably, it is seniors competing in physical contests with younger people, maybe out of shape ones. Anyway, I think that could be fun. My father-in-law is 95 and could probably beat me in a race!

Today, we are headed out rental hunting again. We really hope we find something. We're a bit tired of the hotel style living. And, other good news, the doggies get to come out next week. From there, they will go to quarantine for 30 days. Eastern Creek Quarantine is where they will be. Scroll down on the link and you can see some pictures. Dan can go see them on Tues and Thursdays. Bye for now!

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Day at the Beach

So, as most of you know, we love the beach. Yesterday we went to Bondi Beach.

And, you may have been assuming this, but Mollie has been writing most of this. Here's a note from Dan:

We may be adjusting to the time.  We stayed up till 10:30 pm Saturday night! Yesterday we went out looking for places to rent.  There were a few options that might work.  Of course, the one we liked best was at the top of our budget.  We are still getting a feel for which neighborhood suits us.  There are several people here who have strong feelings tied to neighborhood idenity.  There are assumptions about those who live on the north side of the harbor for example which is more suburban.  There are some of the locations that are closer to the city center that have some old building charm and quirks.  It was a nice day yesterday so after the house search was over we decided to go explore and hang out at a neighborhood near the beach.  We had to take a train to a bus to the place. 

This is a picture of a swimming pool in the ocean. People were swimming laps there. Very windy, but beautiful day!

Ok, so you may wonder why I'd put this terrible picture of myself up, but I thought the view was nice. It was really bright sun in my eyes. If anyone has an app to open your eyes up, that would be nice to apply here : )

We ended the day with a bottle of wine (nice Australian Shiraz) on a sofa outside with this view. Really nice day.

Ok, back to me again - we spent most of the morning on the phone with our family and friends. We love and miss you all. And, due to popular demand (especially from Cooper), we wanted to share some things that can kill you in Australia. Since we're speaking of the beach today, let's focus there for the remainder of the blog.

Australia is one of the world's worst places for skin cancer, so I'd say that sunburn and heat stroke are at the top of the list. Also, many beaches have both sharks and box jellyfish! The box jellyfish is one of the most deadly things in the world - also called a seawasp. They are nothing like the jellyfish you get in the Outer Banks, Cooper and Ashley, so don't worry. A salt water crocodile can also kill you. They are very quick. Justin, you should google these things so that Ashley and Cooper can see them. The odds of being hurt or killed by these things are pretty slim, but it is interesting stuff. Here's a link to a fun quiz about dangerous things http://www.funtrivia.com/playquiz/quiz1955331663d20.html

Well, bye for now. Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Friday, 19 August 2011

Friends and Family

Along the lines of this favorite things topic, of course, family and friends are at the top. This week we have been missing our family and friends, wanting to call in the evenings, and then realizing that it is the middle of the night! In addition, we've made some new friends. We had a wonderful time on Sunday with our new friends, J., and P. (not sure whether people want their names shared here) and their kids. They came by the apartment, brought us some WONDERFUL goodies, stocked our fridge, and then took us out to yum cha (Australian for dim sum). We learned tons about culture from our new younger friends. We learned how to play some games with their daughter on the iTouch - including Truth or Dare and Fit or Fugly. Apparently, I am fit and am an '8,' not sure what is keeping me from a '10,' but nevertheless. In addition, their son taught us a bit of Mandarin. Anyway, it was a great first day. We really appreciated it and felt very welcome.

Then, on Wednesday, we met with some of the "Yanks Down Under," http://www.yanksdownunder.net/ who arrived on the same flight we did, E and T. Anyway, we went to meet for coffee and then they came over and Dan cooked dinner. It looks like we may meet up with them and another friend we met online on Sunday evening. And, finally, we are even invited to a party on the 27th to learn how to make pierogis! My book club starts on the 2nd of September.

Now, for a few of the random bits that I know our friends and family are all after...on the news the other day, they kept talking about "hoons." We had no idea what this was so finally googled it. Turns out they are hooligans who drive wildly and swerve on the road! Also, I'm attaching some pics of our little temporary apartment for you to see. Very spacious actually, and we had enough closets! The dryer is tiny and steams the room. We just ordered pizza and it has arrived. The food here is great. We have capsicum on the pizza (or peppers for you Americans).

I'll post again soon. We are looking for rentals tomorrow. Wish us luck. We miss you all!

Monday, 15 August 2011


So, this is my first post on our blog. Dan and I decided to do this to document our journey to Sydney from Atlanta, Georgia for our friends and family and for those who are also looking to make a significant move like this. So, why the title? The best suggestion I had for a title was, "things that can kill you in australia." I initially liked the idea, but then thought that it seemed a bit negative and wasn't quite sure where the theme would go from there. There sure are a lot of things we have learned that can kill you here, but not sure that's what we wanted to write about...

We just landed yesterday, and this is our first full day in Sydney. I've already started work and we have started to settle into a temporary sort of existence until we find permanent housing. In preparing for this move, one thing we had to do was to prioritize what we would bring to use immediately, use in 2 - 3 months, sell, give away, etc. This process led us to really prioritize what our favorite things were, and suprisingingly they did not include doorbells or brown paper packages tied up with strings. Based on what was most important to us, we had to decide what to do with our things. That's why we have called this blog A Few of My Favorite Things. We will talk about things that we loved at home and hopefully, as we come to know Sydney, things we love here.

For now, I am incredibly jetlagged, and will just say that our favorite things include our friends, family, and of course, our furry friends too. We look forward to going on this journey with you.

Mollie and Dan