Monday, September 13, 2010

Rambling updates

What a lazy weekend we had. The weather was very rainy on Saturday, so doing anything outdoors was pretty much out of the question. Sunday was a little bit nicer, and we did the "Tuart Walk" (TOO-art). Tuarts are a type of Eucalyptus tree here. We thought it would be a lot longer than it was, but it was only about a mile and a half, and we walked it in about 30 minutes. It was nice to get outside and enjoy the weather, though.

Last week we tried Kangaroo steak! It was really good! Very lean, about 98% fat free too. It tasted a lot like steak, just a little game-y. Not as game-y as Moose though. Definitely something we will be eating often, probably more often than beef, especially because of the nutritional value. We love red meat and won't give it up, but it helps to have something that's a bit better for us.

We are finally done paying all of our ridiculous rent payments this month. We've had over $1000 (that's a lot to us!) in bills that we don't normally have to pay. Between having three rent payments this month instead of two, car registration, a doctor bill, my qualification assessment, and extra money for the week of rent we hadn't paid, we'll be glad when this month is over. Next month we'll actually be able to put some money away, and still go to Margaret River for our 1 year anniversary. I can't believe we've already been married for almost a year...and together for four! It's really cool to see how far we've come together. We're looking into getting our wedding bands engraved as gifts to each other. We want to get a part of "One" by U2 engraved on it. "We have to carry each other". I don't know if that's too long though. We'll see :)

I can't wait to finally have my qualification assessment finished. Then I'll be offered a permanent full-time job at ELC, I'll get a raise, and paid vacation. I'm already there full time, I might as well reap the other benefits, too. I like the job and the kids. And the vitamins are really helping. I'm still sick, but it's just congestion mostly, I could live with that forever compared to the last few times I've been sick.

Ben is enjoying his job. He's getting to do some real engineering work! Figuring out sizes of pipes for plumbing or something. I don't know. But it's all kinds of equations and math and pipe design/layout stuff, so he's happy to have a break from all the errand-running, etc. I know he'd be happier doing structural design work, but you have to start somewhere.

We're looking at what's available for houses/units right now, and trying to get an idea of where we'd like to live. There are some really nice units that are so close to the beach, and cheaper than what we're paying here. They're also renovated so they're a lot newer. If you click on this link you can see them:

Who knows if they'll be available come January though. But it's good for us to get an idea. We're thinking of going more minimalist, that way we don't end up with a lot of large stuff to have to sell when we decide to come home. The car will be enough! These units come with a refrigerator and a washing machine, which would be nice--if they break, we don't have to buy a new one, it would be the landlord's responsibility to fix it or buy a new one. I like that! We don't really care about our stuff being nice and all matching and stuff. Eventually we'll have our own home where we can spend money on nice, comfortable furniture, and design things the way we want it. But for now, yard sale stuff works. We want to enjoy everything we can out here, and don't want to spend our money on stuff tables. That's just silly.

We have another trip we're thinking about doing next year, maybe the year after. (Maybe a 2nd anniversary trip?) We're going to scuba dive the Great Barrier Reef! How cool is that? They have tons and tons of trips that we've looked into that provide you with lodging and wet suits, and scuba certification, etc. They have 1/2 day trips all the way through like week long trips. We'd probably just do a day or two. The prices are pretty reasonable. They also have adventure packages where you can scuba and also do bungee jumping, sky diving, hang gliding, etc. AND we get frequent flyer points because we use a rewards card at our local grocery store, and we will gain points from flying home next year (as long as we use Qantas airlines), so we'd get one ticket to Cairns completely free. It would end up being a pretty inexpensive trip. Cairns is completely on the other side of Australia, what better way to use frequent flyer points then to scuba the Great Barrier Reef?

So, that's pretty much it. We're hoping for better weather this weekend so we can spend some time on the beach and not have to run outside and pull all of our clothes from the line because of ominous overhead clouds! Hope everyone is doing well, we miss you!

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