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I'm An Expat Mummy - From Melbourne to London

I'm an Expat Mummy.

6 years ago, I couldn't have imagined in my wildest dreams that the above saying would relate to me. 

I was considering my life's direction. Where I was going in my career and where my next travel destination would be, when I came across a psychic who told me I was going to England. That's where I would meet the love of my life and she could see no path for me in Melbourne.

True story!

So the very next day I booked my ticket and started the plan of living in London for 6 months. That was in 2010.

She was right! I arrived in London in August. I extended my 6 month plan pretty quickly as I fit right into my new lifestyle. By October I had met said man - my husband to be J. Before we got too serious I had a couple of years where we lived apart and I lived a wonderfully crazy life in Camden Town. J and I got married on June 28th 2013 and I gave birth to our beautiful baby girl on 21st August 2014.

Whilst I can relate living in Melbourne to London on so many levels, I've also learnt a lot culturally, people wise, lifestyle wise even jargon wise! Along the way I have picked up some hot tips that I wanted to impart on those looking to make the move.
  • Looking for flat mates in London is sure to be one big adventure so make sure you get ready for it and do not expect it to be a quick process.  I could write a book about my experiences. Perhaps I'll save that for another blog post?
  • 'Innit?'. Think isn't it? Like, do you agree? I did some laughing and nodding before I figured this one out. Thank goodness that was an apropriate response.
  • When you live in London, unless you are walking 100 miles an hour like the rest of the pack and use your ninja techniques to make sure you get through that door on the tube, you are bound to be left behind and late for wherever you are going. Fact.
  • Even though when you first arrive you will think all your dreams have come true when you discover the tube comes every 2 minutes, by the end of month one you will be getting annoyed if it's 1 minute late.
  • The term 'English gentlemen' has been realised for me. Pull your socks up Aussie men!
  • There is something to do every night of the week and there's something in the London air that just keeps you going and allows you to make the most of every minute. Live every minute.
  • No, you don't look ill. People are not concerned about your well being when asking 'You alright?'. It's more of a 'how you doing?' type term (that NEVER gets used in Australia).
  • In theory, being just a short plane ride away to many exciting European destinations and heading there for a weekend is great. The reality is that by the time you deal with the commute (and large train fares) to and from the airports, getting through the airports, dealing with flight delays, it can be very exhausting.
  • That being said, finding a cheap fare and catching the train to Paris for the day for a spot of lunch is one of my favourite things to do. Try it!
  • There are so many friends to be made in London and many of them are expats, so just as quickly as you are making them, you will be sadly waving them goodbye at the airport gate when they decide to move on. 
  • After work drinks on Friday is a given. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday are totally acceptable too.
  • It's just as quick to walk between some tube stations as it is to travel underground, battle the crowds and get on the tube sometimes. Always use  maps to see the best way to get from A-B to make sure it's to most efficient.
  • When it's hot, don't even bother trying to get to a beach as it is bound to be packed and an awful journey to get there.  Instead find a nice green patch at your favourite local park, pull out your bikini and soak up those rays. Believe me, EVERYONE will be there.
  • If you really believe you will only stay in London for 6 months, you are only kidding yourself!
As for me. The more personal advice I would have given my nervous former self right before I boarded that flight that would change my life forever.

Embrace new experiences and people.
Back at home I had my wonderful circle that I stuck to and never really expanded. Making new friends in a brand new city is a little bit like dating, you really have to put yourself out there. I have met so many fabulous people who I now consider my nearest and dearest including my London bestie who I lived with for 3 years and is also baby girl's godmother.
Home sickness is very hard.
It's ok to miss your family and friends but remember why you are so far away from them and the things that are making you happy by living where you are. Convince them to come over for holidays to see you (luckily for me they do that a lot). Also use it as an excuse to go back and see them as much as possible (I try to plan an Aussie trip once a year).
Love. Open yourself up to love like you have never before.
I was so blessed to have met my husband. I sit back and think about the joy that the love shared between myself, my husband and my baby girl gives me and I realise none of this wouldn't have been possible if not only if I hadn't have booked that ticket but also if I hadn't opened myself up to the possibility of love when I first met him. It sure has been a whirlwind.

I'm an expat mummy. I followed the yellow brick road and have been led right here to this exact moment.

I've had one amazing journey to get here. I can't wait to see what else is in store!

K x

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  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. Thank you so much. I'm glad you liked it x

  2. Loved this post, It was quite inspiring! I would love to move abroad in the future xo

    1. I would highly recommend it. You only live once hey? :) x

  3. I'm an expat mummy too! America to London (then Scotland, then back to England, then BACK to Scotland and now in Oxfordshire!) I love your list! So many had me nodding along - I miss the days of after work drinks in London with seemingly the rest of the city on a Tuesday night! #thelist

    1. Thank you for stopping by and finding me on Twitter! I don't know any other expat mummies. I'll be following your blog :) x

  4. I'm an expat mummy too but from London to Dubai! You totally summed up London life! #thelist

    1. Oh I miss the no strings attached London life!! I've only ever been to Dubai when we've stopped over to go to Australia but I really want to go soon. I've heard it's a great place to visit with the family xx

  5. Fabulous post, really useful as we are moving about in 18 months! Thanks so much for linking up to #TheList x

  6. Fantastic! I'm sure you will love it xx

  7. You alreet? (the Manc version)

    I found your blog looking for a pastry recipe!

    I'm an expat too, I'm from Hobart and have settled in Manchester. The UK is just amazing innit?

    I've been here 14 years now, and am less amazed at the differences now but every now and then something will grab me.

    With the new Turnbull-May Brexit talks I think we need to get them to build in easier access to Aussie food as part of the deal!

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