I See Beyond The Road I’m Driving

Ok…so two days, and one hour late on posting but I come bearing excellent news!

After a VERY long, and VERY expensive journey, I received news today that I have been granted my Partner Visa!!  I think I read, and re-read, the email at least 10 times. It still feels incredibly surreal.

It has taken me a long time to find my person, and the fact that he is half way around the world makes things a little a lot more complicated, but I am incredibly excited…anxious, scared, nervous…to get this chapter of my life started. In just one month we will be able to wake up next to each other, have actual face to face conversations and discussions and won’t have to wait months to see each other any more.  It has taken us over 5 years to get to this point and I can’t wait for February!

So much work has gone into this outcome and there is no possible amount of thanks that is big enough to give those who have given up their time, money and energy into helping us to get this point.  Every single person who has helped us, encouraged us or supported us in anyway, please know that Simon and I will be forever grateful and we thank each and every one of you.

It is real now.  I will be selling my house, shipping what is left of my little life here in Canada and will be moving halfway around the world to small town NSW/Victoria Australia.  I will be leaving my job, my family and my friends here (which I still don’t allow myself to think about because…well, it hurts too much) and will be joining my new Australian family and friends in my new home and at my new (old?!) job.  I cannot express how blessed I am to have so much love in two places. Honestly it is overwhelming and something that I really need to sit with and absorb.

Here’s to new beginnings, no matter how old you are! Now start saving…we’ve got plenty of room for visitors!

~Hugs and Love~

DCIM100GOPRO

 

If You’re Gonna Do It, Do It Right, Right?

For those who have been wondering where I have gone from the blogging world…I’ve been busy trying to get my Visa, packing up my life and enjoying time with family and friends before the big move.

Along with the move to Australia in 2017, I am planning on being much more active with the blog. I’m still trying to figure out the direction I want to take it but if you’re interested in my change from the northern hemisphere to the southern hemisphere then keep watching this space.

That’s it for now…come back January 1st!!

Hugs & Love

 

Mirror Mirror On The Wall

I hate my body.

I have always hated my body.

Maybe it’s because when I was in Primary school I heard echoes of “Debbie, Debbie, 2×4, can’t fit through the bathroom door” while in class and on the playground.

Or…

Maybe it’s because I tipped the scales at over 200 pounds when I was in Grade 8.

Or…

Maybe it’s the fact that the genetics gods thought it would be an excellent idea to make my skin resemble that of an orange peel (or, more accurately, like the skin of an over ripe passionfruit)

But…

I am loved, regardless of the size of my clothes, by so many amazing people.  I am also incredibly blessed to have someone in my life who looks me in the eyes and tells me I’m beautiful even when I am at my most vulnerable…

Yet…

I still cannot find peace in my body.

And…

I know it’s ridiculous…I have run four half marathons, completed multiple triathlons, I can kick ass in any spinning class, can flip tires, do jump squats (although begrudgingly) and sling huge, heavy ropes…yet, instead of seeing the strength I carry, all I see is soft and all I feel is doughy.

However…

I know I’m not alone.  I have stunningly beautiful friends who all struggle with body image…who complain, find fault and allow their unhappiness with certain aspects of their body to control their emotions…

Which leads me to ask…why is it so hard to think about all the positives of our bodies?  They carry us, grow babies, give nourishment and hold and give warmth to those we love.  Why is it so hard to switch the negative thoughts we hear in our heads to encouraging, positive thoughts?

Well, I’m going to try.

Little by little, starting in the month of June, for every negative thought that creeps into my head I’m going to silence it with two positive thoughts, said out loud..from me, to me…all while looking myself in the eyes.

If you’re like me and the first word that creeps into your mind when you look at yourself in the mirror is “disgusting” I challenge you to join me on a journey to positive thought and love.

~ Giving you strength and love ~

If Everybody Had An Ocean

I love surfers.

I love everything about them and their culture and sport.  My trip to Western Australia brought me back to my teenage years when all I wanted was to live by the beach and be in the water everyday….who am I kidding…I still want that.

I have a thing for surfing.  Which is weird because I’m from Canada…not the coast where there is a potential for surfing, but from Ontario…the part of Canada no where close to an ocean, or even to waves remotely surf-able.  I think my love for it all came from my summers being spent at Sauble Beach….closest thing to an ocean Ontario would get.  I had pictures of surfers, beaches and the ocean on my walls of my bedroom at my cottage and imagined having little blonde surfer babies when I grew up.

It’s amazing how some hopes and dreams get bogged down as you get older and how it only takes one moment for all of those past dreams to come flooding back.

The first round of holidays here in Australia have just come and gone and during them I took a trip to Western Australia…in particular to Perth with a few day trips centred from there.  We took a trip down to Margaret River and as soon as arriving in the little town I knew I would love it.  We explored around a little bit and the eventually found our “resort”…which was actually a little surfers hostel just across the road from the beach.  As it turns out Margaret River was hosting a surfing competition for the week/weekend that we were there…unfortunately there was no surfing going on the day we arrived but we could still walk around the venue…and there were a few surfers out in the water.  I spent a good amount of time snapping pictures and just enjoying the peace that a beach and ocean give me.

After Margaret River (and a bout of Gastro that Simon had to endure) we drove back to the city and I explored while Simon recovered.  The next day we took a ferry to Rottnest Island and explored by bike and rented some snorkel gear.  We also signed up for a trip out on a boat to find some off island snorkelling areas.  When we got to the destination our guide mentioned that there was an Australian Sea Lion sighted and that we might have a chance to see him in the water…well my animal loving eyes found him straight away and off we went into the water to play and swim with him.  Seriously one of the most amazing moments of my life…I could have reached out and touched him, that’s how close I was.  Unbelievable.

After our adventure across the island it was back to Perth on the ferry and my turn for Gastro.  Awesome.  My last day on vacation in Western Australia was spent in our hotel room bed, not being able to move.  Oh well…Simon got to explore and he took some pictures to share with me.

All in all it was an amazing trip, regardless of all the vomiting, and I would highly recommend to anyone to take a trip to Western Oz.

~ Hugs and Love ~

 

Livin’ In A Land Down Under

G’day!!

Well I made it.  After 30 hours of travel time I arrived safely in my new town, new home and I am happy.  The first day and a half have been busy settling in and getting comfy and now the real work begins.  There is still work left at home to complete and tomorrow at this time I will be on my way to my first day at my new school!  I couldn’t be more excited to get the adventure started!

My flight over was quite uneventful.  I didn’t say more than 4 words to the guy who I sat beside for my Toronto to Vancouver flight and then from my Vancouver to Sydney leg I had the complete opposite…Ken…one of those people who really loves to hear themselves talk…you know, they ask you a question and before you can answer they start commenting?!  Ya.  So I “slept” the entire way…and let me tell you I needed it!  After about 3 hours on the 15 hour flight I feel asleep but only for 3 more hours…leaving about 9 hours of flight to try to get back to sleep.  I woke up again just before landing in Sydney feeling very rough but while waiting in line for customs I got my second wind and was feeling fine getting on my flight to Melbourne.  Simon picked me up at the airport and we made our way to Echuca.

We arrived in Echuca and stopped by the house that I will now be calling home and started to get familiar with my surroundings…Simon took me out for a nice welcome dinner and then it was off for my first sleep back in Australia!

My first full day was spent getting groceries, becoming more familiar with the house and enjoying the weather!  I met a few new people and am looking forward to meeting more!  Today is my second full day and I think it’s starting to sink in that I am in, full on, for one whole year!

Tomorrow is the start of the new school year here for me.  The first few days are without students and will be spent learning the ropes and meeting new people.  Very exciting!

You will find in this post my first ever attempt at vlogging!  I am learning and am hoping to do a once a week vlog including all the fun (or even mundane) things I get up to whilst here.  Be kind as I am learning…as I get more comfortable with the editing software I am hoping to make them a bit more interesting!

I will sign off for now and will promise at least a weekly update!  I am hoping to post Wednesdays and Sundays to keep everyone up to date on the goings on and my adventures!

Off for a run and to enjoy the cooler morning before the heat of the afternoon kicks in!

Hugs and love!

Can You Show Me What I Still Can’t See

Bolgmas Day 18!!!!!!!!!!!!

The meaning behind your Blog name.

I am currently in love.

Not with a person but with a place.

Australia.  It’s a love affair I’ve had for as long as I can remember and has only gotten stronger over the years.

I had the opportunity to live in Australia less than two years ago.  Not as a young holiday worker but as a mature, out of work, leave of absence adventurer…and my love grew deeper.

Saying goodbye to my life here, I took a chance over there for six months.  In order to be able to keep those who were interested in my adventures in the loop I decided to (try to) keep a blog.  The biggest mistake was that I didn’t bring my laptop and was stuck updating on a mobile device…which, while doable, was not very practical…so I was rubbish at it.  But when deciding on a domain/web page name Upsidedowncanuck seemed appropriate…I was a Canadian in the land “down under”… (for those not in the know…Canadians are often referred to as Canucks)

And now I embark on a bigger/longer journey…with my laptop, a new camera and some burgeoning video editing skills which will help make my new adventures much more exciting!

Hugs and Love