Kerri: "Sydney is a beautiful city"

Expat interviews
  • Kerri in Sydney
Published on 2015-05-28 at 00:00
Kerry moved from London to Sydney two years ago with her Aussie husband and their two sons, now 4 years old and 9 months old. She's a stay at home mum and shares her experience in Australia on her blog, Dinosaur Diaries.

Why did you decide to move to Sydney?

My husband is Australian and had been living in London for eleven years, so he was keen to return to Australia for a period of time. We sold our café/cocktail bar in London six months before we came over and had a second business in IT which we sold off in parts over the subsequent year. It was time to move out of London and the right time to make the big move over here.

How was the moving process?

It was easier for us than, I'm sure, for many expats as we had a family apartment here in Sydney we could use for a few months while my husband found work and we found ourselves a place to live.

What are your recommendations to people who would like to move with young children as yours?

I wish I had done more research, before we came, about the systems over here such as health care and schooling. I found that my first port of call should have been Centrelink which, despite being immensely frustrating in terms of time wasting and form filling, it is the best place to get information. I had a 2 years old son when we arrived and found it hard to find places to go with my son in the week because in Sydney's North Shore there is no central database for playgroups, playgrounds and activities. The churches often hold weekly playgroups and the council provides some playgroups, but it is all rather disjointed. I would recommend the council websites, visiting the local churches for details on the playgroups and using social media to gather information. Some of the good parenting websites are Facebook pages like 'North Shore Mums', 'Mum's Grapevine' and 'Kidspot', and a useful free magazine is 'Child' which can be found at the local libraries.

Did you face some difficulties to adapt to your host country?

Just trying to understand how some of the systems work.

What surprised you the most in Sydney?

That finding places to meet with children under pre-school age wasn't straight forward.

Could you please share with us something you like about Sydney and something you don't like?

Sydney is a beautiful city. I love the temperate climate, the blue skies and sunshine mixed with the accessibility of so many amazing beaches. I don't like the coastal wind and the incredibly high cost of living.

What do you miss the most from England, your home country?

I really badly miss my parents and my sisters (who also have young children). I just can't replace that.

Why did you start your blog, Dinosaur Diaries?

I started my blog to share my stories with my family and friends and to connect to others in a similar position. I then quickly realized that I could use the learning process of developing my own website, researching blogs and teaching myself more about social media to further my understanding of digital marketing.

Which advice would you give to people wishing to live in Sydney?

Probably to move to the Inner West of Eastern Suburbs of Sydney rather than the North Shore if they are trying to meet people. This may be a more transient community as young families move further out to get more space, but it is easier to strike up friendships to get you started. I have grown to love this area now but felt, when I arrived, that most people already had their established networks of people and making friends was harder.

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