101 Goals in 1001 Days

Firstly Happy New Year! How is it the 1st January 2015 already!

I’ve decided to start my new year with the 101 Goals in 1001 Days challenge. I saw this idea on Anne from Love the Here and Now’s blog and decided it was something I would like to have a go at.

I am terrible at completing tasks like this but figured that 1001 days is a long time to do everything on the list! As I complete my goals I will try and blog about them and leave the link but also will cross through the completed goals.

Here’s my list and details of when it starts and will end:

Start Date: Thursday 01 January 2015
End Date:  Thursday 28 September 2017

1. Qualify as a Solicitor in Australia.
2. Sell one of my photographs.
3. Visit Bali.
4. Learn to sail.
5. Start studying the subjects need to qualify as a Solicitor in Australia and pass them all.
6. Get over my fear of public speaking.
7. To still be blogging on 28 September 2017.
8. Visit Kakadu National Park.
9. Keep using the planner that I bought so that I can plan my life out better, not forget things and do all the things that I want to do.
10. Plan out my blog posts better so that I can run a bit more to a schedule.
11. Become better at using social media like Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram.
12. See more of Australia – I want to visit at least Perth, Adelaide and Sydney.
13. Buy a car.
14. Learn how to style my curly hair nicely.
15. Invite friends over for dinner often.
16. Get my visa sorted so I do not have to worry about visa’s expiring or deadlines.
17. Pay of my debts in the UK.
18. Save money! There’s so many things I want to do but I need to get saving first.
19. Cook 101 recipes from the recipe books I own and have been given.
20. Learn and understand the rules of AFL.
21. Take my DSLR camera out with me more and actually use it so I don’t miss the photo opportunities.
22. Complete the challenges I set myself via blog, photography etc.
23. Take more time to keep in contact with people to make sure that the distance between us doesn’t seem so big.
24. Reply to emails, texts, calls and what’s app messages within 24 hours at the very most.
25. Wear sunscreen all the time.
26. Walk more and enjoy it.
27. Get better at saying what’s on mind rather than bottling it up.
28. Learn to enjoy red wine.
29. Spend Christmas in the UK with my family and friends.
30. Visit the penguins on Phillip Island.
31. Send a letter, card, postcard to someone as a surprise each month.
32. Visit the turtles.
33. Get up early and take a photo of the sunrise.
34. Take a good photo of lightening.
35. Read 5 classic books I’ve never read before.
36. Redesign my blog.
37. Personalise our home with photos, pictures and things that are important to us.
38. Get my mum to teach me to knit (again) and remember how to do it.
39. Go to the ballet.
40. Attend 3 music concerts.
41. Have the root canal work done/tooth removed in 2015.
42. Complete the Goodreads reading challenge each year and increase the number of book that are too be read each year.
43. Have an allergy test done.
44. Print and frame my own photos in our home.
45. Watch Les Miserable in the theatre and read the book.
46. Learn how to make macaroons from scratch.
47. Visit Thailand with the Aussie.
48. Re-learn how to play the keyboard properly.
49. Practice playing the keyboard at least twice a week.
50. Buy a beautiful coffee table and bookcase(s) for our home.
51. Study for at least 10 hours a week when courses start in March 2015.
52. Dye my hair regularly so the roots don’t show.
53. Get hair cut at least 5 times a year and take better care of it.
54. Take a book out of the library once a month and read it all.
55. Buy a bike and use it often.
56. Go out dancing more.
57. Hang the washing out when it’s finished not leave it so long it has to be washed again.
58. Open a joint bank account with the Aussie – we’ve been meaning to do this since August 2013.
59. Write a will.
60. Change my Super Account and move my existing super to it.
61. Take a helicopter ride over Darwin.
62. Go on at least one “girls” weekend a year.
63. Read a book in a day.
64. Spend the day at the cinema watching as many films as I can cram in.
65. Take a day off work in the middle of the week to just stay in bed reading, watching movies and sleeping.
66. Make someone a mix tape of my favourite songs.
67. No eating out for a month.
68. Drink 6 glasses of water a day for 2 weeks – I really should do this already but I am terrible at drinking water.
69. Take a picture for every letter of the alphabet.
70. Start and complete a project 365 photo challenge.
71. See 10 classic movies I’ve never seen before.
72. Ask 20 friends to recommend a book each and read them all.
73. Go on a completely unplanned road trip.
74. Get a pedicure.
75. Watch the sunrise and sunset in one day.
76. Volunteer.
77. Plant a balcony herb and flower garden.
78. Blog at least 3 times a week.
79. Read 10 non fiction books.
80. Learn to make pasta from scratch.
81. Send a card or flowers to someone going through a hard time.
82. Climb the Eiffel Tower.
83. Do a Yellow Water Cruise.
84. Get a tattoo.
85. Donate blood at least once.
86. Host a wine and cheese party.
87. Send 20 postcards through Postcrossing.
88. Hide a note in a library book.
89. Set up sponsorship on my blog.
90. Create a guest post idea and have someone write a guest post each month.
91. Visit 10 museums.
92. Have a picnic with the Aussie.
93. Write and send Christmas cards preferably with personalised cards.
94. Donate $10 to a charity every month.
95. Have professional photos taken with my family.
96. Visit and comment on 10 blogs every week.
97. Take home made lunch to work for one week every month.
98. Organise photos on computer, phone, hard drive.
99. Buy a film camera and use it.
100. Go on a photography tour.
101. Put $10 into savings for each goal accomplished.

I’m looking forward to giving the challenge a go and think it is all achievable given the timeframe. If you are interested in giving it a try you can get lots of inspiration for your 101 challenges from the Zero Day Project.

If your going to give the challenge a go please leave your link below so I can follow your progress.


Travel Blog Tribe Hop Update

As I mentioned in this post I have been participating in the Blog Love Travel Blog Tribe Hop!

I thought I would share all of the posts from my fellow Tribe members just in case you missed them. Don’t forget to visit all of the posts and leave a comment so that you can participate in the competition to win an Amazon voucher.

Jess from North and South Nomads wrote a fantastic round up of her favourite blogs for 2014. If your looking for some blog inspiration then you should definitely check out her post.

Natalie from Cosmos Mariners wrote about Christmas traditions in Charleston here – do you think you would be brave enough to take the Polar Bear Plunge?

I wrote about my favourite Christmas Traditions here.

Andi from Misadventures with Andi wrote about Christmas in San Fransisco. There’s so much to do there and I would love to try the buttered rum!

Denise from Kuanyin’s Travels about the meaning of Christmas for her and her gorgeous son.

Barbara wrote about life on the circus train for her first married Christmas for her post.

To enter the competition please visit Misadventures With Andi and click on to the rafflecopter contest at the bottom of the link.


Merry Christmas from the Outback Expat


I just wanted to wish you all a very Merry Christmas. I hope that you have a wonderful day with your friends, family and loved ones and receive everything that you could ever wish for.

I’m spending the day with the Aussie and some of our friends which will be fun and I hope my family have a lovely day too. I’m looking forward to Christmas with you in 2015 and can’t wait to Skype you tonight 🙂



40 years ago today Cyclone Tracy hit Darwin leaving devastation and destruction across the top end in its wake.

Darwin goes on cyclone watch every wet season but on Christmas Eve in 1974 the cyclone was a Category 3 Hurricane (SSHS), Category 4 Severe Tropical Cyclone (BOM).

By 1974 Darwin was home to about 48,000 people and the homes just weren’t built to withstand a cyclone. Early in December 1974 Cyclone Selma had visited Darwin but didn’t really amount to much and so most people believed the same thing would happen with Cyclone Tracy.

A website has been created which explains about “Cyclone Tracy” and explains that Tracy formally came into existence at 10 AM on 21 December 1974, when it lay well to Darwin’s north. On 24 December 1974 Tracy rounded Cape Fourcroy, Bathurst Island’s western tip, and then moved along an east-south-easterly course toward Darwin.

The Cyclone passed over Darwin destroying much of the city and killing 65 people, 49 people on land and 16 at sea.

After the Cyclone the rebuilding began. Many women and children were evacuated to other cities in Australia whilst this happened and it’s said some returned and some did not.

At the Museum and Art Gallery of the Top End there is a display dedicated to the Cyclone. It has accounts from people who lived in Darwin when it hit, shows photos of before and after and also has a room where you can step inside and “experience” the sound of the Cyclone. The sound is absolutely terrifying and I understand is nowhere as loud as at it actually was. The Cyclone lasted for hours and just a minute or so in the room is more than enough.

One of our friends was a small child during the Cyclone and has told us about what happened on Christmas Eve in 1974. It’s impossible to imagine what that night was like for the people living in Darwin or what rebuilding the city was like.

We went to the premiere of a documentary called Blown Away which was created for the ABC a few weeks ago. The documentary was very well made and featured stories from people who lived in Darwin when the Cyclone hit. I was glad to be able to attend the premiere during the commemorative events that the city has been holding to mark the 40th anniversary of Cyclone Tracy.

There are lots of websites featuring photographs and videos about the Cyclone and I will list them below so you can take a look:

Cyclone Tracy Transitions

Cyclone Tracy 40 Years on Part 1

Cyclone Tracy 40 Years on – The Aftermath

Cyclone Tracy 40 Years On Rebuilding

Cyclone Tracy A Full Blown Hangover

Photo mapping the path of Cyclone Tracy from Northauschasers.com Facebook page

My Favourite Christmas Traditions

Somehow there are just 3 sleeps until Christmas, how did that happen!?! I have just half a day of work left until my holidays and I cannot wait to be able to sit back and relax for a couple of weeks.


I’ve also finally put up our not so little Christmas Tree this weekend and am loving the festive spirit it creates. I also watched Love, Actually which was as great as always.

Oh Christmas Tree Oh Christmas Tree

This year we weren’t able to fly back to the UK for Christmas with my family due to those annoying finances. I am though already planning the trip next year and cannot wait to spend lots of time with my family and friends (only about 50 weeks to go!).

We’ve planned to spend the day with a couple of our friends in Darwin this year. They are from America so it’s going to be fun and interesting to combine our different traditions together. We’re going to be cooking some yummy food on the BBQ and of course in the Aussie tradition will be hanging out around and in the pool!


Christmas in Darwin is quite different than Christmas in the UK. It’s obviously much hotter (around 33 degrees C versus 12 degrees C) plus there’s about 70 to 80% humidity so all you want is an ice cold drink (cider for me please) and to live in the air con and/or a swimming pool.

Last year we had Christmas lunch under the veranda whilst it rained most of the day. It was very strange being sat outside at Christmas.


In the UK also everyone wonders whether it is going to be a white Christmas but in Darwin we are all wondering when the rain is going to come. Apparently the monsoon rain won’t be coming until mid to late January so we have a little while yet for this humidity 😦

The weather also influences what we do and most importantly what we eat on Christmas Day in each country.

As a family we would probably only have turkey a couple of times a year, at Christmas and Easter so it’s a bit of a special treat and I always look forward to sitting down with the family on Christmas Day for the turkey with all the trimmings including pigs in blankets (sausages wrapped in bacon), sprouts (apparently I used to steal them from everyone’s plates at Christmas which must have been pleasant) and you can’t beat some bread sauce.

In Darwin, and Australia really, I understand that it’s more likely that you would eat some roast beef or lamb than turkey. Ham is also popular as well as anything you can cook on the BBQ and your less likely to have a full roast dinner because it’s too hot to cook which is a shame as you can’t beat some proper roast potatoes.

I did have a go at a full roast last Christmas and managed to cook it all on the barbie!


The Aussie’s brother is visiting us on Boxing Day for lunch and we’re planning a bit of a full Christmas dinner then depending on how hot its is. I’m definitely wishing we had a BBQ still because it would be great to stick everything in it to cook whilst sitting in the cool house rather than running around in the kitchen.

We also always watch the Queens Speech with my family and I am looking forward to sitting down and watching it because they also show it here for us because Australia is a Commonwealth Country. I am looking forward to watching the Doctor Who Christmas special after watching the trailer recently. It also will be on here before in the UK because of the timezones so will have to make sure I don’t give away any spoilers because my brother is a HUGE Doctor Who fan.

In the evening in the UK, after watching all the Christmas TV specials we would sit down around the table again and enjoy some cold meats, pickles like pickled beetroot or cabbage which is amazing.

We probably won’t do that here this year but instead I am really really excited to FaceTime my family when they open their presents on Christmas morning. Last year we did the same and whilst I wish I could be there with them FaceTime is the perfect way to feel part of the day with them.

Last year I even got to sit down with them whilst they ate their Christmas lunch, though I had food envy!! My Mum’s a fantastic cook.

What are your families Christmas traditions? What do you always look forward to at Christmas?


Check out the other posts from our Blog Love Travel Tribe Blog Hop. You can find all of the links here.

To enter the competition please visit Misadventures With Andi and click on to the rafflecopter contest at the bottom of the link.

The Wait is Over

Well kind of!

I heard at the end of this week that I have a place at Charles Darwin University to begin the courses I need to study to qualify as a solicitor in Australia! I had heard last week that I would most likely be offered a place but would not hear until early in the New Year when the Law Department is back after the Christmas break, so it was a pleasant surprise to hear back from them with confirmation that I was in!

I remember when I applied to Universities during College to study my law degree in the UK when I was 17/18 years old (faaaaar to many years ago now it turns out!), and having to fill in the forms and personal statements as well as just trying to work out where I actually wanted to go to uni. Then there was the waiting for the envelope to drop through the postbox offering or not offering you a place. This was before even getting your exam results. Luckily I was offered a place at the University of the West of England in Bristol, where I wanted to go and got good results so I could go where I had planned.

I always wanted to be a solicitor from a young age, no idea where I got that idea from but my Mum tells me I was always convinced that’s what I wanted to do. Everyone in the family learnt all about the law during those 2 years at College I think.

The process to become a solicitor is long in the UK because if you chose the university route you have to spend 3 years studying the law degree followed by one year studying the post graduate legal practice course and then up to two years working on a training contract.

This is often a difficult process because there are just so many people to compete with and so it took me several years to start my training contract after finishing the academic studies but I qualified on the 1st February 2010 and I was so over the moon to be admitted as a Solicitor. It’s a bit crazy I have to go through this process again but the way I look at it, I’ll be dual qualified which will be useful in the future, plus I will be able to call myself a solicitor here at last.

Some of my friends in the UK are still going through the process and I think they will probably qualify around the time that I complete all of the academic studies so we will have lots to celebrate then.