Travel Blog Tribe Blog Hop Coming Soon!

Welcome to the Travel Blog Tribe Blog Hop!

What’s a tribe? Well its origin comes from a book written by the amazing Seth Godin in 2008. It is a group of people creating their own movement. Blog tribes usually consist of people writing in the same niche, at different skill levels and tenure. They support each other and hold them accountable for their blog goals.

Sound hard? It’s not, we have a lot of fun! Proof? Our blog hop!

Over the next two weeks the six bloggers that make up the Blog Love Travel Blog Tribe will be posting on their individual blogs. You will recognize a post by our blog hop image. Once they are all live, we will be adding a Rafflecopter to facilitate a $50 Amazon giveaway. If you visit each of our five blogs and leave a comment on our blog hop post – easy and fun!

The Rafflecopter will be available on all our blogs in the next two weeks: Barbara Vogelgesang Cosmos Mariners Kuanyin’s Travels Misadventures with Andi North & South Nomads and Outback Expat

Barbara Vogelgesang

Cosmos Mariners

Kuanyin’s Travel

Misadventures with Andi

North and South Nomads

Outback Expat

Travel-Tribe-Hop_horiz

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Festive Movie Love

I haven’t managed to watch any Christmas Movies yet really other than the end of Elf a few weeks ago, which is very unlike me. Normally I watch the first one around my birthday but that was weeks ago now!

I love watching and going to the movies anyway so always enjoy a festive film. Last Christmas one of my priorities was to go out and buy all of my favourite Christmas movies so I could watch them and feel festive.

My absolute favourite movie to watch is the re-make of Miracle on 34th Street. The story is so sweet and I just love the outcome too. I also love that it shows off New York at Christmas and one day I will visit New York around this time of year so I can see it for real.

I also love to watch Love Actually. It has a fantastic cast and there are lots of funny moments where you can’t help but laugh out loud but also a few sad moments which really tug at the heart. You really root for the characters to get their happy ending as well because they are likeable.

Now if you want a good laugh at Christmas then I think Elf has to be the go to movie for me. I saw this for my birthday many years ago when it was released and I still watch it every Christmas. It was on TV recently and I switched over at the end and was singing along with the cast. I’m not sure the Aussie quite appreciated how great it is!

No Christmas (or any other time of the year come to think of it as its shown all year round) would be complete without watching The Holiday. The premise of two random strangers swapping homes for Christmas is pretty great and the characters are all quite likeable. It’s another film where you want everyone to be happy.

Last but by no means least I have to mention Santa Clause the Movie. I can remember watching this film from when I was really little and I just loved it. Even though its almost 30 years old having been made in 1985 even now it’s still great and I will watch it if it’s on TV. You know that the Christmas TV line up is great if this movie is on!

So these are just a small selection of the films that I will be watching this festive season. Which films do you like to watch during the Christmas holidays?

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas

I cannot believe it’s the 10th December already although I know it is as it’s the Aussie’s birthday (happy birthday!) so that means we have what 15 days until Christmas!?! How did that happen?

This week I finally baked our Christmas cake. We ended up with two cakes in the end because I had too much batter for the size of our tins but that worked out nicely as I’ve used one of the cakes for the Aussie’s birthday cake.

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I’ve bought us a Christmas tree but we still need to put that up, maybe this weekend!

Today we had dinner in the city for the Aussie’s birthday and popped by to visit the Christmas tree and decorations which looked pretty nice. I also loved that they were playing Christmas songs, although not sure my singing out loud went down to well!

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It’s very strange to be in such a tropical location where even in early evening it’s warm and humid and due to the build up to the wet season we’re getting almost daily rainstorms, instead of in the UK where it’s cold and feels much more “christmassy” to me. It’s definitely a strange thing to get used too.

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We had our work Christmas party last weekend which was so much fun and did make me feel much more festive. It started with drinks at the Ducks Nut which was entertaining because the 12 pubs of Christmas event was underway and the Ducks Nut was one of the stops so we were treated to pub crawlers in all sorts of Christmas States of dress. Yes even topless santas.

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We had dinner at the amazing Hanuman Restaurant (I only took one picture of the food unfortunately but this oysters were amazing!) before dancing the night away. I felt very very delicate the next day that’s for sure.

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Even the decorations used here are very different in some ways but are lovely to look at.

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My Top 5 Christmas Songs

I think I have been quite restrained this Christmas with my love of all things festive. However yesterday I bought us a Christmas Tree and whilst it remains in the box it definitely has made me feel festive and I’m looking forward to Christmasfying our home!

One of the best ways to get in the festive spirit for me is to listen to my favourite Christmas songs and Carols. I have to say that around Christmas time I do love going to a Carol Concert and singing along to all of those songs I grew up singing each year. How is it I can remember all of the words to Away in a Manger but not how to do algebra (not that I want to do algebra EVER!).

Below are my top 5 favourite Christmas songs – I am loving listening to them as I write this post!

1) Driving Home for Christmas by Chris Rea – this is a song I always listen to every Christmas and I always always played it on my last journey home from work on the day or two before Christmas. I wish that me and the Aussie could be in the UK for Christmas this year, but next December this song may well be on repeat all the way from Darwin to the UK

2) Mistletoe and Wine by Cliff Richards – now I really am not a fan of Cliff Richard’s (sorry Mum!), however this song was played in our house every Christmas so it feels like a tradition. I also have some great memories of me and my old housemate Jo “singing” this song together in “harmony” during our annual Christmas dinner before we all went home to our families for Christmas

3) Merry Christmas Everyone by Shakin Stevens – yep this is a song that I seem to know word for word for some reason and I can never resist singing along when it comes on the radio or my iPhone!

4) Let it Snow by Dean Martin – a classic song and always the top of my play list each Christmas!

5) All I Want For Christmas by Mariah Carey – last but by no means least is Ms Carey’s infamous song! No Christmas would be complete without screeching, I mean singing along to this song would it!?!

What do you think of my choices? What are your favourite Christmas tunes that make you feel all festive? Let me know below 🙂

Patience is a Virtue Apparently

For me, I think not so much but I am trying to become more patient.

In addition to still having no idea what the Aussie means when he describes a surprise for me as being “a bird with big feet” I am currently waiting for Immigration to process our visa application which was submitted in July and now for a university to decide whether to offer me a place to study the subjects required to qualify as a Solicitor in Australia as well as the UK.

The waiting time for processing the visa we have applied for is according to the Immigration website, 6 months from receipt. To be fair to Immigration, we did apply with only minimal documents at the end of July because my previous Visa expired in August. We submitted the rest of the documents that they need at the end of October so I am counting the 6 months period from October and will hopefully be pleasantly surprised when they process it earlier than that.

The frustrating thing about the Visa application process is that on the website you just receive a message that says that the application is being processed and someone will be in contact soon! I think it would be much more helpful to allocate it to a Case Officer and for that Case Officer to contact you and say, yep I have your application and I am processing it but its taking X number of months to process your kind of Visa so you won’t hear from me until at least then.

I’ve heard that the fact you haven’t heard anything is probably a good thing, but not for someone with no patience of course!!

a quiet study

I have also this week finally got around to submitting an application to begin studying again at University. It’s taken a while to get going because I had some questions and then when I received the answers more questions (trust a Lawyer to be that way inclined right?) for them as I am classed as an International Student currently.

I applied yesterday and was almost immediately told some of the documents I had tried to upload had not uploaded so sent them and now I have to wait and try and be patient whilst trying to remember I actually have to do the studying once I am offered a place 🙂

Study study.

Christmas is definitely coming

In the UK we would always say that christmas was on its way when we saw the coca cola advert on the television.

I keep seeing lots of pictures on Facebook of my friends newly erected Christmas tree but unfortunately our decorations are at our new home but the actual tree is still at our old home in the rural area so we aren’t able to put the tree up yet. I am tempted though to just buy a new tree as I want to make our house festive. I’ve threatened to drown our house in Christmas decorations, the Aussies not so sure about my plans 🙂

I have noticed also that the decorations have been up in the streets and shops for a while now ready for the lights being turned on this Friday. It seems like they go up earlier and earlier and I am also surprised to see them out and about in October.

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To get in the Christmas spirit today, and also because I have been meaning to do it for 2 weeks I finally started the preparations for baking our Christmas cake or at least to give it a go as I am nervous about my cake baking abilities these days. My cakes seem to be too dry so I need to work on that and hope for the perfect Christmas cake.

We bought the main ingredients in the supermarket but we still needed to buy some brandy to soak the fruit in. This ended up causing the man in the shop amusement when I popped in to buy some brandy today after work and ended up with this little collection.

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I tried to find Advocat last year to make snowballs but couldn’t find it anywhere, this year I found it without even looking and luckily had some lemonade and lime in the fridge to mix myself up a snowball whilst I cooked dinner (a very yummy curry I will blog one day soon) and then beginning work on the Christmas cake.

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I also love to listen to my Christmas play list this time of the year so stuck that on and let Christmas in our household begin!

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I’m not good at surprises

I’m not afraid to say that I am someone who likes to know exactly what is planned or I end up organising things so that I know their done the way I like them to be done.

Hence I decided what restaurant me and the Aussie would visit on my birthday on Wednesday (I chose Moorish in Darwin and it was amazing! I’ll share more of the he pictures later)! He told me to decide, probably a bit scared of choosing somewhere I wouldn’t like!

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On Thursday the Aussie came home from work and told me that he had got me something else for my birthday. He wouldn’t tell me what it is, only that it’s a bird with big feet? Ummmmm what!?!

I asked when I would receive the gift and was told sometime soon, I was concerned I might be busy, hectic social life and all that, and was told that if I wasn’t available then I would miss out!!!

I have spent quite sometime asking questions now:

Q – Is it an animal vegetable or mineral?
A – I think that would be fairly obvious – only if it’s an actual bird?

Q – can I sit in it
A – maybe or maybe not

Q – will I receive it at home
A – possibly

It’s really quite infuriating now! I’ve reminded the Aussie of my control freak ness and also that I am a lawyer but even my best negotiation skills have failed. Apparently he is aware that I am terrible with surprises and now I’m just waiting and wondering.

I’ve asked friends and other than an actual bird with big feet (Jacana?) maybe we have no idea.
Crown Crested Jacana Running
What do you think it could be, any and all suggestions will be very gratefully received and when I finally find out I will share it with you all, if I don’t go crazy first of course.